Sunday, October 30, 2011

And finally....

...the jet lag has subsided!!! Thank goodness say I!!! Back to the grind of normal life now...quilting...stitching...friends...chocolate...(giving that one up tho :( )

Tis nearly time for the bi-annual Slobs & Snobs weekend away. However, this time there will only be one partial Snob and 4 Slobs as part of the clan are unable to get away for the weekend - they will be missed - never the same when the group are not together as it should be!

And I will leave you with the thought ---- there are less than 60 days to Christmas!!! LOL

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Local week... the trip comes to an end, we spent most of it saying farewell to family and friends - its quite funny really - you go away and spend the first half of your trip saying 'hello' and then the second half saying 'goodbye'!! Never the less, it is something you have to do! Pity we just cant 'beam me up Scotty' and be there whenever, where ever!!

Anyway...this is my cousin Peter and wife Margaret. My cousin Lillian, her hubby George and daughter Rachael.
Lisa - a long time family friend - and partner Paul.Davids cousins, Dorothy and Joan with their Johns and Dorothy's daughter, Janet.
A new member to Davids side of the family - Lacey.Some more long time friends of the family, David with Alan, Valerie, Joanne, Maureen, Lawrence, my dad.
David and his 4th cousin Alfie.
Dad, his brother John and his wife Yvonne, their daughter Alison with her brother Gary in the back and his partner Sarah and me!John is NOT a Newcastle supporter - hence the cake for his birthday! LOL - got him a matching card too - couldn't resist the stir.After a 24hour delay on leaving England, we finally arrived in Singapore. However, because of the delay most of the time was spent sleeping in the hotel and very little sightseeing. These orchids were in the main foyer, the colour was just stunning.
The Holiday Inn Atrium was our venue and this is the view of the lifts going up inside the hotel to the various floors. Magnificent hotel, worth the stay.
Back at Changi Airport and more orchids.
Well folks, 14 different beds have been slept in, 7509 kms in the hire car have been driven, one train journey to London and back along with several bus and train trips short distance, many miles done on the old feet, a reasonable amount of chocolate eaten (of course!), visited with lots of friends and several family members, had a great time but now we are back home to our own bed and shower (no matter how good the others are, you cant beat your own can you?!) So now its back to the grindstone.....

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

So 50 came and went....

...there was a small urge to have a blue rinse and perm done! Also the thought of purchasing a frock while I was in London...but thought I might leave that for my 60th!! LOL

Anyway, the birthday week was spent in London. Lots of sightseeing and walking and dodging lots of other sightseers in the process! Our first stop was the British Museum.Lots of things to look at here and lots of pics were taken, but will not bore you with too many! As in previous places we have visited, there were miniatures of buildings etc to be seen. Here is a miniature of the Parthenon as it would have been when completed in 432BC.Dad measuring up with one of the statues in the museum.
The Roman section had some fab mosaics on the walls.Night time fell and we strolled around London for a while, the Queens Theatre have this lovely rather large show on their roof advertising a long running show there.
Next day it was Madam Tussauds. Packed with visitors was an understatement. I have to say that I thought Morgan Freeman was one of the best on show.Then it was off to Ripleys Believe it or Not. Some very strange things here to be seen. Here is one of the shrunken heads that were on show....and yes it is real!A tiny, fully working camera.After lunch Dad and Dave went on the London Eye. However, due to my lack of interest in heights, I had this view! LOL The hot chocolate in the cafe near was delightful though :)We took a cruise up the River Thames. Very interesting commentary from our steward on board the boat. There is lots to look at along the Thames, including Dame Helen Mirrens house, Michael Crawfords house (they live opposite each other), David Bowies house, the 'boat' owned by the chap who owns Tottenham Hotspurs Footy team - it is said to be worth £1million per metre!!!! This next pic though is of the oldest pub in London, 'The Prospect of Whitby'. Quite quaint against all the high rise apartments and development that is going on along the Thames.This is the OXO building and is a very expensive place to dine out so I am told - cousin and wife went there and it cost them £170 for two for lunch!!!!
At the end of the cruise up, we got off at Greenwich and had a walk around the area. We stopped to watch the 12.55pm clock go off - this is where Greenwich Mean Time is marked. The ball on the 'T' spire is at the bottom of the pole and works it way up till it gets to the top which is then 1pm and then falls back down.We walked through the Queens House - and of course there was a miniature of that to be shown.
The staircase inside was magnificent. It houses art work on the walls and was quite interesting to walk around.
This picture was just fabulous!!!Birthday night!
The Imperial War Museum was on the agenda. Very good, but too much to see!! The Science Musuem was great too, but once again, way too much to look at. This clock was very different, don't know if I would like one in the lounge but was worth a picture.There are many sections to the Science Museum, and of course I took many pictures, but thought this one was one to share. It is a miniature room box of someone giving birth in the Victorian era ----I know, I am a sick puppy!!!
Harrods was next!!! Who could resist???? This is a resin model that was for sale of the Hogwarts Castle.The Christmas section in Harrods opens rather early in August and looked magnificent as always.The last morning in London we walked around the park near our hotel, and guess what??? There was this cute little grey squirrel waiting to have his pic taken! LOLOn the way to catch the train home we met up at Libertys with a friend for lunch. Very nice little store with heaps of atmosphere...and the lunch was great too! This is Tinks, David and Dad.
Well, back to the home town now! It was Davids Auntie Eleanors birthday while we were away so thought it would be nice to celebrate with her when we got back. Her choice of eating was one of the award winning fish and chip shops in South Shields - 'Colemans'. I have to say it was award winning food!
Well, here we are at the end of another posting. So till next time, happy reading!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

And the celebrations have begun...

...yes folks, the big 50 is approaching and the party has begun!!! Peppa Pig was even there!!!

You cant really see these cup cakes decorations all that well but it is edible glitter!
The next few pics are of the family and friends that helped start my 50th year off with a bang.
Kevin and Myrna.
Dad, Jim and John.
Louise and Bryan (Tommy hasnt come out yet!)
Gloria, Marion and Louise.
Autumn and Alfie.
Next stop....London!

This weeks places...

...were quite close at hand and easy to get to! We finally tracked down my dads brother, John, and paid him a visit. My dad is not a big man, but uncle John is very small!We took a trip to Whitby, which is about 1 or so hours down the coast from where we are staying in the North East. Beautiful seaside resort, had the BEST fish & chips there! (Cod, fresh, yum!!!) Most of the streets in the main part of Whitby are old and as they were pretty much when they were built (except for electricity and running water I would say) This was one of them and thought it was really cute.This red building is where Captain Cook lived while doing his apprenticeship.We walked up to Whitby Abbey, this is the view of the beach and surrounding countryside.Whitby Abbey, some of the gravestones can not be read, but we found a few that dated back to the late 17oo's.
This is John Freeman who has been painting for many years and does the most wonderful pictures of the Whitby area.Another of the streets of Whitby.You certainly would not need be tall to live here comfortably!!!
On the way home we stopped at Hartlepool and were crossing the road when this unfortunate chap lost his rear wheel! It missed us by seconds!!! Someone had loosened his wheel nuts in the car park of McDonald's just minutes before. Very lucky no one was hurt.Next day was a beautiful day of 24oC (the locals didn't like the 'heat' tho), so we took a trip to the local beach and Marsden Rock. Here I found Beach Henge (LOL)Marsden Rock to the left in the distance and Marsden Grotto on the right.Inside the Grotto. It is an old smugglers lair and has been many things over the years. Now, as it has been for quite a long time, it is a cafe and restaurant.Then it was off to walk the pier at Shields. Alas, it was closed cos there were divers doing their work :( But this is the Little Beach at Shields looking back from the beginning of the pier.Next day trip was to Cragside. (This pic from the Northumberland Web as I could not get a good one of my own!) It was the home of Lord Armstrong who was a great inventor)Of course! a miniature house was to be seen inside.The formal gardens were a delight.Tiles were the order for some of the hallways. Another quilt coming on???This pic is a little yellow because of the lighting. It is red work on a cream and is very old.This quilt was made around 1870. It has a fine net over it to keep it together along with a radiator and temperature gauge to keep it at the right temperature.This Grandmothers Flower Garden is made of 100% silk. 95% of the items in Cragside are original to the house.The pool room was as great as all the other rooms in the house. However, you are allowed to play on this table if you wish!!! So Dad and John had a go.The Rock Garden.There is a Labyrinth in the gardens which was a pleasant walk around with many carvings on the way.
This 'little' toadstool was hanging off one of the trees - it must of been about 10-12'' in diameter.
Back at Gloria and Johns and it was breakfast time - little Springer having his bran flake!
Gloria's mums ashes were to be sprinkled at sea, so we took them up to one of the local beaches at Seaburn. This was an opportunity (?????) to have a plodge in the North was a warm day - another 24oC - but the sea was freezing and this is as much as I wanted to get wet!I will leave you for now with the sun glistening on the beach....