Tuesday 31 May 2022

Tuesday afternoon and all's well (so far)

 I tested myself this morning and so far have tested negative - so far so good.    I am still caring for myself but not finding it easy.   I was hoping that as the days went by each day Iwould find it easier.   So far this has not happened.   Today I did not manage to get dressed until after lunch.   Does it matter?   I suppose not but I am finding it disappointing.  I am staying in bed an extra couple of hours in the morning - getting up around nine but even that is not helping and I am ready for bed each night.

I do hope things improve.   I have just had a text from my carer to say she is feeling much better today so I am pleased about that.

It has been wet more or less all day today and the  Isky is very black.   Yes, we do need the rain but I do hope the weather improves before the week end. I have nothing special to write about today so see you all tomorrow.

Monday 30 May 2022

The inevitable has happened.

 Yes, my carer has gone down with Covid   This morning she has a very sore throat and a bad head.  I am so far managing on my own with a promise of a replacement if I need it.  I don't feel ill but am very tired.   I slept well, as I always do and I managed the usual chores - after all I always do them on Tuesdays  when I don't have a carer  anyway.  But when I sat down at the computer I fell asleep.  I switched off, sat in my chair and slept for an hour, waking to get myself some lunch (jacket potatoes - 1 filled one with cheese and onion and one filled with Heinz five beans in tomato sauce - both were delicious: peach yoghourt for afters.   I shall finish off the beans in tomato sauce with pasta for my tea.)

My carer has just texted to see how I am. All I can say is I am very, very tired but feel alright.   See what I am like in the morning.   I will have another go at putting on a post:-

It doesn't just apply to Chelsea last week (not the Football Rachel) but it was a good example.   This applies to men and women but it was the men I noticed particularly and I have noticed it on Breakfast television too and it pops up everywhere. You never see a Newsreader without a tie do you?  We used to joke that they could be sitting there in their underpants but they always had a jacket and a tie.   Now at Chelsea they have come out from behind the desk so to speak and they are still in their suits - smart jacket and trousers, suitable tie  (after all Her Majesty the Queen might come and speak to them if they were near enough to the Golf Buggy) but what about footwear?   And not just the men - many of the women too.  It was trainers all round - the men wore navy trainers with a white band of sole coming up the side, the women on the whole wore white.   And the prices of this footwear?   The ones quoted in the Times ranged from £50, through £120, £395, £530,  £700 to £870 (the latter crystal-embellished).  But they all have one thing in common - they hate MUD and never recover from an encounter.

My goodness me they have come a long way since the days when you got a detention if you turned up on a Thursday afternoon and had forgotten your netball pumps and nobody would have been allowed in with those crystal embellished ones either).


Sunday 29 May 2022

 Well, important day indeed because today (my Carer's weekend off) my carer J rang in to say she has tested Positive for Covid.   Strangely enough for the past few days I have been wondering what I would do if my Carer caught the dreaded lurgy.  We discussed it on the phone and have decided that we are going to try my managing on my own.

My son is not happy about it and wishes I would get a relief carer in.   But I know I am not getting enough exercise these windy days and could do with a bit more bending and stretching.   So I am going to try.   Everyone is keeping their eye on me and a carer is standing by - I already have one day alone - so fingers crossed - let's try.

Whether or not I catch it remains to be seen - I hope  not,  but it is highly likely I expect.

First of course is to surround myself with food because usually my carer provides my meals.   So I have been on line and ordered quiche, salmon. sea bass, prawns, lotsof mushrooms and tomatoes and a large pack of jacket potatoes.   Let's see what I can concoct.   Getting dressed should be alright as long as I take my time.   Let's face it it doesn't matter what time I end up dressed does it?

Tonight there is another programme about the Queen with lots of family footage so I look forward to seeing that.  I will keep you informed about my meals!!

Saturday 28 May 2022

The Coronation

 I watched a film on Channel 4 this evening - a film about the preparations for and then the carrying out of Queen Elizabeth's Coronation in June 1953.

It made me    feel very old - I had been married for 18 months and I remember the event very well but it was interesting to see the preparations and the practising that went on.

Also I noticed that the thousands who ran down The Mall to get to the front at Buckingham Palace were almost without exception dressed in dark, drab clothes.   And then of course I realised that it was only about eight years after the end of the second World War.   And I don't remember thinking about the drab colours at the time so it must have been 'par for the course'.

My Grandmother bought a television (10 inch screen) specially for the occasion.   My fairly new first husband and I (still living with my parents) and my mother and father and my brother and his wife (he had a car so my parents and M and I were taken by car  I felt rather grand if I remember).

My Grandmother and my four spinster aunts who all still lived at home (like many women left spinsters by the shortage of young men after the First World War) invited us all to watch it on the new black and white television and - we really did feel rather posh - to a buffet lunch (some foods were still rationed).   I wish I could remember what we ate.  After watching tonight I know that the Queen had a bit of a break at one point and had smoked salmon sandwiches and sausage rolls!!

It is late now and dark and forecast to be much colder.   I just hope there is not a frost - my tubs by the front door are just coming along nicely.   See you tomorrow.

Friday 27 May 2022


 Well, any day now we shall be saying 'good-bye' to another May.   How quickly the months fly by.

I must say that the Hawthorne blossom (or 'May  Blossom' as we always called it) has been particularly beautiful this year and so lived up to its name.   The blackthorne was beautiful so no doubt we shall have plenty of sloes. I think up here in the Dales we are particularly aware if it because last year we had such a 'cruel' April with very sharp frosts which destroyed much of the early blossom.

In my garden pink is slowly taking over as the predominant colour - pink geranium clumps are all over the garden - don't know its name but it is one of the really common perennial geraniums.   Pink alliums are popping up here  and there, as is London Pride and a pink flower I was given a snippet of and which I have split up several times and which stays out ages once it is ready.   Two large clumps of pink osteo spermum are already out (when the sun is out - if the sun goes in its shows its displeasure).   A new osteospermum I bought and put in a pot on the front doorstep (in full sun)is already fast catching up the pink one and certainly has no intention of hiding its light under a bushel. It has turned out to be orange.

Again it has been too windy for Priscilla and me to walk round the block.   A whole week has passed  and I am trying to do exercises to stop me going backwards, but it isn't the same.   I can feel myself stiffening up and can do little about it.   Tonight is the last Chelsea Flower Show.   I shall miss it although as someone said on here earlier in the week, they do show the same gardens over and over.  Perhaps they show it all for a bit too long.

My friend S has just been with lovely brown eggs from their hens.   Nothing like a fresh brown egg with a yolk of pure gold.  The hens have the run of most of the garden (but not where the veggies are or there would be no fresh veggies.)   Nothing else of interest has happened so I will sign off until tomorrow - see you all then.

I don't know whether to blame it on being retired so that I can't separate week days and week ends in my head or whether it is plain 'old age' but I can rarely name what day it is without a lot of deep though   This morning I woke up thinking it was Saturday.   Now I know it is Friday but in my head it will be Saturday all day.   Now I shall go and read 'Friday's paper' - that is one way to help a bit.   See you later.

Well it is now seven pm (and only an hour to the last programme on the Chelsea Flower Show.) and it is still blowing a howling (and very cold) ga

Thursday 26 May 2022

The Wind

No, I am not speaking of my digestive system;  I am speaking of the weather,   For almost a fortnight now it has been windy and today it has been the very worst day - gale force and I have been totally unable to go out.   I did venture with Priscilla into the back garden in order to skirt the bungalow and water my tub on the far corner.   And to let you know just how windy it is the tub I watered had the most beautiful bright red Pelargonium just coming into bloom and the wind had snapped it off and I was just in time to see it rolling off across the lawn and down the road.   Verydisheartening.

But it made me get on with a job I have been going to do for ages.   When you get to my age, if you have any thought for those you will leave behind, you leave your affairs in good order.   I do this about every other year and have been going to do it ever since the end of the tax year.   I made a start this afternoon in my filing cabinet.   I tackled the insurances.   It took me a couple of hours but that is one file done and updated.   Only about another ten to go.  And I feel better for doing it.

If like me you are a Chelsea fan you will have enjoyed it this week from the comfort of your armchair.   Tomorrow is the last day.   I am not a fan of formal gardens and I love the informality and haphazard nature of my own garden.   But I do find it annoying now that I can't climb the steps to see what is out in my garden.   I have to wait until my gardener comes to ask him what's what and he doesn't always know the answer.   Until tomorrow friends.

Wednesday 25 May 2022


 At the top of my garden is a wall - half of it is a typical Yorkshire Dry stone wall. The other half is a neat stone wall with a parapet on the top and above that a hedge.   And in the hedge, as there is most years, is a blackbird's nest.   When Mrs Blackbird was sitting on their eggs Mr Blackbird would spend a large part of each day serenading her from the rooftops.  Now the chicks are hatched and hiding in amongst the plants in my garden waiting to be fed by Mum and Dad, life is a bit more hazardous for them.  When I go out to do my five laps of the patio Mr and Mrs B give their warning signal to tell the chicks to stay hidden.   As soon as I come in the feeding begins again in earnest.   Except that this morning it didn't - danger signals continued and both Mum and Dad fluttered up and down, tails in the air.   Why?   I couldn't work it out until suddenly, what I had taken to be a root in the hedge moved.   It wasn't the hedge at all.   It was a tabby Tom Cat, curled up at the base of the hedge.  They knew he was there and by golly he knew they were around and he was going nowhere(he fancied a meal of nice fat blackbird chick rather than tinned cat food wherever he lived).

That was yesterday - today is a wet morning and so far no sign of him so Mum and Dad are presumably making up for lost time and stuffing grubs, flies, worms and anything else that appears on the menu down little cheeping throats as fast as possible.   Strike while the iron's hot as they say.

Now my gardeners have arrived to mow the lawns and dead head the daffodils and tulips - oh dear poor old blackbirds - what a tough time they are having.

Tuesday 24 May 2022


 My father died in 1971.   He left school at the earliest possible age - when you realise that he was born in around 1890 only 20 odd years after the first Education Act bringing in Compulsory Education then I don't expect he had all that much education.   If any amongst you care to look how much - feel free - but when I started looking it became too complicated.

He came from a very working class background but his saving grace was that although he was one of eight his father was a lay preacher Methodist and education was taken seriously and they were home schooled as much as it was possible when his parents were not educated either.    But he valued it and one thing he did was to teach himself Latin in as much as was possible.   He loved gardening (we had a big garden, he grew lots of veg and flowers) and he loved their names.  He trotted them out at every opportunity throughout.( Latin is an easy language to learn on the surface because you say it as it reads).   He 'rose through the ranks' to have a reasonably good job and made sure the three of us would not fare badly education wise.   I was lucky being born last (1932) and passing the scholarship and 'staying on' at school a little longer.

And so we were away Dad and I - we searched for wild flowers and could trot out their Latin names and those of the garden plants in our garden.   How he would have loved Chelsea.

I have always watched the offerings we are given on the television.   And - one year - what excitement- a friend who was a member of the RHS couldn't go on members day and she gave me her membership entrance card!

I lived in Wolverhampton at the time.   I caught the six o'clock train to London, changed to the tube and was more or less there at opening time.   The tent with all the exhibits, the show gardens, the atmosphere, the famous faces.   I was totally and completely overwhelmed.   Be lunchtime, when I had intended to get lunch (bear in mind that by this time I had gone through University, gone through the ranks of teaching and travelled extensively abroad so was used to crowds)I just wanted to get home.   I left Chelsea and made for the train like a frightened rabbit.

How I love it on television.   I never miss a programme, I gobble it all up, I hear the latin names and remember my Dad, I jot down the names of plants I fancy adding to my garden.   But invite me to go again???   No thanks - I looked at HM in her buggy seemingly interested in what she was being told and I marvelled at how she could keep up and how she could make polite conversation and (if I had been wearing one I would have taken my hat off to her).


Monday 23 May 2022

A wet Monday evening.

 Half past seven - half an hour before tonight;s Chelsea- and so far it is a wet evening.    These last few weeks there have been plenty of wet evenings - trouble is that it is only light rain and it doesn't rain for long.   It is better than nothing but couldn't we do with a real good downpour.   My whole garden looks as though it is waiting.

When you get to my age sometimes you seem tired for no reason and today is one of those days.   I slept perfectly well washed and dressed (helped by my carer) and then using my indoor trolley as soon as I had had my breakfast and she had gone I watered and fed my five tubs by the front door.   They are looking good.   I am pleased I followed the advice of Joe Swift and planted them up in a more haphazard way.   So far so good.

After my lunch I fell asleep again and awoke to the sound of friend W tapping on the window with some magazines for me.   We sat and chatted for an hour.   I have just had a cup of tea and am now hoping I can stay awake through Chelsea.

So really there is nothing of any any import to report today, so I will sign off and see you all tomorrow.   Take care.

Sunday 22 May 2022

Plenty to think about.

 Well I must say, most days your welcome comments to my posts leave me with plenty to think about.   But yesterday it was my Saturday magazine with The Times that provided food for thought and also plenty to chat about, both with H, my neighbour who came round for a cup of tea in the afternoon and also several times with friends who rang.

There was an article about Emma Thompson and her new film, "Good Luck to you Leo Grande".   In it Thompson plays the role of a woman, widowed and a teacher, who has never had an orgasm and wonders what she has been missing.   So she books a young, high class, male escort.   In spite of having had 2 children she plays a repressed, dutiful wife who wants an adventure.

Caitlin Moran, who does the interview,  says Thompson seems to have waited until she had 'enough power and confidence to do sex and nudity in a way that matters'.   Moran says 'it is the first time we have ever seen on film an older naked woman look at herself (in the mirror after the orgasm) with such joy.

We shall have to wait for a full crit of the film until either John (Going Gently) or Rachel Phillips go and see it.    I can assure you that both of them give criticism of films as good as any you will see in the papers.

But it set me thinking - not about orgasms - that is an entirely personal thing and not, in my thinking, something to be discussed here  amongst bloggers; but about nudity in general.   I know that I never, ever saw either of my parents naked.   In spite of the fact that when I was small our bath was a zinc one in front of the fire on a Friday night, I was always first in, out and dried and powdered and sent off to bed.   What happened after that I have no idea, and don't think I thought about.   By the time I reached  teenage years my sister and her husband had had a house built nearby with a bathroom and we went there for baths whenever we felt like it.

Things were slightly different when I married.   My first husband (and father of my only son) was a painter in watercolours and oils and pastel and once we married - and before if my parents were away and the house was empty and we would not be discovered, I would pose for him.   Occasionally I would pose for his friends and once or twice - when the Art School model was unable to attend- I would pose for  a class.  (my parents never knew and would have been horrified. ) So what I am asking is this.   As I now have a carer - a woman who is almost forty years younger than me and who is brilliant to me in every way and who, as she dashes around doing various jobs chats away so that I know so much about the way of life up here - I hear of people she has always known, who went to school with her, or with her brother or sister and who have children from three or four different relationships - are we saying that nudity and sexual relationships have little to do with one another?  Because her attitude - and that of her peers - does not seem all that different from that of my generation.   I said this to her this morning and her reply seemed to suggest that nothing much had changed.

Friday 20 May 2022


 And another week bites the dust.   When you hopefully haven't all that long left on this earth I can tell you that the weeks fly by.   I say 'hopefully' please don't think I am down hearted or depressed - not a bit of it but believe me there comes a time - and I have reached it - when everything takes a lot of doing,  you know what you want to do but it is never easy.   Either it is too far to walk, you can't remember exactly what it was you intended to do, you would like to pull up that enormous weed in the garden but know the effort might lead you to fall over, you get half way through writing an e mail and at the click of something inside your computer the whole thing disappears as if by magic.   Need I go on?   If you have not reached that point yet then it is only a matter of time.   Luckily it is Monty Don's Gardener's World tonight so I shall be back on form again tomorrow.   (I might be 90 in October but some feelings never altogether disappear believe me!)   I will say no more except to say I am pretty near the back of a very long queue I suspect.

Yesterday on my  order I bought my first bunch of British Asparagus so melted butter to the fore and nice bread and butter cut thinly, asparagus steamed lightly and there's my tea for tonight.   I love it.   You can't beat it if you are a fan and it needs nothing more than brown bread and butter to make it a feast fit for a king - or so near to H M's Platignum Jubilee - a Queen either.****The asparagus was delightful - particularly as it was from Tesco and was labelled 'British Asparagus' and was grown in Lincolnshire (the county of my birth) by one Chris Kitchen - thanks Chris - I enjoyed it tremendously'.

I have spent a long time this afternoon typing out a scone recipe for Jackie.   If you are reading this Jackie I do hope you receive it and it makes sense.   I have Benign Essential Tremor which makes my hands shake so that when they hover over the keys of the computer when you look up at the screen they have often landed in the wrong place.   If this has happened I do hope it still makes sense.   If it doesn't then please get back to me and tell me where you can't understand it.

Well asparagus calls in all its greenery,   See you tomorrow.

Thursday 19 May 2022

One thing a day.

  I am trying hard to stick to only one major thing a day because sadly more than one and I seem to be good for nothing for the rest of the day.   Today's 'thing' was a Cut and Blow Dry and I have come home, had my lunch and dozed most of the afternoon.   But as most women will agree I feel so much better after my hair do.

It has been quite a pleasant day and now that it is early evening, as with the last few days, the clouds have cleared and the sky is beautifully blue.   Perfect silaging weather as any farmer (or farmer's wife) out there will tell you.   The field at the back of my bungalow is being silaged today and the grass smells delightful.   I feel sad for my farmer, no longer here to judge when to cut.   The town (only a small town of maybe three thousand inhabitants) is so very busy because every farmer is silaging and the road outside the hairdressers is a constant stream of tractors and silage trailers back and forth.

No other news really except to say that about a dozen of my alliums are out - lovely to see that some have come (there was more than this last year and I suspect mice.Also my tubs, only planted up on Tuesday, seem to have flourished already.   I love to see them fill in their space.   I have mixed up the plants in them rather than pot them the conventional way - so I am waiting eagerly to see how they develop!

See you all tomorrow.

Wednesday 18 May 2022


Sorry no post yesterday - I was just too tired.   I find at the moment that anything different that I do tends to make me very tired.   But I soldier on.   It was my day for going up to Ripon to have my  hearing aids  serviced.  I should have gone a month ago but I was in hospital after a fall and by the time I could go my hearing aid specialist had caught covid.

I rarely go out these days unless friends S and T take me or I have a taxi.   J, my taxi driver, and I have known one another for many years and we always enjoy the drive together.   Yesterday was exceptional- the countrside was so beautiful,   On the way between here and Ripon there are some very pretty villages and every village seemed to be full of Horse Chestnut trees and I really don't think I have ever seen so much blossom - each tree was laden with 'candles' - mostly the creamy white ones but here and there a pink one.   The creamy ones are without doubt the stronger ones but a pink one here and there is pretty.

We always find plenty to chat about.   She has lived in the village where she lives now all her life. She knows everyone so we can always catch up on any village gossip.   Coming back we talked food all the way and she made me quite sad not to be making meals now because she told me some very tasty meals to eat on toast for tea.

But I got home and I was so tired I had a sleep before attempting food.  I was aw akened by the door bell,   My gardeners had arrived to pot up my pots for Summer.  Together we put the plants in the two pots by the front door and two more pots to be put in the back garden.   Very good jobs done.   In the evening I watched Rick Stein driving round France, looking at the scenery (vineyards!) sampling the food both in restaurants and with friends and then cooking recipes (and to some extent adapting them to English food).   He is one of my favourite cooks on TV and although I have seen this series before I am enjoying it just as much second time round.

Dropped off in front of TV,dragged myself off to bed and slept like a log.   So here I am at 1pm putting on a blog.   A rather tasty beef pie sits in the fridge for my lunch, courtesy of my cleaner but as I had a Tesco order which included a Maple and Pecan slice I am not ready for my lunch yet .   See you tomorrow.




Monday 16 May 2022

This and that.''

 First a laugh to start off your day.   I put a thank you comment on yesterdays replies box.   Meant to put 'plants' but instead I put 'pants' - luckily I saw it and deleted it before Tom's eyes lighted on it - can't imagine what joke he would have made of that!!! Good old Tom - you can always rely on him to make me laugh.

Now regarding the tutu skirt - my grand daughter has said she will open the parcel and inspect it - she says she will know whether it will fit or not - and then she will post it back to me so that I can hide it when they come.   Lovely idea don't you agree?

How well all my family look after me and try to keep me cheerful - as do all of you thank you.   It is not always easy to keep cheerful but I do try and little things like this and funny comments indeed any kind of comment from you, brightens my day.  So thank you all.

Well over the week-end we have had every kind of weather.   Saturday was undoubtedly the best day this year up here in The Dales - warm, sunny, cloudless and with very little wind.   A perfect day for a walk and plenty of folk (and dogs) around for passing chats.   Yesterday the sun never broke through all  day and there was a strongish breeze.   As no possibility of frost was forecast I left the plants waiting to be potted up for by my front door out all night and I was awakened by the sound of them doing a song and dance act round the front lawn in the pouring rain (only kidding).  As I write this at twenty past eleven (am) it is still raining quite heavily and already everything in the garden is showing how much they are enjoying it.   I have left a message on the phones of both my gardeners saying if they want a job do feel free to come round (I am in all day) and do my pots in the garage (I want to be there when they are done as I am trying a new planting scheme this year.)  So far no reply.

I seem to have a permanently residential pair of Jackdaws around - mostly on the lawns (did think they were crows but now realise they are not big enough.)   I can't imagine where they are nesting - I have no chimneys - as yet have seen no young.   I think the crow family are much maligned so I am quite happy to welcome them but I would like to know where they are.  In fact I have as yet seen no this year's baby birds around -I usually have young robins in the garden but no sign so far.


tthat is today's chat over so see you tomorrow.

Sunday 15 May 2022

Wrapping parcels

Trying to wrap a parcel when one has BET is almost impossible.   I get everything ready on a flat surface, I spread out everything I am likely to need.  I begin and everything goes wrong.   I cannot get the brown paper to lie flat, the sellotape sticks to itself. -   I go through the drawer in which I put everything which may come useful for wrapping parcels - tissue paper, brown paper, large envelopes - but nothing is just right.   Eventually I find a brown card envelope which looks just about the right size  - I put the item into it, seal it down with sellotape and address it.  This morning when I get  up, the sellotape has pulled loose.   I give up and when my friends call for the parcel after lunch they take it off my hands and tell me they will do it.   What would I do without them - each time they save my life.

It has not been a lovely day like yesterday - it was raining when I got up - not  much, just big blobs.   Soon stopped but the sun has never appeared and that cool breeze has begun again.  It is almost five o'clock   My friends have just gone along with my parcel and soon I shall have to think about what to have for tea.   I never feel like much at teatime but it is a long time to breakfast.

I have not walked round the block today.   I wasn't sure whether my friends were coming morning or afternoon so I stayed in - not really a very nice day so didn 't mind anyway.  There were plenty of mind games in the Sunday papers so that kept me occupied most of the morning.   I shall now send my Grand daughter an e mail to say the ballet tutu is being despatched in the morning.   What lovely things there are for children these days (thanks largely I have to say to Amazon)!

Take care.   See you all tomorrow 

Saturday 14 May 2022

At Last

At last.   While most of the country seems to have been basking in Summery weather all week we have had strong winds off the North Sea blowing and it has not been all that warm.   Added to that, the winds have dried up the land and we are desperate for rain - as is Derek down in the Isle of Sheppey too.   But today there is just a very light breeze blowing and the sun is out and it is very warm - lovely day.

I have managed the longest walk for quite a while and several chats and dog-strokes on the way.   I had a chuckle before I left home.   Any walk I do with Priscilla is preceded with a trip to the loo - getting 'caught short' these days is not an option.   This morning - sitting on the loo I looked up at the window and there was the window cleaner with his brush, giving the glass a brisk wash.  Luckily it is frosted patterned glass but I would have thought he would at least have seen my outline but he happily carried on and then moved on to the next window.   When I opened the door to pay him he had left a printed bill as he does if folk are out.   I could see his van further down the street so I put the ten pounds in my pocket and stood by his van until he came back to it from the back of the bungalow.  I paid him and he expressed surprise saying he thought I was out.   I shall never know whether he really did think that or whether he was being diplomatic shall I?   Wasn't there a song George Formby used to sing about such things altough I rather think it was something a bit more exciting than seeing someone on the loo he used to sing about.

Well London will be heaving this week end won't it - Mens' Cup Final today and Women's tomorrow.   My father will be turning in his grave at the thought of Ladies playing football!   He and my brother used to go every year until one year (when he was in his sixties)  he was carried along by the crowd and his feet were not touching the ground.   He found it quite scary and he never went again.  All of us find it don't we?   Suddenly things we have always taken forgranted become beyond our capabilities and we have to draw in our horns a bit.   Believe me, when you reach my age and look back - my horns have been almost completely drawn in.   All one can do is do  what is possible and live on memories of what once was!   At least  I have plenty of those - and as my little motto on the wall says 'A Moment Enjoyed is never Wasted.'

I was hoping my Gardener and his assistant would be here today so that she could help me pot up my tubs while he mowed the lawns but no such luck.   So a few more days to go.   I am - with hard work - bringing the plants into the  garage each night.   If I left them out, that is when there would be a frost so NO - I must bring them into the garage every night.   Luckily my carer puts them out each morning.

See you tomorrow....


Friday 13 May 2022

A Lonely Friday

It as as though everyone has 'gone to earth' today.   It is cloudy, windy, not cold but just not a pleasant day somehow.   Apart from my carer this morning and then the girl from down the road who always brings me fruit at the week end to top up on the fruit bowls I have seen no-one and I have spoken to no one.   I have bought a rainbow ballet tutu party dressing up skirt for my Great grand daughter - I was going to hide it - along with a few other things - for her to search for while I look at and admire her little brother (I have not seen him yet because of covid) but now that it has come (made in China - bought from Amazon - what isn't these days?) but now that it has come her mother (my grand daughter) and I have had a discussion on fit and have decided it needs to be tried on.

Sadly I can no longer get out so jobs like this - getting to town to go into the Post Office and post off the tutu to Glasgow, where she lives - involve a major operation, not helped by the fact that some days (and today is one of them) when my hands shake so much I can't begin to pack a parcel. Thank goodness for friends like S and T who always step into the breach.

It is my favourite gardening programme tonight Gardeners' World and I always learn something new every week.   If you want to see some magnificent Aquelegia then go over to John (Going Gently)'s site - his photograph shows a beauty.   My garden is full of them but they are mostly the ones which are almost the wild blue ones  - lovely but not compared with the ones in John's garden - pop over and have a look.

Till tomorrow dear friends. 

Thursday 12 May 2022


 It is half past two in the afternoon and I am waiting in for the District Nurse to come.   I do believe my heel is on the mend although I could not keep the fancy 'blow up' thing in the bed - it was far too uncomfortable.   Weatherwise, as I sit here and look out of the window, it is sunny now and then - then it clouds over.   At present the sun is out but there is a strong, cool wind blowing.   I have not walked round the block but Priscilla and I have done 5 laps of the patio and we intend to do another 5  later in the day.

I am pleased to say that I can happily distinguish between dying tulip buds (if you can call them 'buds when they are 'going' rather than 'coming.' ) The tulips have been a sight to behold and the alliums seem to have been in bud a long time. But nowthe alliums are winning and telling me they are on their way loud and clear.  What can be more perfect this time of the year than looking out on the garden.

Further along a glorious patch of deep pink osteospermum are in full bloom.   I bought five more a few weeks ago (each a different colour) because I feared this pink one had 'given up the ghost' but no - it is back -stronger than ever.   If you want a recommendation for the border this is it - flowers all summer long.

The Nurse had just been and has 'signed me off' as my heel is so much better.   The latest E45 cream seems to have done the trick.

Enjoy your evening dear friends.

Wednesday 11 May 2022


Well it has not been a very nice day here today.  It has rained in the wind all day and not been very warm.  My carer kindly put my plants out for me this morning, after lunch I gently watered them with the hose which is quite close to where they are sitting in the day time so now they have had a good drink.   I am much happier about them.

My new cleaner came as promised at eleven o'clock and she is lovely.   I am so lucky.   And added to  that Ifind she is the sister of my 'reserve' gardener - the man who did the major operation on my patio eighteen months ago .  Luckily she was not short of time because we chatted for three quarters of an hour before she started.   (and yes I did  payher for the time).    She is a keen gardener too and  - as any gardener will tell you - when two gardeners get together they can always find something to talk about.

Well, as that was the high light of my day there isn't a lot more to say except tonight is The Sewing Bee - my 'in' programme at the moment - a programme which is made up of brilliant sewers who just serve to underline what rubbish I am at sewing!  See you tomorrow.





Tuesday 10 May 2022

I always polish the Welsh Dresser ii

 I really was too tired to do a lot yesterday.   The walking round the Garden Cenre (which I loved) really took its toll on my old bones.   And to add to that - today I have had to do certain jobs because I have a new cleaner starting in the morning.    J, my Carer and I do the cleaning between us each week but then - once a month I like someone to go right through with the vaccuum and the polish - wipe all the door handles, wipe the skirting - that sort of thing.   I always polish the Welsh dreser in the Hall.    It has so many things on it - gifts from friends  and many things I have brought back from abroad - nothing valuable just mementos.   I have done this this morning.   Then I like to do the fire surround too as it has things which I would not like to get broken.   I shall do that in the morning before she comes.  I am not suggesting she is more likely to break them than I - but I would rather she didn't have to blame herself if for example my buddha met with an accident (I have had him for over seventy years and I know how much my son wants him!

What's the weather like with you today.   Here there is a glorious blue sky and a strong sun but there is far too strong a wind for Priscilla and I venture out.My dear friends P and D - along with a group of friends - are on the Norfolk Broads this week.   They sent me a photo yesterday of this very modern, streamlined boat.   Rachel tells me the weather is good in that part of the world - as does the weatherman so I expect they will all be enjoying themselves.

Well friends.   I shall pour myself a glass of apple juice and then go out and sit in the sheltered sun for half an hour.   Enjoy the rest of your day.   I really will see you tomorrow.


Monday 9 May 2022


 Sorry - two days without a blog!!   No excuse except that I had no time.  I can't remember why I didn't do one on Saturday but yesterday Friends T and S called in the morning and had a coffee.   T was going to a Bee meeting in the afternoon and S asked me if I would like to go out for a ride somewhere.   I never say no to a ride out these days so of course I said 'yes please'.   She kindly asked where I would like to go.

I read an article in the Sunday Times by Joe Swift talking about planting up one's pots by the front door.   At present I have pansies in two of mine - pansies which have been in all winter but will not last all summer too so need re-planting.   The other two have recently been planted up by my gardener - each one with an osteospermum and already growing strongly - each pot will  soon be  filled and we shall see how they turn out.  This leaves the pansy pots.   Joe Swift says be adventurous - don't plant them convent ionally with perhaps one plant round the outside (alyssum/lobelia springs to mind) - fill the plant pot really full - perhaps something a bit taller up against the wall (I have chosen a pink dahlia), then fill in with plants of various sizes and colours and put a couple of trailing plants to hang over at the front.  Once planted fill in between the plants with good compost and  then feed and water regularly.   So I am doing just that.   And we shall see how they turn out.   My son brought me a bag of compost round this morning.   The plants are out in the day time and in at night.   In about another week I shall leave them out at night and cover them if frost is forecast.

It was a delightful journey - we went Richmond way, did our shopping at the Garden Centre and then back round by Marske.   The gorse was everywhere showing us its very bright yellow - as were the dandelions.  Gardens had white and Purple Lilac in profusion.   How I miss being out in the countryside I love and how very good it is of S and T to think of taking me.   It is a nuisance for them.  I have to sit in the front as I can't get into the back and they also have to fold Priscilla and put her in the back because I can't walk without her.   So sincere thanks T and S for taking the time for me.  (Incidentally - they called today with a share of their black grapes and blueberries - they had been to market).

I have had to stay in today for MedEquip to call and bring me a fancy inflatable  thing to put into my bed for my feet to be on in the night in an attempt to stop me getting another ulcer starting to form on my heel..

It is now half past seven and the sky is incredibly black with huge black clouds scudding across and a sharp wind blowing.   Not really a May day.   I will see you all tomorrow - I have absolutely nothing marked on my calendar so should have plenty of time.

Friday 6 May 2022

Who's a big boy then?

 Yes indeed.   I just have to post this for any  one    who doesn't take The Times or any other newspaper the story has appeared in today.  In a small town near Dallas lives the World's Tallest Dog.   His name is Zeus - well it would have to be wouldn't it?   He is 3ft 5.18in (1 . 046metres)  tall  He drinks directly from the tap.   Apparently he is prone to 'short bursts of intense activity'   (rushing about the house for thirty seconds and flinging himself into his chair for a rest.)   He eats around 12 tins of dogfood a day.   (work that out for yourself on your Tesco order each week).

Now on to other happenings.   I have just had a much better walk round the block.   Still only a short one but I felt much better and more supple.  And I had three really good chats so on my way up to six a day again.   First a man caught me up and started to chat before he reached me.   People often do this - very kind of them as they don't make me jump when they pass.   As is often the case the subject was the weather and as we walked along together we agreed that the gardens really needed rain and I told him heavy rain was forecast in a couple of hours (it is very black, cloudy sky)).  At this point he said he had better hurry home to take his washing in!

Shortly after that I met two ladies I often meet with their Black Labrador bitch and again we talked dogs and the differences in behaviour between dogs and bitches.   I must say - since I retired I have always had dogs - Tess, my last and much lamented Border Terrier was my first ever bitch.   And yes, I agreed - bitches and dogs have totally different behaviour.

And so on to my last chat - with my next door but one neighbour who was cutting his privet hedge - short and well cared for.   We discussed gardening .  He has the most beautiful Red May tree in the front garden - variety Paul's  -Scarlet.   I remember my father having plants named after Paul - I must find out who he was.   My phone rang (he heard it ringing I didn't) so I said goodbye and made for home.  (it was the nursing service to say that MediQuip would deliver my heelcups on Monday...

Altogether a pleasant morning wouldn't you agree? Off I go now to eat my lunch left by my Carer --a delicious salad with hard boiled egg and pork pie.  I shall add potato salad, sweet beetroot and cole slaw. See you later as they say round here (which could mean anything between later today, tomorrow, next week or even Christmas.)

Thursday 5 May 2022


At last!   Even with my poor eye sight and my inability to climb the steps into the garden I can now see which are fading tulips and which are alliums coming into bud.   I have no idea how many so far but at least there are some, so I am  happy.   And after a few showers - notably in the night so that they have done more good before the sun dries them up- everything is looking better.   Except that is for my iris.   I have just noticed that my gardener has covered the rhizomes with mulch.   They do not look happy and neither am I.   When she comes I shall explain to her that the rhizomes need to see the light of day.

It is the final  of Master Chef tonight.   It is years since I went to a restaurant that I would class as 'Fine Dining' - certainly not during the days when I was married to my dear farmer who would have considered it a complete waste of money.   But I do enjoy watching folk who devote every waking minute to preparing food to perfection.   I know Derek disagrees when maybe more than half the world is starving and I appreciate his point of view but to see the standard of perfection is something I enjoy.

Similarly with last night's Sewing Bee -   how anyone  could be clever enough to make a pair of trainers (and most of the contestants did) is beyond my imagination.

Tonight is the final of Master Chef.  I hope the youngest of the three wins - all are equally good but she is so young and so eager.   But good luck to all three - any one of them deserves the crown. 

** The District Nurse came and saw my heel problem.   She is coming back tomorrow with heel covers to wear in bed and for tonight has told me to raise my feet on a pillow.





Wednesday 4 May 2022

Busy doing nothing

 Working the whole day  through .  Trying to find lots of things not to do.   That has been my day today.   I will try and tell you how it has been although it has been so odd I may get muddled.

I have been so exhausted that I slept all afternoon but I am pleased because I do wish to be awake for Master Chef and then for Sewing Bee tonight.

For a long time I have had a sore heel.   Since I broke my hip I have only been able to sleep on my back.   I sleep very well but it does mean that one place on my left heel stays in contact with the same place on the sheet all night.   For the last few nights it has woke me up in the middle of the night and I have been unable to get back to sleep.   The night before last things came to a head when I was conscious that the skin on my heel had broken and it was very painful.

My carer thought I should have the District Nurse so at 8.30 I started the process of booking one.   Each time I rang the number I was abruptly cut off.    Eventually I decided to ring my doctor's office.   They are naturally very busy in the mornings and I was a long time getting through.   The receptionist must have been new because she didn't know what to do and said she would ring me back.   She was a long time in doing so but when she did she told me exactly what to do.




I followed her instructions to the  letter but when I finally got back to the District Nurse's office and they looked me up in their records it was too long since I had seen her and I had to start again by ringing the doctor and getting a referral.  I was told that the doctor would ring me at six this evening and I described my heel and how difficult it would be for me to get into surgery (and they couldn't give me an appointment until 16th in any case).   The very nice doctor said she would deal with it and that the Nurse would call in the morning.   I said could it possibly be in the afternoon as I hadan appointment to get my hair cut in the morning.   She was very nice about it.

Breathing a sigh of relief I put the phone down and made myself a cup of tea.    The  phone rang - it was my Hairdrsser - she has Covid and was cancelling my appointment for tomorrow morning. I rang my taxi to cancel it for morning


I sat down with my cup of tea.  Mission accomplished.

Tuesday 3 May 2022

Help please.

 I need help please from all Mums, Grannies and Great Grannies out there.  My Grand daughter and her husband and their two children live in Scotland.   I have not seen any of them since the beginning of Covid although we have had phone/birthdays/Christmas contact.   The elder of my Great grandchildren is now five and a half, the younger six months old.   They are coming to see us in July  and of course I don't want the older litle girl to feel left out.   I have knitted the new baby a teddy (well I started it but my shakes made knitting the nose and sewing it all up impossible.   My friend S kindly took him home and brought him back all sewn up and looking very smart.   So that is his present.  I thought of an idea for my Great Grand daughter.   I thought I would buy perhaps four little presents and wrap them in pretty paper and hide them in the sitting room for her to find.   I thought a set of 'grown up' crayons and a sketch book (a 'proper' grown up one) for two - but I want a couple more.   Please has anyone any ideas?   It will have to be something I can buy on line as I hardly ever go near shops.   I asked my grand daughter to suggest something - but her list is really not specific enough.   I am not talking expensive stuff here.    The baby will get the teddy and some clothes as he is too young to appreciate things.   Here is the list my Grand daughter sent back:

She likes unicorns, princesses,animals, nature, magic, witches, wizards, teddies, soft toys, dressing up, ballerinas.

I have just thought.   Can you still buy those books full of a doll and then a lot of card clothes with  tabs so that you can cut them out and change the outfits the doll is wearing (all made of card).

Any ideas would be fully appreciated.   It is sad - I feel as though I hardly know her because it is so long since I have seen her.   Now and again I have sent some money for her to buy a book - I don't even know what she likes to read.   There must be so many families like this because of Covid and we can never reclaim it back.

Thank you in anticipation of a bit of help from some of you with the experience in that department.



Monday 2 May 2022

May Day Zoom

 Well it has been a dull day here - the Sahara is supposed to be sending us warm air later in the week but no sign yet. Priscilla and I had our walk this morning and felt much better for it.  All that is left now is our five laps of the patio and hopefully that will be done after tea.   But in between W and I have our fortnightly Zoom at 5pm with P and D in Grange over Sands.   They sent  photographs of wild flowers for me to identify but five years of no going over that side of  the country - in fact no going anywhere - and anything I ever knew about wild flowers of the Lakes has been forgotten.

S and T came this afternoon for a coffee and to collect six varied pots which have held bulbs, now finished.  They are all attractive pots and at Christmas will easily be planted up with hyacinths and the like for presents.   I shall never do it so I suggested they might like to do so and they have collected them out of my way.   Isn't it a good feeling as the shed or garage begins to look tidy?

I think we are beginning to have nests of baby birds in the garden.   Dad birds sing early in the morning and them Mums and Dads are searching frantically inthe lawn for grubs and the like.    We even have a Mum and Dad crow digging their long sharp beaks deep into the lawn after grubs - all, in fact, helping the gardener.

Well, what topics shall we cover on Zoom today?  If anything interesting I shall be backlater to report.  Otherwise see you all tomorrow.

Sunday 1 May 2022

May Day

I have only just realised when friends called and mentioned it, that today is Mayday.   In typical English weather pattern it is dull, damp and chilly.   We have had a little rain but not anywhere near enough.   But all the plants have perked up.

I sat down after lunch to watch the Snooker final and woke up an hour later just as friends were calling.   As is usual when waking up in an afternoon I do not know what time it is for a few minutes and am quite confused.   Still I got my head round things eventually and we chatted about a local mill which is still grinding and selling flour. It is interesting just how much the coming of the railway changed  things.   Before the railway got here villages had their own mill and housewives baked their own bread using local flour.   Once the railway arrived flour could be brought in and gradually local mills died out.   Ones which are still working are mostly museum pieces and my friends had been to see a local working mill this afternoon.   It is in the village of Crakehall near Bedale and is on the side of the beck which actually starts on the moor above our village here.   Every village between here and Bedale had its own mill - now almost all have been converted into houses.   In the 'old days' the miller was quite an important man in the village - along with the doctor, the parson, the farmer, the vicar and any other person 'necessary' to the life of the village. Now these villages are full of incomers and sadly many young people have been priced out of the housing market and often by second home owners.   It is in many ways a sad old world.

And speaking of sad worlds yet another 'scandal' in Parliament after Partygate - now we have an MP resigning for watching pornography in the House of Commons.   I can't help wondering if it is the first time it has happened or if it is the first time it has been discovered. Any thoughts on the subject?