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Monday, 29 August 2011

Something for a windy, rainy day

It was my turn to be the nurse in charge of the youth group on Saturday and the plan had been to take the young people sailing.  When it came to finalising the plans on Friday the weather forecast was force 7 and heavy rain. So we had to make a decision in the best interests of the young people we care for taking into consideration their conditions and needs.

In the end we spoke to the sailing club concerned and decided to postpone these plans for another day.  We also didn't have a huge uptake due to it being the bank holiday weekend.

So Hannah (respite nursery nurse) and I set about making plans for staying at the hospice and making a fun day in for the teenagers. 

We got popcorn and DVD's together. The Wii set up.

We planned to make scrapbooking canvases and because it was short notice I searched all our photos of previous events and printed out a 5"x7" photo of each of them (I'm unable to share these photos, photos of the event or photos of their canvases, as I need to protect their identity on the Internet).

Hannah was great, she phoned everyone concerned to change the plans.

I couldn't believe it when yesterday dawned and it was sunny, but it was short lived and by 11am it was stormy, raining and dark.

At the last minuet, I left home early and got cake baking stuff so we could make and decorate cupcakes too. So did Hannah! Great minds!

In the event the kids got engrossed in the crafting and had the DVD's running at the same time. We still had the picnic lunch we had arranged but had it indoors instead of on by the riverside.

The craft work went on all day in the end (their choice). Each child made a canvas of themselves, and we made one for the girl who was unwell and unable to attend at the last minute. In order to demonstrate we made one of Hannah with a photo from last year's Christmas party, when she came dressed as a snowman. The Cricut came in very useful and was a bit of a novelty to the youngsters.

Here is the joint effort canvas of Hannah the Snowman! 

After the canvases they went on to make cup case boxes using the Sweet Treats cartridge for the Cricut, and mini canvases with their names on. In the end we had a job to get them to go home!

... and I do believe, Hannah may be getting a little interested in crafting! ...

... as she set about making another canvas for her colleagues at Sara's wedding back in June.

Will be interesting to see what the rest of the team think of the creations on Tuesday.

Twelfth Night

We didn't think we were going to make The Theatre in the Forest this year, there has been so much else going on. There are performances Tuesday through to Saturday each week from late July to Bank Holiday weekend in August and I had to work on Saturday. Then we discovered the very last performance is held on the Sunday, so in the end we drove up to Suffolk for the final performance of Twelfth Night, yesterday.

The set before the performance began

We had a brilliant evening, the shows seem to get better every year. I have a few pictures, but it is difficult as it gets dark during the performance. Twelfth Night is the Red Rose Chain's twelfth Shakespeare production, and the fourth one we have seen since we heard about them. Although the weather has been poor recently and it got cold during the evening, the rain held off. We turned up with picnic and blankets well prepared.

The brightly coloured beach huts and costumes helping us distinguish between the households of  Duke Orsino (purple and white) and Countess Olivia (red and black).

The Shipwreck which brought the twins Sebastian and Viola to the land of Illyria

Look at these amazing puppet seagulls. The way these puppets were animated was amazing.
Also in this photo Olivia's jester Feste, maid Maria and uncle Sir Toby Belch.

Sir Andrew Aguecheek (who liked to imagine himself as a brave knight!) and his friend Sir Toby.

The interval

Into the second half well after dark

My drama student daughter Catherine an me  in the stands at the beginning.
Her comment on facebook is:
 "Been to see yet another epic 'Theatre in the Forest' every year they out do themselves. Such talent and intelligence.+ Shakespeare made easy. What more could you want looking for to next year already"
Looking forward to seeing her photos when she gets up this morning.
See also:

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Sprouting Forth!

A poem written by our friend Frances about an event that occured on our last visit. We arrived the weekend after her daughters and their husbands had been for Sunday lunch....

Sprouting Forth!

I was busy with cups in the kitchen
Making tea for the guests who had come
When I said to Steve
“It’s peculiar but this cupboard’s beginning to hum!

It was a cupboard where we kept all our china
Every cup, every saucer and plate
Not a place where we kept any comestibles
So what caused its smelly old state?
Had something died in its corners?

Was there room for a rat or a mouse?
But we found there no sign
No hole, not a chink
So what was wrong with our house?

Years before there’d been damp
In this corner
We’d had it fixed before the cupboard was there
Was this then a return of the problem?
We were now filled with worry and care!

Damp left untreated can lead to dry rot
A fungus that grows
Through a house in a jot
It can eat through hard brick,
Wood, stone the lot
And smells as disgusting
As food you’ve forgot!

So now we’d have to rip out our dresser
We’re objects of fear and dismay
Tomorrow we’ll call out a surveyor
There was no time for pause or delay

We thought of this house filled with family
Just a week ago
They’d been with us here
We’d cooked up a lovely big dinner
They’d filled us with joy
And with cheer!

And after they’d said
Put your feet up!”
as our energy started to zap
“We’ll clean up the mess and the dishes
so pop up and have a nice nap!”

But now we were back to the present
Today we were worried and glum
As we dished up a meal for our guests
And thought of the trouble to come!

Our friend takes a dish from the dresser
Lifts the lid to put in veg for our meal
But the whiff it emits knocks her sideways!
A smell just like death
That would make anyone reel!

One dead brussel sprout
Is the cause of this fuss
That caused us to worry and tremble and cuss
To think about damp and dry rot or wuss!

So think when your kids
Say they’ll wash up for you
They’ll tidy the kitchen
And make it like new

Cos a dish that’s left dirty
Can throw out quite a phew
Your dearly loved kitchen
Can smell like a zoo
And to find out the cause
Could cost you a few!

by Frances Lee 2010

For my sprouty friend Anita and my anti-sprouty friend Zoe!

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Something Different, Something Special...

For afternoon tea Frances took us to a Grade I Elizabethan Luxury Country House Hotel & Restaurant near Honiton in Devon, Combe House. We had a great time exploring the place and having a cream tea.
WARNING - this is a photo heavy post, best make a cup of tea before you start your journey round the house and gardens with me.


Let me show you round the house. 


Let's go outside

Hope you enjoyed the tour and thanks for staying with me to the end.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Starting Point Becomes A Regular Feature

During last weekend's Online Scrapbooking weekend on Shimelle's blog, she included a challenge called Starting Point. It was so popular, this is going to be a regular feature. Scrapbook Starting Points. Shimelle says "...And it also means we should have a starting point challenge every week, right? On Saturdays. Saturday Starting Points. It has a ring to it."

So here is the starting point for this week.

Here is the layout I made in response to last weekend's challenge, and this is the original challenge on Shimelle's blog.

my starting point. 

Sounds like this could be a popular regular.


... From Blackbury Camp we travelled on to the historic village of Gittisham
This amazing tree stands in the centre of the village.

... now on to Combe House for afternoon tea ...

Monday, 22 August 2011

Blackbury Camp

While in Devon, Frances took us to Blackbury Camp, English Heritage. An Iron Age hill fort with impressive ramparts.
A single bank and ditch forming a rough D-shaped enclosure.
This fort was probably occupied between the 1st and 2nd Century BC by a cattle farming community.
It is now surrounded by woodland.
We wandered around the fort, which would have been much higher at the time it was in use. There are many beautiful trees and flint stones.


A beautiful spot to be on this lovely sunny summer day. Not sure I fancy living there surrounded by cows!
Then on to Gittisham... (next post).