Adoptees Meet over a May weekend 2014

Posted on May 23rd, 2014 by Debbie


It was certainly a pleasant surprise to have fabulous weather when a few of us met, at my mother’s house in Cheshire whilst she was on holiday.  This event became ‘a sleepover‘ or a ‘PJ weekend’, as many had to travel some distance.   Who would of thought that grown women in their late 40’s and 50’s would be doing this, especially when it is usually associated with children or teenagers having friends to stay!  Haven’t we come along way sisters (brother), the bonding that is going on is just so electrifying since we all started to find each other.  I can hardly describe the immense pleasure and excitement that it has given me to say that I haven’t been moved by those who came is an understatement! This event was so special to me as my mother had offered me the use of her house over a year ago as she knew living in Carlisle had its restraints and the family house was so much bigger for such an event to take place.  Thanks Mum!

Personally I would like to thank all of you who came and shared this unique experience, yet another milestone, watch this space for another organised event but at a different location…

Below are accounts of the wonderful summer’s day:


Written by Serena S

Serena! I was excited and looking forward to spending some time and having a long weekend with some HK adoptee brothers and sisters at Debbie’s mum’s house in Hale Barnes, Altrincham. Thank you, Vanessa. I arrived on Friday and was picked up by Debbie and Janet from Altrincham Station to go food shopping for the troops.


IMG_7474In the evening we chilled out, did some catching up and chatting about all the wonderful homemade food Janet had prepared and the enormous steak pie Debbie had bought for the weekend. Saturday morning food was prepared. Joanna and Peter were the first to arrive, Sue, Jan, Kwai and her young son Alex, finally Pete and Lynne.  We all enjoyed the lovely sunny day eating lunch outside.


IMG_7487IMG_7498After full stomachs, we went indoors to view Pete’s DVD of his family in Hong Kong where they picked up Pete and his sister at ‘Fanling Babies Home’ in Hong Kong where they were bought up. It was a real insight as to what it was like to be there, especially seeing the surroundings of the home.

After viewing the DVD, this encouraged us to chat and bring out our photographs, documents and write-ups from our parents. I always like to see and compare notes, with other Hong Kong adoptees and hear each individual story. I really enjoyed getting to know Janet, Jan, Joanna & Peter, Kwai, Debbie, Pete & Lynne more and hearing about their upbringing and family background.


Saturday late afternoon Joanna & Peter, Pete & Lynne made their way home. While we enjoyed the warm evening sun relaxing and preparing the evening meal which was to be the famous huge steak and kidney pie! All very yummy. Kwai and Alex said their goodbyes.


The rest of us went for a local stroll admiring the nice houses listening to the sound of singing birds and to exercise our legs. We walked passed Debbie’s old Primary School and where her Grandma lived. In the evening we chatted more about how the day went and retired to bed 11-12pm ish.


Sunday morning we had a wonderful breakfast, I couldn’t resist having a cup of Janet’s home-made vegetable soup!  Then Jan, Sue and I got packed ready to go home. Debbie and Janet came with us into Manchester on the tram, this was a first for Janet as she had never been to Manchester or rode on a Tram. We said our sad goodbyes, as Sue and I boarded the coach to London.   Debbie, Janet & Jan then went off to Piccadilly Station where Jan was to get her train to Cardiff. I am really looking forward to our next mini get together with our Hong Kong adoptees sisters in Brighton.

Janet’s first visit to Manchester and ride on the Tram



Written by Janet M


The catering and eating formed part of the fun, with everyone joining in the preparation, placing out the food and, of course, eating it!  A number of folk asked me about ingredients for the homemade things (though anyone who cooks probably knows!) so this paragraph is by way of a “souvenir”, reminding those who came what they enjoyed. Debbie organised the catering (and of course the whole weekend), so a big thank you to Debbie, and to Serena and everyone who helped; Debbie, Serena and I did a big shopping trip on Friday for Saturday’s meals. Thanks also to Linda who unfortunately couldn’t come but provided chutney and marmalade – I could hear people sampling them but I was too into the Oxford marmalade which was my top favourite!

I catered for the evening tea and supper on Friday which was required to be vegetarian: Vegetable soup (onions, carrots, celery, leeks, water, salt, pepper) Bread (white and brown flour, in bread machine) Vegetable pate (white button and porcini mushrooms, 20-year old port, fresh parsley, salt, pepper) Fish pate (salmon, lemon juice, cream cheese, pepper) Vegetable lasagne (béchamel sauce with sprinkled mozzarella and cheddar cheese, ‘ragu’ sauce [base of mirepoix, pureed tomatoes, minced garlic, Italian red wine, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, vegetable stock, fresh basil, milled brown rice], onions, roasted/de-skinned peppers, courgettes, carrots, petit pois, pasta sheets [’00’ flour, eggs]) I’d provided pudding (meringues, raspberries, fruit coulis) but we were too full so it contributed to the next day’s buffet.

For the buffet lunch on Saturday:

06_BuffetSaturdayLunch_JanetCamera_MayMiniMeetManchester2014Serena prepared the salad and beautifully presented it (lettuce, cucumber, celery, tomatoes, cress, spring onions), dressed with a Northumbrian honey and Dijon mustard vinaigrette; a (bought) French vinaigrette was available for top-ups.


03_PineappleByDebbie_JanetCamera_MayMiniMeetManchester2014Vegetable pate and salmon pate (as per Friday) Bread, crackers and oatcakes to accompany the pates, Prawns, Hard-boiled eggs, Honey-roast ham, Aioli (garlic mayonnaise) to accompany the prawns, eggs and ham, Cheeseboard with mixed grapes, Kettle crisps, Rice cakes, Condiments including tomato chutney made by Linda. Various fresh fruit juices, elderflower cordial, coffee, and Debbie brought a nice and wide range of teas,

Pudding: meringues, fresh raspberries, fruit coulis (mostly raspberries plus strawberries, redcurrants, milled sugar) and double cream. Serena and Debbie prepared a colourful and delicious fruit salad which included fresh strawberries and kiwi fruit; Debbie artistically carved the fresh pineapple (see photo).

For the evening meal on Saturday

2014 HK_steakpie- SJ

Steak pie brought by Debbie (see photo) Fine green beans, New potatoes, Beef gravy with red wine and mint Fruit juice to drink

For the breakfast on Sunday

Remains of the fruit salad and fruit coulis Various cereals Toast with three marmalades made by Linda (Oxford, Tangerine, Three fruits), One of us had vegetable soup! Tea, coffee & fruit juice.

Thank you to Janet, Serena and Debbie for the photos.  Photos are for the use of the website only or personnel use.


  1. Liz Lambourn -

    What a wonderful weekend you all had. I am hoping to join in more with socials and get togethers
    when my exam are over .

  2. Jemma -

    It looks like you had so much fun! It would have been awesome to see the DVD and get a glimpse of life in the home, what a fortunate viewing and to have such visual memories. I love that huge Pie … Debbie did you make that? Impressive!

    • Debbie -

      Sorry Jemma I have to confess I bought the Pie. We have a fabulous butcher just down the road from us and he makes these wonderful pies which we buy for our social events down at my Lawn Bowls club that I belong to and now we are even buying them at our WI (Women’s Institute) socials. So I knew the Steak pie would be a hit!

  3. Debbie -

    Great to have some feed back. I will look forward to getting to know you more Liz soon. I am going on a grand tour of the South in July with another Adoptee Janet. If you are around let me know and perhaps something could be arranged! Or at least we can give you an idea of our schedule and who we are meeting up with!

    Jemma I have the DVD in my hot sticky hands but because it has been transferred from an old cini camera of its day the quality is not brilliant. It is on my list of to do jobs and it will be put on the members part of this website where we keep the more sensitive material screened from the general public. If you have not registered look at the website and try and follow the procedure if not come back to me on email. Thanks Debbie

  4. Mim Phillips -

    What a wonderful time! Everyone look so beautiful and the food amazing. It would be wonderful to see Pete’s DVD and get a glimpse into life at Fanling. How emotional it must have been. Love and hugs to all. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Rachel -

    Sounds like you had a brilliant time, eating, drinking and loads of chatting- you should have taken your onzies for the sleep Yes Pete’s DVD must have been interesting.xx

    • Debbie -

      What a missed opportunity to wear our onzies but we would of been roasting in them!

  6. Kit Myers -

    Wow, thanks for sharing! Looks like folks had lots of fun and ate like royalty :)

  7. Beccie Lloyd -

    Lovely to see your great photos, and to hear that you all had a super time. Look forward to catching up in July. Beccie x

    • Debbie -

      Both Janet, Joanna and I look forward to meeting up with you too in July.

  8. Fiona Shea -

    Oh what a wonderful weekend you had, how I wish I had been there too!! The food looks especially yummy. However I will be seeing Debbie and Janet soon.

    • Debbie -

      Both Janet and I are really looking forward to catching up with you, hope you have a few photos to show

  9. Yan -

    What a fantastic week-end! I love the “Chinese” tradition of eating, drinking and (of course) lots of chatting at these social gatherings!! Food looks very tasty and not for those on diets!! Sorry I missed it but look forward to meeting you in July.

    • Debbie -

      The only bit of alchol was in the fruit salad I made! Otherwise it was soft drinks all round! I think it has something to do with the fact that many of us miss that enzyme !

  10. Kate -

    I hope Pete will be able to make it to the Birmingham meet up in October, and bring his DVD. Having heard him describe it, it would be fantastic to see it.

    • Debbie -

      I will bring the DVD along as I have the copy which at some stage I will put on the website but it needs to be edited first and I have not had time to do it just yet, my apologies.

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