Poppy Patchwork

My little bit of this big World

Monday 26 June 2017

all sorts of everything

Sewing machine is out, this is the 3rd cushion almost finished
I love the fabric, very easy to work with, but it does fray.
I hope to have all 4 cushions finished by the weekend
 Hubby finally decided to sort his wardrobe, it's full of clothes from his working days. I have kept these 3 cotton shirts for Hexi's the rest have been taken to the charity shop.
 I hope to varnish my items made at our break in May, 
The last week it was way too hot to get things done.
 This corner by my water but is looking good
The Peony did not do so well this year, soon I will dig it up and make 3 plants. 
I love the bird feeder, which never worked, so I have put an alpine plant in there
 Lillies are looking good, some flowers are going over but still loads of buds. 
 Walnut sappling in my greenhouse
 Kiwi and pomegranate on my desk 
 Two books from a lady in work, 
I will start one later. 

A very mixed post this time, I have enjoyed using my sewing machine, the design on the fabric makes it very easy to match up. I don't have a pattern, I just cut the pieces and sew them back together again, I did not want to wrap the material around the foam, I wanted it to stay looking neat with the lines straight and the seams keep it all in place. The cushions are for a camper van for our neighbours.
I am hoping to do some more hand sewing of hexagons, I have loads stitched, I just need to sew more together.
The garden is still looking after itself, all I am doing at this time is watering and harvesting fruit and salad things. I am planning to redo the side garden as I stated in a previous post, plus my raise cut flower bed is not shaping up to what I wanted, so I will be sorting that, I have sown some Sweet William seeds for plants to over winter in the garden. 
With just under 5 weeks left of my working life, I am busy making leisure plans, I am tracking down the local gardening club, they help out alot in our local parks, which I think will be fun. I want to go back to doing yoga once a week.  I would also like to be a part of a craft club, but I don't think there is a local one. Once I have finished work I might test the water and see if I can start one. 

Last weeks steps = 80,568, average 11509 steps each day

Saturday 24 June 2017


Not a harvest but lovely blooms
This spot is looking good
 I am picking mixed fruit each day
The blackcurrant crop was very poor, 
but Monty said it was a greedy plant so next year I will feed it. 
 I only have two tomato plants this year
both are full of fruit
Cucumbers, which I love have gone mad again.  
I saw this book on someone's blog, I'm sorry I forget who
It was a brilliant read, I will look out for more books by this author
Hubby has finished his front garden with red cedar bark
He planted his solo plant purchase. 
I love the look of this garden, which is totally different than I would have planted. 
Thank you for your comments on my last post, so many of you agree the simple things enhance our lives so much. I am trying to be organic in my gardening, which is why I am so please the hedgehogs come into the back garden. I am trying to encourage an eco system, so all the bugs stay under control.
I can't wait for the liquid fertilizer to be produced from my wormery, the intention is not to use any other types. The compost made won't be enough for my needs, but I am happy we are using the kitchen waste to create other things. Our garden is so tiny I don't have any room for a normal compost heap.
Where we feed the birds and squirrels is working, keeping them at the back of the plot, where I have the lovely hedgerow which soon will be fill of berries again,  none of them have attacked any of my fruit tubs, which are nearer the house.
I do need loads of copper tape for my pots, slugs have not been such a huge problem this year, but they have munched through my hosta leaves. I do still use slug pellets which work, I did get last year wool pellets, which were expensive and did not last too long. The slug numbers are down in the garden, so if anyone has any suggestions, I am willing to try different methods.
I am loving our fake grass, we sit and walk on it, it does feel real, except the crunch under foot, it's nice to come home and see it so green and not requiring a cut.
We went to town this morning, got a pair of half price sandals from Clarkes, and a couple garden things from Wilko's. I met a friend for lunch, we chatted together for a couple of hours, we both retire on the same day, so we are planning one afternoon a month for girly time.
Later we are off to a BBQ, just hope the weather stays fine.

Wednesday 21 June 2017

Little things

Here is my list of little things which have made me smile this week.

Eating mixed berries from our garden each day 
Feeding our wormery
Hedgehog sleeping in overturned pots in the garden.
Roses in bloom
Hubby buying a plant, without me present
Sunshine everyday
Simple BBQ with family
A day at the beach
Strong black coffee
1st cucumber harvested
Clean cotton sheets after a shower
Dawn chorus, bird song 

I don't think any one is better than another, they are all small things, but they bring smiles to my lips and joy in my heart. Summer time is wonderful, I hope you are enjoying this beautiful weather. I could add loads, a good book to read, laughter, a walk in the cooler evening. Life is good.

Monday 19 June 2017

Oh we do like to be beside the seaside

Lee on the Solent, Hampshire
 A perfect day for a long walk along the shore
 Home to play in the garden
Waiting for Daddy to come home from work
 It all got too much
I have spent the day with youngest daughter, Su and baby Will, we walked along the whole of the coast at Lee, stopped in a pub for lunch, walked back to the car via the ice cream van.
At home playing in the shade, Will was testing the lawn, very comfortable.
BBQ for tea, the temperature was still over thirty at eight this evening, whilst the grown ups ate, Will had a lovely snooze.
After a perfect day today, I can't wait to finish work, the only down side is sore shoulders, but some cream will sort that out.

Sunday 18 June 2017

Along with the sun

As I walked into our garden, this beauty open for the first time this year
My sister gave me 3 plants a few years ago
I only have 2 left, they are stunning
Summer is arriving in my flower garden
 I love to hear sounds in the garden, and not someone else's music
Hubby loves wind chimes and his gong, often there is a gentle breeze under the Magnolia tree. We always pack them away in the cooler windy months.
 We wake up each morning to bird song, 
often we hear the starlings squabbling over the feeders
We have loads of different birds visit through out the day 
We have nothing to do in the garden, we sat yesterday in the shade, making plans for later in the year, our small side cottage garden has never really been the riot of colour I hoped for. My Peony needs to be lifted and split, it's huge, I hope to get 3 plants out of it. Hubby is now taking more interest in the plants has stated he liked Hydrangeas, we both liked the smaller white flowers. So we plan to replant this garden, already there are 3 roses growing, which we will keep, I hope to have 2 Peony's to put back and a Hydrangea. 
Again this year we have loads of flies, both inside and outside, we use an American disinfectant Pinesol, which I spray all over the decking and fence. It does stop the flies, but it wears off quickly. As an extra bonus at the bottom of our garden the smell of cat pee is terrible, with 15+ cats living in a glass fronted summer house, they do have a run next to the building, so they are not trapped behind the glass. We are burning loads of citrus scented candles, so on these very hot days we sit inside and look out on our garden. The environmental department of our council are aware of the issues, I sent another email yesterday, just reminding them we are still suffering, but mad cat woman ignores any polite suggestions and is rude and will shout and swear at you if you point out any issues.
I have a huge sewing task this afternoon, I have to finish the 3 camper van cushions for the bed, it's not difficult just alot of material. Later hubby will be home from his motorbike ride, they met up in South Wales this morning, he spend last nigh at his sister house.

Friday 16 June 2017

Walking around in circles

I am trying not to buy flowers for myself
But these peony flowers are a stunning colour 
 I am enjoying reading this book
it does help to have lovely warm evenings outside
 I am doing huge amounts of walking, I now walk three times a day
These are my steps as recorded on my Fitbit
Last seven days
Friday 9.27
Both hubby and I wear a fitbit to record our steps, we have had various methods of recording steps since 2009, we get lazy and stop wearing for a while, normally through the winter months. Then in spring we start again, I am loosing weight at a small steady rate, but this is about fitness and stamina. On working days I get to the office an hour before I start (to miss most of the traffic jams), I make good use of this time and walk for 40 minutes. I always walk for 30 minutes at lunch time, both these walks are done at a quick pace. Hubby and I like a small walk in the early evening together, loads of steps are added by pottering around the garden and house.
I am having today and Monday off work, so this morning I walked through our housing estate for my early morning walk, just over 3000 steps, I like to know how many steps a walk is worth, it helps me plan to achieve my total steps.
Once I retire we plan to change the lunch time walk for a cycle ride, we have some interesting places close enough to get to by bike. I am also hoping to join a daytime yoga class once a week. I don't plan to get old just because I am giving up work.
This is not a sponsored post, just my views.
How do you keep fit and active ?

Tuesday 13 June 2017

Around the plot

We had to get some plastic covered canes for my huge tomato plants
it's not perfect, but for now they hold the plant up
These are as tall as me now.
 My cucumbers are both doing well, loads of tiny fruits growing
 Watching Monty on Gardners World, he spoke about leafy Allium plants a few weeks back, stating this was due to overcrowding. So I did as he did and cut into the roots and divided the plants, today I have 12 new flower heads popping through. With another plant in the garden gaining strength. 
My cuttings are becoming nice plants, 
soon I will be able to plants the Coleus in the garden 
 My Lilles have loads of buds
The marigolds are huge around the outside of the pot. 
 Finished this book last night
Slow start, but a good read
I am about to start reading Faith by Lesley Pearce, one of the girls in work is passing a few books she knows I am a fast reader and will finish them before I leave in just over six weeks.
The worms have stopped escaping their nice home, I added a bit of top soil, so the level is deep enough for them. We can't start feeding them yet.
I have decided to sort all the spare plastic pots which are stored beside my shed, firstly I don't use them so they will be taken to garden center for recycling. I will put a huge pot on it's side with the bottom missing, like a tunnel, so the hedgehogs can get through, we popped next door and checked behind their garden wall and the hedgehogs can get through to other gardens.
Hubby got two new bird feeders, they are huge, only the small birds can feed off them, the pigeons can't get near them which is good as they wasted all the seed out of the old feeders. Now we are getting so many different small birds.
Our potatoes were yummy, I have a couple potato bags, so I will grow plants again next year. We have strawberries and raspberries each day, putting the strawberries in the high long tubs have worked, the fruits are not touching the ground and the bugs are not eating them.

Saturday 10 June 2017

Saturday at home

My 3rd dish made up this weekend
they were purchased for the stand
 Two new dishes on my lovely stand
the middle one will be changed soon. 
 Top shelf of my staging looking good
 Hubby choose and planted his front garden
 I have read cats don't like pine, part of the reason for these plants.
Just need bark to cover the soil. 
He did not want flowers here
I am sure in a previous post I said the garden was finished, so how did we spend 4 hours outside today.  I have moved one tomato plant out of my green house, I now have room to move about. The cucumbers are doing well, I have picked off a couple fruits, I had loads at the bottom of the plant all the same size. The tomatoes are doing well loads of fruit. I dug out the last two potato plants and we have a dish of new potatoes, they are a nice small size, which we prefer, I should have left them a bit longer, but I wanted the space in the raised garden.
This morning we had to rescue loads of worms, which were making a break from their new home, we need to check them each day until they have sorted themselves out, should be OK after a couple of weeks. I also woke up our lovely hedgehog, it's still hiding by my shed, once I noticed it I came away from him, I would not want to scare him, we love seeing hedgehogs in our garden.
I did get a pedicure and a manicure done this morning, it's like walking on air, as for the manicure as you can imagine after all the gardening my hands as as messy as normal. Now it's time to relax, read a book and enjoy another evening with hubby. 

Friday 9 June 2017

Seeds and pips

Kiwi plant on left
Pomegranate on right slightly in front
both sill on my desk 
 12 more Kiwi seedlings
these are in the greenhouse
 This Poinsettia was tiny at Christmas, 
put it in greenhouse in bigger pot, 
where as you can see it loved it, plenty of new growth
 Lemon tree, still tiny but growing
Tiny orange tree
My wormery is in it's final place
I am so happy to know I have 2 bags of worms living in their new home, ready for all the kitchen and some garden waste, I have read loads of items regarding the care of the worms, and the next couple of weeks are the toughest time for them. I have 3 trays, which should be enough for us, the top two trays are up side down on top of the lid, it will be a while before they will be required. The hope is now to have zero food waste from our kitchen, we are very good and do not waste meats or dairy, we have also stopped loads of plastic coming into the house, we won't be able to stop it all, but we can try our best. We do recycle everything we can, but again we have noticed the bin is never as full as it used to be.
Work has been interesting, as more people find out I am retiring and more comments are made. I am counting down the weeks, just 7 to go, I have loads of things I want to do and try. I have a few crafts I want to progress with, I should find time for my cross stitching as well as loads of reading time.
Thank you so much for your comments last time regarding the announcement of my forth coming retirement, the decision took a while, I really did not want to say I would give up and then have to got back to work later. We did loads of research to ensure I have paid in enough to get my state pension, when I am 66 years old. Hubby is very happy, he has wanted me to finish for months, knowing I was not enjoying going into the office. I am really looking forward to us spending time together, we share hobbies and enjoy each others company so very much.

Wednesday 7 June 2017

Good things....

.....happen to good people, 
my mum told me this all through out my growing up years, 
I am lucky our family have had loads to celebrate and enjoy over the years, with our perfect grandsons, including our latest Will. All our boys are wonderful, we don't see the older boys so much, through distance and them creating a busy life doing things they enjoy, but having the knowledge they are thriving and happy, catching up with them when we can. 
Life has not always been good, as with all families we have bad times, things we can't control, people do and say unexpected things, I have done things when I look back I do wish I could change. Money has been tight often as our children grew up.
Hubby and I have been looking at our life in many different ways, the biggest being I am still working whilst hubby is retired, we have been reevaluating every part of our lives for many years, building to what we think will be a better life in retirement, because once we get there we will have little or no chance to make many changes. 
When the government changed the pension age for woman to match men's at 65 (now 66), they really hurt many ladies. Our generation as many before us did as we were asked we saved, brought homes, we paid into pensions, most of all we paid taxes, lots of taxes. I can see our world has changed, and I understand as a country we are not as wealthy as before. BUT it still feels so very unfair!

Last week we made a huge discussion, and I informed my employer I intend to retire from work on 28th July 2017, this is two years earlier than planned, 4 years before I get any state pension, but in my mind (as loads will agree) 2 years later than expected. 
I really can't wait for 28th July to come.


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