Rants and Raves #3

I’m feeling grumpy. It can’t be helped really. It’s Thursday, when really it should be Friday.

I don’t want to moan…but I will. Sorry. I’ll try not to just rant the entire post.

Rant: With Ben being away it is quite lonely at the moment at home. I get very set in routines when I’m on my own as well. Walk Alfie, cook dinner, watch TV, go to bed. Nothing exciting really happens. I’m used to having him there to joke and laugh with, or moan and groan at…depends on the day and mood really 😉

And with the 8 hour time difference it’s a struggle to keep in contact with him. Especially as with him being in China they don’t allow Facebook or Twitter, and I need to wait for him to get access to the limited Wifi in order to either WhatsApp or Skype. Humph.

Rave: Although saying that, with Ben not being here, this means dinner can be whatever I want it to be without having to worry if Ben will a) like it b) eat it.

Chickpea meal

Looks rather grim doesn’t it? But actually it was really tasty. I literally threw chickpeas, Brussels sprouts, courgette, onions, mushrooms and kale together with cream cheese and BBQ sauce. It’s just what I fancied. For me BBQ sauce and cream cheese are big winners.

Rant: perhaps ‘rant’ is too strong a word here…but Ben does make me laugh. He goes to Hong Kong and China and he eats… Italian. To be fair, he can’t go wherever he pleases as he’s with work colleagues but still. He ate Japanese one night which I suppose is at least that vague area of the world to some extent. Though he did tell me he had the strangest Hawaiian pizza which had a sweet dough with tomato sauce, tinned fruit salad, olives and cheese on it. I did say to him he’s probably better off actually eating the local food! *sighs*

Rave: Alfie is very loving at the moment as I’m the only one there. Despite Ben’s side of the bed being free, he still cuddles into me at night. My furry hot water bottle.

IMG_8446 But it also means I’m the one who has to clean up his sick when he wasn’t well the other day. This is usually very firmly a blue job…but currently no blue is here to help.

Rave: getting cool things in the post. I received a Fuelify goodie box which contained a lot of exciting products.

IMG_8459 A full review will be coming soon!

Rant/Rave: a mix of the two if you like. It’s no secret that I hate my commute. It’s a fair way from Southampton to Basingstoke and can take on average an hour (sometimes more) to work and then from work every single day. It grinds on me. Even when it’s plain sailing it still takes 40 minutes. To me this is absolute dead time. The radio is OK but I despair of BBC Radio 1’s Nick Grimshaw in a morning (I was a huge Chris Moyles fan – sorry non-Brits, basically Radio 1 sucks as the best DJ left a few years ago and now it’s run by a moron) and I’m not quite ready to switch to BBC Radio 2 (which is aimed at a slightly older audience).

Aaaaanyway, long story short, I’ve signed up to Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited (30 free days) as I saw they had audio books available too. I do read a lot as well on my Kindle, but thought while I drive I could listen to another book. Normally audio books are fairly hefty in price so I was pleased this was part of the deal. I decided to go for Life of Pi.

I’ve got the book on my Kindle but when I tried to read it I just couldn’t get into it. But listening to it is fantastic! In just over two days I’m 40% into it and it’s so good. I need to see the film as well now. Listening to it in the car just makes the journey zoom by as I get sucked into the narrative.

I’ve also downloaded Great Expectations to listen to next as I’ve never read it. I’m aiming for the more ‘dense’ books as I’ve found I can get into it easier than if I tried to read it. I’m still reading another book at the same time as well. Will see if I’m swayed by this Kindle Unlimited business by the end of the 30 days I think!

And that’s all I have in my current lonely, empty existence…well it’s not all bad. The house is extremely tidy and I’m only using one loo in the house (we have three) so that means only one bathroom needs cleaning this weekend! Wahay it’s the small things, right? 😉 I’m going to my parent’s house on Friday night for an Indian and staying over with Alfie so that should be good. Then really it’s just one week till Ben’s back! Hurrah!

What have been your rants and raves this week?

How do you cope when you’re alone in the house?

Do you listen to audio books?

30 Replies to “Rants and Raves #3”

  1. Haha the italian in HK and China cracked me up – that said, I was taken to an italian resto in Japan once (think katsu curry on a pizza – weirdly worked…)

    Re: your commute dilemma – I’m all about podcasts! Mostly health, design or business-related but there are some classic general interest ones over at http://www.radiotopia.fm/

    20-40 mins is the right length for me – I get distracted by anything longer :/
    Cat recently posted…WIAW #53: A Meat UpMy Profile

    1. Wow that pizza does sound quite nice actually haha.
      Thanks for that link – love the variety! I find if I’ve had a really mentally tough day I might just need music or silence, but usually podcasts and books seem to work well at relaxing me.
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  2. Poor you… I remember the days when I hated being home alone.. Now it feels like an unachievable dream! The girls were on a sleepover on Saturday night and I can’t believe how different the house felt.. So quiet and tidy! ;o)

    Back in the day I used to love my (rail) commute as a really good chance to get stuck into a book or some music. These days I barely get a whole song on the radio between finishing the carious child drop offs and getting to work. I miss my music!

    It’s quite funny about Ben’s foody choices whilst in China. To be fair, I’ve heard some horror stories about some of the food (i.e. Dog etc) from my Bro & Sis in Law who live in HK and travel to China reasonably often. I’m sure it very much depends where you go though and I think they tend to go to the less ‘westernised’ areas! I have to say, when we were in HK we had some AMAZING food!

    Enjoy the rest of the peace and tidiness.. before you know it, it’ll be back to normal :o)
    Liz recently posted…Human Soup, Hills and Mud!My Profile

    1. I am imagine one day I’ll look back at this time and wish I’d cherished it more 😉
      That’s the only thing that appeals to me about commuting by train – having that time to just sit and daze off into space or read a book. You can’t really glaze over when driving, or have a snooze! But I do like the comfort and solitude of my car…
      Ben has promised he won’t knowingly eat dog. Alfie would not allow him back in the house otherwise!
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  3. Ooooh Anna I’m really interested in the Kindle Unlimited thing as I also have a 45-60 min commute each way (it drives me nits – I hate the M4!). How do you listen to them? I have quite an old car with no wa of connecting any devices…I suppose I could burn them to CD? I tried learning German on my commute – it didn’t last all that long though as I felt strange and self-concious practising when stopped in traffic! Hope Ben is having fun in China, enjoy the free time to cook what you like!!

    1. So far I’m really enjoying the Kindle Unlimited. I’ve download several books and a few audio books. My car (Fiat 500) has a little USB port which I can plug an iPhone charger cable in and connect it to my phone and then play the audio book through the Kindle app.
      Otherwise you could use headphones? Although I’m not sure if that’s legal?? Or speakerphone (which wouldn’t be the best quality I guess). Or the CD idea – but I have no idea how you’d do that.
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  4. Ooh I didn’t know Kindle do audio books. I have a long commute too and also get sick of the radio. I hate radio one but hey, give radio two a chance! I love Chris Evans in the morning and I think I’m only a couple of years older than you?! My taste in music is somewhat debatable though, I do love the oldies!
    Autumn recently posted…I’m A Runner……Get Me Out Of Here!!My Profile

    1. I didn’t know either. There aren’t a vast selection, but enough to make me happy. I pretty much can read or listen to any book.
      Ahh I do like Radio 2 and Chris Evans isn’t *that* bad but he just doesn’t “do it” for me like Chris Moyles did. Simon Mayo however I love. And yes sadly I’m the target for Radio 2 now *sobs*.
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  5. I’ve been married for almost 14 years and with 2 kids AND a live-in mother I would LOVE to be home alone for a week or two 😀 In the summer the kids actually go with grandma to her place for a few weeks and it’s a total bliss hanging out with just the Mr.
    MrsB | Mind over Matter recently posted…Paleo browniesMy Profile

  6. I’m sorry but I couldn’t stand Chris Moyles! I’m a fan of Sara Cox or Scott Mills, but neither are on when I’m in the car and I’m not sure that Sara Cox is even with Radio 1 anymore?… My new car allows me to play stuff through my iPod so I keep meaning to play Marathon Talk through the car on my way to work but I haven’t gotten round to it yet. I much prefer listening to stuff rather than music lately in the car. Then I can choose my own music at home for a rock out! 😛
    Mary recently posted…Marathon #6: Gower EnduranceLife CTS (Pt 2)My Profile

    1. Ahhh this makes me sad that you don’t like Chris Moyles. He wasn’t for everyone though I can understand that. I LOVE Sara Cox. It’s her accident and her obsession for food that endears me to her. She does stuff on Radio 2 now I think.
      I could listen to MT but I would just get through all my podcasts too quickly. I like to save them for running.
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  7. I love time alone for some reasons, like being able to eat food that I like but Scott doesn’t, but I do get lonely after a while! I’d recommend podcasts too if you can listen to them in your car. My little ka just has a radio and cd player though so I’m usually stuck with the radio and flick between radio 1, radio 2, radio 4 and the local channels too. I’m so indecisive! I’m a marathon talk podcast fan though.
    Helen recently posted…Winter miles make for Spring smilesMy Profile

    1. I can’t stand the commercial radios as I hate adverts. But I do do a lot of flicking around if I listen to the radio – mainly between Radio 1 and 2. I’m very spoilt with my (relatively) new car as it allows me to play things from my iPhone. Such a novelty to me!
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  8. I skipped past radio 2 (to be fair I never listened to radio 1 anyway) and went straight to radio 4! They have loads of interesting progs- I only turn over if a play comes on(or the Archers) as I hate radio play things.
    Urgh, this week was the worst. We got the dreaded ofsted phonecall on Tues lunchtime, and they were in Wed and Thurs, which meant everyone working flat out,school being open 5am-9pm- preparing for interviews with the inspectors etc. Stress levels are just crazy.
    When I am home alone I am pretty terrible- I would usually take the opportunity to get more work done, as normally when Andy is here I feel I should stop at about 9 so we can watch a TV show together, but also I will generally not be bothered to cook dinner, so might end up having toast. He is a very good influence on me in that respect!
    I must admit that if I was going to China I would be terrified of the food and probably do a Karl and pack food (although not monster munch) in my suitcase. My cousin told me horror stories, also I don’t like Chinese food anyway. Hope that your weekend is better- cake and running?
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted…Oh I do like to be beside the seasideMy Profile

    1. I did listen to Radio 4 for a bit but I found it quite depressing with all the news and very intellectual for first thing in the morning (I’m a simply minded person…).
      Gosh I don’t envy teachers with the stress of ofsted. It sounds unbearably stressful 🙁 Hope it is going well!
      I’m sure this must be a reference I know but I’m drawing a blank – Karl? Who is he? And why does he always have Monster Munch??
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Rants and Raves #3My Profile

  9. Alfie is so sweet, I hope you’ve trained him to warm your feet with his furriness!
    I’m getting really sick of long drives at the moment, I seem to have had so many of them. Radio 5 Live is a lifesaver for me and I’m trying to hook up my iPhone to my Parrot handsfree for podcasts but it isn’t working yet…
    Claire @ Flake and Cake recently posted…GIVEAWAY: Rawr ChocolateMy Profile

  10. I hate when my hubby is away too, but it does have a few good things about it! Like you said, I can literally cook whatever without worrying about altering it for him. PLUS, my puppy gets to sleep on the bed with me when he’s not home. shhhhh don’t tell him 😉 [just kidding, he totally knows]
    KAT recently posted…Thinking Out Loud #38My Profile

  11. Hi Anna! SO glad you commented on my blog so I found yours, I think I am gonna love it 🙂 I am really curious about the audiobooks, I hear so many good things about them, and I would love to try them out. I have a nook though….so a kindle is not really gonna help me there 😛 Love the idea of the fuelify box! Have a wonderful weekend 🙂
    Tina Muir recently posted…Winter Running- What to Wear at Every TemperatureMy Profile

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