Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Christmas Chocolate Syns

I have put a list of Christmas chocolate syns to help me (and anyone reading) through these tricky times!  Luckily for me my favourite chocs are not too bad so I will enjoy a few over the next week or so. My favs are bold!

For other Slimming world members here is the list:

Ferrero Rocher - 3.5 syns
Cadbury Chocolate Eclair - 1.5 syns
Cadbury Christmas Dairy Milk Coin - 1.5 syns
Cadbury Christmas Snow Bites - 1 syn
Cadbury Christmas Snowman 150g pack, 25g serving - 6.5 syns
Cadbury Dairy Milk Bar, 6g miniature - 1.5 syns
Cadbury Milk Chocolate Tree Decorations - 2.5 syns
Cadbury Miniature Heroes - 2.5 syns
Cadbury Roses Chocolates - 2.5 syns
Celebrations Advent Calendar Chocolates - 2 syns
Celebrations Chocolate Miniatures - 2 syns
Galaxy Gift For You - 10 syns
Lint Lindor Balls all varieties - 4 syns
Mars Celebrations Chocolates - 2.5 syns
Nestle After Eight - 2 syns
Nestle Quality Street - 2.5 syns
Terry's Chocolate Orange, segment - 2.5 syns
Terry's Chocolate Orange, whole - 50 syns
Terry's Chocolate Segsations - 2 syns

Monday, 12 December 2011

Diet going well...

I have been on the slimming world diet for 6 weeks now and have lost a total of 12 pounds.  It is going completely to plan. If I can get two more pound off this week I will have lost a stone.  Then it will be just 7 pound to loose to reach my target weight of 11st 7 pounds.  (I am 5ft 11 1/2inches by the way).  Basically I will be back to my normal self, which all my mates call skinny.  But I will be far from skinny, just a healthy weight for my size. The main thing is that I will be able to go shopping and find some clothes to fit me.

Slimming World Syns - Crisps

According to the lastest Slimming World magazine below is a list of syns for popular crisps.

Quavers, (multipack, 17g bag,) = 4 1/2 syns
French Fries, all flavours (multipack, 19g bag) = 4 syns
Skips, all flavours (multipack, 15.5g bag) = 4 Syns
Frazzels (multipack, 23g bag) = 5 1/2 Syns
Twiglets Original (multipack, 25g bag) = 5 Syns
Pom-Bear Origianal (multipack, 19g bag) = 5 Syns
Twiglets Original (multipack, 25g bag) = 5 Syns
Pringles, all flavours (multipack, 40g can) = 10 1/2 Syns
Hula Hoops, all flavours (multipack, 25g bag) = 6 1/2 Syns
Nick Naks, all flavours (multipack, 25g bag) = 7 Syns
Kettle Chips, all flavours (multipack, 30g bag) = 7 1/2 Syns
Doritos, all flavours (multipack, 30g bag) = 7 1/2 Syns

No wonder I had put the weight on. I used to eat loads of crisps.  One of my favourite treats at the weekend was 2 or 3 packs of Doritos with cheesy dip washed down with full fat coke!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Construction Recruitment

Farsight Recruitment Ltd are a construction recruitment agency based in Derby, Midlands offering bricklaying jobs, engineering jobs, electrical jobs and much more.

Hiring agency staff is the ideal solution when your company needs temporary or permanent labour.  Maybe you have deadlines to meet or have an unexpected growth spurt.  Also they are ideal when it comes to covering holidays and sickness.

4lb down

I have successfully lost 2 lb a week since I started my diet.  So it works.  I am not going hungry, far from it, in fact I am eating more now than I ever was before, the only difference is that its all healthy.

I am aiming for a lose of 3 lb this week so I hit my half a stone mark and receive a certificate!

Monday, 7 November 2011

My Diet

Last week I started a diet using slimming world.  My mum runs a local slimming world club and because I think I could do with losing a few pounds I decided to join.  One week later I am two pounds lighter!  Only 19 left to go.  ( I want to lose 1 1/2 stone) I was hoping for a bigger lose but as I was told as I have less to lose, I will lose is slower!  All of the other first timers lost up to 5lb in their first week!  I was hoping for about 4.  I am no surprised as I ate more last week then I ever have in a week. But it was all healthy and I lost weight. 

The diet is good as you can eat anything you want really.  You just have to monitor the naughty stuff.   The trouble for me is that some of the naughty stuff is what I use in my cooking. But I am learning alternatives.  The past week I learned about Quark which is a low fat soft cheese which you can sweeten (with sweeter of course, not sugar) to become and alternative to cream.  I made this fab roll cake with raspberries which was very nice.  I also made home made chicken kievs and chips.  All slimming world style.  It was yum. I am planning on cooking a burger this week.  I am determined to eat all my junk food but at home with me cooking it healthily.  Why hasn't someone come up with a healthy version of mc Donalds or KFC?  Maybe this should be my next project.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Life is Great!

Life is good for me right now.  I have had about a year of worry and sadness with my dad dieing of cancer but I can finally see a light at the end of the tunnel.  My dad was an inspiration for me and he has left me in a very comfortable position which I will be eternally grateful.

Business is great.  Things just get better and better on that front.  I am learning new tricks all the time which I will be keeping to myself.  There was a time a few months ago when work was very stressful. But this was down to the stress of my dads illness and a pushy client.  But that has long gone and now everything is fine.  In life you meet all sorts of people, some are positive some negative.  If you want a positive outcome in work and life, stick to positive people, as the others will bring you down.

Things are sweet and life is great! Thanks Dad. 

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Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Money aint so great

Money will not buy happiness, but it will let you be unhappy in nice places.

I like the above quote as it is so true. 

I think I was happier when I didn't have any!

Monday, 19 September 2011

Great British TV is tops!

Great Britain is called Great Britain because it is just that, Great! Great Britain has a beautiful and diverse countryside with beautiful changing seasons. We used to known as people with a "stiff upper lip". But these days we are much more open-minded, flexible, well educated. We have over 100 Nobel Prize winners which proof that here in Britain we have some of the very best scientists, writers, economists and peace-makers.

When it comes to entertainment and the arts you can’t beat Great Britain. We have a great history for creating the very best music, think the Beatles to name just one group. Britain is truly a nation of drama lovers and don’t forget this is the country that brought you Shakespeare. Britain hosts some of the best and most varied theatres in the entire world. London’s westend houses 40 theatres showing all of the top glitzy musicals.

Some of the best TV shows are written and created in Britain. Some of the top TV shows are getting serious critical acclaim recently. Downton Abbey is a period drama set in the early 1900’s. The series is produced by the British media company Carnival Films for the ITV network. The show is gaining in popularity all the time and is a great success in the USA. These past couple of months saw then win 6 Emmys.

Another great British show is Inspector Morse which has been running since 1987. Since it began there have been 33 episodes and the main character is portrayed by the great British actor John Thaw. Morse is a fictional character who is a senior CID officer with the Thames Valley Police in Oxford. The show has won a number of TV awards over the years. John Thaw won best actor in 1990 and 1993 at the Baftas. He also won most popular actor in 1998 at the National Television Awards. In 1991 and 1992 the show won the Writers' Guild of Great Britain Award for best original drama series. In 1992 the show won a Bafta TV award for the best drama series and also in 1993. With plenty of other nominations it just goes to show that this detective drama is a quality British TV show.

Midsomer Murders is another British television detective drama which is based on books written by Caroline Graham. The lead character is acted by the great John Nettles. You may remember him in Bergerac which I thought he was brilliant in. Most of the show is centred on the working and family life of a country policeman Tom Barnaby (Johns character). Neil Dudgeon has now taken his place in a brand new series which continues this Autumn 2011.

So there you go, some reasons why Great Britain is Great. These are just the tip of the iceburg though. There are many more reason making Great Britain just that Great! If you don’t believe me why not take a visit and see what Great Britain has to offer.

Here in Britain we are proud of all of our great TV shows and have location tours which fans can go on. Brit movie tours offers a great day out for Midsomer Murders fans with the Midsomer Murders Tour. You can also go on an Inspector Morse Tour Oxford or a Harry Potter tour, Doctor Who tour. In fact if a TV show is ver popular and doing well world wide you can be sure there will be a tour based around it. So check out Brit Movie Tours if your looking for a different day out in Great Britain.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Cloud Computing – A silver lined cloud or not?

It is said ‘every cloud has a silver lining’; is this true of the concept of cloud computing?

To have your head in the clouds generally means you have no idea what is going on around you; does the same adage hold true for cloud computing or will putting your faith in it give you for clearer view of your IT usage and save you money as well.

What is cloud computing?
The term cloud is a name give to represent the whole of the internet and will be shown as one in diagrams.
In a nutshell cloud computing provides you with access to a remote server where your company runs all or a proportion of your IT from.  This remote server is cunningly named the cloud, presumably because you do not need to know what is going on inside. 

What is in the cloud?
Every element you would normally hold on your company server and individual employee’s computers would be available from the remote server.  The interior of the cloud does not only house the hardware needed to run all your IT needs but also includes software packages, applications and data storage normally run in-house; thus removing the need for your own server and its incumbent problems.  It would also save the cost of purchasing multiple software licenses and maintenance.  The cloud would be shared with many other companies and individuals who buy into the scheme.

Does cloud computing give you access to everything in there?
The simple answer is “No”.  The cloud computing company and the client would draw up a contract stipulating what services were being purchased and agreeing a fee for there provision.

What services does cloud computing provide?
There are a number of different services provided the most popular being they are named with a prefix letter and followed by aaS (as a Service): -
•    Saas – Software as a Service.  This gives the client the opportunity to use shared software on the server.  This can dramatically reduce the cost of using software as you will not have to purchase software packages or their licences nor employ someone to ensure their patches or service packs are up to date.
•    PaaS – Platform as a Service.  This is very similar to SaaS but you are using shared applications rather than software.  As with software there may be a drawback if your company is specialised and you require dedicated applications or software.
•    HaaS – Hardware as a Service.  This is purely the supply of hardware space from the remote server.  The main use here is for data storage, network equipment and server space.  This can save costs on purchasing and maintaining your own servers as the cloud computer company takes responsibility for them all.  It is also known as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).
•    DaaS – Database as a Service.  If the above three services were fairly straight forward with their naming this service should be a cinch to understand.  The type and method of service may be different dependant on the cloud computer company.

The three main players in cloud computing are Google, Amazon and Microsoft.

The subject of cloud computing is quite complex and to cover the subject in a short article is not possible however these few paragraphs have at least given you the basics of what cloud computing is about and what it has to offer.

For more information about Cloud Computing visit Ancoris who are are an authorised Google Apps Reseller offer who offer the help with setting up Google Sites, Google Apps Email, Google Docs and everything related to Cloud Computing.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

London Boutique Hotel

A Boutique hotel is a term which  is used in North America and the United Kingdom to describe an intimate, usually luxurious or unique hotel environment.

Boutique hotels are different from the larger branded hotels and by providing a more personalized accommodation and services. They are also called  "design hotels" or "lifestyle hotels".

The came about in the early 1980s in major cities like London, New York, and San Francisco. Most  boutique hotels are furnished in a themed or very stylish manner. Generally they are considerably smaller than mainstream hotels, often ranging from 3 to 50 guest rooms, but then so is the price.

One I recently stayed in was Simply Rooms and Suites which is a Kensington Boutique Hotel.  The cost was just £99 per night and the location was right in the heart of Kensington.  The decor was beautiful with all mod cons.  You are paying for the quality of the room and not for the added facilities that come with other larger branded hotels, such as spas, swimming pools and gyms.

As I was leaving the freindly staff told me of one of their sister hotels which is another great value Budget London hotel, Kensington West. So I plan to try this hotel on my next visit to London.   Appently it is even cheaper but not such a boutique hotel.  But I am all for saving money so I will review it once I have stayed.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Eulogy - Dennis Wearing Clayton 05/11/1927 - 17/08/2011

Mention the name Dennis Clayton to anyone who knew him in Folkestone and Cheriton, and the first word that comes to their mind is Golf.  However, apart form being an avid golfer, there is probably a lot more they do not know about him.

Born in Manchester in 1927, the only son of Stan and Hilda, his family moved to Surrey when he was quite young.  he completed his schooling in Surrey and later moved back to Manchester where he did his National Services in the RAF. During these young years, he was a great fan of the trumpeter, Harry James, and he bought a trumpet and learnt how to play it. He met and married Pam with whom he had four children, Linda, Micheal, Raymond and David.

A great sportsman, he enjoyed many sports and particularly enjoyed playing tennis.   He loved swimming and was a very strong swimmer, and was never happier than when he was on top of a very high diving board.  During this time he joined the police force in the Manchester Met, but always had a yearning to be his own boss, and when the opportunity to own his own business came he grabbed it with both hands.  It was about this time that he discovered golf, and became totally hooked on the game.

The weather in Manchester is well known for its high rainfall, and he longed to play golf in drier and brighter conditions, so it was decided that they would sell up and move south to the Kent coast, where he bought another newsagency "The Cabin", which was nicked "The Windmill", as it opened every day except Christmas Day.

Unfortunately a couple of years later his marriage to Pam dissolved, and he met and married Sheila, with whom he had a daughter, Carolyn.  Getting up before 5.00 a.m.every morning was getting to him, so a change of business was necessary.  He decided to try his hand at catering, and bought "The Four Winds Restaurant" on the seafront at Hythe, where he successfully ran it with his wife Sheila.  He soon became famous for his homemade doughnuts and scones, and people would come miles to enjoy his fresh fish.

However the golf course kept calling him, and golf during the summer months was impossible, as he was so busy.  He sold the restaurant and opened "Claytons Cafe" in Cheriton, where he became a well known figure.  His hours enabled him to play golf all year round and he soon got his handicap down to single figures.  His ambition was to get his handicap below five, so he could become a county player, but six was the lowest he ever achieved.  He became Vice Captain, then Gold Captain of Sene Valley Golf Club, and enjoyed a wonderful social life with all his fellow members, playing all round Britain and abroad.

He was blessed with six grandchildren,Emma, Lisa, Shannon and Leon and twins Jack and Oliver.  Being brought up by Victorian-style parents, he found it very difficult to show his emotions, but he constantly talked about his grandchildren, and was very proud of his family and their achievements.  His eldest daughter, Linda moved to Australia when she young, and he would get very excited when she returned to the UK to visit family.  His youngest daughter, Carolyn, moved to Shropshire eighteen years ago, and drove down to Kent regularly to see him.  He always looked forward to her visits.

His last job was as a garage assistant where late one night a man wielding a gun told him to 'hand over the money', the man was told quite firmly to get lost, although other words were used.  When he finally retired from business, he was almost a permanent fixture of Sene Valley Golf Club.  He had so many good friends there, and was very popular.  He was lucky enough to enjoy good health all his life, so it came as a shock to everyone when he was diagnosed with a terminal illness last year.  He accepted his illness with dignity, and was determined it would not beat him, and remained active until a few weeks ago, when sadly he lost his fight.

There are many who will miss him, but one thing is for certain - if there is a golf course in the afterlife, then they all know he will be the first one on the tee every day.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

RIP Dennis Wearing Clayton 5/11/1927 - 17/8/2011

Sadly my beautiful father died tonight after a tough battle with Lung Cancer. He was 83. I am sitting here trying to come to terms with it. I will miss him so much. He was an inspiration to me. He lived on his own looking after himself right up until a few weeks ago. He battled chemotherapy last year bravely and with dignity. When he was told the cancer had gone around Christmas we were both over the moon.  We planned to take a holiday this year to celebrate. But the chemo took it out of him and he never recovered.  Two months ago he had a scan and was told the cancer had returned with a vengeance and had spread to his Liver. He was given just a few months to live. After a week spell in hospital he was moved to a lovely hospice where he passed away just a few hours ago.

Dad, where ever you are now, I want you to know that I loved you so much and I am so proud of you.  You really were like super-dad to me. Thank you for all the qualities you instilled in me. Thank you for every single thing you ever did for me, I will be eternally thankful.  I know you think you let me down but you did not. I wouldn't be the person I am today if I hadn't lived my life just the way it panned out.  I wouldn't have changed a thing.  So don't you ever think that you let me down.

I hope that wherever you are, hopefully in golf heaven, that you are happy and not scared anymore. I will see you again one day I am sure.  Perhaps by then I will have learnt to play golf well and we can have a game together!

Bye dad, thanks for being you and for making me me.. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Friday, 29 July 2011

Brighten Your Home Decor With French Pottery

Accenting your home is an important way for you and your family to feel most comfortable being there. Choosing items for adding warmth and a vibrant environment is a great way to improve the total atmosphere in any room. Learn more about how you can add an inviting aura to every room in your home with French pottery.

The heart of homes lies in the kitchen, making it an area of important and warming choices in decorative items. Brightly painted canisters and dishware can enhance warmth. Consider the rainbow of colors you can add to a china hutch using potteries. You can select a matching set or one that is a mix up of design and colors and choose mathcing French tablecloths. No matter which choice you make, the look you get adds flair to a dining area.

Pitchers and bowls can be used in every room of the house. The decorative appeal of some sets have added to basin tables have an especially unique and personal touch. These are decorative decisions you make that improve the environment in your home. Tying in colors helps to add to the brightness of any room.

The French born design on some potteries can be mimicked in the entire decorative scheme of some rooms. While this is especially true in the kitchen, a bath is another area you might use pitchers, jugs, and unusual bowls. A water jug near the tub is a great accent that is also functional. The large bowl sporting bright painted dots and slashes works well for many purposes in a bath.

Decorated storage pots are the perfect choice for placing out on counter tops and shelves. The lids alone add a unique look that is a far cry from traditional or plastic canisters. Some watering jugs look great as vases for fresh cut flowers. Consider the table setting using differently colored jugs or pots as well.

Outdoor patios are the greatest places for entertaining guests during the warmer months. The picnic table adorned with bright yellow, blue, and green potteries is the perfect way to set the mood for a picnic barbecue party. Choose from assorted styles in plates, serving bowls, and mugs for putting together a fantastic looking summer table.

French pottery designs can help you to present inviting home decor. No matter what your personal tastes might be, you can find the selection of pots, plates, and bowls that is perfect for you and your decorating needs.

Boutique Provencale offer a huge range of Dishes pottery and other French home accessories including a great French tablecloth range.

Friday, 1 July 2011

What features can we expect from Google Plus?

You may of heard that Google launched Google+ this week in a bid to try and take over from Facebook and Twitter in terms of social networking.  So what features can we expect from Google Plus?

The Stream is very much like the Facebook News Feed where you can share content and see what friends are sharing.

Circles is a way of dropping and dragging friends into different circles, ie for friend family or co-workers.

Mulitmedia will be effortless to share with a tagging system on photos and an app that allows you to edit photos and add effects. Naturaly it comes with privacy options and sharing features.

Video chat looks impressive. There is a “hangouts” feature which means users can click to start a hangout. You will be taken to an empty room and then your friends will be told you are “hanging out” which temps friends to join you, according to their testing and research. There will be one chat box rather than multiple and ut changes chat screen to whoever is currently talking. The maximum members in any one video hangout are just 10, but users can get on a waiting list and wait for someone to leave.

Sparks is a part of Google+ where people who use social media to consume news will be able to pull stories, videos and other cool content relating to your specific interest. Interesting according to Google, the actual content in the Sparks stream is completely different from the results you'd get if you put the same term into the Google search engine.

Very soon there will be mobile apps for of course the Android which will include access to the Stream, Circles, Sparks and tall the shared multimedia. One feature will see every photo taken on your phone through Google+ will automatically be uploaded to your computer, ready to share. Any images will not be instantly public, you will have to log in and allow sharing. If you don’t do this after eight hours the images will not be available to share. Google+ does have plans to launch mobile apps for other platforms in the near future.

Apart from their search engine Googles successful social product is YouTube, but they just bought this which proved to be the most expensive acquisition in the company’s history.

Whether Google + takes off depends on its usability and its power to draw users and keep them engaged. To beat the popularity of Facebook and twitter is a seriously tall order, but if there was one company that defines the word innovative - its google.

Ancoris are an authorised Google Apps Reseller and a Google Enterprise partner, certified to deploy, support and train organisations and enterprises of any size on Google Docs, Google Email, Google Sites and more.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Exciting times

I have been working hard for a couple of years now and it is finally paying off.  Having took the plundge to work for myself back in 2009, it now feels like I am reeping the rewards. 

Most of my life I have struggled with a couple of kids on my own.  When my eldest was younger is was practically impossible to find work to fit around my child care needs.  It was only when I went off to uni started working in IT that I could afford the better things in life.

This past year I have had a new bathroom, re-decorated my whole house and now as I type I am waiting for a delivery of my new sofa.  I am very excited to say the least.  This is the first sofa I have ever bought new.  My others were hand-me-downs or bought second hand.  It is really nice to go into a shop and know I can afford any of the items there.  Trouble is this means there is a lot more choice available to me.  Before I would have to chose within a budget.  Now I can have any sofa and it made the deciding which one part more tricky.  Took me 6 months to choose the right one, then another 3 months for it to be made and sent to me.

Tonight i should be sat on my designer sofa looking around my newly plastered and painted living room and thinking to myself well done!

Loving the French Look right now

I love the French look right now.  I haven't been to Provence yet but you only have to Google images of Provence landscapes to see why this home look is so popular.  The beautiful scenery of lush lavender, poppy and sunflower fields look heavenly.

I had to post this image below...