Friday, 28 February 2014

A Timely Warning. . .

. . . . if you're a mole. The mole catcher is out again!

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Congratulations to James

. . . but you may or may not want to see him like this . . .
. . . depending on how you're feeling.
Nearly three years ago James completed his training and became a CFR (Community First Responder) as part of the Endmoor group. He carries a pager and is called out by the North West Ambulance Service to 999 calls within our local area. The group covers an area roughly from junction 36 to 37 of the M6, and eastwards of Kendal as far as the A684. This also includes Lupton and the new Auction Mart at J36. By knowing their own locale First Responders can arrive before the ambulance. This is taken from the NWAS website, and explains better than I can -
Community First Responders are teams of volunteers who live and work in local communities. They are trained and activated by North West Ambulance NHS Service NHS Trust to attend certain calls where time can make the difference between life and death. Such calls would include Chest Pain, Breathing Difficulties, Cardiac Arrest, Unconsciousness, Fitting, Arrest of Haemorrhage and Diabetic Emergencies. The responder provides care and support to the patient and relatives until the arrival of the emergency ambulance.
Very often, the role of a responder is one of reassurance. In instances where someone has chest pains, simply giving oxygen can make a big difference.  In extreme cases, they can perform CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) or use a defibrillator to restart the heart. Chances of survival decreases by 10% with each minute a person's heart has stopped beating. So the CFR's availability in the local area means they can respond quickly and start treatment as early as possible.
Each volunteer makes themselves available on call to suit their personal circumstances. They carry basic life saving equipment, and a simple to use Automated External Defibrillator (AED).
The Ambulance Service control centre sends Responders to immediately life threatening medical calls within their local area. They are dispatched at the same time as the ambulance crews but because they are often in more rural locations, may arrive more quickly than the ambulance.
Since last July James has been training to be an ECFR (Extended First Responder). This has involved practical training courses as well as intensive online study (modules to complete followed by assessment). Last weekend the final assessments took place over two days at Shap Wells hotel and James has now attained ECFR status. He even won a prize for best overall performance in scenarios (3 creme eggs!).
He now carries pain relief (Entonox) as well as Oxygen and Dextrose Gel for hypoglycaemia and has the capabilities to respond to twice as many incidents, including falls, head injuries and trauma. It's not just the type of calls that has increased, but also extra categories of people he can attend.
He has twice as much kit now, including two gas cylinders. It's packed up and stored by the front door, so as soon as his pager goes off he can drop everything, throw it into the car and be off down the lane in minutes.
The NW Ambulance Service has a YouTube channel, including this video showing a typical First Responder.
So, if you've just rung 999 the first person you see could be James.
P.S - I should also say Congratulations to Martin Smith of Endmoor who is now also an ECFR.

note - clicking on links (in red) will take you to other related websites.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Our family star

Don't miss Emily next Sunday (2nd March) at Crosscrake

and then as the lead in Princess Ida
And if you can't make either, or want a preview, click here to visit Emily's website

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

End of an Era

Today Henry said goodbye to one of his most treasured possessions. Ever since I've known him he's had a Mini of some sort (except for a few years when babies and prams necessitated something bigger). Maybe it was his transport that drew me to him in 1966. At the time not many girls at Kendal High School had a boyfriend with a car. It wasn't exactly a car - but the start of his love affair with Mini Vans. Eventually this was sold (but only to his brother, so it was still in the family) and he bought a rather smart and flashy red Mini car. This was followed by a white one then a kingfisher blue one, before we succumbed the space of an small estate car to accommodate Victoria's pram. In the 1970's cars were smaller, but prams were bigger than now. We had managed to fit quite a bit in the back of the red mini (including a kitchen table and two chairs we bought in Liverpool).

We didn't come back to Minis for some time - though we had one of the first Mini Metros. In the 80's and 90's James had a Mini (crashed), I had a Mini (Victoria crashed) and eventually in 1993 Henry was reunited with his youth when he bought a Mini Van from an acquaintance in Old Hutton. It was more or less always in good running order for the first few years, but gradually became less reliable (probably from lack of use) and was sidelined; especially as I had bought a new Mini Cooper (thank you K Shoes for the redundancy money).

In 2006 the van had a major overhaul, passed it's MOT and was back on the road and occasionally taken out on the road. But it was kept inside, and not always easy or handy to get out, so once again it fell into disuse. And if you don't use something regularly, they tend to go downhill. It's been kept dry and out of the elements in the sheep building, but realistically we new we would probably not use it again. So when someone who was picking up some cow mats, saw it and confessed to being a complete Mini fanatic we thought it was too good an opportunity to miss.

And today there is just an empty space in the sheep building, and a few photographs of the van in it's prime. In the "olden days" (i.e. the 60/70/80's) we never took many photographs, and certainly not just of cars. Occasionally cars happened to be in photos of something else. I've rummaged through albums and drawers and found photos of all but one of our minis (the Kingfisher Blue Clubman), and arranged them into a sort of collage.

The quality is not the best, but here are
 Minis We Have Known.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Valentines Day

I've just been presented with a bouquet of half a dozen red roses.

Not your usual red roses - these were Christmas Roses growing wild down the fields (escapees from our garden long ago).
And not your usual cellophane wrapped bouquet - though it was hand-tied.

Thank you Henry!
How have they survived the recent storms?

Thursday, 13 February 2014

A Tale of Three Deliveries

1. Two new settees.
2. One CD.
3. Seven plates.

1. The new settees are still wrapped in very large brown paper bags, and rather blocking the hall (see post of 10/02/2014.)

2. I ordered a CD of early Folk Music from Amazon. It was dispatched, but then disappeared into some unknown black hole. When I chased it, it was "lost in transit". I was offered a replacement or refund. An easy decision - as it came with "Auto Rip" (as soon as I ordered the physical copy I could download a digital copy - which I did).

3. I'm a bit of collector of Cloverleaf pots that feature Shorthorn cows. As these are now discontinued, the main source is Ebay. I have to admit to having a rather large collection, and don't really need any more. But occasionally something comes up that is too good to miss. I found a set of seven plates in a size and design I hadn't got, so put in an optimistic bid. I was lucky and got them for a very good price. They arrived yesterday, very well packed and clearly labelled "fragile". But after removing all the protective packaging this is was we found -


1. We are getting a new door onto the patio.
2. I got a download for free.
3. I got all my money refunded, plus I get one free unbroken plate.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Birthdays Galore

Today it's two for the price of one
66 years young

Monday, 10 February 2014

Ups and downs

Today has been a day of Ups and Downs.

For the first time in 44 years of marriage we have bought a new settee; but not just one, but two new settees. We have always had either hand-me-downs (my mother could never quite find the perfect suite, so there was a steadyish stream) or bargains from the Auction or Miscellaneous Sales in The Gazette. But we took the plunge and ordered two beautiful pieces of furniture that should last for ever. A definite UP.

We managed to find homes for the existing settee and chairs (see my advert a few posts back), and cleared a space ready for the delivery this morning. After a few problems lowering the ramp on the delivery van the first settee was carried through the front door into the hall. And that's when the problems started. The door into the sitting room is maybe not the widest in the world (but we had managed to get the old stuff out, so I wasn't worried), but it's also set into a very deep panelled doorway. Despite my pleas to try just one more time, another way round, there was no way either of the settees would go through. If we had bought a big squashy sofa it might have worked. But the solid ash frame was going nowhere. Even ringing Henry to come down from The Lots didn't help.

We decided we may have to take a window out, and stacked the new and old furniture in the hall, signed the delivery note and said goodbye to the delivery men. A definite DOWN.

But while back tidying up new drains, Henry had an idea. And it must have been a good one as James had the same idea. We would get the builder to replace the back window with a door onto the Patio. It would then be a simple straight lift through the new doorway. Henry has always wanted a door on that side of the house, so this was a definite UP.

Our builder has been and there's been talk of different levels, drains and types of door. But it's going ahead. There will be dust and mess for a while, but the result should be worth it. Another UP.

But - we'll lose some wall space and the window sill. Where will I put the HiFi speakers (only recently reconnected after 2 years adrift). And more importantly, where will I display the overflow collection of blue glass? Maybe a DOWN.

P.S - what is the difference between a settee and a sofa?

A few notes for posterity

Last week - while the weather and ground were wet enough to see which way the water flowed - we did some extensive drainage work on The Lots (our parcel of land at the other side of New Hutton). At the moment it's easy to see where the new drains are, but later in Spring (when the land dries up!) we'll be reseeding and gradually there's be no evidence (apart from more usable pasture and meadow). So, as they were working Henry and James drew "detailed", if slightly rough and not-to-scale plans. The mud splattered pieces of cardboard (recycling an old calendar) will get tidied up - but just in case they get swept away before the, I scanned them. So next time you're driving up Hawkrigg Lane or along  Sedbergh Road, you'll be able to identify what we've done.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

A Technical Tip

A hint: What to do if your wind speed sensor stops transmitting to the console in the house -

Hit the pole several times with a large hammer!

Result - we have wind!

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Does anyone want a free sofa?

Next week we are taking delivery of two new settees. Now even though we have a big house, sometimes we just run out of room. So the big squashy sofa has got to go. It's big enough to seat four (at 210 cm x 100 cm) or even sleep one if you've a full house. It's not perfect (we got it secondhand ten years ago), but there's loads of life left in it.

This isn't a "For Sale" advert - it's FREE!

Please get in touch (via contacts or comments) if you're interested.

P.S these adverts are not going to be a regular feature - I just need the room!

For Sale - one workbench and associated tools

But if it's one for the garden shed or farm workshop you're after, this one may be a bit small. This one is designed for the younger farmer. It's well made and sturdy, and in good condition.

As you can see it comes with loads of tools - some battery driven, and wooden bits and pieces to build your own designs.

All reasonable offers considered - just get in touch via the Contacts tab at the top of the page, or leave a comment.

Sorry for the blatant advertising, but we've got this web space, so I though we might as well use it. And I  keep bumping into the vice on the workbench as I walk past it!

Another February Day, another Birthday

Today its


Tuesday, 4 February 2014

It may be cold outside . . .

. . . but inside, our calves are snug and warm.

It's not just so they look rather cute; the theory is that if the calf doesn't have to use as much energy keeping warm, it will have more energy available to grow big and strong quicker. (But they do look rather fetching, don't they?)

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Happy Birthday

February is a month full of Birthdays and today's the first - here's a clue (picture courtesy of Victoria's Twitter)