and our house is all empty and quiet again.... yet there are echoes of the sounds of our guests and as always, loads of little memories have been left behind for Danny and I to recall and smile about.
It's not really a great time to come and visit, especially for the little 'uns simply because there's not a lot to do. We don't live in a very 'touristy' area and although there are plenty of places to see and things to do, a lot are simply shut for the winter. Although the past few days have been cold (bitterly so for the last couple of days) it's been dry, bright and sunny. We were particularly lucky on Wednesday as it was mild enough to be outside with the children as they played. This is a collage of photos we took at the children's play area by the lake at Secondigny.... I think it captures the fun that was had - by all!!
(Remember you can click on the photo to enlarge it)
I've got to admit, my see-saw days are pretty much over as my poor arthritic knees couldn't take the strain!! Still, I can enjoy the swings I guess!
The ground at home is still unbelievably muddy so we thought it would be better to let the children (and Mark) play out the front as it is gravelled. But whoever thought it would be possible to play boules on gravel....??? (I wanted to upload a video clip here but I seem to be having problems.... if anyone can help with some technical advice, please email me!!)
And playing football on gravel? Crazy but I guess "if there's a will, there's a way!" (Notice that, as usual, Finn and Liam have to be involved!
I felt a bit sorry for our guests as they didn't get to do or see very much at all. Mark wanted to go to a market on Friday and I found there was one at Thouars that day. It was around a 50km drive and by the time we got there, there wasn't much left to see. It was a bitterly cold and windy day so we didn't hang around long. On the way there though, young Brooke had spotted a sight he was keen to visit on the way back ... the big of a McDonalds restaurant!!!! So that's where we had some lunch!
It all makes me realise that this year, Danny and I do need to get out more and discover more places to visit. Looking back on last year, I think that we were so involved in getting the house straight and then having a number of visitors throughout the summer, most of whom were more than happy to relax in the garden, that we didn't do much exploring ourselves. We must rectify that this year..... yet another thing to put on the "to do when the weather gets better" list!
As we so often do, we rounded off our guests' visit with a trip to our favourite restaurant, A La Bonne Vie, on Friday evening, where we had a lovely meal and the children (who were very well behaved, I must say) enjoyed the chef's home made chicken nuggets and chips!
Here are pictures of the children, Skye and Brooke, standing in the lane that leads to our house....
Before we knew it, Saturday came around and it was time to load the cases in the car and take our guests to Poitiers airport for their return to the UK. We hope they enjoyed their stay and weren't too bored!
As soon as we got home, we realised that our bird feeders were empty - again! We decided to get on and fill them all up before we settled indoors in the warm. I think it also helped to take our minds of coming back to a quiet and empty house.
I'll finish with this lovely picture of some birds enjoying their replenished baskets of boules de graisse......