About Me

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Worcester, Worcestershire, United Kingdom
Born in the year of the Coronation, I'm a Baby Boomer. In April of this year I decided I too would have a Diamond Jubilee celebration and completely change my life and that of my Husband's in the process

Tuesday, 22 May 2007

Leaving On A Jet Plane.

I’m going to get an entry in now, I have lots to do in the next few days and then on Sunday I’m off to Germany, which should be my last solo, jet-setting trip, as Catherine should be back in England in August.

I now have TWO, new chickens. I went to pick them up on Saturday, I’ll let Isabella introduce them in her Blog. Chicken Run - The Great Escape

When I arrived at the collection point I gave my name and the lady in charge took me by the hand and led me away. She said she wanted to talk to me. I thought, she was going to say there was a mistake and I couldn’t have any girls after all. No. She wanted to ask if I would consider one, that was in a cage on her own, who had a slight injury. No pressure but she needed to go somewhere quiet and where she would have a bit of TLC. I’d only spoken on the phone but I was obviously marked down as a little eccentric who would go the extra mile in looking after the birds….Yes, I expect that is me.

So, that was Letitia (Letty). She has a sort of bruise, or blood clot in her one shoulder but she seems OK, so hopefully, whatever it is, it will clear up and she won’t have any problems with it.

The other girl that came with us is Josephine (Josie). Both the new girls are as dark as Isabella is fair . I use family names for my girls, these two new ones are going back into my Family Tree.

Unlike Isabella, the new girls seemed much stronger and more clued up. They knew how to feed and drink and I’ve had an egg every day from both. Their eggs are browner than Isabella’s.

I have a poached egg every morning for breakfast but even so, the fridge is quickly filling with eggs. It will be good to be able to give away the surplus again , as most people are very appreciative of such fresh, wholesome, free range eggs. Apart from Chris of course, who when offered the choice between a supermarket egg and one from my garden, he preferred the supermarket one because mine had come from a chicken’s bottom…..err, HELLO Chris, where do you think the supermarket ones came from? Grew in the box?????

After my chicken liberation run, I popped up to  the Black Country to have a look at an Open Weekend on the canal, the weather was not very good but it did reawaken my longing for buying a Narrowboat.



There's something so special about canal bridges, whether brick



or metal. 


The last remaining chimneys of our industrial heritage look beautiful alongside a canal, built to transport their products.


Whenever there's an event, there's a Traction Engine.





Something evil lurks in my garden, its very small, not much larger than a pinhead and it bites me and when it does I have blood running from the bite. How can something so small do so much damage? Even worse is the reaction. I got several of these bites on my left leg on Sunday. For some reason they prefer my left leg, maybe they are Catholic (left footers), I don’t know but they’ve made a right mess of it. I have one normal leg and one elephant leg.

I thought I’d pull on my old suede boots today, as protection from the biters when I went down to see the chickens but I couldn’t even get my foot in. So off to the doctor’s went I and now I’m taking three sorts of tablets, marvellous!!!!

I’m planning to go to a book signing on Saturday. It’s a new book about my beloved Rowley Regis, I think I read there are 300 photos in it and its called Haystacks to Chimney Stacks, I’m presuming its charting some of the progression from poor agricultural land to industry and its accompanying waste lands. I'm supposed to be meeting my friend there and having lunch, she’s from Manchester but apart from that she’s very nice.

(Sorry Jan).

Not much else going on so will update when I get back from Germany, with new pictures of Isabella (grandchild, not chicken).

Before I go, some garden shots.

I don't remember planting that!


Morgan having a close friendship with Catherine's Olive Tree.


While I was busy getting bitten I took this of Merlin


and then later, I caught him on my bed, he looked so comfy I didn’t like to disturb him.


Saturday, 19 May 2007

Who the hell invented the Recorder……… and why? Maybe it was by a deaf man, who wished to inflict punishment on all those who were not similarly afflicted.

My class were taking their QCA exams this week but first lesson on Thursday morning they had a little light relief. Music? Well it was supposed to be music, I was putting all their Literacy Targets onto their reports via a laptop and was looking forward to 40 minutes peace while I got on with the job. Only when they reached The Music Room, it was already occupied. So, they came back to the classroom, where I was working. This meant I was then subjected to a noise that can best be described as 100 cats having their insides drawn out through their nostrils with red, hot pincers. I remember Catherine having a brief interest in joining a Recorder club; thankfully she didn’t stay interested for long.

On Wednesday Mike and I went to a house in a village on the Welsh Borders. It was called The Great House and their garden is open under The National Garden Scheme this weekend. Mike needed to interview the owner for his gardening programme. I didn’t take my camera, as I felt it would be a bit intrusive into their privacy but, oh, what a place! It was in the middle of the village, just by the village green, two storey and very long. The gates, drive and the dimensions of the house were perfect and of course the enormous old front door was bang in the middle, just like a child’s drawing. The delightful lady of the house met us and took us through to the garden where we were greeted by their Pekinese and Black Labrador Dogs.

The entrance hall was large and square, panelled and had a huge old fireplace at the opposite end, where an aromatic, log fire was blazing, with a cosy armchair alongside. Just inviting you to sit and read awhile. There were flagstones, wide oak floorboards and ancient doors. After a tour of the beautiful gardens, we sat in the kitchen and drank Earl Grey tea and nibbled chocolate biscuits. For my American readers, you don’t have anything as old and as beautiful as this, that may not bother you but for me, visiting places like The Great House, makes my heart sing, I can’t imagine living in a place where you can’t easily see houses that date back to Medieval times.

I left The Great House, feeling so in touch with the history of the place (King Charles 1 is supposed have danced up on the large landing) and clutching a plant that I had been given by its delightful lady owner. Now her children have moved out of the family home she does Bed & Breakfast, as she feels the house is too big for just the two of them. I can’t imagine a lovelier place to stay, I might be tempted to take Mike there for a romantic night.

Mike picked me up from school on Thursday and we did a Sainsbury shop. I wanted some flowers, we always have flowers. What a bargain! They’ve been selling these bunches of Peonies at £7.99 a bunch. They are of a type I used to have in my garden many years ago, cyclamen pink and the heavenliest, rose scent you could imagine. I can’t find one to buy anywhere but I’m hoping our gardening expert friend, Reg Moule will be able to identify it for me. Anyway there were two bunches reduced to 99p but still looking as fresh as daisies. It’s so nice to buy £16 of flower for under £2!

After shopping we called into our local Farm Shop for lunch, where I made a complete tit of myself. I jumped out of the car and a man, who was passing by, looked at me and I thought, ooh, I know you and raised my hand to wave and started to say Hi. I abruptly stopped when I realised I knew him from the television. It was Paul Martin from Flog It.

I did feel silly.

                  Paul Martin

They had been filming there and had just lunched. Now I’m not saying it was Paul’s fault but honestly!!! There were about eight of them in the team, had lunch and didn’t lave a penny as a tip! How tight.

I’m going to collect Isabella’s new companions today, I’m expecting some fun and games there, as when I got Isabella she had to be taught to eat and drink and there was a lot of pecking going on at first. I’m hoping that if there are two they’ll stand a better chance against Isabella, who I think is nicer natured than her previous companion, Abigail. I don't like to think of their previous lives in a Battery Cage, I so glad I'm able to give a couple a chance of real life. This reminds me, I haven't had my breakfast yet of poached eg on toast, Isabella lays me an egg every day now, bless her.

I know I shall call one Letitia (Letty) after my 2 and 3 x great grandmothers. The other willbe named when I get her, as I don’t have an obvious family name in mind at the moment.

Simon has offered me his old, BMW convertible, which he has just finished restoring. If it passes it’s MOT in June I shall have it at the beginning of July, which I’m rather excited about.

I’m off to The Black Country later today, to see a weekend on the canal (The Cut) of all sorts of memorabilia relating to Stewarts & Lloyds , a now defunct company who produced steel tubes. They built a small village at the entrance to the works for their workers and many of my family lived and worked there, my mother being one of them. I’ll take my camera, as I’m sure there will be some interesting photos waiting to be taken.

Sunday, 13 May 2007

I Think We've Had Enough Rain Now...Thanks!

What a wet miserable day it is! I’m supposed to be doing some housework but its hard to feel like doing anything in this dull, grey light.

I don’t know why I don’t seem to have the time to do a weekly diary entry but I always seem to be catching up on the last two or three weeks just lately. I need to organise myself better and get more motivated.

I so nearly broke my leg the week before last. I was going to the greenhouse with the hosepipe, when Mike stopped my with some question while I was crossing the bridge over the boggy bit. Normally you would have your feet on two or three slats at any one time but because I turned sideways, to speak to him, my foot was just on one, in the middle and it broke. My foot shot through to the ground below and I started to topple sideways. I could feel my leg giving, it was trapped between the remaining slats. Mike grabbed me and pulled me back upright, preventing a serious injury but I still have the bruises.


Merlin on the bridge with the offending slat behind him. Afterwards Mike said it was lucky he was there to save me. I had to point out that if he hadn’t have stopped me in the first place, then it wouldn’t have happened.!!!! The bridge is only two years old and this shouldn’t have happened. We’re getting some replacement slats sent from the manufacturer.

Last weekend was a long weekend and on the Saturday afternoon we went down to Bath to see Mike’s daughter. The weather was lovely, we sat in the garden all afternoon and I really caught the sun. We had a lovely time chatting to Chloe, who is a teenager next year! 0704050014

Hug for Poppa

Where on earth did that time go?

Abigail went to a sleepover party, so we only saw her for a quick hug.

Whilst sitting in the garden we met the latest member of the family…George. 0704050008

David and Sam joined us mid-afternoon and there were lots of nibbles, wine and trampolening. I abstained from the latter, as memories of the last time, when Catherine bounced me off onto the floor, are still painful!

Mike and I went to see the house that Sue and her husband have bought, which is having to be extended and altered to become an adequate sized home. It’s in a lovely position but oh my god! What ARE Bath property prices like. Mike and I couldn’t afford a shoebox there!! Sue didn’t want to come whilst it is in the demolition stage but I didn’t think it looked that bad.

We stayed for dinner at Sue‘s, which was lovely, Monkfish wrapped in Parma Ham. (how the other half live eh?) and poor Mike was driving, so couldn’t have any of the wine.

On Bank Holiday Monday, we went out for a drive to Gloucestershire. There is this church we had noticed recently from the M5 just before Junction 11A. We didn’t know why it seemed to have recently appeared and it looked very striking on top of a hill.


It look us a little while to find it. Its high above the village of Churchdown, up a long, narrow track, which only those that knew it, or nosey parkers like us would ever go up.


We were lucky, it’s normally kept locked but a couple who are planning to marry there were being shown round, so we got to have a quick peek. It was well worth going to have a look around.


The views are amazing.


After that we tried to get lunch somewhere nice but the Forest of Dean doesn’t boast many welcoming pubs. They mostly looked rundown and lacking in character. We found one that looked good and the food appeared to be excellent, we got a table but then realised it was going to be at least an hour before we ate, so decided not to bother.

I was having one of my strange days, when I can’t stay awake and must have fallen asleep at least 30 times. I hate that, I think I’d eaten too much wheat, which has that effect on me.

It was back to work Tuesday and lots of talk about SATs and QCA testing which starts tomorrow.

On Friday afternoon I went to visit a new friend, who lives in Wolverhampton, we met online ,through our family history research. I wanted to go to David Austin Roses, which is a short distance from where she lives. She’s like me in that she says what she thinks and we laughed at a lot of things that some might have found a bit questionable in taste but it does you good to have a laugh and each to his own. There’s a pretty little tearoom there and they do CAKE, of the home made type, so that was a good trip out.

We’ve decided we will have another trip out, to a National Trust Property next time but it must include CAKE! On the way home I stopped to take a photo of this rather unusual Sainsbury’s.


Mike had an I Pod for his birthday present, which he’s very pleased with but neither of us has been brave enough to open the box yet. No doubt I will have to sort it out.

I had some GHD Hair Straighteners for my birthday, which cost more than his I Pod. I’m getting to grips with them now. They’re good for straightening my hair, obviously. Last night I used them to curl my hair. We were going to the Hereford Police Choir annual dinner . Mike’s got an honourary position with them because of all the work he does for them as a Compere at their concerts. So I had a lot of loose, ringlet type curls and I was really pleased with the way it looked.

Hereford Police are part of the West Mercia Constabulary and last night their Chief Constable Paul West was there. (Aren’t Chief Constables getting younger?) Before we started the meal he wanted to say a little about the member of his force, who was shot dead whilst attending a domestic dispute last Sunday . Richard (Ricky ) Gray had been commended for bravery 5 times and had been with West Mercia for four years. He twice saved people from drowning in the River. We observed a minutes quiet reflection in Ricky’s memory.

I hadn’t been to one of their ‘Do’s’ for a few years but recognised some of the people and chatted to them. Their Pianist came up to say hello and I said, Are you going to have to ‘Sing for your Supper’ tonight? I had to stop myself from laughing out loud when she said ‘No. But I’ll be playing the piano’.

I was talking to Catherine on the phone this morning, I’m going to put our name down for an Allotment, there is a waiting list for some of the sites but hopefully when the annual rent falls due in October, there will be some available. We want to grow our own Veg. She should be living over here by then.

She told me that Flo had said that he was really looking forward to picking Lulu (me) up from the airport. Catherine said, Oh that’s nice but why exactly. He said……because I’ll be able to have a Burger King at the airport!

Just spoke to the man at the Battery Rescue Hen Welfare, he says I can have two girlies next week, so Isabella will have company again, rather than hanging around, forlornly, at the back door, in the hope she can sneak in and join us and pinch some cat food. I found her in the sitting room the other day, having a conversation with her reflection in the glass door of the Video cabinet.

Sometimes this is an odd house.

And I thought this was going to be a short entry!


Wednesday, 9 May 2007

I've Been Tagged!

No! I haven't been given an ASBO (Anti Social Behaviour Order) I’ve been personally tagged by Deb at Whatever and I have to give 7 facts about me that you may not already know.


I may have written about some of these things before in my Blog, so if you already know some of them….tough! Unlike Lyn at Britsblog, who has listed one of her 7 as having had sex with a woman, I won’t be coming out with anything quite so personal, as members of my family and my husband’s colleague’s read this.


1.    I should have been called Wendy but when Mum went into the Maternity Home to have me, she found she was in the next bed to a woman she knew who was called Wendy. She didn’t want the woman to think I had been named after her, soI became Linda. My middle name is Gillian.

2.    I’ve got one leg longer than the other, which you wouldn’t notice, other than in A – Line skirts, when the line of the skirt goes off to one side, rather than hanging symmetrically.

3.    When I was in my mid-teens I was obsessed with death, probably because both my Grans had just died. I was convinced I was going to die a virgin and that I would die young. Neither of these things happened.

4.    Having revealed my husband’s oddly named girlfriends, I think maybe I should come clean with some of my ex boyfriends, or short term relationships. One was named Dick Barton, no, he wasn’t the Special Agent. Another had a glass eye and was a drummer with a group, I also went out with his younger brother but not at the same time. Although I did go out with the younger brother at the same time as someone else.

5.    I have a really bad habit of pulling long hairs from my head and using it as dental floss, only when the real thing is not available. I just can’t bear food stuck in my teeth.

6.    I can fall asleep absolutely anywhere and in fact just did for about two minutes. I’ve been known to sleep through Pantomimes.

7.    My daughter is named after Catherine, in Wuthering Heights, I read the book at the age of 15 and said, if ever I had a daughter, she would be named Catherine.


I’m supposed to Tag 7 others now but I’ll just leave it open to anyone who wants to have a go but if you do, please leave a link in the comments, so I can read yours, although I think most of my readers have already been tagged.



Friday, 4 May 2007

Star Wars Day

May the Fourth be with you.

Today is my darling husband’s birthday and today we will be celebrating. First we will lunch in town and then a special dinner at home tonight, just the two of us because even after nearly 25 years, that’s what we like best, our own company.

On his birthday I would like to share some secrets with you.

He’s frightened to death of spiders.

In the early 80’s he had a curly perm and wore dark glasses.

He cries at sad films

He can’t make up his mind where to park in car parks and has been known to try three different places before he finds one he likes.

When he was little and companies used to have signs out side showing job vacancies, he thought they must be nice places to work because they said they were ‘Appley Within’

He didn’t like the song Matthew & Son by Cat Stevens because it was written about the place where his first wife worked and he thought that was a bit rude, as she was quite happy there.

He picked girlfriends with the oddest names, like, Dolores Kalapas and Betty Tibbles.

And I love him to bits. Happy Birthday.