Showing posts from August, 2020

Box Sets

Over the last year we have been making our way through some old box sets.  So far we have watched:

All Creatures Great and Small.Based on the life of real life vet Alf Wight the story is about James Herriot, a vet in Yorkshire before and after World War Two.  Tales of grumpy farmers, practical jokes, love and fantastic scenery.There's an updated series due to start on Channel 5 soon.  I'm not sure I'm ready for them to change from the original but the scenery will be worth it.
Life on Mars.This series tells the fictional story of Sam Tyler, a policeman in serving with the Greater Manchester Police. After being hit by a car in 2006, Tyler awakens in 1973 to find himself working for a predecessor of the GMP, the Manchester and Salford Police, at the same station and location as in 2006.It's one of those that you're not really sure what's going on so it keeps you guessing.  Such a great series.
Ashes to AshesThe series tells the story of Alex Drake, a police officer …

Greek Salad

Hands up anyone who actually likes lettuce!!Not me.  I do like a good salad though,  just not the greenery bit.A friend at work told me to try Greek salad as it's made with no such greenery.  As she is of Greek origin it must be true. INGREDIENTS1 medium red onion2 Medium juicy tomatoes½ cucumber partially peeled making a striped pattern1 green bell pepper coredGreek pitted Kalamata olives a handful to your likingkosher salt a pinch4 tbsp quality extra virgin olive oil 1-2 tbsp red wine vinegarBlocks of Greek feta cheese do not crumble the feta, leave it in large pieces1/2 tbsp dried oreganoINSTRUCTIONS1.Cut the red onion in half and thinly slice into half moons. (If you want to take the edge off, place the sliced onions in a solution of iced water and vinegar for a bit before adding to the salad.2.Cut the tomatoes into wedges or large chunks 3.Cut the partially peeled cucumber in half length-wise, then slice into thick halves (at least 1/2" in th…

Real Books

I have to be honest and say that I haven't read a real book in ages.  Not because I don't have the time but because I've been listening to books on Audible so that I can crochet at the same time.This system was going well but then along came Tennis Elbow and I had to find something to do for a week whilst I rested my arm.I have a stack of books that are waiting to be re-homed and as I looked through them I realised that there were one or two I hadn't read.  I fished them out of the pile and started reading.Wakenhyrst by Michelle Paver1906: A large manor house, Wake's End, sits on the edge of a bleak Fen, just outside the town of Wakenhyrst. It is the home of Edmund Stearn and his family – a historian, scholar and landowner, he's an upstanding member of the local community. But all is not well at Wake's End. Edmund dominates his family tyrannically, in particular, his daughter Maud. When Maud's mother dies in childbirth and she's left alone with her …

Venturing Forth

It's taking a while but we are gradually venturing a little further from home and into places with 'other people'.
I don't mind admitting I have liked being away from crowds and noise for the last 5 months and I'm in no rush to get back to it.
We took the plunge a few weekends ago and went out for lunch at Hickory's in Southport.

It was well organised, well spaced and we didn't feel squashed in or rushed.  We felt it was a good choice for our first meal out.

We have also been returning to our National Trust visits.  I book on a Friday morning for the following weekend and so far it's worked out well.  Neither Chirk Castle or Dunham Massey have been over crowded and there was a relaxed feeling to place.

We have been to the Zoo twice since it re-opened and again it was a good experience.  They really have thought the area out well and there are only small queues to go into the inside areas.  We stayed out of those and opted for walking to all the areas we don&…

Family weekend

Last weekend we all got together, as a family, for the first time this year.  When the rules changed in July and family members were allowed to stay over in your home our DiL called and asked if they could come and stay.  Of course I said yes at once.  Admittedly, I was a little worried to start with as, apart from the Sky man, we haven't had anyone in our house since lock down started.Dates were arranged around working schedules and last Friday they came to stay.What a joy it was to see them.  We spent a lovely evening in the garden, dining al fresco and chatting until the bats and moths came out.

The weather played nice and we were able to get out and about with our Grandson.  He had a lovely time at the beach (as did the big Lee boys).On Saturday we went to Chester Zoo.  The sun came out again and we had a lovely day. Little man did so well, and apart from a few times when daddy carried him on his shoulders, he walked the length and breadth of the zoo.  He was more than happy to …

National Trust - Dunham Massey

A few Sunday's ago we took a picnic and headed an hour up the motorway to Dunham Massey.  The home of the Booth and Stamford families.It was such a gorgeous day and, with restrictions in place re numbers, it wasn't too busy.  Lots of families having picnics and enjoying the sunshine.
There are woodland walks around the deer park plus a rose garden, an allotment area, ponds and a winter garden.  The deer roam freely throughout the park and aren't bothered by people at all.  The males live separately from the females but aren't fenced off.  They just seem to stay in their own areas.
Here's a bit of it's history.
1362 - The first mention of a deer park at Dunham Massey. 1362 to 1694 - If you're interested in history you can find out more about the lost years here.1694 - George Booth, 2nd Earl of Warrington, inherits the Dunham estate with debts of £50,000. To turn the estate's fortunes around, George begins to plant hundreds of trees throughout the park provid…

All Things Bright & Beautiful

Let me just state from the outset.  I am not a gardener but I do like a nice a garden.  
The garden we have at the moment is mainly concrete slabs but we hope to rectify that once we've decided exactly what it is we want to do with it.  
Hubby wants a huge man shed at one end and I want a country style garden with a trees, grass and decking.
Most of my flowers this year are in pots. The rest are in a small border but they have still done reasonably well.

        Fushia - Sunflower - Crocosmia
        Phlox Paniculata 'Laura' - Helichrysum italicum (Curry Plant) - Oxalis
      Sweet William - Lobelia Starship Scarlet - Begonia Red       Fushia - Petunia - Begonia Pink

Curry plant is great for ground cover, Phlox and Lobelia grow every year and get bigger each time, Fushia come back year after year and crocosmia is like a weed unless it's kept under control.  Great for a small area you can just leave to it's own devices.  It does die back in winter though and leaves a big bl…

One Photo / Twenty Words

Hubby tells everyone I can burn a salad, my cooking is so bad.  Well look who proved him wrong yesterday!

We're NOT Going on Holiday

Today hubby and I should have been going on holiday.  One that was booked in August 2019.  One that would have been for our 25th Wedding Anniversary in September.
Corona had other ideas and we now have to wait 365 days until we go next year. (Virus permitting).
Not one to dwell on what is not to be I've put together a few photos from previous holidays abroad.
France 2011 Omaha Beach, Normandy - Notre Dame, Paris - Vernon, Normandy - War graves cemetery, Bayeux 

Turkey 2012
Side, Turkey

Florida 2013
All things Disney and Universal

Arizona 2016 Tucson, Arizona - Boot Hill, Tombstone - Catalina Mountains - Rooster Cogburns Ostrich Ranch, Picacho

Bear in the House

It's not very often that a TV programme really pulls you in.

Bear in the House is a great 2 part programme, recently aired on BBC 2 about a bear sanctuary in Laos.  
The star of the show is Mary, a 5 month old Sun Bear. Taken from her mother in the wild she was destined to end up in one of the countries many bear bile farms.  Giles and Matt from Free the Bears rescued her and taught her how to be a bear.  She was such a joy to watch.
The sanctuary also has over 30 moon bears, red pandas, pangolins and macaques.
The programme wasn't all smiles and cute bear cubs.  It was horrifying and distressing but watchable all the same.
You can read more about Free the Bears here
If you have access to BBC iPlayer you should be able to catch up with Mary.  

Science v Engineering

Which of these jugs holds the most?  It's obvious isn't it?  Apparently not.

One Saturday morning as I was emptying the dishwasher hubby said that we really needed some new measuring jugs as the plastic ones had seen better days. He thought that Pyrex would be the best option and went on to tell me what sizes we would need.  He said that the small plastic jug we had would need replacing with a new one, but I told him we already had one that size.
He wasn't convinced and said that the glass one was bigger. The plastic one is tall and slim and the glass one is wider and not as tall. The cogs in his engineering mind went into overdrive until eventually he got it.  
They hold exactly the same amount.  It's all to do with volume, thickness of glass and height or something along those lines.
The science minded, younger male got it straight away.
Science wins over engineering.  On this occasion :0)

Summer Photographic Scavenger Hunt 2020

Mary-Lou at Patio Postcards is hosting this years Summer Photographic Scavenger Hunt (SPSH).
So far I've managed quite a few off the list but it doesn't finish until 1 Sept so I still have a few weeks left to find the others.
2.  Something with or in a knot.  A rope used to cordon off areas of garden at Chirk Castle.
3. Something with the colour of your countries flag.  My Texas pig money box.

5. Something you have more than one of.  Two very good friends and work colleagues. 

6.  Something in the shape of a triangle.  The roof of the laundry building at Chirk Castle.  There are also triangles in the weather vane. 7. Something that displays a rule. A sign on the lion enclosure at Chester Zoo

8.  A leaf longer than your hand.  Another find from Chester Zoo.

9. Something that starts with the initial of your first/last name.  Lighthouse at New Brighton.
11. Something you need to throw away.  Not so much throw but give.  Items waiting for our charity drop off slot for St Johns Hospice. 12. …