Saturday, 21 December 2013

Grocery Shopping at Christmas and some old flooding pics

 When the river comes up across the lane at the bottom of the hill . . .  This was about a year ago.

We did our main shop yesterday. We'd got the meat in prior to this as we like Game at Christmas and bought early and froze it.  We split our shopping between Lidl and Morrisons.  The latter have been offering £40 voucher off Christmas shopping if you spent £40 a week with them in the previous 9 out of 10 weeks, which we did.  It made the final amount seem rather more bearable! Anyway, this really amounts to a double shop so we shouldn't need anything fresh (apart from some veg perhaps) until the New Year now, and the freezer and storecupboard mean we could go on for quite a while, using up what we have.

It was chocabloc in Morrisons, but if we thought THAT was bad, they were queuing to get into T*sco as we drove past on our way to Abergwili, to get our fruit and vegetables for the week (at very much reduced prices!) We got a box with about 8 lbs fruit in - mainly big Russet Apples, a few Granny Smiths and 3 lemons in a corner.  I needed lemons too.  That was £1.   For another £1, we got a box of remaindered Manderins or Satsumas.    Then I bought a bag of onions and a bag of carrots - 50p each.  A stalk of Brussel Sprouts, another pound.  2 lettuce hearts 60p.  I don't know how we will manage when we move away - I will miss my bargains - but I guess we will have to use Lidl instead, as their produce is good and competitively priced.  We also bought our tree from Abergwili for just £10.  It's a beauty.  Someone had been selling lovely blue spruces outside Morrisons a couple of weeks back - £35 a hit - all the way from Scotland too.  I think ours yesterday was almost certainly local.

I had to take D into work this morning for 8 a.m. so I went in search of some jute string in T*sco.  The car park was already half full.  The aisles are piled with stock, everything you could conceivably need but I think we must be considered a very staid sort of shopper as we aren't tempted by ready-made anything in the food department.  I've always said, I buy ingredients . . .  But for purchasers of practical things like string.  Well, you leave empty-handed!  Our eldest daughter T is arriving this afternoon, so we will go to the garden centre of Wilkos and get string there.

An old scanned photo showing the flooding at the bottom of the hill across our lane, joining the river which you can just see in the middle right.

As I said, I buy ingredients.  This morning I am going to be making raspberry jam, to be part of the filling for a home made Arctic Roll (recipe in the current (Winter) edition of Baking Heaven magazine.)  This is as good as buying a book and so for £4.99 a good buy.  101 recipes to make your mouth water and your waistline expand.  I will be careful not to overindulge.  Though I LOVE to bake, I do try not to eat too much of it, though my shape might make you think otherwise!

Just outside our house - the runoff from the fields can't get away fast enough . . .

Today is warm and windy - the wind is from the West, so a wet one.  Last night was WILD here, and the river high as a consequence, but still within its banks here.  Only when the Cothi joins forces with the Towy does is spread across the fields of the flood plain.  There are more gales and heavy rain forecast for Monday, when we still have to be out and about early.  I shall be glad when we can pull up the drawbridge on Christmas Eve and just heave a sigh of relief.

This afternoon T and I will dress the tree and fling some more tinsel about, and tomorrow we shall go and gather the ingredients for the bigger wreath and some greenery to go on top of the pictures.  I hope we have a dry window in the weather.

Finally, the previous scene from head on, looking down the hill.


  1. Very dramatic photos. We had the most glorious peach sunrise over the floodwater yesterday morning.
    Have a peaceful and joyful Christmas Jennie and may 2014 bring you everything you wish for.

  2. Bless you Kath. I wish the same for you and your family. I have every intention that 2014 will be the year we get to MEET!

  3. Gosh, that flood water is frightening-even more so that it's so close to your house. I hate supermarkets at the best of times and at Christmas it's just madness. I'll walk into Brixham and pick up the veg and chicken on Monday depending on the weather and hop on the bus back up the hill, but maybe I'll get the bus both ways looking at the terrible forecast. Merry Christmas if I don't get to wish it to you next week.

  4. Wild waters! I hope that T gets home safely this evening.

  5. Suzie - what a sensible plan you have. No conspicuous consumption! The flash floods tend not to last too long - e.g. when our lane turns into a river. The flooding at the bottom of the hill generally subsides within 24 hours, sometimes less. It comes from the field behind flooding and over-running the lane. Merry Christmas to you and all the best for 2014.

    DW - Tam is safely home and we have just dressed the tree. She added tinsel afterwards, because "it looked too posh"!!! Merry Christmas and thank you for the Christmas reading.

  6. Holy mo! Those river pictures are awesome!!! I miss your lovely house and your wild landscape :D Stay safe dearest and I hope you all have a lovely time :D

  7. wow, that's some photos!
    the water will sometimes get high here, it was last week, but crosses out the banks a few miles down the road. I stand and watch it though, and am always feeling smaller just by seeing the force of it. sounds like you got some good buys.
    I hope you have a lovely Christmas.

  8. Have you seen the frozen raspberries in Lidl, they make very good jam at a very good price. I've used the forest fruits and it's good jam, they also have frozen strawberries in the same section.

  9. Yarrow - I can't find the best ones I had! I transferred everything across to the external hard drive when I updated my computer so perhaps they got left behind. I will try and stay safe and as warm as poss. too!!

    annie - our river can be so scary - when it is in spate, the sheer force of it is frightening.

    Elizabeth - I shall look for them in Lidl too. I got a pack from Morrisons to add to my frozen ones from our garden. The Forest Fruits make a lovely Summer Pudding too.

    The raspberry jam I made yesterday set so easily as it was just fruit and sugar. LOTS of pips though!

  10. Wild and wooly weather here overnight! I'm hoping we don't have to go near a store until after the holiday--the only thing we might run out of is milk and the half and half creamer for coffee. Do your cats not wind themselves up in tinsel?

  11. Your water looks frightening to a landlubber like myself. We're on low lands but never see water flowing that rapidly so close to home.

    Happy Holidays, may you be safe, warm with loved ones nearby.