Monday, 30 August 2010

Comings and Goings.

This weekend Caroline and Tee went to a  friend’s wedding in Portmeirion and had a lovely time.  Charlie came to stay with us for two nights.



Poor Charlie, he wasn’t very well, he had a bad cold and not a lot of energy.


He still managed to drive Muffin to distraction though.  That little dog is so sweet natured and doesn’t so much as growl no matter how much Charlie chases and teases him.


The Goodalls packed their trunk and trundled off to the jungle.  Actually by all accounts it was worse than a jungle.  They went camping in their new tent for the first time.  The boys were very excited as you can imagine.  Unfortunately the Haven Holidays Blue Dolphin site over near Filey on the east coast that they had booked was a nightmare full of noisy, inconsiderate people and did not live up to expectations.  Needless to say they will never go on a Haven Holiday again no  matter how good the adverts look on television.  They had booked three nights but only stayed for two.  Even George at seven years old said the place was rubbish!


Today being a Bank Holiday, William and Gary were both off work.  So while my girls, their boys and I went to Towneley Park for a couple of hours the men went to Go Outdoors (a camping store) in Stockport.  It worked out very well, we all enjoyed what we did and what’s more the sun shone.  And that doesn’t happen very often on a Bank Holiday does it?!


My orchid…

…is blooming again!


I bought this orchid last December and I was and still am just thrilled to bits with it.  The original blooms lasted until about 6 weeks or so ago, I then pruned it as per directions that came with it, and voila!  More blooms, isn’t it beautiful?


Sunday, 29 August 2010

Boats on Beer Beach

I really like this picture. 


I took it on holiday in Beer earlier this month and I just like it so here it is for posterity… or prosperity as my husband would say!


Monday, 23 August 2010

The Weekend

The weekend started with a little Tea Party on Friday afternoon for George and Nicholas.  They had been away in Bristol since Tuesday so we called it a little Welcome Home party which thrilled George no end. Of course Charlie and Caroline were invited but it  was bad timing for Charlie, he needed a nap.  I saved him some party biscuits though.


Saturday morning is my housework morning and I was going to get stuck in when Caroline rang and asked if I would like to go for a walk round the lake with her and Charlie.  The sun was shining and that hasn’t been happening much this week so naturally I said yes, come and get me, the housework could wait!

It was a beautiful morning, lots of runners were out doing their thing, lots of walkers, lots of children in the park, hence no pictures of Charlie.  I have a problem with strangers on my photos – I don’t like it – so I just don’t take any pictures when they’re around if I can help it.

Onto Saturday afternoon.  Victoria and Gary have decided to take up camping and have just bought a fabulous family-sized tent.  I’m so glad, I know the boys will love camping.  I always maintain that you meet “nice”,  for want of a better word, people on campsites.  We used to go camping when Vicki and Caroline were little and they always loved it.  It was a big frame tent that we had back in those days.  Boy, was that fun  to put up on a windy day – not! 

So, they brought their new tent round to our house to erect it for the first time.  They’re going away in it next weekend so a practice was needed.

Going by their faces I'm sure grandad is saying don't do something or other here!

I saw the tent being unpacked.  I went into the house to make us all a drink, grab my camera and when I came out it was all but done.  I couldn’t believe how fast it went up.  Look at Nicholas’ and Charlie’s little faces.  I think they were being told off (probably by granddad) for being too enthusiastic in their helping. Poor things!





As you can see - it didn’t dampen their enthusiasm one little bit.  The inner tent went in and then a camp bed to be tried for size.


Oh dear.  That camp bed might not quite be Gary sized!  Never mind, there’s always the floor, eh Gary?

Onto Sunday.  William suggested we go out somewhere on Sunday morning so I suggested the garden centre and a stroll around Uppermill.  DSC_5629Again the sun shone, we were able to sit outside the garden centre cafe with our coffees and cakes.  It really was quite pleasant.  I bought me a new houseplant.  It’s a succulent, commonly known as Hen and Chicks and I think it’s lovely.  Victoria took a look at it and said it did nothing for her.  Oh well, we can’t all like the same things can we?

Sunday afternoon was quite a giddy one.  Victoria, Gary and the boys came round.  Everybody was in high spirits.  The men and boys were playing football etc. and at one stage Caroline rang, she lives way up the hill across the fields behind us, to say that she could hear our noise!  Oops, sorry neighbours!


Before they went home, the grill was fired up and we had a mini barbeque.  That was actually the first time we had used the grill this year and I wouldn’t be surprised if we don’t use it again until next year.  Shame isn’t it?

All in all it was a good weekend.


Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Middleton Library.

I’ve had a really fun day today.  My lovely cousin, Sylvia, and I met up at Middleton Library.  As kids Syl and I spent tons of time in this library, it was one of our favourite places.  So going in there today was a little trip down Memory Lane for us.

DSC_5565Middleton is where we were both born and brought up and the library is the place where copies of births, deaths and marriages records can be found, plus old photographs of the town.  We are both interested in our family tree and what Middleton used to be like before the crackpot powers that be/were took a sledgehammer and just about knocked any character and beauty Middleton had right out of it!    So, after being spurred on by seeing photo copies of the house where we lived when we were kids which my brother had acquired from the library, I asked Syl to go with me and have a nosey at this treasure trove of antiquities.


We saw so many photographs of old familiar places.  The memories came flooding back of how it used to be in the 50s and 60s.  We oohed and aahed over everything we saw, falling over ourselves to put the memories into words.


We found my mother’s baptism record in the Wesleyan-Methodist Chapel book.  We viewed the 1901 Census on microfilm and found our family’s details.  You wouldn’t believe how exciting it is when you find the name you’re looking for. 


This pub, The Olde Boar’s Head, stands across the road from the library.  It dates back to around 1586.  Thank goodness the sledgehammer never went near this  fine old building.

The only problem we had was time, we ran out of it.  The library closed for the day at 12.30 .  We’re going to go back again soon though and see what else we can find..

The day didn’t end there.  After this we paid my sister, Jean, a visit and happily my brother was there too.  My brother, Ken, has a phenomenal memory, it seems he remembers everything from the day he was born!  We all had a really good old chin-wag about who remembered what , where and when.  We laughed a lot and it was fun.  Today was a good day.


Tuesday, 17 August 2010

The final holiday pictures and Axmouth.

We don’t usually spend much time in Seaton but this holiday we discovered the charms of the other side of the Axmouth estuary which is down at the bottom end of Seaton beach.

Axmouth 27/07/2010

This is view from Axmouth Yacht Club over to the other side and the Tea Caddy.

Axmouth 27/07/2010

What with William’s new found passion for sea-fishing this little snack bar looks set to become a favourite haunt – it also has a fishing tackle shop.  William had just been in it and bought that tripod you see him playing with.


We were having a drink at The Tea Caddy with Caroline, Trev and Charlie one day when Trev spotted this giant jellyfish.  It was up close to the estuary wall where the fishing boats were moored and families were crabbing.  I’m telling you, it was huge!  None of us had ever seen anything like it before.  I mentioned it to the lady in The Tea Caddy and she said they get them occasionally and also seals have been known to venture up the estuary.  We’ll be on the lookout for them next time we visit.


I took so many photos on this holiday I’m beginning to go cross-eyed trying to get through them.  I think I’m just about done with blogging them.   I want to move on to digiscrapping some of them now so my next lot will be on My Digiscrapping World blog.  I wanted to post this collage here of mainly family pictures because each one sparks a memory.

The photo on the bottom row of Trev and Charlie is one Caroline took and I think it’s really sweet.  I actually pinched it from her blog – - but I know she won’t mind.

And finally, I just want to post two more photos.


This cute photo of Charlie taken on the campsite …

Axmouth 27/07/2010  … and this one of William taken on the beach.  Just because I like them!

I’m done.



Monday, 16 August 2010

I want to remember…

… these flowers, particularly the way they were given to me.  48% softlight. These are the flowers Victoria bought me for keeping the boys overnight while they went to Cliff's wife's 50th birthday. Nicholas came running in with them.

George and Nicholas stayed overnight with us on Saturday night.  Victoria and Gary were going to a friend’s birthday party and staying overnight in the hotel where the party was being held. 

soft light 30%

Staying overnight with us is something George has done a lot but Nicholas not so much.  So Saturday Nicholas was very excited.  I want to remember the sight of him running up to our front door, dragging his little suitcase on wheels behind him, carrying high in the air this bunch of very pretty flowers for me.  It was a fleeting moment but oh so sweet!


Here’s the little man himself.


Saturday, 14 August 2010

I tried so hard today …

… to get a picture of my three little grandsons all together.  I would just love a picture of all three of them together.  I’m not asking for a great picture but just one of them all in one place, all looking at the camera, all at the same time. I don’t know if it will ever happen though.  They are all three just so…. active. 


Here are two of them.


Here are two of them.



Here are the three of them.  Photograph-wise it never seems to get any better than this!

Never mind.  At least they’re all in the same place, at the same time, a lot of the time and that alone makes me very happy!


Friday, 13 August 2010


By happy coincidence, on the second week of our holiday my lovely cousin Sylvia and her husband Andy were down at their cottage in Padstow, Cornwall.  We arranged to go over and spend the day with them.  It was a good choice of day, the heavens opened and poured down in Sidmouth but by the time we got to Padstow, an hour and 45 minutes away, the sky was blue and the sun had got his hat and had come out to play.

We got there around lunchtime.   After a tour of their gorgeous, quaint little cottage, complete with wood-burning stove, (I’d love a house with one of those things), Sylvia made lunch for us then we headed for a walk down the Camel Trail.  Never having been to Padstow before William and I were in for a treat.

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

The Camel Trail was very busy the day we walked along it - school holidays of course - you had to be on your guard looking out for the bikes zooming along all the time.  Syl and Andy have bikes and have cycled down this trail a time or two as did Victoria, Gary and boys when they stayed in Syl’s cottage the week before, but more on that in a later post.  It was a lovely walk and before long the hedges broke up to reveal stunning views of the Camel River.

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

Chatting and admiring the view we walked on into Padstow and took the ferry over to Rock.

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

On the crossing I noticed the name of the boat on the right in the picture above, Grumpy B.  It could’ve been named after my beloved!

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

A Cornish Cream Tea was enjoyed overlooking the river.  I’m glad we enjoyed that cream tea too, at £7.95 it was the most expensive cream tea I’ve ever had!  Rock is a rather up-market kind of place.  Princes William and Harry have been known to holiday there.

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

Padstow is a picturesque place with lots of shops, pubs, restaurants and plenty of boats in the harbour to admire.

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

Here are Andy and Billy loitering down a side street. Do you think they might be asking each other “How would you like to tend all these hanging baskets on a daily basis?” or do you think it might’ve been “Do you fancy a quick pint?”.  

Afternoon with Syl & Andy at Padstow and Rock.

One of the things I most enjoy about our holidays in Devon is the vast array of blooms on show. 

So that was our day in Padstow, we had a great time and I’m hoping that we get to do it all over again the next time our holidays coincide with each other.


I’m linking to Outdoor Wednesday over at  If you have a few minutes to spare click over there and enjoy a little bit of armchair travelling.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010


On the Thursday of our second week after Caroline, Tee and Charlie had gone home William and I took a trip into Exeter.


The main reason for our visit was to hire a canoe and paddle it up the canal.  It was my idea and I had been really looking forward to it all the holiday.  So, we made our way to the Historic Quayside, spotted the canoes, saw a few empty ones and thought, yeah, that looks like fun let’s do it.  ‘Twas not to be, the flipping things were booked solid all day!  However, we’re going back to Devon in a few weeks so we’ll have another bash at it then.  Perhaps next time we’ll get it right and book ahead of time like they advise in the brochure.  The hire shop is called Saddles and Paddles, here’s a link to their website.



Of course, we had planned to have a look around the place too and there’s plenty to look at.  For one thing the place is steeped in history and there are cafes, bars and an antique centre or two.  We mooched around the antiques shop in the picture above left and then sat outside it with a cappuccino and watched swans and ducks “heads down, tails up, dabbling free”  on the river before us.

There’s a good visitor information centre and free guided walking tours are available too.  We intend to take the Historic Quayside tour on our next visit.

From here we walked into the city centre and took a quick look at the cathedral, it was only a quick look too.  There’s a £5 entry charge and I don’t really like the idea of being charged to go in God’s house.  A donation would be quite in order but a charge doesn’t seem right to me.


This row of fine old Tudor buildings stands opposite the cathedral.  The little red brick building on the left is St. Martin’s Church and was consecrated in 1065.  There’s a plaque inside the doorway stating this fact and the shiniest place on it is where goodness knows how many fingers have pointed in awe to the date just like we did.Exeter.


We drove into Exeter with the kayak on the roof rack.  William didn’t want to go the hassle of taking it off and putting it back on again with only me to help him.  We never gave the parking a thought but I certainly did when we drove into a low ceilinged multi-storey car park.  I couldn’t look.  I was sure we were going to come unstuck and that the kayak was going to come off with or without my help!  Miraculously we made it in and out without mishap but I’ll bet there was only an inch or two clearance.  Oh well, all’s well that ends well.

More of the holiday to follow tomorrow.


I’m linking to Outdoor Wednesday over at  If you have a few minutes to spare click over there and enjoy a little bit of armchair travelling.