# Thursday, November 29, 2007
In another chocolate related story I read this article about an artist who has created a Christmas grotto out of chocolate, icing sugar and biscuits. It uses £1,000 worth of chocolate and features a Christmas tree, fireplace, furniture, chandelier and a Christmas dinner. Yum.

posted on Thursday, November 29, 2007 3:52:27 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I read this interesting article about two British men who are going to drive across West Africa in a lorry powered by chocolate. The fuel is made from cocoa butter which has been extracted from the waste chocolate. The trip should take around 3 weeks and help promote the benefits of bio-diesel.
posted on Thursday, November 29, 2007 3:50:17 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, November 28, 2007
I am always very careful when shopping online and tend to use Paypal rather than my debit card when visiting any unfamiliar websites. I was quite surprised then to find that my debit card has been compromised. On looking at my statements the other day I noticed a number of Paypal transactions which I had not made. The odd thing was that they didn’t show up in my Paypal account. Naturally the first thing I did was call Paypal who confirmed that I had not made the payments from my Paypal account. On doing a check against my debit card, however, they did find the transactions. It appears that someone has managed to obtain my debit card number and set up a Paypal account with it under a different name. Of course the payments they make come straight out of my bank account. Paypal are unable to give me any details regarding this other Paypal account and their best advice is that I should cancel my debit card. They say that the payments will eventually be refunded back to my account, (watch this space to see how I get on with this).

In the meantime I have called my bank and cancelled my debit card. This leaves me in  a bit of a fix, as it is my only account. To withdraw any money I would have to go into the branch (there isn’t one in my town) and produce a passport or driving licence. I am also unable to carry out any transactions until my new debit card arrives which is most inconvenient, especially in the run up to Christmas. During my phone call to my bank they also had the cheek to try and sell me some sort of fraud protection cover for £6.99 a month. Personally I think it is the banks responsibility to protect your account details, I find it laughable they want to charge people for something that in my opinion they should be doing already. Anyway needless to say I didn’t take out this additional cover. I am still no wiser as to how my account has been compromised, whether it is the fault of Paypal, the bank or the result of me purchasing something from another website that has disclosed my details. One good thing that has come out of the whole mess is it has forced me to save money because I can’t get to it. On a trip to Tesco today I went into the store with £30, added the items up as I went round and spent £28. Usually I would go to the store needing just a few items, end up purchasing a lot more and finding I didn’t have enough cash, put the balance on my debit card.

posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 5:27:41 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
From Friday bank account holders will earn more interest on cheques paid into their account. UK banks and building society will have to pay interest on money paid in by cheque after two working days. Customers will also be able to withdraw money after four days if they are paying into a current account. The cheque will also be guaranteed even if it bounces after six days. Some banks like Lloyds TSB already pay interest on cheques once they have been deposited but the new rules will make the practice common place.

posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 4:06:45 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, November 27, 2007
I read this article that suggests some parents are so desperate to get a Wii console before Christmas that they are paying up to £500 for the console on ebay. The console is priced at £179 but is currently unavailable in most UK stores. When stock does become available it has been selling out as soon as it hits the store. The Wii is a great console but I don’t think I would pay £500 for one.

posted on Tuesday, November 27, 2007 6:05:19 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I was reading this article where Johannes Hjorth decided to try and grow cress in a keyboard. This is the result, how cool is that?

posted on Tuesday, November 27, 2007 11:40:27 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Northern Irelands only salmon has been completely wiped out by an invasion of jellyfish. Around 100,000 fish have been killed after billions of small mauve stingers were washed in the cages where the fish were kept. The company is now likely to face closure.

posted on Tuesday, November 27, 2007 11:37:03 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, November 26, 2007
Regular readers might have noticed a lack of recipes recently. This is mainly because my oven is broken. It currently either cooks everything on a super hot setting or takes the whole day to heat up. The main problem is you never know which setting it has decided to use, so you either end up with cremated food or raw food. The good news is I ordered a new oven at the weekend. I got it from Currys who had a good deal on a built-in oven and hobs for only £349. We also paid an extra £50 for them to install it. The oven is due to arrive next Monday, so I should soon be able to post lots of new recipes.

posted on Monday, November 26, 2007 3:23:15 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I read this article that suggests that groceries ordered online have a shorter shelf life than those brought in store. A survey conducted by Which? found that on average the best before date was a day earlier for good brought online. They tested four different supermarkets buying the same 10 items in store as they did online. The researchers brought goods from Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Asda and Waitrose. They found little difference between the four supermarkets.  The supermarkets have questioned the accuracy of the research. Personally I purchase my shopping online every month and have noticed that some items have a short shelf life.

posted on Monday, November 26, 2007 1:37:16 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
The RSPCA have warned about the dangers of discarding litter after a cat was found with its head stuck in a tin can. The cat was released unhurt but RSPCA officers said people should make sure cans are either recycled of stored safely in a dustbin.

posted on Monday, November 26, 2007 1:28:29 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, November 25, 2007
I buy and sell items on ebay on a regular basis and so far have not had any major problems, other than a few items being lost in the post, which have always been promptly replaced. I do however; tend to assume that most ebay users are honest. This article made me rethink that. Sheryl Johnson sold items on ebay that she did not actually own and managed to make £800 from the exercise. Police traced her because she had given her victims her name and address so they could send her cheques. She admitted to two counts of fraud and has been given a twelve month supervision order.

posted on Sunday, November 25, 2007 1:40:32 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I read this interesting article about a US solider who had been serving in Iraq for a year. He returned home to hear rumours that his wife had been cheating on him. His wife said she had kissed the suspect, a professional bowler once. Not believing her the man investigated further and came across a suspicious Mii on his Wii console. After looking at the calendar options he realised he had a complete record of all the times his wife had seen the other man. It appeared they had spent many nights bowling, so he filed for divorce. A very interesting story but at least they were only bowling, it could have been worse, they could have been sleeping together.

posted on Sunday, November 25, 2007 1:09:10 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, November 24, 2007
The Wii zapper has just been released in the US. It costs $20 and comes with a free game, Link’s Crossbow Training. The gun basically houses the Wii remote and nunchuk as shown in the picture. It looks quite interesting, although without trying it, I can’t quite figure out how the controls would work. This review however, gives it quite a favourable write up. I may get one when its released in the UK, watch this space.

posted on Saturday, November 24, 2007 1:19:53 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
The WWF have warned that Atlantic bluefin tuna could soon disappear than the Mediterranean. The bluefin tuna is facing a dramatic decline caused by over fishing. The WWF have asked for the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) to introduce a moratorium on commercial bluefin tuna fishing in the region following scientific evidence that shows a collapse is probable. ICCAT has so far failed to adopt any compulsory measures to protect the bluefin tuna and the WWF says it may be late to stop the decline.

posted on Saturday, November 24, 2007 1:04:56 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [2] Trackback
# Friday, November 23, 2007
England might have played very badly against Croatia the other day but many Croatian’s found the national anthem more entertaining than the game. British opera singer Tony Henry sung the Croatian national anthem but managed to mispronounce a word giving it a very different meaning. Instead of singing You know my dear how we love your mountains Henry instead sang "My dear, my penis is a mountain" which greatly amused the Croatian crowd.

posted on Friday, November 23, 2007 9:53:25 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Further to my post yesterday Staines managed a win against Stockport. They won 4-3 on penalties to go through to the second round. They will now face Peterborough in the second round at home in Staines on Saturday 1 December.

posted on Friday, November 23, 2007 7:44:18 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
A man sized sea scorpion claw has been found in a German quarry. The fossilised claw measures 46cm long and it is estimated the creature would have been bigger than the average human. The size of the claw suggests that spiders, crabs and other insects were much larger in the past. How scary, I think today’s spiders are big enough.

posted on Friday, November 23, 2007 12:01:42 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I have been looking around at digital SLR cameras in the hope I can persuade my husband to buy me one for Christmas. This article is quite useful and offers an overview of five of the top selling cameras. Now, I wonder whether my husband might read this blog post.

posted on Friday, November 23, 2007 11:54:43 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, November 22, 2007
Its not very often I find anything of interest in the local news, I guess nothing much really happens in Egham. I was interested, however, to see that Staines is playing Stockport tonight in the FA cup first round replay. In the first game Staines managed to hold Stockport to a 1-1 draw. If they win the game tonight they would go through to play Peterborough at home. I won’t be going to the game but will definitely follow it on the radio. Come on Staines.

posted on Thursday, November 22, 2007 2:07:15 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
A cat that got trapped behind the front grill of a car survived 70 miles on a trip from Surrey to Sussex. Tilly the cat ran out in front of the car as Paul Younger drove his BMW through Godalming but when he stopped he couldn’t find the cat anywhere. He continued to travel on to Eastbourne where he stopped when he heard meowing noises. Tilly emerged unhurt and was later reunited with her owner.

posted on Thursday, November 22, 2007 11:06:33 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback