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My Thirty-Sixth Birthday – A Visit to Walton Hall & Gardens, time with Family and Friends

By Books & Authors, Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, NatureNo Comments

This weekend, it was my thirty-sixth birthday. A couple of days before, I treated myself to Why Has Nobody Told Me This Before? by Dr Julie Smith.

The day before my birthday, on a sunny Friday, my good friend Simon and I visited Walton Hall & Gardens.

Walton Hall & Gardens is a park with a café, crazy golf course and a children’s petting zoo.

Essential Info

  • Walton Hall & Gardens is a park with a café, crazy golf course and a children’s petting zoo.
  • The Hall is often hired out for events such as weddings; but the café, crazy golf course and petting zoo are all open to the public.
  • It has a pay and display carpark.
  • It has toilets.
  • It has gardens that are best viewed in the Spring due to when the flowers are in bloom.
  • The café, crazy golf and children’s petting zoo have various opening times that can be viewed here.
  • The petting zoo is in the process of being revamped and therefore the only animals currently available to view were peacocks, alpacas, rabbits and ducks.

Here are some photos from Walton Hall & Gardens:

On the Saturday, my actual birthday, I spent time with my brother, his wife and my nephew.

On the Sunday, my good friend Jayne and I went out for tea.

Blog soon,


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My Favourite Blog Post For Each Year

By Life, Nature, ThinkingNo Comments

While we are self-isolating and only allowed to make essential journeys, I decided to share my favourite blog post for each year that the blog has been online.

2019 – The Bank Holiday Weekend: 4 Lovely Days
I chose this blog post for the weather, the time spent in nature with good friends and the photos.

2018 – Chester Zoo with Jayne
I chose this blog post for the animals. I love animals and it’s always great to see them. I got to spend quality time with my good friend Jayne on this day and the weather was lovely. Plus the post has plenty of photos.

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2017 – Causes For Celebration
I chose this post because lots of positive things happening to me at the time, including landing my dream job.

2016 – My Thirtieth Birthday
I chose this because of a meal with family and friends. It is perhaps the best birthday I’ve ever had. And just look at the cake:

My 30th Birthday Cake: Minion Bob.

2015 – A Celebration of Love: Mum & Ian’s Wedding
I chose this post because I have never seen my mum happier than on her Wedding Day and in the relationship she is in with her husband Ian (I call him my Papa). It was truly a special day and one to remember.

2014 – Mid-Wales, Part 1: The Lovely Penrhos Cottage
My good friend Simon and I had a lovely weekend away in Mid-Wales. There are photos of the cottage we stayed in. You can also see part 2 here.

2013 – TED Talk: Elizabeth Gilbert – Your elusive creative genius
I chose this post as it is my all-time favourite TED Talk.

Honorable mention must also go to Mel Bossa’s Latest Book: In His Secret Life, the author very kindly sent me a signed copy of her book.

2012 – Growing Up Gay: My Story
I chose this as I just loved the photo of me:

2011 – A Long FANTASTIC Bank Holiday Weekend
I chose this post as I went to visit two of my bengal cats as kittens and the photos on the post are super cute.

2010 – Book Review: The Magician’s Assistant by Ann Patchett
I chose this as this book is perhaps my all-time favourite stand alone novel. I’ve re-read it several times.

2009 – Pagan Festivals
I chose this post as it describes pagan festivals easily.

2008 – Reiki one – Qualified
I chose this as I am proud to be a Reiki practitioner.

There you have it. I hope you’ve found it as entertaining as I have putting together the list.

Take care and blog soon,


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Help The Bees Flourish With Beebombs

By Friends & Family, Nature, PaganismNo Comments

Beebombs are pellets containing various seeds of wildflowers, clay and compost. The wildflowers are all ones that Bees love and that will help them survive and hopefully flourish.

My 33rd birthday was a big one on a pagan and magical front. Magically spells are said three times. In Numerology, 33 would equal 3+3 = 6. Six is The Nurturer, which couldn’t be closer to the values associated with paganism.

So for my birthday this year, I decided to buy something small for some family and friends that would help nature. Then I came across an Ad for Beebombs.

Beebombs are pellets containing various seeds of wildflowers, clay and compost. They are handmade in Dorset and all of the packaging is recyclable.

Since World War 2, the Bee population has dropped by 97%. We all remember being at school being taught about the food chain and the web of life. If the Bees die out, those animals that eat the Bees could die out, then the animals that eat them and so on.

The Beebombs don’t need to be planted, they are simply be scattered. Just know that the wildflowers contained require a lot of sunlight, so don’t scatter anywhere where they will have a lot of competition for sunlight.

According to the makers, they are safe for pets. They do contain Poppy seeds, which are toxic to cats, but only in small quantities and not enough to cause harm to cats.

The wildflowers that will grow from the Beebombs are slow growers and it make take up to 2 years to fully grow. They are all wildflowers that that Bees love and that will help them survive and hopefully flourish.

I bought five Beebombs bags. One I scattered close to where I live. One I gave to mum and papa. One I gave to Simon. One I gave to Kay for her mum’s garden and one to Jayne. Everyone has loved them. They make great gifts, providing that the people you give them to aren’t scared of Bees and or butterflies.

I should point out that I haven’t been paid or compensated in anyway by the makers of Beebombs for this post. I just thought they were cool and wanted to share.

Take care,


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A Brilliant 33rd Birthday (including a visit to Mother Shipton’s Cave)

By Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, PaganismNo Comments


This week I have had a brilliant time celebrating my 33rd Birthday. I’ve seen my brother Shaun for coffee, had tea out with mum and papa, seen Jayne for coffee and cake, spent a wonderful day at Mother Shipton’s Cave and in Knaresborough with Simon and am seeing Kay tomorrow. I received some lovely cards and great gifts. The most brilliant thing has been catching up with people.

But a highlight has to be visiting Mother Shipton’s Cave. Here are some photos from the cave visit:


Simon and I, the famous Petrifying Well behind us.


This is Beech Ave. It has some of the oldest beech trees in Britain.


The stream that leads down to the Petrifying Well.


The top of the Petrifying Well.


The Petrifying Well. Normally the rock above would have worn away due to erosion, but because of the unique properties of the water, that turns things to stone, a layer of stone has built up and protected the rock underneath.


A side view of the Petrifying Well (1).


A side view of the Petrifying Well (2).


Ivy at the side of the well has began to crystalise from the water splash back from the Petrifying Well.


The entrance to Mother Shipton’s Cave.


A rock carving impression of Mother Shipton within her cave.


The naturally formed Wishing Well (1). Simon and I both made a wish.


The naturally formed Wishing Well (2).


A sculpture of Mother Shipton in the small museum/gift shop.


Just a silly photo of me.

A video I took at the Petrifying Well:

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Essential Info

  • Mother Shipton’s Cave includes: some of the oldest beech trees in Britain, a cave where Mother Shipton (a Witch in the 17th Century) was said to have lived. A Petrifying Well that turns things into stone (due to the unique make up of the water), a naturally formed wishing well, a park for children (with picnic benches) and a small shop/museum. It is located in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, England. This attraction could be fully completed in about an hour.
  • Admission Price: £9-10 for an adult. This is on the expensive side for what is on offer, however it does include an all day come and go wristband. This means that you could leave the attraction to go into the market town of Knaresborough.
  • Opening Times: Vary, view here.
  • Parking: £1-2, with plenty available.
  • Toilets.
  • Has a small gift shop and museum combined.
  • Useful to know: Wednesday’s are market day in Knaresborough, so worth visiting on a Wednesday if you can. That way you can do the cave, markets and get something to eat in the many pubs/restaurants in the town.

I’ve had a fantastic birthday, but the week of annual leave that I’ve taken for my birthday has gone far too quickly as always.

Blog soon,


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