Saturday, 31 October 2009

Half Term...with ALL 3 CHILDREN!!

It has been ages since we saw all 3 of our children in the same week... but this half term we DID, the half term week beginning with Cub coming home from London. He had a surprise, we had blitzed his room getting rid of the old cabin bed and building a new one. All his old Forest stuff that had accumulated under the old bed over the years was washed or dusted down ready for the home-coming!(Aaaaahhh Steve Stone...) Good job Forest are on a good run of form!

We did the usual "Choaks" and the inevitable "Chris can you help me on the computer please.." and then it was off to the North East to see his twin.

Pixen drove us to Durham for the day and Husb wasted no time at all before he started spending money...

We walked up to the Cathedral...The Cathedral was built in 1093 (it took about 40 years to build) as a place of worship, specifically to house the shrine of the North's best-loved saint, Cuthbert,the animal and bird lover from Lindisfarne, in whose honour pilgrims came to Durham from all over England. It was also the home of a Benedictine monastic community.
Click here for official website.

Pixen and I climbed the 325 steps to the top of the Tower. It wasn't the best day for photos from the top but we did get a good view...of the castle...

...and of the weir over the River Wear...

...and all the way down again to study the Newcastle kit
(The Toongerines indeed)

All that climbing and walking wrecked the Pixen's feet.


Next was the Durham Light Infantry Museum and Art Gallery. (I say "art gallery" but it was all wall and hardly any art...)

Good dressing up corner though. Those coats were SO heavy and HOW did the soldiers wear those hats?? I really enjoyed this Museum. Pixen braved the terrible tunnel, but imagine doing it wearing all those uncomfortable clothes.

The next day we went to Middleton as Mr Denton was booked in for a service there. "WHOOP WHOOP" Chris! Look what we saw in the local Post Office!

Then it was off to HIGH FORCE, the aptly named waterfall where the whole of the River Tees plunges over a cliff edge and suddenly drops 21 metres with a loud roar into the pool below.Very spectacular.

It was a really picturesque walk through the woods to the falls, the low rumble of the water becoming louder and louder. We had a good day for it as there had been heavy rainfall the previous night.

A severe storm uprooted many of the huge trees several years ago.

Geologists love this fine example of rock. High Force was formed where the River Tees crosses the Whin Sill - the rock system followed by Hadrian's Wall. The waterfall itself consists of two different types of rock. The upper band is made up of whinstone, a hard rock which the waterfall takes a lot of time to erode. The lower section is made up of carboniferous limestone, a softer rock which is more easily worn away by the waterfall.
Click here for more.

...and here they are!!

Look how calm and quiet and peaceful it is at the top of the falls!

Just time for a cup of tea and a homemade scone...

...before heading back to Barny.

Friday, 30 October 2009

Aqua Helen's 60th

Another birthday, another meal, another boat trip. This time we had the afternoon on board the Mill Restaurant Barge sailing (chugging) along the Shropshire Union canal towards the Bridge Inn, being wined and dined along the way and serenaded by a giant balloon who warbled "Haaa ppy Birthday" to the tune of "AAAAA llelluia" to the amusement of other passengers.

My technically wonderful son helped me make("helped me make????") (made me) some templates for a champagne bottle which was totally and utterly "OOOOOHED" and "AAAAAHHHHED" by the ladies, Helen was made up with it. (pretty good for a first attempt ??!)

We were SOOOOOOOOOOOOO close to the wall inside the lock...

We were allowed off the barge at the lock (for a cigarette?!?!)so fat lady balloon came too..

so we did a little impromptu routine with various legs and arms...

These ladies provided the wonderful entertainment for the afternoon...what a great laugh we had..

Happy 60th birthday Helen!
Thanks for a great fun afternoon, what a fab bunch of ladies you/we all are.

Friday, 23 October 2009

40th party at the Grosvenor Arms

Well we had the most brilliant time at Louise`s 40th birthday party last night. It was the most wonderfully organised and "choreographed" party I`ve ever been to.
A NIGHT AT THE OSCAR`S was the theme.

Here she is opening a present...(quite an amusing one by the looks of things)

Libby serenaded us all as we arrived with some brilliant piano playing, she hasn`t been playing the piano long and is already very good.

It was an excuse to wear my dress and heels again... this was Epse and me doing "glamorous".

(l-r) Donna(stretch and tone), Darryl(Mr Louise), Louise(Body Zone)(and Party Girl!) and Espe(Spin)

After Pimms and photos and chit chat and the piano the evening got underway with Louise`s dancers.

Followed by some amazing unaccompanied singing by the school choir.... the young girl had a beautiful voice.

And then the cutting of the cake....with fireworks!

Look at Louise`s fabulous shoes!!!!!

Our table was the film GREASE.

Me with Kay.

Irene found herself a Turkish Masseur. Only Irene could manage that!

It was a fabulous evening.As well as the hot buffet and disco there were loads of photos on the big screen featuring Louise at various times in her life, and even the World cup winning England Rugby team got a mention (though there was more Jonny Wilkinson and NO LAWRENCE DALLAGLIO) Louise did a fantastic job of organising it all. Excellent attention to detail!