Saturday, 24 December 2011

merry christmas

merry christmas to one and all !!!!

nothing fancy here - just a hope for all of you out there to enjoy this festive season - wishes from me and mine to you and yours .......HAPPY CHRISTMAS.........

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

christmas cake

here is the picture of our christmas cake for this year

so what do you think of that - amazing or what !!!!

it was made by a friend of ours called ruth - she makes a few of them each year and this year we were lucky enough to get one .

underneath it is a christmas fruit cake and the rest is done with various types of icing....................

incredible does'nt quite cover it..............

Thursday, 3 November 2011

my wishes for the wedding

My niece and partner are getting married and i wanted to pass on some top wisdom – but i am not very good at wisdom so thought of this instead.

Marriage is a journey through life , taking the motorway is allways the quickest route but it is more prone to accidents and holdups, you rarely get chance to enjoy the scenery .

The back roads are slower and the scenery is much better but sometimes the scenery is better than the journey and can distract you.

Marriage does not come with a sat-nav so at each junction you will have to make a decision – there are two of you in the car – so choose a destination you both want to go to.

Maybe not the best advice in the world – but i do wish them the best journey through life together.

May your road be smooth and not too many roadworks and may the scenery be nice but not too nice to stop you enjoying each others company .


Thursday, 27 October 2011

still on hols - yet more photo's

more photo's of happy hols again............
 we took the kids out for the day

one went horse riding ........

 the other went on an off road segway (sorry about picture quality they go too fast for me to keep up with)

 this one is about half way up loch lomond looking north.........
 loch lomond again but looking south - pic mainly of interesting tree.................
double click this one and blow it up it shows the local area.........
we went back to my ancestral home and took this picture remmembering one of my very distant relatives
my family tree goes back to the colquhoun clan who are from the loch lomond area from year dot - its one of those places in life you have to go and see ..................

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

more out and about (photo heavy)

been out and about a lot today so lots of photo's

 this waterfall is in the grounds of the place we are staying
 we are in the middle floor - the one with the doors open
we walked down the road a bit and went for coffee - this is how far from everywhere we were.

you just need to read these -

same again......

and again...

 this was a nice bit of carving....
this was the shed next to it - lots of random signs - i couldnt resist a photo ....

later on we went down into aberfoyle and had good look round and them some lunch

after this it was back into the car again and we spent the afternoon wandering around callandar - but i will leave that for another day..........

Monday, 24 October 2011

still on holiday - out and about

been out and about today

we went accross to stirling and had a wander about the thistle shopping centre - not my cup of tea - but the much beloved enjoyed it (come on blokes who enjoys shopping appart from the girls)

on the way back we called in at the dobbies garden centre and we found these - dancing penguins playing different xmas tunes - hilarious!!!!!!!!!!
i did actualy buy something for me for a change - i bought a seedling bonsai tree - lets see how that turns out............................ 

Sunday, 23 October 2011

on family holiday in scotland (picture heavy)

on hols at aberfoyle - forest hills trossachs club
here is a taster - lots of pictures...

here is one of the bedrooms

twin single beds with en-suite

the next two are the view from the balcony...........nice.....

just up the road a bit - just look at that reflection
same loch different view

a bit further up the hills and looking down towards the next loch

well you would have to take a picture now wouldnt you !!!

the sign tells it all - this is where we were and this is what was there

if you double click any of the pictures they will go full size - much better view then - also feel free to use them as backgrounds for your desktop - i never bother to lock them you may share them freely

Saturday, 8 October 2011

its tattie picking week ...

the potatoes are about ready around our bit so its tattie picking time.
we used to have 'tattie picking week' when we were kids and used to go down to the local farm and work(damn hard) picking and sorting that years crop of potatoes
the health and safety gestapo and various child cruelty groups would probably have a heart attack nowadays but we loved it - and besides we got paid for it , not much by todays standards but it was good pocket money in those days
back to the present.........

there was a large potatoe picking machine whizzing up and down the field digging out the potatoes and feeding them out in to boxes carried on the back of a tractor and trailer and then taken off that by a telehandler and then loaded on to my wagon

it didnt take long to empty that field i can tell you as there was a few wagons there waiting to load and go - got to get a shift on as they have to go to the supplier the same day as they have to be fresh.

the views were good while we waited though
(good picture for my dad this - he should know where this is)

Saturday, 1 October 2011

out and about - action photo's

been out and about with ermintrude
the wheels were mucky and i was too lazy to get the bucket and sponge out

had to wait for eldest son to leg it over the bridge with the camera....

and away we go - mobile wheel wash.....

dont know what happened with this last picture but you get the gist of it - this is the way out again

Sunday, 28 August 2011

the less than twenty pound re-spray

it was time for a tart up job for ermintrude - so out with the paint brushes and the roller(before shots on last post) 

not bad i thought and it only took a few hours with a 1 inch brush for the small bits and a gloss roller for the rest

at less than a tenner for a litre of proper paint from the local agricultural centre - and i only used one and a half tins - not a bad afternoons work i think!!!!!!!!

Saturday, 6 August 2011

been on our holidays

we have been on our holidays

 we went camping over at Teeside - Stockton-on-tees that is

we went in my car which is called Ermintrude - a 1980 series 3 long wheel base station wagon

we always consider the journey to be part of the holiday - so we started and finished with an adventure so to speak !!!!
as you can see we don't believe in 'roughing it' when we go camping

even though there was only 4 of us going this time we still took a decent size tent - why be uncomfortable when you don't have to be ?

we slept in this side on a queen sized double height air bed and the kids were in the other side on their own air beds.
 one of our days out was to a quad bike track which was quite local - to say the boys enjoyed it would be an under statement

we also visited lots of other towns and villages with Redcar and Saltburn-by-the-sea being of note

my dad will remember the 1 in 4 hill (25%) down into the bottom of Saltburn - yes it was fun in the land rover !!!!!!!!!!!

the north east is very under rated for holidays we think - but we enjoyed it and the weather was mostly good

why fly off to the Costa-who-knows-where when there are so many interesting places on your door step so to speak ?

Thursday, 21 July 2011

the (unwritten) rules of the road

1.   You don’t own the road – learn to share it.

2.   Keep up with the traffic flow.

3.   Give way and be courteous – you may need the favour returned.

4.   The other traffic does not know where you are going use your indicators.

5.   Get in the correct lane early, if you leave it too late you might not get in.

6.   Traffic jams – pick a lane and stick with it – the grass is always greener etc,etc.

7.   Learn to read other traffic’s ‘body language’ and expect the unexpected.

8.   Have a sense of humour – there are plenty of idiots on the road – don’t retaliate it only brings you down to their level.

9.   Plan your journey and allow plenty of time – better late than never.

10.Make time for a break – tired drivers make mistakes.

11.It is not your god given right to drive – make enough mistakes and you will lose your licence.

12.Carry warm clothes and a waterproof coat – even new cars can break down – the hard shoulder can be an inhospitable place.

13.Have you re-read the Highway Code this century?

14.Check your oil/water/tyres/brakes regularly – if you don’t know how to find out how to – its basic stuff.
Cars and roads do not cause accidents – drivers do – think about it.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

appleby horse fair - a town under seige

Appleby horse fair has been going on since year dot and they gather once a year here to trade horses and get together to renew friendships
yep - that's the gist of it
unfortunately the reality is much different
over the last 10 maybe more years it has grown out of all control and been taken over by trouble makers and hangers on
you would think i would be against all of it but i am not - this is because i just think it needs to be better organised
the proper gypsies are not the trouble makers as i believe the trouble comes in the cars and vans - not the caravans
no one is actually responsible for the fair and no one wants that responsibility either - this is because it is a nightmare to control and on paper it does not make any sense at all
the gypsies allways say that the town benefits from the fair and makes money out of it - this is true for only the few businesses that trade during the fair and yes they do make lots of money
the rest of the town ie joe public do not gain anything from the fair just massive inconvienience and hassle
this is where the problem lies - we are effectively under seige for the duration of the fair and cannot even use the facilities in our own town due to how ridiculously busy it is
we do tend to plan ahead and stock up so we dont have to go down town as you will find very few locals bother to go to the fair as we just find it a hassle that just needs to be tolerated yearly
we allways pray for rain the week after as it helps with trying to get the roads clean again - just imagine several hundred horses running up and down your street for a week and imagine the rest -
dont get me wrong the local agencies work wonders on the clean up operation and within a few days all the rubbish is picked up and the place begins to look more normal again but it usually takes until next year for the grass and the roadsides to recover
all this has to be paid for of course and this is where we allways get a nasty taste - we have one of the highest council taxes in the county and what for - to look after something that we have very little to do with and does not benefit the majority of us at all
what needs to be done is a back to basics with the fair and make it more organised and properly run to discourage the hangers on and trouble makers and make it more about the horse trading and the traditional gypsy way of life
i know this would make it more 'touristy' and would serve to make money out of it but it does need to be self sufficient and look after itself so it is not a burden on the local area
the proper gypsies are a proud people and the vast majority are good people - they should take this oppertunity to improve their own PR and begin to show themselves as the noble and honerable people that they claim to be
there is nothing finer than to see the horses pulling the fancy caravans into town and i must admit i respect the hard work and skill that has gone into them
the problem is the reality is different as most of the traffic is transit vans pulling modern caravans followed by boy and girl racers with no respect for the local area

the point is - we understand why it happens - it probably should continue to happen - but it needs to change - if not just for its own good then for the good of all involved and all it affects

Monday, 2 May 2011

been to the car boot sale x2

we have been to two car boot sales over this weekend and have bought some useful stuff as usual

here we have a nice picture of a rooster for the kitchen

we bought some flowers too and this is what we have done with some of them

now here was a bit of a bargain it is a plastic bench with built in storage - only paid a tenner and it's £80 in the argos book

this is just a nice picture of some flowers we got a while ago and are doing well in the good weather we are having

all in all a good weekend we have been out and about enjoying the time off and the weather and picked up a few bargains to boot

also managed to come accross a dog guard for my landrover for a tenner (over £100 new) , a punchbag and boxing gloves for the youngest - his choice - worth three quid just to keep him quiet for a bit
so there you have it - thats what we did this long weekend (not counting all the jobs at home) been there , did that and did'nt manage to set fire to any thing at all

Monday, 25 April 2011

spring has sprung

spring has sprung etc

 the garden has come to life and we are taking full advantage of it
the seeds we planted are bursting through and allready some of it has moved on to bigger pots

 being good weather it is time to spend more time sitting and eating outside so the other week i sanded down the table and re-did it with teak oil ready for the summer - looks good
meanwhile on the 101 uses for a spare wheel dept - a plant pot
i bet you havent seen one of these for a while - recycling at its best and a good selection of flowers to boot
all in all spring is here and summer is on the way - so some nice pictures to cheer you up - and wind our gill up of course !!!

Friday, 1 April 2011

eddie stobart rip

edward stobart died yesterday from a suspected heart attack
eddie stobart probably one of the most famous truck driving brand and known all over the world
edward sold up several years ago and was bought out by wa developments owned by his brother william stobart and andrew tinkler
i can say i met him several times and can say he was nice bloke and will be missed
my thoughts are with his friends and family
rest in peace you will be missed

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

My big sister

My big sister

All of my life i have had my big sister gillian.

when i was younger she was a pain and allways telling me off
and grassing me up to our parents when i got into trouble.

Then she discovered boyfriends and was no bother to me but a
worry to our parents.

Then she moved out, settled down and had family of her own.

Then she was gone on the airplane for a one way trip to
canada (i took all their cases in my little van)we said goodbye and then she

Mother was in tears and so was gill – me , i wasnt so
bothered i thought.

I was away and in the army and too busy to remmember my big
sis , but every now and then news would filter through and i would hear of
their lastest exploits – they we doing well.

Now i am older and i too have family all of my own and i
listen to the kids bicker and fight i think back to my own childhood and wonder
if we were that bad.

Well yes we were and worse as well.

I just hope the kids get over it and in time learn to
appreciate their siblings over time as i have done and its not all just
brothers and sisters its equals and friends.

Happy birthday our gill – www.

Friday, 25 February 2011

been there did that - with pictures

well we are back and yes we enjoyed it

this picture just about sums it up - just look at that view - and it was like this all over
 this is how we got over to hunters quay - it is one of the ferries run by western ferries
only a 20 minute crossing and the kids loved it
much better than to extra 100 miles in the car to get round the other way
 this is what we stayed in - it is a 3 bedroom lodge at hunters quay holiday village - a very nice, well run site in a lovely location

would we go there again - yes i think we would

our son is called john and we spotted this street sign in dunoon

well you have to dont you ..........

Monday, 21 February 2011

Happy holidays 2011 – hunters quay nr dunoon scotland

We left home about 0930 stopping for fuel at penrith on the way

Before we knew it we were on the 1230 ferry from gourock arriving 20 minutes later at dunoon

After driving off the ferry we were at our cabin within 5 minutes

Not bad we thought for 160 miles door to door with no hold ups

Empty car out and unpack cases , tidy up and back down into dunoon for a bite to eat and then into the local supermarket for supplies

Back to the cabin and settle in for a bit – investigate the site and its facilities – not bad 2 swimming pools and an indoor play area for the kids – a bar and a restraurant and entertainment most nights

Back to the cabin again for tea and then settle down for the night – one or two drinks and then bed

– its been a busy day -