Saturday, 31 December 2011

Christmas/ New Year 2011/2012

Hello Friends,
I know from reading all your lovely blogs that most  of you have had lovely Christmas celebrations and I am  sure you realised that I was not looking forward to Christmas  with my usual passion, however we had a very pleasant weekend.  Beth and Max came over Christmas Eve and we all went out for supper which was lovely.   Christmas day started for me around 5.30am !!  could not sleep so decided that I was as well up and getting on with preparing the turkey that our local butcher had kindly delivered at lunch time on SSaturday. As I stood there rubbing the  garlic butter under it's skin etc. I had a sudden thought that it was actually the first time....ever....that I had done a turkey !!  well Mum had always done it, and for the last 35 years at least Sarah and John had done all the Christmas dinner preps !!  anyway I soon had it basted to perfection....I hoped !!........Mary came over at her usual time and we were soon on our way up to the early morning Christmas service, It is always such a lovely service to be able to greet our friends etc on such a special morning. It is a short service as our minister Rachel has to go to one of her other churches shortly after being out at Box.. Nice we were back home Peter came along and we allowed ourselves to open a few presents which is always exciting....the bulk of them we left till after dinner..........this was a real change for me as it must have been the first Christmas ever that I had not opened our presents around midnight..ever since I was a child Mum and Dad had got me up and allowed me to open gifts and go back to bed with a fav.  probably knowing that then I would sleep long into the morning !!!     Anyway lunch turned out to be very good and enjoyed by the three of us.  We had Melon to start then the Turkey with roast potato and roast parsnips (that Peter had done) sprouts, carrots, and swede and beetroot, then we had the usual Christmas Pud. with double cream/single cream and brandy butter....mmmmmmmm 
Once things had been cleared away we got down to the serious business of opening all the exciting parcels..Mary and I are so very lucky and have such kind loving friends. Our gifts are to numerous to mention but I have to say that my gift from Mary has been a real was a lovely  "kindle! reading "book" I just love it already,  Thankfully Peter is good at getting all our "teccy" things working for us and before long I was able to start having books downloaded....he also got Mary's new mobile from me all set up for her.                   The days between Christmas and New Year I always think of as funny days it is difficult to settle at anything.    I have been over a few times to see Margaret my sister who has been quite poorly over this period....and now we have only a few hours left of 2011.  Mary is sitting knitting and the TV is on in the corner we are watching the surfers and life guards on Bondi Beach in Australia.  I will not be staying up this year as has been done most times,....I expect we will have a few wee drinks before Mary goes over home though....  And so dear friends I just have to say a very BIG thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the support that you have given me during what has been a very difficult year. What better words can I leave you with than the words said by our late King George V1's

I said to the man who stood at the Gate of the Year, 'Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.' And he replied, 'Go out into the darkness, and put your hand into the Hand of God. That shall be better than light, and safer than a known way.'"

God Bless you all and remember to take every opportunity to LOVE EVERYBODY each and every day throughout 2012

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Hello Friends,

Thank you so much for all the lovely letters e.mails and phone calls regarding the death of my poor wee Dee.  I have to admit that the last couple of weeks have not been easy but life goes on and with Christmas fast approaching I have just got to let go and get over his death....Indeed today I was perhaps able to help by writing a few words to a near neighbour who has just had to have her little dog put to sleep.

On Friday 9th Dec. We had a Christmas Celebration Evening at church.This took the form of singing carols, which were intercepted by readings, poem etc.  Pam my friend and I were both involved I did a reading of a poem about Christmas Eve and the reindeer's...It was well attended and we had a closing collection and managed to raise over £250 for the homeless charity in Bath.  That set me to thinking about poems and ones that we liked best etc... for me the John Betjmen poem "Christmas" has always been a fav. a friend of mine actually added an extra verse...we hope Mr Benjemen would not object.    As this will be my last blog before Christmas I think I will leave you with the poem including Bronwyn's last verse...
May you all have a very Blessed Christmas, and may each day bring Joy your way in the year to follow..

Christmas by John Betjeman

The bells of waiting Advent ring,

The Tortoise stove is lit again

And lamp-oil light across the night

Has caught the streaks of winter rain

In many a stained-glass window sheen

From Crimson Lake to Hookers Green.

The holly in the windy hedge

And round the Manor House the yew

Will soon be stripped to deck the ledge,

The altar, font and arch and pew,

So that the villagers can say

'The church looks nice' on Christmas Day.

Provincial Public Houses blaze,

Corporation tramcars clang,

On lighted tenements I gaze,

Where paper decorations hang,

And bunting in the red Town Hall

Says 'Merry Christmas to you all'.

And London shops on Christmas Eve

Are strung with silver bells and flowers

As hurrying clerks the City leave

To pigeon-haunted classic towers,

And marbled clouds go scudding by

The many-steepled London sky.

And girls in slacks remember Dad,

And oafish louts remember Mum,

And sleepless children's hearts are glad.

And Christmas-morning bells say 'Come!'

Even to shining ones who dwell

Safe in the Dorchester Hotel.

And is it true,

This most tremendous tale of all,

Seen in a stained-glass window's hue,

A Baby in an ox's stall ?

The Maker of the stars and sea

Become a Child on earth for me ?

And is it true ? For if it is,

No loving fingers tying strings

Around those tissued fripperies,

The sweet and silly Christmas things,

Bath salts and inexpensive scent

And hideous tie so kindly meant,

No love that in a family dwells,

No carolling in frosty air,

Nor all the steeple-shaking bells

Can with this single Truth compare -

That God was man in Palestine

And lives today in Bread and Wine.

But is it all? No, there is more

In compassion and love for us, God came himself

To earth; forsaking heaven’s glory

For suffering, injustice and death itself.

That same God still reigns supreme

And lives today in you and me.


Thursday, 8 December 2011

Hello Friends,
This will just be a brief posting as I know one or two of my readers are wondering what has been happening in my neck of the woods.
I think it is with Christmas fast approaching that I am feeling a bit "blue"  This will be the first Christmas in over 30+ years that we have not all been celebrating together at my sister Sarah's....Oh what fun over the years we have many fabulous dinners etc etc. including one very memorable one when there was I think 23 of us crammed into the dining room including friends from New Zealand. I have never seen so much food eaten in all my life !!...and laughs...what wonderful remembrances.. This year I have said to Beth my niece that I think we should try to start our own new traditions...and to that end I will stay here at home with just Mary and of course Peter our neighbour who although he has a Father down south he prefers to to stay will certainly be different....To cap all last week my wee dog Dee started to take fits during the night of last Sunday.  I took him to the vet Mon. and again for blood tests wed. the upshot was that he was diagnosed with a serious liver problem that really could not be treated as well as the fits..and so I decided as I loved him so much that it would be kind to have him put to sleep...It was even harder that I had imagined as he deteriorated so fast I had to call the out of hours vet and take him to be put to sleep after midnight on Thurs/Frid.  I even had to call  Peter out of bed to come with me....Those who have lost a loved pet will understand just how empty I am feeling and so not really up to doing a longer post.
I promise I will be in before Christmas..
Till then remember to  LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Hello Friends,
I do hope that you have all had a good week and that you have been able to get out and about to enjoy it.  We have been blessed with warm days not at all like November, when I think back to last year we had deep snow and Mary and I were marooned !!!....The forecaster tells us that perhaps the mild spell will end this weekend and it will become more winter like....we will wait and see...I for one would be quite happy if it stayed this way till spring came !!!
Two weeks ago on Thursday we had a lovely day as my sister Margaret felt well enough to come over to me for our usual Thursday visit and then the 4 of us went out for lunch. we went to a very old Inn called The George set right beside the Kennett and Avon canal as it meanders into Bath some 4 miles away. It was some time since we had been there and it is now under new management. It was excellent. Even more so as I had a voucher and Mitch and I were able to have two wonderful sirloin steaks with all the trimmings at 2 for price of one...yummy....It was all the more special as Margaret got quite unwell the day after and has not been able to get out at all since....
I collected my new glasses last Wednesday, They are varifocals and glad to say I have got used to them very quickly there are only occasional times whon I have to move my head up and down to get things into focus. Such as at our church quiz night, I kept getting the question master out of focus LOL.  Pam and I were doing a raffle st the quiz and everyone was very kind to want to have a go, we did have some nice presents so that helps. I think that we made almost £97 and altogether the evening made just over £300 for church funds. Pam Henry, Mary Peter and I I am afraid did not do as well as we have in previous quizzes coming 7th out of 12  boo hoo,  although Peter did win some biscuits in the raffle !!!
I am going to change my header picture tonight and will keep it up for a few days.  It is a very old picture...the reason I am putting it up is to let you see what my dear Mother looked like at around age 6 tomorrow my Mother would have been celebrating her 100th birthday. what celebrations we would have had...She is the only one with a ribbon in her hair...she hated that ribbon as none of the other children had to wear one. Mum was brought up by her spinster Aunt who always insisted in the ribbon....little did she know that it was removed as soon as Mum got out of sight...but the day of  the photographs of course she knew better than have it removed.  I actually think it is an amazing thing to think that 94/5 years ago a school photographs was taken especially as it was a very small single class primary school the headmistress must have been well beyond her years to think of such a thing....
To all my friends in America may I wish you all a Very very Happy Thanksgiving weekend whatever you are doing I hope that you are surrounded by love and friendship.and take that opportunity to tell everyone that means anything to you that YOU LOVE THEM....

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Hello friends,
How are you all this week. i can hardly believe that we are half way through November already. Christmas will be here before we realise it.  I will have to get my Christmas hat on and try somehow or other to get into the mood.  I know that this year is going to be particularly hard with out my dearest sister but for the sake of other people I will put that smile on the face and get going...just that it is taking a bit longer this year ..
i have a friend Marie who writes a daily always amazes me that she can write such interesting stories every takes me all my time to wrote to you all once a week...and even then I never think that it is very interesting.  On a Tuesday Marie writes each week what she calls a simple woman's page...or similar ! so i thought that maybe this one week I will give you a taste of what she writes by doing a simple page of my own...

Outside my Window.
It is all dark with just a few orange glows that indicate some street lighting in the village. up near the top of a far hill I see a white light travelling along that must be a car bringing someone home from work perhaps. I hope he/she has had a good day.
I am Thinking.
How lucky I am to have such a lovely warm house. Mary has just gone home and tells me that the temp. outside is now 3deg.c. quite cold as we have not had real cold for some nights now..actually the weather forecast tells us that the clouds will soon be covering us and that will bring the temps up again.
I am Thankful For.
All my wonderful friends and family and all the encouragement the give to me.
I am wearing.
Black trousers, and a short sleeve pink top. I did have on a navy cardigan a wee while ago but the heating has come on now and it isn't needed.
I am creating.
I have started to knit a few scarfs some will hopefully sell at the church table top sale in December perhaps others will be for extra Christmas presents.  I am also sewing up blanket squares that Mary has been knitting, it is a lovely child's blanket this time in lovely colours of yellow green and a brilliant orange and will have a white border all round when finished...
I am going.
After  I finish this to do the drying up of the dinner dishes. Tonight we have had some ham that I roasted at the weekend with new potato's and some mixed veg. Peter our other neighbour joined us tonight direct from his work...Mary always washes up but is not so keen to dry up and put away !!
I am reading.
Running out of Tears. it is the moving personal stories of Childline's children over 25 years by Esther Rantzen.  My sister Sarah was quite involved with childline right from the start and indeed was partly responsible for making childline available worldwide in particular in India.  It is quite a hard book to read it is so disturbing to read of the effects adults treatment has been to young people.
I am hoping.
That tomorrow when I go to Bath to collect my new lenses that they will be good varifocals and that I very soon get used to them. Also that when I see my dear Sister Margaret she will be a bit better. She has been very poorly this week.
I am looking forward to.
the quiz night at church on Friday evening..not exactly for the quiz ! but for the good company and laughs that we all share not forgetting the great ploughman's supper !!

and so there we are, that is almost as much as I can think of to write tonight.  Oh I nearly forgot  Mary and I had a great Saturday afternoon at the theatre. The play was all about the last few months of Judy Garlands life. I can't remember who played Judy Garland but she was brilliant. She even looked like her and sang like her. there was a long standing ovation at the end.  we were so glad we went even although we had great problems finding a parking place !!...

Have a great week ahead, hope the days are sunny for you.  LOVE ONE ANOTHER    xxx

Friday, 4 November 2011

Guy Fawkes.

Hello Friends,
Another week has flown past and we now find ourselves in November. I can hardly believe it, we have been blessed with such mild weather. I still have my sandals on I don't think that has ever happened...
Trick and treat has been and gone and as always I have not had anyone knocking at my door. where I live in the village we do not have street lighting so I imagine the wee ones would not like that !! so all is quiet.  Our next event is on 5th. November when it will be anything but quiet....

For 400 years, bonfires have burned  on November 5th to mark the failed Gunpowder Plot.

The tradition of Guy Fawkes-related bonfires actually began the very same year as the failed coup. The Plot was foiled in the night between the 4th and 5th of November 1605. Already on the 5th, agitated Londoners who knew little more than that their King had been saved, joyfully lit bonfires in thanksgiving. As years progressed, however, the ritual became more elaborate.

Soon, people began placing effigies onto bonfires, and fireworks were added to the celebrations. Effigies of Guy Fawkes, and sometimes those of the Pope, graced the pyres. Still today, some communities throw dummies of both Guy Fawkes and the Pope on the bonfire (and even those of a contemporary politician or two), although the gesture is seen by most as a quirky tradition, rather than an expression of hostility towards the Pope.(not so sure of the politicians though !!) 

Preparations for Bonfire Night celebrations include making a dummy of Guy Fawkes, which is called "the Guy". Some children even keep up an old tradition of walking in the streets, carrying "the Guy" they have just made, and beg passersby for "a penny for the Guy." The kids use the money to buy fireworks for the evening festivities.

On the night itself, Guy is placed on top of the bonfire, which is then set alight; and fireworks displays fill the sky. when I was young my Dad was always in charge of the bonfire and fireworks. We usually had baked potatoes in the bonfire and when it died down we were able to grab those black half cooked potatoes and ate them with glee !! today we would probably die before we ate them and certainly health and security folks would probably be at our door  LOL   I do enjoy the wonderful display that the fireworks make but these days it is difficult as Dee and most wee dogs I know are terrified of the whizz, and bangs of the fireworks and so I have to keep indoors with the radio or Tv on at high blast to try to counteract the sound of the fireworks etc..It is bad enough on the actualy 5th. Nov. but it seems to go on for a week nowadays, although to be truthful this year it has been much quieter...thank goodness. But come tomorrow night I know I will have one wee cowering dog....

The extent of the celebrations and the size of the bonfire varies from one community to the next. Lewes, in the South East of England, is famous for its Bonfire Night festivities and consistently attracts thousands of people each year to participate.

Bonfire Night is not only celebrated in Britain. The tradition crossed the oceans and established itself in the British colonies during the centuries. It was actively celebrated in New England as "Pope Day" as late as the 18th century. Today, November 5th bonfires still light up in far out places like New Zealand and Newfoundland in Canada.

Please take great care if you are having fireworks or bonfire. There are so many accidents it is usually safer to go to an organised party.

Goodnight friends God Bless  and remember to..... LOVE ONE ANOTHER...

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

weather, friends,

Good morning Friends,
This has been a quiet week so sorry not a lot to report on. The weather has been certainly getting colder and there has been a lot of rain very close to us here in Box with terrible flooding. It is hard to believe that only about 15/20 miles away they have had such flooding.  We have actually had it quite nice although certainly getting colder.  Yesterday Mary and I went into Bath as I was taking my glasses back. I only got them about 10 days ago but they were not as good as my old ones !! at least they didn't seem to be when I was on the computer the print was not as clear as it should be..Anyway after another check and various questions it was decided that I would be better with now I have to wait another couple of weeks or so for them to be ready. Thankfully they did agree that although I have had to pay extra for the new lenses they would deduct what I had paid for the ones I had just bought...
Pam was over on sunday for church. Henry brought her over and as he is not a church goer he came down here whilst we were at church and made himself a cuppa ! after church we all met up for Sunday Lunch at the Bear our fav. hotel in the village. Pam and Henry had never had a meal there but enjoyed it. Pam was also over on Monday again Henry brought her over. That was great as we do enjoy our Monday together. It was actually the first time I have had time to really hear the news about her new shoulder joint. She is getting on ok with it but will be gald when she gets the sling removed as she is finding it very hard to find a sleeping position..We had guild in the aftrenoon and this week our speaker had made up a quizz for us  !  there were 50 questions, it was made a bit easier in that all the answers were either a,b,or c..    you would never believe it but Pam and I got the exact same number correct   42/50 !! and as the winners we were given a big box of chocolates !!  we of course shared them with everyone at the meeting and so they all enjoyed them...
Well friends I'm sorry if this has been a wee bit short on real news but hopefully nesx time teher will be more. I did have a "send" this week that I think is too good to keep to myself so I am actually going to pass it on to you all with my love...

A 92-year-old, petite, well-poised and proud man, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o'clock, with his hair fashionably combed and shaved perfectly, even though he is legally blind, moved to a nursing home today. His wife of 70 years recently passed away, making the move necessary. After many hours of waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, he smiled sweetly when told his room was ready. As he maneuvered his walker to the elevator, I provided a visual description of his tiny room, including the eyelet sheets that had been hung on his window. I love it,' he stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy. Mr. Jones, you haven't seen the room; just wait.' 'That doesn't have anything to do with it,' he replied.

Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time.

Whether I like my room or not doesn't depend on how the furniture is arranged ... it's how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. 'It's a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that no longer work, or get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do.

Each day is a gift, and as long as my eyes open, I'll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I've stored away.. Just for this time in my life.

Old age is like a bank account. You withdraw from what you've put in.

So, my advice to you would be to deposit a lot of happiness in the bank account of memories!

Thank you for your part in filling my Memory Bank. I am still depositing.

'Remember the five simple rules to be happy:

1. Free your heart from hatred.

2. Free your mind from worries.

3. Live simply.

4. Give more.

5. Expect less.

Have a nice day, unless you already have other plans.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Hi Friends,

I wrote an update last night only to have it “go AWOL” so I try again. Although this time I am doing it in Openoffice..and will paste when finished so fingers crossed all will go well..

It has been another nice week here in Box, the weather has become much more Autumnal as the temps. Have dropped quite a bit especially over the weekend.

Last Tuesday after bible study here Mary and I went to my wheelchair supplier as I had read about a new lighter wheelchair that seemed just what I was looking for..They had the model in and I was soon whizzing about in it until Andy came of the telephone..we then started to go into the pros. and cons. of it viz The one I have. It was certainly a bit lighter however once it was dismantled it would actually have taken up more space for instance on a coach etc. It would not have been as good at going over rougher ground etc. I think it was mainly designed for indoor use or flat pavements/malls etc. so all in all I decided against it but I was bitterly disappointed as I was sure this was going to be the answer to a more light weight chair...never mind one day something will turn up... On Thursday it was a nice day and we went to Longleat Estate I have described Longleat before so won't go into it again. We did not go to see the lions etc. but visited the gardens, and even part of the house. It was to be the last of the warmish days and it was great to be sitting out there without even a cardi. on...unbelievable in mid October... Saturday was another good day as we went into Bath to the theatre. I love the theatre but don't often go as it can be expensive. However we were very lucky last Christmas !! and had vouchers we had not used them so decided now was the time as quite a few things were coming up that we liked the look of, we have another three visits booked between now and Dec. Saturday's play was actually more of a monologue or should I say two..the first was called Mr. Chips and the second Dr. Marigold. They were both short stories written by Charles Dickens...indeed Charles Dickens himself had read those stories to his contemporaries way back in the 1800's. An actor called Simon Callow told us the stories. He was marvelous and we were all swept up in the emotions. Mr. Chips was actually a freak man (dwarf)in a traveling circus all he ever wanted was to be “normal” and able to take part in “Society” one day he won £200 and so asked to be freed from the circus and this was granted and off he went to join “society”. He was fete'd by one and all and he had a great time ...until he ran out of money...then he realized that “society” had not really accepted him but ad made use of him...and so he returned to the circus where he was happy ever after !!!! The second story was called Dr. Marigold a traveling salesman, to make it as short as possible it was all about a young girl he found being abused by her Father she was deaf and dumb and Dr Marigold asked if he could adopt her and did some cost...and tried to educate her as much as he could until one day he met a Scottish schoolteacher who offered to take her and teach her for him. He allowed her to go and didn't see her for 2 years by which time she had grown up into a lovely young woman who now had a boyfriend. The boyfriend wanted to marry her and take her away to China. Dr. Marigold's heart was almost broken but as he loved her so much he could not stand in her way and so permission was given and of she went...a few years later she returned and brought with her a lovely daughter, who immediately seeing Dr. Marigold ran into his arms calling “Hello Grandpa “ so making the old mans later days very happy. They were both very sloppy plays but told with such feeling that many of us were near to tears ourselves !!

Today has been our Guild day and Pam and I were the “speakers” and we decided to take them all on a “Cruise” they seemed to enjoy all of our experiences. I am glad to say that Pam was looking not to bad considering it is only almost 2 weeks since she had her shoulder joint replaced, she still has the stitches in will have them removed on Thurs. and then will have to have some physio to get the shoulder moveing again, but knowing Pam it won't be long before she gets back to moving the new joint.

And so another week has past all to quickly. I just can't believe that we are well into October perhaps now that the colder weather has arrived it will begin to feel more like late Autumn.

Xxxx Love One Another. xxxx

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Last Cruise news...

Hi Friends,
Well how are you all tonight ?  Hope that all is well with you and that you have had a good week. Our nice late summer has just about kept going this week only last two days has it really cooled down and we have tried to enjoy every minute of it...Last Monday we had our 2 Guild meeting in the aftrenoon this week we had a lady come to tell us all about the Salvation Army how it strated and where it was now etc. It was such a intersting afternoon, everyone enjoyed it very much.  Afterwards we had our Church Council Meeting, this is a wee bit like an AGM when members and friends get together and are informed of all that is going on and that has perhaps been done in their name by the Leadership team. It is held twice a year and for the first time we held it in the afternoon hoping that perhpas more members could attend.  It seemed to work well and we certainly had a few more attend than previously.
Tuesday was a very emotional day for me as I went up to New Malden which is near London to a dear friends funeral service. Revd. Dr. Angie Sheir Jones was our minister at Box nearly 4 years ago and was the most wonderful person anyone could ever hope to meet. She has had cancer for almost two years and died when I was away. She and I had a rather special affinity and it was particularily hard to hear whenever I got back about her death. Although I am happy that she is at last free from all the pain it is hard to believe I will never hear her laugh or see her infectious smile again. It is especially hard for dear Brian her husband, they had no children and at the funeral Brian looked so was so so sad. I am sure though he must have been overwhelmed to see over 300 in the church..... I was very grateful to Peter who took a day off work to come with me and do the driving.
Wednesday,Mary and I had some shopping to do before we were able to sit out for a while. As always on a Thursday my sister Margaret and Mitch her husband come to me and I make lunch for us..  Friday they said might be our last warm day so Mary and I went to the Courts Gardens that I have told you about before.  It was lovely there and very peaceful, a lot of the plants had been cut down ready fo winter but there was quite a lot of autumn colour in the borders. So thats been our week friends  and now on with the last few days of our wonderful cruise.

Cruise part 3  I think !!

Well our days on board the ship seem to pass so quickly it is our 11th whole day and this morning we docked in Portugal's Capital Lisbon. We had arranged to have a panorama coach tour of the city and as soon as we were allowed we were down the gangplank and joining our tour. It was explained that his was to be a no shopping trip ! But that stops would be made at various famous tourist places. As we had sailed up Tagus River into Lisbon we saw quite clearly on the far side the statue of “Christ the King” a monument built after the war to celebrate Portugal' s neutrality during World war 11...and this was the first stop we made once we had crossed the 25th.April Bridge built in the 1960s it is the third longest suspension bridge in the world. Once we were back over the bridge we were in a suburb called Balem. There was a tower there built between 1515-1521 was built to protect the river entrance from Pirates and later functioned as a prison...Quite near there was a wonderful monument called the "Monument to the Discoveries". It is a modern sculpture by the riverside of a caravel and comprises various historic figures who were involved in the discovery of “new Lands” Prince Henry the Navigator is at the prow. There is an elevator inside that give some wonderful panoramic views...however we were not allowed to have time to do this. Thankfully Henry got of the coach and was able to take lots of photo's at each of the”monument shots” ! It took around 4 hours to do the panorama of Lisbon and it was very very interesting.. I have a wonderful painting that a friend of mine Pat did for me of the rooftops of Lisbon and whilst there it was so easy to see just these same rooftops....

Next day our stop was in Spain in Vigo. It was a very hilly place and although we all disembarked it wasn't long before we had to admit defeat at getting the chair up the streets. Anyway we soon found the usual coffee shops and it was here that we had another laugh when we asked for tea for me and a coffee black for Mary. When they came I had a very large cup for my tea and Mary's coffee came in the tiniest wee cup you could imagine and boy oh boy was it strong..Mary never takes sugar but to try to drink it she emptied in about 3 packets of sugar!!! it was more like syrup by the time she finished ...we did laugh... We also met at the same cafe a couple of people from our ship who had with them another couple. They asked me to take their picture and explained that it was a sister and brother in law who had arrived by another cruise ship the Oceano and so they were able to meet up, wasn't that nice but odd at the same time to think they had had to come all that way to meet up !! All to soon it was ALL ABOARD...for our last day at sea. What an adventure it was. Certainly one to be done again and again. Mary and I are now we think quite addicted to cruising..we find it so very easy to get around, with enough to do to keep us both occupied and also plenty time just to laze around...
If you ever get a chance to have a cruise I would advise you to give it a try..Think how many more people that you could greet with a   " LOVE ONE ANOTHER."..

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Late summer heat, and cruise part 3 !!

Hello Friends,

What a beautiful week we have had here, the sun has shone and the heat has built up and up...a real Indian Summer...I hear that it is soon to come to an end early next week so we are making the most of it until is does. Tonight I have all the doors and windows open to catch any breeze that might float past..It is getting quite dark now and I don;t want to switch on the lights as I am sure they generate more heat. On Wednesday Mary and I went to the Courts Gardens I have previously told you about only to find they closed on a Wednesday however on the gate was an invitation to go to another garden and house called Chalfont Manor. I am so pleased that we went, again it is only about 10 miles away and I had never even heard of it !! The Manor dates way back to the early 1400's and has hardly changed throughout the years..the gardens are lovely and there is even a moat surrounding it all..It is still a “lived in house” and only open certain days in the week by the National Trust. I was chatting to the lady of the house in the garden she was picking something up on the lawn and I thought it might be chestnuts (although I hadn't seen chestnut trees so I was being a bit daft.....nothing changes LOL) anyway what she was picking up were lovely walnuts I can't remember ever seeing anyone pick walnuts.. There were beautiful herbaceous borders full of lovely autumn coloured flowers. It was a truly lovely day out. Yesterday I had an appointment for an eye test so had to be in Bath quite early we left at 8.40 for a usual 20/25 min journey.....well the traffic was awful an dit took almost an hour to get in and parked. When I did I left Mary to walk herslef slowly down town and I took to my heals...metaphorically speaking....wheelchair at top make my appointed time...I got there...just....Turns out I needed new prescription and I have a small cataract developing, hopefully it will take a long time before I need to have it seen to...I will collect the new lenses in about 10 days..

Now back to cruise mode :

After Florence our next port stop was Citivechia this is where most people got off to go on to Rome by coach a two hour journey in Rome the heat had been terrific and they mostly came back exhausted so we were glad we had not gone.anyway  we had heard that it was not really suitable for wheelchair so once the rush to get away was over we slowly left the ship and had a lovely morning in the town. The streets were rather steep//to say the least ! But as usual I found a way around and we had a lovely time just mainly window shopping. There seemed to be an abundance of gorgeous bridal wear shops...and of course coffee shops... Next day was Ajaccio on the Island of Corsica. Here we had booked a coach trip and very nice it was. Renowned as the birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte, Ajaccio's many squares and streets pay homage to the conqueror. We went inland and up into the mountains it was very beautiful ad we had an excellent guide who gave us so many facts and figures that I would have to have had an encyclopedic memory to remember even a 10th if the info she gave us...Suffice to say that I enjoyed the visit very very much and would like to go again some day...13th Sept was Pam's 70th birthday and we had decided we would not stray far from the ship ( I had arranged various surprises for her) but we did get off for a short walk into Seville Spain. It was an easy flat walk but I think Pam and Henry were a bit tired so after a while we left them behind to go back on baord and Mary and I walked a bit further into the town which if we had had longer to explore I think would have been a very interesting town. ...but.....birthday lunch called and we were soon back on board to visit Pam and Henry in their cabin. I had arranged for it to be all decorated and it was such a surprise for Pam. Their room attendant had done it beautifully with streamers and paper bells, etc etc and Happy Birthday Banner on the door... After lunch Pam decided to go for her one and only swim (she thinks she is overweight and didn't like to be seen in a swimsuit) It was great fun sitting by the pool encouraging her to stay in the water she also enjoyed it very much !! That evevning at dinner there was even more celebrating Henry had kept her present till evening and gave it to her at dinner it was a beautiful diamond ring...she was needless to say thrilled...even though it was a wee bit big and she has had to take it to be made smaller since we got the end of the meal all the waiters around arrived with the cake we had ordered and sang Happy Birthday to her....what fun it was...To end the evening we all went to the Theatre to be entertained by a piano player called Bobby Crush who was way back in the early 60's a British “star” he was still very very good and we had a lovely end to the birthday day .....

Only 4 more days of the cruise to go before you can all relax and imagine you have travelled with us !!!! If you are not bored out of your minds by now.....

Good Night Friends.......... Love One Another....

Monday, 26 September 2011

smilebox might be here !!!

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Click on the above...This should,  might !! take you to a smilebox of a few photographs.....fingers crossed...

Sunday, 25 September 2011

cruise update 2

Our first port of call on our Med. Cruise was Gibraltar. It actually attached to Spain and there have been many times I the past when the Spanish have wanted to get back this small piece of land from the British and although the British Government would be happy to make such arrangements, there was a referendum in the late 1960's when the people of Gibraltar....voted very strongly against it.

We did not go to the hill tops as that is where there are loads of monkeys who are very mischievous and not at all nice to tourists. Pam does not like them at all !! so we stayed in town. It was the first time I had visited Gibraltar and found it quite a pleasant place. Lots of lovely shops in particular jewelery shops that I can't resist !! I don't quite know how it happened but I found myself actually in one of these delightful shops and within a few mins was very easily persuaded that a new pair of diamond earrings might just prove the best buy of the holidays particularly as they were tax and vat free and I managed to get a 60% yet another jewelery shop Mary discovered herself walking out with a lovely gold bangle...again vat and tax free and 60% wonder we had to find Pam and Henry and a tea shop to sit and recover !!!

Second port of call was Toulon in Provence, France.. There were many museums in and around Toulon, however we did not have very long ashore and although the cruise company had laid on courtesy coaches to take us into town we did not have very long so other than a quick look around we did not see very much. A rather disappointing town altogether..

Florence in Italy...was our next day ashore. We had pre booked a tour to Florence and once we disembarked around 9.30 we soon found our coach. The driver was very helpful and got the chair into the hold without any grumbles !..our very nice lady guide was called Loretta she had a good way of describing the various places that we passed through on the hour drive. The coach was parked outside the City and it was a good walk into town. Mary walked with Loretta and so everyone walked at her pace. All went well with the exception of Pam and I !!! we were confronted by lots of steps down wheelchairs and scooters don't really like drops on pavements and the Romans had not heard of drop kerbs LOL ( it would have been great for their chariots if they had....mind you maybe they didn't even have pavements in these days LOL.).. however the other folks on the tour could not have been kinder and we were soon masters at the art of me jumping out of chair and others pushing and pulling said chair into the road !! actually in the end I gave up getting back on the pavements and decided to take my life in my hands and stay on the road. We arrived on the Palazzo Della Signoria ( Palazzo Vechio) dominates the Piazza, with a copy of Michelangelo's statue of David adorning the stairway it was completed in 1314, what a wonderful sight David is. We were all but dead beat by the time we got there as the temp was in the high 80s so after an examination of David and some of the other magnificent statues Lunch and shade was the attraction. I soon found a nice cafe on the square and Mary and I enjoyed a cool drink and as we were in Italy an Italian Pittza was ordered between us !! very nice it was...Pam and Henry soon appeared as well and were soon relaxing at an adjoining table. I had remembered from a previous visit the story of a bronze pig at a market quite near the square so I asked the waiter exactly where it was and Mary and I were soon of in search.of the story is if you rub the pigs nose you will return one I never thought I would return, although I had rubbed his nose previously.....maybe it does work so I had Mary give him a good old day maybe we will return we both liked Florence very much....despite the pavements !!! The only sad part was that as on my previous visit I did not have time to visit the Ponte Vecchio Bridge this is the oldest bridge 'remaining in Florence and is now lined with Goldsmiths.....maybe be a good job I didn't get there !!!

(In Bath we have a lovely bridge called Pultney Bridge that was inspired by the Ponte Vecchio in as far as there are shops on either side ) Actually the bridge was not far from where we were but it would have been a few steps too much for Mary...After an hour and a half we met up again with Loretta and were marched back to the coach. It really was a lovely day and enjoyed by everyone I think.
So there you are the first of our off the ship trips... None of the tours were very long, in fact all were a bit rushed but it gave us a taster for the places and you can never tell we may be able to go again one day...
Getting of and on the ship was really quite a military operation. when we boarded for the first time we were photographed and given a credit size shape card...this card was all we used all the time on board, it was a "cashless ship" if we bought anything from any of the shops, bars etc. we just showed our card and by the time we got back to our Cabins we could check our account on the TV and see exactly how much we had used.  When I first booked I  managed to get us all $200 spending money !!  (free !!) and so we were well into our second week before we actually began to "spend" any money....This same card was used as we went off the ship and so they could check we were out and again on our return so that the ship would not leave without you it was also our room "key" and had our room number on it also the deck number of our dining room in other words a "magic card"     Tonight I might try and get some photographs this space...
Goodnight, God Bless,  Love one Another  xxx

Friday, 23 September 2011

Cruise of the Med.

Hi Friends, I will try again to get news to you of our holiday. I made an entry last night only for it to go AWOL between me and the “blog” Grrrrrrrr.

Anyway what I was saying was that Mary, Pam Henry and I had a wonderful cruise in the Med. The taxi arrived on time and we were soon loaded and on our way to Southampton to board the Royal Caribbean's “Independent of the seas.” Once all the formalities were over it was all systems go...At first I was rather shocked by the size of the ship and the number of people who were milling around. I knew that Pam and Henry would not be liking it at all....We made first for the Windjammer Cafe as I remembered from last year that that was the best thing to do first....again it was packed, however we were soon tucking into some food which all agreed was good...then it was down to our cabins. Mary and I were on deck 9 Pam and Henry deck 6. We had by then discovered where the main dining room was and when we were booked in to have dinner, so we agreed to meet up at 6pm. The dining room was lovely and our waiters just excellent...The food throughout the cruise was delicious and served so promptly never a wrong step was made. ... After dinner we just had a further stroll around the ship trying to familiarize ourselves. As I say it was so big it was a lot to take in.

Day 1 at sea started with breakfast at 8.30. Now there were around 5/6 places we could have eaten from the Windjammer cafeteria, to street cafe's, dining room restaurant self service, or dining room full service...we opted to be served each is so nice to “come to and relax” first thing, before the onslaught of the day LOL By now we had began to get used to the size of the ship and people had started to find their own “places” and were not all milling around on the main street. Deck 5 was where we could be found if we wanted a bit of shopping extra coffee, food,. ...on the ship one could have eaten from 6am till the early hours of next day if one liked. I have never seen to much food being eaten....after the first day we decided not to have lunch served as we had had such a big breakfast.  Mary and I could be found in one of our fav. Cafe's around 1ok. Having a croissant and cofee/tea, we were always helped by one of the lovely waiters who seemed to be waiting just for us to come along !! There was so much to do on board it was sometimes hard to decided where we should be !! Pam and I did three classes on jewelery making. I managed a lovely necklace, bracelet, and earrings for Beth, we tried our hand at scrapbooking, and napkin folding, but missed out on the towel folding as we were a bit late !!

If we had been energetic LOL we could have tried our hand at windsurfing !!, ice skating !!, wall climbing !!, even a game of golf or football or basketball...all on deck 13. of course there were the swimming pools I think about 4 large ones and a couple of childrens as well as various hot tubs. We spent lots of time just sitting people watching. If all that seems to be a bit hectic we could always find a quiet corner, Perhaps in the very large library where there were lovely deep leather chairs to snuggle down into, or there was always somewhere on deck that other people hadn't quite found...we were blessed with the most wonderful calm sunny hot weather. In the evening after dinner we tried out the various Theater's The Alhambra where there was a new show every night, The ice rink where there was spectacular ice shows...a few “bars” where you could always find some of the ships musicians playing for ballroom dancing, or classical or modern music, It was no wonder that we all found ourselves heading for bed quite early most nights !! I am glad to say that when we docked at all the ports we were able to go ashore which was a bonus as we had thought we might not be accessible for the chair. However the cruise company provded courtesy coaches every time to take us into the nearest town...usually just outside the port. I will stop now and next edition will tell about the various ports we visited and what we did there.

So for now. Goodnight, God Bless and Love One Another...

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Just before I go.....

Good Morning Friends,
This is just a short message before Mary and I head away to the hopefully sunny Mediterranean for our 14 day cruise...The taxi is coming to take us down to Southampton to join the cruise we will leave in about 31/2 hours, packing is mostly all done  just last min. bits and pieces found lying around.
This has been a busy week. Pam was over on Monday and as it was a Bank Holiday over here our plan to go out and about was abandoned ....the roads, attractions, cafes, etc are always so we stayed at home which was just as well as we had another three visitors that day...felt a bit like a busy railway station !!
Tuesday not so bad Mary and I just went to Chippenham to get some shopping as Sheila my friend was arriving Wed.  Wed. at 12.30 Sheila duly arrived.  We collected her at Bath Coach Station and all was well. When Sheila is here it is always a busy chatty time !!  Thurs. Margaret and Mitch arrived but I had already said we would go out for lunch which is just what we did,  In the late afternoon Peter brought over Mary's case and I went through it and decided what could be left behind and then repacked into the one big case we use between us....Yesterday another busy day. I got us early and started to look out my clothes and get packing them....hopefully everything is there. I have taken the new dresses !!  well left one behind !!!!
then Beth and Max arrived, went out for lunch again !!!   Afterwards had to do a bit more shopping for fruit, vegs. etc. to keep sheila going for a few days.   I am so lucky to have Sheila stay here with Dee. Otherwise I could not have gone.  Dee is a funny wee dog and does not take to people easily but Sheila is one who he took to instantly...very very rare that I have no worries about leaving him.  Only hope that Sheila does not find it to quiet all on her own, although I know a few of my Friends are going to come visit and Peter will pop in each day as usual.
Has anyone ever used Quinoa ?  I had not heard about it till about a week ago when I saw a lovely salad that used it, I have cut it out and plan to make it when I come home.  I managed to find a box of Quinoa yesterday and how to use it, but I was wondering if anyone out there had any recipes that used it....
Well dear friends, I must leave you for at least 14 days...probably a bit more as when we get back Sheila is staying another 4/5 days ...Till I get back  always remember that being out of sight does not mean that you are out of my mind and in my prayers....
Love One Another .

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Red Letter Day's

At last I am back again.  Things have been so quiet here of late there has not been much news. I don't think that it would be of much interest to repeat what we get up to each week as each week more or less follows the same pattern !! 
However today was a bit of a red letter day.  It was the day when our youngsters at around the age of 18 get the results of the A levels exams which enable them to get into university/college/or perhpas an  apprenticeship..
It is always a very anxious wait. ..... why was it an anxious wait for me?.... and then a Red Letter day ? well my great Niece Samantha had sat her exmas and like 1000's of others had had a sleepless night before the post arrived and then the telephone calls started...The best news was that she had passed all the exams needed to get her into University, and, as she already had a place...depending on results...she will be off in a few short weeks to Plymouth University to study Music...Samantha has had diabetes since she was 6 and has and indeed still has a great deal of difficulty getting it under control although these last few months it has been slightly better since she had a pump if the diabetes was not bad enough she was also diagnosed a   Celiac and so her diet has been very restricted...She had lots of time out of school during these years and it is really a wonderful tribute to have been able to get her place in Uni.   So yes I am one very happy and proud Great Aunt...I only wish the Sarah my sister had been here to help her celebrate as she was very very supportive of Samantha and many times kept her going with her wise advice..
Now other news have I to share.....Oh dresses !!  I was telling you a few weeks ago that a friend Helen had offered to make me a dress..or two or three !!  Now I have a great deal of difficulty buying any clothes and certainly can never buy a dress "of the peg" so to speak.. So for Helen to offer to make me one was a real wonderful thing. This she has done and she came on Tuesday with her two wee ones Scarlet and James and a rather  "large bag"  what was in the bag I wondered !! yes not one but 4 yes 4 new dresses. How she can have done them I do not know she had even hemmed them and all...she really is a genius and a wonderful dressmaker so I now have not one or two but 6 new dresses for the cruise (today I put out for recycling 6 old dresses that I have had for so many years one at least 25 years old !!)  I will photograph them some time and share them with you... Helen was saying that the wee girl Scarlet was watching her Mum make the dresses and asked her  " Mummy why are you making dresses for Sybil ?  does she not have a Mummy to make them  for her ".....LOL we did smile at the idea.....
Last week Tuesday, Mary and I had a day visit to Dyrham Park a lovely National Estate Home and Park near Bath    Dyrham Park was a treasure to enjoy; set in a dramatic deer park on the edge of the stunning Cotswold escarpment,  we saw the beautiful late 17th-century home of William Blathwayt, a hard-working civil servant who thrived during the political upheaval of three monarchs.  We explored how fashions changed over the centuries, from the original 17th-century Dutch-inspired interiors and formal gardens, to the very different style of Victorian country squire Colonel Blathwayt. The elegant garden is a more recent restoration, recreating the spirit of what had been lost, and was wonderful.  We enjoyed the visit very much and will go again later in the year the autumn colours shoudl be lovely and hopefully we will be able to see some deer as there are apparently many 100s around the estate...we did manage to glance a small group from the coach window.....It is a long 15/16 min walk from the car park to the house but they supply a wheelchair friendly shuttle coach down the long driveway...   we were also able to have a vey enjoyable lunch in the old coach house...
Well after this day of excitment  and an almost sleepless would think it was me who was waiting for exam results.....I think I will have an early night. 
Remember always to LOVE ONE ANOTHER

Friday, 5 August 2011

another week races past...

Hello Friends,
It's a wonder anyone reads my blog it is so sparse at times...I won't apologise again as I keep repeating that I will come on more regularly and I DO MEAN IT..but what happens after wards...I fail yet again..SORRY.
Since Mary got back from Edinburgh things have been fairly quiet ...gadding about wise at least !!... so not much to report at all.......Chippenham and a visit to Bath last Tuesday we have not been very far at all.  The weather has been very heat and humid and so really I have been at a full stop most of the time LOL...We had quite a wet day yesterday and the humidity has gone down somewhat so I am thankful for that.   Today Mary had her chiropodist and you may remember that Helen had said she would try and make me a dress or two last time she was here....well this morning she brought one that was a prototype she said !! It fitted exactly just as I thought it might...perfectly...and it only cost £2 !!! the cost of the material she said !! she was almost as pleased as I was....she could not have been more pleased...and this afternoon she phoned to ask if I was truly happy with it...if I was she was away to cut out another 2 or maybe even 3 dresses !!!  considering that I don't think in all my life I have bought more than one dress at a time...and then usually years in between....the thought of having 3/4 of Helen's lovely style of dress is wonderful.  Muriel my very kind old neighbour is also making me 2 dresses with material I bought, she has done a couple of dresses for me a long time ago and can only do the one style.... that is why it is so exciting that Helen can make different styles...So on the high seas I will be fully dressed not just my usual jeans and tops !!!!           I forgot to say that when Mary and I were in Chippenham I was able to buy a full length dress for Pam my friend, (when we were sitting in the gardens we had been talking about the cruise and she said her Son had said she should have a black dress....Pam was not so sure)...however there on sale in a nice shop was a long dress very plain in a lovely turquoise colour with a lace shrug type top and I was sure she would like that I was not sure about the right size so had to take a chance....luckily it fitted and she liked it so now she has another dress for our evening with the captain ROFL.... I do think we are all going to have a grand time on this cruise...not long to go now.... will be back soon....
Love to you all and  remember to .....pass on your love to Everyone....

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

weekend news

I spent some time last night trying to put on a smilebox photo show for you all....However failed...what is it about me and getting photo's on this blog.  I have never manage to get any where I want them other than the header...most odd.  Never mind I am going to send you all one individually where I have an e address..
I have had a very nice weekend.  Last Friday my neighbour Muriel took me out for long as I would drive...never any problem for me to drive anywhere....We went to a local Farm Shop she had always wanted to go to but had never found it.  it is called Allington Farm Shop and has won awards for the last two years as the best Farm shop in the South West...It is very good, a bit pricey which I can never understand as it actually belongs to the farm and although I know they have had to build a beautiful building they should not have the same overheads as a town shop for instance...anyway they have a very nice cafe attachment and we had a nice meal. The Muriel in particular spent quite a bit in the shop..  Saturday was a quiet day trying to get through all the books Pam brought over, I am getting through them almost one a day !!  my friend Cait came down for a while in the afternoon.  Sunday was another day without church.  I really don;t enjoy the month of July very wise I mean...the two local C 0f  E churches have their patronal services and they are always joint services so it means that I miss out on 2 Sundays in July.  I could get to the other two churches but they are difficult to get to with no parking... However as it happened on Sunday I went over to Margaret's Mitch had gone to their church and she didn't feel up to it. I went over earlier than I would have done as I was having lunch with them....which I did and had a nice meal... Home early to get on with the latest book !!  Yesterday was a gloriously sunny warm day and Pam and I took ourselves of to the Court Gardens that I have just discovered.  Pam brought filled rolls with her and I took some juice so at lunch time we were able to find a nice seat there and enjoy a panoramic view of the beautiful gardens.  Pam has fallen in love with them as well...and is going to join the National Trust... I had a very late night last night as I went to Bristol Airport to collect Mary.  The flight was in time for which I was grateful...but it was still just after midnight by the time we got home.   From what I could see of her she looked well and will be over very shortly to give me a blow by blow account of her three weeks away...
Take care of each other and  never forget to tell your loved ones that you love them.

Friday, 22 July 2011

quiet lazy days..

Well where do the days go...does anyone know the answer ? I cannot believe that it is a week since I last wrote.  I do hope that you have all kept well,
 My dear friend Lura has had another operation I am pleased to hear that she has come through ok although it will take some time for her to get back to her blogging....   Mind you my days this past week have been fairly quiet so there has not been much news to pass on to you all.  Peter came home from his holiday to Panama on Thursday and we have had lots to talk of about his adventure...lots of photographs to be downloaded and enjoyed.  The weekend was quiet. Beth and Max are away on a narrow boat for a week. Many years ago Sarah John and friends combined together and had a narrow boat built and the divided the weeks between them. Sarah had a bad fall from the boat a few years ago and that put her off for life ! however Beth took over her week but later sold it. Now there are not many of the original owners left it is mostly the younger families who have it now.  However Colin offered Beth one of his weeks.  I hope that they have enjoyed themselves, They were sailing around the Birmingham Canals I think. They will be back tonight.  As they were not around last Sunday Peter and I decided to go for lunch together. we tried out a new venue for us it is a Farm Shop locally that has added a restaurant. It was quite nice but nothing out of the ordinary so don't think we will go there again very soon.  I think it might be better for an ordinary lunch but not a Sunday Roast...Afterwards  I took him to the local cottage Hospital, He had been bitten in a few places !!...he saw the one on his hand and was able to get the wound clean, he then thought that he had one or maybe even two in his back...Anyway thankfully the Dr's. decided the "spots" were just ordinary spots and not lethal bites !!
On Monday Pam was over as usual, we had hoped for a nice dry sunny day as we had planned to go to the Gardens I found last week...however it was dull and heavy showers we are now hoping it will be nice this week.  Instead of going o Holt we went over to Mary's. She had a decorator in over the weekend and so we wanted to get the house back to "normal!" I am sure she will be happy with it when she gets home.
Pam brought me over a lot of books that she has been reading all by someone called Rebecca Shaw. There is a whole series of I think 14 all set around a village. They are a real good read and I get completely drawn into them....she had already brought over the first 4 really since Monday I have had my nose in a book...just finished number three !!Before I start the next thought I should nip in and let you know that I am still around.  Other than reading I have had a couple of "taxi" runs for friends. One of our old church members had a fall last Saturday and has broken her hip so a hospital visit to her was in order, another friend had an emergency Dr. appointment so needed transport !!
Well I am away now to start my 5th. will be the 8th. in the series....

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

summer days and outings

Hello Friends,
Here I am again, All alone at last !  well actually I have been since Ann left last Thursday and I am only now making time to update the "blog"   I had lovely visit with Ann, although she is actually my sister Margaret's oldest friend, I include her as a friend of mine as well.   She was staying with me and made visits to Margaret each day.  On  Wednesday she and I had the morning in Bath and although Ann has been here before she had never had the pleasure of coffee in the pump you can guess where we went for coffee and crumpets whilst of course listening to the trio playing their lovely music.  Ann also bought me a lovely present it is a "globe" not a world globe as is normal, but one that is actually a map of Bath in much detail...even where the parks are you can "see" people walking with their dogs etc.  I might try and take a photograph and share it some time.  Ann was not here long as she had to go home on Thursday as she is dog sitting this week.   I have not done a lot since she left, did spend the afternoon with Margaret on Saturday as Mitch was away playing bowls, and I know he feels happier if someone is there with Margaret. It was a nice afternoon and she was able to get out to the summer house and sit awhile so that was good.
Yesterday I had a lovely day. I invited my friend Cait to join me for lunch at Holt .... I think I told you that I had taken Mary before she left...It was just as nice as first time for our lunch afterwards we went to explore as I knew there were gardens there in the village called "the Courts" I had always wanted to see them but as is often the case we never seem to get to places that are right on our doorstep...What a miss that was once we found the gardens I discovered just how  fantastic they are, almost all on the level with easy wheelchair access. Actually they belong to the National Trust and after a few peaceful hours there I decided that I would actually join the N.T. for a year as I can see Mary and I going over to the Courts quite often and also there are at least another 6 or 7 National Trust properties within 15 miles of us here.  What a find, I am so pleased that Cait and I went to investigate... On Monday when my friend Pam comes over if the weather is nice I will take her over to see it as well.  ...The flowers, trees green areas and of course the Lillie ponds with red white and pink blooms floating around were just breathtaking...
Today I had to take the car to get new tyres fitted. On Monday the car had been in for a service and they decided that two tyres were needed both on the near side,,,,I am going to tell Mary that she will have to go on a diet as they are on her side of the car !!!   This afternoon I have been reading all about the benefits of the National Trust membership and marking various places I would like to visit..
Mary is enjoying her holiday in Edinburgh. Today she will be on the Isle of Skye she has gone on a three day tour from Edinburgh I haven't heard from her from the Island but perhaps her mobile does not have a signal. She will be back at her friends late tomorrow and no doubt I will hear from her then.  I do hope she has enjoyed herself and that perhaps she may have found some long lost cousins on the Island. (Her Mother was an islander)
Thank you for the many prayers for Max.  He has had the op. on Monday morning and was allowed home late afternoon he will not know for sure what the results will be for another 10 days or so, we are just praying
that there is nothing to alarm us...any more than we are !!!.........
Will be back again in a few days.  Till then remember to 

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

busy busy days...

HI friends,
At last a wee while to try to get a few words down before I am interrupted again !!.......
When I closed last time I was about to have a visitor for the weekend.  Julie did arrive and we had a lovely time. The only sad thing was that on the Saturday we all went to the Chinese for a meal, my fav. place..only to discover it had closed. I was very very disappointed as it has always been a fav. place of ours. So I had to make a quick change of plans. we ended up in another pub in Chippenham called the Pheasant and it was quite good..On Sunday Mary went off to her own church and I had a day off...It was a lovely morning and the night before we had been discussing where Julie had visited n previous visits and I discovered she had not been to Chew Valley Reservoir Lake. So that is where we headed. It is not very far from here about a 40min. drive through some nice countryside. At the reservoir there is plenty parking and as we were early we had the best choice ! once parked I got the chair out and we went for a lovely walk around the Lake to another car park, once there there was another two walks we could have gone on where there were hides where we could have watched out on the various water birds nesting, however it was a round 11/2 miles and my wheelchair was not fully charged so we decided to leave that for another day. Once back to where we had started it was coffee time so in we went to the lovely cafe there and indulged in a couple of delicious scones with clotted cream and jam...We didn't think that as it was almost 11.30 we wouldn't have any room left for lunch did we....consequently poor Julie went back to London early afternoon without our planned for lunch !  Still she said she was more than full with the scones.........Monday found me back at Chew again. This time it was the guild outing I had organised only 12 guilders were able to make the trip but all enjoyed it so much, I had pre booked lunch for us all and it was just as well as it was very busy. There is a nice gift shop attached to the cafe and they enjoyed buying little gifts etc. The rain stayed if long enough to allow us to sit out for a short time after lunch.  Tuesday we had the last of our bible study classes as we are stopping for the summer months. we will miss meeting up with Rachel our minister weekly. She has a young son and it is only fair that she be allowed time to spend with him but we all look forward to Autumn. In the afternoon I had to attend a leadership meeting at church so it was a busy day. Wednesday was Mary's birthday and as our fav. Chinese had closed I had to think of another treat for her. We ended up going into Bath and having a very posh breakfast in the Pump room of the Roman Bath's...It is so lovely there sitting under the chandeliers at a table laid with crisp white linen tablecloths and napkins and lovely bright cutlery and china. all the time being entertained by the Pump Room Trio playing the piano, violin and double base...(If one closed ones eyes you could almost imagine we were back in the 18th. Century with the rustle of the ladies silk dresses and all hatted with parasols, parading  around)...As we came out we just said the icing on the cake would be to come out and hear our fav. busker playing the Hedge Monkey....and there was Hang and his friend playing, it was so nice.  Thursday Margaret and Mitch came over and took us out for lunch to celebrate Mary's birthday we again went to a fairly local pub called the hare and hounds and had a very nice lunch.  Friday I think I called a stop and had a day doing very little..other than getting the house tidied up for this weeks visitor. Saturday we had a coffee morning at church and that went well after we had been to do some shopping in Chippenham. I had to go to the bank as Pam had given me a cheque as it is time to pay for our cruise...only about 8 weeks to go now.  Sunday after church I met Beth for lunch. Max was not very well so unable to join us. I would like to ask you to please remember Max and Beth in your prayers as Max had now been diagnosed with nodules on his voice cords and has to go into hospital tomorrow for a pre op visit and be operated on next Monday. Beth needless to sat is beside herself with worry.  One wonders when it will all stop...  Mary left for her annual holiday to Edinburgh yesterday afternoon flying up on the same flight that brought a friend down from Edinburgh..So it worked out well that I dropped Mary and picked up Anne.  Anne is firstly an old friend of Margaret's they have been friends for well over 50 years now and she was coming to see Margaret really but is staying with me as Margaret is really not able to entertain visitors now. So Anne stays with me and I will take her over each day to Margaret and Mitch will bring her back.  I expected her to be back by now but I am still on my own.  It is all very peaceful...I have just come back from feeding Mary's cat Amber and Peter's cat Ryan....Peter is also away on holiday he left on the coach at 4am yesterday to London Heathrow airport for his flight to Panama he will be back in 10 days. Thankfully in a way the rain us come on so I will not need to go and water...or  Anne !! water Peter's and Mary's plants !!
So there you are all up to date with my life up to date again.
I will get back later in the week.  Anne returns to Edinburgh on Thursday so I will the start to have my wee holiday all to myself....maybe I will have time for doing exactly what I want to do  LOL
Love to you all,  and remember to    LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Happy 4th July xx

Just had to pop in and wish all my American friends a very happy July 4th.  I have a visitor this week but will try to get in within next few days.
Love to you all

Saturday, 25 June 2011

last of the weekend tales

Sorry I didn't get back in yesterday.  I was quite tired all day as I had a rather disturbed night...needlessly so, as it turned out....around 4am I woke to the sound of my fire alarm bleeping...indicates a new battery require..after 1/2 hour I could stand it no longer as I feared that it might go off altogether, then I would have to get a stick I keep handy to poke it with (it is up on the ceiling and to high for me to reach normally) anyway around 6.45 I figured that Peter would be up and getting ready for work so I called him and he came to take the battery out. At first he could not do this so took the whole thing down and went off with it...a few secs later I thought I heard it go again !  PETER...he came back and we stood in the kitchen looking around only to discover it was the carbon monoxcide alarm that was bleeping and in need of new batteries..It sits under the gas boiler and of course had I known it as that I could have taken action to silence it at 4.30am..... No wonder I felt tired all day !!!
Anyway back to the weekend. Once we left the castle we made our way to my friends house where we were staying till Monday. It was great to see Fiona again. we have been friends for over 40 years. we started our friendship when I baby sat for her and her Dr husband now the "bairns" are around 46 44 and 42  !!
We all went out for a nice meal in the evening. Sunday dawned a lovely sunny day and after breakfast we made our way over the Forth Road bridge and on into Fife.  My dear friends Jane and Meme live in Elie a tiny fishing village...well it was once fishing now it is a holiday village.  Jane has been very very ill for a while now and it may well be the last visit I will be seeing her. so it was very special. We did not stay to long as I could see that she was very tired after about 11/2 hours.  Once we left we dove along the coast visiting a few of the tiny villages and ended up at the real fishing village of Anstruther. Here in Anstruther there is a Fish and Chip shop that has won the award of the best fish and chip shop in the UK for last 4 we just had to stop there. The sitting area in the shop was full but as it was such lovely day we just sent Max in to Q. and Beth and I found a seat on the harbour wall and waited and waited it was at leats1/2 hour before he returned with our orders...I had the very best smoked haddock I have ever tasted in all my life.  Beth had battered prawns and Max had lobster....all freshly caught that morning....All in all except for the sad part of seeing Jane look so poorly and Meme having aged so much it was a lovely day and we were so blessed to have brilliant even warm sunshine.  Oh I forgot whilst we were sitting having our lunch we were entertained by a puppeteer who was one among around 7 Harley Davidson motor cycle enthusiasts.. There bikes were so beautiful There was even a three wheeler that I got quite envious of..I could just see Mary and I sitting astride that one going through the village !!!
Monday we left after breakfast for the long drive home. It is approx 400 miles from Edinburgh home to Box. Max drove all the way and we made good time and arrived in time for Mary getting the kettle on for tea at 3.30...
I will be back after the weekend with more news. I am soon leaving to collect a Friend from London who is coming for the weekend.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Edinburgh weekend

Morning Friends,
Back once again from my short trip up north to Edinburgh.  It was a really good visit and thankfully the horrendous weather forecast for Friday did not materialise. Max and Beth collected me around 8am. and Max made good time on the motorway. In fact I have rarely had such a good journey there are usually accidents and road works to contend with but this time both going up and coming home the M.ways were all clear.   we arrived in Edinburgh around 3,.30pm.  In the evening as it was still dry I suggested that we go up to Arthur's seat with John and Sarah's ashes before we did anything else.. I felt that that would be better for Beth...This we did. It was a beautiful evening. We stopped by a small lake and Beth went off by her request...she took the ashes to where her Dad had taken Jacqueline's ashes, and so once more Jacqueline, and her Mum and Dad were intermingled...if you know what I mean. It was as I say a beautiful evening and when she came back Max and Beth and I had a hugging session and enjoyed the sounds of the birds and the views of the loch and further away the river Forth and the coast of Fife.
Saturday dawned very wet...However we had planned for that and decided to visit a new exhibition least new to us...Planet Earth..I think it was called.  It was a good choice as we spent 21/2 hours there and were fascinated by all the facts and figures. The exhibition started with the big bang theory and continued in that vein as we were taken through ages. There were many interacive buttons to push etc etc and areas where we were enclosed and felt the effects of the ice age. earthquakes, times quite scary !! towards the end we had a 4D film show.  We had never seen a 4D show and it was truly magnificent with our glasses on we really felt part of the Astronauts flying through the air and visiting various planets etc etc. all in all a good morning.  Afterwards we drove up the Royal Mile to Edinburgh Castle.  There we had quite exceptional attendance. The esplanade was closed to general traffic so we asked where the nearest disabled parking was..the soldier on duty said no trouble Sir  (to Max) and opened the barrier told us top drive right up the esplanade to the sentry box right At castle gate !!  next a private hire limo arrived and took us including of course the wheelchair right to the top of the castle pointing out various places on our way up and dropped us of right at the top and said when we were ready to come down wherever we might be just to ask any guide and they would call them up and they would come..  and they did.     I will stop here as the day has started and Mary will be over any moment now and I will have to get he breakfast toast ready.  I will try to pop in tonight perhapss to share the rest of the weekend with you.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

showers and Sunshine.

Good Evening friends,
Just a quickie tonight before I leave in the morning.  we didn't do much yesterday as there were lots of heavy showers.  when Peter came home from work he came along as usual.....his excuse as usual.."why should I make my own coffee when you can make one for me !!"  We decided that we should try to pick up some potatoes. It is the first year that I have grown them  ( my garden in too small for a veg. patch) however in the springtime when I was in the garden centre they had on offer, potato bags and the compost and potatoes to put in I thought I would have a try.  Peter to the rescue once more as he planted and tended them..Last night we/he ! dug the first lot up. They were a fair size (Peter did say that if he had have watered them even more and they might have been bigger) but I was delighted.  There was enough for a few dinners. Peter took home a few for last night and today I made them for lunch boiling them with some nice fresh garden mint....delicious...I could have just enjoyed them on their own but did have some chicken fillets and peas and carrots..  Margaret and Mitch were over today.  It is very sad to see Margaret getting ever weaker she seems to spend most of her time sleeping or dozing...However she was quite cheerful ...when she was awake !!  when Mary goes up to Edinburgh on the 4th July and Margaret's friend Anne is coming down for a few days. Anne's flight gets in...turns round...and will take Mary up to Edinburgh. So it will be a case of dropping one and picking up the other !!  Margaret and I are looking forward to Anne's visit, she will be staying with me for a few nights and visiting Margaret during the day..
Today has been a day of sunshine and showers at the moment it is lovely. I am hoping that tomorrow will be good for driving. This will be the first time that I haven't done the driving myself. This time we are not taking my car and Max will do the will seem strange...
Till I get back...Look after yourselves and don't forget to   LOVE ONE ANOTHER.