Friday, 20 July 2018

Going blue

For the last few years I have restricted my wardrobe size by using up everything till they are only good for rags and only buying when necessary and often making my own.  This last bout of warm weather has had me running through all my very light cotton tops and loose blouses. Over the winter I am going to have to do some replacing as they are washed thinner and thinner as I change everyday. 

Needing another decent top for going to the shops I pulled out some brightly printed polyester that I got for £3.50 a meter and a free pattern.
I like a long line top so I am extending the length 5 inches, and putting 2 inches on the sleeves too  and I hate high necklines so I will probably put in a split on the centre front.  Its slow work as it is hot and sticky in the sewing cabin.

Meanwhile my husband has booked an autumn holiday on the west coast of Ireland so I am reviewing the winter clothes stock.  Going to need some warm stuff.
I got this T shirt for a £1 in a charity shop sale. It was brand new with the tags still on.  Its quite thick and far to warm for this summer.
While waiting for my husband in the opticians the other day I wandered into the supermarket to use the loo and have a look at the clothes sales.  He did tell me to go and have a coffee while waiting but I thought I would use that cash towards this winter jumper instead.

It was not marked so it took some time to find out the price was £10.  Its size is marked as 20, but its not that big and it is loose enough on me to put a T shirt or something warm underneath.  Its in keeping with my new blue theme too.

We are flying there so I will not go too mad with clothes as I doubt we will want to pay for extra luggage.

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Cabin Painting

The log cabin we had put up 2 years ago for me to sew, paint and craft in has been looking very sad for some time.  We had followed instructions and put preservative on it at great expense but it was going grey and mottled.  Feeling very disappointed (a little bit that it had been a waste of money) we sought expert advice.  Nothing clear on the web so we went to a trade paint centre on the industrial estate.

We met an enthusiastic rep (up from the big city) who was a bit of an expert. Any way he sold us some paint that is used on swedish wooden houses.  Its lovely stuff, thick, creamy with great coverage. As its been so dry for weeks we hurried to get the first coat on all round - working in the cool bits of the day and in the shadow. 

We could not reach high enough so my husband raided the firewood stash and built a platform!  He hates heights, usually balking at standing on a chair. I was round the corner holding on to the washing line as the drugs from root canal extraction had knocked me sideways. I will help tomorrow.

Here is a picture of intrepid painter!

Its lovely sage green and we will get a small tin of cream for the windows. I shall not tell you the price - suffice to say it needed a sharp intake of breath!

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Shower water

Every morning I shower using the bath with the plug in and try not to use too much soap and stuff. When done, I scoop a big bucket of water out and use it to keep this trough watered.

Well worth the effort.

Monday, 16 July 2018


Are you busy with your summer hedge cutting? We have about 50 feet of well established hedge down the front drive and round to the where the car is parked in which a flock of hedge sparrows live.  We wait till we see the new fledglings about before trimming even then they are vocal in objecting.  

This year we did it in 5 separate goes. Waiting for cloudy or cooler days and restricting the cut to fill 2 wheelbarrows. By which time we were sweaty and in need of a Magnum ice cream break.  We got through a lot of packs of Magnum this month.  My husband finds it difficult with his arthritis so has brought a new battery driven hedge cutter which is light and less noisy and hot than the petrol one. But he found the bottom difficult so I have been using shears. I have been fierce and cut a good 45 degree angle so we can get rid of the baby budlelia that keep appearing underneath as 3 trees in the garden is enough.  On the other shaded side ivy is becoming invasive and creeping out to the lawn, so letting in more light may discourage it.

I should explain I was taught to cut hedges at the age of 8 by my Dad who worked hard doing long hours and was increasingly in ill health, and after his death when I was 12, I did all the hedges myself for 8 years for my mother and have done loads more in all the houses we have owned in the last 40 years. Our neighbour is 86 and very old fashioned (prefers wives that are "home bodies"  not active gardeners) and gives me odd looks when I am out on the shared drive cutting the hedge.

As we have driven here and there this week we have been spotting good hedge cutting (bit like spotting the best lights at Xmas), We admire the dead straight lines some precise people achieve, wince at the hedges that are 20 feet high which we could never manage (big conifer windbreaks are common round here) and envy at some really nice ones. There is a lovely berberis just down the road that has bright purple new leaves on the top when it is trimmed.

Sunday, 15 July 2018

Do you remember milk bags?

I was putting the last of the stored kitchen items into the backs of the new kitchen cupboards when I found this un-used Jugit for use with milk bags.
It was the eco idea of 2010 to replace milk cartons. You brought 1.5 lt bags and put in the jug where a spout pierced the bag.
When it first came out the price of the milk bags undercut cartons. After a few months the price crept up and the stocks became unreliable in supermarkets.  I remember I went over to 6 pint cartons about then - saving the number of cartons I put in recycling and getting a good unit price. Only once failing to use up the milk before it went off.

It was a good idea and if the bags could be recycled too in the UK (they can be, apparently it happens in Canada) because you can freeze the bags easily. 

I did see that the milk bags and jugs in use in a Costa this week - I assume it saves lots of space in not putting hundreds of big milk cartons in their commercial city centre bins.

Now I wonder what use I can put the jug too??  If I can't think of something soon I think hoarding it for 8 years is long enough!!

Saturday, 14 July 2018

Hot here but..

A giant iceberg is seen behind an Innaarsuit settlement, Greenland

It may be hot here and dry but I am not going to complain - we could be living in this village in Greenland being threatened by an iceberg.  See this link to BBC News

Looking out of our windows all I can see is quickly ripening cereals and patchy crops of potatoes. If you look carefully at the crops there are lots of gaps in the rows where nothing has come up.  It will definitely be a low harvest for potatoes and an early one for cereals.

Friday, 13 July 2018

Food Bank hero

What a super idea and well done to this artist (Peter McKee) to give away an art work in exchange for food bank contributions.  I like his style!
Full story on today's BBC news site

Pete McKee's soup can
When the donors handed over their tins of food, McKee handed them a tin of his own in return. It was empty, but it had a label he'd designed himself.

It was a nod to Andy Warhol's famous Campbell's soup tin, but McKee's limited edition packaging had one of his trademark cartoon-style pictures - of an old lady supping a bowl of soup on a settee with a tray balanced on her lap, with a dog gazing longingly at her lunch.

Going blue

For the last few years I have restricted my wardrobe size by using up everything till they are only good for rags and only buying when neces...