Monday, 14 October 2019

Here and Now

Hello Lovelies,
I hope you are well and enjoying October. It's whizzing by rather too speedily for my liking.
These are a few of the images that have ended up on my camera since we last spoke....

One wet day I decided to bake, on a whim.

It was a recipe on a leaflet from the milkman and contained ingredients I had in the cupboard which need using up.

Is usual, to make me feel more organised and to make best use of the turning on the oven, I doubled the quantities and made two, weighing each to get even cakes.

They turned out great, and there's still one in the freezer to enjoy later.

As well as rain we have enjoyed sunny days. I'm still loving the zoom on my camera. This looks like a young male Sparrow to me.

It's also great to focus on the distant landscape.

Here the Ivy Flowers were a-buzz with pollinators.

Great to see.

Back home I'm still trying to make adjustments towards a more environmental lifestyle. Some changes stick and some slide. We can only keep trying our best with the time and monetary constraints we have. I do love my simple cleaning routine. Yes, there is still plastic involved here but the products are affordable and natural.

It makes me happy to buy Bicarbonate of soda in a cardboard box (wonderful stuff for loads of things....I've just discovered a little sprinkled in a tea stained cup and rubbed in with a damp cloth gets the stubborn marks off easily) and to make it last longer I create a " sprinkler" with my cake skewer, or a kebab stick.

We still use bar soap. It's just basic unscented "own brand" stuff but still creates less plastic waste than liquid soap and saves us money (also, my hands are not so dry)

These next few pictures are from a group walk in Derbyshire we did on a dull Thursday. I was shocked how cold it was too. Still, the views were pretty and I've since updated my rucksack to it's winter setting (to contain a woolly hat, gloves and hand-warmers) so I'm prepared the next time the temperatures drop.

Chatsworth house in the mist.

Back in the garden now :0)
Here my newly planted hostas are still looking great, much to my surprise. I thought they would have died back by now.

And my Dahlias are still flowering their heads off.

I'm training this climbing rose to spread along the fence (this was a prickly job).

and I'm still picking the odd rose to enjoy indoors. I love this orange one which I've had for many years. I wish I knew it's name.

I'm also trying to spread my growing space around the house. Eldest made me this large planter to go where our bins used to live. It was his good idea to mount it on casters, which he already had. The only bits we bought were the trellis panel and the planks that make up the sides. I've planted a few evergreens in it which were from the garden. I do love Lemon scented conifers. Their lime green foliage is so cheery and the whole purpose of this planter is to give me something green to look at out of my side kitchen window. I'll add some spring bulbs soon, mini daffs I expect :0)

On our front doorstep I've placed a couple of pumpkins. They are so seasonal and cheery. Never-mind it's not Halloween yet.

I also got out the one Halloween decoration out of storage that I own these days, don't think I would ever want to get rid of this cute lady.

Now it's getting cooler at night my large sunburst blanket is back on our bed, until it gets cold enough to need the winter duvet. It's a nice compromise and easy to throw off if the weather turns mild again.

I've also been doing a little sketching with my coloured pencils, some countryside scenes for an article in our parish magazine about the walking group I'm part of. I've made birthday cards for members in the past and the chairman asked me to do these too. How kind was that. Did I ever say how much I love those people :0)

One even contains the tractor I put in my first drawing of recent years, which I blogged about HERE.
Oh and Tom Tit too :0)

Onto another random subject. Here's the harvest of apples I picked from our young apple tree. Not that many but we didn't get any last year so I'm just glad to see any sort of crop.

Some are pretty tiny :0)

but I still had a go at peeling them ( they are Bramleys, cooking apples)

And popped them all in a pan with some of my foraged Blackberries.

Yay, 2 apple crumbles. One for now

And one for later

While I was in the kitchen I obviously decided to snap my "new" kitchen clock.

The old one has broken so I was thrilled to find this lovely wooden one in the Cancer Research charity shop.

£5 to a good cause and great recycling. What's not to love.

 And Finally. Last Saturday morning at 7.30am I opened the bedroom curtains to see this scene. I had to smile. I think we made right decision to invest a lot of time and effort (and money) into building a workshop for eldest.  He loves to be busy that boy, and by economising on day to day expenses as best I can I'm making projects like this possible.

 Thank you as always for reading, and for your kind and helpful comments.

Jacquie x

Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Padley Gorgeous

Hello Lovelies, it's tipping it down here this morning so I'm stuck indoors with time to write another blog post...every cloud and all that :0)

These pictures are from last Thursday's group walk in the Peak District. It's about as far away as the group journeys (generally we stick to within an hour's drive of home...this took 1hour 15mins) I think it was worth the extra miles and we always car share to save fuel and costs.

The Longshaw Estate is a national trust property high on the moors above Sheffield. It's in what's known as the Dark Peak ( with Millstone Grit geology as opposed to the Limestone of the White Peak) though I'm not fond of that description...makes it sound a bit off-putting and like the sun never shines.

It's actually rather beautiful moorland and wooded valleys. We started our walk from Longshaw Lodge in cloudy but dry conditions.

Wandered past the lake.

And through trees.

Where the rocky outcrop of Higger Tor could be glimpsed....and the Heather still looked purple....ish.

Here we crossed Burbage Brook and headed down stream.

To enter the boulder strewn delights of Padley Gorge.

I loved all the moss

and signs of Autumn just beginning.

There are some amazing twisted trees

And steep drops.

The recent rain meant the brook was quite impressive.

And trickles became waterfalls.

It takes some concentration to navigate but thankfully we stopped here for coffee and soaked it in a while longer.

Then the sun came out and the dappled light was gorgeous :0)

Blinking as we emerged into bright sunlight this tree caught my eye. I do love red acers.

The sun lit this roof beautifully too.

This glimpse of a garden gave a feeling of the alps.

We crossed the brook at the bottom of the gorge.

and passed these cute cottages.

Climbing steadily past cows.

And beginning to spy far reaching views.

Dry stone walls. Lovely.

Cross the road carefully.

 and climb higher still.

Fabulous light on Millstone edge, really making the jagged rocks stand out.

We passed interesting looking homes.

And here we began the short but steep final climb.

Zooming in.

Stopping to admire the views ( catch my breath) half way up. Oh look it's Mam Tor ( the wrinkly hill in the centre). I walked that HERE

Phew, made it to the top, excuse us Mrs cow.

Great views from way up here.

And interesting rock formations. Anybody see a snakes head here?

We enjoyed lunch on some rocks before it started to rain a little, time to head onwards. Past Mother cap.

And another snake...this one looks happy :0)

Spotting fungi. Fly Agaric.

Not sure :0)

Yay, more sun as we near the end.

And a rainbow.

Pretty Burbage Brook again.

And a final section though tall pines.

Back at the Lodge.

For a cup of tea.

With a view.


What a special outing that was. In case you fancy doing it too, it was THIS walk.

Thank you all so much for your kind comments on my recent posts. I never know if to reply, but I have done for the ones left on my previous post and I will try and do that from now on. It's great to chat with you and lovely to be back in blogland :0)

Jacquie x