Wednesday 27 July 2016


Yes, that's right, they CANCELLED yesterday evening.  Obviously in the area as yesterday was a possible viewing day had I gone for it, they must have done a drive by.    They said:  We have reviewed the location of the house again and have decided due to the general area, it is not for us therefore we would like to cancel the viewing please."

So there you have it.  2 x 12 hour days and a 6 hour day of housework and gardening to try and make it as perfect, clean and tidy as I could (imagine spring cleaning a 19 room house and you will know how exhausted I am today), all for nothing.  I have never driven myself so hard, and if I hadn't had the garden to do too, could have got the house up together in a day. The garden is another matter though.   I can't garden much in June because pollen levels affect my asthma, and of course everything grows like crazy.  I was away for much of a week and we have been very busy with sourcing and selling stuff for my small business.  Cutting back and weeding was the equivalent of "cutting" an acre of grass with a pair of tweezers . . .

So, either they couldn't cope with living next door to a farm, although it clearly states we are situated next door to a working farm, or we were deemed too far from the shops and amenities.  Their loss.  As Pattypan said, our house wants special people in it, and they weren't special . . .

Tuesday 26 July 2016

A viewing looms

We have a viewing on Thursday at 1.30 p.m.  Please think of our lovely house and hope that the folk fall in love with it . . . and buy it . . .

Monday 25 July 2016

I must go down to the seas again. . .

These are the only photos I took when I was down in Southampton with Tricia and John this time, as the new batteries I bought for my camera proved to be duds, but I got more in time for our outing to Stokes Bay, near Gosport, where we used to go as children.  In fact, thinking back, it is probably a good 50 years since I was last there.  That makes me feel quite OLD!

Above is the Isle of Wight ferry from Portsmouth, heading for Ryde I assume.  It was SUCH a hot day - well over 30 deg. C - and the sunlight sparkled on the water like diamonds.

Above and below: there is never a boring moment watching the ships and yachts and windsurfers.

It is a shingle beach at Stokes Bay.  The tide was just starting to go out and there were quite a few people swimming.

Looking out towards the fort (the darkest bit in the middle) which was built to defend the seaways in Napoleonic times.  I think this one is now a rather unique hotel.

Tricia and John chilling out.  John drew the short straw and ended up with their grandson's little chair!

More water activity, and a view of Queen Victoria's favourite summer location - Osborne House on the Isle of Wight.

This young lady was very accomplished and fairly scooted past us.

Me to John:  Is that a container ship?  John: Not sure, might be a liner . . .

As it got closer, Trish said, I'd want my money back if I'd paid for a holiday on that!!!

One last blurry picture (through glass) of the Island taken from the Osborne View pub at Hillhead where I was taken out to lunch.

Now I'm back home and neither my husband or I are at all well - some summer bug which gives you a headache, tired legs and slight dizzyness, not helped at all last night by my having asthma problems too, so I hardly slept at all until my stronger antihistamines kicked in.  Ah well, onwards and upwards.

Friday 15 July 2016

Off to Hampshire

I'm off down to Hampshire today, returning on Wednesday, to see my best friend Trish, who's poorly and needs cheering up at the moment.  I'll try and get some Hampshire photos.

Thursday 14 July 2016

Another summer's day walk

The first Blackcurrants from our soft fruit plot.  About 5 lbs berries now in the freezer.  I have to confess, a few popped into my mouth too!

I am a terrible cheat and I cut the canes (call it pruning!) and bring them indoors to tackle, whilst I listen to the radio.  It's a tip a neighbour shared with me when we first arrived, and I have to say it's a lot less back-breaking than bending over the bushes picking.

When I went for a walk this week, this young bunny was very aware of me coming, and soon scooted into the hedgerow.  He is one of the lucky ones, as our cats regularly bring back baby bunnies (so far all of them dead, although Little Whale did bring me back a Blackcap (bird) a few weeks ago and obligingly dropped it when I told him sternly to do so.  I managed to rescue the bird and give it liberty again, shocked but unharmed.  They are beautiful birds, very graceful and rather like a grey swallow with a black head only without the tail streamers.  I never knew we had them on our land until that incident.

A well-nibbled Boletus - I think this is the Cep (Penny Bun) - Boletus edulis.

The view across the valley on a walk to my friend's smallholding.  This lane climbs very steeply up the valley side and comes out by Pantglas Hall.  It is a time share place these days, although the Italianate tower of the old house still remains in the grounds.

Rosebay Willowherb in all its glory.

Another view, further along the lane.  The lane in the last picture can be seen to the right.

More later.  I am off to stay with my best friend Tricia in Southampton this weekend, so will try and do one last post before I go.

Wednesday 13 July 2016

The Summerlands

I do love you mum - tickle my tummy!  Here is Theo being a Daft Cat.

A colourful splash in the garden - the scarlet of the tiny scarlet Dianthus against Lady's Mantle.

The Kiftsgate in the corner, which has grown right through the Hawthorn into a bouquet of blooms.

Last week we had to go to Llandeilo, and decided to have a very short walk across the river (Towy) to the watermeadows on the far side.  This is the view looking upstream.

The view downstream.  Swallows and Martins were ducking and diving and swooping above the river, trawling for insects.

It's easy to see that if Wales was ever abandoned, the trees would very soon take over!

This lovely house has a wonderful outlook.

This is the bridge across the river.  Our son Danny and his friends always called this the swing bridge.  it does bounce delightfully as you walk across!

Upstream again.  I can just envisage Salisbury Cathedral in this setting . . .

Erm, Umbellifer . . .

Common Knapweed.

Common Bindweed.  This grew all over a neighbour's hedge across the road from the house where I grew up.  I truly believed that this was the flower that the Moon Moth used in Dr Doolittle Goes to the Moon!!  I was only 8 or so though . . .

Bird's Foot Trefoil - or is it Meadow Vetchling?  I didn't notice the leaves.

Above and below: the beautiful Fox and Cubs (aka Orange Hawkweed).  They grow prolifically on warm roadside banks.

Finally, a close up of my favourite wild flower, the purple Tufted Vetch.  Isn't it gorgeous?  I love to see it tumbling up the hedgerows.

Sunday 10 July 2016

The wild flowers of mid summer


Rosebay Willowherb.

Dog Roses.

Looking up our valley on a recent walk when our eldest daughter was here.  We had planned to be dropped off by the iron footbridge across the river, much higher up the valley and cross it and walk back along the lanes over that side, but the road had been blocked for repairs to a dangerous stretch of wall.

Below:  I was intrigued that this dead tree above still had a couple of teensy green-topped twigs, but I think they are seedlings which have managed to get established in the rotting wood.

The lane ahead leads down to our valley bottom.  Our house is out of sight to the left of this picture.

Here the farm buildings stand in front of our house.  Anything painted white is one of the original farm buildings (we were the accompanying farmhouse until the farmer sold it to us 28 years back).  You may just see our chimneys on the right of the cluster of buildings, just where that branch comes in from the right.  The heavily wooded bit immediately behind our house is our copse but it merges into the trees forming the boundary and then onto next door's farmland.

Looking up our river valley again.  This is the right hand slope of it, and at the top, just out of sight, is the old Iron Age enclosure.

You can just see the "hillock" on the top of  this hillside, which was one of the Iron Age enclosure boundaries.  It is square in shape.

Robin's Pin Cushions on the wild Dog Roses.  Properly known as "Bedeguar Galls" these are caused by the larvae of a tiny gall wasp, Depoloepis rosae.  The grubs inside feed on the host plant all winter and hatch out as adults in the spring.  They are asexual, and just a tiny number are male.  (The Wildlife Trusts)

Honeysuckle is in mid-romp along the hedgerows.  I can remember teaching my kids to pull off the individual flowers, bite off the very base and suck out the sweet nectar.  I expect folk have been doing that for 1000s of years.

Above and below, Bramble flowers may be simple, but have a beauty all of their own.  They are lovely to draw.

Now I have cracked how to load my photos in future, I should be back in the land of blogging.  Just need a few more hours in the day though!