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Thursday, 27 March 2008

Thursday 27th March 2008

I am feeling so relaxed and am enjoying my Easter break. Yesterday didn't turn out as expected with a trip to Luton which could have been avoided due to Charlie being unable to organise himself properly ( or his friends for that matter). However we visited the Arndale shopping centre and I bought some wool from a great knitting shop. I am now knitting a lovely cardigan.

The weather has been lovely today-very Spring like. I woke at 8am which is late for me and read my bible whilst the others were still asleep. Reading Job made me think how much God is control of everything and how we tend to forget:
JOB 38-39
Then out of the storm the Lord spoke to Job.
The Lord
2 Who are you to question my wisdom
with your ignorant, empty words?
3 Now stand up straight
and answer the questions I ask you.
4 Were you there when I made the world?
If you know so much, tell me about it.
5 Who decided how large it would be?
Who stretched the measuring line over it?
Do you know all the answers?
6 What holds up the pillars that support the earth?
Who laid the cornerstone of the world?
7 In the dawn of that day the stars sang together,
and the heavenly beings
shouted for joy.
8 Who closed the gates to hold back the sea
to hold back the sea:

when it burst from the womb of the earth?
9 It was I who covered the sea with clouds
and wrapped it in darkness.
10 I marked a boundary for the sea
and kept it behind bolted gates.
11 I told it, “So far and no farther!
Here your powerful waves must stop.”
12 Job, have you ever in all your life
commanded a day to dawn?
13 Have you ordered the dawn to seize the earth
and shake the wicked from their hiding places?
14 Daylight makes the hills and valleys stand out
like the folds of a garment,
clear as the imprint of a seal on clay.
15 The light of day is too bright for the wicked
and restrains them from deeds of violence.
16 Have you been to the springs in the depths of the sea?
Have you walked on the floor of the ocean?
17 Has anyone ever shown you the gates
that guard the dark world of the dead?
18 Have you any idea how big the world is?
Answer me if you know.
19 Do you know where the light comes from
or what the source of darkness is?
20 Can you show them how far to go,
or send them back again?
21 I am sure you can, because you're so old
and were there when the world was made!
22 Have you ever visited the storerooms,
where I keep the snow and the hail?
23 I keep them ready for times of trouble,
for days of battle and war.
24 Have you been to the place where the sun comes up,
or the place from which the east wind blows?
25 Who dug a channel for the pouring rain
and cleared the way for the thunderstorm?
26 Who makes rain fall where no one lives?
27 Who waters the dry and thirsty land,
so that grass springs up?
28 Does either the rain or the dew have a father?
29 Who is the mother of the ice and the frost,
30 which turn the waters to stone
and freeze the face of the sea?
31 Can you tie the Pleiades together

or loosen the bonds that hold Orion?
32 Can you guide the stars season by season
and direct the Great and the Little Bear?
33 Do you know the laws that govern the skies,
and can you make them apply to the earth?
34 Can you shout orders to the clouds
and make them drench you with rain?
35 And if you command the lightning to flash,
will it come to you and say, “At your service”?
36 Who tells the ibis
when the Nile will flood,
or who tells the cock that rain will fall?

37 Who is wise enough to count the clouds
and tilt them over to pour out the rain,
38 rain that hardens the dust into lumps?
39 Do you find food for lions to eat,
and satisfy hungry young lions
40 when they hide in their caves,
or lie in wait in their dens?
41 Who is it that feeds the ravens
when they wander about hungry,
when their young cry to me for food? 39
1 Do you know when mountain goats are born?
Have you watched wild deer give birth?
2 Do you know how long they carry their young?
Do you know the time for their birth?
3 Do you know when they will crouch down
and bring their young into the world?
4 In the wilds their young grow strong;
they go away and don't come back.
5 Who gave the wild donkeys their freedom?
Who turned them loose and let them roam?
6 I gave them the desert to be their home,
and let them live on the salt plains.
7 They keep far away from the noisy cities,
and no one can tame them and make them work.
8 The mountains are the pastures where they feed,
where they search for anything green to eat.
9 Will a wild ox work for you?
Is he willing to spend the night in your stable?
10 Can you hold one with a rope and make him plough?
Or make him pull a harrow in your fields?
11 Can you rely on his great strength
and expect him to do your heavy work?
12 Do you expect him to bring in your harvest
and gather the grain from your threshing place?
13 How fast the wings of an ostrich beat!
But no ostrich can fly like a stork.

14 The ostrich leaves her eggs on the ground
for the heat in the soil to warm them.
15 She is unaware that a foot may crush them
or a wild animal break them.
16 She acts as if the eggs were not hers,
and is unconcerned that her efforts were wasted.
17 It was I who made her foolish
and did not give her wisdom.
18 But when she begins to run,

she can laugh at any horse and rider.
19 Was it you, Job, who made horses so strong
and gave them their flowing manes?
20 Did you make them leap like locusts
and frighten people with their snorting?
21 They eagerly paw the ground in the valley;
they rush into battle with all their strength.
22 They do not know the meaning of fear,
and no sword can turn them back.
23 The weapons which their riders carry
rattle and flash in the sun.
24 Trembling with excitement, the horses race ahead;
when the trumpet blows, they can't stand still.
25 At each blast of the trumpet they snort;
they can smell a battle before they get near,
and they hear the officers shouting commands.
26 Does a hawk learn from you how to fly
when it spreads its wings towards the south?
27 Does an eagle wait for your command
to build its nest high in the mountains?
28 It makes its home on the highest rocks
and makes the sharp peaks its fortress.
29 From there it watches near and far
for something to kill and eat.
30 Around dead bodies the eagles gather,

and the young eagles drink the blood.

I visited an elderly lady from church who is in a home for a short while. I took her my Easter chocs (as I am trying to lose weight) and felt that I must make more of an effort to visit her more often.

Harry and I then went into town to collect the pottery from The Kiln. It looks great. Rosie will love her plate. I need to go now to collect her from tennis.

Off to fat club tonight. I'm hoping I've lost a lb or two, but not sure!

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Easter 2008

We came home last night after a relaxing break at Center Parcs. We took part in the Good Friday Witness in the town centre before we left which was great. The service was powerful. The weather was absolutely freezing and I didn't know how long we could realistically stay there. However the sun broke through the clouds and warmed us for the last twenty minutes or so. We then drove to Thetford stopping off in Cambridge to visit Alison's grave. During the service we were encouraged to take a small bunch of spring flowers which were at the foot of a large wooden cross which we took with us and poignantly placed alongside the other flowers we had bought. Alison's friends had also placed flowers and plants on the grave and there was a single red rose on top.

We spent much of the weekend swimming, playing badminton, cycling, eating and drinking. The eight children all got on well and there were no squabbles. Apart from Harry having his old bike stolen, a couple of keys were broken off in bike locks and in lockers it was thankfully accident and event free. Harry's bike was found by security and we got it back on the last day which was great.

We also had snow on Easter Sunday which was so beautiful to look at as we were in a forest. I totally marvelled at God's creation whilst we were there as we saw so much wild life including deer, rabbits, squirrels and ducks who all casually wandered about and played outside our villas.

I spoke to my sister last night once I got home and she told me something about a member of my family which I mulled over and prayed about when I woke up at 4.30am this morning and could not get back to sleep. The ramifications of the actions of this person are so awful that I can't believe it. I can only hand it over to the Lord and pray that His light will expose the hidden darkness of the situation.

Graham left early as he is back at work today and I got up shortly afterwards and prayed and read my bible. I am still reading Job and chapter 24 is so apt at the moment:

"Why does the Almighty not set times for judgment? Why must those who know him look in vain for such days?
2 There are those who move boundary stones; they pasture flocks they have stolen.
3 They drive away the orphan's donkey and take the widow's ox in pledge.
4 They thrust the needy from the path and force all the poor of the land into hiding.
5 Like wild donkeys in the desert, the poor go about their labor of foraging food; the wasteland provides food for their children.
6 They gather fodder in the fields and glean in the vineyards of the wicked.
7 Lacking clothes, they spend the night naked; they have nothing to cover themselves in the cold.
8 They are drenched by mountain rains and hug the rocks for lack of shelter.
9 The fatherless child is snatched from the breast; the infant of the poor is seized for a debt.
10 Lacking clothes, they go about naked; they carry the sheaves, but still go hungry.
11 They crush olives among the terraces [a]; they tread the winepresses, yet suffer thirst.
12 The groans of the dying rise from the city, and the souls of the wounded cry out for help. But God charges no one with wrongdoing.
13 "There are those who rebel against the light, who do not know its ways or stay in its paths.
14 When daylight is gone, the murderer rises up, kills the poor and needy, and in the night steals forth like a thief.
15 The eye of the adulterer watches for dusk; he thinks, 'No eye will see me,' and he keeps his face concealed.
16 In the dark, thieves break into houses, but by day they shut themselves in; they want nothing to do with the light.
17 For all of them, midnight is their morning; they make friends with the terrors of darkness.
18 "Yet they are foam on the surface of the water; their portion of the land is cursed, so that no one goes to the vineyards.
19 As heat and drought snatch away the melted snow, so the grave snatches away those who have sinned.
20 The womb forgets them, the worm feasts on them; the wicked are no longer remembered but are broken like a tree.
21 They prey on the barren and childless woman, and to the widow show no kindness.
22 But God drags away the mighty by his power; though they become established, they have no assurance of life.
23 He may let them rest in a feeling of security, but his eyes are on their ways.
24 For a little while they are exalted, and then they are gone; they are brought low and gathered up like all others; they are cut off like heads of grain.
25 "If this is not so, who can prove me false and reduce my words to nothing?"

Anyway after contemplating matters I phoned my mum who is still unwell with a sore throat. She can't swallow properly due to the presence of a lump. She has another appointment tomorrow with her GP so hopefully she will reassured. I tried to cheer her up by telling her we would drive up and see her at the weekend and take her out for dinner.

Rosie is at a party in Woburn this morning. If I was better organised I would have bought birthday presents for the twins whose party it is last week, but I wasn't so had to rush out to Sainsbury's first thing to buy some craft card making items for them. Today I will spend washing and ironing and catching up with the housework. The cleaner phoned earlier and is coming round this afternoon to give me a quote. Now that is something to look forward to.

Thursday, 20 March 2008

Remembering Dad and Alison

It would have been Alison's 46th birthday today and my Dad's 87th. Graham's parents have gone to Cambridge to the cemetery with Chris. We will go tomorrow on our way to Center Parcs. I have bought a lovely bunch of daffs and tulips to put on the stone. Hope they don't blow away as it is so windy.I also hope the stonemason managed to finish the headstone before today as it will mean so much to Chris and Graham's mum and dad.

My Mum is ill again with a sore throat so is unable to go to my Dad's tree today.

I had to go to work today for clinical supervision. It was useful but I felt I used some of the time to let off steam about the current staffing levels and quantity of child protection work. I was only at work for one and half hours ( must take my time back ) so managed to clean all of the upstairs and the lounge.

I then went into town with Rosie and bought some Christian books from Wesley Owen ( my weakness) and some underwear for Rosie.

Graham came back at 2pm and then took Harry to the O2 arena to see The Eagles. He was so looking forward to it. That's the end of concerts for a while.

Later on in the day I picked up my friend and we went to Weight Watchers. I have lost 3lb and my friend lost 4lb which is great. So I am celebrating with a glass of pinot grigio ( 2 points). The diet is not that difficult to stick to to be honest as it is just healthy eating. It does make me think about what I am eating and makes me feel in control. I know it is early days and 3lb is a drop in the ocean.

I am looking forward to tomorrow despite the horrendous weather ahead. It will be fun to spend time with our friends. Rosie is taking her friend so we need to transport 6 bikes on the car ( 4 on top and 2 on the back) so not sure what time we're actually going to get there. I'm sure it would be easier to hire them once we are there.

Wednesday 19th March 2008

I've had a couple of busy days at work but not too stressful, thankfully. Yesterday I was able to pray with another colleague first thing which was great. I really feel we should set up a Nurses' Christian Fellowship as we would really see some changes if we made time to pray and there seem to be enough of us around to make it work.

Graham looked after the children yesterday at home and Charlie looked after Rosie for a short time before she went to her friend's today. Harry went to his friend's for a sleepover.

I'm still sticking to my WeightWatchers plan and have only had one day where I didn't stick to it and ended up eating too many chocolate cornflake clusters. All will be revealed tomorrow night when I will be weighed. My friend is also sticking to the diet which is great.

This will be the first Easter that I can remember that we won't be going to church as we will be staying at Center Parcs with some friends. It does feel very strange.

I do love Easter and whilst Good Friday is a day of sad reflection Easter Sunday is a real time of joy as 'He is risen, He is risen indeed.' Infact, for me the celebration is more meaningful than Christmas.

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Monday 17th March 2008

First day of the school holidays. Graham left at 5am to catch an early flight to Lisbon. Rosie's friend came round first thing and then we drove to see Graham's parents. We exchanged Easter eggs and stayed for a drink. I am worried about Graham's dad as he didn't look very well. He was also very breathless. He has an appointment to see his GP this week when he gets the results back from his echo cardiogram.

We then went to Tesco to stock up with things we need for the weekend. I then took the children to McDonalds. I had a chicken salad deli sandwich which according to my WeightWatchers points book was only 51/2 points. We then drove to the retail park to buy Charlie new school shoes and trainers. The school shoes were no problem but the others proved to be a no no. I ended up having an argument with Charlie and leaving him in Sports Soccer as we couldn't compromise. He didn't like any of the shoes I was prepared to buy and I didn't like any of his choices which were either too expensive or they looked too chavvy. So he is still in his white reeboks which are falling apart.

Once back at home I wrapped up my friend's books I'd bought her for her birthday and drove round to give her her present. I then made tea. Another friend of Rosie's arrived for a sleepover and they are now watching 'Rugrats the Movie' on the portable DVD player. The rest of us are watching 'Sleepless in Seattle' which I recorded on Sky Plus the other day. I have work tomorrow so am trying to prolong my days off as I am not looking forward to it. I'm still praying about work and whether I need to leave.

Church was great yesterday. We ended up going to the morning service after Rosie's netball as Charlie's rugby had been cancelled due to the awful weather. Richard preached from Matthew and talked about the first two commandments which Jesus taught to the Jews in the temple before he was taken away to be crucified. In the evening we watched 'The Passion' which is a BBC adaptation of Matthew's gospel and again the same passage was mentioned.

Saturday, 15 March 2008

Saturday 15th March 2008

Day two of my WeightWatchers diet. So far so good, although I had a few problems during the night either due to food poisoning or irritable bowel from eating too much salad!

The children broke up from school at lunchtime yesterday. I watched the boys run in the annual steeplechase race which takes place on the last day of the winter term. Charlie then went off with his friends and then back to Ernest's and then church. Harry had his mate over for a sleepover and Rosie had her ballet lesson. Graham and I went to Harpurs in the evening for a friend's birthday celebration.

During the afternoon a couple of friends came round. We managed to pray briefly before one of them left. It was great to see them though.

The meal in the evening was good fun. I had roasted mushrooms with peppers to start and a tuna steak on a bed of salad for my main course with some nice wine. We had a late night and didn't sleep well due to stomach pains and rushing to the loo! I spoke to our friends today who were all ok, so I don't know whether I can put the cause of my problems down to food poisoning.

Today has been relaxing and restful. Harry's friend's father came to collect him and we chatted over coffee for some time which was nice. Rosie went to see a friend in a play early afternoon and Charlie vegged around at home all day. Graham then took Harry to London to see Neil Young in concert. He was so excited. They won't be back until late. Graham has taken a pillow and blanket so Harry can sleep in the car on the way home. At least he is not playing in the band tomorrow morning.

Rosie and I then went to The Kiln in town. Rosie beautifully decorated a plate ( for her toast) and I painted a mug with colourful polka dots. I can't wait until the pottery has been fired. I love painting the clay. It is so therapeutic. I treated Charlie and Rosie to KFC whilst I had a WeightWatchers ready meal ( which was pretty disgusting) and salad. I wanted to try them, but won't be buying due to their synthetic taste.

Looking forward to church tomorrow.

Friday, 14 March 2008

Thoughtful Thursday- Acknowledgement that help needed!

Woke up feeling stressed about all the things I needed to do today including going to the Drop- In Centre after the gym. I really felt I needed to have a day at home to rest, recover from my cold, reflect and reclaim my home. I phoned Cornerstone to say I wouldn't be able to make it today which wasn't a problem. I then dropped the children off at school and nipped into Sainsbury's to buy a few things. I met up with an amazing woman I know who has taken a huge step of faith with her husband in moving to Marston Moretaine, a village south of Bedford to church plant. It is real faith building stuff as a close friend of mine is a Pharmacist in that village and she has been praying about that with some other Christians for years!

I then went home and caught up with three days of bible reading and spent some time worshipping to one of my favourite cds ( Sue Rinaldi, Sound Travels). My bible notes are about taking the initiative which closes the door to fear and opens the door to opportunity. If you wait for perfect conditions , you will never get anything done ( Ecclesiastes 11:4 ). I then started my housework and began to tackle the upstairs. I thoroughly cleaned two bedrooms and two bathrooms and sorted out some of my clothes to sell on ebay. I intended to clean all the upstairs but didn't have time.

Whilst I was eating my lunch ( very late -2pm ) I began to realise that I would never find the time to do the things I believe I need to do this year if I spend most of my free time doing housework. So I phoned my friend's cleaner and asked if she could help me out. Although it is an admission of defeat in some ways as I have always maintained I would manage my home myself I feel it is the right thing. She is coming round next week to assess the house, and I intend to have help every other week.

I then went to see a friend in the village for a quick coffee and we were talking about how we would like to lose weight. We then decided to join Weightwatchers tonight! Again this is another admission of defeat for me as I feel I need help to shift a stone or so and despite trying to lose weight this year I now acknowledge I need help with it.

Can't believe I have made two major but positive decisions today.

My friend and I went to a neighbouring village to the meeting desperately hoping we wouldn't see anyone we knew. As soon as we walked through the door we saw two people from our reading group who were at the front of the queue. One of them has lost 18 pounds and is looking fantastic. As we were queuing up I heard someone call my name and it was my next door but one neighbours. They also have lost a lot of weight. Anyway I had a real wake up call when I stood on the scales. I need to lose more than two stones to get to the right weight for my height! I couldn't believe it. Imagine if I didn't do any exercise at all I would be massive.

We then sat through the most embarrassing talk by the leader. That part of the meeting was not my cup of tea I'm afraid. The leader who was very nice then gave my friend and I a run down of the actual diet. There are two options. We can either count points or choose food from a list. I think I will count the points to begin with and then switch when I get bored. I can't believe it had come to this! Still it will be worth it if I manage to lose weight.

I also managed to spend a small fortune: £17.95 for a month's membership, £9.95 on a starter pack which include books on eating out, shopping and a journal and £1.75 on the Weightwatchers magazine. Not cheap by any means but if I'm eating less I will perhaps spend less on groceries. I'm still in shock about my weight and am thinking perhaps the scales were wrong! I know they weren't really. My friend felt exactly the same and we were both very silent in the car on the way home. My first test will be tomorrow night as we are going out for a meal to celebrate my friend's birthday.

Thursday, 13 March 2008

Wednesday 12th March 2008

It looks like something is going to be done about the staff shortages. I was able to offload one of my child protection cases to a colleague today and I have had several offers of help. I don't feel so stressed today. My cold has gone but I have a really awful cold sore under my nose which is a sign I am run down. I am going to try and forget about work until next week now.

Graham and I went to Rosie's parents evening tonight. She is progressing well so we are pleased. She loves school, particularly the sport. We then stopped off for a quick drink in The Tuns.

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Tuesday 11th March 2008

I woke up after a great night's sleep and felt I could breathe a little easier. I dropped the children off at school and then drove to work. I spent the morning making calls and I had two visits, both difficult ones. I left my first client feeling very despondent and disappointed that the family are clearly not making any attempts to change. I now seriously doubt whether their parenting skills are adequate. I relayed this information to the social worker who informed me there is another meeting next week where I will be able to air my views.

For lunch we went to Harpur's which is a recently refurbished new restaurant, for a colleague's retirement party. The colleague who is retiring hopes to come back to work on a two day a week contract. The food was delicious. I had a smoked salmon, prawn and smoked halibut salad on ciabatta.

I then returned to the office and tried to do some paperwork but was easily distracted by my colleagues so didn't do as much as I should have.

I collected the children from school and when we got home Graham was already home. Harry asked whether he had been fired!

Graham took Rosie swimming which enabled me time to tackle the ironing pile .

I'm reading a brilliant book at the moment called 'The Shack' by William P Young. I cannot put it down and need to go to bed so I can read. The book addresses the weighty issues of child abduction, forgiveness and God's involvement . I do hope that Madeleine McCann's parents have read it.

Monday, 10 March 2008

Cold Monday

The weather is cold, rainy and windy. There have been gale force winds and storms throughout the country. I am feeling unwell too with a horrendous cold. I drove to St Neots this morning to meet up with a friend who I knew from when we lived in Cambridge. We haven't seen each other for nearly two years I think so we had a lot to catch up with. We arranged to meet some time ago and I didn't want to cancel the appointment despite feeling unwell. I really should have stayed in bed though as I am now starting to feel cold and shivery. I have practically used up a full box of tissues and need to buy some more Lemsip. It is raining and the wind is howling outside and I have to collect the children from school shortly. I intend to have an early night and hope I will be fit for work tomorrow.

Sunday, 9 March 2008

Sunday March 9th 2008

After a stressful couple of days at work I now feel more relaxed but unfortunately have started with a mega cold. I'm just praying it stays a cold and doesn't turn into a chest infection.

I had a good time at the drop in centre but had to go into work first thing to write up my records and make some calls. Some of the girls seemed low and depressed and I had an interesting conversation with one girl who was telling me about her former life of crime and breaking into cars to steal things. She said at the time she had no concept of the consequences of her actions. After Cornerstone I went into town and bought some new jeans from M and S which accommodate my seemingly increasing waistline. So much for losing weight this year!

I had a great day on Friday. Four of us went to Stapleford Park for a Spa day. Stapleford Manor was built in 1633 during the reign of James 1st ( I may be wrong). It is such an imposing building set in acres of beautiful parkland in Leicestershire near Melton Mowbray.

It took us about one hour to get there. We had a coffee before going to the gym. The gym and treatment rooms were in the converted stables. The treatment room that I had my manicure and massage in was a former stable hand room with the existing chimney breast in the corner. I ran for ten minutes and did the cross trainer for another ten minutes before walking over to the swimming pool where I swam 20 lengths. We briefly went in the sauna before getting dressed for lunch. We walked over to the thatched pavilion and enjoyed a light lunch. In the afternoon we lounged around on huge sofas chatting and relaxing in between treatments. We left at 5pm and it was a mad dash back. One of the women I went with was hosting a surprise fiftieth party for fifty people that evening! She really needed to chill beforehand. Back at home I quickly changed and went to the party arriving seconds before the person who the party was intended for. Graham had gone to a men's curry evening, Charlie and Harry to a joint church quiz and Rosie to a friend's for a sleepover. I collected the boys who had had a great time. Charlie's team had won which he was ecstatic about.

Yesterday was spent doing housework and taking the boys to the barber's for haircuts. Harry was not very happy at all. Rosie went to a bowling party in the afternoon. In the evening friends came round for a take away which was very nice.

Today has been busy so far. Rosie had to be at the netball courts for 9am so an early start. Graham took Harry to church and then Charlie to rugby. I went to collect Harry and arrived before worship had finished. I normally stand outside where Harry can see me. As I was waiting in the hallway I felt impelled to go into the main hall and take part in the service as I saw the band had one more song to play before the sermon. Well God's presence was awesome and tangible. I had arrived during a special part of the service where the Holy Spirit was really ministering to people. I was pleased to be part of it as I don't feel great and thought I may miss church this afternoon. I now really don't want to miss it!

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Harry's Birthday 3rd March 2008

Harry loved his guitar but unfortunately we couldn't get it to work and we noticed a small piece of the binding missing so I had to take it back to the shop and exchange it for another one. I went to the gym first thing and then had coffee with a friend. A friend came round in the afternoon for coffee and then I collected the children from school. Graham came home early and we took Harry to The Tuns for tea. Rosie had Brownies and Harry went to band practice. I gave him some cake to take for the members of the band. Charlie had cell group.

I didn't sleep well as I was worried about work. Tuesday was a bad day at work due to the amount of work and news of more child protection cases. Graham was away in Barcelona. I didn't sleep well again due to worrying about my visits and strategy meeting today. Anyway God is amazing as one of the visits I had not been looking forward to was cancelled and another child protection visit was also cancelled which gave me enough time to prepare for the strategy meeting and to write a report. I had a student nurse allocated to me today which was great as she was able to have an insight into the health visitor's role and child protection. She is also a Christian and goes to the church where the drop-in centre is held. I'm glad today went better than anticipated. I will go to work in the morning to write up my notes before going to Cornerstone.

Monday, 3 March 2008

Mother's Day 2008

Woke up early to Graham asking if I wanted breakfast in bed. I felt so full from last night's Chinese that I said that a coffee would be nice. Harry then appeared with a coffee in a mug that had printed on it' If mothers were flowers I would pick you'. Rosie then brought me a beautiful cushion that she had made at school with red felt hearts sewn on it. She had hidden the card that she had made for me and couldn't find it, bless her. Charlie appeared with a CD ( Westlife) and a card. Rosie made sure that my pillows were 'mother's day pillows' and I stayed in bed for about twenty minutes reading my book and drinking my coffee. Graham had bought me a lovely plant, two charms for my bracelet, some chocolates and a cd so I felt completely spoilt.

I then took Rosie to her netball match whilst Graham took Harry to church and Charlie etc to a rugby match in Hertfordshire. Rosie lost 8-1 but played really well. We then collected Harry and went home. I made lunch. Graham's parents arrived shortly before Graham and Charlie returned. Charlie had won his match. We invited Graham's parents to church but they didn't feel they could make it as Graham's Dad has not been too well.

Both Graham and I were welcoming today which was great. There were several new people. The service was fantastic as usual. I so love worshipping God. The sermon was about forgiveness taken from Matthew 21. We also had communion.

I've now settled down for the evening. Graham is ironing the school uniform and is also going to wrap Harry's presents whilst I watch Lark Rise and read the Sunday papers and my book ( not all at the same time). Bliss.

Sunday, 2 March 2008

March 1st 2008

I can't believe another month has sped past without me noticing. I still haven't made any progress with my plans for 2008. My 'Word for Today' reading today was as follows and was yet another reminder along with the unread library books piled up underneath the window that I need to get a move on with my research:

Keep your dream alive
01 Mar 2008
'Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.' EPHESIANS 3:20
When God gives you a dream, He places within you or within reach, all the resources needed to fulfil it. Do you have an unthinkable, scary, absolutely wild idea that won't let you sleep? That's the way it is with dreams, especially when God is in them. They appear crazy (humanly speaking, they are crazy!). Placed alongside the triangle of logic, cost and timing, such dreams usually seem beyond our reach. They won't fly when you test them against the gravity of reality. And the strangest part is the more they are told 'can't' the more they pulsate 'can' and 'will' and 'must.' What's behind great accomplishments? Inevitably, great people. But what is in those great people that makes them different? It's certainly not their age or gender or heritage or talent or environment. It's faith! They are people who think and believe differently. Are you dreaming about writing a book? Don't wait for a publisher, start writing! Are you wondering if all that work with the kids is worth it? It is! Want to go back to university and finish your degree? Do it. Pay the price, even if it takes years! Trying to master a skill that takes time, patience and energy (not to mention money)? Press on! Thinking about going into business? Why not? It's hard to find satisfaction halfway up someone else's corporate ladder. Without a dream and the determination to fulfil it, life is reduced to bleak black and wimpy white, a diet too bland to get anybody out of bed in the morning. So go after the quest that fuels your fire. Keep your dream alive!
Bible in a Year: Gen 32-34; Matt 23:1-22; Ps 70; Pr 6:26-28;

Anyway going back to yesterday the 29th Feb ( leap year). I had a great day. I went swimming first thing and then coffee with a friend. I then popped home to do a spot of housework and to see Graham who was working from home before driving into town to meet a friend for lunch. We went to a new wine bar/bistro which has just opened on the High Street. I had 1/2 pizza and salad which was very nice. After lunch I stayed in town to buy Rosie's friend a birthday present. Whilst I was in the queue in New Look my mobile rang. It was Sarah to say she was outside my house and was wondering where I was! I had completely forgotten the time. I rushed home to find her inside doing my ironing! She had done so much as well. What a friend! It was good to see her. I do feel I have done a lot of socialising just recently and perhaps I should batten down the hatches for a bit. Went to collect Rosie and Harry from school . They had a party and youth club to attend respectively. Charlie was at his friend's before also going to church. Graham had taken the afternoon off work to play golf with his golfing buddies so we met up at the local pub with some friends. We didn't have a late evening as we had to get home before Charlie returned from church.

I realised that my reading group is meeting next week and I haven't started the book so I read a few chapters of it. It is 'The Rose of Sebastopol' by Katherine McMahon. The author is going to attend the meeting as she knows a member's husband so it is quite exciting. I want to read it quickly as I bought an interesting book from Wesley Owen which I can't wait to start ( The Shack by William P. Young).

Back to today. Rosie was singing in the school choir in the Bedfordshire Music Festival at the Corn Exchange this morning. It was so good to watch. All the performances were excellent and Dame Alice school won, and very deservedly. They really had the edge and were so professional sounding. Graham took Charlie to school to catch the coach. He was unsure where he was going to and was non the wiser when he returned. He has no sense of direction and didn't think of asking who the opposing football team were. However we deduced he was playing King's School in Ely. He drew 2-all.

Harry's 4 friends arrived this afternoon and played boisterously outside on the trampoline. We then went to the Golden Dragon for his birthday meal. The 5 boys wanted to sit at a table on their own which they did. The 4 of us sat an adjacent one so we could keep an eye on them. They still managed to have eating competitions. One boy ate 32 prawn crackers and not much else. Harry had 8 bowls of jelly and then wondered why he felt sick. We all sung Happy Birthday to him but had to bring the cake home with us as they were too full to eat it!

Looking forward to tomorrow- Mother's Day. Graham's Mum and Dad are coming over in the afternoon before church. I have bought Beryl a beautiful flower basket. Spoke to my Mum today who had received her card and flowers.