Monday, 29 September 2014

Hillier Gardens, Romsey

We popped out yesterday to view 'Art in the Garden'
not sure what we expected
enjoy some of the many photo's taken












The gardens were great, but I love tree's, and they manage the park so very well. 
It cost £16 to get in, and after almost 3 hours, I'm not sure we have seen every thing.
The leaves on the trees are begining to turn into the most amazing colours.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Autumn tidy in the garden

This tomato plant has gone mad again, full of tiny ripe and green tomatoes and loads of flowers, it grows inside my greenhouse, so I hope to pick for ages to come.
 The outside plants have been removed, I had Sammy helping yesterday (wearing his garden gloves, sorry no cute photo's this time), he picked all the fruit off the plants into a large colander, he then put all the green ones into this brown paper bag and stored it in my shed, he has promised to look each time he visits to pick out any red ones. I have a few weeks supply here, but I did not have enough to make any chutney this year.
 Couple of things ready for planting, the blackberry was £2 and the Garlic was £1, all will be planted later today, I have found a spot next to the garage, near my shed for the blackberry to grow and spread. The garlic will go in the front of my Herb bed.
 Sam came to the village with me yesterday and choose these plants for my pots at the side of the house, his reasons for the choice was 'I like red and blue' £4.15 was spent.
 The Amaryllis has got longer, the stem and leaves are a bit pale, but the growth is good, I don't have any windows in my shed so it is a perfect dark place to keep it.
 
 Lastly my Chocolate Comos, I love this plant, the stems are rather long, so I have moved the plant to a spot where the sun is most of the day. These flowers smell divine.
Lowspend/nospend September, the last few days have not been too bad, we did some food shopping and spend £37, plus my plants, £7.15. We did not go into Fareham town centre, we had no requirements, next week we are going to require a food shop, but my plan is to stay on track, one thing I have noticed in this month we have not eaten alot of fruit, and we do not have any room to grow too much.
Soon hubby will be replacing all my veg tubs with a raised bed, it won't be huge, but it will give me a bit more growing room. I look over our back garden fence and see the neighbours garden going wild, I would love to purchase part of it, but there are 3 trees in the area and next door has two huge conifers, so nothing much could be grown there, I did suggest we go it and had chickens, but that is a step too far for hubby. The tree's make a nice backdrop to our garden.
No stitching done here, I don't think I have lost my mojo, just I am tired in the evenings, and I have alot of white stitching to do on Santa, if I start something else he will become a WIP, and never be finished.

Thursday, 25 September 2014

2013, second time around

Not very good for my diet, hubby provided us a treat
I have just returned from a good job interview
fingers crossed
 Everything is looking good on the windowsill next to my desk, Avocado has not any extra height, but the leaves have grown, I love their texture, very pretty. Lemon plant loves it's new pot and has six leaves. Lime plant has not grown much but the stem is now much thicker and beginning to look a bit woody. 2nd Avocado stone is just sat there in it's water.
My ORT jar is filling up, loads of red from my Santa project, I have not picked my stitching up all week, it's been busy in the real world, I did want to use my sewing machine, but again, I have not set it up.
I spend my time here, my 2013 book which I had almost finished had to be abandoned, 
Su and I tried every way to get it back on the system, 
but even though we can see it, we can't upload it.
So I am using the view above to place text boxes and photo's to create the page below, I am working one month at a time, it is much easier to deal with a few post rather than the whole year in one go.   I am working on April, and hope to have it all redone in a few weeks, this will be my birthday present from hubby, 
so I do have a deadline, it's needs to be done within 4 weeks.
Lowspend/nospend September, not spent any money so far this week, will need bread and milk tomorrow, I am enjoying the concept of taking a good look at what we buy and eat, we have been good for a couple of years, and I am proud to say we do not waste food. We make most of the meals we eat from raw ingredients, for years we brought pre made things to put together, this has helped with Fliss being with us and her gluten free diet.

I am beginning to think of Christmas, this year, like last year we are setting a budget for each present and again sticking to it, I am not planning to buy decorations for the house, I have loads with I can reuse, I did buy a new 7 foot tree in January, so I will require some more baubles, but again I am looking for glass, no plastic, I have started looking in second hand shops, I would love a few vintage ones. I will make my cake next month, I will have to purchase some of the ingredients, but as Fliss does not eat fruit cake, I can use the same recipe I have used for the past 20 years.

Paula, you asked regarding the beach huts, as a normal rule, you are not allowed to sleep overnight in the huts, they are a basic hut without windows, but you can furnish the inside how you wish, most have tables and chairs stored for use outside, maybe a camping stove to boil a kettle, some are rustic, basic and then sometimes you pass the most stunning interior. They are a base for spending the day at the beach, the rents are yearly, or you can buy them, but the cost are equal to the value of a small house.

I'm off to school later and then taking the boys to McDonald's drive through, later Josh is going to see a senior school, he has a few to visit to choose where he goes in two years. Sam and I will go to the park, he can ride his bike. I can not believe Josh is already looking at senior school, where has the years gone.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

At the beach

I love beach huts
sadly too expensive for us to have one
 We walked along the seafront at Portsmouth 
 We stayed at the older end, away from the crowds, I love the natural look of this end, all very wild, the benches and street lamps, plus loads of wool bombing. 
 We walked for about an hour, Fliss and hubby and I. 
The walking has done me loads of good, I feel so much better, and I am sleeping much better, I hope to get out my bike next week and start using it as well. No weight loss last week, but I do think my waist is shrinking. 
............... 
 A blast from the past, I still wear this top, I loved Etam, almost every thing they sold I loved, sadly this is the last item I own. There are still shops in France, we saw one when we were on holiday back in June. My other lost favourite shop was Richards. 
Lowspend/nospend September, been very good this week, just purchase bread and milk yesterday. We have had lovely meals, I made a blackberry and apple crumble yesterday, using picked blackberries and some soft eating apples, for the 1st time I used gluten free flour, it was really nice and had spare crumble which is now in the freezer. Tonight we are having Chicken Biryani, I prefer lamb, but we have ran out in the freezer. Tomorrow we are having corn beef hash, which we have not made in ages.
I did not make the scones for Fliss, so we still have that treat to come.
I have worn my new sandals every day, they are so comfortable, and with the cooler weather coming I am trying not to get into shoes and boots yet.
I have done no crafting or cross stitch, with busy days, walking in the evening and eating our main meal later, I just have no time. I am redoing my blog book for 2013, with the upgrades on this computer, I am not able to reinstate the book I saved. It's much quicker the second time around.
This afternoon we hope to go for a ride on the motorbike, and later a friend is popping in for coffee and a catch up.
Thursday I have an interview, fingers crossed, it would be nice to earn again, but I will miss my days at home.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Green, Red and Opps!

Sam visited yesterday, and wearing his new gardening gloves he helped me re-pot my Lemon plant, as you can see he was really happy in the garden. We use my white table as his work bench, with the bag of compost on a chair, everything is a perfect height for him. His favourite chore is to sweep the back area. 
He then packed both mine and his gloves in the shed.
 My Amaryllis has a nice shoot, I keep this in my shed in the dark.
Lemon Plant has doubled in size
Lime plant, not much height but the stem and leaves have got huge
Avocado plant is my prize, loads of new height and the leaves are huge.
 This is hubby's best chore, 
filling all the feeders, 
we have loads of birds and squirrels, and our hedgehogs eat all that falls to the ground.
 Santa is doing well, I have just the bottom white  and his shoes to stitch, I have also stitched a quickie, but I can't show it here, 
I hope to get my sewing machine out today to do a few more items. 
 Just a few views from our walk on Friday night, loads of signs Autumn is arriving.
Lowspend/nospend September, Oh dear I have fallen off the waggon, and for shoes! to be fair, I have seen these sandals in our local shoe shop all summer, loved them, but thought they are over priced. Yesterday I had to replace my slippers ( I went into the garden and stood in cat poo!) and inside the shop these sandals last pair in my size, called to me. 
Can I be forgiven.
We shopped for food yesterday and spent £34 which is much lower than normal, so I do feel I am on track normally we would spend triple that. I did get my teapot on Friday which cost £16, but it has an inner so we can use loose tea, which both Fliss and I love in different flavours.
Both Josh and Sam spend the day with us, Fliss and I took them to our local library, both boys love books. Josh had loads of fun on his DS, he was playing a new game, and Sam firstly helped Grancha change a tyre on his cycle and then did gardening with me. It was warm enough to sit outside all the day, in fact it was too muggy to sit inside, last night was very hot. This morning we have clear blue Sky's.
Crazy cat woman has not shown herself again, but it has been recorded to use should we need too, PC Bob was keen to add it to his long list (she has a pop at everyone). So harmony is restored.
Now for the rest of my lazy Sunny Sunday.

Friday, 19 September 2014

Flowers before the rain

My Sunflowers are beginning to open
 Their colour and shapes are beautiful, they are with other pot plants in our sitting room, little balls of sunshine, they should last loads, can't wait to see them open. 
Our neighbour two door's down have loads of sunflowers in the back of their garden,
 planted as a living hedge at their bottom boundary. 
 Just a few of the many flowers in the back garden, this area is not so pretty now, but it's nice to see so many flowers in bloom. The centre flower is my late planted Chocolate Comos, now in bloom with loads of buds. These were taken before the huge thunder storm we had, loads a lovely rain for the garden.
 I spent the afternoon out yesterday, dangerous times, we popped to a local craft shop with a huge sale, I managed to resist. We then went to a garden centre, Haskins, I love this garden centre with shop, they has closed off a large section and were dressing for Christmas, will have to go back next month. But I did spend £9 on the items below, the 'Martins bar' is for my brother, part of his Christmas present. The Scone mix is for this weekend so Fliss can have a treat, I will make them and we can all have some, the gloves are for Sam so he can help me in the garden.
 When I got home both cats had missed me,
 they followed me around until I fed them,
 so maybe they were typical cats and just wanted feeding. 
I have stitched more on Santa, done loads of the white, I have his face to do and then the bottom of his trousers and shoes, should be done in a couple of days.
Josh and Sam came after school and had tea with us, Sam spent all his time with Grancha, loads of laughter.
Hubby is not well, has a bad throat, so just Fliss and I on our walk last night, we walked later and watched a nice sunset over the water.
This morning I woke up to the result of the Scottish referendum, and the No vote winning, to keep our union together. I am pleased to see we stay as a union, I do feel for all the Yes voters, the result was very close.
Nospend/Lowspend September, we need a quick trip to Lidl, we need rice, milk and bread plus a couple store things. I would like a new teapot so pop into Dunelm. We are still on track, our last night's meal was all from freezer and cupboard, same tonight. But the lack of general spending has made a huge impact on the bank balance, it is a bit scary how much we (me) spend on 'stuff'.
On the real plus, we have not snacked on any sweet things, I stopped buying yogurt, too much sugar, crisp too much fat, and chocolate is now a Sunday night treat, and I have lost more weight this week.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Animals and life in General

Not the sort of thing you expect to see in the High Street, 
it was even funnier when the traffic warden came along and made the owner move it to the car park whilst they were shopping. 
I was with Josh, Sam and Fliss, we popped into town for chocolate cake (just the boys) and a drink, then playtime in the kiddies fun park.
 We have started walking again after tea each evening,
it was part of the reason we moved here, having nice routes so close to home. 
Fliss is very energetic and is keen to get me cycling as well.
 Can you see the two dogs in the water, there were loads out last night, the shore is not at it's best when the tide is out, and to be honest it can also get a bit whiffy. With the lights from the Naval base dancing on the water, and the neat path to follow, we walked down toward Portchester Castle. 
On the plus side I have lost a couple of the pounds I put back on.
 My Avocado is coming along well, the leaves are much bigger and again more height. We had a warm chicken and avocado salad last night for tea, and I now have a new stone resting on wet kitchen paper to see if I can get roots to grow.
 I have finished the red on Santa.
next his face and shoes and then loads of white
 Kev gave me this book for Mothers day 2006,
 I have pulled it out to read a couple of his broadcast each day, which were about 15 minutes long, 
so just a nice pick up quick read book. 
The book I read on holiday 'Before I go to sleep', has just been released as a film with Nicole Kidman, Colin Firth and Mark Strong, I can't wait to see it and I have every thing crossed they are true to the story.
Lowspend/Nospend September, still on plan, I got a few fresh items from Tesco on Monday, beansprout, rice noodles and my avocado, plus items gluten free for Fliss, if I remove the cost of Fliss special food, I spent £12. Yesterday I had my dental check up, so with the cost of parking I spent £19.50, the coffee was paid for by Fliss, next month will be an expensive coffee treat month. My shopping bill is going to start to rise, I am out of frozen and fresh veg, and I am only harvesting tomatoes from the garden, but I will still plan to use store cupboard and frozen items as much as I can. Hubby purchased a bunch on Sunflowers for £5, but I am not including them, as they were a surprise from his budget. I will post a photo, when they are open, I can't wait to see the beautiful sunshine colours.
Nothing planned for today, lazy day at home, I hope to spend an hour in the garden.
Going to make a fish Paella for tea tonight, Kev is not keen but Fliss loves it, hubby will get a nice omelette with tasty fillings, using every thing from the freezer and store cupboard.
Problems have started again with our mad catwoman next door, I will have a word with our community officer PC Bob, it has been quiet for a few months.


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