Thursday, January 31, 2013

Chatty chatty Woman

The boys were never particularly forthcoming with the minutae of their day. We tend to get a bit more back from them these days, but it still has to be dragged out.

Miranda by contrast will volunteer stuff and then expect you to start asking questions. Then you can't stop her, the glood gates are open...

I told her at breakfast what I'd put on the blog and she gave me a disapproving and reproachful look and shook her head.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013


It was one momont such as this, I was reading her a story and she had disappeared under the covers.

There was lots of laughing and giggling, and I just sat there wondering what was going on. Eventually she resurfaces and without prompting she comments that I have stopped reading....

"Oh you noticed then, ....what was going on under the duvet?"

"Mousey kept tickling me, so I had to sort him out!"

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Winter Blues

Rain, windy and miserable .... bring on the Spring! Taken from the boat club at Calshot looking towards Cowes over Christmas/New Year when I had a camera in my hand rather than a mince pie.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Defining moment

The tables at Juliet and Nich's party were covered in little versions of the this photo. It's one I know well, capturing a brief moment before stepping into a winebar in Basingstoke, and not long after coming out of the Register Office.

It was raining, so not the time for the traditional lingering wedding photos but the happy smiling faces say it all. I don't think the rain dampened our enthusiasm then, and it was nice to relive the day over the weekend twenty five years on.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Beer o clock

Travel broadens the mind, so they say. This one began it's journey on the Shropshire hills before being brewed in Market Drayton, and served up in Ye Old Red Lion in Stafford...

Very nice beer, very good atmosphere.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Me and my Girl

We read some more from Rhyme Stew this evening, laughing and joking until we both nearly fell asleep.

Miranda tried to read me one last piece but she said lets have a cuddle instead. Now that's what I had in mind!

Horseplay followed, the cuddle postponed for another day... and then it was dinner time.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Photo Album

With Greg showing an interest in being the replacement official photographer, I now have to content with another power struggle. Although she has forgotten to put the camera around someone's neck,its clear that she see's herself photographing the group. She's got a very subtle yet manipulative way of setting her agenda....

This book was left prominently on the kitchen table just where it would catch my eye!

Snow Brown

Not sure what she has done with the seven dwarves, but here's the very colourful Miranda just before Greg snaffled my camera. We had a good laugh looking at this photo as you can see remains of food around her mouth. Greg has just walked into my workroom and he has an even larger chocolatey ring around his mouth - is it just my family that are incapable of basic hygene...?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


Not a new photo, but one taken a few weeks ago at Studland, although only just processed! It was buried in a folder needing ten minutes to bring it to life! Captures Greg at his most natural self, never happier than kicking a ball around either with friends or on his own. Even wearing wellies on the beach he can do this for hours.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Winter Wonderland

This is one of Greg's photos that he took yesterday of Fallow Deer near Stubbs Wood. Lewis and Miranda were walking ahead of us and spotted them first, and Greg had been talking to me. So he stalked over and got a picture before he got too close and they made a run for it. There was one stag who was a magnificent sight, but he was keeping the rear!

Good shot Greg!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

White Out

Just found one of Greg's photos of us in the forest today so had to load it for all those who don't have any snow yet!


Kids bathed, hair washed ready for another week, and dinner before collapsing in front of the fire with a glass of Vina Eguia Rioja GR

I'm listening to Anour Brahem's Le Voyage de Sahar with Francois Couturier and Jean Louis Matinier on accordion.

Been out for a walk in the snow with the kids this afternoon at Rans Wood. The boys threw snowballs at each other whilst Miranda couldn't quite decide if she wanted to get stuck in or be protected from them.

Greg took a nice photo of some deer which I may have to post later.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Little Perishers

Lewi was supposed to be sail training at Lymington but it was called off due to the thick layer of snow. He was most disappointed when I told him, but fortunately we had a call half an hour later from Terry asking us if we fancied a blast down the Solent, as he needed to move his boat from the boatyard at Bucklers Hard.

Fair to say it was windy and icy cold on the water, with a 6 forecast rising to 7...

That and wind over tide meant we had a rough passage and were glad to get back on the mooring on the Beaulieu River

Thursday, January 17, 2013

A matter of Perspective

Looking more like Joe Ninety than TV Charlie, Greg tries to look cool whilst playing a game of Chess. He seems to think they give him magical prowess whilst engaged in mortal combat....

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Thema Mundi

A piece of Lewis' DT homework partially finished, and left on the kitchen table. He's quite good at getting on with stuff in the mornings when he puts his mind to it. He's had a few issues to resolve this term and is trying very hard at the moment.

He's supposed to be playing rugby tomorrow with the Hampshire U14 Zone squads but has come home with an injury from a match at school today - not good!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Flexible friend

Had a slightly mad conversation with Miranda about a guinea pig called Wendy, which got me thinking about someone we used to call Bendy Wendy back in the day. Before we knew it we were playing an imaginary game about making a website for her and her friend, the name of which was

I know the spelling was thus as sher typed it into my iPhone and wondered why it wasn't coming up. I explained that the broadband wasn't working which she seemed happy enough with, but which left me wondered which side of reality I was on.

I may do a search on gineygirls or later and find out it really exists (or worse?), I can hardly wait!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Friday, January 11, 2013


One of Miranda's watercolour pictures of two Spitfires. I don't think it has anything to do with the topical news story, it's just that Greg has made a model of one some time ago and we then tracked down the planes in the Science Museum at Christmas.

I love the way the detail is all remembered and embelished at face value

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Footie Fever

A few days ago Caroline had been telling me about Choir Club at school, so I have been encouraging Mipp to get involved. Consensus was that it was too well behaved an activity to suit her temperament....

Anyhow when she came home from school she popped in to see me, and give me the good news that she has signed up for it! And additionally she has signed up for soccer club with Greg! Tonight as i kissed her goodnight she told me her kitbag was packed and ready yo go, and could i take a photo of it

G....o....a....l !!!!!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013


The Guthries may recall this little chap. I think he was a present for Lewis on his first birthday, and Greg has a similar one from his first birthday too.... Miranda has always borrowed them for short periods of time but the boys have always repatriated the bears, and they have been good friends down the years.

I remarked this evening that he'd been spending a lot of time in Mipp's bed recently and she confided that Lewis didn't really want him back anymore. So he has a new soul mate....

Damn sad to hear about poor old Wilko Johnson, the first band I really "got into" way back in the seventies... Just have a listen to Roxette and the way he machineguns that guitar like no one else.

and when you've seen it take a look at the Sweet Gene Vincent video when he was with Ian Dury and the Blockheads

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

George Speaks

Been having good fun reading Dick King Smith with Mipp and Greg. Tonight we had moved on to something more grown up which Miranda chose herself, but we did not laugh so much.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

bathroom sink drama

Toothbrush time, and tomorrow it's back to school. Doesn't seem a moment too soon either!

Been out on our bikes this afternoon although the weather is still miserable here. Mipp took me on a magical mystery tour, and when we got back to Frost Lane she announced we were going to put all the animals to bed, which we did!

Saturday, January 05, 2013


Day sail to Fishbourne IOW with Lewis and Terry, stopping for lunch at Cowes. Something of a grey day but very pleasant nonetheless. We ran aground at least four times on trying to reach the pub at Fishbourne and eventually gave up, but as the river was flooding we were confident of getting out of trouble. Does not bode well for trying again however, as three hours later and it may be too close to call the outcome. Barely enough room for the ferry to get in, and not even turn around... it reversed back out to sea down a very narrow channel we observed!

Quite spectacular sighting of Lapwing on the Beaulieu River as we set off. First group of about 150 were joined by some others, making a group roughly three times the size. A few minutes later they flew ahead of us towards Needs Ore, and the pheasant philanderers on the Beaulieu Estate started shooting which put up a swarm of Lapwing which I estimated at over 5000. I have never seen so many all together, the sky was black, and with their unmistakable flight pattern made me sure they were all Lapwing. Maybe it's been a good year for them, maybe I was just lucky?

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Miranda Brown Watercolours

Regular viewers will know I have something of a family interest in the subject of watercolours, but nothing prepared me for the surprise of finding this on the kitchen table drying. It's one of Mipp's first on watercolour paper, and a joy to look at. I wonder what father brown will think of it

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Snout in the trough

There are occasions when a small dog can cause Miranda apoplexy. I have known her leap into my arms when a pooch approaches wagging it's tail.

However it's not until you see her in the pen with three fairly large snorty pigs, welly deep in mud, and a bag of peelings in her hand as she talks to them calmly, that you see the other side of her. Tough and feisty, able to hold her own, she's a tough cookie when it suits her....!

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

new year, old faces....

Despite a late night seeing in the new year qith the kids, we were all up early to go sailing - it was absolutely fab on the beach at Calshot.

Greg was in fine form showing us how much he's learned this year.

We also paid a visit to see the animals at Barry and Janis' as Miranda has been asking every day, and frankly the weather iver the last week has not been very inviting, has it?

The pigs have a new pen, as the field is waterlogged, and Popsie has helped get them settled in and fed this evening...