In short... I passed! Woo Hoo! Andy stayed up with me last night and quizzed me and it really did help. I took seventeen practice tests and passed all of them so my confidence was a bit high but still I was nervous that there would be too many questions that I did not know. Here is how the day went.
10:00am : Since we stayed up late studying we let ourselves sleep in a bit.
10:00 - 12:30 : Did a few more online practice tests while Andy played around on the Wii Fit.
12:30 - 1:00 : Making our way to the test centre. It was at a place around 12 miles from where we live and in a building called Red Rose Training. At first I thought we were in the wrong place because it was a truck driving facility but nope we were in the right place... how could I doubt our little Tom Tom?
1:00 : Made our way into the building as we were told that we needed to be there by 1:00pm (no later) as the test was to start at 1:30pm. Inside there was no where to sit and about 20 people crammed into a very tiny space. I walked into one of the offices and was told to go ahead and wait out in the 'waiting area' and they will start checking people in shortly.
1:15 : People start getting checked in.
2:00 : I am finally checked in and Andy decides since there is no proper waiting area he will wait out in the car. They took my £33 and checked my Passport as ID.
2:10 - 2:20 : Moved to a room where we were each called in one by one to verify our information (name, address, etc.) and yet again my Passport was viewed for ID.
2:20 - 2:40 : Moved to another room where we were told to wait until it was time to go into the testing room.
2:40 - 2:50 : Finally were taken into the testing room. Upon walking into the room my Passport was viewed once again for ID. We each sat at a computer and were told guidelines for taking the test, such as no talking, no study materials, etc. Then we were allowed to take a practice test of 4 questions just to get us in the grove of the questions format and how to tick each of them. We are then told that when we are ready to start the actual test they will come around and start it for us.
2:53 : I ask for my test to be started and yet again my Passport is viewed for ID.
2:55 : Started test, time allowed 45 minutes.
3:02 : Ended test.
3:02 - 3:45 : Waiting in yet another room because until everybody has completed the test they can not print the results and hand them out.
3:47 : I am called into another room where again my Passport is viewed for ID and am I told congratulations I have passed and am asked to sign the pass certificate.
So... 2 hours and 47 minutes and 5 checks of my Passport later... I am finally walking out of the testing centre and am very glad that it is all over! The test itself only took me 7 minutes and this was with me answering all of the questions and then going thru each of them again to verify my answers.
What is to happen to my study guide and test question booklet? I am passing them down to Meg so that she can study for her test which she might be taking this summer.
Now I have to call the Home Office on Monday in order to set my in person appointment for my Indefinite Leave to Remain Visa and then hopefully that will be all... until of course when I qualify for citizenship and then it will be yet more work.
I could not get a picture of all of them together so six little pictures will have to do. Now lets go thru these flavours together.
Builders Breakfast: This is meant to taste like Eggs, Bacon, Sausage and Beans.
Fish and Chips: I really do not want to try this one but I will take one for the team. I have a feeling it is just going to taste like vinegar and I do not like that at all.
Crispy Duck and Hoisin: When Andy and I went to eat at Red Chilli I tried the Crispy Duck and actually really liked it, but I was not a fan of the Hoisin sauce.
Onion Bhaji: I love Onion Bhaji and I always order them when we have Indian so I'm thinking this might end up being my favourite.
Chilli and Chocolate: No way jose. I am not looking forward to trying this one it just sounds bad.
Cajun Squirrel: This has to be a joke right? I mean come on. I can not even get past the picture of the cute little squirrel on the front.
Andy and I have yet to try all of these but we think the taste test will start this weekend. I will make sure to let you guys know how they are... I have to admit I am a little scared of a few of them.
So what has Christine been busy doing lately? Well here is your answer. My Life in the UK Test is scheduled for this Saturday January 31st at 1:30pm. I am SO very frightened.
Only 4% of American fail this test, I have a feeling I will be a part of that percentage.
There are just so many little things that I know they are going ask and I can't seem to keep all of the numbers straight in my head. 84%, two-thirds, one half, three quarters, etc... *ugh*
Some of you that know a little about the Immigration process may be asking why I am taking the test so soon after arriving in the UK, well here are the reasons.
I am currently here on a Spousal Visa that will expire in December 2010. Normally somebody that is here on this type of Visa must wait a full two years after arriving to go for the next Visa which is called Indefinite Leave to Remain. In those two years you are required to keep bills, letters, bank statements, etc.. showing that you and your spouse have been living together in a marriage.
Since Andy and I have been married for over four years (in fact over eight) we 'proved' our relationship while in the US when I applied for my Spousal Visa. So my Visa has a special notation on it which means all I need to do in order to go for the Indefinite Leave to Remain is to take and pass The Life in the UK test and I can then immediately apply rather then having to wait the normal two years.
Why go ahead now? Well...
Fees are normally raised in April of every year and seeing as how the price is already £750 ($1071) for postal applications and £950 ($1357) for in person applications there is no way I want to have to spend even more money on this. Oh and we do plan on doing an in person application because I want to get this over with and do not fancy sending my Passport into the Home Office and wait the nearly 14-16 weeks to find out if I have been approved.
Also right now there is quite a bit of immigration chit chat going on that there are a lot of changes in the works and one of those changes is that they may be doing away with the Indefinite Leave Visa and I want to make sure to get it now since I qualify so that any changes later will not apply to me as I will already have it and hopefully any changes to the next step of Citizenship I can be grandfathered in.
So... long boring post but this is what I have been trying to study for and hopefully I pass on the first go. It is something like £34 for the test and if I fail it just means I have to try again later and it will be yet another £34 each time. *ugh*
Everybody, please wish me luck and be thinking of me at 1:30pm GMT on Saturday!
To sit around for days on end! I was tired of there being no table and chairs in the dining area of our kitchen so I went ahead and ordered some. Nothing too fancy just a cute little four seater table.
We normally eat in front of the TV with our TV Trays but this will be nice to have to put shopping on when we come in and I am sure it will become my new purse holder. Was just tired of this huge open space and this should fill it perfectly. Now we will see how long it takes me to put it together.
I am so tired this week... I have been staying up until around 12:30 to 1:00am every night and trying to get up at like 7:30 just because next week I work 8:00am - 4:00pm and last time I had these shifts I felt knackered all week. So if I do not force myself up I know next week my sleep pattern will be all off and I will feel very tired again.
Not much going on today. I took this picture because while I was in the kitchen earlier I just thought it looked pretty with the different colours.
There really is nothing much to report. I have decided that when I work a late shift I love getting to spend a few hours at home before I go to work just piddling around the house but that I hate having to stay so late at night. *ugh* At least it works out to just about one late shift a month so that is not too terrible, I can live with that.
I will mention again that I have been very busy doing something for this Saturday but I am sure I will blog about it soon enough... It makes me too nervous to talk about it yet. *double ugh*
Andy and I were able to get two tickets to the FA Cup replay set for next Wednesday at Goodison Park. Woo Hoo!
So as you can see they are £39 each so a little bit higher then a normal match but boy is it going to be fun. Since Everton and Liverpool are from the same area there has always been a rivalry there and when they play each other it is called the 'Merseyside Derby' (and don't call it a der-by it is pronounced dar-by... if you say der-by you will get teased like I did at work). I have not yet been to a derby match so I am very excited! This will be the third time these two have played each other in two weeks. It has been crazy.
Not much else is going on... I feel much better today and have not been really dizzy. There was a moment on the bus (this week are my 1:30 - 9:30 shifts) where I felt a little faint but I think that is only because it was close to around 110 degrees on the bus. I am not joking. I know it is cold outside but they would probably save a lot on petrol if they did not try to keep it so warm.
You may look at this photo and think.... why in the World did she post this? Well this is the best way I can express how I felt today.
It started at around 3:00am this morning. I woke up to use the bathroom and when I stood up to get out of bed I immediately fell backwards onto the bed. I tried again and the same thing happened. I sat there for a minute or two and tried to focus on the alarm clock and it was very difficult the numbers kept bouncing all around. Finally I stand up and make my way to the bathroom but I had to hold both of my hands out and steady myself on the walls. I made my way back to bed and fell asleep.
When I finally woke up later it was not nearly as bad as earlier but I was feeling dizzy all day.
So the above picture gives you an idea of how I felt all day... like crap.
On a better note the Liverpool v. Everton FA Cup Match was tonight and it ended in yet another 1-1 draw! The replay is scheduled for next Wednesday February 4th and this time they will be heading back to Everton's grounds (Goodison Park) and Andy and I are going to try to get tickets. Wish us luck!
I had to work today but look at who was waiting for me in the window when I got home. After he watched me come in he was having trouble getting under the sheer curtain but finally made his way to the other side to give me a proper welcome. What a cutie!
I don't really mind working Saturdays but will be glad when I have two days off in a row next week. However I have something planned on this coming Saturday that I am not really looking forward to, but more on that later. . .
This picture is to show two things. 1) The unpacked bookshelf is no longer laying in the floor and 2) It has been unpacked, assembled and can also be seen in this photo.
I had two choices today. I could choose to spend my day off laying on the couch watching TV and pretty much just relaxing... or I could buckle down and get some stuff done around this house. I chose the later and I must say I feel very accomplished.
The last bookshelf is up and all of my craft and book boxes have been completely emptied out and broken down. The only two boxes in our house that have not been unpacked are ones that are full of picture frames and paintings and I will be putting up next weekend.
I have to honestly say I am so proud of myself! I could have done nothing but I am so glad I did not. It helped that I had my iPod blaring the Mama Mia soundtrack over and over and over...
I have to work tomorrow and while I am doing that Andy is going to Liverpool to visit his Nan with his dad. Then on Sunday I am having myself the relaxing day! I seriously do not have any plans except for watching the Liverpool v. Everton match and I'll either be doing that from the comfort of my own couch or from the comfort of Andy's dad's couch. But either way it will be nice.
My friend Wayne from work created this using my thinking putty. He sits next to a HUGE Liverpool FC fan so we have been teasing him about the outcome of the game all week. On Tuesday when he was away from his desk for a few minutes I taped up a photo of Cahill celebrating his goal that Andy had printed out. It has been a fun week.
Oddly enough they play each other again this Sunday in the FA Cup so I am sure if Liverpool end up winning then I will not hear the end of it all next week... but hopefully Everton win again!
I am so excited that I have tomorrow off! Since I worked for a co-worker last Saturday I only had one day off last weekend. I need a break.
That this country HATES grape.
I mean really? Purple = Blackcurrant? I actually went ahead and tried one and at first it was a very weird taste but it did get a 'little' better. Is it as good as grape? Not in a million years. Will it ever be? Not in a million years. But it is not so bad that I will have to ignore them all.
This is my week to work a Saturday so I get this Friday off in lieu... so yay for only having one more day of work until a day off. I really don't mind working a Saturday, I get to wear jeans. Woo Hoo!
On a bad news front my wonderful perfect printer is a dud here in the UK. *ugh* I needed a good scanner before we moved here so when I went to buy a new all-in-one printer I made sure that they sold the same one here so that I could easily buy ink. Well I bought ink the other day and when I put it in it says it is not recognized. It turns out that Epson region codes their ink... What a stupid thing to do. I contacted some companies that have these de-chipper things that can make the cartridge think they are full so that they can be refilled for a cheaper rate but they said it does not get rid of the region coding so it will not work.
So... after work tonight Andy and I went and bought a new printer. I am so mad at Epson that I decided to go with an HP instead. Even though I have Ink that would have worked there is no way I am giving them more money. Plus I never liked that on an Epson if you run out of any of the colours it will not let you continue printer with just the black. Even though the black could be full... it will not let you print. How silly is that?
My friend Meg started a cool Wacky and Fun Sock Exchange and looky what I got in the mail today. They are just adorable. Whoever you are out there that sent them to me... great choice!
I sent my pair out a few days ago and I hope my person likes theirs as much as I like these.
I was gutted that I had to work today from 9am - 6pm (extra hour today) as I could not watch President Obama's (feels good to say that) inauguration live. However as soon as I got home Andy let me watch CNN so I got to see the recap of everything. They even had the live US Broadcast so it was all of the same presenters I am used to... I love Anderson Cooper! I do miss MSNBC but this was a very good replacement.
The weather reports were correct! The snow did not start until around 1:00pm but it was coming down pretty heavy for several hours. By the time we left work it took us around 15 minutes to clean off the car enough to be able to drive away.
I love when it snows and since we were living in Texas for close to four years before we came to the UK we went quite a while without having any snow. It was very much missed by the both of us.
Tonight after we got home from work we decided to go down to the Chippy for tea because neither of us felt like cooking because the Liverpool v. Everton match was starting at 8:00pm. Shortly after kick off Andy's dad came down to watch with us.
Steven Gerrard scored in the 68th minute... boo... hiss...
Then in the 87th minute, when it appeared to be all over... Tim Cahill had a wonderful header into the net to tie it up 1-1. Woo Hoo! I am in love Tim but it's okay Andy is cool with it.
It is amazing how much I am falling in love with Football since we moved over here. It has always been something that I did not really mind watching with Andy in the States but it is not like I would go out of my way to watch. However, since we have arrived here I have found myself more and more into watching the matches with Andy. I love going to the matches live but it really is a lot of fun to watch them on the TV also.
This Sunday they play each other again in the FA Cup match so I know where we will be at that time.
And last but not least... Today is my sister birthday so...
So yes... this is still packed up and laying in the walkway between our bedroom and the spare bedroom. At least the cats have found something useful to do with it while I continue to be lazy and not unpack and build it.
Seeing as how after they have gone thru this first layer there is a white particle board bookshelf I better stop being lazy and get it put up. The last thing I need is for them to scratch it all up.
The weather reports are saying there may be snow tonight or tomorrow.. Woo hoo!! *fingers crossed*
Thanks to the suggestions from my friend Aimee (by way of leaving a comment here) I was able to get a much better photo of my Christmas lights. This will be my excuse for still having them up... being able to play around with the manual setting on my camera to get the perfect shot.
I know the new picture is not perfect but it is so very much improved from the last one. What do you guys think?
I have a headache. Is it because I am not feeling well? Nope. Is it because I have had a long stressful day at work? Nope. Then what could it be?
I have a headache from laughing myself to tears at watching Verne Troyer purposely run his scooter head first into the diary room door on Celebrity Big Brother.
Let me set the stage. Big Brother gave everybody some alcohol tonight (we all know this leads to either laugher or fighting... usually both). Verne got a bit tipsy and first spent about 5-10 uncomfortable minutes chatting up LaToya Jackson and apparently trying to 'get in there'.
Then he took another 5 minutes to drive his scooter all around the house while he ignored Big Brother's request for him to come to the diary room.
Then it happened...
Coolio and LaToya was opening the door for him to go to the diary room and calmly Verne looks up to Coolio and says "You see that door?" Coolio just looks back at him and says "Dont do it." Then he proceeds to drive head first into the diary room door.
Andy and I started laughing so hard we had to pause the show until we stopped. Then Andy ended up rewinding and watching it about 10 more times. I seriously do not believe I have laughed that hard in ages.
Obviously Andy kept it on the DVR so I had him play the scene again so that I could record it with my camera. I have posted it to You Tube so that all of you that have not seen it can laugh along with me. For those of you who did see it... watch it again as it is just as funny the 2nd or 100th time.
I am at home... in the UK... watching American Idol. Who says I can't have my cake and eat it too?
It may be a couple of days behind the US but here it is in all of it's glory. Love it!
I must say though, I thought I would like the new judge as it would bring another voice of reason to drown out Paula and Randy but no... I was wrong... I can not stand her. I found her to be rude and not in the lovable Simon kind of way.
At one point one of her biggest fans came in to audition. I understand the girl was not very good and I love that she still said no (because of course Paula actually said yes so nothing has changed there) but when the girl left she made a rude comment about how if that was a fan of hers what does that say about her own singing? What the heck is that about? That was her fan. Say no to Hollywood because she is not a good singer, fair enough. But make a wise crack about her when she has left? Way out of line.
Then there was another part where a girl in a bikini came in and no she was not the worst and no she was not the best but the new judge took it all personal that she was in a bikini and started to have a sing off with the bikini girl. That is just crazy! Not even Paula has pulled that kind of stunt.
We will see if my opinion changes about her but something tells me it will not.
This is one blog post that I will need to keep away from Andy! He will die when he sees this picture. I can imagine him saying something to the effect of "You can not buy any more until at least 50% of that is used". Boys. They just do not understand a woman and her crafts.
I unpacked my last craft box and thought it would be fun to line all of my wool up to see how many I had altogether. The final count? 110! Wow.
But I love my wool SO much. In the states there is the most wonderful craft shop... Hobby Lobby. Oh how I miss you Hobby Lobby.
Every Sunday they would release their weekly specials and it always included around 15 different brands of wool ranging in price from .99 to like $1.99 a skein. I would say about 98% were purchased from these sales. My favourite (2nd row from bottom on left) is regularly priced at $6.29 for one and I got them for only .99 a piece! What a steal. I remember checking the sales every Sunday until that very brand was included. Then my mom and I had to drive to like three different Hobby Lobby stores to get enough of it (I love scarves and I love them to be really long).
The row of Yarn Bee Mosaic at the very top (three different colours) took us going to four different stores. But on that day Andy was with us and he was not too pleased with having to ride all over the Dallas/Fort Worth area looking for them. But it was very worth it in the end (at least for me).
The bottom row are ones that I have actually bought since I moved here. There is a little craft store located in the Bolton Market and I picked them up last time we walked thru there. So far I have been to that little shop and another larger shop called HobbyCraft but to be honest neither store is anything like Hobby Lobby. I found the wool at HobbyCraft to be very over priced and there is just not as large a selection. But at least I have enough to get me thru for now... by the time I use this up there may be a better wool store I can go to.
But if not then I have plenty of cross stich, scrapbooking, needlepoint, etc.. to keep me busy!
This is our new dehumidifier. Andy and I noticed that in the morning there has been a bit of condensation on the windows so we thought it would be best to nip it in the bud and get one of these.
It is one of those products that I can say "It does what it says on the box". Ever since we plugged it in there has been no more condensation on the windows which means we do not have to worry about there being any damp to deal with. Woo Hoo! We have not noticed any issue with the downstairs so I think we will be able to get away with just having the one.
I am assuming since it is now January 12th and these are still wrapped around my stairwell banister it means that I will have bad luck in 2009. Oh well! They are used more now for a) A night light with a nice glow and b) A deterrent for the cats not to climb on the banister. If that means I will have bad luck for not having them down 12 days after Christmas... then bring on the bad luck!
Sorry for the poor quality photo. I am still not feeling that well today and really had no other photo opportunity come my way. I have still not gotten used to taken photos without the flash and they always end up blurry. When I have more time I will have to read up on how to achieve a better quality photo under these conditions.
In case you are still wondering the unpacked bookshelf is still in the walkway between our bedroom and the spare room. At this point it will probably be there for some time. I had planned on finishing it all up this Saturday but I have agreed to a shift swap to help out another co-worker. It means I only get Sunday off this week but he will be working my Saturday on February 14th (Valentine's Day)... and since I have the 13th off also it means I have a three day weekend. Woo Hoo! Andy was also able to get that Friday off so we each have three days to do with as we please. I think we are going to plan a long weekend somewhere... we just don't know where yet.
I have had a headache all day long. Me on the couch watching TV with the cats at my feet is about all I have accomplished today.
I stayed up last night and put 3 of the 4 bookshelves together but did not feel like doing the last one today. We carried it upstairs but the box is still laying in the walkway between our bedroom and the spare room. It will probably be there until this week sometime. I hope I don't feel this bad tomorrow at work. *ugh*
I put up a second row of hooks in our vestibule so that I could hang my many umbrellas and scarves. I have another scarf almost complete so it will soon be added to the bunch.
Today we had 4 bookshelves delivered from Ikea. I have not yet unpacked like 4 boxes that are full of my crafty things. So tonight I will be busy putting together yet more Ikea stuff and unpacking those boxes. It will be exciting to have pretty much all of the unpacking done.. finally! The only thing left will be a couple boxes which have some of Andy's grandfather's paintings and some framed photos. Next weekend I will tackle hanging all of those up.
Pooh has said goodbye to his Christmas outfit and has said hello to his warm scarf and mittens. In this weather he needs it... quite cold but there has not been any rain for a while now so I was happy it was dry all week since I had to wait for the bus.
Next week my shift is 8:00am - 4:00pm which is nice because Andy's department is okay with him working those hours as well so we get to have an early start home. Woo Hoo!
This week at work I am on the 1:30pm - 9:30pm shift. Since Andy still has to be there at 9:00am I had been trying to find the best way to get me the six miles from our house to our place of work.
Not as easy as it sounds.
Since the office is just on the other side of a different county the bus situation is a bit iffy and I would have to change. It does not sound difficult but honestly I am not yet comfortable with using the bus on my own if a change is involved. I am always afraid I will be standing at the wrong place waiting, or for that matter get off at the wrong place altogether. Since they do not make a stop at each bus stop and I am not familiar with the areas I would not really know where to get off.
Anyway... after some searching I found a bus which picks almost right outside our house and goes to this small town of Blackrod which is only about a 3 minute drive from work. I don't have to change and since the town is so small it was easy for me to know when I needed to get off.
So I get here at around 1:05pm, Andy takes his lunch at 1:00pm and drives to pick me up to take me back. Easy peasy!
Now the train was an option but it would have required me to go in the wrong direction to Bolton and then get another train into the town of work but that would have taken just over an hour as there is only one train an hour from Bolton to where I am going so the wait would have been long. Not something I wanted to do.
And since this is only going to be happening about one week out of the month I think it is a pretty good solution!
This is Rooney relaxing after a long game of Go Fetch!
Rooney has played fetch ever since he was a little kitten. But honestly it seems that since we moved to England he has wanted to play even more. I think it must be the layout of the living room. There is a perfect space to throw his favourite toy behind the 2nd couch and into the area that opens up to the stairs and the kitchen door.
However the best part of playing fetch is when he gets tired and stops. Not because we don't have to play any more but because he is so very cute when he gets tired out as he will run to his toy... meow loudly... then walk back without the toy.. and then jump into your lap to relax. Precious.
I was able to get a short video of him bringing one back and then you get to hear his lovely meow as he is tired out. Andy was playing FIFA '09 online over the Xbox with Wayne (another friend from work) so you can also hear Andy talking to him over his headset.
Now how cute is Rooney?
Meet Charlie's foot. Charlie's foot refused to go to see the doctor and has been in agony since New Year's Eve. Well guess what? Charlie's foot finally decided to go see the doctor... and has found out that it is broken in not one but two places. Silly Charlie's foot!
Charlie is a friend that sits next to me at work. Can you believe that she has been limping around with a swollen and bruised foot/ankle since New Year's Eve. I have been telling her since it happened to go to the doctor's office to have some X-Rays done... but oh no. The reasoning? "I will have to sit and wait for like 4 to 5 hours". My response... "IT IS FREE!!! GO!!!"
Well finally she went and yes, she has broken her foot in two places. They wrapped the above all around it and tomorrow she has an appointment with a fracture guy to see if they need to put a cast on it. Of course it has not cost her anything, and they gave her a fancy arm brace to use when walking. When I fell and sprained my ankle in the US it cost me quite a bit to go to the doctor and they charged me an arm and my leg for a pair of crutches to take home.
Oh, and don't you just love the shoes? It was all she could get around the wrapping and even then she could not close the shoe all of the way.
All kidding aside, I hope you feel better Charlie!
This is the 2009 calendar that I bought the other day when Andy and I were in Bolton. I just love getting the new calendars 1/2 off if you just wait until right before the new year.
I always go for the interactive calendars as it makes me feel a little creative while I am at work. This year I went with the above choice. Everyday you have a new cut out creation to make. It is starting me off easy with basic snowflake cut outs and then later it moves on to the more difficult folds and cuts. I am sure there will be plenty of these cute little cut outs used for future photos.
Andy picked a Dilbert calendar which means I really get two as I will make him keep each page of his so I get to read a cartoon and make a cute little cut out with mine. Double score!
Now this is one yummy cup of hot chocolate!
My mom gave me the recipe for a homemade hot chocolate mix so I made a batch of it the other night and it is just as good as I remember. Perfect timing for the very cold weather we are having right now.
Here is the recipe in case anybody wants to try it.
1 Cup Nestle Quick
1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Dry (Powdered) Milk
1/3 Cup Dry Coffee Creamer
Mix all together and enjoy!
What did Andy and I do for 6 hours tonight? Uhmmmm.. That would be sing Karaoke on our new Xbox 360 game 'Lips'. I do believe I have started to lose my voice but it was SO worth it.
These are the microphones that came with the game and they are pretty cool on their own... they light up and pulse to the beat of the song. You can even change the color of the lights.
The game itself came with 40 songs and a free download of A-Ha's 'Take On Me'. We have already downloaded about 10 more of the available songs via Xbox Live but all in all there really is something for everything. My personal favorites are Radiohead's 'Fake Plastic Trees', Young MC's 'Bust A Move' and Rhianna's 'Umbrella'.
You can even connect your own music device (like an iPod) and sing songs from it. The lyrics are not displayed like with the others but it is still great to be able to sing anything you have.
Tonight... we were rock stars!
This is a new toy for my camera... it is called a Gorillapod.
I have been wanting a small lightweight tripod and the other day I remember seeing this cool product last year when Andy and I were over here so I went and got one.
It truly is amazing! The arms are made of flexible joints that rotate and bend. You can pull them straight for a classic tripod position or (as you can see above) you can wrap them around virtually any surface.
It is so very light and tiny that it easily fits in my purse so that I can have it on hand when needed. This was a great buy!
at your destination.
Andy's parents gave us some money for Christmas and told us to buy something that we really wanted with it... i.e. don't spend it on bills or anything silly like that. Mission accomplished.
Andy and I used our first Sat Nav when we were driving from Fort Worth, TX to Chicago, IL when we were moving to the UK (our flight was out of Chicago and believe it or not saved us a ton of money doing it that way). Then when we landed in Manchester we had made sure that our rental car was equipped with one so that we could easily find our way from the airport to his parent's house. Since Andy grew up in the Bootle (Liverpool), this area of the UK is as foreign to him as it is to me.
We pretty much know our way around to the most important places such as work and into the main area of Bolton when we want to do some shopping but beyond that we have mostly been using MapQuest. Which is a lot of help but we tend to think we can just reverse the directions to get back but it never seems to be the case as there are so many one way roads over here we end up getting lost or just going in circles somehow.
It also does not help that the roads are not so clearly marked as most signs are posted on the side of the houses and you need to be pretty much right on them to see where you are. Also since it is getting dark so early if we go anywhere after work it is already very dark and you can not see the signs anyway.
So... since we have been wanting one of these little guys for so long (as the two we used before were awesome) we decided it would be the perfect gift to us.
We LOVE it!
People usually have a love / hate relationship when it comes to Sat Navs but you can put Andy and I on the love side. This little guy is going to be our best friend and will be going everywhere with us, even if we know the way or not. This is a fancy version that has a SIM card in it so not only will it tell you directions but it is constantly downloading traffic information so if there is an accident or traffic on your route it will alert you and find an alternate route. It also has a Google search feature so if you are out you can pretty much search for anything you may want to go to... it will direct you there, give you the details of the place and a phone number.
Oh... and it has bluetooth so both of our phones are linked up to it so if we get a call it becomes a handsfree device and there is no need to touch your mobile at all. Also if you get a text it will display the text and read it to you over the Sat Nav... awesome!
Anyway... this was my commercial for TomTom, thank you for listening! : )
Here is to never being lost again...