Monday, 17 November 2014

Since the since then...


 At the moment, after a lovely sunny summer that seemed to last forever, 
I'm sat at home with my legs stuck on a footstool like a lazy old tart with nothing better to do.

 I've been at home for 7 weeks so far and I have a couple more weeks before I can put one of my lazy tart legs on the floor again.
Yep it be a little bit busted.
Not just a clean break, oh no, my first ever broken bone has to be an awkward one with a fancy name and I have to break both my leg bones just under my knee. The very same knee I need to use for weeding & walking. Urgh.
A boisterous dog ran into it on the park, he took a playful bite out of of Frank's bum, Frank ran and hid behind my legs, boisterous dog hit my legs, owner cleared off sharpish.  Hmmm.
So here I am, still on crutches, no longer in a thigh to toe cast covered in paw prints having to do many a strange leg action that would make John Cleese proud, (thankfully) but a stretchy metal calliper type thingy to keep my knee lined up with the other leggy bits. Bald bloke calls me Forest Gump. Oh the joys.

I get to loll around the house in jogging bottoms (a new experience for me...I'm liking it!) and I have been rediscovering old hobbies like doing a spot of landscape painting (bit rusty at it mind you) reading books a plenty, watching the 'delights' of Jeremy Kyle, I've become obsessed with 'Homes under the Hammer' (and their ability to match any tune to suit the last sentence spoken about a house) oh and I've been eating lots of biscuits. LOTS of biscuits.
One good thing is that I don't have to drive bald bloke to work in the silly hours and I do get to ride around in a wheelchair when I venture out at the weekends. My bestest pal who came to visit thought it would be amusing to abandon me and my giant leg and take a photo. We also went to the local DIY centre where Frank very nearly 'watered' the artificial Christmas trees on display..eek! Sharp exit there!
There was nearly a tipping out up the curb incident at Ledbury recently which was slightly embarrasing but I'll let Baldy off for that one. Just this once. I think if I'd have fallen out and rolled across the cobbles with my giant sticky out leg, I might not have shown my face there again..

Well summer, as lovely and busy and long as it was has whizzed past and now it's Autumn and I'm desperately missing being in the garden or over the hills and in the woods with the doglets.
The very bored doglets that get walked whenever they can by whoever is willing. 
The garden looks seriously neglected  both front and back. We were in the middle of digging out the pond to rebuild the wall having moved the summer house, and planting a couple of trees I had grown from seed. I have precious plants dug out in bags and bulbs that should have been in by now but hey ho, Spring is not far off and maybe ( hopefully) I'll be able to dig and kneel again by then to pop them back in the ground.

Bald bloke re did the roof of the summerhouse and replaced the windows with proper glass. He made the window frames a little differently to give it a thirties look and the colour is a little darker than before. By next summer I'm determined to have it finished with a new floor and that wallpapered ceiling. It's been ongoing for four years for goodness sake,maybe more. If I can find the measurements on that piece of paper I've mislaid, I might even get round to finally sewing some fabulous vintage deckchair fabric into the blinds.
  
I have all this time on my hands but am really restricted as I can't get to the fabric stashed in the roof or under the stairs or pop to the shops for a reel of cotton and every little thing is such an effort. Luckily I have the making of tea thing down to an art now. Got to have my tea fix. It's the law don't you know..
Anyway, I can't think of anything much else to tell you, it's all just on pause really but I thought I'd pop by here, my poor neglected blog. If you're interested, I've recently discovered the joys of Instagram (far easier than trying and failing to write a blog post on my phone!) I'm on there as  @vintageprettyshabby. It would be lovely if you popped by and said hello!

Cheerio for now x

Ps sorry if my blog looks a bit skew-whiff, I'm doing it via my iPad or phone rather than on a 'proper computer' and it won't play along nicely and re-size my piccies.










Thursday, 8 May 2014

Since then...


this stuff has been happening...

well, I went back to France and I brought my mum home with me to live here whilst her house got sold.
I even had to drive my dad's car on the 'wrong' side of the road over there. Scary stuff. Good job my brother was there for a bit to give me lessons
I became even more obsessed with shutters.
It was gorgeous weather there and very pretty.This is Bergerac.


When I got home my car which refused to start, had to go to the scrappers. £2500 to fix it? I don't think so.  It cost me £146 to tell me that and I got £150 scrap for it. Hmmm a lot of bad things happened that month and I seem to remember crying quite a lot! 
I'm now sharing Pete's fancy pants one which he had to change just for me.
There's dog fur in it. And grass clippings. And the odd insect. 
He moans at me....A lot
There's a downside to this car sharing malarky though,taking bald bloke 80 miles to work at 3am every Monday morning and back again then having to pick him up again on a Friday. Great fun.
His workmates have witnessed my Beano pyjamas and sheeps wool hair first hand.Nice.

Two became three...


That's Frank there in the bike basket.He's great. A bit bonkers but he fits right in here.
He instantly became one of the gang.


Three became two  :(
Oh My heart broke. Really broke. Bellas heart broke too but Frank helped mend hers. On Reds last day she lay next to him and never left his side. The vet said you'll know when it's time, he'll let you know and it's so true. I had to carry him back from his last walk and he'd stopped eating. He had a look in his eyes that said that's it, I've had fun but I've had enough now. He had cancer in his lungs. 
14 and a half isn't bad going but it's still not long enough in my book.
Poor old Red.xx

Inbetween the rain (cor its rained and rained here)
the builders came and did a bit of bashing walls about.
With them, the dust arrived by the ton and got everywhere and I mean Everywhere. Particularly in my lungs making me sound like a 60 a day fag hag.
Got rid of a door and gained a radiator (or two) ooh I  love these repro school radiators.

I lived in one room for a week with 3 rooms of stuff in there as well and no heating. Not something I want to repeat in a hurry!

The window blokes came too.
More dust arrived but I now have French windows! Ta-da!
See that mud? Urgh. Yep the renovations certainly took their toll on my poor little neglected garden. Along with the rain, the wind and storms came and finished off that garden wall for me.The one that had just been finished and I reversed into it a while back. Oops. That's on the repair list but at least we have plenty of bricks to rebuild it with now!

I sanded and painted, you might notice the grey stayed in the end but it's a bit lighter.

 I made lampshades,painted mirrors and moved pictures.

The carpet bloke came.
And the sofa men too.
The dust is still here and there's still lots to finish,little bits of painting and colourful pretties to add but it's made such a massive difference to the light in our little house.
Oh the fox came too..early in the morning and just for fun, not for food it seems, so I have only 2 girlies now. Not nice.
The last few weeks I've been emptying endless packing boxes for my mum who now lives in Ledbury, one of my favourite places just down the road. We've done far too much scone testing in the local cafe, it'll have to stop I keep telling her but there's always one more that needs sampling... Just in case.
So I've Been a busy bee see ? 
 I don't do stress very well which is why I disappeared for a while but I thought I would pop by my old blog and post a few tales. Like ya do.

Cheerio for now xx
































Monday, 5 August 2013

In the corner of a foreign field...

IF I should die, think only this of me.
 That there's some corner of a foreign field that is for ever England. 
 The Soldier,Rupert Brooke
***


I've been in France.

 Yes I know, ME traveling, amazing isn't it?.

A mad panic of selling virtually half my summer wardrobe on eBay to fund the last minute flights, getting a passport after 17 years (£81 now ?!! crikey) and sorting out dog sitters, chicken shutter-inners and other peoples gardens.
 Madness. 
There was a reason for all this though and it wasn't good, sadly not a holiday.
My Daddy passed away.
 He had been very, very poorly after an operation that didn't go to plan.
I spent a few days over in scorching heat in the corner of a foreign field surrounded by acres of beautiful sunflowers, grape vines and old, old houses with sunbleached shutters in gorgeous shades of blue and green.
 I was with my lovely family and although it was an incredibly sad time it was also some of the best days I've spent with my brother, sisters and my brave mum in a very long time. Just us, no husbands, no kids.
Laughing, chatting, hugging.
 
  When something tragic happens, your emotions are all over the place and they are certainly heightened so funny things become hilarious and little bit sad things, become very sad.
I kept thinking my dad would go mad at us mucking about in the pool, swimming with the dog and talking in the garden until the early hours,watching amazing thunderstorms way past bedtime, exploding meteors and reminiscing about when we were kids but he'd of loved the fact that we all pulled together to look after mum and their house that is in the middle of no-where off the beaten track near Duras (and my mum doesn't drive!)
My brother and I took charge of the vast gardens and my sisters, the house and the cooking. I have never gardened in such heat (36 in the shade!) and never in my pyjamas that were ringing wet by lunchtime! The ground was like concrete, which I later found out when I managed to stick a hand fork through my gloves and finger instead.
 yowww!

 
I remember my dad best from when I was little, we'll quickly flit over the teenage years as I was vile and rebellious and tried the patience of a saint! Nevertheless I was a real daddy's girl, we all were. He named our sailing boat after us 'Sa'nicajac'  which has a bit of all our names in and many breezy days were spent fishing in Cornwall on it. My love of gardening comes from my Dad, he won prizes for his flowers at the local shows and was always a great source of knowledge that I could turn to. Although we didn't see much of each other when they moved abroad, your Dad is your Dad and it's like a little piece of you dies when they do.

I'm going back later this month for a couple of weeks with my brother and maybe bringing mum back with me to rainy old England. Maybe I'll see a bit more of this pretty area then.They had a lovely life and some lovely friends there, so I know that will be so hard for her to sell up and move back but France seems a very long way away when you need to get there quickly.
 
At the funeral, which was hastily sorted out within 2 days, they buggered up the music a bit and 'La Mer' by Charles Trenet managed to turn into a Boyzone song sang in Italian, I can hear my father tutting!...

so Dad..this is just for you. x


Thursday, 11 April 2013

Putting pretty back




Hillbilly Bella

Living with a grey sitting room is like living in a thunder storm. Well that's what I've decided anyway. hmmmm...bald bloke is not pleased with me. Fussy mare that I am.
It looked lovely when the sun shone (and when the brightness of all that snow shone through the windows) but who am I kidding? I live in England for goodness sake, by a big hill that makes its own micro climate that consists mainly of rain. We get a lot of  rain here.
So commences the process of putting just a little bit of pretty back.

 It has to be Celadon green. I LOVE Celadon green and it goes nicely with calamine pink and grey and funnily enough that olivey-yellow colour. Plans are being made.....
In the meantime, now that the stinky boys have both gone, along with the gadgets and remote control cars, pairs of crutches (found under the bed) and the general stinky stuff older boys seem to hoard, I once again have an empty house. Just me and the furry ones.
It's quite strange to start with I think I had 'empty nest syndrome' and although it was a relief to be shouty, stinky and untidy boy-free, I had that strange feeling wash over me that all of a sudden I was all alone.
It was the exact same feeling you get a few days after you give birth..but for the opposite reason. Funny that.

Inbetween a nasty chest infection and hacking cough that has lasted at least a month and looks like its got no intention of leaving just yet..oh and another dog bite (the perils of working outside in damp,sub-zero temperatures...and walking other people's dogs) I have been sanding and painting and planning and buying stuff I shouldn't on ebay..oops.
 

This was stinky Georges room.I couldnt believe the state it was in when he moved all his junk out, walls had to be re-plastered and the carpet cleaned 5 times! They're an 'orrible lot these boy creatures.Festering in their lair infront of the x-box.
It's going to be the guest bedroom, so all those visitors we couldn't have to stay before, can.
 Calm pale duck-egg walls and a pretty wardrobe filled with pretty pastel coloured 1950s hangers...both eBay bargains.
 
Our lovely old, but rather knackered looking, black metal bed has gone back in here and they'll be some other old bits and bobs added too.


 Bald bloke sprayed the fireplace with barbeque paint and it came out a treat. Looks like new.
 I remounted this beautiful iridescent vintage butterfly and added a little label.


 I need to track down The Laundry lady to purchase some of her gorgeous 40's style bedlinen, I've been hankering after some for a very long time.

 I still plan to sort out the loft and put some stuff in my shop or on ebay but the whole house seems to be in some kind of 'state' at the moment, once its sorted out a bit more I'll have some space in my brain free for the next mission.I find it quite therapeutic de-cluttering and simplifying our lives. All the curtains are being replaced with simple linen roman blinds.All the walls are being painted in calm ethereal colours and my hoards of 'stuff' are being relocated. Even the peace lily in the lounge is finally flowering after years of just leaves.


As part of the simplifying process,my Beastie truck got sold. I had been worrying myself silly about the MOT in July as it needed a heap of work doing and an even bigger heap of money to pay for it.A mountain of money almost. Scary. A young man came up to me in a car park on Valentines day ( ooh I thought my luck was in !!!) when I was walking the dogs, asking if I wanted to sell it. I was quite attached to my old truck and my heart was saying nooooo and my head screamed a sensible yes, a deal was done a few days later and he bought it for great price, in good knowledge of all the work it needed.
I'm now the owner of a boring old Ford estate, very economical, comfy and with a working radio. woo. (the enthusiasm is overwhelming there dont you think?) It's not going to seduce me with it's fancy gadgets and shiny finery I'm afraid, but it'll do for the mo.
Unfortunately the bloke who sold it wasn't as honest as me and the second day of ownership the blinking thing wouldn't start. Aaarrgh!
This was the snowy sunrise view of the hills out of the window the other morning. They were far more pink than they look in this rather bad photo and the moon looked like a glowing silver orb.
It was silent but for the birds chirping away. So pretty.    Roll on Spring....

Cheerio for now x
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