Saturday, May 24, 2008


We will be off in the early hours of the morning. No blogging for 2 weeks now but while hanging around waiting for the final batch of washing to be ready for packing, I found this wonderful kit on the Coco and Co site (sorry site is in french so I cant give full credit) and just had to do a digi LO.

Friday, May 23, 2008


Yesterday Martin and I went to the Chelsea flower show. I have always wanted to go but never been able to as I was always working, so it was a real treat when Wayne offered us 2 free tickets and the date of them con-insided with Martin's day off.

We travelled up by train and then (after much searching for the ATM machine at Victoria station) caught the shuttle bus service. There were so many people taking this that the bus company had had to bring in some of the open top tourist busses for duty. So for a few quid each we got to ride on the top of one of these when tourists on the tour were getting the same for £30! The garden show is amazing. So many people but so well organised. Lovely wide roads so that you dont feel squashed at all, and plentty of facilities (although the ladies toilet queue was round the block!)

Drink and food was expensive, but only to be exected in the middle of the trendy part of London, although I was disappointed not to get a glass of Pimms but at £4.50 a small glass - well no way hossie!

We had met a bloke on the station platform who had told us he was going to be manning the Marshalls children's garden so that's where we headed off to first. The trouble with the show garden's is that they are very design orientated, so there wasnt one
overall that we loved although every one had aspects we liked. The children's garden had been designed by children apparently but of a whole I do not think many children would have played in it for that long.

From seeing all the show gardens we concluded that - colour is not 'in' this year. All the themes were either green, or purple and white. Shrubs were popular, as were vegetables. Practically every garden included veg somewhere in them. We then progressed to the small courtyard gardens, all of which we loved. Difficult to pick a favourite because they were all what we thought a garden should be like.

We had carried a small picnic around with us, the picnic are
a was packed, if only we had chatted up the Marshall's man a bit more and got an invite to the guest tent! LOL We found a little patch of grass by the path though and spent a pleasant time people watching, and observing the BBC film crew. I must have wandered in front of that camera a dozen times but I dont think they caught me once. No idea who these tv personalities are but I snapped them anyway.
Google says this is Joe Swift but I am none the wiser.

The urban gardens were ..odd.. but quite fun and some of them had some really funky water features.
The queue for the floral designs was massive so we went into the Pavillion. Here were the smaller gardens, and the garden centre experts. We fell in love entirelly with the 'Sign of our Times' garden which had a 1950's garden one side and a future garden the other., Most people were looking at the 1950's garden, I think that is what most people's idea of a garden is, and I have to say, it contained all the garden elements that I personally love, including the rotting green house with the worn out guttering collecting water run off into a metal water butt.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

How does your garden grow?

As promised, photos of my growing things!

So far we have bought 14 grow bags for various reasons. are 4 on the patio now, 2 with tomoatoes, 1 with peppers and 1 with cucumbers. Apart from the one I still have left the rest have been used to fill pots for things like potatoes:

We have 10 pots and one dustbin full of potatoe plants.

growing seeds or planting up

- all the strawberries came from one seed packet of something that looked like dust. I never expected them to germinate let alone grow.

runner beans and sweetpeas (also in a pot this year).

Treats for me, and good news.

Good news

Both Kelly's bessy mate Helen, and one of Laura's bessy mates are expecting babies! Helen is having number 2 child and is past the 12 week semester and Hayley is due in Jan 09.

Treats for me.

Wayne arrived with my brand new shiny laptop. It is so so fast, no more that sickly pc that kept throwing error messages at me, and plus now I can access the net from all over the house (and the garden!)

The kids came over last night to help me set it up and to have a cuppa. I have been on it the entire day loading up software and generally playing. I am soo so pleased with it.

As if that wasnt enough, Wayne has also got 2 tickets for the Chelsea Flower show and he is giving them to us!!!! Not only that they co-inside with Martin's day off. I have always wanted to go but thought the price too expensive, the whole event not to Martin's taste, and impossible for me to go as it was on during school teaching time. But since I seem to be a bit out of favour with the agency (no work or phone calls for over a week now) and so am not teaching, the tickets are free gifts, and who cares, Martin can just be bored, so we are going!!!

The only other news is that Mum and Dad have both managed to get my flu/cold type lurgy.

Oh and Martin has now decided that we should book into a hotel overnight at Heathrow rather than making Laura drive us up. I wish he had thought of that earlier, we could have used our tesco vouchers.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Not bad. just ill

I haven't been a bad blogger, just had a really rotten summer cold/come flu type thing that left me ill in bed for 4 days and not really feeling up to much for 4 more. Today is the first time I have felt even the slightest bit of energy for anything, and I am still sniffing away like mad.

Of course being ill means nothing much has happened in my life although the girls are pretty busy in theirs. Kelly has a job interview next week and two exams the week after. Laura is knee deep in wedding plans, end of term assessments (dreading when she gets to her first year of report writing, since she is teaching 5 subjects that will be a very heavy workload) and things are slowly progressing on the house buying - although still nothing on selling their own.

I, typically have had no work since I signed off at the Job Centre so this morning I sent off for the childminding pack from the council. Hopefully this will include all the info I need about becoming a registered childminder.

Mum and Dad have returned from holiday - and are promptly looking at brochures to set out again. Dad has a lot of Tesco vouchers burning a hole in his pocket. Trouble is they are not the good deals they once were. For instance, Butlins are doing a 4 day deal on half board, £49 pp. If you use your Tesco vouchers though the price nearly trebles! OK its still a good deal because you re still not actually paying anything from your own pocket, but when you know on other deals (the restaurant ones for instance) you will be getting full whack on your points its a bit galling.

We are still getting ready for our major road trip (Ha! Ha!). Since I didn't really want to go I told Martin all organising was down to him. So far I have - hunted out passports and all other paperwork: organised Laura to drive us to and from the airport; and attempted to work out some kind of itinerary. Working out the itinerary is a bit of a nightmare as we dont really know anything about the place so we cant decide where to go and what to visit. We started off thinking we would land in LA, have a bit of a time there, drive to Vegas, and from there up through Death Valley onto Yosimite and so into San Francisco. However this was a lot of driving in the time we have and is all through desert.

Put off by this, I suggested a domestic flight to Vegas, back to LA and then drive up along the Californian coast. A great idea as internal flights are really cheap. Except on National Holidays. And the Monday after we land is Memorial Day. So now we are going to stay in LA for Bank Holiday, drive the 272 miles to Vegas and take it from there.

How come even if you go on holiday annually there is always still bits to buy before you go? I nabbed some rather snazzy water bottles from Matalan with bits in the middle you can take out and put into the freezer to keep your drink cool. Great for road trips across the desert!

Craft wise.
My dress is made but because I have spent 2 weeks surviving on ice-cream and soothers, the diet kind of went out the window so I need to loose a few pounds to wriggle into it properly. Continue to watch this space.

Because this poor computer is limping rapidly towards its final resting place, Wayne has finally found and bought me a laptop. It has arrived but he needs to set up all the software. In hopes he will then come and wireless enable me I cleared up the scraproom so that he can get to the hardwear. With all the junk out the way I was finally inspired by one of the days on my AL Calender to start a LO. Its not quite finished but I will upload it as soon as I have.

And the garden is, despite yet another cold snap, coming along in leaps and bounds. Yesterday I transfered (rather small) tomato, pepper and cucumber plants into growbags, nearly all the squares in the SFG are full (cabbage, broccolli, beetroot, peas, strawberries, carrots, and lettuce), the runner beans are over a foot high: the fruit garden has been partially netted and I have managed to fill quite a few pots and baskets with flowers. As soon as the sun comes out I will add some photos.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Bank Holiday catch up

Saturday was Martin's birthday. It was fairly low key as mum and dad were off on their holiday on Sunday and the kids were busy plus he had to work.

With Jo still ill, where as we would normally have done something with Jan and Trev that was not on the cards. I have not heard any news for quite a while on Joey, and can only hope she is making steady but slow progress.
Anyway Martin and I ended up going for a lovely meal at the George and Dragon in Fordwich. It was a little more expensive than we normally eat out but well worth it as it full of fresh ingredients and all cooked to order. So tasty. Plus I even managed to eat within my weight watchers points (lost 1lb this week!!).

On Sunday the kids were all over for a BBQ so I had to shop, clean and cook for most of the day while Martin was at golf. As well as that Laura had wanted to go to the local annual roundtable bootfair, a huge effort taking up most of the playing fields. Wayne didnt come commenting that it was all someone elses rubbish! This from a regular ebay buyer - go figure. Shame was he was right. One man was even selling jars full of rusty keys???

The BBQ was fun, and afterwards Laura beat us all playing Flux. (Its about the only game we can beat Ollie at on an even playing field).

Monday everyone was working, mu
m and dad had arrived safe at their overnight B&B stop and I spent the day in the garden planting up bedding plants (having spent £50 at B&Q). This week between planting out (why did I buy so many - I dont actually have room in the flower beds), teaching and watering dads greenhouse I have been quite busy.

And with the sun finally shining I have not felt like messing with paper and glue. Finally as I had to go and sign off at the job center yesterday, I decided that since I am a dressie girl at heart and they just dont sell any of the dresses that suit my body shape or that I like, I would dust off my sewing machine and make my own.
The shop in Whitstable sells material that makes dressmaking worthwhile so I got a lovely pattern and some material,

and spent a pleasant afternoon cutting all the bits out. Watch this space to see if I can get it made and fitting me.

Saturday, May 03, 2008


National Scrapbooking Day!!!

There are loads of offers going on today. Nearly all the digi shops are doing sales and lots of the paper shops are giving offers.

I need paper. My paper stock is verging on non-existant. The trouble is I havent bought for sooooo long that I have no idea what is out there and just get overwhelmed looking at all the wonderful lush goodies. I have just spent an hour between Scrapshed's site and Scrapfairies. In the end I shut down the pages having bought nothing :(

I wish there was one big page with all the papers on so that I didnt have to keep opening and closing pages, going back and forward, then when I find something not being able to match it to anything else on the site. I wish I knew what I was looking for.

I wish the sales weren't just for one day.

So now I am off to do some housework, think about what I NEED, and am going to come back later and actually ORDER!