About Me

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I'm 57 years old, working full time, wife, mother and grand mother, wishing that I wasn't working full time! I love and enjoy our children and grandchildren, our dogs and cat, our garden and allotment. I love crafts - knitting, sewing, crocheting, patchwork and restoring old furniture. I love to go to country auctions and love thinking that I've got my self a bargain!

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Afternoon Everyone

I hope that you are all fit and well - it's been a very grey day here no sunshine whatsoever, but my husband and son have managed to move my 2 greenhouses for me to better positions in the garden - so all the hard work starts next weekend.

I'm hoping that I will be able to get the propergators out and into the conservatory ready for the seeds to start going in (I went and fetched the last of the seeds yesterday from Wilkinsons so all ready to go now). I need to get the garlic into pots - I know I'm a little late with starting it but hopefully it will catch up and then I need to generally start going through all the pots in the garden -  getting rid of the ones that I no longer want to keep and placing the ones that are left into the right positions.  My soil here isn't that good and I do tend to grow a lot in pots.

Now that the glass greenhouse has been moved, we have a really large deck space in front of the summer house, so will be able to set the table and chairs out nicely for the summer months. I just want to try and find a reasonably priced pop up gazebo to go over the wooden table and 6 chairs.

It's a set that we purchased 5 years ago from the BBC Gardeners World show and we have looked after it religiously, by feeding it well with teak oil ( a job I love to do as the oil always smells like putty and I love the smell of putty - strange I know - but that's me!)  and up till last year it did sit under a gazebo on the top deck right outside the conservatory (the gazebo was put there to stop a very nosey neighbour from 2 doors a way peeking over her fence into our garden - she's slightly higher than us so was able to do that!)

But last year we moved the set down in front of the summer house where it sat o.k. but we could have done with more room around it - plus as our last gazebo had come to the end of it's working life, we left the table and chairs out in the open and just used a large garden umberella whenever we got chance to sit out, but the hot sun and rain really took it's toll on the wooden furniture and as this set has got to last us - I really do want to put another gazebo over it this summer.

We've decided that we're not having a holiday this year - we just can't afford one and we only really sat out in our garden a few times last year - we worked out in the garden but only sat out a few times and I only used the summer house once!

So it seems daft paying to go away when we don't already have the money and it would mean scrimping to save the money for a holiday, when we have somewhere nice to sit out and rest and relax. So that's our plan for this year.

Went to Aldi again for our shopping and still have only found one thing that we weren't certain on and that was some black pudding - it tasted O.K. but not quite like black pudding should taste like but I'm still very pleased with the prices.

I was off work from Monday to Thursday - I suffer from arthritis and it was really painful last week but whilst I was away it certainly was a case of 'while the cats away the mice will play' I think (know) that certain individuals at work didn't get much done at all whilst I wasn't there!!! Must change that this week!!

Also this week - I've decided that as I can't afford to go to a slimming club, I'm going to try and be mindful of what I'm eating and limit the portion sizes - I can't afford new clothes and everything I do have in the wardrobe is starting to get a little too tight for comfort. My problem is that when I get stressed at work I eat (I also eat when I'm happy and not stressed!) Will report in on how I've done next week 

Did you like the first picture of the Dahlia? - I love Dahlias, Begonias and Pelagoniums - all bright and breezy and making a splash of colour. 

Hope you all have a good week........Byeee

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Finding my Way

Afternoon All,

Just a very quick post - the above photograph is just me finding my way on how to put photo's on this blog - it's an old photo of our rear garden taken about 4 years ago.

The garden has changed a lot since this was taken I suppose now due to us having the allotment it's becoming a more productive rather than pretty garden. I lost the large cordyline that you can see on the right hand side last winter due to the bad weather and the wooden swing is now long gone along with the gravel, it's now decked with deck pathways between the different areas.

The summer house is still there and this is what I want to get painted this year - I want to paint it in a gentle green and cream - but it's finding that 'right' colour green.

Well I've mastered putting some old photo's on here - now all I've got to do is get the garden looking some thing like it should do and then learn how to put new photo's on!

Hope you're all having a good day - got to go now Byeee

Sunday, 13 February 2011

So where did that week go to.............

So where did that week go to.......... I don't know whether it's down to my age or whether it's because we are all being pushed to do more and fit more in to our hours - but time does seem to pass now in the blink of an eye.

When we had our little caravan we used to load up after work on a Friday evening - head down to Montgomery  and spend Friday evening, all day Saturday and Sunday morning on the site. I still worked all week and still managed to do all the gardening both at home and at the caravan. Nowadays it's enough to just cope with work, the commute, the house and the garden and allotment! Have I slowed down over the last 10 years and not realised - I must have!!!

I work for a locally based organisation and 'team lead' a group of 21 colleagues - 21 males and 1 female - it is a job that more often than not is stressful - but it's also a job that I enjoy. They are a diverse bunch of characters -  But the job wouldn't be so enjoyably challenging without those characters in the service.

I leave the house just after 7am and most days don't get back in till after 5pm - by the time I've done a few jobs around the house cooked tea and washed up - I'm shattered!!!

I went to Percy Throwers garden centre yesterday with my 2 sons, daughter, daughter in law and 2 grandchildren to meet my Mom and Dad for an hour - we'd arranged to meet in the cafe there. (My Mom and Dad live near Welshpool and this is the half way house meeting place). Mom and Dad had already brought a pot of tea each when we got there which they said was expensive and tasted like dish water. So I went and got 5 coffees for us (the grandchildren had there own drinks) The cost of 5 coffees?.......£8.95!!!! Gosh for that much I could have brought a large jar of coffee, 2 litres of milk and a large bag of sugar!!!!!!!!! No wonder there weren't many people in there - must be only the very rich residents of Shrewsbury who can afford to eat in there now.

I checked the price of the apple trees whilst I was in there - £35.00 each! - so have been to Aldi this morning and have brought 4 trees for less than half that amount. I've got 2 Bramley Apple trees and 2 desert types called Elstar. Infact for the first time ever I have done my shopping at Aldi this week and the weeks shopping was definately cheaper there and so far everything has tasted fine. I think that some of my shopping items may still  have to be brought at Asda but we'll see.

It's too cold and wet to plant the apple trees out yet so going to plant them into some large pots and keep them in the larger greenhouse for a few more weeks - if they all start to bud up and put on growth I shall put 2 of them in the garden and give the other 2 to my son who has a huge garden to fill with plants.

I had another bill come in yesterday which is going up - the telephone, t.v. and internet package will go up by £3.00 in April, one wonders how much more is going to go up in price. Soon people will be working hard all week and then not be able to afford to have any quality of life! Whilst I agree that the deficit needs to be paid back and not left for our children and grandchildren to have to pay it - I really do think that the measures being taken are being taken too quickly and too heavily.

Oh well Sunday lunch to cook and plate out and then the skating is on.....I do wish that Jason would shut up with his offensive comments - I thought that ITV may have sacked him last week after his nasty comment to Karen but no such luck.

Hope you all have a good week.......

Monday, 7 February 2011

Today I Could Smell Summer

I've had a day off work today due to having worked too many hours just recently - flexi days are one of the very few perks of the job that we have left and it is probably only a matter of time before we loose this as well.

So I've had a relaxing day at home and have had a a really good sort though my stash of balls of wool brought over the last few years, and I have decided that as last Xmas was so hard on the pennies, I'm going to knit a number of items as Xmas pressie's for this comming Xmas for some of the little ones in the family, and try to save a few of those pennies, so wool, pins and patterns are already in their seperate bags now waiting to be worked on.

I'm presently crocheting all the odd balls of wool together and have made a couple of small blankets to throw over my arthritic knees when the weather is cold - My husband says that they're a bit jazzy and a throw back to the 60's in design but who's worrying.

We have a summer house at the bottom of the garden which is my craft room through the summer months and I had to go down to find some wool from there and that's where I could smell summer............why do summer houses and caravans have there own 'perfume'? We used to have a caravan a few years ago near Montgomery in Wales and whenever we went there in the winter it had a summery smell and I used to stand in there in the bitter cold of winter, breath in and think -'won't be long now and we'll be back' - which is exactly what I've done today........ Mind you the garden looks awful - lots of work out there when it does start to warm up!

I've also sorted out which seeds I have to get for the garden and the allotment and happily don't have too many left to get - a trip to Wilkinsons on Saturday should suffice.

But the down side today was the shock of the gas and electricity bills comming on line!! We've been so careful but the gas is still going to jump up by £9.00 per month and the electricity by £12.00 per month from March onwards -  £21.00 increase is an awful lot. I've kept the thermostat at a steady 18 degrees after reading a post from Frugal Queen about only keeping the thermostat at the same temperature as a pleasant summers day and still that big increase plus we only put the heating on when we're in the house - if we go out it goes off. I just feel so sorry for the elderly and the young couples with young children how on earth are they coping with all these increases - I don't know.

I remember the recession of the early 80's when inflation was at 20% + but don't remember it being as bad or as long as this one.......or is it just my memory playing tricks.

Work tomorrow - back to all the stress........ Byeeee

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Hello There


As I'm sure that you can tell I'm relatively new to the world of 'blogging' - I've been reading blogs for about 12 months now and find them really interesting and I've been wondering for a while now whether I could do one - whether what I have to write would even be interesting to anyone else to read and then I thought why not - it doesn't matter if anyone else chooses to read it - they're my thoughts and it can be my online diary.

I'll probably write about the issues that concern me and how I'm trying to overcome some of them. Like getting out of debt, managing finances, losing weight, that long awaited dream of retirement, (11 years to go now thanks to this coalition goverment) gardening, allotmenteering, and the crafts that I would love to have time to do and my working days.

So here goes............