Monday 31 May 2010

Busy, busy.

Just words today as I haven't had time to sort out my photos yet. There are some from nearly two weeks ago when we went to Symonds Yat overlooking the River Wye as well as those from my little holiday.
I had a lovely week in Glastonbury with our youngest daughter last week. The weather was amazing and actually too warm for comfort a couple of days, but we managed to find shade in several interesting shops! and postponed our trek up the Tor until the end of the week when it was cooler. There is the most wonderful view from the top - a full 360degrees and you can see for miles. I didn't know that there is a small wildlife area within the Abbey grounds which has a badger sett, and the duck pond is full of huge carp whose scales look golden when they swim through a patch of sunlight.
The first morning we were there, I woke up at about 6 o'clock and heard a cuckoo calling. It must be over 30 years since I heard one.
I'll do a proper Glastonbury post later in the week when daughter and I can get together as she has some of my photos on her camera, due to the fact that I had left mine behind in the flat the day we went into the Abbey museum and I saw the wonderful cope and medieval tiles.
It's been all go since we got home. The garden had become a jungle-cum-wilderness and the liner for the new pond had been delivered so I have spent the past two days weeding and digging up plants to be saved and potted in order to make space, as the new pond is larger than our current one. Our son came this afternoon to empty the old pond and rehouse the frogs and newts temporarily in a tank. I had no idea we had so many - there must be well over a dozen frogs and over twenty newts.
At the moment it all looks dreadful - a bare uneven area of soil with a big hole in it and mud all over the patio slabs. It can only get better! When it's all put back together and replanted I'll take a photo and show you. Whatever we did to the garden last autumn seems to have paid off - it's all looking very lush and healthy. I'm sure plenty of other gardens are the same and maybe we needed that 'proper' cold winter weather so that the seasons knew where they were and what they were supposed to be doing.
I took some homework on holiday to do in the evenings and made little canvaswork slips to add to my allotment piece. I will have to wait till the weekend before I can do any more to it as this week is booked up. When I have something worth showing you I'll post a photo of it.

Sunday 16 May 2010

A belated birthday present.

It's arrived at last after quite a lengthy publishing delay, but is well worth the wait. I've been an admirer of Jan Messent's work since I discovered it nearly 30years ago. This book is a mine of information about these early times and it is obvious that Jan has done an enormous amount of research.
She has used her fabric, mixed-media and altered books to record many experiments and findings, but there is a great deal more to this publication than making books. It's full of other delights as well though I feel inspired to make another book myself.
I should of course be doing more on my allotment piece, but work has slowed right down as I seem to have fallen prey to raging hayfever. I wondered why my cold symptoms kept coming back! I have never suffered from hayfever though have been aware of being a bit 'sniffy' now and then during the summer. This has taken all my energy and I have lost my voice! It's very peaceful in our house!! I have a stuffy head, watering eyes, sore nose and a hacking cough and as long as I don't do anything I feel OK . At present I could maybe sing baritone or counter tenor all in one line of music!!
I am having a week off next week and am going to Glastonbury with our youngest daughter, so must be fit by then. We are planning to walk up the Tor and I don't want her to have to carry me! I have masses of gardening jobs to do as well, as we are having the pond enlarged and many plants will have to be moved. Oh well! I'll do what I can and the rest will have to wait.

Thursday 13 May 2010

No pictures but a new and user friendly laptop!

This is my first solo run on my new laptop, bought this morning and set up this afternoon by my very helpful daughter. I didn't know I was going to buy one - just went to see what was available - but this one seemed like the answer to all my prayers. Don't ask me anything about it! It's a Dell, it's lovely, it's blue and it works!!

Daughter and son-in-law wore me out going around our out-of-town retail park and then the shopping mall, but it was so worthwhile having someone with me who knows what they are looking at and talking about, and I'm delighted with my new toy. My daughter will be happy as they bought a new washing machine - theirs died yesterday after making a dreadful noise and filling the house with the smell of burning rubber. The replacement will be delivered tomorrow.

I'm just about to find out if my paragraph spacing works on this one, or if I will have to go on putting in full stops to leave a blank line.

Just off to do a quick - yes QUICK!! - flick through other people's blogs before I get supper. Yippee!!

Saturday 8 May 2010

I've been shirking - but I have been poorly.

This is a new visitor to the back garden - he pops in most mornings for breakfast and dips crusts of bread into the lawn birdbath to soften them before tucking in. After eating several pieces he often flies off with another piece in his beak. We had a greater spotted woodpecker on the peanuts in the front garden this afternoon but before I could get to the camera it had flown off.
This is another frequent visitor, and very cheeky with it. I opened the front door to see it sitting on a low branch of the wisteria just above the porch. Of course I startled it and it disappeared but when I stepped outside with the camera I found it sitting on the tiles just above the guttering over the porch. Look at those lovely fat wisteria buds - it's going to look wonderful later this month.
I can't believe the amount of growth in the garden over the past few weeks. There is hardly any soil to be seen - everything has taken off and the stone birdbath has almost disappeared among all the foliage.

I love bluebells but they are a mistake in a small garden and will insist on marching onto the rockery and pushing up in the middle of other plants. I am always having to dig them up but their number never seems to diminish. The forget-me-nots are so well named and a lovely reminder of a dear neighbour who moved to New Zealand with her family some years ago, but not before she had given me just one little plant from her garden. They have happily spread throughout mine and if they turn up where they are not wanted I just pull them up, otherwise they have freedom to flower where they please.
I have been rather lazy this week owing to a heavy head cold which has drained all my energy. For two days I was so busy blowing my nose there was no time to do anything else! The 'allotment' piece is crying out for more work and I'll try to do more on it tomorrow. It's our next group meeting on Tuesday and I shall need something to take for our Show and Tell session.
I was hoping to do this post two days ago but problems with this contrary contraption prevented me from doing so. After driving me to distraction then, it is now behaving beautifully and butter wouldn't melt in it's mouth. Aaarrrrggghhh!!