16 May 2021

Fighting Back


The garden has suffered immensely this year after a long period of dry, cold and frosty weather.  Finally things have started to warm up and a few rainy days have prompted the plants to unfurl their leaves and start growing.


I have transferred some ivy leaf toadflax into my Ali Baba pot, I'm hoping it will thrive and spill out over the sides

ivy leaf toadflax

rosemary flowers

cordyline and sick looking palm


Paul has pruned the damage from the roses and we have had to cut the hydrangea bush right back.  The hydrangea always starts to grow so early in the season and its new leaves were badly burnt and blackened by the constant frost.  Everything in the garden is about a month behind but most plants are quite resilient and have survived the harsh spring.

hydrangea fighting back

Kat is due home tomorrow after her three month overseas deployment.  Her re-vamped bedroom is all ready for her.  Rick will go bonkers when she walks in and he won’t leave her side for a minute while she is here.  At least I will finally get to watch the Great British Sewing Bee!


Will someone please throw my tennis ball?


4 May 2021

Everyday Stuff


I love a bargain so we snapped up the Shower Gel three for one offer when we were doing our on-line supermarket shop.  I had to giggle when we were unpacking our delivery to discover three tiny travel size gels.  Should have checked the bottle sizes!  At some point we will venture back out to the supermarket but on-lining shopping has made us quite lazy, it’s so easy just doing the weekly shop from the comfort of your armchair. 


The weather remains unseasonably cold for this time of year.  Our bicycles are still covered up in the garage so we are trying to keep fit with our line dancing.  This should really come with a health warning - two days ago Paul got a bit carried away doing the Jerusalema and fell over the dog.  Rick is okay but Paul has now got a very painful wrist.  My dancing sessions resume at the village hall later this month but my husband is not going to accompany me!


When I was pulling a few weeds out earlier in the week I found this poppy head skeleton.  I was fascinated at the delicacy of its structure and couldn’t resist bringing it indoors and painting the poppy with some glittery varnish.  


Kangeroo Steve thinks it's quite exquisite!

 Yes, I really do need to get out more.


30 April 2021

The price I pay for bread


For a long time now I have suspected that I suffer from a wheat sensitivity.  Whilst I love eating the different breads that Paul bakes at home I always pay the price afterwards.  I have tried to reduce the amount that I eat but even two small slices of bread will have an effect – bloating, cramps, general discomfort and a strange desire to sleep!


I didn’t really start to eat bread until I retired and discovered the delights of long, leisurely lunches in the south west of France.  Who could resist those wonderful French baguettes and cheeses?


A week or so ago I confessed to Paul that I could no longer continue to eat bread.  He was crestfallen, even though I insisted he should continue to bake bread for himself.  He immediately started to do some research and today he baked, especially for me, a ‘wheat free’ baguette.  Made from a special blend of rice, tapioca and potato flour the recipe also included vinegar, egg white and olive oil.  The result was excellent.  It tasted slightly different and was marginally heavier but I found it a delicious substitute to our normal bread.


I am now nervously waiting to find out if I am going to suffer from today’s bread indulgence.


23 April 2021

Paul's Latest Invention



These cold mornings may have been playing havoc with the garden but the blue skies and sunshine that follow have been some compensation.  Paul went outside early this morning with Rick to plant up some lettuce in his potager and then disappeared around the side of the bungalow.  Some time later I went to investigate and found him ‘hoovering’ the gutters!  He was very pleased with his latest invention - a few pieces of leftover plastic plumbing joints attached to his workshop multi-purpose Vacmaster.


It is very pleasant to have trees bordering the garden but the big poplars shed their catkins and sticky leaf pods all over the lawn and the bungalow roof.  They then accumulate in the gutters and block everything up.  As the weather has been so dry here for weeks Paul decided it was an opportune moment to vacuum the roof.  His new invention worked a treat!





20 April 2021

Home Made


We had a busy morning bottling our plum wine.  It was very satisfying to see all the filled bottles lined up, sealed with corks and carefully labelled, all twenty four of them.  Actually the labels got a little mixed up so we now have an Early Plum, a Late Plum and a Very Early Plum.  Well, they’re all plum anyway.

For the first time this year we had lunch outside on the terrace.  Home-made ciabatta, cheese, home-made pesto with a three bean salad, home-made yoghurt with fresh blueberries, and ….. a chilled glass of home-made plum wine!  It was certainly a very enjoyable lunch and I’m not sure if it was the sunshine or the wine but I felt very warm and rosy afterwards!