marjorie73: (Default)
 This weekend is a bank holiday weekend, which means 3 days off. It is also traditional for the weather to be terrible!


It's been very hot over the last couple of days (you know, the days we've been spending in the office) so of course at around 3 a.m. on Saturday morning there was a massive thunderstorm, with torrential rain, and lots of very loud thunder. 


I'm sure that the rain will be good for the garden and fields, but I could have done without being woken at that time of night!


The forecast suggested that we were likely to get more rain over the weekend, but other than a very brief shower, Saturday was dry (although very warm and muggy a lot of the time) so I was able to cut the grass both at the front and back.  


I had turf laid at the back, when I had the gravel removed last year. The front, where I had tarmac removed, was just replaced with topsoil, and I wasn't quick enough to plant it so have an awful lot of docks and nettles and other things I don't really want,but am gradually working on getting rid of the weeds, and getting grass to grow. 


I also planted some young hydrangeas (grown from cuttings from my parents' garden) earlier in the year, which seem to be doing reasonably well. I hope, eventually, that I will have a selection of bushes and flowers - and maybe even a vegetable patch.




The clematis I planted last year is thriving, and has just started to flower, and my tomato plants (in pots and grow bags) and peas (also in pots and grow bags) seem to be doing well; the tomatoes are starting to flower, and the peas have both flowers and little baby mange-tout pods. 


Given that my track record on growing things to eat hasn't been great, and mostly seems to consist of growing things to be eaten by slugs, or to die for no apparent reason, it is very gratifying! I'm really hoping that this year I will get a reasonable crop of tomatoes. The last few years I've grown them, the fruit has't had time to ripen before it gets too cold, but I started the seedlings off earlier this year, and I'm keeping some of them in pots indoors, so hopefully those will ripen, even if the outdoors ones don't!


So, I've been pottering around, doing a bit of weeding and pruning and re-potting, and I also did various bits of housework, because sometimes you run out of excuses not to! 

Springtime

Apr. 10th, 2017 06:04 pm
marjorie73: (Default)
 This weekend, the weather has been lovely, warm sunshine, blue skies - what more could one ask?



I have primroses blooming in the garden, the tulips appear to be on the brink of bursting into flower, and further afield, trees are covered in blossom (and my baby apple tree is going to have blossom any minute now!) 


 

I cut the grass for the first time this year, on Sunday, and have planted out some of my tomato and pea seedlings, so shall have to hope that the nice weather continues and they all survive!



Oh, and I bought a new washing line and now need to make a deeper whole to put it in, because it turns out the new lie is bigger than the old one, and needs a deeper hole to put the stalk in..!

marjorie73: (Default)

When I moved in to my house I knew it would need a fair bit of work doing, and last year I got the majority of the indoor work done, with a new boiler, insulation, and lots of redecoration.


This year, it's time for the outside, and on Monday morning, 4 blokes and a JCB turned up to get started.

pre work

At the front, the previous owners had tarmaced over the front garden, leaving it open to the road, and I've wanted to turn that back into a garden, (hence the JCB)


Apparently they took out about 18 tons of tarmac and rubble.

After which they laid topsoil, and built me a fence and a couple of gates.

I am of course partial, but I do think it looks rather nicer now!


And I shall be starting to plant stuff at the front in the coming months.


At the back of the house, the previous owners had laid patio and gravel over most of the garden, and again, I wanted a bit more garden. In addition, at Christmas, the back fence succumbed to the weather.

The death of the back fence
pre-work back garden

So I decided that I would keep the patio but increase the amount of lawn, and of course replace the back fence.

new back garden

The new turf looks very neat and bright compared to the old grass (or it did..)


Because, having finished the work on Thursday, the heavens opened on Friday evening, and we had phenomenal amounts of rain in a very short space of time, which resulted in a very brief but spectacular flood.

Which was just a bit annoying :( I mean, the turf care instructions I have been given do say to "keep the new turf well watered" for the first couple of weeks, but I suspect this wasn't quite what they had in mind...

marjorie73: (Default)

I've had something of a stressful week, despite it having been so short (there was a bank holiday on Monday) and stress did the stuff it always does, and left me not sleeping well, and feeling nauseous, which is no fun whatsoever. And the knowledge that things are (almost) never as bad as you expect really doesn't help.

Anyway, for various reasons I was very much looking forward to the week being over. On Friday I was in court all day. It was a not-too-difficult day for me, as I had counsel, but a long day in a stuffy court room is rarely much fun, especially when timing leads to a certain emptiness, at the point in the day where one usually finds lunch...

However, after we had finished, it was suggested that we go for a drink, as one of our number was celebrating a birthday, and besides, I was told, "it's fizzy Friday" (one per week!) so i found myself, at around 5.30, sitting out under a large parasol, sipping chilled prosecco and fraternising with my erstwhile opponents. I’m not in the habit of drinking champagne or prosecco at 5.30 in the afternoon, even on a Friday, but I have to say it is the kind of thing one could become accustomed to, fairly easily…!

Of course, one of the disadvantages of slurping fizz at 5.30 is that you then have to find something else to do afterwards, while you wait for the fizz to wear off in order to drive home. Happily, another local lawyer was holding a party to celebrate 20 years in practice, so we went to congratulate her, and socialise for a while. Not at all what I had planned for my Friday evening, but definitely a pleasant end to the week. And when I got home, it was to find an unexpected free box of chocolates on the doorstep, which I think we can all agree is the type of thing which improves any day no end! (The chocolates are a somewhat belated apology from the chocolate company, for having inserted a big chunk of plastic sheeting into a chocolate I had at Christmas)

So not a bad day, all in all.

And then, it started to rain. It hasn’t rained for several weeks, and everything smelled of freshness and wet earth and spring, and a new start.

Today has been a quiet day – I woke up to the news that the referendum, on AV has resulted in a ‘No’ vote, which does not surprise me, but which does disappoint me. Other than that,  I have done dull things, such as laundry and hoovering the floors, and topping up the oil in the car, and taking cardboard and plastic to the recycling place. I have also been to the garden centre to buy various seedlings – tomatoes, beans and so on, as, as usual, I have either been too late to plant seeds or have planted them and seen them develop into healthy slug-food. I am hoping that the plants I have now bought will prove too large to be easily eaten by slugs, even the Super-Slugs which seem to inhabit my garden. I haven’t planted them yet, as I got side-tracked by weeding, and it then started to rain, but hopefully tomorrow will be fine for long enough to do so.

The day ended, happily, with Doctor Who and Pirates, and a little sneak preview of Mr Gaiman’s episode, which airs next week. I have to say that this week’s episode, while it had its moments, will not, I think, go down as one of the great episodes. It was fun, but not deep.

marjorie73: (Default)
This week seems to have gone on for a very long time, and I have been sleeping poorly, so I have been tired and cranky. I was, therefore, most annoyed to wake up at 5 a.m. this morning.
 

And then when I finally got back to sleep, the alarm went off as I had to get up and take my little car to have its MOT. On the plus side, it passed first time, which is nice (and cheap).
 

But it meant I had very little energy to do anything else, so today I have mostly been sitting about, reading, and watching Tybalt being photogenic.

 
 
I also found that my baby clematis, which I planted last year, has beaten the bindwind and managed not only to survive, but to blossom.

It's pretty.


 

It appears that there is some football going on at the moment. I have absolutely no interest in this, but as long as they refrain from cancelling or moving Doctor Who, or anything else important, I am happy for people to enjoy it.
 
 

I do find the flags a little annoying, however. My opposite neighbours have two big flags, both wth the cross of St George and with 'England' written across them, plus bunting. It is a pity that they didn't think to iron out the fold creases before they put the flags up. And I have to wonder, why print "England" on the flag? Do they think people won't know what they stand for without?
 
 

For myself, I have my copy of 'Stories' I am pacing myself, reading just one story a day (well, Ok. Maybe two) So I will continue to have new stories for a while.
 
 
I have also been watching some random TV. Today, I came across the Trooping of the Colours, for the Queen's official birthday. It's very, very strange. We have a real army, then they come back from Afghanistan or Iraq, dress up in 18th Century clothing and prance around on horseback. Most odd. I also learned that the horses which carry the kettle-drums hold the rank of Major. Sadly no explanation was given as to why this might be, or how they get around the issues of military etiquette which must, surely, arise when you have junior officers riding around on the back of senior ones....
 

I wonder if they get saluted much. Or, indeed, paid. Still, handy to know we staill have cavalry, in case we decide we need to fight some new wars after all the oil runs out.
 
(Originally posted at http://margomusing.blogspot.com/2010/06/its-weekend.html - please comment there or here)
 
 

marjorie73: (Default)
I guess that after last weekend’s excitement, the rest of the week was always going to be a bit of a anticlimax. It was mostly spent working, and trying to catch up on lost sleep.

There was time, however, to help Cheryl move, on Monday evening, and to enjoy the signs of spring – I drive past woodland on my way to work, and over the past week the bluebells have all come out, as has the wild garlic, although that has not yet reached full strength as you cannot yet smell it as you drive past! The horse-chestnuts are in full flower, and on all the residential streets there are ornamental cherry trees covered with pink or white blossom.

It was wet and windy this morning, so the blossom was falling like snow.

In my own garden, the kingcups in my miniature pond are out in force, the clematis plant I bought last year seems to have woken up and is galloping at speed up the trellis, and the aquilegia is our, although oddly, all of those seem to be purple this year (I’m sure at least one was white, last year…) The rock geraniums are flowering busily (They are a bit pink for me, but seem to be VERY hardy, so I think I shall have them around for a while)

I shall also have an excellent crop of Herb Robert, although as that’s technically a weed, I probably shouldn’t boast about it – it is quite pretty, however, and grows in the cracks of the paving I haven’t been able to take up, yet.

And the lettuce, tomato, cauliflower and herb seedlings which I planted out all seem still to be alive, and growing, and not yet completely devoured by slugs and snails.

Once it stops raining, I shall go out and do a bit of weeding, and meanwhile, as it is a weekend, I think I shall do some baking – I think I feel a poppy seed cake coming on..
marjorie73: (Default)
I am sorry for all those people who are standed by the grounding of flights as a result of the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, but I have to say the lack of noise from flights is rather nice. I don't live under a major flight path, and have never thought of it as being particularly noisy here, but the quiet is VERY noticable. And as natural disasters go, this one is stunningly beautiful. I was watching the news earlier, and they had film showing the ash cloud above the volcano, shot through with crimson lightening caused by the eruption. It's (literally) awesome.

Despite the suggestions on the news that we were all to be buried under drifts of ash, it has in fact been a beautiful clear, bright, sunny dday - borrowed from June, not April. I cut my (postage-stamp sized) lawn, planted the rest of the lettuces and tomato seedlings I bought yesterday, plus some seedds which may, perhaps, one day become spring onions, and tidied up the (also postage-stamp sized patio. and, as I am still not 100%, in between I spent quite a lot of time sitting in the sunshine doing nothing much bar listen to the bumble bees and birdsong.

Although I did leave the house briefly to take the car to Kwikfit to get a new tyre fitted - whie they were doing tht, I wandered into town and ened up buying two new pairs of jeans, and a bag, and i have seen some shoes I may go back & buy, if they fit (I didn't try them on because I have a rather large blister right now, which doesn't seem the optimum condition for trying on shoes)

It's been a good, relaxing weekend. and next Saturday (volcanos and health permitting) I shall be in London fopr the EvelynEvelyn show.

Spring!

Feb. 14th, 2010 07:22 pm
marjorie73: (Default)

I don't wish to tempt fate, especially after the false alarm last week, but it does look as though spring might be on it's way.

I spent some time in the garden this afternoon, clearing away dead leaves and so on. I'm not really a gardener, and I suspect that some of this is stuff which ought to have been done in the autumn, but better late than never...

I have two little clumps of snowdrops, both of which have buds just beginning to open, and some other green shoots which I think may be crocuses when they get around to it. The rosemary bush seems to be thriving.
 

The sun came out for a little while whilst I was outside, which was lovely, and made everything look more alive - I can start to believe that more things will grow, and reappear.
 

I also finished off the marmalade, with lids and labels. It And ate some of it for the first time - there was a little bit left over, not enough to fill a jar, which forces me to eat it straight away....It isn't perfect - I think I ought to have let it sit a few more minutes before putting it in jars, as the peel has risen a bit, but only a little, and it tastes OK.
Small things, but satisfying. I think, today, I am happy

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