Week 27 and 28 #Project365 – 2014

Week 27

Sunday and Monday was spent mooching about the house and garden.

Tuesday – A visit to Cardiff  for the Hotter shoes shindig. A blogger evening spent trying on shoes and meeting up with some lovely ladies including TheBoyandMe – Yes I met Me!! and Mel at Diary of a Jewellery Lover  whom I’ve been pals with online for sometime.

Wednesday – Orange Wednesday this week was Mrs Browns Boys D’movie. I love the BBC series and it can leave me breathless with laughter but the film… oh dear.. very disappointing. If you’ve seen the trailer you’ve seen all the funny bits.

Thursday – Today I found out that I won a 3 night stay at Aqueduct Cottage at Goytre Wharf for this weekend.. EEKK…It may be only about 20 miles away but a weekend away is a weekend away!!

Friday – Spent the morning sorting out the packing for the weekend. We set off at 2:30pm and was sat in the cottage less than an hour later.  We were the first guests to stay there so it is all new and clean. It’s well equipped and had some lovely touches – a welcome tea/coffee tray, kitchen pack with t-towels, cloths, sponge, washing up liquid and kitchen towel. The big downer though was no interwebs.  Data connection on phone virtually non-existent and wifi signal too poor to register with local service. Oh well.. guess I’ll have to talk to Hubby then! 🙂 (you can read more about the cottage here)

Saturday – Drove up to Hereford, lovely city and was pretty busy. They have a new small shopping centre too which is just across the road from the main city centre. I can’t understand how this is a thriving centre with lots of shops and outlets and yet Newport is failing and full of ‘cheap’ shops. Something wrong somewhere!

soosie wales, hotter shoes, hereford, orange wednsday,

Week 27

Above: Flower head in local garden, Hotter Shoes,  Gl ass cut to size,  Orange Wednesday, Hereford Cathedral, Aqueduct Cottage.

  WEEK 28

Sunday – Discussion over breakfast on where to go today. Options were Brecon, Hay-on-Wye or Big Pit. I know Hubby was keen to do Big Pit so that’s where we went. I wasn’t keen on the underground bit and wouldn’t be keen on doing it again to be honest. The museum part is very interesting and brings home how dire the conditions once were.  I’d highly recommend it, children can also go underground!  As it’s a Museum of Wales site all you pay for is parking which is currently£3. (More about Big Pit here)
By the time we ended our visit it was gone 2pm so a bit late for a pub Sunday lunch. We popped down to Pontypool to buy a few bits and bobs and a drink and made our way to Pontymoile Basin and sat at the canal edge with our impromptu picnic. We planned on going to the local pub for our evening meal – what a palaver we had.. they don’t do food on Sunday evening, neither did the Wainyclare or the Horse and Jockey! We ended up in the Harvester near Pontypool!

Monday – We bid farewell to our weekend away. Back home to water the pots and baskets. When I logged into my email I noticed that I had over 3 thousand emails. I panicked a bit,  then realised I was looking at the copy folder (I send a copy of all my emails to a folder then double check this one for wins.. what a saddo!!) There was only a thousand in the Inbox!!  That’s what 3 days of hardly no wifi does to you!!

Tuesday – Off to Cardiff again – this time at the Millenium Centre to see a production of Warhorse that we booked last October. We had Circle front row seats so had a great view. It was wonderful, powerful, emotional, sad and funny.  It’s pure class.

Wednesday – no cinema this week. There’s nothing we fancy seeing. The road opposite was closed off so that some supplies could be craned in to where a new house is being built.

Thursday – Son, DIL and Grandson came and we all sat in the garden for a while. DIL is getting quite big now, only about 10 weeks to go now I think.

Friday – One of the window panels in the bay was due to be replaced as it had gone cloudy. Despite lots of photos by the window company it didn’t come back from the manufacturers looking anything like what we had. So they decided to fit the ‘wrong’ panel so that the old panel can be taken apart for the glazing bars to used in another try at the panel!!  So they are doing what I suggested at the start!! MEN>>>>>

Saturday – decided to buy one of those Karcher Window cleaner things as they are on offer in Currys. I’ll update you all next week on what I think of it.

soosie wales, big pit, warhorse

 Above : Window before the replacement, crane lift, Big Pit, Warhorse, Emails.

 
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TRAVEL : Goytre Wharf and Aqueduct Cottage

Goytre Wharf is part of the Monmouthshire – Brecon canal it’s about half way between Pontypool and Abergavenny.

At the Wharf you can berth your own barge or small boat and you can also hire boats by the day or longer. There is also a cottage you can rent.

Aqueduct cottage has recently been taken over by ABC Leisure and has been refurbished.

It’s a good base for exploring the Heads Of Valleys. You can get to places like Pontypool, Blaenavon (for Big Pit), Abergavenny, Hereford, Brecon and many more.

goytre wharf, soosie wales,

Goytre Wharf

Aqueduct cottage:

We had a warm welcome from Stella and Sue at the Redline office. We were given some information on the area and given the keys and instruction on how to open the waterways gates. (the main gate to the wharf is locked at night)
We were the first guests to stay after the refurbishment.  (I actually won the 3 night stay from their Facebook page).
The cottage was very clean, with basic furnishings.

They provide a good local information folder and welcome tray of tea and coffee. They also provide a handy kitchen pack, tea towels, washing up liquid, kitchen roll etc.
The kitchen has every thing you’re likely to need to cater for yourself. First aid box and torch provided too.
The living room is comfy with a small sofa and chairs, dining table and a couple of small side tables. Cozy electric log effect fire and an electric heater. TV with integral DVD player, Freesat and small music player is also provided.
Up the stairs which are very steep – as you would expect in a house like this – there are 2 bedrooms both with 2 single beds, bedside tables, chest of drawers and small wardrobe.

There is WIFI available via ‘Iwantbroadband’ but it needs a minimum signal of 2 bars and I couldn’t get that. The only WIFI all weekend was a quick connection in a pub in Hereford and Pontypool. At first I hated not being able to connect but soon got used to locking my tech away and ‘Looking up’  (Search Google there is a great video on the subject – Look Up)

We really enjoyed our stay, the beds are comfy and it’s really cozy in the evenings with no traffic sounds to disturb you.

When we left we were asked if there was anything that they could improve on at the cottage. There is very little to change it’s just ‘tweaks’. This is what I passed on to them :

Good: Welcome tea tray and provision of kitchen pack.

Things to change: The lighting in the living room. Either lower wattage bulbs or installation of a dimmer.
Hang fridge door on left. You have to step around it or reach over the door..could result in breakage/failure.
Wardrobe in bed 1 is a bit wobbly it needs either moving or packing under one (or more) corners to make it more stable. They could also attach it to the wall (via a strap) to prevent it being pulled over.

Would be nice to haves: A bedside lamp or at least a switch near the bed to turn the light on/off.
One bin provided .. Would be good to know if contents will be sorted for recycling or provide recycling bins with details of what could be recycled. Most people do this these days and would continue to do so.
The freesat remote controls the TV if not pointing it exactly at the box. Is it possible to change the frequency to prevent it doing it? (they were aware of this)
In the welcome folder – add details of where you can buy basic provisions. Where is the nearest shop ?
Wifi-See above – Most people would expect WiFi to be included as standard. Alternately promote it as a place where you can ‘Look Up’.

Aqueduct cottage, goytre wharf, soosie wales,

Aqueduct Cottage

If you’re looking for a bit of peace and quiet and good cozy weekend take a look at Goytre Wharf . 

I have written this post to share my thoughts about the Wharf and the cottage. I was not asked by anyone to write it.
All pictures and words are my own and cannot be reproduced without permission. 

Week 26 #Project365 – 2014

We had quite a busy week. We decided we would have a few short trips out.

Sunday – I had a go  at making some soft rolls, not quite like the ones over at ‘Tales from the Kitchen Shed’  but they were really nice especially when stuffed with pulled pork. 🙂

Monday – A trip to Goytre Wharf, it’s on the Monmouthshire Brecon Canal and you can hire boats from here. We took a picnic and walked along the towpath.

Tuesday – A trip to Abergavenny. Although we’ve been many times it was the first time I noticed the big brown tourist sign and the fact that there is a castle in Abergavenny! After a walk around the town we headed to the castle and sat on a shady bench to have our lunch.

Wednesday – Hair cut for me, done by the DIL, she chopped off about 3 inches. Orange Wednesday was CHEF – fab film, one of those feel good stories. Reminds you that sometimes you have to do what’s in your heart. Also shows the power of Social Media both good and bad.

Thursday – A bit of food shopping and a quick visit to the Range as hubby broke my Kitchen Devils knife. Its just an all purpose one with serrated edge so great for almost everything. They didn’t have anything I liked but we did find a small tray for Ashley, it’s about the size of a tea plate so handy to put his bit of lunch on. AND it has cats which he loves!

Friday – a day of tidying and cleaning around. A quick visit from son to ask if we were still ok to have Ashley on Saturday. Ashley couldn’t resist having a giddy up from Gaddy.

Saturday – Couldn’t go to the park as it had been pouring down Friday night and early morning. We popped out to Halfords for some parts for Hubby’s bike. Ashley was in heaven! He ran around the shop shouting BIKE, BIKE!  We also bought a car seat for him – one of those boosters with a back.  We’ve always used the one from his mummy and daddy’s car and it’s a real faff to strap in especially in the rain!
He was a really good boy too – holding hands to walk to the shop.

 

abergavenny, goytre wharf, orange Wednesday,

 

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Week 17 #Project365 – 2014

We spent Easter Sunday and Monday tidying the house and garden. Hubby cleaned the driveway with his pressure washer – not very exciting!!

On Wednesday we had a trip to Abergavenny, hubby had an appointment with a urology consultant at Neville Hall. I know he’s been worried for weeks about what he might get told but it was all good news. The likelihood of him having ‘the big C’ or anything serious is unlikely. He still has to have a blood test in a couple of months and provided the outcome of that is within expected levels all will be well.
On our journey there we were followed by a typical ‘white-van man’. Hubby was keeping to the speed limit but this idiot kept driving right up our chuff and even tried to undertake us on a roundabout. I decided to get my phone out and snap him. I had to wait for him to drop back a bit to be able to get his registration. I’ve sent a complaint to his company which has been passed to their transport manager.  Aggressive driving really gets my goat!
Before going to the hospital we spent some time walking around the town and had lunch in the local ‘spoons. I love that pubs serve tea and coffee. A cup to Tetley can’t be beaten (Well unless there’s vodka, tonic and lime involved!)

No Orange Wednesday this week due to the trip to Abergavenny.

On Thursday we had a visit from my son and Ashley.  A few weeks ago I gave them a photo-canvas that I won – a gorgeous picture from their ‘official’ photos. Well it transpires that the DIL doesn’t really like it despite it being one of my son’s favourite pictures, he told us that we can have it back. This made me rather upset – some of the regular #365 visitors may have seen my rant in our FB group. I loved the support you gave and some made me smile. 🙂 THANK YOU!

We were going to the cinema to see Wolf of Wall Street (Cineworld Take 2) but I really didn’t feel like going.

On Friday we had Ashley to look after. We went shopping to Morrisons and he’s rather keen now on following you around rather than sitting in the trolley. He did a good job at putting some useful items in but also added lots of cake, sweeties and toys – most of which we managed to put back!  As he’d been so good he was rewarded with a good tickle session!
After dropping him home I decided to tidy files on my laptop, clearing out temp internet files, old bookmarks, browser cache and running a full antivirus scan. Boring but necessary.

While we were walking around Asda living earlier I spotted a rather silly gadget – a banana slicer – FFS – what’s wrong with a knife or just eating it!

Off to the cinema to see The Other Woman – hubby thinks I need cheering up. Update – its really funny! Laugh out loud funny! Leslie Mann is hysterical and so over the top. Hubby thought Nikki Minaj had a big arse!

abeergavenny, gadgets,

  • Silly gadget
  • You want a post-it Nan?
  • Lovely cuppa!
  • The bone of contention 😦
  • We had to speed up to get far enough away to snap the registration (blurred out for this post!)
  • Getting ready for a tickle!

 

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Week 8 #Project365 – 2014

Over the past few months we’ve been making more of an effort to buy food and household items when they are on offer rather than when we need them.  This has resulted in full cupboards and a very full freezer.
So over the next couple of months we should only need to buy fresh food – bread, milk, eggs, yogurt, fruit and veg.  We certainly won’t go short of food for sometime!
Some of the best recent bargains have been :

  • turkey breast steaks – 3 for £1.149
  • PG Tips – 160 for £2.09
  • jars of salsa dip – 34p each – for hubby’s snack fest in the evenings!
  • bags of egg fried and pilau rice 37p each – not something I usually buy but there’s plenty in each for 2 people and makes a change from noodles or plain rice.
  • Baxters soup – at less than 50p tin – ideal for quick lunches.
  • Luxury Muesli – under a £1 bag

To make room for all the bargains I’ve had to tidy the kitchen cupboards and the freezer. The freezer is the size of a fridge freezer so holds quite a bit! At least I know where everything is in there now! Drawers full of meat and chicken, fish, bread/cakes/wraps, and home-made ready meals.

We had a drive out to Abergavenny and enjoyed a walk around the indoor market. Lots of stalls for the flea market but we both resisted buying anything – I’m a bugger for glasses and can’t usually resist nice shaped or coloured ones!
The market has big veggies hanging from the rafters!

Orange Wednesday this week was Dallas Buyers Club.  I wasn’t sure that it would live up to expectations as it’s getting very good reviews and also wasn’t sure hubby would like it considering the theme. Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto lost loads of weight for the film and are virtually unrecognisable.  It’s a cracking story and I heartily recommend it to you.

We’re not seeing grandson until tomorrow – hopefully it’ll stay dry so we can all go for a walk and have some time in the park. Whatever it was that made him sick didn’t hang about long. Mummy and Daddy reported him fit and well on Sunday!

#project365, orange wednesday,
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205/366 Sun is out where shall we go?

I think I’ve said before sitting in the garden in the sun or the shade bores me rigid.  (Although that’s what I do on holiday!!) I’d prefer to go for a drive and tour our local area.

Over breakfast we discussed where we’d go:

  • Cardiff? we’ve been there a few times recently.
  • Bristol? £6 parking, £6 for the Severn crossing, gallon of fuel..to walk around the shops. Nah..
  • Gloucester? Mm not been there for a while.
  • Forest of Dean? Ok but OH gets Hay fever and we ALWAYS get lost!
  • Abergavenny? Mm we could go there and then on up to Brecon and the Beacons.

Ok then Brecon Beacons it is then as long as we can go to Abergavenny too! You’ll see why in bit!

We set off at 10.30am and got to Brecon shortly before mid-day. I thought we had been to Brecon before but neither of us could remember anything of the town. It’s not very big and the shops are dotted about in several streets. We found a cafe to have a cuppa and noticed they sold Cozy Tea.. well I was sorted, Chamomile Cozy for me! We had a stroll through the town and looked at St Mary’s church and wandered back to the car.

St Mary’s Church – Brecon

On the way to Brecon we passed the turn off for Llangors Lake and decided that we would buy a packed lunch and head for the lake. It’s probably 25 years or more since we went to Llangors. They used to allow speedboats on the lake but it’s mostly rowing boats and yachts now. We found a free bench overlooking the lake and watched the water birds while we ate lunch.

Wild life at the lake

We then headed back towards Abergavenny. We parked at what I call the bottom of town in the main car park and walked up through the town. It’s just one long street with a mix of local traders and High Street names. There is a market twice a week but not today! I really like Abergavenny it has lovely shops and few nice pubs for a drink or lunch. BUT the thing I like most is that the town has my favourite shop. It’s only small but has hundreds of Teddys’. I wouldn’t dream of going to Abergavenny without going in to see them! I’ve bought a few over the years but today I resisted temptation even though there was one in the window that I liked. He was about 12 inches tall in a duffle coat and holding a bright yellow brolly over his head. It wasn’t hard to resist though as he cost nearly £100!

Picture of the day – My favourite shop!

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Catching up on #Project366 again!!

Here I am again catching up on the week.  The weather has been glorious for this time of year,  I’m not one for sitting in the garden, it bores me rigid! I’d much prefer to be on my lappy pootling around the internet. However that has its drawbacks too as I get rather frustrated with the job hunting. Hubby is also off work at the moment after failing his medical last week. He has to get his blood pressure under control before he can go back to work. If this is what retirement is going to be like then get me a job!!

Mid week we decided to forego the ‘essential use’ only for the car and went out for the day. The plan was to go to Abergavenny and hubby turned left towards Chepstow.. argh we are going the wrong way.. no he says, we’ll go via Chepstow and Monmouth!

If you look at any map you’ll see that Abergavenny is north of Newport/Pontypool and Chepstow is East! I would have just gone north but hubby wanted to have a scenic drive hence the detour to Chepstow. The journey takes you on this route – Home to Chepstow, turn off towards Tintern, carry on past Tintern, Llandogo, Redbrook and Wyesham to arrive at Monmouth. It’s a lovely scenic route – wasn’t quite the same in my Seat Leon – last year we also had his MR2, nothing like get the top down on a drive like this!

Well at Monmouth we decided we’d go to Ross-on-Wye. We parked at the bottom of town and walked along the river bank and up into the town. We’ve not been to Ross for a couple of years, it’s pretty little town built on a hill above the river, lots of locally owed shops which sets it apart from the bigger towns here in South East Wales (yes I know Ross is England but it’s near enough!)

There were a few photo opportunities to be had but I hadn’t noticed that my camera battery was nearly dead.  I managed to get a couple along the river and despite feeling like a tourist in the town I stood and took the first picture of the Market Place. I pressed the zoom button and CLICK.. battery dead. ARGH I was so annoyed that I hadn’t noticed the battery meter. I couldn’t even get shots with my phone as that was at home charging after I forgot to connect it the night before..

So here is my one decent shot of Ross (88/366)

Ross-on-Wye

86/366 – Got to get my feet ready for sandals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

87/366 My new mug

89/366 Strawberries – summer in a bowl and yes the black bits is black pepper.

90/366 Grandson Ashley – poorly boy trying to look happy. He has an ear infection and a bad tummy.. Poor little man.

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