Friday, 26 December 2008

Tally-Ho Jo !!

Boxing Day.

Blue skies and sunshine.

Every Boxing Day there is a gathering of the Four Burrow Hunt Meet up on Carn Brea, right by the Castle. This is mainly to continue the tradition and dress up for the morning, supporting the local farmers and riders.

We headed on up to Carnkie and onwards to the Brea, only to find that there were already many many cars and people arriving.

We parked the car in the village where we could and walked up the hillside towards the Castle and Monument. Fred and Hamish loved all the new sniffs, and took no heed at all to the riders and horses as they passed us on the way up.

At the top we found a spot that was as sheltered as possible, but ensured that we could see everyone arriving to watch the wonderful sight of so many riders and horses gathering at any one place at one time.

The head chappie said a few words of thanks to the local farmers for their continued support and then the horn sounded - (yes that does really happen) and they all rode off through the now very large throngs of crowds.

Before this though, Hamish and Fred got to make a few new friends....

I have to say it was probably the most unusual Boxing Day we have ever had, but that comes as part and parcel of being in Cornwall - everything is a new experience to us down here.

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Christmas Day

Christmas morning came around finally - and Fred must have known..... as soon as I came downstairs Fred went to his parcel under the tree, got all excited and wanted to open it!

With a little help from his Daddy, and lots of tail wagging....

He finally got his stocking from Nanny open.

Then it was time to help Mommy with hers!

and Daddy with his....

There were certainly lots of lovely gifts from our friends and family.

It was then time for a troll over to Perranporth to see JB and watch her open her pressies from us...

I received a new friend as you can see - his name is Dylan Bear!

We stopped off and collected Fred on the way home and went on to Portreath to see Sally-Ann, Mike and Hamish. We had promised the boys a Christmas Day romp on the beach together, and arranged to swap gifts at the same time.

After Dinner, which we ended up getting at about 2.45 after all of the excitement of the morning, it was time to relax - Fred was still in his Xmas bow-tie and looked very handsome....

Then is was time for a snuggle with Mommy before flaking out on the end of the couch.
Life is so hard when you are a spoiled little doggie!

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

T'was the Night Before Christmas

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St Nicholas soon would be there.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tinny reindeer.

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!

"Now Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid! on, on Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!"

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler, just opening his pack.

His eyes-how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow.

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly!

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself!
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"

Saturday, 20 December 2008


Today Fred was to have is hair cut with Auntie Helen.
Unfortunately, the last few times he has been he has been very stressed and fidgety due to a bad experience when he was a puppy. Helen was really concerned that he'd have a heart attack the last time, as he got so worked up!
We came up with a cunning little plan, on Helen's suggestion. She said that the last time he had his hair done at the same time at Hamish, he was much calmer. He would be much better if his bestest bud was with him.
In the meantime we had to start using anti stress herbal tablets on him, made with scullcap and valarian.
Last Saturday I started to double dose him so to speak as it was the run up to the big event. The tablets did not stop him being his usual mischievous self, so I was not sure at all if they would work.
I gave him a double dose at 7am and then another at 10.15am, as it said to give a dose 2 hours before the stressful event.
We then went off to Portreath to collect Hamish from Sally-Ann and Mike, so that he had some doggy support with him. We took them for a nice stroll on the beach and then bought them home to settle for an hour before the 12.15 appointment time.
Hamish settled down, like the good boy that he is and curled up to rest on my lap. Fred on the other hand, considering he was dosed up the the eyeballs was a wittery, bark monster!
We arrived with Helen at 12.15, and Hamish trotted into the travel cage, good as gold and Fred went onto the table for his cut. At this point Hamish realised he was not going to get to play and lick Auntie Helen and got quite upset, and had a little cry. That's OK said Auntie Helen, H can play in the garden and that way Fred can watch and it will take his mind of what it happening to his legs and paws (the problem area). This worked well - H watched from the gate and Fred looked back at him.
OK so this wasn't what we originally planned when it was suggested that we have both of them together, but it still worked well. When he wasn't watching H, he was watching me, as I had a very large bag of cheese cut into small cubes...... at the end of the day, he is is mothers boy and loves his food , so this acted as the second distraction.
Success - Helen said 300% better that ever before.
Now we aren't sure whether it was Hamish. the tablets, the cheese or me being there, but something worked and now all we have to do is recreate it for the next time!!!!
Thanks H, you were a good boy, even if Fred did keep sniffing your bits and annoying you!

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Christmas Hamper

Not content with providing all of the staff with a Christmas dinner, we got our hampers today from them.....

I've decided they want us all fat and drunk!

I'm on the way to fat, so I'd better practice on the drunk!

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Carol Singing

Tonight we went to join in the singing of carols outside the Portreath Arms.
There was a local Silver Band playing the music, and we all had hymn sheets to follow in case we didn't know the words....

Whilst we were singing we were handed hot mulled wine and mince pies.
It was a lovely evening, and began the festive fun properly.

Christmas Dinner Day at Work

Every Christmas the girls in the Canteen at work pull a minor miracle.... and succeed!
They cook a full Christmas dinner, pudding and all for 700 plus staff, all paid for by the Company.

Me being me, I could not wait, especially as I knew how good last years meal was.....
Finally our time slot of 12.30 came around and we stood in anticipation waiting to be handed our plates....

Meanwhile, the earlier groups from the factory sat enjoying theirs

We selected our drinks and then got stuck in.....
But not before we had some pictures, above is me with Alison, and below with Sharon.
Another lovely meal - Thanks

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow....

Finally - Paul has got the Christmas decorations out for me.

The outside lights went up yesterday......

When we were out at the garden centre getting the outside lights I saw this little tree and fell in love with it - isn't it cute!

And today the the main event, the big tree went up!
- now I can wrap presents and put them underneath. Fred has already found his stocking....
But ours are on the fireplace ready for Santa!
I'm such a child!
Then it began to snow - this is a rarity in Cornwall so I got a picture whilst I could -OK it's not a very good one, but at least it proves it did snow!

Friday, 12 December 2008

It's Party Time!!!!

Tonight was the works Christmas do.

22 of us all rolled out what what can only be described as the windiest rainiest night in the history of us being in Cornwall!
I knew that people would be dressing up but not in sparkly party gear - shame - but that was not going to stop me - Ha - I could show 'em how it's done even if I am old enough to know better!
Black velvet skirt and top and sparkly turquoise crochet top and very high heels - well higher than I'm normally used to anyway!

We had booked and paid in full a few weeks ago and we all had to remember what meals we had ordered - so the ever organised Sharon bought with her a list of what we had said all those weeks ago so we knew what to expect to eat!

Paul and I had garlic mushrooms, followed by steak, and chocolate gateaux - Yes I know - not Christmassy but we fancied it!

After the food the Lanner brass band came and played a few Christmas carols for us, we got silly with the helium in the balloons and the live entertainment began - a local duo that sang all Commitments stuff.

We had a boogie and then retired home for a well earned rest.

Fantastic Night!

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Secret Santa

Duncan arranges our Secret Santa at work every year, and this year the girls on reception decided to join in the fun.

Basically we have to fill a shoe box with presents to the value of £6 or over. The fun bit is trying to wrap a shoebox inside and out so that you have a posh box to put all of the other wrapped gifts into!

Normally we use the training room to set up Santa's Grotto - Kitsch blow up Christmas tree and all - to place the gifts around and have a mass present giving ceremony.
Unfortunately this year the training room was needed last minute so we had to make do with a trolley in the laundry room - Not quite the same effect unfortunately especially as you could only get 10 at a time on!

Mandy has an envelope with who did each of our shoe boxes and we don't get to find out until after Christmas - Boo Hoo.
Can't wait to open mine though!

Sunday, 7 December 2008

The morning after the night before....

Hamish and Fred are happily sated after their marvellous sleep.
Paul states he is going upstairs to try and get an hour!
Meanwhile the boys are lovely together and play in the garden and nap on the sofa - yes they did take it over between them - I got the pouffe!
Hamish was collected at dinner time, after a nice long walk with his buddy in tow.
It was really sad to see him with his little rucksack looking back at the house and Fred peering through the gate from the front yard - I think they will really miss each other.

Fred promptly went into the house and got into his bed and sulked for the next hour.


Saturday, 6 December 2008

Family Values

Tonight is the night when all of the fivers get together for the Christmas meal.

Unfortunately with it being so far up country this year, we would not make it back to get Fred into the garden in time for his bladder, so we decided to miss out. It's a shame the hotel didn't allow dogs, but as not everyone loves animals I suppose it's something that we will have to get used to.

Sally-Ann and Mike wanted to attend as they were the area co-ordinator's for Cornwall until September, so we said we would have Hamish here for the night - after all he and Fred are related - Hamish is Fred's Uncle.....

'H' arrived with his bed and a rucksack with his overnight things and promptly started to race around like a loon with Fred - I feel a mop and bucket coming on very soon - muddy paws with Fred alone is bad enough, but two of them!!!

It took about 45 minutes for them to settle down together and then they were a joy to watch. They just curled up together and slept.

We did our late night walk and after 40 minutes 'H' finally did his business, allowing us to go home again. They then settled down once more on their respective beds and started to snooze.

At this point I suggested that we should quietly slip away upstairs and leave them to sleep.

HA HA! Yeah right.... Hamish is used to sleeping with his Mommy and Daddy and was not impressed when we left the room. The barking began, and all the time Fred slept!

Paul decide that the best thing to do was to sleep in the lounge with the boys - Fred has not been allowed upstairs since last March when we had the carpet fitted so that was not an option.

Down Paul went, with spare duvet and pillow in tow. Of course I slept the sleep of the wicked, in our own bed and came downstairs again at 7.30 am!

Hamish has spent the night sleeping on top of Paul, with Fred on his pillow on the floor next to him..... Bless! Trust me there are pictures, but as Paul is half naked they are not pretty, so you'll just have to use your imagination!

Monday, 1 December 2008

To dry or not to dry - continued...

I did the reckie for a new drier this afternoon, and thanks the new new reduced VAT rate they have all come down in price..... OK only by 2.5%, but it's better than nothing eh!
I found just the job and as it would never fit in the 5 in a million years, advised the salesman that Paul would be in later to collect it for me.
So out went the old......

and in came the new.....

I've dried 2 lots of washing so far in a fraction of the time old faithful did them for me - she must have been on her way out for a while bless her!
Now I can't wait for the next wash day - Sad I know!

All ready...

I bought my absolute final Christmas present this afternoon from Presingol Barns, the place we visited the other day.
The drive over there was beautiful with the sun shining and lovely blue skies, the glittering sea shining in the distance as I drove towards St Agnes and the aforementioned Barn.
I can't believe the rest of the country is under snow and ice, when we never see anything like that here - it's like living on a different continent.
Now all I need to do is wrap everything and put up the tree.

Sunday, 30 November 2008

To dry or not to dry, That is the question

I decided today that I was fed up of the rain and did not want to have to trek down the garden to get to the tumble drier in the garage, just so that I could get a load of washing dry, especially as the grass is now nearly all mud!

In our old house, we used to have the freezer in the cupboard under the stairs and it worked quite well, so I told, yes TOLD, Paul that I wanted to do that here too TODAY!

Paul being the good soul that he is, just rolled his eyes and got on with it for me.

We emptied all of the camping gear and tents out (where these will now go is anybodies guess) to make room for the freezer....

Fred decided that it was safer at this point to stay well away and hope that it would all be over soon!

Once the freezer was in situe I was really pleased not only do I now have room for my dryer in the kitchen but I can also put Fred's games and towels etc on top of the freezer in the cupboard, hence giving me some more much needed cupboard space back in the kitchen - so far so good....

We placed the dryer in the old freezer space in the kitchen and lifter the fridge back on top of it, and then Paul got inspired and said we could use the useless cat flap that the old house owners had kindly left us for the venting pipe - even better!
I placed one of the 4 wet loads of washing I had in waiting into the dryer and felt very please with myself.

An hour later, it transpires that my lovely 12 year old dryer had given up the ghost and was not getting warm, and definitely not drying the clothes - B*****ks!

It's now too late in the day on a Sunday to go out in the search of a new one so the wet clothes will have to wait until tomorrow, when I can do a reckie at the local electrical store....