VS the hedge

We moved into a house with a evergreen giant hedge down the front side of the drive and wandering past the extended kitchen.

I dislike evergreen hedges a lot, so it had to go. Although I was surprised at the sheer level of interest from my parents in the hedge meant I got lots and lots of emails asking if it had been removed yet.

wickes block paving

(Photo from Wickes)

It is our border so, by my calculations, is our hedge, which means I didn’t need the neighbours permission to remove it.. but the Other Half said we should inform them.

I was concerned that they might have some crazy Stockholm syndrome about the hedge and want to keep it, but it turned out they wanted rid of it so they could block pave their driveway… now I know we’ve moved into suburbia.

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Curious: Feeding birds VS Google – I didn’t need to know *that*

As part of giving the house cats cats interactive entertainment we bought a rather large and high bird feeder to put in the backgarden by the full length windows.

It took a couple of weeks for the birds to overcome their fear of new stuff but we are starting to have a few more regular birds in the garden – it turns out that starlings really like fatballs!

magpies

(Photo from rspb.org.uk – who rather gloss over the eating-other-birds-alive part)

This morning we had the first Magpie, but he wasn’t looking convinced at the bird food on offer.

So I googled “magpies eat” – the 2nd result is a YouTube video of a magpie eating a live bird. Bad Google.

I am now somewhat less fussed about if the magpies like what we are offering them, after all they can always eat the pigeons…

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Nails: Loch Ness Monster

Sometimes it is nice to have something random, even if it doesn’t make any sense or serve any purpose, so Nessie nails.

nessie nails

(Photo from Pinterest)

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Film: Robin Hood (2010) – “If you thought it was hard getting wages from him when he was alive, try getting wages from a dead king”

Apparently I’d forgotten that I’d already seen ‘Robin Hood’ as directed by Ridley Scott and starring Russell Crowe.

To  be fair I did remember it pretty quickly and then it felt like it went on for at least 5 hours – apparently it is really only 2.5 hours.

robin hood film poster

The plot is basically a pre-sequel of the normal bits of the legend that people focus on and really made me miss the 1973 Disney version.

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Book: A. R. Winters’ ‘Innocent in Las Vegas’ – “The closest I came to romance in my own life was when I bought heart-shaped boxes”

I decided that it would be fun to download some random free Kindle books to see what I could find – the emphasis being on *free*.

This is nothing to do with my recent shock credit card bill after replacing all the furniture in the bedroom as the previous owners had built in the most hideous set of units.

My starting point was a romantic-comedy, despite it not being my preferred genre, but the cover was so pink that it was eye-catching.

innocent in las vegas

Plotwise, Tiffany Black works as a croupier in a casino and loves cupcakes – no I don’t know why we needed to know that, I guess Winters thought it made her heroine quirky.

Tiff wants to be a Private Investigator and nearly has her license – she also has her first case… investigating the murder of a casino-mogul who may not have been murdered by his stripper wife…

For a rom-com there wasn’t much rom and the ending felt really abrupt and like the male led was being deliberately pushed away – random.

The writing was light and fluffy, which works for the genre, but there was nothing that will be memorable in a week’s time- which is fine as a) I didn’t pay for it and b) I remember too much junk anyway.

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Yoga: Utkatasana Explosions – Laughing whilst falling

I recently came across the concept of utkatasana explosions, this was a complete curveball and also very exciting!

Utkatasana, which seems to be pronounced OOT-kah-tah-sahn by most of the yoga teachers I’ve worked with, is also known as chair pose and has  never been massively popular in any yoga class that I’ve attended. It involves bending your knees as it you are going to sit down… and then hanging out in that position!

 Yoga Journal has a good description of the core pose, but basically:

  • You stand tall with your feet as together as you can
  • Raise your arms above your head at about 90% – aka perpendicular, with your palms facing inwards.
  • Bend your knees, the aim is to have the thighs nearly parallel to the floor – the reality may be very different!

The explosion element is then lifting up one leg and tucking into a ball whilst standing on the remaining leg, then popping out into a stretch with all three non-standing limbs.

I am wobbly as heck at the moment still, but it is fun!

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Food: Olives – No animal parts

After the Gu surprise I’ve decided that it might be a good time to start treating my body a little more like a temple, so I decided to try eating olives again. I don’t actually really like them, but I keep hearing that they are good for me

 Last time I tried eating them for a bit with only the vaguest of ideas about why they were good for me – and also with no idea of sensible serving size!

 I did look at a variety of random internet pages and the consensus olives in small doses are generally deemed ok – this being under 100 grams or somewhere between 4 and 8 olives.

They are healthy because they contain mono-unsaturated fatty acids which promote good cholesterol and also something called oleocanthal which *might* have anti-inflammatory properties – if it helps my knee I will try anything!

 Black olives are supposed to be particularly healthy and you need to avoid dodgy genetically modified oils such as Canola.

As the Mediterranean diet is still being pushed as being fab this is probably worth the effort of choking the darn things down.    

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