I am a very lucky person indeed. I had a wonderful weekend last weekend celebrating my birthday with my family and I was spoilt again this weekend by another wonderful celebration with my girls and our children.
We met up on Friday night at our house in Ramsgate and I completely failed to take any photos at all! The camera made its weekend debut on Saturday in Whitstable where we went for lunch and a potter.
We had lunch in Samphire which I highly recommend.
We had a delicious lunch and a cheeky bottle of Prosecco. Our children had their own table in a separate part of the restaurant. At the end of the meal, the manager came over to compliment us on how well our children had behaved which was a lovely thing to be told. We all know how completely gorgeous they all are but it was great to be told. We done good and brunged ’em up proper 🙂 The weather was somewhat bracing but we persevered, snuggled in to our coats and went for a lovely walk about. Beauty and the beast ! It is such a privilege to have known these lovely ladies for so long – since we were at school together!It is a while since I have been in Whitstable and I really enjoyed being here again. It is never too cold for an ice-cream when you are beside the sea. We managed to visit some lovely shops such as Pink Flamingo. Whitstable is famous for its oysters. Note the large pile of oyster shells on the right of the picture below.
Here is a close up with a young boy who was unable to resist them. Walking along by the seashore, you go past lots of charming old fishermen’s cottages, many of which are available to rent. I have had a delightful weekend with these friends in some similar huts a few years ago. When you stay in these cottages, it is wonderful to be so close to restaurants and then wake up in the morning at the beach. Whitstable is totally charming. As well as the lovely restaurants, cute buildings by the sea and boats to look at, there are some very unusual shops to look in and art galleries too.
If you like knitting but need some inspiration, how about a bicycle cover? We went in to a Chemists which was delightfully old fashioned. Look at these charming drawers. Back at the house a surprise was brewing. Or rather baking. Holly made me a fantastic carrot cake. The recipe was one of the Hummingbird Bakery’s and it was perfect. Moist and nutty. Beautifully decorated too. Thank you Holly for such a wonderful cake. We were all silent for a couple of minutes while we enjoyed our cake, which is very extraordinary for us to be so quiet! I enjoyed an afternoon siesta while my lovely friends prepared a feast for us all. We began with champagne and presents. I was completely and utterly spoilt. Thank you Gini, Lucy, Michelle and Sally. I was so overwhelmed by my lovely presents and champagne that I forgot to take pictures again so you will have to take my word for it that the canapes and dinner were delicious. The best bit though was the company. Over the years we have had so many holidays and weekends away together, we have a very rich store of experiences and stories to enjoy retelling and reliving. It is really good fun to remember some of our (with hindsight) very ambitious holidays we had with so many young children and remember the tales for our amusement and the children’s. Well, hopefully they are amused rather than horrified by some of the situations we ended up in. They are all still alive, which is the main thing.
For the sake of my dear friends, I will not share any of the photos we were in hysterics about. We were reduced to tears of laughter , yet again, by looking back at pictures of us in a Hammam in Turkey. To say we look like we are in a Nativity play is being rather polite. They are so funny but not for public consumption. Sunday morning was sunny – Yippee. It is ALWAYS such a joy to wake up and see the sun shining and the water in the marina sparkling, as it was today. The advantage of facing East is that the sun shines on the front of this old house in the morning which is my favourite time of day. I couldn’t wait to get out and enjoy the sun, especially as the forecast was for rain. The marina looked glorious in the sunshine.
We walked along the cycle path to Pegwell Bay.
I had wanted to sit on the huge outside terrace of the pub with a coffee, enjoying the lovely view over the sea but it didn’t open until 12 so we sat in the bar of the hotel instead and had a coffee there.
Or a hot chocolate. The weather completely changed in that short time. When we came out it was cloudy, threatening to rain and very windy. Pegwell has some sweet little flint cottages. Harvey had many climbing opportunities on this walk and enjoyed taking his skateboard. More food. My goodness we did eat well this weekend. Gini made us all a delicious caramelised onion and goats cheese tart and a pesto and tomato tart. I had both, but began with the onion and cheese with a large helping of Michelle’s salad. It was all very lovely.
Maddi had made 2 huge batches of meringues and I thought we had eaten them all last night but I was very pleased to see some more on the lunch table. They were perfect and amongst the best I have ever eaten – crisp on the outside and chewy inside.
some loads with some whipped cream in to which I stirred some delicious gooseberry and elderflower jam made by my neighbours at LNH, mixed berries and mango cheesecake. Yummy! I do wish these lovely weekends could go on for ever. Thank you Gini, Lucy, Michelle and Sally for such a wonderful weekend. Thank you Harvey, Lara, Alex, Holly, Maddie, Tilli and Charlie for being there with us too and making it even more special. We missed you Emily but hope you can make it the next time.
Michelle summed it up well: The next person who wants to tease me about my very old age can take note of the below please; I am not old, I am Retro. I feel so much better about it now.I do not feel better about my diet though which has been non existent recently. I have one more birthday celebration to look forward to and then it is back on with the weight loss with a vengeance!