Sunday, 22 December 2013


Is flying by!  And what have I been doing?   Well, there was some felting at the start of the month  .. followed by a week playing around with scraps on my sewing machine - more on that in another post  :)

And I turned 40 this week! 
My birthday was Tue 17th.. we started the birthday festivities on Sat 14th.  Getting up bright and early we went water zorbing :) on a pretty little lake in Worcestershire.  

The guys at PumpitUp knew we were coming for my birthday and opened the lake early.. so it was just the 4 of us on the water together.  The kids didn't know what we were doing until they started inflating the zorbs..  We had such a laugh!  Matthew managed to take a couple of short videos and Gary took a couple of photos (they had their gadgets inside the zorbs too).

I like seeing Matthew laughing in this one :) and looking out seeing Gary stand up in his hamster ball and slowly fall over backwards :)

We went out for a meal with Gary's family on the Saturday night.. Rachael made me a lovely birthday cake

Chocolate cake with chocolate fudge sauce sandwiched in between the layers..
covered with fresh cram and strawberries - YUM :)
She had been planning this cake for about 6 weeks bless her.. and she did every little bit of it on her own

They brought it out after the meal and sung Happy Birthday :) first time that's happened since I was 10!
On the Tuesday Gary took the day off work, we went out walking with the digs in the morning.. it was a bright blue sky day.. perfect for walking :)  Then shopping and a late lunch.. Finishing the day off at the cinema watching THE HOBBIT - Desolation of Smaug - which was FANTASTIC!  Love love loved it.. I can not wait to watch it again!

So I had a lovely birthday :)

Earlier on in December we went on a couple of day trips..

Rachael and me went to Birmingham to visit the German Christmas Market (which is pretty big) and also the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery..

The big reclining figure is at the centre of a fountain (not working at the time) where we sat to eat German sausage and sauerkraut :)
We rode on a beautiful carousel :) which went really fast
Admired beautiful painted buildings..
We were going to the museum to visit a specific exhibition.. but got hopelessly lost looking for the gallery and ended up finding lots of interesting treasures..

Beautiful stained glass windows - very different but both beautiful
The weather vane from Birmingham Town Hall with holes in his tail.
During the English Civil War (1642 to 1651) Prince Rupert shot the weather vane 3 times
while his troops pillaged the town of Birmingham.
I think this cockerel is quite splendid :)  
Beautiful, sparkling buttons
An amazingly decorative smock which belonged to a 17th century gardener.. this was his 'Sunday best'
The exhibition we were there to see was the Staffordshire hoard.  Discovered just a few miles from where I live, this is the only Anglo-Saxon gold hoard ever discovered..  I can't remember the weights involved.. but there are kilos of gold .. more kilos of silver ..  and then kilos of copper, but more gold than anything.  All in tiny fragments, twisted and broken.. but once cleaned quite exquisite.  A glimpse.. a tantalising taste of the artistry of our ancestors.  Photos were not allowed here, but I have pulled a few images off the net.  They are pieces mostly taken from weapons and armour, with just a few Christian crosses.. no jewellery.

Fish and bird
Love the writing.  It's a Latin biblical inscription
We really enjoyed seeing this.. it leaves you speculating about WHY all of these 'scraps' had been buried. Having just finished reading Bernard Cornwell's Anglo Saxon Chronicles (an excellent read!) I had vivid images of them being battlefield plunder.. the rich metals and gems torn from arms and armour of the fallen. The thing that amazes me is how decorative and beautiful such tiny elements are.. so many pieces smaller than my little finger.

We also visited lovely historic Ludlow for their Medieval Christmas Fayre..  we usually go on a Sunday but this year went Saturday and it was very busy.  Too busy for my liking if I'm honest..  But Ludlow is always lovely..
Very crowded streets of Ludlow
My 'little man' in the yellow jacket at the top of the stairs :)
And there were GIANTS! :)

All of my family have broken up for 2 weeks now :)  I'm really looking forward to the family time. My to do list now is: wrapping the kids pressies, visiting family and friends that we haven't gotten to yet, and food shopping.. oh and cooking up a storm of course :)

Hope you are having an enjoyable run up to Christmas too.. 



Heather Woollove said...

Happy belated birthday, sweet friend!!!
40 is impossibly young! :)
It looks like you had the most wonderful day...and your day trips look amazing, too!!
Did the ball thingy feel claustrophobic at all? It looks like SUCH fun!!

Jacqui Galloway said...

Happy 40th and Merry Christmas.
Jacqui x

FeltersJourney said...

Thanks you Jacqui and Heather :)
Heather it was strange more than anything.. Sounds are really loud.. it's blooming hard to stand up let alone walk in it, so you crawl like crazy to try and move a few feet.. only to find you haven't moves or have gone backwards lol. You are only in there 10 minutes 'cos you start to run out of oxygen after that. I do get claustrophobic in crowded places but didn't really feel it in the ball. I felt a little flutter right at first but it went away as soon as I was moving and having fun. I didn't half ache afterwards though.. you get a ridiculous workout! x

Jackie said...

A belated Happy Birthday. What a great way to spend it. I would have been rather scared I think! I enjoyed your trip to Birmingham too. I wish you a very happy New Year ahead with a lot of felting fun. You are ahead of me. I only discovered how to make felt when I was 42! (20 years ago now. I can hardly believe it)x

FeltersJourney said...

Thank you Jackie :) It was fun