Saturday, 14 December 2013

Whoops a Daisy Angel

I have been to the village school’s Key Stage 1 Nativity play this week, despite the fact that it is a couple of children from Key Stage 2 with whom I work and the warning from one that “They’ll forget all their words and be rubbish. I don’t know why you’d bother when you don’t teach them.”
I love a Nativity play. For me, half the charm is the bits that go wrong! It was delightful, lots of youthful singing (always slightly tuneless don’t you think?) with a bit of acting and humour thrown in for good measure - and completely priceless of course!
I’ve performed in a few Nativity plays myself. One of my earliest memories is of walking down the school hall between rows of chairs wearing a sheet tunic and a dyed blue sheet headdress put on with elastic as though it were a hairband. Unfortunately I also remember being mortified because I had to hold hands with a boy who was so nervous at an early rehearsal that he’d wet himself and of course the rest of the class weren’t going to let either of us forget it! Better, was singing ‘We three kings’ with two others, each singing ‘our’ verse alone; I brought myrrh. And best, was playing the angel Gabriel in my last year at Primary, though I recall that learning the bible version of the words was tricky because they weren’t the same as the carol’s!
That was a very long time ago. More recent memories are of Youngest as a very proud Mary in a tableau as a Reception child at the end of a review by the rest of the Infant School - she didn't actually drop Jesus, he was saved by her grabbing a leg! Though she’s since been in a number of Christmas productions, she’s never been in a traditional Nativity, and neither has Eldest since she played a star (narrator) at her first Christmas in school.
Last night Youngest performed in Down the Rabbit Hole with her sixth form friends at school. She had devised the play from Alice in Wonderland; performed three minor roles; organised props and costumes; directed the production and was also selling the tickets. (It was a triumph though I say it as shouldn’t.)Then she went to an after show party and sleepover. She is exhausted!
It is her birthday on Monday so, as usual, we are hosting grandparents and godparents to a slap up lunch tomorrow: an opportunity to remember her day before Christmas sets in.

(While Blogger is at last letting me post it has decided to stop uploading photos. Hmph.)

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Selling chairs

With Tuesdays full of people sewing and Thursdays full of upholstery I don't seem to get all my chores done and 
I'm struggling to find time to visit here, never mind read all my favourite blogs. I've also finally got around to setting up an E-bay account to sell off some of our better stuff. I'm not really clear how it works and somewhat sceptical about the possibility of earning more than the 99p you're encouraged to put as your starting price. With thousands of listings I wonder how anyone finds anything!

This pretty caned chair is my latest piece of work, though I grant it's not upholstery. Learnt at the same class and very satisfying. The chair was given me by my in-laws as a possible project but they don't want it back - even repaired - and we don't need another occasional chair... For your information, you apparently pay for caning by the number of holes in the chair. That's 80 in this instance, and it's not £1 a hole - though our teacher refrained from telling us what she did charge. So I shan't be popping it on E-Bay for 99p!

Sadly I'm unable to make the system load a picture, may try again later but I need to get suppr organised so I can watch Strictly and Dr.Who!

(Since I can now add photos I thought I'd better add the cane chair! 12.08.14)

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Ta Dah!

The owner has collected and paid for her chair - result!
We are off to Dorset for the weekend and the forecast is rain.
I am still not getting proper typing etc. from this page so blogging has become somewhat of a chore: sorry!

Monday, 14 October 2013

Progress in pictures

completed back

springs tied down

tack roll and stitchiing

fibre layer

forgot to photograph the horsehair layer and I'm not undoing it now!

Friday, 4 October 2013

autumn term

The autumn is well and truly upon us: we have finally finished the runner beans and are deluged with apples instead, and upholstery classes have begun again.
My latest piece is a commision which will cover the materials and tuition, so I get to learn for free and the owner gets her chair revamped.
Youngest is now a sixth former with a lengthy reading list and Eldest is back in Oxford though not quite back at university yet - we deliver the rest of her stuff when she moves back into hall next week, always assuming I've found and packed her requirements!

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Holiday highlights

Home is beginning to look loved: the house is vacuumed where it shows and the garden is deadheaded and mowed; there is still room for improvement.
There are spiders’ webs everywhere, in every corner of the house and across every path in the garden. I must be upsetting them, constantly walking through as they attempt to repair my previous work. I am followed as I work cutting down our long grass by a young robin who clearly thinks I’m doing it for him. He’s quite happy just a couple of feet from me grabbing insects and seeds, but he doesn’t like me to speak so I have given up trying to engage him in conversation.

Corfe Castle

Dorset was lovely as ever, a few new things to do and lots of revisiting.
A different view of Corfe walking 'home'.
the Red Arrows - really!

View from the pub

Pythouse Kitchen Garden for a coffee

The Red Arrows performing in Bournemouth but flying over the cottage and our Corfe walk – they’re the spec if you blow up the photo!

Corfe from the garden of the Scott Arms in Kingston

Supper with friends at The Grannary


Mapperton, a beautiful private garden and setting for Far From the Madding Crowd which started production work there the day we visited – Youngest very disappointed to discover they were looking for not tall girls with long hair, no modern cuts or dye, no tattoos and natural eyebrows (just like her), but you had to be local…

(If anyone has a suggestion as to why I'm unable to make my posting page type/compose easily I'd be most grateful - this has taken me hours and still doesn't look as I planned, but I've lost the will to persist!) 

Thursday, 22 August 2013


We’re on holiday in Dorset visiting our usual haunts and delighting in the absence of TV, internet, landline and dodgy mobile signal: life is slowing down. But we have popped home for a couple of nights to collect Youngest’s GCSE results. She may not be her sister but we are all delighted with a total (including two taken last year) of 6 As and 5 Bs - even if the As were in the subjects she’s not planning to take to A level! As she remarked, “I got what I deserved, and what I needed to do the subjects I want to do, and I can have higher level qualification in those subjects, but I need the As in the ones I’m not taking forward.”

Not perfect, but perfectly grounded!

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Confessions of an errant housewife

I’m in a spot of bother…
When we moved to our corner of Wiltshire we always seemed to be away for the village show and failed to appreciate what an important part of the social calendar it is. However there came a year when we were able to attend. We were amazed at the size, intricacy, variation and popularity of the things to see, but the bit that got me going was the exhibits in the marquee.
The range and beauty of the Horticultural entries was astonishing. The talent of the competitors in the Industrial section was terrific. Wandering around admiring the items on display and chatting to other viewers it became clear that the competition is fierce, and the rivalry in some areas apparently famous. I was hooked: next year I’d join in! Each year I encourage my family to join me.
Each year they decide they’ve nothing suitable or good enough. In vain do I state that it’s the taking part – no I don’t really believe that either. I am quite certain I’m not the only person who thinks at some point “How did that win?” or “I could do better than that”. We are competitive by nature!
Anyway, my point was that this year Husband too would enter some of his veg. There was talk of potatoes, runner beans, onions, courgettes and tomatoes. As we got nearer to the day of entering there were doubts about the tomatoes as there was little chance of ripening before Saturday, but the rest were duly written on the entry form.
As I baked brownies the morning before the Big Day there was some muttering about how to display onions and what they were supposed to look like. I suggested the internet, fountain of all knowledge, with the view that there was bound to be some film footage of how to wrap string around stems. Later the onions were beautifully strung and there were a pair of courgettes that would be suitable. The potatoes were apparently underweight and a bit marked, not perfect white, and whether they would be entered was touch and go, but the nub of my story is those beans.
Produce from the allotment comes home in old supermarket bags, ice-cream cartons and trugs and is generally left as an offering on the kitchen table. Midweek, with a little time to spare and a glut of runners, I set to stringing and blanching for the freezer, and this, Loyal Reader, is where I came undone. The beans had been sorted, some were for eating, but some were for consideration in finding the best, straightest, uniform set for entry in the Show. They are all now frozen.

Next year we will have an advance plan of organisation – the internet advice went further than advising on display… it said we should be growing things specially: nurturing and protecting the special produce. Clearly we haven’t yet taken the whole thing seriously enough.

Footnote: I am much relieved to report that those onions won first prize!

Wednesday, 7 August 2013


Things I have thought I should write about while I was away:

The second workshop

The logistics of dealing with ‘independent’ children

How glad I am I’m not a princess – giving birth is hard enough without the world watching

Where to visit on a trip to the Chinon area

How to walk a dog in Hampstead

Supporting your children’s productions

Birthday celebrations

The Ashes

I may come back to some of them, but I can knock off a couple now. The second workshop was much like the first, with three people coming again and two new customers. All seven said they would come again but none want to commit to weekly classes. Need to think about that!

Eldest came home just in time for our trip to France, even managing to wash some clothes needed for the holiday and/or the Edinburgh Fringe. We travelled via the Channel Tunnel staying in Le Mans en route to a little village near Chinon (above). We stayed on a property with three self catering cottages and a shared pool. We would recommend: 

a potter around Tours
Bastille night in Chinon

the gardens of Villandry
Wherever you of course, it is vital that you take Test Match Special with you at all times – we wouldn’t let Husband listen to any of the CDs we’d brought along for our holiday as we needed to know the score…

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

France here we come

The frogs are sunbathing in our pond: it must be time to go in search of summer weather abroad!

Friday, 5 July 2013

Prom frock

Ready to roll! It's tonight and she's going in a friend's father's Jaguar - hopefully it is a better plan than Eldest's fire-engine which was fun but late.

Thursday, 27 June 2013


I'm sorry! I've been reimagining my spare/sewing room as a working space and I’ve held my first workshop: I had five paying customers and they all said they would like to come again! I am a happy lady!

Three of them made bags (using my samples as inspiration), one a simple dress with a shirring elastic bodice for her teenager and one embarked on a frilled top for her 6 year-old. There was a spectrum of experience/ability/confidence/perfectionism, which made it interesting for me, and they all claimed they’d learned something they’d not known.

When I was taught to sew at secondary school we all had to make a bag to keep our sewing in, then a roll in which to keep our science instruments, and finally a smocked apron with shell edges on the ties (for our mothers) before we were let loose on an actual garment. At that point we were taught to use tailor’s tacks, pin then tack seams before we could machine stitch, and generally do things properly! It was interesting to watch the various techniques these largely self-taught ladies used: most were determined to put pins in every inch and take them out as they were reached. I confess I rarely do more than the occasional pin and then I put them at right angles to the seam and sew straight over them. This is a risky strategy since if you hit a pin you will break your needle, bend the pin and ruin your machine (i.e. don’t try this at home!). However, I have had my machine since the fifth form and it does me fine. Obviously I don’t need pins if I’m sewing in straight lines nor for most seaming, but perhaps for attaching a collar or setting in a sleeve. In industry there isn’t time to mess about with pins and tacks if you’re going to earn your piecework money, you need skill and practice. It isn’t wrong to tack and/or pin of course, but I hope to increase 'my' tutees skill levels so that they don’t always have to.

I’m looking forward to next week’s session now – though I must get Youngest’s prom dress made by next Friday or there’ll be trouble!

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Vintage family

These are the wedding outfits, one dress suit made (by me) for a wedding in 2007 and one (by mother) for a wedding in the 1960s! (Luckily Youngest has no pre-conceived ideas about Crimplene.) A beautiful, intimate late afternoon and evening affair the wedding was a privilege to attend.

I have no pictures for the Church Fete. The weather, which had been promised to be fair all week, was in fact chilly and overcast, but luckily people turned out in goodly numbers and it remained dry such that we sold out of food and booze and a jolly good time was had by all. I maintain that this is a village party first and a church fund raiser second, but it was pleasing to make the second best grand total to date.

“I don’t realise how much I miss you guys until I see you,” said Eldest as we shared a picnic on Saturday evening. Husband and I travelled to Oxford to attend the last night of a play performed in the grounds of Worcester College – on their lake! – for which Eldest was Stage Manager. She is thoroughly engaged in life at university, but in Maths and backstage management – not parties and boys! She might be home in September, and will manage a few days of the family holiday in France, but is otherwise engaged over the summer with a university production that they are taking to the Edinburgh Fringe…
We are happy that she is happy, but, may I say to those of you who have yet to get to this stage, it comes as something of a shock that your offspring have other things to do and you are pretty much irrelevant! Make the most of the time you have with them because it flies by. As my mother remarked: “And…?!”

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Soul time

Counting down to the Church Fete but still finding time for essential soul feeding:
a walk through a bluebell wood with friends

an amble in Dorset that found wild orchids

a march to Corfe Castle for a cream tea
Back home for essential revision (we hope she's doing some). Chair’s done, card and a couple of outfits next.

Sunday, 12 May 2013


I am of course busy with a chair, a sixties version of the fifties one I did recently. I think it may become a wedding present for Husband’s friend and godfather to Youngest. (A happy second marriage for both parties.) And today I was asked by an acquaintance to look at a chair with the prospect of my reupholstering it – though she’s only after a quote having already had one which she presumably considers too much!

I have put an advertisement in the parish mag offering two sewing workshops at the end of June with the view to starting classes in September. No idea if anyone will bite.

Eldest, a clever girl, has had two parcels delivered home this week that she needed in college. She promises to look at delivery addresses more carefully next time.
Youngest starts her GCSEs tomorrow with Religious Studies. I have no idea whether she’s done enough revision, questions from her parents result in much eye-rolling but little information.

Our hall is looking terrific but there is still decorating to do and the sewing room and girls’ room are overflowing with extraneous furniture, papers and donations to the church fête – which is still a month away!

Friday, 26 April 2013

A happy accident

Got a call from Youngest’s School on Wednesday: she’d fallen in PE, couldn’t put weight on her foot and needed to be fetched home. Mummy to the rescue, of course, but what to do with her? Called at the local GPs to be told we’d have to wait for someone to be free and then a doctor would have to fill in a form and send us to Swindon for an x-ray. They suggested we’d be better going to A&E. Feeling rather guilty I drove to Tetbury, where there is a little part time department. They were very welcoming (despite our Wiltshire address in a Gloucestershire hospital) and within ten minutes we were sat in a room with a very efficient but friendly nurse poking Youngest’s foot. We came away with instructions to keep her foot up and rested for at least 24 hours, to take lots of pills and to walk only with the (demonstrated) crutches provided.
Today she has gone to school, clearly fine in herself, but on crutches and putting no weight on her damaged ankle. It would seem the nurse knew what she was doing when she decided not to send the patient for an x-ray; she certainly convinced us it wasn’t necessary.

The hospital was marvelous. They had the time and all was well and Tetbury is only a 15 minute drive from the GP surgery. Although I am slightly puzzled by the advice… I suppose they’d argue there was no guarantee she wouldn’t need an x-ray and as soon as she did they’d made extra work for themselves, but it does seem a bit mad. With GPs running businesses I guess they don’t want anyone hanging about waiting for the possibility of people turning up needing advice now, appointments today are rarely available.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013


I’m sorry I’ve not been to visit here, and failed to visit everybody else, but I have been busy ‘doing’.
Father’s chair is complete and will be delivered this weekend. Friendwithmatchinggirls’ curtains are all altered for her new house and will be delivered tomorrow. I have been out lifting and dividing perennials in my garden where spring has finally sprung: there is frogspawn in the pond and daffodils, pulmonaria and primroses flowering in every direction. The washing's gone out on the line at last. The hall and landings are being decorated so we're living in a certain amount of chaos, but it will be lighter and brighter - and cleaner!
Now, have you been watching The Great British Sewing Bee? (And yes, I thought they were spelling bees, I’m not sure about sewing ones.) It’s Bake Off with sewing. Thing is, I’m definitely part of the target audience as both a seamstress and a keen viewer of many cooking programmes, and I know it’s early days, but it’s not right yet… I want more information about the tasks and how they should look, I want closer detail of the stitching they’ve done so that I can better understand what’s right/wrong about it, and I want a better rapport between the three presenters. Did Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood get it right at the start? I don’t know as I didn’t watch the first series, but they give down to earth feedback without it seeming as though they are trying not to be scathing – I feel the nice lady from the WI and the smart tailor don’t even have a passion for sewing in common. Claudia’s cute but a bit too random in her comments, without the humour that is Mel and Sue. Episode three of four is tonight on BBC2; I hope it gets another series, but with amendments. Watching Paul Hollywood making bread last night affirmed how beautifully food is now photographed at all stages; it would make all the difference if they could do the same for stitching.

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Easter break

The chair is restored to its fifties beginnings.

We are visiting the in-laws for lunch tomorrow and I have baked a Simnel cake to take with us for tea. And we’re next door for curry tonight so my culinary duties are not required ‘til Monday, when I shall make Nigella’s Chocolate Egg Cake – we can’t have Easter without one!

The sun is shining between snow flurries so I am off to play in the garden. Spring may not have arrived but the garden is awake and in need of work.

Happy Easter, whatever you're doing!

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Whose job?

I thought of posting a picture of our new wood burner but it isn’t quite what I was expecting and has yet to produce the promised performance, largely due to our lack of suitably dry logs and middle-sized kindling. It turns out it is also a gadget and thus a Man’s Job to deal with. This is a Good Thing: I am no longer responsible for clearing out the old fire each morning and fetching in the wherewithal to relay the fire for the next night – I am restraining myself from sweeping the flags in front of the wood burner, mostly!

It is good to share, but sometimes it is useful to have clearly defined roles. Now that Husband is around all the time I am doing my best to not do jobs that need doing because, now he’s here, he can help. I am very capable of making work for myself by criticising the way other people do them; hence, for example, it is my job to fill the dishwasher as I can make the most efficient use of the space inside, sadly this means that it is therefore usually my job to empty it and put everything away! The good news is that I have started simply queuing items for the dustbins/recycling by the back door rather than delivering them to the appropriate container in the garage, and generally this works as the garage/greenhouse combination are this families equivalent of a shed, clearly a male domain. With most household tasks I blink first, no one else minds about the cleanliness/ tidiness/urgency of a chore as soon as I do – and my tolerance levels are fairly high (i.e. it has to be dirty, not just a while since it was cleaned).

We have friends coming to share a take-away curry supper with us this evening. Their house is always noticeably cleaner and tidier than ours. They both work and, I’m told, both do the housework – though she does all the cooking. When I suggested to Husband that we’d better run the vacuum round he said it would be good for Gunnerfriend to see how real people live… I may have to take Eldest shopping to avoid acting having noticed that the house needs work.

Friday, 15 March 2013


Just time for an update on very pleasing progress on my latest upholstery project.

Eldest is home from her second term at university, eating me out of house and home and complaining it’s cold – it is: Husband and I wear more layers than ever and often keep our coats on during the day. We have ordered a wood burner to be fitted next week and have some hope that it may provide the miracle our neighbours describe!

Friday, 8 March 2013

Lemon Drizzle Cake

I’m meant to be having a fete meeting, I’ve made the cake, but only four of us could come so we’ve called it off. Youngest will be pleased, she likes Lemon Drizzle Cake.

It’s quite a useful recipe:
A 5 fluid ounce carton of yoghurt – the measure
1 of vegetable oil
2 of white sugar
3 of self raising flour
3 eggs
The zest of a lemon
Put all the above in a food processor and blitz. Pour into a base lined 10” springform tin and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes at 140°C.
When it comes out of the oven prick the surface all over with a fork or a cocktail stick and sprinkle over the juice of your lemon and a satisfying amount of caster sugar. Leave to cool then remove the tin and serve.
(I expect there’s a litre equivalent, but it’s the method that counts!)

And the chair is on the mend:

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Things to do!

Artstudentfriend asked if I wanted an upholstery project and it has gone from shabby to skeletal in an hour and a half! An exciting new project.

I'm also making 'new' curtains out of some old ones for Friendwithmatchinggirls who's moved house recently.

And I'm supposed to be potting marmalade as I type...

Sunday, 17 February 2013

A cold garden

I'm getting over a cold. Husband's getting over a cold. Visited home: Father has a cold. Youngest goes back to school tomorrow, she's had a particularly exciting half-term!

The sun is shining today so I've had some fresh air and done some gardening. The garden is waking up: all sorts of things are in bud and some are flowering.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

Hugh’s Honey Wholemeal Cake

A recipe from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall which I highly recommend.
300g softened butter
250g caster sugar
4 eggs
150g wholemeal self raising flour
150g ground almonds
1 tsp baking powder
50g flaked almonds
4 tbsp runny honey
Grease and base line a 23cm springform cake tin. Place on a baking sheet because it will seep butter during cooking.
Cream the butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs, flour, baking powder and almonds. (I do this in my freestanding mixer because you do need to get a really fluffy creamy mixture to meet the cooking time and reduce the sinking - though it tastes jolly good even if it’s slightly overdone on top and like a honey lake in the middle as it was the first time I cooked this!)
Scrape into the tin, smooth the top and scatter the flaked almonds over the surface.
Bake at 170ºC for 45 minutes until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Remove to a wire rack and, while it’s still hot, trickle the honey over the top. Leave to cool a little before turning out.
This can be eaten as a pudding while warm or as cake for tea. As you can see from my photograph there were considerable inroads made into it yesterday evening, after all a growing girl needs two slices for tea, and a Husband needs it for tea and pudding… Youngest is planning to eat it for breakfast too, though by the time she gets up you could argue it will be time for Elevenses!

Friday, 25 January 2013

Little news

The picture that wouldn't load.

New term, new project: a chair for Father.

Friday, 18 January 2013

Split diagraph anybody?

I learnt this week how to play Full Circle. I was taught by the 8 year old I spend half an hour with each week helping with spelling and reading. He’d told the TA that it was easy peasy and he could thus teach me to play. “That’s great,” I said as she left, “What’s a split diagraph?”
The game involved writing down a word that featured a split diagraph and then changing a letter at a time to make a new word for about ten goes, and we won if we got back to the word we started on. This required a bit of planning I felt, but he was pleased when we ‘won’. He couldn’t really explain what one was, but he could write down an example.
And what’s a split diagraph? When my girls were learning to read and write it was a ‘magic e’. I can’t remember whether I called it anything when I learned to read, but then, I was reading Ladybird books about Janet and John. The whole phonics thing is new to me. I think I, and my girls, were lucky: we learnt to read by osmosis, being read to for as long as any of us can remember. As our vocabulary expanded we recognised what a new word might be from what we knew already, and we did a lot of reading!
I know that an e at the end of a word usually changes at least one letters sound, but I had no idea until Wednesday that this was a split diagraph i.e. two vowel sounds have been split by a consonant… Do they really need to know this? Does it help? Too much information! Well I think so.

I have a lovely picture of my snowy garden but blogger doesn't seem to want me to upload a picture for the second week running... Anybody know why?

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Radio 4 v Radio 5Live

Oh dear, I knew there was a reason why I should be home alone and not home with underemployed Husband: apparently, rather than listening to Radio 4 all day it may be better to listen to the cricket…

I have listened to Radio 4 for years. It is the backdrop to my life – both hearing the programmes and knowing the schedule mean that I am informed, entertained and amused at the same time as having a feel for the hour just by hearing what’s on. It isn’t just me, the whole family has been listening to it whether they chose to or not. They have all taken an interest in the 6.30 comedy slot for instance: we have a regular date on Fridays to listen to The Now Show or The News Quiz (depending on the six week cycle), and often listen to the repeat on Saturday lunchtime for the jokes we missed laughing. We like Benedict Cumberbatch and cast in Cabin Pressure, The Infinite Monkey Cage, PM and Tim Harford’s More or Less. And while I’ll listen to it all day, everyday, I am a particular fan of Woman’s Hour, The Book of the Week, The Archers, the Afternoon Play, Bill Nighy as Charles Paris whenever he’s on, Desert Island Discs, and many more.
Husband thinks I should turn off the radio if I leave the kitchen. I rarely do: I dip in and out of what’s on if I’m pottering about doing chores around the house, or, if I’m enjoying something in particular, I either turn up the volume or find a kitchen chore to do. When the family are at home I might find another radio or take this one with me - but he’s at home all the time now! And there’s cricket on despite it not being summer! I’ve had to retreat to my computer desk and put the iPlayer on!

Good news: England have won so I can have Radio 4 back in the kitchen... I'd better go and do something useful!

Saturday, 5 January 2013


Mother and I have discussed the possibility that nowadays she would have been visited by worried social workers: Babybrother ate little but Edam cheese, and drank nothing but Ribena. He was little (my other 'little' brother overtook me in size and weight when he was 18 months and I was three and a half) and has stayed so - 5ft 7 with size 7 feet.
We celebrated his 50th birthday at a brasserie at Bluewater having queued along the M25 and driven around the whole site looking for a parking spot on the first day of The Sales. Luckily lunch was very good and he paid!
Seventeen of us then removed to my parents' home to drink tea. I had provided Ribena and Creme de Casis (to go in the champagne) and an 'Edam' cake. What I can't believe is that I didn't photograph the Clanger that Mother had knitted for her little boy and for which I had made armour and sewed features.
It was a nostalgic day!