Friday, March 25, 2011

Adopt a Panda....?

...I might as well, judging by the amount of bamboo I have dug up today. A tip for you; No matter what the label says, bamboo will invade every square centimetre of your garden. It is a evil thing and must be destroyed. Forget 'slow growing dwarf variety', the damn stuff pops up everywhere. Even through your industrial strength weed suppressing membrane.

So, today was warm and sunny, so I started the chore of clearing the garden. The bed I can see from the kitchen window is always a good place to start. It spurs you on to do the rest when you see one area neat and tidy.

Just the box hedging to trim into a neat little hedge and a few more plants to get and then it is done!

We spent last weekend at a lovely house in Kent, not far from the coast. It was a friends 40th birthday and his sister and Other half arranged a great weekend. On Friday evening we visited Chapeldown Restaurant and had a truly wonderful meal. I started with wild mushrooms on toasted brioche and a fried duck egg, then pollock in wine batter with 3 fried chips (that is fried 3 times, not 3 chips - as if frying them once wasn't bad enough)!! with cheese and biscuits for dessert.

Saturday daytime, we headed across the border to Rye for a wander around the antique shops.

Being as poor as a church mouse at the moment, I of course found loads of things to tempt me. The temptation proved to be too great -

I love vintage tins and these were a steal at a little ram shackle antique shop. My bartering skills were on form! We also picked up two miniatures wooden chairs, a wooden coat rack for the utility room and a large clock for the kitchen!

I saw this cute little bone china jug and couldn't resist -

The daffs are tiny, no idea what type they are as tete a tete are much larger than these. The flowers are only a cm or so across. The jug is hand made by a local potter. I have no problem paying a little extra for something that is hand made and beautiful.

Saturday evening was spent playing a murder mystery game, set in the 1960's. Jase and I were given the roles of woman, which proved to be interesting. Full costumes were expected. Make up was optional, but in for a penny........Lets just say I cannot go to Primark in Manchester for a while. The black dress, shoes, padded vest and bolero jacket are going to charity now. I will keep the wig. *wink* A really fun evening!

Jase left for work around 1.30 today, so I dug over the beds, and managed to get my first veggies in the ground. The hens helped dig over a couple of raised beds, searching for worms and slug eggs. Planted some leaf spinach around the strawberry plants as well.

Broad beans are now in!

Our plum tree is laden with blossom again, but I am secretly hoping that we don't get as many plums as last year. We had buckets full! Stunning to look at though -

The hens are laying well, 2-3-4 eggs a day, nice to fill up the egg boxes. They are loving the sun as well and will all lie down with wings out-stretched to soak up the rays.

Tired now and my back is sore. Spending 2 days at the Ideal home exhibition for Omlet hasn't helped. Lovely to talk chickens for 2 solid days though. Even popped to the stall next door and ducked my feet in a tank of Dr Fish. Strange experience, but lovely smooth feet now!

Bye for now!

C x x

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bundles of fun!

Morning All! Yes, for once I have time during the day to write my blog. You see I am in Oslo with work and have 3 hours to count down until pick up from the hotel. So here I am, swigging tea from a ridiculously small hotel mug.

It has been a weird week. Late starts, arriving at hotels at 11pm. Felt like I have been in a permanent state of fuzziness since Friday. Can't get my head around getting up at 8am, I am more used to 3-4am starts. Will swap any more lates if I get them next month.

So, I managed to get a few more crafty things done. I finished off some bunting for the shop last week. The flags were cut out ages ago, but just need some spare time to sew the whole lot together.

Vintage garden floral bunting -

Jase and I visited Southampton to get my new Iphone replacement. Unfortunately, I have lost all my numbers and several pictures as I hadn't backed up the info. Have now learnt how to do it and am religiously plugging it into to my laptop to store things. It is becoming an obsession. Just one more to add to the list. We also bought a new desk lamp for the office/craft room/my oasis of calm. The light in there is bad, so I needed something to make night time sewing a bit easier. The new chunky chrome lamp looks great.

I would still really like to convert our brick outbuilding to a craft room. It has power and light in there (along with numerous empty boxes, lawn mower, hundreds of jam jars, fridge/freezer and more junk that I am prepared to admit) and would make an ideal room for me. Too much money to sort out at the moment, but one day maybe. Just a bit of insulation, a few new power sockets and some shelves. Perfect.
In the meantime, I will make do with the office and desk. which is slowly getting more organised. One end of my desk -

...and the other with unfinished projects - Lots more bunting to sew together!

...and my inspiration on the chimney breast wall!

Spent yesterday in Stockholm, so doing a bit of a Scandi -tour this week. Managed to pick up some Christmas red fleece from a fabric shop, for a project I am working on. More of that later, nearer the festivities....! Also saw these cute little bundles of embroidery thread in a basket and had to have them. At 80p each it would have been rude not to.

Not a bad picture from my phone.

One flight home later today and then tomorrow is my last day before my Part time week off! Have a few plans for next week, including helping out at the Ideal home show, a friends 40th murder mystery party and a chicken course. Need to crack on with a few things craft wise next week to keep me happy.

We are having the utility room refitted this week. Jase has been lumbered with the massive task of emptying the room ready for the new worktops and cupboards. I will crack on with the new curtain to cover the boiler when I get back.

Just realised the time. I am leaving here in just over an hour, so better get a wiggle on! That's what happens when you get sidetracked with Facebook!

C x x x

Monday, March 07, 2011

How much longer?

6 days of work now done. Not the hardest working block I have done, but getting up between 3-4am every day took it's toll. I got home around 11am this morning, checked the hens, cleaned them out and headed upstairs. Such a waste as it was a stunning day, blue skies and quite warm, but my bed beckoned. Nothing like sleeping in your own bed. I crave it when away. Woke up at nearly 3pm and felt bleary eyed, hair standing on end and fuzzy. Must have slept well.

3 days off now and heading to the Apple store in Southampton tomorrow, to get my iphone fixed. We will pop into IKEA on the way and see what delights they have to offer. Need some pillar candles and that's about it, but we'll see what we come home with.

A laptop genius friend is coming down on Wednesday and Jase has a kidney scan on Thursday - after a bout of suspected kidney stones a couple of weeks ago. So that is the next few days off planned! Back to work on Friday for 6 days. Can't wait.

I have made several more felt number and stitched extra large safety pins to the back, will post pictures when I get a chance.

I haven't seen Jase since Tuesday, nearly a week now. He will be home tonight and we both have days off together. Plans are underway for the utility room, when next door get back from holiday. Looking forward to seeing the back of the work tops that have been residing in the lounge for months. It will mean stacking the contents of the room in the lounge, but should only be for a couple of days.

I am now doing 3 days at the Ideal Home Show in Earls Court. The 22-24 March on The Omlet stand, so pop in and say hello if you are there. I will be the one sucking a Strepsil - always get a sore throat from talking too much. Not usually a big talker......! *wink*

I got my new laptop this week after the ibook really started to play up. This new MacBook is lovely, slightly bigger but very moochy to the touch. I won't go into details about setting it up and trying to 'migrate' all the info from my old laptop, lets just say there is reason my Mac wizard friend is visiting on Wednesday.

Jase flew to Larnaca this week and came home with a huge bag of Seville oranges and grapefruit-sized lemons. Marmalade and lemon curd are in order I think. When I get 2 spare seconds.......

No eggs from our hens today, but 3 from next doors'. We have a couple of boxes now, so will take those to Mum & Dad's later this week. Looking forward to my part time week on the 17.........counting down the days.

Country Living magazine has landed on the mat, so time to light the fire and chill out.

C x x x