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Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Christmas isn't just for kids

I was moaning on Christmas Eve about the TV showing utter crap nowadays on Christmas.

When I was a kid, we always used to watch Mary Poppins, ET, Star Wars, Sound of Music, Wizard of Oz.

But this year; the telly has come through. We didn't get it all on Christmas Day, but ET was on yesterday and I am watching Mary Poppins right now!

Hey, I'm not the only one!

My friend Ashley is 'fed up with waiting for his phone to arrive, but it's ok because Mary Poppins is on'. My friend Elle is also happy it's on and Stephen Fry is in heaven!

Well, she is Practically Perfect In Every Way :0)

Saturday, 25 December 2010

Merry Christmas

It's now 5.20pm and - for most of you - the fun is all over!

The food consumed, the presents opened and all the shouting done LOL

Well, we've done all of that except for the food! Every year we plan meticulously for Christmas dinner, so we can eat at a halfway decent time and every year we starve all day long while the damn food refuses to cook at a decent rate.

Tonight we'll be eating about 8pm!

So, what did you get for Christmas? I got a toolkit from Mel, a little heart pendant from Mason and lots of chocolate from the kids!

But you lot, my online friends, you totally surprised me!

I tend to go through life very hard on myself. I know I can make people laugh, but I'm also incredibly pushy and I know I make people uncomfortable - especially when I lose my temper! I chat to quite a few people, but I often get it into my head that if I disappeared; I wouldn't really be missed on here...

Claire started it, I received 2 e-mails on the 23rd telling me that Claire had bought me Through The Woods pattern (Ravelry link) and Flying Cables pattern! Then Helen got in on it and bought me the Chandelier Fingerless Gloves pattern (Ravelry link) and a Damselfly Shawl pattern (Ravelry link)! Next thing I knew; Diane bought me Sweet Tees pattern! Then Elle bought me Athena pattern (Ravelry link) for my 'A' socks on 1st Jan! Rita also got in on it with the Owlsocks pattern (Ravelry link)! Then Kristina bought me this gorgeous pattern (Ravelry link) called Serenity which I'm very excited about as it's knit with two strands of KSH so will be a gorgeous warm sweater!

Eight presents! Some of them from people that I haven't met yet! I am so totally blown away by the generosity of my online friends.

Thank you so much!

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

I challenge you!

Over the past couple of years I've heard about the sock challenge.

The idea is that you guess how many socks you can knit in a year then go for it. You can do 52 socks in 52 weeks, 26 socks in 52 weeks, 12 socks in 12 months, whatever combination suits you.

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee - otherwise known as the Yarn Harlot - came up with a fab idea at the beginning of 2010. She decided to go for the 12 socks in 12 months idea and she made up 12 sock kits.

She explains here, but basically she got 12 bags and in each bag she put a skein of yarn, a pattern and needles. All she had to do was grab a bag to get started on each one.

I don't know why, but sock challenge on Ravelry starts in June - personally I think that's odd; if you're going to do something over a year, then start at the beginning of the year!

So on the 1st January, I am going to start my sock challenge. I'm initially going to go for the 12 in 12. I could do the 52 in 52 - I have knit a pair of socks in a week before now - but I wouldn't get any time to knit anything else or to do any spinning and I'm not going without spinning for a whole year!

I shall keep you updated on the blog, a few people on facebook have already said they'll join me.

As I was writing this post, Elle posted that the UK sock knitters group on Ravelry had planned an alphabet sock knit.

These are the rules:

  • Every two weeks a new sock would be cast on to relate to the current letter, which would be the first letter of the pattern title.
  • There would be no obligation to fulfil the whole years worth of A-Z, however there may be plans to have prizes for the people who knit the most socks
  • Each letter will have a two week cast on period, you would have to post during that week to say you have cast on and which pattern. The only finishing date would be the end of the year.
  • No baby socks, only socks for two year olds and above, with a leg of 3 inches will be eligible (it would be too easy to whip out a pair of baby socks every two weeks after all!). The idea is to challenge yourself :)
  • Have fun!
I think this sounds like great fun! So I've joined!

This will actually give me a bit of leeway as we're planning a 3 week holiday to Italy at Easter and I know from visiting Norway and Wales that I just won't get a lot of knitting time!

The weather strikes again

After missing out on the tennis at the beginning of the month, I got myself into the mindset that if it was going to snow then so be it. I had ordered my shopping and I could just hole up here where it's warm and dry and look out the window and marvel how pretty it is!

On Sunday evening I was on my way home after taking Isis the Fluffy Puppy out for her daily walk - we have walked daily for over a month now! - we'd gone out on our own and were quite confident that we would be alright.

I was just coming down a small slope past the Co-op at the end of my village and I stood on a patch of ice.

I didn't even see it!

I fell - hard! I landed (narrowly avoiding Isis who looked completely baffled to find me suddenly on the floor beside her!) right on my backside with my left palm flat on the floor next to me.

After a minute or two, I managed to get back on my feet and head towards my house. I was so stunned and had scared myself so much I could barely move - a walk that usually takes a minute, took me 15 minutes.

By the time I got home, I was having a mild panic attack and shaking like a leaf. My left arm was alternating between agony and numbness, I had pins and needles in my left hand and couldn't make a fist, I had knots of pain on the inside of both thighs, my back was in spasm and my favourite jeans had split under the strain.

Alex rushed to make me tea and I took one of my whammy pills to help ease the spams and calm me down. I spent the rest of the evening hobbling around with my stick (which I haven't used it months!)

By the time I went to bed, several hours later, I had regained some use in my left arm and the pins and needles were easing.

I felt like I had been beaten when I woke, but I was able to move and the tingling in my hand had gone. I was ok providing I moved carefully.

Then I walked Kaz home after knit night. I do this every Monday. She comes to mine, rides with me there and back, then I walk her back to Sandown - that way I can still do my daily walk but not be too tired to go out!

I was doing fine, all the way to Kaz's house - we chatted about shopping, Christmas and tattoo ideas. I walked her to her door and kept going back towards town to come home.

By the time I reached the town centre, I knew I was in trouble. The pain in my left shoulder was intense! I also had pain in my back, all down my left arm and in the back of my right knee (that was new - I guess it must've happened as my right leg slipped out from underneath me). I couldn't walk very fast and basically shuffled along.

A walk that should've taken me half an hour tops, took approximately an hour and ten minutes!

I feel worse today than yesterday, my left shoulder is absolutely agony and clicks if I move it in a certain way (I'm pretty sure that's normal for an Ehlers Danlos sufferer like myself - I just hope it doesn't dislocate), my forearms ache, my back aches, my neck aches and I'm still fighting the flu I've had for three weeks too!

I've got a billion and one things to do, 3 fruit cakes, 2 almond slices and 2 chocolate cakes (at least) to bake and I feel like one huge bruise.

I've had enough of winter now :(

Doctor Kyle

A year or so ago, I don't remember now, I offered to make Kyle a Doctor Who scarf. We decided to the Season 18 scarf, but we couldn't find the correct colours, so Kyle chose black, red and a sort of mustard colour.

I got knitting and I must've got about halfway through it before the garter stitch drove me absol
utely batty with boredom and I put it away.

Kyle didn't say anything at the time as it was summer, but as Christmas approached and it got colder he voiced concerns to my mum that I wasn't going to get it finished. She nagged me and I got to work.

I forced myself to put down my current shawl, put my spinning wheel away, ignore my spindles and knit mindless garter stitch.

It w
ent on and on and on and on and...well, you get the idea!

But, last week, I finished!

This thing is humongous! As you can see it stretches across the room and then some (the pic with Alex was taken while I was still knitting it!)

I've wrapped it and put it under the tree. I can't wait for Kyle to open it and model it on Christmas Day!

Monday, 6 December 2010

eBay - it goes on and on

After the suspension of my account, I received this email from them:

Hello Sam,

Thank you for your reply to our email regarding the suspension of your
account "puddytatpurr75". I unDerstand that you'd like to know more
information about the suspension for High Risk and I appreciate the
chance to explain this for you.

Sam, I've personally checked your account and I can see it was suspended
due to several discrepancies in your registration information. We
reserve the right to suspend a member's account and ask for further
information if we have cause for concern.

Please understand we're not accusing you of fraudulent behaviour. Our
top priority is to ensure that eBay remains a safe and reputable place
to buy and sell, so we'd like to confirm some of the information you've
given us.

Kindly provide us with the following documents so we can review your
account, here are the following:

- Proof of the name and address you have on file with us

Please send us copies of both:

1. government-issued photo ID (your passport or driving licence)
2. evidence of your address (a bank statement or utility bill)

You can use our free document upload service, or send the documents
requested to us via fax or post. You'll find all the information on this
page - open a new window on your browser window and copy this link into

Please ensure that all your personal details match the information
you've registered on your account. Rest assured that eBay treats your
personal information with the utmost care and destroy it once reviewed.

What happens next?

Your account will remain suspended until we receive and review these
documents. Please bear in mind that while your account is suspended,
you're not allowed to use eBay in any way. This includes registering a
new account or using someone else's. If you do, you could be suspended

I trust this information is helpful and that I've explained things
clearly. We look forward to receiving your documents.

Kind regards,

Kate Pearse
eBay Trust & Safety

Well, I was doubtful that my registration details - which haven't changed so much as a comma since I joined eBay 8 years ago - were dodgy, so I photocopied the appropriate documents and followed the link to the document uploader.

That announced that I couldn't send my documents that way and my printer decided to refuse to fax, so I sent them by post!

Meanwhile, Mel had returned the item, seller refused it and it got returned to her and he didn't refund her money. She opened a case with eBay, he spent most of that time bitching about ME, and eBay saw in her favour!

I then noticed that my account went from being suspended to being unregistered and that the feedback which had caused all this trouble had been removed from his account!

Finally I received this:


Thanks for sending us the documents we requested. I'm happy to assist
you in resolving the suspension on your account "puddytatpurr75".

I've reviewed the documents you sent and I'm pleased to let you know
that your account has been reinstated following your temporary
suspension. You're now free to use your account to buy and sell on eBay.

Thank you for complying with our rules for account reinstatement. We
hope your future experiences on eBay are pleasant and successful.

Kind regards,

Martin Singleton
eBay Trust & Safety

I waited a day or so, but the feedback didnt reappear! I was fuming by this point that this guy had behaved in this manner so I didn't let it go!

So I sent them another email!

I did report this before, but then eBay suspended my account
and I've only just got it reinstated (with no explanation or apology!)
The feedback I left for this seller has been removed - why? I left
honest feedback - on eBay's advice, he sent me a defective item &
demanded positive or neutral feedback before a refund. When I left
negative after receiving my refund, I received the email asking me to
change my feedback (only because I refused to answer the phone!) This
seller was reported to you by babycham77 too as he then sent the item to
her and refused to accept the return or give a refund while accusing me
of theft in the process! I have got my refund (although he has now
opened a paypal dispute to claim back £9 postage he paid me 'in good
faith' to return the item), but I don't understand why this man is still
trading when you have received two reports about misconduct and yet my
account was suspended (supposedly for discrepancies in registration
details that haven't changed since I opened the account!) The treatment
I have received from eBay over this one transaction has been

Today I received this:

Hello Sam,

Thanks for your email about your feedback concern with "moons-cave". I
understand that you'd like to know why the feedback you left for your
trading partner so allow me to assess the situation and explain what

In your case, you ceased to be a registered eBay user shortly after you
left you Feedback. We therefore removed the Feedback.

If Feedback is removed, both the Feedback comment and the rating are
gone from your Feedback profile, and the rating no longer counts towards
to the Feedback score. Any Detailed Seller Ratings left by you are also
withdrawn - they no longer contribute to the average scores.

As for your suspension, we know from experience that certain items and
actions are more associated with fraudulent activity on eBay than
others. We reserve the right to suspend a member's account and ask for
further information if we have cause for concern.

It's our policy never to share exactly what gave us reason to suspend an
account as this could tell a fraudulent member how to avoid suspension
in the future.

Now, as for your complaint about you seller, I understand your concern
that they are still selling on eBay.

Let me assure you that we've looked into your complaint and taken the
action that was required. Due to privacy laws I can't share details
about this seller's account specifically, but the actions we can take
against poor-performing sellers include:

- Warning the seller
- Ending their listings
- Taking away their Top Rated Seller status
- Placing selling limits on an account to reduce the amount of items a
seller can list/sell
- Temporarily holding funds for PayPal transactions when the seller has
a high level of buyer dissatisfaction
- Restricting them from buying and/or selling
- Temporary or permanent suspension from eBay

If you can?t see what action was taken this doesn?t mean that we haven?t
taken any. Bear in mind that most of these actions can?t be seen by
other members.

We look at a number of things when deciding to take action, such as
their Feedback history and Detailed Seller Ratings, their trading
history on eBay and any complaints against them from other buyers. This
is why it's important to leave accurate, transaction-based feedback for
every seller.

I do apologise for the inconvenience this may caused, but I trust that
I've explained our position clearly. If you have any further questions,
please don't hesitate to contact us again.

Kind regards,

Ryan Davidson
eBay Trust & Safety

I have replied with:

Thank you for your reply.

I 'ceased to be registered with ebay' through no fault of my own! I did not close my account, it was suspended and then closed by eBay supposedly because there was a discrepancy with my registration details. Although your comment "we know from experience that certain items and actions are more associated with fraudulent activity on eBay than others. " confirms that that was not the real reason my account was suspended!

Unfortunately I cannot follow the advice: "This is why it's important to leave accurate, transaction-based feedback for every seller." because you have removed it, so there is no way of warning future customers that this man is a thief and a liar! I have PROOF that he is guilty of feedback extortion - which you claim is highly frowned upon - but nothing is done! What's the point of leaving feedback if he can make accusations against me which get my account suspended, yet nothing is done with hard evidence?

This man has now put in a claim with paypal accusing me of not returning the item in question - agaIn I have proof that I am in the right here. I just hope paypal make a better decision than eBay!

I shall think VERY carefully before I use your website again because you obviously fall on the side of the people you make the most money from and not against honest people who have traded with no problems, queries or negative feedback for many years!

Oh yes, he's put in a claim with paypal now for the £9 postage claiming that he never received the item.

Good thing I sent it Recorded Signed For!

I am livid with eBay and I shall be very very careful before buying from them again!

Please please take note! This seller is moons-cave, he is a thief, liar and swindler DO NOT BUY FROM HIM!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, 3 December 2010

Shall we talk about the weather?

Why not? Everyone else is!

See this? Click on it and make it bigger - I'll wait!

Those, my friends, are tickets to watch the Aegon tennis at the Royal Albert Hall and the ferry tickets to get me off this rock.

Go and click again and check the date, I'll wait again.

Yeah, it is now 1.12pm on 3rd December and I'm at home writing this blog post.


Let me show you!

Yeah, that's why!

£144 wasted!

To top it all off; I woke with a bloody migraine too!

My friend Claire is at the hall RIGHT NOW and I hope she really enjoys it!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Not where I should be!