What I wore for Nan’s 95th

Dapper’s Nan’s 95th birthday fell on a balmy evening before the summer, well, ended abruptly. Just as well as the M-I-L and I spent much of Thursday afternoon preparing food for 40 folk to enjoy outside, and we’d never have fit 40 under the gazebo!

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Apologies for the poor picture – it was taken at the very last minute, and I had no time to take another, better shot!
Dress: Lady V London; petticoat: House of Olivier; cardigan & flats: Matalan 

My wee lads stayed up late for the occasion and at first dark we enjoyed fireworks – their first. I was half expecting tears at the loud bangs and screeches, but they were in awe, glued to the bright lights and colours. It took a while afterwards to settle them to sleep, though!

What I wore for a pub lunch on Sunday!

Yes, really! An actual “outfit shot” post for you – with a pic and everything!

CIMG0223Dress: George @ ASDA; cardi & belt: Dotty P’s; shoes: M&S

You might recall this post about my post-baby body, and how I had a new-found respect for it? Well, honestly? That didn’t last. The honeymoon period ended in spring, more or less, when I realised I couldn’t fit into any of my lovely summer dresses yet again. Luckily, it was about this time that I got access to the “allotment” and began to garden in earnest, which really helped to re-strengthen my muscles and burn some calories. Add in running around after two little monkeys, and bibbity bobbity boo – I’m back into some of my old favourites!

I still have quite a lot left to lose, but getting into my beloved green George dress for Sunday lunch at The Leopard in Bishops Tachbrook was a real confidence booster. The occasion was Dapper’s Nan’s 95th birthday, and we have a second family affair this evening as well! So, if the outfit shots were your reason for reading in the past, hold tight – they might just start to reappear with a little more regularity…

Last week, in the allotment…

Weekly photo updates for you…

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Toms toms toms!

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Bees on the borage

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Summer squash

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A handful of blueberries

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Whirlybird Nasturtium – going wild!

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New Zealand Yams, or Oca

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The Butterbush, looking lush.

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My marigold harvest begins!

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Chillis and peppers

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And the strawberries, runners pinned for next year!

Hang around this week if you’re a long-term reader – I actually have an outfit shot for you… In fact, by the end of the week I might even have two!!

Two little monkeys…

Sometimes jumping on the bed, sometimes trying to turn the telly over! Already, they each have their roles – Conall completes the monkey business, whilst Hal stands watch…

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They know when they’ve been caught, though!

 

Allotment news

Here are last Monday’s photos – after a weekend of rain and sunshine, the plants went wild!

CIMG0104Alpine Strawberries – these have been great this year – a daily source of snack-time treats for the boys!

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Various tomatoes, growing and ripening at varying rates.

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Chillis and container carrots

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Naturtiums, a great addition to salads (leaves and flowers), delicious in cream cheese sandwiches for a fresh and peppery hit.

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“Butterbush” patio squash plants – I’m delighted with their progress as I’ve nurtured them from seed.

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Turnips in an old suitcase with beetroot, and the squash that won’t stop growing…

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Borage flowers – delicious in elderflower gin and tonic, or Pimms, and the leaves and stalks are edible too!

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Re-useful #1: “effervescent multi-vitamin” (Berocca) containers

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m trying to find secondary uses for as much of my household waste as possible, and thought I would invite you to join me on my journey. My first entry in this new series is about the humble Berocca tube.

I had planned on using these to store seeds saved from my garden, but my reading suggests paper envelopes are a better choice. They are, however, perfect for storing dried herbs to use over winter once the fresh herbs are dormant. I have more than enough for this.

This week’s scorching weather has seen me offering the boys a daily dose of home-made lollipop. I usually make these from fresh fruit puree or leftover smoothies, and often wish I had another set of moulds to make some for myself…

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Enter the Berocca tube. Simply fill with your flavour of choice, wrap a lollipop stick with a bit of foil or clingfilm and insert into the top of the tube, wrapping the foil/clingfilm around the top so that the stick “sticks” out. Stand in your freezer until frozen, then store in a ice-cream tub or freezer bag for hot sunny days!

Felt-inspiration

On Boxing Day we all embarked on a family walk. Halfway down the drive, Dapper pointed out the roots of a huge, old tree, overlooking the pond. The tree was tilting over, and the roots starting to lift from the ground.

The tree had to come down that very afternoon – or risk ripping up the entire driveway! It was quite an exciting spectacle! It fell into the pond with an almighty splash, creating waves of water that lapped into the meadow. It was left there for the time being, and soon became a favourite roost for the ducks.

Last week, the winch finally came to lift the tree from the pond. It had disturbed the natural balance of the water, and needed to be removed, although some larger branches were left behind for the ducks, moorhens and heron to enjoy. Dragged out into the meadow, it quickly dried in the hot sun. Dapper and I took the boys out to inspect the remains.

I was amazed by just how much the dried pondweed resembled felted wool and fibres! It was utterly beautiful, and naturally, I took a bazillion photos. Here are some of my favourites!

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