Monday, 31 August 2015

Dresser All Painted!

Today of course has been a Bank Holiday in the UK. Traditionally a time for catching up on some gardening or DIY.
The rain put pay to anything going on in the garden....but I wasn't particularly disappointed as it meant hubby was able to put the final touches to my dresser!
I am delighted with how it now looks.....
...its hard to believe its the same piece of furniture!

I love how bright and clean it looks...and how much I prefer the natural colour to the top than the antique colour it had before.
I now seriously want to paint our half dresser to match ( shh don't tell hubby!)
We used Brilliant White Egg Shell from Screwfix, only £16.99 a tin and hubby says there is enough left to paint half a dozen more that sounds like a good excuse to paint the other one!

It looked so lovely all clear, but it has to pay its rent and serve a practical purpose, so reluctantly I  put back everything back that has for some time been dotted around the kitchen temporarily.

We also put up a tin picture I bought in New England nearly 20 years ago. It always reminds me of their lovely houses and every time I look at it I am transported back to the time we lived there.
I am so happy to have it back up again.
PD will be happy to hear we are still on the straight and narrow and spent the afternoon at a church conference.
It was out in the country, so was a lovely drive, albeit in the rain. Teen One was able to catch up with some friends, as were we and Teen Two always looks forward to the tea, which is always very typically English, plenty of sandwiches and home made cakes!

Sunday, 30 August 2015

Put Your Feet Up Time

Today has been a fairly quiet day for my family, but not for everyone it would seem!
 It started with the usual call next door to check my neighbour was ok, before we headed off to church.
It was then back home to get the roast dinner finished.
In the middle of making the Yorkshire puds ( a weekly tradition in our household no matter what the meat!) my neighbour came in with some kind of problem he wanted me to sort out with his phone.
It seemed there was a fault on the line in his son's area, resulting in all kinds of confusion.
I did my best to get him sorted ( which almost resulted in hubby driving to check the son was ok) and on my return commented to hubby that he clearly did love his son really....they seem to bicker no end usually!
The door went a second time...same neighbour, same problem, so off I went again to try and resolve it...this time, the son turned up, having not had any success getting through to his (very deaf) dad.
Oh my....what a ding dong! I did my best to act as referee and in the end left them to it!
I came home and announced that the crisis was over... life was back to normal....I had left them shouting at each other!

The rest of the afternoon went very quickly and quietly with everyone putting their feet up.
Grandma worked her way through a pile of Readers Digests my neighbour had given us...

Teen One passed the time on her iPad
Teen Two played with Shadow
Hubby had a snooze in the chair ( it really would be too cruel to take a photo!)
I had a lie down on the sofa ( am not big on selfies but thought this was a fair likeness....yeah??)
Before I knew it , it was time to get cracking with some tea.
Teen One's sponge, despite being a little dippy in the middle, was very light and tasty...however I don't think gluten free flour will be a regular feature in our baking!

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Mind Your Head!

With Lego being a popular past time in our household, whenever we hear of a Lego Expo, its a given that Teen One and I will tag along.
It's always interesting to see the amazing models these clever fans make. 
At this Expo there was a competition...see how many Mini Lego Figures you can spot with a red cup.
It was a challenge and a half, with the vast number of people there, all crowded round the displays.
We shall have to wait and see if we have won!
We decided to end the lovely long summer holidays, with a special lunch out.
It wasn't quite time for the restaurant to start their lunch menu, so we thought we would make the most of the large nearby field and  play with the boomerang we had in the boot.
I bought it about thirty years ago from Covent Garden for hubby ( then boyfriend)
Teen Two had fun with it, and it proved to be great it rarely came back!

Teen One took some photos whilst I enjoyed watching the family.

Hubby then gave it a go, taking some time to check each angle, in the hopes he would work out which one actually made the boomerang return to him. I had my back to him at this point, trying to help Teen Two with a sore foot......the next thing I heard was "look out......"

....too thing I knew...whack...right across the back of the head! For a minute I didn't know what had hit me!
It took a few minutes for me to feel my head wasn't actually going to drop off and I wasn't seeing double...but boy did I have a headache!
I seem to have survived, we managed to have the promised lunch out, albeit rather quieter than usual, and when we came home Teen One and I did some baking for tomorrow.
Blueberry Elijah bread, sultana sponge pudding and finally a sponge cake.
 I guess the moral of the story today is, don't turn your back on a boomerang thrower!

Friday, 28 August 2015

The Dreaded Unpacking

As with every holiday, there is always the dreaded unpacking and washing to face on the first morning.
Despite having a washing machine in the lodge, I still needed to do four loads before I caught up.
I have to confess that the suitcase is still not completely unpacked, but I have run out of energy and enthusiasm for today.
I ought to add, I cleaned my neighbours house from top to bottom this morning, so that sapped a lot of my energy before I even started on my own house!

Apart from a trip to Morrisons to refill the fridge and larder, it has been a stay at home day for us, expect hubby who had to go to work.
Teen Two caught up on some Minecraft building, something he wasn't able to do when we were away.

The Teens are rather partial to J2O's at the moment, but it's something I only buy when its on special offer.
Today we saw a new flavour "Garden Rose" It has a delicate taste of rose ( one of my favourite flavours) and at £1.99 for four at the moment, I will treat them to some more next time I am out.
So aside from cooking dinner, and general housework, that has been my rather run of the mill day.

Thursday: Goodbye To Our Holiday and Goodbye To The Vulcan

It was hard to believe that our holiday had come to an end so soon.
It was goodbye to my lovely kitchen, so different to my own....

...and goodbye to our lodge and hot tub!
Our journey home was done in two stages.
First, we needed to track down Withermarsh  Farm for Hubby's photo collection.
This was no mean feat, and we were on the verge of giving up finding it.
Out in the middle of nowhere we saw a postie in her little van. We hoped she would be familiar enough with the area to point us in the right direction.
Sadly, she had not heard of the farm, but suggested a road a little further along.
We said our goodbyes and set about turning the car around. By the time we got to the end of the dirt track we were on, another car came along ( amazing how busy the middle of nowhere can be!) To our surprise, the lady driver wound down her window and asked if we were the people looking for Withermarsh! We can only assume the postie had seen the lady, knew her, and told her about us.
The very kind lady not only told us she once rented the house, but that she would drive to the turning we needed to take! She was interested to see the one hundred year old picture we had and hopefully felt she had played a part in this little adventure of ours!
We couldn't have done it without her.
 The last leg of the journey was via Clacton for the Air show.
Now its true, only hubby had any interest in going here, so whilst he enjoyed the views on the seafront, the Teens and I took refuge in a Costa...great coffee for me and free wifi for them...sorted!
But....who can resist the call of the Red Arrows! As soon as we heard that familiar roar of their engines, we abandoned our table for the car park so we could get a better view.
Two of their jets in the air, at this position, can only mean one thing....
our favourite "love heart!"
Our original plan of using the park and ride at a local outlet shopping centre failed as there were no spaces left. So the Costa we stayed in was a short walk from the beach. The pro's was free parking, the con was only for two hours. So hubby had to return to the car before the star of the day arrived...the Vulcan.
However, we decided to chance it by driving as near as we could to the seafront in the hopes of seeing this magnificent machine for the final time.
We were fortunate enough to find an area at the end of the beach where lots of people had parked up on  the pavement, not obstructing any traffic, so we joined them for a few minutes and were treated with spectacular views as the Vulcan did its final fly past.
Having been to many air shows over the years with hubby I used to dread this particular plane going over, it was sooooo loud, and shook your insides around!
But I guess I was rather sad to think we won't see it fly again.
Goodbye Vulcan!

Wednesday: A Very Rainy Day!

With the weather forecast predicting heavy rain, it was time to look for more indoor things to occupy ourselves.
Wroxham Barns is a lovely place to visit. Full of crafty people demonstrating and selling their amazing wares.
I could have spent a lot of money there!
So too could Young Retiree!
I am sure she would have spent ages mooching around this beautiful shop.
It's fair to say, this was more a "mummy" place than somewhere all my family would enjoy, but they did make use of the wifi at least!

We weren't in an ideal spot though, near a bin that had an army of wasps  doing their best to make us feel unwelcome!
The saving grace for Teen Two was the opportunity to hold some animals at the junior farm.

Next on the agenda was another one of Hubby's photo's.
This time it was Horsey Windpump/mill
By the time we got there the weather really was terrible, the three of us sat in the car whilst Hubby braved the elements for his art!
By now it was well past lunch time and we were all in need of some sustenance.
We had spotted a quaint looking café on the way round to the mill, so that was our first port of call.
It was called Poppylands and was a very unique place indeed.
The welcome was very warm and we all enjoyed the food we ordered.
The weather took a turn for the worse...hard to imagine it could be worse than it already was....but we decided to stay put and pass the time playing a few games of Uno.
We made friends with a family on the next table, who had come in just after us looking like drowned rats!
They told us they had been to see the seals which we hadn't realised were right on the doorstep!
Had the weather not been so atrocious we would have enjoyed walking along the beach to watch them. 
The weather showed no signs of letting up, so we called it a day and returned back to our lodge.  The evening couldn't have been more different to the day, lovely blue skies and it was a quick dip in the hot tub and then a chill out in front of The Great British Bake Off!

Tuesday: AlpacaTreking!

Meet  Costello, Pablo and Pepe!

I had read about Alpaca Trekking some time ago, but it wasn't until our visit to Norfolk that I looked into it further.
What a treat it was!
It did seem rather odd walking on the pavement with an oversized dog, that walked with the gentleness of a cat!

And crossing a main road was even more unusual!

But once on the open fields, it was just second nature!

Both Teens thoroughly enjoyed this very unique experience, anything hands on with animals is a hit with Teen Two.

The scenery was beautiful and the pace very gentle.

We weren't the only ones enjoying this adventure.

One can only assume the local residents get used to seeing these exotic animals passing their windows everyday!

After the walk, its time for a snack. We came prepared with chopped apples and bread. Like most cheeky creatures, they preferred the bread over the apple!
If you are in the area, I can highly recommend these friendly alpacas and their guides. It was money well spent
On the walk we passed this road...I just HAVE to live here one day!

With our alpaca adventure at an end, it was time for hubby to track down one of his scenes in Sheringham. 
This one, sadly was impossible to recreate accurately as the advance of the forest and new builds has obliterated the view. However, as it is approximately one hundred years since the original scene was painted, I guess we have to expect some change.