Tag Archives: Jenny Kirwan

‘Wipe-Out on Burleigh’ Fused Glass Art by Jenny Kirwan

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Yes, I’ve been at it again….making glass art and this is what my latest work is….a frenzy of surf boards and surfers been thrown around and wiped out by a deluge of waves.  This is how I would imagine it to look like in Burleigh Heads on the Gold Coast in Queensland…….I love this place!  I have now placed it in the kiln for the second firing and it’s been set on a tack fuse which will give it a little more texture to the finish.  I will wake up in the morning to see the result!  Early riser Steve I am certain will have it out and ready for my inspection!  Hope he remembers my ‘hot’ cup of tea first!  I love this one……

“Still Water” fused glass art by Jenny Kirwan

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“Still Water”

This morning I began a new piece of glass artwork ready to be fired in the kiln this afternoon.  Sea and beach themes I adore, so here is the artwork before it has been put into the kiln.  It depicts a yacht on calm waters with surf boards in the sand, ready for conditions to rough up a little!  I will post the finished artwork when it comes out of the kiln tomorrow…….I would love to be lying on that beach!

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placed in the rather lonely kiln, ready to be fired…….

A Tour of Bath…………..

We got very lucky with the weather while staying a couple of days in beautiful Bath and we covered some ground!…… taking some great shots with my new Nikon Camera……….

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Late arrival in Bath, but we were looking very forward to a Thai meal and a lot of walking the next day……I was loving my new camera here already!
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Steve relaxed having an ale in The Saracens Head, not a pub we would recommend to anyone! but there were many fine pubs here in Bath
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The Georgian Architecture is wonderful and a treat for me who loves this period.
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The Royal Crescent, Bath. One of the finest examples in this country of  Georgian Architecture
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Brilliant sunshine proved just wonderful for getting to know my camera…..

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Some of the best shopping  can be experienced in Bath city centre and this cheese shop, Paxton and Whitfield is the best!

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We came across these gorgeous tea rooms, Bea’s Vintage Tea Rooms, serving tea and gorgeous cake on vintage linen and tableware…..it was a delight just looking through the windows….

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I have a love of all the old churches, Cathedrals and Abbeys in this country…..just wonderful works of art

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Bath Abbey……just beautiful
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What a magnificent door…..Bath Abbey entrance
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Me (Jenny Kirwan) in the beautiful Bath sunshine outside Bath Abbey
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Heading towards Pulteney Bridge with Bath Abbey in the background
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Pulteney Bridge Bath

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My dear dad must have been looking down on us as we had the most glorious sunshine all day for touring this favourite city of mine, beautiful Bath

This gorgeous little flower shop was on Pulteney Bridge and walking past was amazing……the waft of the fragrance of spring flowers was divine…..

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I was loving my camera and snapping away in the sunshine….

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The tiny lanes and arcades add to Bath’s wonderful charm…..

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Steve I think had had enough sightseeing for now and was looking forward to a quiet bevvy!

I think it was time for some liquid refreshments…..and we had an enormous variety of pubs to try out…….it was pretty tough trying to decide…..!  But I had a well researched list with me……

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you can almost see a slight smile breaking on Steve’s face as he enters his favourite pub in the world!…..well maybe only a slight movement of the mouth!…Sightseeing all day has built up quite a thirst!
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The wood panelling at The old Green Tree in Bath has remained the same……it’s like stepping back in time when you enter this place
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The cosy back room….one of three at The Old Green Tree in Bath
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The Griffin Inn, Bath…..I loved this place, it had a lovely rustic charm
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Steve rated Griffin Gold Real Ale very highly! and my half Ashton Press Cider was brilliant!
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Fresh Tulips at The Griffin Inn gave a lovely touch to this inviting pub in Bath

 

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My new camera has a black and white feature too……..

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The Garrick’s Head in Bath…..looked and felt lovely from inside and out but Real Ale connoisseur Steve wasn’t impressed with his Ale from Devon
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The Volunteer Rifleman’s Arms got thumbs up from Steve but we were keen to try The Raven down the road!!
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The Raven, Bath….well kept ales and a huge selection of ciders…..food hit and miss though

It was a great break for the two of us….loving Bath and its charm….We had a wonderful time but the Italian restaurant we decided to go to on our last night wasn’t much cop!  A real disappointment and quite appalling to say the least….but that is another story!….and a detailed review on trip advisor!!  It didn’t affect our love of Bath though…..a wonderful vibrant city for sure.

Oh what a night…………….

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I’m ready!! Take me to the party!!!

What a night it was!  Saturday night in Maidenhead at Nick and Carolyne Banerji’s combined 50th Birthday Bash.  Steve and I stayed in the hotel where the party was held…….very good idea as bed was just a short troll away (but that’s another story!!)

We estimate there were just on 100 guests, young and old and even tiny baby William, our little nephew born in December to Claire and Colin, Steve’s brother.  It was a brilliant party, music fantastic and plenty to drink!!!

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Mr Roy Rogers and me (jenny Kirwan) at Nick and Carolyne’s 50th Birthday bash in Maidenhead

We saw so many people and friends that we haven’t seen for years……I didn’t want the night to end…….

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Little baby William Clark and me at the party in Maidenhead
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Colin Clark and baby William
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Steve Clark and Roy Rogers at Nick and Carolyne’s 50th
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Nick’s mum and two sisters, with Danny’s partner
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Nick and party goers

 

Christmas 2013……………

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Jenny Kirwan (me) in Winchester, Christmas Eve, outside my most favourite pub in England, The Wykham Arms
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Steve and his brother Colin holding his little boy Edward, Christmas Eve in Winchester
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Winchester Cathedral…..great views from our hotel window!
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The beautiful church, St Andrews in Fontmell Magna, Dorset

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Finger food of goats cheese and rocket wrapped in prosciutto……back in Compton Abbas, Christmas Day
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Pheasant Wellington….pheasant breast filled with game pate and wrapped in Juniper berries, bacon and short crust pastry……a very different but quite beautiful Christmas lunch back at Compton Abbas in Dorset
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Pheasant Wellingtons, oven ready on Christmas Day
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Basil called in to say hello…….
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Pheasant Wellingtons, just out of the oven…….
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A red wine, game jus was all that was needed to accompany this plate for Christmas day lunch…….
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Basil had a long day………!

 

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Boxing Day….time to walk some of the unwanted calories off……..around Compton Abbas in Dorset
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Boxing Day…..looking down into Melbury Abbas on our chilly, sunny walk

Another amazing climb….Charmouth to Eype’s Mouth in Dorset.

Sensational walking weather yesterday, with a slight cool northerly breeze.  We walked 12.5 miles (around 20 kms) up and down steep cliffs and hills on the wonderful Jurassic Coast in Dorset.  We started off early, walking from Charmouth to Golden Cap, Seatown and Eype’s Mouth and return, finishing with a well earned pub lunch at the delightful Fiddleford Inn in the beautiful Dorset countryside.  It doesn’t get much better than this for the outdoor lovers that we are.  I placed another stone on top of Golden Cap for my darling dad…..he loved the views…..

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Walking up Stonebarrow Hill out of Charmouth…..so still, clear and cool!
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We reached Golden Cap in no time…….Steve looking very pleased with himself!
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Leaving Seatown heading to Eype’s Mouth
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looking back towards Seatown with Golden Cap in the distance

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Views towards Symondsbury and Bridport, in beautiful Dorset
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Magnificent weather for walking…..the cliffs and hills were pretty hard work!
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Heading towards Eype’s Mouth
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Coming down this slope was fair enough, but the climb back is going to be a challenge!!
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Eype’s Mouth Beach……boys having a dip to get rid of their hangovers, so one young man told us!!
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The calm shores of Eype’s Mouth Beach
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Back we must climb…..Steve walking with the locals!
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Jenny Kirwan (Me!) feeling quite exhilarated, eating an apple! and knowing we were homeward bound….
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Wow! We deserved this! A pretty decent Beef and Ale Pie at the Fiddleford Inn, Dorset
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Yep! We built up a pretty decent appetite that’s no secret!
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The delightful Fiddleford Inn, Fiddleford, Dorset was a great pub to finish such a magnificent walk on.

 

 

 

Charmouth, Golden Cap and Seatown…….wonderful!!!

Well, it’s the last Summer Bank Holiday today and great weather was forecast, so a walk to Golden Cap on the Jurassic Coast in Dorset was on the cards!  We packed a small picnic the night before and made a thermos of freshly brewed coffee before we left.  Unreal, we love this part of the coast and couldn’t wait to get down there……

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The steep climb up Stonebarrow Hill from Charmouth was like a walk in the park for Steve! after all his rowing training and walks up Melbury Hill in Compton Abbas.

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Jenny Kirwan (me)on the highest point on the south coast, Golden cap in Dorset. I’m placing a stone on top of Golden Cap and one for my dear departed dad…..he loved seeing my favourite spot in England today….
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the half way point, Seatown beach, Dorset
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The unspoilt Seatown Beach, Dorset
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Steve on the beach at Seatown, Dorset
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Steve and I adore this coastline on the Jurassic Coast in Dorset….what a day!!
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Only half a mile all the way up to Sonebarrow Hill,Steve! then all the way down hill into Charmouth……

My Sister Fiona is having her 2nd Baby!

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Me (Jenny Kirwan and my two sisters, Jane Knuckey and Fiona Kirwan

Well, I am back in England again and my younger sister Fiona, who lives in Melbourne, Australia, is about to give birth soon to her second child!  Max is almost one year old now and soon he will have a new brother or sister.  All the best little sister, to you and Rob being new parents again!

Happy 2013…..and Thank You!

 

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Jenny Kirwan (me) at Club Rinaissance, Florida, New Years Eve

We had a really fun New Years Eve last night attending a swish do at Club Renaissance in Sun City Center, Florida.  Steve and I danced the night away and boy was my head a little sore this morning!!

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The party is in full swing! Jenny Kirwan (me) and the lovely Carmen Clark at the New Years Eve party, Club Rinaissance, Florida.

Thank you to everyone who has made our stay in Florida and enjoyable one.  It’s been amazing to escape the wet, bleak conditions in England for a while.  We look forward to our trip back to the UK, to  hopefully make 2013 our best year yet!  But for now, lounging by the pool today seems like a winner of an idea…..

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‘Our’ lovely pool at the club is making my mouth water after partying hard last night!

Christmas and New Years Eve in Florida? You Little Beauty!

Well, we’ve booked our tickets and the dates have been set.  Steve and I are leaving the South West Coast shores of England to spend a few lovely weeks with Steve’s mum Gina and her husband Ken in Florida.  How amazing!  thank you Gina and Ken!

Sandhill Cranes with their baby, viewed from the back of Gina and Ken's house in Florida
Sand hill Cranes with their baby, viewed from the back of Gina and Ken’s house in Florida

Gina has already booked us in to a few parties leading up to Christmas and a Masquerade Ball on New Years Eve!  Very nice, thank you very much.

Jenny Kirwan (me) at Marina Jacks in gorgeous Sarasota, this year.
Jenny Kirwan (me) at Marina Jacks in gorgeous Sarasota, this year.

We hope to recharge our batteries as I have now been job hunting for nearly three months without any success.  There must be someone in England that is looking for the best housekeeper and cook with the highest standards and manners in the world?  Not so far!  I have had a very disappointing experience looking for work since I arrived back here from Australia.  If only I had have know the tough route this was going to take…….I would have snapped up Charlie Kimmin’s job in Pewsey straight away, even though it wasn’t ready to start for a few months.  Charlie, if you read my blog in the next few weeks, I would still love your wonderful job if things don’t work out with the person you chose for the position.

 

 

Jurassic Coast in Dorset

This stunning, favourite coastline of mine covers 95 miles from East Devon to Dorset with rocks recording 185 million years of the earth’s history. This World Heritage Site covers three geological time periods…..Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous.

Lulworth, just past Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door, Dorset
Lulworth, just past Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door, Dorset

Climbing the cliff paths around this coast can be pretty demanding, but worth the pain and suffering when one is rewarded with such breathtaking views.

Jenny kirwan (me) about to tackle another steep section of the South West Coast Path near Lulworth Cove in Dorset
Jenny Kirwan (me) about to tackle another steep section of the South West Coast Path near Lulworth Cove in Dorset

 

 

Happy Birthday to me!

It’s that time of year again, November 9th and I now find myself celebrating my 46th Birthday!  Yep, I’m getting old!

Jenny Kirwan (me) with Jester the monkey and Indi boy in the fields at Haughurst House, Hampshire
Jenny Kirwan (me) with Jester the monkey and Indi boy in the fields at Haughurst House, Hampshire

I started the day with an early walk along the beach at Seaton, Devon then up to the top of the Axe Cliff Golf Course at Axmouth.  It was so quiet and peaceful and a wonderful start to my day.

The Axe Cliff Golf Course at Axmouth....great views down into Seaton
The Axe Cliff Golf Course at Axmouth….great views down into Seaton

 

Jenny Kirwan (me) and Indi at Haughurst House, Hampshire
Jenny Kirwan (me) and Indi at Haughurst House, Hampshire

Steve’s taking me out for lunch to the lovely Harbour Inn at Axmouth.  I will post more pictures soon!

Happy Birthday Jenny kirwan.....me in Florida sipping one of Steve's gorgeous margaritas
Happy 46th Birthday Jenny Kirwan…..me in Florida sipping one of Steve’s gorgeous margaritas

 

Gale Force Winds at Seaton, Devon

This is a wonderfully quiet, unspoilt part of the world to be at the moment…..the seaside town of Seaton in South East Devon, England.  We set out early this morning for a walk on the West Coast Path.  Fully equipped with wet weather gear, we had no idea it would be so windy!  After an hour, we had to turn back as the strong winds where not very kind to us, especially so close to the cliff lines of the coast path.

Approaching Beer head in Devon on the South West Coast Path with gale force winds!
Approaching Beer head in Devon on the South West Coast Path with gale force winds!

We climbed up and down through the gorgeous fishing village of Beer and made our way towards Beer Head only to find it was impossible and potentially life threatening to continue as the winds were squalling and strengthening with unpredictability

Jenny Kirwan (me) just outside Seaton heading towards the fishing village of Beer, Devon.
Jenny Kirwan (me) just outside Seaton heading towards the fishing village of Beer, Devon.

All up, we walked for three hours and I enjoyed being thrown around by the wind….a real challenge.  We were pleased to be back off the cliffs and back at Seaton, safe and sound.

Seaton Beach, Devon
Seaton Beach, Devon

 

Winchester, Hampshire

gorgeous shops everywhere in Winchester town centre
gorgeous shops everywhere in Winchester town centre

What a wonderful market town Winchester is.  It has it all…..fabulous shops, farmers market, restaurants, pubs, historic buildings, Winchester Cathedral……the list goes on…..

Historic buildings in Winchester are wonderful
Historic buildings in Winchester are wonderful

It’s Saturday morning, the sun is shining and it’s Farmer’s Market day.  The place is buzzing…..full of eager shoppers and sight seers!

Shopping in Winchester
Shopping in Winchester

I was up early to get fresh bread and a little shopping before the crowds ascend upon this wonderful market town, Winchester

Jenny Kirwan (me) outside The Vine Inn at luchtime in Winchester
Jenny Kirwan (me) outside The Vine Inn at lunchtime in Winchester

 

Farewell Australia………..

I feel so sad and happy as well (if it makes any sense!) as I write this post!  Sad that even though I love my homeland country, I don’t feel the connection that I have know in the past to live and work here again.  It’s a horrible feeling, discovering this, as I had hoped to come back here and settle for good.  Not to be!  My love for England…..the magnificent countryside and all the historic towns and villages, along with the coast of the South West, that we love and know well is calling me back.  I suppose I needed to come back to Australia to realise this!  I feel happy to be gong back to be part of rural England again.  Life is so uncertain and unpredictable.  Lets hope we create the life we love finally!!!!

Jenny Kirwan (me!) and Steve at Malaysia Menu restaurant in Mermaid Beach
Jenny Kirwan (me!) and Steve at Malaysia Menu restaurant in Mermaid Beach

So, we finished on a high, at a wonderful authentic Malaysia restaurant a few paces down the road in Mermaid Beach.  As good as ever, complete with plastic tablecloths over pale pink proper tablecloths!  This old fashioned place is loved by locals and visitors alike.  Wonderfully cooked fresh Malaysian food, served by the friendliest staff.  If we ever return to the coast, this will be on our list of places to dine.  Being BYO wine, we took a lovely bottle of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc which worked a treat with this type of food.

Seagulls on Mermaid Beach sharing a fishy meal
Seagulls on Mermaid Beach sharing a fishy meal

So, England here we come!  The weather there is lovely at the moment, being the end of their summer……sunny with tops of 20 degrees C.  A very lovely welcome for us indeed!  We’re flying with Emirates to Dubai, then on to London Gatwick, arriving at lunchtime. Unreal.

The south coast of Dorset.....magnificent!
The south coast of Dorset…..magnificent!

 

Maurice Joseph Kirwan (Mike)

I was sorting out some paperwork today and came across the poem I wrote for my dear dad’s 80th Birthday.  I had a lump in my throat when I read it again and thought what a dear father he has been to us all…….

My dear dad, Mike Kirwan, pictured here with my younger sister Fiona Kirwan on dad's 80th Birthday!
My dear dad, Mike Kirwan, pictured here with my younger sister Fiona Kirwan on dad’s 80th Birthday!

The party was at The Lake House in Daylesford.  It was a a huge family event with aunties and uncles, my husband Steve, Peter’s gorgeous wife Rosie, Gary’s lovely partner Mel, Jane’s husband Ian, Fiona’s partner Rob and of course the five of us children!  We all stayed the night and met up again for breakfast!

here’s the poem………

THIS MAN THEY CALL MIKE  by Jenny Kirwan, 2009.

I know a great man
who’s as gentle as a lamb
so tall and so lean
and also very keen
of a kelpie called Milly
a red dog he loves dearly

This man they call Mike
is my dad who’s well liked
he’s a fine Aussie bloke
loves the land and its folk
worked hard all his life
for the kids and his wife

Found a job for me down
at the bakers in town
when he’d wake me so early
as I became very surly
‘Goodmorning, happy days!’
was his usual phrase
but it never sat well
with my hangover from hell!

But my dad’s a dear soul
now an 80 year old
and tho’ we live far apart
he’s still close to my heart
this man they call Mike
he’s a legend alright!

The tree sisters at Dad's 80th Birthday...from left Fiona Kirwan, Jenny Kirwan and Jane Knuckey.
The three sisters at Dad’s 80th Birthday…from left Fiona Kirwan, Jenny Kirwan and Jane Knuckey.

Dad was spoit with all the attention and he loved it all…..that’s what birthdays are all about!

All My family...from left Gary Kirwan, Joan Kirwan (mum), Jane Knuckey, Fiona Kirwan, Jenny Kirwan (me!), Peter Kirwan and Mike Kirwan (dad)
All My family…from left Gary Kirwan, Joan Kirwan (mum), Jane Knuckey, Jenny Kirwan (me), Fiona Kirwan, Peter Kirwan and Mike Kirwan (dad)

We’re Back!

The lovely unspoilt Mermaid Beach, Queensland, Australia.
The lovely unspoilt Mermaid Beach, Queensland, Australia.

After a pretty hassle free flight from Orlando to Dallas, we finally made it on Australian soil after 16hrs straight onto Brisbane.  You little beauty!  Feeling a bit like a zombie but a run on the beach tomorrow will fix all this.  Great to be home!

I have to say Dallas airport is fantastic.  The best airport I have ever been through.  Clean, new, sleek and when we were there, extremely quiet.  By the time we flew in from Orlando, it was around 7 1/2 hours since we had eaten.  We found this great little pizza/wine bar close to our gate.  There were so many more eateries and bars to choose from. Fabulous…..and after whoofing! down a decent pizza with some great red wine, we didn’t need to have the supper meal on the plane.  Very smart move!

Jenny Kirwan (me!) at Dallas Airport.....Australia here we come
Jenny Kirwan (me!) at Dallas Airport…..Australia here we come
A couple of glasses of red and some pizza at Pizzavino.....we were ready for the 16 hr flight ahead!
A couple of glasses of red and some pizza at Pizzavino…..we were ready for the 16 hr flight ahead!
Stone baked pizza with field mushrooms, goats cheese and truffle oil was sensational at Pizzavino, Dallas Airport.
Stone baked pizza with field mushrooms, goats cheese and truffle oil was sensational at Pizzavino, Dallas Airport.
Jenny Kirwan (me) and Steve Clark, excited before arriving back in Oz.
Jenny Kirwan (me) and Steve Clark, excited before arriving back in Oz.

 

Happy 14th Anniversary to Us!

Yep!  We are still in Florida, but fly out tomorrow (whew!) to head back to the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia.  Steve and I are celebrating today, 14 years married and 24 years together!  Wow, I know!  It’s been a long rocky road, but we’ve made it through unscathed! and happy to still be together.  I love you Steve, thanks for being my best friend…….

jenny Kirwan and Steve Clark, 14 years married and 24 years together!
jenny Kirwan and Steve Clark, 14 years married and 24 years together!

Lenny Roth and Marina Jack in Sarasota……a winner!

The views of Sarasota Bay and the Marina from Lenny's appartment are sensational....
The views of Sarasota Bay and the Marina from Lenny’s appartment are sensational….

We visited a friend in Sarasota last night and as expected, we had another amazing time.  Lenny’s apartment is on the edge of Sarasota Bay, with views to die for….and his Margaritas aren’t bad either!

Looking out over Sarasota Bay from Lenny's appartment.
Looking out over Sarasota Bay from Lenny’s appartment.

This man sure knows how to entertain first class!  He made us the best Margaritas on this planet along with finger food of mature cheddar nachos with sensational authentic salsa, pate, pretzels and crisps.

Lenny Roth's Margaritas are the best Margaritas on this planet
Lenny Roth’s Margaritas are the best Margaritas on this planet

We were then chauffeured off to Marina Jack across the road.  This place to eat and drink has always been a special spot of mine.  Marina Jack  has spectacular views over the Marina, downtown, Sarasota bay, Big Pass and out to the Gulf of Mexico.

Views from Marina Jack are sensational.
Views from Marina Jack are sensational.
Jenny Kirwan (me!) dockside at Marina Jack, Sarasota.
Jenny Kirwan (me!) dockside at Marina Jack, Sarasota.

There was a band playing while we were there and I took a small film which I will post at a later date.  Steve and I felt we were back in the ‘land of the living’ after a rather lengthy spell, cooped up in Sun City Center!  Not long now though until we enter back into Australia…..you little beauty!

lenny Roth, Jenny Kirwan and Steve Clark, dockside at Marina Jack, Sarasta, Florida.
lenny Roth, Jenny Kirwan and Steve Clark, dockside at Marina Jack, Sarasta, Florida.

Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door, Jurassic Coast, Dorset, England

The unspoilt Lulworth Cove on the Jurassic World Heritage Coast of Dorset.
The unspoilt Lulworth Cove on the Jurassic World Heritage Coast of Dorset.

My love of the Jurassic coast in Dorset and East Devon has taken Steve and I on some spectacular hikes along the Southwest Coast Path.  This area around Lulworth Cove is an extremely popular tourist destination, so towards the end of September in England was a good time for us to spend a couple of days hiking.

Chalk and limestone cliffs near West Lulworth are a geoligist's dream.
Chalk and limestone cliffs near West Lulworth are a geoligist’s dream.

We stayed in the small fishing village of West Lulworth in a B&B that was the closest cottage to the waters edge of Lulworth Cove, called the Boat House.  Views were amazing, we loved this place.

You couldn't get any closer than this to Lulworth Cove.  The Boat House was fantastic!
You couldn’t get any closer than this to Lulworth Cove. The Boat House was fantastic!

 

You couldn't get any closer than this to Lulworth Cove.  The Boat House was fantastic!
West Lulworth is full of character with some lovely old shops and cottages.

 

Lulworth Cove Inn, Dorset.
Lulworth Cove Inn, Dorset.

 

One of many lovely old cottages in the village.
One of many lovely old cottages in the village.

The weather was perfect when we arrived and the forecast for the next couple of days was excellent for walking.

Jenny Kirwan (me!) arriving at West Lulworth in perfect weather conditions
Jenny Kirwan (me!) arriving at West Lulworth in perfect weather conditions.

 

The Southwest Coast Path and Jurassic Coastline looking a picture of delight!
The Southwest Coast Path and Jurassic Coastline at St. Oswald’s Bay looking a picture of delight!

 

Walking towards Durdle Door from Lulworth Cove was pretty easy going.
Walking towards Durdle Door from Lulworth Cove was pretty easy going

 

Durdle Door on the Jurassic Coast, Dorset.
Durdle Door on the Jurassic Coast, Dorset.

Durdle Door no doubt would have to be one of the most photographed landmarks on the Jurassic Coast.  Over a period of time this arch will eventually collapse and leave a sea stack like those that can be seen at Ladram Bay in East Devon.

Durdle Door near Lulworth Cove, Dorset
Durdle Door near Lulworth Cove, Dorset
The views around Durdle Door were breathtaking
The views around Durdle Door were breathtaking
Jenny Kirwan says, "Bring on the steep cliffs, I'm ready for it!!"
Jenny Kirwan says, “Bring on the steep cliffs, I’m ready for it!!”

 

Approaching West Lulworth (whew!!)
Approaching West Lulworth (whew!!)

What a magnificent sight it was to see this tiny village of West Lulworth again.  The cliffs after Durdle Door were undulating to say the least!  What a relief to finally make it back!  A quite few beverages at the near by Castle Inn was a wonderful reward!  The Real Ales and extensive list of Real Ciders at this 16th century thatched free house is sensational…….but that’s another blog!

"Yes please!"  A pint of Stowford Press Cider for me and a Real Ale for Steve went down well!
“Yes please!” A pint of Stowford Press Cider for me and a Real Ale for Steve went down well!

 

 

Wisteria Cottage almost finished!

Wisteria Cottage in South Perrot, Dorset, England was a wonderful thatched cottage where Steve and I lived for a number of years.
Wisteria Cottage in South Perrott, Dorset, England was a wonderful thatched cottage where Steve and I lived for a number of years.
The stone window frames with window seats and low beams along with an inglenook fireplace made Wisteria Cottage full of character.
The stone window frames with window seats and low beams along with an inglenook fireplace made Wisteria Cottage full of character.

 

I spoke to Sylvia in England on Skype yesterday and she has almost completed redecorating parts of Wisteria Cottage after an unpleasant six months where her filthy, cruel, destructive tennants refused to pay rent and ran the cottage down badly.  She had a painter in to repaint most rooms and the carpets had to be replaced in some areas of the cottage.

This young couple who were renting (without payment!!) had a small baby and a number of dogs that left a trail of distruction.  The tiny courtyard at the rear could never house a number of dogs.  It was made clear through the agents at the begining that no animals were permitted.  The agents have a lot to answer for.  What chance does that baby have of growing up to be a decent, respectable adult?  Zero!  Sylvia now has a new agent but has a large, hefty legal bill to deal with that has still left her without any form of due payment from these two toe rags.  This has been a large pill to swallow.

But life goes on and I believe these two criminals will get their just desserts one day.  I can’t wait to visit Sylvia when we plan a few weeks holiday in their summer to visit and do some hiking.  We have magnificent memories of Dorset and the West Country.

The River Parret Trail was on our doorstep.....wonderful!
The River Parrott Trail was on our doorstep.....wonderful!

Sundays in the summer we would hike to the next village of Chedington up the Parrott Trail and have a few pints in ‘the best beer garden in the world’ at Wynyards Gap Pub.  The views down into the valley below were breathtaking.

Wynyards Gap Pub in the village of Chedington, Dorset has the best beer garden in the world....in my opinion!
Wynyards Gap Pub in the village of Chedington, Dorset has the best beer garden in the world....in my opinion!

 

The River Parret Trail......down hill after a couple of pints at Wynyards Gap Pub was brilliant!!
The River Parrott Trail......down hill after a couple of pints at Wynyards Gap Pub was brilliant!!

If we didn’t stay for a bite to eat, we would walk back down the trail and fire up the barbie or make something special to eat.  We would set a lovely table up outside ….it was wonderful. We were lucky back then to have had some good summers in England, unlike the past few years which have been very poor! to say the least

The rear of Wisteria Cottage in Dorset was tiny, but a lovely space for two and lots of flowers growing in tubs and pots
The rear of Wisteria Cottage in Dorset was tiny, but a lovely space for two and lots of flowers growing in tubs and pots

 

Wisteria Cottage rear courtyard where I had many hanging baskets full and overflowing with colourful flower displays in the spring and summer.
Wisteria Cottage rear courtyard where I had many hanging baskets full and overflowing with colourful flower displays in the spring and summer.
Sylvia's beetroot and sweetpeas were a hit with me......
Sylvia's beetroot and sweetpeas were a hit with me......

Our landlady, Sylvia Daw lived next door in ‘Winton Cottage.’  She had a huge garden where she grew some gorgeous flowers and a large vegie patch that produced beetroot, carrots, parsnips, potatoes and leeks.  In the summertime she had a decent crop of gooseberries, blackberries, runnerbeans, tomatoes and apples.  She would often leave a bundle of home grown goodies for us on our back step.  It put a huge smile on my face arriving back to find these delights waiting for us.  How gorgeous she was to us.  Her apples made the best apple and backberry crumble in the world!

Sylvia's runner beans were a favourite of mine!
Sylvia's runner beans were a favourite of mine!
Jenny Kirwan (me!) looking pretty pleased with Sylvia's blackberries
Jenny Kirwan (me!) looking pretty pleased with Sylvia's blackberries
Looking down into the village we lived in South Perrott, Dorset with the village of Chedington high in the distance.  The tiny white spec on the top left of the picture is Wynyards Gap Pub.
Looking down into the village we lived in South Perrott, Dorset with the village of Chedington high in the distance. The tiny white spec on the top left of the picture is Wynyards Gap Pub

 

Sleeping Monkey Boy!

Jester the Labrador sleeping soundly in the cottage without a worry in the world!
Jester the Labrador sleeping soundly in the cottage without a worry in the world!

I wonder if Jester the Labrador is allowed to visit the cottage again with his new carers?  He is extremely well behaved when invited to come in and usually ends up sleeping on a foot or up against a leg or any other body part he can manage to get close to!  We miss this monkey boy!

The Lovable Jester the Labrador
The Lovable Jester the Labrador

 

Jenny Kirwan (me) with Jester and Indi on the back terrace at Haughurst House, Hampshire, England.
Jenny Kirwan (me) with Jester and Indi on the back terrace at Haughurst House, Hampshire, England.