Thursday, 5 July 2018

Flaming June....

....hasn't it just. I can't say that I'm enjoying this heat one bit. It's too hot. But to have continous sunshine is pretty unsual for us so we shouldn't complain as all to soon it will be winter and we will be complaing it's cold.

I'm a bit late posting about our June adventures as I've been planning our trip to wales, which is where we are now. I'm on my own today as Martin and Laura have gone to walk up the mountain. This will be Laura's first big walk after her spinal surgery two and half years ago. We are staying in a lovely, peacful cabin with a hot tub and poor internet connections. Update - They made it to the top and back down again. The walk took longer than anticipated but came back safe had a very late tea and then enjoyed the hot tub before going to bed.

June started off fairly quite with us watching our local gala parade and then the crowning afterwards. The new queen and princess are sisters and the queen was a Lady in Waiting to Laura when she was queen.  Sorry no pictures of the parade. As part of the gala celebrations there was a garden competition to celebrate either The Suffragets or the End of WW1. I opted for the End of WW1. I had three tomato plants growing in pots so I moved them to the front and placed them into the boarder so they blened with the other plants. I also included a bucket of carrots. (Those carrots have not been a success. They tried turning to seed way to early and are still tiny and very woody) I made a lovely herb pot to sit by the front the door. This contained a small bay tree with sage, thyme, parsley and rosemary. (before the summer ends I will repot, individually, the thyme, rosemary and sage. Also moved to the front garden (in pots) was a Blueberry bush and a trough of strawberry plants. In a planter, that lives at the front, with mini daffodils, I planted it up with some peas, at the back, and lettus at the front. I made some plastic bottle bottoms to represent poppies and fixed them on to the fence and the hung bunting around the garden. It looked very festive but I didn't win. All the pots have now been returned to the back garden but I've left the the poppies in place as I like them.

Martin and I went to Lytham Club day, the following weekend to watch their parade. This one is always well attended by particpants and supporters. We were going to go and support Fleetwood Carnival the week before but it was raining. The one and only day in June it rained it had to be on a gala/carnival day. 

Last summer Martin made a new back gate from recycled plastic from an old shed that was lying around in dad's garden after he'd dismantled the shed a few years
before (he didn't like to throw anything out). The plastic was not looking that good so Laura and I talked about painting it. But, we had to used the paint that we already had and this is the result. The paint we used is emulsion and there was still loads left.
Rather colourful. I had dad's wooden garden furniture and the table had spent most of the winter outside and was in need of restaining/painting. We bought some fence paint that is guarenteed for 5 years. We painted the legs and the frame of the table and Laura did the rest.
It now matches the gate. Our next plan is tackle the Summer house. I will do the frame work with the fence paint and Laura will do the rest. pictures to follow when it's done. You'll be wondering if Martin had much say in all this, well............. not much. but he can live with it. We won't be doing the chairs or the garden fence to match, that would be just too much.
I finally finished these squares and stitched them together for a blanket for Laura. I still have to put a boarder on it yet. The colours are yet to be decided. I'm thinking grey and white. You may be wondering what the symbols mean. They are runes from a Laura's much read serise of books about shadow hunters by Cassandra Clare, a a youg adult auther.

During Laura's first year at college one of her subjects was fish husbandry. She learnt quite a lot and decided she would like a go at keeping fish. In the attick was a small tank from our previous attempts at keeping fish. Martin got it down and helped Laura to set it up and we got a couple of fish. In the meantime four more fish were added and the gold fish was getting bigger and back in May we replaced the small tank for a bigger one. A much bigger one. Laura then wanted some more fish as the tank was looking a bit empty (still does). We went along one of the aquatics shops near us to see what they had. They had the cutest little turtles, but we didn't get them.

I lost internet for a while but I'm back.  Where was I? Oh yes...   We did't get any turtles as our tank just isn't suitable.  Laura picked a couple of little shark looking fish.  As I was paying for the fish The retail manager was chatting to Laura and asking what she was doining at collage. She told him him Animal Management and about the fish husbandry course and how she got distinctions on her course work so he asked her to submit her CV and a covering letter as they had a vacancy. We took the fish home and she worked on her CV and covering letter. This was a saturday and on Monday morning she took in her CV and letter and on the following Thursday she was offered the job. It's full time and she started the weekend before she finished college. She is the only girl working with 4 lads on the shop floor. There are other staff (male) who work in the warehouse, at the back, who deal with internet orders. She has enjoyed her first week. Laura has been so lucky to find a full time job in the industry for which she has been trained and so quickly. It's not her career choice as eventually she would like to work for the RSPCA, but what a fantastic start we are so proud of her. She is not a girl who likes to out spending so now plans to save her wages so she can have driving lessons and buy a little car and insure it.

Since the fire has been burning on Saddleworth Moor there have been others. One on Winter Hill, that was still burning, on Tuesday, when we passed, on the motorway. Luckily some one has been arrested for that one. Two in Lytham which is about 16 miles away from where we live but the smell, after it was put out, drifted on the wind and we could smell it. I think these may have been accidents caused by bbqs. I saw some pictures on facebook that two fires were started deliberatly not too far from home but were put out fairly quickly and yesterday I read that there were three in North Wales. What is wrong with people? Firemen have enough to do without clearing up after them and they have had to use some water from the reservoirs which are getting low due to this lovely weather.  Ok rant over.

Let Julys adventures continue.


Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Busy May

The weather has been glourious this month, almost wall to wall sunshine. Some say it will last all summer. We'll have to wait and see.

Laura was working at the local RSPCA centre (as a volunteer) on the first bank holiday monday and at lunch time we picked her up and had a picnic at Knott End . These are the views of Fleetwood.

We went to the Scorton Bike and Barrow festival. Scorton is a small village but the community come together for this event and out do themselves every year with their displays which includes some scarecrows. I didn't take many photos but this one I loved of Peter Rabbit and Mr McGregor's garden. We ended the day at a pub beside the canal at Garstang.

Two weeks  ago we attended Martin's great great neice's Christening. It was a lovely service in an old church in Bispham and was followed by a celebration at North Shore Golf Club. The view from the huge windows of the function room were magnificent. The building in the back ground is the old Miners Convelecant Home which was sold off several years ago and turned into allartments. The builders, before they started the renovations, opened up a lot of the building for public viewing along with the plans for the renovations. It was beautiful inside, very grand. I understand that the builders were very sympathetic in their renovations and tried to keep as much of the original features as possible. Just beyond the building is the sea

Laura had a day off college and we went up to the river for a little walk and a cold drink at the cafe. As were were sat having our drinks we watch a Robin visit the table next to us. We also took a look and mum and dad's trees. I was worried that one of them might not survive. However they are growing very well and one even has some flowers on it too.

I've been making some plastic bottle bottom poppies for a little garden display.  I decided to go in for a little competition, set by the local gala, (our gala is on 10th June). There are two themes to choose from. The Suffregettes or the End of WW1. I picked the End of WW1. We have a small raised boarder in the front that has lots of spring flowers but not so many summer ones (working progress each year). So what I've done is grow some veggies, not many, in pots and will place some of them in the gaps in the boarder and others around the wall and fence.  It was a bit late in the season, when the competition was announced,to grow the plant from seed so I bought  some. Only what we would use. I will show pictures of the garden when it's complete. Today I'm moving the post in position (I hope they don't get pinched) and tomorrow I will put out some bunting. There are a few more poppies to put out which Martin helps with that. Judging is between the 1st and 9th June and the winner will be announce at the Gala Queen and Princess crowning event on 10th. This Saturday is Poulton gala.

My red current bush is so heavy with fruit if fell over. Luckily it is next to a tree so between us we've managed to strap it up using the tree trunk. I think it may have to come out as it did the same thing the year before last. 

In between all this I've been invigilating for the GCSE's at school.. 

Thank you for dropping by and reading my rambles


Tuesday, 1 May 2018

1st May. What ever happened to April?

I'm thinking back to what I did during April. I started to tidy up the garden, a little bit each day when it's not raining and we had a lovely afternoon out. We (the 3 of us) went out for lunch the other weekend when the sun was shining and it was lovely and warm. We went to a pub in Garstang and sat by the canal (a few boats were moving about). The food was delicious and the glass of cider was refreshing. Afterwards we went to the very expensive garden centre, Barton Grange. We had a look at all the lovely displays but didn't bother to look at the prices as we had no intention of buying

The toadstools and bees are some kind of metal and that corner was a little too colourful. The crocheted dreamcatchers reminded me of jellyfish. I think they came to mind after visiting the seaside display. I do like the hanging seagulls. Much nicer than the ones that c@*ped all over my car windscreen yesterday after next door had fed them grrrrr.

I like this sign but we have more spring flowers than either of our neighbours.

Matin and Laura took rather a liking to this bear  

Ladies you will never see these on display at this garden centre as these are the gents urinals. I really don't know what to think about the Lilly. Please note that I didn't venture into the gents to take the photos. Martin did that and waited until  it was empty.

May has started with some lovely sunshine I hope its here to stay, for a while anyway.


Tuesday, 3 April 2018

No Snow for us this March

Hope you all had a good Easter break and didn't get too many jokes played on you on Easter day.

March was a funny old month it started with the Beast from the East 1, when every where was covered in snow. Kids and some workers got snow days, some people got stuck, a baby was born (in the snow). We woke up to an inch or two and by the afternoon it was gone but it was so very cold. I just could not get warm, I even got my old jumpers out and still I was cold.  A week later it felt like spring was finally on it's way and it was just a tiny
 bit warmer. Laura and I took ourselves off for a lovely walk on the beach. It was so nice to get out in the fresh air and blow a few cobwebs away. That BftE was a bit persistant when it came back twice more. We still didnt see much snow. the odd flake that was all.

A few weeks before the BftE1 arrived I'd arranged a family get together to plant two trees in honour of our mum and dad. We planted them at the local nature reserve with the help of the warden and then scattered their ashes. Afterwards we went for a nice meal and gave a toast to mum and dad. They have a lovely veiw.

Mother's day was a nice day and Laura bought me some really nice flower bulbs for the garden that will come up each year. It was such a lovely idea. Cost about the same as a bunch of flowers but last much longer. I'm waiting for the weather to warm up a little more before planting them out.

Even though Laura is 18 she still attends a dance class each week. She loves it and as there is no upper age limit she wants to stay as long as she can.  The week-end before last was the annual dance show to showcase the different styles they do. Usually the show is held in Middleton which for us that have to travel makes it a long day. However this year it was held at the Marine Hall in Fleetwood.  Every year I'm asked to do some sewing and this year was no different. 25 pairs if mouse ears. I hand stitched them on to little hair bands. Also the brightest orange waistcoats fot the two boys. 

I've finally finished my jumper I started back in November. Sorry no picture as I washed it and it's not dry yet.

My RAF brother came for a flying visit. He'd been on a course, at BAE at Samlesbury. He retires this year and is going to work for BAE systems out in Saudi for the next five years, so it was nice to see him and catch up.
I wonder what April will bring?  We will have to wait and see.

Have a great April


Wednesday, 14 March 2018

R.I.P Professor Hawking

We are in danger of destroying ourselves 
by our greed and stupidity.
We cannot remain looking inwards at ourselves on 
a small and increasingly polluted and overcrowded planet

Professor Stephen Hawking
 8 January 1942 - 14 March 2018

Saturday, 17 February 2018

Half Term

Half term is almost over and we haven't done much. It's been so cold and wet we didn't want to venture out out doors unless we had to.
Laura spent Monday at her work experience and the following day working on an assignment she needs to hand in next week and Wednesday we had a movie day where we sat on the sofa and did nothing but kept warm and cosy. I went to craft club on Thursday morning whilst Laura cleaned out her fish tank. Some great news was announced at craft club - Our library that was closed last year is to reopen on 26 Feburary and craft club can rturn on the same day at the same time in the same old room. A lot of work has gone on at the library, walls have been painted, new solid front doors, new furnature and rearrangment of the lay out inside. I can't attend the official opening of the library as I'm at the dentist but I will call in afterwards.
What else have I done this week. Oh yes I finally got my car back yesterday. It's taken a month to fix it up after the collision last month. Because the door didn't shut properly rain got in and the drivers seat has a water stain on it. I mentioned this as I looked around and inspected the work done. The manager came out and said that they would get a proper valeter to clean it but can't arrange anything until Monday.
Yesterday I also had a man out to look at my washer, as that's broke down. I explained the problem and he had a look at it and said it was the starter motor and to get a new one it would cost £180. He advised that it wasn't worth spending that kind of money as he sold washers in his shop for £189. I took his advice and today we are going to find a new washer. 
So what else have I done since my last post. Well, about 20ish years ago I started to crochet a jacket, no ordinary jacket but an Irish crochet jacket. This year I decided that it will get finished. I have 1 full sleeve and the top of the other one to complete. I take it to craft club and manage to do about 2-3 rows. It's going to take a long time at this rate. At home I'm working on a purple jumper that I started before Christmas. All parts are knitted and need sewing together. It has a picot edge to the top, bottom and sleeves so before I stitch that down I'm sewing some beads onto each piont to make it more special. I will do a show and tell when It's complete.
I've also been doing some exam invigilating for the year 11 mocks. There is more next week and the week after. In a couple of months the GCSE's and A Levels start followed by the rest of the school's end of year exams.
I need to get a wriggle on as it's time I got breakfast and got myself ready for looking at washers.
Have a great weekend.


Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Happy New Year

Everything is back to normal. laura has been back a college a week and feels she's never been away. She really didn't want to go in today as she's being assest on feeding a geko with live crickets.  Before Laura returned to college she had her last check up at the Children's hospital, Manchester.  We saw the specialist nurse who was well pleased with her recovery and her ex-rays were good. The nurse said she could lead a normal life with no restrictions (except for the ridgidity of her spine) and was discharged. One very happy girl. She still has a few problems with her muscles but very slowly the are getting better as they become strong again.

During the Christmas break I replaced my aging vehicle (Grand Vitara). I never really liked it when we got it but it was all I could afford at the time and it served it's purpose. My new, to me, car is a Renault Capture. It's smallish and so easy to drive and feels really nippy. Unfortunatly after having it for only 2 weeks a driver thought it was a good idea to overtake me when I was turning right (indicators on) onto a side road and we collided. Thankfully no-one was hurt. I've been given a very nice courtesy car, A Vauxhall Mokka, it has so many gadgets, heated seats and a heated steering wheel. I didn't know you could get heated steering wheels. I should get my Capture back sometime next week. The insurance company has to give the repair company permission to go ahead and fix it.

Martin is also looking for a replacement car for his taxi. Begining of December his car was written off by a drunk driver. Martin's night driver got a bump to his head and a broken finger and the passenger sustained a broken collar bone. The driver of the other vehicle had no injuries and a bit of damage to his car. He was 4x over the limit and has been fined £500 and banned from driving (can't remember for how long). Insurance have still to pay out but won't be long. Martin was off work for only a couple of days as now there is a taxi hire company, locally, so he's been able to continue to work.

The last three years have been pretty difficult and I figure we've had our lot so this year is a new year new start. Except for the bump things are looking ok. I want to be more organised and possibly find a new job. I'm not sure what I can do as my arthritis is still bad.
First on my agenda is to get a pension statement and forcast and go from there and whilst I decide what I want to do I'm going to do some heavy decluttering. I did some before Christmas but the house didn't look any different. I am lucky that, thanks to my dad, I have a safety net that will allow me the time to make the right decision. Laura will leave full time education this year and hopefully will find the job she really wants, this means we will lose her child benefit and the child tax credit. Although I do have the safety net I will continue to be frugal and try and find more ways to cut down on spending. I don't spend silly anyway but I'm sure I can find ways to cut down further.
Second thing on my adgenda is to be more positive and look forwards not backwards

Thank you reading and have a nice day.


Flaming June....

....hasn't it just. I can't say that I'm enjoying this heat one bit. It's too hot. But to have continous sunshine is pretty ...