Organising The Medicine Cabinet & The Smallest Room in the House

My husband Fred had Food Poisoning which we presume he got in Azerbaijan on a business trip or on the plane on the way home.  So because of this and because of some medical type things I discovered in the garage last month it made more sense to do the back toilet first this month as that is where our Medicine Cabinet is.

Yes it is as simple as that; sometimes I need to be flexible.

So I started by creating my TOILET OVERHAUL list
on the iPad Pocket Lists App which now looks rather different to before in both the icon and the content.

Pocket Lists App

Unfortunately this week I had to take that drastic step of updating to ios7 and if you read a certain post from last year you would know that this then was a very sad week for me, but it had to happen as without it I could not update some of my apps.

Isn't the screenshot so bland compared to previous ones and so pale as well?   Rotten update to this app.

Well as you can see above even for such a small room I had 18 items on my list.

No way this room would be done in a couple of hours!

No way this room would be done in one day  -  all my time in any day is not going to be given over to housework and organising.

So armed with my cleaning kit and trusty steamer I got started.

I got the boring bits out of the way (you know the cleaning of the toilet etc.) and then it was time to reorganise the Medicine Cabinet and I just brightened up because those things are far more interesting to me than washing and cleaning and dusting and hoovering.

This is the Funwork part!

While I was rearranging I was of course checking dates of items and throwing out things and making out a list of things I would need to get to replenish my store.

I was pleased with it when I was finished because I took out some of the more bulky things and some other things that didn't sit so well on the narrow shelves and thought of somewhere else to put these plus the face masks that I had found in the garage (brand new provided by Fred's work but he had kept them in a travel bag in the garage).

So what was my idea for storing these things?

Simply to put them in the underused drawers and cupboards of the vanity unit in the same room.

You see this room is really only used for two things

          1.  Medicine Cabinet
          2.  Recycling

It is not really used as a bathroom because we have two ensuites and a bathroom so why need another one and have to always be cleaning a fourth toilet?

Up until now there was hardly anything in the cupboards and the drawers but that was going to change.

The drawers took some of those not too large items but ones that didn't sit so easily on the shelves of the Medicine cabinet

and the cupboard shelves took the larger health items.

There is also still some room for a few things I need to get like gel cooling pads. 

Then I decided to store the extra towels for this room in the vanity unit (brown top right), the toilet rolls went in there too as they had been in a basket but it has got rather grubby and finding out how to clean it is the first item on my ToDo list for this room now.

Of course I hope you have noticed the packet of wipes (green top left) which are very important in each room as you may remember from a previous post  5 Things to Make the Housework Easy  and the vinegar (bottom left).

Well after most of the overhaul list had been done it was

Then back the next day to finish off.

Things like cleaning the window blind and the light shade and the radiator were still to be done and sometimes these are the types of things that we can overlook so make sure you have them on your list and then you won't forget them.

And before I could do my inventory for this room I wanted to do the ToDo list.
It is not very long but does include a rather annoying thing.

 The people who owned the house before us had put up two hooks above the window probably to put up some kind of drape.   The walls are completely tiled (not absolutely ghastly but not as nice as all the rest of the tiles in the house) so this means they put up two sticky backed hooks.


why couldn't they have put up two hooks that were the same 


 at the same height?

So my main ToDo is to find out the best way to remove these hooks.

Any bright ideas?

If you have had to do something similar and are now an expert in this please leave me a comment to help me.

I you have noticed anything online that might guide me please leave me a comment.

I need help here!



Standing not Sitting - A Dose of Encouragement

  There is a seaside resort called Portrush on the northern coastline of Northern Ireland, which has a headland jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean.  This area is called Ramore Head and all along the shore are beautiful but rugged rocks.


When we were living in the State of Delaware in America many years ago we took a trip to visit seven of the north-eastern states; and there in the smallest state of Rhode Island, in the picturesque town of Newport, we found the same type of rugged shoreline as at Ramore Head.  

         We stood on the rocks, sat on the rocks, took photographs, and laughed in the breeze that was blowing in from over the ocean - we felt "at home" on these rocks.

            Perhaps it was because of these memories, that a picture the Lord gave me a few months later in church one Sunday morning, seemed to really touch me deeply.  

I saw a figure of a man, tall and dark, standing on a rock facing out over the ocean. Even though the wind was blowing strongly, this person was standing firm. 

I was sure this man felt secure as he stood on that rock.

There is only one rock that we can be secure on and that is the Lord our God.  

Several times in the bible we read that God is our rock. 

I like the personal touch in 2 Samuel 22 v 2 where David started his song of praise to God (after he was delivered from Saul) with the phrase:

                                    “The Lord is my rock”   

and also in Psalm 31 v 3  where he says

                        “Yea Thou art my rock and my fortress”.  (RSV)

          So what type of a rock is our God?  

Well in the picture I saw a large, firmly placed rock that gave a good foothold.  There was no fear of stumbling or sliding off; the rock was good enough for the man to stand steady and at peace in the wind. 

I believe that illustrates the type of rock our God is!  He’s dependable, solid, firm, sure and steadfast; we need have no fear of anything else when we have such a foundation to stand on.

As I considered the picture, I sensed the most important thing was that this man was not sitting, but standing on the rock.    He was standing firm, standing boldly, not being swayed by the wind; not sitting/crouching scared of the wind.  

In Ephesians ch. 6 we read about the armour of God, each part of it is important but Paul stresses three times that we must not only put on the armour but we must also stand

·         We need to be able to stand against the devil’s schemes v.11

·         We need to be able to stand our ground and after we've done everything else to still stand v. 13

·         We must stand firm v. 14             

            We are exhorted to stand not sit, perhaps because sitting might lead us to relax (let our minds wander and not be alert) when God is really saying:

                        “Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.”
                                                                                                1 Cor. 16 v 13   

The man in the picture I saw definitely seemed to feel "at home" on the rock. 

Do you feel "at home" on the rock?

Are you putting all your trust in God?


Why We Worship 23

I am taking time each week to ask myself "Why we worship"

This is Pentecost Sunday

                so there is no doubt as to what we should consider today.


This is probably one of the hardest things for us to comprehend.

We are so used to everybody having a physical being 

but God is not a physical being 

He is a Spirit.

We can't see a spirit, we can't reach out and touch a spirit, 

we cannot fully understand what a spirit is.

But something we do know is God's Word and in the Bible it clearly states that we must

Worship God in Spirit and in Truth.

We must worship Him in line with these two attributes that belong to Him.

From this we can know that we have a spirit too because if we were only a physical being God could not require this of us.  

What a great privilege we have to be like God and be 

invited to worship Him.

Did you worship God today?


In Sickness & In Health - A Dose of Encouragement

My post today is late because

                I have a sick husband.

Monday morning after a long night's sleep of approx 11 hours hubby gets up feeling ok but the hint of a headache which could simply be from him having had a long sleep after such a short sleep the previous night between two flights on his way home to Northern Ireland from Azerbaijan.

He makes the usual breakfast of tea, toast and banana, sits down at the table, takes one bite and a sip of tea and suddenly pushes the chair back and says I feel awful.  After taking an advil for his head and starting to feel shaky he heads back to bed.  About half an hour later he feels extremely hot when I touch his forehead but he claims he is so so cold.  He doesn't even want a drink or some paracetamol because he feels sick.

He just wants to lie flat in bed.

Later  -  No lunch.

The thought of food makes him feel sick and then he vomits and also has diarrhea.

By 2.00pm he has a temperature of 99.86 and then vomits again so I think the temperature will have gone down but no at 2.30pm it is 103.1.

We continue with paracetamol and frequent sips of water but there are several more bouts of this 'double sickness' with his temperature ranging from 101 to 103 all day long.

During the night we seldom get it below 102 and I stay awake checking him every half hour  -  I have never seen him so ill.

In the morning at 8am it is 103 again and I ring the doctor as soon as surgery is open.

By this time our children who are all in different parts of the world (keeping in touch with us via Kakaotalk) have discovered that Malaria is increasing again in Azerbaijan and that dad should get checked for that.

Now we live in a small town

The view from our bedroom window

and the doctors here probably do not have people ringing up often saying

"just back from a country that has a risk of Malaria and I've a temp of 103 
with vomiting and diarrhea"

 but trying to be calm our doctor checks his manual and yes he sees about malaria and Azerbaijan but the symptoms could also be for any infection so he can't prescribe until Fred gets blood tests etc. done.

So he has to get out of bed, washed, dressed, and I drive him to the surgery.

Doctor checks everything about him including his heart and sends him to the treatment room where at least he is allowed to be seen before the 15 or more people already sitting waiting.

During blood tests for a variety of things which they don't even name to him, they are not sure which type of container the blood for the malaria test should go into.

So here is the proof that in Banbridge, Northern Ireland 
they don't take blood for Malaria testing
 every day or week or year.

I am very tired by this stage but don't want to sleep because I still don't like the state of him even if the doctor said his temperature was normal.  And it certainly doesn't stay normal as he goes through more bouts of this awful sickness through the day.

Later that evening Fred tells me they said the results of all the tests should be back by Friday morning - this was Tuesday.  I am not too happy about this as he is so sick and weak and such a bad colour.

He wants to sleep and insists that I sleep during the night so I only check on him every 2 hours and sleep on the couch downstairs where I would hear him if he called.  Temp is around 101 all night.

Doctor rings the house at 8.30am  to ask how he is and is obviously concerned when he hears the vomiting and diarrhea is not any less frequent but still doesn't want to prescribe anything until the results are through which he hopes might be Thursday instead.

Then at 9.30am the temperature goes to 102 again followed by another bout of sickness.

2 more bouts later and then he asks me when I think he will be able to fly out to Morocco (which is his next business trip and he should have been leaving today) as he sits up in the bed to make a phone call to change his flight.

If that was me in the bed having gone through all of that there is no way I would be asking when I should fly out I would simply be saying I have to cancel that trip altogether.

Sometimes I am so proud of my husband and sometimes I just shake my head at him but on this occasion I didn't know which way to be.

Then at 4pm the doctor rings again  -  some results are back.

Not Malaria

It's Food Poisoning.

Antibiotic to be collected and the Environmental Health authorities will be ringing us
 because it is a notifiable illness.

Off I go to get the antibiotics and get the first dose into him.

A little later as I lie at the foot of the bed and he is sitting up for a few minutes.

He says

And I just smile as I think, yes I suppose it is, 
but I had just done what he needed; 

I didn't consider it a duty.

What do people do in these situations where for a few days or much longer, they are very ill and the doctors don't know what is wrong straight away?

How do they cope when they see temperatures that are high and their loved ones iller than they have ever been before?

I don't know.

I only know what we do.

We pray.

We pray because we trust God to hear us 
and know he cares about us.

We pray because there is no-one else who can do more for us than God can.

I hope you turn to God in all circumstances too.


Why We Worship 22

I am taking time each week to ask myself "Why we worship"

A chorus that we sing and a memory verse we learn as children tells us that

  Jesus is the way, the truth and the life.

And today I want to think about truth.

Perhaps one way to think about it is to consider the opposite of true which is false. 

So we can say that God is not false.

God has no lies in Him

          God has no deceit in Him

                    God has no evil in Him

Also it means that God is not a false God.

God is not an imitation God

          God is not an idol or image

                    God is not the wrong God

God is the right God

God is the true, living God.

When Jesus was praying to His Father (in John chapter 17) on behalf of the ones who would trust in Him He described God the Father as the only true God.

The verse above also tells us that knowing God, the only true God is what it means to have Eternal life.

We mostly tend to talk about Eternal life as the life we have after we die and that living forever is the main goal or reward for a Christian but here Jesus is saying that

it is not 

living forever that we should be looking forward to 


instead it is knowing God


surely that must start 
in this life

Do you know this one true living God?

Do you know the right God?


Distorted or Beautiful? - A Dose of Encouragement

Anyone who knows me personally or has read a lot of my blog posts will know that I absolutely adore my iPad
 (I wish they would pay me for saying that - I would be rich by now).

Also my family will know that I have far too many apps on my iPad (mostly free ones - I only get paid ones if I cannot find a free one which will do the job).

Well one of the apps I had downloaded one time ages ago was one to have a little fun with photos.  You loaded your photo into the app and then you could get a black and white sketch of a funny kind of outline of the photo.

I played with it once some time in 2012 and just used two photos that I found; quickly one of each of our boys many years ago when they were young. My husband had scanned some negatives and I had those pictures on the ipad so they were handy to use.

 (I can hear our daughter now saying "what about one of me?" 
- she always claims that being the third child was so unfair because we didn't take as many photographs of her as a baby as we did of the boys.)

These are the results of those two experiments

Faces stretched and pulled into strange shapes ending up with a kind of a caricature of each of the boys.  It provided me with a bit of a laugh and then shortly afterwards the pics were transferred to the computer and forgotten about.
In fact it took me quite a while to find them today.

Have you ever had a picture just pop into your mind?

Well you can probably imagine my surprise when suddenly these two pictures popped into my mind during a prayer meeting at church a few weeks ago.  I saw them clearly in my mind's eye and thought this was very strange.

Then God impressed a phrase on me

"I do not distort things I make them more beautiful"

Two of the words in that sentence really stood out to me.

"Distorted"  and  "more"

It was good enough, I felt, that God was telling me or reminding me that He does not distort things - that is the work of the devil.

And it was even better that He was reminding me that He makes things beautiful.

But the thing I felt that was being stressed was the fact that He makes things MORE beautiful.

Perhaps we need to take heed of Psalm 90:17

Now this only shows the first part of the verse but I think it is important that we also consider the next part

And establish the work of our hands for us;

Yes, establish the work of our hands.

God is not making us beautiful so that we can bask in our beauty, He is making us beautiful so that we can work for Him.

With the beauty of God upon us we will be more like Him in all ways filling us with His Holy Spirit and bringing forth the Fruit of the Spirit in our lives.  Our minds, attitudes and feelings will be more aligned to God's and ultimately this will help us to reach others for Him

So can we sit back and just think for a little while today about how we as children of God are not distorted but are made more beautiful by God?

I'm thankful to have a God who can make things MORE beautiful.

Do you want to thank God that He makes us more beautiful than we can imagine?
I do.


When Darkness Falls - Book Review

I love to snap up free ebooks if they look like they are something I will enjoy (especially murder mysteries).

So one day I saw this offer of an ebook in three parts and I downloaded it.

I only got round to reading it over Easter while I was travelling  because I had not got the Agatha Christie mystery that was next on my reading list already on my kindle.

The book is

       When Darkness Falls  

by  James Grippando

About the Author
JAMES GRIPPANDO is a best selling author of several books and lives in Florida, where he was a trial lawyer for 12 years.

Synopsis  from
In this novel from this bestselling author, lawyer Jack Swyteck tackles a case in which the life of his best friend hangs in the balance - and in which nothing is as it seems. A Miami criminal defense attorney, Swyteck isn't looking for a new client, at least not one who is homeless and in jail for threatening to jump off a bridge. But from the moment Jack is called to defend the man, who goes by the name Falcon, something is amiss. For one thing, Falcon comes up with the $10,000 bail - in cash. Then the body of a brutally murdered woman is found in the trunk of the abandoned car in which he is living. Panicked and on the run, Falcon takes Jack's best friend, Theo, hostage. They end up barricaded in a motel room, and Theo isn't the only one at Falcon's mercy. Jack must work with the cops and their crackerjack negotiator to free Theo and the other captives before Falcon decides he has nothing to lose by killing them all. What Jack doesn't know is that Falcon has a much bigger agenda, and that there are people behind the scenes who will stop at nothing to keep their dangerous secrets. Thus unfolds a riveting, lightning-paced story, as only James Grippando can tell it.

Publisher:  Harper Collins
Date Published:  Feb 2007
Series:  A Jack Swyteck novel

My Opinion

We are teased by attempted suicide, murder, a hostage situation and also trips back in time to another mystery.  A lawyer mixed up with a Homeless man, a man released from Death Row, a blind policeman, disappearing money and the daughter of a mayor definitely would seem to indicate a unique story and James Grippando has delivered a unique mystery here.

The action is quite fast paced in parts and well detailed but also slower when dealing with the individual characters who are important to the overall essence of the story.

Unfortunately I did feel that the male characters were better rounded than the female ones but I enjoyed the fact that there were some out of the ordinary characters.  I was able to deduce most of the mystery and would have been disappointed had I been able to deduce it all.  

This appears to be the 6th book based around the character of the Miami based lawyer and would definitely interest me in delving into another of the series if only to find out whether or not his best friend is also a leading character there.

If you have read any more of the Jack Swyteck books perhaps you would like to recommend another for me?