30 July 2009

Zoo de Champrepus

Having just got back from a two week holiday in France, I am sure you can imagine i have lots to share with you. Today I will tell you about our visit to Zoo de Champrepus in Normandy.
This zoo is much like any other with the park split into different sections. On arrival we crossed over the bridge to visit the Farm Animals. Here are the usual farm breeds; goats, sheep, cows, horses and donkeys.
We went on through to the Tropical Zone to find tiger, leopard, chmipanzees, a marmoset, Scarlet Ibis, Chilean Flamingo and macaws.
We passed back over the bridge and progressed to Madagascar in search of the lemurs who we then saw being fed. These cute creatures do let out a terribly loud cry from time to time though!
As you round a corner you are greeted by three lovely giraffes! We sat and ate out lunch gazing at them eating theirs! Their funny faces made us smile as they munched on their grass. Keeping them company in their enclosure were Oryx, Ostrich, Blesbok and Zebra. These active animals kept us entertained on our journey around the enclosure. the baby zebras were so cute! The meerkat's watchful eyes followed you as you passed by, they want you to look at their cheeky antics.
The lions were sleeping when we walked past them - as soon as we left them, they got up and promptly lay back down again as we turned back!
Overall the day out was lovely, lots of animals to view and see in their own environments (as much as possible). if you are ever nearby and love animals, it would be worth visiting.

27 July 2009


I am back from my holiday and in the mood for cake! I have been subscribing to Bakerella's blog for a few months now and am very impressed. The recipes are in depth and the pictures are amazing, you want to reach into the screen and pick up the cake to eat it right away.
I have not attempted any of the recipes yet but am planning to over the weekend, I think I will need a whole day to do any of them justice.
Take a look at her blog, but beware - it will leave you hungry and craving cake.

07 July 2009

The 10 Novels I Have Most Enjoyed Reading

Today I would like to share with you some books that I have really enjoyed reading. I am part of two local book groups so you can imagine that I read quite a few books!

The two groups work in different ways:
The library group - the library buys in sets of books and we are allowed to choose each year 5 books from the list and then a final list is compiled for the coming months, usually including every one's number 1 book. I often have to read books I never would have chosen, I mostly like them but at times hate them!
The social group is a group of girl friends that meet about every 4-6 weeks and we do aim to discuss the book and mostly we do - for the first half an hour anyway, then we get on with catching up, eating cake and drinking wine! We each take it in turns to choose the next book and host the group.

I will get back to the original topic of the post now: The 10 books I would recommend reading

1. Out by Natsuo Kirino
This thriller is written by a Japanese author and is written brilliantly. With lots of twists it will keep you reading til the end.

2. The Girls by Lori Lansens
This moving book was a great read, told through the eyes of conjoined sisters, the two very different lives of the conjoined twins.

3. The BFG by Roald Dahl
One of my favourite children's books, this lovely story really captures the imagination.

4. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
The film fits perfectly with this book, while reading it you can imagine everything in great detail and on seeing the film, you realise that how you imagined it is correct. The author really tells the tale well, allowing you inside the character's lives.

5. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
One of the very few books I have read twice. I read this as a teenager and obviously missed a lot of the meaning behind it. On re-reading it for a book club I found it a remarkable story and thoroughly enjoyable.

6. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Another children's book that I really loved reading: the stories are so imaginative and take you to another world.

7. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Having read this a very long time ago, I remember that I thoroughly enjoyed it - so much so that I read it a few times, something that is very rare for me but shows that I must have enjoyed it. I think it would be interesting to see if I still enjoyed it now.

8. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
This was a very thought provoking book, the subject matter is touches on events in the future that may or may not be too far in the future.

9. The Life Of Pi by Yann Martel
This surprising story has so many twists and turns you won't know what is coming next.

10. What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt
This booked is packed full of artistic references and snippets of history from across the water. It had some really interesting pieces of information that kept you reading. The characters were varied and realistic, and you wanted to find out what happens to them.

In my list, I have forgotten two other books that were really good:
The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Morgan and My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. But don't read these if you don't want to cry!
Have I missed any great books? Or do you disagree with my choices? Let me know!

05 July 2009

Butterfly House

Today I visited Cumberland House Natural History Museum in Portsmouth. They have a butterfly house at the back and between May and September it is butterfly season. This was the first time I have visited this year and the butterflies were quite different to last. Obviously a lot of them were the same, but there were a few I don't remember and one amazingly beautiful bright blue butterfly that unfortunately just wouldn't stop still for a photo.
Here are a few I managed to capture

After seeing these beautiful creatures this morning I then joined some friends on the common for a BBQ and a few games of rounders. The sun was lovely and warm, and it was good to sit out and do nothing. After eating we started out rounders tournament which was not helped by the light weight ball being carried by the wind unexpectedly and not very helpfully! Overall it was a very fun day. I am now recovering my aching legs and red shoulders.