Friday, 18 January 2013


Well, it has come as predicted, and there were some fat flakes this morning, easing off a little as the day wore on. The place where TH's car had sat overnight didn't cover over, so it was melting. I believe in the Midlands there has been an earthquake. We once had one when I was at work on the night shift. It was weird to experience it.

TH rang me at about 11am to say if I went out in the car to be very careful of the side roads, as it has snowed on top of ice. So I decided I'd cycle to the local shopping centre, just to get some air really and buy some washing up liquid which once the bottle gets to a certain level I am often left with none at all very quickly. I went on the recumbent trike. It would be a little difficult when it wasn't on a level and if I went off road and via the track, I might have to push. It was thrilling to pedal without worrying about slipping and going head over *** well, handlebars, and had to get good acceleration down a little hill just to get up the other side. I asked some nice guy if he would take a picture of me rather than me balancing the camera on a post and going back ten times to actually get me in the picture, so here is the picture.

A bit colourless, I've never bothered finding out how to stop up and down for taking photos  when surrounded by lots of snow, or sky, or sand. Must read the manual.

I've left my little mascot on the front, to add a little colour to the snow and the frozen pond.

Well, made it to the shopping centre. The main roads were clear as they had been gritted but it was great in the Park. It would have been much easier to go on the road, but - I don't always like to make it easy for myself. Just posted a parcel of odd balls of wool to a fellow blogger, bought some Fairy Liquid (I know, I normally buy Aldi but this was a HUGE bottle for £2.) Called into the charity shop just to mooch and found a set of bamboo DP needles for socks, as I seem to have completely lost all my mini circulars and the cheaper circulars, and I want to knit a hat too. They were 25p, so I gave them a bit more as they were nice needles.

Back again via the other park, which is a bit on the wild side - the paths are narrow and it was very hard to get the rear wheels through the snow, as it was untrodden snow. Also, where there had been mud and were deep ruts I had to get off and push. So, it was very good exercise and I feel shattered now but very virtuous.

Ruts ahead! Get off and walk if stuck.
I shovelled a bit of snow from the path and applied rock salt when I came back.

Now, what do you think this is? Answers, not on a postcard and I will tell you later.

Just in case you can't see properly, this is crochet

And here is a little more of my T shirt rug/bag project. I think it will have to be a rug as I would need to be a weightlifter to have this over my shoulder, particularly with shopping in it.

Well, folks, that's all I can think of just now. Just please keep safe on the roads and footpaths and if you don't already have them, buy some ice spikes that are now very popular. I've had mine for years, when they were selling them off very cheaply at QVC outlet store near me. I have given a few to some of my friends. Now they are far more accessible and cheaper. Until the next time!

Sunday, 6 January 2013


I thought you may be interested in these family photographs. The large group is of brother and sister, marrying brother and sister. The two married couples are in the centre row, starting with the lady with the flowers and thence to the right. I always get this wrong but I think the man who is just to the right of the tear in the photo is my Mum's great grandad or grandad, I'm not sure about that, I have it written down somewhere but my Mum is 92.  I can see family resemblances here and there with members of my Mum's family today. On the large group there is nobody who looks like me but on the smaller group, there is one, the one who is sitting down, lower than the rest.

My Grandad's father was a haulier with horses and carts and sent my Grandad away to boarding school as his wife had died in childbirth when the youngest girl was born. My Grandad was an engineer but with the first world war, he went away in the Army and when he came back he went down the pits. He ended up a pit instructor but that was after he lost a finger in the mines. (he couldn't find it, sorry for the pun).  Unfortunately, his father drank and lost most of his money!!! Grandad was a clever man and did wood and brass carving and painted pictures on wood and created gifts for the family. Every family had a tray, bowl, or  something he had made. He also was a very talented photographer and was a founder member of Atherton photographic club. He took photos down potholes too, going over to Ingleton on his motorbike. A man with quite a temper sometimes, but he actually never drank. My Gran (Nanny) used to be glad sometimes when he used to to away potholing for a couple of days. I remember him sitting in front of the fire on the peg rug, legs apart, playing Patience. He taught me to play it, although I do it on the computer nowadays!!

I don't really have any family photos of my Dad's family, other than some odd photos of my Gran, and her husband and my Dad on bikes. My Grandad on Dad's side died in his early 50s from heart problems. My Gran, who was a hairdresser, lived until her late 70s, colouring her hair and doing it up and her make up etc until she died.

I'll just give a brief outline after each photo.

My Mum, about 19 years old, she used to race on the track.

My Gran, my Dad's Mum, she does have two legs BTW!

A family group, the Smiths/the Fentons

My Grandad, Harry Barker, with my Dad, Alan Barker on the back of the tandem

This is the wedding mentioned above.

This was a stock photo from a site I found, planes being driven through Liverpool from the docks. I bet it was a frightening site, if awesome.

I couldn't move this, so it will have to be at the end. My Mum , Dad and me on the back of the bike. See the resemblance to the lady in the small group photo?