Making a cold frame

When the weather warms up a bit (soon I hope) Im gonna take some cuttings from my geraniums and cyclamen. Trouble is I dont have the windowsill space for them so I persuaded hubby to make me a cold frame so they can sit in the garden safely without fear of frost getting to them (hopefully)

too much of my arm demonstrating the lid opening

Its now actually green not brown but couldnt be arsed to take more photos -ha!

Its come out well, he’s a clever old sausage my other half.

Taking photos at night

I was in the garden tonight on our usual nightly search for frogs and toads making thier way to the pond when i happened to shine the torch onto a flower. I really liked the way it looked all lit up and it gave me an idea to try to take a photo.

The results are okay but the flower itself is still a bit blurry whilst the leaves have come out okay.

Cape Lily
Harts tongue fern

The fern looks ok to me, fairly sharp. Maybe because its a larger area perhaps?

I love experimenting with photography so I’ll keep practising each night and see what works best.

Nature ramble did me good

Went to One Tree Hill for a car picnic lunch and a good old wander around. Got some much needed exercise climbing the steps up to the top where there is a fab view of the river Thames and across to Kent.

Saw some wonderful old gnarly trees

a very cool wood carving

and so many spring flowers.

I especially loved all the holes in the tree trunks which reminded me of Winnie the Pooh

This ones even filled with rainwater

It was a nice refreshing hour which quite cheered me up.

Leigh Bootfair finds – 15th March

Did I do well yesterday or what?

No postcards sadly but I did find 3 tiny jugs to add to my collection, a gorgeous hand painted plate and a lovely brooch

Sylvac
Royal Watcombe Torquay motto ware
Lisa-Rae 2004
Butler & Wilson amethyst Crown brooch

I set my self the usual challenge of buying 1 or 2 items to sell on just for fun but the trouble is I always buy with my heart instead of my brain and fall in love with the items so find it hard to sell them!

I will never be a millionaire thats for sure.

Salisbury Postcard Research

Minster Street, Salisbury, Wiltshire Posted 1915
Sent to Mrs Hodgson

This is one of three postcards i bought the other day from a dear friend of mine who runs OldPostcards4Sale online.

It depicts Minster Street, Salisbury and is sent to a Mrs Hodgson of 49 Sunny Bank, Lancaster, Lancashire

She was Ellen Hodgson married to James Hodgson though I cant find a marriage record for them despite having an approx date of 1873 based on the 1911 census where its recorded that they have been married for 38 years.

They had 6 children; Rose, Margaret, John, James, Alice and Thomas

The postcard was sent by someone who signs themselves BH? Its not terribly clear. Its not addressed to anyone though so im guessing they knew them well. However i dont thinks its one of their children unless the B is a nickname?

Message reads:

Had our tea at the Haunch of Venison shown on the other side. The erection on the right hand corner is very ancient its something like that on Kirkby Lonsdale Square. I see that the 1/2 d postage is not to be cancelled. The Cookhouse cat has just paid us a visit. It is like our big one only brown in colour, its a great favourite – follows fellows like a dog. The washing came back this afternoon after being away nearly 3 weeks. We all got our own, which was more than i expected. Will send some home this weekend to stay. See Horace is in the prize list + that Sam Carey (?) has been hit together with Middleton and others. Will be writing this weekend BH (?)

A really lovely chatty card to someone they clearly feel comfortable with.

I love that the card features the Haunch of Venison where they had tea too, it justs adds a lovely personal touch

I’d love to be able to attribute it to one of their sons but I’ve drawn a blank. A great card to add to my collection though

Making friends with pastry

Today I took the bull by the horns and decided to make friends with pastry making.

I last attempted to make shortcrust pastry about 30 years ago, the attempt went badly and it ended up in the bin! I just dont have much patience when it comes to something like that. If it goes wrong I get frustrated and ditch it.

I followed a recipe that said to chill the pastry once made for 30 minutes. Things happened and it ended up being 3 hours. When i tried to roll it out it cracked into many pieces!

I persevered and made a patchwork jam pasty

It looks more like a rock cake dont you reckon?

Have to say though that it did taste rather nice which is a sort of win.

I wasnt gonna be beat though so made a second batch and only chilled that for 10 minutes. This was much easier to roll and didnt crack! Hooray!

Made another jam pasty for me and a cheese pasty for hubby

I’m trying not to be cocky but I reckon pastry and me could be mates (nice)

I wish I were a mudlark

This just arrived right after I published the previous post.

Mudlarking

I would love to search around on the foreshore of the Thames or any other river and see if I could find the amazing things Lara discovers.

The paperback version which just came out Thursday has photos in too which the hardback didnt. The publishers there missed a trick as i saw so many comments from people who’d bought the book that they were disappointed not to see pics of all the finds.

Looking forward to diving in right away

I’d love to find one of the old clay pipes with a sculptered bowl, what would you like to find?

small book haul

I wanted to share with you five books i’ve bought fairly recently. Of course buying books is easy peasy its the reading of them thats become hard.

I am in a mahoosive reading slump and have been for months now. I can begin a book, I can quite enjoy a book, i can even annotate and quote from it but I get bored of it really quickly and never finish it.

Yes, you’re quite right its totally shameful and I would love any tips you have on increasing my book reading staying power please.

Anyhoo back to the books

Quite a varied selection. I’ve begun Bunny, Miss Pettigrew and Happiness for humans. Out of the three Miss Pettigrew is a favourite so far.

Have you ready any of these?

What books have you bought recently, let me know in the comments

Books acquired

Bought these at my local supermarket. I do love having a browse every time i’m in there and they are so competitively priced too its like going back in time.

Tidelands: You can’t go wrong with a Philippa Gregory book they are always so well written and full of historical facts.

The Five: This is making many waves at the moment and i’m intrigued to see what the author has to make of the facts we all know.

Elevator Pitch: Linwood Barclay is another author you can trust. I have read many books by him and they always keep me gripped.

S(W)hich case to buy?

I thought long and hard about the case i wanted to buy for my Switch.

I appreciate that the hard shell cases are the best if you transport your Switch a lot in a bag or rucksack. They provide protection especially for the joy cons, but I wont be taking mine outside the house and i really like the softer cases so i went for this

Splatoon 2

I love lots of colour in everything i own so this was an obvious choice for me. I hope one day to get the Splatoon 2 game for my Switch too.

It comes with a squid case that can hold 4-8 games or a mix of games and memory cards. Its an officially licensed product too.