Friday, 28 August 2009


Actually pink Sunday.

We decided to go out for lunch on Sunday as the rest of the family were busy so we went to a little village just outside Exeter  called Topsham and, despite the fact it is “ on our doorstep” it was a lovely day out.

Topsham was once the second busiest port in England. Now it is a favourite destination for the retired, and tourist alike.


See the pink buoy next to the pontoon?

The town is sited on a low red ridge between the main river of the Exe to the west and the River Clyst, to the south. The Exe at this point is an estuary of some width with salt marshes on its opposite bank.

On the quay is an enormous antique centre but I missed the opportunity to photograph some pretty cranberry glass. However, There were some beautiful pink cottages -

here are some

077 This one was stunning. Called Drakes Cottage.

087 Pale pink with beautiful windows.

100 Tucked away in a little side street.

103 The local hairdressers.

109 Pink door on a Georgian frontage.

115 hiding away.

Next week – more pink in Topsham. Hurry back


Wednesday, 26 August 2009


Since joining this blogging family I have noted how so many people love collecting and making things  to display in their beautiful homes and I have been struck by the difference in style between here, in the UK and the USA. That is a sweeping generalisation I know but most of my friends and neighbours have followed the trend to de – clutter ( at the expense of bulging attics and garages!)

Now retired my aim is to minimise all unnecessary housework, which I hate, and to have more time to do what I enjoy such as painting, my grand children, photography,  gardening, reading, trips out to the countryside, etc.etc. and I thought you might like to see some photos of our sitting room  having recently redecorated.

I am not entirely happy with it yet, my pictures are still in a pile in my office waiting for Mike to get his drill out ( more mess) and for hard decisions to be made as to what is going back on the walls.

fireplace 2The only piece we have put up is this acrylics on canvas which I painted to bring the design of the wallpaper on the chimney breast into the dining area.


009 011

012   014

016   013 


Friday, 21 August 2009


I cannot possible top last weeks PS when I showed pictures of our grand daughter Phoebe so what to show this week????????????

Some of my art work perhaps – there must be some with a pink theme. Let’s go look -

BEACH HUTS. We have a hut on Preston beach in Paignton, Devon and love to visit when the sun is shining. Sadly very little this summer.

However, a good subject for making a pretty picture.

beachuts 2 copy copy

Here we have a pink sky and dotty pink sailing boat.Jeanni is opening her hut getting ready for a day in the sun.

kids at play

Oli & Toby play tennis on the prom and the rest of the family arrive by boat.

 beach huts 3

Friends walking their dog stop for a chat.


There’s a Regatta out to sea

Gallery 056

All return safely home  at sunset.

Night night


Saturday, 15 August 2009

More Arty Stuff – drawn with Serif Drawplus

I have been rather busy with my blog about my childhood -

but there are always lots of pictures on my computer .

These are just a few drawn using Serif Drawplus and my mouse.


Apple Blossom Time



Daisy, Daisy.




Forget me knots





By The Seaside


Beach huts

Friday, 14 August 2009


What do I have that is pink and I would like to share with all my blogger friends????????


My darling little Angel – Phoebe.Above aged 12 months


24 may

An earlier one here  in her pink chariot aged 3 months


Relaxing in a bubble bath.


Strawberry pink in a sea of coloured balls


Safety testing her dollies pushchair. Check out the slippers.



Finally, nestled in the soft petals of a rose. By Nanni!


As our flight on Sunday was cancelled, several reasons given but who knows why, we were taken to Treasure Island in Las Vegas  for the night & given a free dinner & breakfast but no booze!
I felt like cutting my throat but didn't have the strength – my cough just got worse & worse until I was afraid to move. Bitterly cold in L V too which didn't help.Can you believe it? SNOW in Las Vegas?

 Las Vegas gets heaviest snow fall in 30 years

What had I done this time to upset the Gods I wondered.
So, to continue the Saga -
We waited outside the hotel for a coach to pick us up - no one told us where to wait & so many people panicking about getting home. Coach arrived on time & we climbed aboard. Eventually a Virgin rep turned up to say flight was overbooked by 150 and she wanted volunteers to stay another night and we would get a free round trip to anywhere Virgin fly apart from OZ. Not much response to that on the coach so we eventually left for the airport & arrived to see a large queue in front of us.

Never mind I say, Virgin have a dedicated check in Quote - PREMIUM EXPERIENCE

The Premium Economy experience is not just about what happens onboard, it begins and ends at the airport:

  • Dedicated Premium Economy Check In, if you haven't already checked in online and dedicated bag drop.
  • Priority boarding and priority disembarkment

But no, No dedicated check - in for us posh people in Premium Class so I kicked off until the cough got the better of me and we joined the snake also now beginning to panic. Oh, I forgot to say it was cold &

R A I N I N G!
Chris & I decided to wait in the Premium queue just in case someone turned up to man it & that WAS a good move because we were first when it did open. Given our boarding passes we relaxed a bit & settled down for a 6 hour wait for the plane.
Virgin continued to try to get people to stay behind and several who had checked in their bags eventually agreed which meant that their bags had to be found delaying things even more.
Eventually boarded plane over an hour late and thought - Thank God we're off in a minute but no – the captain announces that 2 people needed seats urgently & upped the offer to first class travel next day. This was accepted quite quickly but by now all bags on the plane so another delay whilst they (again) sorted through all the  cases! I think it was another 45 mins before we finally taxied to the runway & then - UP, UP & AWAY!

Plane packed everywhere although more comfortable upstairs thank God but the air con & pressure made my cough even worse & I didn't stop the whole night including a couple of bad bouts of choking, spitting & reams of snot everywhere. Stewardess made me a hot toddy but nothing helped and I felt so embarrassed. Mind you - Mike slept thru most of it!
On the subject of embarrassment - I WET myself. At first it wasn't too bad - just a dribble here & there but I couldn't control it due to the coughing & ended up soaked. Took my knickers off but jeans sodden - only pleased I had put on dark ones & not the light pair. What with paper stuffed up my nose & my ****** I now know how a turkey feels.
We get to Gatwick early as strong following wind only to be told there is fog & we would have to circle for about an hour by which time I was ready to just jump without a parachute!
On a good note - luggage arrived quickly & we got out of Gatwick after taking an interesting ( not) tour of the car parks. Where did you leave it Deryck? Where?
Fortunately I had blanket in Chris's car so sat on that rather than ruin her seat and we drove home via the 303 & got in about 5/ 5.30. I was straight in the shower & then to bed.
Went to the doctor’s  next day  - chronic bronchitis was diagnosed & I was prescribed steroids again but SO PLEASED to be home.

BTW, no cigarettes now FOR 8 MONTHS and this time I guess I must stay off them - it just ain't worth it.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009


And it started so well!
Decided to park the car this side of the river & catch the passenger ferry over to Dartmouth so we parked in Kingswear marina & headed for the ferry ..... along with 300 other people who had just got off the steam train! The queue was horrendous but, thanks to local knowledge we headed for the car ferry & managed to get on quite quickly.



However. this meant a much longer walk to the pontoon and my little legs could hardly keep up with Mike & Rob & I soon started to fall behind. I'll catch you up I shouted as they disappeared into the distance totally unaware that I wasn't there.
I then remembered we needed food so called into the local supermarket which seemed a good idea but, I had forgotten I had a backpack on, & I spent the next 5 minutes apologising to staff & customers alike who foolishly got in my way.
I left the supermarket with 2 carrier bags & the backpack which slowed me down even more &, by the time I reached the pontoon Rob was picking Mike up in the dinghy.
You can come & pick me up in the boat I shouted -I'm not getting in the dinghy. So I waited (impatiently) whilst they took the covers off, tied up the dinghy, checked the engine, etc etc & I spent my time chatting up a handsome young yachtsman who was cleaning his boat.Just as we were becoming buddies the boat pulled alongside without mishap & I clambered aboard & we set off for the sea.
It was lovely, not as hot as the week before & a pleasant breeze kept us cool. We carefully watched our speed as the river patrol were right behind us probably with the name of our boat on the top of their list of "idiots".

Then we reached the open sea & Mike opened up the engines to full throttle.As it was as calm as a mill pond we skimmed across the water at a great rate of knots; Rob & Mike were fine sitting up front behind the screen but I was frozen sat in the back catching the spray & hurriedly found a damp towel to wrap round me. This is "quite" nice - I thought, if only I had brought my fleece with me.
After 10 minutes or so Mike handed over to Rob and came & sat beside me to "enjoy" the ride. "we'll go into Brixham shall we " he said "it won't take us long at this rate". Yes, they were the famous last words as the next thing he said -or rather screamed was " Rob, throttle back it's over heating". He lifted the seat above the engine & clouds of smoke billowed forth. The air was full of blue smoke & blue expletives and I disappeared into the cabin.
Mike, being the engineer put his head down in the engine compartment to see what was wrong. Several burns later he pulled out a sheared fan belt & waved it in the air - Oh S**T, F*****G HELL, hope there's a spare on board he yelled. Of course there wasn't & they spent the next hour or so trying to make one out of rope & various bungee ties we had on board. All this time we were drifting closer to some rocks & my IBS was beginning to grumble. By the way -  DID I TELL YOU WE STILL HAD NOT DISCOVERED HOW TO WORK THE TOILET?

JEAN!!! start waving at any boat nearby - we are going to be in big trouble in a minute says Mike. Rob, being Rob remained calm & said "welcome to the world of boating Mike" & carried on trying to make a substitute belt.Then the wind started to get up & the sky began to darken and no one took any notice at my frantic waving! I started to feel sick as the boat was rolling from side to side & I suddenly realized why most people wore life jackets when at sea. Not us, needless to say - we can all swim!
Eventually a little motor boat came alongside - too small to tow us but they went to a cruiser moored in a cove who agreed to help us. Don't think they were too pleased as they had been sunbathing wearing only a smile.
T'was a magnificent boat very clean & pristine & very, very expensive. Obviously the owner's pride & joy but, not practised in towing, he got out his book of rules and we were secured to his boat & headed back to Dartmouth. At the mouth of the river he pulled us along side after making sure that his fenders were strategically placed so that his shiny hull wouldn't be damaged & we headed into the river in tandem. Not the most comfortable of rides but, we could see houses & boats & people & were very relieved.It started to rain but we didn't care - we were back safe & sound & managed to tie up without a problem.
Needless to say we didn't have any money on us so I asked our rescuers for their name & address so that I could send them a cheque but they wouldn't hear of it. So, thank you Nicky & Andy, we will catch up with you in Brixham soon and show our appreciation.
I've nearly finished, but there was still the problem of me getting back to dry land without getting into the rubber dinghy. Boats were moored on our pontoon full of kids fishing for crabs; I'll hitch a lift with them I thought having overcome any shyness when my dignity was at stake."Are you going to Dartmouth " I asked with a big smile. No, we're going back up river, ta ta & off they went!

So it came to pass that eventually, I had to get in the dreaded dinghy! Knees shaking, IBS really, really bad, I sat on the side of the pontoon. Put your legs in & sit on the back says Rob. Legs in - not too difficult, lean forward & plonk, sat on the side. No way I could move so we teetered across the river, with the tide coming in fast & eventually reached the other pontoon.

Then I had to get out! well, there were loads of ropes in the way but I managed to get hold of the side of a boat & started to pull myself up, at the same time the current caught us & I was pinned round my neck by a rope. Now, for those who don't know, Rob was our son-in-law & I felt sure he was deliberately paddling backwards as the rope tightened. Surely not I hear you cry. But, if you had heard him laughing you might think differently.
Anyway. after a struggle I pulled myself onto the pontoon with all the grace of a big fat Hippo & sent up a little prayer of gratitude.
Here endeth episode 2 & it's all true - honest!

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Life (or death) on the Ocean Wave

Friday -
Well, we got the boat yesterday - Oh My God - what a palaver. You know how hot it was well, we had to sit in the ferry queue for an hour to get across the river.

Then the oars for the dingy were missing & we had to wait for the previous owner to bring them round. The tide was falling so we then had to get the dingy out of the toast rack & Mike got absolutely soaked when he sat in it. He rowed it to the pontoon then went back to the car to take it to the park & ride as there's nowhere in Dartmouth to park for more than 2 hours. Whilst he was gone I waited on the pontoon near the dinghy in case anyone moaned that we were in the wrong place. Can you imagine standing on a pontoon in the middle of the Dart in that heat yesterday - not funny.
Eventually Mike got back & rowed the dingy over to the boat & climbed aboard - like an arthritic crab;

He then started to remove the covers & there I was, still marooned on the other pontoon getting hotter & hotter.

Then up came a young woman in a boat - can I pull in here for a minute she said. Well, my husbands coming in here to pick me up but if you like to give me a ride over to the next pontoon I'd be ever so grateful. Ok she says & off we went.

Saturday - to continue yesterday's story -
The next thing was getting off the mooring !" I thought we were going to hit all the other boats but managed it eventually & went over to the fuel barge.
When we get along side grab the rope - says Mike. Well, I did as I was told, Mike couldn't find neutral so he went from full astern to full ahead & my poor arm is now 6 inches longer than the other. At one time I was more out of the boat than in it so eventually let go & we drifted away. Must have been an hilarious sight to all those around & we were SO embarrassed. Decided to forget the fuel & headed for the sea.

At the mouth of the river we were hailed by the river patrol & told off for going too fast & by then I was really questioning whether we had done the right thing!
We turned around & headed back to the mooring as we were low on fuel & then it was the fiasco of getting the boat back on the pontoon. Mike edged in slowly & said - can you jump off & tie up?????? Jump ? - me Of course I couldn't - silly fool!
I couldn't reach the cleat so ended up putting my fingers in a hole in the pontoon deck & pulled us in. Thank God for that I thought & then started worrying about how I was going to get back to land. Luckily, the guy in the boat in front offered me a lift in his rubber dinghy;


I got in without capsizing it but got my bloody foot stuck under the fuel tank so couldn't get out. how humiliating was that.
Mike was left to put the covers on the boat and rowed our dinghy back to the toast rack. All this time it was absolutely boiling & I was feeling exhausted. Got the park & ride bus back to the car & came home.
That's about it. Our first day of boating. Guess why I haven't gone today??


Friday, 7 August 2009


So many pinks in my garden, I did not have to look far this week.

My favourite rose Silver Jubilee.