A Weekend Back Home

Everyone needs a little trip back home once in a while. Weekends away at home often involve a fully-stocked fridge, heated rooms and moments when you feel truly spoiled. In my family’s case, there’s usually one too many fat free yoghurts and not enough food, bottles of wine and the boiler that just keeps on breaking. This weekend however, was a little different.

As Friday approached, I felt super excited about going home. It would be the first time since August and for me, this is quite a long time to be away from my little hometown. You know I love Manchester, but sometimes it’s just ideal to escape to a small town with big fields – even if the majority of places are closed by 9pm.

We arrived back home just after midnight and I was welcomed by my little guy, Max.

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He gets incredibly excited and was jumping from wall to wall with happiness,
gathering together his favourite toys to introduce them to me.
(I don’t know who he learns this from… honestly!)

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Meet Sammy the Sheep and Leo the Lion, otherwise known as Max’s babies.

After playtime, we made our way to our beds and before I knew it, I was fast asleep!

However Saturday morning proved there’s no rest for the wicked as I was up and out at 9am – ready to get my haircut.

After my hair appointment and a quick catch-up coffee in Costa with a family friend, we made our way to Chester.

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Ready for a bit of retail therapy we spent our Saturday exploring the latest collections in Zara, Oasis and Marks and Spencer before having a quick, light lunch at Cafe Rouge – oui, oui!

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I was so excited to go the Zara store in Chester as the shop in Manchester’s city centre is closed for refurbishment.
As soon as we walked into the shop, I was smiling from ear to ear, picking up handfuls of coats, dresses, shirts and trousers.

I have been searching for the perfect Winter bag, jacket and randomly a pair of brown trousers –
I found them all in Zara…

Zara

Zara – short coat with hood – £79
(available in black, navy blue or camel)

ZaraZara – black shopper bag £39

ZARA

Zara – brown pocket trousers – £25.99
(Available in camel, brown, black or grey marl)

Next, we visited Oasis.
Here I spotted so many tops which would be perfect for work and weekends, tube dresses and big cosy jumpers.

But, I chose these lovely items instead:

OasisThe Tilly Boucle tweed skater dress, which I have been eyeing up for a while now.

And the most comfiest pair of jeans I have ever owned – the Grace highwaisted ankle grazer jeans in denim.

Oasis

After a little more time browsing the shops, we called it a day and headed back home.

I had only been home for about half an hour, before Norm, Sam and I decided it was time for dinner.
So we headed to Hickory’s Smokehouse, hoping they would have room for us and our hungry bellies!

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Luckily they did and boy, oh boy we were very happy (hungry) hippos.

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We decided to grab some cocktails from the bar and were treated to a little bartender showmanship…

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He moved so quickly I could barely keep my phone up with his throws and twists!
Sam and I were then asked to shake our own cocktails…

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I found the atmosphere to be really friendly and refreshing.

There was always something to see whether it be the open grill, ring of fire table, football on TV, watching people stock up on the jars of sweets or simply drooling over the food as it made its way through the restaurant.

With that in mind, we made our way to our table, stuffed our faces with popcorn and ordered our meals.

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Sam chose the 16 hour smoked BBQ pulled pork which was accompanied by a pit of beans and chips.
The menu says ‘looks inedible, tastes incredible’ and from the noises Sam was making – I can confirm this is indeed true.

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I stuck to my not-so-healthy eating plan and ordered the Hickory’s double burger complete with pickles and American cheese.

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I found it a bit too much and was full before I had even reached halfway – probably due to too much popcorn.
But it was jam packed with flavours, a generous heap of freshly cut salad and super spicy salsa.

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Norm opted for the fire grilled ribeye steak and crispy onion rings which looked seriously tasty.

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I think next time I visit I will definitely order the steak!

As always, we couldn’t wait for dessert.
The menu offered a range of puddings from waffles, cheesecake and cookies to classic pies and sundaes.

Sam ordered the simple but heavenly home baked cookies and milk and I got the salted caramel and creamy cappuccino cheesecake.

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Norm once again ordered the best course and chose The Banoffee Waffle with a Yee-Ha Malted Milkshake – I had a little taste and it was so sweet, literally everything you would want in a pudding.

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I would definitely recommend Hickory’s Smokehouse and I already can’t wait to visit it again – next time with my main camera so you can really see how good the food/drinks are!

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On Sunday I just spent some time with family, running errands and visiting my Nana for a nice cup of tea and one too many biscuits!

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It was a lovely weekend – but I’m starting to wonder, maybe I should have bought a brolly instead?!

And as for this week? Well, it looks like work will be pretty busy with numerous projects and deadlines to meet.
Aside from work, my usual Zumba classes will definitely get me dancing around to some of my favourite Latin songs – as will my weekly bachata classes. I’ve also started teaching English to a lovely group of students so I have my class to prepare for.
If I still have enough energy left, who knows, maybe I’ll surprise myself and run a marathon!

Hope everyone has had a great Monday and enjoy the week! x

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21st October 2013
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