Tuesday, 31 May 2011


This evening's supper :- Janson's delight (pronounced Yarnsen's) - a Swedish recipe that Ruth gave us a while back. It consists of a layer of sliced potatoes, a layer of sliced onion, a layer of anchovies, repeated until the dish is full, then covered in cream and baked. Quick, delicious, nutricious, and filling. With a salad. Followed by a mince pie and custard. Goodnight All.
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Monday, 30 May 2011


As you can see - roses are now in full bloom in the garden.

 Spent this morning labelling and wrapping goodies for Long Melford on Wednesday. This morning Ann 'phoned Sue and David (who we've not seen for a week or two) and asked them to come and have tea with us, it being the bank holiday. They turned up at three o'clock as arranged, and as it was a nice afternoon we decided to have tea in the garden. Sue asked how I'd got on with last Saturday's Telegraph prize crossword (I'd done about two thirds of it) so I produced it and between us we soon completed it. Just as we finished it, Sheila (who lives about two hundred yards away) came in through the back garden gate, with her copy of Saturday's Telegraph under her arm, and wanted to do swapsies on the crossword (swapsies Lori - very dated schoolboy term for exchanging one thing for another). Had to tell Sheila that we'd just finished the crossword, so she came and joined us, Ann produced another cup and plate, and we compared notes on the crossword. Very pleasant and sociable half hour or so. We count ourselves fortunate to live in so friendly a little town.
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Sunday, 29 May 2011


Two last photoes from our Annual Show a week ago. One's of a dog (a bull mastiff I think) and the other's of a horse (a Shetland Pony). Very little to choose between them in size or weight, I should think.

Been a good busy weekend. Ed, Jo, and Darcy stayed over from Saturday until this morning. Ed was photographing a wedding over near Stowmarket, so Jo dropped him off, and drove over to us. Should mention that they'd stopped off en route to view a flat. Jo had a bite of lunch with us then went off on a walk (she'd got this well planned - she went by the farm tracks and public footpaths) across to Kersey, taking Darcy with her. I always say that the best houseguests are the entertaining ones who don't feel the need to be entertained. I then went off to scrabble club for my weekly three games. Jo got back just after five, so we had tea together, then ate later. Jo went off to Finborough (I think) to pick up Ed, they came back here, we had a nightcap, chatted for an hour, then crashed out at nearly midnight. They breakfasted with us this morning, then hit the road just after nine a.m., as they'd another flat to view on their way home to Wiltshire. I said to Ann later how much I admired their energy, but she pointed out that they're forty years younger that we are, and that forty years ago we could easily have kept up with them. I'm afraid I could see what she meant and had to agree. O well!!
Goodnight all.
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Wednesday, 25 May 2011


Yesterday afternoon we decided to go to a garden centre we hadn't tried lately, to see if we could find some small alpines for our sink garden. Qualified success. Bought a small dianthus for the sink garden, a trailing lavender (to trail over the edge of the sink), and Ann was beguiled by a begonia, dallied with a dahlia, and finally carried off a carnation (rather handsome, deep red ,  large flowered and not for the sink garden).
 Top photo is of a Suffolk meadow fairly near garden centre.

We then decided (after all our other hard deciding at the garden centre) to treat ourselves to a cuppa at an upstairs tea shop that overlooks Mistley Quay. Took above snapshot from our table. We both had tea, accompanied in Ann's case by a fruit scone and in mine by a cheese scone. Ann said (with perfect truth) that the scones weren't a patch on hers. Quite agreed - should have said it first, I suppose, as a good and supportive husband; but (in all honesty) I think that the only slight drawback to my cheese scone was that there was possibly a touch too much mustard in the mix, and I'm not sure that that wasn't what my Norfolk Grandmother would have called 'a fault on the good side'.

Took the above photo from our table and through the window in the middle snapshot. The tide was full and shows Suffolk across the river Stour looking North (we were on the Essex side).
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Sunday, 22 May 2011

Sunday 2.

This morning we had a fried breakfast at about nine a.m., and lingered over it. At about 11 a.m. Sarah and family set off homeward, and we got in our car and drove up into Norfolk (near King's Lynn), to attend the Christening of a new great nephew - Mossy Earl Clayton Grey - to which I think his parents should have gone the whole hog and added a hyphenated -So There ! We'd not met him before, and he turned out to be a slightly impish little charmer with a very ready smile for a twelve week old babe.

Above snap shows Ann, her brothers Mick and David, and David's wife Maureen. Next photo shows the nave of the church where the baptism took place. It's a lovely great building, set on its own in the fields. Mossy's grandfather Tim is Ann's youngest brother and has been the Churchwarden here for a good many years. I don't know if you've kept count, but by Norfolk reckoning Mossy is Ann's youngest brother's youngest daughter's (Harriet) youngest son. All clear now?
Oh by the way, the top picture shows Harriet's oldest brother William playing the organ for the service (this is considered, in Norfolk, to be that desirable element known as 'keeping it all in the family').
After the service Tim and Sue's family had put on a very fine tea, to which we all did ample justice. We finally got home at about 6.30 p.m. after, as I said earlier, a very pleasantly hectic weekend.

Goodnight all.
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Sunday 1

Been a pleasantly hectic weekend. Sarah, Mikey, Amelia (19), and Guy (11), accompanied by the two cocker spaniels, Ruby and Mango, arrived on Friday evening for the weekend. The above photo shows Guy, having volunteered to help Granny in the kitchen, was given the job of cleaning out the saucepan in which the topping for a chocolate cake had been made, and is shown, very generously offering his Mama a taste.
On Saturday morning we all walked down to the showground where the Annual Agricultural show was being held.
The next photo shows two very well groomed creatures in the main ring. Never found out which of them won a rosette but feel sure that one of them must have done.

In the craft tent one of the exhibitors was displaying cakes she had made, and I couldn't resist taking a shot of this very fine cake decoration.

Must include Suffolk Punch horses in a blog about a Suffolk show, and this snap shows a mare and her foal.

This snap shows grandchildren Amelia and Guywith their Grandpapa.

The above three pictures are of turnouts for the driving competition.

Son in law Mikey, grandson Guy and instructor, trying six shots at the archery display.

Your blogger about to score a bull's eye (to everyone's astonishment - not least the blogger's). It was the only bull any of us scored, but my next five arrows were all in the target. Ah well, sometimes seniority is no disadvantage.

In the evening we drove across to Monks Eleigh, and had dinner at our favourite hostelry. Our good friend the landlady volunteered to take the above photo so that all of us were in it. Sarah, Mikey, etc., etc, had never been there and were very impressed with the place, as also were Amelia and Guy. Guy carefully ordered the same dinner as his grandfather had, and ate all of it (until we came to the pudding, which he ate half of, and then retired, replete, and rather somnolent). For the record we both had smoked whole sprats as a starter, Suffolk sausage and mash, with sweet and sour red peppers, then one of the best sticky toffee puddings ever! Can't really remember the rest of the order, except that Amelia and Mikey both had steak, and declared it was the best they'd ever tasted. Everything is prepared and cooked on the premises, and is mostly locally sourced. I even ordered a bottle of white wine grown and bottled at Lavenham. It would have compared favourably to a good, full bodied Moselle. As Mikey had beer, and both ladies were driving, most of the wine was drunk by Amelia and meself, with a little help from Guy.

After dinner, and before we drove home, took the above snapshot of evening sky at Monks Eleigh. In every sense a lovely evening.
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Friday, 20 May 2011


Probably shan't blog until after the weekend, as we will have senior daughter, her husband, two grandchildren, and two dogs staying with us, in order to go to our annual agricultural show tomorrow. Will try and take lots of photoes and show you them on Sunday (or more probably Monday).
The above photo was taken last Monday and shows the Market Square (or rather triangle) at Woolpit.
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Thursday, 19 May 2011

Thursday 2.

Ann took this snapshot through the car window earlier this week. It's somewhere near Felsham, I think. It looks rather like a child's drawing of a farmhouse.
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Thursday 1.

Rained a good deal during the night. Garden was desparate for rain. Bright sunshine this morning though. Took above photo of stormy sky rather later this morning, I think about eleven. Didn't rain again though.

I seem to remember putting up a photo of this rosebush last year. Much more vigorous this year. It's a Ferdinand Pichard (similar to the old Rosa Mundi). It's a 'striped' rose, with a glorious scent when the sun's on it as it was early this afternoon.
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Tuesday, 17 May 2011


Set out just before eight this morning and motored over to Bury St. Edmund's where Ann had yet another eye 'check up' at hospital. All seemed fairly stable but they want another check up in two months. Then drove on to Littleport (Cambridgeshire) where I put an eighteenth century long case clock movement I've been working on (by Samuel Buxton of Diss) back into its original oak case. Had lunch with Ann's older brother, Mick. Then drove back to Ely where I combed the antique centre and purchased a powder flask by Sykes and a pair of early nineteenth century brass candlesticks. Walked round to tea shop in the Maltings, where we met up (and had tea with) daughter Kerry and granddaughter Laura. Ann's brother Mick then joined us and we spent forty five minutes or so catching up with family gossip around the tea table. Finally arrived home just after seven. Been a good, busy, day.
Took the above photo of a pre-Tudor farmhouse somewhere in the back lanes in the Lavenham area. Saw the place about a year ago, and been vaguely looking out for it ever since. Came round a corner earlier, and there it was waiting for us. Not sure I could find it again, though.
Been a long day, and got an early start tomorrow, so - Goodnight all.
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Sunday, 15 May 2011


Garden's looking nice and colourful. Took above snap because Ann was about to change all the urns and hanging basket contents to their summer bedding plants, which she did this afternoon.

Above is roast chicken supper, with sage and onion stuffing and various veg. Ann bought chicken from Andrews, our local (and very good) butcher's shop. When we moved here (seventeen years ago) there were two butcher's shops. The other one was a very old established family butcher who rejoiced in the name of Mr. Pierpoint. There was a standing joke about him that his meat was very well hung, but you had to be of a certain age to get the joke. Pierpoint's shop has (since Mr. Pierpoint's death) been sold on, which leaves Andrews as the senior (and better) butcher's shop. For pudding we had locally grown strawberries and cream. Ann's just gone up to bed, so I'd better follow. Good night All.
P.s. For the benefit of my younger readers (if any) the joke about Mr. Pierpoint's well hung meat is that a Mr. Pierpoint (another one I hope) was, for some years, the hangman. Slightly black humour. Sleep well.
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Friday, 13 May 2011

Friday 2.

The above flowers look, at first glance, as if the daffodils are trying again; but, in fact, are aqillegias showing what variety they are capable of. Ann's just called down my cellar steps to remind me that we are due to go and indulge in 'drinks and nibbles' with the committee of the Ansell Club, so will now have to knock off again, and go and imbibe-and nibble- and socialise.
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Friday 1.

Yesterday motored over to Woolpit to have lunch with Ann's cousin Sheila. Stopped off in village to take photo of above cottage, which we(about twenty years ago) eventually didn't buy. Also took photo of fine old house below which has the look of having been the town Guildhall (???) at some time.

Above snap shows Ann and her cousin Sheila outside Sheila's house. Should perhaps add that Ann and Sheila are first cousins (once removed), and that Sheila and I are about third or fourth cousins (via Great Grandmother Fuller for the benefit of family historian Crowbard). Whilst Sheila prepared lunch (main course- pork in a sweet-and-sour sauce) I checked out her grandfather clock, which I have been ministering to for over forty years, and her late mother's mantle clock, with which I have been intimately aquainted for about as long. Spent lunch (and the next hour or so) picking up the threads, and swapping any news of increasingly far flung relations.
Bloggery seems to have been switching itself on and off regularly over the last twenty four hours, so had better make the most of the fact that it seems to be having a lucid moment at present. Back in a min.
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