Monthly Archives: August 2016

Happy Friday 19.08.16

Well, I’m not sure where the sun has gone, as I have woken up to grey, overcast skies and actual RAIN this morning, but we have had a lovely week in the beautiful weather, so I can’t complain – and it is good for the garden!

Here are the highlights:

  1. We had a wonderful family day out to Warwick Castle last Saturday. D and I last went there in 1997, so it was a first for the children, and it was great. The weather was lovely, which meant that we could wander around, have our picnic, watch the trebuchet and jousting displays and complete the tower and ramparts walk in the sun, as well as doing one of the organised tours of the state rooms, which was really interesting. It really was such a good day.
warwick1 warwick2 warwick3 warwick4 warwick5
2. I did a little bit of furniture restoration again this week, which I am so pleased with. We were given four old wooden garden chairs a little while ago, to chop up and use as firewood, but when I looked at them properly a couple of weeks ago, I discovered that they were actually in quite good condition, just very unloved and neglected, so I decided that I would try to give them a new lease of life. I painted them white, and then made new cushions with some lovely fresh, striped fabric. I bought a new white tablecloth for our old outdoor table as well, so it now feels like we have a complete new set of garden dining furniture, which we have since used a lot this week, for the grand total of £30.
3. To follow on from this, we have really made the most of the beautiful weather this week, spending a lot of time out in the garden – we have had two firepit evenings and have eaten a lot of our meals outside, which we love to do. The lunch below, for example, was delicious – homemade guacamole with crackers and crudites – and it was made even better by eating it al fresco!
4. We have been reaping the benefits of our thriving herb garden again this week – our roast lamb on Sunday was adorned with our rosemary, and then we also made fresh mint sauce to accompany it, as we have huge amounts of mint – and there are only so many mojitos we can drink!
5. We had another nice day out on Monday, meeting my great friend, Hettie, and her two young children, at Carsington Water. Again, it was a lovely day for a picnic, in beautiful surroundings, and G and B did a great job of helping entertain the little ones.
6. We have come up with a new possible career option for G this week – comedian! She has been so, so funny this holiday, so quick-witted and absolutely hilarious that she has had me and B holding our aching stomachs and in tears from laughing so much.
7. B once more came into his own last night when he made us a delicious turf and surf meal – it was so good, especially the prawns, which I am generally not a huge fan of, but it was all just so tasty.
8. I have been loving doing Lucy Wyndham-Read’s workouts this week – she does quite short routines which focus on different areas of the body, so you can choose whichever areas you wish to concentrate on, and then do a few as they are pretty short.
9. As well as eating out in the garden on many occasions this week, we also spent one afternoon playing board games out there too, which was great fun. A lovely way to while away an afternoon!
10. We are definitely hoping that the good weather returns again, as we are off to Norfolk today for another ten day stay. D can only be with us at the weekends, but we will still have fun, and try to make the most of the last couple of weeks of the summer holiday, which is passing far, far too quickly.
Have a great weekend!

Happy Friday 12.08.16

Another couple of weeks have absolutely flown by, with plenty more “good stuff” going on, so here are the highlights:

  1. G and B had a fabulous 11 days in France with their exchange family. They were looked after well, had great experiences of French life and had lots of fun doing different activities with the family, so it was a very successful trip. But it was also absolutely lovely to get them back home again on Monday night!
  2. One thing that has made this school holiday such a joy has been that G and B have been getting on so well together, which makes for lovely, calm days – better for everyone!
  3. A couple of weeks ago (already?!?!), D and I had our annual trip to CarFest – but this time without the children which did feel very strange. It was our first time at CarFest North, having visited CarFest South for the past four years, and the venue – Bolesworth Castle – was absolutely beautiful. As this is an equestrian eventing venue, they put on some show jumping displays, which were a very welcome addition to the daytime events, and were great to watch. The weather was very kind to us, and, on the whole, the music was good (“Faithless” though?? Really? What was that – apart from being very painful on the ears! Just awful!!), especially on the Sunday night, when the atmosphere was at its best.
CF1 CF2 CF3 CF4 CF5 CF64. I had a very successful – and also pretty speedy – trip to Ikea last week, managing to find exactly what I wanted without being distracted and coming away with far more than I had planned!
5. I had an extremely productive week whilst the children were away, making the most of the opportunity to tidy, sort and organise various areas of the house and garden that had been neglected a little of late. I completely sorted out B’s room, which is only a very small space, but it now looks lovely, and added some finishing touches to our bedroom, re-covering the cushions on the bedding box and adding some word artwork, amongst other things, so I was very pleased.
Box Wall
6. D and I had a lovely lunch at Barton Marina on Saturday, as a reward for sorting out the garage, dumping lots of rubbish at the tip and (hopefully!) selecting the “shed” we are going to use as a gym/summer house in the garden. It was a beautiful day, so it was lovely to sit outside in the sun by the marina.
BM1 BM27. We followed this with a fabulous day out in the Peak District on Sunday. Again, the weather favoured us – it was beautifully sunny but with a breeze, which was great for walking, so we had a picnic, a circular walk which included sections by the river and then up and down some hills, ending with tea and cake at the tearooms – a perfect trip out!
PD1 PD2 PD3 PD4 PD58. Wednesday saw us heading off on a shopping trip to get the annual “school shopping” done. This was very successful – we managed to get all stationery and uniform requirements (I think!) so I now just need to start sewing labels on again!
9. We were very thrilled, and extremely proud, to find out this week that G has been awarded an academic prize again for her school work this year. These are highly coveted prizes, as they do not give out many of them, but she definitely deserves it for all her hard work this year.
10. We had a lovely day yesterday, visiting one of my university friends, Abi, and her boys. It was great to have a proper catch up, and fantastic to see the boys all getting on so well and playing cricket together. I love the summer holidays for being able to meet up with friends!

So that’s been about it for the past couple of weeks – apart from D and I also celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary! Where did those years go? Crazy – but all good.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Our Norfolk Holiday

The reason for my absence over the past couple of weeks is that we were away on a fabulous holiday in Norfolk for 12 days. For the first time in 11 years, I was able to go away without my laptop and didn’t have to work at all, so had 12 days pretty much “off grid”, which was bliss. Plus we just had the most amazing time! The weather was incredible – hot, sunny, with blue skies every day apart from the day we had to drive home – we were so lucky.

So here’s a little round up of the best bits, in verbs and photos:

  1. Having breakfast at one of our favourite eateries – Creake Abbey – on our first morning.
  2. Walking along Brancaster beach to see the beautiful seals.
  3. Drinking tea in the garden.
  4. Playing tennis as a family, which we did many times.
  5. Walking the dogs in the early mornings and evenings.
  6. Kayaking at Burnham Overy Staithe – the kayak turned out to be a great investment!
Kayak1 Kayak 2
Kayak 3
7. Drinking prosecco in the garden at sunset.
Sunset 2 Sunset 1
8. Playing with the dogs and B one evening on Brancaster beach.
Bran 2 Bran Lottie Bran HoneyBran 3
9. Visiting Muckleburgh Military Museum with B.
10. Watching the waves crash on the stony beach at Salthouse.
11. Eating brunch in the garden on many mornings.
12. Eating out at various local restaurants.
Orange food 2 Orange drink1 JS 2 JS 1 Orange food 1
13. Walking through the woods at Sandringham.
sand 3 Sand 1 Sand 2
sand 4
14. Picking strawberries and gooseberries.
15. Drinking Pimms in the garden in the early evening.


16. Walking around the lake at Holkham Hall.

Holkham Holkham B Holkham G Holkham D17. Swimming together in Hunstanton.
18. Enjoying a barbecue on Saturday evening.
19. Walking to the amazing beach at Burnham Overy Staithe to eat a breakfast of sausage and bacon rolls.
BB walk BOS beach BB Georgie BB Ben Breakfast beach
20. Jumping in the straw left behind by the combine harvester in the field behind our house.
21. Eating ice cream at Drove Orchards.
22. Sitting on top of the straw bales in the field as the sun began to set.
Bale Bale 3 Bale 2
23. Looking forward to going back again for another 10 days at the end of the month!
Bran 1