Sunday 12 February 2012: Happiness is...
716/365: ... walks with friends and getting the wood burner sorted out.
Which Nick did, partly after ringing the owner of the cottage where we're staying and despairing slightly... partly after poking something on the wood burner and going 'oooh, that seems to have done it'. Because before then the main trick of the wood burner was belching smoke out into the sitting room and setting off the smoke alarm. As a secondary trick it managed to fill the kitchen with smoke too. But we tried to ignore that second trick. Anyway, it's amazing what a freezing cold building will do when it comes to the determination to sort out the heating. In the summer, you'd look at the fire and go 'isn't that pretty'. In the Winter you go 'please work... pretty pretty please...' and cry at the thought that it might not.
Cold (but now warm!) cottages aside, today's been a goodie. Mildly leisurely start to the day. Time to sit, drink tea and read books (while Nick cursed the fire)... and then a tad of the mundane stuff - mainly going to Tesco to get some groceries - and then home again. This time to a warm cottage and some home-made leek and potato soup for dinner.
The kids are shattered now because the afternoon was spent going up and down the Braunton Burrows with our friends and their super-enthusiastic doggie!. The highlight for the kids wasn't the fab scenery. The majesty of the dunes. Feeling alive as they experienced the great outdoors.
Instead, it was discovering spent ammunition from the Army who practice there every so often. Felix had so many his fingers were freezing off with the effort of holding them. Everything became Army-based - even to the extent where he found a manky old bit of plastic and declared it to be 'Army Sellotape'. You can just imagine all those present-wrapping emergencies the Army have to face, right? :o) All the while he was doing that, the girls - Maddy and my friend's daughter Tess - lagged behind chatting. Maddy says they were talking about snail shells and fish bones. High brow they ain't!
Right now, I can smell the roast veggies cooking, Maddy's telling me about the book she's reading, Felix is demanding hot chocolate and all is right with the world.
PS We have absolutely no plans for tomorrow
PPS I LOVE being on holiday
PPPS Less planning, more happiness.