Friday, 5 May 2017

Best laid plans of mice and men

Shall  we try again I typed lots in yesterday and must have pressed something and whoosh all gone despite saving it as I went. I thought I would have a draft copy but no completely disappeared. So the best  laid plan  was not to be. So  here we are in May and the header shows the Lily of the Valley that is blooming just in front of the lounge window. The scent is so lovely. I have forget me nots everywhere, they self seed and look so pretty. I took a few photos with my new camera, the old one finally gave up the ghost ,so maybe I  will  get some better pics now to share. I have one red hot poker out but it has 16 more buds so in a week or two it will be magnificent.
The euphorbia behind it looks lovely with the sun behind it. All these are in the front borders.
A yellow peony just about to open. and  we have 3 in bud, right up the top near the road we have 3 echiums which are very stately and attract lots of bees.
 You can see one right at the back, the phormium in the front has 12 spikes on it. So that will be spectacular later , it looks like miniature bananas when  they  flower. Also in the front is this no idea what it is but it is very pretty.

I did manage a close up of the echium not sure of spelling, but the bees wouldnt stay long enough for the picture.
These are standing about 8 feet tall.The sky was blue when I took these ,but today is overcast ,since I last spoke  it has rained once. Even the grass  when Martin cut it today looked as  if it  needed a drink.We did an Ollie walk the other day , he is never far from our  thoughts , such a lovely walk the skylarks were in  full song, they nest in the fields where we walked twice a day.

The birds are emptying the 4 feeders we have on the apple tree every day now. We have 2 very fat pigeons that visit most days and the other day Martin  was telling Sam that his  grandma used to make  pigeon pie, you can imagine the face that Sam pulled. He did not think you could eat pigeon , to which he was told he was going to have one for dinner next time he called .. I have never tried  it and don't think I want to ...but for once  Sam was trying to get out of coming for dinner.
So this week, I have done  a little stitching not a lot as my hands and back have been playing up. I have had an appointment to see the Spinal  Centre Clinic Consultant on  the 24th May ,great I thought at last, then I found it is almost 100 miles away. Martin is not keen  on driving long distances  now but he has said if that is the only one in the South of England we would go. I cannot tell you how releived I was that he said that. DD said she would take me but to be honest she has so little  time off, with family and work committments that  I would not feel happy .The spring makeover is coming along I had  hoped to get the  dog finished to show you but that maybe next time  now.
I will be sorry when this one is finished as it does make me smile.I have got P finished on Spring.Now onto R.
Jubilees sheep is growing  slowly ,and not much more  stitching has been done apart from Elizabeth Bennets dress which has  not got very far either . So those  will  have to wait for their turn to be shown to you.
I am feeling  like a  Harry Potter character , Dobby the Elf. Hmmmm  I hear  you say she has finally lost the  plot. I  have a    SOCK.
It fits !!!!Martin said the next one should be easier, hmmm  not sure about that but that is next on  the needles.So not completely idle. I have been reading though  and could not put a book down my daughter lent me . Entitled  The Woman  in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware. It took me  2 days to read it ,I am now reading another of hers called  The Dark Dark Wood, which has me  gripped too. I will lend it to  Caitlin when I have finished it. I do not need any more  books  ,I  do not need anymore books ,I do not need anymore books,but when did I listen to that!!! .Books  bought this week.
Amazon is really a good friend of mine lol. However we  seem to have another late starting reader in  the family, Caitlin  our 19 year old grandaughter has just found she can lose  herself in a book ,and has taken to reading in her lunch breaks. She has just read, me before you ,and loved it. She said she wanted to read more  of  Jo Jo Moyes books and so she went to  the library. They did not have any she wanted, and she was  surprised when I said  Oh I have all those on your list. Why she was surprised I just don't know ! as you all know I can  never have too many. She then said next time I will just come and ask  you Nan  , you have more books here. She went home with 3 to borrow. In the supermarket yesterday I saw  one I thought she might like ,but I will read it first.
Martin also picked  up 2 by authors he likes, he is a great reader too. I put this in  the basket as  I thought I could "read" it whilst stitching.
It was only £10,99 which for  a talking book is a bargain. I also picked  up this as I love Charles  Dickens.

Then the next thing that arrived was one of the Silver Creek charts  that I ordered. The other one is on order as she had sold out.

So that is all my purchases for this week. We did go out for a cup of tea and a slice  of cake on Thursday of this week. We went to a cafe which has a courtyard sort of garden and I took a few pics for you to see. This a door that is propped  up .

Just loved the colour and ornateness, is that a word, I have never been so do not know  really, but it reminds me of Morroco. The archway into the into the enclosed garden.
You would not believe there is main  road outside ,a little  oasis in the middle of Portland.The wall I loved , it reminded me of the saying A fish out of water.
Can you see it ,he is well camoflaged . Took lots more but too many to show you here. The greengrocer reminded  me of bygone days when produce was displayed like this.
Inside were hessian sacks containing all manner of lovely things. Yum.
Then while we were driving home  across the  causeway just had to stop and  show you  the  sea pinks that lined  both sides of the road, only in May do you see these in flower,

This is taken  just off the road to Portland which is in the distance, Chesil  beach on the right.

Even closer
So that is all for now ,until next I have an update for  you I will leave you with thanks for leaving me your comments, and now I see I have  200 followers ,feeling quite humbled.
Take care all and if you are travelling safe journeying,keep well and I will speak again soon.
Much love and many hugs

Saturday, 22 April 2017

In and out the dusty bluebells in an English Wood.

Last week we went to our son Graeme and dil Sue for Easter Sunday lunch. We ate far more  than  we  should and decided to go for  a walk. Hence  the title and English bluebell wood. Martins Mum  came  too ,her outfit matched the scene  and  she walked  the whole  distance  . Very proud  of  her. She celebrates her  92nd birthday next month.
A little  warning  ,this maybe picture heavy , as  my post usually are . We started here but had to wait for the others  to catch up.  The smell was beautiful,so many as far as the eye could  see.  

We have had no rain  for almost month so nothing to dampen  them down. I  think nature has woven a beautiful carpet. There were  4 generations of our family , Martins Mum,Martin,  our son  Graeme and his daughter  Ella.
Graemes wife Sue is to the left of Ella. Sues parents also came along and  here is a pic  of  her family.
Also another addition  was Ellas boyfriend Greg. I took this one when he  wasn't expecting it  ,but do have one  of them together.
The two together again.
I do wish this fashion  look would change , I am afraid  I  do not like   the ripped jeans look. Our other grandaughter likes to wear her jeans  like that. Ella  on   her  own . A beautiful young  lady ,but then  I am biased.

We walked for quite a while  and then  we saw in the distance  ,(no not   sheep) but these beautiful Devon  Red bulls.
Not a very  good photo, they were  making quite a noise in the quietness.  I suppose I  had better  show you the one I have of me and  himself  .
For the album one of me and my son.
I do not like having my photo taken so this  one is probably the only one I have of us both.
So we made our way back to theirs for a  cup of  tea and a  hot  x bun before we  drove home. Happy times.
On Monday yes more family pics. Our daughter Kate asked  if  we would like to go for  a walk with them  .
We  were picked up and  set off here.
Portland  Bill about 10 miles from where we live. Another fine  day and we  walked out to Pulpit Rock.
Pulpit Rock is the stack  you can see on the left.  When the sea is rough people are silly enough to climb  it ,  it was being  climbed whilst we were there but at least it wasn't windy and the sea  wasn't rough.
Caitlin  and Alfie had chips , a picnic  just did  not  cut it.
The other grandaughter another beautiful girl but won't accept it. I was hoping  to take  one  of the whole family but trying to get  them all to stay together is  nigh  on impossible  . 
With her big brother Jack and his fiancee Katie.,Caitlin  refers to herself as the third wheel. Not sure if  I have a decent one of  Sam .
Not a brilliant one ,but all of the 4 grandchildren together. Sam  is on  the right. Then I had a bit of a miracle Kate and Iain together.
So proud of our daughter ,  she has been through some  tough times  and  is still smiling. We then went  back and had a cream tea before being dropped back home  . Good times  at  Easter.  Now   Kate and I are back  to the diet.
I hope you havent  been bored by all the family pics , it is  just nice to be able to share.
I  have  not  completely forgotten  my usual bits  and  bobs  so now  would be a good  time for you to catch up on what I  have been doing .
This is how far I have got  with the sock making ,amidst lots of naughty words and scratching of head,despite  having the wonderful sock book.Now the lead onto books  bought this week.
Sorry not a good picture , I saw this a while  ago and put it  on  my wish list and forgot about it. I saw it again this week and it  was still calling me so after a can  I to Martin, it now resides on the evergrowing pile  of crafty books. This morning I bought these 4 at the book sale at slimming.£2 for 4 ,bargain. Kate threw her hands  up in despair, not more books  Mother ,was the comment.
I keep telling her one can never  have too many books ,just not  enough room. She said she had taken some to the Charity shop this week, Oh how can you bear to part with them, to which she said Hmmm  not enough room.
I have done a little stitching this week ,the sheepy design I am stitching  with Sally has an almond  tree at least that is what I am calling it  ,at the start of the third and final row.  I am going to cheat a little  and try and  get the tree finished tonight as next weeks bit amused me.Keeping you in  suspense now.
Will look better when it is pressed. I am thinking of making this into a wall hanging ,what do you think.Then is the time for  MrDarcy ,I have just started Elizabeths hand.

I did  stitch a little on Jubilees Sheep but not much I am afraid so no pic  of that. Spring  is coming along and maybe when I am stitching with Sally on Monday I will get P finished.
 Again not a good picture the fabric is a sort of sage  green. Will try harder next time.Talking of Sally it was very remiss of me last time  not to show you the chart she gifted me for Easter, She has ordered heself one too so we can stitch it together at  some point.

If  I have already shown you this last time,blame the age ,I do all the time. 
I have had some  wool come too , ready to knit  on  holidays nothing too taxing as I do not want to have to concentrate too hard. 

Not crafty but comfy , a pair of trainers ,never worn trainers before but as we plan to walk in the Outer Hebrides I thought I may need something kind  to my feet.
Would be nice to have a pair of socks to wear with them lol

 So thats all my news this week,thanks in advance for any kind comments you wish to leave. Thanks  to those last  time  who left me a little note. I will leave  you a pic of the lighthouse with the wish that your way will be well lit this week.

Much love Barb xx

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Not your usual garden centre.

Hello everyone, Here I am again recording my happenings of since I last wrote. Well as you see by the header we ventured out a few days ago. A lovely spring day and  we took advantage of it. Our daughter and son had been here a few days earlier and we were told how beautiful  it was. A garden centre beautiful ? Well we had to see for ourselves, it is a few miles away but not too far. It was a place called Holme.
So now  some pics  so you can visit virtually too.

We sat here and enjoyed a bowl of soup and watched the coy carp swimming in the pond. After which we decided we would see what was round various corners.

So shall we  go exploring. We followed a path and look what we saw.
 I wanted  to have a go but Martin said I would destroy everything in sight.  So onward. 
We sauntered down the paths and came upon little features here and there at the end of this path were 2 pedestals  filled with violas,about half  way down we turned right and this was awaiting us.

 Yes that is a red hot poker coming  into bloom and I noticed we have one about to flower in our garden.

 On our golden wedding recently we  were given one of these , it grows very tall and  has thistle type flowers . It is a bit like a globe  artichoke. Cardoon  ,probably spelt that wrong ,is its proper name.

Flowers and paths everywhere. 6,000 planted tulips.

 Here a topiary dolphin jumping through a hoop.
Then a windsurfer doing his thing.Although at first I did wonder what he was doing !!

 It looks like they are going to landscape the next field.
 Walking back the way we came and do you think it is like  a normal  garden  centre. I think weddings are held here .as they have a  pavillion area.

More tulips.

 A fabulous group of Hellebores. I love these but they do not like my garden .
Then back to the ponds. The ferns unfurling in the sunlight were beautiful.Of course there was the mandatory shop and although the plants were a little pricey we did buy some and some other items. 
We will never be rich. So here is what we brought home with us.
 Just had to buy this for Martin , and tomorrow he will take it to our sons to show his wife Sue what he can do in his 2 sheds!!!!As she said it will be shed city soon , I hope she does not class the summer house in that lol.
 A favourite of mine is Pooh Bear and a little quote in here sums me up to a t.How wonderful to have a real brain which  could tell you things. I am a bear of very little brain these days.

 We also had to have this  windmill,not a good picture I am afraid but the birds on   the outside go round  clockwise and the inner gold ones go anticlockwise. It is in the rose bed .
 Esther had to come home too to stand by the tree with the bluebells. We had to have her as Martins grandmother was called Esther. Then the plants we bought were planted with Phoebe who stands on guard.
 Should be pretty a bit later on.The peris (if you read that wrong you need to get your eyes tested).
 It is lovely at the moment,  I wish it would stay like  this all year instead of reverting to green.Another one  that has been  blooming recently is the Magnolia.
 Some English bluebells under the apple tree which is a mass of blossom too.
 The Acer is doing  well too. We really do have to get the sheds stained again before we go away.

So a trip round our back garden too. We have been busy in the undergrowth the last  few days and so not much stitching going on . 
 Not a good pic of S for Spring , I have now  found  out why my pics are sometimes blurred , the camera has died. It has done very well as  we bought it back in  2008 and it has been very well used. So today I have got  a new one, ready for hols, thank goodness it went  before. I now have to get used to it. Sheep  have  progressed more  this week ,last night to be exact however I can only show you last weeks as no camera .The tree now has leaves and cherry blossom and a few flowers on  the grass. Ready to start the final row next week.

 Sorry about the crumpled fabric  too. I did have a little stash buying ,  I popped along to Peakside Needlecraft as Sally had said  how  good  they were , hmmmm  thanks Sally.
Chart was free with the threads. I  have been hankering after the next one  since I saw it  on an American   site so I got that too. I did want a Silver Creek  one but they had sold out. Perhaps just as well.

 Another enabler Miss Julie told  me about this book  and sent me a lovely e mail telling me how  much  I  would enjoy? knitting socks. Something  I have  wanted  to do but dpins scare me. Anyway I have  bit  the bullet and now  will be  starting said  socks   soon.Thanks  Julie.You may come to regret it  if I ask loads of silly questions.
Having no  needles like suggested, these arrived  from those lovely people at Amazon.
I cannot  just order one   book  ,  so these arrived too.
 Really looking forward this may come  on  holiday if  I can resist it.The next one  I am reading at the moment and I a finding it hard work although I do not want to give up on it . Do you get books like that.

 The next one is another author I have read all of her books published so was thrilled this one came out.
 Last but not least Darcy he has 2 legs and 2 arms now whoop whoop, next week I shall start Elizabeth Bennet.

So my friends I hope you have not been too bored with all my meanderings through gardens and so on . Thankyou for coming with me and I wish you all a Happy Easter and please leave a comment if you feel so inclined I do read them and feel blessed when I get them 
Take care and this comes as usual with Much love and many hugs.