Wednesday, 22 June 2011

My To Do List

I had a couple of things on my To do List today.  A very much needed appointment at the hairdressers was first on the list.  Pick up a prescription at the doctor's surgery, go to the chemist, run over to Costco to exchange a couple of polo shirts for a different size.   You know the ordinary everyday kind of stuff but also on my list was the extra-ordinary "ring Mo and Jerry and see if they have any plans for today".


And if they hadn't any plans I thought I'd suggest taking them for a little stroll down by the canal in Uppermill and that's where these pictures were taken.  We were doing too much talking for me to snap many photos but I did get a couple.  That's my sister and her husband in the photo above. 

We watched a 70 foot narrow boat go through the locks and the "driver" gave us the low down on the whole procedure.   All three of us more or less knew the basics but it's always good to hear an explanation from an expert.  He was quite a comedian too.


A cute little family of ducklings having an afternoon nap caught our attention.  Mother duck kept a beady eye on us.


In  a side street we came across this novel way to display flowers outside your front door.  Those scales would go very nicely in my kitchen, shame they didn't have a for sale sign on them.  

It's been a good day today but my To Do List still has a couple of things on it.  Never mind though, there's always tomorrow.


The last photo has been aged in Adobe Photoshop with Lynn Grieveson's Worn Photo Edges with Retro Texture available at

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Imperial War Museum

On Saturday William and I took Maureen and Jerry to the Imperial War Museum at Salford Quays.


All the exhibits make you stop and take note.


We were all moved and impressed by this War Museum.  The displays were not just facts and figures, artefacts and photographs but also survivors' memories both in the form of letters and the spoken word.  


A few of those facts and figures.  I couldn't believe my eyes when I read that first line!


Billy, Maureen and Jerry standing in front of a Russian tank right outside the museum.


I should be able to, but can't, remember what this type of gun is called.  What I do remember is that my brother had a miniature replica of one when we were kids.  It used to fire matchsticks.   I remember playing with it on the hearth in front of the fire in our back living room.  It seems looking back that there was always a coal fire in that room, no matter the season.  Completely irrelevant I know but I just thought I'd mention it.

After this we brought the visitors up to our house for tea.  William made a very nice Chinese chicken stir-fry.  Our girls and their families came round to visit and we were able to spend time out in the garden, having a drink, playing garden boules etc.

Sunday was a special day for  my sister, Jean.  Her eldest daughter was Confirmed and made her First Communion.  It was a lovely service and went off without a hitch.

This coming Saturday we are taking the Bakers off to Devon for a week's holiday.  I'm hoping and praying for good weather.  I know we're going to have a good time no matter what but a bit of sunshine would be the icing on the cake.


Friday, 17 June 2011

Antiques and Coincidences

After our excursion to Manchester yesterday afternoon Maureen, Jerry, Sylvia and I all went back to my sister, Jean's, house to visit and natter some more.  We talked about all sorts of things, as you do.


Today I needed to go to the supermarket but first I popped into a local antiques shop.  Among the random things talked about yesterday afternoon was old-fashioned traditional deckchairs.  Maureen said she would like one.  Not that it will fit in her suitcase, but by coincidence, I found her one in the antiques shop.


We also talked about old school desks.  That one was a long discussion!  I found one of them too.  Curious how much that desk costs?  I'll tell you, £225.  At that price I'm glad I don't want one!


Now here's the best coincidence.  Sylvia has been saying for a while that she wants a chest just like this one I came across in the antiques shop.  I was just getting my mobile phone out of my handbag to take a picture of it to send to her when a text message came through.  Lo and behold it was from Sylvia.  Now how's that for a coincidence?  I really like it when coincidences happen.  I get a little kick out of them.  They seem to happen to me a lot too.  Do you think it's because I like 'em or is it just a coincidence?


This is my favourite corner  in the shop.  I love all the glass and china.  I'm wanting a little reading lamp and there's one up there just underneath the big oval mirror on the back wall that I fancy.  I'll have to go back soon and hope it's still there.  Oh, and that the price is right too, of course.

That's all for now,


They're here!

My sister, Maureen and her husband, Jerry, who live in Arkansas, USA are here in Blighty for a three week visit.  They arrived early on Tuesday morning of this week and it's good to have them here.  They were last home in 2008 and although we keep in regular touch via telephone and email three years is still a long time without actually seeing each other.  So, we're all going to make the most of the next three weeks!


Yesterday afternoon we arranged to go into Manchester for a spot of shopping and Afternoon Tea in the Town Hall's cafe.  Our lovely cousin, Sylvia, joined us and we had a really good time chatting and laughing together.  Maureen and Jerry are staying with our other sister, Jean, but because of ill health Jean couldn't join us on this little outing. 

I took a photograph, above, then handed the camera to Sylvia and she took a photograph.


A very nice young woman sitting at the table next to us offered to take a photo of all four of us together but unfortunately the picture she took turned out blurred. 

Prior to the Town Hall we had been in Marks and Spencer's and by sheer happy coincidence we bumped into Sylvia's brother, Jim, and his lovely partner, Shirley.  Naturally we spent a good while chatting away to them.

Well, the time flew by as it does when you're enjoying yourself and before we knew it we were heading back to the train station.  It wasn't only the time that was flying we all had to make a mad dash for the train.  We didn't want to miss it, the next one was in an hour's time.  After running up and down more steps than was good for people our age we made it just in the nick of time!  (I wonder if that expression's in my new book?).

Tomorrow afternoon we're all off to the Imperial War Museum at Salford Quays.  There's an exhibition on about the children who were evacuated overseas during WWII and we'll all find that interesting - I hope.


Sunday, 12 June 2011

Red Herrings and White elephants.

Do you ever wonder where the everyday sayings we use come from?


I do, but I need wonder no more.  All I have to do now is go to my bookshelf and look it up in this book.  It's a little gem and I love it.  I found it in a charity shop on Thursday, it's a hardback copy, in excellent condition and at 99p it was a bargain to boot!  Now I wonder if that's in it -"to boot"?

Thursday was one of those nice easy going days for me.  I needed to get a gold chain repaired and the place to have that done was at Max the Jewellers in Hebden Bridge.  I was hoping he wouldn't be too busy and able to repair it while I looked round the shops and sure enough he had it fixed inside a half hour.  The charge was only £3 and I thought that was a bargain too.


Recently I came across this cute little idea on a crafty blog of how to make personalized fridge magnets from flat glass marbles.  I'm into all things crafty at the minute.  So, I'd been looking for suitable glass marbles to use without success.  Until Thursday that is when I found several in a charity shop in Todmorden on my way back from Hebden.  They were mixed in with a vase load of colourful marbles.  I fished around and found a handful of clear ones, took them to the counter and the nice lady gave them to me for nothing.  Another bargain!

In this same shop I bought a paperback for my daughter, Caroline, Twilight by Stephanie Meyer, for the bargain price of £1.

My good fortune didn't stop there.  In Hebden Bridge after happily wandering in and out of the shops I decided to go for a coffee and who should be sat outside the cafe I was going to but John and Lesley.  Now how was that for good luck?

Yep, Thursday was a nice, unhurried, unplanned, easy going day.  My kind of day.



Monday, 6 June 2011

Bents Garden Centre

William and I spent most of Saturday with two of the nicest, most fun to be with people we know, John and Lesley, and lucky for us they just happen to live right next door.


We set off at 11 a.m. and our destination was Bents Garden Centre over on the way to St.Helens, just about 40 minutes away.    John and Lesley have been before several times and wanted to take us because they knew we would like it.


They were right, we did like it. 

Bents is definitely the most impressive garden centre I have ever been to.  Talk about big, this place is ginormous!  The restaurant is to die for, the range of goodies to eat is huge and  very tempting.  Naturally this is where we went first for a coffee while we planned our strategy for looking around.  We drank our coffee out on the decked terrace overlooking a pretty landscaped area complete with pond.


There are some beautiful plants.  The greenhouse is a vast space.  I really didn't take a lot of pictures, there are signs up saying no photography allowed.  I had taken these pics before Lesley pointed that out.  As well as the usual everyday plants on offer you can buy yourself a fully mature palm tree if the fancy takes you.  It'll only set you back about £1,200!  I wonder if they sell many?

We spent a good couple of hours mooching around and enjoyed every minute of it.  The day didn't finish there,  back at the ranch we had a couple of drinks and an impromptu barbeque in J & L's garden.  The sun had more or less disappeared by this time and it was a bit chilly but we're a hardy lot and just put our jackets on.  However when the wind got up and started to blow a gale we called it quits and headed indoors.  

I've just been reading Bents' website and apparently there's a  "garden of distinction" next door to the garden centre and  next time we visit we'll definitely have to take a look at it.   Have you and John visited it, Lesley?  (Lesley reads my blog, don't you Lesley?)



Friday, 3 June 2011

Charlie's Workshop

William has been hard at work recently building a "workshop" for Charlie.  It's actually Charlie's main birthday present form his parents.  They supplied the materials and Grandad supplied the labour.


Here it is in place in Charlie's garden, very near completion.


The interior needs painting and a door knob putting in place.  You can just see Charlie's little tools on the shelf inside ready and waiting for action. 


Looks like they didn't wait for long.   I think it's safe to say he loves it.

Maybe after Charlie has finished screwing the windows securely in place he can wash them!