Month: October 2015

Looking forward to……

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  • Finishing planting all the spring bulbs.
  • A week away in out favourite cottage.
  • Making the cover for my December Daily® Album.
  • Taking part in the December Daily® class over here.
  • Watch 8 Films in November – my last attempt.
  • The Hunger Games: Mocking Jay – part 2.
  • Getting Christmas inspiration early and being organised. (Every year I say this, is this going to be the year I do it?)
  • Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens. (Squeeeee)

What are you looking forward to?

Bloom 2015 – Pastel pop

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I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I’d have to get creative in the flower hunt for arrangements as the season changes and there are less blooms to pick. We have a Hydrangea in a pot that had three lovely pale pink flowers this summer. I decided that those pretty blossoms needed preserving. So I made this bouquet.

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This was not in my comfort zone mixing big blousey with delicate dainty but I like it and enjoyed putting the two together.

Along with the Hydrangea I picked Dahlia ‘Thomas A. Edison’, Borage, Ivy buds, Sedum and some Nasturtium foliage. If you saw the flower head of the Dahlia in the photo a day post earlier in the week you can compare what they look like picked early in their flowering cycle compared to if they are left to do their thing. I love the big bloom but recognise that for arranging, sometimes you have to pick the tight flower heads. Either way that Dahlia, as I have said numerous times already, is a winner.

The lovely thing about this vase was that all but the Dahlia still looked good, a week after I arranged them! That’s my kind of value. I took a photo of the Dahlia and to me it has a faded glory about it.

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When I finally dismantle the arrangement I’ll tuck those Hydrangea blooms in a vase to enjoy all winter long.

Photo a Day – week thirty one

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We’re getting to the tricky part of the year for photography here in the UK. The light is failing and we put our clocks back yesterday so it’s darker earlier. It’s a challenge but I’m keeping going and just need to remember to get out of the office at lunchtimes to grab a shot!

Anyway first this week we have some construction progess…

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Oops.

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I moved my early morning routine into the dining room complete with a hot water bottle and blanket. I love to alter my daily habit with the seasons.

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All season I’ve been singing the praises of this Dahlia, Thomas A. Edison. This was the first bloom I let open fully while still on the plant, I’ve usually picked them as they are just opening to get a greater vase life. I’m so glad I let this one do its thing. Love it.

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Adorable.

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When I wandered down the garden on Thursday morning I heard a great deal of buzzing going on. I inspected the Eucalyptus tree that hangs over from next door and I found the reason for the bee activity. See that tiny white flower in the lower right of the photo? They are clever those bees finding every drop of nectar they can to keep them going through the winter.

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Sunrise.

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And there we go.

Bloom 2015 – biennial update

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One thing that I am slowly learning about growing flowers for cutting is that extending the season is very important. I’ve been growing blooms to harvest for quite a few years now but I’m still learning. Something that I have learned is that biennials are my friend.

Most come into flower well ahead of any annuals or perennials I grow so they provide earlier stems to arrange and even the later ones add a touch of beauty to both the garden and the vase so it’s very hard to see why you wouldn’t want to grow a few.

This year I sowed the seeds in early summer. We have two variety of Erysimum , Digitalis ‘alba’, Hesperis, Honesty and Dianthus barbatus.

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I’m still planting them but hope to make a bigger impact with more plants than in past years. Also hope that a few have self seeded to help along the bounty.

Lets forget about winter and fast forward to straight spring……

Bloom 2015 – Calendula times two

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Here are a couple of little arrangements using the last of the Calendula. My crop developed terrible mildew about a month ago and although the flowers are still coming the foliage looks very unattractive.

This first vase is full of herbs. Sage, rosemary, oregano flowers along with some cornflowers.

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I’m a real sucker for herbs and I have tried to double their use by including them more in flower arrangements. They don’t smell much when in situ unless you crush the leaves as you wander by but their foliage adds lovely texture to any posey.

And here are those Calendula mixed with Scabious, borage and cornflowers again with just a couple of fennel stems too.

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I adore teeny vases. For this one I re-used an easy bake yeast tins. Cuteness! I sanded it a little for the more distressed look.

Photo a Day – week thirty

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Autumn features again this week as well as the view from my sick bed.

But first a reflection in the bird bath.

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And an avocado, Quorn ‘chicken’ and pine nut bagel for lunch. Mmmm……

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I got a horrid cold that tunned into a bug of some sort that made me take to my bed on Monday. Managed to snap this messy real life scene and Buddy with his head on the pile of stuff.

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The beauty of a Tulip bulb.

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The light made the yellowing leaves sunflower gold that morning.

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Only a week ago there were no leaves under the swing. Now a carpet.

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A leaving do at work but I couldn’t resist a selfie in a toilet mirror!

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And that was another week.

The breakfast love affair continues – avocado scramble, another variation

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The problem we are having at the moment is that we really are addicted to bagels. I know I liked the change of a quesadilla but overall I love bagels. Why has it taken all of these years for me to realise this? Maybe because they are just a few more calories than a simple bread roll?

Here’s the thing though…. I don’t care because they elevate a sandwich, be it a breakfast or a lunch one, a bagel takes it to the next level.

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This breakfast sandwich was scrambled eggs on top of thinly sliced tomatoes on top of crushed avocado. A good seasoning of salt and pepper completed this morning treat.

Yay for bagels.

The reading slump

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Is it a slump? Or a what? What is it? A readers block…… lol. Yes, I like that one. I’m having a readers block.

Can I blame the summer? Probably. Or the lack of YA fiction on my ‘to be read pile.’ Or the laptop and Youtube and scrapbook process videos. Or Gone Girl?! (didn’t even get halfway through that one before I gave up…..)

All of the above? Yes, all of the above.

I do go through phases sometimes but I don’t remember such a long spell of not reading for years and years. That photo is the one I shared in January and they are all still there waiting to be read except The House of Silk and Gone Girl. One I read and the other one, like I say, I didn’t finish.

Although I have had other distractions I do miss reading so it will be great to get back to it. We have a holiday coming up which is usually an opportunity to read all week long so I’m sure I’ll get back into it then.

And of course we’ll be visiting Bater books so more will be getting added to the pile and I can’t add more until I get rid of a few right?

Do you go through reading slumps?

Bloom 2015 – more whites and a riot

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I may have mentioned it before, but I’ll say it again. I love these flowers and am so happy that I got a great crop from the few plants I grew this year.

Antirrhinums. They are a show stopper in my book.

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Simply arranged here with white scabious. The two work well as they are a contrast in flower shape and they lasted well in the vase too.

And as a complete contrast here is a riot of colour.

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Unfortunately the shot I took of the whole vase was very blurry but I wanted to share something of this blaze of colour so I could remember how great the combination of sunflowers, calendula, antirrhinum and dahlias were. Blousey and beautiful.

Not many arrangements left to share now and as of last Sunday the garden took a hit as the temperature tumbled. I’ll have to try and get creative with what I have left out there and maybe another Hydrangea wreath is coming to a fireplace near here soon…..

Photo a Day – week twenty nine

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And another week comes and goes.

Avocado wraps for lunch.

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Good to the bees are still busy in the garden.

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All tuckered out.

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A little autumnal still life.

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Glorious morning walk at the park.

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Outside our local florists.

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More leaves. Can’t help including them as they are eveywhere now.

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And there we go.