I’ve had this orchid for a couple of years now.
She usually sits in the kitchen window but I’ve moved her so that I can sit and admire her beauty.
… well at least it would be if it weren’t for this
little beauty sitting on my kitchen window sill. This was how it looked on the 1st February.
This is today – the kitchen smells wonderful, and I’m just so glad to have a little colour around on such a dark, grey, dreary day.
Beautiful isn’t it? I bought both my hyacinth pots from Morrisons in January when they were £1.00 per pot (they were not on offer). A couple of weeks ago they were £2.50 per pot and today they are half price at £1.50. Hmm they seem to have some difficulty on deciding what to charge. Shame really as I was going to get some more. I dread to think how much of this yoyo pricing is happening to my weekly shop.
Anyways, I must awaken my sleeping companion, leave the warmth of the wood burner and brave the cold for our daily walk. At least it’s not raining today!
Jane & Daisy xx
I seem to remember last year starting to do a monthly collage, but of course it fizzled out as did the photography course I started. I never heard from the teacher again – maybe the funding ran out, who knows? So this is my January Collage.
It’s made me realise I really, really need to try harder with my photography. A lot of my photos are dull and colourless, and I have to think harder about composition, rather than running around snapping whatever takes my eye. I suspect a lot of bloggers have a good eye for colour and for putting together props to enhance their photos. It’s something I’m going to have to think about and maybe plan a little.
These are some photos I took yesterday of blooms around the house that are making me smile every time I look at them. The smell from the hyacinths is quite overpowering, but I love it. The hyacinths were £1.00 a pot and the tete a tete pots were 50p each about 3 weeks ago in Morrisons – a steal and well worth every penny for the daily pleasure I get from them.
This is a very quick acrylic painting I did last week of one of the pots of tete a tete daffodils, before the buds started to appear.
We’ve wall to tall sunshine today, so I’m going to go and prune the crab apple and maybe put some wood preservative on the chicken coup, see how I feel and how cold it is out there.
Cheerio for now
Jane & Daisy xx
Autumn is not my favourite time of year. Seeing everything die back and the days get shorter makes me feel a little sad, I much prefer the spring. For some reason, this year I’ve been feeling more lacklustre than normal, hence my lack of posts this month.
Yesterday I took my camera with me on our walk with the intention of capturing and enjoying the rich autumn colour.
It was one of those misty damp mornings, which eventually turned into a beautiful warm mellow sunny afternoon.
The leaves are beginning to change colour, and the oaks are heavy with plump ripening acorns.
The dew was thick and coated everything with a scattering of sparkling diamonds. I was hoping to find a beautiful big dewy spiders web to photograph – this one hanging on the fence was the best I could find.
At this time of year we have some wonderfully dramatic sunsets.
Most of the plants in the garden might be dying back for the winter, but some are just appearing for the winter season. Silk tassel bush (Garrya elliptica) and arum Italicum.
Some of the plants in the garden are still going strong, including these cornflowers, which have been a delight all summer.
I was able to find a bouquet of late blooms.
We both enjoyed our walk, and the sun broke through as we made our way back, and in a few weeks I will be able to enjoy one of my favourite autumn past times – kicking through drifts of autumn leaves.
The compost bin has been sorted out,
I forked the fresher stuff off the top onto a sheet, took the lovely rich compost from the bottom and then put the fresh stuff back into the bin to continue composting. I spread three barrow loads onto the veg patch (some of the broad beans were reshooting from the bottom of the old plants – I’ve cut off the tops and left the new shoots to see if there will be a few late beans).
I did find a few strange items in the compost – a missing spoon, a nail brush and the burnt out remains of a candle – can’t think how they ended up in the compost bin though.
Of course, I had lots of help …
… it generated great curiosity and enthusiastic sniffling and snuffling.
The chimney sweep turned up the same day to clean the wood burning stove flue.
I’ve also defrosted our two freezers, one is a small chest freezer and the other a tall fridge freezer. Lots of hidden treasures to be found in the bottom, not least several boxes of frozen fruit from the garden that had been in there quite a while, and which has been made into mixed berry jam (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and blackcurrants).
and redcurrant jelly, completed this morning.
I think there will be some Crab apple jelly in the near future as there is an abundance of crab apples on the tree, but I must get my hands on some jam jars first.
I’ve also been sorting out my sloe gin I started this time last year (more details here). It’s been patiently sitting in a cupboard waiting to be strained and bottled.
That’s what I’m doing right now – waiting for the liquid to strain through coffee filters.
I wonder what it will taste like?
Jane & Daisy xx
Autumn is fast approaching here in our Welsh Valley. The rain has finally subsided, the sun is out, and it’s warm again (I beginning to think winter had arrived prematurely a couple of days ago).
We’re looking forward to eating the first crop of Worcester Pearmain apples.
The stone crop has turned the most beautiful colour.
I look forward to the sunsets at this time of year – the colours are so dramatic….
… and I love watching this group of trees in the neighbour’s garden gently change colour each autumn, it makes washing dishes almost enjoyable.
Whilst I was out taking photos I could hear a lot of noise coming from the hedge – far too much for it to be a couple of sparrows having a barny (which happens a lot in these parts – you wouldn’t believe the racket a couple of sparrows fighting in the hedge can make)
It was this pesky varmit - two front hoofs resting on a branch, tucking into the berries in the garden hedge which is 5 ft tall. The brazen creature took no notice of me with my camera and continued munching.
I’m off now to turn over the compost heap and hopefully find some nice compost in the bottom for the veg garden.
Jane & Daisy.
Has it been nearly two weeks since my last post?
So what have we been up to here at Donut Towers? Well …
… there’s been a bit of knitting of Ringwood gloves, this is the first glove and I’m up to the thumb. Terribly fiddly knitting on several DP needles, and I’m sure it’s only going to get worse as I start on fingers!
We’ve marvelled at the different varieties of thistles on our daily walk on the hill.
admired the wild flowers and enjoyed the smell of new mown hay
and sat in the welcome shade of our favourite tree as we contemplated life, and watched the world go by.
And enjoyed some welcome shade in the garden as we’ve enjoyed tea and cake breaks in between watching Olympian feats on TV. (Hasn’t the coverage been great?).
Of course, we’re enjoying picking bouquets of summer flowers for the house …
…. and peas from the veggie plot – believe me they taste much better fresh from the pod!
And we’re back to trying some of this! I’m feeling a bit blah about this toile – sack of potatoes springs to mind. I look at this and see only my negative hangups about my body shape. Is this a good fit, or do I look like a sack of potatoes? You can be honest, I won’t get upset, really. Where do I go from here? Please ignore the jagged neck, we’ll pretend it’s a design feature, it was me couldn’t be bothered to unpin it and take it off to free the neck line so I did some
neat contortions and hacked away! (The red marks are the tailor tacks.) I wanted to see if it would fall off my shoulders like this does.
If you remember, I made this back in early January as a working toile. I’ve worn it a lot around the house, and it’s nice and cool to wear on a hot day, but it has the annoying habit of slipping backwards, and I’m constantly tugging it forwards again. From my fitting books this suggests that the shoulder seam needs bringing forward. I would also not bother with a facing again as it shifts about all the time, I shall bind the neckline edge instead.
But back to my current toile …
look where the shoulder line is. This looks too far back to me, and the biro mark is where I think I might bring the shoulder forward to. The reason for the hack job was to see if it would slip backwards and it didn’t. So should I leave it alone, or try moving the shoulder seam forward? Otherwise the fit is quite good through the shoulders, I think.
I’ve made this toile using the Pattern Drafter from Maria Opresnik, which seems to have addressed things like having the darts in the right place (no fba yay) and my narrow sloping shoulders, but I’m not sure about this shoulder seam placement, and the rest of the toile. What do you think dear readers?
I’ve also just seen this book on Amazon - it looks very useful, but I’ll leave it on the wish list for a while, and peruse the fitting books I already have.
Jane & Daisy xx
…. being able to go out in the garden and pick posies of fresh flowers
Rose – Hyde Hall from David Austin, seriously vicious small prickly thorns, but covered in deep pink scented blooms.
Climbing rose, The Generous Gardener from David Austin. This is it’s first season planted against a north facing wall and it’s living up to its name – covered in beautiful scented blooms.
A row of cornflowers planted in the vegetable patch in readiness for the wedding. Unfortunately they didn’t start flowering until last week, but make excellent cut flowers.
Someone was checking on the lavender hedge against the garage wall. She loves rolling in scented mints, lavender, santolina and cat mint whenever she thinks I’m not looking!
Not much sewing going on, but there has been a little progress on the Ringwood Gloves and I’ve pulled out a WIP needlepoint cushion cover which I’ve been working on for many years – far to many to mention here I’m ashamed to say!
Have a good weekend, Jane & Daisy xxx