Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Sunny Florida

After a lot of wondering we finally got away on our break to Florida, we travelled with Thomas Cook from gatwick. the flight was very good for the first time in a while I would go as far as to say it was comfortable! The plane seemed quite spacious with comfortable leather seats. It was one of those planes with downstairs toilets, 8 of them which meant you could get up and stretch your legs. 
We arrived at Orlando to find that they had messed up our car booking so that took a while to put right, we finally headed off for our hotel with the help of our sat nav. I had downloaded the USA maps earlier in the year whenTom Tom sent through an offer £20 for the maps. They were charging $15 a day to rent one here so I easily made my money !!!
The hotel is lovely, I had been in contact with a lady on the front desk before we arrived so she had made sure everything was top condition for us!! She arranged for us to pre pay breakfast at a reduced price plus we both had a basket of fruit and sweets in the room, a lovely touch!!
I had planned to update this as we went along but this holiday has been full on one way or another!!
We have had some fabulous weather, no rain during the day and lots of sunshine. There has been a bit of rain overnight but that hasn't interfered with our plans too much!!
It has however been quite humid, so for the first time in my life I seem to have acquired curly hair!!! I seem to have loads of photos with Curly/frizzy hair, it's quite a site to see!!!
It's nearly time to head home so I will update the blog once we are back and I will finally be able to add photos, something that blogger in Safari seems to be resisting :(

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Wedgewood has no worries!!!

I seem to be settling into a weekly update at the moment!! Its funny how there are just not enough hours in the week to do all I want to do anymore. 
Last week my friend Jane and I went to Artshed in Ware to have a go at a bit of pottery. Jane went and collected the results and bought them home!!

Considering that we made these from scratch I am quite pleased with the outcome. I am still not sure about the milk jug , not sure the shape will actually hold much in the way of any liquid !!! I was particularly pleased with the little cake stand that I made. Luckily it was Carl's birthday this week so I was able to try out my new cake stand!!

I think Karen was very clever to pick green cake cases to show off my green cake stand!!

How times change, an integral part of birthdays now is a pint of something to go with the cakes, Carl has acquired a liking for Crabbies Ginger Beer, he is spreading his wings !! He spent the night of his birthday out with his mates and when he got home he was so 'happy' he had to sleep on the sofa, oddly he was that happy that he chose to try and sleep on the two seater sofa, which was just a little surprising!!!

A big 'Thank you' goes to Karen for the beautiful cup cakes, peanut butter, chocolate and gorgeous raspberry flavoured ones. I added the candles (very special ones, with flames that burnt the same colour as the wax) although I had trouble convincing Carl about that as you can see he was quite 'happy' by then!!!

This year he ended up with house presents, he has finally exchanged contracts on his flat and completes on Friday, so Laura bought him a clock and a wine bottle candle and we bought him a set of saucepans. He has expensive tastes so they were the best red saucepans to fit in with his kitchen decor!!!

At the end of last week I was away at Conference at Brighton. We went down by train and I was booked into the Hilton on the sea front. It was a strange Hotel, looked very grand from the outside and the public areas were rather elegant, with huge great big chandeliers, once in the room it all became a bit mundane and slightly run down.I have got used to sleeping in a soft bed, so the rock hard mattress was a bit of a trial, I felt like I didn't sleep well, but somehow managed to oversleep on the second morning!!

It was nice to see the sea, although the second day was very windy and chilly. We found a nice place to have lunch on the beach, it was so cold that we never risked a trip down to the waters edge.

Barb and I on the second day getting ready for a day of debates, which turned out not to be debates but a day of everyone furiously agreeing with each other! Still we did actually get a card vote right at the end on a subject that really didn't matter that much but was enough for there to be a little disagreement in the ranks!!

To finish the week Beth went to a fancy dress party dressed as a pirate!! she enjoyed herself and looked rather good without being too over the top.

Next week we are being decorated, so we have had to empty all the front room cupboards, I have ordered new furniture and Carl is taking my old stuff to start him off with. I just need to order a new sofa and chairs when the painting is finished. The house looks like a jumble sale and I will be glad when its finished. 
Mum is still in hospital but she seems to be getting stronger so fingers crossed she will be set free soon. My friend Debbie's Dad is in ICU after a pre-planned operation, we are all saying prayers for signs of improvement and  a speedy recovery for him. 

Have a nice week.

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Week of Overload.

This week seems to have been one of total overload, everything is closing in on me and I can't seem to get too much finished although I have started a fair few things. Mum is still in hospital. She has had the result of the biopsy on her knee back and it appears that there is a general infection in her joint. They are putting that down to the metal work in her hip. Three years ago she fell and broke her femur and after a traumatic time she had to have a load of metal work inserted to scaffold her bone. Right from the very beginning this was infected and it took nearly four months for it to heal and stop weeping. The surgeon is now convinced that the infection is in that metal work and it has to come out. They have done a load of scans and xrays and they 'hope' that the bone is strong enough to manage without it. If it isn't they will have to put more metal back in a different place. Its all a huge worry for all of us and for Mum. The operation is planned for next Thursday. The only good news is that they are going to do the operation at the QE2 , a much easier journey for us. 

This weekend Dad has been around to dinner, he has also spent a load of time in his garden sorting out his borders ready for the winter. When I popped around he picked me some of these lovely sunflowers. He didn't plant this particular one, it must have arrived via bird poop!!! Its a really unusual one with loads and loads of heads. So we have saved some of the seed and hope we can grow some more next year!!

I now have a lovely vase full of them in the living room.
We have also been sorting out the colour we are going to redecorate the living room. I think we have finally settled on a scheme so I am going to order some new bookcases and a suite of furniture. Carl will be taking some of our stuff with him to his new flat so its a great time to have a change. 

Today I went on a great course with my neighbour Jane. It was to make a vintage tea set out of clay, the time absolutely flew and I ended up making a cup and saucer, a milk jug, sugar bowl and a cake stand. It was totally absorbing and the time flew!!

This is the kind of thing we were trying to make, looks a bit rustic, but it was a case of learning the ropes and seeing what we could come up with.

Everything started with a thumb pot, something I've not done since junior school. Its not as easy as you might think, the clay is floppy and thins out in some places and not in others!!

We also made a cake stand, which we imprinted with lace curtains!!

By lunchtime we had made the whole lot, we spent some time drying them with hair driers which meant that we were able to paint them today as well. It was great to see everything take shape. If I did it again I know that I could refine my designs. 

The paint doesn't reflect the end colour so going with my favourite colour, all the insides are painted celadon green and the outsides are painted a cobalt blue. The edges and handles are all painted with a dark metallic colour which I am hoping covers a multitude of sins!!!

We can't wait to collect them next weekend !! I hope they all survive the firing process.
If you fancy a go take a look at ARTSHED, they have some lovely courses. 
Best of all the course that we did was reduced to half price via Groupon Bargain!!!

Here's hoping this week will be better than last week.