Sunday, 31 May 2015

Fairy tale wedding......

My best-friendM's daughter has just got married. She has always been a very girly girl (I've known her since she was about five years old) so none of us were surprised that she had a truly fairy tale wedding where she looked like the fairy princess  ☺

The wedding itself was held in Italy on the romantic Amalfi Coast, for immediate family and bridesmaids, best man etc and we've seen the photos showing it all as wonderful as they all said it was.

Bride and Groom were away for 10 days and I cat-sat for them going round to feed him and have a chat, every morning and putting his evening meal in a clever dish with a timer that keeps the food fresh until the lid pops open 12 hours later. I even got him to dress up on their wedding day, but it seems food was more important than posing for a good photo.

I was quite pleased with the card I made them.

And yesterday was the UK celebration party. I drove there with Hubby and picked up friendH and friendDJ.

The evening was another magical event where the venue had draped fabric ceiling and purple lighting to match the table decorations and balloons. There were hearts confetti and sayings about love scattered over the tables with candles and tubes of bubbles too. There was champagne brought round for the toast to the happy couple, a very full buffet table and a table full of pick-n-mix sweets to help yourself to including little sweety bags.  The wedding cake was four tier and surrounded by cupcakes too.  I gave my friend a hand cutting up the bottom tier and handing it around (we both got very sticky).

It was lovely meeting up with all of BfriendM's extended family including children, grandchildren, sisters, nieces, nephews, partners and babies. I even got the chance to say another thank you to one of my nurses from nearly two years ago who this time was a bridesmaid.

It turned out that of our usual crowd it was the women staying sober to drive home so it was no surprise that these four stuck together right near the bar in a musketeer fashion of all-for-one-and-one-for-all drinking session.
The bar is holding them upright!

Tomorrow the very happy newlyweds are off on their honeymoon and I'm back on cat feeding duty for the next 16 days. 

Friday, 22 May 2015

Theatre: The Business of Murder.......

Presented by Middle Ground Theatre Company
Written by Richard Harris

     Psychological thriller The Business of Murder by Richard Harris, which enjoyed a successful 7-year run in the West End, is brought to Ipswich this year by Middle Ground Theatre Company.
     Stone, a humourless and dour man, invites Dee, a television playwright, over to his flat on the premise of discussing a script. Once there, she is surprised when superintendent Hallett, the man with whom she is having an affair, also arrives for an entirely different reason.
      But nothing is as it seems, and as the plot twists and turns the motive of their host Stone gradually becomes clear. They are all, it would seem, in the same business.... The Business of Murder.

Starring Robert Gwilym (Dr Max Gallagher in Casualty), alongside Paul Opacic (Bad Girls, Emmerdale and Hollyoaks) and Joanna Higson (Shameless, WPC56).


As we took our seats we were already commenting on the good set, a fully furnished one bedroom flat in the late 1970's style.

Just a cast of three with a tremendous amount of dialogue, believable characters with Mr Stone having a very annoying personality that I didn't like him at all, then as parts of the story unfolded I warmed to him and felt quite sorry for him and then it turned again to finding him totally obnoxious (clever acting).

My two companions didn't think they were going to enjoy any of it by the mid-interval with P predicting the whys and hows of the plot to come, but the second half won them over especially as P had got it exactly right. I enjoyed it all although I thought it unnecessarily stretched out a bit.

It was lovely seeing almost every audience seat filled too. Unfortunately the summer programme didn't inspire the three of us enough to book our next before September.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Theatre: Feed the Beast.....

Presented by The New Wolsey Theatre and Birmingham Repertory Theatre
From the award-winning writer of the highly acclaimed BBC programmes, Sherlock and Doctor Who, Feed The Beast is a fiercely funny look at the rocky relations between our press and politicians.

     Michael is moving into Number 10 Downing Street and there will be no charm offensives with this Prime MInister, not with a country to run, a welfare state to reform and vested interests to confront. But when his family's private life looks set to be the next big story, Michael's ruthless young press secretary tells him there's only one way to handle the Media: "Feed the beast before it turns on you".
     Can Michael keep politics and policies centre stage or will he, himself, finally become the story?
      As traditional political loyalties splinter, and the country's future is in the balance, Steve Thompson's new drama asks whether a good man can be a good politician . Or do we get the politicians, and the Press, that we deserve?


Well I'm not sure how anyone found it "fiercely funny" because we didn't but it was very good and thought provoking of how it can all go horribly wrong behind closed doors of government when those at the top, the ones with high morals and very good intentions, get bad advice.

All very fitting just now after this general election and all the press coverage. Do we really know what's going on or do we only know what they want us to know?

Excellent performance by many well known actors I've seen on tv. Big disappointment was the half empty seats but that could be due to the new ticket pricing!

Thursday, 7 May 2015

He's off again.....

Hubby is away again this weekend, it's the annual walking weekend that he does with a big bunch of blokes. This year they are going to Swanage in Dorset.

Next door friendA is driving a full car and they are setting off at 9am tomorrow so his wife friendP and myself will stand on the drive and do the ritual waving until they are out of sight then celebrate with her coming in for a coffee.

After that I have Saturday from 8am-ish to about 4pm being entertained (and exercised) by R and O while Daughter and E are at Kentwell for meetings relating to Tudor stuff next month. Us three will be at R's drama for two hours (she acts we wait while I convince O that he really doesn't need all that stuff in the tuck shop that will be having a huge magnetic force on him and my purse). During Friday and Sunday I'm hoping to fit in some baking, seedling planting out, finish photo sorting that has been ongoing for too long, serious bathroom cleaning, ironing and cooking a dinner for Hubby's return. In reality it could be a little too much playing scrabble online and reading a book!

If I achieve a lot you'll see it here first, so you'll know what's happened if it's silent hahaha

Friday, 1 May 2015

Lovely, local, lunch and laughter......

We never get together often (she's always so busy) but when friendKK and I manage to synchronise a free day out we always have fun and yesterday was no exception.

My first dilemma was what to wear. It looked so lovely and spring like but I knew it was colder than it looked, so it had to be layers, warm enough but not heavy if I ended up having to carry not wear and a rain coat as Hubby assured me we would have heavy showers at midday.

FriendKK arrived about 10ish and we headed out to a place she knows just over the Suffolk border into Essex.

Hall Farm Shop is just off the A12 on the way into Stratford St Mary and the gateway to Constable Country.

Hall Farm got some pretty impressive awards for being the ‘Best Farm Shop’ in 2008 and the ‘Best Informal Dining Venue’ in 2009 – so worth a visit. The Suffolk Food & Drink Awards granted them Best Farm Shop 2011 and they pride themselves on offering everything you may need for a weekly shop plus much more!

They have a wonderful cafe open for breakfast and serves lunch and afternoon tea. There is a shop and deli to browse round before enjoying a relaxing cup of coffee or tea in the cafe.

We were just popping into the restaurant to reserve a table for lunch but decided to start as we meant to go on and have tea and cake as coffee and walnut cake was enormous but as light as a father so I ate the lot mmmmm. The windows of the restaurant area look out onto the farm land and we watched goats and alpacas and sheep wandering around. And we talked and caught up on life, families, friends and general gossip.

Leaving there we got into the car and the heavens opened into a really heavy shower and sure enough it was 12:05pm hahaha.

We drove into Dedham village and parked just as the rain stopped! We marveled again at the houses covered in wisteria (quite famous locally). We have so many lovely villages.

We headed into the art and craft centre which is run as a co-operative and is very big inside, packed with a great variety of stuff that kept us there browsing for nearly two hours!

Then it was back to Hall Farm for lunch, we both had the grilled mackerel fillet on a bed of cabbage and sanfire in a butter and crab sauce with new potatoes, truly scrumptious! Conversation carried on as always with not much time between each recollection of what we used to do together and hilarious memories of past times, we always laugh a lot. Neither of us had dessert, not so soon after the morning cake, there just wasn't room for any more!

Then of course we had a good wander round the farm shop and I bought some huge scones to bring home for Hubby (his favourite). As we were leaving the car park we spotted the pigs in the nearby pen had two young piglets in there too so we watched them for a little bit too.

Heading homewards and then a sudden diversion into Bypass nurseries at Capel St Mary.
They have so many departments other than the huge plant nursery including their pet store called "Cats, rats and elephants" which I knew was a memory so far back that I couldn't quite grab, so frustrating and made worse because I couldn't get an Internet signal in there to look it up. I just did and it was from The Unicorn Song by The Irish Rovers, find it on YouTube and you may remember it too. Of course I now have it as an ear worm!

Home with just enough time for a quick cup of tea and to show friendKK my new studio space, and she is so jealous (her words) as we used to do so much of our crafting together which I'm now back to but she doesn't have time until she hopes when she has retired in two years time.

Waved her off then rushed around to sort some art stuff to take and check if I'm giving friendDJ a lift (unfortunately he's still not feeling well enough) and get out for art group, followed by live music at Olive's Bar and home just as the street lights went out.

Disclosure: none of the photos are mine, I pinched them all off Google searches as I was having too much fun to take photos.