Monday, 29 August 2011

It's a heat wave.....somewhere

It isn't a heat wave in England - I don't care what you say.

It's August and I am sitting drinking a hot cup of tea, under a think blanket and debating on turning on the gas fireplace or heat.

Is this global warming?

The heat index in soaring to 130F/54C and has actually killed people.

Certain states have had over 100F/37C for over a month and the bacteria is running rampant in the lakes and most areas are on major water restrictions.

And England says this is a heat wave? 70F/21C nope not gonna buy it.

I miss the heat!  Now obviously, I don't want the smothering heat that lasts for months on end with a heat index of 130F but I do want to feel warm and have my toes not be freezing.

It's so bad I was making a list for packing and I didn't even put shorts on the list? How do you follow a list when you don't even think to put shorts on it?

I feel super bad for everyone suffering from all the heat but secretly I can't wait to feel that heat and then be able to escape it as well.

A British friend of mine said her version of air con is to stick her feet in a bucket of cold water and hang them out the window - surely she wouldn't last a week in the states in the crazy heat.

Stay COOL!
If you want a funny offending site check out

snow wife

Monday, 22 August 2011

Internet Etiquette

Ok people we know its the 21st century and we spend a lot of time on the computer so why don't you have any online etiquette or simply known as netiquette?

For those who are just joining the world wide web here are some friendly pointers.

1. Just because you are not face to face this does not mean lose your manners. Be polite and if you have something to say that may make a few feathers go up - think before you type.

2. STOP SHOUTING AND USING !!!!!! Wow there is nothing worse then reading posts on FB, Forums, Comments on newspaper articles then someone who is constantly screaming and punctuating. Frankly, it is annoying and makes you look like a toddler. As we tell our dwarfs..."Use your words and your inside voice."

3. Remember there are real people behind the monitor and you can't always tell if someone is kidding or being rude so use emoticons like ;-) or =) or ;-(
Just remember to be sensitive.

4. Something are seriously TMI to post on public forums - would you put it in a newspaper headline? No? then don't share with the rest of the world.  Some of your posts can come back to haunt you.  Make sure you stuff is set to private as employers DO search online and if they see your craziness this may lose you the position.

5. Most of all enjoy the world wide web because there is a wealth of knowledge out there and some great people to meet and talk too but always be careful because not everyone is who they say they are online.

snow wife

Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others.  If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use.
Emily Post

Monday, 15 August 2011

Dear NHS and Associates...

I know we have a public funded health care system available to practically everyone, I appreciate that.  I also understand the tax brackets and everyone gets 7,475 tax free but holy moses it sure seems you are taking the mickey with the amount of money that leaves my check.

People like to think the UK has FREE health care - you are so wrong.  I also want to state this is not FREE to all since we (the ones who work) pay each and every month and it adds up.
My pros's and con's based on my opinion
You don't freak out over not having health insurance because if you get sick, you can get care.
The prescriptions are a set price £7
Birth Control is FREE
Buying diflucan over the counter and not waiting to see a darn doctor

I have not spoken to a friendly receptionist yet
Waiting lists are miles long for specialist
General Doctor's don't have a clue who you are and don't bother reading anything about you
Having a thrush or water infection - you wait many days to get results back
You don't get any real answers because it doesn't feel as if they care BUT they won't discharge you because then you can sue them for neglect.
People go to the doctor because they stubbed their toe - why because they can.
Can barely get appointments in advance must call the day of

I would rather pay for insurance oh wait we do...I mean I would rather have a co-pay for everyone. If you are on benefits why can't you afford £2 and if you are not pay £5.  Lower the amount you take out of our checks and make it up in co-pays.  NOT massive co-pays but it would stop stupid visits and lower the amount a bit for us working people.
Let me also state children under the age of 18 get free medical,dental,eye and prescriptions so they would not have a co-pay.

In England each person doesn't file taxes it is done automatically.  You don't get tax deduction for mortgage insurance or stuff you buy for work ect.. You don't get the bigger deduction for having kids or filing jointly.  There is no married discount for two hard working people as you don't get benefits of any kind if you hold a steady job.  In my own opinion some don't get a job as the benefits the government pays is MORE then they would get working a lower paying job so why work?  I saw a newspaper saying they want to cap benefits at 500 quid a week OMG that's 2K a month - seriously and we wonder why the UK is broke?

Here is a breakdown of what is paid per check - as we are paid monthly here typically.

PoundsDollars (approx)
Salary £15000YearlyMonthlyYEARLYMonthly
Taxable Income £   7,525.00  £    627.08  $  12,040.00 $ 1,003.33
National Insurance £       932.64  £       77.72  $   1,492.22  $    124.35
PAYE/Tax £   1,505.00  £    125.42  $  2,408.00  $    200.67
Total Deductions £   2,437.64  £    203.14  $  3,900.22  $    325.02
 Salary £20000 Yearly  Monthly 
Taxable Income £ 12,525.00  £ 1,043.75  $ 20,040.00  $ 1,670.00
National Insurance £   1,532.64  £    127.72  $  2,452.22  $    204.35
PAYE/Tax £   2,505.00  £    208.75  $  4,008.00  $    334.00
Total Deductions £   4,037.64  £    336.47  $  6,460.22  $    538.35
 Salary £40000 Yearly  Monthly 
Taxable Income £ 32,525.00  £ 2,710.42  $ 52,040.00  $ 4,336.67
National Insurance £   3,932.64  £    327.72  $ 6,292.22  $    524.35
PAYE/Tax £   6,505.00  £    542.08  $ 10,408.00  $    867.33
Total Deductions £ 10,437.64  £    869.80  $ 16,700.22  $ 1,391.69
 Salary£ 55000 Yearly  Monthly 
Taxable Income £ 47,525.00  £ 3,960.42  $ 76,040.00  $ 6,336.67
National Insurance £   4,481.04  £    373.42  $ 7,169.66  $    597.47
PAYE/Tax £ 12,010.00  £ 1,000.83  $ 19,216.00  $ 1,601.33
Total Deductions £ 16,491.04  £ 1,374.25  $ 26,385.66  $ 2,198.81

Remember the dollar sucks right now and £40K is a nice salary by all means but handing over £16K hurts and to think paying almost £4K/$6K in national health insurance for the year - WOW. Talk about the people picking up the tab.  I am all for national health insurance but I also don't think because you make more you pick up more of the tab - keep it equal.

Just like benefits.  Right now a single mom can make 40K a year and still get child tax benefits and working tax credits ect...If you are married - nada.  Firstly if you are making 40K a year you shouldn't get benefits.
This is where I think the UK is wrong. I think it should be a tax deduction % for each parent (no jointly filing in this country) to get some tax back you PAID in.  Now if you don't work and you are on benefits already such as housing and whatever else then obviously you won't get a chunk back as you only get what you pay in.  I am not saying starve the kids! The benefit system here gives people 4 bedroom houses and enough money to take vacations if they don't work (not all people but enough).  Now in the states if you were on benefits we were talking section 8 and food stamps - scraping by and if you wanted to get money and further in life you had to get a JOB.

I went off a slight tangent here obviously and I am sure some may not agree with me and that's fine - that is why this is my opinion and my blog.

snow wife

Monday, 8 August 2011

New location to shop? My attic?

Yeppers - the attic! I can fit back into my clothes from a few years ago.

For the few people that know me in this world my weight has always fluctuated between 135-155ish which for me was a pretty happy weight.

Few things happened in my life then add moving to a new country and WHAM the beef was adding up - I was the heaviest I have EVER been 185!  It crept up and I didn't even know it.  Well you know but honestly, "Its not that bad." Yes it was.  Soon as I saw myself in a picture I thought OH MY GOD that is me?

Oh hell no...time to do something about this.

Thank you to the Wii as it was my starting point and then I started paying attention to what was eating and chowing down on tons of fruit and veg.  It has been working.  It is no miracle and no its not an overnight thing to happen but I guess I had to take the baby steps.

I am about 10 pounds from my "self" goal.  It has taken 8 months but I am down to a happy 160 and this is without a fancy gym membership or anyone telling me I am "fat" because that shit isn't cool.

I think the encouraging thing and frustrating thing is Prince Charming doesn't say a word on it either way which I was thankful when I was "fat" but frustrated as I drop it - HA right?
I say honey I have lost 2 pounds this week...He says: you should fix that hole in your pocket

*eyeroll* At least I know he didn't marry me for my weight because let me know tell you there is more to someone then their body.  If you truly love someone, you love them for everything and support them.

Speaking of support - I had Price harming do P90X and he had to stop 5 minutes in claiming he was still too hung over. I laughed but he sat on the cough to watch me to that crazy lady Gilliam 30 day shred!

I guess I am just happy taking baby steps as it makes me feel so much better about myself and not doing it on any stupid diets.  I still drink and eat bread *gasp* and have take out!

snow wife

Inside some of us is a thin person struggling to get out, but they can usually be sedated with a few pieces of chocolate cake.
Mrs. Anon