2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 23,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 5 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

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Who ate all the pies?

diet-christmas

Yes girls its christmas, a dieters dread and guilty delight. Usually by now i’ve stocked up on so much food that the local barracks are considering me as a siege base should we ever get invaded. This year i’ve been a little more restrained although there are plenty of goodies still in store, i’ll just be shoving more of it in the direction of super slim boyfriend and mentally wiring my own jaws shut. 

But its christmas right? You cant not indulge to some extent and after 7 months of dieting and a 42lb weight loss im more than due something nicer to eat than lettuce! So as i’m happily dreaming of mince pies and chocolates eaten watching a movie, my bubble is firmly burst with the advent of todays email.

Oh look, a diet email from Jenny Craig telling me i can lose lots of weight *twinge of guilt*

Oh look another lose 7lbs by christmas email! *bigger prod of guilt*

Oh and another on how to survive the christmas holidays without gaining weight AARRGGHHH!! Okay okay i feel guilty i’ll have lettuce with my turkey and i’ll only sniff the chocolate tin once or twice!! PLEASE don’t send the ghost of January diet future after me i promise i’ll be good!!

amazing-difference

Actually theyre getting earlier this time. Usually they at least wait until the 2nd of January! I’ll be sitting with mince pie in hand, happily ensconced infront of the tv when the letter box will rattle. Heaving up my christmas tummy i’ll waddle off into the hallway to retrieve the Slimming world leaflet from the floor. This is shortly followed by Weight Watchers, Shapes and a leaflet from the gym. By now im hiding under the stairs trying to furtively eat my mince pie whilst sucking in my stomach and clenching my buttocks, mentally muttering ”i’ll go next week ,really i will”.

This year oh no! This year its different they’ve clearly decided i’m going to gain weight before i’ve even eaten anything!! So this week despite being pretty much at  goal weight and a much slimmer size 10/12 i’m munching faithfully on a lettuce mountain trying to take off a few pounds to use as a buffer. Okay take me away guv i confess i done it, it was me *holding hands out for handcuffs* 

So post christmas whilst twiglet of a boyfriend bewails his non existant stomach i shall be firmly holding mine in, giving him doleful looks and envying his super metabolism whilst malevolently cursing my own. Don’t worry Jenny i will be back on a diet in January i promise…now where are those mince pies??

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We wish you a merry christmas

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Christmas. The most famous widely known holiday of the year.With less that a week to go  most of us really are on the home stretch and getting rather into the holiday spirit. No doubt you have your presents wrapped and a gaily twinkling tree adorns one corner of a room in your home. Your turkey is ordered and invites have gone out to auntie doris and uncle bert, after all someone has to entertain grandma right?

Im sure you picture everyone seated around the table, passing food from hand to hand as you all squabble over who has more potatoes than whom. Wrapping paper colorfully strewn amongst the piles of presents despite a frazzled mothers best attempts to clear it up. Yes im sure this christmas scene is one we are all very familiar with, isnt it? Or is it?

My thoughts drift to christmases past when  they were so far removed from the merry scene i described. Memories of christmases alone, sometimes with a christmas dinner for one and sometimes with nothing more adventurous than a sandwich in a cold single room. Interminably long the day stretched and back when i was young i cried, i am not ashamed to admit that i did, never will you feel more lonely than on a christmas day alone. Older solo christmases i did not cry, for i had learned by then that i was still fortunate, much more so than some. 

Having experienced life on the streets and the harsh relentless life it affords my thoughts turn to those poor souls as soon as the weather turns cold. Suddenly presents and turkey do not seem so important and i remind myself that despite a hard year i actually have much to be grateful for. Had my life not changed the way it did and taken a more happy route, i could still have been one of those unfortunate people and not where i am now. While you are eating your turkey let your thoughts dwell a moment on those with no families, the elderly or the young. Those who will spend christmas alone forgotten and unloved. 

Yes christmas is a happy time and a time for giving yet so few of us see or care about those who need it most. Next time you pass a homeless person begging for change ask yourself can i REALLY not spare any? Would i really want someone to refuse to meet my eye and hurry past if that were me sitting there in their place? Oh we’ve all heard the stories, how the street dwellers spend any money given on drink and drugs, but who are we to decide how another spends their money. In truth in their place would you not want to drink and block out the reality of your existence? i’m sure many of you would. 

Next time you pass someone worse off than you, reach out a hand and help. Say a special thank you this christmas, not for the gifts and the food but for the fact that you are lucky enough to have a life that includes them. 

Merry christmas to one and all 

Awards for the best and worst service ever

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Christmas is coming and the geese are getting fat. Well it definitely seems someone is getting fat this year but i very much doubt the geese will get even close. As the days tick away i am like many frantically doing those last minute tweaks that make the day that little bit special. Since i really am not a fan of shopping (yes you heard right a girl who hates shopping) i decided to do the majority of mine online. It seems more of us than ever are doing so and parcels galore are flying with abandon the length and breadth of the country. 

So as my fingers tapped away on the keyboard i imagined the glee on the faces of the recipients as they tore open the parcels. Couple that with the stress free smugness on mine and you have an almost perfect scenario right? WRONG!!

WORST SERVICE AWARD

Sorry Yodel (@YodelOnline) this one definitely goes to you. Thursday 13th i order before 4pm for next day delivery and duly receive an email from the seller stating dispatch and a tracking number. So next day rolls around and i am firmly seated in my lounge (which consequently puts me 7ft from my front door- yes 7ft!!) Periodically checking the tracking i notice the item is out for delivery but as the hours roll by nothing arrives. Still be patient i tell myself, it is christmas and they do deliver until late. Still nothing arrives and the day rolls into early evening and still i wait. Some short time later i check the tracking online and to my horror it states the parcel has been returned to the depot as i wasn’t home!! Confused i look around me, yes i’m me and yes i’m in my house where i have been all day. Wandering out into the hallway i checked for a missed delivery card but there is none. Now my house is small and i received other deliveries that day with no problem, having a sofa so close to the door is an advantage at times.

So i query the Non delivery with the online team via twitter since this is the only way i can get a response. Emails receive no reply and when the phonelines are operational (which invariably they are not) nobody answers them anyway. I am politely told that i was not home and it will be rearranged for monday. Ummmm yes i was i think i should know!! I have not moved all day despite having a million other things to do!! 

So monday arrives and i sigh and resign myself to another day of waiting. The afternoon rolls on and eventually a Yodel van arrives…with a parcel for my daughter! I politely ask him if he has another on the van since i am expecting one and he replies no. So back to twitter i go to be informed that my delivery will arrive by 7pm. UMMM the van has already been and he doesnt have my parcel! But i wait anyway. By 8pm i’ve given up and it clearly it isn’t coming. Heading back to twitter i crossly tweet but everyone has gone home and i will get no help from there. Checking tracking i look in horror sometime later when i find that my parcel has been taken back to the depot AGAIN!! Now i was smart here i copied and pasted the tracking info onto a word page and saved it. 

Early next morning (Tuesday) i again checked the tracking to see if it would arrive today and praised my foresightedness since Yodel had altered the tracking info to read that i wasn’t home yesterday!! So who took delivery of the parcel for my daughter then, the pixies?? So now 6 days after payment for my NEXT DAY parcel i sit and wait to see if Yodel will pull their fingers out and actually deliver or if aliens will spirit me away so that i am not home when the invisible Yodel van calls. We shall see.

Yodel, your call? I dont think so!

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Best service ever

So far for me this definitely has to go to ASDA!! Fast friendly service, quality goods and they do what it says on the tin. I have been using ASDA home delivery for groceries for quite some time now and have always found them to be excellent. Ordering is simple with a wide range of time slots and orders can be placed until 11pm the night before. Greeted at the door by helpful smiling drivers who will take your items to wherever you wish and seem happy to do so. 

Substitutions are available if an item is out of stock and these are usually fantastic, often being of a higher price than the item you originally ordered but at no extra cost. I cannot praise Asda highly enough and will continue to use them for long into the future. Nice one ASDA keep it up!

     ANOTHER GREAT SERVICE

Royal_Mail

Definitely for me has to go to the Royal Mail. My poor little postie has spent all year laden down with my parcels and packages, all of which have arrived on time. Through wind and rain he trudges without complaint and always has a smile at the door and a laugh and a joke. Van deliveries have been speedy and the drivers friendly and smiley. Outgoing packages have been handed to friendly staff and all arrived speedily and intact.Definitely a service i would use every time!

It seems that the world of online shopping is on the increase. Ever busier lifestyles force us to compensate and it means the loads of the delivery services will be set to increase considerably. But whilst some companies take this in their stride and deliver sterling service it seems others cannot and a growing list of complaints adorn the google pages of the internet. One would think that after so many complaints companies like Yodel would sit up and take action but it seems not. Perhaps the trick is to be more aware and start taking our business to those companies that do deliver. I for one know i shall. 

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