Sunday, 6 September 2015

How does your garden grow?

Over on Crafts by Carolyn we have been talking "gardens!" To be more specific...SLATE and it was mentioned about our borders. I ended up looking back to some of the work we did in the garden back in 2011 (I think) not long after we put the fencing up. The top border was almost completely stripped back and nearly all we had was a few potted shrubs.

Below is a picture of the same border today and as you can see it has filled out quite a bit. Look at the change in the Dogwood, this really looked pretty last winter, the first year it's stems turned a beautiful shade of red. Fingers crossed for this winter too.

It's still be no means finished, but is a garden ever finished? I MUST take an up to date picture of our box tree......LOL my feeble attempt at topiary.

As I hung my washing out this morning I noticed these fungi growing alongside by palm and it is amazing how I see things in nature now I have started to Zentangle. I took some photographs a few weeks ago when we went away for our Anniversary. Hopefully I can share then soon, alongside my interpretation of them!!! LOL

Not sure what we are going to do with these, it's the best year we have had with them and Chris is now considering wine making!

Other borders are not quite so established as we have lost a few big plants leaving us with chunks of border to fill. We lost a lovely big Mahonia a few years ago so we decided to replace it, hopefully it will fill the gap, especially when some of the surrounding plants loose their leaves. 

This year we turned the old Belfast sink into a little herb garden and I have got some white gravel to help retain moisture as it's in quite a sunny spot. Once again, it's a work in progress, I stood our lavender in as a filler and I have left the chives and the mint in their own pots so that they don't take over. Next year I may take them out and replace with a few other herbs. Unfortunately little Brucie Boy has very recently started to take interest in it so I may need to move the chives sooner than planned.

Today I am needing to do a bit more concrete laying as it would be lovely to get it all finished while the weather holds out. I am getting quite obsesses about my pebble border, I feel I want to get the hoover out to clean it up and then varnish it so the colours in the stones can be seen better.

Here is a close up, again, by no means perfect but it's fun (and back-breaking) work and Brucie Boy can't dig it up like he does the slate that we still have around the edge of the patio.

(PS. I have wet the pebbles to show some of the colours better.)

Right, waffle over. Chris is already out in the garden and waiting to mix up the cement for me. I am going to put the kettle on first though.


Saturday, 5 September 2015

Christmas!!!!! EEEK!

I am NOT going to frighten myself........but I sat down this morning a flicked through the Lakeland Christmas Ideas book as I drank my tea!!!!!!! :

Now for a long as I can remember, I have never been prepared for Christmas, certainly not since having the children. This year I have no real work commitments so I actually stand a chance of being a bit more organised.

As well as hoping to make my Xmas cards this year, I have high hopes (or pie in the sky) ideas of making Christmas cakes, Gingerbread houses, truffles, decorations, gifts...........

If I can achieve even a few of my creative Christmas ideas I will be very happy. I think it is time for me to sit down and sort myself a few targets.

Friday, 4 September 2015

Pre-School Book Corner Re-vamp

Well another school year started. Jack is now in Year 12 and starting A Levels and Amelia is starting Year 9. It has been a long and difficult Summer Break this year, what with Chris starting a new job, not being able to get away as a family, lack of respite available for Amelia and my health.......the list could go on. I feel disappointed that the Summer has passed us by and that I have not done the things I had planned.

Hey ho, it's no good pondering over that now, it's too late to worry about what could have been. I know I need more in my life, I need a focus, a direction, a few goals.....but exactly what that means.....I do not yet know. I am going around in circles with my health but I have now been referred to the Rheumatology Department at the hospital. 

Shattered and full of aches and pains I should have spent my first few "child-free" days pampering myself but instead I offered my creative services (if you can call them that!) to the little Pre-school I used to work with. It has been something I have said about doing for many years whilst working there, and that is re-vamping the book corner.

Never done anything like this before and I was very limited with paint colours. On day 1 I only had one tin of blue and 1 tin of very pale I improvised and added a dash or two of the kiddies ready made, squirty paint to help add a bit of detail. Not great but as a first attempt I was quite pleased with how it turned out.

On one wall I did a daytime scene which spread around the corner and into night time.
I would have liked to have gone a lot darker with the night sky but was concerned about the paint mixes. By the time I got to mixing colours for the darker grass, I just decided to go for it and see!

Today I did a few details, the sun (which still needs another coat and perhaps a few sun rays) a few fluffy clouds, some faceless sheep (because paint was still wet to add details) and the most enjoyable part.......some glittery stars and a rather obscure looking moon. Oh yes and a few scattered flowers  dotted around too. 

I also painted the corner of the ceiling a cloud shaped blue with a few clouds and stars.

I'd like to think of it as a work in progress and would love to go back and add to it. Any ideas would be much appreciated. 

I am now crashed out on the sofa with a cup of coffee, a heat pad and a tube of gel for my back pain but with a little smile on my face. I do hope the children will like it when they arrive on Monday morning.