Poppy Patchwork

My little bit of this big World

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Dish it up

I redid this pot last month
 This is one from last year
 Made two years ago 
 I love this simple pot
 Done last month 
I have had this pot since the 70's, it's called onion ware
Not alot doing here, enjoyed our first BBQ of the summer tonight, we have just come inside, it's been a lovely sunny hot day. The garden is looking good, my fruit bushes are full of swelling fruit, the gooseberry bushes are still green, I do hope I have killed off the saw flies.
We have loads of tomatoes on our two plants, and the cucumbers are growing tall. I cut lettuce with our tea, and hope to dig up the early potatoes on Saturday.
We have a big project happen in the garden, which starts on Tuesday, it's hubbies project, more on it next week.
My inside seed and seedlings are all doing well, I have been promised a walnut tree sapling, which is exciting.
Work is very slow, just not enough to go around, but two people have given in their notice, so the work load will improve, I hate being idle.
I have been following Chelsea Flower Show, I do enjoy watching Monty and Joe Swift on BBC2 each evening.   But I am reading so much, I have sewing to do this weekend, a project for a friend.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Outside in

It's getting dark outside and my lights are sparkling
most of them are solar
 Looking down the garden
I keep loads of lights in the greenhouse away from the wet weather, they light the greenhouse up each evening and when we have an evening in the garden I can bring them out all charged and ready for use. 
 Kiwi seedling
I am growing ever hopeful
  New reading glasses 
This is not sponsored, just something I wanted to share with you speckyfoureyes.com,  I got 3 pairs of glasses for just over £100, the reading/sunglasses are Bench, so not cheap, I could have got pairs from £9 each. There is a set of numbers on the arm of your glasses, mine is 51-17-136 this gives the details of your style of glasses, so if like me you want something similar, enter these numbers and frames the same are shown. The site is easy, my 1st order took just over 3 weeks, but the saving I made were great. 
I have done no craft, I have finished reading The State We're In by Adele Parks, the author was sending you to a good ending and then at the last moment she drops in a twist. I really did enjoy it. 
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins (Girl on the Train), is now out, reviews are looking good, another book to add to my list. 
I have really been lazy this evening, after having a near perfect weekend with Will, and Sunday lunch with mummy and Will, Sunday night was reading and an early night.
PS. One of our local's cat has been attacked, the vet thinks by a fox, hope the locals get the message about the fox population. 

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Weekend so far in pictures

Hubby is away until Wednesday
on a biking trip with both his sons
touring his beloved Wales
 Lots of Will and Nanna time
mummy and daddy away Friday and Saturday nights
 Hubby feeling guilty, these came through the post today
he had ordered them before he left
 Popped to the library, got these two
and preordered loads of other titles
These rain clouds are keeping us inside
we would love a walk around the park this afternoon, if they clear
It's a stay at home weekend, Will and I are here in the day, and then I go for a sleep over at Will's house. Little man is down for a nap, so giving nanna time for an early lunch and a quick catch up. But as I was up at 5.30 this morning, it does feel like lunch time, it's great to have so much time with our youngest grand son, we have 5, all boys the oldest being 11 years old.
The weather is dry, but we have loads of huge black clouds, so far they have drifted by without any rain, but I am not risking talking Will out, neither of us want to get wet. There is nothing required to do in the garden, I managed to get the last couple of jobs done on Thursday afternoon.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Urban foxes

What's on top of your shed
 Well a neighbours shed, this fox stayed there for ages, 
we could not see what he was watching, no chickens in the garden, even when we made a noise he turned to watch us and then sat back down.
The local foxes are really very bold.
Urban foxes are every where.
We have loads around our estate, they are getting bolder, most nights we chase one out of our back garden as it tries to get next door, Purdy  our cat will chase the fox, which scares us because she could be hurt badly if they fight.
On Facebook our area has it's own local page, I love to keep in touch locally, it's used for so many great things, if we have stuff to get rid off, we always post here 1st, and often it goes. We also have picked up a few useful things from the page. It also keeps us up to date on local events.
It is very common for people to show photo's of them feeding the foxes in their garden, one person leaves chicken outside for them most nights, our mad cat lady next door feeds them dog food in the back lanes behind the houses. Everyone thinks a great idea to encourage them, the litters are cute.
BUT, these are wild animals, not cute and fluffy, they have flees and ticks, and you would not want your children too close to them. A few years ago, I kept chickens, we lived on the edge of a farm, their pen was was dug in and we thought protected, in one night we lost 15 of our girls, only one survived the fox attack.
I am concerned, if the foxes are being well fed their litters will be bigger, all will survive and we will be overrun with foxes, Where will they get their food from, their natural instant is to hunt, rabbits and other small animals in the garden.
I am not the only one is our area, who feels the same. If anyone voices their concern, they are kill joys, but still these are wild animals, what do you think.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Just a few things

I have been reusing some of the nicer jars we have, 
bringing some of my lovely beads and buttons on show.
The shelf is cut from a leftover piece from hubbies side of the office.
I have a second spare shelf if I want to add it later. 
I watched this series on TV and it was wonderful
I don't normally read a book after watching it on screen, BUT this book is brilliant, I knew what was coming but the book is written so well, and still it offered a twist and turn. 
 Pomegranate potted into a bigger clay pot
I am on a mission to get as many 2nd hand clay pots as I can
Plastic pots are on their way out of my garden. 
I have just ordered the wormery below, in green
It's back in stock in June, can't wait for it to come.

I don't like to touch worms, they are slimy, but I do know their worth. This model allows the worms to munch their way upwards, so when the top tray is full, the bottom layer can be removed, compost used in garden and then the empty tray is added to the top. So no worms will be touched at any point. It's a good size for us, and would ensure our waste from the kitchen is used in a positive way. Plus the tap at the bottom will drain and we will have liquid fertilizer. I will use the last of money gifted to me to purchase this.
I know I am a big girls blouse in the garden, I do not like to touch worms or slugs, worms are carefully tucked under the soil and slugs are removed on my trowel. My mum used to laugh at me, but it's just the way I am. 
We are still looking at waste, we throw away so little these days, as I have said before, if we don't purchase it, we don't have to get rid of it in the future.
Our food waste is almost zero, which is very pleasing.
We do not have plans to  renew anything, if it breaks, we will try and get it fixed, only replace where we have to. We pass on things we don't need, and happily take passed on items where we can use them. The only new things we regularly get are clothes and shoes, but we don't spend too often, I'm not ready to wear clothes that have been passed on.
A couple of points from my last post regarding the bird house, both really good points to point out, the paint used is nontoxic, and regarding the metal roof overheating the box, we already decided to place it in a shady spot, where the sun won't reach it after late morning.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Wet outside

Bird box before the varnish
 Simple decoration, using acrylic base coat and sharpies for the flower decoration. 
Once it is varnished, it will go in the garden.
I hope we can get birds to use it, if not it will look pretty.
I have had one pomegranate pip grow, just small beginnings
This is on my office desk, with a radiator below and loads of sunshine 
I will pop this into a larger pot this week.
 In the same box, kiwi's I have never got these seeds beyond this stage.
I will leave these in this tub with the clear plastic lid,
and hope they get to a size I can pot on.
I cut a thin slice of Kiwi and lay it on farmyard compost,
it went mouldy and then these tiny seedlings grew.
 I repotted my African Violet, and left in on the kitchen window sill, 
the leaves have burnt, but the plant is healthy. 
My cutting for my Coleus, each spring I start more plants from the mother plant I keep inside over the winter, so for the 3rd year, free plants. 
For the 4th day we have rain, today is over caste and we keep having light showers, every where is wet, much needed rain, so whilst we are inside we are pleased. This is perfect weather after all the work and planting I did in the garden on Saturday.
I am home today on sick leave, I have picked up a bug, and it's best to stay away from the office rather than spread it around, my boss is very understanding.
I have plans to do some sewing, I still have curtains to make for the van, our local shop was out of stock of 1" curtain tape, and I am happy to wait for them to restock. I do like to try and use local shops where possible. Later this week I am back on sewing instruction, helping Marie make cushions for her van.
We have also booked our 1st night away in the van on Bank holiday weekend, just a tester to ensure everything is working as we want.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Sunny time in the garden.

After more rain in the early morning, the sun came out
 So many lovely views in our garden
 Planted the marigolds around the lilies
All planted and netted to keep the cats away
 Pot's along the side of the house done
 Raised garden in greenhouse, all settled in and growing.
 Veg in the greenhouse, loads of promise.
It has been a warm sunny afternoon here in Hampshire, so both hubby and I worked in the garden, me in the back, hubby digging out the front corner plot. I have sorted most of my pots, loads of bedding plants to bring in the colour. I have also dug out the small back plot, and replanted, adding loads of topsoil, to help break the clay down. Everything was given a really good watering, so it's just a case of watching things grow.
In the greenhouse our early potatoes are almost ready for harvest, the cucumbers are both growing, and I have flowers on one tomato plant.
All the fruit bushes are heavy with swelling berries, I sprayed the gooseberries bushes again, they are both still full of leaf. Even my blackberry bush has loads of new growth, it has taken 3 years to get the plant growing.
Hubby has cleared the raised front bed, it's his spot to do what he wants, before he plants, he will dig it over again to ensure all the plants are gone.
We even had time to sit in the garden, enjoying all the work and watching the birds feed, a perfect day.
Did you notice I have a few new metal birds, I used some of the money gifted to me to add to my collection.
I have also redone my blog header, the subjects reflect all my interests.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Working with wood

1st attempt at woodwork, 
In truth the design was made on the computer 
and the cutting machine did most of the work.
I painted the letters so they stand out. I also uses different types of sanders to ensure it finished off nicely. I love the block of wood, the imperfections add to the design. 
 This was much better, using a paper template I used a bandsaw to cut this lovely hedgehog out. It's not completely the same as the template.
 I then did a Pyrography class (burning onto wood) and completed the sign.
 I loved the choices from the wood piles.
I also brought this bird box home to decorate and hang outside.
My 2nd attempt at Enameling
These are charms for my cross stitching
I last did this about 5 years ago. 
 Raw materials, glass of all sizes (all being really small)
and the copper base plates. 
All the above classes I did with my sister, whilst our other half's were playing golf, each class lasting about 2 hours, but we had use of the finishing rooms to complete everything. I really enjoyed doing the woodwork, the bandsaw was much easier than expected, some of the designs were very complicated, the hardest being where straight and curved lines which had to be cut true.  It's not a hobby I would want to take up, but it was fun to try. Both my signs are for the bottom of our garden, once they have been varnished.
I also did a water colours class, which I found very informative, giving me enough information and confidence for me to have a go, I won't share my results, as they are not the sum of my learning, just my poor attempt at art.
We also had loads of lovely walks around the site, set in the heart of Devon, very near Okehampton. We did not leave the complex, shopping and site seeing was not on our list of things to do.
The previous weekend with my Brother in Somerset, was fun, we had a lovely meal out, and spent Saturday afternoon, sat in the sunshine in a local beer garden.
I have checked my greenhouse and all is well, the capillary mat worked very well, I have plants outside this afternoon, starting to harden them off for redoing my pots around the house.

Friday, 5 May 2017

Less and less

Will in his Bumbo seat
after his last photo where he looked startled, 
I thought you were due a cute one.
I finished this book in record time,
could not put it down, great story, can't say any more it would give it away.
I will look for another of her books. 
I have not done much since my last post, the garden is looking good, which is pleasing as we are away tomorrow for 6 days, and it will have to look after it's self. The capillary mat in the green house works well, the plants stay moist, and the pot of water last 5 days,  which is enough for whilst I am away. 
I have been walking much more, I am now averaging 10,000+ steps per day, and with my sensible eating, I have lost a few pounds, I still have loads to go, but everything is looking good. 
Each work day I get to the office an hour early, this helps me avoid the worst of the motorway traffic, it's only 13 miles, but the M27 is very congested. I go each morning for a 20 minute walk around the business estate before going inside, a friend has started walking with me, at lunch time we walk again, this time through to the housing estate. After work hubby and I walk around our local park, or Portchester Castle
At weekends, it's walking in the park again, or the castle, along the coastal path, we are not very far from the water front. 
It's a simple change but the benefits are showing, and I am feeling much better.
We do not eat process foods, I avoid foods with flour in, so cakes, biscuits and bread are an occasional treat, I don't drink fizzy drinks or eat crisp at all, and I'm not interested in sweets. 
Wine and chocolate are my vices, but I do limit how often we have them. We do go to a local Bistro for a nice lunch a couple Saturdays in the month, I love their Paninis with a black coffee.
So I find it difficult to diet, I don't eat the normal things you would give up.
I am finding as I get older, the weight finds me and sticks, it's only a couple of pounds each winter, and if I work hard I can remove them by summer, but this year I would like to lose a bit more, some of my clothes are a bit tight, and as I love my clothes and would not want to change them, I need a remedy. 
So watch this space to see less of me.

Monday, 1 May 2017

Dull out, bored in

I have wanted a rain chain for ages
 I also wanted water for the smaller birds
 This does everything and it looks good
I still have the bird bath on top of the Chimera  
This single Iris is looking good in the garden
the birds must of gifted it to me, as I have not planted it.
Our friends came over for morning coffee
and brought their 4 year old grandson, so I baked cakes, which we all enjoyed.
It's very dull here on Bank Holiday Monday, we have had a bit of rain, but we need much more for the gardens. Luckily I don't have much to do in the garden, everywhere is waiting for warmer sunny days to arrive and plants can get growing.
Hubby is replacing some wires in our van, ready for our 1st trip later this month.
I do have some sewing to do, but I'm not in the mood to get my sewing machine out, it's a stay a home day for us. Later I plan to read, but for now I can lose myself in the wonderful world of the internet.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

That's April done

What have they done to Will, he starts his swimming this month and daughter was told he would need googles, these are the smallest, but still too big for him. 
He went to the pool this morning for the 1st time. 

It's that time of the month when I look at my spend
I stayed under budget this month, but I'm still over by £1.84, not that it bothers me, I'm on plan, it will be harder this year as prices are creeping up, so not looking to save, just to keep my spending at a similar level. As always it's the garden  which has the most spent on it. In real terms it's not a craft, but I do like to keep an eye on spending, with so many nice things for outside, I could spend a fortune.
I won't buy any more garden magazines, Amateur Gardening, was interesting but I learn't nothing new. Modern Gardens are for the plastic gardeners, those who buy and not grow things, some of the idea's were really just strange.
I will always love Gardeners World, full of interesting things to read, and helped me keep up with Monty, as Gardner's World was not on TV this weekend.
Whilst in the village I got 3 packs of 6 bedding plants for £5.00 on a 3 for 2 offer, the plants are hardy and just enough for the pots along the side of the house.
I am feeling pleased with my self, I popped to Superdrug to get some personal items for me, and I bagged loads of bargains, my shampoo was less than half price, my L'Oreal face cream was BOGOF, face wipes half price, deodorant reduced, and I want a couple of nail products which were 3 for the price of 2, so I saved about a third off my shopping. As they say every little helps.
This afternoon we have had rain, it's never enough, but at least I don't have to water the garden, so an afternoon inside with Will to cuddle. Family afternoon's are always fun.

Friday, 28 April 2017

1st May bank holiday

Like this for ever, was brilliant
I could not put it down, the story line was against all my normal choices
Sharon Bolton is becoming a favorite author of mine.
The Stranger in my home is on my pile to read. 
 Aquilegia's are back in the garden
this one is huge with loads of buds.
 I love these flowers, I don't have as many as last year
waiting to see what colours I have. 
 Just a single flower on my Peony
It survived the frosty morning this past week. 
I have no idea where the Iris came from, it's not a plant I would grow. 
Different reading
It's a bank holiday here so no work until Tuesday, we are spending the time at home, I have just one task in our garden, we will dig out a small bed and enhance the soil, replant a few nice flowering plants I have in my greenhouse.
My plan is to have time to read, and for a nice change I got a few gardening magazines, I can't remember when I last purchased magazines, way back in 2016. I never have to justify Gardeners World, Amateur Gardening, had a lovely packet of Dahlia seeds and an article regarding regrowing Orchids, I hope to get a few tips. Modern Gardens, is not about plants and growing things, it's all about putting together gardens, a bit like DIY ground force, without Alan Titchmarsh.
Tonight we are at our daughters house, whilst pregnant she had to give up soft cheese and Pate, so we promised her a cheese, pate and wine party with a bit of port. It's easier for us to go to her's so Will can sleep in his own room.
Tomorrow I'm having a Pedicure, so I can get my summer toes out.
I want to do some sewing, but I've not planned which day, and hubby will not want to spend 3 days at home, so I am hoping a trip out with our trusty camera's will feature.
It's much warmer along the south coast, so a promise of a nice weekend.


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