|Sooty the cat in Hall Green, Birmingham|
“Do we need to go back to the UK before the wedding at the end of May?” he asked. As we haven't stopped for a fortnight, I think the answer was a definite yes!
After unpacking the car and repacking the loft we went out for a long awaited curry, in the village, with mum, yum.
|At Alex and Robs for tree cutting and a BBQ|
Off to visit Denise and Paul to deliver the tartiflette cheese, and duck confit in a tin we'd brought for them, then on to Lockwoods to get the skis serviced, three pairs which seems too many for two people, but hey. Back to the village for tea and then G&T with Sarah and John, before tartiflette for us as it is one of Mums favourites too, and that was just the first two days.
It's been one thing after another, dentist, doctors, and Physio, Halfords to replace the glass from both wing mirrors which fell out on two consecutive days, though I did manage to catch the passenger one! Haircuts, computer maintenance, tree surgery, financial adviser and two half days sorting out bank accounts.
|Now this is proof that BBQ'ing is mans work. While Rob and I were doing manly stuff with chain saws and trees, Jackie was BBQ'ing. Just look at those sausages - or are they blocks of charcoal?|
|The birthday cake I baked for Becky and Jackie. Good or what?!?|
It's not all been work though, we caught up with Abi before we moved in and she moved out of her house, including a visit to her caravan which she got for £375 on eBay. It's lovely very well loved and bigger than the little van we lived in in NZ and Oz, jealous? Me? I caught up with Alex for our usual coffee and a chat, and we both went round on Saturday for more tree surgery and a BBQ. We have left Rob with the chain saw, is this a good thing? We've met Lisa and her house rabbits Poppy and Sahara, our next Housesit, been to an afternoon tea dance, where we halved the average age and Brian has bought a new mobile phone as the old one was very tired and driving him mad, which was driving me mad! Amazing how long playing with a new phone can take!
|May 'Christmas' at Fiona and James'. LtoR: Jackie, Fiona (my daughter), Sam (in the background), James, Steph and Harry (Becky's boyfriend)|
|Paul, Denise (Brian's sis) and Brian|
We've been out dog walking, getting caught in a downpour just as we arrived at the pub with Helen and Ian and Monty dog! Shame, though this did make us slightly late for the curry at Diwans, our favourite! Two lots of Monday Club drinks, a Big Wok meal with Rob and Alex and Jo and Mike, and been to the cinema with mum to see Eddie the Eagle and have a Mexican meal.
There's been cake baking by B, to use up old bananas, for Mum to take to a volunteers meeting at Forge Mill, a four storey, birthday, chocolate Oreo cake to take to a family 'Christmas lunch' at Brian's daughters, where we met two of his Granddaughter's boyfriends, both called Harry and ate far, far too much. And two yesterday, one for us and one for him to take into Andantex his old place of work where he is today, meeting the old gang and then doing some 'stuff' with Terry his ex work partner.
|A great photo of Rory, Steph and Sams son of nearly 14 months at Fiona and James' ' MayChristmas'|
|Oscar the cat suns himself|
So I'm home alone, blog writing, fussing Sooty and doing a few odd jobs for Abi and chilling, before we go over the Helen and Ian's as Ian is home alone too for a few days while Helen and Monty are visiting her Mum. She's worried he might fade away, and or work too hard, so a meat fest is planned for tonight (she is a pescatarian). Whether we corrupt him with a mid week glass of wine we shall see!
|Rory having a splash about in Fiona and James' hot tub. LtoR: Harry, Abbie, Fiona, Harry, Denise holding Rory and Paul|
|Jackie and Becky blow out the candles on the birthday cake being held by Fiona and with Jenny looking on|
|Narla the rabbit. Both her and Oscar the cat are left free to roam free in the garden and neither seem to bother the other|
|In Andantex (Brian's old company). This is Martin repairing Terry's (Brian's old business partner) golf buggy. Nothing like us old retirees disrupting work in our old company! Is that a great looking buggy or what!?|
|On the left is Phil (Terry's son and now MD of Andantex after Brian retired in 2012), Terry in the check shirt and the only man working, Martin|
|Martin's got the buggy drive motor and gearbox off and on the bench. 'Go on Mart, hit it. Can't beat a bit of proper engineering!'|