First post lockdown 3 beer

The UK officially wnt into as third lockdown at the start of the year. Prior to that areas were in tiers. Sheffield being in a tier 3 leval prior to lockdown 2 and between lockdown 2 and three meant locckdown meant it has been months since pubs in Sheffield open. I was lucky that I was in the lake district in tier 1 area when the srecond lockdown started so was able to go into some pubs then.

According to the governments roadmap out of lockdown 3, pubs were able top open from April 12th and serve customers outside. It was a week before I went in for my first drink. Many local pubs have not opened yet for some this is because they do not have sufficient outdoor space to merit opening. Additionally it appears my local Wetherspoons are currently undergoing some refurbishment. I tried post a 10mile walk on Saturday 16th April to get a drink but the three pubs close to the end of the walk that were open were all full to the limits of their outdoor capacity. One of them had people queuing and we were told it be an hour and half or two hours before would get in!

I have had my first drink in a pub since November in the Lake District on a sunny Monday lunchtime at the Plough in Bradfield on 19th April.

Also on 12th April non essential shops and places like hairdressers were allowed to open this makes life more pleasant. For example, I bought books in a charity shop yesterday and I have a massage booked today.

Just another pandemic Easter 🐣 …

The title should be sung to the song just another manic Monday. The next line I’d wish it was… but filling my title not directly what my line would be. Certainly this Easter 🐣 is not one expected or wished for last year.

End of March 2020 just before the first lockdown started I hopefully bought theatre 🎭 tickets for two shows in December 2020. Both were cancelled at this stage think still some chance of them being rearranged.

On Monday 29th March lockdown restrictions were eased from only been able to meet one person outside from another household to been able to form a group of 6 outside from up to 5 households or two households only outside if those two households add up to more than 6. Non essential shops and pubs remain closed until at least 12 April. My nephew is having his 9th birthday as second lockdown birthday 🎂 . Worse than that he will be isolating on his birthday due to someone in his class testing positive. Therefore we can not spend time with him outside and he can not leave his garden.

To end on a positive note I have 4 days off work until Tuesday 🙂 Hopefully there will be Easter chocolate. I have been looking for signs of spring. I have ticked what I have seen and hope to complete the list over the next few months; last year it was 31May when I first saw cygnets 🦢

Spring Checklist
Snowdrops ✅




Cygnets 🦢

Butterfly 🦋

Daffodils ✅

Tulips ✅

Frogspawn ✅

Eaten Easter chocolate ✅

Top 5 Tuesday: 5 books that got me into reading

This month Meeghan has got us into thinking about children’s books. Here are the first books in that got me into reading and on 30th March my topic is the books I would give to my children.

1. The books that school had to start us reading were called The Village with Three Corners.

2. Roald Dahl George marvellous medicine

3. Charlie and Choc factory by Roald Dahl.

4. Enid Blyton books.

5. The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy🧙‍♀️

The Worst Witch

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig: Discussion Post which contains SPOILERS

This book is very thought provoking and therefore an excellent book to discuss at book clubs. Also it as it centres around an attempted suicide it is important if affected by the book to seek appropriate help. As it can not be discussed without spoiling the book; I have also written a brief spolier free review.

I read it within just a few days.


My favourite quote from the book is:

“You can choose choices but not outcomes”

The book explores different choices Nora could have made and the impact those decisions could have had on her life. The book shows that different choices may not improve life way think. It is about not dwelling and regretting decisions. It brought to mind a quote I like from Oliva Joules and the overactive imagination by Helen Fielding who wrote the Bridget Jones books.

“Don’t regret anything. Remember there wasn’t anything else that could have happened, given who you are and the state of the world at that moment. The only thing you can change is the present, so learn from the past.”

I thought that the final life Nora experienced before returning to her ‘root’ life was a positive one; maybe because it is the type of life that I would like to have. I’m glad that Haig did not write the book with her switching to that life because that would have made the book unrealistic and into the realms of science fiction. As the book has been written then the midnight library can be interpreted as a figment of Nora’s imagination; a dream. I like to think that the final life is potentially Nora’s future; something to aspire to if she wishes.

By not writing that Nora died and retuning her to her former life Haig showed her life was not all bad and still had potential. I do not think it is good how simple he made Nora realising potential seem as for real people it would not be so easy. Nora’s estranged brother comes to see her because of the suicide attempt; I think it is potentially unwise to imply a suicide attempt can win back anyone’s love.

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig: Brief Spoiler Free Review

I heard a lot of positive things about this book which prompted me to read. I agree that it is a thought provoking book. It has been pointed out to me that it should come with trigger warnings because 0f suicidal ideation and pre suicide thought patterns suicide planning.

The book is about someone who following attempts suicide ends up in the Midnight Library which is a space between life and death. She gets to see how life may have turned out if she had made different decisions.

My first impressions of the book was very positive as are my continued views of the book.

My favourite quote from the book is on p83 of my copy:

“You can choose choices but not outcomes’

If you have read and want to see more of my thoughts which reveal spoliers please see my discussion post.

First impression Friday: Midnight Library by Matt Haig

This has come highly recommended and first impression is that it is not disappointing! Finding the premise of not been where want in life and therefore with regrets about what ifs; very relatable! The book is going to explore what would have happened if the protagonists had made different decisions; would she be more or less happy?

A day that we are missing this year…

Between today and tomorrow, last year was a day that does not exist this year.

Just one symptom of how the world changes since that day is that I ordered a library book that I never got as the UK went into lockdown and libraries closed. By the time the library was doing click and collect, I had bought and read the book for a book club.

A review of 2020 book resolutions

Resolutions wrote in a different time! I was not sure about committing to my book club due to journeying to it! Since April this has not been a problem as it has been virtual. I ordered a book in March from the library but it then shut before I could pick up the book! It was months before the library reopened and by that time as needed the book for a book club had bought it myself. Once library reopened it has been click and collect and they can not get books loaned from other libraries therefore not borrowed a book from the library, this meant I did not achieve resolution 6 but I did achieve all the others.

2020 book resolutions

Blogmas: 2020 Sheffield restaurant visits

There has not been as many as there would have been a normal year but I have managed to get to a lot of my favourites.

1. I left a job at the end of December so I had a leaving do at the end of January when everyone had been paid again in order to avoid my leaving merging in with Christmas. Originally I wanted to try Monki on Ecclesall Road which looks very pretty with fairy lights and swing chairs but they could not fit the numbers in, therefore this is still on my list to try. Instead for my leaving do event to the Moroccan restaurant Otto’s on Sharrow vale road. Desert was amazing as always.

2. Post storm ☔️Chiarra Wadsley Jack I sat soaking wet warming up with Bradfield beer 🍺 and a tasty Sunday dinner.

3. The next storm was storm Dennis. My parents had planned to come over on Saturday and go tot Bistro Pierre but due to Storm Denis they did not. Bistro Pierre has possibly been my favourite restaurant in Sheffield, now I will never go again as it is permanently closed due to financial issues.

Instead on the Sunday we went to Cubanas for tapas.

4. Just before lockdown I discovered a new restaurant that I wanted to return to. It is called Five Rivers. It is lit with colourful lanterns and you sit on cushions on the floor with low tables.

Long gap with no restaurants …

Mind the gap….

… of course due to lockdown.

4. My first post lockdown meal was lunch at the Park pub with my parents.

5. Next went to Browns for a friend’s 40th.

6. I have eaten at one of my favourite city centre restaurants Aagragh’s a couple of times. The first time was during Eat out to help out and the government paid 50% of the meal. The second time Aagraahs themselves kindly gave a 40% discount on food.

7. Another of my favourite city centre restaurants is the Botanist. It has lots of plants and band stands. I went with a friend for a catch up in September. We ate sharing boards of lots of tasty treats.

8. Another of my city centre favourites is Bills. I went for a catch up with a friend in October. I had gorgeous salmon and we treated ourselves to extravagant deserts.

9. Another of my city centre favourite is Piccolos which is a small Italian. I had beef stroganoff at a catch up in October with a friend.

Blogmas: Top Experiences and Achievements for 2020

Thinking about 2020 it would be easily to think that nothing happened and spent all year locked down. Admittingly life has been very limited but there had been some good exxpereinces.

Firstly in January saw first 4DX movie.

1917 4DX

In February stayed in a windmill.

Few days in the Lake District in November (should have been a week but then lockdown hit).

Created decoupage bottle art and tied dyed.

Lockdown creative pursuits

Completed Lucy Locket book challenge.

Near the beginning of the first lockdown I read in a magazine about how this was an historic time and we should diarise it. I think my blog posts about the pandemic are like diary entries and have printed them and filed in a folder as a memory of the experience of this very unique year!