Sunday, 16 October 2016

The Battle of Hastings 950th Anniversary

Every year, English Heritage hosts a reenactment of the Battle of Hastings at Battle Abbey, which is near Hastings. This year, being the closest thing to a proper round number we're likely to get (I'll be elderly, and properly so, if I'm still alive in 2066), we bought tickets.

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Grown Up's Night at Jenny Wren's

If you haven't been to Jenny Wren's, in Stockton Heath, it's a café, where you can paint pre-made ceramic items, and then the staff there glaze, and fire the ceramics in their kiln, and you collect your finished piece about a week later.

We've taken the kids a few times, and LittleBit recently made a birthday present for my Nan, who likes meerkats. This is the finished object, after being glazed and fired.

Sunday, 2 October 2016


On Friday night, I attended the leaving do of a colleague. After drinks in a city centre bar we went to Breakout Manchester (we had booked, don't panic) and split into groups to attempt to solve the clues and escape from a locked room within an hour.

Monday, 26 September 2016

My friend Jane does an amazing thing for charity, I go a bat walk and a trip to the Museum:

On Thursday, I met my friend Jane in town to photograph her "Braving the Shave".

After having six plaits cut off, which she has since donated to the Little Princess Trust to be turned into real-hair wigs for young cancer patients, she then had her  remaining hair shaved off in order to raise money for MacMillan. There's still time to sponsor her here.


Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Cinema - Kubo and the Two Strings

We've wanted to see Kubo and the Two Strings since the first time we saw a trailer for it, and yesterday, we finally made it!

LittleBit was given this poster by the cinema staff

Saturday, 17 September 2016

Theatre Review: Jack the Ripper - The Real Truth

On Friday (16th September), my Mum and I went to the Brindley to see a show entitled Jack the Ripper - the Real Truth. Presented by a former London Police Detective, Trevor Marriott.

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Pre-NaNo Post 2: Planning v Pantsing.

If you have already spent some time perusing the NaNoWriMo website, you may have already come across the terms Planner and Pantser, and may already be familiar with their meanings, but if you're not sure... read on.


A Planner is a Wrimo who plans the plot of their novel. Some planners plan in great detail, some simply have a plot outline. 

I have always found I do better when I have a plan, however, sometimes even the best laid plans go awry! 


Which is when pantsing comes into play. This is the idea of flying by the seat of one's pants, having no plan, winging it. By the end of November, I will be pantsing like a professional, however, I am going to try to stick to the plan as long as possible this year.

Obviously, if you're planning on pantsing this November, that's your planning done already! 

If you are just plain old planning, we have some work to do!

Thursday, 1 September 2016

National Novel Writing Month - Being Prepared.

As you may already be aware, each year there is a challenge to write 50,000 words of a novel, in the month of November. It's called National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo. 
Image courtesy of National Novel Writing Month
I've managed to complete the challenge and make my target a few times, so I shall give it another go this year. However, this year, I'm hoping to exceed my target (I'd like to hit 80,000).

In order to have the very best chance of succeeding, it's important to be thoroughly prepared, and I have decided to share my experience, and plans for this year, on my blog.

This post was written in advance and scheduled to be posted on 1st September 2016

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Bank Holiday Cycling - The Monsal Trail - Take 2

If you read my previous post, you'll already know that we tried a section of the Monsal Trail while we were on holiday recently, and wanted to try and cycle it again. We only cycled from the Buxton end to Millers Dale Station last time, but we did have to use the steepest section of the Pennine Bridle Path which had already worn us out.

The bank holiday weekend provided an excellent opportunity for us to put the bikes on the car and make our way across the Pennines to the car park at Bakewell Station (a disused railway station near the end of the trail).

Monday, 22 August 2016

The Monsal Trail

While we were on holiday, our campsite was about a mile away from the Monsal Trail, a former disused railway turned into a walking and cycle route. The way to get to the Monsal Trail from our campsite was down part of the Pennine Bridleway, mainly the part which has signage asking riders to dismount, and which Beloved was able to cycle down, but LittleBit and I had to walk!

At the bottom of the Bridle path, where it meets the Monsal Trail, is a cycle hire and tuck shop, which sells ice cream and has a dog, called Dave, who LittleBit immediately fell in love with!

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Poole's Cavern and Grin Low and Buxton Country Park

While we were on holiday, one of our day trips was to Poole's Cavern, which we have visited before, and Grin Low and Buxton Country Park, handily situated above the cavern!

Saturday, 20 August 2016


We went camping. We have developed a liking for not going far (after last year's excursion to Delamere), and so we revisited the Buxton area (we visited with family in May).

We stayed at a campsite a little way outside Buxton, and we went into Buxton almost every day, even if just to visit the shops.

Friday, 19 August 2016

James Martin's Picnic Loaf... well, sort of... ish

As per my previous post, for our day out to Chirk Castle, we made a picnic, the centrepiece of which was our 'ploughmans' version of James Martin's Pic-nic Sandwich loaf.

Well, between us being fussy, and not having the ingredients in, we bodged it. But do you know what, eating it for lunch in the gardens of Chirk castle and looking at views like this; it wasn't right bad!

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Another August Post - Pete's Dragon and Chirk Castle

I do remember the original film Pete's Dragon, but not very well. I don't remember the plot, just that Elliott was a cartoon, while the rest of the film was live action, and there was a sea front or something...? Well, that film's older than I am, so the fact that I remember it at all, is good going, right?

Thursday, 11 August 2016

August 2016 - Post 3: An Update

Okay, so, I have finished a few books since my last posts. Not enough to catch up on the 52 book challenge (I'm still 10 books behind, and I don't know if I can finish another one before Sunday, when the week number changes);

Friday, 5 August 2016

August 2016 - Norton Priory.

Away back at the end of 2014 start of 2015, Norton Priory museum closed to be redeveloped, and yesterday (Thursday 4th August) we were invited to a special preview evening before the Museum reopens to the public tomorrow, Saturday 6th August.

We've been able to visit the walled gardens for the past 18months, but it was nice to see the new museum.

The New Front Entrance

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

2016 - August

Already! I know! And it's been two months since my last blog post (which was not the plan).

Not going to bore you all by catching up on the last two months, so let's just kick off, shall we?


Not been doing as well as last year, I have slumped a few times this year, and got all muddled up with 6 on the go at once. So, I'm not allowed to start anything else until I have cleared these down.

Thursday, 2 June 2016

June - and the half year rocket

I had planned to make this post, a mid-year review. However, let's be honest here, it's not been going well.

Most of my challenges went out of the window while I was preparing for walking the Camino de Santiago, and although I spent at least 2 hours a day training, for at least a month before we went, and it was nowhere near enough! However, that's for another post!

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Mini blog - 19th May

On this day in history:

On 19th May 1499 Katherine of Aragon was married, by proxy, to Prince Arthur Tudor, eldest son of Henry VII and Elizabeth of York. The couple didn't live together straight away though as they were considered too young, Katherine was 13 and Arthur only 12 at the time. 

Her second husband's second wife, Anne Boleyn, was executed on this day in 1536, having been arrested on 2nd May and held prisoner in the same rooms within the tower of London that she had occupied before her coronation.

Sunday, 31 January 2016



I wrote most of today's post in advance, ready to post this evening. However, this morning, news came that Sir Terry Wogan lost his battle with cancer in the early hours of this morning aged 77.

Some years ago, I was lucky enough to meet some other TOGs online and joined a community of some wonderful and amazing people who are generous, kind, funny, clever, supportive and generally awesome, but all with only one thing in common, we all listened to Terry Wogan's radio shows on Radio 2.

I was able to listen, this morning, to the special show broadcast in remembrance of Sir Terry's long and illustrious broadcasting career, it should be on the iplayer, along with Richard Madeley's show, in what I still think of as Sir Terry's slot, which included a lot of listeners fond memories of Sir Terry and music that he enjoyed.

I can only imagine how his family feels today, but his loss is, for me, the end of an era.

Friday, 1 January 2016

Happy New Year - 2016

Annual apology because I let it slip last month. Again. Sorry.

So, this year, will be better.

Well, today is 1st January 2016, so far we've slept in late (well, later than normal), had waffles for breakfast, watched some telly... and that's about it.

My beloved family are playing Lego Batman, I'm about to stick a lasagne in the oven for a late lunch and then I shall start reading my first book of 2016.

This afternoon, we will have a family film night (we wrapped up some drinks, popcorn and a new dvd, in a box for LittleBit to open).

and that's about it for today...