Zac Goldsmith speaks his mind "I chose to be an active backbencher, or as the Government probably sees it, a pain in the backside." Catch up on what else Zac Goldsmith had to say about plastic bags, wind farms and whether or not he’d put Nigel Lawson in the Tower, in our Climate Week Q&A.
Best of the Bard In the lead up to Shakespeare Week (17– 23 March 2014), we'd like you to share your favourite Shakespeare quote - be it witty, lusty, insightful, offensive or macabre. Leave your quote on the thread to be entered into a prize draw to win one of three luxury Usborne clothbound editions, containing beautifully illustrated retellings of Shakespeare’s plays. "Is your brain as dry as the remainder biscuit after voyage?" (As You Like It) Yes, ours too. But make haste - you have till 12 March!
Kids' book of the month giveaway Dandelion Clocks (suitable for children aged 9+) by Rebecca Westcott is real, funny, sad, touching and heart-warming and will be a book well loved by fans of Jacqueline Wilson, Cathy Cassidy or Annabel Pitcher. We have 50 copies to give away.
Picture book of the month And not forgetting the littler ones...we have 50 copies of our picture book of the month to give away too. Granny knows exactly what to do when Arthur starts missing his mum on their first day apart. I Want My Mummy is the latest book from award-winning author Tracey Corderoy.
Freelux offers stylish yet practical showering solutions for the whole family. Products carefully selected for easy use and to give you peace of mind. Find out more about how Freelux can enhance your bathroom.
WW1 book giveaway Published to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the First World War, World War I: The Definitive Visual Guide, by DK, is a fascinating portrait of a world at war, vividly portraying the conflicts of the war on land, sea and in the skies. Get your hands on one of four copies here.
Climate Week How green are you? Get involved with Britain's biggest climate change campaign, and do your bit for the environment. There's still time to make your mark. Why not go meat-free for a day, set up a Climate Week Swap (because we've all got those impulse buys that never leave the wardrobe), or challenge yourself to cycle instead of drive?
Review local and win a £100 Amazon voucher Gransnet Local is growing, and up and down the country new sites are being taken under the wings of willing gransnetters, intent on making them hubs of local information and meet-ups. We're working on improving the sites and would love to have your input on how often you use them, what you'd like to see more of, and what you think works at the moment. Not all the sites have an editor at the helm so if yours looks bare, look at adjoining sites or perhaps you'd like to volunteer as a local editor yourself? See here for more details.
Jules Hudson webchat - 20 March The face of Escape to the Country and Countryfile, Jules Hudson, will be joining us for a webchat on 20 March. Ask him anything from renovating houses and historical buildings, to being an archeologist and his passion for military history.
Ahead of No Smoking Day (coming up next week) Susan Bradley writes about her battle to give up cigarettes...and why she is determined that this time she will succeed. Take a look at her guest blog post and share your own experiences and tips.
"Until they are about six, children regard their grannies and granddads as huge playmates..." So says Virginia Ironside in the second of this week's guest blog posts. "Is there ever quite so much fun to be had as playing with DC/DGC?" Frankly we are always up for an excuse to get the Playmobil out. We'd love to know about your favourite toys and games as well.
Well, actually that's not quite true. We've been cringing delighting, in some punny local business names this week, so we thought it was only fair that we share the joy with everyone else. We've gathered the best of British business punnery for your entertainment, from chip shops to dry cleaners. If you have a witty entrepreneur in your local area, we'd love to see their offerings on the thread.
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From the forums
It appears that despite gransnetters' impeccable moral code and sterling <ahem> examples of law-abiding behaviour, a generation of delinquents is nevertheless on the rise. "A dear friend had four children very close together. She told me that many years ago when she had a little one in the pram and the next one up sitting in the pram seat, she got home from shopping in Boots to find a pair of rubber gloves, a hairbrush and a tube of Steradent stashed under the covers!" confided phoenix. Disappointingly, no fruit pastilles then?
And as for janerowena's granddaughter's breaking and entering... "Yesterday DGC2 (two years old) was being clingy and DD was desperate to go to the loo for a little 'me' time. All was quiet and peaceful until she heard a scratch-scratching outside, and DGC2 burst triumphantly into the locked room, much to everyone's shock. The chocolate-spread-smeared knife used to facilitate the breaking and entering was discovered outside on the stairs." Ah, rookie error. Always lick hide the evidence.
Elsewhere, there was a debate on the official Order of Browsing on Gransnet, which, as Soutra suggested, should be added to the Queen's birthday honours list. kittylester wondered what the insignia would look like? "Crossed knitting needles?" and "walking sticks?" were quickly dismissed in favour of "a woman, sitting with feet up while husband does the work," from jinglebellfrocks. The woman sitting with feet up browsing Gransnet of course.