Saturday was meant to be a day of quiet relaxation.. a welcome relief from the frenetic pace of late..
My idea of chilling out was to indulge in some armed combat with the pesky and persistent buttercup weeds that seem to pop up over night and make themselves most unwelcome by spreading like a rash over my nicely cultivated (cough cough) garden. I tell a lie.. chilling out.. was not an accurate description of my mood. Hot and sweaty was more much more applicable as I dug and cursed my way through the weeds and only managed to cover 3 square feet of ground before I admitted defeat and retreated indoors for a soothing cup of tea and a long soak in the bath. It was a generous day for sun and some long overdue warmth and just to sit and absorb the sights and sounds of my small patch was a pleasure indeed.. in fact it is up there on my list of top ten favourite pursuits... Gardening rocks!! Eating chocolate and blogging are two of the others.. eating chocolate whilst blogging even better!
So let me introduce you to some of my garden treasures....
Tulips have never really been my 'thing' before .. preferring the blousy loud daffodils.. but last year I planted oodles of bulbs and I have been rewarded with some gorgeous blooms..
You can't beat the humble forget me not.. One little plant has been busy spreading itself far and wide and this is the result... I love them!!!
My solitary little apple tree has done me proud with blossom this Spring. Hopefully this bodes well for another crop of crisp and tasty apples..We had a harvest of 21 apples on this sturdy little tree last year. If one blossom equates to one apple then we should have many more this year.. fingers crossed.
The clematis has run away with itself and has done exactly what I wished .. romped along the fence..
This is my favourite corner .. where I sit and ponder..
Even the wild garlic has put on a good show of flowers this year and the scent of it reminds me of my holidays in Cornwall where wild garlic grows along the cliff footpaths.. Heady stuff!
The colours of the garden really come to life after a spot of rain...
I often wonder and dream about the many hidden gardens in Bath..
This is one of the houses that I pass on my walk most days and at this time of year it is stunning.. dripping in Wisteria.
Sotto voce ... It is rumoured that Mr Manolo Blahnik owns this beautiful residence and stores his shoe collection here.. I wonder if he ever puts any out for recycling!
Sunset over Bath... always dazzling as the sun reflects off the honey coloured stone houses..
I was foolish enough to believe that this tantalising taste of summer over the weekend was set to last but alas looking at the weather report for this week.. it looks fairly gloomy and definitely WET!
Well after the sun.. inevitably comes the rain.. and it looks like it is on it's way.
I hope you had fun digging in the dirt this weekend and soaking up some rays..XX
Monday, 28 April 2008
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 4:34 pm
Friday, 25 April 2008
Another recurring dream is to find myself on a stage having to perform in front of XXXX number of people... That would truly be a nightmare of monumental proportions for me..
Well writing a blog is a bit like that scenario... suddenly you realise that people are actually reading this and waiting for your next post with some kind of anticipation.. or am I just flattering myself ? I feel I have to keep some kind of standard.. consistency to my posts... Waffle or Poetry.. whatever you make of it..
That realisation is a bit scary, daunting... enough to render me speechless, if I think about it too much. So the trick is not to think about it and just continue this random stream of consciousness...
So more of the same..
It is Saturday and I am on my own... boo hoo... My boys have abandoned me and gone off
to do various pursuits..
Big boy has gone on a residential trip with his school to Dorset.. Last year he managed to get a tick bite on his leg that turned nasty on his return home... Luckily he avoided Lyme's disease but I kept looking out for signs of the disease.. twitching, incoherent talk... well hard to tell sometimes!
Little boy has had a better offer and gone to join his band members for a jamming weekend.. Maybe they will finish the track..'Play that Funky Music' as it was cruelly cut off in it's prime..
So with all this freedom I am about to depart for the metropolis and mingle with the Saturday morning masses. First stop is the flea market.. not that we need any!
Then I have been instructed to buy something called 'Fast Fret' for my beloved. Is that a device to accelerate stress..? I surely don't need any of that thank you.
Actually it turns out to be a cunning tool for cleaning guitar strings..
I might even indulge myself by buying some lovely veggie ingredients to make vegetarian feast for one tonight. It is tough living with cavemen sometimes.. they love their meat.
Returned from the heaving mass of shoppers and tourists alike... and am truly vexed that I forgot to take my camera.
Bath is a photographer's dream.. Architecturally unique, beautiful skyline of trees and hills and as for people watching.. we have it all here from the great unwashed to the small gaggles of tourists being herded around the various hot spots with a flag on a stick! Cafe society thrives and it is easy to sit and sip some Java whilst watching this colourful world pass by.
But as I said.. I forgot my camera so you will have to use your imagination and be content with these couple of photos taken on one of my neighbourhood rambles..
Gosh I miss my boys...
Think I'll make a cup of tea now..
Sorry about the waffle.. I just wanted a chat really..
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 10:49 pm
Thursday, 24 April 2008
I have returned to some sense of normality (what is that exactly?) and arrived at a quieter pace today.. so quiet in fact that I could easily slip into a deep slumber.. Is it the subtle shift in temperatures or those damn hormones that are making me so listless and ..well.. totally exhausted .. these days?
I could sleep for England and yet as I stagger to bed each night I find after three hours of deep and blissful sleep.. I am awake again listening to the sounds of the night.. the muffled sound of night traffic, a dog barking or the inevitable cat disagreement from the gardens below..
I am now having one of those moments.. walk into a room and stand there in a fog trying to remember why you where there in the first place...
Why am I here???
Ah.. yes.. it is all coming back to me now..
I was tagged.. seems like an age ago now but it has been patiently waiting in the wings for my attention and so I will do my best in my current state to give you some more random facts about the person responsible for the dubious music selection and vintage whimsies that is C & C ...i.e ... ME!
The Apron Queen tagged me and has probably lost all hope of me ever coming up with the goods but here we go... better late than never .. I hope.
So here are 7 random facts about yours truly..
1. I was born a 5 weeks prematurely and was called 'Shrimp' by the nurses in the hospital on account of my size..
I'd love to know what they would call me now if they could see me... Moby ?
2. I have a recurring dream.. it crops up now and again and is always disturbing..
I dream that I am in an emergency situation and have to contact my nearest and dearest and the only telephone I can find has illegible numbers so I can't dial...It really is a nightmare!
3. I have always wanted to fly in a hot air balloon..
They are a common sight in Bath on a summer's eve or very early morning.. One can hear the hiss and roar of the burners that announce their arrival...
It is traditional to drink champagne on a maiden balloon journey... Maybe that is the attraction! This one was floating past our windows yesterday evening..
4. I believe in ghosts... I lived in a happy, homely 1930's Bungalow when I was a child that had a large wraparound garden. One night I heard a woman singing in a beautiful haunting voice outside my bedroom window. It was pitch dark outside and on investigation there was no-one there. This was just one of the strange incidences that happened in that house.. My brother also witnessed a presence there..
There has to be echoes of previous lives all around us... and I sometimes feel that my parents are still here.. I glimpse my mother for a split second when I am walking through town... I find these moments very comforting!
5.I had a pudding basin haircut for most of my childhood.. Not my choice!
I longed to have long hair and when I reached the grand age of 16 I was allowed to grow my hair.. and I did..!!
I have had more or less the same haircut since then with a few alarming variations... cropped v short, Rod Steward cut..Ouch!
6. I once danced with Clive Mantle at a New Year's Eve Ball .... I managed to spill most of my glass of wine all down his tux!!
I think I lost all credibility that evening.. talk about two left feet..!
Clive Mantle for any of you who are not familiar with that name.. which is probably most of you... is the actor who played a doctor in the hospital soap 'Casualty' .. Tall... hunky and charming and a much better dancer than I.
7. I was in love with David Cassidy, David Essex and Pete Dual all at the same time.... Hussy!!!!
I would kiss their posters pinned to my bedroom wall .. every night.. until I finally wore a hole in the paper....
There .. aren't you all better off for knowing that trivia about me!!! I wonder how many bloggers are departing in their droves after reading this...
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 4:58 pm
Monday, 21 April 2008
Now I know I shouldn't be here... much to do and all that .. but I just had to share this little gem with you. Well I am a just wee bit biased and ever so proud .. as you see.. this is my son's first band formed with friends from school and his first recording...
I think it is fab and I am tempted to say... eat your heart out Ginger Baker, John Bonham, Keith Moon and all great drummers..
Make way for Harry and his band...
In the immortal words of Mick Jagger... "It's only Rock and Roll but I like it .. like it.. yes I do!"
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 9:05 am
Friday, 18 April 2008
...and I am afraid it is my blog.
I have been toying with the idea of running away to join the circus this week... as I have been honing my skills as a juggler!
Juggling life and all that it entails.
Today is just a typical day.. and I am only a fraction of the way through my list of 'must do's' .
So far I have...
Done two loads of laundry.
Made a small cauldron of vegetable soup.
Made a rhubarb cake
Started the job of wrapping 300+ greeting cards..
and that is only the half of it!
We all have busy lives and days that are getting shorter by the clock.. where does tempus fugit?
So please excuse my sporadic blog posts until I have climbed this small mountain and started the descent.
I am so grateful to every one of you kindly folk who have dropped by to say hello and leave words of friendship..
Thank you.. I will get round to you all.. but it just might take a little while..
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 1:05 pm
Sunday, 13 April 2008
I have been absent for a few days and now feel strangely nervous about writing this post..
Not that I have forgotten how to prattle on about this and that.. I do, however, feel as if I have left a party and now I am hoping to slip in quietly by the back door and hope that no-one has noticed that I just nipped out for a little fresh air.
I have been away to a little piece of heaven.. a place that holds great significance for me, has immense beauty and is my sanctuary.. and much as I would like to keep it to myself, I would dearly love to share this magical place with you as it really is nature at it's best!
When I was a child I would regularly travel with my family to Cornwall for the annual pilgrimage to the coast for the summer hols.. We would cross Dartmoor many times on these journeys and I had a strange love/hate feelings about the place.. I found it slightly menacing and strangely beautiful too.. The fear came from Dartmoor Prison which still exists today and is an imposing and bleak Victorian monument that dominates the area of Princetown. My imagination would run riot as we drove past this sinister building and I would conjure up the dark elements that lived within it's towering walls..
That was then and many years have passed ... now my overriding emotions of Dartmoor are ones of great admiration and a love of the raw beauty of the place. It still has elements of bleakness for me but the area that I have fallen for hook, line and sinker is the north east corner of the moor and an area around the much loved village of Drewsteington.
It is here that we escaped for a few days and met kindly folk and shared laughs and friendship with the delightful host of the B + B in the village.. The Old Inn.
On arriving in the village we soon headed off on our favourite walk along the River Teign at Fingle Bridge.. an area of outstanding beauty owned by The National Trust. We had the whole river walk to ourselves for at least an hour before we saw other walkers along the way..
It is a place I will return to time after time as with each season it brings new colours, sounds and sights of flora and fauna... It really is my little piece of heaven on earth.
Now we are home.. there is the inevitable mountain of washing and ironing to catch up with.. and some Cowboys & Custard product orders to be met.. so it's a different pace altogether this week though my memories of our escape to Devon are close to my heart.
I hope all is well with you and I will endeavour to catch up with all your news soon. XX
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 12:13 pm
Friday, 4 April 2008
This is a last flying visit to thank two very generous bloggers for giving me an award..no make that two awards..
Firstly the dear Louise.. a wonderfully warm-hearted and jovial lass, has given me this pretty ornament for my groaning mantelpiece ..
Now what did I do to deserve yet another award from you ??? You are too kind and generous....P.s You make me laugh and make my day too..!!
My other award.. .
The Arte Y Pico award ..comes from a blogger who I have only just met and must say I am delighted to make your acquaintance.. Green Twins Mummy has been very generous too in awarding me this gong... Many thanks..
I know that there are rules attached to these awards and I will try and get around to following them on my return in a few days..
These accolades are getting so hard to dust but I do appreciate every one of them ... So THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH !!!
I have much I want to share with my blogging friends.. there isn't a day that passes that I do not count my blessings and feel such gratitude towards every one of you who has shared a flake of your life through this diary that I started in Oct 2007..
I will be back in a few days... don't go away! xx
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 1:36 pm
Thursday, 3 April 2008
This week I have been having a flurry of creativity.. ideas weaving in and out of my mind and dreams and some of them actually hitting the drawing board..
I had a visit for the first time from The Apron Queen the other day who kindly invited me to take part in her Vintage Thingies Thursdays extravaganza. This prompted me to have a good sort out of masses of paper ephemera I have horded over the last two years and amongst my piles of vintage song sheets, French fashion mags, old cookery books, retro shop catalogues...(etcetera etcetera) I found some appropriate items to fill up a frame for this event.
I had much fun making this..nothing like getting glue on your fingers (and everywhere else) and snipping and sticking.. took me back to my Blue Peter days of sticky- back plastic and washing- up liquid bottles.. It was amazing what you could turn out from these humble items.. though my finished product never looked like Valerie Singletons' works of art..more a mangled soggy mess of plastic and glue in my case.
So here is the finished article for Vintage Thingies Thursdays....
That is a bold faced lie..as you will know from Louise's poll results this week. I have used just a pinch of artistic licence in this latest vintage whimsy.
There is a certain paradox as with everything in life.. ironing can be relaxing when listening to your favourite radio programme or swaying sideways whilst listening to ipod favourites..
I chose the music for this post as it was the closest I could get in reference.. to 'Dashing away with the smoothing iron'.... I suspect that I am the only person ancient enough to remember that song!
There is a wonderful site in my list of links called The Laundry.. A place where you can find attractive vintage household items, exquisite fabrics and aesthetically pleasing laundry items.
I shall leave you with my latest greeting card creation aptly called...
I will return after a short break now... hols begin this weekend and much to do..!!
Have a wonderful weekend to one and all XX
Posted by Cowboys and Custard Mercantile at 9:04 am