The House that Jack built!

I should have really started the new HomeEtc linky last week with this post.

Our house is a new build, we have lived here for almost a year now. I won’t dwell on the details but suffice to say, it hasn’t been an easy year and the house is still not finished.

The Jack in the title is not our dog but Jack from the nursery rhyme – I will leave it there!

As everyone with a new house will know, there are lots of things interior design wise, that you cannot do for the first two years – snagging aside. Therefore, this link is going to be a great way for me to record the changes because,  although we do have mostly brand new fixtures and fittings, we still have builder’s magnolia on every wall.

Here are a few pictures that compare the construction stage with now:

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The picture at the top was taken on the 1st March 2014. This was a concern because we were due to move in May, of course we didn’t, it was the first of our set backs.

imageThis top picture was taken in June 2014, we couldn’t get near to the site for a long time because it was surrounded with fences that were mostly covered up. A cynic might think this was because the builders didn’t want us to see the lack of progress mmm…….

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The top picture was taken just 10 days before we moved in. Everything was a terrible rush at the end, the builders crammed everything in to ensure we were moved in by their half-year end. The house wasn’t ready!

image The house stands on the site of an old college building that was found unsuitable by Ofstead some years ago. The site is located in a green belt area and as I understand it, the land was sold on the understanding that the footprint for all the houses was not to exceed those of the original college building.

This picture of The Chapel shows the college building on the right which is where our house is now as seen.

Eventually The Chapel is going to be our Community Centre – we are waiting for the builders!

Issues aside, we love living here, the area is beautiful, most of the neighbours are fab and it is really handy for the school bus. I love the symmetry of the house and feel it’s quite well balanced, there is lots of natural sunlight with all of the windows. Nevertheless,  we still do have many outstanding issues with the builders and their “customer service” is shocking!

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So pop around each Wednesday when I join Jess from Mummy to Boy Girl Twins and Caro from The Twinkle Diaries in their new link HomeEtc.  I will show you around and hopefully, you can advise me when I run out of inspiration!

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A massive congratulations to Caro, she has won the Principality Building Society competition with this post about what home means to her, it fabulous!

Have a lovely day!

 

 

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Glade Matters!

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This  post isn’t about Jack. I just like this picture of him at Thurstaton beach. Although, I am reliably informed that this month is National Pet Month, therefore, I feel it’s justified.

There are lots of pets here in The Glade and, there is hardly a house in parts without a dog living it in. However, this being National Pet Month makes me a little bit sad! Let me explain…..

Our really lovely neighbour T, who lives just over the road from us bought a new puppy last October time. He was a gorgeous bundle of fluff called Milo. He was quite the attraction when she walked him because he was so small and cute.

On the Friday that we were enjoying our day out to Anglesey, Milo was run over and killed by another neighbour! I will spare you the details because by all accounts it was brutal.

He had followed his human dad to the car and he had taken his eye off him for a second, but that is all it takes. It seems that a number of the children were playing out and possibly witnessed the whole thing. It has also been reported that the driver of the car was going too fast, this I believe because I have witnessed it myself.

T is devastated, as I am sure you can imagine. What makes it worse for her,  is that she says the driver has shown no remorse, whatsoever! It is such a shocking thing to happen to our lovely community. The loss of Milo is bad enough but the behaviour of the driver disappoints and surprises many of us.

T has gone away this week,  I hope that helps her to come to terms with it. But I have to say, it’s very sad when we walk past her house with Jack and there is no barking to be heard. Everyone seems to be holding onto their dog’s leads a little bit tighter.

Most of us Glade Dwellers remain shocked, a week and a half on!

 

Rest in Peace sweet Milo!

My Captured Moment! #1

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This is my captured moment from last Boxing Day.

To be honest in the run up to Christmas last year, for different reasons, none of us were in great shape.  It had been a difficult time and we planned to have a quieter Christmas than usual. We managed to survive Christmas Day and resolved to make it better next year.

We spent the day after quietly, all doing our own thing and bemoaning that that there was nothing worth watching on television. Then something magical happened, it began to snow.

A lovely neighbour text to say how excited she was and eventually we, with most of the other  neighbours, made it outside and three snowmen were built! It was a wonderful impromptu gathering where we chatted and laughed together! It was a precursor to New Year’s Eve and new traditions beginning!

I took this picture just after receiving the text and I suddenly realised how lucky we really are. Both of our lovely girls were, not only here at home, they are healthy, polite,  respectful and hardworking. They both are thriving as new girls in university and school. We were spending Christmas together in our new home, with our new neighbours and with plenty of delicious food!

This photograph captured the moment that I became thankful!

Please ignore the wonky Christmas Tree, this year’s will be better!

I am hoping to link up to Heledd at Running in Lavender for My Captured Moment.  Please cross your fingers for me because I often make a right hash of it!

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 Such a gorgeous badge!

Have a lovely day!

The Table…………Well?

I am notorious for buying furniture that is too big!

The problem is that I like sturdy pieces that were probably designed for a castle, but I live in an ordinary English house.

Late in 2004, our solid pine table was gifted to Mr G’s friend’s girlfriend as she set up her new home. Mr G’s friend had tragically died in July of that year.

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Our new table was delivered in time for Christmas.  We installed Miss G’s high chair at the end, and I spent the whole holiday complaining that it was too big. I decided it couldn’t stay because we could barely open the French door to get out in to the garden.

We made the best of it for now and ate our meals around it discussing our days, but the table’s days were numbered.

2005

I started a college course, things got even busier and the table woes took a backseat.

In May, I studied at the table  all night to finish an assignment as Mr G flew to Istanbul.

The European Cup Image : LFC
The European Cup Image : LFC

When he returned a day later, an almighty breakfast was served at the table.

The girls did crafts at the table, entertained friends for tea and we celebrated birthdays.

2006

Around the table we discussed the possibility of my going to University.

We decided that we were going to break with tradition, and look for a different high school to our local one for Ms Glade, whilst sitting at the table.

2007

Ms Glade leaned on the table to study hard to pass the entrance exam for her chosen school.

We celebrated, with food and cake, eaten at the table, when she was offered a place at the school.

The table continued to host craft/homework sessions, friends for tea and birthday celebrations.

2008

We celebrated Miss Glade starting school with a special tea at the table.

The  Lambanana Image : BBC
The Lambanana Image : BBC

We sat around the table to decide what to see  in Liverpool, it was The European Capital of Culture, the Lambananas being the most popular around here.

2009

The table housed the gifts and cards I was given for graduating.

We sat at the table to discuss whether we could afford for me to do another Post Graduate Diploma.

2010

We left our tickets on the table for my call night as I became a Barrister.

The table was hauled into the garden as we celebrated Ms Glade’s birthday with a bonfire and fireworks.

2011

The table was relied upon to host crafts, friends for tea and  sleepover breakfasts.

Miss glade celebrated her birthday with a Cupcake decorating party and the table was covered in a plastic cloth.

2012

We planned our ‘trip of a lifetime’ to America at the table.

We put all our clothes on the table as we packed for Disney!

2013

We put all our clothes on the table as we packed for Disney again!

Mr G and I leaned on the table to complete our new mortgage application to move here.

2014

Ms Glade applied for university whilst sitting at the table.

Miss Glade leaned on the table to study hard to pass the entrance exam for her sister’s old school.

We celebrated both successes with food and cake served at the table.

We moved  – Mr G said “Are we getting rid of that table?”

I said “Gosh no, that table has been through it all with us.Let’s try to fit it in”.

It fits perfectly here in The Glade.

It’s like we bought it especially for the space it now occupies.

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And I love it!

 

Do you have a piece of furniture that has a story?

I am linking this post to Mummy of boy girl twins and The Twinkle Diaries’ new HomeEtc link.

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Have a lovely day X

 

 

Five on Friday

Once more I am linking up to Amy at Love made my Home for Five on Friday!

One

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Miss G enjoyed yet another sleepover this weekend. I don’t mind and she really misses her big sister so I would rather she had the company. She sent this picture to her Dad so she obviously appreciates it. All of her friends are really good girls so we hardly know they are here. It just makes me think though that we never had sleepovers as children, when did it start? They were definitely in full swing by the time our eldest was in school.

Two

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All week I had been craving scones after seeing Katy from What Katy Said, have a cream tea with her mum the week before. I finally made them on Saturday and they were well worth the wait. Apologies in advance if I have offended anybody by putting the jam on first!

 Three

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I am so easily influenced it is untrue, this week I have joined Instagram because I wanted to join in with English Mum on her #foodphotooftheday. I have to confess I have become slightly addicted. This is quite a turnaround because I have spent so long fearing social media, I am amazed at how much I now use it and, love it. Feel free to follow if you are on Instagram too and let me know who you are so I can follow back! It’s another community of lovely people.

Four

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I am on week 3 of this app! I am not going to lie, I am struggling! It isn’t getting any easier and I am patiently waiting to become addicted. If anyone has any tips, I would love to hear from you.

Five

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Finally, the daffodils have poked through the ground in The Glade and have started to open up this week. It is fantastic to open the bedroom curtains in the lighter mornings and look over at the daffodils blowing about. Spring is on its way!

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That is my five for this week!

Have a lovely day X

A ‘Welcome to The Glade’ Lemon Drizzle cake

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We were the sixth family to move into The Glade. Most families that have moved in since have been welcomed with a Lemon Drizzle cake.

(If you are reading this and you have moved in and didn’t received a cake,  let me know and I will hasten to rectify the situation ASAP).

People are often impressed with this particular cake, however in the spirit of sharing, I am about to take one for the team and, give the game away about how simple this cake really is.

This recipe is so old that I have had to convert it to metric.

Ingredients

Cake

170g self raising flour

110g butter

1 teaspoon of baking powder

170g sugar

2 large eggs

6 tablespoons of milk

Finely grated rind of a lemon or 2 drops of lemon extract

Toothpick

Drizzle

110g sugar

Juice of large lemon

Method

1. Pre heat the oven to 160c

2. Add all the cake ingredients together in a bowl and mix, see photo below for proof

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3. Pop the mix into a lined cake tin, I use a round one but this will fit into a 2lb  loaf tin too

4. Bake for 35-40 minutes until a toothpick comes out of the centre clean

5.  When the cake is in the oven make the drizzle by adding the freshly squeezed lemon juice to the sugar and mix

6. As soon as it is baked take a toothpick and make lots of holes in the top of the cake

7. Pour the drizzle mixture over the top

Enjoy!

*Tip: Before squeezing lemons put them in the microwave for 30 seconds then you will get more juice!