Showing posts from February, 2017

The Lazy Gardener

I'm not a really good gardener. More of a fair weather gardener. If it's even a little bit cold I will stay in and do something else. So you see even though we did a lot of work in the veggie patch last year spring has brought up the weeds - big time.  Apart from the few broad bean plants in the foreground the rest of the greenery is weeds! This has been heartening in one sense because previously the soil was so poor that we had very few weeds. Now they are tall and lush. And thankfully fairly easy to pull out. I've done quite a big patch already. And last month I spread out the strawberries and planted all the runners. Can't wait for them to start fruiting. While Steve is burning the last of the prunings (all pruned wood of a decent size is kept for the house fire next winter) I have been working hard on weed removal as I want him to install the irrigation system before I do the main spring planting. We still have a few Brussels left from wint

Money Matters

I guess many of our readers will think we have it made. Living the dream and all that. Well yes, we do think we are living the dream, but it comes at a price and for us it is only just affordable. Let me explain.  We live on my husband's military pension. It's not huge, and if we lived in the UK we/he would have to work as well as it is not enough to live on there. Here the cost of living is much less and so we can manage fairly well. In seven years time I should start receiving my state pension - unless they change the goal posts again! It won't be very much, I gave up work to look after my children at a time when the cost of childcare exceeded the wages I could earn. When my children reached school age I went back to work. Later due to illness I worked part time and then I became self employed so my contributions towards my pension were never consistent. I will be grateful for whatever the government gives me when the time comes. Steve is younger than me so his state pe

Toad Hunting

I guess spring has been sprung for a couple of weeks now. Mind you it never quite feels like it until the weather catches up, which it seemed to this week. Our neighbours almond trees have been in blossom for about ten days, we thought this was a little bit early. Ours are only now catching up, but they are quite young. We had visitors this week and spent time sight seeing and eating out. This is nice for us, a break from the routine and a break from work. You don't realise how stuck in a routine you have become until you make a change. It's been great having a like-minded visitor - knitting, crochet, spinning and weaving dominated the conversation. A colourful week! Some things never lose their appeal though. What is it with me and the frog/toad thing? Last year I recorded their noises on our way to language school. This year I tried my hand at a bit of night filming. Sadly the camera isn't up to low light filming but we did our best. Warning! The fo

The Rugby Begins

And it rained! So, stuck in the house with whoops and catcalls filling the air (Steve glued to the television) I was about to get out the couture jacket pattern when I got distracted by a comment on a Facebook group that I follow. It's a group dedicated to historically accurate knitting and crochet. Someone was knitting a petticoat. Sounds bizarre I know but it was cold back then and I guess a warm woollen petticoat would have been a Godsend. Anyway long story short, I started thinking about my collection of Victorian magazines and all the knitting and crochet patterns they contain and before I knew it I began photographing and uploading them to the web, where they will hopefully inspire some historic knitters! It's a work in progress (like I need another blog) but is there as inspiration and/or encouragement for those attempting to recreate a look from the past. You can shortcut here . I can't help but admire our great grannie's skills since the instructions