Another new week

Bullfinch at RSPB Old Moor (Picture: Ian Wordsworth)

On Friday our last fruit and veg boxes (for now) arrived, and we were determined to use it all up before it perished. We didn’t get much chance to do that Friday because we were going fishing after collecting my car and didn’t get back until gone 9pm. We both had a good session: he caught 65 fish (yes, really – he didn’t “keep-net” any but he did count them); and I wrote 1,094 words of the short story I started last time, ending up with a 1,972-word story.

On Saturday we were supposed to be going to a local music festival but decided to stay home. I read quite a bit and the poet did some good fishing prep work he’d been putting off and putting off but that really needed to be done at some point. Son #2 has decided to take up fishing again, now he’s home from London, and he’s after spare gear from his dad and his grandad.

Before we went out the poet prepared a Lancashire hotpot in the slow cooker, using meat from the supermarket, potatoes, carrots, onions and mushrooms from the veg box, and fresh chives and rosemary from our own garden! I think the “from our own garden” bit was by far the best bit, and, of course, the tastiest! We finished off the strawberry flan, which was made with partially set jelly in the end and worked very nicely, but failed to find a replacement flan sponge for the one I ruined anywhere.

Sunday was a trip to Birmingham to see my parents. We made very good time and had a nice couple of hours with them. On the way home we dropped off a birthday card at his parents’ house and had an hour with them too. I asked the mother-in-law if she had a sponge flan dish I could borrow, and she did – but she told me to keep it, although she wouldn’t mind her glass pie dish back we’d had for several months by now! 😀

When we got home, while the poet made a cheese, mushroom and courgette omelette (mushrooms and courgette from the veg box …), I made my first ever sponge flan. I also made 4 small jellies and kept ¼ pint for the glaze. I still had strawberry yoghurt with mine, but the poet doesn’t really like yoghurt so he’s pushing the boat out still with single cream. What a scrumptious tea!

And so another week ends and a new one begins and, once again, it’s a fairly busy one. I have the usual writing work scheduled in, the usual job-surfing work, the usual editing work, but I’m also doing the tax return this week. Then, at the end of the week, we’re off to Harrogate for two events (one Friday evening, one Saturday), for the Theakstons Old Peculiar Crime Writing Festival. And, on Sunday, the poet’s band is playing at a charity music festival.

What are you up to this week?

Admin, admin, admin

Admin, it has to be done. And I’ve been doing a lot of it in the past few days.

Last week I had to sort out my car insurance. I’ve gone for a straight renewal, but they hadn’t sent details of monthly repayments, and they’d added a legal expenses fee on my behalf without even checking. So I had to call them to ensure they wouldn’t take the whole premium in one go and to insist that they remove the legal expenses fee. That brought it down a little.

This week it’s the tax return. I should have done it yesterday, but I wasn’t feeling great yesterday and didn’t do any “proper” work at all beyond take the poet to the dentist. Next year’s should be easier, as I changed all of my bank accounts over at the start of 2014, which means I’ve had to collate 3 lots of statements for the 2013 – 2014 tax return. Next year, it should all be in one place. At least I’ve been able to export them all, though, and merge them together in Excel. This year, for the first time ever, I’ve not sat and painstakingly written out all of my expenses by hand.

We had a very busy weekend with a trip to Birmingham on Saturday, a gig Saturday evening and another gig Sunday afternoon. Yesterday, aside from feeling a bit pap, I was also very, very tired. We turned in at 9pm last night, and I got up at 11am today. I don’t feel so tired any more …

Next job is to get out a search party for my tax return form so I can transfer the information from Excel and get it in the post. As I do the return by hand, it has to be in by 31 October. If I did it online, I’d have until 31 January. But if I do it now, it’s done and out of the way and they can work out how much tax I owe them … which isn’t usually very much.

I also have books to edit this week, but so far no author/proofreader revisions as I shifted all of those last week. Apart from the one where we’re still waiting to hear from one of the authors.

The poet is off to Scotland again tomorrow. I thought that was it, but it seems he still has quite a few days to do up there and just forgot to mention them to me.

Right, search party …

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