Friday, April 11, 2014

Back To Wales

Today we drove back to Wales  via the scenic route through Wales taking in Welshpool, Newtown, Llandrindod Wells, Builth Wells, Talgarth, Crickhowell, Abergavenny, Cwmbran and Newport. I thoroughly enjoyed  the scenery with the hills and mountains, and it certainly became greener the  further south we went. Around Whixall the buds are bursting and the new leaves have only just started to come out. 

We arrived at Clare's house to find her visiting hairdresser doing her hair so had a haircut too so it's back to really short....I was fed up with the wavy hair I get when it grows too long on top. We had chicken curry for tea and Lisa came to visit so she had some too. Poppy the puppy came home and Ben the dog is still keeping out of her way following me around.

Tomorrow is Gwen's 6th birthday party and I've been called in to help with the dozen children coming. It's only for two hours so I'm sure we can cope with the invasion of little boys allowed.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Ben's Busy Day

Today Ben and I were out for hours walking on the Mosses, it stayed dry until we were walking down the Prees Branch back to Whixall Marina. I had waterproofs on and Ben had the use of a towel although I had to wash his feet, legs and undercarriage.....he was filthly. He grumbled at the treatment too. 

After lunch we kept our appointment at the vets in Ellesmere for Ben's annual booster vacinations and a supply of Frontline to keep the fleas and ticks away. They made a mistake with the cost which I  queried ......there was an oustanding bill  for castration for another dog added to my bill......phew! I knew it didn't cost £190  for vaccinations, worming tablets and Frontline pipettes.

Ben's now fast asleep, I had to hide his worming tablets in cubes of cheese....which he never bothers to chew.

Friday, April 04, 2014

Cruising Plans 2014

On Tuesday we met up with Nick and Liz in Ellesmere and went by car for a lovely meal in Fouzi's in Llangollen. The food never disappoints and we had some lovely coffees too.It was time to say goodbye for a couple of months as they are off on their travels heading towards Chester to get some work done on the boat. We'll meet again in a few months when they come back for the Llangollen Eisteddford by boat.

We're currently staying at Clare's house picking up prescriptions in Newport, just a quick trip as we'll be back for Gwen's 6th birthday party next Saturday and my dad's 87th birthday get together for Sunday  lunch at the Rhiwderin Inn.

After that weekend our daughter Lisa and grandaughter Gwen are coming back with us for some time on the boat's the Easter holiday so we're planning a little cruising on the Llangollen Canal before they return to Newport by train.

Then it'll be time to start our Summer cruise heading down the Llangollen and down the Shropshire Union Canal, the Staffs and Worcs Canal, then the Trent and Mersey, the Coventry Canal, the Oxford Canal to Braunston  picking up the Grand Union Leicester Line to head up the River Soar to and the River Trent to Nottingham to visit Anne........stoppages hopefully will not get in the way.  Then it'll be back along the Trent and Mersey to Great Haywood and probably up the Trent and Mersey Canal and  across the Middlewich branch of the Shroppie back to Whixall on the Llangollen in time to pick up the car again and visit the family in Newport. We had planned to  do the cruise in a clockwise direction but there's a big problem on the lock we need to go through to get to Nottingham so hopefully it'll be sorted by the time we get there. 

Well that's our plans but who knows what will happen because something often changes  the route. When we get back from that cruise we'll be thinking of another one as we've spent months in the marina  and it's so nice to be out cruising after all a boat is meant for cruising even though it is our home as well. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Another Week Gone By

Another week has been and gone, doesn't time fly by. This week it's been the usual jobs whether on a boat or in a house, that's shopping , cooking, washing and cleaning. Other than that we've been out in the car and dog walking. One day we went to have a walk on the Montgomery Canal towpath after following road signs to Lower Frankton. We ended up doing a bit of food shopping in Sainsbury's in Oswestry. We've also walked the usual walks down the Prees Branch, in Ellesmere and the  Whixall Mossses.

Today we went by car to Ikea,  Birmingham as I wanted some new fitted sheets, I checked that they had what I wanted online and Google Navigation took us there via the A49, A5, M54 and M6 junction 9. I could spend hours in Ikea but Ben was in the car so it was just a quick the sheets and a new quilt too. If we stayed longer we would have only spent loads of cash.

It's been a lovely sunny day .....British Summer Time begins tomorrow so we lose an hours sleep but it won't affect Eric as he'll be still there at ten o'clock.....not a morning person!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Hello Paula

I've had a complaint from my sister in law Paula that I'm not blogging enough to keep her entertained. Since we are currently moored up in Whixall Marina there isn't anything particularly interesting to blog about so I'll bore you with what we've done today.

My day started with a hot shower and getting dressed to take Ben the dog out for his first wee of the day, I didn't want to frighten our neighbours by going out with bed hair, pyjamas and dressing gown. Ben has an excellent bladder and lasts from 10.30pm until after 9.00am the next day......I wish I didn't have to get up in the night.

I then potter about getting breakfast and coffee sorted before Eric wakes up....he's not a morning person.Once Eric was up, fed and watered we wondered what to do today. We were feeling a bit cabin crazy and went for a drive into Ellesmere so I could walk Ben the dog for an hour. Eric has a painful heel at the moment so walking for him isn't much fun.

We picked up the Sunday papers and headed back to the boat by car as I had some lamb steaks to cook for lunch with fresh vegetables and Auntie Bessie's roasties. That was followed by home made rice pudding and a lazy afternoon where the only activity was  feeding the fire with coal and wood, listening to Shropshire radio, playing games on the tablet and reading the papers. We did have to play ball with Ben the dog once he had his after dinner nap. He likes meat and vegetables too.

So Paula not a very eventful day but we're happy....I hope your day was good too.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Just A Few Photographs

Ben in Ellesmere

Ben waiting for me to catch up

New sculpture by Ellesmere Tunnel

Ellesmere Tunnel
Yesterday Ben and I were out for hours as we did a circular walk starting from Whixall Marina along various country lanes to Waterloo and then back along the Prees Branch. It did involve almost crawling under a fallen tree branches on the towpath which Ben got through quite easily. He did sleep for an hour when we got back. The weather was tremendously windy but it did manage to stay dry until we got back to the boat.
Today we went for a walk in Ellesmere and I remembered  to take a camera so the photos were taken today.......and there was actually a boat on the move. The Llangollen Canal is still closed at Hampton Bank so they couldn't have been going far. Ben was watering the  plants while I took the photograph. We met Eric in Tesco's car park so Ben stayed in the car while we did the food shopping. I made a shepherd's pie for tea.....delicious!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Enjoying The Sunshine

Ben on the Mosses

Following the peaty paths

A Wales/England marker post

A view of the Mosses

Across  the Mosses
Today we've been for a two hour walk from Whixall Marina and along some peaty tracks on the Fenn's, Whixall and Bettisfield Mosses. These photographs were from the Summer but it looks much the same other than the tree being leaf less at the moment. Ben was on the end of a long lead too, as it's the breeding season.  The only wild life we saw  other than dogs and their owners were yellow brimstone butterflies enjoying fluttering in the sunshine.  We passed the anglers along the Prees Branch  enjoying their fishing in the sunshine although they hadn't caught many fish.

Yesterday was a less energetic day as Ben and I went for a walk down the Prees Branch before he had to stay behind on the boat as we were off out to lunch. We met Nick and Liz at Poacher's Pocket, near Chirk, a popular canal side pub. Soon they'll be off on their travels when April 1st comes, as they leave their winter moorings in Llangollen.  We have another trip to Newport in April, for birthdays and prescriptions and a visit from our daughter Lisa and granddaughter Gwenllian in the Easter holidays before we begin our first cruise of the year.

Gwenllian and Lisa crossing Pontsycyllte  Aqueduct