For some inexplicable reason I have suddenly become just a little bit obsessed with caravans! It may be because we were watching repeats of One Man and his Camper Van recently…and I do love campers too. 🙂 We have been lusting over camper vans for ages but they are a bit more money than we can afford to spend. So maybe the next best thing is a little old caravan. Maybe we can upgrade our tent to a treasured tin box on wheels. I don’t know why I never thought of it before! Can we? Can We? Can we?………????
My Family holidays in the 70’s and 80’s were spent touring Scotland for one week every year ( always in the May half term) with Dad,Mum and my younger siblings in a caravan. I have fond memories of eating out of tins, smash potato,Mr kipling cakes, Seaside, the sound of rain beating down on the roof and playing card games on the pop up table and falling out of bunk beds. 🙂
Of course the caravans we spent our holidays in were nowhere near as gorgeous as the pictures featured here.Orange and brown patterned curtains anyone?
Maybe I just want to relive old holiday jaunts gone by and this is all a pipe dream , I’m not sure, but the other half says he will look into getting a tow bar! I think I had better start saving the pennies for rainy days…….in a caravan. 🙂
I am taking inspiration from a lovely blog I have recently started following for this post. Bev from Confuzzledom ( sorry my link not working at mo 😦 ) wrote a great blog entry about all the highlights of her 2013. While I can’t pretend my year has been as well traveled or exciting as Bevs, I thought It would be nice to post a pic ( or two) of something I enjoyed each month. So here is what happened to me in 2013. 🙂
Here is a pic from January. Wil and I had a fab day out in Keswick. It is one of our fave places to visit as there are lots of outdoorsy shops for Wil and really gorgeous scenery.
In February I started doing my craft fairs again. I make teacup candles and I decided to experiment with making tea cup pincushions. Good old YouTube. 🙂
In March my friend Lisa and I did a craft fair at a steam punk inspired Mad Hatters Tea Dance. A bit of a mouthful! Anyway we really enjoyed it and loved the steam punks costumes.
In April I can’t remember much in particular happening but here is a picture of Jake our labrador taking himself for a walk. 🙂
In May I felt very proud of myself for completing the Blog Every Day In May challenge set up by Elizabeth at Rosalilium I found it pretty hard work posting something every single day but amazingly I managed to do it. Hurrah ! I also took my first ever picture of a heron which was busy fishing in the river ribble.
In June we went to Hadrian’s Wall for the first time ever which wasn’t exactly the Great Wall of China but was impressive all the same. My friend Jo celebrated her birthday with a picnic bench afternoon tea which was fabulous. As you know I love cake ( a little to much ! ).
In July we went camping in the Yorkshire Dales with our dooog. 🙂
In August I had a day out at the seaside with my good friend Becky and her family and I also enjoyed the local food festival in my home town.
September was a great month! My old school friend Arwen got married and I was a bridesmaid which was such an honor. A couple of days after Wil and I jetted off on holiday to Agadir in Morocco.
Had an amazing day out with my niece and nephew at The Forbidden Corner in October. If you ever fancy somewhere a wee bit different to take the kids this place might just be it. 🙂
In November I celebrated my big 4 0. Yep i’m now forty which i’m still getting used to. Luckily my friends and family and Wil really made it amazing. Turning 40 was actually a great experience. I’m sure being 40 will be too……….
2013 has been a pretty good year with family and friends celebrating Big Birthdays, Engagements and Weddings. We have had heartbreak in the form of our OAPs ( OLd Age Pets), we had to say goodbye to my dear little cat Tibbs and Jake our black lab has ailing health. 😦 We did manage to give a home to a mischeivious kitty called Slinky though, who is at this moment pouncing on my feet under the duvet wanting to be fed. I had better get up before they become breakfast!
I have been lucky enough to visit and fall in love with the African country of Morocco twice. A few years ago we visited exotic Marrakesh and exquisite Essaouira which you can read about in a previous post. And only last week we were sunning ourselves in the Atlantic coastal resort of Agadir. It seems like forever ago now though.
We decided on Agadir as we genuinely just wanted to get away from it all and relax. Though its in an African country the city is just short of four hours away on the plane and there’s only an hours time difference. The main languages spoken are Arabic and French.
As soon as you come into Agadir you will notice it nestles under a hill top which has the Arabic words for God, King and Country inscribed into the hillside. This is because Agadir itself is a new city built in the sixties. The original settlement was completely destroyed in an earthquake in 1960, killing 15000 people and leaving 50,000 homeless. The new city was built as a resort around the sandy bay and the king offered cash incentives to settle there. The words in the hillside are lit up at night to remind the people of their homes history.
Although Agadir is relatively new it still has its charms as a holiday destination. The long wide sandy beach goes on for miles as does the adjacent palm tree lined promenade. The sea breeze here keeps you cool in the otherwise thirty plus temps. The Atlantic sea can be rough for swimmers and amazing for surfers. Every morning the locals are out jogging and keeping fit. You can hire bikes and cycle to the marina, indulge in a mint tea and cycle back along the promenade. 🙂
I must say we totally cheated with our accommodation in Morocco this year. We decided to go all inclusive, which I had never done before and I must say before going I did have my reservations. All was well though and we really enjoyed our time in the RIU Tikida Dunas hotel. I don’t have anything to compare it to, having had no previous all inclusive experience but it seemed to tick all the boxes. A spacious ground floor room with a sun terrace and sea views, several palm tree fringed pools and four different buffet style restaurants. There were activities and entertainment but I was far to lazy to get involved. However if you should ever visit any of the more historical and cultural Moroccan cities I would recommend staying in traditional town house called a riad which will give your trip a real authentic flavour.
There are souks in Agadir but we decided to go on a half day excursion to the walled Berber city of Taroudannt instead.On the way we drove through Argan tree country where we came across twisted trees full of goats ! Apparently they love the fruits which are used to make cooking oil and cosmetics. Berber people believe Argan oil keeps them healthy well into their old age. It certainly keeps the goats nimble!
Taroudannts impressive sand coloured stone fortifications still remain intact and inside dusty squares and shady souks invite you to wander and explore.
Although Taroudannt was interesting (rather like a mini Marrakesh ) we were glad to get back to the coast and the invigorating ocean breeze. Then we were mostly lazy for the rest of our trip. I think we must have needed the rest though! Have you ever visited Morocco ?
We’ve been undecided all summer as to what to do for a proper break. Stay somewhere in England, back to our favourite spot in Cornwall, somewhere new or just crash on the beach for an all inclusive week abroad. Given the stunning summer we’ve had this year, I am really glad we didn’t go overseas.
I was in two minds about whether to share this place or not as I think we’ve found a real gem and part of me does wants to be really selfish and keep it all to myself!
In the end, we opted for a week somewhere new, and having found this converted shepherd’s hut online, we found a week we were free and made a booking. On arriving, it seemed even more lovely than online.
Rather than being one tiny retreat, the accommodation is spread across two different ‘huts’. The first (the green one above)…
I love the coast. I just love any kind of seaside. 🙂 When my friend Becky and her hubby and parents invited me along to St Annes for the afternoon, I hopped,skipped and jumped at the chance. 🙂 St Annes is quite a sedate yet still very family orientated resort in between Blackpool and Lytham. Very close to Lytham ,the two are often referred to jointly as Lytham St Annes. There are a huge expanse of golden sands, a pier with impressive Victorian wraught iron work detail, amusements, donkey rides and even lovely lovely beach huts. The Beach huts have only recently been re introduced to St Annes. Last year when I came here with my boyfriend only one, the show hut, had been built. Now a further five have been erected. They are painted in fresh nautical colours and families and couples were making the most of them ,sitting on the decks in the sunshine :). If you wish to hire one for a day or longer look HERE.. Its on my bucket list!
Imagine a film festival with a backdrop of sun,sand, sea and Palm tree’s and there you go,you’ve thought up the gorgeous Cannes Film Festival in the South of France.The sixty sixth annual Festival de film will be held from the 15th -26th May 2013 ,with the delightful ‘Amelie’ actress Audrey Tatou hosting the opening and closing ceremony’s. I have always loved the glamour of Cannes and back in 2009 myself, Wil and a couple of friends and their boys enjoyed a holiday in nearby St Raphael in a hot and sunny May. Of course we were up for a bit of star spotting! Firstly though here are a few shots of vintage Cannes. 🙂
This year the opening film will be Baz Lurhmanns ‘The Great Gatsby’ starring Leonardo diCaprio. Back in 2009 the festival was all about Brad Pitts star turn in Quentin Tarentino’s Inglorious Bastards (Scuze my French Tee Hee). Here are a few snaps from our time there. I must apolagize for the lack of actual real life movie stars!
The other advantageous appeal of holidaying in the South of France in late May/early June is that the Monaco F1 Grand Prix follows the Cannes film festival. So of course we decided to drive to Monte Carlo for the race day. We did not have tickets but just thought we would head there for the atmosphere. If you ever go make sure you take your earplugs! The noise is deafening, the course is one of the most exciting and excillerating as it follows the narrow roads around Monaco and includes hair pin bends and a tunnel.We found that unless you are incredibly tall you do not get much of a view of the race if you are kind of gate crasher’s like we were! But our friend Andy who had been numerous times before knew what to do.Head down to the Paddocks next to the harbor just as the race ends and you will spot a few of the drivers past and present.
Ok so I didn’t get a snap of Jensen Button ( he won by the way that year~all the fancy yachts boomed their horns in unison) or Lewis Hamilton-though that particular driver almost ran me over as he scooted away after the end of the race ….on yes a moped. But we have many happy memories of what was definantly a holiday of a life time. 🙂 Bon Vacation!
‘The Lake District’ is a National Park in Cumbria on the western side of North England. It is made up of over 80 mountain lakes, glacial tarns and man made reservoirs. The Lake District is home to England’s highest mountain ‘Scafell Pike’ and England’s deepest lake, ‘Wast Water’ and is classed as an AONB ,( Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). Over the years we have visited several times with our dog Jake. Jake has become a bit of a ‘Wainwright Bagger’ of lakes and tarns, insisting on paddling/swimming in as many as he can. So who better to show you the beauty of ‘The Lake District’ than him. 🙂
Of course there are still several lakes and tarns Jake hasn’t crossed off his list yet. Hopefully he may get the chance to do a few more this year. 🙂
Here are a few dog friendly camp sites we have stopped at in the Lakes.
Ooooh I definatly need a little bit of sunshine. It is sooo grey out there and at times like these I wonder what can I possibly write about? So I thought I would go back in time and tell you about a lovely chilled camping trip we went on in May last year. I really love the sea side so I thought I would try and find a camp site on our own Lancashire coastline. The camping criteria with us is almost always somewhere that is dog friendly, in beautiful countryside and within walking distance of a pub. 🙂 We found the perfect place! ‘Gibralter Farm’ in Silverdale.
The very name ‘Gibralter Farm’ conjours up warm sunshiney days and we were in luck! The campsite is situated on a working farm in the heart of the Silverdale and Arnside Area of Outstanding Natural beauty with gorgeous views over Morecambe Bay. We pitched our tent in the lower left field which is adjacent to a little wooded area where you can camp too.
There are lots of footpaths from the site and if you wander through the woodland there is a perfect little cove where we saw Oyster catchers and Shelduck. Ok I was more excited about the birdlife than my other half but yes I am a bit of a bird nerd!
Even he was impressed that Gibralter Farm has its own resident Green Woodpecker. I spent a lot of time trying to capture its vivid colours on camera but the best I could manage was this siluette shot.
We wandered into the village of Silverdale a couple of times. It has a convenience store,a butchers, tearooms, an Indian restaurant and two pubs ‘The Royal Hotel’ and ‘The Woodlands.’ If you like your real ales and somewhere a little different try ‘The Woodlands'( If you can find it!) which is run by the villagers in an old manor house.It is kind of a bizarre place which also had a pop up victorian tearooms in one of the downstairs rooms when we visited. 🙂
We also had lunch at ‘The Wolf House Gallery ‘ across the road from Gibralter Farm.It was a little expensive but the food was good.
Silverdale itself is in Lancashire and neighboring Arnside only two miles up the road is in Cumbria.Both are well worth a visit. Arnside is a pretty village facing the estuary with a tiny promenade of cafes and gift shops.We took our dog Jake here for some walks on the beach and he made friends with a local dog. 🙂
If you love your wildlife make sure you take a walk round the RSPB Leighton Moss Nature Reserve where you can see all sorts of water fowl in the reeds. Unfortunately as we had Jake there were not to many areas we could take a dog.There is one public walkway where you can walk the hound,on a lead of course.
And a stay here is not complete without sampling the local delicacy ‘Morecambe Bay Potted Shrimps’ which are caught in the shallow waters of the bay. We tried some in the nearby seaside town of Grange Over Sands.
Hopefully we will try and head to Gibralter Farm again this year for a nice relaxing camping trip by the sea. 🙂
This year the boyfriend, the dog, and I are going away for Christmas. I’m quite excited as we are off to a cottage in the Yorkshire Dales.A roaring log fire,beautiful countryside and three pubs and a tearoom all on our doorstep.Yay!
However I have on good authority that we will have no mobile signal in the village.Yikes! My boyfriend is very happy about this as he isn’t into social media at all.So whil’st he is cheerily pulling on his walking boots,I will be moaning the loss of Facebook,Twitter,wordpress and everything else I take for granted on my android phone. But not for long I hope! Instead I plan to make the most of an Internet free few days:
I hope to get out and about with my camera and see if i can take a few good wildlife shots like this picture of a bluetit I came accross on a walk back in October. 🙂
I definately have to catch up on my reading.’A Street Cat Called Bob’ has been waiting patiently on my bedside table for a while now. It is a true story about a stray ginger cat who befriends a homeless busker.Bob certainly looks a cutie on the front cover and his story is supposed to be an uplifting and heartwarming read.
I make enough lovely fragranced teacup candles so I will have to pack one to burn myself me thinks : )
Last Christmas my friend Fi got me this pretty cat brooch to make and I haven’t got round to it yet.So this is definatly on my list of things to do. I might also try making some pom poms! Yes I need to get a bit crafty!
And of course everyone probably has at least one classic Christmas film they have never watched but really should.In my case it is an old movie called ‘Its A Wonderful Life’ starring James Stewart.I hope I can find a copy…..
No doubt there will be quite alot of walking too and quite alot of sampling real ales in the local inns…and maybe some romantic evenings in by the fire 😉
How are you going to spend your Christmas holidays?
I thought I would share with you our recent trip to Whitby.I booked a night in the gorgeous La Rosa hotel which is perched high on the West Cliff with views of the harbor and the commanding presence of the old abbey. We were in good company.Lewis Carroll stayed here once. 🙂
All the rooms are individually themed.We chose the ‘Stoker Room’ with its fabulously high bed and amazing views.Its decor was definantly inspired by Dracula too I think…
The furnishings at La Rosa are very quirky indeed.Think of it as a haven for teacups and taxidermy!
After we checked in and had a nosy around we went for a wander.The first thing to do was tackle the 199 steps up to the abbey. That was a killer!
After that we definately needed cake.Marie Antionette’s serves the best hot chocolate and I loved my Lemon drizzle cake. Let me eat cake here again I say!
There are lots of quirky little shops to browse. I was excited to come accross ‘Dotty About Vintage’,located just over the little bridge in the centre. : )
La Rosa is very near this whale bone arch given to Whitby by a town in Alaska.It very cleverly frames a perfect view.
In the evening we had a few drinks in the various old Inns scattered round this old seaside town. Most serve a grand choice of real ales which my other half is a big fan of.Alot are dog friendly which is great if your holidaying in Whitby with the hound. All are olde worldy.
After a cozy nights sleep and a leisurely lie in there was a knock on the door.Our breakfast had arrived.
Breakfast is a hamper delivered to your room in the morning.Croissants,fruit,cheese,yogurt,eggs,coffee,orangejuice and fruit cake.Fab! You can choose what time you would like it between 8-30am and 11am. If it was summer (or at least not a wet november morning) we would have definatly eaten it on the balcony.
We needn’t checkout until noon which gave us more time to explore. I wish I had booked another night!
All to soon it was time to head home to Lancashire. On the way we stopped off for lunch at an American diner ‘Uncle Joes’ near Pickering which looked interesting.
The decor was pale blue and white with vintage touches.It’s a good place to take the kids too as they eat free during the day Mon-Fri.
Tee hee I think most of my pics have been food related!
Hope you enjoyed the pictures anyway. We had a lovely time. Have you ever visited Whitby?
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