When I say “At Home Day” I don’t mean this in a social context; we weren’t ‘at home’, i.e. ready to receive visitors, but at home as opposed to going out.
We woke to a chillier temperature and drizzly rain – indeed, I put the central heating on for an hour just to warm the house up a bit – but we didn’t mind in the least because we hadn’t planned on going anywhere. Indeed, I wanted to so some much-needed cleaning as I have done next-to-no cleaning during the prolonged hot weather.
And so, after breakfast (a very light breakfast this morning, porridge for husband, croissant with apricot jam for me) I changed the bed linen. I love to see a bed nicely made, and today I happened to see, in my new magazine, a photo of the pink-edged pillow cases that we have. Does this mean for the very first time we’re in the vanguard of décor style? I think not!
The right hand pillow has flopped a bit, but I really didn’t think I needed to re-take this photo. After I’d made the bed I cleaned the bedroom (although the wardrobe still needs clearing out and given a through cleaning and tidying) and then I cleaned the kitchen. Not the insides of the cupboards, that would’ve been a job too far at the moment, but the work surfaces and the floor, and those jobs that sometimes get left – cleaning out the toaster (I try and do this once a week but that doesn’t always happen) and I bleached the filter and plunger for the cafetierre which becomes stained with coffee over a period of time. All these little things aren’t difficult, but they take time.
We had a snack lunch, but that doesn’t mean convenience or junk food. I can make soup from scratch in 20 minutes, and today it was leek & potato soup. It’s so easy to make with just one large onion, two leeks, and three medium-sized potatoes, all chopped and sautéed, and then boiling water added to cover. Then four vegetable Oxo cubes crumbled into the mixture and the mixture allowed to simmer for 15 minutes. Then a drop of milk is added and the whole lot blitzed with a hand-held blender, but not until totally smooth – we like some pieces in the soup. And before serving, a little dollop of crème fraiche and some chopped parsley. We had it on trays in the sitting room as we were watching cricket on TV.
After this we each had a small coffee ice cream (i.e. the ice cream in a cone).
I took a couple of photos of the lisianthus in the sitting room, which we bought yesterday. Our elder son kindly took us to Waitrose as our car developed a rather awful squeal, and so we took it to our local garage. They diagnosed brake pads and we’ve now had them replaced. But as the car was out of action for a day, elder son asked if we’d like to do our shopping and so we took the advantage of his offer.
They blooms are so fresh, with luck and regular changes of water, I hope they will last longer than a week. The blooms are really pretty, the petals are very much like tissue paper.
Mid-morning my new magazine arrived, along with a book. I love The English Home magazine, it is my favourite – not that we live in splendour like some of the residents of the homes included each month, but it’s just lovely to see such beautiful homes and from them we can all pick up decorating ideas and how to place furniture, paintings, books and ornaments.
There are some yellow dahlias in the garden and as it was raining, I cut some and brought them in rather than allowing them to become soaked and wilted. I popped them in a little yellow glass vase which normally ‘lives’ in the shower room. It’s very pretty, as it has been hand-painted with a floral design, but it is glass and not pottery.
This afternoon I continued to dust and vacuum, and then, after 16 years without any pictures on the fireplace wall, we decided to have a look at the paintings we have stored in the loft and perhaps put some up again. We do have some paintings in the dining end of the room, and three portraits of Italian fishermen over one of the sofas on the opposite wall to the fireplace …
but none on the fireplace wall.
And so we have hung two watercolours – on the left is St Mary Redcliffe, Bristol and on the right, the Wills Tower, Bristol – to the left of the fireplace. This took a lot of measuring and checking, as I wanted the tops of the pictures to line up with the top of the mirror and the centre space between the pictures to be in line with the centre of the lamp table. Yes, I’m fussy! Out came the spirit level for all this!
My late mother had these watercolours mounted and re-framed in the late 1980s and now we think that the dark blue-green mounts are a little harsh for our sitting room (although we like the actual frames) but perhaps they just need a bit of getting used to after having had unadorned walls for so long? We now have to choose a painting (or pair of paintings) for the other side of the fireplace. We have several more in the loft from which to choose. Right now there are three lined up, and we’re trying to decide which we like the best … it’s like the hanging committee at the Royal Academy!
And now I’m going to make us a cup of tea – husband is watching the European Games on TV – and then I shall sit and read my new magazine. Tomorrow, the cleaning continues! But for now, it’s time to rest and relax before bedtime. And I think I’ve earned a small piece of chocolate today!
Until next time.