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Wednesday, 22 May 2019

A good news day

First son rang to say DIL had received her visa renewal. She is Canadian and was here for 2 years on a Youth Opportunity visa as she was under 30. Then she married DS two and a half years ago and has been on a spouse visa which ran out this month. She had to go to Croydon to submit her paperwork 3 weeks ago and it can take up to 6 weeks to get the result but it came today. We knew everything was in order but its a relief when its official.

Then just after that the hospital rang me and asked if I would like to bring my appointment forward from August to next week so very pleased with that.

The car had to go into the garage for a new exhaust today. I was told it would be £90 if just the end piece had to be replaced but £130 if the central piece also had to be changed. When I collected it the price was £73 so another good thing.

DD went to look at another park home today and it looks like this will be the one. The vendor still has to find a place but as he wants another park home up North in an area where there are plenty we hope it wont take too long.

She was going to buy one on the same site last Autumn but they said she was too young as it was 6 weeks before her 45th birthday which is the age limit. By the time she was old enough it had sold. So hopefully this time it will be successful.

Monday, 13 May 2019

Clacton Health walk

A couple of weeks ago we had two nights in Clacton-on-sea. It's only 60 miles away but I don't like driving there and back in one day any more and DB wanted to visit his brother and SIL. The last two years we have had a week there in the summer but I felt with the iffy weather 2 nights would be enough. We stayed in a very nice B&B who could cater for DB's mobility scooter.

We went straight to DB's favourite cafe for lunch then to visit his brother which was very nice to have a catch up. We got to the accommodation about 4pm and by then DB was wiped out so he went to bed and I went for a little walk. It was sunny and dry and turned cold but ok for a walk with a coat on.

I started to walk along the sea front toward the pier when I noticed the health walk signs telling me how many steps I had walked. It is a circular walk along the sea front then returning through the gardens which are mainly tended by volunteers. They were really beautiful.

Mediterranean garden.

Lots of lovely colour

Sea front fun.

The sea view from our room. DB wanted to stay in so we just had SB sandwich and tea in the room and I tried without success  to get the Now TV system to play live tv. DB went back to sleep so I just read and used my tablet to watch a program.

We will probably have a week later in the summer when I will be able to have a dip in the sea. Too cold now.

Sunday, 12 May 2019

Swan nest and lane to the ford

Yesterday was wet on and off all morning but had things to do out and about. Then after lunch the sun came out and I felt an urge to be outside but not gardening.  I decided to go and see the swan's nest that DD had told me about so had a wander along the river.

Only one of the pair here today but on the way back saw a lady I know going to check on the nest and she said the pair were there yesterday. DD and the lady had both seen the male pulling stuff out of the bank and chucking it on to the nest.

After the swan and the friendly little chat, I decided to detour down a lane that leads to the main road via a ford. I have never seen any traffic on the lane and used to take a friend's little boy there in his wellies so he could try damming the stream. I have seen kingfishers there but not recently.

I then took the footpath that crosses the field back to the river for the first time in ages.

And the rain kept off! It doesn't matter how many times I walk near the river there is always something new to see as it changes daily.

Thursday, 9 May 2019

Stay at home day

DD was off looking at a prospective new home so I was responsible for the dogs. Apart from two short walks I stayed home all day. When I was in Clacton last week, I had the most delicious celery soup for lunch in a little cafe so I decided to make some. I found a recipe in the Covent Garden Soup Company soup recipe book which I found in a charity shop a couple of years ago. I left the cream out partly because I didn't have any and thought it didn't need it. It turned out very tasty and made 5 portions so some frozen. I think about 20p a portion as the celery was on a special offer.

I also made a scone based pizza from the healthy heart book for dinner. Its quick, cheap and healthy.  I had one portion of home made tomato sauce left in the freezer and I also had grated cheese there.  I buy cheese when I see a good offer and grate the lot in the processor to freeze for later use. The rest of the topping was red onion and garlic from the veg rack, frozen peppers from Aldi and home frozen courgettes bought cheaply on Walthamstow market.

I spent a little time in the garden in between the showers. I sowed another row each of beetroot and salad leaves then picked lots of parsley to freeze. Did a bit of weeding, picked spinach then cooked it to freeze in the juice for green soup sometime.

I uploaded a lot more photos to truprint and made an order then I thought I would just check my emails in case of any new offers. I was pleased I did as there was a 50% off prints with a code in the new email so saved over £6.

I managed lots of other little jobs like shredding some old paperwork and some phone calls so a satisfying day. I find it so good to have a quite day at home just to catch up and unwind.

Saturday, 4 May 2019


Last week I finally went for one of my little explorations using my bus pass.  I have wanted to go to the William Morris Gallery for ages so decided it was time. I didn't expect there to be much else in Walthamstow but looked it up anyway and was surprised to see so much of interest.

I had to get two buses and it was a good journey as we went all round the houses on the second bus so saw lots of new places.  Walking from the bus station to the gallery, I decided to stop for coffee on the way and saw a lovely Turkish coffee shop. A huge cappuccino and warm almond croissant which was delicious cost just £3.30. A coffee alone costs that in many places.

The gallery itself was excellent and very interesting. I had been to the Red House where Morris lived as an adult for a few years so knew a little bit about him but there was far more here where he lived as a child.

I love his wallpaper and fabric designs. He was also a very caring man and was well aware of his privileged upbringing. He felt everybody should have access to good quality housing.

The house was later on owned by a Mr. Lloyd who left it and the grounds to the council on the condition that they added some adjacent land to it and made a park for the townspeople. So this is Lloyd Park.

I walked through to the old village area then. First to the vestry house museum which was originally a work house then when the councils were economizing they closed it down and the inmates had to go to another town to a much larger work house. It then became a police station and is now a very interesting local history museum. It also has a garden full of medicinal plants with olde English labels describing what they heal.

The museum is opposite an old church  and the ancient house. There are also some lovely old almshouses here. It is really like stepping back in time to a village not a town like Walthamstow.

I was near another museum with the wonderful name of God's own junkyard containing vintage neon signs. Apparently it has an excellent tea shop as well but I didn't get to sample it as it was closed. I will have to go back on a Friday when it is open.

I walked back to modern life to the longest outdoor street market in Europe. It was beginning to shut down for the day so for £2 I bought 3 huge mangos and a bowl of courgettes.

I couldn't believe there was so much to see in Walthamstow. Still some for another day.