Saturday, 25 January 2020

Noah saved the day.........

Wednesday I had to be at the hospital for 11am for surgery, nil-by-mouth of course from the night before. I was prepared for an overnight stay and warned it could be a little longer. 4:20pm I was told my op had been cancelled. So messaged Hubby to come and take me home.

While I was waiting for him I messaged some of the people that needed to know starting with my children. After all the expected conversations Daughter suggested that the next day we do something extra "as it's a day you didn't expect to have free" she said, and suggested Noah's Ark Museum  which has been docked on the Ipswich Waterfront for three months and we've never found the time to visit before. Ideal!

We all loved it and it gave us plenty to admire and discuss. I adore all wood and the craftsmenship was wonderful. We are not religious as a family but mostly understand the bible stories and were amused by the narrative boards a little by some of the translations from Dutch. The dialogue was all done in a humorous way and very entertaining.

Then a walk along the Waterfront in the sunshine and a cuppa in a cafe.
My spirits were lifted.

Sunday, 19 January 2020


Oh my it certainly has felt like a full on fortnight! We've been catching up with friends that we didn't fit in around the festive season, so a couple of lunches out and an evening out as well as our usual evenings out.

I've had a theatre night and we've had the cinema which I've already told you about.

For SERVSC Bloodrunners there was an evening at The Rosie Neonatal Hospital in Cambridge where they showed us around and fed us well with pizzas and cakes to say thank you for the milk runs that supply their premature babies when mum can't.

And a quiz night held in Ipswich which was good fun and also raised over £400 for the SERVSC charity

I'm out again tomorrow, lunching with friends but today we were home, catching up with ourselves, doing some much needed housework and thinking about packing for two weeks in Florida starting 4th February but first I've another short stay in hospital starting this Wednesday to pack for, plus we did have a visit from Daughter, R, O and the dog, a very welcome distraction! 

Friday, 17 January 2020

Date Night (part 2)......

As mentioned before, this is our Christmas present to each other.

I'd received another 50% discount at Beefeater which expired Thursday and as we were busy every day of the week before that, then Thursday was decided to be our cinema Christmas date.

It's quite a long film and as we had Daughter, R and O here for lunch and the dog for the afternoon too we decided to go and eat first film second. This time the Tesco Clubcard voucher worked and we learned that you register your car in the cinema and don't pay the parking meter.

I'll not paste the story outline here as those who love Star Wars know it already and those that don't, don't care and to me it is far too confusing.

Seems there are 18 Star Wars films which started in 1977 with Episode IV and this most recent is Episode IX.

So story and maths aside, it was the usual mix of clever film making, loud dramatic fighting scenes both in spaceships and hand-to-hand light sabre battles, familiar music and the occasional very witty line in amongst the dialogue packed script.

As expected there were some amazing "other planet" creatures and they brought back many of the original cast in cameos or hologram messages and they even included the late Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia even though she'd died before this film had been written.

I didn't hate it and Hubby loved what on earth do I get him for his February birthday?

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Theatre: Sherlock........

​     "Who'd be interested in this old relic, Holmes?" murmured Watson, one morning at the breakfast table of 221b Baker Street. "Nonsense, Watson. A splash of cologne and a trim of your moustache, & I’m sure someone would have you". "Be serious, Holmes. Look here - in the Morning Post!"
     Thus began the case that Dr Watson dared not share with the public, till now. A case that, were its full facts to be known, would shake the nation to its very core, and beyond.
     Ancient artifacts are disappearing from museums and private collections all over Europe,. A pre-Christian effigy one day, a shamanic totem the next, a pagan fetish at the weekend. Either someone's on their own personal antiques road trip, or they're trying to summon dark forces. and gain mystical powers. But to what end…and why?
     The ensuing adventure takes Holmes and Watson from the wharfs and alleys of East London, to the icy wastes of the north and the hidden temples of the east (changing at Peterborough), as they pursue "The Warlock of Whitechapel"

     Julian Harries and Dick Mainwaring once again don the deerstalker, plus fours and travelling capes of Holmes and Watson, & are joined by Common Ground regulars Joe Leat & Emily Bennett in this classic Xmas comedy thriller.

     Common Ground have been bringing their distinctive brand of  music theatre - with strong narrative, strong emotion and just a touch of the surreal – to venues across East Anglia, since 2008.


We try to fit in one of these every Christmas, so it's almost our pantomime. This time it had to wait till January and performed in a different venue but just as good (apart from hard seats).

It's very predictable. Makeshift costumes, deliberate overreacting, mistakes and trips which I'm not convinced weren't scripted anyway, and an abundance of rude innuendos. Total nonsense that makes us laugh out loud and come away smiling.

Wednesday, 8 January 2020

Date Night (part 1).......

Hubby and I are definitely finding present buying for each other almost impossible so this last Christmas I suggested we just didn't. It certainly took the pressure off me while I'm having to come up with good ideas for what to buy everyone else, however, I'm the only person Hubby has responsibility to buy for and he seemed a little unsure and did quietly mention occasionally "so would you like this/that/the other".

I made another suggestion "what about giving each other a cinema date night?"
We go to the cinema very very rarely as we don't actually have the same taste in entertainment at all. So I said I'll watch the new Star Wars with him, with a smile on my face, and he can watch Cats with me, with a smile on his face.

It should have been free as Hubby had claimed on our Tesco Clubcard vouchers, but armed with the email complete with QR code we still struggled at the cinema ticket machine and then carried on struggling with a real person and two of her superiors! We gave up and paid for our tickets.

It was an early evening showing which may account for the sparse audience or it may have been the very poor reviews!

I enjoyed it, the clever visual effects, the London's West End surroundings, brilliant computer generated fur coverings on all cats with active tails and twitching ears, and such talented dancers! It had the most amazing star studded cast, which distracted a bit from those that could actually sing and dance.

Some of the songs weren't songs at all, just dialogue in a sing song voice and the story was almost non existent. But overall it was a short time of complete escapism.

Hubby said "It was ok but not purrrrrrrr-fect!" hahaha

We rounded off our date night with a meal in our local Beefeater.....because we had a 50% off voucher. Then home for a cuppa as it was still only 9:30! A couple of old cheapskates but we did hold hands 😉

Tuesday, 24 December 2019

Doesn't have to rhyme, does it?........

Tis the night before Christmas
Food's prepped but not cooked yet
Presents bought, wrapped and ready
Hope they like what they get

All day I've sent wishes
Facebook, whatsapp, messenger and more
Words, emojis and gifs
Spending time telling people you care

So just before I go to bed
Cos tomorrow will be too busy
My special wishes are just for you
To have festive fun and and next year through! 

Friday, 13 December 2019

The Fun Season Has Started......

Well December has started with a big party, sisterS celebrated her big birthday with a party. Hubby and I did the nearly three hour drive to Twickenham and got there early enough to help set up the hall, covering tables with gold banqueting roll and setting out the food etc. Her son is a party DJ so he took care of that. Her daughter had the cake made. Then with some family and lots of her friends we had a great night.

We slept over in our usual bed in their house and Sunday the four of us went out to dinner, then we drove home. 

Got home in time for Hubby to go out again with Rudolf and the Round Table sleigh, this year they are collecting for SERV Bloodrunners and SARS Emergency Medical Charity.  Hubby is out with them every evening we aren't booked to be elsewhere. 

Daughter is working all this week putting on an adaptation of The Tailor of Gloucester as part of the Layer Marney Tower Christmas Event. She had asked us to have O and the dog and maybe the girls too while she's working. I said yes to every day bar their first on I'd booked tickets for Hubby and me to be there without telling her. 

We arrived at 11:30am and started with coffee/tea then a warm greeting by the owner and divided into four groups for a very amusing/informative guided tour, then escorted into a full Christmas dinner. I think there were about 100 diners. As we were finishing coffee Daughter arrived in costume to gather us all outside and play us across to the church. She was very pleased to see us. Their play was magical and clever with audience participation and carol singing too. 

After the play we all went back to the tower for mulled wine and a mince pie and the performers followed us in and sang traditional carols. We came away smiling 😀

Our usual Wednesday gang had our Christmas meal, except we had to have it on Tuesday
Shame we never think about taking the group photo until we've all got our coats on over our party clothes and friendH had already left.

The children (and dog) have been here this week while Daughter has been working, and they've put the decorations up. Leaving plenty for me to finish. 

My third Christmas dinner was at Acorn Village with the monthly crafting group. Think there were 17 of us and I'd taken a silly group game in case it went quiet at any time, but lively conversation and laughter never really stopped so we didn't need it. Forgot to take a photo. 

And all this before the 13th with two more Christmas dinners to go to and then cooking our own.  

So just in case I don't make it back to the blog before the 25th I'd like to wish you all a happy, healthy fun festive season 🎅🎁🎄  Ho Ho Ho

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Theatre: The Season......

A Royal & Derngate, Northampton, and New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich, co-production

A New Musical by Jim Barne & Kit Buchan

It’s Christmas Eve and Dougal has travelled from Ipswich to New York for his father’s wedding. At JFK Airport he’s greeted by Robyn. Tomorrow her sister becomes his stepmother and Robyn’s dreading it. Dougal can’t wait. But then Dougal loves Christmas and Robyn’s the original Grinch.

Thrown together for a wild weekend in the city that never sleeps, their adventure becomes a musical whirlwind of confession, frustration and maxing-out credit cards in Macy’s. Will these two endearing misfits provide the ultimate test for the theory that opposites always attract?

This brand new romantic comedy is filled with heart-warming and hilarious songs, from writers Jim Barne and Kit Buchan, winners of the 2018 Stiles and Drewe Mentorship Award, celebrating the very best of emerging British song-writing talent.


Robyn is played by Tori Allen-Martin and Dougal is played by Alex Cardall and they are both brilliant character actors with amazing voices and in this performance they have totally believable chemistry together!
In fact they are the only two characters in the whole play.
We thoroughly enjoyed it.

Monday, 4 November 2019

Itchy feet?......

In this instance itchy feet meaning can't sit still.....or no opportunity to 😉
We got back from our Spanish holiday in the early hours on the Sunday, our wedding anniversary, but we didn't celebrate apart from Hubby buying me some flowers when he went shopping. I processed a lot of laundry!

Then a call from Daughter, who was at Kentwell Hall performing in the month long Halloween Scaresville event. R was also there but had overdone the physical stuff chasing customers through cages while dressed in a rat costume (I'm only repeating what was told to me), so Hubby went to get her and she moved in here. She didn't have any clothes with her apart from what she was wearing, so I shopped.

Monday I needed a fasting blood test which meant crossing town during rush hour. 
Tuesday E messaged to see if we could pick her up from Ipswich train station after her all day journey back from Scotland. Hubby did and she moved in here too. Poor thing was suffering with a head cold. Hubby and I were out that evening with our usual Wednesday gang although yes it was Tuesday. To give one of these friends I needed a birthday present I hadn't actually bought yet, so R and I made a dash into town and it was bought wrapped and given within a couple of hours.

I checked that O was happy staying with M and as D was with them too and they were boys together playing techy stuff at the CCC lab they were more than happy to stay as they were, however, M said the dog wasn't as happy so Wednesday Tilly moved in here. Which also meant making R her bed on the floor downstairs.

Obviously there was plenty more laundry to do as E came home with a suitcase and R had a few changes now. There were meals to cook too. I was also backwards and forwards to my surgery as they are trying to control my very high blood pressure. Hubby is taking Tilly out for a very long walk (often with a bit of a run) every morning so she had been quite relaxed for the rest of the day, although not always this relaxed hahaha

M, D and O had organised to go to Comic-Con in London on Saturday and late on Thursday M contacted the girls to invite them along. E declined as she was still full of cold and R accepted, so we took her home Friday to gather up the previously prepared but unfinished costume. Between me and R we made the Garfield cat ears. She looked great, even though I still have no idea who her character is.

Sunday R seemed to sleep nearly all day and sounding like she's getting the head cold. E was up at a reasonable time and had a two hour driving lesson. Hubby was out most of the day with his blood runners team mates. And Son came for a visit arriving lunchtime and staying for a good chatty few hours.

Hubby took the girls and the dog home after we'd all had dinner. The house seemed quite empty! But they were all back a few days later and again for Halloween.

The other reason for itchy feet is far more literal. As I've said we are trying to control my blood pressure, so the doctors have been tweaking the pills I'm already on, doubling dosages and also adding not only do I now rattle but I'm also getting side effects which include increased joint pains and some persistent itching mostly my scalp, hands and feet!

Saturday, 2 November 2019

Theatre: One Under.......

A bold revival of Winsome Pinnock's play about the need for atonement, The Stage.

Sonny and Christine want to escape. They have a night to remember but underneath the surface things aren’t what they seem. Cyrus is frantically trying to piece together the truth about that night. Unexpectedly a tragedy is about to unite them all…
An evocative thriller of intertwining stories, One Under explores the unanswered questions left behind when someone vanishes from our lives.

A brand new version of the 2005 play by award-winning writer Winsome Pinnock and directed by Amit Sharma (The Solid Life of Sugar Water, Cosmic Scallies), this powerful story explores human relationships and sparks pertinent, timely conversations on mental health and well-being.

Graeae is a world renowned innovator in theatre and its productions place creative access at their heart. This play will feature a creative use of captioning and will have audio description on offer at every performance (ask the Box Office for details).

4-stars “One Under is a keenly enjoyable experience – and being brave enough to leave parts of the story untold pushes this drama into a different league. Complex and darkly satisfying, One Under proves that when drama moves beyond formula, anything can happen.” The Spy in the Stalls


Yes it was wonderfully acted and yes it was certainly deep and meaningful, however,  90 minutes without an interval is a long time to take in all the heavy dialogue and the constant changing of people and the different times of events, all overlapping within such a minimalist set. I found it interesting but repetitive.....friendT hated it.