Tuesday, 31 January 2017

A Brief Return To The Homeland

We were not the only ones to make a new start back in June last year, Lucy also bid a fond farewell to The Castle and the village Tesco Express (now a One Stop …. how times change).  She bought a house of her own just down the road, in fact, she offered us sanctuary for a month or so while Riverside Towers was still going through, for which we will shall always be eternally grateful. 
Train back to the Homelandtravelling home
We haven’t seen Lu since the New Year, so Darrell and Nigel thought it would be nice if they paid her a visit, especially as Darrell wanted to see her new bathroom, now finished, as he had offered a little (professional) advise on en trend tiling, toothbrush holders and co-ordinating towels.
IMG_0552To get to Lu’s from Evesham, it’s three trains and a bus. The train journey bought back many happy memories of our weekly jaunt to and fro when we first started to look after, the then, baby Iris and as we decided as to whether Evesham really was the place for us.
return to WolverhamptonAs soon as Darrell and Nigel stepped off the last train and headed towards the bus station, they smelt the familiar Wolverhampton air and noticed how people were talking ….
return to the homeland …… wondering, if, in turn, people would remark on their “…not being from these them there parts”, their accents now being of a more rural and countrified type nature!
return to ze homelandPendeford
Naturally, the bus journey was peppered with comments about what had changed, looking for familiar landmarks and wondering if they would bump into any familiar faces.
Through The KeyholeBut finally getting to Lu’s was most welcome ……
Through the keyhole 1….. a cup of tea and a chocolate Hob Nob on arrival, followed shortly after by a meat feast, thin crust pizza with coleslaw and potatoes wedges for tea …… Darrell and Nigel were back in the Homeland, all be it, as aforementioned, just down the road from whence we originally came, but still Happy Days.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Gong Hei Fat Choy Karen & Merci Beaucoup Karen.

Saturday was the Chinese New Year and our much loved fan Karen took us completely by surprise by sending us a very beautiful New Year card, a timely reminder, because, to be honest, it had almost passed us by, especially as we no longer have a Chinese Takeaway across the road like we had back in The Homeland.
Chinese New YearHowever, taking into consideration Darrell’s new eating regime it probably isn’t a bad thing, though we still pine occasionally for a No. 34, 46, 57 and a portion of chips.
Fountain penKaren said some very lovely things to us to start the said Chinese New Year off with and Darrell, in particular, was impressed that Karen had written with a real ink pen, immediately deciding that he would use one too as his Chinese New Years Resolution. We have a couple somewhere, still packed away and he is now determined to find them  and start writing with “style” …… he is also musing what colour ink would best express his personality!  What is he like?
Gong Hei Fat Choy Karen and mahooooooosive THANK YOU for your very kind thoughts.

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Fully Booked In More Ways Than One

According to the noticeboard down the way, the river is almost fully booked for fishing matches every Saturday and Sunday until the end of March …..
Private waters……. so there will be plenty of activity outside Riverside Towers over the coming weeks ……
illegal river fishingCopy of No fish to be taken away
However,  I couldn’t help also taking heed of the warnings about taking fish from the river, which is strictly illegal.
Riverside Fishing PosterNo fish to be taken away
I think Nigel is well over missing our fish back at The Castle, but I think I might just have a word with him just in case. I don’t want to stumble upon a secret hoard of fish swimming around under his bed (in a bowl or similar receptacle of course) and then be forced, through public duty, to hand him over to the relevant authorities ……. that would just be too awful to contemplate.

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Shhhhh …. Nigel and My Chocolate of Choice.

Shhhhhhh, we have to be a touch tactful around Darrell at the moment as he is doing so well on his new healthy eating regime, we would hate to be responsible for any falling off the wagon ……. but …..
Aldi Coconut Crunch……. Nigel and I have a new chocolate of choice, to wit Aldi’s Coconut Crunch.
Aldi Chocolate Crunch.It has it all, white chocolate, coconut and a very distinct and satisfying crunch, it certainly ticks all our boxes, many times over and I am certain it would also tick all Darrell’s boxes too ……. 
diet of lettuce…….. but, for the next little while, he says, until he gets to his target weight, all the crunch he needs will be from his vegetables, but could he just sniff the wrapper!!!!

Friday, 27 January 2017

New Developments On The River Bank

There has been a lot of activity on the  river bank just down the way from us …..
new riverside developmentsI think it might be an extension to the fisherman’s car parking facilities, but, if it were me, I would be erecting a small hut for the purveying of fine doorstep bacon and sausage sandwiches and steaming mugs of tea for the aforementioned fisherman especially on match days.
New pathway And, ……. a new footpath has appeared, which leads to the weir and barge moorings. We used it when it was very overgrown and our passage often risked nettle stung ankles!  In the summer we took our friends Julia, T and Sarah down it and I think they were rather nervous of where we were leading them!  It will certainly be easier to walk along the river, but sadly, it was also a prime spot for our blackberry foraging  (now all pulled up), but that’s progress I suppose.  I shall keep my eyes open for all further developments.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

There She Goes ………...

Darrell and I have a bit of a bet on ……..
wonkey fence..…… when we first took residence at The Towers we all noticed a fence down the road that appeared to be leaning just a little ……
wonky fence bets on……. however, as time has gone on said fence has continued to lurch precariously by the day.
wonky fence. So our wager is when it will finally keel over and meet it’s sad demise  …….
There she blowsDarrell predicts that it will “go” around 14th February, which isn’t really a very romantic prospect, but I think that it is more likely to topple in mid March, either way, if one of us is within three days of our predicted time(before or after), the loser has to invent a new cocktail called “The Keel Over” and present it to the victor!  It’s a win win situation!

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

A Proud And Emotional Moment

Darrell’s return from his first weigh in last night was emotional ……..
Slimmer of the Week……. as he was the Slimmer of the Week.
slimmer of the week.We were sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo proud!
a proud momentHis resolve hasn’t waivered for a single second, as I said, he was emotional, we were emotional, it was …….. emotional!

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Alas, Poor Nigel’s Fluffy Bushes.

Although Nigel doesn’t know the names of a great many plants, he does still take a very keen interest in everything that grows in the hedgerow as we walk along the road, particularly if they are of an unusual type nature ……
fluffy trees…… and so his hedgerow plant of choice these past few weeks, are what he likes to call his fluffy bushes (but now we are sure Mr D at least will be able to identify the species/genus for us, as he knows everything, even when being so far away, in Mexico).
Fluffy bushHowever, I fear poor Nigel will face disappointment on his next walk ……
Hedgerow plants.……. because the rain we have been experiencing these past few days appears to have washed all the fluffiness away …….
Hedgerow plant ….. and I am not sure if, when the sun remerges, the fluff will dry out and fluff up again ….. Mr D?  Nature can be so perplexing at times.

Monday, 23 January 2017

Evesham Boudoir Lounging …..

I am just praying that Darrell doesn’t spot this very glamorous, champagne coloured chaise lounge before it’s sold ……… otherwise I know he will rush home to tell me that it has his name written all over it in  Swarovski crystals and then ask for the £50 to buy it! Chaise lounge for saleHe had set his heart on a said chaise lounge since revelling in the delights of Hugh’s faux leopard skin with the matching gold lame scatter cushions that he has in his ensuite bathroom at his London residence.
cream chiase lounge £50I suppose I should thank goodness that bijoux riverside dwelling does not allow for such “luxuries”, however I don’t doubt Darrell‘s powers of persuasion in that it could be recovered in leopard plush and be every inch as wonderful as Hugh’s, and at that I will just politely hand him the tape measure and ask him exactly where he thinks it would fit in.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

How Romantic Would It Be ……

……. to have an Evesham allotment?
allottment shed On our walk into town we have to go pass the local allotments and I always admit to having a little sigh as we do.
allottment.How romantic would it be to grow your own fruit and vegetables and perhaps the odd cut flower on an allotment, especially when Evesham is renowned for being the Garden of England. I think everything would grow to be absolutely mahooooooosive, brussel sprouts would probably turn out to be as big as cabbages, three foot long carrots would be the norm and as for marrows, well, who knows?
AlottmentHowever, romantic notions do not ploughs and harrows make, so in the end I thinks it’s best that cloches, chitting and hardening off remain a mystery to me. Allotments are a responsibility, so perhaps in the end sharing a communal garden and just watching others do said tilling, ploughing and harrowing would suit me best, especially when sat sitting in a deckchair with a cup of tea and a couple of chocolate hob nobs.

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Nigel’s Deal Breaker

Settling down to every day life in Evesham the subject of hairdressers has inevitably reared it’s head, especially when I had to suggest to Nigel that his hair had started to look a little unruly.  He said I was right, and that he had been thinking the same himself. So off he popped into town to find himself a new hairdresser, saying, as he left, that he had very exacting standards and would be looking for a wall full of certificates before anyone was allowed to set scissors on his “fair locks”.New Hairdresser choiceHowever, when he got back, very neatly coiffed I must say, it became quite obvious that though certificates for hair cutting was important to him, he had been swayed by something completely different ……..
How to choose a hairdresser……. to wit, an ample selection of free help yourself sweeties, well, he reasoned, it would have looked most rude not to allow the lovely Kay to give him a complete restyle and blow dry after he had availed himself of a packet of golden bears, a strawberry mojo and a roll of parma violets and a candy cane while looking at her said certificates ……
How to choose a new hairdresser. Haribo Goldbears ……. not to mention the Tunnocks Teacake he very much enjoyed with his cafeteria coffee.
teacakeWhat is he like …….. if rather full and beautifully coiffed!

Friday, 20 January 2017

2017 Teashop Challenge …… JellyPickleJam

There are an awful lot of teashops and cafes in Evesham, and I sort of think that in 2017 Darrell, Nigel and I should set ourselves the challenge of availling ourselves of each and every one of them.  I think if we visited one per fortnight we could do it, if not all together, certainly in pairs.
JellyPickle Jam 1 So today I thought I would pop in and have a pot of tea at JellyPickleJam .
JellyPickleJam Tea Shop.It did not disappoint, inside was very, very quaint, with decoupaged tables, odd chairs painted to match, upside down metal colanders for lightshades, bunting, vintage cups, saucers and plates and flowers on all the tables.  I felt so at home.
Jelly Pickles Jam As for the menus, well, the Vintage Cream Tea menu ticked all my vintage cream tea  boxes ….. oh my goodness …..
JellyPickleJam menu board….. for me, it would have to be the Countryside Tea, a cheese scone, a hot sausage roll, and handmade chutney, plus a cream scone or piece of cake to follow????  It’s a no brainer, nom, nom, nom. This is definitely a place for us to bring our guests for a treat when they come to stay.
JellyPickleJam Tea ShopThere is also a lot going on with cooking and craft classes, children’s parties and pop in sessions for knitting, crochet and sewing, which would certainly be of interest to Hugh when he makes one of his state visits. They also do a community crop which turns your garden produce into jams and chutneys, how brilliant is that? If only we had a garden!
JellyPickleJam Pot of teaAs I was saving myself for my lunch (and helping support Darrell on his weight lose regime)  I just had a pot of tea, which came with a proper knitted tea cosy and milk in a mini milk bottle. 
For the first teashop of the year, I think I struck gold ….. Dianne, in torridly hot and sunny Florida, you would soooooooo love this place.
16-17 Vine Mews, Evesham, Worcestershire, WR11 4RE

Thursday, 19 January 2017

A No Calorie Meal?

Poor Darrell, he is taking his new eating regime very, very seriously, and I am fully behind him, but I am afraid Nigel, though supportive, also sees it as an opportunity to get one up on Darrell!
Bug BallsYesterday he was at a loose end so popped into our local Pets Are Us  Just For Pets for a mooch, hoping to see some cute rabbits, guinea pigs etc. only to find they were all gone, all they had were fish and they were off limits to staff only. A little disappointed he decided to browse the shelves instead, as he had nothing better to do.Live reptile foodHe was immediately drawn to the bags of brightly coloured Bug Balls and couldn’t help but wonder what they tasted like and if they were chewy! The “live” food also looked very interesting, if a bit jumpy and wriggly. Watching the Bush Tucker Trials on I’m A Celebrity has erm ……. opened a whole new world of culinary possibilities to us, though we have, as of yet, never felt the urge to veer in that direction.
Live reptile food no calories. bush tucker trailHowever, Nigel, with his lively imagination, wondered that as there didn’t appear to be any calorific values on any of the boxes they could be considered as a “free” food on Darrell’s diet. Unfortunately, there were no serving suggestions either, so he is now going to see if Ant and Dec has brought out a spin off Bush Tucker Trial Cook Book, before making any “helpful” suggestions to Darrell.  Heaven help us all!