Thursday, November 25, 2010

Brighton in November 2010

Another beautiful and special trip back to Brighton to celebrate first, the baptism, followed by the first birthday of my beautiful grandadughter Kaci. It was great to be picked up from the airport by Mark, ready for the white knuckle drive on the A27. There are always lots of sucking teeth sounds when anyone drives me around, thse days, I am just not used to the traffic. We have a lot of traffic going passed us at the moment here in Spain as it is olive picking time, however that probably mean less than 10 cars a day, and doing two trips. Weaving in and out of a dual carriage way is rather like being on a roller coaster for me! First stop is to see Mark and Callie's gorgeous little house they moved into recently and seeing my beautiful little Maisie. She is more beautiful than ever, with cheeks you sooo want to squeeze. I was fed and watered, wonderfully by Callie and waited for my little Frankie to collect me after her dance classes, and take me to her and Chris's little home for a few days.

Kaci's baptism was at the catholic Church in Peacehaven and luckily the lovely Fr Tom was happy for Kaci to just walk around the church during the service, it may have been dificult to keep her still. It was a shame it was raining hard all day, but I know Frankie and Chris were so pleased with the turn out. Chris has a large family, but so many friends came too. It was so lovely to catch up. We even managed to get my little Uncle Charlie there, who at the pub, after the service, was given strict instructions to only have two pints, that is quite sufficient for him, bless him! It was also good to see Mark and Frankie's dad Garry, looking so well after a rather difficult year health wise too.

All ready for her special day

Having a potter about

Oopsy wet head!

Proud mummy and daddyKaci's little cousin Maisie of course came too
Kaci with her beautiful Godmummy Louise
And beautiful Godmummy Mairead
Tuesday 16th November was Kaci's 1st birthday, where on earth has that year gone. It certainly does not seem a year ago we were timing contractions, with nerves and excitement! We began the day with a trip into Newhaven to see my wonderful friends at the Haven stroke club where I was a volunteer, for many years. Back home afterwards, as Frankie and Chris had invited family and close friends over throughout the day. Kaci had such a wonderful day, and some even more beautiful presents. I was so happy to be sharing the day with them!

Birthday Princess

So very cheeky

Little Maisie comes to visit
Freddie has a soft spot for Maisie

My two beautiful grandaughters
How adorable are they!

It was also my son Marks birthday during my trip, so it was so good to be able to spend some time with him and Callie on Marks birthday.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Walking the alpacas

We always thought it would be a great holiday experience to take an alpaca for a walk, and during the months of September and October we did some work with the boys. They had been on halters previously apart from our two youngest, Galaxy and Santa. so we concentrated first with Rafa, Galaxy and Marcus. Our first few times we walked the around their paddock then outside their paddock but still in our grounds. Rafa was a dream, and Galaxy very quickly caught on too, however Marcus was rather nervous, and many minutes were spent just standing still with him, whilst he sadly watched the other boys have fun exploring. Of course we persevered with him and he also now is very happy walking. We have a little route we take them on where they can munch on grass and weeds on the way. It is extremely relaxing and another way of getting close to ur beautiful alpacas.

We also spent time with the girls, Cassandra and Lily were perfectly happy to be haltered. Bermuda we don't think has ever had a halter on during her life, maybe just for her transportation, nothing she would particularly compare to being a pleasant experience. Over the last couple of years we have have had the pleasure of owning Bermuda, she has certainly become less nervous of us, and I certainly feel she has benefited from being in a smaller herd. Although we have not taken her out of her paddock yet, we were delighted to get a halter on her.

A bit of TLC with Bermuda

.... and she ventures out... just!

Great year with our holiday guests!

What a great year Alan and I have with regard to our holiday lets this year. Our youngest paying guest was aged four, and of course my beautiful grandaughter Maisie was here at just around 8 weeks old too. Our most mature guest was 70 and spent his birthday here with us, before jetting off to do his regular charity work in Ethiopia. We have welcomed guests from the UK, France, Spain, Holland and Germany, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Most of our visitors hve integrated well with our animals and most of the children have liked to come and help feed the alpacas, and cuddle the dogs! However this of course is not obligatory. What a wonderful way of making a living! We had some wonderful feed back too in our visitors book. We have had a few enquiries over the winter, as yes no definite bookings, although we do like to let people know we are rural and of course have no such luxury as central heating, lovely log fire though. We have also been invited into our holiday apartments to share meals and drinks etc with guests too, how lovely is that! We do have four weeks of next summer already booked and deposits paid for.

Looks like another good year..... hopefully!

More great new friends!

A few months ago we had a suprise email from a couple interested in buying some alpacas. They had put "alpacas in Spain" into google, and we were top of the list, good that! The very exciting thing was the only had a house 20 minutes away from us, just the other side of Montoro, and they were coming over to Spain in the next few days. We were emailing back and forth for the next day or so, and made plans for them to come to us and see our alpacas ............. I was so excited. Haha it's good to talk!

You know occasionally in life you have met up with someone and you just know you are going to click, and be grea friends? Well it was like that with Kev and Sue. Since meeting up that first time at our place, we have also had lunch at their lovely little house which will soon become their full time residence. They also came to us, with their lovely family for a bbq and swim in the summer, ooooh and we watched the semi final of the world cup at the park together on the big screen. One night we shan't forget in a hurry was in the middle of summer when we were eating outside in a lovely little restaurant in town, and totally out of the bue, we had, what felt like a mini tornado with torrential rain. Chairs and tables were flying everywhere, and all Sue and I could do was laugh hysterically! It was lovely to meet briefly this week as they did a flying visit, with brekkie and a chat in Cordoba. Good times! We are very much looking forward to seeing them in January on their next flying visit :)

In actual fact our first meeting was months ago now, but I like to ask friends if they re happy for me to mention them in my blog, I don't want to take it for granted!