Tuesday, 23 September 2008

And......... the kitchen.

Our bargain eBay kitchen out of a farmhouse, re-jigged by our carpenter and walls liberally decorated with some of Jimmy's enamel signs found at a car boot sale.

We were VERY naughty and bought a Lec retro fridge (also off the internet!)

Alfie looks very bored by it all now.

Monday, 22 September 2008

Finally - some extension pics!

Some pictures of our new bedroom and ensuite - kitchen, hallway, new stairs and outside to follow!

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Getting back on track

Office – paint everything and wax everything else. Hang blind.
Downstairs loo – paint shoe pigeonholes.
Utility room – Wax window and sand/reseal worktop and sink area. Paint inside cupboard doors (yes, I know you can’t see inside but I’ll know they need doing…) Get a blind. Hang it.
Garden – don’t go there!

I’m not going to talk about the extension – the “to-do” list speaks for itself and my life is nearly back to normal. Well, as normal as they usually are in our household.

J finally found the leads for the camera but, in the meantime, we have had nightmare internet problems and India Telecom, sorry, British Telecom, have taken their time in sorting them out. I shan’t embroider on that but I’m sure you know EXACTLY what I mean. Suffice to say, things have been fraught here as J tries to run a business with temperamental internet access for checking orders and emails.

For me, things have also not been so good. My health has been pretty naff (all Scleroderma related) and I’ve been as hacked off, fed up, low, bordering on depressed and as antisocial as anyone can get. There! It just feels good getting out. How anything has got done chez Woozle, (by Woozle, that is) is pretty amazing but I’ve slowly hauled myself from my fog of self pity and, as I have been able to start walking again bit by bit, got back out into my garden and let it weave its magic on me. I’ve averted my eyes from the triffid-like weeds that have leapt up everywhere and systematically tackled my borders; plants have re-emerged from tangles of bind weed, along with my good humour.

A couple of weeks ago, I managed a few days down in Cornwall at my friend’s parents’ who have retired to Delabole. I was so chuffed to be able to go on a cliff top walk, without a stick and even with a spring in my step (when I wasn’t going uphill!). We walked from Daymer Bay round towards Rock, but the rain clouds started to gather on the horizon (again!) so we headed back to the car and ate ice-cream as the rain pelted the roof and the windows steamed up around us. Bliss, actually! The waves rolled in, topped by brilliant white crests of foam and the wind whistled through the car, but we grinned at each other over our cones and laughed at our red tipped noses and cheeks and windswept hair.

The next day we visited a National Trust property – Trerice. I really loved it as it wasn’t too big and you could almost imagine living there (funds permitting). The gardens were gorgeous – not too formal and the orchard was a delight to walk through. Round by the vegetable area and greenhouses there was a scything demonstration and the young girl made it look so easy as she used tiny movements, back and forth, to clear around the bases of trees. We ate cake and drank tea but did grumble at the sandwiches - £4.10! Not on your Nelly!!

All too soon it was Thursday morning and I packed up the car to come home. I drove through the whole gamut of rain, wind and sunshine as I headed northwards up the M5 and dodged a car that had shed its canoes from the roof onto the hard shoulder. Finally the familiar landscape of home loomed as I saw the Malverns rising from the ground and the wind whispered “nearly there” to the drone of “home, home, home” from my tyres as they ate up the remaining miles of tarmac.

My heart always lifts when I see those hills – they’re not majestic mountains, or dramatic cliffs but their presence on the landscape marks home to me. They are beautiful and graceful, gentle almost, as they rise out of the ground close to the triangle where Herefordshire, Gloucestershire and Worcestershire meet. They were Elgar’s inspiration and I truly understand why. I have walked the length and breadth of them, as he did, and never ceased to marvel at the views over this, my very favourite part of our beautiful island.

As I turned into our lane and past the village shop, I waved to John as he was sorting out the locally grown tomatoes in the boxes outside and then pulled over for the hedge cutting tractor. Life was going on as usual and thoughts drifted to seeing the dogs and cat again, making my first cuppa for 3 hours and waiting for J to come home from work. When I got out of the car to open the gate, I could hear the dogs barking with excitement as they recognized the sound of my car and it brought a smile to my face. I love going away and seeing new places – marveling at the diverse countryside to be found a few hours down the road, breathing sea air and having my hair whipped around my head by the sea breeze. But I always love coming back again, just as much, or even more. The going away makes the homecoming even sweeter and I can look around with renewed vigour, rather than horror, as I make a mental note of things to go on my list before I get flattened by 3 furry hounds.