The Garden in February

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It was funny. The minute I typed up that post about the new Mac it dawned on me I had taken more photos last week than I had for ages and the reason for that? More daylight hours. Ha! About five minutes after I figure out why I haven’t been blogging as much the problem is almost over, well the part about the winter at least, not so much the part about the Apple…

Anyway I took a few garden pictures and thought I’d share. Of course no garden chat would be complete at this time of year without a nod to my adored Euphorbias. The shot above is a Wulfenii variety.

Leeks still hanging in there.

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And something is sprouting in this pot apart from the weeds that is. I think it might be a Hosta.

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I couldn’t resist this light.

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Looking forward to these wallflowers blooming.

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And finally.

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No lettuce here but there are a few other biennials next to the terracotta label and few Tulips are just peeking through the soil.

The balance is tipping. Spring is almost, almost on its way.

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Breathe before typing

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Posts have been slow to the presses around here recently. Partly it is simply due to the time of year. Less daylight hours means less photos which means less inspiration and there fore less posts. I remember it happened last year too. The other reason is technical challenges.

I have swapped my old laptop for a Mac. No really. We have gone Mac Book crazy in this house. And I like it but getting used to a non-windows based system is quite difficult for my old brain. (For difficult read unbelievably annoyingly want to throw the Mac in the garden…..)

But I can hardly give in and go back to a normal laptop since this one cost a pretty penny and does have its advantages although I can’t bring one to mind right now.

So please bare with me and send calming thoughts my way. Thanks.

Posted in mel, rumble ramble | 2 Comments

Photo a Day – week forty nine

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Lets do some more…

When I came out of work I saw the amazing sunset I balanced the phone on the dashbord hoping to be able to get a shot before the phone switched off. I caught this one. Just love how the airplane trails are pink.

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The crocus are blooming.

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Someone had a birthday last week.

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I can never decide what to have onĀ  my toast….

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Clearly I was obsessed with photographing while driving last week…..

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Ready.

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A trip to Pizza Express.

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Another week gone.

 

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A little something to make

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This idea is was wholeheartedly inspired by this pin. I loved this canvas piece of art and wanted to try it for myself. I have an old dictionary that’s fallen to pieces, actually I inherited this from an work colleague when I left that job and moved on, somehow it ended up in my box of stuff! I dig it out any time I need text pages and think about the good old days when I worked in the job center!

So I just started writing letters on book pages using a sharpie. I picked a sharpie because I knew I’d use gel medium to adhere the letters and I didn’t want my drawn lines to bleed.

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I used paint for the coloured letters, again so they wouldn’t run when covered in gel medium.

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The letters were cut out with scissors and as the paper is so thin I managed to even cut out the middles of the letters with scissors too.

A cheap and cheerful small canvas was used.

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And painted red around the edge of the canvas. My lines are not that straight but it’s handmade right!

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And in the spirit of trying to use some of that inspiration I get from all my pins I picked a saying from one of my boards. I laid out the combination of words a couple of different ways.

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I liked the second one best.

I got out the gel medium and started sticking down the letters. I always apply a coat of gel to the canvas then adhere the letters and cover the letters carefully with more gel.

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You have to put a good layer on.

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And I use my fingers to apply and smooth out the gel taking care not to wrinkly the letters as I smooth the gel out. Nothing like getting messy.

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And here it is all finished.

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Adore it, as usual with anything I make. Ha!

And I didn’t stop there….

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My original inspirations was too good not to try too.

This was so much and easy to do I have a feeling I’ll be making more to give away as gifts!

Posted in Things to make | 4 Comments

Read 2015 – Killing Floor by Lee Child

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This was another one of those books that was on a list that I found somewhere on the internet. I am very picky about what I read but occasionally step outside my comfort zone and try something different. I heard the author on an episode of the BBC’s World book club and found it interesting that he’s British but writing about America in all his novels.

I found this book second hand and it sat on the pile until a few weeks ago when I selected it as my next read.

There are lots of things that I liked about this story, the first of at least 15+ in the series, about Jack Reacher. I liked that you were on Jack’s side right from the start. I liked the idea that he was a wanderer (although I’m sure if I read more of these novels that would get to annoy me.) I liked the authors writing style, short to the point but he gave so much detail in those short sentences and I liked that I was kept guessing right to the end.

I found that I wanted to be shocked at the violence and amount of destruction Jack left in his wake but I just kept ploughing through although I didn’t read it just before sleep!

Overall I thought it was okay and would probably pick up another just to see how old Jack was getting along but be warned it is very violent and brutal at times.

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Photo a Day – week forty eight

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Someone has a brand new harness. Lets hope this one is escape proof!

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The final instructions for a curry my BFF’s husband made us girls. I just loved that handwritten note. And the curry, it was delish thanks R!

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I love these two so much. Here they are with the dinosaur they painted and constructed.

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Paws.

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Macro experiments. Rain on leaf.

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Capturing a bright sunny window although I realise the sun can’t hide the fact that window needs a wash!

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Blossom and a blue sky.

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There we go.

Posted in Photo a Day | 5 Comments

Looking forward to….

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It’s been ages since I have written a post like this.

January seemed to be endless but here we are in February and I know that in the blink of an eye we’ll be half way through the year and the dark days of winter will be all forgotten. So I thought I would take a few minutes to think about what I am anticipating this year.

  • The holiday (crossing the pond again this year!)
  • Seeing the Severn Bore
  • Sowing seeds for flowers and veg
  • Driving home from work while its still light
  • The start of the Baseball season
  • Insurgent hitting the cinema
  • Taking my niece to London again
  • Sitting outside eating breakfast

Small and big things. Ah, yes. Time do you thing.

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Photo a Day – week forty seven

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Wow, I can’t believe that this year of photo a day is almost up.

I took loads of photos in this spot trying to get the sun flare through ther trees. In the end I gave up and just picked the one that I felt conveyed this frosty, snowy but bright morning.

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Gotta love a pink sky.

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And then by Sunday it was all gone but still cold. This is us returning form a trip to the coffee shop where I had to console myself with a Mocha as they had run out of eggnog! Ah well it’ll be back in November…..

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Hummus in a pitta with salad for lunch.

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Matching.

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You know when you glance in the mirror and for once you love your hair…. It never turns out quite the same in a photo!

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Driving home from work. A strange composition, but I had to capture the simple fact that it is getting lighter every day so I’m not driving home in the dark now.

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And there we have it.

 

Posted in Photo a Day | 2 Comments

Granola, the good for you kind

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Forgive me if I have waxed lyrical about granola before but I am going to do it again. I was late to the granola party. In fact I think I only heard about it 10 years ago. At that time I didn’t see the appeal and cast it aside in the same way I did muesli……

But I became a convert during one of our trips to the US when I had some granola with yoghurt. Suddenly I was in love with a new breakfast option but soon discovered that it is generally laden with calories. So I left it back on the shelf again.

That is until I found this recipe which actually calls itself ‘good for you granola’ so it must be right? Well at least better for you than most. So I made a couple of months ago and loved it. Last week I made another batch and even Gav liked it. (Drat! Less for me…) I halved the recipe and used dried cranberries and raisins for the fruit instead of dried berries. I also ran out of maple syrup so there was less of that too but it worked fine.

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I sprinkled some on a bowl of Bircher Muesli which definitely tipped the breakfast scales but all good ingredients and it was rather scrummy.

So if you fancy some granola I say go for it.

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Lists – What’s in my bag?

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This is going to be so exciting, not. But whether the contents of my bag are crazy or boring I think the idea of documenting it is a good one because in ten years I’ll be interested to see if it’s changed or stayed the same.

So here goes.

First of all I’d just mention that I carry a small bag. Quite a few years ago my sister bought me a beautiful Radley bag for my birthday. By the way, I adore Radley bags but gave up leather so can’t buy another – but that’s another story. Anyway the one she bought me was small so I downsized from the great big things I used to carry around and never looked back. I miss that Radley bag so much but it was well loved and well used and is still neatly tucked away upstairs. (Don’t tell Gav I hoard old as well as new bags…)

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My current bag is Kipling, I bought it when we went to Brussels last September. I picked grey because I love grey and wanted a change from black. The monkey is called Jamie.

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I’ve been a fan of Kipling bags almost as long as my love for Radley.

Anyway here’s what’s inside my bag.

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  • Purse, Radley and very worn.
  • Phone.
  • Pens.
  • Notebook (This was a gift from a friend when I took redundancy from the civil service. The cover says The Future’s Bright and it’s from Smythson of Bond Street.)
  • Tissues.
  • Computer card and fob for work.
  • Foldup shopping bag, my Mum bought me this a few years ago and it comes in so handy.
  • Compact hairbrush and mirror.
  • Ipod.
  • Burts Bees lip balm, love.
  • Tic tac’s.
  • A blue plastic fork! (no idea where that came from…)

So there we have it. Documented for posterity. Anything crazy exciting in your bag?

Posted in Lists, mel | 4 Comments