In the garden

Watching birds is captivating. These are some of the little dudes I’ve snapped in our back garden recently. Oh. And butterflies. Just because.

We have a regular gentleman caller in the form of a very handsome tui, and there are lots of fantails about at the moment, too, though I don’t have those on film.

How about you? What are some of the feathered visitors to your garden?

picture of song thrush.

Song thrush: isn’t he a dandy?

photo of a waxeye

Waxeye: so cute – almost disappears in our unmown lawn

photo of a blackbird

A lady blackbird (so, not really black at all, then…)

photo of goldfinch

Goldfinch: don’t you love that flash of yellow? And the red mask. Just like a superhero.

close-up photo of butterflies eating nectar

Monarch butterflies feasting on Fatsia japonica. The bees love it, too.


Sunday list: 19 May 2013

♥ Loll about in bed for a bit… sleeping, eating toast and marmalade, reading…

♥ Get the flat laundry on and hang it out to dry in the sunshine

♥ Unpack the vegetables I bought from the market yesterday which *coughs* are still in the trolley in the kitchen

♥ Turn the compost – and maybe do some weeding

♥ Listen to the Archers Omnibus while I do some batch cooking for the freezer: red curry beef, parsnip soup

♥ Refill the wood baskets and lay the fire

♥ Back up recent photos to external drive and swap around the music on my phone

♥ Sew buttons on Alice’s sixth birthday cardigan

♥ Watch a film and knit some more of Liz’s beanie

♥ Tackle the giant pile of ironing

♥ Cook dinner: potato pizza

♥ Bake a Masterchef-watching treat for the flatties: this apple cake

♥ Phone Mum



Photo of Katherine Hepburn

My boss told me I was “very Kate Hepburn” today.


Best compliment ever


One of those days: disasters in DIY

Got home to this frankly hilarious tale of woe from Mum (Sorry, Mama, this is too good not to share with the world).

“Oh dear. It has been one of those days. I woke up this morning with a huge cockroach climbing up my arm. First one I’ve seen this summer.

Began painting the main bedroom bedside tables. Had sanded including drawers and painted five drawers. At that stage Tigs got off his chair jumped onto the desk where I had the roller container. I had a paint brush in it.

Tigs stepped on the brush which somehow dipped in the paint and hurled a huge splodge onto the window and windowsill. Then he trudged through the tray which was full and got paint over one front paw and completely down one hind leg and part of the other. He then threaded over the carpet and ran out of the bedroom door. While I was still taking it all in he then came in the sitting room door and went under the table then when I came looking for him headed for the back door. Dripping paint all the way!!

I cornered him finally on top of the BBQ after he came up the side of the deck. So we had paw prints in the bedroom over the sitting room carpet through the kitchen on the door step and all round the deck. The paint just ran down the BBQ cover.

I took him into the laundry tub. Him struggling of course, filled up the tub and managed to wrangle bits at a time into the water. Made an awful mess and I finally had to let him go but got a lot of it off. He was gagging and I did think of taking him to the vet. But he seems to be okay now. He’s curled up asleep beside me on the couch.

Then I had to turn around and scrub 20 odd paw prints off the carpet and Lino. Have sanded bits of the deck but it was raining so will have to finish tomorrow. Then I had to finish the painting and clean up myself. And that was just the primer. Think I will lock him in the toilet when I’m painting tomorrow.

Of course, the house now stinks of turps.”


Tigger: butter wouldn’t melt…


There’s no going back


I’ve really done it now – taken that final step towards old ladyhood, cementing my status as a nana for all time.

Yep. Got myself a shopping trolley. And tartan, at that. But you know what? I friggin’ love it. It’s a darn sight easier than lugging heavy bags around the market.

Now I’ll never again be forced to make that excruciating choice between spuds and onions.

Besides, now I have one they’re officially cool. And coming soon to a hipster near you.

I kid you not. This week, me; this time next year, Zooey Deschanel and Agnes Deyne. You read it here first.


Woolly thinking

When was the last time you called something shoddy?

And… do you know the term has its origins in the wool industry?

This morning I happened on this entry in Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand: Shoddy is woollen cloth that is torn up, shredded and made up into new fabrics.”

It set me off on a lovely journey musing on how amazing wool is – and how it was once so all-pervasive in European culture that words derived from it are still in use today, even when their original meanings have fallen into obscurity.

♥ etymology

♥ it’s now not completely and utterly gratuitous for me to share this splendid short film of the inimitable Godfrey Bowen shearing a sheep