30 May 2021

Must Try Harder


I really wished I had put on a long sleeved top this morning as we rode through the fog rolling in from the North Sea.  Paul led the way and Kat rode behind me, shouting encouragement as my legs turned to jelly.  Kat is a QOM, (Queen of the Mountains in cycling terminology).  It’s a bit disconcerting cycling with a QOM when the slightest incline brings me almost to a standstill.

We climbed up to Kirton in Lindsey and then dropped down to Redbourne.  As we joined the road back to Waddingham we somehow got caught up in a triathlon!  Riders with super bikes and go-faster helmets were whizzing past us and further added to my feeling that I’m getting too old for this game.

On the final stretch before home I messed up my gears and had no alternative but to dismount and push my bike up the steep hill.  Paul and Kat had already disappeared into the distance. My embarrassment was compounded by a group of riders passing me and asking me if I was okay, did I need any help?

We cycled 30 kms in total.  Triathlon competitors swim, cycle and then finish by running.  I took the dog for a walk, cycled and then hung the washing out when I got home.



29 May 2021

Has summer arrived?

Has summer finally arrived? It’s certainly been a fabulous day here in Lincolnshire. 

Paul and I ventured out on our bikes for the first time this year. We didn’t go far, I wanted to check everything was in working order before going further afield so we did a gentle 16.5 km ride . Conditions were perfect and it felt good to be out cycling along the rural lanes. Tomorrow Kat is going to join us so no doubt we will go a bit further and faster (yes, I am slightly worried about this!). 

We spent most of the day pottering in the garden and enjoyed a long and leisurely lunch on the terrace. What a difference a little sunshine makes. 


view from the garden room



Paul's vegetable garden

26 May 2021

Rainy Days and Rocket Fuel



Another day of rain and cold temperatures;  Paul and I decided that bottling the apple wine would be a good rainy day project.


We poured some into a glass prior to the bottling process and discovered that it was unpleasantly dry.  A few weeks ago it tasted like a dry Chardonnay and now it tastes like rocket fuel.  Paul and I were puzzled at first and then we realised our mistake.  We had added more sugar to sweeten it up slightly but had not put in a stabiliser so a secondary fermentation had taken place.  The extra sugar has just increased the alcoholic content and made the wine even drier.  Duh!

We will try and rescue the wine by back sweetening it again, making sure that we add potassium sorbate as a stabiliser before putting any sugar into the mix.  Trial and error.


pouring with rain but the azalea makes a beautiful splash of colour on the terrace.

forget the stupid wine and just throw Mr Bunny for me

22 May 2021

Psyllium Husk


Paul is continuing to experiment with his gluten free bread making.  One of his new recipes listed psyllium husk as an ingredient (as well as rice flour, potato starch flour and buckwheat).  Paul visited our local Green Pantry to buy the psyllium husk and was concerned that he was only able to get 200 gms even though he needed 240 gms. I was more concerned at the £9.00 he paid for it!


Reading the recipe a little closer he realised that he only needed 20 gms of husk mixed with 240 gms of water!  So in actual fact he has enough now for 10 loaves and no one else in the district will be able to buy the stuff because he bought the whole lot!

The good news is that after eating quite a lot of the bread I did not experience any bloating or discomfort.  This is a very encouraging result for me.


Rick inspecting the hedgerows

It was lovely to see the wild lilac and hawthorn just coming into bloom when I took Rick out for his walk around the village.  He is quite sad at the moment that he can’t spend all day outside in his garden, the weather is just too cold, wet and windy.  Needless to say we are still waiting for that first bicycle ride of the year.



19 May 2021

Kat Back Home

 Just a couple of signs around the house to indicate that Kat is back home...

she loves her new bedroom

garden room velodrome

I had a brief go on the turbo trainer but I needed a step ladder to get on the bike.

To be fair Kat has tidied her room since I took this photo. 

Rick doesn't wait for me anymore to get up in the morning, he is straight out of the bedroom like a rocket and then sits outside Kat's door until she gets up.

Happy times! 

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.