Do you donate to your local food bank?

Last year all the provincial broadcasters got together to coordinate a giant food donation drive for the food banks in the Netherlands.

This year they are doing this food drive again.


Last year I donated lots of food. This year I intent to do it again. But what is best to donate? Mum in the Madhouse made a lovely list, that I could borrow for this post!

  1. Tuna – It’s packed full of protein and can be cooked as part of a meal or eaten straight from the can
  2. Things with ring pulls – Yep, This is probably one of the biggest tips I can give you! Homeless people often don’t carry tin openers due to the amount of stuff they have to carry around so if the tin of food you give doesn’t have a ring pull on it then they might not be able to eat it. Such a little thing that can make a difference!
  3. Baby formula. As anyone who has formula fed a baby knows, formula is a big drain on your finances. This is a great way that you can support familieson a low income with young kids.
  4. Nappies. Yep, same thing. No one should be worrying about how often they can afford to change their child’s nappy or if buying a new pack means less food that week.
  5. Chopped pork or corned beef. These both used to be cheap sources of protein but the price of them has really risen. They’re super versatile as like tuna, they can be used as part of a meal or can be eaten cold.
  6. Baked beans. And yes, apparently the value ones are more than ok to give!
  7. Tinned curry. A great way to help people have a nice meal with some flavour in it. They also often contain some vegetables in them which is helpful.
  8. Irish Stew. This is also something that gets requested a lot.
  9. Kids snacks. As all parents know, kids can eat a lot and need topping up with food regularly!
  10. Pot noodles. A good source of protein and carbohydrates.
  11. Big Soups. Tinned hearty soups need to be better nutritionally than others.
  12. Rice Pudding. Stodgy, filling and very popular.
  13. Coffee and tea.
  14. UHT Milk for people who don’t have access to a fridge.
  15. Financial aid rather than sleeping bags. If you want to give a sleeping bag for a homeless person then it’s very much appreciated, but food banks and homeless centres don’t always have a lot of additional room for storage though and can also often get deals when buying sleeping bags in bulk, meaning that your money can go further.
  16. Help throughout the year. Your help and support at Harvest and Christmas is really, truly appreciated, however please don’t forget food banks throughout the rest of winter. January, February and even March can be exceptionally cold and people living on the street or in poverty need your help just as much then.
  17. Feminine hygiene products. You really don’t want to choose between buying food or tampons. And, lets face it, tampons are expensive enough when you do have money.
  18. Animal food. Animals can’t help their owner have hit a rough patch in life. They need help too.
  19. Laundry detergent.
  20. Sugar.

The last four are added by me, as I know these things will often get overseen and most people on a very low income don’t have the money to buy these more expensive things. If you have to choose between food and tampons pr laundry detergent, I know what I’d choose…


thank you, mum in the madhouse, for letting me use your post! Make sure you check out her blog!

Quick Gift Box

Hello, long time no see. So much has happened over the last year. Much of which I don’t feel comfortable sharing just yet.

But to kickstart my blog again I thought I’d make a quick tutorial on a gift box I made.

What you need:

  • Thick Scrapbook Paper
  • Scissors
  • Knife
  • Protractor Triangle
  • Scotch Tape or Glue

scrapbook paper

I used this paper. It’s 21X15 CM.

How to fold

Measure out how big you want your box to be. This depends on the paper. My measurements were 8X2X8X2X1 CM.

Cut the paper lightly with the knife, just to make folding easier. After you did this, turn the paper and measure 2 CM for the overlap on the top and bottom. If you made the sides of your box bigger, make sure you’ll measure out the top and bottom accordingly.
Cut the sides on the top and bottom like the picture above shows.

Glue the 1CM overlap and the bottom or, if the glue won’t hold (like on my boxes) use scotch tape to put them together.

Gift Box

And that’s it, really. Quick and easy.

What’s in a name

Yesterday there was a guy called Moose on Pointless. Which is a strange name for a person, especially since he said his brother is called Ben.
It got even worse when his wife told Alexander and Richard that their son has Danger as his middle name…

But I can understand Moose’s dicision to name his son Danger. After all, if your father called you Moose, good have to get revenge somewhere…

Daily Prompt: A Plot of Earth

Yesterday’s daily prompt asked:

You’re given a plot of land and have the financial resources to do what you please. What’s the plan?

This has always been a dream of mine. But the answer depends on how big the plot of land is, really.
For good measure, let’s go with a large plot.

green roof

First of all, my husband and I would build our dream house. A modest house, with ample space for our hobbies (library for me:) ), a nice big bedroom, a couple of studies, a nice big kitchen and a cosy living room. It would be a green house. I would like green covering on the roof, solar panels, a heat pump and a reed bed to filter waste water. It would have a large underground tank to store rain water to use for the toilets, the sink in the utility room and the garden.

home library

The garden would be a wild flower meadow, and walled kitchen garden with plenty of space for my veggies and fruits. It also would have an orchard for fruit trees and berry bushes. And a field for our alpacas!
It would also have an underground garage for our Kate.

All of this sounds great. Let me research our family tree to see if we have an uncle with lots of money…

Photo’s from Focx and LoveMaegan.

Thank you Dirt Devil!

So, after my last post, in which I wasn’t very nice about Dirt Devil, things started happening.
As they promised, they got in contact with me. Well, I say me, but in fact I was at work and Jay answered the phone. He knew about the problems I had with my steam mop and knew that the new water filter didn’t change anything.
But he didn’t know that they promised to get in touch. To be honest, I didn’t expect them to actually get in touch. The people behind the Twitter account promised it multiple times and it did not happen, so this time I thought it would just be the same. That’s why I hadn’t said anything to Jay.

But they did get in touch. And the outcome is very satisfying to me.

At first they promised to send two (more) water filters. Jay told them the one we ordered had arrived the day before, but that didn’t solve the problem. They then told him we could send it in for service in their service center. Jay was happy with that arrangement (I would have been too).
But, 5 minutes after they ended that phone call we got an email. They offered me a new Dirt Devil steam mop instead of servicing the old one. And I have to say I jumped with excitement when I read that!

Why? Because, as I said on Twitter, I still stand by my review. It’s a great mop. Until it stopped working :)

So, only 2 days later I came home to a great big box that had been delivered to our elderly neighbour. I had a meeting, so I didn’t open the box til a couple of hours later. And what I found inside really made me happy.

Inside was not only the steam mop, but the two water filters that were promised in the first place. And on top of that was this!

Dirt Devil

My very own Dirt Devil! And I love it.

So all in all I’m really happy with how Dirt Devil handled the situation after my last post. Thank you Dirt Devil!

Thank you for nothing Dirt Devil…

In May 2013 I wrote THIS review about the Dirt Devil M318 steam mop.
For just over 2 years I was very happy with that steam mop. But then I started noticing things. My floors would get as clean as they used to. The mop started spilling water and it wasn’t steaming as much as it did before.

In December 2014 it almost entirely stopped steaming. There was only a little bit of steam coming out and the floors were left dirty. After a bit of trouble shooting and reading through the manual hubby and I concluded it must be a the water filter cartridge that’s been worn out. So on Dec 22 we ordered a new one at the price of almost 14 Euro. Without shipping that is. There was almost 10 Euro of shipping that we had to pay too…
Within minutes I got an email saying that my order would be shipped out asap.

But then, 24 hours late(r), I got another email saying the part was not in stock and they would ship my order when the part arrived.

I tweeted about the steam mop not steaming anymore and Dirt Devil swiftly got in touch. I replied to their questions and it took them 7 days to get back to me. Granted, Christmas was within those 7 days, so I wasn’t too worried about the delay. They asked me to send them my contact details so they could get the offices in my area to get in touch with me. I replied with a DM some 24 hours later.

5 days later I @ them in a tweet and they got back to me asking me what was wrong. I told them I’d sent my details as per requested and they got back saying the office in my area would be in touch soon. 3 days after that tweet I sent the following tweets:


I did not hear anything back. So 4 days later I sent this tweet:

Really annoyed with @DirtDevil right now. On Dec 23 I ordered a new water filter. Got an email saying it was out of stock. On Dec 30 @DirtDevil asked me to send my contact details, which I did. On Jan 6 they (finally) got back to me saying the sent my details to the regional offices. On Jan 9 I asked them how long I should wait for any info. It’s now Jan 13 and I haven’t heard anything…

Again… Nothing… Until Jan 13, when they asked me if the local office had been in touch with me. I replied, saying that they did not get in touch with me. And again, silence…

On Jan 23 I got an email saying the water filter cartridge was in stock and would be shipped out asap. Today I finally got the cartridge I’ve been waiting for for over a month.

So, naturally I wanted to use my steam mop right away. I installed the filter cartridge and plugged the mop in. To my surprise nothing happened. The ruddy thing still leaks water and isn’t steaming properly… Great,just great…

I’ve spent over 20 euro on a bloody useless cartridge and I can scrap a steam mop that’s just over 2 and half years old.
Now I know we didn’t pay a lot of money for it, but this is ridiculous in my opinion. Such a thing shouldn’t break within a couple of years.

I’m going to look for a new steam mop, one made by a different company. Because Dirt Devil has left a bitter taste in my mouth!

Things I did in August and September

Small post which I was going to do much earlier, but didn’t get around to do.

In a nut shell, I’ve done loads, just nothing that would really interest you. I’ve worked very hard through the summer, had a break in september. Played lots of Sims 4 and got back to work again.

Right now, lots is going on, but I can’t share it just yet as nothing is yet certain. So for the time being have a bunch of flowers!



Changing colors, dropping temperatures, pumpkin spice lattes: do these mainstays of Fall fill your heart with warmth — or with dread?

Right now, the thought of autumn fills me with dread. Why? Because last week, I got tagged into a Facebook group, which consists of almost every living being I despised at school. Yes, it’s yet another “Let’s have a reunion” group for our class.
About 5 years ago they tried the same thing on a dutch site and I quickly left and never got back. Now they did it again on Facebook…
I can’t help it. There are only 6 out of about 28 that I’d like to meet again. One of which I have regular contact with. The rest can fuck off.

Needless to say, I haven’t had a great time at school. I’ve been bullied quite a lot. But somehow most of the people who were bullying me seemed to have forgotten what they did. And now they want to be “friends”. They want me to read their timeline, which I’m sure, I don’t want to read. And, I think more importantly, they want to read mine.


Now I know my timeline is filled with sarcastic ecards, but even then I don’t want them there. I’m not that naive… No seriously, I’m wishing them a great time, but I won’t join them. Despite my wish to see those 6 again.

This post was written for the postaday.

Sims 4 is almost here

I must admit, I haven’t been paying much attention to the new Sims game up until a few days ago. So I didn’t really know about what would be left out from previous sims games and what the new features will be.
But these two threads on different forums has made me want to share my two cents.

Thread 1.

Thread 2.

So first off; babies are objects, not sims. Thank God for that! From the time my first ever sim, in Sims2, almost died of exhaustion due to feeding her baby so much, I’ve always cheated their needs up. Just as in real life I find sim babies annoying and exhausting, so I can’t say I’m unhappy with this change.

No toddlers. Again, yay! Just as babies, toddlers annoy me to no end. I only want them when I can cheat them through their toddler days. I loved Sims3 for the life span changes one can make. Toddlers and babies had only a day in my game.

Teenagers and Elders are the same size as Adults. So? Despite everyone else seeming to think this is a problem, I don’t see it as one. Most real life teens are just as tall, or even taller, than their parents. Makes the game a little more realistic in this aspect, me thinks.

No pools, no hot tubs. The only time my sims used a pool was when I wanted to get rid of them in Sims2. Remove the ladder and watch them drown! When, in Sims3, they could climb out of the pool without a ladder, I didn’t build pools anymore. I’ll miss the hot tub, though. I like those, especially the Sims2 reward one.


No dishwashers, trash compactors, recycling bins or security alarms. Dishwashers and trash compactors always broke down in my games, so I won’t miss them. Security alarms were only handy when you were being robbed, but looked very ugly in your sims house, so I’m  curious to see how this works in Sims4.

No aliens. Well, that’s a bloody shame, isn’t it?! I’m sure it’ll be included in an expansion pack later, as everyone loves a good abduction every now and then…

Max lot size shrunk to 50×50. Knowing that both Sims2 and Sims3 ran crappy on even the best PC’s money could buy, this isn’t a huge problem in my opinion. I don’t think there would be many people out there that could run 64×64 lots without lag. Just view this review to see how crappy big lots run on a good pc in Sims3…

No basements. Basements were great for all the unwanted clutter you needed, but didn’t want to see in your houses. I’ll really miss this one.

No ability to choose which structures on a lot have a foundation and which don’t. That sucks too. I loved building garages with houses on a foundation. But seeing as there are no cars in Sims4, I don’t really need a garage, do I!?

Most normal careers removed. Military, Law Enforcement, Medicine, Athletic, Politics, Science, and Education careers are missing. That’s too bad. I liked my sims to be in these careers. But I’m sure that, just as in Sims2 and Sims3, modders will make their own careers, so I’m sure they be coming back.

No terrain sculpting. Yes, yes, yes! Finally! I absolutely despised the fact that there were so many different levels in the old neighbourhoods. I’ve always wanted completely flat neighbourhoods. This will make building (and downloading) so much better!

No “moveobjects” cheat code. Aww, shucks! I used that cheat quite a lot, so I am going to miss it.

No “constrainfloorelevation” cheat code. As there’s no terrain tools, this cheat is redundant. Which is a bloody shame, as many people used this cheat to create the most gorgeous houses.

Story Progression. Sims will age, but won’t get jobs, get married or have children on their own. On one hand that’s a shame,  but on the other, as there is age progression I’m hoping modders will come up with a better working story progression. Just as in Sims3, where the story progression that came with the game was seriously bugged. Pescado and Twallan came up with way better working mods. So here’s hoping that’ll happen in Sims4 too.

On the whole I’m quite excited to see how Sims4 will differ from Sims2 and Sims3. But I won’t hold my hopes up for a working, or indeed, complete game. Most likely there will be huge issues from day one, as EA likes to use paying customers as beta testers…


Veggie garden 2nd August

This post has been in the making for quite some time. We have had a long period of really hot weather, too hot to get out into the garden. And when it was colder we had lots of rain, so again, I didn’t go out into the garden.
This meant that some areas of the veggie garden became a bit overgrown. But it’s not a big deal. We’ve had some great meals from it.

Somehow I managed to mess up the courgette and cucumber plants. I’ve ended up with 3 courgette plants and two cucumber plants. Don’t ask me how this happened, I have no idea…
The chinese beans did not survive the enormous amounts of water at the end of may. Some other beans did and they look great.
The tomatoes are (now) very tidy and I hope they’ll stay that way. Some of the carrots survived the rain, but not all. I have no idea how many survived exactly. For the onions it’s the same story. The only things that are doing great are the fruits. So many raspberries, tayberrries, blackberries, black currants and red currants. But they rarely make it indoors. There’s someone in the garden regularly that eats them as soon as she can… (yes, that would be me…)