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Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Y stands for ?

Ya Boo !

 Can You believe it ? I've wracked my brain and thought and thought, then Yawned and Yawned, Yet, I still can't think of a suitable subject starting with the letter Y ..... I thought of the lovely poem, 

 Lochinvar by Sir Walter Scott which I learned to recite, when I was quite Young.....Having checked, it seems that ballad is eight verses long, on reflection I really can't believe that I actually learned and recited all eight verses.


 Lo! Young Lochinvar is come out of the West.

 Through all the wide border his steed was the best.

 And save his good broadsword he weapons had none.

He rode all unarmed and he rode alone.

 So faithful in love and so dauntless in war.

 There never was a knight like Young Lochinvar.

As the poem is rather long I shall give you a short synopsis of this delightful prose.

Lochinvar was a gallant young knight who had asked for the hand in marriage of the Fair Ellen. Her father, however, disapproved of Young Lochinvar and refused. In the meantime Ellen was betrothed to another, when Young Lochinvar heard of this, he left the field of battle to save his beloved Ellen. 

Sadly, when he arrived at her home she was already married . Being a noble Knight he asked her to dance with him, then, when the opportunity arose,  he took her up into his arms, swept her up onto his trusty steed and rode off into the night. 


Should you wish to read all of  this delightful prose by  Sir Walter Scott. (and I hope you do) please just google it. It is fiction but loosely based on fact during the time of a famous battle in Scotland.

Thanks to our ever Youthful Denise for devising ABCW and Roger the XYZ guy who puts so much into the running of this Yum Yum meme.... I love it .

Best wishes to all  our ABCW  friends,
 new and present..
Di xx


Tuesday, 21 June 2016


Xerxes was a 5th Century king of Persia the son of Darius the Great. His attempt to conquer Greece ended unsuccessfully at the battle of Salamis.

This was a decisive victory for the Greeks. In his attempt to conquer Greece and the rest of Europe he built a canal across the isthmus where Mount Athos covered the land all  the way down to the sea.
 The canal was critical to Xerxes plan in an attempt to conquer Greece and the rest of Europe. Xerxes commissioned his General Mardonius to build a bridge across the Hellespont to assist the effort in conquering Europe.
 To the dismay of  Xerxes a fierce storm erupted and totally wrecked the bridge thus thwarting his plans. He was furious and ordered that all those that built the bridge be decapitated. Furthermore he ordered that the Hellespont should receive 300 lashes!

 Xerxes truly believed that flogging the Hellespont would be an indication of his wrath. he believed that the water intended to wrong him by destroying his bridges.

Xerxes and his men flogging the Hellespont .

Xerxes may have been an emergent Pantheist believing that God and nature are one and the same. Either way Xerxes  not only gave the Hellespont a good dose of it's own medicine but also, undoubtedly felt better after this exercise.

X stands for an  EXTRA Piece... a little 

 fun from Mr Edward Lear... one of my favourite writers.

 Without EXCEPTION I'm about to  EXIT this EXCRUCIATINGLY difficult letter to find a subject worthy enough to write about on this wonderful and EXTRAORDINARY  Meme created  by the EXCEPTIONALLY talented Denise who devised ABCW and our EXPERT administrator Roger for all he does and not forgetting the team of helpers who assist with the visiting of each participant.

Best wishes,

Di. ABCW team.


Tuesday, 14 June 2016

W stands for Witches..

My family like to tease me at times, as I apparently have an uncanny knack of foretelling the future. Often, when our three girls were younger I would foresee what they were 'up to' when they were doing things they shouldn't. Therefore, for this reason I was labelled a Witch.... A White witch that is, not an evil Black Witch. I don't regard this as 'Witchery' but a mother's intuition!

White Witches are good and often mistaken for being Earth Angels. Although there is a crucial difference between them, White Witches have a deep connection to nature and Earth angels are beings of air. Whilst Angels are mediators between heaven and earth, White Witches are beings of earth and are mediators between humans and elements. However both serve the greater good.

Mrs White Witch spying on youngest daughter drinking cider in woods with other friends when they should have been at a Girl Guides meeting !

  You should have seen the look of horror on their faces when I appeared from behind a tree !

She still doesn't know to this day how I knew she was there, easy really.....The Guide leader telephoned me as she 'smelt a rat', the four compatriots were noticeably missing for two weeks on the run... Oh boy! Were they in deep trouble.....I pushed the four of them into my car... after pouring the cider away. Youngest daughter was fuming with me..."how did you know where we  were"?  she sniffed, "Put it down to Mother's intuition" I replied, desperately trying not to laugh. "You're a Witch" she sniffed again.

 "Ah yes! but a White Witch"I retorted"( where lies another tale to tell).

I drove them all home in sullen silence to 'face the music', whilst the White Witch was stirring her cauldron to compose a suitable spell, to teach Astrid and her friends how to learn the error of their ways.......
 Needless to say, Girl Guides meetings were not missed again ! 

My sincere thanks to the Wise and Warm-hearted Denise for devising Abcw all those years ago.

It is Wonderful how it has achieved a World-wide status.
 Also, we must Whole- heartedly thank the ever Watchful Roger our administrator with his wealth of knowledge, doing what 
he does, so well.

 Finally our thanks must go out to the band of willing helpers, working  hard together, visiting  other sites and particularly, to WELCOME new contributors.

Best wishes  to all,

ABCW team.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

ABC Wednesday: V stands for Venerable.

ABC Wednesday: V stands for Venerable.: The Venerable Bede The Venerable Bede is widely known as the greatest of all Anglo Saxon scholars, born in 673AD  He was a monk and was...

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

U stands for UTENSILS

I have always been an enthusiastic cook and one of the most USEFUL and often USED UTENSIL in my kitchen is my pressure cooker. If I was given the option of having either a microwave or a pressure cooker , the pressure cooker wins, hands down.

My favourite kitchen UTENSIL. The UBIQUITOUS pressure cooker. 

Over the years it has turned out some hearty and delicious meals. Some of the family favourites are Minestrone Soup with Parmesan Cheese Wafers and

  Lentil with Bacon Soup plus lots of fresh vegetables... and not forgetting   Di's famous parsley dumplings......

Minestrone soup with Parmesan Chips. 

Bacon and Lentil Soup with Di's famous Parsley Dumplings.

USING a pressure cooker cuts the cooking time considerably, from start to finish, these two wholesome and hearty soups can be from cooker to table within twenty minutes.

Honey Glazed Ham.

The honey glazed ham took 35 mins in the pressure cooker, then a further 30 mins, roasted with a honey and clove glaze, in the oven. USING the Pressure Cooker cut the cooking time almost by half.  This method keeps the gammon tender and succulent.

 Cumberland sauce goes well with it.

Honey Glazed Ham.

Cumberland sauce.

So here it is .... all this lovely food cooked in my favourite kitchen UTENSIL,
Pressure cooker. 

My sincere thanks to  Denise, who has UNDENIABLY brought a lot of pleasure to so many of us, by devising abcw and  UNITING people from all over the world, sharing thoughts, pictures, poems and daily doings, et al !

Also, our  UNENDING  gratitude to Roger the  UNASSAILABLE  Administrator,  for doing what he does, in keeping US, UP and running with UNFAILING aplomb.

Thanks too, to the team of helpers who, week after week, assist Roger with the visits to all participants....

Best Wishes,
ABCW team.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

S stands for Shakespeare.

William Shakespeare  1564-1616  

Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon. Warwickshire.

 He married Anne Hathaway and they had three children, Susanna and twins Hamnet and Judith.

 A successful career ensues in London between 1585-1592 .

 He was a noted writer and actor, then  part owner of a playing company. Amongst his many famous and well known plays is The Taming of the Shrew.

As well as this being played on the stage many times there have been several movies made of it.

 My all time favourite has to be the version made in 1967 starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, they were well suited to the characters they played as, probably the whole world knew about their much publisized, volatile marriage;   as were the two protagonists in the play, Katerina and Petruchio.


Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor acting in one of their fabulous SCENES in The Taming of the SHREW.     

I won't write any more about this play as I have featured it before so, as I'm rather fond of logical quotations I thought I'd share a few of

  WILL SHAKESPEARE'S, with you.  

'SOME are born great,
  SOME achieve  greatness
 and SOME
have greatness
 thrust upon them'.
 (Twelfth Night).

To thine own SELF be true,
And it must follow as,
the night,
the day,
thou can'st be true.

Sonnet 18.

SHALL I compare thee to a summer's day? 
Thou art more lovely and more temperate,
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May
And summer's lease hath all to short a date.

And so  as I complete my finish SLANT on the letter 'S'
I have to confess I am STRUGGLING to write at present,
SO much to cope with and feeling SO SHATTERED all
the time. I hope you all can bear with me until I get my 
Mojo back..
Thanks to the SUPERDOOPER Denise Nesbitt for devising 
ABCW and the SAGACIOUS Roger for doing what he does
 too! Also our thanks go out to the SPONTANEOUS team
 of helpers who assist Roger with the visits,
Best wishes to all.
Di. xx

Thursday, 12 May 2016

R is for Random

Darling daughter Ingrid.

Ingrid's..... RAISON D`ETRE......her two beautiful children...Olivia and Christian.... she missed them so much whilst she was RECOVERING in hospital.


My profound apologies to my fellow Abcw chums for being so late in posting and carrying out my visits.......
You see,our darling daughter Ingrid was RUSHED  into hospital with severe chest pains, she had all the symptoms of a heart attack, much to our shock horror!
However, I am pleased to REPORT that  after several tests over several days she was diagnosed with Pleurisy  and a Hiatus hernia... this is bad enough in itself but not a life threatening disorder.
 She REMAINED in hospital for six days and is now at home on a course of drugs and REST AND RECUPERATION
Arial view of the city facing down to the estuary
of the River which flows into the emerald green
waters of the Irish Sea.
 Today, much to our RELIEF she is almost pain free and looking forward to meeting her children from school and getting back to normal.

Random pictures of my home town Liverpool Which sits on the famous River Mersey.
Ferry 'cross the Mersey, 'cos this land's the land I love and here I'll stay


The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh in the State Coach going to the State Opening of Parliament,

The ROYAL Barge sailing under Tower Bridge on the River Thames on the occasion of  The Queen's Diamond Jubilee in 1915.


That's all folks.... on the last minute my err..... R contribution!

I'm REALLY sorry to be so late but so RELIEVED and thankful that our Darling Daughter, Ingrid,  is so much better.

Again my sincere thanks to the RADIANT  Denise for devising  ABCW  and the RATIONAL ROGER our most RELIABLE administrator........ also not forgetting our REGIME OF READERS who assist with the weekly visits.