Saturday, 16 January 2021

A little break

 Hi everyone, I’ve just popped in to say I’m having a little break from blogging. 

We had a lovely Christmas Day, where we saw our daughter and her partner and that was it. We toed the line and saw no one else throughout the festive period. But it was, I think, inevitable that we would have a third lockdown. 

Like many, I am finding this lockdown much tougher and to be perfectly honest, I’m far more anxious of getting COVID this time. With only very local walks, there is nothing much to blog about in that respect. Beach or forest walks are only a 20 min drive away, but that is unnecessary travel. I do so miss the sea! 

I’ve not even been baking, as we still have Christmas cake left. Three working from home ( our house is not large) has been going on for what seems forever and selfishly, I’m missing having the house to myself and my own company. 

So yesterday, instead of making an unnecessary car journey to drop off some bits and pieces to my daughter, I decided to walk the nearly 9 mile round trip and use it as my daily exercise. Just to have some time on my own. This morning I am so stiff, haha! 

So that’s it for a while folks. I will be back, once I feel I have something interesting and more importantly, positive to write. Sorry this one has been a bit moany. I may put the odd photo on Instagram in the meantime.

I’ll leave you with a photo of Karma yesterday morning. Every day is a duvet day for her! Cheerio for now, Ann x

Monday, 21 December 2020

Last post of the year

 I know I’ve been gone for a while and this is my last post of 2020. Since my last offering, I’ve had a routine mammogram (that everyone of a certain age has in uk), a dental check up,  my first flu jab and a very deep sports massage to sort my aches and pains out! 

I’ve met my friend for much needed Haldon Forest walks and I’ve taken a couple of solitary walks around our lanes. I’ve got completely frazzled getting the Christmas presents and also putting six hampers together and then delivering them all to their recipients (they would normally be dished out at our usual Christmas get together).  I haven’t even read any blogs recently either.

I’ve not had time to do any relaxing baking, other than to try some Cornish Fairings. They did spread too much, but tasted lovely and on reading a couple of reviews of the recipe, apparently other people had ‘spreadage’ problems too! 

To top off a pretty ropey December, my daughter and her other half tested positive for COVID! She’s had a very tight, sore chest, which is thankfully tons better now. I think she is more annoyed about not tasting her food! Her partner didn’t have the chest thing, he had more flu symptoms. Their last day of isolation is Christmas Eve, so we shall have our traditional Christmas Eve cheese night by zoom. We’ve been dropping food parcels on her doorstep, along with some treats. I’ve been so worried about them both! 

So the following photos are just snippets of the last few weeks. I wish everyone a very happy and safe Christmas and hope you can see your loved ones, even if it is only by FaceTime or until next year, cheerio for now, Ann x

Wednesday, 2 December 2020

A melancholy day

 Today was the 4th anniversary of my Dad passing away (only 14 weeks after being diagnosed with pancreatic and liver cancer) It’s raw every year, but this year in particular I have been very tearful. Perhaps because it’s been such a crappy year. But Dad wouldn’t have wanted me to be sad, he was nearly always cheerful. A loving dad, who always went out of his way to help his daughter. We had so many laughs! So, today I’m just putting up a few photos of him, happy memories, to boot out the unhappy ones.

Fun at the beach

Dad loved his cars, something I shared with him

My wedding day

Helping us with our garden revamp

His last Father’s Day, about 9 weeks before his diagnosis 

Sorry this  has been so maudling, but weirdly I feel better for posting it. Tomorrow is another day and I’ll be thinking about Christmas trees. This year we have to get an slim artificial one, as our furniture has had to be rearranged, due to three people working from home. Therefore we have no room for a real one, which is a shame.
So tomorrow there’s Christmas trees, food delivery, a new mattress delivery and a routine 3 year mammogram, what an exciting life I lead! Until my next post, cheerio for now, Ann x

Sunday, 29 November 2020

A week in pictures

 A strange week, a bit of lockdown lethargy in some ways. So here’s what happened in pics:-


A beautiful, but unwanted visitor in our garden. We allowed the Sparrowhawk to sit there while we took this photo, then I did a little ‘arm waving’ dance by the patio doors to scare him off. I don’t want any of my little birds being his lunch. He’ll have to eat out somewhere else.

I made a start on my Christmas cards. A couple of stamped ones and then some topper ones with extra embellishments. 

A bit of an accident with my finger tips. Inadvertently put them on the hob which had only just been turned off! Fortunately I only have a very slight blister left on one finger (thanks to holding them under cold water for what seemed AGES! and cling filming them after), which is going down nicely and I’m making sure the skin is being moisturised regularly. The downside was that it was on my dominant hand, so left hand was in use for a couple of days.

Karma had the devil in her several times this week. It was quite windy, so I’ve blamed that. She jumped up on to the narrow mantelpiece several times and then tried chasing her tail while she was up there! 

Further cardmaking resumed in small doses, once fingers were no longer sore. Still have more to do, but will be playing around with more stamps this week hopefully. 

Cuddles with Bumble a few times this week. My daughter’s partner has been working away in South Africa for a while, so we’re her support bubble.....and Bumble’s! 

Tier 2 for us on Wednesday, not that life will be much different to lockdown really. I am grateful that the golf course will be open though, haha. It’ll get hubby out from under my feet for a few hours and give him a much needed break from me too, I expect! 

So that’s it, all caught up! I must also catch up on reading blogs in the next few days to see what you lovely people have been up to. So cheerio for now, Ann x

Saturday, 21 November 2020

The last couple of days

 The last couple of days have flown by for some reason, I’ve no idea why. Even my husband said yesterday, he couldn’t believe it was Friday already. Anyway, back to Thursday, I got stuck into the ironing (ironing tv of choice was Midsomer Murders....again) and awaited the Dart Fresh food delivery. Although they give a 7am-3pm window, it normally arrives about 11.15ish. Not this week, he arrived at 12.45, looking a bit frazzled. They’re very busy at the moment, which is good for the company, being local. But not so good for the delivery man, especially with all the roadworks/diversions that seem to be popping up all around Exeter at the moment. 

So I quickly put away the shopping, made myself a coffee and devoured my long awaited Eccles cake that came with the delivery. Mmm, delicious! Now, I would normally have gone straight to Greendale farm shop after that, but while I was scoffing my cake, my daughter asked if I’d like to meet her for a short dog walk. Best laid plans and all that! So I arranged to meet her at another farm shop where they have some nice walks around their fields, not far from Greendale farm shop where I do my shopping. It’s all very complicated! But it was lovely to see my daughter for a chat and give Bumble lots of fuss in nice weather and surroundings.

I love the shape of these clouds

Leeks growing nicely 

Bumble surveying the leftover pumpkins. Normally there wouldn’t be many left after Hallowe’en

Back home after Greendale, it was preparing the evening meal and tidying the place up. No baking this week, so far, as there is still ginger cake left. I spent the evening catching up with my Mum, my Stepmum and looking at my Christmas craft stash. 

Yesterday, I got my Joe Wicks workout under my belt, nice and early. I got the few chores on my list out of the way and popped over to my daughter’s to deliver an Ethernet cable to her. She is working from home for the next seven days or so and her work computer can’t work from WiFi, so she needed a very long cable to plug in her computer (in her dining room) to her router (in her hallway). Life is never simple, is it! A quick hello to Bumble, who couldn’t understand why I wasn’t staying to cuddle her and I was back home, to do what I had planned for the afternoon.....making Christmas cards. With a short break, for fish and chips, I carried on into the evening. I’ve only done 5 so far, a mixture of stamped cards and ones using toppers. I shall do some more today and some next week, so I’ll put photos on another time. 

If it stays dry today, I also want to trim back the remaining plants in the front garden, so it’s tidy for the winter. The little bit of garden between us and our next door neighbours is still in bloom with Busy Lizzies, so I’ll leave that for a while. It’s lovely to still have lots of colour there. 

So that’s my plans for the day. Hubby and Son will be about, but his girlfriend has to work, so she will be beavering away upstairs in the office. Hope you all have a good Saturday, cheerio for now, Ann x

Wednesday, 18 November 2020

Tuesday walk.......where did the sun go?


Oops, late post for yesterday, you can I’m a Celebrity for that!

So I left home yesterday morning to meet my friend at Haldon Forest for a walk. It wasn’t exactly sunny, but quite bright. Even so I threw my waterproof in the car, if only to use it as a windcheater. Thank goodness I did! It’s only a very short drive, but as you go up Haldon Hill towards the forest it can become a different world. Once I was in the outskirts of the forest I pulled over to take the 1st photo. The fog and drizzle was getting worse, such a difference from home. 

I parked up in the bit of the car park left that wasn’t a quagmire, pulled on my wellies & jacket and was greeted by Bruce, who never minds the weather! I have to say neither do my friend or I. As long as we’re dressed up, the weather can throw what it likes at us on our walks. We had too much to natter about to be bothered about a bit of rain or fog. We didn’t meet up last week, as I wasn’t sure whether we were allowed to drive somewhere to go for a walk (I checked police guidelines which said it was ok) 

We walked our normal route and there weren’t many photo opportunities, due to the weather. The ferns are all very brown now and dying off, quite a difference from a couple of weeks ago.

Just as you turn in to where the cafe is ( it’s been takeaway only since the end the 1st lockdown), the forest rangers have put a washing line up, where loads of bird feeders have been hung. There were hundreds of birds swooping in and out, filling their bellies. This photo doesn’t really show the volume of birds, as they were zooming in and out so fast. 

We ordered our coffees and cakes (Bakewell slice for me)  and looked around for somewhere sheltered to eat and drink. All the picnic tables in the area and the wooden gazebo were cordoned off, presumably because it can get a bit congested at busy times. But there was a wooden shelter in a play area ( no children around at all), so we devoured our goodies in there, while Bruce had a few gravy bones. While we were there, we had a little visitor. A robin came down quite close, to see if there was a morsel or two for him. By the time I got my phone out to take a pic, he had perched himself just above us. He stayed there for a while, chittering away. Treats consumed, we resumed our muddy walk back to our cars. 

The rest of the day was spent, doing chores ( washing, ironing, hoovering etc.) and feeding the home workers at various times throughout the evening.  But we all sat down to watch I’m a Celebrity. It’s the only reality tv I watch and I wasn’t bothered about watching it again.....until it was changed this year to a welsh castle. I’m enjoying the different location and I like it when the group all get on. I know it’s not ‘good tv’ if there’s no needle between camp mates and it’s early days, but I’m liking it so far. 

My son and girlfriend have their day off and are doing their own thing today. Therefore, after doing a Joe Wicks workout, I’m going to perhaps dabble with some Christmas cards ideas I have. I also need to walk up to the village, to the post office. So I’ll get my fresh  air and a bit more exercise then. Have a lovely day, cheerio for now, Ann x


Monday, 16 November 2020

A busy bee


It’s been a lovely, if busy old day! It’s started with a Wake Up with Joe (Wicks) workout and a quick shower before driving over to my brother in law’s to deliver his birthday present. We had a chat on the doorstep about this and that. He had to retire early on health grounds and spends a lot of his time on his allotment. We gave him money for his birthday, which he has earmarked for an apricot tree. 

Once home, I baked a white loaf, washing the dishes and feeding the washing machine while the dough was proving and then baking. A quick bite to eat for lunch and then a ginger cake was mixed and in the oven! More dishes and washing. 

I was just sat down ticking off my chores from my to do list, feeling quite smug, when I suddenly realised the time. I hadn’t started our evening meal and as our son has a weird shift this week (11.30am-8pm), he has his ‘lunch’ not long before we have our evening meal. I try to do meals that can be warmed up if necessary when there are funny shifts. (His girlfriend’s shift this week is 12pm-9pm!)
Fortunately I was only doing Chicken Pesto pasta, so didn’t take long to prepare and cook. 

This evening I have trawled the internet for slow cooker recipes on my iPad and put several in my favourites folder. I’ve got a few recipe books to look at too, at some point. The rest of the evening I shall just relax with a couple of a Good Housekeeping mags. Once they’re read, they’ll make their way up the road to my friend and then on to her sister, so they’re well read. Tomorrow I’m meeting my friend in the morning at Haldon Forest for a socially distanced dog walk , so fingers crossed for decent weather! Thanks for popping by, cheerio for now, Ann x