Friday, 24 August 2012

Day trippin #7 Combe Martin

Being a big dinosaur lover, I've been wanting to visit Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur park for quite a few years now. A couple of weekends ago Rich and I had planned on going up to Bristol so we could go to the Balloon Fiesta and Ikea. Well sods law the weather was glorious so we didn't fancy spending the day in Ikea. 

Instead we headed north and I finally got to go to the wildlife park. Sadly it was a bit of a let down. The entry fee was pretty high, £13.50 for adults which isn't that much cheaper than the zoo. There were only a handful of animals and to put it politely, the dinosaurs looked like they were painted by primary school kids 20 years ago and hadn't been done up since. All in all, not worth the money. We didn't let it dampen our spirits though, we looked at everything, indulged in 2 twisters in an attempt to cool down, and saw a few animal shows which was pretty cool. Pretty much every animal had an add on option, you could feed the lions a drumstick for £5 or have your photo taken with a sealion for £10. Very cool if you want to feed a lion, not so cool for the bank balance though.

Anyway, shouldn't grumble because it was nice to have a day out and I did get some cool photos, some of which are here...









When we'd finally had enough we headed down into Combe Martin. Rich went fishing off the rock pools while I read my book and watched people go crabbing. The weather was so beautiful and I really love the beach. The beach itself isn't huge and because we went later in the day it was pretty quiet. We topped off our day with a bbq/picnic on the beach accompanied by chips from The Black and White Chip Shop - literally the best fish and chips I've ever tasted, before the blobs of rain came and it was time to head home. 







How cool is the bus that was in the car park hey?

Hope you all have an awesome bank holiday weekend :)

Sarah

xx


Monday, 20 August 2012

My claim to fame.. well sort of!

Over the past few years I have become quite the tattoo addict. I got my first tattoo when I was 18, a small design dedicated to my mum. Now, 7 years and 10 tattoos later I am on my way to getting covered in the things. Tattoos are definitely a love them or hate them kind of thing. Most of my family hate them, most of my friends love them, but it's me that will live with them, me that might regret them, and I will deal with that if and when it happens. 

When I was a teenager I didn't really know who I was. I tried to follow the same trends that my friends did but I knew none of them were really 'me'. As I got older, and particularly when I started uni and met my amazing friend Kelly, I realised it doesn't matter what everyone else thinks I should be like, it's the person I want to be that counts. Now I'm not saying that's always true, but in the sense of how I dress and what body modifications I make it most certainly is up to me. Tattoos have become part of my life choices and I wouldn't have it any other way. They make me happy and feel more comfortable with myself, I love to show them off and will take whatever criticism is thrown my way.

Anyway, all of my more recent tattoo's have been done by my lovely friend Lauren Gow. I started going to Lauren when she worked at Tanners Yard in Crediton, but she has sadly moved on to bigger things at No Regrets in Cheltenham. I'm so pleased that her career is taking off, and even more pleased to see that she is on the front cover of Tattoo Revolution magazine. I was even more excited to turn the page on to her interview and see MY TATTOO!! Cool huh?


Here is a close up of my beautiful Triceratops, named Terrance.



I'm over the moon that it's in a tattoo magazine, and even happier to know that Lauren must be proud of it to have published it.

I can't wait to get on the table again for more tattoo pain.

Sarah

xx

Friday, 17 August 2012

Currently

I've seen this on so many blogs, so I thought I'd give it a go myself...

Loving getting to spend so much time with my family at the moment. August is the birthday month from hell! Within 2 weeks I've had my sister's 30th, Dad's birthday and brothers 21st (see his amazing cake below), and I still have my siblings partners birthdays and my nephews 1st birthday to come within the next couple of weeks. It's manic but awesome, we don't spend nearly enough time together now we're all growing up and making our own lives so I appreciate it so much more when we do.


Reading The Chartered Insurance Institute CF1 exam study book. I bet you're so jealous hey? I mean what isn't to love about pensions, ISA's, mortgages, interest rates? It's a hoot! But hey, it's dog eat dog out there so any extra qualification is good with me. I also started reading 'We bought a zoo', after visiting Dartmoor Zoo where the story is about, it had to be read.

Watching True Blood Season 4. I'm actually kind of disappointed with this series. I've read ALL the books and absolutely love them, and found the first 3 series to be pretty similar and not a let down by any means. But this series I'm finding it a bit like Harry Potter, you read the books, loved it, and now you've watched the films the characters are no where near as good as they were in your head? I'll continue to watch it though because I still love the vamps. 

True Blood

Thinking about those who are no longer with us, wondering what they'd be like now and what life would be like if they were still here. One of those thing's I'm sure I'll always think about. 

Anticipating the big move! Like I said in my previous post, the family home is being sold so I'm on a big clear out and soon to be flat hunt. I'm not looking forward to leaving my home of 25 years but I am excited about new adventures and having MY own little place called home. 

Wishing that I can find a lovely little flat that isn't going to make me so poor that I can never leave it. So if you know of anywhere in Exeter please let me know :)

Making me happy, planning a mini break in Cornwall with Mr Pomps. We've bought some new camping gear and I've got a lot of holiday time to use up between now and christmas so we're going to hit the road, see some of Cornwall and visit my Nan. I'm very excited and hope the sun shines!

Sarah

xx

Friday, 10 August 2012

Changes

A couple of months ago things started to change. My Dad and his other half had been planning on selling up their homes and moving in together, all very lovely and exciting. The 'For Sale' boards went up, a few people viewed but not a lot happened. A couple of weeks ago the agent called and said 'great news, someone wants to view the house', or something to that effect, so I rushed around every evening and made the house spotless. Scented candles were lit, embarrassing childhood photos were hidden (mwahahaha), the house was clean and clutter free! Two days later after the initial viewing they came back. They had fallen in love with our home and wanted to buy it, and so they are. I don't think it really sunk in until I drove into the street and saw the 'Sale agreed' sign up, and then it hit me, my home of 25 years wasn't going to be MY home anymore. I have lived in this house for my entire life, apart from a couple of years away at uni, so it's pretty sad to think we'll be leaving all our memories behind. But that's the best thing about our house, it has created so many memories that I will treasure forever. Sure there have been good times and bad times, but there have definitely been more. Like remembering when my Mum and Dad brought my baby brother home from hospital, birthdays, christmas', playing in the paddling pool in the back garden or '40 40' with the neighbours. It's been magical.

And then comes the not so exciting part. When you live in a house for 33 years (my Dad, not me), you acquire a hell of a lot of crap! Combine that with the ridiculous amount of hoarding my Mum did, and you pretty much have a loft, garage and shed full to bursting. If there was a bargain to be had, mum would have it, and she'd keep it. Nothing got thrown away, EVER! So now Dad and I are left with the job of clearing it all out. What will be kept, what will be sold, what can be charity shopped, and what is so horrendous not even the tip deserves to see it.It's also a little fun when you come across some of your favourite childhood toys, like my Fisher Price farm set...


But seeing as I'm a fair bit older now, I'm far more excited by my Mum's stash of Tupperware. This stuff is amazing and I had to battle with my Dad to let me keep it and take it to wherever my new home will be.
I love it!


No doubt I'll be updating you on more epic loft finds in the not so distant future, but for now I have a bedroom to go through and 'stuff' I have to be ruthless with and get rid of, sigh!

Cheerio

xx




Thursday, 9 August 2012

Complaining

About 6 weeks ago I wrote a post about a pretty awful meal Pomps and I had in Giraffe. The chicken in our burgers had been turned into charcoal and the fries had turned hollow, yummy hey? I wrote a letter of complaint including a photo of the food (we weren't asked how our food was until the plates were taken away), and received a £25 voucher to spend on 2 main meals on our next visit.

So last night, being an 'orange wednesday', we planned on using our voucher for dinner and then heading over to The Picturehouse to watch Batman. We were a bit reluctant to show our letter before ordering our good in case it turned up with a nice dollop of spit in it, but the staff were fantastic. We were served and seated by the main front of house guy who couldn't apologise enough for our last experience. We ordered garlic bread and a burger each, and I'm pleased to say it was all scrummy and good perfectly, you really couldn't fault it. When we asked for our bill the front of house guy came over and told us the difference on the bill was only £1.50 so to forget about it, he was just glad we enjoyed our meal.

Although a big part of me thinks we shouldn't have to complain, that should be the level of service and quality you receive every time, but I really can't emphasise enough how brilliant the food and service was, and I'd definitely go back there again. Plus Batman was AMAZING and I want to see that again too :)

Today also happens to be my Dad's birthday, so my little brother and I took him for breakfast at Bills cafe. I had some lovely french toast with berries, Dad and little bro had eggs. Unfortunately for them, both of their eggs had been over cooked to the point of being solid. Little bro mentioned this to our waitress, and lo and behold, they were given their meals for free. No one was hoping for free meals, maybe free coffees or something similar. It just show's that you don't have to accept rubbish food when you're paying a fair amount for it (well not this time anyway), but its also meant that we'll definitely go back again as we know their standards and service are both high.

By the way I don't always complain, only if its necessary :)

Hope you're having a good week. Oh look the suns come out, yipeeeeeeee!!

Sarah

xx


Monday, 6 August 2012

And then I fell in the river!

On Saturday Rich and I had booked a free two hour kayaking taster session at AS Watersports in Exeter. Rich has been wanting to buy a kayak, so it seemed like a good idea to go out and have a proper go on one first. We were pretty lucky in that there was only one other person in our group, which meant we could ask the instructor more questions and spend a bit more time on each kayak. In all honesty I had no idea there were so many different types, but this time I only tried a sit on top..


and a recreational kayak that you have to climb right into...

Even though there were a few rain showers I really really enjoyed it. We'd paddle along to the pontoons at various points along the canal, when we'd get there we'd all get out and swap boats to get a feel of what we liked the most. I went on two sit on's first, and then a recreational kayak last which I paddled back to the shop on. It really was brilliant. And then came the trouble. Being the only girl and the boys showing off getting out of the kayaks on their own, I was left to my own devices to 'roll' out too, simple hey? Nope, not for me. As I pushed myself up from the kayak to roll on to the pontoon, the kayak moved back and I fell into the river! Yep, waist deep, I was in there laughing like a fool having lost 1 shoe and finding it far too funny to pull myself up. 
It wasn't until the evening that I realised that I'd completely battered my legs, and that some pretty epic bruises were coming to the surface...


Impressive huh? Despite the beasty bruises it was an awesome way to spend a couple of hours and it didn't cost us a penny. The instructor, Liam, is really good and know's his stuff so I'd recommend going and maybe booking onto one of the courses. I think we'll definitely be hiring a kayak again, if the sun ever comes out again. 

Sunday was a bit more relaxed. In the first two weeks of August we celebrate my sisters, Dads and brothers birthdays, so we had a family get together, pigged out on lasagne, eaton mess and cake, and had lots of cuddles and play time with Jack. Twas right lovely and I wish we did it more often.

Hope all had a fab weekend.

Sarah

xx

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Day trippin #6 Weston Super Mare

Here is a little (shortened) story about why Pomps and I went on a day trip to Weston Super Mare. During the war, literally, Pomps' Grandad was moved to Devon from Estonia, where he met his Nan, they got married and have lived in Exeter ever since. Quite a few Estonian's who had moved to the UK settled in Weston Super Mare, one of which is Pomps' Grandads dearest friend. For the last 20 years he has driven up once a year to visit him, the last surviving Estonian from their group. After various life events, the drive has become a bit too much. So Pomps and I decided that that didn't mean they would never see each again, nope, we would drive his Nan and Grandad up for the day, and take ourselves off exploring while they visited their dear friend.

So this is what we got up to. It just so happened that Pomps' Dad had a stall at the 'Stars of Time' convention at the Helicopter Museum. So we popped over to say hello and had a nose around. Pomps was a massive kid and had his photo taken with a storm trooper and the knightrider car, I however got far too excited about seeing some of the cast of Allo Allo (don't judge me).
We then headed down to the sea front to munch on our picnic, then set off for a stroll where we encountered DONKEYS, and then mooched around the pier. Despite being a bit too modern for my liking, the pier was pretty impressive and a bit like Narnia, it was much bigger inside than you would think. Apart from getting ripped off on the horse racing game that stole our money, we didn't go on anything because the queues were crazy.
We finished our stroll with a Whippy ice cream, look around the town and then a quick nose in ASDA before heading back to pick up Pomps' Nan and Grandad. It was lovely to see them all together and it totally pulled at my heartstrings. We said our 'goodbyes' and 'see you next years', but there's something I hate about old people being alone, so I probably would have kidnapped and adopted their friend if I could have.

So this was our day, and here are my photos:
Queen's Helicopter
Mimi & Helga from Allo Allo
Herr Flick from Allo Allo
Exterminate
What doesn't kill you simply makes you.. stranger!
Pomps & the Joker
Pomps and the Knight Rider car
Pomps and a storm trooper
R2D2 & chum
DONKEYS
MORE DONKEYS
Donkeys?
Weston Super Mare Grand Pier
All aboard, choo chooooooo
If you have anywhere you recommend visiting I'd love to hear it. Next week we're going to the Bristol Balloon Fiesta, I can't wait.

Thanks for reading :)

Sarah 

xx