Wrapping Up The Week (7th May – 13th May)

This week and the weekend has flown by. Not only was there a bank holiday on the Monday, but I was also off on the Friday as my dad was over for the weekend from Ireland. It was a busy few days and we spent a lot of time outdoors, which was great and I FINALLY got to see Infinity War. Waiting to see it with my dad was torturous and I am still unable to have coherent thoughts about what happened. The fact that we have to wait another year for the next one is killing me.

On the Friday we headed to Belton House, which is located in Grantham, and is a place I hadn’t been to in years. I actually reached my target of 10,000 steps for probably the first time ever as we explored the Victorian mansion, the gardens and surrounding area. It was a lot of fun and here are just a few pictures that I took (also, I aspire to have a library like this one day).

The rest of the weekend was spent in the cinema, going around town and taking my dad out for a belated birthday lunch before he headed home today.

Books I read and reviewed…

As I was spending time with my dad I only managed to write my review for Falling Kingdoms, but I still need to write one for Queen of Shadows and Rebel Spring. I finished both books in the last seven days and boy, were they amazing. Fingers crossed I can get them to you early on in the week if I’m not too busy.

I am currently reading…

gathering darkness

As soon as I finished Rebel Spring I picked up Gathering Shadows and I am loving it. I’m only 40 pages in because I haven’t had much time to read this weekend and I’ve been so tired, but I am hoping to smash another 60 tonight and hopefully read it all before next weekend. This series has me hooked and I just love everything about it. I can’t wait to see how things play out in the third instalment.

Posts from the week…

My TBR For May

Top Two Tuesday: Books With My Favourite Colour on the Cover

WWW Wednesday – So Much Fantasy

Even though it was a busy week, I still managed to get out my minimum of three blog posts, so I’m calling that an accomplishment.

My WIP…

Last week I promised myself that I would start edited again and I didn’t manage to in the end. This week I am telling myself it will be different. Instead, I am going to bring my laptop with me and start doing it on my lunch break again because I am just too tired in the evenings. Fingers crossed this works!

Other Fun Stuff…

Well, I kind of already talking about this in the opening paragraphs, but it was great to see my dad again and spend some time with him. It’s always tough saying goodbye and I feel down for a little while afterwards, but I am always grateful of the time I get to spend with him. It’s tough having a parent living in a different county to you, but I’ve been doing this since I was seven, so I’m pretty used to it (although there were lots of tears when I was younger when the goodbyes happened).

I’ll be seeing him again in a few months time and hopefully I can go over to Ireland again before the year is out.

page-break

And that has been my busy week/weekend! I got quite a bit of reading done when I think about it and I hope the rest of the month can continue that way.

What books did you read this week?

Our Trip To A Wildlife Park

At the weekend my boyfriend and I decided to take a trip to Woodside Wildlife Park near our home town of Lincoln. Almost three and a half years ago we visited the same park, having only been together a few months at the time, and I had such fond memories. So we figured, why not go again?

I’ll be honest, we didn’t choose the best day to go as it started raining while we were there (and I didn’t wear my thick coat so my lips turned blue from the cold) but it was enjoyable. We got to walk around and see all the different animals, tried to communicate with the Lynx (we saw a video on YouTube about making friendly noises to tigers and figured it would be worth a try) and made friends with a cute deer called Fawn. She was abandoned when she was a baby and was raised at the park, so she’s extremely friendly with people.

When we got to the park we were greeted by a parrot that squawked every so often, and in the distance we could hear the howling of the wolves and their loud barks, with a growl thrown in every so often. Once we had made our way around we saw that they were playing with each other, one sneaking up on the other, all the while a lone wolf sat above the others, looking over them all.

There were a range of cats are the park, but unfortunately I didn’t manage to get a very good picture of the tiger as she kept moving too much. However, the lynx was very inquisitive of the people walking by and she kept coming up to the fence, as you can see below. As well as this, there was one that was more cat like than any of the others and was the size of the average household breed.

I know that not a lot of people agree with what zoos do, and in some instance I don’t. However, all of the animals at Woodside were rescued, their latest was a tiger from a circus in Europe, but there are also foxes, racoons and even some rats that take part in the Amazing Animal show.

We’ve already decided that we are going to go back in the summer, when the weather isn’t as cold, and check out the butterflies that are in the green houses.

page-break

Every so often I like doing a blog post that isn’t book or writing related (although those are a big part of my life) because I don’t always stay indoors all the time. We’re hoping to head to Ireland in the summer and visit Dublin Zoo if the weather is good.

When was the last time you went to a zoo or wildlife park?

Day Out In Dublin & An Irish Wedding

The last couple of days have been super busy, but a great way to round off the year. On Thursday my sister, my boyfriend and myself arrived in Ireland to visit my dad and family. Since then it has been nonstop, although I wouldn’t have it any other way. While we didn’t do much on the Thursday (we saw The Last Jedi), Friday and Saturday were jam packed.

While I’ve been to Dublin many times, I had never seen the Christmas lights so of course we headed out to see them (and spend some money, too). All in all, we spent six hours walking around the shops (yes, I was moaning near the end because my feet hurt) and grabbing a bite to eat at The Hard Rock Cafe. Apart from my boyfriend, we had eaten there before and it was a great treat, so here’s a few photos of what we got.

That platter and burger was as good as it looks and the cocktail was surprisingly strong. After that we spent the next few hours looking around the shops, navigating the streets and spending the Christmas money that my family gifted me. Of course, I bought myself some new makeup bits and I finally got to try macaroons!

Yesterday, the time came to celebrate my cousin Eoghan and Olivia’s wedding day. It was a wonderful day that started with the church service at half 12 and carried on at the reception in one of the nicest hotels I’ve been in. The set up for the evening meal was gorgeous (I’ll put some photos in) and the food was delicious. I especially loved the glittering dance floor and the Mr & Mrs light up sign. There was also a photo booth that everyone flocked to, to take silly photos.

There were four courses altogether (I forgot to take a picture of the soup), but it was all so good! The servers were amazing, always bringing out the food quickly and you were given a choice of chicken or beef for the main, and either black forest gateau or baked Alaska for dessert.

It was a great evening full of laughter, drinking, dancing and singing. Also, it was the first wedding my boyfriend and I had been to together so that was also pretty special (we were also asked when it would be our turn, still a while to go).

page-break

When was the last time you went to a wedding? I hope you’re all having a great New Years’ Eve and are looking forward to 2018!

Sherwood Forest: The Home Of Robin Hood

IMG_6805

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, my dad was over visiting for the weekend and on the Saturday we decided to take a little road trip to Sherwood Forest. If nobody knows what that is, it is a royal forest in Nottinghamshire that is said to be where Robin Hood lived. It total it covers 1,045 acres and is full of wildlife such as deer, rabbits and a variety of bird breeds (not that we saw any of them in the cold weather).

I’ve been a few times in the past, but my dad and boyfriend had never been themselves. We’d chosen the perfect day with the sun shining (although it was a little chilly in places so coats were needed). Autumn may be coming to an end, but the red and orange leaves were still hanging onto the branches and we crunched our way through the fallen ones. It was a perfect afternoon out and the pictures don’t do it justice. We said that next time we would come in summer, when the weather would be warmer and it would be perfect for a picnic on one of the many benches dotted about.

Of course, we had to show them the infamous Major Oak, which, according to folklore, was Robin Hood’s infamous hideout. People have assumed that it’s age is between 800 to 1000 years old which is crazy when you think about it. It’s even more amazing to see in person. Unfortunately, because it is so old, it needs to be supported by metal rods to keep it upright, which you can see in the photo. My mum told me that when she was young there were no barriers to keep you away and people where able to take picture within the tree through a little slot. Of course, you’d have to be small enough to fit through.

IMG_6807

After we were done walking through the trees and enjoying the fresh air, we stopped in the cafe to have a bit to eat and relax. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and it was great to show my dad something new. While Ireland has it’s own famous places such as Newgrange (definitely worth visiting if you’re visiting) and The Giant’s Causeway, he hasn’t seen many from where we live up North.

page-break

What has been the best place you’ve visited recently?

A Day of Crazy Golf And Eating Ice Cream

IMG_6513

Yesterday, for our most recent date, my boyfriend and I decided to visit the famous Daisy Made Farm (famous if you live in Lincolnshire at least). All of my friends would go on about how great it is and that the ice cream is to die for, but I had never gotten around to going. Finally, we made the decision last week that our Sunday morning would be spent checking it out and we weren’t disappointed.

The last time I played Crazy Golf was when I visited Orlando, Florida when I was 12 years old (which seems a life time ago now). It’s safe to say that we had a blast and didn’t stop laughing the whole time. Unfortunately, Matt beat me…twice! I’m normally a sore loser but I feel that I took it well and was relatively pleased with the amount of hole-in-ones that I got (I had 3 on our first round and 3 on the second as well). A couple holes were a little difficult as I kept chipping it so it would bounce off of things (I’m not even going to tell you how many shots I took on one hole as it’s too embarrassing).

As it is a farm there are a few animals that you are able to see. The obvious being the dairy cows that are kept in the fields surrounding the farm, but there were also two calves kept separate that were too cute! They kept mooing at us (as you can see from the picture above) and eyeing us up. You could also catch glimpses of rabbits and guinea pigs in their hutches and llamas too! As well as this, there were a few pygmy goats nearby and one in particular would not leave us alone, probably because he was hungry!

And speaking of hunger, we stopped to grab a bite to eat in the cafe on to stop our stomachs from rumbling. I’m a sucker for anything that has bacon and brie, so when I saw a bacon, brie and cranberry panini I snapped it up right away. It went so well with our delicious, fresh milkshakes in tiramisu and chocolate flavours (you can choose any of the ice cream flavours to use so the possibilities are endless).

The trip to Daisy Made would not have been complete without buying a litre of ice cream, which they packet themselves, and out of all the flavours we chose mint choc chip (because you can never go wrong with that). Although, if chocolate had been available I would have chosen that as I am a self-confessed chocoholic.

Have you ever been to a dairy farm and had fresh ice cream? I would love to know and I hope you enjoyed reading about my great day out!

Visiting the Kitty Cafe in Nottingham

For mine and my boyfriend’s 3rd anniversary we decided to head to Nottingham for a long weekend. We live about an hour away so the drive there wasn’t too bad and our first stop when we arrived was to visit the amazing Kitty Cafe. If you haven’t heard about or been to this cafe then you definitely need to check it out (especially if you’re a cat lover).

The Kitty Cafe opened in 2015 and is all about helping to re-home cats and kittens that come their way. While some actually live full time at the cafe, there are always new ones being brought in and when we went there were two kittens called Merry (grey) and Pippin (Creamy Ginger) (any LOTR fans?). Not only do you get an hour to play with these adorable cats, you can also taste some delicious food and the coffee is just as good!

As you can see from the images above Pippin tried to take a little nibble out of my cheesecake (and he was successful) before a member of the staff came over to lend a helping hand. He had managed to make his way up to us by climbing up Matt’s leg, much to our amusement. Let’s just say that he was relentless when it came to wanting the food as we saw him badgering a family across from us who had also ordered cake (sweet-tooth kittens?).

At any one time there are about 20 cats and kittens available for re-homing in the cafe, and here are just a few that we managed to snap as they were always darting about and playing with different people. I can honestly say that I would have taken any of them home! Some, however, are actual residents, such as the famous Heathcliffe pictured below (I loved the name) and is the cat that everyone wants to see:

IMG_6424

Isn’t he gorgeous? And he was absolutely huge compared to the rest of the cats around him. Our one hour slot seemed to fly by and before we knew it, it was time to leave.

If you are ever in the area or want to experience something different, I would definitely check this place out. The staff are so friendly and make sure that you are well looked after. You can find out more about the Kitty Cafe by visiting their website here.

Let me know in the comments below if you’ve ever been to somewhere that is completely different and unique>