Showing posts from May, 2010

End of month view

I am away down to Oxford for a couple of days tomorrow to help older daughter get ready for a trip to Japan with her six month old baby and to see younger daughter's progress with unpacking after her big move out of London into the country.  So here is a slightly early end of month view. Here is the side garden, now awash with geraniums, aquilegia, verbascum and peonies.  I am going to show you some close ups too, just because I love them so much. These paeonies will be over so soon but there foliage is a meaty contribution even when the flowers are gone and the flowers themselves are so luscious I would have them if they flowered only for a day. The aquilegia by contrast have been going for a while and will keep flowering for a few more weeks yet.  I love the way they self seed and the different colours and shapes they throw up.  This pinkish one is a gentler softer colour than I would usually like but it is just perfect. This is looking down through the new little orchard.  The


The electricians came.  More of our house fell gently into the kitchen. I planted out annuals into the cutting garden and ox eye daisies into the orchard. The chicks got lost in  the long grass. The state of our house sent us off to our pub for burgers and very good chips. Ian wanted to watch "Dave".  I was snotty.  QI was on and I was wrong. It got, happily and hardworkingly and the days are too short, to bed time.

Chick update

Go away, can't you see I have chicks to look after? Oh my God, I have lost one.  Nobody ever tells you how hard this mothering business is.  I need eyes in the back of my head. No, it's OK.  All present and correct again.  Why don't you just go away and leave me alone?  I have work to do and you are really not helping.

New arrivals

Our Welsummer hen has been broody for a while and sitting tight on six eggs for the last three weeks.  A hen sits for twenty one days so I had been expecting the eggs to begin to hatch tomorrow.  This afternoon I was out in the kitchen garden inspecting the growth of the gooseberries as an alternative to doing anything more strenuous in the blue, still heat, when I heard a cheeping.  At first I thought it was a bird in the hedge but when I stood very still it seemed to be coming from the henhouse. We went over for a look.  When we lifted the lid the hen was still sitting with the familiar spread wings.  The cheeping fell silent.  Ian gently lifted her to have a look.  The first thing we saw was a couple of empty eggshells and then a tiny yellow chick, already beginning to fluff out. Moving her again there was another chick, this one still wet and flat and two more empty eggshells along with the two eggs yet to hatch.  The nesting box she was in sits a little higher than the main bo

Inside and out

On Saturday two men arrived and knocked all the plaster off our kitchen walls.  I was going to say knocked hell out of my house actually and that is certainly how it felt.  In a four hundred year old  house you never know what you will find when you start to do any work at all.  We have decided to move our kitchen from the 1980s extension where it languishes now, all stained walls and peeling melamine cupboards, to the larger, older room at the front which used to be the dairy.  The room has been plastered with a mixture of lime plaster and new gypsum based plaster.  The new plaster has been gently falling off ever since we arrived and we have bitten the bullet and decided to have the whole room replastered. So here we are, bags and bags of rubbish later, with the plaster off and the old stone walls revealed. The floor is made of huge slabs of slate. The walls are hugely thick too but here and there taking off the plaster has brought pieces of stone gently crumbling out of the wall.  I

The day we went to Malvern

I took my camera to Malvern but somehow the fact that it was cold and I was enjoying the company of Zoe means I didn't get it out so this blog will have to be a picture free zone.  Hopeless. Setting off on Thursday felt a bit like playing hookey, all by myself in the car, leaving all my usual responsibilities behind.  I was reminded again of how much I like driving when it is just the car and me and the open road, or the M6 which is not quite so Mr Toad-like. I was staying at Bredon House (recommended, good position, great breakfasts) with Zoe and Karen from An Artist's Garden and Karen's sister in law Jane.  This was quite a cunning way of managing the meeting up with bloggers as I had already met both Zoe and Karen and thought that this would feel more like a reunion with friends and less like plunging in to a roomful of strangers and it did. Meeting blogging friends is an odd sensation,  never actually quite like meeting a stranger, more as I imagine it might be to

Seven things that make me grumpy

I have just read about seven things that make me grumpy on rosie scribble's blog   It spoke to me.  Perhaps I am having one of my grumpy old woman days.  So, just so you can see that all is not sweetness and light up here all the time, here are my seven: Politicians posturing and turning any question into a way of blaming the other political party instead of entering into a real, unscripted, interesting dicussion . Political interviewers doing their own version of posturing, being aggressive and rude and not apparently appreciating that they are at risk of becoming the story not the question.  I am fascinated by politics and follow it avidly and would no more not vote than run naked down the street, but you can tell that I have spent a lot of time shouting at the radio over the last few weeks.  Will be quite a relief, and not just for me, when the election is over. Sexualised clothing for little girls.  No, no, no.  Just wrong.  Leave them alone to be children. People who don&

The Malvern Spring Show

Well on Thursday I am off to Malvern to spend Friday at the show and to meet up with at least 50 garden bloggers.  I have had my usual attack of wondering whether I should just stay home.  I'm always like this.  If ever I am invited to a party I always have a period of feeling that I can't quite be bothered to go and casting about for excuses to stay home.  Then I get over it, begin to quite look forward to it, go and invariably have a good time.  I do actually love meeting people, like talking to people, am quite extrovert and chatty.  I just sort of forget that when I am up here, hanging around in my jeans and t- shirt, dirt under my fingernails, head full of plants and dreams. So now I am well and truly over party cold feet.  I am hugely looking forward to seeing Zoe and Karen and to meeting so many people whose blogs and tweets I read.  I am longing to get round the plant stands.  I am quite excited by the whole idea of a couple of days somewhere else, and somewhere else