Woo hoo! So now the new year is fully under way, I’m getting into my ‘2015 to do list’.When we moved here back in April last year, it took ages to unpack all the boxes of stuff we had.I had to practically shove stuff anywhere or leave it stashed under my bed, slowly unpacking when time allowed.Now the girls have finally moved to a school that’s just 5 minutes from where we live (no 3 hour school runs!!), it has freed up time to concentrate on the house and the garden.The first week of the new year, I decluttered and deep cleaned all the kitchen cupboards.I was shocked to find how much unused kitchenalia I had and biscuit cutters that I don’t ever remember buying.Moving from each room, I have actually taken things out of the house instead of moving it to a pile in another room.Books, toys, clothes, DVD’s, DS games have either been passed on, exchanged or taken to the charity shop.
And it feels good.
I’m also working on my fitness.I don’t diet, instead I look at ways to improve myself.I’m trying Veganuary again but I’m more hopeful I can make it stick this time round.I have lost over a stone since September, now weighing 10st 4 and I’m hoping to lose the 4lb by the end of January.I’m now exercising for 20 minutes each day and we’re walking every week to the local woods and fields here in Chippenham.
It’s been a bit wet this past week and the temperatures have plummeted to daytime temperatures of 4ºc most days.We had hoped we’d get some proper snow but all we’ve had was a couple of days of waking up to a light dusting.As my kids get to know the routes of the paths of Bird’s Marsh, they are becoming more confident on scouting on ahead to find new areas to explore.As our previous visits were always in Summer and Autumn when we lived on the other side of town, coming here during the Winter and Spring will give them a sense of wonder and excitement even when there doesn’t seem to be much ‘going on’ during the resting seasons.
The sad reminder that man is all too careless is evident as walked through the fields.We found a burnt out Chinese lantern, I know I saw a couple flew over New Year’s Eve.It looked at it and noticed that this one was made fully of paper, no metal.But I can’t stress enough how dangerous they are to both the environment and the safety of buildings.
Walking through the woods you could see new growth everywhere.The new shoots of bluebells, I presume that this is what these are.I know they are prolific during late Spring along with Wood Anemones and Rhododendrons, later Foxgloves (as pictured with its large furry leaves below).Mouse decided to do a detour from our usual route which took us to where the new ring road was being built.This will eventually go through the fields around the woods, with 750 houses, a primary school, shops etc will be built.This is why I’m making an effort to get my kids out each week, to make the most of it whilst it’s still here.There doesn’t seem to anything happening since our last visit, so I’m not sure what is going on.
Back last year, the day before my 40th, my mum had arranged a barbecue to celebrate my birthday.I packed a bag with water to drink on our way up as it’s a 45 minute walk to my mum’s, along with a the last bottle of sloe gin and my iPhone and charger.For the life of my I can’t think why oh why I put my phone in my bag as I always put it in my pocket.The bottle of gin was in a blue glass dressing bottle I got from a charity shop, with a rubber stopper.I hadn’t tested it out and presumed like the classic Kilner jars and bottles it would be safe.
Oh how wrong was I!
Just minutes from our house, Kip noticed my bag was leaking.Quickly retrieving my phone from the puddle of gin that now was filling the bottom of my bag, we went back home for a bit to get a different bag, rescue what was left of the sloe gin and let my mum know that we were going to be a bit late.Even though I had heard about the ‘put the phone in rice’ trick, I stupidly hoped that with the very warm weather that my phone would dry out naturally.
Again, wrong, wrong, wrong!
The months that followed meant my phone went through ‘episodes’ of dialling random people at stupid o’clock in the morning, switching to speaking everything I did with my phone, not being able to switch from one app to the next without having to switch it off each time and finally when it all seemed to be fine, it stopped charging the battery.6 months later I had it sent to off to Apple for a quote on how much it would be get it fixed.This was the week before Christmas and when I heard back, it wasn’t good.After it was returned in the New Year, as I was given a bit of time to decide what I wanted to do before parting with a stupid amount of money, I went back to O2. As the quote was from a month a go and the damage would have gotten worse, they presented me with another option, upgrade.
As I’ve had an iPhone since 2011, I had never thought I’d move over to an Android phone.Ever.But as I bought a Google Chromebook last March, I haven’t been able to update iTunes as it won’t allow you to download it.The nearest like for like phone on Android, compared to an iPhone 6 is a Samsung Galaxy S5.It was cheaper than the iPhone and even better still there was money off for a limited period, so I went ahead and went for the upgrade.
I am totally converted.It has so much app space, some very cool features that the iPhone 4s I previously had doesn’t.It’s been a week and I’ve still got lots to try out.Whilst out, I had the go at the video in video feature.The next day I noticed on Google+ that all my photos and the video had been put together as a auto awesome movie.
The local woods aren’t the only places that we like to go walking.With all the photos of Snowdrops popping up in various social media timelines, we went to look for some by the river where I know they appear each year.It is a bit early for them here, as they tend to appear at the beginning of February.Saying that we did some on the way back from our walk in a garden, so they can’t be far behind.
The River Avon passes through Chippenham, providing lots of seasonal interest even in the Winter.As I’ve haven’t the chance to tale a recent photo of the kids recently, I tried after many attempts to get a decent photo of the 3 of them.Thank goodness for the digital age eh?
And finally before we headed off to the library, we pass through St.Andrew’s church graveyard.Despite being in the town centre the church is still a quiet resting place for the deceased.
So yay for having a new phone and sharing photos of my weekend with you all.For the first time in ages I’m linking up to the lovely Em of Snowing Indoors and her Point + Shoot linky and Fiona of Coombe Mill’s Country Kids .