Monday, 7 December 2015

#10 - Conquer my needle phobia - Course of Treatment Booked!

I suppose the title of this post is a bit inaccurate.  I do have a needle phobia, but it's not just needle phobia either?  It goes way, way deeper than just needle phobia.  If you follow my other blog, you may have seen my post about my recent tests for Glaucoma, in which I had to have eye drops.  Two, tiny drops of liquid into my eyes.  I had a panic attack and how I stayed conscious is beyond me.  I kid you not.  Eye drops. 

To say I'm (medically) squeamish is an understatement.  Although this hasn't ever impacted on my health before, it was obvious that it was only a matter of time.  The blog title is a giveaway.  40 Before 40.  How long before something goes wrong?  How about potentially having to have eyedrops every day for the rest of my life?  You may laugh, you may mock.  But just imagine having to face one of your fears every day for the rest of your life?  Maybe starting every day of the rest of your life looking down from a tall building or maybe, waking up and having to hold a spider, or a rat, or having to wear a snake necklace or anything that instills genuine fear in you?  Oh yeah - and being guaranteed a panic attack every day to boot.  Still sound funny?  It doesn't to me. 

Then the needle issue, specifically the needle issue.  The last time I had a needle was the injection to speed up the delivery of my son's placenta.  2006.  So I have managed to evade needles for nine and a half years.  I have come some way where blood tests are concerned, thanks to my very wonderful midwife who looked after my care for my youngest three, in that I am actually able to have one when I am able to use EMLA cream.  If I can look the other way and be distracted, the cream means you don't feel anything, it's almost bearable.  I still don't like it, but it's bearable. 

Trying to explain to people that don't have this phobia that - for example - if I became diabetic, I honestly didn't think that I would be able to inject myself, or - even be injected by someone else daily.  They don't get it.  'You'd have to' - they say.  'I don't have to' - is my response.  As ridiculous as that response might seem.  I don't have to.  I have a choice to, and a choice not to.  Unfortunately, choices such as that, are life and death.  Most people would choose life, right?  I need to be in that bracket too.

So, potentially having to face something that is going to trigger off this phobia on a daily basis, I knew I would have to do something about it.  One of my friends is a Psychiatric nurse, and so I sounded her out about it.  I told her what had happened at the Optician, that this went way beyond just needles, and she promised that she would have a word with some colleagues of hers and see what they thought.

Long story short, obviously I haven't been assessed yet so it's a 'don't quote me' scenario, but one of her colleagues who is a Psychologist said that it sounded like I had a condition called 'Blood Injury Injection Disorder' rather than a needle phobia.  Oh.  Em.  Gee.  I've looked it up.  It is an actual condition.  It was me to a bloody TEE.  Sufferers would refuse vital medical treatment, or refuse to seek help in the first instance, because of the needle issue.  Inclusive of people with cancer, diabetes et al.  I'm not cracking up.  I'm not being silly.  I'm not alone in this.  And most importantly, it can be... don't want to say 'cured' but it can be treated?  So, I have bitten the bullet and in January I am starting a course of CBT to hopefully help me deal with this disorder.  I'm not one to shy away from things, if there's a problem, I will at least try and face it head on and deal with it.  So, that's what I am doing.  I'm really proud of myself, and really rather looking forward to it?  I'm not one to be beaten by anything - once I decided that I'm strong enough to face it head on.  And come January?   BIID, if that is what you are, I'm coming for you.  I am gunning for you.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

#12 - Take part in NaNoWriMo in November - COMPLETE

Sunday 29th November.  Four weeks after the official NaNoWriMo start, I scrambled and submitted my novel.  My official word count was 62,023.  And that was unfinished!  It has a start, a middle, but it's still not conclusively finished!  The weather has been so terrible here, we're on a yellow warning.  We've lost internet connection twice since last night, and I could just see us being without power and my not being able to submit it tomorrow, after all my hard work.  It is, without a shadow of a doubt, one of the hardest things I have ever done (mentally) in my life, but also one of the most enjoyable. 



My little seed of a story grew legs and ran away, had to be reigned in a few times, smacked about the head a bit, and then took off in a completely different direction to what I'd first intended.  And even though NaNoWriMo is over for 2015, I still intend to finish my novel.  Just because it deserves to be finished.  Maybe it doesn't deserve to be read, or published, but my characters deserve their 'for the time being' endings.  Whether they're HEA or not. 

Will I take part in NaNoWriMo 2016?  Definitely.  I'll do it all again.  I'll do it all again with the same characters that it's been my pleasure to share my headspace with for the last two months (one plotting, one writing!).   They've made me laugh, and giggle, and want to cry.  Even though I was in control, I didn't always know what was going to happen next.  And I want to see what they get up to next.  I have bloody loved it.  And I am insufferably proud of myself :-) 

Friday, 13 November 2015

#17 - Eat from 40 different places I haven't eaten at before - 4/40

4.  The place - Antelope Inn, Bangor.  The dish - Beef Burger and Chips  Eat in - 13th November, 2015.


Ok, so not strictly a 'new' place, this is where we tend to eat with my parents, my Dad seems to like it here.  It's always been very safe, but very generic and not very exciting pub food.  Although I didn't get to have a meal in Manchester, today I went with my parents and brother (Mr G was feeling poorly after his big day yesterday) as it was also my father's birthday yesterday.  The reason it's being included in my list even though it's not new for me, is that it has unveiled a brand new menu.

I decided on burger, and I realise that out of the four meals I have posted about so far, two have been cod and two have been burger... I am so boring.  It was on a par with Blue Sky Cafe's burger, it was so good.  Tasted like a homemade burger.  Served on a brioche bun with salad, mayo and seasoned chips, the meal - which included a soft drink - weighed in at £5.69.  Bargain.  Cheese (bleurgh) was an extra 50p.
The only criticism that I had, not for me personally, is that the chips were highly seasoned.  Really salty.  I loved them, but... one of my friends doesn't take salt as she has high blood pressure.  My children have very little salt.  I think seasoning the chips should be done at the table to your own preference, and not in the kitchen?  Just IMHO.  Also nice to see The Antelope giving their customers more than 5 chips with their main meal, which is how it had gone with their ridiculous 'chips in a tea cup'.  Very nice indeed, and if the rest of the menu has improved as much as the burger has, then it could once again become a regular eating place for us.  10/10

#1 - Lawson in Concert and #24 - Meet a Celebrity - COMPLETE!!

Wow.  I actually have no words.  No, I lie, I have several words.  What a day I had yesterday.  It is up there with my Wedding Day and having my children and meeting Mr G.  Yesterday, I met Lawson, I spoke to Lawson, and I watched them perform live.  My favourite, Adam, spoke to me, and he touched me (not inappropriately, sadly) and I managed to slightly embarrass myself by fanmomming over him.

Having arrived way too early in Manchester, after a breakdown in communication with my friend Shelly who thought we were arriving to visit them at 4, not that we had to be at the gig for 4, we found a parking space, walked to Sound Control to get our bearings, had the worlds worst burger from a Street Food van (no foodie entry for yesterday, boooo!) and then ended up killing 3 hours or so in a pub, people watching.  Which was fun. 

Mr G


The pub was literally across the road and under the arch from Sound Control so it was a 30 second walk.  Things didn't quite run to the VIP itinerary we'd been emailed from Ticketmaster, and it was gone half four by the time we got in.  We went upstairs, there was 100 of us (although the crowd that night was 500, sell out), and we were at the front of the stage.  Lawson walked on and everyone was hushed, it was mad.  They stood and talked to us, and joked and asked who had come the furthest apart from the fans from Dublin and Amsterdam.  We said 'Anglesey' and Adam, my favourite, he said 'Anglesey?  That's in Wales, isn't it?  Isn't that where Prince William was based, you've got a big RAF base there haven't you?'.  I swooned.  He. Spoke. To. Me.  They sang two songs for us, Stolen and Red Sky, and also 'Chimpanzee riding on a Segway' (don't ask, you had to be there).

Here are some pics we took of them during the course of the day.

Adam


Andy


Joel, Adam and Andy


My boys... sigh...


Mine...


Andy and Ryan





Ryan


Andy, Ryan, Mr G, Joel, me and my Adam

When we had our photographs taken, the guy said 'I've never used an iPad to take a picture before.'  I was stood with Adam and Joel's arms around me going 'Oh my God, Oh my God, Oh my God..."  The lads were telling him to turn it the right way round, and that he had his finger over the lens.  When we checked after that the photo was good, Adam had a look and he said 'Yeah that's fine.'.  I said 'Yes it is.' and closed Photos down.  As I did that... my desktop paper came on... His head.  I said 'You didn't see that, did you?'.  'I didn't see that.' he said, smiling at me.  Cringe!  Fanmom.com/embarrassment #almostoldenoughtobehismom

They came on just before 9, after two support acts, one called Frontiers and the other a guy called Pete Gardiner.  He was good but not my cup of tea.  However Frontiers are definitely one to watch for the future.  Very Lawson-esque.

I know I might be biased, that they're my favourite group, but Lawson really are fab live.  The whole place was bouncing.  They could have just played the music and not had to sing a word, because everyone sang along all night.  They are lovely guys, down to earth, interact with their fans, so, so funny and what I love the most about them?  They are a proper pop band.  Not a group, but a band.  And they can sing, and they can play too.  The four lads, guitars, drums, and their voices.  Joel is a fantastic guitarist, and Adam gives his all when he's on the drums, it's like he's in his own little world. They sang so many songs, new and old, including a cracking cover version of Jess Glynne's 'Hold my Hand'.  Highlights for me were 'Make it Happen' which is my favourite non-hit of theirs from Chapman Square, and Brokenhearted.  La la la, la la la, la la la...  Being such a small, intimate venue was wonderful too.  They could easily sell out bigger places, but what you gain in seeing a concert in an arena (a seat for one, my legs and feet didn't belong to me!) you definitely lose out in atmosphere.  I know that when their new music is released next year that the likelihood of these types of gigs happening will be less and less, and so I am so happy that I have seen them this way, before I have to sit with thousands of other people, miles away from the stage.  I'm still looking forward to that sort of concert too though ;-) 

I know I've undertaken a few things from my list so far, but this was in another league completely.  This is the sort of stuff that makes you feel alive, I felt like a teenager again.  So, I needs me some more of stuff like this, definitely. 

*Sigh* 

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

General Update

I thought I would update you all with the progress I'm making on my list.  Things are moving, quite slowly, but I'm not getting despondent!  Sometimes you have to look at the bigger picture to see progress, right?  Something fabulous happened this morning, and tomorrow, three more things are happening that will knock spots off today's event.

These are the items from my original list that I have started and either the progress I am making with them, or that I've completed, as of today, 11th November 2015.

1)  I want to have seen, or at least have purchased tickets ready to go and see, Lawson on tour.
Almost complete!  Tomorrow, not only will I have seen Lawson in concert, but I will have MET them too!  Mr G and I have VIP tickets for the event.  So on Friday, expect a blog post with loads of pictures!  Hopefully including one of me getting a kiss on the cheek from Adam Pitts. 
 
2)  I want to lose a predetermined amount of weight by my 40th.


I started and tailed off.  It's nearly Christmas.  Start again in January?

3)  Take a hot air balloon ride.

Looking over my list again the other day, I looked at the hot air balloon one.  I have to admit, it's something I never really looked into, price wise.  I knew it would be expensive, but I didn't quite know how expensive that would be.  So, I did a bit of research.  I made a mental note of the figure.  I knew that if it was meant to be, something would take care of it for me.  This is the wonderful thing that happened today.  Taking a break from my NaNoWriMo (more on that shortly) I decided to check my emails, and I noticed that I had a WEM (winning email for you non-compers).  I have only gone and won a £250 Leisure Voucher!  I looked at all the things I could spend this on, and right there, Virgin Experiences. Mr G has a fear of heights, so I am going solo, and that will leave about £100 to spend on another item from my list ;-)

8) I want to win something really wonderful.  Like a dishwasher.  Or hundreds of pounds of shopping vouchers.
See above!  This remains not complete though, because I want to win something else really wonderful ;-)

12) I'm going to take part in NaNoWriMo in November.
I'm doing really well with this one, the objective is to write a 50,000 word novel in a month.  I was a prepper as opposed to a pantser, and so I had the outline ready for the start of November.  I've laughed at my characters, I've felt their pain (because at some point in my life or other, it might have been my pain).  I've pulled my hair out with frustration when I realised that a certain part of the story didn't work, or I had a better idea for it, and then realised that that one little change meant that hundreds of other things in the story also had to be amended for it to make sense.  I've watched as a villain turned into a heroine, when that wasn't my original intention for her.  I've fallen in love with my characters, each and every one of them.  They're like my babies.  If anyone is under any illusion that it is simple to write a novel, I suggest you sign up for this next year.  That's just the writing part alone.  To actually get it published?  For it to be any good?  For people to buy it?  To be under contract and have to do it all again?  I take my hat off to anyone who does.  Eleven days in?  I've written just over 48,000 words, and I'll have it finished tonight.  I've then got nineteen days or so in which to add, amend and titivate it, before I paste it in and become a NaNoWriMo Winner!  Yay! 

14) I want to deactivate Facebook for at least a month.
It took a bit of faffing about and telling my friends I was off, and making sure they had other ways to connect with me, but I am now a week in, and I love it.  Facebook has gone, and with it went Messenger.  I wish I had done it sooner.

17) Eat from 40 different places I haven't eaten at before (or recently).  
Three out of forty so far, hopefully we can find somewhere nice in Manchester tomorrow before the concert to make it #4.

20) Learn a new language.   
I've started learning Italian, and I love it!  A lot of it is common sense, having learned French, and basic Spanish, there are a lot of similarities in the words.  Some words you can look at and guess.  I'm using a nifty little app called Duolingo, but I might see if there are any proper lessons or courses being offered locally.

24) Meet a celebrity.   
And hello, by the time I go to bed tomorrow, I will have met four! 

27) Buy nice glasses.
Ok, so I had to sell a kidney, but they are nice glasses.  Also had the added bonus of finding out I have Glaucoma thrown in free...

28) Complete a food challenge.  
This was pencilled in for next week, Mr G and I planned to visit our closest Sizzling Pub to us, in Prestatyn, to partake in one of their unfinishable meals.  While browsing the website for the vouchers I have won, I see that Sizzling Pubs is one of the restaurants that accept them as payment.  So, that's two items that I'll be able to complete off my list that hasn't cost me a penny!  The prizes can take up to 28 days to arrive, so the day it comes, we're off ;-)

30)  Connect and reconnect
Having had Shelly come and stay with me last month, before we go to the concert tomorrow, we are calling in to see her Dad Sam, who was a very good friend and father figure to me many years ago.  I haven't seen him for twenty years, and I am so looking forward to seeing him again.  Tomorrow is going to be a fantastic day for so many reasons, but I think this is the part that I am most looking forward to.

There you have it, my 40/40 update for you.  Although it is technically a 30/40 list at the moment...

Saturday, 7 November 2015

#20 - Learn a New Language - STARTED

I already speak English and Welsh, and I have an A grade GCSE in French. I studied Spanish in college but didn't really like it.  On a whim, I've chosen Italian.  For no reason, just instinct.  I've downloaded an app called Duolingo, and it's really very good.  I am doing fairly well, day 2 and apparently...


 ...which I'm not altogether convinced about.  But it's great fun, anyway.  

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

#17 - Eat from 40 different places I haven't eaten at before - 3/40

3.  The place - Town Fryer, Church Street, Wrexham.  The dish - Cod and Chips (for a change >.<).  Eat in - 2nd November, 2015.


I've been wanting to try The Real China in Eagles Meadow for ages, and that was the original plan for lunch yesterday.  Mr G had a hospital appointment in Maelor, and by the time we came out, we were absolutely famished.  We waited for half an hour for The Real China to open, and a further ten minutes past their opening time, before we gave up and looked for somewhere else.  We saw a sandwich board at the end of the street for Town Fryer, stating that you could have Fish and Chips, bread and butter and a cuppa, two for £10.  Sorted!  Located near the beautiful St Giles Church, we received a really friendly welcome.  Food came within about five minutes and was piping hot.  Served in little cutesy 'newspaper' cartons.  Mr G maintains it's one of the tastiest fish he's had in a long time, and I loved the batter!  All crisp and no sponge.  I'm fussy with hot drinks, and I drink tea once a decade, if that.  Even the cup of tea was good, so good that I had to go and buy Mr G Yorkshire Tea today.  Being able to eat in, for that price?  Can't fault it.  Well worth it. 10/10

Monday, 2 November 2015

#27 - Buy nice glasses - COMPLETE

Optician appointment made for 22nd October.  To be updated...

New glasses ordered... cost more for this pair than I've paid for the last six pairs... yikes!  Thanks Barclaycard...  Will put a picture up when I have picked them up...

New bins - sorry about the dodgy road trip 7 am selfie...


Saturday, 24 October 2015

#30 - Connect and Reconnect - Shelly

1 - Me and Shelly.  We were school friends and we both moved to Manchester in 1992, when we were 16.  Two weeks ago, she came to stay with me for the weekend.  With the exception of a very brief meet up for a couple of hours in Llandudno this Summer, we haven't seen each other properly since 1993.  I'm going to go and see her father, Sam (who I haven't seen since 1995) in November.  We're going as early as possible to Manchester so we can spend a little time with him before the Lawson gig.   

Shelly and Shell looking windswept in Bull Bay
 

Monday, 12 October 2015

#17 - Eat from 40 different places I haven't eaten at before - 2/40

2.  The place - Blue Sky Cafe, High Street, Bangor.  The dish - Homemade Beefburger with chips and salad.  Eat in - 10th October, 2015.


This was, without a shadow of a doubt, one cracking burger.  Burger isn't what I usually go for when I eat out.  It said homemade, it was.  You could tell it was just beef and I think a few herbs, but that was it.  The salad was a joy to eat, at best in restaurants it's boring (iceberg, tomato, cucumber, onion) and at worst - there isn't any!  Chips were good too, but only a handful.  Only downside was that our food took a long time to come from ordering, I wouldn't have said it was so busy that the wait we had was justified... but the general ambience of the place was very chilled out.  The food obviously wasn't left standing for hours and was cooked to order, and we'd walked past Burger King and KFC and Greggs, had we wanted 'Fast Food'.  Probably any other day the wait would have been ok, but we were absolutely famished (and terminally hungover).  9/10 

Thursday, 8 October 2015

#12 - Take part in NaNoWriMo in November - REGISTERED


I have only gone and signed up.  He who dares, Rodney.  He who dares...  

I've always loved writing and I've always had some concept of a story inside of me that is dying to get out. As I have evolved somewhat over the years, so has the story.  But it has always been about friendship and the dynamics of friendship, be it friction and conflict, or love and support.  With a dash of sarcastic humour and a soup├žon of real life experiences, what could possibly go right?  I'm not doing this with any harebrained notions of ever becoming a published author, I am simply doing this for myself.  Nobody else will ever have to see it!

Saturday, 3 October 2015

#1 - Lawson Tour AND! #24 - Meet a Celebrity - Booked it, packed it...

They do say to put your goals to paper, or your wishes and wants, if you're into the Law of Attraction (as I am).  So it shouldn't have come as a surprise to me, when as if by magic, yesterday I received my 'fan' email from Lawson.  Giving details of their new EP which was out... and... AND!  A Winter Tour.  Only a small one, a handful of dates, the closest one to me being Manchester on the 12th November.  Oh, and that is not all.  There is a VIP package, where you get to meet the band before the gig and have pictures taken... get signed merchandise, and they play for you before the gig.  Guess which ticket package I went for????  Oh yes!  No brainer, two items off my list in one fell swoop!


Watch out Adam Pitts, I may be (nearly) old enough to be your Mum but I am going to drool in front of you.  I will be incoherent, and drooling.  Quite possibly even crying.  Because when I first saw Kylie in concert, I spent the entire evening in tears.  Just a heads up there, doll face.  In case you don't know who he is, here's a little taster, so you can see what all the fuss is about.  Isn't he just beautiful? 

Prepare to be 'Fanmommed' over...

I am so excited, I think I could poop puppies, kittens and glitter :-D

Yes, that is forty I am coming up to, and not fourteen... 

*Edit* Tickets arrived - this is really happening!


Friday, 2 October 2015

#17 - Eat from 40 different places I haven't eaten at before - 1/40

We'll kick off my list with one of the items I am really looking forward to completing.  The eating one.  Quelle Surprise!  It goes without saying that if I wasn't so fond of partaking in number 17, I wouldn't be needing to lose half my body weight, but hey ho, we're only here once!

1.  The place - Coastal Cafe, Moelfre.  The dish - Cod and chips.  To take out - 24th September, 2015.


Absolutely top notch fish and chips. Cooked to order, crispy batter - not too thick - and really thick, fresh cod.  Quite possibly, the best piece of cod I have ever had  10/10

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Hello :-)

Welcome to any new readers and thank you to any readers from Frazzled Shell who have decided to follow me on my journey, which will no doubt be fraught with disaster and occasional drunken shenanigans.  That's why you love me. 

On the 10th May 2016 I turn 40.  Forty.  Four ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh my God.  Whilst still unsure as to how the **** this happened, it has happened.  And I am determined to face it with dignity, unlike how I faced my 30th birthday (tears, tantrums and snot, in case you were wondering...).

The why...
Why not?  Everybody else is doing it.

The how...
I'm giving myself the 228 days I have left until I turn 40, and the year of being 40 to complete some challenges.  Some are nice challenges.  Some I can't wait to do, and have wanted to do for years.  Some suck.  Some will challenge me mentally.  Some physically.  Some I really, really don't want to do, but I'm taking the fact that I really don't want to do them as a reason why I should.  You can't have a light, without a dark to stick it in, right?  Profound.
Nah, Google. 

The what...
Ok, you'll have to bear with me on this, because I've only come up with 28 challenges and ideas so far.  I'll update this as and when I think of more or complete any.  This is my list, thus far.  In no particular order...

1)  I want to have seen, or at least have purchased tickets ready to go and see, Lawson on tour.  And I will scream, like a twelve year old, at a One Direction concert.  Although, to be fair, I did my fair share of screaming at the One Direction concert I went to...
 
2)  I want to lose a predetermined amount of weight (which I am not disclosing yet, until the end!) by my 40th.

3)  Take a hot air balloon ride.

4) I want to find something I want to study, and take steps towards going back to college.  Maybe University eventually.  Baby steps.

5) I want to climb Snowdon.  Stop laughing.

6) I want to take a Yoga class, and see what all the fuss is about.

7) I want to go and watch a musical in a theatre.  I quite fancy Jersey Boys or Let it Be.

8) I want to win something really wonderful.  Like a dishwasher.  Or hundreds of pounds of shopping vouchers.

9) I want to 'remarry' my husband and have a small, intimate party to celebrate this, and my 40th.

10) I want to conquer my needle phobia, which is beyond ridiculous.

11) I want to do a month of bizarre 'National' days, embrace the spirit of it, and blog it.  I have decided on November, because some of that stuff is batshit.

12) I'm going to take part in NaNoWriMo in November.  If I had a pound for every person who has told me I should write a novel, I'd have about £17.  Which is more profit than I'd make if I wrote a book.  

13) I want to walk Anglesey's Coastal Path.  Not in one go.

14) I want to deactivate Facebook for at least a month.  Preferably permanently.  But at least a month.  I hate it so much.  Hate it.  

15) I want to have an expensive and radical cut, colour and style in a hair salon.

16) I want to finally set, on paper, house rules and what is expected from each member of my family in the way of chores.  I am not a slave.  They will be, by the time I have finished.  Just kidding.  I will no longer BE a Frazzled Shell.  I will be... just a Shell.  Oh.  Wait...

17) Eat from 40 different places I haven't eaten at before (or recently).  This can be takeaway or a sit down meal.

18) Stop drinking wine.  If for no other reason than I am allergic to the sodding stuff, and my enjoyment of it is being impinged on by snot and sneezes.  I wouldn't trough Reese's Peanut Butter Cups if I was allergic to peanuts, would I? 

19) Say 'Yes!' to everything for a week.  Mr G waggled his eyebrows at me when I read this off the list.  So, as a precautionary measure, I'm not telling him what week I am doing this...

20) Learn a new language.  Or, I might just learn my own second language better... 

21) Become vegetarian for a month.  This is an absolutely galling thought for me.  I mean no offence to any vegetarians, I respect you for your choice.  But a) I don't like cheese and b) I will not ever, never, eat Quorn or Tofu or fake meaty shizz.  That - to me - is just as offensive as meat is to a veggie.  I want to see how well I can eat, how innovative I can be with only fruit and vegetables, beans, lentils, couscous, rice, pasta etc.  Or I may end up surviving on Greggs Vegetable pasties.  Win win.  

22) Have my teeth professionally whitened.  I'm talking Simon Cowell.  I'm talking darkened room, and you can see my teeth lighting the way as I smile.  Which in part is going to be a treat for giving up red wine, and leads me on to the next one.

23) Drink nothing but water for a whole month.  I may be knocking on 40, but my head, my heart and my skin think I am 17.  In fact, I probably have worse skin now than I did as a teen.  And in drinking nothing but water, I eradicate the other stainer-of-the-teeth - coffee.  I drink far too much of it.  

24) Meet a celebrity.  A List, Z List, don't care.

25) Go on a Ghost Hunting tour, overnight.  Mr G is refusing to do this with me, so it looks like that's going to be a girlie one!

26) Go to a Crusaders away match, on the coach. Even though, technically, every one of their home games is an away match for us, as it's a 140 mile round trip.

27) Buy nice glasses.  I never have nice glasses.  Those conversations tend to go like this...

Optician: Your head IS a bit like a Jack o Lantern...  these glasses will make your face look a tad slimmer, more like a large swede? (Rutabaga - US/Rwdan - Wales)
Me: How much?
Optician: Those are one hundre...
Me: Cheapest please... unless the one hundred was preceeding the word 'pence'...?

28) Complete a food challenge.  An unfinishable meal.  Not necessarily one where my fat, sweaty head has to then be photographed after eating a 40 oz steak, and put on a wall of shame fame, but - you know.  Along those lines.  

29) Cook for Charity.  I've always wanted to do one of these cooking for charity social evenings, but something has always cropped up.  Today, Mr G alerted me to 'The Soldiers' Charity' Big Curry.  Aiming to raise vital funds for all soldiers and their families when in need.  I host regular curry nights for my friends anyway, so why not raise money for a good cause at the same time?  I'm aiming for November or December for this, but I have to be practical and think that I've also committed to NaNoWriMo for the month of November AND it's coming up to Christmas which is financially tight for a lot of people, myself included.  So I may do this later in the New Year.  They accept donations any time of year, so it might be a way to brighten a dull January or February weekend?
  
30)  Connect and reconnect.  When I was younger, I was desperate to be liked.  And I sought and found that approval in... questionable ways at times.  Now I'm older, I'm less bothered about being fickle, acquaintances, spreading myself too thin.  I have wonderful friends, and a lot of them I don't see often.  Some I have never met in the flesh but I speak to online and on the phone.  Some I haven't seen in years, some in one or two years, some in decades.  Some are abroad.  So, I am going to make a concerted effort to connect and reconnect with my friends. 

And that is where we are at.  Definitely enough to be getting on with, I'd say!  Please feel free to leave any suggestions for my remaining twelve in the comment box below.  I'm not a thrill seeker so no skydiving, abseiling, waterskiing, anything to do with water as I can't swim...