Dear friends: amazingly
here we are once again looking back over yet another year, and
hoping that this will find you all as it leaves us: happy and
well. Doesn’t time fly when you’re enjoying yourself – and
it’s fair to say that we’ve done a bit of enjoying ourselves
this year - despite the weather - and will be going into 2008
looking forward to more of the same!
|From those of
you we’ve been in touch with this year, we know that
it’s been a dreadful year for extreme and unseasonable
weather around the world. We started the year off as
usual, seeing 2007 in with a visit to Terry’s sister and
family in Spain & although that was as great as always,
the weather wasn’t as nice as we’ve come to expect. To
compensate, we booked another short break to go back for
a weekend break and chase away the English winter greys
in February (and so Terry could eat the Christmas
pudding he hadn’t managed to get through on the first
trip) – only to arrive in Palma in time for some of
their worst storms for years!
continued on our major trip in March/April when both of
us this year visited friends in Australia – then had
rain on ANZAC day in the middle of the drought. It
wasn’t all bad though: we still managed some idyllic
days around Sydney harbour on Mick & Kate’s boat, as
well a trips up and down the coast and inland to
Canberra and Cooma.
|This year we
also sandwiched a whirlwind ‘rally’ around the North of
New Zealand’s North Island in between our time in Oz,
including a fleeting catch up with Terry’s ‘Kiwi’
cousins Roger & Averill (after 35 years!) who showed us
the sights in Auckland. Breathtakingly beautiful though
it was though, it hasn’t replaced Oz as our dream
location for retirement.
When we got back
we found that we’d missed a glorious spring and mini heat wave,
and settled down to – more rain! We were lucky not to be
flooded as were many of our fellow townspeople and businesses
here in Alcester and the surrounding areas, but the garden
seemed to like it and I had a tranquil summer pottering about
out there, planting and harvesting well.
Talking of being retired, although it
may seem like I am, and even feels a bit like it as life is so laid back
compared to recent years, I’ve actually been quite busy this year. Alex
decide he wasn’t one of life’s electricians and finally found his
direction and a way to channel his love of ‘big boy’s toys’ by starting
his own specialist engine tuning business, and Terry & I have worked
with him to get this off the ground. He trained with a business in
Birmingham and then got started here, and I am managing his admin and
books for him.
I’m really enjoying being closely
involved, and we work very well together. It’s early days, but business
is growing steadily and he seems really happy with what he’s doing at
last. You can check out his service at
As well as this I have been
consulting and writing for an educational publisher, and continuing with
my passion for historical research. I’ve been getting acquainted with
our local area and its history and records and have enjoyed doing some
research for other people as well as my own in recent months. I
completed my L4 teaching qualification and my Literacy Practitioners
certificates this year too – just in case I ever want to go back into a
classroom, but that’s not on my agenda at the moment! I’m still working
on and building content for my
and hope to be launching a new version of this by early spring, with my
first online course delivery following by early summer 2008.
Terry is still
spending most of his time teaching ‘inside’, moving out of the
prison art room and into the kitchen this year (I know – how ironic
is that!). Latterly though, he has manoeuvred himself away from
‘Red Peppers & Green Tomatoes’ and back into teaching IT again – so
we’ll see what next year will bring! He still travels round the
town troubleshooting local computer problems – mostly for bottles of
homemade sloe gin and plum wine, and the occasional delectable
tipple. As I write he is days away from that BIG birthday, (60 is
the new 40, he reckons ….!) and we’re looking forward to the start
of the planned celebrations which look like spanning about a week!
||On the home
front we have a bit more room again this year as Alex & Kaylee
have taken another flat in Stratford together, and Alex’s room
here at home is now his office.
As for Dominic, well, if I say
he’s 18 in two week’s time and roll on 28, I’m sure you can read
between those lines!
The beginning of 2008 looks set to
fly by as during January I have a further writing commission and we also
have builders in, then we jet off to Australia again for February & then
really look forward to welcoming my cousin Christine and her daughter
here from the US for two weeks in March for Crufts - a first for me.
So…. that’s it from us for another
year. We’ll be looking forward to receiving your updates over the
coming weeks and we really do enjoy them, so please keep them coming –
or e-mail us an update if newsletters aren’t your thing.
I will get around to
loading a few more snaps on here from this
year's social highlights so check back and see if you spot any familiar
faces there. I put some on FaceBook earlier in the year, and you'll find
links to those on the PHOTOS page. As always we'd love to hear from or meet up with as many of
you as possible in the coming year, so please keep in touch.
Once again our thoughts are
with you all along with our wishes for a healthy, happy and prosperous
xxx The Pegs