Monday, 2 May 2016

Stiff and old

It's Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK and amazingly it hasn't rained yet, so we spent a few hours out in the garden yesterday afternoon and again this morning. I was digging up weeds, tilling a bit and then spreading the Strulch (composted straw mulch), and also spreading lawn food by hand. Consequently I am feeling very stiff and achy - I can see why older people retire to a bungalow with a paved-over small garden with a few pots. I can still call myself middle-aged but I am unfit enough that a few hours gardening does me in. But hopefully putting in the work now and getting the weed-suppressing Strulch down will save many hours of weeding over the summer.  That's if it doesn't blow away - I'm still not convinced as it seems very lightweight.  We've watered it in for now but what happens when it dries out in the summer?  Our garden is quite windy.

Also yesterday we went around a set of nine gardens in the picturesque stone and thatch village of Great Brington, northwest of Northampton, which were open for charity under the National Garden Scheme.  Some very pretty spring gardens, some gorgeous cottages, it was sunny, and I picked up some inspiration for things we could do in our garden.

I  spent a day at the monthly quilting 'bring your own project' day and worked again on my ancient UFO Indigo Bear's Paw quilt, piecing five more blocks and cutting out the remaining seven block kits and pulling off the Thangles papers from the half-square triangles.  Then I stitched on my hand-applique Hawaiian Quilt for a few hours so it was a productive day.  Well worth it as if I had been at home I would have quit out of boredom after a few hours which is why the Bear's Paw quilt project is fifteen years old.  I was obviously delusional in my younger quilting days thinking that I could simultaneously complete all these enormous and time-consuming projects that I am still trying to finish off a decade later.

This week was also the great Dollshouse Shed reveal, although that turned out to be somewhat anti-climatic as only around half the members attended this month's meeting.  Still, the ones who were there were impressed with it. Although I was a bit surprised when one woman asked if I had made it myself - why would I bring someone else's half-finished project to the club?  It needs some more gingerbread trim on the porch, something to cover up the seams on the tower, and of course shingling.  But I've finally been able to tidy up the workshop (I am a horrendously messy worker and gradually fill all surfaces until I am literally working on the corner of the table) and get back to working on my bigger Victorian porch.  DH is going to take me to Hobbycraft in Northampton today to pick up some paint for the big porch shingles and while I am there I will look for something to use for the shed porch gingerbread.  Once the shed is done then I need to fit it onto the provided base and create a garden around it.

Knitting this week has continued on the Que Sera Cardigan, the Lallybroch socks and I found a shawl I had forgotten about, the Now in a Minute Shawl so I've done a few inches on that as well.  The shawl had been tidied away inside a cupboard so out of sight, out of mind.  And I have brought my bobbin lace down out of the attic to the dining room for the same reason, and forced myself to soldier on for a couple more inches on the miniature shelf edging.

The only other thing I've done this week, besides debating with DS on why he needs me to send him more money when he is only a few weeks into his third term at uni, is to take apart a large picture I got at a bric-a-brac shop and paint the white frame to look like dark wood. That took several coats of wood stain and tinted varnish but it doesn't look too bad now. Bit streaky but nothing that would offend the casual eye. So I reassembled the picture yesterday and it's hanging in the living room where it looks nice on the blue wall.

If you are in the UK, I hope you are enjoying a pleasant Bank Holiday weekend also.

1 comment:

Daisy said...

Just experimenting with leaving a comment from a tablet! Seems to be working (it doesn't work on my phone!)

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