......what a day it's been"...

...daily updates in Tee's World...

In my life......

This is my blog, where I write about the daily events in my life. Things I've been doing, how my health is, places I've been, etc. It includes lots of pictures, but in particular "Picture of the day", which is an idea I pinched from a friend Gemma - with her permission. Gemma does a similar thing on Facebook and I love seeing her picture of the day and reading about what her and her family have been up to.

I add updates to my garden, my house, anything creative I've been doing, and lots of other general stuff. I hope you enjoy reading!

You will always find the most recent day's blog at the top of this page, and will need to scroll down if you want to see previous posts.

However, if you would like to start at 1st May 2021, and then work your way up to the most recent post, please click here.

Posts from August 2020 (when I started the blog off) through to April 2021 have all been archived to separate pages. I'll be archiving each completed month as I go along, with the links to the pages listed just underneath here. This is to keep the main blog page clutter free and for it to load more quickly.

August 2020

September 2020

October 2020

November 2020

December 2020

To January 2021

To February 2021

To March and April 2021

Saturday 9th October 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... You gotta wade into the water ... " ♫

This morning I went for an art lesson!

Bob's friend (and my friend too) Julia Harris is an artist and is putting on some classes local to us, so I thought I would take the plunge and see if there is an artist inside of me.

I'm mindful of, and thankful for the creative talents I have, but I really would love to be able to draw and paint. My ultimate aim really is to be able to paint fairies and flowers, so I that I can illustrate my writing. The artist gene seems to be right through my family, so I'm hoping it hasn't missed me out.

There's also a psychological reason involved. I'm currently dealing with various issues from my past, relating to my self-esteem and confidence. One of them is that I was unfortunate to be taught art lessons in high school, by someone who spent a lot of his time telling me my art was 'crap' (yes, he did use that word - it wouldn't be allowed now!) and it had an enormous impact on my mental health and wellbeing. I wasn't aware of how badly it had affected me until quite a lot of self-esteem issues came to the fore during a recent conversation with someone close, and it was clear to me that I need to address these issues, deal with them, and move on.

So there ya go! Bring on the art lessons!

Julia has lots of patience and expertise, and it was a lovely morning. There were about fifteen of us - all ladies - and it was a lovely atmosphere of fun, friendly, learning to paint! We painted poppies using watercolours. Poppies are one of my favourite flowers, so this was a lovely place to start, and I learnt some fab techniques, which I will build on, hopefully with some practise this coming week.

October is Lupus Awareness Month, and each day in my blog I'm putting a little something about living with Lupus - to raise awareness.

Here is today's snippet......

Back in April of this year I made the decision to stop taking pain killers. They weren't doing very much for the pain anyway, and the side effects were horrible.

All pain killers make me tired and just add to the fatigue I already experience. They also make me feel a bit 'spaced out', but not in a good way, and this adds to the brain fog I experience. Ibuprofen, which is the main one I was using for my joints, gives me dreadful heartburn and I am convinced that they have caused some damage to my oesophagus and/or stomach lining. Anything with codeine in it makes me nauseous.

Also, I don't want to be in the position where I become addicted to pain killers, or where they stop working, so I take stronger ones, and so on. That's just a vicious circle and a slippery slope down - a road which I am not prepared to travel.

So after much consideration, I decided that enough was enough, and no more! I'd already started looking at other ways to manage pain anyway, so I've been concentrating on those.

More about pain management tomorrow!

Elton John is my featured musician for October. ♫ "... You gotta wade into the water ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Elton John song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Friday 8th October 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Well, I read some books ... " ♫

A lovely surprise in the post today from a lovely Facebook friend.

This looks like a fab book and I shall look forward to reading it. I've actually seen it a few times and almost bought it, so it's really nice to receive a copy.

Also, look at all those packets of seeds! I'm so looking forward to planting them and (hopefully) watching them grow. Apparently, some of them need to be done soon, so I shall hopefully get them done in the next few days.

Thank you Sue for sending me such lovely things and brightening up my Friday!

October is Lupus Awareness Month, and each day in my blog I'm putting a little something about living with Lupus - to raise awareness.

Here is today's snippet......

The dryness I have referred to in my last few posts is due to a condition known as Sjogren's Syndrome. Sjogren's Syndrome can be a stand-alone condition, but it can also be a secondary condition, caused by some autoimmune conditions.

I found an article about Sjogren's Syndrome, by the Lupus Foundation Of America. Please click here if you would like to read it and learn more about the condition and how it affects those who suffer from it. (Opens in a new window).

More tomorrow, thank you for reading!

Elton John is my featured musician for October. ♫ "... Well, I read some books ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Elton John song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Tuesday 5th October 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... This is my house ... " ♫

This is my first week of cutting down to three days in my job.

I've gone from having each Wednesday off to now having Tuesdays and Thursdays off. Today was my first "New Day Off" and I was determined to make the most of what are essentially nine extra hours in my week to get stuff done in my home.

So today I was in the craft room. Although it is a working craft room, and I do manage to sew and do other crafts in it, it's also a bit of a dumping ground for things which don't quite have a home yet, and it's nowhere near the colourful, inspiring haven which I want it to be, which gets me rather frustrated often.

So today I have been focusing on one corner, with a view to putting a comfy armchair there, and my spinning wheel & spinning chair close by, so that I can sit, craft and read in peace and comfort. Eventually the corner will be decorated in a rainbow theme (hence the rainbow cushions) but for now, just to have the chairs and wheel in place is a huge step forwards.

I suppose I really should show you a before picture......

......but 'should' is so over-rated, and I'm embarrassed, so the best you're getting is this snippet!

Suffice it to say that there was a lot of stuff in that corner which needed sorting out.

I would like to say that now I can happily sit in this corner and read, knit, crochet, cross-stitch and spin to my heart's content. However, there are two flaws in this plan.

The first is that I still have much to do in that room and the rest of the house, so I don't have time to do that.

The second is that after some to-ing and fro-ing of messages on Facebook Marketplace today, and also after a visit somewhere to check something out this evening, there will be a rather large item arriving here sometime next week, and it will only fit in this newly-organised corner!

So, from tomorrow it will be back to the drawing board, to sort out another corner for my seated crafts! Watch this space.

In the meantime, today I had my friends Inspiration, Motivation, Organisation, Creativity and Productivity with me, and I do feel that my extra nine hours were well spent!

October is Lupus Awareness Month, and each day in my blog I'm putting a little something about living with Lupus - to raise awareness.

Here is today's snippet......

One symptom of Lupus is dryness - dry skin, hair, mouth, nose, throat, etc. I need to use lots and lots of moisturiser for my thirsty skin, and I drink lots of water each day (not including the water I have in my tea, which is also lots!).

More tomorrow, thank you for reading!

Elton John is my featured musician for October. ♫ "... This is my house ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Elton John song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 3rd October 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... 'Cause I live and breathe ... " ♫

A lovely day up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park again today, with my Lovely Man and Ollie.

Although the weather was a bit mad - torrential rain one minute and warm sunshine the next - Bob and I did manage to get out for a walk at the end of the day, just around the duck pond with Ollie, and I was able to take these few pictures.

It's so lovely to see all the autumn colours coming into play.

Autumn is my favourite season and she definitely knows how to put on a good show......

......and I love how she does it gradually, giving us a glimpse of her beauty here and there, before showing it all in fabulous, colourful splendour.

Ollie and I went for our usual walk with Jackie and Amber this morning, and again we mainly managed to dodge the rain, although I didn't dare go without a trusty brolly!

Then this afternoon I managed to get lots of crafting done. Sometimes inside Bob's studio, when it was just a bit too cold to be outdoors, and then grabbing the warmth and sunshine when I could to craft in the fresh air.

Bob worked on renovating one of his spinning wheels. They do look so lovely when he's worked on them and brought out their full potential.

October is Lupus Awareness Month, and each day in my blog I'm putting a little something about living with Lupus - to raise awareness.

Here is today's snippet......

Around fourteen years ago, when I went along to my GP with a list of symptoms, he took on board my suspicions that I had Lupus and referred me for blood tests and for a hospital appointment.

The test results came back mixed, and I wasn't diagnosed with anything in particular - in fact, the medical team at the hospital were ready to dismiss me as someone who they couldn't find anything wrong with, and that there was therefore nothing they could do!

I made a fuss, making it clear to them that I was in dreadful pain, extremely tired, and suffering from other symptoms, and that I needed something to be done.

As a result, they prescribed Hydroxychloroquine, which I've been taking ever since, and is currently the only medication I take. I have to say that this drug has made a remarkable difference to my daily life, and I am extremely thankful for it!

More tomorrow!

Off to watch some T.V. now. We're currently working our way through "Downton Abbey". Bob has watched some of them before, but for me it is a totally new experience, since up until a few days ago, I hadn't seen even one episode!

I know it has a great following, but I never got into it at the same time as everyone else. Now I'm finding out what all the fuss was about, and I have to say - so far, so good!

I wish whoever is reading this a very happy, healthy and safe week ahead. Toodlepip!

Elton John is my featured musician for October. ♫ "... 'Cause I live and breathe ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Elton John song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Friday 1st October 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Lady, what's tomorrow ... " ♫

I'll tell you what's tomorrow - the West Wales Wool Show in Narberth.

I'm driving Lovely Lucia up and my lovely knorty-knitwit friend Angela is coming with us.

I haven't seen Angela properly for quite some time and it will be lovely to have a proper catch up and put the world to rights whilst we are driving up.

I'm also really looking forward to the wool show itself. I have a few things in mind which I want to buy for various projects. Also, we'll probably do our usual tour of the charity shops and all the other lovely shops in Narberth, as well as being Ladies Wot Lunch.

So all in all by end of play tomorrow, I'm expecting to have achy feet, a full tummy, an empty purse, a well exercised chuckle muscle, and a very happy heart!

October is Lupus Awareness Month. Lots of those who know me, know that I live with this condition.

I'd like to raise awareness of it - a bit of an insight into daily life with Lupus, so I'll pop something into this blog every day this month.

Today I'll start with......

  • I had symptoms for a very long time, before it was identified that there is a problem. I can pinpoint joint/muscle pain back to my childhood, fatigue & mouth ulcers back to my teenage years, and hair loss/thinning back to my early thirties.
  • Once I joined the dots and realised myself that things weren't right, it took me a long time to get doctors (and others) to listen to me, and take on board that there is a problem.
  • It took even longer to get a diagnosis, but I know that Lupus is hard to diagnose, because it mimics other things, so that's ok.

More tomorrow!

I'm off to put together some orgone accumulators now. I've had a few requests for them.

Then I think it will be a hot, bubbly bath and then bed for an early-ish night, and to read my book.

I wish whoever is reading this a very happy, healthy and safe weekend, and I hope it doesn't fly by too quickly for you. Night night!

Elton John is my featured musician for October. ♫ "... Lady, what's tomorrow ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Elton John song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 26th September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... captured it and brought it home ... " ♫

I popped out this evening to pick up this lovely spice rack, and a set of equally lovely jars, which somebody was giving away on Freecycle.

I have a small spice rack in my kitchen, which I upcycled recently, and I have a set of spices and herbs on there in some Schwartz jars, which I had collected from years ago.

However, it is only small and holds only twelve jars. I do lots of cooking, and have lots of herbs and spices, so another spice rack is really rather welcome! I'm not sure yet whether I'll keep it as pine, or whether I'll paint and distress it, as I did the other one.

The lady who was giving it also happened to be somebody I know, which made it even nicer.

I didn't go up to Craig-y-Nos Country Park today for my usual walk with Jackie, Ollie & Amber, and to spend the day with my Lovely Man, crafting in the sunshine and lovely surroundings. Also, my Lovely Man hasn't come down here this evening, which was the plan. We are currently caught in a 'petrol shortage' crisis, so we both decided that we should preserve the petrol we have in our cars, for getting back and fore to work, and for hopefully a day out on Day Off (Wednesday).

So I've spent the day pottering around at home. I've made a lemon drizzle cake and currently have a vegan Victoria sponge in the oven. I've never made a vegan cake before, so I'm hoping it will be nice. I used my new gadget to mix it - a hand blender. If the wonderful smell coming from my kitchen at the moment is anything to go by, it should be delicious!

Right, I'm off to check it now, and hopefully I'll be able to try some tonight. I haven't yet watched last week's first episode of this series of "The Great British Bake Off" so my plan is a late night viewing with some cake indulgence! Tea and kitty cwtches thrown in for good measure of course.

I wish whoever is reading this a very happy, healthy and safe week ahead. Doesn't Weekend fly by? Toodlepip!

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... captured it and brought it home ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 25th September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... a farmer who looks after the farm ... " ♫

I went along to the Uplands Market in Swansea this morning.

The market runs on the last Saturday of the month, from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. Of course, there was a gap of several months during the Covid lockdowns when it didn't take place. This morning was the first one I've been to for around two years, and I was so excited to go!

I started off by taking a couple of pictures just to capture the atmosphere....an atmosphere which was actually rather lovely. It was busy, but not overwhelming. People were curious to look at the stalls, but not intrusive of others, and people queued properly for produce from the popular stalls, rather than it being a bit of a 'free for all'

There were lots of stalls, selling all sorts of products - hand made crafts, fresh farm produce, cheeses, fudge, meats, vinyl records, jewellery, and hot foods, to name a few.

This stall caught my eye. I really like the contemporary designs, and the colours used. I told the stall holder (Hannah Davies) that I have a blog and would mention her....and I am a woman of my word.

Hannah puts her lovely designs on - amongst other things - notebooks, cards, and ceramics. Her designs are fresh, modern, and reminiscent of the ocean.

Hannah has a website. Please click here if you would like to look at her work (opens in a new window).

Another stall which caught my eye was this one.

I overhead the stall holder telling a potential customer that she uses recycled fabrics, and vegan inks. This caught my attention!

The business name is "Ultimate Drifter". Please click here if you would like to look her up on Instagram. (opens in a new window).

I like to have an air freshener in my car. I've been using a commercial one, from Tesco, which is lovely. However, I want something a little more natural, and so......

......I bought this lovely lavender sachet from Ultimate Drifter.

I was going to make something similar, but when I saw this, I decided that it was better to support a local business.

I love that it is beautifully hand made. I love that the fabric is recycled. I love that the contents are natural, and I love the little bee stamp on the front.

I want to hang it over Lovely Lucia's rear-view mirror, but the hanging loop doesn't stretch, so I shall make an alteration to it. I will cut the braid and add a popper. I'll probably do that whilst up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park tomorrow.

Most of my purchases today were of the edible, yummy kind!

I bought some organic vegetables (carrots, kale, spinach, and pattypan squashes), some artisan breads which look and smell delicious, and half a dozen free-range duck eggs.

I also bought a vegan pizza......

......which I had for my dinner this evening with a lovely glass of white wine.

It was lovely pizza....a delicious base crammed with yummy veggies - peppers, tomatoes, olives, onions - and some sesame seeds, garlic, and I can't remember what else, but it was delicious. I did add some vegan cheese. Simply because I do love cheese on a pizza!

One of the things I was really looking forward to buying today was vegan fudge! Oh boy, I love a vegan fudge, and this stall did not disappoint.

I bought some salted caramel and some strawberries and cream, and it is so delicious! The stall holder was also selling vegan nougat. Now, I'm not a fan of nougat - I remember it from my childhood as rather sticky, chewy, and not that nice.

However, the stall holder gave me a taster of some "Tutti fruiti" nougat, and oooohhhh.....yummy! Needless to say I asked her to pop some of that in my fudge bag too! Sorry Bob, but it may not last until you're here tomorrow. It's just so yummy and moreish! Especially with a glass of wine. Haha.

Today has been a good day for me. My self-esteem has been pretty low for some time, for one reason and another....a lot of hang-ups from my childhood, teenage years, and into adulthood....an encounter with a toxic, damaging person some time ago left me reeling and running for cover. I've had a lot of years when I've been very unkind to myself with negative self-talk and other stuff which is no good whatsoever for a person's well being.

However, this is changing - I am waking up to how I treat myself, and how I've allowed others to treat me, and I'm getting less tolerant of crap, and being a little more discerning about who I spend my time with. My Lovely Man is quite fundamental in this change. He is kind, caring, considerate, understanding, calm, and patient. He has taught me so much over the last two-and-a-half years. I cannot put into words what a difference meeting him has made in my life. His friends too - Bob has lovely friends, which are now also my friends. They are lovely people, and I'm so glad to have met them, to know them, and to spend time with them.

It's a slow process, and I have such a long way to go, but I've also come a long way, and something good is working! Today I felt good! I recently had my hair professionally cut for the first time in years, and it's made such a difference to how I'm feeling about myself. This morning I wore clothes I feel good in, I put some eyeliner and mascara on, and found a bright bag and a lovely bangle which hasn't seen the light of day for some time. Little things, but they made a difference. I went out with confidence and a feeling of being 'good enough'. Believe me, this is rare!

I don't open up about such things often, and to very few people....and this is the first time ever that I've gone public with such deep feelings and insecurities....but I figure that if you've taken the time to come to my website, and navigate it, and read my blog....getting this far, then it's only fair that you have a glimpse of the woman behind the blog and what she experiences on a daily basis.

Tomorrow may be different. I may wake up feeling rubbish....that I'm not 'good enough' and need to try harder.....but if that happens, then I can look back at today and know that today was good, and positive, and a small step forward......and I can take some inspiration from that maybe.

In the meantime, there are so many good things on the horizon to look forward to. I go down to three days in work from the beginning of October. I love my job - I love what I do. I love that I get to do one of my passions (sewing) for a living. I love that I get to work with beautiful dresses, fabrics, and all that it entails. I love that I get to be creative for a living. However, I've also got to the point in my life where I need to take time out. For my health - living with Lupus every day takes it's toll on my body and my mind. For my mental health - I need time away in quiet and solitude. For my home - circumstances over the years have dictated that I've never had that 'normal' home existence, and I now need to spend time on my home, continuing with the decorating of it and making it a home I love. For my relationships - quality time with my Lovely Man, the opportunity to go and spend more time with my Gowjus Girl, time to see the rest of my family and to spend time with close friends. For my garden - to continue to make it into a peaceful haven, and an extension of my home. It's all so very much needed.

There are also other plans - lots of creative stuff I want to be doing, which I won't go into now - just watch this space!

If you're reading this - if you regularly read it, or if you're a 'newbie', whatever......thank you for doing so. Thank you, and welcome to Tee's World. I hope you'll stick around and want to read more. I have so much more to write!

Right - I'm off to do something productive now. I hope whoever is reading this is having a fab weekend. Thank you for reading!

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... a farmer who looks after the farm ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this very long (but fab!) Genesis song!

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Friday 24th September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... So we look for the future ... " ♫

I finished reading this book today.

It's one of the best books I've read. It's thought-provoking, sensitive, sad, happy, poignant, and inspiring. I haven't read anything by Matt Haig before, but I'll most definitely seek out his other books.

There was quite a lot of the book which resonated with me, but particularly some lines, which I've put onto a picture.

I've shared the picture on Facebook, for anybody who needs to read these words right now. I know that I did, and they've given me lots of food for thought.

I will keep the picture safe in my computer files and return to it whenever I feel some self-doubting creeping in.

I've now gone on to start this book. It's again an author which I haven't read before.

I'm about six chapters in, and really enjoying it so far.

Today was a productive day at work. I'll be sharing what I've been doing over the last few days at work in a post on my creative page sometime soon. Today was also another day when I had only mild-moderate pain. I'm clearly doing something right, which is fab. I shall simply continue in the vein I'm in!

Off to have some dinner now - a home made pie, made with plant-based 'beef' pieces, lots of onions and some mushrooms......and a very rich gravy, courtesy of a Colman's beef casserole mix. The Colman's mixes are a Godsend to me on week nights, when I want to make a healthy, home made meal, but am too tired to do the whole thing from scratch.

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... So we look for the future ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Thursday 23rd September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... The old days are gone ... " ♫

These little beauties are Ahiflower capsules. They are filled with omegas 3, 6 and 9, and are totally plant based. I was first told about them almost two years ago, during a chance encounter with a lady in a coffee shop in Warwick. Bob, Ollie and I were returning from a trip to visit my sister's family in Leicester.

We got chatting to this lady (as you do), and the subjects of health and a plant-based diet came up and I mentioned the rheumatoid arthritis I get with Lupus, and she suggested I might like to try them as I may find them beneficial. I did try them briefly for a while after chatting to her, but when they ran out I didn't buy any more.

At the end of June this year, I made the decision to give up eating fish.

I'd been contemplating it for quite a while. I haven't eaten meat for years, and I gave up dairy two-and-a-half years ago, so I suppose fish was the next step. However, I put it off - partly because I need the omega oils for my joints, and partly because it is so tasty!

However, whilst staying down in Kent with Lydia and Lewis, we watched "Seaspiracy", and that was the deciding factor for me. I could no longer justify being part of such a cruel industry (not to mention the damage mass fishing is doing to our sea beds and beautiful planet) for the sake of the fact that I find fish tasty.....and not even for the omega oils reason, since I knew I could get those from a plant-based supplement.

As soon as I got home from Kent I ordered some Ahiflower supplements and have taken them ever since. The ones in these pictures are my new delivery for the next three months.

They cost £13.95 (originally £15.49 but I had a discount code) for 90 days' supply.....that's a little over 15 pence per day for all the omega oils I need. Much cheaper than buying fish, and with no cruelty involved. Fantastic!

Healthwise, today was a good one. The pains in my shoulders and arms have mainly gone now, and I had another day with only mild pain in my coccyx. I have had a couple of small bouts of fatigue, and by the end of the working day the last thing I felt like doing was going shopping. However, there were things we needed, and so it had to be done.

Since getting home and having a cuppa though, my energy levels have been pretty good. We've had dinner - a delicious home cooked mushroom carbonara, with some "Vivera Plant Bacon" chucked in. Yummy. Now I'm off for a bath, and then some T.V. before bed. We're currently watching "The Bridges Of Madison County" - one of my favourite films of all time!

Friday tomorrow, and ever nearer to Weekend! Yaay.

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... The old days are gone ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Wednesday 22nd September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Me looking at you, you looking at me ... " ♫

This cow was looking at me....and I was looking at her!

I was thinking what a beautiful lady she was. I have no idea what she was thinking about me.

She was one of a herd of beautiful ladies who were enjoying their tea/supper/dinner - whatever it is cows call their meal at that time of day!

We'd stopped off for a bit of a picnic for our tea, after having been to Stroud to pick up a spinning wheel and some bits & bobs which came with it.

It was lovely up there on Rodborough Common - we caught the late afternoon sunshine and the sun was casting a beautiful golden glow over everything.

On the way to Stroud, we needed to call off into Ammanford so that Bob could go to an optician's appointment.

Whilst he was in his appointment, Ollie and me took a little walk around the shopping area and browsed some of the charity shops.

I picked up some books - including a lovely gardening book - and a pretty plate to add to my eclectic collection of dinner plates.

However, the loveliest thing I got was this chair......

......which I intend to use as a spinning chair. It's really beautiful and feels very comfortable......

......although I think I have competition for it, as Joe seems to have his eye on it!

There were two chairs - very similar to each other but not exactly the same - and Bob bought the other one.

We must have looked funny carrying them - and our other charity shop finds, plus some lunch from Greggs (complete with two teas) and Ollie on a lead - through Ammanford, back to where the van was parked.

Then we decided to sit on them to eat our Greggs lunch in the sunshine and watch the world go by for a bit, before heading on our way.

All in all it was a lovely day....fab company, beautiful scenery, yummy foods, a spinning wheel for the collection, great bargains, quality time together.....what's not to love?

Back to work tomorrow....but for now, I'm off to bed for some zeds!

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... Me looking at you, you looking at me ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Tuesday 21st September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... such a perfect day to spend ... " ♫

I love a Day Off list.....especially a poetic one.

We'll be out and about tomorrow on the spinning wheel quest.

I'm sure there'll be some kind of charity shop fun, and a walk with Ollie, and a bit of lunch somewhere, and generally a lovely day of quality time together.

I struggled through today. I woke up with a pounding head and a large helping of brain fog, so it was difficult to get going. However, get going I did, and I did feel better towards the end of the day.

One really positive thing is that I had no pain whatsoever in my coccyx for best part of the day. It's mildly painful now, but nothing compared to what it has been like over the last few days.

I'm really looking forward to tomorrow, and in the meantime - a good night's sleep I think!

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... such a perfect day to spend ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Monday 20th September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Under the pillow ... " ♫

Orgone accumulators have been working overtime today!

I have two of my own, after I made another one to join the original. This morning my shoulders and arms were quite painful. Osteoarthritis (shoulders) and rheumatoid arthritis (arms) was quite a combined force! I was really feeling it when ironing panels for a wedding dress at work. So I put one of the accumulators to work on that area.

My coccyx has also been really, really painful over the last few days - almost unbearable at times - so I've been using one on that area.

After a couple of hours use of the accumulators, both areas were feeling a lot less painful, although the coccyx is a proper stubborn one and playing up again this evening, so I'll need to work on that area more.

Then this evening, I got this message from a friend who I've made one for:

"Hand really sore today/tonight. I been sitting for a while with my hand on my pad and pain gone!!"

Fab stuff!

I got home from work feeling really tired. I've had food, and now I'm off for a snooze, when no doubt I'll be joined by a cwtchy kitty! I had intended to get some stuff done, but it can all wait. Night night!

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... Under the pillow ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Sunday 19th September 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... And the leaves ... " ♫

I adore the autumn!

I love the colours.....the mixed weather - especially the autumn rain.....and leaves - I love all the leaves!

I collected this lovely group of leaves this morning up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park, on my walk with Ollie, Jackie, and Amber. I want them for a crafting project I have in mind.

It was all about the leaves today. We walked in them - although there weren't many crunchy leaves to scrunch through, because it had been raining. We did find this little patch though, which had mainly stayed dry under a tree.

We chased them around, trying to catch one and make a wish!

Lots of them were falling from this tree, so we dashed to catch some, but they stopped falling when we were actually there, as if this lovely tree was teasing us! So I took this picture up through the leaves to the sky instead.

Amber and Ollie had lots of fun as usual, running around the vast grounds of Craig-y-Nos, and exploring through the leaves.

I had to capture this image of Amber having a ponder and Ollie eager to carry on....as if the conversation goes something like....

(Ollie) "Come on you lot, get a move on - there's so much to see!"

(Amber) "Slow down Mister - I'm stopping to see it properly!"

I did finally manage to catch a leaf! Well, I should say it caught me, since it landed on my shoulder!

That'll do though....and of course, I made a wish! Although I can't tell you what it is, or it won't come true.

The sun came out just before lunch and the day got lovelier and lovelier! So I spent some time crafting in the autumn sunshine. Such good therapy for the soul!

I'm off to make some dinner now, and then it'll be a relaxed evening before hopefully a good night's sleep.

I wish anyone who's reading this a very happy, healthy and safe week ahead.

Genesis are my featured musicians for September. ♫ "... And the leaves ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Genesis song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Thursday 12th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... the lily in my soul ... " ♫

We had a lovely day out today down in Pembrokeshire, for Bob's birthday, which is tomorrow. Bob's working tomorrow, so we can't do it then, although we're planning a birthday meal together tomorrow evening.

We drove down to Bosherston Lily Ponds, and started with a picnic in a very pretty spot.

The weather today was beautiful from start to finish.

I've never been to Bosherston before. It's so beautiful there.

It's quite a walk, but easy underfoot and most definitely easy on the eye!

There were a few others enjoying the ponds too, but it wasn't so busy as to make it unpleasant.

We walked for a good hour or more, and made our way to Broadhaven beach.

Again, I've never been there before (that I can remember anyway, although I may have done as a child), and it's so beautiful!

At the top of the beach there was a lovely pool of sea water - Ollie's favourite thing!

Ollie had so much fun, making friends with some of the children playing in the water, and we found him a rather large stick to play with, which we must have thrown at least fifty times for him to retrieve.

I'd love some of Ollie's vibrant energy!

For such a lovely day, the beach was quite unpopulated, so we were able to walk down towards the water's edge and appreciate the vast expanse of beautiful golden sand.

We found this very happy-looking bucket on the sand, half-filled, as if someone was going to make a sandcastle and then changed their mind, or got distracted and left their lovely bucket in the process!

So we rescued him from the sand, and put him on a rock where he could be seen, in case his owner came along to find him.

He looked very happy about it anyway!

Today was another lovely day. It was also a very, very happy day, because I had some fabulous news.

Just as we were getting ready to set off, I had a telephone call from the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Birmingham. They were ringing to give me the result of my recent biopsy.

The lump at the base of my spine is NOT cancer. It is an epidermoid cyst - benign. They said that there will be some kind of treatment plan, and asked if I would like to remain under their care in Birmingham, or to be referred back to Wales. I opted for the latter, since it will be more convenient for hospital appointments. I was told that they would send a referral to the South Wales team and I would hear from them in due course.

I cannot put into words how relieved and happy I am. I have to be honest - I did think I was going to get bad news, that it was cancerous, so this is just wonderful. I cried with joy when I got the news.

As you can imagine, this made our day our together even more joyous, since we had two things to celebrate - a birthday and wonderful news!

Home now, and very tired, so I'm off to bed. After all the walking and driving my joints are shouting at me, as is my coccyx. I think my orgone accumulator will be getting lots of use overnight!

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... the lily in my soul ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Wednesday 11th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... And there's something bright ... " ♫

My Lovely Man, Ollie, and I went off to Hay-on-Wye today, because Bob had a PAT testing job to do there.

However, because it's my official Day Off, we decided to make a day out of it, starting with a lovely cooked breakfast at the Honey Café in Bronllys. Bob had the regular cooked breakfast, and I had the veggie one, and it was very yummy!

The Honey Café is lovely. Very picturesque and country-cottage style.

Although the day was overcast, it was dry and the sun was trying its best to come out, and we sat outside to eat. Although being next to the road, this didn't detract from the loveliness of eating al-fresco, and the lovely bird song and other sounds which come with being out in the countryside.

The surrounding countryside scenery is very beautiful, and you can't get the full measure of it just by sitting in the cafe area, so I popped across the road and got up onto a verge to get some lovely pictures.

Then it was on to Hay-on-Wye itself.

I love this clock tower which stands in the town.

Hay-on-Wye was comfortably busy. Not packed out, making looking around unpleasant, but enough people there to make a lovely holiday type atmosphere.

We didn't see many charity shops, but there were quite a lot of antique shops, although we didn't spend a lot of time in those, just a bit of a browse here and there.

There was however a mini craft market, and I picked up two pretty items for the bathroom. The first is a decoupage soap dish made from a shell. I bought a new pumice stone from a different stall, so I may use the shell for that. The second pretty is a decoupage coaster made from slate, and decorated with a butterfly. I'm going to put this on the end of the bath to use with my bath time cuppa!

For some reason, whenever I visit Hay-on-Wye, I always find nice candles, and I found these lovely dinner candles in one of the shops. I think Joe approves of them.

Bob was PAT-ing at a café and guest house, owned and run by a friend of his. The café is a converted horse box, with outside seating along the banks of the River Wye. It's a beautiful location and Ollie and I sat there with a cuppa and my book whilst Bob did the guest house side of the work.

We had several visits from this cheeky little Robin, who kept coming to say hello. I also suspect he was hoping we'd have some crumbs for him, but alas we only had drinks!

When Bob had finished in the guest house, he came out to do the café part of the work. Ollie at that point got a little restless, because he wasn't allowed to be with Dad whilst working! So I took him back to the car via a walk along the river bank and another photo' opportunity.

Today was such a lovely day. The journey, company, location, surroundings and atmosphere were all fab, and the rain kept off. I've used the orgone accumulator today for my lower back, which is still playing up, and it's really helped with the pain. We're back home now for a bit of T.V. before bed. I should be back to work tomorrow, but I have another day off. I'ts Bob's birthday on Friday, but he's working, so we're having a birthday day out to Pembrokeshire tomorrow.

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... And there's something bright ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Tuesday 10th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... another open door ... " ♫

Books today!

I've finished reading Mark Billingham's "Cry Baby", which I really enjoyed. I'll be looking for some more of his books to read.

I also started reading "Playing Nice", by J.P. Delaney (aka Anthony Capella). I'm about three chapters through, and really enjoying it already. I've read a couple of his books before, and really enjoyed them, and this one so far is not disappointing.

It's Day Off tomorrow, and we're off to Hay-on-Wye for a bit of a day out. Bob has a PAT testing job there, and I'm going to entertain Ollie whilst he does that. However, I'm sure there will be an opportunity for at least a bit of charity shop browsing, coffee, and a general look around the town.

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... another open door ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Monday 9th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... through her skin ... " ♫

My biopsy wound started weeping again. I was concerned that the infection I've had is back, and so I telephoned my GP surgery.

When I explained what's been happening, they called me back and I had an appointment with the practice nurse after work. The nurse was baffled. She doesn't think there is an infection, as I don't have any symptoms, such as a temperature, and the wound itself looks perfectly fine. However, she did agree that a substance seems to be weeping out. She described the whole thing as 'rather bizarre'! I agree with her.

The nurse has taken swabs to send to the lab, and has given me extra dressings and some antibiotic cream to apply. She has also given me another course of oral antibiotics which I am to take if I do develop any symptoms of an infection. She thinks that the results will be back from the lab early next week.

The saga of my bum continues! Haha.

On a better note, I've been using the orgone accumulator today on the pain in my lumbar region, and it is so much better. This little device just amazes me!

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... through her skin ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 8th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... This is what I need ... " ♫

I only took this one picture today, whilst sat at Craig-y-Nos Country Park, enjoying some cross stitching in the sunshine.

I woke up with an attack of Lumbago this morning. It was extremely painful getting out of bed and took me a while to straighten up!

I know how important it is to keep mobile though with this problem, so I persevered. I also saw it as an opportunity to try out the orgone accumulator on that particular pain, so I put it against my back whilst driving up to Craig-y-Nos. I also used it throughout the day whilst there, and now it's early evening here, and the pain has greatly reduced.

I'll use it again this evening, after dinner whilst watching T.V., and if necessary I'll put it inside my pyjamas overnight, and we'll see how my back is in the morning.

I didn't go for a walk with Jackie this morning, but we did have a lovely chat. Jackie suffers with various pains, from old horse riding and kick boxing injuries, so I offered to make her an orgone accumulator, and she said she'd really like to give one a go. So I'll make it up during the week and give it to her next Sunday.

I hope whoever is reading this has had a fab weekend, and I wish you a very happy, healthy and safe week ahead.

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... This is what I need ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 7th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... clean and dust ... " ♫

I bought a present for my Lovely Lucia today! A dustbuster, so I can keep her floor nice and clean.

In other news.....I finished taking the antibiotics today and all seems ok with the biopsy wound, although it hasn't healed up yet.

I'm feeling really good today generally, and have minimal pain right through my body - including my coccyx. I needed to use the orgone accumulator on my left foot this morning, and it's cleared most of the pain from there. Yaay, hopefully onwards and upwards.

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... clean and dust ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Friday 6th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Don't Give Up ... " ♫

We're not giving up on our quest for a teapot!

I know that at some point we'll find another lovely vintage one in a bootsale or charity shop, but in the meantime......

......I popped to Dunelm today and bought this very pretty teapot.

It's just the right size to sit on our tea-making tray, and the design of it actually matches the tray we use (which also came from Dunelm a little while ago), and we've tried it out, and it makes a perfect cuppa!

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... Don't Give Up ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Kate Bush and Peter Gabriel song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Thursday 5th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Ooh, he's a moody old man ... " ♫

I love the Lemony Snicket "Series Of Unfortunate Events" books. I read all but the last one of them when Lydia was a child (she loved them too!). I'd like to read them again, from the beginning, and this time including the last one. We had some of them in the house, but when Lydia read them, some of them had been library books, which of course were returned, so in order to read them all, I needed to get the missing ones.

I've been gradually doing this over the last few years, as and when I see them pop up in charity shops, boot sales, etc. Yesterday in Wells, I managed to pick up the first in the series! Yaay. I now only need numbers 3 and 7 to make up the set. I might actually pop onto eBay or Amazon to see if I can get them, and then I shall read my way through them.

As well as the Lemony Snicket book, I picked up two other books too. I really like Lisa Jewell, so am always happy to pick up one of her books, and the Joanne Harris book really caught my eye. I shall pop them on the ever-growing 'Books To Read' pile!

Teapot Gate continues! The teapot from my sister isn't really suitable for using every day. It has quite a small opening in the top, which makes it hard to get the tea bags out when we want to empty it. I can't cope with the spoon-on-china high-pitched scraping noise, so it was back to the drawing board.

I bought this one in Morrisons, but it's a very silly design - well, the lid is anyway. The knob on the top of the lid is really small and very hard to grip. Hard enough when the pot is cold, but when it's full of tea and hot, if you want to give the tea a stir, it's almost impossible without burning your fingers off! I think it's going to go back to the shop for a refund.

Whilst in Wells yesterday, we picked up this cute little teapot which we are going to try. I have a feeling it's going to be just a bit too small for two cups, but I like it anyway, and it will be fab to use for myself at times when Bob doesn't stay over and I only need to make one cup of tea.

The pretty plate was another charity shop find, and can be added to my slowly-growing pile of replacement dinner plates - all different to one another, because I don't like matching dinner sets, etc. I like china things to be mis-matched.

I'm still finding that my pain levels are really good. I'm using the orgone accumulator for my left foot still, but I haven't needed to use it on my hips, which are still pain free. Julie is also still pain free. Fab!

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... Ooh, he's a moody old man ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Wednesday 4th August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Keep the Tower from tumbling ... " ♫

It was Day Off today, and we combined it with a trip to Wells for - yes, you've guessed it - a spinning wheel!

We set off late morning and stopped on the way for a picnic.

Then we spent some time in Wells doing the whole tourist/sightseeing thing, etc. The cathedral is very impressive. Bob tells me that he took his first steps as a child outside Wells Cathedral! There is currently some cleaning/renovation work going on at the cathedral, so parts of it were covered with scaffolding. Hence my rather 'clipped' picture of it!

The buildings around the cathedral area are lovely, and there are lots of lovely shops around, including some really good charity shops, where I picked up a few things, including some books, a pretty plate, and a small teapot......things to show another day on another blog post!

We found a really nice coffee shop and sat outside, since the day was dry and reasonably warm. It did start to spot with rain, but nothing much really. Oh, and I think I may have seen David Gilmour of Pink Floyd fame casually stroll along the shopping area when we were having coffee, although it could just have been a very good look-a-like!

This lovely coffee shop caught my eye, and I'd love to have had coffee in there, but it was closed.

So instead I just photographed their rather lovely window display of an imagined outing/afternoon tea with baby in tow in a rather posh pram, and a lovely old-fashioned picnic basket. Delightful!

When we were full of lovely coffee, and charity-shopped-out we headed off to collect the spinning wheel, before making our way home.

My pain levels today have been much better. I've been using the orgone accumulator on and off, for my left foot (which is stubborn) and my knees, but my hips remain pain free, and my coccyx area is also quite a lot better. This evening I messaged Julie to see how she's getting on, and she says that she is still pain free. Fab!

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... Keep the Tower from tumbling ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Tuesday 3rd August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... You're so like a star upon me ... " ♫

I had my first actual bath since the day before my biopsy this evening and it was such bliss!

I've been keeping clean via full body washes, but was afraid to get the biopsy site wet (especially having developed an infection) so have been avoiding immersing in water.

However, the site is looking much better now, so it seems the antibiotics are working, and I thought I could probably get away with literally taking the plunge! So I did.

It was so lovely to sink into hot, rose-scented bubbles and have a good soak. Yummy. My needs are simple, haha.

In other news - I took Julie's orgone accumulator (OA) into work for her, and whilst she was sat hand-stitching, she tried it on her foot (Plantar Fasciitis). After about an hour, her foot was literally pain free! Julie was totally amazed and I don't think could quite believe it.

As Bob did with me, I wrote down the two sensations which people say they feel when first using an OA. I wrote them on a piece of paper, and sealed it in an envelope. Julie voiced two sensations she was feeling, and so I asked her to open the envelope and read what I'd written. She did, and they matched! Haha. Amazement all around! Julie said she will try it out on her hip this evening and let me know what happens. In the meantime, another colleague who was asking about it and really interested, would like me to make one for her. So I shall! I'm more than happy to share this amazing experience.

As for myself, the OA continues to work what seem like miracles on my aches and pains. My foot is still pain free, as is my left hip, and also now my knees. I feel fab - as if I am lighter and can move around so much easier and get stuff done. It's amazing how being in constant pain can really hinder even everyday stuff.

Since I've finished reading "The Martian", Bob and I are now going to watch the film of it. I hope it's as good as the book, and I hope that Bob enjoys it too.

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... You're so like a star upon me ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Monday 2nd August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Strange Phenomena ... " ♫

Wow! I've been trying out the orgone accumulator and I am amazed with the results!

I have Plantar Fasciitis in both my feet. My right foot has actually been ok for a while now, but for the last few weeks the heel of my left foot has been so painful that I haven't been able to walk with it flat on the floor - I've been basically walking on the toes. I'd previously been using special wedges inside my shoes, which are supposed to help with this condition. In fairness, they did to begin with. However, I was told recently by a GP friend, that although they are quite good to start with, the feet do get used to them and so they end up being not as effective, which is obviously what has happened with my feet.

The first place I tried out the orgone accumulator (OA) was on my left foot. I literally sat watching T.V. yesterday evening, with my bare foot resting on it, on the footstool. This was for about an hour, and by the end of it, most of the pain was gone and I was able to walk with the foot flat on the floor.

Next I thought I would try my left hip (I have osteoarthritis in that). So, I went to bed wearing close-fitting pyjama bottoms and put the OA inside those, against my hip. By this morning, I had no pain whatsoever in my left hip.

Bob told me that lots of people, when first using an orgone accumulator, report that they have experienced two sensations. He wouldn't tell me what they are, but wrote them down. I did feel two sensations (I won't reveal them at this point) and voiced them to him. He showed me what he had written, and it was the same as what I'd voiced. Haha - weird but fun, and interesting!

I took it into work and told Julie about it. I'm not sure what she thought at first, but when I showed her how I'm able to now walk properly on my left foot, she was also amazed. Whilst I was sitting down and hand-stitching, I rested my foot on it again for about an hour, after which the pain in my foot had gone completely. This is fantastic!

I then tried it on the bottom of my spine - the coccyx area, where I have the lump that's being investigated. By the end of the working day the pain there was cut by about half.

Julie also suffers from Plantar Fasciitis, as well as arthritis in her hip. I offered to make her one, and she accepted. So that's what I've been doing this evening. The picture is a collage of how I went about it. Basically I bought some various sized envelopes and some steel wool on the way home from work. I filled six of the larger envelopes with the steel wool - enough to form a simple layer within each envelope. After expelling out any excess air and sealing them, I measured, cut and stitched a fabric cover for the whole six and stitched it closed.

I'll take it into work tomorrow and see what Julie thinks. In the meantime, I'm going to try mine out on my left knee (rheumatoid arthritis, caused by Lupus) whilst watching T.V. We're currently watching a film called "A Man Called Ove", which is based on a Fredrik Backman novel, and is very good!

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... Strange Phenomena ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Kate Bush song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 1st August 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Ooh, I just know that something good is gonna happen ... " ♫

I didn't feel very good this morning when I woke up, and so got off to a slow start.

As well as possibly having an infected biopsy wound site, I have arthritis pain in my hips and knees, and pain from Plantar Fasciitis in both my feet, but especially my left one.

The antibiotics have turned me into a zombie, and I seriously thought about going back to bed and not going to Craig-y-Nos Country Park for my usual Sunday visit.

However, as you can see from the picture I took of my favourite tree there, I did go and I'm glad I did! Being with Bob & Ollie and seeing Jackie & Amber were both most definitely a tonic for this grumpy, pain-filled, zombie impersonator!

When I was at Craig-y-Nos, Bob gave me six envelopes, each filled with steel wool. A strange sort of gift you may think! Well, I suppose it might be strange to some, but for me it's something I want to try out. I'd mentioned it to him last night on the telephone and asked him if he would put something together for me.

I've recently been reading about the work of Wilhelm Reich (an Austrian doctor of medicine and psychoanalyst) and particularly his ideas about orgone energy (also known as chi or life energy)and the effect it can have on the human body, especially in relation to pain and disease. This is something which Bob has been interested in for some time and we have discussed it now and then, so it's been at the back of my mind.

Earlier in the week I was chatting to Julie in work about it, and it reminded me that it might be a good idea to try it out for the joint pain I suffer on a regular basis - particularly since I've decided to stop taking any kind of prescribed or over-the-counter pain killers. This is because I've found that such things are no longer working to actually stop (or even reduce) pain, as well as the fact that they all have side effects and potential long-term use problems, and I simply do not want to go down that road. I don't want to be in a position where I need stronger and stronger pain killers, or become addicted, or any other adverse problems.

I've therefore been looking at alternative methods of pain control, such as applying heat/cold, using natural anti-inflammatories such as ginger and turmeric, gentle exercising (keeping mobile is really important I think), distraction of my mind via music, craft activities, or mental imagery (so that I'm not focusing on the pain), etc.

I decided that I need an Orgone Accumulator in my life! This is basically what the envelopes and steel wool are.

In very basic terms, an orgone accumulator is made up of alternating layers of organic materials (to attract the energy) and metallic materials (to radiate the energy), which is believed to have a healthy effect on blood and body tissue by improving the flow of life-energy and by releasing energy-blocks. It is believed that by applying an orgone accumulator to an area of pain, the pain can be reduced and even eliminated.

When I got home this evening, I made a fabric cover for them, and this is a picture of how it now looks. Tonight I intend to try it on my left foot, since that is the part of my body which hurts most at the moment. I will let you know how it goes, and in the meantime, if you would like to read about the work of Wilhelm Reich and his ideas, here are a couple of links for you to check out.

If you would like to read about Wilhelm Reich Please click here to go to the Wikipedia page about him. (Opens in a new window).

If you would like to read about orgone energy and Wilhelm Reich's orgone accumulator Please click here to go to the Wikipedia page about them. (Opens in a new window).

Kate Bush is my featured musician for August. ♫ "... Ooh, I just know that something good is gonna happen ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from the Kate Bush song "Cloudbusting". I've chosen this song because it is about the very close relationship between Wilhelm Reich and his young son Peter. In the video, Donald Sutherland plays Wilhelm Reich, and Kate Bush plays Peter.

Here is the song - via YouTube - if you would like to listen to it and watch it.

Here are the words of "Cloudbusting".

I still dream of Orgonon
I wake up crying
You're making rain
And you're just in reach
When you and sleep escape me

You're like my yo-yo
That glowed in the dark
What made it special
Made it dangerous
So I bury it
And forget

But every time it rains
You're here in my head
Like the sun coming out
Ooh, I just know that something good is gonna happen
I don't know when
But just saying it could even make it happen

On top of the world
Looking over the edge
You could see them coming
You looked too small
In their big black car
To be a threat to the men in power

I hid my yo-yo
In the garden
I can't hide you
From the government
Oh, God, Daddy
I won't forget

'Cause every time it rains
You're here in my head
Like the sun coming out
Ooh, I just know that something good is gonna happen
I don't know when
But just saying it could even make it happen

And every time it rains
You're here in my head
Like the sun coming out
Like your son's coming out
Ooh, I just know that something good is going to happen
And I don't know when
But just saying it could even make it happen

Ooh, just saying it could even make it happen

We've been cloudbusting daddy

Your son's coming out
Your son's coming out

If you would like to read about the song itself, Please click here to go to the Wikipedia page about it. (Opens in a new window).

I'd love to see your feedback!

Maybe you're already familiar with Wilhelm Reich and his beliefs and work? Maybe you've tried an orgone accumulator yourself? I'd love to know!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 31st July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Watching And Waiting ... " ♫

I had a pretty restless night, waiting for a call-back from the 111 service.

Late last night I noticed more substance around the biopsy wound site. Since this time I'd used a plaster, I knew it couldn't be from that, so I called the 111 service for some advice. I was told that they were really busy, but that somebody would call me, although it may be several hours.

I got a call back early this morning from a nurse, who asked lots of questions, and then said that she thought there was an infection in the wound, and would get the on-call doctor to call me. A little while later a doctor did call, asked more questions, confirmed that I probably have an infection and prescribed some antibiotics. I picked them up from Asda pharmacy, along with some new dressings.

I haven't had antibiotics for years, but I do remember that they tend to wipe me out when first taking them, which is exactly what they did! I've slept most of today away and I have no energy this evening, so it'll be a quiet evening for me and Joe Cat. Flippin' 'eck - my bottom seems to have a desire to cause mischief!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Watching And Waiting ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Moody Blues song.

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Friday 30th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Turned on to the same word ... " ♫

Two books - one finished, one started!

Science Fiction/space, etc., are not usually my cup of tea, but I really fancied reading this one, and absolutely thoroughly enjoyed it. I enjoyed the story, and all the nerdy technical stuff involved in how he was able to survive being alone on Mars.

Bob has downloaded the film for us to watch sometime too. I hope we'll watch it soon, whilst the book is fresh in my memory.

I've now moved on to this book. I've not read anything before by this author, but I've read good reviews about his work and this book caught my eye a little while ago in Tesco, and I almost bought it then. However, I didn't and found this copy in a charity shop in Devon recently, so I snapped it up. I'm a couple of chapters into it, and enjoying it so far.

I was a bit concerned about my biopsy wound today, as I thought it was leaking. However, I'm not sure that is the case. The dressing I've had on it from the hospital has a padded centre, and I'm not sure if the stuff I found around the wound site is some sort of gel from that or not. I've put another dressing - well, a large plaster actually, because I've used the dressings the hospital gave me - onto it, and we'll see. The area does feel quite sore, however this is to be expected, and it generally looks ok, so I won't panic yet! Haha.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Turned on to the same word ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Thursday 29th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... The Best Way To Travel ... " ♫

I introduce you to Lucia!

We picked her up this evening and she is absolutely gowjus! I think I'm going to really enjoy driving her.

The young man who sold her to me has clearly really looked after her. He referred to her as a 'she' when we went to look at her, and I asked her if she had a name. He said that she does, and that it is 'Lucia', which is Italian for light. (The family are of Italian descent).

So Lucia she is! Had she not already had a name, I would have called her 'Primrose', because her colour is such a pretty primrose yellow.

Before we went to pick Lucia up, we said a sad goodbye to Cafy, the trusty KA, who would have got us to Birmingham I'm sure, if it hadn't been so hot!. She did a fab job of getting me to and from Kent recently anyway. It's always sad to see a car disappear off into the sunset on the back of a scrap truck, but needs must, etc!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... The Best Way To Travel ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Moody Blues song.

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Wednesday 28th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... My world is spinning around ... " ♫

Last night was horrible.

The hospital gave me these pain killers to bring home and take if I needed. I was hoping not to need them, because I try my best these days not to take pain killers at all. Living with Lupus, as well as the problem I've had with my coccyx (which led to the investigations and the biopsy), means that more-or-less I am in some sort of pain 24/7. I found that pain killers just weren't working properly any more, as well as the side effects that most of them seem to have. So I stopped taking them, and I manage my pain in other ways.

However, the biopsy site and wound did feel really sore and bruised last night - I felt battered and generally a bit crap, and so I decided to take two of these before going to bed.

I woke up in the early hours of the morning feeling like death warmed up! I felt dizzy....hot one minute, cold the next....and so nauseous. I am a person who will avoid vomiting at all costs and over the years I've discovered that if I lay quietly on my right side I can usually stave it off, so that is what I did.

I lay there for I don't know how long, with the room spinning and not daring to move, in case I was sick! Bob got up to use the loo, so I told him how I was feeling, and got a telling off for not having woken him earlier! He made me a cup of tea which I actually really wanted, but when it came to drinking it, I just couldn't, and so sipped water instead.

Eventually the feeling passed and by about nine I was feeling a lot better, so I did have a bit of breakfast. Then I felt incredibly tired and washed out, so I went back to bed and slept until lunchtime.

I feel ok now, and have done since after lunch. I think it was a reaction to the codeine in these tablets which caused it. I get sick like that (only not as bad) with co-codamol too.

This afternoon we went to pick up the shelf unit I bought over the weekend. It's so lovely, and I've decided that I'll probably leave it as natural pine, and put it in the kitchen, but I may change my mind.

This evening we went to have a look at the car which Carol's cousin is selling. Oh wow, what a lovely car! We took her for a test drive, and I will definitely be buying her. We need to sort out stuff with Cafy - getting her scrapped, transferring over insurance, etc., and hopefully we'll be going up to collect the new car tomorrow or Friday. I'm so excited about it!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... My world is spinning around ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song - one of my favourites of theirs.

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Tuesday 27th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... We're all looking ... " ♫

Ok, so it's all done.

The MRI was done around nine this morning. The nurse in the unit told me that nobody had told them that I was on the ward - that they were expecting me yesterday for the scan, and simply thought I'd not turned up! Blinkin' 'eck - another example of the hospital's fine communication skills!!

As soon as I got back to the ward they were more or less ready to take me down for the biopsy.

It wasn't anywhere near as horrendous as I thought it was going to be. They'd gone on about the pain I might feel - that it would be painful when the needle went in (for the anaesthetic) and then if I felt any pain during the procedure and I was distressed, the anesthetist would be on hand to give me a sedative. Well I have to say that I felt hardly anything from the needle, and nothing at all during the procedure.

They wouldn't discharge me until a couple of hours afterwards, because my blood pressure had gone a bit low and they needed to know that I could pee without a problem. The nurse thought my blood pressure was low because I needed to drink lots of water - which I did, as well as a cup of tea which I was gasping for!

Even though the hospital are rubbish at communicating, I have to say that I cannot fault the gentle, friendly, caring, kind way which I was treated by all the medical staff whilst I was there. I am truly thankful for the NHS.

Anyway, we're home now. We picked Ollie up from Carol's on the way home. As we thought, he's had a great time on his holidays! Carol told us about her cousin who is apparently selling his car. It's a yellow Fiat Panda and is apparently in lovely condition. This is perfect timing, since I need to replace poor Cafy, who has bitten the dust!

I'm feeling quite sore this evening - not just from the area where the lump is, but the wound site is quite sore. The hospital has given me some painkillers, so I'll probably be taking a couple of those and hoping for a good night's sleep. It's Day Off tomorrow, so at least I don't have to be up too early.

Oh, and the picture is the only one I've taken today. I've been reading this book for a few weeks, and I got lots of it read whilst in hospital, and it won't be long before I've finished it. Bob has downloaded the film for us to watch at some point. That's for another evening - right now, I'm off to bed!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... We're all looking ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Monday 26th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... make the journey ... " ♫

Yaaay, we made it!

This was our lovely view whilst eating our picnic lunch today, in an otherwise empty park, just five minutes' drive from the hospital.

We (socially distanced) dropped Ollie off to Carol this morning, and again have left plenty of food in timed feeders for Joe, as well as lots of biscuit food and plenty of water.

The journey up was pretty smooth. It's been quite warm, but nowhere near as hot as last Monday, and "Rodgriguez" - Bob's van - behaved beautifully. We got there with over an hour to spare, so were able to eat our picnic in peace and enjoy some quality time together.

I'm currently in a very nice hospital room. It's number 14 on the ward, and coincidentally, Bob's hotel room is also number 14! I've had Quorn curry for dinner, with orange juice and a fresh pear. In fact, that was quite funny. When the man came around to take my order for food, there was very little in the way of vegan choices on the menu. Because we were both wearing masks, plus we had different accents to each other, it was also quite difficult to understand each other when talking. When it came to dessert, I thought he'd said "fresh air" - that he was being humorous because of the limited choice. Then I realised he was saying "fresh pear". It really made me giggle.

I haven't had the MRI scan today, and I'm told I will have both that and the biopsy tomorrow. I've also been told that I can have nothing to eat or drink after midnight, other than water, and nothing at all from six in the morning - not even water! I'm really hoping that the biopsy will be done in the morning, or I'll die of blinkin' thirst!

Anita, the McMillan nurse has been to see me and mainly explained what will happen, and to check that I'm happy to be contacted by telephone for the results in a couple of weeks' time.

I've been watching T.V., reading my book and doing a bit of crochet and cross stitch. I'm ready to try and get some sleep now. I can't say I'm looking forward to tomorrow, but I will be glad to get it done and head off back home again.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... make the journey ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Sunday 25th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Lazy Day ... " ♫

Today was sort of a lazy day...apart from a bit of baking and some crafty stuff with shelves.

The baking was another lemon drizzle cake, for Carol, who is very kindly looking after Ollie again for a couple of days whilst we go to Birmingham. Apparently, lemon drizzle is actually her favourite kind of cake.

However, it was a disaster! I've actually never had a cake disaster before, so I suppose there's always a first time. Pity it's a time when the cake was to be a gift. Ah well, I shall owe Carol a lemon drizzle cake!

I am nervous and anxious for tomorrow and Tuesday, but somehow not as much as I was last weekend. I don't know why. Anyway, it's an early night for us tonight, as we have to set off early in the morning if we're to be there for 1:30 p.m. I'm worried about being late, and about Bob's van (which is what we're travelling in this time) breaking down. Understandable I suppose.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Lazy Day ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Moody Blues song.

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Saturday 24th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... begin anew ... " ♫

I saw this lovely shelf unit for sale on Facebook Marketplace today. It's local to me and a really good price, so I bought it.

Because we're isolating, and then in Birmingham Monday and Tuesday, we can't go and pick it up until Wednesday, but the seller is fine with that.

I think it will look lovely in the front bedroom, but we'll see when it's here.

In other news, my Covid test came back negative, so that's one less thing to worry about. Also, I forgot to mention that when I spoke to Julie at the hospital on Tuesday, she told me that it will be a local anaesthetic for the biopsy. So no more worrying about not waking up! Haha. She also confirmed that I will be admitted to the ward on Monday. We have to be there for 1:30 p.m. I haven't had any other confirmations of timings, but at least we know for sure this time what time we're expected!

I tried to keep busy again today, with some crafting and baking. I made a vegan 'chicken pie' for dinner, using "This Isn't Chicken" pieces, which I haven't used before. It was lovely. I made the stock using a Colman's casserole mix (which is vegan), and added leeks and mushrooms. We had it for dinner with new potatoes and veggies, and it was yummy. There is enough left over for next week, to save cooking from scratch one evening.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... begin anew ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Friday 23rd July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... The Day Begins ... " ♫

This is how my day began - with a Covid test for the hospital. I'll be getting the results by text, and I'm praying that it is negative. I don't want anything to go wrong for the hospital this time around.

Today also begins isolation ready for Monday's appointment. I've spent the day just pottering around really.

It's nice to have time to do that, and get things done, but I feel on pins the whole time to be honest. I just want to get these appointments done and move on to the next step really, which obviously will depend on the results.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... The Day Begins ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Moody Blues song.

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Thursday 22nd July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... we’ll drink a toast ... " ♫

In my small teapot collection, I found this pretty little one, which my sister gave to me a while ago. She knows I love teapots and had spotted this one in a charity shop and thought I might like it.

Up until now it's been up on a shelf with others, but now it's adorning our tea tray and making some lovely brews!

I'm off work now until next Thursday. We have to isolate from tomorrow until the hospital appointment on Monday, so I called off on the way home for some shopping, to make sure we have plenty of food in, and for stuff for our trip up to Birmingham on Monday. I also picked up a birthday present and card for a lovely friend, and have dropped those off to her.

I'm starting to feel nervous again now for the appointments and procedures, added to the fact that I'm a little anxious about actually getting there, after the problems we had last week with the car. We're going up in Bob's van this time, and as far as we know there are no issues with it, so fingers crossed!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... we’ll drink a toast ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Wednesday 21st July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... slip right through my fingers ... " ♫

Our faithful, pretty, vintage teapot has to go to teapot heaven, because I broke the lid today. It literally did slip right through my fingers when I was washing it, and it smashed into several pieces. I'd swept most of the pieces up and put them in the bin before I remembered to photograph it, so there's just one bit of it to show in the pic.

It's been a lovely teapot for using every day - just the right size for two cups of tea. I bought it from a charity shop some years back.

I will use it for something in the garden - make a bird feeder out of it or something. There's lots of inspiration for such things on Pinterest. In the meantime, we need to go in search of a new teapot. I do have others which I use for 'high teas and holidays', and a couple of more everyday ones in reserve, so I'll have a look at what's here first.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... slip right through my fingers ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Tuesday 20th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Tuesday Afternoon ... " ♫

Well clearly today wasn't half as eventful as yesterday, since the only picture I took was of the fan on my desk!

Today was another scorcher and it gets very hot in the sewing room, so the trusty fan was working hard. I did get a 'phone call from Julie at the hospital in Birmingham this morning. My rescheduled dates are for next Monday 26th and Tuesday 27th. Same format - MRI on Monday and the biopsy on Tuesday. The difference is that I'm likely to be admitted straight to the ward when I arrive on Monday and the appointments done from there, which means that Bob won't be able to even come to the clinic appointment with me. He will still be coming up to Birmingham with me though.

I voiced my concerns about the lack of communication from the hospital, and I was assured that I would receive times in writing and that a Covid test would be sent out for me. Bob and I will need to isolate from Friday, same as before. Here we go again then......rearranging/booking time off work, sorting out an hotel room, and some care for Ollie.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Tuesday Afternoon ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Moody Blues song.

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Monday 19th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Carrying your heavy load ... " ♫

Poor Cafy! This is how she finished her day. We finished ours feeling frustrated, cross, disappointed, and a whole host of other emotions. You may have gathered by now that our day didn't go at all to plan.

It started off well. We got up in plenty of time, and all we had to do was get ourselves ready, have some breakfast and put a picnic lunch together. We needed to be at the hospital for 5:00 p.m., and it's about a three hour journey, so we were planning to allow ourselves around six hours. We were getting ready to leave, when I got a call from the hospital. It was the PA (Julie) asking how my Covid test went. I told her that I hadn't actually received one from the hospital, but that I had had one done a few days ago independently and the result was negative.

Julie said that this might be a problem, because I should have received one from the hospital itself, but that she would check and get back to me, and to set off on our journey anyway. I then happened to ask her to clarify that they were expecting us at 5:00 p.m. She said that no, my MRI appointment was for 4:00 p.m. (news to me) and that I had a clinic appointment before that at 2:10 p.m. (again news to me). Apparently I should have had communication from the hospital to let me know these times.

This now meant that we needed to be there three hours earlier than we originally thought, so we got moving! I then had a further call from the hospital (a different person this time) about the Covid test, and was told that it was a problem that I hadn't had one via the hospital, but they also admitted that it was the hospital's fault. Apparently, the department responsible for communicating to the one responsible for sending the kit out, had told them that a 'local swab' would be done (i.e. I would be getting my own done), but they then hadn't communicated this to me! Even though I HAD got one done myself, the timing wasn't right and it wouldn't be accepted. I was told that they would 'sort something out' and that we should set off on our journey anyway.

We called off to Carol's to (socially distanced) drop off Ollie, and headed off in the direction of the A465. Today has been another scorcher, and there was a huge traffic jam on the A465 because of road works. Somewhere near Merthyr, Cafy decided that she wasn't happy, and started to overheat. We did the trick of putting on the heater and opening the windows (to draw the heat away from the engine) but it was no good. Cafy broke down just by some traffic lights.

We decided to give her some time to cool down, and waited. I called the hospital to tell them what was going on, and that we were likely to be late, and Julie said to keep them updated. I was also told that when we got to the hospital, we needed to go to the mobile testing unit in the grounds to have a 'fast track' Covid test done.

We did manage to get Cafy going again, but she gave up the ghost again and we had to call out the breakdown service. This meant that we wouldn't be able to carry on to the hospital, because even if breakdown could get us on our way, or even tow us in one direction and we chose that direction, it would mean that we had broken our isolation and we couldn't go anyway.

When the breakdown service turned up, the guy confirmed that Cafy was just about done in! She has a broken piston and is likely to need a new engine - more than she's worth I'm afraid.

The breakdown service towed us to a nearby Asda store car park and told us that he would contact a colleague to pop Cafy on the back of his flatbed and take us home.

We did have our picnic lunch - in the Asda car park!

Whilst having lunch, I was determined to get some nice pictures of something - just to focus on something calming and gentle and to stop the chaos running around my head. Hence this lovely, graceful wind turbine, the view from our picnic spot, and the blue sky through the trees.

We waited a few hours for the breakdown truck to arrive and get us home. I think we got in at around eight. What an eventful twelve hours we've had!

Julie at the hospital said that we will sort out new dates for me tomorrow. It's so frustrating that the hospital have been so rubbish at communicating with me. Maybe Cafy was on her last legs anyway, and driving anywhere in this heat would have finished her off, but maybe not - if we hadn't been in that extra hurry to get there, etc.

Oh well.....as frustrating as this all is, I am a believer in 'everything for a reason' and there's a reason why we shouldn't be in Birmingham today.

I hope the hospital can fit me in again soon, and that we're able to sort out all the stuff we need to for another trip up there. In the meantime, Ollie is having a whale of a time with Carol and her family, so we've all agreed that he can stay there until tomorrow as was planned anyway.

As for us, I think we need a chilled evening - what's left of it!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Carrying your heavy load ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Sunday 18th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... And the balance ... " ♫

Today has been mainly about the cooking and baking, although I have been sewing, spinning, packing my bag ready for tomorrow, and generally pottering around.

At this stage in the proceedings I'm feeling pretty nervous and anxious. I have lots of questions, as I haven't had much information about what will happen over the next couple of days. For example I don't know whether I'll have a local anaesthetic or a general for the biopsy. I'm thinking probably local, but I don't know! So the neurotic side of me is thinking "What if I have a general and then don't wake up?"

I know, it's completely irrational, because it's very rare for that to happen, but I did say it was my neurotic side thinking that!

Anyway, I've done my best to keep busy today. I made the lemon drizzle cake to take to Carol tomorrow.....well, we will have a few pieces because obviously we have to test it to see that it's ok! I hope Carol likes lemon drizzle!

I wanted to make a few things so that we would have meals to come home to for Tuesday evening and beyond, since I don't know how I'm going to be feeling and it will be nice to have things just to pop in the oven or microwave.

We also needed meals for today and things for our picnic lunch tomorrow on the way up to Birmingham.

So I started by making a French Onion quiche and some vegan sausage rolls.

Both of them were delicious, and we ate some for lunch with some fruit. Yummy!

Whilst I was working with the pastry I made a vegan pie, but I forgot to take photographs of that!

Whilst I was staying down in Kent, Lydia made some absolutely scrumptious vegan 'crab cakes', using banana blossom and a variety of other tasty ingredients.

I decided to have a go at these myself. They were fairly easy to do and I'm impressed with the banana blossom, which I hadn't ever had before until I tried it in Kent.

One of the ingredients is vegan mayo. Anybody who knows me, knows that I hate mayo and usually avoid it like the plague.....however I did buy some, to use in the crab cakes, and because there are so many other ingredients in them, the mayo kind of goes unnoticed. The problem now of course is that I have a jar of mayo sitting in my fridge (this has never happened before! Haha) which will probably never see the light of day again! Unless I make more crab cakes that is!

Anyway, the crab cakes were very lovely, although not as lovely as the ones Lydia made. Lydia's an amazing cook, and I suspect that she added a touch of Lydia-ness to hers!

We ate some of them for dinner this evening, served with jasmine rice, a bit of salad, and some sweet chilli dressing. There is some of the mixture left over so that I can make a few more for later in the week.

I also made a cheesecake for the first time ever.

It's a vegan chocolate orange cheesecake, with no baking required - just chilled in the fridge.

Lots of yummy ingredients were used, including disgestive biscuits, vegan butter, Elmlea plant cream, vegan dark chocolate and orange essence.

With some spare chocolate I moulded some orange slice shapes and we ate some of the cheesecake after dinner this evening, topped off with a little bit of Elmlea plant cream. Absolute Heaven!

There's plenty of that left over for very-near-future desserts!

We're off for a fairly early night, since we have a fairly early start tomorrow. We'll be (socially distanced) dropping Ollie (and lemon drizzle cake) off to Carol's on the way in the morning, and hoping to have a leisurely journey up to Birmingham, stopping off somewhere to enjoy our picnic. We're going up in 'Cafy' my car, and it's forecast to be hot, so we don't want to be pushing her too much in the heat on a long journey.

Night night!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... And the balance ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Saturday 17th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... For there's no where we need go ... " ♫

Today was a scorcher and Ollie was a very hot dog!

What do you do with a hot dog on a hot day? Well, you get a watering can with a rose and you water him like a little flower of course!

I'm not sure Ollie was too impressed though, haha!

Now this is a dog who actively seeks out water when we're out on a walk. He heads for rivers, canals, puddles, the sea, rock pools, streams, and any other kind of water which he can jump into and roll around and get himself as wet as possible.

However, when it comes to going out in the rain, or having a watering can of cool water gently poured over him to cool him down on a hot day, it's a different story!

Anyway, water him we did, and he soon realised how lovely and refreshing it was and that it also provided an opportunity to......

......roll around on the ground and dry off. That was of course after standing as near as he could to us and having a good old shake!

We had a fairly relaxed day today. I pottered around in the house, and then got out into the garden a bit later to tidy up an area which has been bothering me a bit. You can read about it here on my creativity page if you like.

I also had a lovely 'phone call from Jane, one of my oldest and dearest friends, who now lives in Australia, so I don't get to see her very often. We had a good long chat about all sorts of things (which we always do, as if we only spoke yesterday), and it was such a tonic. Thank you Jane.

Bob worked out in the garden on one of his spinning wheels - sanding it down, etc.

More of the same tomorrow please! I need stress-free activities, since I'm starting to get a little jittery about the hospital trip.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... For there's no where we need go ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

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Friday 16th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Time seems to stand quite still ... " ♫

I popped out into the garden late afternoon-early evening. Not to do anything in particular, but just to take some time to appreciate what's out there at the moment.

Seeing a ladybird on a strawberry plant leaf in the late afternoon sunshine was such a simple but beautiful pleasure. It so reminded me of my childhood days, when I would look for ladybirds on the leaves of the redcurrant bushes which my father grew. I felt a wave of nostalgic pleasure wash over me, and time did indeed seem to stand still.

The fact that I was able to get a decent photograph of it was a lovely bonus!

Nala's rose is looking lovely. She's a beautiful colour, and clearly very happy in her spot, above where our Beautiful Little Lady is buried.

I'm so glad we chose a rose for that spot, and I'm so looking forward to so much rosy, flowery loveliness in the years to come. If the first blooms are anything to go by, each year will be a treat!

Hydrangea is fighting back too!

I really thought we'd lost her during the winter, because she seemed to just shrivel back to nothing.

However, she has plenty of foliage, and her blooms are starting to come out now and they're still a lovely shade of pink. I don't think the pink is quite as vibrant a shade as when I bought her, but it's still a lovely colour.

Finally, Clematis seems to be ok where I've planted her near the ladder.

It's still early days of course, and she may decide that she doesn't like it there after all, but for now she's looking good, so that's fine.

We are now isolating this weekend, ready for the hospital visit on Monday. Everything's sorted - work is sorted, Ollie is going to be looked after by Bob's friend Carol (Carol's dog Barnaby is one of Ollie's doggie friends, so I'm sure they'll have lots of fun together), and Bob has an hotel room booked for Monday night, so hopefully everything is on track.

I haven't heard any more from the hospital itself, so as far as I am aware we turn up at 5:00 p.m. on Monday and take it from there. There was mention of a Covid test being sent out, but that hasn't happened, so I hope all is going to be ok there. I did actually have one a couple of days ago and it was negative, so hopefully that will suffice anyway.

I think the important thing now is to just try and enjoy the weekend, get lots of stuff done, but also lots of relaxation!

I wish whoever is reading this a very happy, healthy and safe weekend.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Time seems to stand quite still ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Thursday 15th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... As the door opened wide ... " ♫

I love Kilner and Mason jars, and jars in those styles, and have lots of them in the house.

I mainly use them in the kitchen, for storing baking ingredients, pulses, rice, pasta, etc., and in the craft room for buttons, threads and other bits and pieces.

I fancied a bit of reorganising today, and my kitchen cupboards are currently getting on my nerves. This is because there is a lot of stuff, in not a lot of cupboard space. I have some shelving to paint and put up, but like everything else, it all takes time, so in the meantime, I store things as best as I can.

Having recently put up a cupboard, shelf and spice rack, this has helped to make some space in the other cupboards, but there is still a lot to do.

Anyway, today I decided to go through all my jars of ingredients, etc., and make them a little bit more organised.

I have this large shelf unit to go up onto one wall, and it is intended for putting on all the Kilner and Mason jars.

It needs to be painted and distressed in the same style as the yellow cupboard, shelf and spice rack I've already done. Also, it's a bit tall for the wall space I have for it, so I'll be cutting the top off it and using that smaller shelf to put into another wall space, which is just perfect for it. The remaining bottom part of it will then go on the larger wall.

I do have some pretty labels which I bought a while ago, and will be using Letraset (remember that? - I have some left over from my school days!) and stickers to put on the labels what's inside the jars. I'll be doing that when the shelves are up and ready for the jars to go on.

In the meantime, when I transfer the contents of a packet into one of my jars, I just cut off the cooking directions (for pastas and stuff) and the wording from the packet saying what it is (since it's not a good idea to get plain and self-raising flours mixed up!) and pop them in the jar with the contents.

I managed to get it all sorted today anyway, then gave the cupboards a clean out and put everything back in as organised as I could. Having said that it'll probably be a matter of time before I can't find what I'm looking for again! Haha - I need to get those shelves done!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... As the door opened wide ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Wednesday 14th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... In the hands of time ... " ♫

For Day Off, today was quite busy.

The boiler in my house has been making funny noises for a while, and it decided not to play ball at all a few days ago, so a very nice man came today to sort it out and give us our hot water back!

I only took one picture and it was of this beautiful bloom - the first bloom on Nala's rose bush. So of course, I just had to share! There are a few more buds, so we're looking forward to some more beautiful blooms to remind us of our Beautiful Little Lady Nala.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... In the hands of time ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Tuesday 13th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... A turn of the page ... " ♫

More book loveliness today, and again from our trip to Porthcawl on Saturday.

Sue gave me this little group of books. She's read and enjoyed them, and thought I might too! I think I will.

I'm looking forward to getting stuck into them anyway, and I think I'll start with "Small Pleasures" sometime soon. Again, thank you Sue!

These are books I picked up from the charity shops in Porthcawl.

There are a few favourite authors amongst these, and again I am really looking forward to getting stuck into them all. I definitely need more reading hours in each day! Haha.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... A turn of the page ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Monday 12th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Dreams that never die ... " ♫

Sue bought me this lovely book whilst we were in Porthcawl on Saturday.

I've always liked the Linda McCartney branded vegetarian food which you can buy, and it will be nice to try out some of her recipes.

I've also always considered Linda to be a bit of a pioneer for vegetarianism. I'm pretty sure that if she was still alive she would be totally vegan by now. Certainly the company that she launched are making more and more of their products vegan, which is fab!

I'm really looking forward to using this book. Thank you Sue!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Dreams that never die ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Sunday 11th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Aching for the warmth of a burning sun ... " ♫

On my walk with Jackie, Amber and Ollie up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park today, I fancied just taking random photographs of flowers, just to get some practice in. So I did!

I started with the roses near the duck pond, which are so beautiful.

During the walk I found lots of lovely flowers (and leaves/greenery) to photograph - mainly wild stuff, which is sometimes the best stuff!

I'm not the best at taking wildlife photographs, but I have pleasantly surprised myself as to how nice the photographs are. Maybe there's hope for me as a photographer yet!

I couldn't resist taking another photograph of my favourite gate......

......and I got this fab photo' of Ollie Dog, who was anticipating being thrown a ball. I adore his face with this expression......

......and I also caught a lovely shot of Amber looking very thoughtful!

I always enjoy walking with Jackie and the pooches. A lovely friend, beautiful surroundings and two furry companions - what's not to love?

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Aching for the warmth of a burning sun ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Saturday 10th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... We laughed and talked of things to come ... " ♫

It's been a while since I've seen my lovely friends Debbie, Julie and Sue. We were all in school together, and we try to meet up a couple of times a year. Because of Covid and lockdown, etc., we haven't met up since December 2019, and Julie couldn't make it then, so it was just Deb, Sue and me.

So, we decided that it was time for a catch up and arranged to meet up in Porthcawl today for some fun, food, and friendship!

After a bit of car park confusion, we finally got together, although this time we were minus Deb, who couldn't make it. We missed you Deb!

The forecast had been for rain, but the sun shone for us and we each got some lovely pics of the beach. It was a really nice atmosphere there - not too busy so we could move around comfortably and easily find places to eat and drink.

We found somewhere for a coffee and spent a good couple of hours catching up on each other's news and generally putting the world to rights.

This of course made us hungry! So we headed over to the Saltwater Inn for some lunch. I was impressed by the vegan options on the menu, and I tried vegan 'fish', chips and mushy peas. The 'fish' was made from banana blossom, and it was lovely. I've recently used banana blossom to make vegan 'crab cakes' and it does have a very fish-like texture, so it's perfect for this kind of thing. If there was any criticism, it was that they could have added some sort of spice/herb or other flavouring, as the banana blossom itself is a little on the bland side....although the beer batter was lovely.

After food we went for a wander around Porthcawl town, where there was lots to see, and quite a bit going on. There was some live music in the main shopping street courtesy of a busker or two, and there was also a pop up art gallery....and of course we explored the charity shops, where I found some books.

We finished off at Cadwaladers on the sea front, where I had a very yummy vegan strawberry sundae.

It was such a lovely day, and I'm so looking forward to the next time we can all get together, which will probably be around Christmas time, and will hopefully include Deb too!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... We laughed and talked of things to come ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Friday 9th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Long time no see ... " ♫

I haven't taken any photographs today, so I'm using this one from two years ago.

It's a photograph of myself with three lovely friends, each of which I've known for blinkin' years! I haven't seen them for nearly two years, and tomorrow we're all meeting up in Porthcawl for a day out and a catch up. I am so looking forward to it.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Long time no see ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Thursday 8th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... In a far off wonderland ... " ♫

Books which I bought in Penarth yesterday in the charity shops. They will now join the ever-growing 'books to read' pile on the bedside cabinet! That is all.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... In a far off wonderland ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Wednesday 7th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... a road I can follow ... " ♫

Today was Day Off for me.

However, Bob needed to go over to Penarth to work for a couple of hours, so Ollie and I went with him and did our own thing whilst Bob was working.

Then the three of us had some lovely quality time together.

Ollie and I walked up to where we had a fab view of Penarth Pier and looking out over the sea towards Flat Holm and Steep Holm. It was raining, but it was fine rain and actually quite nice to walk in. We went up to St. Augustine's Church and had a bit of a wander through the church graveyard. I like graveyards, especially old ones, where some of the monuments and grave stones have a bit more character, and it's always lovely to see the wild flowers growing in amongst them.

There were also lovely views from there out towards Cardiff Bay.

After a wander, we went back down to where there were some benches and I read my book for a while, until I got the text from Bob to say that he had finished and was on his way back.

The three of us then drove down to Penarth front. It's been a while since I was there, and the last time I was, they were still making improvements to the area. It looks like they've almost finished now, and I really like what's been done. It's very colourful and inviting.

Dogs aren't allowed either on the pier or the beach, so we couldn't walk Ollie there unfortunately (and much to Ollie's disapproval!). So we bought some food and drink, which we enjoyed whilst looking out over Penarth beach. By this time the rain had gone and sun was coming out, and there were some lovely patches of bright blue sky. It was really nice to just sit and enjoy the food, the views and the atmosphere.

We bought our food from "Beachcliff Fish & Chips" and I was really impressed with the range of vegan options they had on the menu. I was also impressed with the friendly service, the quality of food and the prices.

If you would like to check out the Facebook page for "Beachcliff Fish & Chips" Please click here (opens in a new window).

After food, we then drove back up to Penarth town and had a browse around the charity shops, and I couldn't resist a visit to one of my favourite shops - Shaws, where I bought a lovely set of crochet hooks.

I did pick up some good books in the charity shops, but I'll show you those another day!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... a road I can follow ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Tuesday 6th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Oh, when the final line is over ... " ♫

Books today!

I finished Peter May's "Coffin Road" - such a good book, and such a good author. I really want to read more of his.

I also started Andy Weir's "The Martian". I have to say that science fiction/space novels aren't usually my thing, but there's something about this one which has drawn me. I'm a couple of chapters in and really enjoying it already.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Oh, when the final line is over ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Monday 5th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Heard the voice, had no choice ... " ♫

Noise has been a big problem for me today.

Some days are worse than others with the noise sensitivity, and today was one of them.

So it was very lovely to get home, shut the door, and just sit in a quiet house, with nothing but the sound of Joe's purring (a beautiful sound) and enjoy this cup of Welsh Brew tea in a lovely bunny mug, and accompanied by the obligatory Jammie Dodger!

I think the rest of the evening will involve peace and quiet too, so I can properly recharge my batteries.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Heard the voice, had no choice ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Sunday 4th July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Spread your wings ... " ♫

Today I took two photographs up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park, whilst out on a walk with Jackie, Amber and Ollie.

There was a cute little duckling floating around on the duck pond, without a care in the world, and I managed to capture a couple of shots of it. It was moving quite fast for such a little one!

I spent the afternoon with Tracey, another of Bob's friends (and my friend too), helping her to get to know her new sewing machine! It's a lovely machine and I did enjoy exploring it with her. I hope Tracey found it as helpful as I found it enjoyable!

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Spread your wings ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Saturday 3rd July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Do as you please with so much ease ... " ♫

I only took one photograph today. I had some quiet time in the house sitting with my crochet, and that's what this picture is. I'm working on the scalloped edging of my cwtchy blanket and hoping to get lots more of it done up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park tomorrow.

Other than that, I pottered around the house, catching up on housework and stuff that I don't get time and energy to do during the working week. I also had a bit of a snooze this afternoon, since fatigue got the better of me.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Do as you please with so much ease ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Friday 2nd July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Here Comes the Weekend ... " ♫

I've shamelessly stolen this picture from t'interweb! This little squirrel certainly looks happy to see Weekend - as am I! Even though I've only been in work two days this week, it is always nice to see Weekend, and I'm hoping to have a combination of productive and restful, as well as spending quality time with my Lovely Man, Ollie Dog and Joe Cat of course.

I'm hoping that my old friends Inspiration, Motivation, Organisation, Creativity and Productivity will hang around quite a bit. I have lots of things which I want to do in the house which have been lingering around too long!

I got a call from the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Birmingham today. They want me there on Monday 19th and Tuesday 20th July. On Monday 19th I'll have an MRI scan on the area where the lump is, and on the 20th they will do a biopsy of the lump to see what's what.

We have quite a bit to organise now.....time off work for me, and Bob needs to reorganise his work duties. We also need to sort out some accommodation in Birmingham for Bob. He'll be allowed to come to the appointments on the Monday with me, as they are outpatient appointments, but then I'll be admitted to a ward, so he'll have to go and then come back for me the following day after I've had the biopsy. Plus we'll have to sort out some doggy care for Ollie. Joe will be ok at the house with timed feeders and biscuit food on demand!

Although there's a lot to think about, it's nice to have a date to work towards and I'm glad they're getting me in fairly quickly for this.

Continuing with The Moody Blues as my featured musicians for July, ♫ "... Here Comes the Weekend ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Thursday 1st July 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Peak Hour ... " ♫

Wow - 1st July! That means we're half way through the year already. Where does the time go? It's a bit scary I think.

Anyway, today I thought I would show you the things I picked up from the 'peak hour' in the boot sale on Sunday down in Kent with my Gowjus Girl and her Handsome Man.

I'm not keen on musicals as a genre of film. However, there are a few that I like, and one of them is "Oklahoma!" I managed to pick up a vinyl copy of the soundtrack! Yaay.

I also picked up two little baskets for the house. Baskets are a fab way of organising stuff. You can hide a multiple of sins in them, but they always look pretty when displayed, especially if you paint and/or decorate them with something. I have plans for these two, but they will be revealed on my creativity page at some point.

Finally I picked up some embroidery threads - always useful to have in the craft stash!

The Moody Blues are my featured musicians for July. They are one of my favourite bands, and I hope you enjoy their music as much as I do. ♫ "... Peak Hour ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Moody Blues song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Wednesday 30th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Pink Moon ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 30

Today sees the last of my "Strawberry Moon June" ponderments.

This year, June has been very mixed, and I'll be totally honest, I've struggled to remain positive.....however, I HAVE remained so, and that's a positive in itself.

I don't know what lies ahead regarding what the hospital will find in their investigations. I do however feel optimistic about it, and feel fairly certain that it is something innocent and which can be dealt with, and in the event that it is not, I know that I have Lydia and Bob as fantastic pillars of support and love, as well as the love and support of the rest of my family, and my friends. I am a strong person and will stand up and fight anything unpleasant which rears its head.

Today Bob and I just pottered around in the house and the garden, enjoying the weather and the company of each other, as well as our lovely furry companions Ollie and Joe.

Late afternoon we took Ollie down to the beach for a run around and a ball chase, and I photographed the lovely clouds. I love clouds and always make pictures from them. In the cloud pictures I took today, I can see angels, feathers, dragons, and angel & dragon wings. What can you see?

Nick Drake has been my featured musician for June. I hope you've enjoyed his music as much as I do. ♫ "... Pink Moon. ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this lovely Nick Drake song, and I'm using it to finish my "Strawberry Moon June 2021", as I did to start it. Thank you for reading and listening.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Tuesday 29th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Written in my true love's eyes ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 29

I travelled home from Folkestone today. I didn't actually take any photographs, so I've used some older pics to make up a collage of my positive for today - the Lovelies I came home to.......My Lovely Man Bob, Joe Cat and Ollie Dog.

I've had such a lovely time in Kent with my other Lovelies - Lydia and Lewis. It's been so fab to see them after so long, and the time has flown. I so hope I can get back down to see them again soon, or maybe they can get up to see us. We'll have to jiggle something in soon I think.

As I was getting ready to leave Kent this morning, I received a telephone call from the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Birmingham. They've received the referral from the Rheumatology department here in Wales regarding the lump at the base of my spine, and are keen to get me in to do another MRI and a biopsy of the lump to see what's going on. They said they'll be in touch over the next few days with a date for around two weeks' time. I am glad that they are moving quickly on this, because if there's anything untoward then it needs to be addressed. However, I am also nervous and anxious that they are moving quickly on it to be honest!

The journey home was reasonably good. I called off to Ramsgate to pick up a spinning wheel for Bob. He'd bought it a few weeks ago online and the lady selling it was happy to hang on to it until my trip down to Kent, which was great. It just about fitted in the back of "Cafy" my Ford KA! I then had chips for lunch, sitting on a little bench in the middle of a pretty village. Lovely.

I stopped off on the services on the M4 for a cuppa and a toilet break, and not long after I'd got going again, there was a hold up around Swindon. There'd been an accident ahead and the whole motorway had come to a standstill. Whilst I was sitting there, letting Bob know what was going on, five fire engines and three ambulances went past in the direction of the accident. I had visions of being camped out on the M4 for hours, but in fairness, they got things cleared and moving again within about an hour. As I went past the scene, I could see a car overturned onto its roof. I so hope nobody was killed or seriously injured.

Off to bed now. It's been a long and mixed-emotions day, and I'm ready for some sleep. It's Day Off tomorrow and Bob & I are planning on spending some quality time together, before I go back to work on Thursday.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Written in my true love's eyes. ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this lovely Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Monday 28th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Just a little too fast ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 28

My last full day in Folkestone today and my positive is the fab time I've had seeing my Gowjus Girl and her Handsome Man, and all the lovely things we've seen.....just to spend quality time together after not seeing each other for so long has been wonderful. It has, however gone way too fast!

We popped over to Hythe today, for a fleeting look at the canal, followed by a ponder of the high street, the charity shops etc.

The weather wasn't wonderful, with intermittent drizzly rain. We stopped off at a watering hole for a drink, before heading back to the flat for a chilled evening, during which there was yet more lovely food cooked by my equally lovely host and hostess. Then we watched "Seaspiracy". I've been wanting to watch it for a while, as have Lydia and Lewis. It was certainly very thought provoking.

I gave up eating meat years ago, and I gave up dairy just over two years ago, but until recently I've still been eating fish, although for quite a while now I haven't felt truly comfortable doing this. After watching "Seaspiracy" I won't be buying or eating it any more.

If you haven't watched it, and would like more understanding of the fishing industry and the impact it is having upon our oceans and planet, then I would urge you to watch it. It's available on Netflix.

I'll be travelling back to Wales tomorrow with mixed feelings - sad at leaving Lydia and Lewis (although hopefully it won't be too long before I see them again), but really looking forward to seeing my Lovely Man and of course Joe Cat and Ollie Dog.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Just a little too fast ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this lovely Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 27th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Where the seabirds flew ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 27

More Folkestone positivity today and another lovely day spent with Lydia and Lewis.

We got up this morning and headed off to a boot sale to grab some bargains. After that, we went down to Folkestone Harbour again, because there is still so much to see....well, for me anyway!

I really like this seagull model, which sits proudly about halfway along the harbour arm, and watches the world go by!

I love seagulls. I know lots of people don't, but for me the seagulls are part and parcel of living near the sea, and I love to hear their calls, and to see them around and about. I always feel 'at home' when there are seagulls.

I also love lighthouses and was delighted to see such a lovely one at the end of the harbour arm.

I even managed to have a sneaky hug when nobody was looking! Some people hug trees (I do that too)......I love to hug lighthouses! Oh, and wind turbines if I get the chance, although I've only done that once.

Whilst we were walking along the harbour arm and contemplating whether to get some food from somewhere, we spotted this pair of seagulls near the edge.

They were arguing (and eventually fighting and playing tug of war) over a very large piece of discarded pizza.

It was really comical watching their battle, but the one who had it in the first place won and he gleefully took his piece of pizza into the water to eat. It was so big, we were amazed that he managed to swallow it, but he did. Then he was taking big gulps of sea water to wash it down! Greedy boy, he could have shared! Haha.

Although the day was warm and dry, in contrast to yesterday it was overcast, with a mist over the sea, so no chance of seeing those white cliffs today!

I'm really impressed with how pretty the harbour area is with all the lovely flowers that have been planted. There are lots of poppies - one of my favourite flowers. It's so lovely.

We bought a coffee to enjoy with our walk, and eventually decided not to bother with food out, but to eat back at the flat.

We popped over to the craft market, which is held every Sunday from April through to October, along the platforms of the old Folkestone railway station. It had a lovely vibrant and friendly atmosphere and there was such a nice mixture of crafts, which left me feeling quite inspired!

If you find yourself in the Folkestone area on a Sunday (from April through to October)I would highly recommend a visit to the Sunday market. Please click here if you would like to find out more via their website. (Opens in a new window).

I was very pleased to be able to get some sticks of rock to take back to Wales.

Lydia and Lewis are fab cooks! This evening as a starter they made me vegan 'crab cakes' using banana blossom. They were absolutely delicious, and I must try the recipe myself back at home. They also made tofu with noodles, which again was delicious. It's so nice being cooked for, and such lovely food!

Also this evening we watched "A Star Is Born" - the version with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. This is the first time I've seen any version of this film, and I thought it was fab......and I blubbed like a blubbing thing!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Where the seabirds flew ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this lovely Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 26th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... I've been a long time that I'm waiting ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 26

My positive today was being in Folkestone with Lydia and Lewis and just enjoying the sights, atmosphere, sunshine, and especially the company.

We got up quite late and had a bit of a lazy morning. Then this afternoon we went down to Folkestone Harbour.

We walked through the Folkestone Creative Quarter, where there is so much to see - such a vibrant part of the town.

One of the things I love to do is look at rooftops. We walked up quite a hilly part of the creative quarter, and I had this lovely view of rooftops from where we were standing.

The harbour itself wasn't too busy, and it was so nice to see families, friends and couples out and about enjoying themselves in the sunshine after all the Covid restrictions we've had.

The general atmosphere was lovely.

There were lots of boats out on the water, bobbing around.

I love to look at boats too!

Also of course, because the weather was so fine, visibility was great and we had a good view of the white cliffs of Dover in the distance.

The sea and sky both looked so blue in the sunshine.

We stopped off at one of the bars along the sea front, and it was lovely to sit outside and have one of my favourite cocktails - a Strawberry Daiquiri. I could have stayed there all day!

However, we didn't stay there all day. We went back to 'Chez L2' and enjoyed takeaway pizza and watched "The Girl On The Train" - a fab film.

Such a lovely day!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... I've been a long time that I'm waiting ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this lovely Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Friday 25th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... From the Morning ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 25

Today was such a lovely, chilled day.

I spent it at Lydia's and Lewis's home in Kent. We got up late, we watched lots of T.V. (including the film "Yesterday" which I thoroughly enjoyed), we chatted, we ate yummy food, which they cooked (and it's so lovely being cooked for!), and we drank cocktails!

So my positive for today was the day itself, and having one of my favourite cocktails - Tequila Sunrise - made for me by my Gowjus Girl. Yummy.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... From the Morning ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this lovely Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Thursday 24th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Something has taken you so far from me ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 24

Today has been a mixed day, and the only photograph I took was of this meal - vegan deep-fried cheese sticks, and proper home-made chips, made my my Gowjus Girl and her Handsome Man.

I haven't seen them since August last year because of Covid restrictions, and this evening I got to give Lydia the biggest, squeeziest cwtch, because I've come down to visit them in their flat in Kent for a few days.

I drove down and the journey was mainly good. Bob (who's staying behind to look after the house, Joe and Ollie) loaned me his sat nav and it went a bit crazy after I left the M4, but I sort of know the way and was able to get to the M25 ok, and then called off to services for a cuppa and to reset the sat nav, after which it was fine.

As I was preparing to leave at lunchtime, I had a bit of a concerning 'phone call. A doctor from the Rheumatology department called me. Remember that letter that I was copied into and received on the 7th June, when the wording was not very good and implied I could have a fairly serious health problem? It concerns a lump I have at the base of my spine, and I have since been reassured, via a few 'phone calls, that I have nothing to worry about - that the lump is some kind of a cyst, which probably adds to the painful coccyx problem I've had for years, and I was told that I would be referred to the relevant department to look into it properly for me.

The 'phone call I received today was to tell me that the soft tissue sarcoma team have looked at the MRI imaging, and whilst they are "almost certain" that the lump is a developmental benign epidermoid cyst/teratoma, there is a small chance that it could be something more sinister. As a result, they were calling to ask for my permission to send the MRI images and refer me to a hospital in Birmingham, which specialises in such things, and "may want to see me to perform another MRI scan and a biopsy". Of course I gave my permisssion, and I was told that the Birmingham hospital will contact me.

I wouldn't be human, and would be a liar if I said that I'm not a little worried about it - of course I am. I thought about it all the way down to Kent! However, I'm reassured by the fact that the medical people think it is most likely to be a cyst, and that they are acting quickly to ascertain that. I am grateful for the NHS. Now it's a waiting game, to hear from the hospital as to whether they want to see me or not.

Anyway, my positive for today - and it is a very, very, very BIG positive - is that I got to see Lydia and Lewis and I have a few days to spend time with them. Absolutely fab!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Something has taken you so far from me ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Wednesday 23rd June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... I can take a road that'll see me through ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 23

I haven't taken any pictures at all today!

It's Day Off, but Bob and I haven't done anything in particular, just chilled and enjoyed each other's company. I'm off down to Kent tomorrow, to see Lydia and Lewis, and I am so looking forward to it. I haven't seen them since last summer and I can't wait to spend a few days with them. Also though, I will miss my Lovely Man and Ollie and Joe. Bob is staying behind to look after the house and the furries.

So, I'm using this picture as my picture of the day because these three beautiful people are three of my Lovelies and each one a massive positive in my life! That is all.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... I can take a road that'll see me through ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Tuesday 22nd June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... while away your hours ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 22

Other than the garden for my creative post, I haven't taken any photographs today.

I saw this on t'interweb, and decided that my positive for today is books! I love books and always have done, ever since I was a child......new books, old books, big books, little books, children's books, adult books, books which inform, books which entertain, and books which transport me into another world. I love them all.

I love to hold books - to turn their pages, smell them, and feel the weight of them in my hand. One of my favourite things in the world to do is to sit with a good book and enjoy a cup of tea and some escapism.

So in celebration of books, I hope you enjoy this lovely poem, written by Julia Donaldson, who is one of my favourite children's authors.

I'm off to make a cup of tea now, and enjoy a few pages of the book I'm currently reading - "Coffin Road" by Peter May....which is incredibly good!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... while away your hours ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Monday 21st June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Know I'm not there ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 21

I came home from work today to something absolutely beautiful in the post. This card from Haven Vets, sending sympathy on our loss of Basil. Wow, what a lovely thing to do. In case you can't see the picture properly, the heart panel in the centre is filled with little paw prints.

This is the inside of the card, which reads "With deepest sympathy for the loss of Basil your companion and friend. From Haven Vets."

The little packet to the side was also included - it's a packet of seeds, and reads "Scatter these seeds in remembrance of your beloved companion and friend".

We most certainly will scatter them in memory of Basil. A lovely card and a lovely gesture from Haven.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Know I'm not there ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 20th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... There is no hello and no goodbye ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 20

With it being Father's Day in the UK today, my positive is my Dad.

This is one of my favourite pictures of him - taken when he was around 18 years of age.

My Dad was a hardworking man, who taught me many things and because of him I have a love of classical music, I know how to wire a plug and hang wall paper, and I always remember to read the small print of anything I sign!

My Dad was a passionate gardener and seemed to be able to grow just about anything. I really hope that he's passed his green fingers on to me, and I hope I can reflect that now in my own garden.

So up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park today I raised a cuppa (in the absence of whisky) and a Bourbon biscuit (one of his and my favourites) to the memory of one of the most influential men in my life. Cheers Dad, and I bet you have the best garden up there.

Also up at Craig-y-Nos today I took this picture of the Rhododendron tunnel, and I really like it, so I thought I would share! You're welcome.

I hope you've had a great weekend and I wish you a very happy, healthy and safe week ahead. Off for some T.V. now and then bed. Night night.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... There is no hello and no goodbye ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 19th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Told of a life ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 19

My positive today is the lovely care which the pet crematorium took with our precious Basil.

Lydia asked if we could have him cremated, because she wants us to get together and scatter him somewhere beautiful. Even though Bob and I loved Basil very much, he was always more Lydia's cat really, and she's so very upset at his passing.

So we agreed on cremation for him and had it done with "Summerleaze Pet Crematorium", via our veterinary practice.

I had a call on Thursday to say that his ashes were ready to collect. It was Ollie's birthday on Thursday and I didn't want to overshadow that with this blog, so I've kept it until today. The ashes are beautifully presented in a little casket with a paw print design on top, and this is inside a box with his name on and a dried floral decoration on top. It's really lovely. There's also a little certificate saying when the cremation took place.

I've never had a pet cremated before and I don't know what I was expecting, but it wasn't really this amount of care I don't think. It's very lovely, and has helped to ease our grief at losing one of our family. We'll keep him safe now, until such time we can all get together to give him a 'send off'.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Told of a life ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Friday 18th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... people and places ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 18

My positive today is absolutely because it is Weekend!

I am so looking forward to doing lots of lovely things with Weekend.....we also have our friends Inspiration, Motivation, Organisation, Creativity, and Productivity with us. At the moment my energy levels are pretty good, and pain levels about medium, so I can hopefully get lots of things done in the house and garden, but will obviously pace myself so I don't overdo it.

My Lovely Man and Ollie will be here Saturday evening and on Sunday I'm looking forward to going up to Craig-y-Nos with them, for some crafting (although the weather forecast says that it might not be in the sun this week) and to hopefully meeting up with Jackie and Amber for a walk and a natter!

So much to look forward to and to be positive about. I wish whoever is reading this a very happy, healthy and safe weekend.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... people and places ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this beautifulNick Drake song. The piano in this is just so lovely, and Nick's voice smooth and soothing. The addition of the glockenspiel accents make this song quite delicious!

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Thursday 17th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... find a friend ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 17

Today's positive is Ollie Dog, who has a birthday today and is eight years old!

Along with my Lovely Man, Ollie is one of the loveliest, most precious souls ever to be part of my world. Ollie is most definitely the loveliest dog I have ever known - he is such a calm, gentle, sensitive, loving dog, who brings joy into the lives of all who interact with him. Up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park he has a definite fan base, and is never short of friends to take him for a walk.

Ollie also has a typical Springer Spaniel side to him, and he loves to chase balls and sticks, and more than anything to go to the beach and play in the sea.

Here are lots of lovely pictures of Ollie - on his own, with Bob, with me, with each of the pussycats, and with his doggy friend Amber.

It was really hard to choose just a few pictures, as I have so many lovely ones of him.

Happy Birthday Ollie, and here's to the next eight years and beyond!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... find a friend ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Wednesday 16th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Three Hours ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 16

Today's positive is having the opportunity to get out into the garden and get lots done! It's been a while, for many reasons, and the grass was about four feet high, and interspersed with lots of weeds! We put a good three to four hours in today, which was fab.

I'm so happy that I finally got to plant Nala Cat's lovely rose, in the spot where we buried her back in February when she passed. The rose is called "Queen Bee" which is an absolutely perfect tribute for our Beautiful Little Diva!

I'm so looking forward to watching it grow and bloom beautiful roses for us.

My Lovely Man worked his absolute socks off to strim everything back, and I am so grateful to him. A kind neighbour loaned us a super-duper strimmer which made the job much easier that using my humble little strimmer!

There are lots of things in the garden to be positive about - Hydrangea is looking good. She had died right back in the winter and I thought she was a gonner, but she's growing really well again, and there are definite flower buds there. Another thing which I thought was a gonner was a rose peony which I bought last year, but again she seems to be doing really well.

The strawberries in the wheel barrow are thriving, as is the ivy I planted at the base of the barrow, and some ferns which I took as cuttings on a woodland walk last year.

Today was such a boost, and apparently the weather is going to be good for a while, so it will be nice if I can find some opportunities to get out there regularly.

The next job I want to do is plant some wild flower seeds around this tree.

Some have grown there naturally and I like the way it looks, so I've decided to make a bit of a feature out of it, using this old ladder as a prop. I've seen some posts on Pinterest showing a similar sort of thing, where people have used old step ladders to display potted plants. I'm pinching the idea, but I don't want mine to be as organised as the ones I've seen. This old ladder was put to one side, with the intention of taking it to the tip, but I think I can make it and its surrounding area look really pretty with the use of ivy and wild flowers. We'll see anyway.

Off now for some food, and maybe a hot bath. My joints are shouting at me this evening for doing so much in one go, so maybe some Epsom Salts will do the trick. Then some T.V. - maybe another Bette Davis film. We watched "Now, Voyager" last night - what a fab film that was.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Three Hours ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Tuesday 15th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... could have been a book ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 15

My positive for today is this book, which is such a good read!

I started it on Saturday and am only three chapters in, but am enjoying it so much. Peter May is fast becoming one of my favourite authors.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... could have been a book ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Monday 14th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... clean and nice ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 14

My positive for today is this basket of line-dried tea towels, which smell deliciously fresh and yummy!

That is all - my needs are simple!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... clean and nice ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Sunday 13th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Dream with the sun and the skies ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 13

My positive for today is a lovely day up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park.

As well as crafting in the sun and messing around with those 'ats, I enjoyed the beautiful blue sky......

......walking through the park with Jackie, Ollie and Amber, when the pooches enjoyed some cooling off and splashing around in the water......

......and the general beauty that is Craig-y-Nos, combined with such a fabulous, colourful season.

I never, ever tire of this place - it makes everything ok!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Dream with the sun and the skies ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 12th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Who can know what happens in her mind ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 12

My positive for today is getting to the end of this book!

I can't say I enjoyed it all that much - I found it slow - it only seemed to pick up in pace during about the last quarter of it - and felt that there was a lot of unnecessary stuff getting to the point. I didn't want to actually give up on it, because it was well acclaimed in it's time, and praised by writers such as Margaret Atwood, who I really like.

Anyway, I've finished it now, and can start another! Hopefully one which I'll enjoy more than I did this one.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Who can know what happens in her mind ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Friday 11th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... To play so many parts ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 11

My positive today is books! Actually, when were books never a positive?

This is my haul of books from our trip to Watchet in Devon on Wednesday, where there was a fabulous community book shop, as well as lots of books in the charity shops, and a bus shelter at the top of the town, which had been converted to a sort of "bring and take" book stall.

Mark Billingham is an author I've seen here and there when out and about and this book - "Cry Baby" is one which was in Tesco recently and which I almost bought. I'm looking forward to reading it.

Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales" has been on my reading list for many years, so I thought I'd grab that one and put it in the 'books to read' pile - a pile which is getting taller and taller! Haha.

Fearne Cotton's "Happy" is about overcoming depression, so I thought that might be useful for me at the moment.

Jenny Colgan and Peter May are two of my favourite authors, and I haven't read either of these books, so in the basket they went! As for "Daisy's Vintage Cornish Camper Van".....well the fact that it has 'Cornish' in the title was enough to grab me!

So....I'm about to stack this lot up in the pile and hope it doesn't topple over before I get a chance to read them all! Off for some tea and chapters now - toodlepip!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... To play so many parts ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Thursday 10th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Where flowers grow ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 10

My positive today is the humble cuppa!

There's a lot to be said for a lovely cup of tea, and this is a lovely cup of tea!

On this occasion I'm drinking Glengettie - one of my favourite teas, and one which was also my Mam's favourite.

I always think of her when I drink it.

The mug I'm drinking from is one of two which I picked up in a charity shop in Devon yesterday.

Poppies are one of my favourite flowers and I love to see them painted and printed on things. When I saw these two mugs, I couldn't resist them - they are so pretty.

I always feel that drinking tea from a pretty cup makes it taste even better! Yaay for pretty cups!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Where flowers grow ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Wednesday 9th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Turn around and come back again ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 9

We popped down to Devon today - as you do!

It's possible that we needed to pick up a spinning wheel and there happened to be one in Devon.....or it could be that we needed to go to Devon and we came across a spinning wheel - I'll let you decide! Haha.

Either way, it was a lovely day out with my Lovely Man and Ollie, during which time we admired the view at Watchet Harbour......

......were entertained by the antics of a seagull and his piece of bread......

......and feasted upon a yummy picnic, complete with dessert.

We also (of course) perused the charity shops and had some lovely finds, as well as a very well organised community bookshop, and a bus stop which was also converted into a sort of "bring and take" book stall....but those things are to share another day!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Turn around and come back again ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Tuesday 8th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Rider on the Wheel ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 8

My positive for today is an encounter with a young man on a bicycle!

Bob, Ollie and I had gone to the beach for an after work walk, and on the way back, we called off to the bottle bank in Tesco to dispose of some glass jars. When I was putting the jars in the container, I heard somebody call out what I thought was "Missed!" I thought someone was telling me I'd missed my shot, popping the jar in, and so turned around to have a look.

I saw two young lads. One of them was riding a bike, and he was the one who had called out. What he'd actually said was "Remember me from primary school Miss?" I did indeed remember his face, but couldn't for the life of me remember his name! So he politely reminded me of it, we exchanged a few 'how you doing?' kind of words, and they went on their way.

It's around six years since I left the teaching profession, and probably around ten years since I taught him. What a positive feeling to be remembered - and clearly remembered in a good light, since he was so friendly and smiling. It was such a lovely encounter.

I obviously don't have a picture of the encounter for my 'picture of the day' since that would have been well weird to whip out my camera and take his pic! Haha. So I've dug out this one from when I was teaching in that particular school. We were reading a book called "Sharing A Shell" by Julia Donaldson and I was teaching the tiddly peeps about different lines used in art. We used wavy lines to paint images of "Blob" - one of the characters, who is a sea anemone.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Rider on the Wheel ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Monday 7th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Day is done ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 7

Today it was so hard to find a positive.

Our Handsome Old Man Basil passed away just before seven this morning. He was at home with Joe and me. He passed with me stroking his head and paw, and Joe laying next to him and purring. It is a horrible thing to see your beloved furry companion die, but I am so glad that it was the way it was and not in a cold, clinical vet's surgery, as it was with Nala's passing in February.

There are other reasons why today is hard and why it has been hard to find a positive. It is the anniversary of my father's passing, which is always a difficult day for me......and today I received a copy of a letter (which I was copied in to) - a medical letter which was about me, and implied that I may have something sinister going on with something which showed up on the MRI scan I had towards the end of last year. Thankfully, there is nothing sinister. I was able to talk to somebody over the 'phone, who reassured me that all is ok, but I spent over an hour today thinking that there was something seriously wrong and that nobody had told me.

By the end of the afternoon I had decided that the positive for today has to be Basil himself. Dear old handsome, lovely, special Basil.

Basil came to us in October 2006, when I was doing my degree and working in a chippy in the evenings to help pay the bills. I came home from my shift one evening and Basil was sitting in the middle of the kitchen, looking at me, as if to say "Right, is it ok if I move in now?"

He had latched on to Lydia and come home with her, and decided that we were his hoomans. He was skinny as a rake, riddled with fleas & ear mites, and still had his three-piece-suite in tact! We think he was around two years old, which made him around seventeen when he died - a long (and happy) life!

Within weeks he had been to the vets to get him cleaned up and neutered, was eating us out of house and home, and had transformed into the handsome boy you see in these pictures. We nicknamed him "Basil Bumface" because of the cute little white marks between his nose and mouth, which looked like bum cheeks!

When Basil arrived we already had a female cat called Boo.

Boo sadly passed away in Spring 2007 and around the same time, a friend of a friend was trying to rehome some kittens from a pregnant female stray cat she had taken in. We went to see the kittens and agreed to take one on as a companion for Basil.....so along came Joe, who was nine weeks old.

Basil and Joe immediately became the best of friends. Basil behaved like a father figure to Joe, looking out for him, cwtching with him, and really nurturing him. They were beautiful together. Basil wouldn't share his food with Joe though! Haha.

Then Nala joined our family in 2001. Unfortunately Nala never really hit it off with the boys and it did change the dynamics a little also between Basil and Joe, but they still remained best friends.

Basil and Nala generally avoided each other, but now and then - as you can see from these pictures - there was an opportunity for a photograph of them together!

Very rarely, all three cats would sleep on the sofa together. Usually on a cold day when I hadn't been at home to put the heating on! I did manage to get this picture, but it is the only one of them all together.

When Bob and Ollie first came to the house in spring/summer of 2019, Basil hid away behind the sofa!

However, it wasn't too long before all of the furries were getting along together. I remember being absolutely flabbergasted the day I saw Basil on Bob's lap! Basil was only ever affectionate when he wanted 'fishies'. He was definitely never a lap cat and hated being picked up for a cwtch, so I figure my Lovely Man must have something special about him - but then I knew that anyway!

I sadly don't have any pictures of Basil with Ollie, nor of him with either Lydia or myself! I love taking pictures and do it often, so it's quite surprising, but there ya go.

I love these fun pictures of Basil.

I'm not sure whether he liked wearing his Christmas jumper. I suspect not, and that he was thinking 'bloody hoomans', but tolerated it in the hopes of getting extra fishies out of us!

The blep picture is really rare - the furries don't very often do a 'blep', and it's by pure fluke that I had the camera out when Basil did his.

Yep, that is an IPad that Basil is playing with in the third picture - there's an app that you can get for cats, where they can chase bits of string around the screen with their paw, and that's just what he's doing! He loved doing that and I was very sad when my PiePad broke and we couldn't play that any more.

Next to eating, Basil's favourite thing to do was to sleep!

Having furry companions in the home is always a positive, and Basil was absolutely no exception. Our lives were enriched for having him around.

This is one of my favourite pictures of him - cwtched up on a blanket, sleeping without a care in the world.

Sleep peacefully now Basil - our beautiful, cute, funny, gentle, darling Handsome Old Man. ♥ ♥ ♥

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Day is done ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is the title of this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

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Sunday 6th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... The blossoms came ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 6

I spent the day up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park again today, with my Lovely Man and Ollie.

Ollie and I went out for our Sunday morning walk with Jackie and Amber, and Jackie very kindly took these two pictures for me, because I had forgotten to take a camera! Thank you Jackie - the photographs are much appreciated!

There were actually lots of positives today...

...the day itself...

...the weather...

...the location...

...the company...

...and the fact that I got to craft in the sunshine again.

But I think my favourite positive was the beautiful blossoms on these trees, and knowing that they will blossom even more, and before we know it, the trees will be laden with colours - fabulous, vibrant colours!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... The blossoms came ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

I'd love to see your feedback!

Please click here if you would like to comment on this blog entry via my Facebook page.

Saturday 5th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... in summertime ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 5

A hat!

I don't usually wear hats, as I find it very difficult to find any to suit me. I'm not a hat person.

However, since I've been spending quite a lot of Weekend time up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park with my Lovely Man and Ollie, and there have been a few spells of very hot weather lately, I'm finding that being in the sun so much is really taking it's toll on me, and I need to use a head covering.

So when we were over in Ammanford a few days ago, I decided to look for a suitable hat, and I found this one.

It does actually look ok on me, so my positive for today is that I've found a hat I'm happy to wear! Yaay!

Actually, when I say happy to wear it.....I am.....however, not quite as it is at the moment. I think the band of little flowers is a bit neither here nor there, and if I'm going to have to wear a hat, I want something bold & colourful on it! Look out for a hat-transforming creative post sometime soon!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... in summertime ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

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Friday 4th June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... a way to find the sun ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 4

Today's positive was going to the beach for a walk after work. We haven't actually done that for a while, and what a lovely way to start Weekend off.

As usual, Ollie was in his element. The tide was going out, although the sea was just visible about a quarter of a mile in the distance. Because it's been so warm, there were no little pools for Ollie to splash around in, and he spent quite a bit of time looking for them! Awww. However, he was perfectly happy to hare around chasing a ball and stop for the obligatory bum rubs and back scratches!

I wish whoever is reading this a very lovely, happy, healthy and safe weekend.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... a way to find the sun ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today is taken from this Nick Drake song.

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Thursday 3rd June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Take your time and you'll be fine ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 3

Finally my yellow cupboard, shelf and spice rack are up in place on the wall! This is a big positive, because it's taken me so long to get them done, and putting them up was stressful, for various reasons. Big thanks to my Lovely Man who helped me with this.

So this is today's positive, and I'm really looking forward to spending some time tomorrow after work filling them up with lovely things!

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... Take your time and you'll be fine ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today - a very appropriate line, since I've definitely taken my time with my yellow things - is taken from this Nick Drake song.

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Wednesday 2nd June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... You're a rare, rare find ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 2

Today was Day Off and we popped over to Ammanford for a coffee and a browse of the charity shops.

I came across this rare find - a whole tin full of lovely, vintage buttons. All shapes, sizes and colours. Absolutely fab!

There is something incredibly therapeutic about running one's fingers through a tin or box of buttons. I think most people can relate to having had such a tin or box in their house whilst growing up - maybe it belonged to Mum, or Granny. Memories of sorting through the buttons, maybe putting them in different sizes and colours, or grouping complimentary colours together, as I have done in this picture.

I definitely remember having a box of buttons like this in our house, and always finding them fascinating. My love of all things sewing has its roots in Mam's sewing talents and the lovely sewing things she had in the house.

So this is my positive for today - finding such a treasure. I am going to keep this tin of buttons just as they are, and get them out for a rummage through now and then, enjoying their many colours, patterns, textures, shapes and just the simple feeling of them between my fingers, and wondering about the story behind each button.

The fact that the tin itself is so beautiful just adds to the loveliness of it all - it will look very lovely on a shelf and I'll enjoy finding just the right shelf as I continue on my 'making my house a home' journey.

Continuing with Nick Drake as my featured musician for this month, ♫ "... You're a rare, rare find ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Nick Drake song.

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Tuesday 1st June 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Pink moon is on its way ... " ♫

Strawberry Moon June 2021 - 30 Days of Positivity - Day 1

Today I am kicking off Strawberry Moon June 2021, and my blog each day in June will be about something positive for that day.

I started Strawberry Moon June a few years ago, because I was finding June a very difficult and sad month, because of the anniversaries of the deaths of three of the most influential men in my life - my father, Lydia's father, and my brother Dave. I decided to turn June on it's head and specifically focus on all the positives for that month.

I have a very lovely friend, Andrea, who I've known since school days, and she totally gets my Strawberry Moon June thing, and each year, since I started it, she has sent me fab gifts to celebrate the month.

I received these gifts in the post from her just over a week ago, and although I put a teaser on my blog for that day, I wanted to save pictures of the actual gifts for today - the first day of Strawberry Moon June 2021.

So today my positive is friendship, and these lovely things which I will so enjoy using and looking at. They will always remind me of Andrea, and they will always remind me that however sad life can get, there is always something to be positive about. Sometimes when we are in the darkest, saddest place, we have to look carefully...but there really is always something positive to find, no matter how small.

If you are reading this, and you are in a sad place, I send you wishes for something positive soon, and I hope you too can have a Strawberry Moon June.

I've also decided from this month onwards, to have a 'featured musician/s' for my blog, and will choose one of their songs each day to take my lyric snippet from. My featured musician this month is the fabulous Nick Drake. Nick sadly passed away in November 1974 at the age of 26, but he left behind a legacy of the most beautiful, soulful music. I love his music so much and listen to him almost every day. I am proud to feature him and his music during my Strawberry Moon June.

♫ "... Pink moon is on its way ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Nick Drake song.

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Monday 31st May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Don't put all your dreams in one basket ... " ♫

I never put all my dreams in one basket.....nor all my shopping - especially when it won't fit!

I went up to Craig-y-Nos Country Park again today to spend the day with my Lovely Man, and on the way called in to the boot sale, where I got this absolutely gowjus little basket, some lovely plants for the house and garden, and a cute little clock to use in work, because the desk where I sit now has no clock nearby. Not that I clock watch, but it is nice to know what time of day it is, and at the moment I don't wear a watch.

Ollie and I went out with Jackie and Amber for a walk again, and Ollie & Amber had a dip in the river as usual. Jackie was throwing a ball for them to catch, and I love the look of anticipation on Ollie's face in this picture.

The weather was beautiful today on this bank holiday Monday and the park was packed with visitors, all enjoying the lovely sunshine. Look how blue the sky was!

When the weather is this nice, there is nothing for it but to sit outside and read & craft......

......so I enjoyed some cross stitching, with regular tea input!

It was probably too hot for me though really, and I definitely need to sort out a hat to wear. I don't usually do hats, but I must look for one, as the sun isn't really my friend as far as Lupus is concerned, and even being in direct sun for a small amount of time can give me heat stroke type symptoms.

I am definitely paying for it this evening, with a pounding headache and a bit of a spaced-out feeling. At leas the natural vitamin D will have benefited me anyway, so there is a positive!

I'm off for a cooler than usual bath, followed by some gentle T.V. I think! I hope you've had a fab bank holiday weekend, and I wish you a happy, healthy and safe week ahead - a shorter working week this week!

♫ "... Don't put all your dreams in one basket ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Ray Charles song.

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Sunday 30th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Songs from the wood ... " ♫

I was up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park with my Lovely Man and Ollie today.

As usual, Ollie and I went for a walk with Jackie and Amber, and whilst walking I decided that today it was all about the trees! One of my favourite things to do is look up through trees and take photographs of the sky beyond.

I love being amongst trees.

I love to look at them, smell them, listen to their rustling, and of course now and again give a tree a good old cwtch!

There are a few trees in my garden, which self-seeded and are now around fifteen years old. When Bob cut all the garden back for me to start afresh, I was quite adamant that I wanted to keep as many of the trees as possible, and so we did. They are a haven for the bird life in my garden, and I have the bird table - just a simple slice of tree log - propped into one of them.

Most of the trees up at Craig-y-Nos are donkeys years old, and I wonder about the stories they could tell if they could speak.....the people and animals which have come and gone over the years. Life is constantly changing but the trees remain the same - strong, upright, and beautiful.

Even when they are chopped down - for whatever reason - they can tell a story of how old they are and what kind of wood they yield, and the most beautiful things can be made from their wood. My Dad dabbled in some carving when he chopped down an apple tree which we had in the garden, and which had become diseased and could no longer grow properly and yield fruit. He took the best parts of it and made a few things for Mam and for me, and I treasure his carvings.

These are the rhododendrons at Craig-y-Nos and I never tire of looking at them, or through the tunnel they make as their branches twist and turn towards each other, as if seeking comfort and reassurance from one another. In a few weeks' time, this area will be a riot of beautiful pinks and purples, when they come into bloom, but for now I'd just like to appreciate the beauty of their lovely old and tangled branches.

♫ "... Songs from the wood ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Jethro Tull song.

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Saturday 29th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Carry me home ... " ♫

I popped over to Burry Port this afternoon for this little gem. Another Facebook Marketplace bargain. It's destined for the bathroom, and I love it already.

♫ "... Carry me home ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this blink 182 song.

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Friday 28th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Here comes the weekend ... " ♫

Weekend and I are very happy to be together, and we're looking forward to entertaining Inspiration, Motivation, Organisation, Creativity and Productivity......but for this evening, it's all about the tea, the kitty cwtches, some chapters and a bit of fiddling with some pointy/hooky things and stringy stuff.

I wish whoever's reading this a very happy, healthy and safe weekend.

♫ "... Here comes the weekend ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Pink song.

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Thursday 27th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... I take it on up to my room ... " ♫

There was only one charity shop over in Burry Port yesterday, and because of Covid they are usually taking visitors and browsers by appointment.

However, they allowed us in because they had nobody else in the shop at the time. The only thing I found which I wanted to buy was this Audrey Niffenegger book. I have "The Time Traveler's Wife" down in my library lined up to read, so I may get it out and pop it with this one, then read them one after the other.

In any event, this one is going on my bedside cabinet 'to read' pile, which seems to be growing at an alarming rate! Ah well, what's life without a little bookishness?

♫ "... I take it on up to my room ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Pete Townshend song.

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Wednesday 26th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Mr. Blue Sky is living here today, hey hey ... " ♫

Today was such a lovely day, in lots of ways......Day Off.....quality time with some of my Lovelies.....beautiful weather...to name just three.

After lunch we took ourselves off down to Burry Port for the afternoon. I saw this bright windmill in a shop and bought it for my garden.

I love these colourful windmills, they are such happy things to look at, and I think Bob modelled it beautifully against the fabulous blue sky!

I also love these colourful buildings on one of the streets in Burry Port. They always make me feel cheerful, and today they looked particularly bright.

Of course we explored the charity shop, and I found these two lovely baskets which are just asking to be filled with lovely things!

I really like Burry Port and really enjoyed capturing some views of the harbour, beach and sand dunes......

......as well as some views of the lighthouse, which is probably my favourite thing down there.

You've heard of people hugging trees? Well, I love to do that, but I also love to hug lighthouses and I gave it a jolly good hug today, since it's been a while since I've been there.

Ollie (like me), absolutely adores the beach and he was in his element, tearing around and having the time of his life. He loves to go in the sea for a swim, and he loves it when we throw stones into the water for him to chase....although he doesn't do much actual chasing of them - I think the thrill for him is just to see us throw them! He does look very cute when he's anticipating a throw though.

We saw some pretty and interesting things on the beach, including an interestingly shaped piece of driftwood, lots of groups of lovely colourful pebbles, and one pebble which was particularly pretty with its blue and pink colours...and it wasn't until I was editing my photographs that I noticed it's in the shape of a fish!

Being out in the fresh air today, with such fab company, and the sunshine (although not too hot) really helped to lift my mood. I really need more days like this!

I'm off to cook some dinner now, and have a little reflection on the lovely day, and a ponder on where in the garden I might put my gowjus windmill. Toodlepip.

♫ "... Mr. Blue Sky is living here today, hey hey ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this fabulousElectric Light Orchestra song.

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Tuesday 25th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Noise Annoys ... " ♫

One of my biggest problems at the moment on a daily basis, is noise sensitivity. It began about eighteen months ago and is really horrible. I find certain (high pitched) noises unbearable, and when there is a variety of noise in the vicinity I feel overwhelmed, unable to concentrate, and it makes the constant headache which I have worse.

There's always a fair bit of noise going on in work - it's part and parcel of the nature of our work. The radio, telephones, steam irons, sewing machines, conversations, sounds of things being packed into boxes. All sorts of noises, and some days it is worse for me than others. Yesterday was one of them.

To combat this when it's particularly bad, I wear headphones and listen to music of my choice (usually Nick Drake because he is so soothing). This doesn't cut out all the noise (although some), but it does allow me to tune in to what I'm listening to, and focus much better to be able to concentrate on my work. The drawback of this is that it makes me somewhat antisocial, because for this to be effective I do need to have the music I'm listening to up quite high. Although I can hear people when they talk to me, and ask me questions, etc., it is difficult to have a full on conversation without turning the music off or taking off the headphones.

The other problem of course is that I'm concerned about the potential damage to my hearing through having music piped into my ears through the whole working day. I already have tinnitus in my left ear, and I don't want things to get any worse.

Last night Bob suggested actual ear defenders, and we had a look online to see what's what. We found these little beauties and I picked them up from "Tool Station" on my way to work this morning. They are pretty fab, and I think a good solution to the problem I'm having. I wore them in work today, and they cut out most of the noise. I was still able to have a conversation with Julie (who I sit opposite to) whilst we were working.

However, I did find them a little uncomfortable - it felt like they were squeezing my head a bit, which again is no good for the headache - and they made my ears 'pop'. These things may of course get better in time. The other thing I found was that I could hear the tinnitus in my left ear quite clearly (usually I don't notice it unless I'm in silence) and I could quite distinctly hear my own heartbeat, which was a bit freaky. It felt like I had the opening track of Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" on a loop! I think a way to combat these problems may be to still have some music via ear buds, although really quietly. This should take the edge off the tinnitus and heartbeat, and still ensure I can have a conversation. It's Day Off tomorrow, so I'll be trying that on Thursday I think.

♫ "... Noise Annoys ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Buzzcocks song.

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Monday 24th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Pack it all away ... " ♫

Today after work I collected another fabulous Facebook Marketplace find. This beautiful old trunk.

I've wanted one of these for years, and now I have one! Yaay.

It's beautiful inside as well as out, with this lovely removable tray and the criss-cross design inside the lid. It needs some tlc - there are signs of it having got damp at some point, although it is bone dry now - so I'll do something creative to upcycle the inside of it, and will work on the outside too - probably keep the decorative wooden parts as they are and either paint or découpage the parts in between.

Originally I wanted it to use as decorative storage for the front bedroom, but now I think I'll probably use it in the craft room for fabrics and haberdashery, and make a feature of it. It'll be a while before I do it, so plenty of time to plan something lovely.

♫ "... Pack it all away ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Sia song.

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Sunday 23rd May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Here stood my dreaming tree ... " ♫

This is definitely a very dreamy tree! This tree is on the edge of the duck pond up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park, and I've wanted to get a picture of it from this angle for a few weeks, but each time I've been there the lighting hasn't been quite right. Today it was fine, and I am pleased with the result.

I was up at the park today to spend the day with my Lovely Man and Ollie. It rained relentlessly all day.

Ollie and I did manage a walk with Jackie and Amber this morning. Then we had a visit from Bob's friends Chris and Moira. It was nice to have a catch up with Moira whilst Bob and Chris talked spinning wheels (the renovation of).

I then spent the rest of the day crafting with my needles, threads, hooks & yarns, in the cosiness of Bob's studio with the sound of the rain outside, and a regular supply of tea. Very Hygge.

Off to watch T.V. for a while before bed now. We've been watching Bette Davis films recently and tonight it's going to be "Watcher In The woods".

If you're reading this I hope you've had a fab weekend and I wish you a very happy, healthy and safe week ahead.

♫ "... Here stood my dreaming tree ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Dave Matthews Band song.

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Saturday 22nd May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... You make everything groovy ... " ♫

Today something wild turned up in the post!

I've decided to subscribe to Wild deodorant. A work colleague uses it and says it's very good, so I thought I would give it a try. It has no parabens, aluminium or single-use plastic, and the original container they send you is refillable, with compostable refills.

I had an introductory voucher for 20% off, so used that for my first purchase. You then set dates to receive refills, and you can go into your account any time and change your subscription - to order extras if you use more, or hold off your next delivery if you're not using as much. You can also cancel your subscription at any time with no penalties.

Wild is also vegan and cruelty free.

I've been using the same brand of antiperspirant/deodorant for many years and have always found it effective. However, to my knowledge the product is not vegan or cruelty free and this has always bothered me. Also I've always been concerned about aluminium being present.

It will probably be a few weeks before I start using the Wild, because I still have some of my current deodorant to use, so I'll let you know how I get on.

♫ "... You make everything groovy ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this song by The Troggs.

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Friday 21st May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... I can't tell you, but I know it's mine ... " ♫

I wasn't feeling my best when I got home from work today.....very tired, in pain, and a little on the low side. So it was a fab surprise, and very much a feel-good thing to come home to a gowjus gift in the post, from a lovely friend.

The gift is in honour of this year's "Strawberry Moon June", which is something I invented for myself three (or was it actually four? It could be) years ago, in order to turn June - proven to be a very sad month for me - on its head and make it positive.

I'll explain more about Strawberry Moon June and all it entails on June 1st when I kick it off. For that reason, I'm keeping the details of my friend's lovely gift until then, and this is just a little picture teaser!

♫ "... I can't tell you, but I know it's mine ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Beatles song.

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Thursday 20th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... You lift me when I feel small ... " ♫

Two lovely products in the post today, which contribute to better self-confidence, and better health for me.

The product on the left - Florisene - is a hair supplement, which helps with the growth of healthy hair. Lupus makes my hair fall out, and this product helps to stop that happening, and also replenishes most of what falls out. It's so important for me to be at least reasonably happy when I look in the mirror. Call me vain if you like, but when I see how thin my hair gets at times, it's very depressing indeed. This product is nothing short of a miracle for me.

The product on the right is a Vegan capsule of plant-based Omega 3,6 and 9. Omega 3 is vital for me, again because of Lupus - to reduce and prevent inflammation. Omega 6 may not be so good from what I've read, and may even cause inflammation, but I've decided to give it a go and will reassess when I get to the end of these capsules, then I may just re-order Omega 3 capsules. I don't eat meat (haven't for years) or dairy (for just over two years), but I have still been eating fish, to get the Omega 3 for my joints. However, I'm really not comfortable eating fish any more and I'm so happy to have found a vegan substitute for the Omega 3.

♫ "... You lift me when I feel small ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Lady Gaga song, and from the soundtrack of "A Star Is Born".

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Wednesday 19th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Back on the road again ... " ♫

We were indeed on the road again today. This time we went to Winchester, so that Bob could pick up another spinning wheel which he has bought. Apparently this is a very special one, hence the distance.

We set off late morning and had a picnic on the way, arriving in Winchester around three in the afternoon. We decided not to go into Winchester itself, as the traffic seemed really bad, so we stopped off at a garden centre, where they had a coffee shop and we were able to enjoy a coffee in the marquee outside and a browse around the garden centre and shop.

The gentleman who was selling the spinning wheel had quite a large garden, with so many interesting things in it. So whilst he and Bob were talking spinning wheels, I (with permission) went off with my camera to take some photographs.

First of the lamp post in the photo' of the day, then these lovely jars and bottles......

......and these old buckets and a beautiful anvil caught my eye. I love anvils and would love one for my garden. I'm on the lookout, but they are really expensive. One day though!

I also love old tractors, and there were a couple of them in this garden.

I think the loveliest things though were these beautiful, brightly painted old caravans. Absolutely gowjus!

All in all, it was a lovely day out. Bob is thrilled with his old Swiss spinning wheel, which is fab since that's why we went in the first place!

♫ "... Back on the road again ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Osmonds song.

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Tuesday 18th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Spinning Around ... " ♫

It's Day Off tomorrow, and we're off on the road.

It was Ludlow last week.....and there is a blog post waiting to be published, which I will do at some time.

In the meantime, tomorrow we go a bit further again, on another spinning wheel quest.

♫ "... Spinning Around ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Kylie Minogue song.

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Monday 17th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... The cupboards are bare ... " ♫

This little cupboard is bare at the moment, but I'm sure it won't be for long, once I've found somewhere to put it. It's in a temporary place in the hall at the moment.

It's small and beautiful, and another lovely find on Facebook Marketplace. I might leave it as it is, or I might give it a fresh coat of paint and a different design on the fronts - although I do like the flowers that are currently on it. I shall have a ponder!

♫ "... The cupboards are bare ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Neil Young and Crazy Horse song.

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Sunday 16th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Let it blossom, let it flow ... " ♫

The weather at the moment is mainly lots of rain!

This doesn't bode well for actual gardening, but it does mean I can curl up with a good book, and if gardening is not an option a gardening book or two is! I picked these two up from a charity shop in Ludlow on Wednesday.

I really like Geoff Hamilton's style of gardening and used to love watching his country cottage gardening programme on T.V. Country cottage is kind of the style of garden I'm hoping to make. Geoff Hamilton may not be with us any more, but his gardening legacy certainly lives on in these lovely books.

♫ "... Let it blossom, let it flow ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Eric Clapton song.

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Saturday 15th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... I'm still standing ... " ♫

These little beauties turned up in the post today.

I take Vitamin D because I have Lupus, and Lupus patients are susceptible to being deficient in Vitamin D. I was buying them in my local Tesco or Home Bargains, but found out that over the counter Vitamin D can be derived from an animal source, so decided to look for a vegan alternative. I found this one via Healthspan.

Whilst ordering them, I decided to buy some Glucosamine, as it is possible that it can help with pain relief for Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis - both of which I have. I did take some for a few months last year, and I'm not sure if it helped or not, but since Healthspan sell a vegan version of it, and I had a voucher for 20% off, I decided to give it another go.

I also have two other supplements on the way - plant-based omega 3,6 and 9, and some Florisene. I've ordered those from a different company, and I think they'll be here in a couple of days.

♫ "... I'm still standing ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Elton John song.

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Friday 14th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Line after line, when you're taking it in ... " ♫

There were lots and lots of books in the charity shops in Ludlow.

I probably could have filled about a dozen carrier bags with books I'd like, but I do try to limit myself because the pile on the bedside cabinet is getting bigger again, and there is also the matter of the small room at the side of my house which I converted to a library last year, and which is filled with lots of books to read!

However, I couldn't resist these three. I'm slowly reading through the Kathy Reichs books, so I buy them when I see them, so that I hopefully have the next in line ready for when I need it. Sophie Kinsella is one of my favourite authors, and I know I haven't read this one, so in the basket it went. As for "Blood Orange" by Harriet Tyce - it's been on my 'to read' list for a while, so that's that!

♫ "... Line after line, when you're taking it in ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Arkells song.

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Thursday 13th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Pussycat, pussycat, I've got flowers ... " ♫

When we hopped off to Ludlow yesterday, we couldn't resist popping into some charity shops, where everyone was very friendly, and very welcoming of Ollie when we asked if we could bring in a well-behaved dog! I wonder if they would have said the same about Joe? He certainly looks very cute in this picture!

Joe is very much approving of this pair of curtains and extra fabric which I picked up from one of the charity shops. As soon as I saw them, I loved the bright, vibrant floral print - and when Bob said he liked them too, I just had to get them!

There are two ready-made curtains which will be perfect for the spare room when I decorate, and I'll use the additional fabric to make a vallance or pelmet.

The nice thing about this fabric is that there are lots of colours to work with. I sort of had ideas for colours in mind for the spare room anyway, and was thinking of purples and blues. This cushion I finished recently, together with two others, are the sorts of colours I had in mind.

The new curtains will complement them well I think.

I think the same about this lovely paint, which I bought in the sale recently in Wilko's and which I'll be using for three of the walls.

I have a wall paper for the other wall, which is a Laura Ashley mini print (flowers and birds) in tones of blue.

I also like that this cute little basket I bought from Home Sense a few weeks ago will go with it all.

Things are gathering together really well for my spare room.

♫ "... Pussycat, pussycat, I've got flowers ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Tom Jones song.

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Wednesday 12th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... we go down the highway ... " ♫

It was Day Off today and we went off to Ludlow....mainly to pick up a spinning wheel, but also to have a bit of quality time together, looking around the town.

We left late morning and stopped on the way for a picnic, then arrived in Ludlow for around two-thirty.

It was so nice to have a day out together, and Ludlow is one of my favourite places in Britain. Some of the old buildings are so beautiful.

There is so much to do and see there. It was market day, but by the time we'd browsed the charity shops, we were a little late and the market was packing away. We did pick up quite a few bargains in the charity shops - some books, and some bits and pieces for the house.

There are lots of other little things to see, and lots of nostalgia in such an olde-worlde kind of place!

I love that there is an original red telephone box, and it was nice to read all the blue historical plaques around the place.

Also, around the castle area, there is an old drinking fountain. At least I think that's what it is!

The castle wasn't open for us to go in, and in any case, we'd need a whole day just to do that, but the area around the castle was very photgraph-worthy! We also managed to give Ollie a bit of a walk off the lead in that area.

I love this sign outside a music shop, and couldn't resist taking some photographs of it.

Today was such a nice day. I think we'll have to go to that area again and spend much more time there next time!

♫ "... we go down the highway ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Willie Nelson song.

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Tuesday 11th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Made For You ... " ♫

At last I am sharing the beautiful scarf which Bob made for me for Valentine's Day! It's his first proper woven item made on a Louët Erica 4 Shaft Table Loom.

He did finish it for the actual day - it's me who's dragged her heels, getting it washed and trimming off the fringing.

It took me a while to remember to get the hand-washing detergent, as I didn't have any in the house, since I put most things in the washing machine, and if I do hand wash anything, I use my regular detergent, which is non-bio.

However, I wanted to use proper hand-washing detergent for this special item.

I will also admit that I was more than a little bit scared to trim off the fringing, in case I made a mess of it! Thankfully, I didn't and now my lovely scarf is ready to wear. I just need some cold weather now to wear it.....oh hang on - Welsh weather! Ha!

♫ "... Made For You ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this Jake Owen song.

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Monday 10th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... journey back in time ... " ♫

Another day another Facebook Marketplace bargain!

After work today I popped to Swansea to pick up this cute little cupboard. It's really old-fashioned (which I love) and reminds me of those little larder cabinets - with the mesh front - that were around years ago. We had one at home, and I think my Auntie Dol had one in the house in Canton too.

I'll probably end up refreshing the paint on this and changing the flower on the front, but that won't be for a while. I think it'll be for the front bedroom.

♫ "... journey back in time ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Peter Frampton song.

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Sunday 9th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... smell the rain ... " ♫

Another lovely Sunday spent up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park today with my Lovely Man and Ollie.

The weather was a bit grim - grey and rainy for most of the day, but it was dry to start so we managed to give Ollie a walk around the park. I could indeed smell the rain - the petrichor - and I couldn't resist taking this picture of the view of the sky up through some trees. I love doing that!

Oh, and here are those lovely Acers again - this time from the other side of the wall. It's good to look on the other side sometimes.

♫ "... smell the rain ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Stereophonics song.

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Saturday 8th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... got to have you some ... " ♫

I popped into Home Sense today - one of my favourite shops. I don't go there very often, because I could easily spend lots of money, so now and then it's a treat to go and have a browse.

I found these two lovely things.

Back in February, when I made heart-shaped biscuits for my Lovely Man, I didn't have a heart-shaped cutter, so I used a cardboard template of a heart and 'drew' around it with a sharp knife to shape each biscuit. This wasn't ideal, because it took so blinkin' long, and the biscuits ended up having a bit of a raggedy edge from the knife. Bob didn't mind, and he thought they were yummy (and they did taste lovely) but even so.

So when I saw this set of cutters today I just had to have them - ready for the next time I make heart-shaped biscuits!! That reminds me, I haven't used my lovely bake stone which Bob bought for me.....hmmm, perhaps heart-shaped Welsh Cakes will be on the menu soon!

I also saw this gowjus little basket. The picture is deceiving, as the colour is more of a duck egg blue than grey, and I think it will be a lovely accessory for the back (spare) bedroom when I decorate it. The walls are going to be a duck egg blue. I'm not sure what I'll use the basket for yet.

♫ "... got to have you some ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this fab Dave Edmunds song.

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Friday 7th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens ... " ♫

Those of you who follow my blog regularly, may remember the lovely copper milk churn I bought on eBay a few weeks ago.

If you're new to the blog, or don't remember, then this picture is a reminder of it. I bought it originally for my garden, to put plants in, but then decided that it's far too nice for the garden, and I'll be using it in the house instead.

Well today, I had gowjusness in the post!

My lovely cousin Vicky had this copper kettle, with the same style Delftware handles as my churn, and thought I would like it to go with the churn. It is absolutely beautiful, and I'm looking forward to shining them both up, and finding a home for them together in my home. Thank you so much Vicky.

♫ "... Bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is of course taken from this fabulous song from this equally fabulous film!

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Thursday 6th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Family Table ... " ♫

I got this beautiful little table at a bargain price from Facebook Marketplace.

I wanted something for the lounge for Bob to use his laptop on, and to store bits & pieces which we use in the lounge, but if left lying around can cause clutter. It's only a small room, and because I have so much DIY, craft and other stuff going on in the house at the moment, the lounge is the only room we really have which is tidy, organised and clutter-free (most of the time) for us to retreat into and recharge our batteries.

This little table is perfect, as it's a good height to use the laptop, it has two magazine compartments either side, and a drawer and a couple of shelves on the front. It's vintage, which suits my style perfectly, and it fits neatly at the side/corner of the sofa.

I'm not over-keen on dark wood, so I'll probably 'shabby chic' it at some point, but for the moment it's fine as it is! What a lovely find!

♫ "... Family Table ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is the title of this sweet song by the Zach Brown Band.

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Wednesday 5th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Let me show you ... " ♫

Ollie was showing us just the way to go to see the Defynnog Yew today!

Defynnog is a little hamlet near to Sennybridge, just off the A4067 - the road between Craig-y-Nos and Brecon.

Within the church grounds at Defynnog there is a Yew tree, which is apparently one of the oldest trees in Britain.

There is a website called Undiscovered Wales which gives more information about the Defynnog Yew.

Please click here if you would like to read more about it (opens in a new window).

We think we found the right tree, and I found opportunities to photograph some atmospheric things, including this picture which I think looks quite spooky......

......and this lovely ivy on a gravestone. I love ivies!

The church itself is also a lovely building to look at and photograph.

Prior to having a wander around, we had been for lunch at The International Welsh Rarebit Centre, which is also in Defynnog. They do the most yummy food, and made me this vegan Welsh Rarebit! It was delicious.

The Undiscovered Wales website also has an article on The International Welsh Rarebit Centre. Please click here if you would like to read it (opens in a new window).

The International Welsh Rarebit Centre also have their own Facebook page. Please click here if you would like to access it (opens in a new window).

Bob had the regular Rarebit and says that too was delicious. Talking of my Lovely Man, can you spot the difference between this photograph and the photograph I took of him on Wednesday 21st April when coincidentally he was also eating lunch? if you would like to compare the pictures, please click here! Haha.

♫ "... let me show you ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Jacksons song.

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Tuesday 4th May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... start the day in the usual way ... " ♫

Yes, I know we've just had a bank holiday weekend and I spent Sunday and Monday in a beautiful place with my Lovely Man....and I know I've only been back in work for one day.....but I'm still looking forward to Day Off. So there!

For tomorrow we've made some firm plans of what we're going to do and who we're going to see.....and we've also made some loose plans, which will be dependent on the weather. However, I'm sure the words on my list will all apply!

♫ "... start the day in the usual way ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Tori Amos song.

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Monday 3rd May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Hangin' around ... " ♫

Another day up at Craig-y-Nos Country Park today with my Lovely Man....and what a contrast to yesterday!

It hammered down all day, accompanied by howling winds! I took the opportunity to sit in Bob's studio in the warm and get on with some crafting - crochet and cross stitch.

A sunny bank holiday Monday would have seen lots of people coming to the park to enjoy the surroundings and picnics, etc., but not today - there were hardly any visitors at all.

Even on bad weather days though, I think it's beautiful. I do actually love the rain, especially watching and listening to it. So I took this photograph to show how beautiful it is, even in the rain!

♫ "... Hangin' around ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this beautiful Carpenters song.

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Sunday 2nd May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... but the river is wide ... " ♫

Today being Sunday meant a trip up to Craig-y-Nos Country Park to spend the day with my Lovely Man and Ollie, and to meet Jackie and Amber for a walk.

Ollie and Amber are such good doggie friends and they love to walk together and to splash around in the river, and play chasing stones.

Chasing stones is a game where we humans do all the work by throwing small stones for them (being careful not to hit them on the bonce obviously!). Then Amber chases them (probably just to humour us), and Ollie just looks from us, to the stones, to Amber as if to tell us we're all daft! I think Ollie would rather chase sticks, balls and squirrels!

After splashing around for a while and chasing stones, we walked on through the beautiful woodland, and around some of the rest of the grounds.

The sky was so blue today, and the contrast between that and the greenery was such a joy to photograph......

......and photograph again......

......and again with the added delight of some beautiful fluffy clouds!

Bob and I had a picnic lunch on our usual bench......

......after which I settled down with some crafty stuff, and took the opportunity to photograph the actual bench with those wonderful Acers behind!

Then I walked up to beyond where the Acers are, to capture the wonderful colours of this view......

......and this one. I never tire of the beautiful scenery at Craig-y-Nos.

Late afternoon Bob and I took Ollie for another walk around the grounds......

......and such a busy day resulted in a very tired Ollie Dog!

♫ "... but the river is wide ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this Billy Joel song.

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Saturday 1st May 2021

Picture of the day...... ♫ "... Pages turning ... " ♫

The pile of books to read on the bedside cabinet has been slowly reducing over the last few months.

Not so now though, since some more books were recently acquired and have somehow managed to pop themselves in the pile! Norty little books!

As well as the 'to-read' pile, I've also decided to revisit a couple of positive mental health books, which I've read before but feel the time is right to read again. I shall dip in and out of them.

In the meantime, I finished reading this book today - one which a lovely friend recommended to me, and then passed her copy on to me to read.

I have to say that it is one of the best books I've ever read, and I'd thoroughly recommend it.

I also started this one today, which was in the bedside cabinet pile.

I'm not sure of it so far, but I have only read a few pages, so we'll see.

♫ "... Pages turning ... " ♫ my chosen song word snippet for today, is taken from this lovely Jackson Browne song.

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