Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Book Club Visit

Two days after getting back from France (7th June) I went on a trip with friends from my church book club, to the house which the book 'The Children of Green Knowe' by Lucy M.Boston, is based on. It's the oldest house in Britain which has continuously been inhabited - the oldest parts built in the 1100's.
We read the book a little while ago, and it was nice enough, but seeing the house, with all the features talked about in the book, really made it come alive, and I loved being there.
Lucy M. Boston's daughter-in-law lives in the house now, and she showed us around it. I'm listening to her here.
Lucy M. Boston was also a quilter. She didn't make these quilts being used as curtains - they are much older, but we got to see lots of her beautiful quilts.
This was my favourite room in the house. In the 2nd World War airmen used to come up here once a week and listen to music on this giant gramophone. We even got to listen to one of the original records.
Up in the attic is the room just like is described in the book - with the window left open a crack for birds to come and perch in the bird cage, and the chest with the ghost children's toys in etc.
There is even the statue of Saint Christopher with the Christ child, in the garden, which features in the book.
The Manor, Hemingford Grey, or 'Green Knowe'
Some of our book club girlies.
The gardens were beautiful too, and the most fragant I have been in...
After the tour, we were just left to wander the house and gardens as we wanted. I also bought my own copy of the book, and Diana Boston signed it and wrote for the children in it. A wonderful trip, finished with Jo dropping me off at Harry and Tom's school just in time to collect them!

Our new Driveway

While we were in France, Dad had been working on building our driveway. As we neared home we got all excited imagining what it would look like... it was fabulous!! Dad had worked ridiculously hard on it, made friends with half our street in the meantime, and got it all finished - and it looked even better than I had hoped for!

Half-term Holidays in Brittany

On Friday 27th May, we took the kids out of school for their last day before half-term holidays, and took the Euro-tunnel to Bel-Air, the house in France. We had the place to ourselves for all of half-term, and had fantastic weather all week (just one cloudy day). The first couple of days, apart from a trip to Super U, we stayed at home and just soaked in the surroundings and sunshine... it was bliss!
The kids happy to be reunited with their bikes! Harry asked me to take this picture of his.
This picture just reminds me of sitting in the back garden feeling happy and relaxed and warm!
At the 'Cuttlefish Beach'
I took some hand-quilting with me, and Harry asked if he could do some too... he made a (very) mini quilt for his ratty.
One day we went to Dinan, and tried to head down to the river. We did get there eventually, but after a very circuitous route via another town, and along a towpath with amazing trees...
Finding ourselves on top of an ancient monument whilst still slightly lost.
Finally there!!
The next day (Wednesday 1st June) we went to 'the bouncy castle place'. Plently of fun on the go-karts as usual, and also checking out the park's new additions.
On Thursday we went to the beach at Sarzeau.
And in the evening a walk in our favourite wood.
Friday, we had a quick run around Josselin, including a timed run up  the clock tower! (And yet another picture of this view!)
The surfing beach. Not very big waves, but Scott and I managed to get up on the boards, and the kids had a great time bodyboarding.
Saturday - we went off on a bikeride with a picnic in my trusty bike basket... another blissful time in the countryside.
Made smores on our last evening.
On Sunday 5th June we drove home. We spent 11 and a half hours in the car (couldn't believe it was actually so long - held up in the D-day celebrations at Normandy), and with only about three 5 minute toilet breaks... The kids were amazing, and didn't have a single squabble the whole way!

Belgium & Derbyshire

From 19th-22nd May, Jack went on a school trip to Belgium to take part in a big folk dancing festival. They performed some molly dancing dances, and also visited some 2nd World War sites. Unfortunately he lost his disposable camera, but he says he had the most brilliant time from start to finish!

On 21st May, I went to Derby to pick up Katy, and we headed to Derbyshire to visit the camp site we are using for the Stake Young Women's camp this summer, and plan some of the trips. We found a great little hike right near the campsite in Matlock. Our picnic lunch with the fabulous view! Riber Castle on the hill. I love this one of Katy and me!Dovedale We headed back to Derby, and Katy and I had the most amazing Indian meal, before I headed home.