Tuesday 27 July 2021

Tuesday's Travels 15

Was this a toughie or what? Mind you, if I hadn't been there, I would never have guessed this one either. But it was Bournemouth Pier in England. Points go to Fun 60 and Yamini. Hilary gets a mention as she first was at the right coast and right starting letter (B), but then moved to the wrong coast, even if she did stay with B.
My story? When I lived in England back in the early nineties, I decided a few days at the seaside would be fun. As it was pre-car, I took a train or two and ended up in Bournemouth. It was already autumn, so not much was open, but I enjoyed myself anyway. The weather wasn't very good, but I think I visited a Lego exhibition on or very near the pier.

On to this week's challenge. Where is this? Have you ever been? What is your story? Answer next week!

Wednesday 21 July 2021

Eating my greens

They need to grow a bit yet these beans
Apart from new home and a birthday party, there is of course also this little garden of mine. Which is not that little to be honest, it seems to take up most of the garden now! But it does look great and is good fun. 

The Crimson Clover has started to bloom
Last Sunday I was sitting on the terrace with my breakfast enjoying the peace and quiet of an early morning. Bees and wasps were already busy and there was buzzing all over the place.

A wasp (?) and a ladybird on the Buddleia
When the sun became a bit stronger, the Red Admirals and Cabbage Whites arrived. They love the Buddleia we have, but the Cabbage Whites are also partial to my cabbages! 

Which are doing great by the way. Despite being eaten by the unseen caterpillars and/or other bugs. Plenty to go around.

The first tomatoes are here as well. Still very green and quite small, but as they are the cherry variety, they won't grow that big anyway. 

Radish flowers and seed pods
Two plants have started to set seed now: the rocket and the radishes. They will have to remain on the plant for as long as possible obviously (so my Mum says) to actually produce viable seeds. 

It looks like a gherkin!
My courgette that was didn't survive due to lack of water, but fortunately another one has started to form and I will make sure this one does survive. And my first cucumber is on the go as well.

My brother and his family gave me a small lemon tree for my birthday, but according to the sign with it: not edible. I had been thinking limoncello or pickled lemons, but alas. It still looks really good though!

Quite a few pea pods already. Growing big and fat!
The carrots have been harvested and eaten already and that pot will soon be moving with me and probably be filled with flowers for the time being. The rest will come as and when. 

Tuesday 20 July 2021

Tuesday's Travels 14

Well, this was actually a bit of a shoe-in for some. Mostly those that had come and visited me while I was living in Norway. It was of course a copy of the Statue of Liberty on Karmøy in Norway. The points go to Harm, Gera and Bettina. I am not giving out points for knowing it was the Statue of Liberty!
My story? I took everybody there that came to visit me. It is also the closest I ever got to Lady Liberty and I was able to touch it from standing. No chance of seeing the inside as it was only a small statue.

On to this week's challenge. Where is this? Have you ever been? What is your story?

Monday 19 July 2021

Birthday party

It was my birthday last month, but due to my sister coming a few weeks later, I scheduled my birthday party for July 17th. It was going to be watery. As in: sightseeing by boat, perhaps renting a small boat ourselves. 

One friend couldn't make it, as she was on holiday. Another couldn't make it as she was due to go on holiday. So, of the 17 people invited: 6 dropped out immediately. My friend in Scotland couldn't make it. Nor could my sister (this virus is slowly getting on my nerves!). My brother called: he was coming, but his family not as they were (going) camping and had travel time. 

H tried to putt, but he overshot
Eventually it was me, my parents and a couple who have known me all (she) or most (he) of my life. I still didn't want to do the Dutch thing by sitting around, having coffee and cake, followed by nibbles and chit chat. But the watery idea I had was doable with a sizeable group, not so much with a small group. 

 I in the 'Ruff'
In the end I had an idea. I had been to this place yonks ago and I thought it might be good fun to go there again. We were going to play golf! Not the Tiger Woods version, but not the Kurt Russell/Goldie Hawn 'Overboard' version either. Pitch & Putt. 

First there would be lunch at home. For this my brother, his wife and two daughters would come. Until that blasted virus knocked it sideways once again. Until they could come anyway. Until traffic got in the way in the form of accidents and roadworks. The other couple had similar problems: an open bridge which then wouldn't close again. 

In the end, everybody arrived. Lunch was eaten and then four cars left again. One car for camping, one car home to son (who wasn't able to come) and two cars for golf. Once there it was busy. Very busy. And due to this virus (have I told you it is getting on my nerves), not enough staff. But we did get our coffee and cakes and then we were told about the course and what to do.

My Dad and H searching for a ball 
The weather was glorious. Blue skies, sun, a bit of wind, 24 degrees C. All around fantastic. Perfect for a nice 18 hole round. Well... In the end it was only five. Due to all the troubles earlier in the day, we started a bit late and if we were to do the whole thing, it would be 10 pm by the time we would finish, as we weren't that good.

It was a lot of fun though. I took some photos with my phone and for some reason it takes short videos at the same time. Normally quite annoying, this time around it was perfect. On our return we visited our local Chinese to round off the day perfectly. Good food, good company. It was a good day, despite...

Video 1: My Mum teeing off
Video 2: My Dad teeing off and failing
Video 3: My Dad's ball had landed in the water and he needed to retrieve it. We were hoping, it didn't happen...
Video 4: Me hitting the ball
Video 5: Me hitting the ball again

Sunday 18 July 2021

Friday 16 July 2021

Tuesday's Travels Update 13

A little update is needed of course due to me being AWOL and not having updated the post direct. This was the balcony of Romeo and Juliet in Verona, Italy. Gera gets one point, Millie and Walter get 1/2 point (for naming Romeo and Juliet) and Yamini gets 1/4 point (for only naming Juliet).

So, how about another little update? I have been doing this little challenge for three months now and here is how the leader board stands right now: 
Yamini: 8.75 points
Gera: 5 points
Millie and Walter: 3.5 points
Fun 60: 2.5 points
Everybody else: 1 point or less

I hope you like these challenges as there are plenty more places I might be able to trick you with...

Thursday 15 July 2021


Holiday with my sister back in 1997
And three guesses why I have been AWOL recently. Well, I am celebrating the fact that I am holiday. At least, I had taken some days off to spend with my sister who was due to come over. The emphasis on WAS. She isn't. Again. Our hope is now for December when she will come over for three weeks: enough time to include a quarantine if needed. 

We knew and dreaded her not coming for a while, but in the end all was not lost, as there was a house to be decorated. I have been going over most days (two days I was out of the running due to a bad H) and have taken stuff from storage with me. 

My collection of bin bags. *Sigh*
Most of my kitchen stuff is now in the house, washed up as well. The only thing missing really are my dinner plates that have still not been located. I finally did locate curtains yesterday: in the first row from the door! *Sigh* But, they have been found and most are usable as are, some need a small adjustment, some need sewing from scratch. The main thing though: I don't have to buy any curtains! 

The inside painting was finished on Tuesday, the last bit involving some severe acrobatics on my side. Think ladder resting on stairs or me climbing over the protective barrier. The result however is good and I am very pleased. There are some bits where I spilled a bit, but they will have to remain so: no more acrobatics for me!

Last week the solar panels were due to be installed, but heavy winds on the day prevented them from doing that. They did do the preliminary stuff though, so it should be a quick job today. Some of the trees have been removed, which means there is a lot of light in the house now. My living room is north facing, so having big trees blocking light was not good. I still have some trees left that need pruning, and I have a big laurel hedge that is out of control. That will be trimmed back in a few weeks' time.

Today and tomorrow are the last days of me working in the house really. We are now on to coat hooks, and picture hanging anyway, so not that bad. On Monday the floors upstairs will be carpeted, which will mean that a lot of stuff now in the shed, will be moved up. Then on Wednesday the downstairs will get a laminate floor. Sunday in a week the big stuff will finally be gotten: bed, couch, wardrobes, washer and dryer. 

This was not part of the acrobatics!
I will not move in then just yet. There will be another week needed to get everything right, also because cooker and fridge don't arrive until Wednesday the 28th of July. A lot of my small appliances and some of the big have UK plugs on them: they don't fit our European sockets. They all need to be changed. And the remaining two lights will have to be hung. As I am still on the fence about where to put what in the living area, I thought it wisest to wait until it has found a place!

So, that is what I have been doing lately. Painting, fetching, carrying, doing dishes. But it is starting to look good!

Tuesday 13 July 2021

Tuesday's Travels 13

Romeo, Romeo, where art thou Romeo!? Yes, this is the balcony of Romeo and Juliet fame. Although it isn't. Not really. It can't be you know, as the story of Romeo and Juliet was thought up by Billy S. But the people of Verona don't let the fact that it is a fictional story hinder them. 
I was there back in 1999 when I visited Italy with a friend. The main memory of Verona however is not this balcony, but pizza as it was the first time I actually ate a pizza and liked it. I have eaten many since. 

On to this week's challenge. Where is this? Have you ever been? What is your story? Answer next week!

Tuesday 6 July 2021

Tuesday's Travels 12

This was something that was fairly familiar with a few of you. It is a hoodoo and this one is somewhere in the Badlands of Alberta, Canada. There are however several places where Badlands occur and where hoodoos are a feature, most notable Bryce Canyon in the United States. Points this week go to: Yamini. Again Anvilcloud knew where it was, but failed to actually put down a name, so alas no points.
My own story? On my visit to Canada back in 2011 I was shown the Badlands of Alberta by a Canadian friend. In fact, I did go back to see the area again a few days later as I loved it there and would have loved to see even more. Time restraints kept me from doing so.

On to this week's challenge. Do you know where this is? Have you ever been? Tell me your story! Answer next week.

Sunday 4 July 2021

Photo on Sunday 2021-21

Nature's bubble wrap or spider's web and drizzle? You pick!

Friday 2 July 2021

Dinner time

I can harvest some things almost daily
My parents came back from their 3 week holiday last Saturday and the first thing my Dad said once he saw my garden: it's a jungle! Not meaning the new house, but my allotment. And I guess if you haven't seen it for a while, it does look a bit like it: a jungle. In fact, some of the plants have already grown so big, I had to move them elsewhere so everything would have air and sun.

The courgette flower only blooms for a few hours
I have been checking and eating and watering and eating. The main eating is done from the Swiss Chard which grows really well. The rocket is now really flowering in earnest, but the leaves can still be eaten. The basil is also going strong. 

The first tiny flowers on the tomato plant
I have also eaten most of the snow peas. There are a couple left that I missed among all the green! And the other day I also eaten the first of the Lucinato Kale (or Cavolo Nero). It will continue to grow until well into autumn. 

The strawberries are not doing well
The tomatoes are now beginning to flower, as are the courgette. The beans are slowly becoming beans and the regular peas are also slowly coming on. The radishes have a mixed result: some grow really big and others stay tiny, but the plant is bigger! 

It smells like liquorice! (the Agastache)
For me this has been a real success and I have loved it. Definitely something to continue with next year. And I already have massive plans for the new garden, although that would involve winning the lottery big time. I do however know I want an edible garden with fruit bushes and room for other edibles. But that is for another time.

Thursday 1 July 2021

Before and after

Goodness me, you would think that once past the panic buying last year, people would be less fixated on toilet paper, but apparently not so! The first thing people thought when they saw the potty: there is no loo roll! Tsk tsk tsk. It was a before photo people. Mind you, it could have been an after photo as well of course, but let's not get into that. Before it is.

But I am not one to hold out and that's why I took my camera to the new digs the other day to actually take photos of the littlest room in the house. Which is the only room completely finished at this stage, although I am making headway in the kitchen/living room. The hallway is also coming on fine and once I figure out how to re-glue the out of reach wall paper...

What else is there to say about the privy? It has a loo, it has a tiny sink with cold water (almost all Dutch houses have tiny sinks with cold water only in their bog, not sure why) and mine even has heating in it. I painted the walls and ceiling a nice calming magnolia, hung up a loo roll, put a shelf over the can itself where I placed more loo rolls, made sure there was a tiny waste receptacle and a cleaning brush. And I made sure some of my own flowery photos were level. Done!