Fifty Shades of Grey. Does it live up to the hype?

Oh dear, more proof of my theory that the more people rave about a book, the more average it tends to be. I’ve read 183 books this year and this was the biggest let-down so far.

Mr. Grey is unconvincing as a dominant and a millionaire, not just because he is ‘copper’ haired and drives a fleet of Audis…Anastatsia is equally unconvincing as a desirable character. I wish she had been gagged. Her whining might have quit for a few pages. By about page 60, I wanted to give her a very un-erotic smack in the mouth…

E. L James shamelessly trots out cliche after cliche – the erotic element was bland at best. The whole thing gives the impression of Google writing – when you have no experience of the situation you are writing about so you Google for other peoples accounts of your theme… I was expecting / hoping to at least read something inventive in the playroom area…Yes. Mr Grey has a playroom but it gets so little action in this book, I almost forget it was there! There is much more bitching and whining than there is sex.

There is fairly frequent use of the F-word, which I know some people don’t like , but still, I can’t even say the language was particularly shocking for a modern novel, but that is subjective to an individual readers feelings about ‘swearing’, to me the annoying over use of the word mercurial and ‘deep, deep’ were far more offensive than the swearing or the sex .. It would shock my catholic grandmother, but not some of her less religious friends…

It is a shame this is the book that has captured the worlds collective imagination because there are better books and far better writers that don’t get the kind of sales and recognition for their work; anyone with basic high school English can see that the technical quality of the writing is poor…

The cliched content may have been given some balance if the author had some beautifully crafted writing and/or some convincing characters in there.

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Too Lazy to go Bridezilla

I’m getting married. I’m too lazy to go full-on Bridezilla. Although I have no doubt I will have my moments…I just hope the are private moments. Or at least limit ranting to the Internet, a place where I’m never going to be the craziest person….

I have ideas, don’t know if they’re good or not but what the heck! Its our wedding. we’ve been helpful and happy for everyone else’s big day… so Karma dictates they have to do the same for is now.

Unlike the status quo in this house, so far wedding plans are going unnervingly well…

We are in love, have got this far without killing each other or splitting up…The important people in our lives seem genuinely happy for us. I don’t hate the engagement ring that was picked without me knowing a thing about it and we have 20% of the matching wedding bands. So, off a good start…

The venue

A place I love, where we went on one of our first dates have just started to do weddings. Even more shockingly, we can afford it, within reason.

Picked a date, well three dates…

Registrar and venue available on date we wanted most and deposit sorted, as long as I don’t forget to pay the rest , sorted. Apart from my panic that I emailed the venue three days ago and haven’t heard back yet…the dates based on the highly scientific method of weather checking – (ringing/emailing everybody I know with birthdays around that time and asking how many parties they had in the rain) Satisfied that my date choice is fabulous, I book the registrar and venue, only for it to rain in biblical fashion all through the date this year…

Found a dress ( sort of)…..

I’m mildly resentful of the rip-off elements I’ve already encountered. I can’t justify paying something in the region of £1000 for a dress I’ll be wearing for 12 hours, At least 6 of which I’m hoping to be champagne drunk… I’ve been looking at buying from manufacturers, all the very expensive shop frocks are made in China and on good old ebay, they look the same and come from China. I’m going to be brave and buy one, if its cheap and nasty looking I’ll do the boutique thing…Found some perfect shoes, which I’m happier to splurge on, mainly because I think if I get silver or cream colored shoes, I’ll wear them again with an evening dress. Plus if I’m going to be standing a lot, it’s going to be worth the investment.

Avoiding Rackets…

We are not rich, this will have to be on what some people would call a skimpy budget.

The current project is to attempt to grow table flowers for my wedding. I’m a fairly successful flower fairy at home, I have millions of vases that I can use, or Jam jars look pretty enough when filled with flowers -(I decided this shortly after being astounded by the wedding flower racket, among the many other rackets…) I am going to use the sometimes used vegetable patch as a flower patch next year and plan to grow my own purple sweet peas and larkspur, white cosmos and sunflowers for dressing the ceremony and reception…fingers crossed Mother Nature co-operates! The money I save doing this, should pay for my bridal bouquet to be made by professionals…I don’t have enough faith in my self to do my own bouquet – although I can’t help thinking £50ish seems like a slightly unreasonable sum for something tradition states I have to to chuck at somebody else…

My next blog will be when I recover from the quoted price of £300+ for a wedding cheesecake:( That is if I survive the ‘wedding fayre’ my BFF is dragging me along to, she claims it will be as ‘much fun as shopping!’, failing to take into account, shopping is not one of my most fun ways to spend the day, unless its online shopping on my couch with a bucket of wine. It doesn’t sound like my idea of a fun day out, but we shall see…

Enjoy Sunday…

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kindles and Iphones

Have just been called a weirdo for not wanting a kindle reader or similar. I have such nice friends… I’m not quite the neo-luddite that the love of my life is but I’m somewhere between the two.. I love my laptop and get quite irritable if anyone else wants to touch it – to the point that I have been known to cast a glare at people if they so much as move it out of the way. I realise this is entirely irrational and do try not to. But I don’t want to read books on it – in fact reading of a screen sounds like a punishment – I like books. I like the artwork, I like holding them…and even though I’m close to critical mass I love having them in the house

I have a iPod which is great compared to the previous portable players, and I’m lusting over and sending letters to Santa and the birthday bunny begging for an iPad but remain unimpressed by iPhone’s and even less so by their users. Every time people start blathering on about their ‘apps’ I want to shove the iPhone up their nose. This might be due to my general dislike of shortening words – how lazy are people?!

When my beloved-and- awesome Ferrari (makes a noise like an F1 car yay!) phone died, I actively sought out an older type model to the horror of the terrifyingly slick sales team in the store, (btw the shop was like some weird Bugsy-Malone type scenario, and more like a clinical environment than a retail one).

A phone is for making calls/texting. I have no desire to watch TV on a teeny-tiny screen, or go blind trying to surf the internet on same mini screen – a concept that was entirely alien to the twelve year old salesman, nor do I want constant updates from the myriad of networking sites – I’m still slightly uncomfortable with the idea that people can get hold of me 24/7, a fact born out by the frequency which I don’t bother to take my phone out with me – this seems to horrify many people, particularly one friend who has two cellphones, an office and a house number – how big an ego does a person have that they need four phones…?

I did toy with getting a Blackberry, mainly because it sounded less irritating than an iphone. Happily after spending an evening with a friend who has one I came to my senses. I needed to make a call, and had forgotten my phone, she lent me her blackberry and I went outside, froze to death for 25 minutes of trying to work the bloody thing before admitting defeat and going back inside to get help.

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Since getting hit by a car and damaging part of my brain I developed a compulsion to read, at what is generally considered an accelerated pace. It’s I guess the least annoying of the symptoms I was left with after the accident. Because the love of my life is amazing he gets books for me when he shops, he is pretty good at choosing and I read anything, so the arrangement works out pretty well most of the time. It is kind of amusing to me that other people are surprised that somebody else buys quite a lot of the books I read…

Anyhow, not so long ago he came back with a CSI book, even though I never saw the show – the story was actually OK, it took me less than two hours to read the whole thing which puts it in a ‘weight class’ slightly above a Mills and Boon romance which as a rule take about 45minutes from start to finish. The thing that really bugged me about this book was that at the end of each chapter there is a web code you type in and get a video extra. I’m sure people who buy books because they’re based on the TV might like this, personally I don’t get it.

Because I had the time, place and bad guy all worked out in my head, the location etc – using one’s imagination, building your own version of the world within the book, is meant to be part of the pleasure of reading? Isn’t it? . Books are Books. TV is TV. Both fine in their own right. The video thingies ruined the book for me because a good book doesn’t need a pointless video/TV tie in gimmick .

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Talking about Manager: Raikkonen ‘no longer looking’ for F1 2011 return – Yahoo! Eurosport#co#co#co



Manager: Raikkonen ‘no longer looking’ for F1 2011 return – Yahoo! Eurosport#co#co#co


Who wants to go back to the moany bunch of nit pickers in F1 – which gets less and less about driving by the day – when you could be in WRC having a good time? and yeah he crashed alot this year but he is a rookie! and not like the other rookie in wrc who came up via other rallying…so he did pretty good really!

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Hello world!

Welcome to This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!

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Atlas F1 Bulletin Board – Kimi pushes Photographer!!! -VIDEO-


"I’m not insulting you. I’m simply saying that if you were an F1 fan with more than half a brain, you would know". – djellson’s guide to not insulting people.

Atlas F1 Bulletin Board – Kimi pushes Photographer!!! -VIDEO-


except you can’t watch it – the great and powerful FOM says NO NO….

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If global warming is true…

. Despite the weather and the constant babbling about global warming, apparently the risk of frost lasts until flipping May – very annoying.


Still the poppy seeds have grown under the fleece and the indoor narcissi bulbs have done fine – god


Have amused me with two not-quite-greenhouses one fancy wood and the other less fancy plastic that is warmer but impossible to get a watering can into… Both are stuffed with baby plants to go out in May. The window sills are similarly laden and I’m forced to admit that I’m going to have to get a proper grown-up heated one if I’m to continue this malarkey…The man is getting very annoyed with me misting seedlings with magic spray several times a day, especially as the concoction leaves faint brown residue on the window frames…I started painting the planters and rose archers but ran out of spray paint and in a rare display of thrift decided to get a tin-and-brush version. I painted 2 sides of a planter before I recalled the good reason I waste money on spray paint. Because I fucking hate painting…


But the bulbs seem to be working, well mostly, a few casualties, but mostly pleasant surprises. The snow drops the moany old boy complained to his wife ‘ud never grow, that silly girl plantin dry-snowdrops and them tulips so late ….

– well screw you mister, cos I appear to have them all over the place… – hope fully they’ll naturalise into clumps over the next few years. The daffodils are out, not the white and pink ones yet, though, I’m glad I got so many different types and sizes and took out some of the masses we inherited in the front beds!


I never thought I cared much for crocus’ but got a lot of free bulbs that I couldn’t bear t do nothing with and planting the net off over 100 seemed like a chore, hence treated rather carelessly, shoving into unprepared clayey soil and grass, under hedges or trees and in the wild area I’m glad I did though because they look quite sweet. Mrs. Sparkle, the previous tenant must have liked them because we have some lovely big deep purple and white crocuses I’m sure I didn’t put in… I never thought I cared much for fuchsias particularly but am coming round, as the ubiquitous punk one and also some blue and black types and a climbing one should be here in frigging May when the frost danger is passedL


Had loads of compost and suchlike delivered on a lorry much less aggravating and laden with temptation than garden centres – cake, overpriced food that smells good enough to eat but rarely is…and plants is lethal combination. I’m bad enough in normal shops. Plus staying at home reduces the risk of bumping into people who can’t believe I’m in there! Also gives the horrid old scarecrow and his witch something to get jealous and gossip round the village…have mulched all the front and finally made attempts to put in edging and make the raised beds for the veg. After last years caterpillar riddled offerings have thought ahead- (scary!) and have butterfly protection net o the way or should have provided Royal Mail hasn’t lost the order…  


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Spring-time it’ll be worth it…

Made a start on the poppy bed – the plan is to look from the kitchen window and get an eyeful of the display. I purchased as many different poppy seeds (+ purchased some plants to go in for good measure from the gardeners world offer) as I could get my mitts on and mixed them all up in bowl before sowing so there should be a great mixture of colours. The bed is formed from my children’s old bunk bed (recycling!) and some rubble scrounged of a bloke down the road who was glad he didn’t have to cart it off the tip.

Also put in a million bulbs (and donated to breast cancer month by buying a pink bulb planter, shears and rose-pruning gloves.


I’ve mostly put in tulips and bluebells because there seemed a glut of daffs last year. Although, I have purchased and put in a few pink daffodils (for the pink beds).I read (thank God) this week it’s actually better to do snowdrops ‘in the green’ when spring finally comes…so that’s a few hours less on my knees!



New plants this month I’ve bought or acquired, aside from the bulbs for next year are:


Am happy because have found another red Buddleia to replace the one that was refunded after the nursery lost the crop to a virusJ It should be here soon so by next summer will have blue, pink, white and red in the wildflower patch.


The babies have been great at suggesting plants for their bit. Luca wanted a red, red rose so we got a Guniee climber to grow around the screen that marks the edge of their bit. It’s in a pot at the moment as I need to check how far away from the inherited rose it should be.


 Daisy wanted black tulips and bamboo with blue poppies – I have throw in some other colourful  bulbs with the morbid princess request and the can-can pansies are coming up nice in their little corner.


 My Camellia arrived and has been put in a pot as I think the soil round here will kill it! Along with some lovely hyacinths and amaryllis for indoors I got from the milkman of all places, the local garden centre was giving away free heather plants so I put that in the corner for the babies.


 Have a few roses coming at the end of the month, 2 blue moon and English Miss varieties.


I want to get a white climber with a ‘real rose’ scent for the other side of the children’s area and some lavender for edging the kid’s area and front path but feels like I’m running out of ‘garden time’ I want to ask my neighbour for a cutting or seeds


I’ve already stuffed two 25litre compost bags full of dropped leaves for compost, and added handfuls of comfrey to increase the benefit of the finished leaf compost.


It’s really getting chilly in the evenings now so Have placed an order for garden fleece, just in case. We cut down the pumpkins ready for carving this week. I admit to cheating and using weedol to clear the surface of the veg patch for digging. But it gave the incentive to begin the spade work and sow some green manure over at least a third of the plot for next year.


The compost heap has been turned, pots scrubbed, the patio sunflowers taken down, seeded and the heads left for the wildlife to pick off. The patio bed has been dug, weeded and mulched, as have the roses and front flowers. The weeds are in the fire bin ready for burning at the pumpkin party next week and everything else added to the now-massive compost pile! I got the love of my life to mow half the grass and he promises to the rest ‘soon’, (which is a good enough start for me!), Seeds collected and plenty ordered for next year. As a result I feel a little bit like I’ve been a good girl (n the garden at least!)


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indian summer

 I figured by this time of year it’d be mostly digging and sticking the long cold days out – (I started the blog, pessimistically on a cold wet day to give me something when its cold outside but there is tons to do outdoors yet) The garden is sooo beautiful still- I bet the neighbour who stood whining to his wifey-witch on the other side of the fence how I’d never get flowers from such late seeding is sick with rage!) All the flowers have gone crazy from the sunny days and intermittent showers – even the roses have beautiful new flowers this week.  The evening primrose is almost as high as the sunflowers and has produced a bunch of baby plants all over the garden! We also have little crops of cyclamen and autumn crocuses appearing all over the garden.


I managed to get the fuchsias I bought out of the ground into pots just in case -apparently potted in sheltered area, they are hardier than people think… We’ll see! I have taken some cuttings just in case

, and have put the newly purchased Nile lilies (white, navy and Windsor grey) into pots – they do Okay in beds but stronger better flower if potted and it gave me an excuse to pot-shop.  The toad lily and pokers I got that weren’t even meant to flower until next year have their first blooms!  I have got white and pink I wanted buddleia in. I wasn’t going to get a purple buddleia but when they cropped the fallow field down the lane I found a purple branch and figured I’d try to make a plant from a cutting. Sadly the ‘royal red’ buddleia I had on order was a victim of infection and the nursery sent me a refundL so I’m still hunting. The pepper vine is on its way from the USA – I hope it survives!


I’m also planning a display of white in the huge copper pot I have, -camellia, and clematis pixie to trail over the sides with a central daisy bush, some green and white tulips so far.


I‘ve started the bulbs (buying them at leastJ) and a masses of primroses/ primulas for the lawn in peat pots – (thanks to the lovely local postie who probably hates me for the extra bike weight and the genius who invented the little pots that you start seeds or cuttings in, then can chuck in the ground to melt away and feed the soil) I have bulbs for pink daffodils, all kinds of  tulips,  snowdrops and a few hyacinths – to add to the masses of daffodils, crocuses and bluebells we inherited last spring I have no doubt some losses were suffered in the digging and planting this summer but hopefully not too many…


When planting the veggies I was a bit worried abut diseases like club root as I have no idea what was grown in the vegetable patch area before us, two out of the three non-mean neighbours think it was a pond that was filled by the realtors . The vegetables are still cropping and seem healthy, not just the beans and pumpkins- carrots, broccoli, and peas are still going strong. The potted raspberries didn’t fruit, nor the grapevine but both, have grown so much. The raspberries will need to be put in the ground instead of my original pan of having them in bins. I know that you are not supposed to put them in a place that raspberries have been before but I’m just hoping the pond rumour is true and! I’m told the raspberries and will benefit from the ‘pot-time’ next year; they have grown a lot from the twiggy little things they began as! But the strawberry plants – which began as 6 dodgy looking plugs and I alpine plant, have taken over, triffid style. The love of my life is fetching boulders for me too build a little castle for them! I’ve put in some winter broccoli and green manure seeds for over winter that have cute blue flowers as well as the nutrient value – it’s sort of handy living in-sight of so many fields and mean-old-mean gardens to follow a schedule for! On the green manure/ compost tack – I also got myself an organically grown comfrey plant since I read the leaves are one of the most beneficial that can be added to compost heaps, or ground and leaves steeped in water and the drained water used for watering and the resulting wetted leaf mess used around the edge, not only fertilize but the smell repels insects (animals, adults and children too by the sounds of it!!). I’ve saved empty compost bags to make leaf compost when the walnut tree starts to drop. Apparently Clover is also great for replacing nutrients – we have tons of clover but I’m not sure if it means a specific kind is good or if it’s all good!

 I can’t be bothered to do a mass harvest, as we are just taking what we need each day an hour or so before dinner,   but expect will soon need to organise a major dig-out before it all rots in the ground – and I think we grew just the right amount for the family and to freeze. I’m going to make up some herb pot-pourri for winter use as well as herb oils for cooking – different blends for meat, fish and pasta – The love of my life tells me my hobby has definitely made a difference in the shopping bill.


I have started the garden plans for next year and the first thing to buy is weed blanketing for in ’between the veggie rows and flower beds! I might even enter the village show (if Mr. Mean next door winds his neck in anyhow!).


It’s the time of year I enlist the assistance of the love of my life. As much as I love the garden I have managed to maintain my manicure and my dignity by 🙂 refusing to use power tools, turn the compost (even wearing my sexy welly boots!), lift anything that may over balance me or deal with frogs. I have called the hedgehog preservation people for advice and rescued a couple of the prickles (well I told the love of my life what they said to do from a safe distance!)


So the gorgeous one has, been busy lugging sacks of bark, manure, compost, bulb fibre and suchlike, drilling overflow holes in pots drowning in the rain – (I figured at the top was good for winter without loss in the summer),  aerated the lawn (after approx three spikes  with the garden fork as the method in the article says and the next thing I know he was shooting off in the Jag to B+Q to buy an aerator – came back with a case of beer, hedge trimmer and strimmer also – I do like it when he resigns to his fate! The raking of the thatch business is being left for a cooler day, after we both nearly collapsed of heat stroke within seconds…I want a lovely classic lawn out front, smooth and green, blah, blah – but out the back I ‘m going for a wildflower seed mix which looks so pretty (and allegedly is good for the planet’s wild life)


I’ve decided the horrid funeral-ground- type hedges are going next year as he has the right tool for it, but as I have n’ told him about the wild flower grass I want to put in before the end of the month I’m picking the battles in order of urgency (if all else fails I can always resort to dousing the morbid looking bushes with weed killer while he sleeps and claim them as victims of frost!

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