Alli's Place

Where Alli shares her thoughts and feelings…


So it is a New Year!

Maybe I should restart this blog which I have ignored for too long… I might have to think about how to do that!

Since the last post…

Lenny and Molly now look like this:

My bathrooms and done and look like this:

I have lost 3 stone in weight. 

Become obsessed with beating my own swimming times. Current best is 2000m of front crawl in 29 minutes 25 seconds.

Managed to increase the distance I can comfortably walk to about 4 miles.

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Weekly Witterings #19

1. My new mattress arrived yesterday so last night was my first sleep on it. I think I need to get used to it but I do like it.

2. Excited about going to look at bathroom designs tomorrow and see how outchy the price is!

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Weekly Witterings #18

1. Today I had a physio personal best of 18cm on one of my measurements, both my physio and I had a mini cheer! I finally feel like I am back in control and nearly back on track πŸ˜ƒ only 3 1/2 months later,

2. A nice man called  Daniel has come and measured my bathroom and ensuit and is doing some designs. Now to wait to see how scarily expensive the quotes are. He lives in the same village and knows my neighbours.

3. Four day weekend and a trip to the beach at Hunstanton coming up so going to post this a bit early. Fun with Tom, Fiona and Eilidh. Eilidh is very excited about going to sea side house and has been working hard to say her ‘S’s properly for it.

4. I am going to be Aunt to another puppy

How cute is she!?

6 1/2 weeks old so not long till Allan and Laura can take her home to cause mayhem with Lenny.

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Weekly Witterings #16

1. I watched Pitch Perfect for the first time on Friday evening, I now know what the cup song is all about at last, the Guides have been obsessed with it for ages. I loved the film and want to see the second be now.

2. This weekend has been Lisa’s Hen Party so I have been down to Portsmouth. I think this deserves a separate post but it involved I tersting piercings, pizza mountain and lots of fun and laughter.

3. I managed two almost full days in the office this week. The back is improving!

4. While down in Portsmouth I fitted in a quick trip to Gunwharf Quays, I miss the shopping there but was disappointed that there isn’t a FatFace anymore πŸ˜”

The place still has a lovely view of the harbour entrance though.  

 And of course there is the Spinaker Tower!


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Weekly Witterings #14

1. I am a crochet machine πŸ˜€ This week I have completed two sets of bunting

Made these head bands and bracelets for the school fair


And made another little egg monster for the fair

2. I was brave on Monday and went to meet up with the other Miltin Yarnies who are busy creating stuff for the school fair. I only know the person who was hosting a little bit and wasn’t sure if I would know anyone else. I don’t like meeting new people much. It was lots of fun though and I am glad I went.

3. My back has been frustrating this week. I feel like I have hit aplateau. I attempted to stop taking tramadol which has resulted in not sleeping very well so I am shattered. When I saw my physio on Thursday he commented that I look pale and tired. I saw my GP on Friday and have started taking the tramadol at night again πŸ˜” He wants some blood test done to check I am not anaemic. 

4. At guides we celebrated St Goerge’s day by taste testing teas and scones (both are rather English). The teas were various ethnic fruit and green one and the combined smell was revolting! The dregs that they didn’t like went into a washing up bowl and well… Didn’t look too attractive!


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Birthday Celebrations

So today is my birthday and it has involved…

Friends – lots of lovely messages, texts, emails, visits and birthday wishes πŸ˜ƒ

Balloons – Eilidh said I needed balloons and they are lovely pearly type ones.

Cake – lots of it! This is a selection.


Birthday cake – Fiona and Eilidh made this amazing, huge., multicoloured (rainbow), piΓ±ata cake complete with candles.



Banners – hanging silver, pink, blue and gold star banners

Mini party – a few friends popped round for coffee and cake πŸŽ‰

Presents – my mention my birthday at the last minute was foiled by some people who managed to produce cards and presents and hardly any notice. The gifts have included wool, knitting book, yoghurt maker, smellies, sweets, an Alli picture, flowers, coasters (butterfly’s and reindeer from Helsinki), socks, flowers, baking things and a desk bunny (it has scissors for ears!).


It has been a good one!

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Weekly Witterings 20015 #4

1. Loving this song by Rend Collective at the moment. Play it in the car a lot.

2. The back is easing off again, thankfully. Does mean I have done much this week.

3. The Guides were doing a hike and sleepover on Saturday. I met them at the start and those who were doing both put their sleepover kit in the car and then I met them later where the sleepover was. I was sad not to be able to do the hike until I was sitting in the lounge watching the snow! Apparently they were all great and there was no complaints about being cold and wet. They seemed to enjoy the bit of the sleepover I was there for but it sounds like there wasn’t much sleeping.

4. I have been teaching my Mum how to use her birthday present from my brother, sister-in-law and me. We got her a Hudl 2 from Tesco in perky purple. Hopefully she will get the hang of it.

5. February already! It is my birthday next weekend!

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MRI Scans

I guess this post should have a health warning. You are about to see my insides.

I now have the images from all of my MRI scans. So here are some of the interesting views (the January 2009, post surgery ones are not very interesting so I left those out). Welcome to my lumbar spine which has been described as interesting, fascinating, complicated, unusual.

January 2008.
This is Jelly Bean, my now removed schwannoma.

You are looking for the jelly bean shape that is in the top two images, grey on the left and black on the right (one was with some contrast dye). In the bottom two images there is a round area in the middle towards the top which is the vertebrae and disc area and then a circle underneath which should be dark but the jelly bean is in there in grey leaving only a small crescent shaped, darker area, that is where the nerves are. The bottom two discs are not looking in great condition here either.

October 2013.
This is the disc that, to me, looks like it did a poo.

Unfortunately these are a bit darker so it is less easy to see. Look for a dark area that looks a bit like melted candle wax in the top two images. In the bottom two it is bulging downwards from the circle that is the vertebrae/disc area, it is a back area in the white area, which is the nerves. If you compare the images here to the ones from 2008 you can see the scar tissue from my surgery and the missing lamina bone. The scar tissue is the area that is white to the right on the two top images and the bottom of the lower images. This is the bit the surgeon didn’t fancy “fighting his way through”. He also pointed out that you can see the scar tissue in the muscle but not on the nerves and he sounded a bit concerned about disturbing that.

I still don’t understand why or how this caused more pain than jelly bean did even though it doesn’t take up as much of the nerve space.

April 2014.
These ones show the poo has gone but the discs still bulge and don’t look as good as the others.

This ones is essentially the most normal of the three. Obviously the lamina is still missing and the scar tissue is still there but it allows you to compare the abnormalities of the other two. Thankfully this lot meant the second operation didn’t happen. 😊

So there you have it, my insides and the cause of my back pain, referred leg pain, numb patch on my leg, foot and big toe and strange sensations in my big toe. It could be worse, Jelly Bean would have caused much more damage had it not been removed and was left to grow!

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Weekly Witterings 2015 #2

1. Not a good start as I missed last week.. Whoops. Kind of makes them not so weekly but that is the intention.

2. Finally got a copy of my notes and MRI scans from Addenbrookes before Christmas so I have been having a nose. Might have to put up some screenshots of the herniated disc. I think it looks a bit freaky, kind of like it did a poo but then I am odd πŸ˜‰. It also looks rather pathetic compared to my “jelly bean” and to me it doesn’t make sense that it hurt so much more than that.

3. I did a 4 mile walk with my lovely friend Fiona on Sunday. I am quite proud of that. Ok so it hurt and my swim on Monday was slow, painful and short as a result but hey I did it! It was really good having long chat with Fiona too, just us two, and she said it was nice to have some child free time. We must do it again! Here is a photo of the mill at Lode which we went past.

4. Saw the physio on Thursday. I was still a bit ouchy from Sunday and let’s say he made me hurt for the first time since May. He did some stretch thing to apparently loosen up the nerve a bit which was ok ish on my dodgy leg but not good on my normally ok leg. So a big flinch from me and some shooting nerve pain and he stopped. I was still moving around ok but it didn’t have the desired effect on the pain and tingling I already had! I forgive him though, you have to try things and he has still had a better effect than any other physio I have seen.

5. Finished this little guy for a baby at church, Joseph. Hope he likes it.

6. Love these yoghurts. They have little fudge balls in.


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Weekly Witterings 2015 #1

1. Why do people queue for the self service tills (with baskets) in the supermarket when there people manning the basket have no customers? Do they really just perceive that the self service is quicker? Am I the only person who like to use on human till still?

2. Bit sad that the last ever Miranda was shown on New Years Day. Loved that program.

3. I enjoyed a walk around Milton Country Park on New Year’s Eve taking photos of the last sunset of 2014.


4. Tasted a persimmon for the first time on New Year’s Day. I quite liked it.

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