Wednesday, 30 November 2011

A Day Out In Birmingham With Auntie Jan

andys nokia 572
Auntie Jan asked if I would like to join her in trip to Birmingham for nothing in particular, just a mooch. As I hadn’t been for ages it would have been rude not to accept her kind offer.
andys nokia 573
Our first port of call was to visit the tourist hotspots like the famous Bull Ring Bull …………………
andys nokia 576
………. followed by Selfridges with all its plates for a couple of photo opportunities.
andys nokia 556 Then we went into the Bull Ring where they had a Nintendo stand with lots of DS’s to play on ……
andys nokia 551
Auntie Jan decided that it would be best if she left me there for a while, as she realised that it would be hopeless to try and prise me away until I had tried all of the games available to play, and she went into Selfridges to look at lady things like Cath Kidston and Paperchase.
andys nokia 555andys nokia 553 
After two hours or so ….. I realised that I was getting a little peckish and spookily, at almost the same moment Auntie Jan appeared and said “Starbucks?”
andys nokia 569
“Nom, Nom, Nom” I replied and within minutes we found ourselves sat at a table feasting on wondrous comestibles. I veered from my usual latte and cinnamon twist and gravitated towards an unpronounceable “Crème Brûlée Macchiato” because it sounded very romantic plus a most ample portion of Rocky Road which was indeed very nom, nom, nom.
andys nokia 619After that we strolled around the fruit market for a little while, where I purchased 3lbs of satsumas for the bargain sum of one pound thus ensuring a sufficient supply of our 5 day for the next week and a big bag of jelly beans each for Darrell and Nigel for holding the fort. I thanked Auntie Jan for a lovely day, who also bought 3lbs of satsumas, as well as some plantains, yams and a bowl of bananas ….. there is no danger of there being any scurvy in our family!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Roadkill? Marmite Akimbo! Marmite Tanker Overturns on M1

We are extremely tempted to dash up the M1 to assist in the clean-up operation after a tanker carrying more than 20 tonnes of our yeasty spread of choice overturned on the motorway.  From what we have gathered it's Marmite mayhem on there!  However, we are not too sure about the reception we would receive if we turned up with a camping toaster, tub of butter, an ample supply of Warburtons thick toastie loaves, knives, plates, bibs and a picnic table in tow.  Picture the scene as we set up the said picnic table on the hard shoulder and did our best to robustly consume some/part all of the savoury spill, to do our bit! But,  we could encounter a little resistance to our altruistic activities from the local constabulary, who might tell us to "Move on, there's nothing to see, the party's over" etc. ..... It also throws up several probing questions like .... does spilt Marmite count as road kill and is there such a thing as a Marmite-necker?

All In A Days Work For Vinnie The Volunteer at the FIG Trampoline and Tumbling World Championships 2011

We are so proud of our friend Vinnie and all his altruistic activities. He’s always somewhere really interesting and has now amassed a huge wardrobe of uniform polo shirts and accreditations, as well as a very impressive CV.
FIG Tampoline & Tumbling
Last week he was at the Trampoline and Tumbling World Championships in Birmingham, which sounded very exciting , but we expect like our job in rush photocopying it had it’s ups and downs.
Trampolining Bham
Vinnie was based in the Media Centre …..Vinnie 3
….. which gave him access to a lot of areas of a very important nature.
Vinnie 2
He had to look after the photographers ….
28th Trampoline and Tumbling
….. and book in visiting members of the media from all over the world, and put their media packs together …..
World Trampolining Bham
….. which involved quite a lot of photocopying (for which we trained him well!) …
Press Pigeon Holes 
….. He had to make sure that all the “journos”, as he likes to call them …….
Vinnie 1
…… had all the latest results, facts and figures as soon as they happened, if not sooner…..
World Trampolining Birmingham
….. which also had to be filed away ……
Trampolining and Tumbling Bham
…… using a very sophisticated and complicated system.
Topping Up refreshments
Vinnie was also responsible for seeing that all the journos received adequate sustenance. Vinnie said that having to watch and count how many times world trampolinists bounce up and down all day,  especially when they gather up speed, not only gives you a cricked neck but can also give you a thirst, especially if you go boing… boing …. boing as you count! 
 Trampoling World Championships 2011
Having to sample the daily supply of Danish pastries and muffins to make sure they were without a hint of staleness was an onerous task, but like everything he does, Vinnie embraced the challenge every time he passed the catering facilities, in order to ensure that the highest standard of refreshment was maintained!
World trampolining championships Birmingham 2011
Vinnie had a 7.00am start  each day, but he said it was all worthwhile when he looked down on the empty arena floor before any of the bouncing started. He said it  was very romantic and gave him a spine tingling thrill being part of all the pomp and circumstance.  He also confessed to a secret hankering for one  of the mahoooosive flags as a souvenir, to use as a “bedspread” on his bed!  What is he like?
Vinnie 5
We couldn’t resist asking him if he had been tempted to have a “cheeky bounce” while no one was looking …. but he just gave us a rye smile and added mysteriously “Now that would be telling!”

Nomming In The Jungle?

andys nokia 037
Did anyone else hear Ant say “Nom” when he was describing a Bush Tucker trial on Sunday night?

Monday, 28 November 2011

Builder’s Bum

Oh dear, cracks are appearing …..
Builders Bum
……. Nigel’s got builder’s bum! It really is NOT our view of choice ! It's a good job we are taking him to town later on today to purchase his Christmas outfit of choice, as there is only so much of Nigel's bum cleavage we can cope with!

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Sinister Undercurrents Within Marmite Works of Art..... A Product Placement Too Far?

Hmmmmmmm, much as Darrell, Nigel and myself like, adore Marmite …..
Marmite Art
I’m not sure if we could live with these objects d’arts hanging on the walls at Chateau Castle Greyskull …. just looking at them brings the taste of marmite into my mouth, if that makes any sense? In the kitchen, yes, but in the bedroom …… I have some misgivings …..
It could be construed, by some, that having a picture of a Marmite jar in your chambre de slumber  might leave you open to slightly sinister auto-suggestive undertones …..imagine, upon waking, seeing a giant jar of your savoury spread of choice in front of you, you could easily (if you are not of strong enough character) find yourself  succumbing to the sub-conscious message that Marmite could, must be part of your breakfast repast, even though you rather fancied marmalade for a change that morning …… spooky!  No wonder they have banned it in Denmark!

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Keeping Nigel and Marcel Occupied

Tubes of Millions sweets
Nigel had Marcel round to play yesterday, but they were both in a very rambunctious mood and in order to return some semblance of calm and order to Chateau Castle Greyskull I decided that Nigel and Marcel needed a structured activity to occupy them, rather than having them running round the house and chucking lego!
Tubes of millions
So I gave them three tubes of Andy’s “millions” to count, on the pretext of my gathering information for an up and coming confectionary review.
Bubble Gum Millions
To be honest I don’t think counting really is their forte ….. they used their fingers and toes (and noses), they asked for a calculator, and attempted several tally charts, but they never seemed to get beyond 10 without having to start again!
Strawberry Flavor Millions
However, it kept them occupied for about an hour and a half, until Marcel wondered out aloud that if he swallowed several mouthfuls of the millions, one after another and then jumped up and down, if Nigel could hear them rattle inside him!
Millions sweets
I give up!
Millions sweets 2
What are they like??
Bubble Gum Millions 1

Friday, 25 November 2011

Darrell Is Very Touched

Sugar Mouse
Louise from the Office next door bought Darrell a present yesterday, she said she saw it in the sweetie shop and thought of him ……. he was very, very touched.  Although very partial to all confectionary, Darrel said that he was going to put it in his treasure box as he couldn’t bear to eat it and said if he kept it there it would help remind him that he too should do more random acts of kindness himself. 

Thursday, 24 November 2011

The Pleasure And The Pain!

I seem to have gained rather a reputation among the young ladies at school as someone who has a keen interest in food, a discerning and refined palate and a healthy appetite!
Master Chef
So I was very honoured when they asked me to sample some of the dishes that they had prepared for the preliminary rounds of a regional Masterchef competition
Masterchef 1
It would have been rude not to accept their kind offer and I prepared myself by only having a cauliflower and broccoli cup a soup and a ryvita with marmite for my lunch so that I was in a ravenous state for the judging …..
Masterchef 4
I loved the steak pie ….  the pastry was well and truly puffy and the steak tender in a gorgeous gravy ….. nom, nom, nom!
Masterchef 2
I felt I had to try three banana and maple muffins before being able to declare them to be  “As light as an angels breath and extremely morish”
Masterchef 3
However my overall favourite was a fruit and cream pastry dish in the shape of the Olympic Rings …. it was a culinary triumph and very original.
Washing Up after Masterchef competition
To thank the young ladies for their wonderful hospitality I naturally offered to help them with the washing up …. unfortunately they piled it up very enthusiastically and as I was feeling rather full by that time it took me quite a long time to work my way through ……. the hands that do dishes !

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

We’re All WANTED men!
Darrell was bored and surfing the net when he stumbled upon a Wanted Poster programme ….
So he made a poster for each of us.
What is he like?

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here!

I'm A Celebrity Jungle Camp
Did we fool you?  Bet you thought we’d been called in at the last minute to cover for Ant and Dec while they were recovering from a nasty attack of the squits!!!!!
While Darrell and Nigel have been away on their Sun £9.50 holiday they had only managed to catch quick snatches of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, our very favourite televisual viewing of choice at this time of year.
They had both become very embroiled in the entertainment scene  at their  site in the evenings, and had partaken vigorously in the karaoke, cabaret time, party dances and quiz nights.  BUT, fortunately for them, I had set SKY to record I’m A Celeb  for them.  So when they returned, we all bedded down on the settee for an I’m A Celeb Fest! Darrell was a bit subdued at first, because this time last year Stacey Solomon was very much his Queen of the Jungle, but once he set his eyes on Jessica-Jane ….. he soon perked up!!
Jessica Jane Clement
…… and to get us really in the mood, Auntie Jan had sent us some bulging jelly bugs to create our own bush tucker trial…..
Bulging Bugs
…… which we decided to do in the garden to add an air of authenticity to the proceedings ….
Bush Tucker Trial
…… but the bugs were quite delicious, and we nommed away quite happily, which sort of defeated the object of the trial!
And and Dec
As we looked round the garden we saw that there was quite a lot of scope for more trails ….
Bush Tucker Trial 4 Bush Tucker Trail 5
As we have a sort of ponging, fetid swamp like tank ….
Bush Tucker Trial 3
….. and a few dark, dank pipes that are bound to harbour all manner of creepy crawlies……
Bush Tucker Trial 1
………. So if you want to see Nigel embrace every challenge we set him and EAT everything that he meets on his path, even if he isn’t meant to, pick up your phones and vote NIGEL 123 456 789
Bush Tucker Trail 2
Or on the other hand you could vote for Sinitta … for lots of girlie squeals and not a lot of eating!!