Saturday 29 September 2012


This is my new mug

I need to fill it with tea

Tranmer House Sutton Hoo

I sat  in Tranmer House at Mrs. Pretty's desk
in her breakfast room, kept as it was in  1930's,
at Sutton Hoo and wrote in her guest book

Using pen and ink
What a great feeling to write slowly so that you didn't blotch the page -

But when pen and ink and tea don't work
and I need inspiration I might have one of these

while waiting for some supper in one of these

or in this one

Well I was on holiday ......

Hope you all behaved yourselves while I was away.

Thursday 20 September 2012


Challenge No. 45  Friday September 21st 2012

Your friend could be a him or a her. Why do you hate them? What have they done to make you feel this way? Check out the Challenges Page for more suggestions...
Sign up for RFW latest challenge! Your story. Your poem. Your way. All we ask is that you keep it under 400 words and include a romantic element.
Challenge open to all! Just write your story/poem, post to your blog, copy the DIRECT link, submit your link at the bottom of the linky.
Linky will close Sunday evening AEST time. Contact Denise at if you have any problems linking.
Read/comment on as many entries as you can over the weekend. Return on Wednesday for the Wrap Up post and mini critique on all entries.
Now go write!



We weren’t from the other sides of the tracks but were brought up in different ways
She came from a large family with brothers and sisters and a dad long gone away
We hit it off from the first moment we were introduced by our respective partners
She had her own family with two little ones running around corners and counters

I’d drop in to see you after work and you’d immediately stop your chores
We would sit at the table and chat away over the tea you had just poured
Discussions ensued about cooking the evening meals when the spouses came in
I wanted to be more adventurous so you gave me some curry paste in a tin

My job provided me with a freshly cooked lunch time meal so I started the preparation
My mother-in-law, who we lived with, followed her nose and joined me in the kitchen
She so adored eating curry having been reared in India as a young child in the 1920’s
Various improvements were suggested by her: some Vindaloo and some chopped chillies

Tears streaming down their red faces, coughing and spluttering, reaching for the tissue
I was sure I had poisoned them and vowed to never have curry again on my menu
I hated my best friend the next day when I regaled her with my embarrassing story
She laughed so much her sides were splitting, she spluttered, ‘one or the other but use sparsely’

She taught me to have fun when circumstances and money were so very tight
We played cribbage and gin rummy, backgammon and *Carrom throughout the night
I hated her when she beat me at the games; we were so competitive and loved to win
We played with gusto and spirit, laughing throughout; I loved her as a spiritual twin

I hated her for being loyal and staying with a husband who treated her like dirt
I hated her for saying ‘but he loves me’ as she washed the strange perfume out of his shirt
I hated her for following him to the other side of the country for a new start
I missed her company, her laughter, her joy in life when she had to depart

I hate the drunk driver who stopped her from living
I hate it that all these years later my heart is still aching

 Word count: 393


Tuesday 18 September 2012


100 word Challenge for Grown ups – Week#58
Posted on September 17, 2012 by Tanner
Julia says:
Keeping on the simple lines I’m going to start moving into the change of season. It is not quite autumn here in the UK but there is a nip in the air at night and first thing in the morning.
The prompt this week is:
….as the apple fell….
As usual, you have 100 words to add to the 4 above. The linky will close at midnight on 24th September. If you are befuddled and bemused by all this, have a read of ‘What is 100WCGU?’ and hopefully some of the mist will clear. If not, leave a comment below or tweet me (@jfb57) and I’ll help you out.
Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list which will take you to another page.


A peaceful feeling came over her as she leant against the tree
Enjoying the soft whisperings of the gentle end-of-summer breeze
She continued reading the historical romance she favoured
Enjoying the part where the heroine was about to be rescued
A heartfelt sigh left her mouth as she thought if only that could be me
She glanced up through the wafting leaves as the apple fell from the tree
She peered at her watch, another five minutes of peace and quiet
Time for one more guilty pleasure, she felt in her pocket
A whipped milk chocolate and fondant filling topped with a walnut.

Saturday 15 September 2012


It's time for another round of the Knights of MicroFiction.  The Knights of MicroFiction is a bloghop hosted by me and Jess on the 15th of every month (except April, because the A-Z Challenge makes things crazy!).  We came up with it as a way to meet new friends, help build the blogging community and (hopefully) spark your creativity! 

We reveal the prompts on the 13th and you have until the end of the 15th (11:59 pm) to post your reply.  Just sign up on the linky list below. 
By the 17th Jess and I will choose two winners to be featured on our blogs.  We really hope you guys have fun and meet lots of new people!  We can't wait to read what you come up with!

This time we are giving you 5 TELLING sentences to choose from.  The object is to pick a sentence and create a scene in 500 words or less that SHOWS what the sentence is about.

For bonus points, don't include the sentence you chose (or any alteration of it) in your scene. Your readers should be able to guess which one you described!

Here are the sentences to choose from:
  • It was the most interesting birthday ever. (This is in honor of Jess's 16th birthday on Saturday! Happy Birthday Jess! :))
  • He/she's so obnoxious.  
  • It was dark.
  • The meal was delicious.
  • He/she was in a bad mood.

Crikey, she thought, that should put the cat amongst the pigeons.  This phrase kept turning round and round in her head.  She couldn't get it out.  So she decided that would be the theme this year.  Sixteen white doves would be released at the end of the evening which should clinch it as an extravagant finale to finish the day off. 
She made a list and then another and another.  She bought a spiral bound notebook and wrote her lists in that.
She had plenty of time to organise the event.  Should she make a cake or have one made?  How big should it be?  How many people would be coming?
Make a guest list.   This will be bigger and better than anybody else’s.  She could do this.  This was not beyond her capabilities.
Write a list of why she can do this.
Write a list of why she can’t do this.
Google what ‘pros and cons’ mean.  Now write a list of ‘for’ and ‘against.’   If she writes the pros list in larger writing it will be longer than the cons list then that means that she can do this.
Oh balloons!  Write a list of types of balloons.  White ones tied with silver ribbons to pick out the overall theme of silver and white.  Helium filled, yes or no?  When do you order those and pick them up?
Oh food!   Buffet style, finger food? Hot food?  Another list to write.
Write one more list of plates, cutlery and napkin colours.
She goes to bed with her mind whirling in a maelstrom of ideas and thoughts.  When she wakes up exhausted she can’t remember what she decided, so she has to look at her lists again.
She remembers her dream from the night before.   Can she pull it off?  She writes a list of how to find out if it is possible.
She has another thought.  She researches and writes another list.
The decision is made.  The point is underlined in her list.  A new page is started.  A new list is made with a capital heading.
Write a list of hotels and venues that have a large LED screen in their function rooms.   Narrow the list down.  Choose one.
Limousine ordered - tick.
Colour scheme chosen - tick.
Catered food buffet style - tick
Coloured helium balloons to be delivered to the venue - tick.
Table favours in the shape of Star Wars Troopers - tick.
White doves ordered - tick.
Surprise organised – tick.
People arrive on time dressed in their finery.  Compliments flowed on the venue and decorations and food.
The room buzzes with conversations, people are laughing, everybody is having such a good time, nobody wants the night to end but as midnight approaches she hopes the surprise will go down well.
As the first notes of Ravel’s Bolero fill the room the large LED screen shows Torville and Dean skating in the 1984 Winter Olympics where they won the gold medal.

Word count: 497

Tuesday 11 September 2012


As usual, you have 100 words to add to the 4 above making 104 in total. Please keep it suitable for a PG certificate and do go and visit other posts to share the creativity. If you are new here (where have you been?!) do read ‘What is 100WCGU?’ which may help. If not leave a comment below or tweet me @jfb57.
WEEK # 57
The prompt for this week is:
… returning to the routine...


Returning to the routine after the tragedy of 9/11

All those poor souls sent away up to heaven

Those left behind to mourn and grieve

Watching the colour turn on the leaves

The hardest thing they’ve ever had to endure

The untold, unsung heroes who helped each other
Families, friends, colleagues, rescue services
The tragedy unfolded filled their eyes with bleakness
Pain and heartache stretched around the world
As emotions let loose and the tears of humankind swirled
Then comes the disbelief, the anger and the strife
Why did they take so many beautiful lives
Eleven years later returning to routine is still hard


Do you love chocolate? Does the very word make you drool with anticipation? Then be sure to join us on September 10th for the “What’s Your Chocolate” Blogfest and tell us all about it!

 Post about your favorite chocolate – what it means to you, where and when you indulge, a favorite memory – anything chocolate-related.

 Hosted by M. Pax, Laura Eno, Brinda Berry, and Ciara Knight.

Chocolate kept in the fridge eaten cold
At room temperature from the cupboard
A matter of taste and opinion
Available globally from Australia to Britain
Plain cocoa beans 70% or more
Add some milk, cream, fruit and nuts galore
Turns us into frenzied, addicted gannets
When one square or bar is not enough
Saying ‘no thank you’ is so very tough
Giving up for New Year resolutions or Lent
Then gorging chocolate eggs at Easter weekend
You might as well admit to your addiction
And give in to this all consuming passion
Favourite childhood memories of chocolate:
Those wonderful hollow Father Christmas chocolates from the Christmas tree and my aunt’s famous boozy chocolate fridge cake which we were only allowed to eat once we were deemed ‘old enough.’

This is Aunty Margaret’s recipe – she usually added more booze than the recipe stated.
Refrigerated Chocolate Biscuit Cake

8oz plain chocolate (melted)
½ lb butter (melted)
½ lb digestive biscuits (broken into large pieces)
2 oz mixed fruits (cherries, sultanas, mixed peel)
2 eggs
2 level dessert spoons caster sugar
2 oz chopped walnuts (or almonds, brazils, hazelnuts)
2 oz glacé cherries
2 tablespoons brandy or rum

Butter 6” or 7” cake tin
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water
Soften the butter
Using a large bowl beat the eggs with the caster sugar
Pour the melted chocolate and butter into the eggs and sugar and beat well
Fold in the broken biscuits
Add the fruit and nuts
Add the brandy or rum

Put mixture into the cake tin
Refrigerate for at least four hours or until set
Decorate the top with cherries
Serve in slices/wedges with cream if desired.

N.B. Measurements are imperial

Thursday 6 September 2012


CHALLENGE NO 44 - FW/RU - Friday Sept 7

the hesitation, the uncertainty ...of the missed opportunity TO more

Any genre, any POV, remember the romantic element.
Write your story/posetry of 600 words or less


Standing on the platform waiting for the ten past eight train shivering in my school coat and thick black tights I saw him bounding down the station steps, all six foot four inches of 18 year old masculinity.  His shoulder length black hair was parted in the middle framing his big blue eyes, the wisps of black beard growth hinting of a sexy five o’clock shadow to come later in the day.
I turned away so he didn't realise I was looking at him.  Young ladies didn’t look at young men in that way or not overtly anyway.  I started chatting to Christopher, who at a couple of years younger than me, still couldn't keep his eyes from darting where they shouldn’t be looking. 
The train pulled in and we opened the carriage door and quickly found our seats.  We were usually lucky enough to get a compartment to ourselves before the commuters piled on to the train at the next stations along the route to London.  
We would alight at Maidstone and let the other poor souls travel on to the big city.   Oh my goodness, I hope I didn't have to work in London next year.   I had certainly had enough of rail commuting to school five days a week.
The sliding door to the compartment opened and in flopped this chap himself.   Christopher greets him with a smile and introduces me to Colin. I can feel my face blushing as I nod in acknowledgement.  A forty minute train journey is not long enough or far too long when your heart begins to race as you hear his words slip out of his mouth with that sexy, slightly upper class college accent.
For the next couple of weeks we shared the same train journey in the mornings and evenings.    The rumble of the train wheels on the track, the musty smell of the scratchy fabric of the seats, our breath misting up the windows, all added to an illusion of seclusion and privacy.
The nights were beginning to draw in so the walk from the station to my home was in the darkening twilight.  Christopher’s route took him  part of the way with me before he turned off into his road to his own home, then I only had a few more minutes to walk by myself.
One Friday evening it was just Colin and I who caught the train home.  I didn't really care why Christopher wasn’t there, he’d played the gooseberry for long enough. We chatted all the way home and as we left the station Colin asked me if I fancied going for a coffee. 
We started walking over the railway bridge in to the town centre and then he took the shortcut through the Memorial Park.   The leaves were turning colour and falling on the path rustling under our feet as we walked.   I was shivering, so he took my hand and pulled me towards him, hugging me close.
We stopped under a street lamp and I looked into those blue eyes, brushed my eyes across his lips, took a deep inward breath and waited for the kiss I was sure was coming.
‘Hey sis, what are you doing?’ Called out my stupid, younger brother, cycling past us and screeching to a halt.  ‘You’re late.  Mum is going to be mad.’
Colin let go of my hand, removed his arm from my waist.  He winked at me and said, ‘see you Monday, Janet.’
Forty years later I wonder how our lives would have turned out if I had kissed him that day.
 Word count: 598

Monday 3 September 2012


Today, 3rd September 2012,
is the 80th birthday of my wonderful father.

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
There’s a spider in my room
I’ll come up with the broom

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
I can’t sleep tonight
I’ll come and hold you tight

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
Can you fix my dolly?
I’ll make her look bonny

Sally, Sally, Sally
Yes Daddy
Take that muck off your face
Your skirt is too short you look a disgrace

Sally, Sally, Sally,
Yes Daddy
Be in before midnight
Or the door is locked tight

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy,
Yes Sally
Will you give me away
On my wedding day

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
Here is your first grandson
With his hair that is auburn

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
Here is your granddaughter
She’ll bring us joy and laughter

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
I am a single mum now
I’ll help you through it somehow

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
I’ve found a new man to love again
Yes, he’s a good man

Daddy, Daddy, Daddy
Yes Sally
Happy 80th Birthday
Best Dad, Granddad and Great-Granddad