Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Chicken Whisperer

Monday didn't start too well. I woke up feeling the worst I have ever felt. Tight throat again and the same hacking cough, but pain further down my throat. Then I tried to talk. And couldn't. Now you have to understand, some people are quite quiet and can happily plod through life without too much conversation. I am NOT one of those people. A quick phone call is always an hour. My 2 hour chicken courses last at least 2 1/2 hours. You catch my drift? Hee hee.

So, I resorted to a croaky whisper. After lots of help from Jase and (the internet is amazing, if a little scary), Laryngitis was diagnosed. Rest, no caffeine (which includes diet coke, could things get any worse)???, no talking, no smoking, lots of fruit tea (makes me heave) and more rest. By Monday afternoon I called the Doctor's and had a very quiet conversation with the receptionist. The Doctor was busy, but managed to call me back and spoke to Jase, who went through my symptoms. Yes, Laryngitis. No antibiotics as it is viral and wouldn't do any good.

By Wednesday, my Birthday, I felt better but was talking in a voice akin to Barry White. Woke up to a blackberry and nettle tea (heave) and opened my pressies! Determined to not let it get me down.

Jase got me lots of dvds, mainly because he bought some months ago and put them away for safe keeping and forgot! Sounds just like me! The complete set of Dinnerladies, Avatar, 2012, The Inbetweeners and a new electric toothbrush that sonically removes the skin from the roof of your mouth. Also got a new compost scoop to shovel chicken bedding, a large cloth bag filled with books, a propogator, bookmark, ribbon, a wooden hanging chicken and money towards my new iphone, if I ever get round to getting one! More chicken cards than you could shake a stick at. What is it about that expression?? Never understood it!?!

Next door made me a teddy bear! He even has a chicken in his apron!! (she based him on me, always wearing an apron when I pop over).

View her other bears at Lovelock Bears

The propogator was set up before breakfast and filled with sweetcorn and squash seeds before the toast had popped up! Unbelievably, the seedlings are up already! I love my Propogator!

Will sit down later and read through My new Allotment book and see what I should have done in May! Desperate to get outside and do some weeding, but for once I have to stop and rest. The smallest thing exhausts me and I am getting slightly concerned now. If I am not feeling better by tonight, then I will go and see the Doctor tomorrow. Just to confirm it is laryngitis.

The garden is in bloom and starting to look summery. I was brave and bit the bullet as far as frost was concerned. The tomatoes were planted out (but with fleece at the ready, just in case). I have 5 more plants upstairs on a sunny windowsill and 10 more plants in the greenhouse.

The spinach and strawberries are coming into their own and flowering well. The enviromesh is now left off as the sparrows don't seem that interested.

My little rainbow chard seedlings will soon be ready to plant out. Not sure quite where to put them as the veggie garden is already planned. Might tuck them amongst the flower borders as they are striking plants.

Rob next door made a dust bath house for a lady on one of my hen courses. Here is it!

I have just received an email from her friend who would also like one. I should get commission!

I had to cancel my quilt stretching session at the local Quilter's Dream and was quite disappointed. But there is no rush (sorry to start with a 'but') - I will get it finished soon. I decided to play around and make something, just to sit and sew really.
A little hen change purse!

Her little tail doubles as a zip tab and I have lined the purse in green fabric. Couldn't find an egg fabric as that would have been ideal!

Next door are away and we are bantam sitting again. 2 of the 3 are now broody and clamped to the nest 24/7. I keep going over and turfing them off, but within 2 minutes they are back again, grumbling away. Once Lilly, the White Pekin, has laid I shut off the nesting area, but they still find somewhere to brood.

Loved this picture of Lavender and Marigold!

It was scorching hot yesterday and the girls weren't happy. They spent most of the day under the privet hedge avoiding the sun. I made sure they had extra water and put another shade over the run to give them more protection from the sun. Cornelia's egg drought is over and we have had 4 large dark brown eggs from her this week. Just seen that she is sat on the nest, so it might be five!

I did a chicken course yesterday as was feeling better on Friday night. After 2 hours, I was exhausted and wished I had cancelled it. Nice group though and happy to cuddle a broody bantam! Once everyone had left I slept for 2 hours.

Looks like it is going to be hot again today as it is 21C already and only 9.30. Umbrella is up. Caffeine free diet coke is chilling and books are waiting for me. *smiles*

Enjoy your Sunday everyone!

C x x x

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Quilting Kraut *wink*

Last week was pretty much a write off, as I was under strict instructions from the Doctor (and Jase) to take it easy. Not possible for me I'm afraid which is probably why I ended up with tonsillitis in the first place.
Spent my time pottering around, which is my favourite pastime. Manged to get a few bits of sewing done though!

A little car pencil case with button wheels -

A new tea cosy and matching egg cosies -

I have been thinking about the Michaelmas fair at the craft centre and realised it is only a few months away, so got cracking on things for the stall.

Little tote bags -

and a more flowery one.....

I went down to the craft centre and had a chat with one of the ladies that runs a shop there. They have 2 shops available at the moment (I say 'shop' - I think they are all converted stables)! All really prettily done with wooden shutters in different colours and tubs of flowers outside.

I would love to run my own shop, but can't see a way to do it at the moment. Such a shame as the rent is quite reasonable, but need the security of my current job. Maybe one day? Anyway, we got chatting and she mentioned a quilting shop just a few miles down the road. I couldn't believe my luck! Acres of beautiful fabrics and a quilt stretching service! Have booked in for next week to get my quilt laid out perfectly with wadding and backing, to tack in place. Really excited that it will be done soon. It has been sat on the dining table for weeks taunting me.

The lady that works there is German, so we had a very long chat about food, Christmas markets and gravy! Yes, gravy. Best not to ask.

They also run quilting classes as well as other fabric related stuff, so might book in for a class or two! I have a strange feeling that I will be a regular visitor.........

In Milan at the moment and just back from a lovely meal with the crew. All older, experienced people who are a joy to fly with! We are off to Stockholm for the night tomorrow and then I have 10 days off!!!!

After scraping the windscreen this morning, I am hoping that is the last frost, as my runner beans are reaching for the sky and need planting out. Tomatoes are doing well too and have flowers on my pea seedlings. They all need to go out asap. The sweetcorn on the other hand is pathetic, so have bought another packet of seeds and will try again.

The girls are all well and laying ok. They are being wormed at the moment, so less treats and that always puts them in a bad mood. I think they are withholding eggs until they see green veg again.

Off to bed in a sec as up again at 4.30 tomorrow morning.

Sleep well everyone.

C x x x

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Tea for two?

Got up at 5am this morning, ready for work. Had a coughing fit which felt like my tonsils were being ripped open *sorry, way too graphic*, so decided to call in sick.

Been popping the antib's all day but my throat feels worse, so copious amounts of tea and trips to the toilet! I'm not one to sit and do nothing, so as Mum had fixed my new sewing machine, now affectionately names Doris, I gave her a trial run.
What do you think?

Have loads of that Laura Ashley gingham fabric left, after making some egg cosies and thought a matching tea cosy would look good. It is getting lots of use today!

The hens need cleaning out, but don't have the energy. Had an Elsbeth egg already early this morning, Cornelia sat on the nest with Agnes watching and chatting. Pru was on the other nest, so maybe another 4 egg day? Am tempting fate, I know.

Off to finish my book now........

C x x x

Monday, May 03, 2010

Barbed wire throat

Feeling icky today. It isn't often that I feel this rough, but woke up at 6am with a sore throat this morning. Felt like a dagger wedged in my tonsil. Jase was up early for work and pestered me to call the Doctor. Not so easy on a Bank holiday, but managed to see an emergency Doctor a few miles away.

Definitely tonsillitis, so 4 tablets a day for 7 days. Swallowing is hard enough! Lots of piping hot tea and fluids and I should be fine again soon. Managed to suck a brioche roll for breakfast this morning, took me 40 minutes!

Thought a mini jaffa cake would be easier, but alas no. Have been out and bought low calorie berry sorbet to ease my throat and a tub of strawberries and cream, full fat ice cream for when I need comforting!!
Hoping to lose some weight - 3 stone by Friday would be good - as tea is about the only thing I can swallow. Picked up an industrial amount of Strepsils, to tide me over.

Am supposed to be back at work tomorrow, but will see how I feel. If it is anything like today, then I won't be going in.

Next door's bantams are fine, Lavender is still broody and bok boking like a banshee, every time I shove her off the nest. Gave them a clean out today. Ours are fine too, 3 eggs today, none from Cornelia but that is the norm now. When we do get an egg it is even more exciting!

After gorging on far too many M&S avocado and feta salads, I have now written down the ingredients to make my own. The one thing I didn't have was pea shoots. Not anymore!

I simply planted loads of seeds in a pot and left them on the window sill. 2 weeks later, it is full of delicious pea flavour (funny that) greens! I keep walking past a picking a few shoots. Jase likes them too, so have planted up another pot full.

Fire is stacked ready for later and tempted to get into bed time attire. Can pop over to next door's dressed like that and no one will see me! Thinking a quiet chill out time this evening.

Bye for now.

C x x x