Sunday, August 31, 2008

I was productive...

I had a very good day yesterday, managed 15 double layouts, very simple, very basic but scrapped none the less and I am happy with them.
Today has not been so good, had a very disturbed night, which meant I couldn't get to sleep, finally nodded off at 2.30am only to be awakened by Hunny and a 'noise', listened for a while looked out the window, put the light on just in case. Finally went back to sleep around 3.30am.
This morning Carl went out to his car to find that some piece of scum had smashed a window and broke in. He lost two winning scratch cards for a pound each, I hope the thief gets run over when he goes to claim them. The damage has cost £200 to repair. I am sure that was what woke me up. The police have said that there were a further 8 reported in our area and that they have an idea of who might be responsible.

Saturday, August 30, 2008


I am going to attempt to scrapbook some of my photos, I have so many now that the back log is a bit daunting, so many events to sort out that I don't know where to start. I like to scrap chronologically so at least I just have to plough on regardless!!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

We're all in this Together!!!!

Last night we took a trip to London, Hammersmith Apollo to see High School Musical.
It was a brilliant show, full of life and colour. Beth had no idea where we were going and didn't twig until we were on the train. Megs was a last minute replacement fro Carl who had to work. I don't think it would have been to his taste, although there was one bloke right at the front who was stood up dancing for most of the performance!!!
The actual cost of the all the things that kids want was extortionate, the pom poms started off at £5 per pair. (Just a bit of glittery tinsel stuff on a plastic handle) I managed to play two salesmen off against each other, saying that one was selling for £4, eventually going back to the original guy and getting them for £3 a pair!! The ice creams were a mega £2.50 each for a minute tub, the programs were £7, but they were good value a very comprehensive book with loads of glossy photos and a pull out poster. Coke was a bargain at £3 for a Glass!! So even with the reduced price tickets, we managed to spend around £150 for a nights entertainment, not something you could do every month!!
Still it was worth it for the look on the girls faces and the excitement of seeing them join in and sing along with their pom poms!!!

Monday, August 25, 2008

My Town Monday - Variation - Delft!!

Well this week I have decided to report back on the various places that we visited while on holiday, a surrogate My Town!

The first place that we visited was Delft, only 12 or so miles from where we were staying. We drove into Delft with no problems, but parking was another matter! The main square is pedestrianised and all on street parking was residents only. The town is surrounded by canals so we seemed to do a lot of driving around in circles. The satnav (Stella) got herself confused, she knew where the parking was but was incapable to actually getting us anywhere near to it, very frustrating. In the end Tom and Debbielou went to the tourist office for instructions. We felt quite out of our comfort zone as we just didn't understand the language, although almost everyone does speak some English.

Delft is a very pretty town, the home of the painter Jan Vermeer (1632-75) and the burial place for Dutch Royalty.Vermeer is buried in the 13th century Oude Kerk.(which is the first picture, the church with the wonky tower!!) The Royal house Oranje-Nassau is also associated with Delft and members of that family are interred in the 14th century Nieuwe Kerk, including Prince William of Orange (Last picture above) This church is quite spectacular from the outside having been built over a large number of years.

Delft is known world wide for the very pretty blue and white pottery that is produced in potteries both in the town and in the surrounding area. As a tourist it was my duty to bring some of that back with me, I have some new blue and white Christmas baubles for my tree!!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Message for Travis!!!!

Hi Travis, I am back and have been enjoying catching up with your adventures on your blog, I have tried to comment and it boots me out!! So the next time Jehovah's witnesses corner me I'll get out my Rosary beads and dangle them in front of their faces!! I intend to do a modified MTM later on.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Here we go.

We stayed in a two bed caravan, with Canvas Holidays. We stayed on a site called Duinrell, which had a great theme park attached, low key but with some really fantastic rides. The children loved the bumper boats but the were very slow and quite hard to control, poor Georgie she spent one go doing nothing but going round and round in circles!!
The chairoplane was great, a blast from the past, I can remember going on one of them at Butlins, in fact I remember going on one time and time again. Its a simple ride but really thrilling!
The park also had a great swimming centre with water slides, a lazy river and a wave pool. We were able to use the pool for two hours a day. After the first very busy session we learned that the best time to go was at 10am, that way we were able to do the rides without queuing!
Big M encouraged us all to join in with his mid life crisis, we decided that we would all chose a variety of names that we fancied and that we would try and live with that name for a day, at the end of the week we would decide which name was the best. (having voted each night on how the name had felt) I kicked off with Scarlett, Tom was Clyde, Carl was Rex and Beth was Roxy. Big M decided on Blue Thunder(?) It was really hard to stick to the new names, particularly Blue Thunder. I felt so sorry for Debbielou!!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Theme of the holiday was???????

Before we left we had been made aware that Debbielou's husband had decided to dye his hair blond, this got Carl thinking and he decided to do his as well!!
So we spent a couple of days trying to get the colour right, it started with a definite ginger tinge, not a good look. Eventually three goes later we achieved the blond bombshell look. When we arrived at the port Deb and and Big M were already there, we were in plenty of time and had we have been 5 minutes earlier we would have been able to get the earlier ferry (They had been offered that ferry but kindly waited for us!!)
We had an uneventful journey to France, we drove through Belgium and arrived in Holland early in the evening. We knew that we had crossed the country borders as we kept getting text messages telling us we were in a new country!! On the first night Big M also told us of his plan to change his name and we all agreed to take part in a name swapping event to see if we could help him find a new name!!
The first night we spent time in the playground, it was great full of all the playground equipment that health and safety folk have had removed from all the British parks years ago. There were things that I can remember from my childhood. I have no idea what they are called, Beth had never seen them before but they were as much fun for her as I had remembered!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

We're back!!

We have arrived home after our holiday, a long journey home and I am glad to be back in my own bed.
We have had a great time the weather has been changeable, most days we had rain, but it didn't stop us getting on with all the things we had planned!!
I will work through some of the highlights later on, May have to do My town Monday from a different point of view for a few weeks!!
A brief run through..... we stayed in Wassenar in Holland, a nice little seaside town. We visited Amsterdam twice, took a canal ride, visited Anne Franks House, had a pancake in a fabulous little waterside restaurant, Rode the trams and looked around the shops and fantastic buildings.
We visited Kinderjik, where there are lots of working windmills from the 1740's (got some lovely photos there). We went to Delft home of the Dutch blue and white pottery, Haarlem where we saw a church with a cannon ball embedded in one of the walls.
I have to be up early in the morning to await the delivery of my new washing machine, in time for the bags of holiday washing!!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Almost there!!

Today has been a busy one, all the preparations for our holiday. I had a restless night worrying that I wouldn't get it all sorted out . I am nearly there, just the tyre pressures to check and a fill up with petrol then bed.
It has been a feat packing the car. We still have to put the bedding in but can't do that until the morning. I am tired now but looking forward to our adventure!!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

What a Happy Face.

Today I had to pop into Hatfield this morning and I was thrilled to find that one of the shops sold Beths school Uniform, the school said it was only the one place in St Albans that had it. So at the end of the day Beth and I went and bought the lot!! The lady in the shop was very helpful, I was anxious to get her the largest size blazer that she could wear without looking daft. (its so expensive to replace every year)
I was quite lucky in that she was able to make use of some hand me down uniform from Carl (mainly PE kit) I had to buy, Blazer, Two blouses, a 'regulation' skirt and trousers, socks and shorts. It came to £98 !!! The lady gave Beth a geometry set which was very nice of her,I still have shoes and trainers to buy.
The strange thing was seeing her all dressed up in a skirt for the first time ever. So just sewing on the labels and sorting out the books .

Monday, August 04, 2008

The 'Beast' of Hertfordshire

I expect that you must be wondering what I am going to be talking about this week. Here in England we really don't have a huge range of dangerous wild beasts, no wild bears or boars to talk of, BUT we do have numerous sightings of 'Huge Black Cats' . Now I am not sure if any of these cats actually exist but there is hardly a month goes by where there isn't a report of a sighting in the local paper or on the radio.

Last year for Herts and in particular Welwyn Garden City was a very busy one for sightings. These large cats are usually described as black and at three or four times the size of a regular cat. There are no wild cats native to the UK but I think that if these sightings are real that they could be cats that have escaped from captivity.

Last year a sighting of a big cat resulted in a full scale police operation, as reported by Herts News 24

'POLICE marksmen were deployed and a 21-officer search was carried out after two policemen spotted a big cat near to their Hertford station on Saturday.The duo reported seeing a large feline type animal on a building site just before 7am and a three-hour search for the beast followed.Insp Paul Burnage from the intervention and response unit at Hertford led the investigation. He said: "It was our priority to ensure public safety. We called an expert from a local wildlife park to stun the animal if it was seen. "However, our firearms unit, including officers with rifles, surrounded the site as a back up in case the animal got out of the building site."The animal was not seen again.This is by no means the first such sighting in East Herts. Just last August we reported how a similar creature was seen in the Mangrove Road area of Hertford, and then received further claims of sightings in Hoddesdon and Goffs Oak. Wildlife crime officer Det Insp David Laming said: "There are no confirmed records of anyone ever being attacked by these animals. The reason being there is no shortage of small natural prey available to them for food, and they have a natural fear of man."All previous recorded sightings have only been brief as the animals always run from humans.Det Insp Laming offered this advice if you do come face to face with such a creature. "Under no circumstances should members of the public attempt to shoot or injure such an animal. This would create an unpredictable situation whereby the animal would feel threatened and would be more likely to act in an aggressive manner."

So what do you think??

Saturday, August 02, 2008

It has just dawned on me.......

Well our holiday is looming and I have at least a million things to do before then, I have just realised that one thing I absolutely have to do is buy Beth's new school uniform. I only have a couple of bits at the moment and if I leave it until we get back it will be too late if they are out of stock of some of the stuff. It seems extremely expensive. I was able to get away with it a bit more with Carl, as they had pale blue shirts and charcoal grey trousers, both of them can be bought at Tesco's. Beth on the other hand has to have 'uniform' blue blouses with open necked collar and official uniform trousers and skirts. I am going to get one of each and then she can see if we can vary it a bit once we get settled in.
That brings us on to shoes, something that Beth never wears. She has always been able to wear trainers at primary, so that's another thing to think about.
This morning has dawned bright but very wet, which is a pain as I have around 4 loads of washing to get dry plus a sleeping bag. So I am slogging on with it. Carl has only been back home since last night and today he has three swimming parties at school and in the middle of the day he is working at the University pool. He is not afraid of a bit of work!!
I am off to do a bit of jewelry making between the washing.