Blue sky days · Family · Fresh air · Laughter · Memory making · Uncategorized

Beautiful Shropshire

I’ve more or less decided that I am pretty rubbish at this blogging lark…I start with great gusto and then run out of ideas as I feel my normal life is more or less just that…boring! I will try harder.

A couple of years ago we decided to downsize and move to the county of Shropshire. We knew it was a lovely place to visit but didn’t realise how beautiful it actually is and how we would fall in love with it.

The month of May saw a flock of ducks appear along the River Severn in the Ironbridge World Heritage Site. Nothing out of the ordinary there you may remark, ducks on the river, pretty normal.

Oh no…not normal at all!!

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How fantastic are these ducks!   #LetsGoQuackers Free Accessible Community ArtTrail.

They are dotted along the Ironbridge Gorge and it’s an enjoyable walk with or without children in tow. The ducks have been designed by local artists and school children to encourage us all to enjoy the beautiful surroundings. There is an ultimate reason for these ducks and that is to raise money for Severn Hospice which is local to this area. The hospice is close to my heart as nearly ten years ago my mother spent a few days here and had wonderful care from the staff.

The ducks will travel to Shrewsbury soon and then be auctioned for the charity. I am certain they will bring someone much pleasure and raise pots of money for a well deserving charity.

We really enjoyed our day out walking along the River Severn and finding all the ducks. We met other families having fun in the sunshine and children laughing as they spotted the next duck. Fresh air and laughter is a heady mix…we need more of it!

Enjoy the sunshine and always take time to relax with a coffee and cake.

Maz xxdownload

employment · School

March ….”Spring has sprung, the grass is ris, I wonder where the birdies is?”

Perhaps someone should have a word with the weather and remind it that spring has officially sprung!

I think we usually expect snow in the months leading up to Christmas, although I do remember a very heavy snowfall 27 years ago when I was expecting No 2 son! It has caused more than a few problems over the last few weeks – I did feel it was beautiful when my world was white over, still and quiet. However, it’s not such a good feeling when when you know you should try to get into work. The thought of sliding across the roads, bumping into snow drifts or the odd tractor storming towards you down single track country lanes did not fill me with enthusiasm. Luckily as I only work 2.5 days a week the snow appeared on an ‘off’ day – phew relief flooded through me! No need to worry – I could watch the white, wintry world from the safety of my warm cosy house. I did venture out well it would be rude not to see how Mother Nature spreads the white stuff around.

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Continue reading “March ….”Spring has sprung, the grass is ris, I wonder where the birdies is?””

employment · New chapters · School

Not sure yet…

Since the last time I was here…yes it was a while ago….life has slightly changed for me. September 2017 I made a big decision to leave my job of seventeen years as a school secretary. Christmas was my leaving date and I hoped to have another job to begin 2018. October saw me applying daily for employment of all varieties, anything that I felt I could do or would enjoy. Enjoyment and part time were my main criteria now. Not that I didn’t enjoy my school job I felt I needed a new experience. I accepted a job within a removal firm – lets just say it wasn’t for me and I didn’t stay. Strangely I was asked if I would come back to my old school for just a few hours a week to cover until the office was fully manned at the start of February. I accepted – no one sensible is going to turn down cash and it was on my terms so why not!

Here is my big problem I have been offered and I have accepted a school secretary job in a private school – only 90 children – but bang goes my big ideas of a change in employment. To be truthful I did not seem to fit any of the other jobs I applied for. I was always close but never the exact fit, for the employer as well as myself. So this job seemed to be a good idea. I am getting to the point hang on with me – now I am slightly worried I can’t do it. Firstly it’s an 8.00 a.m start and a 5.30p.m. finish. I can’t remember ever working such long hours, will I be able to stay alert for that length of time? The previous secretary leaves after me spending 1.5 days with her – oh dear not long for a handover! Good point it’s just 2.5 days a week – bad point is I really don’t seem to know what to do with those days I will not be at work. Other than housework, food shopping and the boring daytime t.v. that seems to creep into my quiet hours. After moving areas to downsize I realise I don’t have any friends – how sad is that – actually it is so sad I could weep…..

Will have to wait and see how I feel after a few weeks….

I am trying to think positive and smile

Maz x

Blue sky days · Family · Holiday · Memory making · New chapters · Pink calmness · swimming

Simple pleasures…

I recently had a fantastic holiday on the beautiful island of Crete. Although we have holidayed every year, this was our first ‘sunshine’ holiday for 30 years! My husband decided we were going to try out an adult only, all inclusive hotel and we would either love it or hate it. Well guess what? We loved it!

We’ve had a difficult few years and it was time to de-stress and boy did it work. I couldn’t fault the hotel or the wonderful staff who catered for our every need.

However the highlight of my time away was swimming in the sea. Such a simple pleasure you may remark. True! I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed swimming although I was always wary of the sea and not be able to touch the bottom slightly unnerved me. No worries here in Crete, the sea is so salty I could float with ease. Mind you that first step into the water literally took my breath away!

I’m making some life changing decisions during this summer and a few smaller ones. Going swimming again is one of them but unfortunately not in the sea.

Now I wonder, can l persuade my other half to move to the coast.

Now that would be life changing eh but that’s another story maybe!

Enjoy the sunshine when it appears! ☀️

Keep smiling 😎 Maz x

Blue sky days · Holiday · Uncategorized

People watching in Crete!

People watching has always amused me and during my week away it has not failed to make me smile.

My first encounter was Lilo Lil who’s always on her water bed. Her and hubby have matching cool cups that they fill up at the free bar. The cups convienently fit into her waterbed and hubby pushes her around the pool. Hubby is shaped like Popeye but without the tattoos or pipe, although Lil definitely wears the trousers in that relationship. Oh and tanned? Creosote is their colour of choice!!!

Speedo Man came to my attention around the pool on my second day. Yes, he is wearing sky blue speedos and just so we are really certain, the word Speedo is emblazoned on them. He is a man of a certain age and undoubtedly drives a Mercedes Benz in his home country. He doesn’t quite strut but is confident with himself as he walks to the bar for another drink. He likes his Cuba Libre just so, which means light on the cola! The party of four are quite happy to sit all day on their loungers only moving to top up their glasses or partake in lunch and take an occasional dip in the sea. As Speedo is a recognisable word and I really don’t want to offend, he is also known as Hakuna Matata man due to his t-shirt. He obviously enjoys his labels in all areas of his life as most people would ask for rum and coke on holiday not Cuba Libre!

During an afternoon at the beach a young couple arrived and they chose their sun beds carefully. He covered himself in sun cream, laid out his towel and settled down. The tall young lady sorted out her bikini top, found her cap, book and then proceeded to apply sun cream. She must’ve stood for at least ten minutes doing her preparation and then arranged her towel and lay down. Her head hadn’t touch the sun bed before get boyfriend said let’s go for a swim. Preparation is everything they say ….. possibly not on this occasion!!

Painted lady intrigued me. Small and petite with a penchant for Louboutins. I spotted them at dinner but are they real or fake? I wouldn’t know! She revealed a dragon tattoo that ran from her shoulder, down her side to her ankle. It was fabulous if rather unusual.

Milk bottle boy was just that – bright white. No amount of factor 50 is ever going to stop him from turning lobster red. Get over it, sit in the shade, read a book and remember pale is interesting!!

Well don’t you see life on holibobs.Thank goodness for dark glasses!!

Keep smiling 😎

Maz x

New chapters · Pink calmness · Purple madness · School · Uncategorized

‘That’s all folks!’ a new journey?? …..

Well as Bugs Bunny said ‘That’s all folks!’ and another school year has ended. Sixteen years I have been a school secretary – 16 end of year school procedures I have undertaken – that’s an awful lot of children I have moved up through the school and out of it to start their new journey at the junior school. 16 new beginnings for 60 little ones starting their education with us at the infants. I have enjoyed those years and at the beginning it was an ideal career to have when my own boys were young. No child care during the long six weeks holidays!

However, now I am thinking it’s time for a change? Often I am told that the school office is the epicentre of the school. Where all problems are solved, tears are often spilled, confidences whispered, heartbreaking and heart warming news shared and my virtual swear box is continually overflowing! It is also the place where all the rubbish is dumped – physical or mental. The one stop shop that staff and parents assume everything can be made to appear or be repaired with the wave of -nope not a wand – but usually the magic of the WWW or in lesser problems the help of the telephone and our pleasant help desk advisers! There is not a magic wand or a magic fairy or even a Minna (who did all the loathsome jobs) as we used to say in Germany. In actual fact it is I (sorry just had to do the quote “It is I, Leclerc!” -you’ll either know it or not) who sorts out the chaos and tries to bring pink calmness into the raging purple madness.

If I am so important and central to the running of the school here are a few questions I have asked myself recently. How come in those sixteen years I have never been asked to watch a Christmas performance (we have at least three including rehearsals). Yet I type up the programmes, source costumes, stitch and iron on occasions and smile pleasantly as devoted parents come to watch their little darlings. The same little darlings that I have seen grow from shy little three year olds to confident, sometimes over confident, seven year olds. Same goes for sports days and the most hurtful of all the Leavers Service when our Y2 sing their hearts out as they start on the next step of their educational journey. Not asked to pop into the school disco, unless I am volunteered to help out, after I have popped to the shops on the way home to buy juice and biscuits.

I would like to feel that I have made a difference to the children and staff’s lives during those years. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am under no illusion that if I were to leave tomorrow, yes I would be missed, but not for me, myself, but for the things that I do. I often refer to my job in the sense of throwing a pebble into a lake, it would ripple for a while then become calm again. I would cause the ripple by leaving, but as soon as my vacant seat is filled the calmness would resume again. At present I find myself saying frequently after another disaster has been averted, ‘you’ll miss me when I’m gone’ with the reply being ‘but you’re not going anywhere!’ Oh dear, I wonder what they would say if they knew what I am thinking.

I need to make a big decision and the most important point of issue is – where do I go and what do I next? My first step would be to tell my employer that I wish to leave, but telling them you are leaving and do not have another job to go to – is even more difficult. Yes, I know, I have also been told that it’s easier to find another job whilst still employed. At present nothing seems to suit me or the skills that I thought I had gained over the years. It seems I might just be the typical Girl Friday who doesn’t really have any major skills. I feel if I don’t make the decision when school starts again this September, I could possibly be thinking the same thoughts by NEXT September. The years are flying by so quickly I would like to think I could do something a little bit more worthwhile with my time.

I need to think long and hard over this summer as chaos looms and there will be definitely purple madness!!

Any useful ideas or comments would be appreciated.

Keep smiling and drink iced coffee while the sun is shining! Image result for coffee image clip art

Maz x

Blue sky days · Family · Fitbit · Holiday · Memory making

Bloomin’ Beautiful Bournemouth.

We were really lucky to be able to spend the Easter weekend away at the Dorset coast. It’s been a good few years since we visited there last- oh my – at least ten – where does time go?

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As we are British, I must of course, mention the weather, which actually behaved itself for the few days we were there. No rain, but windy as it usually is by the sea and a bit chilly a scarf was a necessary requirement. The sun did make quite a few appearances as the photo will testify!

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Departing from Bournemouth Pier our first visit of the weekend was to the noisy, busy harbour town of Poole, with its quaint, old fashioned houses. We hopped onto a fantastic open top double decker bus that took us on a tour of Poole Bay and the Sandbanks peninsular.

The oldest Pub on Poole Quay, is the Poole Arms with its distinctive green tiling which dates from the 1600s. As my family name is Poole and my parents were publicans for over forty years – I think think this photo is very apt!

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Poole Arms

On arriving at Poole Harbour we jumped onto one of the many ferries that take passengers around the coastline. We were very lucky to have a two hour trip that took us along the Jurassic coastline. We had a fantastic captain who is very knowledgeable about the area. He pointed out Brownsea Island a peaceful little island in Poole Harbour. It’s an idyllic spot – a haven for wildlife and the threatened red squirrel.

 

 

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H and I had a very happy few days away, as we’ve had a few upsets over the last year, these memory making times are important to us. Make time do be with folks you care about, life is sometimes way too busy…..slow down and smell the coffee, but only if there is cake alongside it!!

Keep smiling Maz 🙂Image result for coffee and cake logo