Life and Thyme!

How can it be the end of another month? It’s been so busy round here. A trip to lovely Dorset, gardening, picking blackcurrants, strawberries, raspberries and bilberries. Lots of meetings up with family, Mr T and his family, my stepbrother and his family and a visit to Wales to see my Mum, brother and sister in law.Mum has Alzheimers, and I spent a long time on several drafts of a post about that visit, but I couldn’t get it right and so judged it best to delete the lot. Suffice to say we had a lovely time together , even though Mum had forgotten I’d been within hours. And birthdays this month, three of them which means CAKE.

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Please note museum qualtiy kitchen in the background!!

So how am I doing on my 15 for 2015. There is a full list, just updated on the page you should be able to see above.

15 minutes walking x 4 times a week. This was too easy a goal, I can see that now, but yes still managing this

14 bags to a charity shop, none taken this month

13 animal/bird photos- ACHIEVED! I have enjoyed doing this so much I shall keep going and then choose at the year end my favourites. I may even share the disasters of which there have been far more. Here come the first two from this month

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12 meetings with friends- this month was all about family Here’s a picture of one of my brother’s dogs, he has four. Mum won’t call him by his proper name. ” I call him Whiskers”, she says, you can see why. Actually he’s a rescue dog from Cyprus and you can just imagine how his life might have been, starving, scavenging for food ,sleeping  in the middle of a dusty Greek road. He doesn’t know how lucky he is, hours away from being put down when my sister in law saw and fell in love with him.

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11 New savoury recipes. I was struggling with this in June , but Rachel suggested I bought a cookery magazine. Clever idea, I did and I made a Moroccan chicken dish. Very tasty. Total now tried is 8.

10 handwritten letters- none this month, total stays at 4. But the really lovely thing about writing three letters in June is that I have had replies to them all. Just so nice to have a proper letter.

9 handmade cards- all those birthdays, I had a card making afternoon, result ACHIEVED.

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8 and 7 no progress, but persevering with two projects towards these goals

6 trips to museums etc- 5 down now with the trip to Corfe Castle and to the Castle museum in York.

5 through to 1, nothing to update,

0 impulse purchases, already failed, and again this month with an impulse purchase of a jug in a charity shop in Dorset. It was a question of buy straightaway or not all as we wouldn’t have been there the next day. Two impulse purchases can’t be so bad can it?

Couple of final horse pictures from the New Forest, taken whilst we were in Dorset.

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I might try flower pictures next year, al least they don’t run away!

 

 

Yarn Along!

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I am STILL knitting my Alpaca mix cardigan, but now on the second sleeve. The end is in sight!!

New book again this week, am I just spending too much time reading?

Now I LOVE Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen so was most intrigued when I spotted a book of the same name but by Val McDermid in the Library. Turns out it is part of something called The Austen Project. Has anyone heard of this? Basically six modern authors each take one of Jane Austen’s novels  and reworks it in the modern day. At first this book struck me as very clever. Bath becomes Edinburgh, the Assembly rooms and the life of Georgian England becomes the Arts Festival. Romantic fiction becomes vampire fiction. But I love the Jane Austen book so much that I know it pretty well and I keep getting distracted by the thoughts that “Oh in the real book this was the setting”. And worse still I find that I am imagining the characters in Georgian dress. It’s very weird and I can’t help wondering why on earth has this been done. Northanger Abbey is already a very accessible novel, why bother changing it at all for a modern audience? I read this review to see if it is just me that feels this, and it would appear not. Perhaps Joanne Trollope’s reworking of Pride and Prejudice is better. Has anyone read these books in the Austen project? If so what did you think?

Linking with Giny for Yarn Along

Photo challenge- Soft

Continuing the theme from last week , here is Soft

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Fruit- raspberries.

Linking with Blue Daisy

Castle Museum, York

Last week whilst celebrating a certain gentleman’s birthday we went to the Castle Museum in York.

I thought I would share some of the exhibits which caught my eye.

First we visited a set of home interiors- A Victorian parlour

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A working man’s cottage

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A 1950’s sitting room

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A 1940’s kitchen. Mr E said it looked like his Dad’s used too. Haha!

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A 1980’s kitchen.Not so Haha, it’s our kitchen. I’ve been saying we need a new one and have been saying this since we moved in 13 years ago. Our kitchen is in a museum!!!

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I kid you not, those are our kitchen units and worktops. Time for a new one! Actually it looks in better order than ours….

Then we ventured into Kirkgate, the Victorian street. The collection in the Castle museum was started by a Dr Kirk, here in Pickering. He wished to have it displayed in Pickering but the Beck Isle museum, couldn’t get up and running fast enough and the collection ended up in York.

Never mind. The street consists of shops and actors play the parts of the inhabitants. The lighting is on a timed loop to give night and day. Hence the darkness of my photos.

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That really is inside.

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You can see where the inspiration for places like Ironbridge and Beamish comes from in this exhibition.

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The museum is very big and one of the few which kept my sons totally engaged when they were little. Very child friendly. We enjoyed the toy display, which included toys right up to the present day. The exhibition about the first world war was excellent.

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This is the fashion immediately post First World War. It never occurred to me before that one of the reasons dresses became more streamline than the bustles of Victorian times was that there was a shortage of fabric.

From there we went into the 60’s display.

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More dresses and a scooter.

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And finally into an exhibition of agriculture. Before going any further read this on Woolwinding, all about strange sheepy things.

I am delighted to have

a, remembered to look for this

b, found it without asking anyone

c, no-one saw me take the picture.

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a ram preventer , circa 1870

Summer Bucket List

Annie wrote a lovely summer bucket list. It seemed like such a good idea to me to set down the half formed ideas I had for Summer 2015, and maybe now I will do them. Can’t beat a good list hey!. So here’s my bucket list for the Summer.

  • Pick strawberries and make an Eton Mess
  • Go to an agricultural show
  • Visit the workhouse in Ripon, and if there’s time go to the cathedral too
  • Spend time with my grandson, dependent on dovetailing our plans, my sons’ plans and Master H’s Mums plans
  • Go swimming
  • Paddle in the sea/ and or a river
  • Spend a day on the moors and enjoy the scent of the heather
  • My lavender harvest was non existent this year so visit the lavender farm
  • Go a new long walk (part of my 15 for 2015) and enjoy a cream tea

 

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So I wondered what you had planned for this summer.

Yarn Along!

A good book and a knitting project makes me happy!

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Now what I need to know is how come I missed the fact that there was a new Bridget Jones? Loving the book, still as funny as ever. Still knitting my Alpaca mixed yarn cardigan. Now on the first sleeve. Surely if I tried hard I could be finished by August.

I have borrowed two more books from the library. One is a Christmas story. Clearly I am in the wrong season. So what I wondered is , what are the best reads for summer. Please let me know your recommendation for a good summer read.

Linking with Ginny for Yarn Along

 

Photo Challenge- Black

I am dedicating this photo challenge to my Dear Old Dad, who died just over a year ago. I’ll explain why after the picture.

Black-

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-Blackcurrants.

I am still in the process of winding up Dad’s affairs, including the sale of his house. Each week I go round there to check everything is fine, and have a wander round the garden to see what’s what and that it still looks pretty. Here I acknowledge the skill and care of the two gardeners who come in weekly and keep the garden looking just as Dad liked. A couple of weeks ago I wandered past the apple tree and then I noticed something which I had forgotten all about. Just before he had become ill he had received ten blackcurrant plants as a free gift ,alongside the seeds that he had ordered. The gardener had planted them into the otherwise now near empty vegetable plot. Now I don’t know if they were too late to fruit last year or if I simply didn’t look , but I know that I picked the beans that were in the vegetable plot, so surely I would have noticed? Anyway, gleaming in the sun, I spotted the bushes for the first time, absolutely laden with blackcurrants. I have picked so many now. We have ten containers full in the freezer, had a blackcurrant meringue pie, and given them away to neighbours. On Sunday, I made for the first time ever, a double crust pie. It’s leaked at the top and Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood would not be impressed, although it didn’t have a soggy bottom. And I feel very proud of myself.

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It’s Dad’s last gift to me, Thanks Dad.

Do look at the other entries for the photo challenge at Blue Daisy

 

 

 

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