New East London line opens to public today.

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Sushi and Origami at Shoreditch Sisters WI

Source: rogiro

Just returned from my first visit to Shoreditch Sisters, a Women’s Institute group right here in London.  (Click here to find out the history of the WI.)

Shoreditch Sisters is a group of women meeting once a month to share different skills.  Tonight I tried my hand at origami – I made a crane and a half finished frog and later, sushi.  The sushi was delicious.

The ladies were lovely and contrary to popular opinion, young.

The ladies were lovely and contrary to popular opinion, young.

I understand each WI group is different.  Shoreditch Sisters is a crafting and campaigning group.

They have recently moved to a new venue so it’s worth emailing them to check where they will be.

For a list of other WI groups in London, go here.

Reduce, Recycle Clutter

Photo by theogeo

Don’t you hate it when people call your things ‘junk’!

Well, that’s what my sister called my things when she came round the other month to help me find an important piece of paper.  Admittedly, I am a bit of a paper and book junkie, but I do take exception to my things being called junk.  Junk is, in my opinion, items that are rubbish.  That is things that are broken, not working and cheap.  My things I would argue are good quality clutter (I don’t do cheap).  Basically I have too much stuff for the little space I live in.

When it comes to living spaces, my sister and I are complete opposites.  I live in an environment where I have piles of books, folders, papers and bags of fabric stash where you have to move or step over things in order to get around my home.

My sister on the other hand, is a minimalist.  You walk into her place, and there’s nothing there.  It’s like walking into one of those places you see in magazines.  I don’t know how she does it!

You may be wondering why I am talking about clutter.  It got to the point where I could not find things.  I would put things down, and in the next minute, that thing is lost, gone.  I would pay large overdue book fines to the libraries I belonged to because I wasn’t paying attention.  If somebody wanted to visit, I would refuse because there was no room for them.

So last year, I made a conscious decision to become clutter-free.  I got rid of my larger items and am slowly throwing out my papers – most date back to the mid-1990s!

Earlier today I was glancing through several 31DBBB participants blogs and I came across a post on Katie’s gorgeous blog makingthishome in which she talks about “A Simpler Life” and one suggestion she makes is to donate 5 items to charity.

Now I don’t like throwing or giving things away but after reading her blog, I decided there and then to donate some books and a treasured coat, which I have never worn and which has been hanging on the door for a number of years, to a charity shop.  It wasn’t easy, but I did it.  I just hope my coat goes to a good home.

One day, I hope my place looks as good as Katie’s in the photos on her blog.

Anyway, you may be wondering, did my sister ever find that piece of paper?

Well, she spent all day going through every single piece of paper I had.  And, no it was never found.

Free Personal Finance Book from The Simple Dollar

Photo by annia316

Over at Lifehacker earlier today I came across a post in which The Simple Dollar is very generously giving away a free book about Personal Finance.

It’s a very good read and full of great tips. If you are into Frugal living, which I am at the moment, then you’ll love Idea #3.

If you want to know more, head over to The Simple Dollar.

6 Favourite Posts from 31DBBB


Photo by Noël Zia Lee

This week I have been looking at some of the posts from my fellow 31 Day Challengers and in the spirit of ‘link love’ here are a few that caught my eye.

  • ManVsDebt – lists ways to stop identity theft
  • Liz Hover has compiled a great resource for learning about Twitter
  • Some writing ideas for when you have “stuck” days

Continue reading

Ten of my Favourite Free tools

I recently joined Problogger’s 31 Days to Building a Better Blog Challenge.  Today’s assignment is to write a list post – so here it is:

  1. Firefox web browser:  Loads of features, moveable tabs, add-ons …
  2. Google Reader:  I use this every day.  An RSS feeder which keeps you up to date on all your favourite websites in one place.
  3. Google Notebook:  Browse websites, clip text or website link and organize information in one location.
  4. Google Mail: Easy to use, built in chat, lots of storage space and so many Apps …
  5. Adblock Plus:  Blocks ads and pop ups on websites, which means faster loading sites.  Also stops you accidentally clicking on your own Adsense ads.
  6. Foxit Reader:  Have you ever tried to open a PDF document in Adobe and it either takes ages to open or freezes your PC?  This is a breeze.  It’s small and fast.  A must have Firefox add-on.
  7. Video Download helper:  Download and convert videos from many video sites.  I love it.  I can now take tutorial videos on the go.
  8. Fox Clocks:  Keep an eye on times around the world.  No need to calculate whether people times are behind or in front of you.
  9. Snippy:  This tool lets you take snapshots of part of a screen, copies it to clipboard for use in any document.
  10. YouTube videos:    I use this a lot to find video tutorials on topics I am interested in.

Are there other great tools you would like to share?    Let me know in your comments.

Is Pancake Day at risk of dying out?

It would seem so. According to a recent survey by Guardian Unlimited, only one in five Britons were aware of Shrove Tuesday and of the tradition of pancake making and’ flipping’.

And, in the North Yorkshire city of Ripon, red tape has put a stop to it’s annual pancake race.

What is the world coming to!

Shrove Tuesday, sometimes called Pancake Day, is the day before Lent starts on Ash Wednesday. Lent is a time of giving up things such as chocolate or smoking for 40 days.

If you would like to know more, the BBC gives further information about Lent at this site


Shrove Tuesday is therefore the last chance to feast and use up all the eggs before a 40 day fast.

To keep up the tradition of pancake making, why not try your hand at Delia Smith’s pancake recipe.

Delia Smith