Some of my favourite podcasts

I love listening to podcasts- when out running, on a walk, and on my commute. Here are some of my current favourites:img_20161002_082602384_hdr

Of course there is my long run favourite, Marathon Talk. It’s my favourite podcast for my long runs- I love the banter between the hosts, but they have a wide range of guests on, from super speedy elites, to people running a marathon for the first time. They also chat about general running issues and news stories, like the doping scandals that keep popping up.

Friday nights are good to listen to the Kermode and Mayo’s film review show. Again, they have great banter (athough at times they ramble on about old music a bit too much). The show has a fairly high entry point as there are lots of in jokes and sayings, but it’s worth it. They also review the films without spoiling them, which is not an easy thing (I’m talking to you Robbie Collins- I am glad I had seen Inside Out before I heard your review as you basically explained the whole film). It’s on air on Friday afternoon, so we tend to download the podcast and listen together while dinner is cooking, or if we’re going away for the weekend we save it for the journey.

Adam Buxton hosts a great podcast. Some of you may remember him from The Adam And Joe Show, either on TV or later on Xfm. He now hosts this podcast- each show he has a little chat, and then interviews a guest. He’s had some really interesting guests on there (including Michael Palin and Louis Theroux) and it’s well worth a listen. There are a few catchy jingles in there too, if you love those.

Pop Culture Happy Hour– This is a discussion podcast from the US, about TV shows, films, books and music. It’s good as they recommend new shows, and talk about old ones that they have just discovered (so even though usually America gets things first, they also have BBC America so get some of our shows too). Recently they had a very funny discussion about “The Great British Baking Show” (what Bake Off is called in America). It cheers me up on my Monday morning commute.

Science Vs– hosts some really interesting discussions, weighing up evidence and concluding. The first series had discussions about Paleo eating and e-cigarettes which were particularly interesting.

More or Less– They look at statistics that have been in the news and pick them apart. It’s so interesting, and not heavy going at all. They should be fact checking everything! And if only the government would listen to them (e.g. Grammar schools don’t improve social mobility…).

Tough Girl podcast– I only got into these a few months ago, and I find it so interesting. Each episode hosts a different adventurer. I love reading travel or adventure books (like Wild) and so hearing about someone climbing Everest, or hiking the Appalachian trail is just so interesting.

Now I hardly ever have the radio on- if I download the podcast I won’t miss any of it!

What are your favourite podcasts? What kinds of things to you listen to on the radio?

House stuff

Some good things first!img_20161003_180828154

The blind is finally up in my office. At the start of the summer my dad helped me to decorate the room, and I bought the blind but Andy’s drill was buried somewhere in the old shed.

Our new shed is up! After the old one took us 4 hours to take down, it took the people about 15 minutes to stick together with a nail gun! Andy is outside now painting it blue, to brighten it up a bit.


We finally got the lights sorted in the bathroom! This is big news indeed. Honestly, I have no idea how the people here before us lived with it. There was no light switch, but a sensor, so if it was dark the light would come on (multicoloured colour changing lights no less…) but the sensor was not by the bath, so if you were having a shower and it was dark (or gloomy outside) the lights would switch off after about 40 seconds. So I would have to open the shower door and wave my arm about to make the lights come back on again- it was so annoying! Anyway, an electrician came and fitted a switch, and updated the fittings (they were metal and going rusty) and replaced the bulbs. Now I can see for the whole of my shower! He also replaced our (very tasteful) plastic gold chandelier in the dining room with a normal pendant so we could have normal lampshade.

Finally we replaced our old dining room table- we bought it when we bought our first place, over 10 years ago- it was something like £15 from Ikea and we kept thinking we’d replace it but didn’t find anything we liked.


Our new table, chairs and lamp shade (plus the blue shed in the background).

It can’t all be good though. The guttering flooded and so we had people out to fix that (during the day where everywhere flooded and there were landslides). The dishwasher broke and blew all of the sockets in the house. As it was quite old we bought a new one instead of paying for the call out (because who knew if it could even be fixed)- it’s an integrated one which was such a pain because they are more expensive, plus the original one had been fitted rather badly so the people installing the new one had a lot of trouble getting it out and fitting the new one. But it’s in now.

The boiler stopped working this week too. After yoga on Wednesday (luckily I don’t wash my hair after) I had to heat water in the kettle and mix it with the cold water for a bath. Because it was so cold I made a hot water bottle, left it in bed while I got changed, and then when I got into bed and picked it up, it burned me. I jumped out, knocked over my full glass of water, and had to mop up the water (getting cold again). I thought there were a few drops of hot water by the valve, but when Andy picked it up we realised it was leaking all over the place so the mattress was soaked in two places (from the hot water bottle and the glass of water)- there I was at 11 pm drying the mattress with a hairdryer. Hmmm.

The weather seems to have been much colder this week and I think I would have had the heating on for an hour to take the chill off, but we could not. We have been showering at Andy’s parents (lucky we have that option) but it’s been cold at home. Today I’ve been sat in my office since lunch time doing work, and I had to have a hot water bottle (not the broken one) to warm me up a bit. Anyway someone came about the boiler on Friday and thinks they can replace the circuit board next week, although apparently it’s old and a bit of a mess so we might need a new boiler.

We still need to sort the flooring in my office and our bedroom- we got a quote for the bedroom but we may have to wait and see how the boiler does! Then it will be on to Andy’s office (more wallpaper stripping…).

Have you had your heating on yet? One of my colleagues used to do what she called “The November Challenge” (not having it on until November)- I think I last into October but it would have to be a very long Indian summer for me to last until then!

Just scraping by

In July I did the Awesome Virtual Running challenge of running 100 miles in July, and I managed a total of 116. I wasn’t going to do it again, but then I saw the September medal…

100 miles in September:


Well, I managed it by the skin of my teeth! After the half marathon I thought I had 9 miles left, and we did just under 4 on Tuesday (the club run), but it turned out that after that I only needed 7 in total during the week, and I was feeling pretty tired on Thursday so I did just over 3 to make sure it would go over. Phew.

The medal came today, and as I had to go out and collect some leaves (as many teachers will understand) I took a photo next to the leaves. Although, for some reason it’s upside down and each time I rotate and save it, the original comes back again. Anyway, I love the medal.

The October one is Halloween themed, and the November one is pretty cool with a spinning rocket, but as I am doing the virtual runner Poppy Challenge in November, I will leave it. I have high hopes for a festive December one, so that might be my next one.


What’s the deal with Bloglovin, and other random ramblings

A rant about Bloglovin’:

I have used Bloglovin’ for a while now to keep track of the blogs that I read. It’s easy to search for blogs, put them into categories, and you can see right away if there are new posts to read. Now I appreciate it is a free website so it has to pay for itself with adverts, but my feed is getting more and more clogged up with just nonsense.


So many of them are to do with fashion which I am not just interested in. Not sure if it comes out but one of the ones above is something like “Five versatile ways to style a sleeveless coat”. My first thought is what on earth is the point of a coat WITH NO SLEEVES??? A coat is to keep you warm, or dry, and I want my arms included in that. There have been nonsense ones about “How to wear white” (put the clothes on???) or “How to be beach body ready” (take your body to a beach?)- the thoughts in my head bubble with sarcasm as I read the feed and click “mark as read” over and over again. Argh!


A little rant about Fat Face:

I really like Fat Face and find that their clothes and things are good quality- but this is the second of their bags that has broken. I bought this bag at the end of July, and at the end of August when I was walking into town, the strap broke and the bag fell on the floor. As I don’t have the receipt any more (who keeps receipts once they have taken the tags off?) and since then it’s been in the sale, they have been a bit funny about it. The online people told me to go into the store, the store would only exchange but they didn’t have any in stock, so now I have sent it off with my bank statement to prove that I paid full price in the hope of a refund. I feel that seeing as their product is not up to scratch they should be a bit more apologetic. Grrr.


I’ve bought this tin to keep my receipts in now (yes, I could just use any old box, but why when I can buy a labelled one?) so that now I am not going to throw them away until I’ve had things for much longer. Take that Fat Face (next time something breaks…).

This video cheered me up (and gave my mind a brain break):

Usain Bolt racing James Corden (who was doing the proper ear to pocket with his arms). Bolt is just such a character and clearly so competitive too!

I also love my Run Disney top!


It’s more t-shirt than vest weather now, so it’s perfect for runs (although soon it will be covered by my high-viz vest).

Does anyone else use Bloglovin’? Any tips to get rid of the rubbish?