Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Mondays, Mail and Me: Parcel from 'Merica

Did we do any thing new? Yes we did, we signed a couple of slates. The Jewel in the crown of my home town is Tredegar House. It was built by the Morgan family - parts of it are mediaeval but the front of it is much later, 17th and 18th century. It used by the American Army as billets for officers during WW2 and was sold after the last Lord Tredegar died without an heir and was a Catholic school through my childhood. The Convent is was linked to had a new, state of the art school built alongside it in the 1960s and the old house was threatened with demolition. The Town Council bought it - despite much opposition - and began the laborious process of restoration. My father was a wrought iron worker and he won the contract to restore the railings and side gates. He was so proud of this and made sure that his grandchildren knew just how important it was for him. 
In the early years of this century the National Trust took a 50 year lease on the house. The council had reached the bottom of the money pit and were getting pretty desperate. This action has done several things for the house. The number of visitors has increased dramatically because it is listed in the NT guidebook. The NT has begun a long programme of restoration and conservation and people locally are more involved than ever before. 
This year the NT have wrapped the whole house in scaffolding and covered that in plastic sheeting because the roof is to be stripped and replaced. They have put in place a scheme where people can pay a fee - £20 - and they can sign a slate before it goes up onto the roof. I mentioned it to Mr M and so on Saturday we went down there and performed the deed. We had two slates. We dedicated one to our parents and I added a note telling about my Dad and his restoration of the railings. The other we dedicated to us, the children and grandchildren and great grandchildren.

 Did I have any mail worth talking about oooooooooh yes!!! A parcel came from 'Merica. I have a cousin ... actually I have over 30 cousins but I have one cousin who lives in Hollywood. Yes the real movie capital. He lives within sight of the Hollywood sign, just around the corner from where the Oscars are held and he is an actor, writer, artist and teacher but mostly he is my cousin. Recently he took a nostalgic trip to New Orleans and as he knows I just love to receive postcards from anywhere he sent me a parcel. It contained strings of beads and postcards. He explained that the strings of beads are called throws by the inhabitants of New Orleans, the strings are thrown from balconies and from the floats in the carnival and - those of a nervouse dispositon should stop reading now and start again after the picture - if you catch a "throw" you are supposed to expose parts of your anatomy. Females should bare their breasts and males their ... junk I think is the latest euphemism. I was excused this task because I am not in New Orleans - and the weather is too cold.
I was so thrilled to receive my parcel. I have told everyone about it and I am pretty darned sure that the beads will be very useful when Miss Boo gets involved in the next show with the Pantomime Society.
One thing that kind of shocked me was the fact that the value of the beads etc was put on the customs form as $6 but the postage cost $22.50. I think that showed me just how much my beloved cousin cares for me...... and even though we have never met face to face he really knows me quite well

my thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me coming back for more

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

The Quilt nicker and the Enabler

Have I said recently that I dearly love this man? no? well I do and I have done for nearly 37 years. Even after all that time he can still make me guffaw with laughter in the most inappropriate places and my tummy still does that funny little contraction when I see him come through the door.

Soooooo, when I woke up cold and a bit shivery because somehow the duvet no longer covered me, I got up to go to the bathroom and as I walked past the end of the bed he moved so I said

"You're a quilt nicker, look it's touching the floor on your side of the bed"
"You made me do it," he replied, "you piled it up in the middle of the bed and forced me to take it" There was a slight pause as he adjusted his pillows

"You enabled me to do it," he said with a degree of satisfaction in his voice,"you're an enabler!"

It was a close run thing but I managed to get to the bathroom before there was an "accident". I was still chuckling about it an hour later and I know that every time I drag the duvet back onto the bed I will think about it and smile.

Monday, 13 February 2017

Memos, Mail, Me: A birthday weekend

There was a birthday this weekend and that meant there were birthday cards in the mail for a certain gentleman. We like cards.

In the past we have used the week surrounding Mr M's birthday to go somewhere, not always but for the last several years. This year we couldn't think of anywhere we wanted to be other than at home. We went out for a little ride around.
Mr M loves to drive, we decided many years ago that it is his main hobby and all hobbies cost money so the cost of the fuel is covered and we don't feel guilty if we travel 200 miles in a circle just to be out in the car because it is "A Hobby". My hobby is 40mph photography so once again we fit together very well.

We drove kind of north-ish which took us up the valley through Pontymister, Risca, Cwmcarn etc until we detoured a bit and found an old road and it snowed on us - that's what the picture should show you, the snow falling as we drove.

we eventually ended up at Raglan Garden Centre where, in a previous life I used to work. It's all different now, of course and the "cafe", which was first opened when I worked there and I became the cafe manager (I was the only one employed in the cafe except on summer weekends and bank holidays when we drafted in extra assistance, ...................... totally lost myself there and I daren't delete what I wrote because I'll never remember what....... oh yes, the cafe is now three times as big and has loads of staff - including a chef!!!! But guess what? it took nearly ten minutes for three people to serve me with a pot of tea and a decaff cappucino. *sigh* I thought about the old days then I thought about how exhausting it was on a Saturday when the world and his wife came to the garden centre and they all wanted pie and chips and a pot of tea. Then I was glad I don't have either the responsibility or the need to do it all again.

Miss Boo was away for the weekend with the school. She went to a place in west Wales where they speak Welsh all the time so that the children can do all sorts of activities and learn the language as a real-time thing.

Talking about mail I sent out the first edition of a family newsletter for Mr M's side of the family. A dozen copies went out and I am hoping that there will be a little feedback, although if my side are any example then I might as well try to plait fog.

My thanks to Sian for inventing this meme and keeping me writing

Monday, 6 February 2017

Memos, Mail and Me - first edition


January was mostly shut. Even the view above was shut the day Mr M took me for a little drive and we decided to come home the pretty way. The camera was poised and as we came around the bend I clicked and then realised that the normal view where a person could see all the way to Brecon was covered in mist - shut! As was January.

A niggling chest infection kept me low for most of the month. I so wanted to do things and take part in things but by the time I had looked at my emails all I could do was snuggle into my bettermaker quilt and watch mindless TV. Eventually I decided not to fight it and just didn't do anything much.

Now it is February and I am feeling a little better. This weekend Started on Thursday with a flare of the inflammation in my wrist that I haven't had for ten years! I gave in straight away, took strong painkillers and wrapped it in warm fleece. By Saturday it was fine but I had a tummy upset that kept me close to the bathroom all day. Do you know what is worse than someone saying "I had that" and giving you too much information? It's someone saying "There's a bug going around".
I don't give a flying wossname if there's a bug going around! I have an upset tummy and feel like a wrung out dishcloth, who cares if anyone else has it? I have it and it sucks!
The day was made better by the arrival of a parcel from Amazon. four DVDs! for me! I spent some of my Christmas money.
I long ago decided that the cost of going to the cinema was so much and I don't like going on my own so two tickets are £20+ and we can buy the DVD for just over £10 when it first comes out.
While I was feeling a little better I made a list of all the recent films that I wanted to see and I went on Amazon and ordered them. Four DVDs for just over £20.
We sat and watched one on Sunday - I say we watched but really Mr M sat with me and snored gently while I watched Florence Foster Jenkins. Meryl Streep is always good and Hugh grant has matured nicely - Thelma Barlow is in there too and John Sessions. Made me cry a little.

My Thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me interested in writing

Saturday, 14 January 2017

A splendid day out

No photographs. I took the camera but didn't switch it on. Still not feeling 100% but I really felt that if we didn't go out I would be stuck in the house forever.

We went to buy a coat for Mr M.

We failed. wrong sizes and wrong prices. Ah well.

We went to Staunton and Corse to the garden centre because their tea and coffee is always good. Then we headed to Upton on Severn and Clive's Fruit Farm. We had jacket potatoes, shan't bother with those again. It must be the winter weather cos the food was lukewarm and flavourless. Mr M had Chilli and I had just cheese on mine. I couldn't even taste it. Mr M said his chilli wasn't and could only be described as stew, and not very flavourful stew either. He said it tasted as though it had been made from tomato soup and carrots.

Anyhooooo. We did stroll around the shop and bought a lovely pork joint and a pasty and scotch egg for Mr M for his tea.

Then we headed home. As we were driving along a lane somewhere we saw a sign that said

"Peacocks for Sale"

"That's not something you see too often" remarked Mr M and then we both burst out laughing. It quite made up for feeling lousy and eating warm food.

Tomorrow we have roast pork on the menu - with roast potatoes, carrots, parsnips yorkshire pudding (yes, I know but we like yorkshire pudding) and gravy and perhaps a trifle afterwards.


Monday, 26 December 2016

Me on Monday - No photographs

A lovely Christmas with family in contact throughout the day. Lovely meal and then a peaceful evening knitting. Today we slice up the meat for the freezer and then sleaze.

I left the camera by the computer and didn't touch either all day

Merry Christmas everyone

Monday, 19 December 2016

Me on Monday - still emptying boxes

It's been a week of rediscovery here at Macey Towers. Finding spaces for the stuff that lived happily for 20 years in the backs of cupboards.
Dishes and bowls that had been dragged screaming into the harsh light of day and now were being judged as to their suitability for The New Kitchen.

What was new this weekend? a new curtain track in the breakfast room to replace the one I managed to break when I opened the curtains after three weeks of not being able to get to them. As the curtains were thick with sawdust and absolutely minging they went down to the washing machine and spent the afternoon on the radiator drying. Mr M was very brave and stood on two chairs (one for each foot, not on top of each other) and fixed the new track to the wall and then put the curtains onto the track.
The Charity Shop boxes are by the front door, I have found a new place for the china cabinet to live and Miss Boo spent an energetic hour carrying books upstairs ready for grandma to put them onto the bookshelf that had to move for the china cabinet to................. you get the picture, I was playing put and take with furniture all week.
Today my lovely daughter and my favourite son-in-law spent half an hour moving the last of the boxes down to the cellar and stowing the cookery books into a space until after Christmas. Tonight we get the tree up and decorated and then tomorrow Eldest Son and his family will arrive and the festive season will begin

My thanks to Sian for inventing this meme and keeping me writing