A Few Days in Keswick

What a wonderful few days away we have had this week, as on Tuesday we made our way to Keswick for a little break. M’s middle sister turned 50 on the 23rd and all the family were invited to stay with her and her husband for a few days. Lovely.

M actually has 2 sisters, both with partners and is lucky enough to still have his mum & dad. We all stayed in a self-catering property called Fernbank House, which is part of a quad of properties all owned by the same person in and around Keswick. M’s sister booked it because we had stayed in the sister property River Cottage a couple of years ago and it was just lovely.

We arrived around lunchtime and after a buffet lunch, we all decided to go and play crazy golf in Hope Park as M had cunningly devised a scoring system. The weather, it had to be said was HOT and much MUCH hotter than expected. I actually burnt my arm it was so hot!!

It’s fair to say the weather in the Lakes was better than expected #lovethelakes #lakedistrict #sunburn

A post shared by Gill Lysons ? (@gilliblogs) on

After the Crazy Golf we went home and as this was the actual day of M’s sister’s birthday, her husband had arranged for an outside caterer to come and make us Dinner. ?

The menu consisted of:

Starter
Trout with Asparagus & potato salad

Main
Saddle of Lamb with Dauphinoise Potatoes & seasonal vegetable

Dessert

Profiteroles with lemon cream and white chocolate curls

Every single bit of food was delicious and was made by Laura in the Lakes. She has a coffee shop/cafe in the centre of Keswick, a cake making business as well as doing outside catering.

Laura did know in advance that I was lactose intolerant, so as a delicious alternative she did new potatoes for me with my main (Dauphinoise contains cream)  and for dessert she gave me a lemon and blueberry cake with strawberries, which was divine!!! I am only sorry I don’t have pictures to show you, I was too busy shoving it in my face!!!

M’s mum also had a birthday cake made for M’s sis as you can tell, she loves travelling and is going to see the gorillas (in the wild) for her main birthday present.

On our second day, we all did our own thing in the early part of the day and M and I went off to Keswick for a wander round and we ended up in Fitz park just enjoying the warm weather and the amazing feeling of having nothing to do. But we had to make sure we were back at the house in plenty of time, as we were booked in to Armathwaite Hall again for afternoon Tea at 3pm. It was a slightly larger affair this time, with their being 8 of us and full disclosure, we got off to a bumpy start as the sandwiches they brought me were ones I didn’t like (egg mayo, tuna & sweetcorn & something indeterminable) so I had to wait for quite a while to get anything to eat. Then they told me the cakes were dairy free, but I wasn’t convinced and sure enough I was poorly at the end of the meal. ?

However, the staff were wonderful and the afternoon was a lovely and honestly for around £25 per person, I don’t think you can get better.

In the evening we spent some time just hanging out and the boys even went for fish & chips. It’s funny isn’t it, before they went no-one was hungry, at the mention of chips, 6/8 hands went up to put their chippy order in!!! Could we be more English?!

I had also done a quiz for everyone in the evening and it was won by M’s eldest sister, who was double chuffed. Competitive should have been her middle name.

We finished our trip with another walk to Whinlatter Forest where  the first mission of the day was to find a missing diary. M’s mum lives by her diary – she asks for one every Christmas with an attached pen and her (and our) whole life is written in it. So you can imagine how mortified she was on Wednesday night when she couldn’t find it. We turned the house upside down, but no luck.

However, when we got to Whinlatter we asked at the desk to see if it had seen it (MIL had been there the day before) and sure enough some kind soul had handed it in. THRILLED!!!

Anyway… the last time we were at Whinlatter we did the Red route and on Thursday we did the Blue route, both marked as moderate, both very strenuous to me. However it was idyllic in the sunshine, no matter how hard the very steep and windy uphills were at the end, and we even had a mini photo shoot half way round!!!

We set off for home about 2ish with a smile on our faces and just thrilled that M’s sister and her husband invited us to spend some time with them for J’s birthday. M is so lucky to have such a kind and caring family. Also if you ever have a chance to visit the Lake District, then do. It’s my favourite place in the whole world as it’s a beautiful as it is green and exfoliates my brain every single time we visit.

G x

Follow:

Perfect Few Days

So let me just say, if you aren’t into blogs from people telling you what a wonderful time they have had, then I would deffo skip this blog. BUT.. if not strap yourself in!!

This post is entitled “Perfect Few Days” as this is exactly what M and I have just had. Firstly, it was his birthday on Thursday and yes, if your maths is any good, then you will have worked out that he does indeed have a Star Wars Birthday, as in “May the 4th be with you!” Which was reflected in some of his birthday wrapping..


But first things first, as the FIRST thing we did for his birthday is presents in bed. This is something that we have done since almost day 1 and it’s a tradition I particularly love. After pressies, we ventured to ChouxChouxbedo for breakfast and I think it’s fair to see M was very happy with the situation!

After breakfast we had originally planned to go to Pennington Flash for a walk and then to Bents, but in the end we sacked off the walk and just ventured to Bents for a bit of (expensive) food shopping and present buying for M’s mum, whose birthday it actually is TODAY!

Once home we were chilling out when we had a surprise visit from our brother-in-law and our lovely nieces. They stayed for a while and the girls and I made chocolate covered strawberries and I put the Scouse on to cook. I have a whole recipe for Scouse, which is basically lamb stew, but that’s another post I still have to write. ?

Once the girls had gone, we got ready and Michael’s family came, namely his mum & dad, 2 sisters and their partners. We ate the scouse and a birthday cake made by m’s amazing mum. M is very lucky to have such a lovely family.

Then on Saturday, we had a mini lie-in and then set off for Keswick in the Lake District, where we were booked in to the Best Western Castle Plus Inn. It took us about 2 hours to get there and we have to say we were pleasantly surprised on arrival.

Friendly welcome, lovely staff, nice hotel, good start. Full disclosure, our room was a little small as it was crammed with too much furniture which meant we didn’t have too much room to manoeuvre. However, we didn’t stay too long initially as I had booked afternoon tea for M and I at Armathwaite Hall. AH is where M and I stayed on Honeymoon and we hadn’t been back, so we were REALLY excited to see if it had changed at all.

On arrival the staff showed us to our reserved table in the window, overlooking the lake ? . As I have blogged before, I am lactose intolerant and I even though I mentioned it when I booked, I was  little worried about what food might arrive. I needn’t have been, see pics below.

It was all GORGEOUS and I know some of you might think that plain ham sandwiches are boring, but honestly the ham was divine and who doesn’t love ham butties?!

After our feast, we decided to go for a walk in the grounds of the hall, which overlooks Bassenthwaite Lake. We actually got married in February, so on our last trip, we tried to get down to the lake, but were foiled half way as it was too muddy and wet. But this time, it was sunny and we wended our way down the path, across the bridge and eventually the foliage cleared and the lake was resplendent in front of us. Wow.

Heaven is a Place on Earth

We stayed at the lakeside for a little while, talking and throwing stones in the water, the sun was shining on us and I really felt like I wanted to capture that moment and keep it forever. I felt so lucky, almost emotional and if ever I feel stressed and want to think of a happy place, that hour will play on a loop. ?

Once back at the hotel we chilled out for a while (M fell FAST asleep) and then in the evening, we kept it low key and just went down to the bar for a lovely meal of chicken fajita (me) and corned beef hash cakes with poached egg (him).

For day 2 of our mini-break we decided to go to Whinlatter Forest, which was about 10ish miles away from our hotel here:

Parking was easy as there is a visitors centre, loos and cafe along with a decent sized car park. After a slightly dodgy start (we didn’t see the wayfinding signs) we decided to do the aptly named Two Gills trail, which is described as “moderate”. I supposed it depends on fitness levels and your preconceived idea of moderate, but I found parts of this walk quite challenging as there was quite a lot of uphill walking.

Massive elevation gain!

So even though for the uphills I had a face like thunder whilst I was puffing and blowing, I did really enjoy being in the outdoors and the views of the forest at the top were stunning. We will be back.

So overall we really have had a perfect few days and so glad I got to share it with you. This type of post is one of the reasons that I got into blogging, because it holds my memories tight. Thanks for reading too if you got this far. ???

G x

p.s. all photos in this posts are taken with either an iPhone 7 or iPhone7+ (I left my Canon G7x at home this trip)

Follow: