Thursday, January 31, 2008

Snow Alert!

The city, actually the Province, is on snow alert tonight. Such is the severity of the expected snow that schools were emailed by the governing education authorities to warn them of it so plans could be formulated in the event of staff and pupils being snowed out of school.

My kids were told today that if there was snow to stay at home. Well, that's what the youngest said. I think memories of our last snow day about three weeks ago lie heavy in her mind ;-) The more senior child told me that if there was snow he had to listen to the radio to see if the school was open or not.

If you ask me, the whole things smacks of teachers wanting an extra day off ;-p

So they are sitting at their respective windows, waiting for the snow. Unfortunately at the minute there are only gale force winds, but the BBC are prediciting snowfalls from 6am tomorrow until 3pm in the afternoon.

I wonder what the teachers' plan is for being snowed into school?? I hope it includes porridge - my Dolly loves her porridge on a Saturday morning!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The ATM has failed

I do remember thinking, as I walked towards the 'hole in the wall' last Saturday night, that the writing looked a bit slanty on the screen, but such was my urgency for cash I sort of ignored my thinking.

Which is why, when the machine went clunk, clunk, clunk once, twice three times too many, I sort of thought maybe I should have trusted my first instinct. But the screen said that the machine was counting my money and I trusted it implicitly, even though I was thinking 'I only wanted £20 and it sounds like it's counting out £200 ... in fivers!'

In fact, it was taking so long, I let the man behind me see the message on the screen as I'm sure he's thinking 'this doll's put in the wrong pin number and it's eating her card.'

And then the final clunk. Followed by silence. No whirring of doors opening to spit out cash or card. I'm left standing with my hand in mid-air waiting to catch whichever the machine decides to spew out first to discover it's constipated and nothings coming. And the message on the screen says 'the ATM has failed'.

That's when I start doing the irrational things that draw attention to myself, like responding to the machine saying 'what do you mean failed?'. I knew there was no point kicking it because it was embedded into a brick wall and I was never one for self-harming, so the next logical thing to do seemed to be the slide up the door where the money comes out to see if theres any there for me. Of course there's not.

I didn't have much success when I tried to stick my fingers into the 2 mm wide slot to try and retrieve my card either, so I spoke to it again and demanded that it give me back my card. I pushed a few of its buttons just for good measure - well, it had pushed a right few of mine so I reckoned at least we'd be even.

As I moved in to try and look down the 2mm slot to see if I could see my card the man behind asked was everything OK. I told him the ATM had failed and pointed at the screen, only to see that the message now read 'Welcome, please insert your card'. He disappeared rather quickly, I'm not sure what worried him more - losing his card or me.

I had an urge to stick over the slot with sellotape just in case the machine decided to spit my card back out while I went into the shop to report the incident, but I didn't have any sellotape.

The spotty faced youth (that's an exact description) inside the shop had obviously been watching because as soon as I set foot across his threshold he mumbled 'it's not my problem' and then, just to clarify who's side of the war he was on: 'it worked alright until you came.' Part of me wished I'd just filled up with petrol and wasn't able to pay him. Alas, no.

Such began a week with no cash, no cashcard and no debit card. And no husband to bail me out as he was still skiing in blissful ignorance of my dilemma. Of course, I had my credit card, but gone are the days of signing a slip and I can't remember the pin so keep trying to punch in my photocopy ID from work. Have you tried to pay by cheque recently? Nowhere takes them.

Not that I had the card to guarantee them anyway ...


At Christmas we were given a voucher for a photo session with Venture. I was really excited about this because

a) we've not had a family photo taken since the Dolly was 2 weeks old, and
b) I love the Venture style

Traditional photoshoot this was not!

Friday was the designated day, and we spent an hour in the studio chasing each other round, playing with a rugby ball and on bouncy hoppers, being beaten up by the kids and rolling round the floor on top of each other.

It'll be interesting to see what comes out of it ... watch this space ...

Sunday, January 20, 2008


Is that George Clooney who crash-landed the BA plane in Heathrow this week??

Friday, January 18, 2008

My life is trickling down my nostrils and dripping off the end of my nose

Indeed, I think I might have man-flu. Yes, it's that bad. And if I knew which bl%dy man had given me it this week of all weeks, I'd kill him.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Answers in the 'comments' please

I appear to be mathematically challenged. I didn't think I was until my son started to get maths homework. I think I first realised when I started to leave the more complicated stuff for the engineer in the family to work out. Not that I purposely left it. No, I just would drag out all the other stuff until my hubby arrived home and then - oh look, there's only the maths left to do!

Here is tonights maths homework. I challenge you to see how many you can get, never mind how many you can get right!
  1. 4 equal sides but no right angles
  2. 6 equal sides
  3. a triangle with 3 equal sides
  4. 1 curved side with no angles
  5. 5 lines of symmetry
  6. a triangle with 2 equal sides
  7. a four sided shape but no parallel sides
  8. 4 sides, 4 right angles and 2 lines of symmetry
  9. 4 equal sides and 4 lines of symmetry
  10. a triangle with a corner
  11. Now write a clue for a 'parallelogram'
In true Nancy Mon style, there is a prize for the winner-the person with the most correct answers gets to be my online support for all maths homework whilst the engineer is away skiing this week :-)

PS Pluto, I expect an entry from you, and no collaborating with the maths department at work!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Need a laugh?

This post on Steve's blog is just too funny. What a nutter!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Bloggers Block

I'm not often stuck for words, and my life is such that there are usually blog-worthy events occuring, but at the minute I'm suffering a bit from bloggers block. But as tonight I had my 3000th hit, I thought I really ought to blog about something.

Just on the note of the 3000th hit - hello mum! She reads my blog three times a day (this I know by the power of Sitemeter) even when she knows I'm at work and can't update. And for the record, if you're listed over there on the right, she reads your blog at least three times a day too. She also frequently instigates conversations about you all! So, just so you all don't feel it's a bit one way, let me tell you a great story about my mum.

Many years ago we went on a family skiing holiday (I know, you can tell already that there's going to be a disaster involved here). Before we set off, mum and dad took us to the artificial slope and we all had some lessons. Picture the scene; the class of about 8-10 beginners all lined up along the side of the slope, each in turn stepping out and starting down the hill doing snowplough turns.

And then it was mums turn. She started off fine, but she was a bit 'all snowplough and no turn' with the result that she skiied into the line of waiting beginners on the side of the slope, knocking them all down like dominoes. Every single last one.

Not content with that, just before she skiied off the side of the slope onto the grass, she pulled off the most phenomenal snowplough that pulled her right back onto the slope, straight into the path of the student who had set off before her, knocking him down too. If I remember correctly, Dad got a broken finger out of the whole incident.

Most people would have given up after that, not my mum. I remember standing at the bottom of the slope later that night and overhearing two Mummies (who were watching their kids, also in our ski class) saying 'Look, here comes that woman in the green hat again.' In fact, punters were coming out of the clubhouse with their beers to spectate!

Turns out my hubby (I didn't know him then) was teaching at the same ski-slope at that time, although not on that night, and even HE got to hear of the 'woman in the green hat'! Imagine the pride he must have felt so many years later to be able to tell his coaching colleagues that HE was marrying the daughter of the legendary 'woman in the green hat'. Though to be fair, she wore a brown hat to our wedding. The type you'd wear with a camel coat, but thats a whole new blog!

Bless you mum, now the blogging world knows where I get it from!

Sunday, January 06, 2008

High School Musical meets RiverDance

I'm so dead if she sees this ...

Friday, January 04, 2008

I hope he says 'No'

Bill Clinton has been invited back to Northern Ireland for a party.

The first time he was here, I was on the slab for surgery to remove my tonsils. The second time he was here, I was on the slab for surgery to remove my daughter.

Snow Day

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

"Days Like This - The Big Match"

This is a short animation by a local company which is to be aired on TV sometime soon.

It's a nice wee story, but the reason I have posted it here is because my son was the 'model' they used to produce the animation of the young boy and he had an absolute ball.

Thanks to all concerned for this priceless opportunity!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

After Dinner Entertainment

We had dinner at mum's today. A very nice, relaxed, civilised affair - so how we got from that to this, I just don't know.

After we had eaten my son suddenly says 'look what I can do'. He then pulls his trousers up past his knees, lies on the floor on his back and curls up in the foetal position with his knees tucked up against his chest. He grabs the underside of his knees with his hands and starts kicking his legs up and down like billy-o. To produce farting noises, from his knees.

My son is eight. He has a legal right to do these kind of things. My daughter is seven. She also can get away with such behaviour. It should have stopped there, but when she said 'mummy, you have a go' ...

Then hubby had a go, but we had to be careful he didn't sneak a real one in; I'm sure dad would have joined in too had there been any more room on the floor. I don't think mum could quite take it in, especially when the doorbell rang and she had to answer the door to a symphony of farting noises coming from the next room.

Great icebreaker, should you ever need one.