Wednesday 29 May 2019

A walk up the hill

The wild flowers are coming into their summer garb now.  Foxgloves are tempting the bees.  Below - also a Foxglove but it has forgotten to grow upwards!

Black Bryony threading through a hedgerow.

Looking over the valley.

Meadowsweet about to bloom.

Woody Nightshade.

Red Campion.  I have now seen this for sale in Garden Centres, and called by its Latin name, Silene . . .

The tall flowers of Navalwort.

Up the top of the hill now, and a better view across the valley looking N-E.  On the left you can just about see the tractor at work in a field recently cut for silage.  I think he's muck-spreading.

Above and below: Buff Tail Bumble Beeshard a work on a pretty thistle.

A Heron near the pond in the opposite field.

Wild Aquilegia by our field gate.  We just have this palest pink flower - half a dozen plants (downfrom a high of 14 - they WILL persist in dragging too-wide farm machinery along the bank.

Ladies-in-waiting in our top field.

Sam being Lord of the Manor in the garden.

Three of the plants I bought at Malvern on Monday.  Veronica, Astrantia and Digiplexus.  The latter is now planted up in a tub the others I shall pop in the back border this morning.

Right, this won't do.  This post has taken me an hour to load photos and write and I need to Get On - I am in the Junk Room of Doom but doing well.  Photos later . . .

Tuesday 28 May 2019

A very busy weekend and a visit to St Llanelieu church

Of this photo - a little more later.  We had such a busy full-on weekend with two back-to-back Fairs followed by going up to Malvern Flea yesterday.  On Friday, however, I hit an absolute brick wall and felt like I had run a marathon, followed by a Three-Peaks Challenge.  I had to go back to bed and slept deeply for 2 hours, then fell asleep on the sofa after lunch.  I was just shattered.  

Anyway, I was dreading the weekend, but managed to potter round on the Saturday, and there was a lot of sitting - hmm, waiting for customers . . .  Not a brilliant day, but a few sales were made.  Then it was time to pack up and go home and the next day do it all over again!  I walked around the few outside stalls on Sunday (not many turned up as the forecast had mentioned showers - wise move, after we had heavy rain first thing - so glad to be INSIDE!) and my steps by the time we had unloaded the car at home, were over 15,000.  

Yesterday was a 4 a.m. start - and we had a good drive through and arrived spot on at 7.30.  I didn't bother with photos as one Malvern is much like the next and there weren't any ludicrous things to take photos of this time.  Lots of car boot type stalls outside, filled with utter rubbish (or "complete crap" as my husband calls it!) I'm not one for rusty tin buckets and baths and find their desirability difficult to understand.  Likewise scruffy bits of metal, stuffed toys which need to be incinerated or plastic trivia.  

There wasn't much in the way of affordable militaria there but Keith eventually found a couple of interesting items for his side of things.  I bought well, some really interesting and unusual things (including some animal ephemera from Tibet).  Although "ephemera" is an insult to the spirit Ram used in Shamanic rituals.  A very special piece.

On the way home we stopped to visit the Church of St Ellyw, at Llanelieu near Talgarth.  I had read about it and as it was on the route home, we took a short diversion.  As you can see, it is close to the roots of the Black Mountains in a quiet spot.  All we could hear was birdsong.

This was the Medieval door - the oak planks used for it were an inch thick and it took some pushing open.

Of course, one of the things drawing me here were the Early Christian sculptures - 2 ring-cross stones leaning against the outside of the porch.  They date between the 7th and 9th Centuries.  The chalk marks round the rings are not helpful especially for the shorter of the two which has a more interesting pecked design and a double ring with single dots in the interspaces (as more obviously in its neighbour.)

This was what drew me too - I have never heard of (or seen) a red screen like this.  Dating from the 14th or 15th C and painted red, it has stencilled white roses and the ghostly mark of the central cross.  Note the quatrafoils cut through in the woodwork  below.

Some of the early Medieval wall paintings have been exposed again, although the lion above is Post-Reformation showing the Royal Arms.

View of the altar from the nave. Holy,Holy, Holy is painted around the window edge to encapsulate the cross.

One of Keith's favourite bits - an ancient (14/15th C church coffer, probably for vestments or documents.

On the walls were various plaques including this one bequeathing income to two of the poorest children in the parish as long as they were lawfully begotten!

Memorial to Thomas Aubrey who lived in a nearby house and died in 11669, aged just 4, bless him.

The font.

The very early bells, which were used to provide the bell sounds for the tv programme Cadfael.

The sundial high on the south wall, dated 1686 and inscribed P B Wapden.

Check THIS page for further details and photos.

Sunday 26 May 2019

Rude customers

Evening all.  Just about keeping awake after two back-to-back fairs.  I had some lovely customers today - my favourite being the lady whose family had all worked at Ewenny Pottery who bought a beautiful jug which is transpired had been made by her uncle and glazed by her dad.  I virtually halved the price as I wanted it to go home with her.

That made up for the woman who was rude about the price I was asking for a painted Art Deco lampshade (half of what they normally sell for as they're not easy to pack and carry around).  She put it down straight away and said, "Well, I'll keep on walking then" and stomped off!  The trouble is, there is so little knowledge about antiques and collectables these days, and people seem to think because they have a price they want to pay (e.g. car boot sale price), and I want closer to what something is actually worth (especially when I have bought it from auction so there is much less room to haggle!) I am in the wrong and know nothing!   Next time someone is rude to me I am going to say something . . .

Anyway, here are some scruffy photos of animals in the circus in the field next to the Fair today.  They were enjoying the sunshine and some huge haynets were nearby for night-time.

Mountain Zebra (appears to be from checking on line anyway.)

A Bactrian camel.

Reindeer in moult.  

It's the circus Mondao, a family-run circus apparently.

The animals looked well cared-for but I did think it was a shame there weren't more of each species so they could have a relationship with one of their own kind.  There were some ponies in stables under-cover - could just see a couple of Shetlands.

Anyway, time for a bath now and an early night I think.  Tam's home tomorrow for a few days, so that will be lovely.

Thursday 23 May 2019

What a Week!

Well, I don't know how I survived last week as it was one of those full-on working flat out weeks that turn up now and again.  I started tired, and ended up exhausted, but that's par for the course I guess.  Most of the jobs here on the house are now done - just one final deep-clean on the last few rooms and of course, there is always gardening to be done.  One of the tiring jobs was scrubbing the kitchen floor down in what was mum's flat - it's flagstones and even when scrubbed clean they still look grubby, so it was necessary to lightly oil them with Danish oil.  Then I got on to washing and polishing 3 wooden floors which had gotten dried-out and dull.  Now they are all gleaming and look so much better.  I have the downstairs bathroom floor, and hall floors to do now.

Yesterday I made the mistake of washing my hair first thing as in the afternoon I ended up remixing and repainting the limewash I could reach on the house wall overlooking the yard which really gets the weather.  I could only go up so far, but it's covered again now and I can't face going any higher with it (it needs scaffolding to do it all the way up).  Needless to say, my nice clean hair got well splashed with limewash . . .

Today is empty a stable/move boxes of stock from Junk Room day.   That should be fun . . .

At the weekend we had two back-to-back Fairs, which is always tiring.  Here are a few pictures from Sunday's Militaria Fair in Brecon.  Above - a house that was on the market recently and which we would have viewed, had we had an offer on ours.  It's now sold.

Next door is an ultra-modern house, set well above the road level and boasting a beautiful white Wisteria.

Finally - a few bikers visiting the town (they came round the Fair).

I have taken to sitting in the garden after tea.  It is so peaceful and I noticed that my pink and yellow Aquilegia (in a pot) has now decided to put out the can-can variety of flower on the same stem as the single flowers.  Isn't that pretty?

A view across the main pond - lovely irises with a perennial wallflower (Erysimum) behind it.  This has flowered through the winter too.

Yesteray morning we went down to Porthcawl to meet up with a Facebook friend (we used to be on a forum together too).    We've been trying to meet up for ages but the fates conspired against us.  Gail and her daughter and grandson are staying in a lovely holiday camp at Porthcawl, which is only about 45 minutes' drive from here, so we finally got to meet and had a lovely morning.

The last time I went to Porthcawl it was to a car boot sale up in the town and that was about 20 years ago!  

Right, now I need to go and vote and then get back to the Junk Room of Doom!!

Wednesday 15 May 2019

Down by the river

I managed to shoe-horn in a short walk down by the river with Keith yesterday.  Just a few photos, and no time for words today.  Enjoy the serenity.