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Thursday, 23 January 2020

Some goals achieved

This time a year ago, I wrote about the things I wanted to achieve during the coming year. Not resolutions but just goals. So how did it go?

Well one thing was to get my health sorted and I am more or less back to my old self. I think I will always have some gut problems but I am not spending half my life in pain and throwing up. My energy levels are much better as well.

The second thing was to move into a smaller home. I couldn't do that until DD found her home and moved out as she was in one bedroom and her stuff was mainly in the other bedroom and in two sheds. She moved to her new home in July and finally on 30th November my move happened.

I wanted to have more days out exploring the surrounding areas and did have a few but mainly quite a lot of trips to Clacton to visit DD and our other relatives. Still enjoyable though.

The other thing to achieve was spending more time with friends and family. Since I moved lots of friends have visited to see the new place but mainly just for cuppa and cake. I haven't done any major catering yet but really keeping it simple is the key and the company is the important part.

This year I want to visit a dear friend who will be 90 soon and I haven't seen for 2 years. She lives in the lake district so that is an important goal. I also haven't seen my oldest sister for ages so I'm hoping to do that this month.

A couple of pictures of views from my patio. Straight ahead is a circular green with a fountain in the middle. The second photo was taken at night when the fountain is lit up and looks very pretty. The building opposite is similar to mine but i have a patio. I couldn't live somewhere without an open space to sit. Once the patio is how i want it I will take more photos. So all in all quite a satisfying year.

Thursday, 9 January 2020

Some bargains

Don't usually get good yellow sticker bargains from Asda in day time but was pleased with this one.

Then took what I hope is the last lot to the charity shop and had a little browse. This was my haul

A set of vintage wooden skittles with ball, a wooden tool box with mainly wooden tools and screws, a flap up book and a book with a hare puppet costing £6 in total. Little GD will love them.

Cleaned my car inside and out so saving on the car wash. Using up toiletries before I buy any more. Mainly eating what I have and not buying much. So quite a frugal week.

Sunday, 5 January 2020

I'm back after a break

Well what has happened since I last posted in October? Quite a lot really but mainly moving after 31 and a half years in one house. I will do a post about that soon but thought I would do a catch up first.

A few days after my last post 3 friends and I visited the Henry Moore Foundation which is about 5 miles away. This was courtesy of free tickets from one friend's neighbour who works there. I used to work practically next door to it but have never visited. None of us had even though one friend lives nearby and can see one of the huge sculptures from her sons garden.

I hadn't realized there was so much to see there as it is spread out over a large area and included a guided tour of the house. A public footpath crosses the property and passes one sculpture so I had seen that several times on walks. Anyway a few pictures.

No photos allowed in the house but plenty outside. We'd had the tickets all season and had to use them by the end of October so only a couple of weeks to spare but the colours were so beautiful we were glad we had left it until then.

We also enjoyed the excellent restaurant where we all had the child's meal of jacket potato, topping and salad. The portion was plenty big enough. I didn't have room for cake although the others managed it. Maybe next season I will take DB back just to the restaurant for cake!

Sunday, 13 October 2019

London again

I had another appointment at a London hospital so as it wasn't until 2pm I decided to have a short visit to the Museum of Docklands. It is one of the few bigger London museums I haven't been to and there was an exhibition on about London's hidden rivers.

I only ended up with about an hour but managed a good look at the exhibition. It was really interesting to think of all those rivers mainly hidden underground now. There was a video presentation about opening up one of the rivers which I think was the Effra. The trouble is it would mean demolishing many buildings including Buckingham Palace so I can't see that happening.

It was a frugal day out as I used my bus pass and Oyster Card, took my own food and water. I did buy a coffee at the museum but saved 25p by taking my own travel mug. I also spent £2 on a sticky bun in Tottenham Court Road in aid of Macmillan nurses. So money well spent.

I didn't take many photos as I had such little time but here are a few outside the museum and along Tottenham court road on the way to the hospital.

This last one is the BT tower opened October 8th 1965 as Britain's tallest building. I do remember that and we all thought it was quite amazing that it had a revolving restaurant at the top. I never have been inside. Apparently it was open this year for London Open House but I have missed this for the last few years so maybe next year I will accomplish a visit. I have to go back next week so may revisit the museum.

Monday, 7 October 2019

Black History day and

other things this week.

I walked up to the town to get a paper on Saturday afternoon and thought I would see if anything was still happening in the market for black history day.  There was lots of lively music and dancing and a few stalls with food and beautiful colored African clothes.

There were actually quite a few spectators but not in my photos. I stood and watched and listened for a while. A lady in a beautiful African dress greeted me and told me she hadn't seen me for a while. I had no idea who she was until she enlightened me that we knew each other from a mutual friend and then I realized. It's seeing somebody in a completely different setting throws me.

Another thing this week was cutting back the lavender as mostly the flowers were finished and the bees had gone. I deadheaded the roses and brought the last few rosebuds in along with one last rudbeckia and a few marigolds. I'm hoping the grass won't need cutting again.

The heating has gone on a few times and the cooler weather has encouraged me to do some cooking. I made the second batch of soup this season, using up some country soup mix from the freezer. It was cooked and frozen some while ago and I am trying to eat the freezer as when I move I won't have room for it. It is too big for where I am going and won't be needed as I will not be freezing garden produce. Mind you most of the soup was put into the freezer but will be eaten soon. I also made a batch of Rocky Road for when people pop in. All made from the store cupboard. I have decided to make jam from the blackcurrants in the freezer. I may do that tomorrow. There is also some pumpkin left from last year. Most went in the first batch of soup and the rest will be used for Dunkin Donuts pumpkin muffins which I love. I had them in America a few years ago and Googled a recipe which is pretty close.

So quite a satisfying week.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

Epping forest district museum

DB was feeling a bit down so as Saturday was lovely I suggested a little drive out. We made for Waltham Abbey which is a lovely historic little town. We started with lunch outside a tearoom near the ruins of the Abbey. We both chose warm croissants with cheese and tomato. They were delicious and not a filling I would have thought of in a croissant.

We then had a wander along pedestrianised Sun street and as the museum was open DB suggested we went in. I was a bit dubious as he was on his mobility scooter and the last time I was in the building, it had steep narrow stairs. However the receptionist saw us and came out to tell us it is now wheelchair accessible with a lift. I love museums so was very pleased.

The top floor was an exhibition about Gilwell park which is the nearby scouts headquarters. The rest is the story of the district.

This is the top floor. Little gd would have loved the tepee.

Some of my favourite exhibits.

 The garden but I'm not sure what the lady and child represented.

We finished off sitting in the sun outside a cafe with tea and scones people watching. We were glad we made the most of the good weather as it was horrible the next day.

Friday, 20 September 2019


While I was at DD's the other week, after the dog show she needed to rest but as it was a lovely day I decided to get on the bus to Jaywick. Now this little seaside place has a bad press but years ago we would love a day out there. It is a bit run down in places but the beach is wonderful. I stayed on the bus to the end of the route which was just past the bungalows which were all holiday homes back in the day. I walked along the sea front past a caravan park and was planning to keep going when I saw the Martello tower was open and had an exhibition.

The exhibition was about the flood of 1953 which was particularly interesting as I had just finished reading a book by a man who grew up on Canvey Island. He was 13 at the time of the flood and had to carry his younger brother through the flood waters to a refuge. There was also lots of information about the history of the towers. Lastly I went up on to the roof to see the view.

Such friendly informative people running the exhibition too. Then on the bus back we were on a circular route so went right along the seafront for a while and I was at the front of the top deck so more views. A very good frugal afternoon out. The only spending was a donation to the exhibition.