Sunday, 22 November 2009


If you ever get the opportunity to go to Dedham, go!
My husband and I often stop there for lunch in the Wilkin & Sons Tea Room when we're out in the direction of Colchester. I like Dedham because of its "oldie worldie" charm and Michael likes it because there are only a few shops to browse around, so we're not there forever.
Yesterday was no exception, we were able to park right outside the tea room and after our lunch just had a browse around the Dedham Arts and Craft Centre.

It's a very pleasant walk from Dedham along the river to Flatford Mill, which we have done on a better weather day. Infact yesterday we did advise a group of keen walkers to drive to Flatford. We didn't like to say but, high heals and wet, soggy constable countryside don't mix.

We left Dedham and drove up to Hadleigh, a place we'd never been to before. We were just amazed at how nice it was, a market town, just outside Ipswich. There is an Adnams of Southwold, Cellar and Kitchen Store there where we had a sample taste of their own Christmas pudding and advokaat custard. Well, we had to buy that, it was delicious!

Also, they have another great shop - Partridges which was a real surprise, an ironmongers that sell everything you may ever want or need. Michael and I split up in there, he went upstairs to the tools, nuts, bolts, screws and nails section and I stayed downstairs looking at everything else. Did I buy anything - no!

However, I now know the place to get it from when I do need it!!

Wednesday, 11 November 2009


I can't remember exactly how old I was when I first learnt to knit. What I can remember is that my grandma and my mum were my teachers. I knitted many little garter stitch scarves for my dolls and many different coloured squares which were eventually going to be sewn up to make a patchwork blanket. Well, that never happened, because as we all know, I can't sew! My grandaughter Charlotte has been asking me to teach her to knit. At only 3 years old I wasn't sure if it was too soon. However on Sunday I searched through the hundreds of needles I keep in my loft and managed to find a bendy, plasticky pair which I thought might be suitable plus an odd ball of pink wool. She's a pink girl!!!!
Yesterday, as soon as she came through the front door she said, "Are you teaching me to knit today, Granny?" and I thought mmm, I'm going to have to give this a go!
As soon as her baby sister had nodded off to sleep out came the needles and wool. I started off with a Heath & Safety warning on the dangers of misusing the needles. [I can't remember my own mother doing the same, but I'm married to a Heath & Safety Manager, so I think it's rubbed off on me]. Anyway, after nodding and trying to take control of the needles she said that she understood. Realistically by the look on her face I could read she was actually thinking," for goodness sake Granny get on with it." So, she eventually climbed up onto my lap ready to start knitting her scarf for her dolly, Poppy.
I was impressed, she really tried to wind the wool around the needle and between us we did about 3 rows. She wasn't so impressed that the scarf wasn't growing at the pace she would have liked but agreed to have another go next time she visits.
I did smile this morning when I looked in my knitting basket, her little needles and wool were resting alongside mine. How cute!!!!!

Sunday, 1 November 2009


This is my first "Blog" rant, but something I feel very strongly about.

Not only did my father serve with the RAF in Burma in World War II, his younger brother died when the submarine HMS Vandal sank off the coast of Arran in 1943.

I always wear my poppy as a mark of respect for all that my father endured and for the ultimate sacrifice my uncle made.

I am astounded that yesterday while walking through London so few were wearing the poppy. At a time when our nation is crying out for our soldiers to return from Afghanistan, we should all be wearing them with pride and compassion in respect of all of those soldiers that have lost their lives, been injured or are currently working in difficult conditions away from their families to ensure OUR lives and our country are made safer.


It was both Michael's and my dad's birthday yesterday, very nice but hectic.

Today, we decided to have a day out, just to wander and relax. Michael fancied going up into london and we headed off to the Docklands Musuem. We found that to be very interesting, finding out about the history of the River Thames from the Roman times through to the current developements. We saw filmed footage of the London Blitz which even though I have seen similar lots of times, I still find very moving. My grandfather served with the West Ham fire brigade at this time and I can only imagine that it must have been a terribly difficult time for him and his family.
From there we meandred slowly alongside the docks towards Island Park and then through the foot tunnel under the Thames to Grenwich.

As it was such a nice day we decided to jump on a Thames Clipper and head back up the river towards Waterloo. Surprised at just how well our feet were feeling we then walked to Regents Street where we spent some time in Hamley's playing with all the toys, well that's what you have to do when you're buying for the grandchildren. You have to check for suitability!
We had a brief whirl around Selfridges and then headed back to Docklands where we met up with my cousin and her husband for a very pleasant meal in the Lotus Floating Chinese restaurant.
By the time I remembered to take a photo of our banquet it was too late. We'd eaten it all!