It has been a frustrating day...I've found my eight times Gt Grandfather...his name was Thomas Johnson and he was born in the middle of the 1600's 'cos his son was born in 1680...but because mothers weren't included on the baptism record I don't know who she was...and I don't know Thomas's actual dates either.

It took a bit of squinting sideways to find Thomas's name in the list...classic example of the vicar cramming the information in as best he could on a very small page. Though it might have been the church clerk who wrote the records down...not sure about that.

I cleaned the top of the range this morning...a truly absymal task involving lashings of hot water and a scourer with baking powder and vinegar making sinister hissing noises...it's much worse than cleaning the gas cooker 'cos it's mostly water splashes on the range which have sort of burnt on. The top becomes far too hot to mop them up straight away. It's done now and is nice and shiny, for a while at least.

Then this afternoon I set to to make a needlecase with a pocket for my embroidery scissors included...there are plenty of patterns on the net so I chose one and found some blue gingham and there lay the problem...it's cheap gingham I've had forever screwed up at the bottom of my stash and the squares are all out of kilter so cutting it straight still meant it looked decidely wonky. I kept checking the edges were level, and they were, but it looked funny. Then I forgot to insert the pieces of card to keep the whole caboodle stiff and had to undo one edge and realised I'd trimmed the card so severely it was far too small and so the edges of the fabric flapped about...so I cut some more card and a huge Bumble bee came in and so I had to catch it and put it back outside and stop Eilis from killing it and that took ages 'cos the silly bee didn't want to be rescued...it wanted to bang its head on the window pane instead.

And I'd put some salt down to stop the slugs from slipping and sliding all over my workroom floor and it had shrivelled a couple up and I kept looking at them and thinking I really ought to scoop them up and throw them out and so I didn't get very far with the needlecase...mainly because I'd got cross with it by then.

There's a book I want which Amazon is selling so I had a look to see how much money I have left on my card and there was plenty to buy the book with and the postage. Filled in the order form and they sent an e-mail to say when it would arrive and another e-mail came hot on the heels of the confirmation to say they were having difficulty in processing my card 'cos of insufficent funds....I'd totally forgotten about the change from Sterling to Euro which had taken me just over the limit of the money I had left to spend...it doesn't much matter because I can put some more funds in tomorrow...but this isn't the first time I've done that...you'd think I'd have learned to allow for the currency exchange and I always feel a bit embarrassed when it happens...even though Amazon don't know me personally.

You'll be pleased...or perhaps not...to know the book is about the likely causes of your ancestors deaths...you can order death certs of course, if you wish, but only as far back as 1841 so you're unlikely to know what they died from unless it's in a family Bible or passed down through the generations. One of my Gt Grandfathers died from smallpox but that was written in a Bible.

I think it's amazing that some people lived to a ripe old age when you think of the diseases prevelant at the time...there was always something lethal waiting to get you.

Himself is strimming and it's hammering down with rain...this being the first day of summer and the Solstice I suppose rain is par for the course.Many people will be lighting bonfires on the hill tops this evening...it's a shame they are likely to get sodden wet though with a few glasses of the black stuff inside them perhaps they won't much care.

I'm away to think about the supper.