Tag Archives: family fun

December catch up and Merry Christmas one and all!


It’s been a long Christmas this year.

It started around the 1st of December and since then it’s been a party of one kind or another every other night right up until the Christmas Day. Along with the parties we’ve earned ourselves a few God points by attending a carol service here and there as well as some festive lantern and wreath making. It’s a good job we’ve had very few guests in, we’ve been far too busy having fun to work!img_3944

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In between all this we managed a few days ‘up country’ as they say down here and had an early Christmas with family and friends in Lancashire. That was lovely but hectic. Two full Christmas Days and half a dozen meals out, lots of laughs, cuddles and catch ups. It was fantastic to see everyone but I always get more than a pang of sadness when it’s time to leave. We used a fairly central pub as a base for our entertaining. By the end of the trip we were on first name terms and exchanging B & B tips with the landlord. I’m pretty sure he’ll remember us haha.

On our way back from there we stopped overnight in the midlands for a dog show. Dougie the Doggie and me danced in a heel work to music competition and managed to come third! Get in!!!

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Straight from there and still in Christmas leggings we went for a lovely posh lunch and catch up with little sis and after that we headed off home.

It’s exhausting having all this fun!

On Thursday night Boofuls and I left the last party of the season, high fived each other and said “We’ve done it! We got through all the parties and survived.” Of course we had forgotten about the dog walker’s cocktails at a lovely bar near the beach. Oh well, one more night out won’t kill us!

Christmas has been a blessed relief. We’ve been glad of the break from all the parties! Mind you, we’ll be kicking it off again in the next few days as it’s our turn to host the ‘bar club’ meeting for all the B & B owners who have bars on their premises. After that we have a murder mystery dinner party planned.

To be honest, I was a bit worried about Christmas Day. Last year we went back up north for Christmas business as usual but this year it was just the four of us here in Devon. Would it be too quiet, tense, grim? Nah! It was bloody brilliant!

We changed the guest dining room around and basically sectioned half of it off to give us our own dining room, a luxury these days. We trimmed it up, ok, when I say ‘we’I mean ‘I’ with the gaudiest, tinselliest, sparkliest decorations I could find along with all the new and gaudy laser lights that Boxfuls has been investing in this year. The dining room glittered and twinkled like a magic grotto. Tacky in the extreme. It was BRILLIANT. I’d never let a guest see it. So far as they are concerned our restrained and tasteful decorations are the standard by which the bar is set. Haha little do they know what goes on behind the door of our little flat. Here’s little visual of our Christmas. Munki has grown a lot, hasn’t she?

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Let’s talk for a moment about the word ‘tacky’. In my day tacky meant slightly sticky. When did it start being used in place of the much more elegant word ‘vulgar? One of my mum’s favourite words, vulgar.

Oh yes. I know when it was. When our American cousins imported it into the UK via popular culture. I don’t like it. In this house ‘tacky’ will continue to describe not quite dry paint or nail varnish and anything else that is slightly sticky. Ostentatious, poor taste displays of well, anything, will henceforth be known as vulgar.

Anyway, back to Christmas. The day passed in a merry and laid back blur of jollity and laughter. By the time Dr Who came in we were starting to flag a bit but rallied round for a nice game of Pictionary. After that it was choccies, port and telly before bed.

Boxing day morning rose clear, cold and bright. A perfect day for a swim in the sea. Wait? What? Swim in the sea? In December? are you mad?

Apparently so. I donned the fetching wet suit that my lovely friend bought me as a gift, the Santa hat, a belt of tinsel and some fetching red and green bauble earrings and joined a hundred other swimmers in various stages of fancy dress for ‘The Boxing Day Dip’ Several hundred people lined the steps of the promenade to watch as we all ran into the sea whooping and laughing. It was so much fun, I could hardly stand for laughing. Still I carried on and got up to my shoulders in water before swimming back to the shore. I was so excited I went back in for another dip. Fair to say it was a bit bracing but I’ll be doing it agin next year. I love a bit of festive eccentricity and it certainly got rid of any cobwebs!

It’s almost two years since we moved to the bay and on an almost daily basis I am still amazed at how our lives have changed.

Our lives bear no resemblance to our old life up in Lancashire and every single day I thank God for the life we have now.

Ok, it’s bonkers. Working eighteen hour days in summer and struggling to get any business in at all in winter. Would I change it? Nope. My only regret is that we didn’t do it years ago. If there is any sadness at all it’s that I miss my family and friends. If only I could get a few key people to move to Devon, that’d be perfection!

Now we have opened the doors to the public again and are gearing up for the new year celebrations. So far working has been a lot less tiring that all the partying we’ve been doing. I’m glad to get back to work for the rest.

May I take this opportunity to say I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and may the new year bring you health, wealth and above all happiness. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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That was different!


Last Sunday was a day with a difference.

It was the day of the dog show where The Rev was due to run Mrs Woofy in her very first agility competition.

However, The Rev has been and gone and got himself another job. One that involves working Sundays. Oh dear. The kids had been looking forward to going. Oh dear again.

Well. The clingons had been promised a day at the dog show and a day at the dog show they were going to get. I dressed myself in my dog club polo shirt, you know, the bottle green one  embroidered with mine and Mrs Woofy’s names, sad but true.  Next I popped on a pair of brown leggings and my wooly walking socks – all the better to move in when keeping control of an excitable dog.  I turned to the mirror to check the results of my carefully picked wardrobe and when I found myself standing tall and proud and saying “Ah yes, Little  John and Friar Tuck, ’tis a fine day for a dog show!” I thought I might have to change the outfit to something a little less Robin Hoodesque.

Douggie the doggie at five months old was too young to enter anything and there was no me point entering anything with Mrs Woofy as I haven’t walked her for three months and only run her in the agility class a couple of times in the last month or so, so we were both out of practice. The plan was to go and watch the show and cheer on some other members of our dog club, get a couple of new toys for Douggie, enjoy the atmosphere and watch the competitions.

That was the plan. Once we arrived the other members of the club began to put on the pressure.

The next thing I know, I’m stood in the queue of competitors waiting for our turn to run. EEEEK!

Amazingly, we didn’t get disqualified on the first round. Mrs Woofy set off like a rocket, we did all the jumps in the correct order and Mrs Woofy was a star – apart from right at the very end when she ran towards Dangerous instead of over the last jump but we managed to correct that and get away with it. I did nearly die of exhaustion when we’d finished. I obviously put a lot more effort into it when it’s for real and not for practice. We had about five minutes to get our breath back before it was our turn to run again.

All the way through all I could hear was WOOFWOOFWOOFWOOFWOOFWOOF as Douggie the doggie went crazy trying to join in. How very dare I do something without him  – and with another dog?

We completed the second round but managed to get ourselves disqualified when Mrs Woofy back jumped a jump, she ran off for a sniff at some cow poo as well at one point so that was us out of the competition.

Batty sidled up to me. “Nanny. Can I have a go?”

“I, um, what, er, oh.” Was my response as I rapidly considered the idea of a blind kid running a twisty, turny, bumpy agility course with an excitable dog who goes like a rocket and is easily distracted.

However. My opinion is that she should be allowed to do whatever she wants a go at as long is it’s not going to kill her so we went off to the entry clerk and had a short chat with her.

“Of course she can do it, she can run it NFC.”

“What does that mean, no flippin’ chance?”

“Not for competition. Enter her in the helter skelter.”

I’m not sure what happened in my head when I heard ‘helter skelter’, I seemed to have got it confused with ‘steeplechase’ you know, a nice long straight run with jumps in a straight line. That would be perfect.

So we entered her in the helter skelter.

As we walked the course it became glaringly obvious to me that my brain had misled me. As you’ve no doubt already realised, a helter skelter goes round and round in circles. Oh. My. God. Talk about setting her up to fail.

I was allowed to run with her and help guide her round. What a shambles! What a laugh! It was like a Benny Hill sketch. Mrs Woofy made up her own course as me and Batty ran around shouting and waving our arms around like windmills. We did manage to get her back on track for the last three jumps which she cleared with a flourish – and then gave us her opinion of the competition by doing a great big poo right in the middle of the arena! The shame!!!

Then, of course, Dangerous wanted to have a go. She entered a pairs competition with Miss Yappy from our dog club. Miss Yappy did the course beautifully, passed the baton to Mrs Woofy who took one look at dangerous and decided that she’d just do her own thing and ran around like a fool while Dangerous stood helplessly watching. In the end Mrs Yappy’s handler got her back under control  and the ordeal was over for Dangerous. Poor thing just felt humiliated, I really felt for her. It doesn’t seem to have put her off though.

So that was pretty much that. Let’s not talk about the waggiest tail competition where Mrs Woofy sat on her tail and wouldn’t budge it, or the most appealing eyes competition where she steadfastly looked at the floor and refused to even look at the judge. and all the while Douggie the doggie went WOOFWOOFWOOFWOOFWOOFWOOF!!!!! My poor brain was scrambled by the end of it all.

When’s the next one?