Monday, 13 November 2017

Scamming Season

 Last week I was almost caught by a scammer on email and I thought I would share my experience with you so that you too don't get caught out.

My friend was moving from a large 3 bedroomed house to a small 2 bedroom bungalow and as I sold a few things on a local selling site she asked me if I would list some of her things. This had gone very well up until last week.

All the adverts are maked "PICK UP ONLY" as I can't be doing with working out the postage and it's a local selling site anyway, also listed was my friends phone number and not my email address. I had listed some curtains and accessories for my friend and she had a text message asking to comunicate by email. Well her computer was all packed up so I did it for her. The buyer wanted to buy the curtains for her cousin but couldn't pick them up as she was in a wheelchair and had recently had a heart operation so would it be possible to post them. It was agreed and she would pay through paypal. My friend doesn't have an account (another reason for pick up only) so we used mine.
The payment email came through with £200 more than the asking price. I though this was rather strange. At the same time the buyer sent me another messages saying that she has arranged for a courier to come and pick up the parcel and the extra she had sent had to be paid in cash through instamoney/instacash/instapay or something like that, I can't remeber now. Anyway, I didn't like the sound of that. further down was some more details the name of the person to recieve the package and the country, Nigeria. No way no, no, no, no this sounded so wrong. I phoned my friend and said I didn't like it and felt very suspitious. After our chat I phoned PayPals and explained about the email. The very helpful chap I was speaking to told me, amongst other things, that they only send out emails that are addressed "Dear 1st name and 2nd name" and as mine was addessed "Hi email" I should just delete it and do nothing. Which is what I did.
Later in the day I was checking my emails and I had another from the buyer asking if I'd made made the payment yet and if not could I do it ASAP. My reply was - Nope. You're busted. See ya. And I've not heard anything else.

Scammers really prey on people at this time of year when they are busy working and doing a lot of shopping on line and waiting for parcels. In the past we have had cards put through the door. Looks like they're from the post office and you have to phone to arrange redelivery. It's not, and don't ring the number because as soon as you do you are charged £100's.

If you are aware of any other scams please share them here or on your blog to keep our readers safe.


Monday, 16 October 2017

Best Laid Plans.....

I must apologise for being away so long but sometimes things just don't go to plan and there is nothing you can do about it. I planned to return to writing after the Christmas celebrations and now it's nearly the next ones.

The week before last Christmas my father-in-law, Tom, was rushed into hospital with abdominal pains that turned out to be a twisted gut. When the Dr finally made the decision to operate, just into the new year, it was too late his body had started to shut down and was given just a few days. Tom passed away peacefully with Margaret (his wife) and Linda (oldest daughter) at his bed side. He had a lovely funeral and wake afterwards and later in the afternoon the children were playing with paper aeroplanes made by some adults (I'm guilty, I made the first one). I feel Tom would have approved (he was a lovely man and loved all his family very much). At Christmas there is often a paper ball fight back and forth across the small living room and at their 60th wedding anniversary celebrations (at the same hotel as the wake) there were paper aeroplanes going up and down the table. The in-laws are a fun family and I'm very happy to be part of it.

Just a few week later my dad was having tests done. He'd not been feeling well for a while and although he had been seeing the Dr was not getting any better. About 2 weeks later after spending some time in hospital they finally diagnosed him with terminal stomach cancer. This was too much of a shock, for me, and hard to come to terms with although dad appeared to be ok with it.. Dad decided he wanted to come home so arrangements were made with care services, McMillan's (who were wonderfully supportive) and the district nurses (again very supportive). I was granted time off work (here's another story for later) and I looked after dad with the help of my sister-in-law, Sue. Long story short, 19 days after being diagnosed dad passed away. He knew he was slowly fading but was still determined to get better. He said he didn't have time to die he had too much to do and one thing he had to do was finish a clock he was making (Laura want's to finish the wooden clock in his honour) He kept his sense of humour right up to his last day. I have thanked Sue so many times for her support and help because without her I don't know how I'd have coped. She was my rock. Before I'd had time to process the news of his illness he was gone. Dad passed way after having seen all his family except my no2 brother, who was stationed in the Falkland's at the time, but we spoke over skype at his bedside.

Afterwards we had dad's bungalow to sort out. Both mum and dad were hoarders (nothing quite like what you see on the tv).When mum passed away, 2 years prior to dad, he hadn't done anything with her things. It took us months to sort everything and clear the house. We came across many childhood items, somethings from mum's mum and a few from dad's dad. (another story here too) and a few surprise discoveries. The bungalow finally sold 3 weeks ago and all funds distributed. Next I have the tax forms to fill in and arrange the scattering of the ashes of both mum and dad.

There have been some fun times in-between all the sadness. Laura wanted to arrange something special for Mothers Day, and with her dad's help she got some tickets to see the show "Bat Out Of Hell" in Manchester. It was absolutely brilliant and we all thorley enjoyed it.  It took our minds away from our current situation for a few hours. We had a late celebration for Martin's 60th birthday and we managed a few days away in the lakes. Recently we celebrated Laura's 18th birthday.

I will not leave it so long before my next post as now I'm starting to feel a bit stronger and able to cope with thing a bit better.


P.S I'm not sure I like this new look I've picked. I feel it's a bit in your face. I think I'll look for something more gentle.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Lost My Mojo

I've decided that I need to take a break from writing but not reading. I think maybe the events of the past two year have caught up with me and I just need to take some time out for me to recharge my battries and find my mojo again.

I didn't take time out when my mum died because then things started to move on with Laura's operation that kept being moved back and my new job hunting had to be put on hold. Then Martin had his accident followed by Laura's operation.  
Laura is recovering well from her operation and doing her physio (now and again) and her college course is going well.
Martin is still experiencing  some back pain and stiffness (should still be doing his physio exercises)
Job hunting isn't going to well at the moment but I do still have a job for now.

Before I go, I would like to wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Haapy New Year.          


Saturday, 1 October 2016


Laura is 17 today. Time is going just too fast. It only feels like yesterday we were celebrating her 16th birthday.
She is growing into a lovely young lady who knows what she wants and has the will power to strive for it.
She has no time for idiots but still knows how to enjoy herself.
Last year she had a bit of a rough time with studying for her GCSE's, cancelled operations, her friend moveing to a different school, it all go too much. But to see her so happy now and laughing more is wonderful.
She's enjoying college even though they're long days with an hours travel each way.
We and the rest of the family are wishing her a fantastic birthday.


P.S.  It was a sad day yesterday as the library, as we know it, closed it's doors for the last time. I went in to see the ladies in the afternoon when I'd ,finished work, and found them drinking wine and eating cakes left over from the McMillan coffee morning. Some staff are taking redundancy but others have to apply for other jobs and are up against their friends for the same jobs and there are so few jobs. I feel so sorry for them.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Hunt The Picture

Joining in with Mum's picture scavenger hunt.

Beauty and Happiness

Year 6 Prom
Year 11 Prom

 Laura had fun at both proms and has grown into a beautiful young lady


 Martin's parents, married 54 years. This was taken at their 50th celebration do with their family

Tune and Passion

 Music is Laura's passion whether listening to it or dancing to it. She did an amzing job of decorating her bedroom bedroom in music


 Wonder what cuddles thinks of the Jamaican Turkey. They do look rather cosy


Kite festival at Lytham, St Annes. Big ones, small one, in the sky, on the sand and everywhere in between


I love  Cleveleys beach especially in the summer. Picture is 
of  Mary's shell


 One of Laura's art projects for her GCSE and one she is most proud of


 Laura sorting my twiddle muff beads

That's my lot and I hope you enjoyed it. I enjoyed looking through my old photos stored on the computer

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Closures In The Community

Lancashire County Council have to make a savings of £265m over the next five years due the central government cuts and these are some of their actions.

Closing 6 museums from 30 September 2016. These are:-

The Judges Lodgings - Lancaster
Maritime Museum - Fleetwood (Run by 1 paid staff and a few volunteers and only open in the summer)
Museum of Lancashire - Preston
Textile Museum - Burnley
Helmshore Museum - Rossendale

Organisations for four of the above museums have applied to take over the running  and the council is hoping negotiations will soon end with the view to make the transfers by the end of the year. But I don't know which ones they are and it still means that two will be gone forever.

Also on the list of closures are 2 Youth Centres (1 of which is in my area), the one and only Youth Offending Centre (in my area also), old people services and diabled services.

On top of that 14 Childrens Service (once know as Sure Start) one of which is in a raural area are to close. (Luckily our one is not closing) And 40 out 74 Libraries.  The buildings that are owned by the council will be sold off. So may job losses too.

So many organisations rely on voluteers so that they can continue delivering the sevices we need. I worry what will happen when people say enough is enough and people stop vlounteering.

My local library is affected by the closure, where I go to a craft and chat group and will close at the end of September. However there is a group who are negotiating a new proposal with the county council and local council in a bit to take over the library, run it with volunteers, and bring in other agencies who will contribute to the cost of running the building and the county council will give £5,000 towards the set up costs. I'm not sure if other areas are also considering this way forward too.

A number of years ago our police station closed and the building sold off. It was knocked down and a block of flats were built in its place. Then gradually the 3 banks move out.  All the while our village (almost the size of a town) has been expanding with more and more property being build on old farm land. (Currently only 2 working farms left in the area)  Even now there are plans in with the local council to build over a 1,000 homes (with strong objections) on some farm land close to a very congested road. There are only 2 roads out of Thornton and both are congested mornings and evening and as there are so few jobs so most people have to commute.

I wonder how other councils are affected in this way and how the residents are coping?


Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Show Time

The other week-end it was our annual Flower, Art and Crafts Show. I did take loads of pictures on my tablet and they've all deleted themselves. This tablet has a mind of it's own and I can't use the main computer as that is so very slow since it came back from the menders. I realy think we need a new one but it wil have to wait.

Anyway back to the show.  In the past I've not entered many exhibits. It was a case of if I had done something I would enter it. However it was a different story when it came to Laura, she had many exhibits and came away with one, two or three trophies. But now she is too old for those catergaries and possibly too young for the adult sections due to her inexperience and with this in mind we decided to give this year a miss.

Two weeks before the show we changed our minds and we found 14 things, between us, that we could put into the show.  There was the painted canvas Laura did for her GCSE, some painted pebbles, that looked like cactus, in a pot, some baking, and some crocheting.

I won 1st for my crochet jacked and 2nd for my marmalade and that was it for me and Laura didn't win anything.
The chocolate cake wasn't chocolatey enough but was very light.
The victoria sponge, not sure what was wrong with that. I felt it could have been lighter.
Scones, well they were a disaster, very much like rock buns. Won't use that recipe again. Will stick to the Bero ones.
One of my jams was disqualified because I forgot to put on a wax disc. oops!

We want to knock Miss Winner (not real name) off the top. We have our work cut out but at least we have a year to practice.


Scamming Season

 Last week I was almost caught by a scammer on email and I thought I would share my experience with you so that you too don't get caught...