Friday, 17 June 2016

Five On Friday - garden pics

I am sorry I am late posting today, I spent most of the morning in the Vodafone shop in town getting my new phone sorted and time has just run away with me this afternoon so this is a very quick post this week. 

I am once again joining with Amy from Love Made My Home to bring you my five this week and I thought I would show you five photos of how my garden is progressing. 

As regular readers will know the garden underwent a major refurbishment during the Winter to turn what was an unsightly jungle with horrible meadow grass into something that was more easy to manage. I am very new to gardening but am pleased with the progress the plants I have purchased, most of which are now growing in pots. I am attempting to grow plants that are bee and butterfly friendly - I haven't seen many butterflies yet but the bees certainly seem to appreciate my efforts!

I will keep you updated with my garden as it progresses, especially the flowers that I am attempting to grow from seed which I hope will start flowering before too long. Meanwhile I am trying to keep away from the Garden Centre as I am finding buying plants quite addictive and have spent far too much money on plants and pots during the last couple of months.

I will try and visit your blogs and leave a reply over the weekend, not sure where time is going at the moment and I know I am behind with visiting and replying at the moment - please forgive me, I do hope to catch up very soon. In the meantime pop along to Amy's blog to find links to more Five On Friday posts.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Five On Friday - Weathervanes

Where has this week gone? Cannot believe Friday is here already and therefore that means it is time to link with Amy at Love Made My Home for another Five On Friday post.

I have decided this week to show you something a little different from my usual crochet/walks/weight type posts. I haven't done anything very exciting this week so am delving into my weathervane photos - yes that is right, sad I know, but since we have been out and about walking more I have been amazed by the number of different weathervanes we have seen - so I have decided that every so often I would show you some on my 'Five' posts.

For centuries weathervanes have kept people in touch with the elements, signalling shifts in the wind which bring changes to the weather. For more information please follow this link.

Traditional weathervanes often feature a cockerel. This one can be found on an outbuilding in Longparish, Hampshire

This ship fittingly is to be found adjacent to the sea at Minehead, Somerset

Being a bird of prey lover I just love this red kite vane at Hannington, Hampshire

This sheep sits atop an outbuilding in Kingsclere, Hampshire

This quite intricate dragon design sits atop the museum in Newbury, Berkshire

It is worth looking up when you are out and about, you never know what you are going to see!

Please go and visit Amy to find links to more Five On Friday posts.

Friday, 3 June 2016

Five On Friday

I am, once again, linking with Amy at Love Made My Home to bring you my Five On Friday post.

It has been half term this week but unfortunately the weather has been more like February than end of May/beginning of June. Apart from a day out on Saturday before the weather turned decidedly chilly I haven't really been anywhere apart from a trip into town (more of that later) so have been busy crocheting - I really have the bug at the moment and have far too many ideas in my head that I want to transfer to my hook!

Anyway, here I go with my five this week:-

On Saturday we motored to Crofton on the Kennet and Avon Canal, the main reason was to see Flying Scotsman again, but this time at speed rather than stationary as it had been in Salisbury the week before. I tagged along as well as I enjoy walking along the canal and it was a good opportunity to get some steps in. When we arrived we saw that Crofton pumping station was in operation and as we had never been inside before we decided to add that to the day's activities. I cannot begin to understand all the technicalities of what the beam engines do but basically the pumping station was used to raise the water by steam up to the summit of the canal at nearby Bruce tunnel to maintain the water in the canal after boats have passed through the locks. Since 1959 this all happens by electricity apart from the occasional break down where the steam engines come into operation again. However they still hold occasional open days at Crofton where they demonstrate how the beam engines work.

We took a footpath from the canal past Crofton Water through the meadows up to the village of Wilton. There was a profusion of wild flowers growing in the meadows, it certainly seems to be a bumper year for flowers everywhere which is so lovely to see.

Red Campion

Ox-eye Daisies

complete with insects!!!

White lilac

Vetch plus ants!!!

Besides the above there were masses of cow parsley, buttercups and speedwells. We thoroughly enjoyed this walk and I am sure we will be repeating it one day very soon

I mentioned above that it has been a busy crochet week and I was pleased to complete another charity blanket, this time a ripple blanket. I love making these, it is something I can do without really thinking about it and ideal to pick up when I have been watching the tennis at Roland Garros (when it hasn't been rained off) and makes a change from projects where I have to concentrate a bit more.

This was a interlocking colour sequence blanket and is complete with a butterfly which is the symbol of the Sunshine International Blankets of Love. I am tempted to start another one of these but really must finish some other projects first.

Yet another Sunshine blanket has been in production this week, I only have three more squares to complete before the joining and edging can begin. Hopefully I will be back with another completed blanket to show you soon.

And yes, I have already started another blanket, what am I like! This one is a V-stitch blanket, I haven't made one of these before but again, it is one that I can do while watching TV (well that is my excuse for starting this one before finishing the previous one).

I still have to work my squares for the Last Dance On The Beach CAL this week, hopefully will get to those over the weekend.

I mentioned above having to make a trip into town - I suddenly realised early on Wednesday morning that my wedding and eternity rings were missing from my finger. They have been loose for sometime (a downside to losing weight) and I really should have done something about it before now but hate not wearing them. Anyway, after a three hour search (missed crochet time) turning out the freezer, kitchen bin, wool boxes and just about everything else I did eventually find them thank goodness. Having found them I decided to take the action I should have done months ago and they are now safely in the jewellers being resized (down three whole sizes) and I have also taken the opportunity to get my engagement ring repaired, I haven't worn that for ages as I lost a stone out of it a few years back. Hopefully I will get them back in a couple of weeks time.

Well that is it for this week, please do go and visit Amy's blog where you can link to other 'Five' posts. Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

The Year In Books - June

I had a very slow reading month during May and am still in the middle of one of my May reads and have yet to start another one so those two will move onto my June reads. Not sure really what went wrong this month, I do most of my reading in bed and have been really tired so have found myself drifting off to sleep instead of reading.

I am currently reading this and will review it at the end of June

This was also one of my May selections so have now moved it forward to June

I also hope to read the following during June - let's hope I have a more productive reading month this time around.

I have read Amanda's first book and thoroughly enjoyed it so hoping for the same with this one.

A couple of my blogging friends have recommended Elly Griffiths so am excited to add this to my reading list.

So what did I read during May:-

I selected this one at the end of April as I had completed all my April selection and thought this would be an easy, light and quick read. Unfortunately it seemed to take me a long time to get through it, I have read all of this series of books and have previously enjoyed them for what they are (light village sagas) but this one just didn't do it for me. Rebecca Shaw has now sadly passed away and I am wondering if this was penned by a ghost writer, I cannot put my finger on it but this one just didn't flow for me, the characterisations were poor and the plot line was almost non-existent. There are two more books in the series after this one but I am not sure whether I will bother with them.

This was the only other book I completed during May. 

Three women, one man, and a tangle of lies. 
When the world famous music conductor Leo Bruck dies suddenly, the three women who loved him meet for the first time at his graveside. 

Victoria, his partner of twenty years and mother of two of his children; Maddy, mother of Leo's daughter Phoebe; and twenty-four year old Cat. Can these three very different women, whose lives become inextricably bound, break free from the masterful control Leo exerts - even from the grave - once and for all?

I enjoyed this one, an interesting plot with believable characters. I did feel the book was a little drawn out in places though.

The Year in Books, hosted by Circle of Pine Trees is now in its third year and is a project aimed at ensuring we make time for reading in our busy lives. It's open to everyone and you can join in at any time via your blog, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or Goodreads. For more information please visit