Donna H.

Category: Family

Sleepover!

I’m so behind on the posts… This one was about a month ago.  Uni is insanely busy and I’ve been super stressed and anxious but, after Tuesday, I’ve made it through the worst of the deadlines in time to start revision.  I’m even having a celebratory lunch and piercing on Wednesday!  Anyway, back to the sleepover – my two nieces and one of my nephews came down to Glasgow for a sleepover at my flat (mainly to give my sister and her husband a well deserved night off!).
We all went for a trip to Glasgow Science Centre on the day they arrived.  It’s expensive, and when they said the price I was pretty taken aback.  I can now definitely say that it’s worth it though – there’s so much to see and do, you can be there for hours and the children loved it!P1000587P1000589P1000593P1000595 P1000596P1000599P1000601P1000603P1000620P1000625P1000630 P1000631P1000633 P1000634P1000640

After the science centre, it was time to ditch the parents and head back to mine for fun!  First for arts and crafts… We drew pictures, made Halloween decorations, baked cakes and carved pumpkins.P1000645P1000648P1000652 P1000653 P1000654 P1000655P1000658

Then a certain little one had had too much fun and it was nap time.P1000659 P1000660

For tea, it was homemade pizzas – the easiest thing I could think of for all ages to help out with!P1000661P1000663 P1000664 P1000665P1000667 P1000668P1000672

After tea, we watched Chicken Run and ate popcorn.  The eldest two got a little bit of a late night, and much to Lewis’ surprise – they could eat on the couch!  No rules in this house!  It was the first thing he told my sister and her husband when they came to collect them: “You can eat on the couch here!”P1000678P1000681

In the morning, we watched another film – Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs – then Michelle and Scot came round for a quick cuppa before their drive back up to Aberdeen.  It was such a cute day and so good to see them.  I miss them so much, and don’t get to see them and Lukas, my other nephew, nearly enough.P1000690 P1000691 P1000692Anyway, back to the uni grind and presentation practicing.   Only remembered to post this at all because of Lynn’s blog. Thankfully, it won’t be as long until I see the family again because everyone is going home for Christmas! So exciting!

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London, July 2013

It’s a whole month since I was in London and I still haven’t blogged it so here goes.

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We flew to Heathrow on the Thursday and I feel like we packed in a hell of a lot between Thursday and Sunday!  I just love how much there is to do in London.  I’ve been 4 times and had a totally different holiday each time.

This is our hotel – The Park Grand.  Don’t be fulled by it’s fancy exterior; it’s basically just a glorified Travelodge!

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We were there in the height of the heat wave so it was around 30 degrees the whole time which was great.  On the first day me and my parents had a Vietnamese lunch near our hotel and then sauntered around central London, had a few drinks in Leicester Square and went to China town for tea.

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imageMam and Dad checking out the cakes and pastries!

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 I managed to catch up with my friend Harry on the Friday.  We wandered around in the sunshine and had lunch al fresco in the park!  It was really nice to see him as we don’t get to see each other very often and he has just turned 21 and graduated from his theatre set & costume design course. 

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That evening, we went to Loch Fyne for our tea which was absolutely delicious but let down by the service.  It was obvious that they were in such a rush to get rid of us!  Our mains came while we were still eating our starters, they took food we weren’t finished eating and thrust the bill at us when we were going to order more drinks.  We the went to a bar across the road for some cocktails which I unfortunately can’t remember the name of!  The staff were lovely in there.  We then went to the theatre to see Fences which was so so good! It was in a small intimate theatre and is about a black family living in America in the 50s and I can’t recommend it enough.

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Saturday was the Rolling Stonesday (!!) then on Sunday we went to Notting Hill and Portobello market before heading to the airport.

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Unbelievably I didn’t buy a single thing  while we were there!! Very disappointed in myself. I did go shopping in Edinburgh though which is where I headed after London to spend a week with my boyfriend before going home again to work.  Blog post coming soon…

Barclaycard Presents BST, Hyde Park: THE ROLLING STONES

The Rolling Stones are my favourite band in the world, EVER.  I got this love from my Dad.  I saw them in Glasgow back in 2002 but can’t say I fully appreciated it at 10.  Fast forward 11 years and I could have peed when I got my tickets!!  I was sat on the o2 presale refreshing and retrying and nothing was happening.  I happened to Google it and find that Barclaycard also had a presale (hardly rocket science since it was a Barclaycard event) and since I was using Dad’s Barclaycard, it was the perfect opportunity – I got the tickets!  5 of them – me, mam, dad, my auntie and my uncle.

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A few months later and here we were!  Hyde Park on an absolutely beautiful day in London.  It was around 29c, and since I’d already got burnt the day before (London trip post to follow), I was clatching on the sun cream.  When we first arrived, we met up with a girl from my year and headed to the wine bar for some shade and a glass or two of white before the music began.

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Elyse & I decided to head into the crowds and find some music while my parents sat in the shade a while longer.  We got the most perfect spot at the main stage and were considering staying there until the Stones came on but it wasn’t long before the sun defeated us and we headed to find a tree to sit under.

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There were lots of yummy food options but if I’m honest, I just grabbed a quick bag of chips in true festival style!  Absolutely loved this coconut stall though – for £4 you got the coconut to drink the water from and then took it back to the stall for them to chop up so you could eat it.  The best bit was, I handed the woman a fiver and got £6 back – they paid me £1 to have it! 🙂

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There were lots of good bands on through the day but with all the shade we were seeking, we didn’t catch that many of them.  The Vaccines were great, loved them anyway but it was Gary Clark Jr who really found a new fan!!  He was FANTASTIC. Check him out here!

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Now, the Rolling Stones themselves… I don’t even know how to describe them.  They were just completely and utterly amazing.  They started with Start Me Up (see what they did there?) before launching into a mixture of revved up tunes, slower ballads and a mix of old and new.

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Gary Clark Jr joined them on stage for a song or two and I think he should join the band!  His guitar skills are incredible.

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The legendary Mick Taylor also joined in on the action and it was great to hear them all on stage together!

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I don’t know if I could pick a favourite song.  I loved Honky Tonk Women and Jumping Jack Flash.  Keith’s songs were also incredible.  (He may not be the front man but he’s a better singer and everyone’s favourite if we’re honest, isn’t he?)

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If another tour goes on sale, I will most definitely be doing my best to snap up tickets right away!   If tickets had gone on sale at 9am the next morning I would have been on it!  Cannot recommend it enough – it may seem expensive at the time but when you are there you will not regret it.  They are unbelievable.  All hail the Rolling Stones.  Legends.

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 I seem to have found myself with three summer jobs but hardly any shifts!  Hopefully it picks up as I am skint.  In the meantime here is a huge mishmash of what I’ve been doing in my joblessness, other than applications.

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I painted my nails with newspaper which was a lot easier than I expected. Here’s the WikiHow page I used. It honestly took no longer than normal nails!

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Lovely photo of Nanny and my brother’s friend Jim! My brother, his fiancee and my nephew are all home just now too so both my brothers and I had people over at the weekend before we went out. It used to always be so busy but since we all left home it’s been ridiculously quiet. It was good to have a houseful again!

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I’m going to paint my room and furniture over summer. Don’t think I like any of the samples I got but I’m thinking a mint green if I ever get started.

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Can’t get enough of Snapchat. I cannot quite describe how delicious Vimto lollies are. If you see them, buy them.

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These photos are an insult to how beautiful they really are but you cannot beat a Shetland sunset.

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I customised these shorts that I’ve had for about 5 years to cover up the edges which were starting to wear (no wonder!).

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Sunny skies on the way to work.

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Cooking up a veggie curry.

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I found this old magazine scrapbook I used to keep when I was about 16 because I was super cool!

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Lerwick by night.

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Trip to Fine Peerie Cakes with Lynn. (Shetland dialect for ‘nice little cakes’)  Had some butternut squash soup followed by a delicious chocolate banana cake!

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My brother, Kevin; his fiancee, Annika and my nephew, Lukas.  We went exploring!

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Hay’s Dock – Outside Mareel & the Museum in Lerwick.

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These photos are all from St Ninian’s Isle beach in the South end of Shetland which is the largest tombolo in the UK and where the St Ninian’s Isle treasure which is now in Edinburgh Museum was found.  Read all about it here!

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Hopefully my next posts will be less sporadic although I only find out each day if I’m working on that day with one of these jobs I’m doing which is pretty annoying and doesn’t allow me to make many plans!  It’s all about the money ca$h dolla though and it’ll be worth it when I’m in London in a few weeks and Munich in September! 🙂

Today Dad taught me how to clean and dress a crab, as well as languostines, scallops and mussels. Then we had a feast with mam, a delicious feast! This is what I love about being home. You can’t beat Shetland seafood.

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Kragero, Norway: Part 2

The real reason we got the whole family out to Norway was for little Lukas’ christening. None of our family were christened and we don’t have a religious background but it’s the done thing in Norway apparently and I really enjoyed it.
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The christening was part of a normal church service, which was obviously in Norwegian so I didn’t understand much but they did give us a mention in English! There were lots of children’s songs and Kevin and Annika played a tune on the fiddle and hardanger which they wrote for Lukas.  It was a lovely service.

Afterwards we went back to Annika’s parents’ house for FOOD.

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Unfortunately I was too hungry to capture any photos of the amazing buffet but here are the cakes. And my sister’s husband made some Scottish tablet for the Norwegians to try!

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This is an unfortunately small panoramic photo taken on my phone of Annika’s parents’ view!  Their house is so beautiful and this is what you see out huge windows (which open out onto a balcony) in their dining area.  Breakfast looking out to this?  Yes please.

Because it was such a nice day me, Fiona and Janice went out for a walk before joining everyone sitting outside as the children played.  We also went up to Kevin and Annika’s house site for a look.

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ImageI think these photos are super cute and love how children can get on with each other when they’ve just met and don’t even speak the same language.  (The girl in the middle is Annika’s niece so only speaks Norwegian, while my niece and nephew, Ellie & Lewis only speak English.)  Us adults need to take a leaf out of their books and have less inhibitions when meeting folk!
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ImagePerfect way to spend my last night.  Lukas loves bath time!

I’m hoping to get back to Norway in the summer time to see them.  It feels like I’m missing out loads with a nephew in Norway while I’m in Scotland.  But luckily they’re coming to Shetland for 3 weeks in the summer while I’m up too.  Very excited about that!

 

 

Kragerø, Norway: Part 1

In the Easter holidays I took a very exciting trip not only to see where my brother and his fiancee live for the first time, but to see my new nephew!!

Both were beautiful, especially Lukas.

We flew to Oslo Torp which is a small airport, roughly an hour and a half away from Oslo. From there to Kragero itself is another hour and a half drive with some beautiful views.

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It was late on when we got there so we had some cheese, olives, ham, bread and wine then headed for bed. The next morning we got up and grabbed some breakfast and Sophie did a cheeky spot of colouring in before we got the ferry across to town. Sophie Colouring

The ferry journey is only about 15 minutes long but I got very snap happy! You can also drive around but it takes longer.

Boat View

Apparently in the summer time Kragero is very different, full of tourists and you can hardly see the sea for boats! I’m very keen to go back in the late summer.

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How Norwegian are the houses?! I’m such a tourist.
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We went for a stroll around town and had a look in the shops before heading for lunch.

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I absolutely loved these water bottles. I think I might need to buy myself some for next year’s flat.
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Kev&Lukas at lunmch

For lunch I got a delicious chicken pesto salad. Others got chicken wraps, salmon wraps and omelettes. (It seemed to be a very healthy cafe)

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Then we headed for the ferry back home but (because my brother got the times wrong) we missed it! It wasn’t really a bad thing though because it gave us a chance to go and buy some wine and explore a little more. The children had great fun feeding the swans and playing in the snow.

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Ellie, Lewis, Swans

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Sophie playing

Coming soon: Part 2, the christening!