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birthday celebrations

Thirty Four in Alert Lockdown

By Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, Music & Radio, NatureNo Comments
Me, out in the sunshine. Alert for Coronavirus.

I think 2020 will be the year known as what wasn’t, rather than what was. So many of people’s plans have been cancelled. Of course we all understand that it is essential and that keeping safe is the most important thing.

On Wednesday 13th May 20, the UK Government relaxed lockdown. Just in time for my birthday! This meant I could now meet a friend for my birthday, maintaining social distancing and go for a walk in Rivington with them. So the day after, on my birthday, that’s exactly what I did.

It was a lovely walk. The sun was out and was warm. The birds were singing. The stream flowed making a gentle gushing sound. All combined sounded like a nature meditation CD.

The 1975, one of my favourite bands released this song, which I’m absolutely addicted to. I’ve been listening to it on repeat since its release:

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That’s how I spent my birthday. Take care and be safe. Write soon,


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Thirty Two Today – My Birthday Plans

By Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, LifeNo Comments

Good morning everyone,

Today is my thirty second birthday. I’m not actually sat here writing this, it’s a scheduled post.


I’m Thirty Two Today!

My birthday plans include a well-earned break from work for a week.

Today I’m off to Newcastle to see castles with Simon. In fact we are probably already on our way as this post is published. There are two English Heritage castles nearby that we want to see, along with Newcastle Castle.

Later in the week, mum and I are off to re-visit Harry Potter Studio Tour. You can see photos from when first visited the Harry Potter Studio Tour in 2014 here.

So expect to see blog posts about the above soon. In the meantime have an awesome week.

Write soon,



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Places that I’ve Visited this Year

By Adventures, Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, Life, Nature, ThinkingNo Comments

As the dark, cold, winter nights draw in and signal the end of the year I’ve took some time out to reflect on the places that I’ve visited this year.


Birdozwald Roman Fort – Photo Opportunities, especially on the outside of the fort.

In May my good friend Simon and I did the first half of our tour along Hadrian’s Wall.

We started at the Cumbria end of the Wall and worked our way along, stopping at several historical sites along the way. In one day managed to enter Northumberland, stopping at Walltown Quarry and Vindoland Roman Fort & Museum.

If you want to see exactly where we went, along with photos and essential info for each place see The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure Part 1 and The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure Part 2.

Next year we are having another day out, starting at Vindoland Roman Fort & Museum and working our way along to the end of Hadrian’s Wall.


The Elephants.

As part of my birthday celebrations I invited family and friends to spend the day with me at Chester Zoo. I really wanted to see the Islands Exhibit.

Unfortunately not many people could make it on the day to share the experience. The Islands Exhibit was also rather disappointing.

But the well-established exhibits were great. My favourites were: the Elephants enclosure, the Butterfly house, the Giraffes, the Chimps, the Flamingos, the Lions, the speckled Bear and the Black Rhinos.


Astley Hall Park/Grounds (3)

In July Simon and I set out to one of our faviourate places – Rivington. But unknown to us, there was some sort of cycling event and with many roads closed we couldn’t work out how to actually get there.

So instead Simon directed me to Astley Hall Park. It was a place that I had never been to before and is beautiful.

We had a walk around the park, stopping to take photos. Then we had coffee and cake in the on-site cafe.

I have wanted to visit a botanical gardens for sometime now. I wanted to meander inside a giant glass greenhouse full of exotic plants and trees. I even put it as a goal for 2016. So I did a Google search looking for my nearest botanical gardens, found Southport Botanic Gardens (Churchtown) and dragged Simon along.

It wasn’t exactly what I had in mind. No giant glass greenhouse. But the weather was sunny and warm and in its own way it was totally charming. The small park was filled with trees from across the world. I just wish there had been some sort of guide to what species the trees were and where in the world they had come from.

There was an unexpected aviary and a small yet delightful Victorian gardens. There was another cafe, so of course we stopped for coffee and cake.


The Victorian Garden (1).

York is known for its iconic Abbey and shopping. It’s a place that I had never been to until this year.

Simon and I visited York and Knaresborough. York is architecturally splendid and has building from various times in its long history. We did visit The Shambles, but didn’t really buy much.

Probably the greatest thing about our visit is the fun we had together. We talked and laughed lots. Here are two photos of me being silly (click on any image for full size):


Me racing on a wooden sheep.


My arrival at Knaresborough Castle.


York Abbey (from a distance).

So these are the places that I’ve visited this year. I think it’s time to start planning for 2017.

Blog soon,


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Goals & New Experiences for 2016

By Books & Authors, Happiness & Joy, Life, ThinkingNo Comments
goals-and-adventures-large Goals for throughout the year:
Unticked Box Read & Review at least 20 books.
Unticked Box Watch & Review 6 films.
Unticked Box To create more time for creative projects.
Unticked Box To complete 2 creative projects.
Unticked Box To get up-to-date with my financial obligations and continue to reduce the balance on my debts.
Unticked Box Save up for and buy a new rug and corner sofa for the living room.
Unticked Box To give up smoking.

Monthly Goals

Unticked Box Start a new creative project.
Unticked Box Take it easy.

Unticked Box See Mary Poppins with Mum, etc.

Unticked Box Treat yourself to a reiki treatment.

Unticked Box See a sunrise.

Unticked Box Celebrate your 30th in style, including a night out in Newcastle and a family meal.

Unticked Box Visit Chester Zoo Islands Exhibit.
Unticked Box Start a new creative project.

Unticked Box Spend time in nature. Go for walks in places of natural beauty.
Unticked Box Visit a botanical gardens.

Unticked Box Visit a castle, one that you haven’t been to before.

Unticked Box Read in the horror genre. Maybe some Stephen King.

Unticked Box Celebrate Samhain.

Unticked Box Take it easy.

Unticked Box Bring people together to celebrate Yule.

Blog soon,


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