Tuesday 30 June 2009

A Bit of a Change

Can you have too much floral loveliness? I doubt it but for a while my dresser has been nagging at me to change things about a bit. There are lots of tricksy things on my mind at the moment (mainly work related) and I find a bit of shifting and rearranging is the perfect de-stresser on hot, mithery, muggy days like these.
I couldn't work out why I wasn't happy with it for such a long time (no before picture oops - they went with the old laptop but you can see how it looked on my last post) and then I came around to thinking there was too much prettiness, which is a bit of a strange concept for me to grapple with.

Maybe its because I enjoy the jumble and colour of my two little boys' gubbins and paraphernalia so much and too many delicate plates and tea cups are beginning to jar with the boys place in our home?
I feel the need for bolder, brighter colours and a place to display family treasures and special finds, and maybe not always the prettiest or daintiest things. Until now these sort of bits & pieces have been scattered about the place but I hope now the jollier dresser will become a happier home for more of them.

So the dresser is still mostly mummy's territory but I hope what's on it now reflects our jumble of home a bit more and doesn't look like too styled or like one that belongs to single girl with her own pad. More books, tins, mugs and trinkets and few less delicate floral plates and the kitchen feels more the centre of a family home. (Does this all sound a bit daft? Honestly I do have more important things to think about but this week I need destractions!)
Talking of which, we spent a lovely day on Sunday in the village a few miles away where I grew up. We basked in the sun, admired mum's outstanding new herbaceous border and the Rambling Rector then strolled up to the village for the fete. Swing boats, bat the rat, church flower festival and much ice cream was all enjoyed although I did forget to take any decent pictures. It was bliss to stroll home over the fields and remember the hundreds of times I've walked that route with family, friends and now my own little brood.

Happy summer days, just the ticket.

Monday 22 June 2009

Sitting Back

Sometimes there's nothing to do but sit back and take in the simple things around you. And this weekend was one of those. Stuck in bed with rotten tonsillitis (it feellike I've swallowed two burning golf balls - how nice!), at least I've had a chance to look through my photos and be reminded of the lovely things around me, even if I can't get out from under the duvet to see them.

So, looking back through the most recent batch of pictures these are a few favourites.

:: Wild flowers filling the bank by the school playground (aren't these the most amazing foxgloves!)

:: Bumblees bees enjoying their nectar

:: Going home from school the river way and being just in time to see the steam train chuff past undergoing repairs (two very excited boys let me tell you!)

:: Enjoying the table all cleared after tea

:: The allotment's starting to take shape at last (ignore the weeds!), you can see the beds at last and we're even growing some veg!
First crop - baby radishes, but there are broad beans, broccoli, purple sprouting, calabrese, dwarf green beans, late carrots, strawberries and raspberries, courgettes and pumpkins on the go. Think we might have a bit of a glut come August but I'm just pleased to have some space to grow. Looking forward to an autumn & winter of sorting and planning now to make sure we use all our space properly to give us a bit of something every month. Not quite the Good Life but a good try at least!

:: The first rose from the David Austin St Swithun I planted last year. The rain had started to lash down on it and I couldn't bear to see it flop so it got snipped off and popped into a jug of flowers from the garden.

Apologies too for being away a while. It's been a tough few weeks here at number 25, what with the car expiring and the laptop at the same time , there's been little or no getting about. So the bank is empty (again!) but we are back on the road and do have a very swish and lovely new laptop to play with.

Oh I really have missed keeping up with everyone but hopefully will be around to say hello in between my temperature hitting the roof and falling back under the covers for another snooze !xx

Sunday 7 June 2009

A little more of me

With credit to Lucy's lovely blog, The Little Blue Door for this idea and hope you don't mind discovering more about the scatty girl behind Curlew Country.
Me with my sisters at mum's 60th Birthday Do on New Year's Eve. Both younger than me, Rachel on the left is my best friend (taller, slimmer and always beautiful, she can have me in hysterics and luckily lives quite close by) and Susannah on the right is the youngest of we three, who now lives in Dubai (brilliant chellist, free spirit and will always be my dearest little sis).

1. What are your current obsessions? Cornwall, bevelled mirrors, midnight panics about snails ravaging our allotment and will we/won't we get a better summer this year.

2. Which outfit in your wardrobe do you wear most often? A green polka dot blouse and a much loved, patched up pair of sailor trouser jeans.

3. What's for dinner? Sandwiches from lunchtime's roast chicken, tomato and basil salad and a couple of Tunnocks tea cakes for a treat.

4. Last thing you bought? A pink diamante hairclip for a big night out in the city last night, which broke within seconds. Boots will feel my wrath tomorrow!

5. What are you listening to? The Euro election results - I know how to enjoy myself.

6. If you were a god/goddess who would you be? Now I'd love to step into Nigella's shoes if she ever vacates them but I'd be the sloppiest domestic goddess ever!

7. Favourite vacation spot? Port Isaac, Cornwall - every time.

8. Reading right now? The Burning Blue by James Holland - wonderful, terrifying but romatic novel of an WWII spitfire pilot.

9. Four words to describe yourself: Imaginitive, enthusiastic, scatty, tired!

10. Guilty pleasure? Ooooh a box of chocolate mint thins please.
11. Who or what makes you laugh until you’re weak? The observations my very dry, acerbic husband makes in his newspaper column, some of the comedians at the stand-up night we run, my colleagues and Victoria Wood.

12. Favourite things to do in the summer? Picnics by the river messing about with my boys, strolling about deadheading with a cup of tea in the evening, a week by the sea in Cornwall, treating myself to cottage garden posies from the WI stall at the market.

13. Planning to travel to next? The Yorkshire Dales in the summer holidays.

14. Best thing you ate or drank lately? Delicious healthy working lunch served at a local hospice where I was running an event. Wonderful feta cheese salad and poached salmon. Been trying to recreate it at home - hmmmm, working on it.

15. When did you last get tipsy? Years ago, before children. I get the most dreaful hangovers so I'm past those days, although my colleagues were doing their best to get me to change my mind last night!

16. Favourite ever film? Before Sunrise, I adore Ethan Hawke - brilliantly romantic

17. Care to share some wisdom? Nothing earth shattering - but its definitely worth staking border perennials much earlier than you think you should - I always get caught out and my lovely flowers get pummelled flat by early summer rain.

18. Least favourite part of your day? That after-lunch slump, I think I'd suit a siesta lifestyle very well.

19. What make/model was your first car? A red Nissan Micra - I gave it away as a wreck to some mechanic students and now it looks like new but they won't give it me back. Oh I did love that car.

20. Favourite song to sing? I Don't Want to Set the World on Fire. My dad has always warbled this and I picked it up from him years ago. It's so wistful, describes me and will always bring a picture of my lovely, smiley dad to mind.

My boys and me

Well there you go. Have a super week and hope the weather perks up for everyone - we're drenched here.

Tuesday 2 June 2009

This Week, I Am Mostly Enjoying ....

:: Ancient thrifted magazines with beautiful covers (1938!)

:: Chalk pictures on the patio
:: Lazy afternoons on the river bank, just footsteps from our back door, with the steam train trundling by.

:: Sweet Williams back on the greengrocer's stall. Beautiful shades of summer that last ages and ages and for just £1.20 a bunch.

:: A £5 vintage mirror and a thrifed embroidery for 50p that are brightening up the sitting room.

:: Luscious lupins blooming in the garden.

:: Falling asleep to the sound of tractors rumbling up and down the village fields, bringing in the spring silage.

A lovely sort of a week. Hope yours is too.