Sunday, 31 October 2010

Dovestone Reservoir

 William and I decided to go for a walk over at Dovestone Reservoir this afternoon. 


The weather wasn’t at its best, there were grey clouds and half the time we thought it was going to pour down.  Thankfully, it never did.

Blue skies or not, boy, was it beautiful out there!  Autumn’s colours were in fine fettle.

It’s about a 2.5 mile walk around the reservoir but didn’t seem that far today.  There was so much beauty to admire along the way.

It took us roughly an hour and a half to get round.  Mainly because I was stopping to take photos all the time.  Except this one, of course, which Billy took.  Didn’t he do well?

I love autumn.  Actually, I love all four seasons here in Great Britain.  I don’t even mind the rain too much.  Without it our land wouldn’t be half so green and lush would it?

Toward the end of our walk, (we had attacked the res clockwise), we found this gorgeous little area.  It’s just perfect for picnics and perfect for our little boys. They will all three love to play in that boulder filled stream whatever the season.  In fact we need to organise it and go back with all of them very soon.

We completely enjoyed the scenery, exercise and fresh air and because we hadn’t taken a picnic – we will next time though, every where we go we’re seeing people enjoying picnics in the cold autumn air -  we called at the garden centre outside of Uppermill on the way back to enjoy a Kaffee und Kuchen.

Until next time,


Thursday, 28 October 2010

Candles and Cones.

I’m not big on decorating for the change in seasons but this year I have been influenced, ever so slightly, by all the American blogs I read.  Over there it seems like everybody decorates for the seasons and holidays and I love to see all the photos, especially of front porches (I would love one of those things and the house to go with it, of course) festooned with all manner of “Fall” goodies such as pumpkins, scarecrows, bundles of straw, autumn plants etc.  I found loads of photos I could have shared but they’re all copyrighted and I’m too scared to take ‘em just in case they come after me!


Sooo, having said all that, here is my “Fall” decorating.  I told you it was only a slight influence. 

I am getting so much pleasure from these few candles and cones glowing away after dark in their wooden tray on the countertop in my kitchen that I had to link up to Dayle at A Collection of This and That for this week’s Simple Pleasures.

PS. Sorry the picture is so very dark - it looked so much better in my Photoshop Elements organizer.


Sunday, 24 October 2010


I got back yesterday from a few days holiday down in Cornwall.  My lovely cousin, Sylvia, invited me to go down to her cottage near Padstow with her for a couple of days.  Now, that was an invite I just could not refuse!


We arrived at the cottage late on Wednesday night.  The first thing needing to be done was light the fire.  We don’t have a fire in our house so I’d been really looking forward to that part.  There’s nothing nicer than a real fire on a cold night is there?  Then it was something to eat, sit back with a drink and enjoy!


These are pictures from Thursday afternoon which we spent in Port Isaac, the very quaint, little seaside village where “Doc Martin” is filmed.  We spent a lovely couple of hours here, including a walk along the coastal path with spectacular views over the village and coastline. 

The two dogs, Molly and Mackeson, are Sylvia’s.  You wouldn’t believe how much attention that little Cairn Terrier gets when he’s out. It seems like everybody in the world wants to say hello to him.  Poor Molly, as beautiful as she is, it was as though she was invisible.  She just doesn’t get a look in!

Padstow in the evening when Syl and I had fish & chips sitting by the harbour.  Padstow in the evening when Syl and I had fish & chips sitting by the harbour.

Thursday night we went into Padstow for fish & chips from Chip Ahoy.  There are a couple of tables outside the chippy and now the weather is colder the management has provided blankets for its customers to keep them warm while they eat their chips.  I  thought that was a nice little touch.

We carried our chips round to the harbour-side, found a bench and ate them there.  We were serenaded by a busker, a happy little chappy, singing sea shanties and folk songs.  The night air was very mild, the fish & chips were good and hot, what more could one ask?


Friday morning after an unplanned visit to the vet for Mac,(poor little dog had hurt his back and couldn’t stand or sit, all he wanted to do was lie down), Sylvia drove us around and showed me the countryside and little villages around and about the cottage.  I have to say it is all really beautiful and I can see why Syl and her family have been drawn back to the same area year after year just like my family and I go back to Devon to the same place year after year.

In the pictures above you can see where we stopped in Padstow for a scone and coffee at a lovely coffee shop overlooking the harbour and bay with views over to Rock.  The pretty cottages and church were in a little place called St. Minver.  If it wasn’t St.Minver it was Trebetherick – I can’t decide which it was at the moment!  Then again there’s a good chance it could’ve been somewhere else too!  ‘S'truth, I think I’m losing it!

I had a lovely time with “our Sylvia”.  I saw places I’d never seen before, got plenty of fresh air, walked a fair bit, talked a lot, ate plenty, watched an old black & white film - “How Green Was My Valley”, mooched in and out of a few shops (always a pleasure!) and did something I’ve never done before.  I flew home, courtesy of, from Newquay because it was cheaper and more convenient than the train! 

It was a great little holiday.  Thank you, Sylvia!


Saturday, 23 October 2010


Padstow in the evening when Syl and I had fish & chips sitting by the harbour.

This is where I’ve been for the last few days.  Isn’t it beautiful and aren’t I lucky? 

I’ll be back tomorrow with the details.


Monday, 18 October 2010

Buffers and Bolton Abbey

William, Caroline, Charlie and I loaded up in Caroline’s car yesterday and headed into Yorkshire.

Buffers is a unique cafe within an old stone farmhouse in a perfect, picture postcard, setting. 

Up above Bolton Abbey with fantastic views of the glorious Yorkshire Dales countryside, Buffers is the perfect place to go on a beautiful autumn day for a hot drink and a bite to eat.  Which is exactly what we did yesterday. Buffers is part of a working dairy farm and all the food served in the cafe is home-made and home-grown.

Buffers was our first stop and then it was down into Bolton Abbey.


We enjoyed walking in the crisp fresh air and wallowing in the beauty around us.  The place was busy, lots of families were out enjoying themselves.  There were even some hardy souls having picnics on blankets on the grass!  I must admit I wished we had taken a picnic but I don’t know that I would have been brave enough to sit on the grass to eat it.  I think I would have wanted a picnic table, to be off the ground.  Others were having barbecues and that looked and smelled good!


There’s no doubt about it, Bolton Abbey is a beautiful place and we love it!


Thursday, 14 October 2010

Yesterday was a day of…

…markets and charity shops.


My sister in law, Audrey, is home on a rare visit from Australia.  She and her family emigrated in 1969 and one of the things she misses about England is a good old-fashioned market.  So yesterday I was more than happy to take her to a couple of the markets here in my neck of the woods. 

We spent a good, long afternoon trawling through all the charity shops and wandering up and down the rows of stalls.  Audrey was in her element and said several times how happy she was and how she loved the little towns that I took her to.  She found a few treasures to take back home for family and friends.  Among her finds were two Royal Doulton Willow Pattern tea plates, a Wedgewood Jasperware trinket box and a rather sinister looking brass toasting fork.  All bargains too.  I never thought to take pictures of them, we were too busy nattering all the while.

Audrey and I are separated by 20 years.  I’m the youngest child of eight and she married my oldest brother.  Audrey is an interesting person with a keen memory and it was so interesting to listen to her reminisce about the old days.  She told me about her childhood -she’s a Lancashire lass from Oldham - about how she met my brother and how he proposed, all sorts of family stuff that I didn’t know about before.  I can’t say how much I enjoyed our day together and wish that we could do it again soon but come Saturday, Audrey, will be off on the second half of her trip and will be on the train down to London to spend some time with her granddaughter and grandson who are both in London just now.

So, that was my extra special simple pleasure this week.  Now I’m going over to A Collection of This and That where Dayle and her friends will be sharing their Simple Pleasures too.


I think…

Is this swan smiling at me?

this swan is smiling at me!


Unlike this little boy who wouldn’t even look up for me!  I must’ve taken 200 photos of him (slight exaggeration but I took an awful lot) when we were out for a walk on Tuesday afternoon and he wouldn’t look at the camera for even just one of them. 

Bless his little cotton socks!


Saturday, 9 October 2010

On Friday morning there I was…

… being very good and doing some long overdue hemming up of trousers for William. 

Was, that is, until the phone rang and it was Caroline to ask me if I’d like to go into Manchester with her, Tee and Charlie.  Just to pass a couple of hours on a beautiful, sunny autumn day sitting at a pavement cafe in St. Ann’s Square. A place where there’s always something going on and is pedestrianised which means Charlie can play safely.  Also to give him the fun of riding on the train into the city centre and back.

Outside Starbucks, St. Ann's Sq., M/cr on a beautiful, mild autumn day. 08/10/2010 

Well, of course, I said yes.  When it comes to Starbucks versus sewing – Starbucks’ll win every time in my book!

There was a  Fine Food Market on in the Square yesterday.  It’ll be there until Sunday. 

We spent a pleasant hour or so drinking our coffees and people watching.  A leisurely mooch around the shops and then back to Victoria Station and home.

They look good, Nanny! Victoria Stn., M/cr. 08/10/2010

Charlie spotted the Sweets Stall and I spotted something I can’t ever remember seeing before.  Nuns in a public place with collecting tins.  Little Sisters of the Poor they were.  You can see two of them in this picture.  They were very sweet too when Charlie put some money in one of their tins.

Twas a lovely afternoon.  Thank you Carolina and Tee!


Thursday was a good day.

I had arranged to take our  Australian family visitors out for the day and fortunately the sun shone and the skies were blue.  I went and got them from my sister’s house where they are staying and brought them up here to my neck of the woods.

Hollingworth Lake, Littleborough, Lancs. 07/10/2010

First stop along the way was Hollingworth Lake where we got out for a breath of air and to take in the view.  Then we drove on out through Todmorden to Towneley Park.

Towneley Hall, Burnley, Lancs. 07/10/2010

Autumn is beginning to show her colours.  The Hall looked beautiful drenched in sunshine. 

In the gardens at Towneley Hall, Burnley, Lancs. 07/10/2010

Towneley Park is beautiful, we love it, and I think our visitors liked it too.  We sat outside the cafe with a drink and chatted away.  The cafe, which is housed in the former stables building,  is just visible at the far side of the pond in the picture above.  That’s Danny up there taking a picture.

For ages now I’ve been wanting to take the tour round the Hall and today we did just that.  I have to say the staff in there are all really very friendly and the Hall is definitely worth taking the time to go round.  What’s more the ticket is valid for 12 months so I can go and have another look round it as often I feel the need.


On the way back we stopped at a quaint old pub, The Ram Inn, at Cliviger.  The lads had a nice cold pint.  I think it must’ve been the best they’d had since they arrived here, I know they really enjoyed it!

It was late afternoon by this time and we were all getting hungry.  So to finish the day off it was back to our house.   My girls and their families joined us for something to eat and a couple of drinks.  Conversation flowed easily and I think everybody enjoyed themselves, I know I did!,


Monday, 4 October 2010

It was 1969…

the last time I saw this man.Kathleen and Danny outside St. Peter's Church, Middleton. 02/10/2010.

Because that was the last time he set foot in England - until last Thursday that is.  Danny emigrated to Adelaide, Australia along with his mother, father, five brothers and one sister.  It was at the time when Australia was crying out for people to populate its shores and were offering the right candidates a passage for £10 a person.  There were around one and a half million Britons who took up that offer and became known as the Ten Pound Poms.

Danny is my nephew,  (even though I’m only four years older than him)  and he and his mother, his son and niece have all come to England for a holiday.  In the picture above Danny and I are standing outside the church we attended as kids and was taken on Saturday morning when we set off on a walk around the neighbourhood of our childhood.

An awful lot has changed since 1968.  There’s a lot of catching up to be done wouldn’t you say!