I think garden centres are much more imaginative these days in the way they display plants. I love this flower ‘bed’!
Last night, I suggested to husband that if it was fine in the morning we could go out for breakfast, something we’d not done in a very long time. I really fancied going to Le Bistrot Pierre on Torquay Sea Front, but husband also needed some compost for the garden and as the garden centre – which isn’t that far from where we live – has a small café and serves a good breakfast, he suggested we went there. And so I agreed, I can’t have my own way all the time, can I?
The view from our seat in the café – it was too dull to sit outside this morning
Breakfast is served from 9am to 11am, and we arrived around 9.25am, but we were the first ordering breakfast. There were several options but most of them included bacon or eggs, and so we both chose a “full English”, which to those outside the UK consists of egg, bacon, tomato, mushrooms, sausage, hash brown, and baked beans. I don’t like baked beans on my breakfast (although I enjoy beans on toast for a snack meal) so I requested no beans for me. It arrived a little while later and while this was a simple meal, simply presented, it was well cooked and the ingredients good quality. With it came a round of toast with marmalade and butter. And we had coffee to drink.
Once we had tucked into that, and finished our coffee, we had a look around at the plants, and I chose some violas to go into a pot where the tulips in it are now ‘over’. We also bought ericaceous compost as we intend transplanting an acer from the pot it’s in into a slightly larger pot.
From the garden centre we decided to go to the DIY outlet, B&Q, as I wanted to get four lupin plants similar to the ones we bought there about three weeks ago. The weather hasn’t been good and we hadn’t had an opportunity to plant those lupins and a consequence was that three out of the four plants had been gobbled by slugs. We must have the fattest slugs in Devon the way the blighters devour our plants, even though we use the awful slug bait (but we do buy the bait that doesn’t harm wildlife – perhaps because of this it doesn’t harm slugs either!)
Once we had bought the replacement lupins (good value at four plants for £10) husband had a good look around the tools section. Oh, men do love doing this, don’t they? B&Q is, to him, like the perfumery counter is to me in a department store, or a good bookshop, new or second-hand! So I bide my time and don’t complain. If I knew what all the things actually were, I’d find it more interesting, I’m sure. I can’t tell a router bit from a wing nut! Seriously, I do know what most of the things are; I’ve not been married to an engineer for the best part of 54 years without knowing a hack saw from fret saw.
Toys R Us for Men
And then we drove home and, having bought the Saturday newspaper, we settled ourselves in the summerhouse for, by then, the sun had put in an appearance (but after a morning out and about we felt more inclined to sit down with a cup of coffee and read for a while than embark on gardening.)
Once refreshed, husband decamped to the garage where he’s working on a little project and I decided to continue weeding files and such like in the study. It’s surprising how paperwork mounts up if you don’t deal with it regularly. I had files of paperwork dating back more than a decade: the council tax statement for each year, the water rates for each year, the house insurance documents, the car insurance documents … I knew where they all were and most of them were in order, but I had kept them from years gone by when, really, we only need the current information.
So I got busy with the shredder. And the difference it has made is wonderful. I have now just one concertina file with everything in it, all in just one place. And my basket on my desk has just the paper and envelopes, the postcards and so forth that I wish to keep. I’m afraid I chickened out of parting with birthday and Christmas cards and they have gone into a large bag and will be stashed away in the loft! I cant’ bear parting with cards, especially those from our lovely family and close friends. Sentimental old goat, aren’t I!
Here is our work bench, aka desk, in the study now that it’s all been tidied …
Not a particularly good photo, but it has been a very dull and rainy afternoon and I put the lights on, which causes reflections on the workbench (aka desk). My computer is on the right, husband’s (with a slightly larger monitor) is on the left.
My mother bought me the miniature chest of drawers you can see on the wicker basket (in which I keep writing paper, envelopes, postcards and so forth). It is ideal for business cards, postage stamps and anything that is so small that it could be easily ‘lost’ in larger containers.
On the wall next to where I sit are four small prints of Japanese ladies in traditional costume representing spring, summer, autumn and winter. I had these framed many years ago. They are actually notelet cards from 1956, the year I was 12 years old and they were one of my birthday presents that year (I used all but these four) and I still love them all these years later.
This room really does need redecorating, but it will be a mammoth task and we’re really rather reluctant to start – just imagine moving all those books and magazines to another room, for a start! We would keep the curtains, but everything else we would change, the wallpaper (which has been on the walls for about 30 years) and the colour of the bookcases. We bought the curtains when we moved here 32 years ago. They were specially made for this room and we still like them and they still look as good as the day they were put up and we still like the colour and design.
You can see some holes in the wall above; this is where we used to have a wall-mounted small TV and its support bracket was fixed to the wall. The letter rack, shaped like a mountain, was a gift from the paint and wallpaper company, Farrow & Ball, and I find it useful for correspondence cards and a notebook. I keep pencils in an old, washed out, Lyle golden syrup tin.
Photos from some of my items I have from when I was a child, including a lovely bone china Coronation mug, and the programme for the Queen’s, then Princess Elizabeth, marriage to the Duke of Edinburgh
And finally, today is the 92 birthday of HM Queen Elizabeth, may she have a happy birthday and also enjoy the concert this evening in the Royal Albert Hall (although I’d recommend she takes along some ear plugs for some of the more musically vigorous, shall we say, items on the programme!)
Until next time.