Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Longleat Christmas 2016 50th Anniversary

"2 blog posts in a week Annie?" I hear you cry. Well yes, I have some things to talk about and I'm enjoying it!

Last year was the first time Kathryn, Miranda, Louise and I went to Longleat for their Christmas spectacle. (Wrote a blog post on it here) We had the most incredible time and swore we would do it again. Unsure of what to expect the first time we were totally overwhelmed by how great the safari was, the house and all of the Christmas lights which had been installed all through the Capability Brown gardens. So we decided it should become a yearly tradition. It's so Christmassy and we giggle so much as we go round the safari in the car with our packed lunches like kids on a school trip!

It doesn't feel like a whole year since we went, but it is. And now it's the 50th Anniversary of Longleat they had a bit of a special treat for the light show. Beatrix Potter! It was all Peter Rabbit themed, which works perfectly in the location and the little rabbit has a soft spot in all of our hearts!

Anyway, I can't recommend it enough. Book early next year and go if you can.

My favourite attraction has to be the monkeys. There is nothing like driving through and watching the naughty little guys steal windscreen wipers and aerials. They were fascinated with the leaves under the car bonnet this time and did a lovely job of cleaning them out and eating remains inside! Two of them may have had sex on the roof.... we know this because the people in the car next to us had full view.... um.... yes! haha! 

Little fight.....

 Post Safari we went down the impressive house..... gosh it's breathtaking huh?!
We want through the maze and when we finally found the centre, the sunset was incredible. 
^^The View of the house over the maze just before the lights switched on^^
Group selfie. I'm getting good at this selfie malarkey! 

^^And we waited on the tower for the lights to go on, and they did. Pretty! Now we just had to find our way out of the maze.^^

Back near the house, we had some penguins to visit. 
These guys below had been a bit naughty, they were stood facing a wall like that for at least ten minutes.... didn't move the whole time we were there! 

And then it was properly dark and after a wonder round the house it was time for the light display. I would have taken photos in the house but this year they weren't allowing us. I think it's because they had some very special exhibitions of Peter Rabbit costumes from the Ballet and first edition signed books. It was stunning inside this year, the costumes were exquisite. 

How incredible are these Elephants made from china cups, bowls and spoons etc?

Another selfie attempt!

Monday, 12 December 2016

5 joys number 3

This week has been really busy, and really stressful, but also full of many joys. Actually I think it's a couple of weeks since I wrote about anything cheery in my life, so here we go.

1) Mum and I went to The Ideal Home Christmas exhibition. This is now a yearly tradition and we love it. It's £10 each and we go around trying all the free food and drink we can get our hands on and getting all of the free samples. The music is brill and the atmosphere really fun. There was a really good Four Seasons cover band there this year ( Frankie's Guys ) and if you like that sort of thing (I do) you end up dancing like a mad woman before it's even lunchtime. I was also possibly the youngest person watching and dancing to them... ah well. Bovvered. It was fun! Here's me and mum posing for our obligatory Christmas tree photo out the front!

2) I moved into the New Flat. I want to do a blog on it, tell all about how I've done it up, some of the lovely things I've bought, some of the furniture, I'm upcycling and creating. That will all come in time. Life is far too busy right now. For now, here's a picture of my first real tree, bought by me on my own. Chosen by me on my own. Put in my little mini, by me on my own and driven home and decorated, all by me, on my own! I am an independent lady with a proper real tree in my gorgeous little one bedroom flat. I love it there. It's so cosy and I can't wait till I've finished filling it with lovely things. 

3) Longleat festival of lights. I'm going to do a whole blog post of all of my photos. Everyone should go, it's the most wonderful day out. Get the full ticket, do the full safari, house tour and light show. It's worth it. Book early. You might have to wait till 2017 now! 

4) My friend Lesley came over and brought me a lovely new microwave, brand new! Friends are so generous and loving sometimes and despite all that they have going on in their lives, they still take the time out for little old me and bring me such a lovely gift and have tea with me in my new flat. I love her and all of my community group. Which leads onto my joy number 5....

5) The Bernays Gardens Community Group Christmas dinner. We all went to The Hare and had a beautiful 3 course meal. Who would have thought that 2 years ago when I met these humans at a volunteer gardening day, that we'd still be friends 2 years later and having Christmas dinner together. Wonderful! 

And that my friends, is my latest 5 joys. Hopefully it put a smile on your face!