Monday, 27 February 2012

I find myself with a rare little bit of spare time and thought it was about time I blogged.
I've spent the morning researching the plant Hoodia Gordonii. A fascinating cactus-like plant used by the indigenous peoples of Nimibia on long hunts for centuries. It is currently used in slimming aids as an appetite suppresent after scientists identified the active principle as a pregnane glycoside (P57). Research into how it can be used for Diabetes is underway which I find very exciting (for obvious reasons).
I have to produce a three-way folding leaflet on 2 sides of A4 on this plant, advertising the local Biodomes of The Eden Project. I'm really enjoying this coursework for once. It's the first time in 3 years of university that I am on the course I want to be on and my favourite module, plants. It's also arty and creative, I got to do some line drawings of the plant and the plant is of personal interest. Life is good. After so much time spent on topics that I hate: chemistry, statistics, biomed - blerg! It is lovely to have work to do that I enjoy. For once I am ahead of a deadline too.
I had a 9am lecture that I didn't go to because I was engrosed in my research but I think Tom can forgive me. I am due to meet John at 1pm to work on my leaflet but I think he will be pleased at the amount I have already done so looking forward to that.
I guess that's all I wanted to share. I will write more when I get chance. x

Saturday, 2 January 2010

Well as you know I am in Abu Dhabi right now. Nan and I flew from Heathrow on Wednesday afternoon and arrived 2 minutes past midnight Abu Dhabi time. As soon as we were in the airport a waft of heat and perfume came at us. Auntie Jeanne, Uncle Abdul and my cousin Adel came to pick us up in the black BMW 7 series. It has really cool doors that close by themselves and all sorts of funky gadgets and gismos that I won't go into but it's an impressive looking car. It was nice to see all the traditional dress and to hear people speaking Arabic, obviously. After a pretty short drive we were at the house. I say house but it's so huge! Around the back they have a pool, gym, hot tub, sauna, shower room and summer house. As it was pretty late when we arrived it wasn't too long before everyone was off to bed but as I was sooooo very excited I couldn't sleep one bit so decided to explore the house a bit to try and tire myself out. I knew the girls would be getting up for school at 6am and I wanted to see them off so ended up not going to bed at all. This is Arwas room that I am staying in, it's so comfortable. Finally at 6am Yas and Arwa got up and the house wasn't so quiet. I chatted with them and stood outside with them while they waited for their bus. It was cute to see their uniforms and their dress and fun to wave them off. Amber and Jack their dogs were there to greet us. While they went to school, Juanita, Aunite Jeanne, Nan, Nabeela and I went to the Marina Mall to pick up presents as it was Abduls birthday. They picked out some really posh suitcases and some Timberland clothes for him then we went back to the house. We all sat around the living room chatting and Abdul opened some gifts. He got a smaller Cartier bag from Khalid and his wife Miriam. They have a little daughter, my second cousin Dhabiya. I can't put pictures of the female members of the family online so you'll have to use your imagination. Adel came home with tons of sweets and treats for everyone to celebrate Abduls birthday. Adel bought him some Lacoste tshirts. When the girls Arwa and Yas came home from school they gave him some aftershaves. I didn't see them all but I did see some Farenheit. We all sat around chatting and had a pretty fun evening. The next day was the Friday which is the countrys holiday like Sunday. They have Friday and Saturday off so the whole family was at home. In the morning there was a huge breakfast laid out: Sausages, porridge, eggs, mushrooms, cereals, yoghurts, jams, and some stuff called Foul (said like Fool) which is some kind of bean like kidney beans but not the same taste which is cooked up into a paste with tomatoes and I don't know what else. I had Foul, eggs, sausages and mushrooms. After breakfast we all got in various cars (they have a lot of cars and there are a lot of us) and went on a trip to the biggest mall in the world in Dubai. Abdul drove his Ferrari and just looked so very cool! Driving to Dubai was a lot of fun, seeing all the buildings and architecture etc was really spectacular. It's a very pretty place.The mall when we arrived was as you would expect, huge!

I have just found out I am allowed to put pictures of the family on when they are in their outdoor dress so I have a few pics I can share with you. This is my Auntie Jeanne with my nan and my cousin Nabeela. The little baby is Dhabiya, my cousin Khalid and his wife Miriams baby. The rest of the afternoon we walked around the mall, went for coffee etc. When we got home we all had dinner at the table then got an early night.
I will write about Saturday and Sunday later because we are now off to a different mall. I only get chance to write here in the mornings briefly and I have been writing this blog since Saturday lol. I promise to keep trying to keep it up to date but I'm busy having fun!

Love and hugs from Abu Dhabi! xxxxx

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Wednesday 9th December 2009

11.45pm - Random ramblings!

The last few months have really flown past me in a flash, I can't believe it is December already and so so so so long since I last blogged. I am deeply sorry about that but as you know, last year I failed my first year of Uni and this year I vowed to take it a lot more seriously. So far, I am doing excellently, much improved on last years performance but have had to put in a lot of time and effort.

Need a little vent I'm afraid here goes: I am feeling major Burn Out to be honest. I feel exhausted. Diabetes has totally kicked my ass and everything is just such a huge mission now. I guess I'm just run down but it's hard all this keeping myself positive when I feel tired at the end of the day. In the morning I will feel differently, all keen and spritely as normal but right now I'm wiped out. My brain wants to go but my body says no, lol.

I don't think I have much news but I'll just start blogging and see what happens. I've been pretty busy lately not just at uni but socially too. I seem to have a group of really lovely friends. David, Vicky, Steve, Kev, Clare, Talan, Rob, Anne, Jonny, Peter, Laura etc etc. Here is how it goes:

Mondays I have maths but not until lunch so I get a much needed lie in and the night off, Tuesdays I have a day off but the last 3 have been spent doing maths in the Chaplaincy, tuesday nights are Christian Union if I can make it, Wednesday is supposed to be a day off too but the last 2 have been spent doing maths with Tom in the chappers, every other Wednesday I go to Xalt when I know someone that will be there, Thursday is my super busy day lately, maths lectures and maths with Tom in the chappers, Christianity Explored in the evening, Friday I go to Bible brunch if I can get up early enough then get the afternoon off. Saturdays I do all my house work and washing late into the evening, mumsie comes over on Sunday for dinner.

The rest of the time I'm catching up on Facebook, except this week I went to Church on Sunday night. I'm trying to make myself go into uni every day for as long as I can manage so that I really appreciate my time off and am ready for the increase in subject and difficulty after Christmas that threw me last year. I was doing just fine until the second half of the year when I didn't understand a word when I had missed lectures.

I haven't had chance to get on here to blog but I have been reading Hollydaze! I always read the email one when I get my uni emails and comment if I get chance to go on blogspot at the same time which alas is not as often as I would like. My plan of action for this year was just to nail maths get it out of the way so that I don't have to go to maths after christmas. I have one more test to do and then I am done so the plan is to get it done before I go on holiday. Oh! my holiday I haven't really told you about that yet, I got asked to go to visit my family over in Abu Dhabi! Aren't they lovely? I was so so grateful! I am going on 30th December with my Nan and staying there until 28th January. I can't wait!

Anyway, since I passed Bio 005 and Chem 005 I only had to do maths this term (semester?) but I didn't pass Bio 006, Chem 006, Stats or Maths for the second part of the year so after Christmas I am back to a whole timetable after only having maths right now. If I can reduce it to Bio, Chem and Stats then I might have a chance of completing this year and getting onto my actual degree which will be a lot more fun because it's a subject I'm actually interested in. I was very close to passing bio and chem last year so fingers crossed. I'm hoping the work I did last year will count towards my final mark but I have yet to confirm that with my tutor Dave Harwood.

I have an enabler this year called Tom who has made the hugest change in my whole uni experience. I no longer have any stress when I go to a lecture. He walks me to my lectures and sits through them with me then spends hours on end one to one patiently explaining the simplest of things that I just don't get over and over. Bless him. Maths is like a foreign language to me apparently I have something called Dyscalculus? (I am guessing you know what that is.) Perhaps I rely on him a bit too much? Anyway we sort of just got on so well right from the start that I feel like I have known him forever and I don't know how I managed anything last year. While I am on holiday he might even be sitting through all my lectures note taking for me for when I get back home! A combination of Tom and feeling so very much at home in the chappers is making uni a real pleasure.

I chatted with Alysha tonight for the first time in years. It was lovely. Really reminded me of the good old days of chatting with her, Vicki, Becca and Angel all the time instead of once in a while. We both really miss those days, it was nice to catch up. She asked me if I ever talk to you and I said not exactly, lol. I said that we read and comment on eachothers blogs but that I still feel the same as I did when we chatted for hours on the phone every day. Perhaps I will get the opportunity to call you over the christmas? I will try my best. I'd love to come and visit you and meet Holly. Angel has invited me to go to visit her at Easter or what you call Spring Break. I am hoping to have enough money to do that. I talk to Angel on Facebook all the time by the way, she is as lovely as ever :) I haven't heard from Becca in nearly 3 years now I think. Have you?

I'm sorry to say that I started smoking again recently after having given up for over 11 months and now I am going through the giving up process again. It's such a difficult thing to do, I can't believe I was stupid enough to put myself through it twice. I have to take tablets that make me feel like I have morning sickness twice a day. They stop me from having cravings. Well they work like a treat during the day, I don't smoke at all but evenings I can't kick it just yet. It's all just habit breaking, I'll get there again. I'm not taking tobacco with me abroad so that will be the end of it.

I can't wait to get in the sun I have missed it so much. It's freezing cold and always raining here in Plymouth at the moment. It is the worst time of the year weather-wise, October - April really. We have 2 months sun usually, 3 if we are lucky. The cold isn't so depressing it's the constant year-long rain.

It was Sams third birthday yesterday. It was fun we had a birthday tea and he loved his presents. He was in a great mood and a good time was had by all. He is so big now and just so handsome and gorgeously cute!

Hope your knee is better now by the way!

It's late now so I'm going to get going. I promise to be on facebook but I will get on here whenever I can, sorry. Finish uni 21st not going on holiday until 30th so I'll try and get on then again. xxxxxx

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Wednesday 30th September 2009

Time flies by so quickly I hardly noticed it has been over a week since I posted a blog and I was trying to stay up to date too! Oh well. I've been so ill this week I had three days where all I really did was chat with people on Facebook and keep up to date with my games. I had my hair cut and as promised took some pics.
Tuesday Vicky and I sat in the chaplaincy and chatted with Kev Blake. I wasn't feeling too well though and didn't go back as planned for the event in the evening. Wednesday all day I was proper ill and spent most of my time just facebooking but I did pop down and see Heidi and the girls a few times. Thursday I was feeling a little better but still stayed home to rest. My mum came over and I cooked a stew. I have pictures but don't want to traumatise you so I'll just put them on Facebook where you can avoid them. Later in the evening Katie brough Sam over for a little visit while she went down her friend Andreas who lives right near me.

Friday I was ill again and stayed home all day resting and napping. Saturday I felt better and wanted some fresh air after being cooped up so met Vicky in town for a little shopping. She bought some cooking things, I got another t-shirt, this one was black with Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon, Elvis, Jim Morrison and a few others on the front saying Legends. With my very handy student discount of 20% it was only £4.80 which I was very impressed with!

Saturdays are always crazy busy in town and this week we had a farmers market to add to the chaos but I was actually ok with it and had a really good time. Vicky and I went to a little cafe and had some lunch which I forgot to photograph then we continued shopping, ending up in the christian book shop that we love.

We spent hours in there, going through and checking out almost everything on offer. It's such a cute little shop above another shop tucked away and fun to browse. Vicky bought a wrist band and an inspirational poster and I bought a book written by the Bishop of Durham on Marks Gospel, a daily inspirational book and a New Testament. I have many different versions of the bible but none that I would want to write in so even though I have many New Testaments I wanted one to cross reference and write notes on whilst reading the 'Mark for Everyone' book. I've really been enjoying these books so The Lost Symbol is on the shelf for now. I did read a few pages of it on the bus when I bought it though and what I read was very good!
On Sunday I went to mumsies and we had cottage pie before she had to go and babysit my stepsisters children.

It was nice to be out of the flat even though I wasn't feeling very well at all. Good to see mum and get a change of scene, the cottage pie was gorgeous too! Monday I was feeling worse then ever and stayed home from Uni. By then I knew I had Bronchitus at least as I just couldn't stop my barking cough for even a minute and my inhalers were barely working anymore. I spent the day chatting on Facebook inbetween naps and slowly got worse and worse as the night went on, developing a severe pain all down my right side. By the morning I couldn't bare the pain and went down to Heidis to phone the doctors. I had really scared myself by then and was thinking the worst that I might have pneumonia so got as early an appointment as I could. Daisy was in a great little mood that day, she was very good at cheering me up. I went to the doctors even though I was thinking I should go to the hospital and I'm glad I did because she said it was indeed just Bronchitus and I had probably just strained my muscles coughing but to come back if it got any worse. She prescribed me some much stronger antibiotics than the ones I had the week before, some Ibruprofen for the pain and a stronger inhaler for the 'rattle' in my chest. I layed on the sofa most of the rest of the day feeling sorry for myself and nearly coughing up a lung, lol. The cats kept me company though. Tuesday was much of the same although I wasn't so tired and the Ibruprofen was working enough for me to get back on Facebook and not feel quite as lonely. I chatted with Vicky who kindly offered to come over and asked me if I needed anything from the shop etc. She said everyone was missing me in Uni which made me a little sad. I had promised to be in that day but just wasn't well enough. I was up very late that night as I found it hard to settle and go to sleep so I kept getting back up. I chatted with Angel for a little while which was nice so I was then glad I had stayed up late enough to catch her. Today Vicky came over to see how I was and to be honest I have been feeling much better. The antibiotics must be very strong and the Ibruprofen is perfect. I wasn't quite up to going out still but I made a sausage casserole and we watched Scrubs, Friends, Judge Judy and chatted, it was lovely.

She really cheered me up. I seem to now be a lot better, only coughing every so often and not as bad. The combination of strong tablets, good company, plenty of rest and decent food seems to have worked a treat. It is now 3am Thursday and I think I am well enough to go into Uni today which is great as I have Maths which I don't want to miss then this evening it is the first Christianity Explored of the new study year so I would have been sad to miss that too!
I will definitely take pictures even if I don't manage to blog so that I can catch up later. As long as I'm going to be in Uni today I will anyways otherwise the pictures will all be too samey, lol. Much love xxxxx