Reading, Watching & Socialising

<p>I love to read. Always have done.</p><p>I usually have a few books on the go at the time as I tend to flit depending on my mood (or where I am)</p><p>On my Kindle, I’m currently reading the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich – William Shirer, which is a fascinating read so far. The Nazification of Germany could potentially have been stopped at so many points, and I’m only just at the stage where Hitler has declared himself Fuehrer.
Human nature stopped that from happening.The way that people tend to think the best of people, to ascribe positive traits to others, was the very thing that allowed Hitler to seize power. He repeatedly lied, but people trusted him. He repeatedly pushed his agenda, leaving the disarmament programme because other countries weren’t disarming as quickly as he wanted them to, while all the time he was secretly re-arming Germany.</p><p>I’m enjoying learning more about a part of history that I did not study at school. Plus I think it is vital that people are aware of the past, as there are such valuable lessons to be learnt.</p><p>The other thing I have been doing this weekend, is watching a crime drama on Iplayer called Luther. Now I’m not generally much of a fan of crime novels, or series. I tend to think there is quite enough evil in the world without creating more!</p><p>However, I have been enjoying Luther, even though I was a bit uncomfortable at watching it in the house alone when I realised the content!</p><p>Other than that, I’ve had a busy few days socially. Exercise class went really well last week and it was lovely to be back doing something I enjoy. Sadly I can’t go this week, but I’m determined to get back to it again the following week. Then I had a friend’s hen night out on Friday which was great fun. We went to a local restaurant which does tapas style food. We were advised to order three to four dishes each and I’m glad I opted for three as it was plenty! The food was amazing and I can’t wait to go back.  It was lovely to see old friends that I haven’t seen much of recently due to busy lives syndrome. And also great to just chat to strangers. I met some really interesting people, and saw some amazing shoes on one of the other ladies on the night out ;)</p><p> This was followed by a family get together at my house the next day, which was lovely and relaxing. I’d planned the food to ensure that it required minimal cooking. I hate the cooking part most of all and get into a right mood having to do it. So a giant salad, couscous dish and pre-cooked meat was the way to go! It’s the type of food that I always eat myself too. I often end up being pressganged into doing a huge roast dinner when my family come and it’s stressful purely because I don’t ever do roast dinners.  My mum and sister can witter on as much as they like about how easy it is.. but I don’t eat roast dinners at home. I don’t even particularly LIKE roast dinners! So cooking them is alien and a total pain in the arse for me. So I opted out of all that crap this time and it was much better, I was much more relaxed and therefore, I actually enjoyed hosting. For once.</p><p>I’ll be remembering that for next time.</p><p>I’m starting the week in an optimistic frame of mind despite a few minor niggles in my private life.</p><p>Anyway, back to my reading..</p>

Cadbury World & Warwick Castle

I spent this last weekend away with my children and parents. We set off on Saturday morning for Birmingham where we were meeting my sister and her family. After a high speed picnic in the park and a quick run around for the three kids, we went into Cadbury World. My sister uses Tesco a lot for her food shopping, and as a result she had a huge amount of Tesco Clubcard vouchers to use. So she had pre-booked all our tickets. We went straight in and I was in heaven smelling all that chocolate!

The tour took about two hours and kept the children entertained for the duration. I would LOVE to go back without the kids at some point though, just so I can actually read more about the process.

After the tour we went on to the hotel in Solihull where we had booked in for the night. My two children were extremely excited at staying in a hotel, particularly my son! I’m not sure what he was expecting, but he said it was even better than he’d expected. And bearing in mind he had been ecstatic at the prospect, that is pretty good!

We went for a swim and then got changed ready for our evening meal My sister had booked us a table at Bella Italia, which was just across the road from the hotel. It was a great meal and the three kids were brilliantly behaved, which really takes the strain out of eating out with them. My son was really starting to flag with tiredness by the time the desserts arrived. He was asleep within seconds of climbing into his bed, utterly exhausted!

Next day we were down for breakfast bright and early. My daughter adored the whole hotel breakfast experience. She took about six trips to the buffet area, coming back with a different course each time. Both kids said they wanted to live in a hotel when they grew up.. Hope they both get exceptionally well paid careers in that case!

After that we checked out and headed to Warwick Castle. Another batch of Clubcard vouchers had been deployed and so we wandered in, bypassing all the queues. We checked out the planned events of the day and decided on our schedule. There was a Mike the Knight event on that day so the children soon had us hunting all around the place finding dragon’s eggs with clues. We watched displays on Bird’s of Prey, Warriors and archery and then finally the Flaming Trebuchet.

Each display was fun and interesting. Pitched just perfectly for kids and yet informative enough for adults too. As each display lasted around 15-20 minutes it was perfect for a child’s short attention span. We left Warwick Castle around 5.30 and headed into the city centre to find parking and a cheap pub meal. We found parking on a side street thanks to google maps on my phone. It was bit of a panic navigating to Wetherspoons from there though as my phone battery was almost out! We made it though and had a cheap but cheerful dinner before hustling the children back into the cars (after the obligatory Joyride travel sickness pills for my two) and we set off for home.

Both children were wiped out, but we all had a fantastic time. They had a nice early night last night to try to recover a bit of sleep after their two late nights and full on days.

Me? I was in bed almost as soon as they were asleep on the Sunday night!