Life's pretty busy right now. The last few days have been spent ostensibly taking Niobe to Exeter Uni's open day. Given the distance from Nottingham we decided to extend this visit by a couple of days to incorporate some of the sights ( or blog lover stops) so we travelled via Stonehenge, Plymouth and finally Exeter (it was a very roundabout tour!)
I had hoped to see lots of the places shown on the various blogs I follow but luck wasn't really on my side! Hunting for white horses carved into the hillside proved fruitless (although they are shown on maps - they were obviously always around the other side of the hill to the road we were travelling!). We did, quite by accident, come across this flight of locks - an amazing feat of engineering completed 200 years ago!
Stonehenge would have been difficult to miss although its disappointing that it's surrounded by some very zealous security guards.
Onwards to Shaftesbury and Gold HIll - which meant nothing to Niobe as she had never seen the Hovis advert! Still the view was lovely as we sat and enjoyed breakfast al fresco.
I did have to pop in and see the lovely Sue (Vintage to Victorian) at Dairy House antiques. Sue persuaded me to start my own blog over a year ago so I'm very grateful to her for setting me on this journey. I would have loved to spend more time there rummaging through Sue's lovely haberdashery and fabric drawers looking for treasures but we were on a mission and had lots to pull in!
Honiton was high on my list - Kirsty (from the Homemade Christmas series) had waxed lyrical about one of the antiques centres at Honiton - but - it was Sunday and the shops were closed. There was a lovely little vintage toys shop selling toys at ridiculously cheap prices - but that was closed too. I'm ashamed to say how used to 7day trading I have become and assume its the norm everywhere.
Onward to Plymouth via Dartmoor. I loved seeing all the ponies able to wander at their will. I was a little concerend when I saw this -
but seconds later the little foal was up on its (unstable little legs)...
Plymouth was decidedly open to visitors and it was fascinating to learn more of the place from where the Pilgrim Fathers left for America all those years ago.
Monday saw my excitement mounting as thanks to Sal of "Sals Snippets" I had to visit Totnes and Ashburton. Sal's mentioned shops in both of these places and Totnes was a delight with lovely places to eat and lots of delightful shops with a vintage vibe not to mention charity shops which are in a different league from those in the Midlands!
The Snug at Ashburton was great with some lovely fabrics - some of these had to come back with me. There was a wonderful shop the "Vintage Emporium" from where I had to have my nose surgically removed from the window. Again - closed!!! AAAAAGGGGGHHHH!!!! I wanted to buy and couldn't. Floral Vernon Wards tantalising me with their kitsch loveliness. I can't believe that I managed to forget to carry my camera at several of these stops.
Exeter ticked most of Niobe's list of "must haves" in a Uni although I have to express some disappointment at some of the accommodation. While I don't expect (and can't afford for) her to live in luxury - she doesn't have that at home - I was horrified at some of what we saw. As she said "it looks like prison". She opened a wardrobe door which then fell off in her hand... I can see I'm going to have to come up with some creative solutions! (Not to mention a toolkit!)
I was given a "two for one entry" voucher for the Eden prject - to be used by 31st August. If anyone can use it I'll be happy to pop it in the post - just e-mail me your address at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hope you're enjoying the sunshine!