Shopping, shopping, shopping.

Went out with Em and Gilly (my father-in-law) today to Letchworth for some shopping. We stopped by Lidl first for some budget shopping. Stocked up on grape juice, baked beans (I love the baked beans they sell) and other non-perishables. We bought some vanilla creme wafers from there which we tried when we got home. YUM!

 

Then it was on to Morrison’s where I stocked up stuff that I like most from there, their facial tissues – cheap boxes at 35p each, but don’t come out of the box all attached together like other cheap brands (ASDA Smartprice being an example) and they are quite soft, for 35p. Got some cream of asparagus cup-a-soup, some cous-cous snack pots, among other things. Sweet things included sticky toffee trifle and lovely, lovely Baklawa, which I had been hankering for for quite a number of weeks now, and they were divine!

 

We hire a van tomorrow and have a second attempt to buy a new sofa. Hopefully things will work out tomorrow and around this time tomorrow we’ll be in possession of a new sofa, and possibly a chair as well. We were given the money to cover the lounge today as money that was owed us, so we might (if the sofa is significantly smaller than the one we have now) extend to getting a chair as well. Where else but Ikea could you buy a sofa and chair for £108?

 

Just a short and sweet one for now. I’ll leave you with an image of the sofa and potential chair…

 

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The Anniversary Easter.

From Antipodean – The Right Side Up

We’ve had a busy week leading up to Easter. Em had an appointment for a check-up at the hospital in Leicester on Wednesday (19th), and as you’ll know from previous posts, we decided to go away for a few days. It was our anniversary (the big 10th anniversary) on Good Friday, so instead of going away right over Easter, we decided to do it just before.

I think we had very good timing because this is what it looked like this Easter Sunday morning.

From Antipodean – The Right Side Up

Happy Easter, welcome to spring!!

Anyway, to the adventures of the break. We headed off late Monday morning. We shelved going to the wildlife park at Shepreth for going somewhere else closer to Leicester. We just made our way up to Stamford, stopped there at the local Morrison’s supermarket, then made our way to the Travelodge. We were both pretty tired from having a late night and early morning, so that’s basically what we did for Monday.

From Antipodean – The Right Side Up

Tuesday we headed over to Leicester and we went to Tropical Birdland, which is in this little village outside Leicester. We were following the signpostings for the place. I swear we went around the whole village before we got to the place! It was a freezing cold morning, around 6-8 degrees, with a slight fog hanging in the air.

From Antipodean – The Right Side Up

The signs for the place were NOT good. We went in. No one was manning the pay window. I wish we’d sneaked into the place because it was TWELVE POUNDS (for both of us – IE: not each) to get in. There were emus and and owls at the front entrance, here are some pics.

We were only there an hour. We saw everything we could see by that time. I’m sure the place would be nicer in warmer weather and more of a crowd there. There were loads of macaws flying free. Apart from the emus, there were different types of cockatoos as well as a red-cheeked bulbul and a lovely kookaburra. It was SSSOOO cold though. I could see some of the birds shivering! The poor things. Not exactly the kind of weather conditions for these birds. They were lovely birds though. They had a few different types of toucans there with different coloured beaks.

Time passed quickly though and so we left tropical birdland and took the park and ride into Leicester. We went into Primark and had a look around. Cheap jeans man!! Jeans for £6 and £8. Em bought a pair of jeans and a cardigan from there. Then we went across the mall to New Look and got some bargain tops as well. We killed a few hours there. Had a big costa coffee. Em had her decaf cappuccino and I had a huge decaf mocha. Em’s cup was so huge it had handles on the side like a toddlers sipping cup!

We left Leicester and stocked up on supplies at a Morrison’s nearby. Then we ended up on our first traffic jam, going to Morrison’s! We ate there and then had another early night. We had to be at the hospital early the next day and negate the ring road around Leicester.

Next day, we did start to get lost around the ring road. We took a wrong turn and went off track for a bit, but recovered, so we still got to the hospital on time. All was wrapped up by midday.

Then it was off to Birmingham to watch U2:3D. We thought we’d overspent the day before so we didn’t have 2 brass razoos to rub together. I thought I had £10 left though, so I knew we had enough left to have something to eat at a motorway services. We stopped at a services on the M6. I got myself a KFC twister meal, got the money out to pay and then realised my £10 was only £5!!! Em had yet to buy anything!! So we bought some milk so she could eat bran flakes that we bought from home!!! Poor love, I felt so guilty!

We got to Birmingham HOURS early. We tried to negate the city centre (frig me, Birmingham is the world’s scariest city! – to navigate around that is) and stop at The Bull Ring shopping mall, but every time we went by, we’d miss the car parks, so we gave up in the end. We went and parked near the Thinktank place that has the Imax cinema. We had to kill around 2 hours, cos we only had enough money to park in the Thinktank car park for an hour, so we decided to wait until 5.30pm when parking would be £1. The movie started at 6pm, so we had time to get in and park and get into the cinema. It was cold in the car, but the sun was out, so it kept us warm for an hour or so, until the sun started to go down.

The movie was really good. Some really good 3D effects and the sound quality was fab!! It wasn’t like being at a concert as such, and in a lot of respects it was better than a concert experience. I enjoyed it. A good playlist of songs and really well edited together. It was good.

Then afterwards as we exited the cinema, we had to go down 4 flights of escalators! They were SSSOOO fast, I missed my footing and ended up on my bum. I hate escalators. And if they are high and exposed (IE: I can see down either side of the escalator), it’s 10 times worse. These particular escalators ticked all the boxes. And they were fast speed. I didn’t want to get on it when I approached it, but couldn’t see any lift available, so I had no choice. The steps were going around so bloody quickly. I kept trying to step on, but it just was going around so bloody fast. Anyway, I went and still didn’t hit the step right, tried to recover, but just kept losing my footing, then ended up on my bum. Thank God that’s what happened and I didn’t end up falling!! I screamed out to Em, who was already half-way down. Like she could do anything. I felt so embarrassed and upset. I was shaking! I SSSOOO didn’t want to get on the next one. But I had no choice. I was shaking like a leaf. Anyway, I somehow managed to get down the rest of them without any further mishap.

We got to the car and were leaving Birmingham, going round a roundabout. Em almost clipped the side of the car to the left of us, wanting to get in the left lane. My leg started to sting. I’d grazed my leg on the escalator edge! We left Birmingham. Em was tired as hell, so we stopped at a services for a rest. Then later stopped again. She was almost falling asleep behind the wheel! She had a sleep at the next services. We finally got home around 10.45pm. Freezing cold and extremely tired!!

For Easter I had my treat of a tub of Ben & Jerry’s Caramel Chew Chew ice cream (which was divine!) with 3 creme eggs, which I dropped into the ice cream every now and then. It was GORGEOUS!!! Our anniversary was quiet, but lovely.

All that scrimping on the last day and we’d been paid early because of Easter and were totally fine!! Damn it.

We’re on day 2 of the trip away and already…

we’ve changed our plans.

We didn’t go to Shepreth yesterday, we just went straight to Stamford. We had an early night which meant I was out of sleep by 4.20am. Today we’re going to Tropical Birdworld. I hope it’s going to be good. I’ll let you know the verdict later. Ciao

The plan of events when we go away

We’re off to a wildlife park the 1st afternoon away. Then a day in Stamford, Oakham and/or Rutland Water. The next day, hospital check-up, then to B’ham to watch U2:3D on Imax. I hope we have a great time. Ciao.

The weather is now meant to be…

pretty pooey for the rest of the week.

I just hope it gets better next week. Em and I are off for a few days next week as an early anniversary present to ourselves. It’s our 10th one! A milestone in modern times. We’re going to Lincolnshire for 2 days. Around Stamford, Oakham and Rutland Water. All our old haunts. We love these places. Not much else to report at the mo. Ciao

Oh dear, it’s a deer!!

We (Em & I) went on an adventure yesterday. Since around October/November last year we’ve been without a car. Our car died and it’s gonna take a lot of money thrown at it to repair it. We just don’t have that sort of money, so when he have needed a car for a day, we’ve hired one. More often its shanks’ pony or taking a bus. We haven’t done any travel like that together this year until yesterday. We went to Hitchin for the day. The bus goes around all the back villages of Hertfordshire. It’s only a short walk to the bus stop from where we are. Anyway, because the route the bus goes around the Hertfordshire countryside, yesterday we got to see a deer leaping across the road as we hurtled towards it! It was a young fawn, still very Bambi-like, but it had some speed. There were about 8-10 of us on the bus and there were gasps and cries of “It’s a deer!”. Fleeting as it was, it was really lovely to see. Bus trips around village backwaters DO have their advantages!

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A Beautiful Red Deer fawn.

Thanks Guido!

Hooray for Guy Fawkes! I love the man! If it wasn’t for good old Guido, we wouldn’t really be enjoying fireworks this weekend! Only in England could what was a plot to BLOW UP the houses of parliament be CELEBRATED by letting off fireworks and having bonfires!!! Brilliant!

Our local fireworks display is on tonight. It’s usually quite a good display, and it’s free (always a good thing). I think we might go tonight, if not all the way to the park itself, at least somewhere closer so we can see the bigger crackers go off. Then tomorrow night we’ll go to the home of Big Brother UK, to Borehamwood for their fireworks display. We’ve been going there for the last 3-4 years now and it’s quite a good (& free) display.

I do get worried that fireworks are available to buy for the general public. I don’t think that is very safe. And I don’t understand why people want to waste their money on fireworks. Don’t get me wrong – I mean obviously by the subject of this post, I would expect it is obvious that I love fireworks, but I’d never buy them. Maybe a pack of sparklers, that would be it. But I don’t even buy them. I find sparklers WAY too dangerous. I just think buying fireworks are a waste of money to get for private use. I mean it’s like burning a £50 note. There are SO many professional displays put on around here, no one needs to buy fireworks really. But people do. More money than sense as far as I’m concerned.

I shouldn’t really say this, but we have done something INCREDIBLY daft lately. The weather has turned recently and we have been starting to get cold. We haven’t had any heating going to our central heating system. We were waiting for the estate agents plumber to come back from holiday so he could come and look at the central heating. Then this morning (after relying on other heat sources for the last 3 days), Em had a “eureka” moment and realised that what had been happening with the central heating was…

WE HADN’T ADJUSTED THE THERMOSTAT!!

Em felt like a total prawn for not thinking of it earlier and I felt even worse because I didn’t even think of the thermostat AT ALL!!! If we had a brain cell between us, we’d be dangerous sometimes! lol

So, needless to say, we now have heat. How damn embarrassing would that have been if we’d not have twigged and the plumber had come and went ‘click’ and adjusted the thermostat. Talk about wanting a crack to open up in the ground to swallow us!!!

Great minds think alike – soul-mates don’t think at all!