Sunday, April 23, 2006

Well we did it, Debs and me climbed a lot of steps up 250 ft to the top of the bridge and then tiptoed out over the river Tees. It was a gorgeous day of clear blue skies and no wind (neither external nor internal you will be glad to know). As long as we didn`t look straight down we were fine.
The highlight was an oil tanker sailing under us and a sailor waving up in surprise. We hope to have raised over £1000 for Rhema school. Thanks to every brave body who did the "walk of death", and of course the ground crew ( led by Angus ) and their moral support.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

The "Walk of Death" takes place on Sunday morning over the Tees transporter bridge. Looking at the picture folks, that is up and over the top not across the bottom! Organised by a friend of mine with loads of colleagues and Geoff and Hilary from next door we are doing this to raise money for Rhema School Kampala. The question is, will Angus overcome his fear of heights and actually do it or is he going as "ground support"?!!!
Anne of course is going over the top as usual hahahahahahaha!!!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Rhema school in Kampala is pictured here with the children being led in prayer during our visit last year. As you can see the building on the right of the picture is very small - there are now over 200 children going to the school, being fed and clothed as well as taught. We are the main source of funds for the school using Uganda Development Services (see link on the right) to get money to Bernard Bakunda our friend who runs the school. We are aiming to get a new 3 storey school built and with this in mind have been able to send over about £30,000 in the last year. No wonder Bernard looks so happy!!

This is a piece of work done by Ruth, just messing about with our new toy - a graphics tablet (a pressure sensitive A4 sized pad with a wireless pen for drawing and painting). She did it using "a palette knife and acrylics". As a first attempt to use both the software and hardware I think it is impressive and intend to get it printed professionally. Of course I had to stop Ruth deleting it!!!

We are pleased that some of her artwork is up on the walls in france - her series of pictures of the cockroach we inadvertantly brought back from Uganda will not be to everyone`s taste ( I killed it as it nearly ate through my favourite pair of shorts!).

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Bonjour mes amis! Well what an adventure - we met Durand the helpful antiques guy who found us an old oak dining table (not an antique mais a la ferme) - he almost killed me getting me to hump it up the narrow winding stairs to the first floor as it was 10 cm wider than the gap between the banisters and the stair-rail so we had to lift it above the banisters! Thus we broke the free lifting record of northern france.
Anne took the picture of the town square at night last week as well as cooking spitted chicken and roast lamb and salmon trout gifted to us by our neighbour Jean-Claude.
Lots of decorating was done and Ruth and Debbie were very busy getting their bedrooms sorted whilst Dugald, James and myself did the garden - weeding and transplanting and planting for the summer months.
We will be returning in August to do the doors and shop for old dining chairs and hangings for the rougher walls.
love to you all.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Easter is almost upon us. So it is about time that I reflected on who (not what!) is central to our lives. Family, friends, food and wine and rock and roll are all (in descending order!) good; but are not central. They do not bring joy in themselves.
Heb 12:2 looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
Jesus is our joysource - a wellspring of constant blessing.
So here is an image that caught my eye in Ischgl Austria this year, hidden behind an ugly hut just off the high street.
For the joy of knowing you and me, He despised the shame.
Happy Easter 2006

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Well it snowed harder than an Orc with a double bladed axe - and that`s well hard I can tell you.
The heating has gone (like the snow!) in the car just in time for the trip to France - yippee! Blankets for "Family member X" (the child formerly known as Ruth).

So no snow last night just gales and torrential rain! Here is a photo of la maison Normandie in La Ferte-Mace. We have discovered that the scrolling ironwork at the back of the house has a monogrammed "B" in it! Could it be better? It was a Doctors` house for a long time and has a B in it! The blue doors open out to allow your horse and cart inside the archway.
Anne is off to Ikea for bits n bobs today and I am lecturing on Bipolar this evening. In case you`re wondering at the lack of family photos on the blog - the older ones have banned me from putting them on!!

Monday, April 03, 2006

Well the snow hasn`t arrived as yet but here`s some from yesteryear to enjoy showing James with a pile of snow on his head! Bought some fine floorstanding speakers today to replace my ancient Heybrook HB1`s which weren`t even biwired (shock)! Wharfdale Diamond 9.4`s - they`re as tall as Gimli the dwarf in high heels and just as powerful.

We are all excited as we have discovered an antique furniture place in Normandy that is 35 miles from us. Farmhouse tables and chandeliers `r` us!! My mother (Wendy) has ordered her double bed and is in a frenzy of excitement at the prospect of painting "her room"!!!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Well what`s a boy to do, checked all the wine today after "interesting church" this morning (lots went wrong and we ended up doing the prayers at v short notice despite which there was a real sense of the presence of God! Hurray! ). We have too much good wine - in fact about 100 bottles - so have decided to take the "laying down stuff" to France - 12 bottles of 2004 Angus the Bull - (see pic) plus assorted others in preparation for my brothers birthday.
Re the Angus, apart from being my name- it is the best wine to have with steak - a shiraz made by a guy called Hamish McGowan - if you beg, we will serve you an "Anne cooked steak" from our butcher in a little village in N Yorks who has a hook for a hand, with a bottle of 2002 which is now perfect for drinking!
Off to Richer Sounds tomorrow to get some stuff for the HiFi francaise!!
Angus the daddy

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Campanology - the ringing of the Bells

Hi we are the Bell family of Guisborough. We live between the wilds of North Yorkshire and the edge of Teesside smogmaking industry. I can`t be bothered to tell you about us now so suffice to say that today we have been wine buying and trailer borrowing, all in preparation for our trip to Normandy next week. Oh and here are a couple of pictures, one of a sunset from our back garden looking up to the North Yorkshire moors and the other of the whole family at Christmas.