Da da da da Click Click

The view from the Grand Circle of the King’s Theatre in Glasgow last night. We were there to see the stage production of The Addams Family. At first I wasn’t sure about it but it was great. The cast were amazing and my daughter really loved it. Unfortunately it was way too hot in the auditorium and my boy felt sick so we missed the last 20 minutes of the show. We could hear it though from the hall outside the Circle where we were cooling off. After a glass of water the boy felt better.

Verdict of show: great.

 

 

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Little Mix Magic, the Mattress Drama and Trying to Get ‘Me Time’

A poor pic taken from a distance, but it gives you an idea of what Little Mix Magic look like!

A poor pic taken from a distance, but it gives you an idea of what Little Mix Magic look like!

You know when you go to an event and it’s better than you thought it would be? Well me and the kids went to see Little Mix Magic (a Little Mix tribute band) at The Commodore Hotel in Helensburgh last night and it was great. It was a fundraiser for a local dance school and we had a brilliant time. The band were amazing. I cannot tell you how good these girls were, they had fantastic voices, and they were so good with the (many, many) little girls and older girls who were there to see them. They spent ages at the end of the night having their photos taken with the kids and giving them autographs. Fab night. Excellent band. Recommend them.

The real Little Mix.

The real Little Mix.

Anyway, back to reality. Sorry this post is a little late this week. I have no other excuse other than I forgot about it until yesterday and decided to wait until we’d been out last night.

This past week has been just the ‘same old, same old’. Nothing much has been happening except Casper chewed a corner out of my brand new hall rug. It was literally down for ten minutes and the wee pest had decided that real wool was a lovely snack. He kept doing it so I’ve had to take the rug up. It’s currently rolled up in the room I use as a study. Sigh.

We also took delivery yesterday of new mattresses for our beds. This isn’t that interesting in itself, except for the drama of trying to get my super king mattress upstairs. Luckily the delivery men did this for me, but it took them ages and they were both sweating heavily by the end of it. I felt a bit guilty about it. If I had had any cash on me, I’d have given them a tenner for their trouble…it was that bad! However, I’m a bit like the queen – I never carry cash. Well, I do very briefly and then the kids clean me out! Anyway, I didn’t have anything to give them…sorry guys! They were so good about getting it upstairs for me.  * Additional note: I shouldn’t have laughed…me and the girl nearly killed ourselves trying to get my old mattress down from upstairs. It was a difficult job.

We went shopping with my mum on Saturday. It’s the girl’s birthday next week (she’ll be 12) and she wanted to go shopping with her gran. We met my mum at Braehead and me and the boy were duly dismissed as she happily went off with granny. While they were away, the boy and I did a bit of shopping of our own. Anyway, an hour later we all met up and the girl was delighted with all the new clothes her granny (and grampa, although he wasn’t there) had bought her. Thankfully my mum was there to stop her picking up inappropriate for her age clothes. The girl just loves clothes, and the tartier the better it feels!

This week, the kids are off. It’s yet another school holiday and already they’ve been bickering. Sigh. I don’t have any plans for this week other than doing a wee birthday lunch for the girl. I think we will just take it easy. I have stacks of stuff to do around the house plus I want a bit of ‘me’ time too!! There’s a bubble bath with my name on it tonight!!

Films I’ve seen this week include: the new Jason Bourne movie which I liked, Bundle of Joy (Eddie Fisher was a rubbish actor, nice voice though – I think this was a remake of a Ginger Rogers movie, it certainly reminds me of one of hers), The Princess Diaries II and Robinson Crusoe. Have finished reading the first two Flambards books and am looking around for something new to read.

Right, am going to leave this here and say adieu to you…and you and you and you (sorry a bit of The Sound of Music crept in there!). Til next time!

Dawn xxx

Weather for ducks, the Primevals and a ballet stage debut

mary poppins

It’s been a strange bag weather-wise this week: we’ve had mainly nasty, horrible, cold and wet, blowy and windy weather…you know: the type that makes you wish you were still tucked up in bed all cosy and warm. On a couple of nights the wind was so strong I thought the roof was going to be ripped off our house. I didn’t go outside for fear of ‘doing a Mary Poppins’ – being whisked off to who-knows-where, umbrella up, toes pointing out but without the beatific smile of the good lady, but more a look of horror! Then on Tuesday we had the most stunning day – all sunshine and spring warmth, the birds were singing their wee hearts out and all was good with the world. The weather’s gone potty…I’ve been saying that for a few years now.

Anyhoo…how have you been? What have you been up to? For regular readers, you’ll know I was at two 50th birthday occasions last weekend: lunch with my friend Tracy and a party at Glasgow’s Sloane’s bar on Saturday night for my friend Laurina. Both excellent occasions. The party was excellent. I danced the night away to live bands: the Beat Poets (the original Glasgow band, not the one from Northern Ireland)

The Beat Poets

The Beat Poets

and the Primevals. Fantastic! Spent Sunday recovering from all the dancing (achey body – it’s been a while since I danced my socks off!) and wine. Was so worth it though!

The Primevals

The Primevals

NB I should point out that the last two pics were taken many moons ago and the lads are a little bit more mature but can still rock with the best of them!! When are they next playing that’s what I want to know?

Moving on…

Unfortunately, the girl has been unwell with a sore throat and earache. She got this from her dad who is also suffering and can’t hear out of one ear. His has been going on for a couple of weeks, hers came on on Sunday and she seems to be recovering. She was off Monday and Wednesday and half of Tuesday though…wee soul. She’s away today having declared yesterday that she was bored and desperate to get back to school. My built in mum radar is wondering if there’s an alternative reason other than boredom? Hmmm. She is in the school show (they’re doing Annie) and she does love to sing so that might be it. The boy, however, is well, but extremely put out that his sister has been off and he hasn’t. He’s been cranky and extremely cheeky about it. Some time in the pokey (in this instance his room) soon cured him of that though. Weans!

Am feeling all smug with myself just now. Not only have I got all my housework done, but the dishes and washing is done too. I also had my piano lesson this morning, so have been really busy. I am one of life’s writers of lists so have ticked off a fair few ‘must dos’ off that. Kitchen cleaned – tick. Bathroom cleaned – tick. House dusted and hovered – tick. Piano lesson – tick. Blog written – almost tick.

This is what I'll be knitting for the fish and chips babies.

This is what I’ll be knitting for the fish and chips babies.

Joined a local knitting club this week. It’s a monthly meet and started when some ladies from our local church decided to get together to knit for Africa’s Fish and Chips babies and premature babies in our local maternity hospitals. The group recently advertised in the village for more knitters, so I joined. I thought it would be fun. The ladies all range in age from their 80s (I’m guessing) right down to me and another mum who I think may be about my age. I think we’re the youngest there at 44 (well, that’s what I am). Anyway, I am in the process of knitting a blanket for premature babies and I want to knit something for the Fish and Chips babies, so called because they are sent home from hospital wrapped in newspaper because their parents can’t afford to clothe them. Wee souls. Anyway, I went on Tuesday, was made very welcome, had a good blether and felt good for doing something nice for others. Unfortunately, I knitted my blanket whilst tired and made a few mistakes so had to rip it out and start again. No probs. Am looking to get the blanket, a top and a couple of hats finished by next month for the next meeting.

This weekend looks like it’s going to be a busy one: the girl has her ballet show on Friday and Saturday nights. I’m really looking forward to it. I’m going with my mum – the boys opted out, it’s not their kind of thing. My mum and dad are coming down for dinner first and then me and mum will go and see our wee ballerina strut her stuff. In between now and then, she also has a couple of rehearsals too so I will be taxi-ing her around most days this weekend. On Sunday, though, I will be putting my feet up and enjoying Mother’s Day. We don’t make a huge thing of it in our family. I have got my mum some nice gifts and a really lovely card. My boy has already presented me with a home-made card and apparently the girl has one for me too. I like these the best. I know what I’m getting because I ordered it…a pearl necklace which will go with my 50s dress. I’m really looking forward to a cup of tea in bed on Sunday morning…that’s a real treat for me!

Anyway, must be off. If you’re a mum, enjoy Mother’s Day on Sunday. Am I right in thinking the clock goes forward this weekend? I’ve heard from a couple of places this might be so…will check it.

Til next time!

Dawn xxx

Ballet, piano and Bette Davis

Well, I’ve gone and voted and once I got to the ballot box I was under no doubt  which way I was voting. The last couple of weeks have been both exhilarating and a bit scary. Independence is a huge step and today is historic. Am waiting with bated breath to see what happens when they announce the result tomorrow.

This week has been overtaken with the Referendum. You just couldn’t get away from it. However, apart from that we’ve seen a few things happening. The boy had a really bad ear infection recently and it’s now cleared up. He also started piano lessons last week and seems to like them…so far. The girl is still in love with ballet. I bought a ballet exercise DVD so we can do something together (the boy and I have piano) plus it will hopefully get me fitter. Over the last five years I’ve put on more than a stone in weight. I don’t eat any more than I did before and I certainly am busier than ever. I think it’s the fact that I’m over 40 and have a sedentary job. Sigh. Anyway, ballet here we come!! Am sure a few plies will sort out my thighs!

ballet 2ballet 1

Hubby celebrated his 51st birthday last week too. Me and the kids took him out a local Chinese restaurant for a meal and various members of the family visited with presents or sent cards. On his actual birthday, I made him a special meal for every meal time. The kids insisted on having pancakes for breakfast, I made veggie tortillas (from The Fussy Eater’s Cookbook by Tana Ramsay) for lunch and we had Hungarian Ghoulash for dinner…yum. There was also birthday cake and custard…lovely.

Bette Davis 1

Am currently reading Bette Davis’ The Lonely Life and it’s excellent. Her voice and strong opinions ring through the book and I’m thoroughly enjoying it. As you know I am a huge fan. All About Eve is in my top ten all time films…she’s fabulous in that. Other fave Bette films include Now Voyager and Jezebel.

Bette Davis 2

While I greatly admire Ms Davis, what else rings through the book is her absolute determination to get to the top no matter the cost. I think she was used to getting her own way. She was a strong woman who didn’t put up with rubbish. Some may call her a bitch. I think she had to be to pursue her dreams. Anyway, she’s very inspiring and her book is full of great stories and truths.

What else has been happening? I took the plunge and bought myself a new sewing machine. My machine was secondhand when my parents gave it to me when I was 11 or 12, so it’s at least 30 years old! It’s not reliable. I’m hoping a new one will be so that I can get on with sewing.

Right, that’s it for this week. I am going to finish up here for now. Until next time!

Dawn xx

 

 

 

 

 

A wedding, Bannockburn and loving the re-enactment!

How are you all? How have you been? Sorry I’ve not been around so much lately…had a wedding on June 21 (congrats George and Raymond!) in Edinburgh and we (me, hubby and the weans) trooped off to Stirlingshire on Saturday to celebrate the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn!

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Bannockburn Live weekend was a great event despite the long queues for everything but the toilets!! We arrived about 10am with half of Scotland it seemed. The queue to get in went back a good half a mile, but everyone was in good spirits so none of the stewards got hassled.

Anyway, we got in, went up to the stage to see who was playing. We stayed to listen to a band I never got the name of…sorry band, but you were good. We then went exploring…apart from craft stalls, there were also stalls from various clans and a whole host of quality food places…we ate buffalo burgers and they were excellent.

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The whole event was held up at the Bannockburn visitor centre/monument/Bruce statue. One area was the band/clans/stalls/food and another (which you had to queue – quelle surprise! – to get into) was where the re-enactment was taking place and included a mediaeval tent village where Clanranald re-enactors were showing people how they made weapons and food and clothing etc. It was really good.

My favourite bit was the re-enactment of the battle itself. The guy narrating – an historian – was good with the banter and had the crowd cheering The Bruce and booing King Edward. It was a laugh. The costumes were excellent as was the information given out about the historic event. The narrator took us through the two day battle talking about all the skirmishes and explaining what happened when and what various things meant/how things worked (eg the Chiltern…below).

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The kids had a ball. They loved it and went away with a tabard each (in the Bruce’s colours of course!) and a wooden sword (the girl) and wooden spear (the boy) respectively.  Anyway, we stayed about four hours and the rain started to get heavy so we went back to the car just as the heavens opened. Was an excellent day!

I got myself a hand thrown mug which looks like it wouldn’t take much tea in it, but is actually bigger than it looks (a bit like the Tardis!!).

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Funniest part of the day – the actors forgot their mikes were still on. There were a few choice words from them when things when wrong (a horse got spooked, the rider swore much to the amusement of the crowd). The guy playing The Bruce also had a very interesting conversation about ‘where’s the wee lassie who has my car keys?’ which also got a lot of hoots from the crowd!!

It was a good weekend, thoroughly enjoyed it. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera, but got some shots on my phone which then ran out of juice!! Hope you enjoyed the pics anyway.

The kids stopped for their summer holidays on Friday there, so I’m off for the next two weeks to look after them. Today, I’m just catching up with bits and pieces around the house. Been watching The Darling Buds of May and thoroughly enjoying it.

Anyway, I am going to go now and get on with the ironing! Oh the glamour!  Til next time!

Dawn xxx
PS if you’re interested in learning more about Bannockburn, BBC 2 did a great series called Quest for Bannockburn.

A right busy old week and making sour dough

sour dough bread

Am feeling a bit tired after a busy old week chez moi. Hubby and I went to see Eminem at Bellahouston Park in Glasgow on Tuesday night. He was brilliant, but I’m at that age when a night out after a working day just drains me. Then I had a meeting with my publisher and two others the following night and didn’t get back in til after 9. Still it was a good meeting…it’s looking like DarkIsle 3 may be published in November. I hope so!

Anyway, feeling tired as I am this week I’ve not done any writing. So this weekend I am planning to get lots of rest and lots of reading (for pleasure) and writing (also for pleasure… I’m working on a sequel to Dusting Down Alcudia and I have an idea for a children’s book that’s been rattling about my head for a good couple of years).

Today I’m trying to make sour dough. Fingers crossed it worked, but I missed a couple of days feeding the sour dough starter and am not sure if it’s going to work or not. The kitchen smells a bit odd due to the starter. We’ll see what happens. It’s currently proving…not very well going by the look of it. I’m all inspired thanks to the wonderful bread my friend John made a couple of weeks ago. His bread looked fab.

Dawn xxxx

Red, chrome, Helen Reddy and South Korea

I have a new love and it links beautifully in with a love I’ve had since birth. I’ve recently purchased this…

It’s a Steepletone Roxy 3 that is a record player, CD player, radio and has a USB port…what more could a music lover want? I really like it and it’s meant I can play my records once more. I have quite a large record and single collection stemming back to Bright Eyes (my first purchase) through the 80s right up until the mid 90s when I swapped vinyl for CDs. However, I never got rid of my records because I knew that one day I would buy another record player. And the Roxy is it. As an added bonus, it’s red…my favourite colour…and it’s got chrome (very vintage!). And added to that is that I have a few of my parents’ old record collection (which they gave me when they went to CD), so not only am I doing the 80s and 90s, but the 60s and 70s as well. Anyone for the Carpenters? Helen Reddy? The Beatles?? It’s been a nostalgia fest round here lately!!

Talking of colour, have a look at these lovely things… They are the South Korean versions of DarkIsle and DarkIsle: Resurrection. Unfortunately the second book got a little bashed en route here, but I’ve placed it under a pile of Nigella Lawson cookbooks, so am hoping she’ll sort it out for me!

Dawn x