Hi everyone. I did have to miss last week as I was in UK with limited internet, but I'm back today to share some of the great fun I had while visiting there. The main reason for this visit was the wedding of my Gran-daughter, so here is my Friday smile. This is my two-and-a-half year old great-grandson, 'taking a picture' of his pretty mummy on her wedding day.
And she wasn't just pretty; she was beautiful.
Emma was my first grandchild, and I remember so clearly the day she was born, making all the parents at nursery wait at the end of the morning session, while I took the phone call! I went on to mind her until she went to full-time school, and her brother too, and even then they came to me until their mum finished work, so she has always had a special place in my heart, and I was a very proud Grandma, and so happy to be able to share her special day. (It had rained earlier in the day, and I had not realised that it was bright enough outside the reception hall, to darken my glasses so much!).
We had spent the first couple of days at our son Ben's house in Birmingham, so he was driving us over to the wedding. Here we are in our 'best bib and tucker' as my mum used to say, ready to set off.
The wedding went smoothly, the rain stayed away for the photos, and the reception hall looked so pretty, in shades of purple and white which was her theme throughout the day.
I loved the topper on the cake which included a mini-man with orange hair. I wonder who that could be?
I have not seen the official photos yet, of course, and I am sure they will be much better than mine, but I had to just include a few.
But there were lots of other good things to be grateful for in the week.
We had some prime time with each of the boys. On the morning after the wedding we all met up in town for a family breakfast.
We spent a long weekend with our eldest son and his family. He is a vicar in Pendeford, Wolverhampton, and I enjoyed being able to attend a service at his church. It was also good to sit and chat to their three children. We don't see them very often and they are growing up so fast. They have a lovely black cat called Severus who made himself at home on the arm of Chris' chair. It is so homely to have a cat around.
We then spent a couple of days with son number four in Manchester. I think it is a lovely city, with a rich mixture of ancient and modern. We went to see Jonathan's recently acquired studio where he can practice his drums, and hopefully start recording his and other bands, to boost his income. He then took us to see the newly opened library.
There is still a lot of work to do outside, but inside it is more or less complete. There is lots of interesting technology on the ground floor, and a busy buzz of conversation, but upstairs we crept into the study room to take a photo and you could have heard a pin drop in there. It was a huge room and they had retained the beautiful domed ceiling and stone pillars.
We went on to the Town Hall to admire the lovely arches and spiral stairways...
... and the many mosaic floors. Most were covered in intricate patterns but I liked the one with bees all over it.
In Spain we have had so very little rain this winter that, already the ground is parched and brown, and many trees are thin and stunted, so we were delighted by the vivid greens of the trees and meadows, and the colourful wayside flowers. We drove down to Southampton on our last full day and although we were on the motorway for most of the journey, there were long stretches of tree-lined roads...
... and even when the sun was getting low in the sky, the fields of rape made patches of bright gold. It was lovely to see.
Other blessings:- we were so grateful to our lovely son Ben whom lent us his car for three days, and made our travelling so much easier.
We were very glad that Chris's sister, who has been fighting cancer for so long, was well enough for us to be able to visit her, and spend a lovely few hours catching up with her.
I am grateful to my husband who enabled me to replace my ailing camera while we were in UK, so I was able to feel it and talk to the man about it first. That is so much more satisfying than buying it online.
I was happy to have a day all on my own to browse the shops in Birmingham, while Ben was at work and Chris was visiting friends. I am not a shopaholic, and it is not how I would often choose to spend my time, but as we have no shopping centres anything like that around us here, it made a nice change, and gave me the opportunity to update my wardrobe 'a little'!
We were able to arrange for two of our grand-sons, cousins who were born just seven weeks apart, and who are both nine-teen now (!), to come over on holiday together in July, so that is something to look forward to.
We were delighted to find that our new animal/house sitter had been so efficient. The house was in good order, and more importantly, the dogs and cats were happy and healthy, and had obviously had a great time in our absence.
We enjoyed the exuberant greeting they gave us on our return though, and have been happy to spend time today relaxing with them.
I am also rather pleased with an extra little purchase that I made today. We have a rather poor electricity supply so that, if I use too many kitchen appliances at one time, the whole house fuses! In UK I found that my daughter-in-law was using a hob kettle instead of an electric one, and I thought that might help me a bit too, so today I went looking for one. And I found a rather splendid purple one! I am not sure it really fits very well in my little Spanish kitchen, but I love it.
And on that happy note I will quickly publish this and link it up with Annie's Friday Smiles and Rocking your World over at Celtic House, and then I'm off to bed. Good-night all.