Sunday, 29 April 2012


. . .  and it's absolutely filthy outside.  Windy and lashing with rain.  On days like today I am incredibly thankful and grateful (in a very humble sort of way) for my four walls and a roof dwelling that keeps me snug, warm and dry.  You'd never think it is nearly May, it is so dark and gloomy.  It looks as if it has been raining all night and I gather there are flood warnings out - in areas with a hosepipe ban. 

Yesterday was truly a lovely day.  At about 1:00, we all arrived at the South Lodge Hotel to be greeted by DG who efficiently and loudly escorted us to the private room in which we had our meal.  A lovely room it was too with big doors that opened onto a little garden area.  Such a shame it was so wet and miserable because it would have been nice to have our coffee out there, but never mind, it was a super view anyway.  DD had colour coordinated and themed everything around owls.  I love owls in a non- nature/wildlife, rather soppy, decorative sort of way and everything was owly.  The cake, the place labels, the card, the gift tags . . .  you name it, there was an owl somewhere nearby.  She had used friends who have their own little business from home - paining on glass or plastic (or card), cake making, flower arranging, fimo models.  She knows I love to support local enterprise so I was so thrilled that she'd done that.  The cake and the flowers had been done by two of  'my mums' - mums of children currently in my class.

The food was very good too, and not shockingly expensive.  We all ate from the set menu and it was scrummy.  First of all I had pate (smooth and very delicious) and accompaniments - a lovely chutney that tasted home made, gherkins, olives and semi sun dried tomatoes with what tasted like fried bread but crispy and crunchy all the way through and with no hint of fattiness or grease.  After that I had duck on garlic mash with green beans and 'natural jus' (which caused great merriment as we tried to explain to DG what it was).  The duck was perfectly cooked and the jus delicious, but there was rather too much garlic mash and I felt the beans could have been cooked for a few more minutes.  Didn't stop me eating them though!  After that I had a 'trio of ice creams', a rather pretentious way of describing three scoops and some chocolate sauce and finally it was all topped off with some very nice coffee.  I was presented with gifts, we had a bottle of bubbly (yum) and it all made me feel very special and very loved.  What more could one ask for?  Thank you, everyone, it really was lovely.

And then it was home for a bit of a rest after which the cake was cut and a bit eaten.  I really couldn't face any more food that day but several of the family proceeded to cut slices off the ham, open the pringles and generally play slight havoc with today's food arrangements - which actually doesn't matter one little bit!  I had to admit I did finish off the wine: after paying a fortune for a bottle at the hotel, there was no way I was leaving any behind so it came home with us.  Fortunately it had a screw top.

So, on to today.  It's going to be a stay at home and keep warm kind of day.  I've put my precious tomatoes outside but in a sheltered place.  I've started another pair of socks.  Don't smile - this time they are a gift for a friend.  And then after that I am going to use a bit of my Hobbycraft present to get some plain sock yarn to have a go at some patterns - ribbing, perhaps.  Oooh, don't I live an exciting life?  :0)

The cake (which got a bit bashed on one side but was still absolutely brilliant - gotta love that owl!)

. . . and the flowers which are in a lovely spherical bowl with 'bubbles' in the bottom, standing on a mirror - very artistic!

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