Tuesday, 22 June 2021

My favourite waste of time

One of the things I like best about our house is the kitchen window.  I can see all of our back garden from this window, it was one of the things I loved when we came to view the house and I still love to pull up the blind each morning to look out there.

We have both enjoyed watching our many feathered friends visit this year, perhaps they always visited but I was at work and didn't get to enjoy them, but since I've been at home, watching the birds come to the garden each day has become one of my favourite things to do.  I could spend hours just watching the comings and goings 

We have all the various tits visit the feeder, but the blue tits have been the more regular this Spring and Summer, mum and dad bought their babies to feed, that was so lovely to watch.





We have two robins that come at the moment, this is the skinny one, very cheeky, he is the one that comes down close when we are cutting the grass or weeding, I always say hello to him, I bet the neighbours think i'm mad!


And one a bit plumper, he's a bit more shy.


We also have some of the bigger birds visit.  Mr Magpie loves it when I put cheese on the feeder and will keep coming back until it's all gone!


The crows love the mealworms, but are also partial to cheese too.



We also have a Jackdaw that comes who is also fond of mealworms, it doesn't take long for the bigger birds to clear the table, basically they keep coming back until it's all gone, lol



My blackbird is usually the first one to visit, if he come down and there is no food for him he stands and looks towards the kitchen window as if to say, come on it's feeding time, so funny


I wasn't sure what this one was so asked on fb and was told it was a Dunnock, we have probably had these before but I've mistaken it for a sparrow, which I've noticed we don't have very many of.


The woodpecker comes a couple of times a week, once he's fed he sits up in the tree for a while


I've been trying to encourage the Goldfinches for ages, but although I hear them only one year have we been lucky enough for them to come to the feeders.  I put all the right sort of food out but they don't seem to want to come.  This is the closest we had this year. (Can you spot him in the middle?).  They came on and off all that day, so there must have been something they liked there.


But the ones we were excited to see this year, (they have never visited before) were the Nuthatches.

For a few day's I kept seeing a different bird but it was so quick I couldn't get a picture, then one Sunday we noticed half a dozen or so of them in our oak tree, mainly on the trunk of the tree but they would fly back and forth to the feeder.  I finally managed to get a photo and we used good old google to find out what it was.
They came for a good three or four weeks, although I think they have now moved on. 



Although I used to feed the birds when I worked I never got to enjoy them really, so there are some advantages to being at home :-)

-X-

Wednesday, 16 June 2021

Only mad dogs and English men

We've been spoilt with all the sunshine these last few weeks and, it was certainly welcome after all the rain and cold of the previous couple of months.  But, because we are in the UK we have to make the most of it because as we know, it can drastically change overnight.  
According to Alexa tonight we have a flood warning, I suppose there is a storm coming our way pretty soon so it will be all change.

Monday's outing was to Baggeridge Country Park.  For some reason I have never been here before, don't know why because it is only a 20minute drive away.  We spent almost all day there, the weather was perfect, not too hot for walking and not too sunny for Bonnie, (because she is just a hot sweaty mess in the heat and being a red head cannot be out in the sun without being plastered from head to toe in factor 50)

We had a great time and plan on going back again over the summer.








We walked right to the top to see the amazing view and this little bean didn't complain once, it was quite a hike too.


There is a great children's playground there too with a sand pit, Bonnie would have been quite happy sitting in that sand all day.



To make the most of the weather when I collected Oliver from school today we went a ride down to Bewdley and had an ice cream, a nice river walk and a fish and chip tea sitting by the river.



I hope you have been making the most of the weather too.

-X-

Saturday, 5 June 2021

The English countryside

 The weather has changed for the better this last week and it tempted me to do a couple of outings.  On Wednesday I took a drive to Shrewsbury.  Shrewsbury is a Tudor town with some lovely buildings, a great range of shops and a lovely indoor market too.  I did look in a couple of shops as the town itself wasn't too busy but my intention was to grab some lunch and visit the park.

The Quarry Park is 29 acres and has been a place of recreation in Shrewsbury since the 16th century and is still well used today.  This is just a small section but In the distance you have the town, and behind me is the river Severn, to the left is a large children's playground and a splash pool, which was full of children enjoying this sunny day.


At the heart of the park is The Dingle which was cultivated by the famous Percy Thrower who was also Superintendent of the park for 28 years.  It is the most peaceful place and although at the moment there is a one way system in place was not it the least busy.  There is a section that is still closed off and the benches have been removed due to Covid but the space is still amazing.









My other trip out today was to Bourton-on-the-Water, probably one of the best known and more popular Cotswold villages.  As Saturday was another scorcher it was busy, but again I didn't go to look in shops.

The river Windrush  runs through the middle of the village and it has a number of tiny bridges, the water is really shallow and so people congregate on the grass banks and use the river to paddle in.

As you can see, it was very very busy so I didn't hang around where the crowds were.



There are houses running right along the river bank, very pretty houses, but I'm not sure I would like crowds of people right outside my garden taking photos of my house all the time.  
(ok, I'm one of those people 😅)


I walked further back from the main village which was much quieter.  
All the houses are built from the same Cotswold stone, it really is such a pretty place and I think when you imagine an English village this is what you think of.



Every house seems to have a beautiful cottage garden and I just loved this one with all the alliums


And then as if all those house's weren't pretty enough, walk another hundred yards or so and you have all this wonderful countryside!



I did another blog post about Bourton-on-the-Water in October 2011, when we had a heatwave. You can find that HERE

-X-

Monday, 31 May 2021

A tale of two stitches

I've been wanting to have a go at sewing something wearable for a while and I got a load of fabric off Mark's auntie a few months back, mainly for finishing cross stitch items but, there were some larger cuts of fabric in there too. 
I chose this pattern by Tilly and the Buttons because it said it was a beginners pattern, it takes you though all the steps from cutting to assembling and sewing.  I also liked the idea of a tunic as I do wear them a lot.


Tadah!
I did it!
I set aside last Tuesday when I knew I would have no distractions, and good job I did because it took me most of the day :-)


Now I'm not saying it's perfect, but for a first attempt I'm pretty happy with it and....it fits.  If I wanted to be really picky about the fit,  It could do with taking in a smidge, but I could still do that If I decide I want to.  


I've also been stitching on and off.

I haven't been feeling like stitching lately but I did get Autumn Dream out recently to see if it would spur me on.
This is where I'd got to when It got put away.


And this is how it looks now it's had some attention.


I'm going to keep plugging away at this though June in the hope I can get it finished, although If I'm honest I don't much like stitching on it, I do however love the design so it needs to be finished.

Today is another Bank Holiday here in the UK and for once the weather is beautiful, not that we are going anywhere, I would imagine there are crowds of people out and about today because of the sunshine, so I'd rather stay at home.  We've worked in the garden all morning before it got too warm and enjoyed a quiet afternoon.

Mark is back at work tomorrow and as it's half term I won't have to pick Oliver up from school so I have the rest of the week to myself :-)

-X-