Category Archives: seaside

My 2016 ~In Photos.

As is now tradition, I am posting a quick photo round-up of my year. All in all it’s been a pretty good one! I have been slightly more organized than normal and included some post links. Yay!

January.  Woh this seems such a long time ago now. January gave us the only snow of the year. Hugo loved it of course but it only lasted one snow day. 😦 It was still frosty and cold however on our visit to Formby Point where we saw Red squirrels 🙂  And yep thats me with a naked man at Another Place , the Anthony Gormley Art Installation on Crosby Beach.

February.  It was a pretty quiet month in February. We did manage a day out in Manchester however and I had a fun time photographing the Street Art in the Northern Quarter. I also attended my God daughter Mady’s sons christening. I’m not one for holding babies but baby Jason was very chilled. 🙂

March.  Wil and I had a weekend away in Coventry and stopped at the lovely Coombe Abbey Hotel & Country Park. We also visited Coventry itself which had lots of surprises. And later in the month I was in Manchester again , this time for a friends birthday. You can read my post about it here.

April.  Spring arrived at last ( hurrah! ) and I  couldn’t wait to get out and about with my camera and my Ladybird Book Guide To spring. 🙂  A day out at Bolton Abbey in the Easter Holidays was great fun and I treated Wil to a trip on a steam train ( with lots of Real Ale involved 😉  ) on the East Lancs Railway.

May.  The weather was great in May and included a day out in Kirkby Lonsdale with my sister and her family. We even managed a paddle in the river. 🙂 A walk along the banks of Derwent Water in the Lake District was made all the more interesting , when Wil, Hugo and I came across a giant hand sculpture!  Our Holiday Season started in May.:) A camping trip in the Yorkshire Dales , not too far from Fountain Abbey. And a stay in a hotel looking over Haweswater. 🙂

June.  I loved our day out in Malham where we walked up to the Cove and paddled in Janet’s Foss. Think that was Hugo’s favourite part.:) We also went camping in Silverdale and Hugo enjoyed his second ever boat trip, on Lake Windermere.

July.  Clitheroe has had lots of great new eating and drinking venues open in 2016 and the biggest surprise is probably Bowland Beer Hall at Holmes Mill. It’s an amazing space in an old textile mill, host to a listed steam engine and what appears to be England’s longest continuous bar. I attended the opening evening with Wil and some friends in July. I also crossed Llama Trekking off my  Bucket List when myself and some of my family enjoyed a half day with these adorable animals here. Oh and Hugo found himself inside the July edition of The Simple Things Magazine. 🙂

August.  In August there was a holiday at Spring Park  in Cornwall. We stayed in ‘The Duke’ , a beautifully restored Showman’s wagon. On the way down to Cornwall we stopped one night in the spa town of Bath.I would love to return to both places. 🙂 Hugo has been busy bagging lakes all year. Here he is in Grasmere, over the bank holiday.

September. The poor pooch wasn’t quite sure what to think of The The Morecambe Bay Cross Bay Walk. as it involved a lot of doggy paddling. I got pretty soaked too!  The new Bridget Jones film turned into a bit of an event for us ladies.:) And if you like cake ( doesn’t everyone) you will like my post about my friend Nicolas Macmillan World’s Biggest Coffee Morning.. She certainly didn’t scrimp on her baking. 🙂

October. We had an unseasonably dry October so this month’s posts are full of Autumn colours. 🙂 I joined in with #30dayswild, and enjoyed fun days out at Lowther Castle & Gardens   and The Forbidden Corner with family.

November. November is my Birthday month so it was great to get away with Wil and Hugo to a holiday cottage in Scotland . The Afternoon Tea in Portpatrick was a Birthday treat courtesy of Wil and it was also nice to get together with friends. 🙂

December.  This month has been all about meeting up with family. 🙂  I’ve included a piccie of my cat Slinky as she does tend to get overshadowed by a certain Black Labrador. And I took part in Janet’s ‘Thrifty Christmas Gift Swap’ which I will post about separately I’m sure. 

Despite the radical changes in this country and abroad in 2016, I guess the best thing to do is just carry on and LIVE. Life is just to short to get depressed about it. So all the best for 2017 guys ….. and see you soon. X

 

 

 

Blog Birthday Giveaway……Revealed. :)

It’s time to pick the winner of my Blog Birthday Giveaway!  

Up for grabs is a delightful ceramic seahorse tag made by the lovely Lisa at Tile Productions

  and my recently read copy of a book I enjoyed called ‘A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding’ , set  in Japan before and after World War 2.

Thank you so much for all your lovely blog birthday greetings and comments. I really appreciate them.♡♡

I wrote down the names of everyone who commented and placed them in a teacup. I gave it a good shake and looked round for someone to do the honors. Yep I had to ask the other half!

And the winner is………….

It is you Julie W. I will be in touch!!

Thanks again everybody. I have enjoyed reading all your blogging comments. :))

Ten things I enjoyed in Silverdale.

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Limestone chimney, Jenny Brown’s Point.

I’ve recently got back from a few days away on the coast. I decided I needed some refreshing sea air and as my other half loves the Lakes we compromised and chose to stay  just outside  the lovely village of Silverdale. Silverdale looks over Morecambe Bay and the coastline is rocky , the tree’s twisted into windswept shapes. I loved it there. 🙂  The village is actually in Lancashire, though quite close to nearby Arnside, which is in Cumbria. Here’s a wee list of some of the things I enjoyed in Silverdale. 🙂

1. Camping at Gibraltar farm.  The perfect campsite to pitch your tent  Gibraltar Farm  is a family run site on a working farm with stunning coastal views. There’s good hot showers, a little shop and miles of countryside walks on your doorstep.

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Windswept trees at Gibraltar Farm.

2. Breakfasting like a king.  Just across from the campsite  The Wolf House Gallery Cafe is somewhere you should definitely treat yourself to brekkie one morning. But don’t expect plain old bacon and eggs. How about Harissa roasted pepper,potato hash,fried eggs and honey pickled jalapenos or Buttermilk & Blueberry pancakes with bacon & maple syrup, to tempt your tastebuds. Yes we treated ourselves twice. 🙂

3. Local art and gifts.  The Wolf House Gallery ( legend has it the surrounding area was home to England’s last living Wolves) sells beautiful pottery, prints, ceramics and jewellery so after breakfast I just had to have a browse. And in the village itself there’s a lovely vintage shop called Vintage and Country , both are well worth a look.

4. Wildlife Watching. Silverdale and nearby Arnside are a designated Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty. I loved nothing better than heading out with my camera to snap the various wildlife that considers this gorgeous habitat home. Below are a Little Egret, Common Spotted Orchid, a Shelduck and and a tiny orange butterfly.

And if you want to see Bitterns,Otter, Birds of prey and even more varied wildlife, RSPB Leighton Moss is just up the road. 🙂

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The Woodlands is a bar in someone’s House. 🙂

5. Find the Local’s Pub.  Silverdale has two very good pubs that serve really nice food. It will be easy enough to find the warm and welcoming Silverdale Hotel  and the recently reopened and refurbished Royal  in the village. But if you fancy hanging out with the locals , sampling good ale ( at very cheap prices) in 1970’s decor then why not hunt out THe Woodlands ( known as Woody’s ) on Woodlands drive. Not a food serving pub but they do do sandwiches and bags of crisps!

6. Walking to Arnside.  Nearby Arnside is a picturesque village that looks over the river kent estuary, it’s pretty promenade of shops and cafes face the Arnside viaduct. The village has two pubs and a train station. There are several ways to walk here including over the limestone fell of Arnside Knott but we chose the coastal path from Silverdale.I would say it’s probably a six mile hike through coastal woodland and over cliff tops. Breathtaking!

7. Buying plants for the garden. Ok a bit of a strange one, but I was kind of spoilt for choice in Silverdale. A couple of houses as well as The Woodlands were selling garden flowers on their door steps for charity. Really pretty ones too. I ummed and ahhed and finally chose a Red Hot Poker ( a lilac and pink one!) and a pink lupin. 🙂

8. Sit on Jenny Brown’s Bench and wonder ‘Who the heck was Jenny Brown?’  It’s an easy walk from the village to Jenny Brown’s Point.  Follow the country lane past Gibraltar Farm until you see a National Trust sign for Jack Scout on your right. We passed a lime kiln and criss crossed our way along until we came to a bench with stunning views and a sign. Maybe the mysterious Jenny sat here wistfully gazing out to sea. A whole flock of Shelduck congregated here and samphire grows by the rocks.

9. Walking in the footsteps of Literary Heroines.  I didn’t realise that when writer Elizabeth Gaskell holidayed in Silverdale , she actually stayed at Gibraltar Farm. Nope she didn’t pitch up a tent unfortunately. 😉 Mrs Gaskell resided in Lindeth Tower which is next to the farm house. I spied it through the trees and wondered how she ever got any writing done, with such fine views to distract her……  Another famed author, Charlotte Bronte visited Silverdale too as a young girl.

10. Biryani on the Beach.  On our last night we treated ourselves to an Indian take away from Silverdales only restaurant. Cinnamon Spice  does a delicious biryani and what better place to enjoy it than down by the shore watching the sunset  with a bottle of cider. Who says Romance is dead !

Have you ever visited Silverdale?  Hope my blog has inspired you . X

#BEDM Alice’s Tea Room ~ St Annes.

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Saturday was a marvelous day, as not only did I get to spend some quality time with my lovely friend Lisa, we also visited an Alice In Wonderland inspired Tea Room and partook of Afternoon Tea. 🙂   Alices Tea Room in the Lancashire seaside town of St Annes can be found on St Albans road, away from the front and not to far from the town centre. Once there you can sit outside in the sun or enjoy the Wonderland inside.

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Everywhere you look there are characters from Lewis Carroll’s magical tale along with Top Hats and White rabbits , Teacups and ‘Eat Me’ and ‘Drink Me’ signs. There are two rooms to be seated in as the cafe has recently been extended due to it’s popularity. Lisa had reserved us a table luckily. 🙂

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Lunch at the cafe includes sandwiches,paninis and jacket potatoes. However we couldn’t resist The Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea. 😉  Served on a beautiful vintage three tier cake stand, the Afternoon Tea is a feast for the eyes indeed. Accompanying the gorgeous selection of sumptuous sandwiches and divine cakes, came our tea in china teapots. And all was served on pretty mismatched crockery.

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Lisa getting ready to tuck in. 🙂

The Afternoon Tea contained mini cheese,egg mayo,tuna and ham sandwiches ( Veggie fillings are no trouble either), fruit scones with jam and clotted cream, flapjacks, chocolate cupcakes and marvelous sparkly meringues. Tea refills were plentiful and there’s lots of choice on the tea menu. If you don’t fancy doing the Afternoon Tea but need a sweet treat, Alice’s have fabulous cakes and an Ice cream counter too. 🙂

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And if you want a memento to take home with you , there’s a little shop too full of Wonderland inspired goodies. In fact my super talented friend Lisa makes all the lovely Alice tags you can see hanging here. 🙂

The Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea was £17.85 for two people.

Are you a fan of Afternoon Tea?

This post is for day Two of #BEDM set up by Elizabeth at Rosalilium.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo Scavenger Hunt ~ January.

 

 

Hi this month’s Photo Scavenger Hunt is slightly different than normal as Jill simply asked us to contribute twelve random photo’s from our month. I am happy to do that 🙂 so here goes. Apologies to those of you who may have seen some of these pictures in my past posts.

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Naughty But Nice ~  Although I am on a bit of a health kick this month, I have had time for a couple of treats. Oh yes :). This was a particularly wonderful Afternoon Tea I enjoyed with friends at the lovely Mitton Hall near Whalley. It was I have to say, scrumdiddlyumptious!

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Gorgeous Scenery on a day out in the Lake District. The lake is ‘Derwent Water’ and there is snow on the mountains ,geese on the lake and a certain black labrador is enjoying a paddle. 🙂

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One Black cat sat on my bed. She thinks it’s her bed obviously!

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Family ~ Wow this feels like a long time ago now. Our Christmas get together actually happened in the New Year. Every year tradition dictates that we pose for a family photo. This involves my brother setting up the camera, everyone jostling for position and all of us falling about laughing when the camera doesn’t take the shot. Fun times. 🙂

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Read ~ The only book I have read so far this year is ‘The Art of Being Normal’ by Lisa Williamson, which I heartily recommend.

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Here’s a close up of Hugo by the lake. He’s just come out of the water which must have been freezing!  He’s wearing his new Grrrrrrrrrrr! tag.  :0).

 

 

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Welcoming ~  A lovely wooden horse welcomes visitors to a shop in Kirkby Lonsdale.

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Naked ~  Yup, one of many naked statues on Crosby Beach near Liverpool. One Hundred of them in fact!  You can read my post about this unusual art installation  here. :0)

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On the same day we visited Formby Beach , where the nearby pine woods are home to lots of  cute  red squirrels.

20160131_095820.jpgUninspiring picture of the spare room. We are hoping to decorate and make it into a kind of dressing room/storage space. Trip to Ikea is needed methinks. 🙂

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Gorgeous wildlife tiles at the Rheged Centre in Penrith.

 

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And my Favourite birdie picture from January is this cute female Bullfinch!

Thanks for dropping by!

February Beckons. 🙂

 

 

 

 

Sea Air ~ Squirrels and Naked Men on the Sefton Coast.

Wednesday was a gorgeous cold and clear blue sky day and both of us happened to have the day off work. Talk about good luck!  We decided to head off to the Sefton Coast near Liverpool….with the dog of course.

In the morning we found our way to Formby Beach and parked at the National Trust Car Park which was quite expensive but well worth it. I do keep thinking about membership and just don’t get round to it. Anyone out there a member?  So, the car park area is right by the pine woods where red squirrels are in residence. 🙂 But first we ambled down to the beach via one of the many trails. Check out the recycled Christmas trees that have been planted in the dunes to protect them from becoming flattened.

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Formby Beach is lovely and very dog friendly too. There are lots of shells especially Razor Shells. This part of the coast is home to some rare wildlife such as Dune Tiger Beetles and Natterjack Toads. And when the tide is out ancient human and animal tracks dating back 5,000 years can be seen in the rocks.  The other wildlife Formby is famous for is of course it’s  Red Squirrels.

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The pine woodlands  were planted 60-110 years ago to stable the sand dunes and protect the asparagus crops that were once grown here.  Nowadays they are a refuge for our protected squirrel species. The squirrel walk ( dogs allowed on leads) is a delight. I can’t tell you how chuffed I was to see so many of these beautiful little tuftys. 🙂  They are smaller than their grey cousins and never keep still for long!

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After our fun times in Formby we drove a little further down the coast to Crosby Beach. Here is  home to 100 cast iron statues by artist Antony Gormley entitled  Another Place. They are dotted around 3 km of beach, looking out to sea.  There is a signposted free car park and dogs are allowed on the sand. I’m not sure what Hugo thought of the sculptures. He did pee on a lot of them!

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As you can see all the statues are naked!  They are actually modelled on the artist’s own body. I wonder how he feels about himself being duplicated  across the coastline in his birthday suit. Well pretty good, I guess. 🙂

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It was interesting to see the varying states of erosion and weathering the statues have succumbed to. Ten years have passed since they were installed. I hope they are gracing the coastline for many years to come. 🙂