Saturday, 21 September 2019

21st September and a Saturday Round-up

Last Saturday I was worried.........worrying about things that might not happen, things other people don't worry about.

So the other side of the coin...........the things that don't frighten or worry me that maybe worry some people
  • Live mice in the bedroom in the middle of the night
  • Large spiders walking round the living room
  • Earwigs appearing on the kitchen work top (they'd come out of some cooking apples)
  • Standing up and talking in front of a room full of people
  • Living in an out-of-the-way place on my own
  • Being seen without make-up
  • Strange noises in the night! -  It will be a Muntjac  although it can sound like someone being murdered.
  • Going into a room/meeting/whatever, where I don't know anyone

Haven't found anything at a car boot sale to blog about for weeks until last Sunday, when I found this lot. Mainly books for the grandchildren again, 2 are specially for Willow who will be a big sister in January. Two are sticker books to put away until they are older.  The "Verdict of Twelve" is a British Library Crime Classic that I've not read because the library don't have it. £3 for the 6 children's books and 50p for mine.

 A tube of toothpaste and two clip top bottles all for £1 each. I'm not having much luck with finding bottles for the limoncello that I'm going to make for the hampers. I found one that had a stain inside that just wouldn't clean and another that didn't keep tight closed. They both went in the glass recycling bank. These two are better and even buying 4 from boot sales and chucking out two is still cheaper than buying 2 new.
Packet of Nasturtium seeds for next summer for 50p and also 50p for my third try at making a scrapbook of country sayings and cuttings from the folklore diaries. I got  books from boot sales earlier this year which I thought would do but the pages were too thin in one and another didn't have enough pages. Both of those were re-sold when I did my 2nd car boot sale.

Another week of being tired, so a bit of gardening and a bit of resting and no swimming (tut tut!). The autumn garden clearing looks a big job when I think about doing it on my own, but if it's tackled a bit at a time I guess I'll get there in the end, just like last year.

This week I'm grateful for
  • Having some quiet days
  • The boiler being serviced with no problems
  • Time spent with DiL and Willow on a trip out
  • Being a pensioner - for cheap fish and chips!

This weekend the  Rugby World Cup has started, so I will enjoy watching the games and it carries on all through October, although because of the time difference (it's in Japan), all the matches are on TV in the mornings, some at early as 5.45- don't think I'll be watching those live. Also hope to visit a village garage sales event and coffee morning............not my village.............nothing happens here!

Have a good weekend
Back Monday

Friday, 20 September 2019

St Mary-le-Tower, Ipswich

At last this town centre church was open for both the Heritage Open Day and the Suffolk Churches Cycle ride. It's right in the middle of town and is the civic church of Ipswich for all official occasions .

There was a church here in 1200 but this church is completely Victorian. As usual with town churches it's difficult to get a photo of the whole thing.

This is the reason for this church being in the 100 treasures book. It's the memorial for William Smart who was MP for Ipswich when he died in 1599. The memorial is an oil painting on wood showing a panorama of Ipswich at the time and the words are an Acrostic of what can be seen each starting with the letters in WILLIAM SMART. Because all the lights were on I couldn't get a head on photo as there was too much reflection.
Visible landmarks include 8 churches, a monastery, a mill and the river.

View down this wide church to the altar

Beautiful stained glass everywhere so I don't know why I only took one photo. You can see all the other windows in their glory HERE.
Very elaborate carved pulpit

There are angels and saints on the choir stalls

There is a grand gilded altar piece dating from 1895

On columns are wrought iron stands to hold the Mayors mace and sword during a service

The font dates from early C15

It was good to be able to visit and see what was here as usually the gates are locked so you can't even get into the churchyard.

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Thursday, 19 September 2019

Why I Don't Regularly Shop at Farm Shops

I was on my way home from Ipswich when I remembered that there was no fresh fresh fruit for the weekend but coming home the back country road way meant I didn't go by any shops except being near the Hog and Hen farm shop that opened two years  ago.

So I called in and bought a few local things that I wouldn't usually buy, an experiment - and a weekend treat.

  • The James White Pear and Raspberry is locally produced fruit juice, it's delicious........but expensive. BUT then I noticed in small print "made in Suffolk from imported produce". Not so local after all then.
  • The punnet of Strawberries were local, and tasted better than many I've eaten from shops this year...............but expensive and by the end of Sunday even though they were in the fridge some had gone squidgy so I think had been in the shop a few days.
  • The mushroom - just 1 large one for an omelette, well it was local but was just a mushroom! and when I came to slice it up it was more akin to leather ....old I think.......and VERY expensive.
  • The "misc cheese" wasn't cheese but Butter from Suffolk Farmhouse Cheeses  where I visited with WI a couple of months ago. The owner said they were about to become the only place in Suffolk producing it's own butter so I thought I'd try some.It's beautiful butter but £3.25 for  250g is also VERY expensive.

I thought about doing a Blog Challenge of shopping and eating only local foods for a month but maybe it will be for just one week or I'll be bankrupt!

Thank you for all the comments about them, but only fresh....much too gritty when dried.

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Wednesday, 18 September 2019


These were an unexpected treat.

The fig tree is only a few years old, brought here in a pot after I bought it from Wilkinsons for £3.50 in January 2017, just before we moved here.
Col took up a paving slab from the patio to make a sheltered spot for it and I watered it all through last year's and this year's dry summers.

I wasn't expecting any of the small figs to actually get big enough to eat before frosts stopped them, but I've been watching them slowly get bigger until at last they started to turn brown and were quickly picked and eaten.

There were 7 more after these two ............delicious.

Back Tomorrow

Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Heritage Open Day

Thank you to everyone for comments about the auction on yesterdays post, sorry for not replying, I had a day off!

On Saturday I had a lovely morning out in Ipswich, visiting some of the places only open to the general public on Heritage Open Days.
I've put in some links which explain more if you are interested.

First of all must show you the Cornhill "modernisation" now the concrete henge has been removed. Here's how it looked a few weeks ago. Very strange concrete things put there just a year ago and already falling to bits

And now ....gone!
My sister said there was lots in the local paper about the changes.

Anyway, back to my real reason for being in our county town

The front cover of the brochure shows the Unitarian Meeting House reflected in the Willis building. Both open for visiting but I had other places to go.

And this is the actual Willis Towers Watson Building now 40 years old (originally it was Willis Faber). Famously designed by Norman Foster it was revolutionary in the 1970's. An open plan office building that even had a swimming pool and still has a roof garden. It caused much controversy when it was built but we are all used to it now.
It was open for visiting but modern buildings like this don't really interest me so I didn't bother

Just two photos of the outside as I walked by.

Now this is much more interesting to me. 3-5 Silent Street. (The only Silent Street in the country?) A medieval Grade II listed timber-framed building. Originally part of a much larger building built as an Inn. Just a small part open on Saturday, one ground floor and one first floor room...on the left of this photo below

The two buildings here were once one Tudor Inn- One of the most complete and important Tudor Inns anywhere in the country.

 There were lots of information boards to look at in this building, now empty since it closed as a second-hand  book shop in 2011 and a leaflet had been produced to explain the history.

It seems it was always an important high status Inn because it lay opposite an important house, now demolished, called Curson House.  Cardinal Thomas Wolsey hoped to use Curson House as his retirement home (he didn't live long enough to retire!) and people from the entourages of the visitors to Curson House would have stayed at the Inn. Catherine of Aragon visited Lord Curson in 1517 and Henry VIII in 1522.

This map of Ipswich showing Curson House with Curson Lodge opposite dates from 1610

Wood panelling in the downstairs parlour is thought to be original 17th century, although it has been cut and moved since then. (The bunting is for Heritage Open Buildings)

There was once a rear courtyard and gallery which would have given access to people staying in the upper rooms at the Inn and these windows which now look over the stairs would have looked down into the courtyard

Photos show the uses of the building during the first half of the 20th Century.

Photos of some of the wallpapers found under the modern paint and plaster. The earliest dating to Georgian period

 I also visited the Bethesda Baptist Chapel. I'm sure I've been here in the past when taking part in singing competitions as a member of Wetherden Baptist chapel. Bethesda is huge chapel built in 1912 in classical style on a site used by various religious groups since 1782.

Polished granite two storey columns at the front and wide steps leading up to the big doors.

There is an upper balcony on 3 sides of the chapel with the organ up on the 4th side. The church was full of donations for Harvest Festival - lots of tins of food rather than the fresh produce with which we used to decorate our village chapel in the 1960s.

From the entrance to the front

And from the front looking back to the entrance. I had a nice chat with the lady who was welcoming people by the door, she had once lived in Great Finborough near Stowmarket and knew the leaders at Wetherden Chapel when  I was going there.

I also visited two Churches that get a mention in the 100 Treasures Book. One I've tried to visit before but it's normally locked. I've written separate posts for them which will appear sometime later this month.

Still many other interesting locations to visit on next years open days.

Another thing to mention is  spotting an Ipswich Town FC legend!......... GEORGE BURLEY  In Costa in Debenhams just enjoying a coffee with his wife, several people noticed him, you could see them nudging each other........ but no one bothered him.
He was playing for Ipswich back in the days of 1973-77 when I used to go and watch with boyfriend of the time. 
It's fair to say he was a better player than Manager - as a manager he kept getting sacked!

Back Tomorrow

Monday, 16 September 2019

Rural Bygones

On the 7th, after looking at the on-line catalogue I decided to visit the Rural Bygones sale at the auction yard at Campsea Ashe. This is their 3rd  of the year and there were a couple of things that looked interesting.......more interesting than the similar sales in February and July.

The Auctioneer said in his introduction that many of the lots had come from the attics of  an antique/junk shop in Yoxford which hadn't been touched since the 1960.......real treasure.

Just a few photos of the over 700 lots.

Lots of enamel ware

Interesting carts

 This would have been nice for the garden
 Lots of old children's annuals from the early 50's

 This box brought back memeories - old I-SPY books - loved these when I was young and albums full of the Typhoo- tea cards.
The world would be a better place if tea companies still gave picture cards with their tea!

 Who knew back in the 1950's and 60's people would be bidding for empty cardboard boxes!!

This dog-cart would be fun for grandchildren

 Dozens of old card advertising boards........fetching a lot of money, almost as much as the metal advertising signs.

Love these staddle stones, they went for £60 each.

lot image

 The things I was interested in were early on so I got a bidding card and hoped that no one else would want them. Vain hope! The prices went up too much and the 3 glass antique wasp traps which is what I would have liked most of all sold for £35 to an online bidder, I dropped out  before it got to £30.

lot image

I didn't stay much longer. Can't imagine being there all day, looked online on the i-bidder site  at 3pm and they were just on the 700's, many of the lots went to online bidders.

Next month they will be auctioning all the Elmer Elephants from the Hospice fundraising trail around Ipswich. I mentioned the one designed to celebrate local lad Ed Sheeran. That has online bidding already at £700.

Back Tomorrow

Saturday, 14 September 2019

I Need a List

Autumn and everywhere you look there are tractors ploughing or cultivating, this is right beside the house

Last year I made a list of ideas for getting through my first  Autumn and Winter alone. I got lots of the things sorted and got through OK. Some dark days but I managed.
For some reason I feel very worried about the coming 6 months, last year was a new experience but now I have to get through all over again and just to make me feel really unsettled I'm wondering if I should stay here much longer after all,  there are so many things that might need fixing...........

When the chimney sweep came last year he said there were cracks in the fire bricks in the wood-burner,  he said if I got new bricks before this year he would fit them in. He gave me the measurements and I wrote everything down on a bit of paper which then sat in my purse forgotten until it was time for the chimney to be swept again. Then I discovered that the local wood burning place didn't supply firebricks for my stove so I ordered some online, now they are here they don't look anything like whats inside the wood-burner. The sweep isn't coming  until early October........ So that's Problem #1 will they fit, if not why did he give me those measurements? Can I use the woodburner?

Problem #2 is the boiler which is really old and seems to be OK but I'm worried that when they come to service it next week they will find something wrong and a new boiler can't be put in the same place because of new rules, which would be a big upheaval with pipework.

 Of course I might be worrying about nothing and no one to tell me I'm worrying about nothing just makes it more difficult.

I need a list to keep me going.......... or perhaps two lists...........

List 1 had better be things to help me get through the autumn and winter again and List 2 the pros and cons of moving somewhere easier to look after.

Right.............Things to do get through my second winter alone, half of these are the same as last year.
  • Clear the garden 
  • Clear the greenhouse and wash down
  • Wash all the used pots 
  • Clear the patio pots of summer stuff and then
  • Plant up some pots for winter colour
  • Keep swimming
  • Make Limoncello for the Christmas Hampers 
  • Think of more things for  hampers.
  • Visit more churches in Suffolk further afield
  • Go back to helping at the Home Start charity shop for the winter but in Eye rather than Stowmarket? 
  • Read (goes without saying!)
  • Sort all the big folder of paperwork that came with the house and chuck things like out of date guarantees.
  • Sort boxes of old papers and stuff regarding the smallholding and self employment.
  • Sort more craft stuff, clear out things I know I will never get round to doing. I have a phone number of a lady who might buy it, she gave me her number after I sold her some bits at the boot-sale I did.
  • Finish a cross stitch card started a year ago
  • Go through books again to see if there are any to send to Ziffit
  • Take some books to charity shop
  • Do more sorting and clearing in the workshop
  • Get some paint to do the skirting boards in the kitchen, waiting to be done since the kitchen man finished last December.
  • Chop kindling and pick up twigs for fire lighting.

By the time all that list was written I couldn't be bothered to work out the pros and cons for moving or staying! and anyway I'm just about to have some gates put up to stop everyone driving in and round and out again - and to make it safer for grandchildren, so I'd better stay and get the benefit of them......the gates, not the grandchildren although they make me happy too.

This week I'm grateful for.............
Good weather to begin the veg garden autumn clearance
More raspberries from the garden

Hope you have a wonderful weekend. It's Heritage Open Days weekend, the chance to visit a place not usually open to the public and the weather forecast is good, although I've felt shattered this week so may not go anywhere.....I'll see .

Back Monday

Friday, 13 September 2019

First for Thelma followed by Hoo.....the shortest village name in Suffolk

Before I get onto Hoo church I have to send condolences, love and ((Hugs)) to Thelma at North Stoke Blog whose partner Paul has passed away this week. Wishing you strength to get through the next few weeks of form filling and phoning.

I've lived in East Suffolk all my life but I had to look on a map to find out how to get to Hoo.

A very unusual dedication........St Eustachius?

This is what Simon Knott says on the Suffolk Churches website

 The dedication is unique, but I am afraid that it is not authentic. The medieval dedication may have been to St Eustace, or it may have been that there was a shrine altar to that minor saint here. After the Reformation, church dedications fell into disuse. But the Enlightenment of the 18th century saw a renewed interest in history. The modern dedication arises from a double (possibly triple) error of those days. Firstly, a misreading of 'St Eustace' by the antiquarian Browne Willis, working in the records office at Norwich Cathedral in the 1720s, and a confusion by him of Hoo in Suffolk with Hoe in Norfolk, where the medieval church was dedicated to St Andrew. He may have missed the actual dedication completely, and many of these documents are now lost. So, he conflated the two Saints into an undeniably attractive and interesting combination. When the dedications of Anglican parish churches were restored to them through the enthusiasm of the Oxford Movement in the 19th century, this was based on the work of these well-meaning but inaccurate antiquarians; Willis had published his results as Parochiale Anglicanuum in 1733. Some errors were corrected by the 1780s, when Bacon's Liber Regis was published. But not this one.

It's been very unusual to find anyone in a church when I've visited, especially the tiny village churches, but here I found an elderly lady doing some cleaning before their twice-a-month service.
So it was nice to chat about why I was there and find out a bit about the village........One of the smallest populations in Suffolk - about 20 people. The church was nearly closed in the 1970's but managed to hang on, it's very plain and simple but obviously well loved. The lady said they get lots of visitors.

Red brick tower dating from the C16

 The reason this church get a mention in the 100 treasures book is due to the very old.....C17 and C18, chancel furnishings. This is where the congregation would "Draw near with faith" to receive the Holy Communion. The communion rails protecting the sacred space.

 These paintings fixed to the pulpit are modern icons, gifted to the church by a Greek family who have had the name Eustachius in their family for 100s of years.
 First the C2 Roman soldier martyr.

 And the more well known St Andrew

 This amazing  solid iron bound chest dating back to the C13 is now used by the church wardens to store the vases and Christmas decorations. The lady told me she can only just manage to lift the lid.

A Tudor rose on the font dating to C15 with its new font cover, which was given in memory of a villager, not many years ago and replacing an old metal cover, which now stands by the wall.

Under the Victorian boarding are six old tie beams. On one is a  brass plaque with the date 1595. It is thought that the date is carved on one of the beams, now hidden.

 A very simple church, no coloured glass, no fancy fittings. The pews are Victorian and the pulpit from the 1700's. The lady dusting said she has to make sure to dust the pulpit because although the vicars or preachers rarely use it, one day it was used and as everyone looked at the vicar they could see the sun shining on cobwebs under the bible stand!

I only noticed the basket of courgettes when I loaded the photo onto here......wonder if it was ready for a harvest festival?

Back Tomorrow