Friday, 1 July 2016


Good Morning tis Friday - what positive silver linings moments have graced your week this week, I hope it has been a good one 

Well Mischief 2 - aka said 15 year old is currently away, he went on thursday last week (and it has to be said that the house has been mighty quiet since he left, nothing has been obliterated, shot or evenly slightly maimed on Xbox since he left - like I said - mighty quiet!).  As me and hubby very rarely get chance to escape on our own, I decided to book us some time reminiscing about the 'good old days' - you have to bear in mind that I'm only actually 44 years of age!  

However, we decided to book a hotel for a couple of nights, grab a couple of tickets and explore some old haunts in Stafford for a couple of days.  We were all for dropping in and catching up with people but I don't think said 15 would have been happy so we didn't - we just enjoyed our own company and reminisced.

On our way down we visited Amerton farm, somewhere we took little man to when he was - well a little man - rather than the strapping 6 foot young man that presents himself these days! 

It was a beautiful sunny day, the chickens were still wandering around, the bakery smelt beautiful and all seemed as if we hadn't been away, the craft barn - lacked well crafting which is a great shame - they obviously make far more money from the deli and the play barn than actually having any decent craft items to buy.  But we enjoyed the nostalgia nonethless. 

We booked for a Premier Inn (nothing fancy but you can guarantee a good nights sleep), there was a fab pub next door that sold lovely food and nice beer - so win win!  

We enjoyed a slap up meal and then sat outside to enjoy the rather warm barmy summers evening!  I loved the chicken wallpaper on the walls inside and how pretty it looked from the outside, despite the pub only being built a few years ago! 

We enjoyed a trip into town but were disappointed to find most of the car parks have been built on, making parking a nightmare.  Lots of the shops had changed hands, the angel house that sold beautiful statues is long gone, sigh.  But we did giggle at us reminiscing. "That's where Our Price was - I remember buying an album from there.   This sweet shop was where we bought our first Myth and Magic dragons all those years ago" - you know the one! 

We found the 'quaint' country lane with the Stafford soup kitchen on, always a beautiful walk.  

We got caught in the rain, but found the Picture House and enjoyed a half whilst chatting about where we had been and what we had seen.  We also remembered taking my brother and sister to the Picture House to see Jurassic Park when they were younger and them hiding behind their coats as they were so scared!  The picture house is amazing as a pub and they have retained some of the seats at the back where we sat (I don't think they retained them because we sat there, but you get the meaning).  

We got changed for tea having booked a table and grabbed a selfie. 

We discovered they had a deal on a bottle of prosecco on a Friday night so - well we enjoyed a bottle (or two) - it would have been rude not to! 

On the Saturday we had a brilliant walk around Cannock Chase, people were out in their droves enjoying the mountain bike trails.  We came across people on horseback and segways of all ages! 

The sky remained blue whilst we had our walk - which I was grateful for! 

The lake was lovely! 

And we spotted these baby geese as we wandered!

 Then we headed off to Shugborough Hall, owned by the National Trust but leased to Staffordshire County council.  It was the home of Lord Lichfield and really is a delight to walk around.  

However, being Chatsworth members it really doesn't compare but we enjoyed the trip nonetheless.

The gardens are still pretty, although the oriental bridge in the background could do with a coat of paint.

We found this amazing 'shrub' (I use the term loosely given the size of it), it was covered and I mean covered in a gorgeous white flower! 

As we weren't sure on what we were going to have for tea and hadn't booked a table and were due at the Castle for the play we decided to have a bar meal at one of our old haunts.  Now this place really hasn't changed, the Holly Bush Inn at Salt, still delivers a fabulous bar meal at a fabulous price in a gorgeous environment! 

After we headed back to the hotel, the staff were great and booked us a taxi in advance so we 
weren't stressing!

So we headed to the pub for a quick drink - here is Mischief 1 - being well mischievous!

The play was fantastic, we were technically under cover (we were front row - so when the rain arrived we knew about it)! 

The actors were fab and the play was great, the fact that Emilia and Desdemona managed to pretend to be sunbathing on the sand in part of the play as the rain absolutely bounced down is beyond me! 

The set was great and blended beautifully with Stafford Castle in the background!

Afterwards we had been told to just call the taxi firm that dropped us off, you can imagine our faces when they told us a 75 minute wait - can't you!  We tried pleading with the taxi drivers in the car park and tried another firm to no avail, in the end we rang back the original firm and explained our predicament and that they had promised that we could get a taxi easily if we phoned when it finished!  They came to our rescue in minutes so a big no a MAHOOSIVE thank you to Aerobright taxis of Stafford you were awesome! 

Sunday arrived and we had decided to enjoy a trip to Chatsworth on our way home, firstly to break the journey and secondly to enjoy Florabundance a floral spectacular in the house - we were not disappointed! 

This was my favourite! 

 Up close the flowers were beautiful!

and it looked totally different from the other side!

We left via my favourite sculpture next to the doors at the exit, the sleeping lion! 

We got home and enjoyed a quiet evening before the working week began.  The week has been crazy busy but fun, even though I'm officially shattered and not a hundred percent! 

Thursday has arrived and after a busy day I'm thinking about said 15 year old who is on his return journey back to us, he's been in Lourdes for just over a week, I was thankful to receive a couple of photos of his journey over there.  Here he is with his pilgrim whom he has been helping this week - the word proud doesn't come close as you can imagine!

And to finish this post off, I've received a letter from school indicating that he's been put forward for an award!  Awards evening Tuesday - very very proud Mum! 

I hope you've had an awesome week, well done if you are still with me on this post, sorry it is so long!  If you fancy joining in then pop a post together, pop back and link up so we can come and visit! 


  1. Nice and early today! You must have posted before going to work!
    What a great post to read! You had a fantastic weekend. I loved the photo of the window in the pub (with the chicken wallpaper). (The Summer Photographic Scavenger Hunt has a window as one of its items to photograph. Your window would be perfect)
    Glad you were able to go see the flower arrangements at Chatsworth. They are stunning! Being Dutch I like the orange arrangement. But they are all beautiful.
    Said 15 yr old is doing very well. You must be very proud. First that he is willing to give up a week's 'gaming' to look after pilgrims on a trip to Lourdes (which must be a boring holiday for a 15 yr old) and then being put forward for an award! Proud mummy!
    I enjoyed reading about your weekend. You pack so much into it.
    Happy Friday,
    Have a good weekend,

  2. What amazing photos Virginia. It looks like you & hubby had a wonderful time.
    Many congrats to Said 15yr old.
    Toni xx

  3. What a heart warming post. Always a pleasure to visit :D XXX

  4. what a fantastic week you have had! Congrats to said 15 year old.

  5. Wonderful photos and congrats too. Jx

  6. My word, you do get around don't you. Lots of lovely photos this week. I love the white flowering 'shrub' and the family of geese. The flowers at Chatsworth are stunning, and I too love the sleeping lion, though he looks rather sad.
    You have every right to be proud of your son. He is a lovely young man. Kate x