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Sunday, 26 December 2010

Beautiful Strangers eBook Sale




Yes, the sales are upon us. Only with this sale you don't have to leave the house. Amazing isn't it! And, you can download the e-book in seconds :-)

I have decided to offer Beautiful Strangers e-book at a reduced price until the end of January 2011. You can read it on Kindle, Nook, Sony and just about any reading device imaginable. Isn't technology wonderful!

What's more . . . you can sample before you buy.

Amazon UK Kindle  Amazon US Kindle and  Smashwords

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Janet Macleod-Trotter - The Vanishing of Ruth

North East of England's Best Selling author Janet Macleod-Trotter was due to guest on my radio show Durham Dales Radio on Saturday 18th December to talk about her new book 'The Vanishing of Ruth' but, because of the adverse weather forecast,  she has had to cancel. Janet will now guest in the New Year. 

Let me tell you something about her new book:



Janet is now concentrating on writing mystery novels with unusual settings.
Her new novel, The Vanishing of Ruth, is inspired by her own overland trip through Asia:

1976: friends, Marcus and Ruth, go missing in Afghanistan during an overland bus trip to Kathmandu. A generation later, Ruth’s niece Amber, haunted by the disintegration of her family, determines to get at the truth of their disappearance. Was it murder, as her father suspected, or a suicide pact as the police believed?
Tracking down the trip’s bus driver, Cassidy, Amber starts to piece together a lost world - the mystical vibrant hippy trail to India – and colourful characters like Juliet, who imagined herself the reincarnation of an Edwardian traveller. As the mystery surrounding her aunt and the charismatic Marcus unfolds, Amber begins a journey of discovery of her own, that will lead her not only into the dark secrets of the past and lost love, but face to face with a tragedy much closer to home.

I have started to read The Vanishing of Ruth and am up to chapter 8. I want to know what happened to Marcus and Ruth. I am so tempted to read the end, but I won't or it will spoil the surprise.

There is a special reason that Janet has self-published this novel. You can read all about it at Journal Live

You can buy Janet's novel from Amazon and from her website www.janetmacleodtrotter.com

Ellen Dean - Recommends 

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

The Golden Prince by Rebecca Dean

Being a Royalist, when the news broke about the Prince William and Kate Middleton engagement and forthcoming wedding, I was interviewed several times live on BBC Radio York for my opinion.

Needless to say I was delighted when I was asked to review Rebecca Dean's novel The Golden Prince available now.

This novel mixes both fact and fiction about Edward Vlll the blond blue-eyed playboy who was widely popular until his abdication to marry the ambitious (she wanted the crown) divorcee Mrs Wallis Simpson. It was put to the Commonwealth Countries as to whether he should marry Wallis, or not. History tells us that only Winston Churchill was in favour of the marriage.

Was Edward Vlll happy with Wallis or did the whole thing backfire on him? Had he really wanted to marry her at all? Had things gone too far for him to back out?
He led a fruitful life before Wallis came along. However, he only dated married women - the wives of his friends! Hmmm......



Introduction to The Golden Prince 


Written in stone was the cardinal rule that royalty only married royalty, 
and though Rosemary Leveson-Gower was aristocratic – her father was the 
Duke of Sutherland – she was, in King George’s eyes, a commoner. 

What he would have thought of his great-great-grandson marrying the beautiful 
Kate, daughter of parents from a working-class background,
 can only be guessed at. 

It is written into the British constitution that a Prince of Wales must have 
the monarch’s consent when he wishes to marry. As King George 
adamantly refused to sanction Edward’s marriage to Rosemary, Edward 
couldn’t marry her and two years later Rosemary married one of 
Edward’s friends, Eric, Viscount Ednam. 

The author, Rebecca Dean, believes that his father’s refusal to allow him to 
marry the girl he loved had a traumatic effect on Edward whose name 
was never again linked with that of an unmarried woman.
 In her book The Golden Prince, published this month by HarperCollins, she melds 
fact with fiction to explore the poignant situation of Prince Edward when, 
as a very young man, he was denied personal happiness by not being 
allowed to marry the commoner he loved. 

And . . . what would King George V have thought about our now Prince of Wales having married two commoners?

Watch out for my review - but please remember that I need time to read it.



Monday, 6 December 2010

Masham Musical Society Annual Concert



All photographs courtesy of © Kathryn Holland 

Masham Musical Society, conducted by Jonathan Heitler, accompanist Anthony Rudd, gave an outstanding performance in Masham Town Hall on Saturday 4th December 2010. 

Despite the adverse weather conditions the concert was very well attended and the audience enjoyed 'A Miscellany Of Song' from Moon River to When I'm 64 and a selection of Christmas Carols. In the second half the audience  enjoyed singing along to the Carols with a bit of brilliant and fun conducting by Jonathan. 



Neil Craddock and Alistair Staton gave good solos performances, and Mr. and Mrs. Peach performed a lovely duet. Plus, there was an outstanding cello  performance by 13 year old Jessica Bryan - a talent to watch - beautifully accompanied on the piano by Anthony Rudd. 

At the end of the performance we enjoyed a pleasant supper and had chance to chat with members of the society.

This was a thoroughly enjoyable evening. I was sorry to learn that Mr. Heitler is taking a year out which means that the Musical Society will be looking for a conductor for their 2011 concert. Big boots to fill!

And if you're wondering why there's no photos of Sat Nav, it's because she wasn't able to sing due to a sore throat.

You can check out the Musical Society's website at www.spanglefish.com/mashammusicsociety

Ellen Dean Recommends

Friday, 26 November 2010

Masham Musical Society - Forthcoming Annual Concert 4th December 2010

Masham Musical Society will be performing their annual concert 'A Miscellany of Song' in the Town Hall, Masham, North Yorkshire, on Saturday 4th December 2010 at 7.30pm.
Tickets £5 on the door include a light supper after the performance.

Come along and enjoy music from Rogers & Hammerstein, Mercer & Mancini, Lennon & McCartney. And Christmas Carols that you can join in with.

Amy and Sat Nav sing with the sopranos :-) Not to be missed!

Conductor Jonathan Heitler  

Secretary Liz Whelan, Jonathan, Treasurer Anne Gregg 


Chairman Mr. Jim Heaton


Ellen Dean with Amy Addison

Photos taken at the June 2010 society fundraiser 


New members always welcome

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Masham Players perform Ding Dong directed by Ellen Dean & Kathy Boyer




Every picture tells a story :-)

If you missed Masham Players performance of Ding Dong - you missed a treat because it was absolutely fantastic!!!

Our excellent cast:
Guy Wilman - new to the Players - playing Bernard Marcellin the aggrieved husband of the naughty Jacqueline played by Sue Smith.
Richard Bailey played Robert Regnier - Jacqueline's lover. But who is his wife?
Throw in the Marcellin's overworked and underpaid maid Marie-Louise (Pam Grimsditch) who also has a keen eye for Bernard, and the high class call girl Barbara (Kathryn Holland) paid by Robert to pretend to be his wife Juliette into the mix, and things start to simmer nicely. . . but then along comes the real Juliette (Julie Prescott)! Result? Complete mayhem! All very oh la la, darlings :-)

How our audiences laughed :-))))))



www.mashamplayers.co.uk

Ellen Dean




Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Golden Lion, Northallerton, North Yorkshire


Enjoyed a lovely meal with John Frannis at The Golden Lion, Northallerton
www.golden-lion-hotel.co.uk on Monday evening. John had travelled up from South Wales. Guess what I had for pudding?


Yes, sticky toffee pudding, and did I enjoy it? You bet I did. Not only good food, but friendly and helpful staff.

Ellen Dean Recommended

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Lip Service BBC Centre London

Last Thursday - 30th September 2010 - I was invited to attend the premiere of  Lip Service a new BBC drama due to air 12th October on BBC3

at the BBC Centre in London.
You can read my article at www.shewired.com



I travelled to London by train. We'd only gone a mile or so down the track when an announcement came over the system  asking if there was anybody on board with medical training - I immediately thought oh no - the driver is ill! - and the announcement continued requesting them to please go to the buffet car immediately. Happily a medical person was on board and everything seemed to be okay.
I have to say Grand Central train staff are brilliant, nothing is a bother for them. 

I was met at Kings Cross by a lovely guy called Barney who knowing I was probably going to need help getting across London, was a godsend. Thank you Barney :-)

I thoroughly enjoyed the taxi ride to the K West Hotel London where I had a lovely surprise: I had been upgraded to the Embassy Suite. A big thank you to the staff at the K West. And, I have to say, the food is absolutely delicious.

I decided to walk to the BBC Centre, it was only fifteen minutes from the hotel. So, off I went down Uxbridge Road on to Wood Lane, passing the new Westfield Centre, - simply MUST go back and shop there.

I arrived at the BBC Centre Reception and waited for Sherrie Hewson who was joining me.

We enjoyed the premier, the chat with Harriet Braun, BBC staff, and other guests. Lip Service is set in Glasgow. The main actors are in the 20 something age range so no doubt it will appeal to a younger audience. 
But, please,  let's have some older women on screen. After the age of 40 women do not disappear. Far from it. They are - like good wine - maturing beautifully. I have to applaud Sherrie as she was quick to say that should another series be made with older actors then she is most definitely available! 


Monday, 27 September 2010

Amy and her horse Honey





This is great progress. The last video saw Honey getting upset and distracted by her foal Bee, and Amy took a couple of tumbles. But, not anymore . . . foal was very naughty, but completely ignored by her well behaved mum. Positive steps forward.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Ding Dong!


ELLEN DEAN and KATHY BOYER 
CO-DIRECTORS
OF
MASHAM PLAYERS AUTUMN PRODUCTION
DING DONG
by
Marc Camoletti
English version by Tudor Gates
Performance dates
18, 19 and 20 November 2010
Masham Town Hall
North Yorkshire

Curtain up 7.30pm

Tickets from Masham Community Office






   www.kbequinetherapy.co.uk                                 




Saturday, 4 September 2010

A Pudding at The White Bear, Masham, North Yorkshire



We thoroughly enjoyed our meal, and pudding at The White Bear, Masham last Tuesday evening.

Amy tried Summer Pudding for the first time; her face says it all. The pud wasn't to her taste. That's absolutely no reflection on the food though which was delicious. I said she should have tried the sticky toffee pudding :-)

Ellen Dean Recommends the fish and chips!

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

North Face Hedgehog GTX XCR 1st Review

I was delighted to be chosen by Fitness Footwear to review their North Face Hedgehog shoes.

I have to say though that these shoes are a small fit. I requested a size 4 because that's what I take, however, I couldn't get them on my feet. I had to return them, but that was very easy to do, and within a few days another pair  - size 5 - arrived.  So when you order a pair make sure you get a size bigger than you normally would.


These shoes are ever so comfortable. They are breathable, and waterproof too. Although I haven't tested them in the rain yet but, I have tested them in the field when scooping the pony poop! And I jumped the fence into the maize field. That was 'amazing' as I have never jumped that fence before.



I went caving but decided not to wear the shoes as they are so pretty (foil gray and popsicle pink) and I didn't want to get them dirty on their first trip out!  North Face Hedgehog GTX XCR

I haven't gone all technical (you can read the tech bits on their website) with my first review because I want to test their comfort and style.

Friday, 30 July 2010

Stump Cross Caverns Experience


I hadn't been in a cave since my childhood days. So, on Wednesday I decided to go underground, and  explore Stump Cross Caverns owned by Richard and Lisa Bowerman.  

Okay, I must admit (if I don't tell you my niece Amy will) that I was more than a bit apprehensive but thanks to the encouragement of Jacob (the owner's son) who at thirteen knows all there is to know about  Stump Cross Show Cave I put on my hard hat, and descended into the hole! 

Once I was down there I was amazed at the beautiful colours and formations. Stalactites and stalagmites are everywhere, along the cave passages and in the grottos, in all shapes and sizes. Isn't it bizarre how many faces there are in rocks? See if you can spot any faces in the video pics of these  caves that are millions of years old.

After the cave experience we enjoyed tea and cake in the cafe, that in itself is well worth a visit. So, if you are with a party of people, and you can't get down the steps into the cave, sample the delights of the cafe, and have a browse around the shop. A great choice of crystals and gifts. There's something for everyone.

British weather being what it is this is a perfect place to visit rain or shine!
Oh yes . . . I nearly forgot to say . . . Richard brews his own beer made using water from within the cave. Appently visitors are able to enjoy a drink with a difference! It's called Stump Cross Beer.

Ellen Dean Recommended.


Sunday, 25 July 2010

The Volvo C70 Convertible Experience


Recently I was asked, “What is the discerning woman driver looking for in a convertible?” 
From a woman’s point of view head turning style and sleek lines are the first essentials. Followed by a luxurious leather interior designed for ultimate comfort. Lots of easy to use gadgets including Blue Tooth; built-in Sat Nav; a terrific sound system; USB connection for iPod; four comfortable seats, heated of course; air con and a spacious trunk for the designer shopping bags.  Plus, to make life especially easy, a hard top that retracts in 30 seconds at the push of a button and disappears into the trunk. 
Enter the Volvo C70 Convertible. 


The gleaming silver number I had the opportunity to drive and review matched all of my wish list in looks, and more because it is an absolute dream to drive. Quick acceleration; easy to handle, it glides; great to park - there’s a reverse warning alarm; 6 gears but there is a choice of manual or automatic; everything is within easy reach including neat control buttons on the steering wheel; plenty of leg room both front and back, and a high class sound system that performs perfectly whether the top is up or down.


No need to be concerned about the safety features when the roof is down. It has a semi-rigid inflatable curtain to protect passengers if in a collision with the roof down, and pop-up rollover protection bars. 


The Volvo C70 Convertible is not only a convertible, but a stunning coupĂ©  to boot.



I was totally seduced by this car.
A little confession though . . . there are a lot of gadgets in this car and what did I do?
I got my buttons confused and pressed the button for the heated seats
 instead of the button for the air con! 



All-in-all luxurious motoring at its best. www.volvo.com


Ellen Dean Recommended


Friday, 9 July 2010

Our visit to the Lleyn Peninsula, & Snowdonia, North Wales, UK



Take a trip around this beautiful and inspiring part of the world with us. Many thanks to Neville Williams of Blue Water Marine Limited, Pwllheli Marina Fairline Marina - Wales you are a star! See you on board next time.



Criccieth was beautiful with some of the most dramatic skies, and coastline you could wish for. Sat Nav kept going on about the light; that's an artist for you.
Criccieth Castle CADW - Wales stands on a rocky peninsula overlooking Tremadog Bay. Originally a stronghold of the native Welsh Princes, Criccieth was later annexed and added to by the English monarch Edward 1.



Keith and Helen Burt took us on a tour of the Snowdonia Railway stopping off at the Sygun Copper Mine Sygun Coppermine

Caernarfon Castle is impressive to say the least. Built by Edward 1 . . . though why he wanted to build it next to the car park I do not know :-)

Then on to the National Slate Mine passing Electric Mountain

We were bombarded by seagulls whilst we enjoyed fish and chips overlooking the lake at Llanberis.

A great trip. Thanks to Helen and Keith Burt. Keith is Welsh and his history knowledge is awesome.

All venues/visitor attractions recommended by Ellen Dean

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Masham Music Society June 2010



On Friday 25th June Park Square, Masham, echoed with the sound of music when members of Masham Music Society, conducted by Jonathon Heitler, performed their open air concert to a large and appreciative audience in the colourful garden of Mr. & Mrs. Malcolm Jameson, Society Patrons.

The choral society sang several popular songs, interspersed with individual performances. Amy Addison and Brian Gregg performed a catchy folk song and invited everyone to join in the chorus. And they did, including me! Enjoyable solo performances were courtesy of Alistair Staton  and Robert Jameson.

The weather was kind, although gazebos were in place in case of rain. On arrival the guests were greeted with a glass of wine and enjoyed a buffet supper and raffle afterwards. Honorary secretary Anne Gregg said that the evening had been a huge success.

Society Chairman, Jim Heaton, presented Mr. & Mrs. Jameson with a small token of thanks for their continued support and generosity.

Masham Music Society perform their Annual Concert on Saturday 4th December 2010 in Masham Town Hall. New members are always welcome, no audition is necessary.
Ellen Dean

Photographs Ellen Dean and Gloria Fletcher

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Portmeirion, Gwynedd, North Wales, UK


If you are thinking of visiting North Wales, you must take a trip to Portmeirion Village. Ellen Dean recommends it :-)

 Portmeirion was built by Welsh architect Sir Clough Williams-Ellis from 1925 to 1976. He wanted to show how a naturally beautiful landscape could be developed without spoiling it. The village closely resembles Portofino, Italy.                                                        





Thursday, 24 June 2010

Jeryl Orsino - Singer/Songwriter

Tonight on Durham Dales Radio between 8-10pm BST I will be playing the fabulous music of American singer/songwriter Jeryl Orsino whose songs 'Be With You' and 'He's a Whore' were featured in the second episode of the groundbreaking web series, Venice.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

UK's Youngest Radio Presenter

This is Anna Gaughey.
At 11 years old Anna is the UK's youngest radio presenter, and she is good.
Anna who lives in Crook, County Durham plays a mix of music on www.durham-dales-radio.co.uk along with requests. Join her every Tuesday 5.30-6.30pm BST.
Abba is one of her favourite groups (great taste Anna). ABBA - Gold: Greatest Hits


Anna loves horse riding. Keep an eye out for her at equestrian events.

 

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Astral Projection - Synchronicity


I am writing a scene for a character and would love to hear any stories you might have about what you consider to be an Out of Body Experience. Have you ever experienced this yourself? If you have will you please contact me.

And...can you Astral Project? Have you ever tried it? If so, what happened?

I would also like to hear about any experiences you have had with Synchronicity.

Any comments gratefully received. Or,  if you prefer confidentiality, please email me at beautifulstrangers@ellendean.co.uk



Thursday, 29 April 2010

Kataka Gara featured on the Ellen Dean Show - Durham Dales Radio tonight 8-10pm BST



Kataka Gara is a singer/songwriter of "Spirit Pop"; described as World Electronica music, featuring haunting melodies and powerful lyrics about enlightenment.  Evoking the musical stylings of Enigma and Dead Can Dance, Kataka Gara is a master of unique musical instruments such as the Hang, Didjeridu, Berimbau, Djembe, as well as over 50 additional instruments. 
An accomplished Reiki Master Teacher, she "funnels" healing energy into her music, creating an exquisite and inspirational sound experience, which drops audiences deeply into their hearts when they listen to her music.



I will be playing songs from her 

recently released album 
Songs Of Life tonight Thursday 29th April
and Saturday night 1st May 
on www.durham-dales-radio.co.uk 
between 8 and 10pm BST.  


To check out additional songs on the album and read her current press reviews, please go to the website www.katakagara.com


You won't want to miss this hauntingly beautiful music.



Friday, 23 April 2010

Cetyl M Equine Joint Supplement Update

Almost a year ago we started to give the joint supplement Cetyl M www.collarways.com our old mare Katie. We were pleased to be asked to trial this supplement on a veteran. We had great results. Please read two previous blogs.

So how are things going now after she's experienced the worst winter for many a long year? Good question.

Every time the snow deepened (it never seemed to melt) and the temperatures dropped even further we worried about Katie.

She was well wrapped up, had a new little Shetland friend for company, and both had 24/7 access to their stable.

How did her old joints manage? Just fine!

Cetyl M was, and still is, fed daily in her food and we believe that it helps her enormously. She is relaxed, happy, and more importantly, she is supple. Our  vet, farrier and equine masseuse can confirm this, and are happy to recommend Cetyl M. In fact they were all surprised at how supple Katie had remained over the winter months when they visited her recently.

If you have any need to consider using a joint supplement, we strongly recommend that you try Cetyl M first. We saw results within the first 14 days of use, and with continued use the result is maintained. A must for our golden oldies.

If you have friends who you think might be interested in Cetyl M please tell them to read this blog. Please tell your vet about it, and your local riding club members. And, if you have any questions about the trial, please feel free to ask.

Cetyl M joint action formula for horses with Cetyl Myristoleate
Unique Fatty Acid Blend: Exclusive 100% plant-derived blend of esterified fatty acids with Cetyl Myristoleate to support joint health and function.
Granular Form for Maximum Potency: Not subjected to the degrading effects of heat and pressure from pelleting.
High Palatbility: Apple and molasses flavoured.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Chocolate and Love

When  Chocolate and Love www.chocolateandlove.com asked me to taste test their new line in Organic chocolate, and write a review about it, what could I say? Absolutely! After all I do like my chocolate :-)

I received four 100g dark and delicious bars from C & L:
Filthy Rich, Crushed Diamonds, The Coffee Affair and Orange Mantra, and one Essential Orange bar courtesy of Conscious Chocolates Ltd www.consciouschocolate.co.uk   Oh the anticipation.....



I sampled Filthy Rich first, an extra dark chocolate with 71% cocoa. I expected it to be bitter, but it was perfect and I was in chocolate heaven. This is very smooth and creamy, no bitterness at all. A must for those who like their chocolate bars without added flavour.



Crushed Diamonds is a fabulous chocolate, but not one for me as I found the cocoa nibs too sharp. However, it was a favourite of my partners!



The Coffee Affair is a deceiving little number. It has very little coffee smell but when it hits your taste buds the coffee taste explodes into a quality ground coffee flavour.

Orange Mantra is lush. A must for chocolate orange lovers.

Unfortunately the Essential Orange bar from Conscious Chocolates didn't go down very well at all. I'm sorry to say that it just wasn't to my taste, but I'm sure others will love it.



I would certainly buy Filthy Rich and The Coffee Affair. My partner would buy Crushed Diamonds.

I definitely recommend you try this luxurious chocolate for yourselves - you won't be disappointed.



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