Thursday, 24 September 2015

Review - Griff House Beefeater Nuneaton

As you know I'm a big fan of receiving emails that offer us a review experience as a family, so when I was asked if I fancied a visit to Griff House Beefeater in Nuneaton I thought why the hell not.

They explained that they'd had a makeover and so were looking for bloggers to check it out. In all honesty I was expecting it to be very much a 'chain restaurant' feel with 1970's decor and awful patterned carpets but actually it was really cool and funky! I do apologise now for the fact that there are very few photos but a) I was having too much of a good time and b) It was packed and you look a bit deranged taking pictures of random furnishings on a busy Friday night even for a blogger :)

We were greeted by a very lovely lady who saw us to our chairs and then our 'host' for the evening who looked after us was called Sarah. She was awesome and really looked after us well. I thought maybe it was because I was there to do a review but actually from observation everyone got the friendly treatment which can be surprisingly unusual in the service industries of the UK.

Totally loving the sign made out of astroturf!!

There was humming and hawing over what to pick from the menu:

Me and JoJo decided to save ourselves for pudding but the man had a camembert starter which was lovely and just the perfect size. Apparently the onion marmalade that came with it was 'fantastic'!:

Chick also had a nachos starter, followed by a pizza and desert which also included a drink from the kids menu. The 3 courses and the drink were a total of £5.99 with several options at each course level which I thought was a bargain quite frankly. Portion sizes were good too and she was stuffed when she finished it!!

Us adults had a variety of mains with me and the man opting for various burgers and JoJo going for the Chilli Con Carne:

My burger was immense. It was juicy, the sauce was lovely and the seasoned fries just rounded it off nicely. JoJo also loved the chilli. Her only complaint was that there wasn't enough of it and she could have eaten more!

For dessert we decided to go all out. Chick had a build your own dessert which came with marshmallows, chocolate brownies, ice cream and chocolate sauce:

We all agreed that the desserts were fab and thought that the ice cream was incredible. It was vanilla but made with proper vanilla pod and seeds rather than shop bought and seemed luxurious. These were the other desserts:

One huge chocolate sundae and a melt in the middle chocolate pudding. What a lovely end to a fabulous meal.

We really enjoyed our evening at Beefeater, the decor was funky and modern:

The food was good and it was decent value for money. For 2 starters, 4 mains, 4 desserts and plenty of drinks the bill came to £73 which I felt was pretty reasonable. I'm sure we'll be back again :)

 Disclosure: Beefeater gave us £50 worth of vouchers towards our meal however we were free to pick and choose our reservation slot and whatever we wanted from the menu. All thoughts, views and pictures are mine!

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Silent Sunday

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Wild Swimming

Many, many moons ago, when I was several years younger and several (lots of) pounds lighter, all of my lucky stars aligned and I was fortunate enough to work out in California for a couple of years. During my first Summer I was offered a chance to train as a lifeguard. As this involved lots of swimming, sunshine and loveliness I jumped at the chance and said yes.

Being a lilly white English girl and only ever having swum in the pool or at a push in the Ocean, nothing could have ever prepared me for my first lifeguard training session which was in a lake. I can hear you thinking 'well, that doesn't sound too bad'! Oh my bloggy friends it was bloody awful! I can still conjure up that feeling of panic swimming through the clear waters when I first noticed the frog spawn, then the reeds, then the frogs and most hideous of all my lovelies...... the snakes!! URGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have an absolute lifelong phobia of snakes. I cannot even look at them on the TV or at pictures in a book without freaking out. However after my initial session, I somehow managed to put all of those creepy things out of my head, swim in a lake all Summer and pass my qualification. I even returned for a second year:

Fast forward a number of years and my memories of California and swimming in Lakes have a very rose tinted hue. 

A few weeks ago at a local lake I saw a sign for open water swimming and with my 40 before 40 list in mind decided to have a chat with the gent about it. He assured me that everyone swims in wetsuits and that there are no snakes in the Lakes in Leicestershire, so I thought why the hell not after all the frog spawn and snakes seem so long ago. After much hassle trying to find a fat enough wetsuit and thanks to the amazing team at Two Bare Feet, it was time for my first swim:

Yes, I know I look particularly hot!

So trying very hard to be mentally strong, I put all thoughts of creepy crawlies in the water out of my head (made my brother come with me to hold my hand and do up the wetsuit!!) and away I went.

Man alive it is so liberating to be swimming in a lake again. It's normally chilly (read; bloody freezing) but as I start to lose the worries of the day, warm up from swimming and start to appreciate being in the great outdoors and notice nature, there really isn't a better feeling. The lake that I swim in is actually mainly used by Triatheletes in training and they've all been super lovely although I'm sure they must think me odd when they see me waddle by in my wetsuit!! 

Last weekend we decided to have one last camping trip and head up to the Lake District. Bizarrely there was a distance swimming competition at Lake Coniston so we spent several lovely hours on the dock in the sunshine watching all of the swimmers come in:

Maybe something to train for next time?? More pictures to come from the Lakes possibly along with a story about swimming with fish and swans *shudders*