Monday, March 30, 2015

New

Yesterday I finished off my post with the line, 'New week, new month, new season'. Well it kind of got me thinking that it seems to be the theme not only in nature but also in our home at the moment. There is much 'newness' that is going on now and much 'newness' that we will embrace over the coming months.

I think that over April I'm going to embrace and explore that theme in my daily outlook and share a bit of that here on my blog. There are many small ordinary things where we can see this theme coming through. Of course spring is all around us and 'new life' and 'new beginnings' can be seen in just about everything.

I think spring makes you look at things a bit more closely, especially within the home. I get the urge to clear out and freshen up. For simply ages one small little area has needed a bit of attention...


... the laundry basket. It's such a small thing but rather annoying. Every day as our clothes are tossed into the laundry basket I see the old worn fabric liner. The fabric has lost it's integrity, its floppy, has a grey tinge to it even though it is washed frequently, and the seams are fraying. Each week that goes by the seams fray a little more and I tell myself, ' I really must do something about that'. But I don't.

Well last week I did! After I emptied the basket of it's contents in front of the washing machine, I took out the liner - 'it's now or never!'

I unpicked the bottom and laid out all the pieces on some lovely stripy fabric I had sitting in my stash. It was the quickest, easiest sewing job I've done in ages. Honestly, I don't know why on earth it has taken me so long to tackle this small job!


I unpicked the bottom of the old liner and laid out all the pieces on some lovely stripy fabric I had sitting in my stash. It was the quickest, easiest sewing job I've done in ages. Honestly, I don't know why on earth it has taken me so long to tackle this small job!


I'm really pleased with the results. The basket looks crisp and clean {even if the top is looking a bit wonky}, it's new look is perfect for the new season. It has a kind of summery/nautical feel to it I think.


Next job on my list ... digging over my weedy flower beds! Will it happen? I think so - we have a glorious two weeks of Easter holidays stretching before us. Only a commitment to Maths for the girls - a little each day. Other than that time is our own to spend how we will. This week we are mostly at home trying not to do too much as my youngest is dancing every night of the week in her dance schools annual show. We have quite a few church services too as we are now in Holy Week. So a lovely week to look forward to, much to celebrate and much to enjoy and savor.

Happy Monday and a blessed Holy Week to you all.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Last Sunday in March

Well here we are, the last {Palm} Sunday in March. This weekend saw us gain an extra hour of sunlight as we officially switched to British Summer Time. It was wonderful to see the sun still out at 7 pm!

Our Palm Sunday has been wet, windy and rainy. Late this afternoon the heavy cloud lifted a bit and we had a little glimpse of blue sky and sunshine. I must say, the sky was impressive!


My Magnolia twigs have bloomed beautifully, and so quickly! I might have to bring in a few more twigs for the Easter weekend.



The petals of the flower are such a delicate pink. Pastels and yellow are the colours of spring of course. Everything is so delicate, new and soft. I love this time of the year.


So once again we are poised at the end of one month and standing on the brink of the next. Tomorrow I will begin my month-end routine: Pull out the recipe books and calendar, do Aprils menu plan, budget, clean out the refrigerator and make sure that it is fresh and clean and ready for re-stocking. 

A new week, a new month and a new season. Lovely!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Monday Check-In :)

Hello and happy Monday to you all!

First up - look what bloomed over the weekend...



Aren't they just gorgeous! Spring is definitely springing :) 

This morning we started off with a bit of sunshine which was lovely, although it clouded over as the day progressed, but starting off with sunshine streaming through the {clean!} windows is always enough to put me in a good mood.


I've brought a few twigs of Magnolia indoors, I'm hoping that they will open up by the end of Holy Week - which is next week already - and give us their beautiful pink display of delicate flowers.

This morning I was having a look at our schedule for this week and next and was pondering on how quickly Lent has passed by. Our weeks are particularly busy at the moment as DD2 has a major dancing production that they are preparing for. It runs throughout Holy Week which is a bit of a pain as it is already a week with lots going on. It would have been nice if they week-long production was in the 2nd week of the Easter holidays ;)


With everything feeling very 'spring-ish' around here, I was inspired to put up a few Easter decorations. I know that it's perhaps a bit early but I do love my Easter tree and and bunting and quite fancy having them on display for a bit longer than a week. 

The mantle will be decorated a bit more over Holy Week
For this years Easter tree I spray-painted a few twigs, hung our usual white and yellow decor eggs on it's branches and added a new set of yummy edible eggs - which the girls can add to their Easter-egg stash on Easter morning.


Of course a couple of those little speckled eggs went 'missing' during the filling process ;)

Well I hope your week is off to a magnificent start! I'll see you back here very soon. 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Bits n' Pieces

Brrrrr! We had a frosty start to the day yesterday. I do love the pretty patterns that Jack Frost paints :)


The daffodils were kind enough to keep their blooming until we returned from Devon. They look a bit sad under the weight of the frost, but they soon perked up once the sun came out and melted all the frostiness away. They are perfectly on time I have to say - what with the official start of spring on Friday :)


And they are not the only ones peeking out... 


My Camellia's are beginning to open up.

My lovely friend Michelle sent me these beautiful daffodils that she knitted herself...


Aren't they just gorgeous? I just love them and think that they are just perfect on my dresser. I love that these will never fade and die - 'forever' daffodils :)

 If you are a yarn-aholic like me you must drop on over to Michelle's new yarn store African Yarns. Oh my goodness -they are just beautiful. It's wonderful that you can get these beautiful hand-crafted yarns right here in England. 

Years ago, before we moved to England, I was lucky enough to attend the opening and launching of Nurturing Fibres. Carle's yarn is just beautiful. I bought some hand-dyed sock yarn and made this beautiful shawl for my step-mother.



This pictures are almost 4 years old now - I can't believe how much my youngest has grown since then! Anyhoo, it's these lovely African Nurturing Fibres yarns that you can now buy through Michelle. I believe she has already had orders from the States. Yes - she ships to the United States too!

On the home front - my cleaning routine is working wonders! It is so much easier to attack jobs a bit at a time rather than all at once. Yesterday I managed to do a couple of windows in a little 10 minute time slot that I found during the day. 

This weeks Midori diary page...


its all about St. Pats of course. Each little bullet under the 'To Do' and 'Prayer' list is a little clover :). I also have a list of books that I want to get hold of that a friend recommended to me, the meal plan was incomplete at the time of the photograph but it's all been updated since.

I think that about wraps up this little 'bits n' pieces' post. I hope that Thursday is treating you all well and I hope to see you back here soon.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A Trip To The Seaside

We are back from our travels...

...and what lovely travels they were!


So  here it is - my husband's company have offered him a hotel to run in Plymouth. Our trip was all about going to suss things out. Would he be happy with the hotel? Would we be happy living in Plymouth. Is Plymouth even the type of town we would want to live in? Some of these coastal towns can be just awful. So this was an investigative trip. Only three days, so a whirlwind in and out. Not much time to do much sightseeing but enough time to get a feel for the town and the surrounding areas.

Driving through England is always a pleasure. It's so beautiful, the only problem is that most of the beauty is missed when you travel on the motorways. About 10 miles out of Plymouth we came across a cross-country/steeple chase kind of thing - (sorry, I don't know much about horse racing events - you get the idea though I'm sure). Our timing was just right - the race was just starting so we pulled over into the lay-by and watched the horses hurtle passed us. My eldest daughter was thrilled.

First impressions of Devon as we drove through - STUNNING. Although there are not many parts of England that are awful ;) but Devon is certainly a beautiful county.

And then Plymouth... Oh my! I LOVE this seaside town. It is so clean - I have never ever come across such a clean town. There was not a packet, paper cup or tin can lying about. It was spotless.

And the views from the waterfront - Oh my goodness!!! Have a look...














We arrived on a very overcast day and left on a sunny day (Murphy's law). It looked great in both lights lol.

Before we moved to England we lived in Cape Town South Africa, about a mile from the beach. Although I'm not a sit-on-the-beach kind of person (too sandy) I do LOVE walking along the rocks and beach and just soaking in the views. I find it nourishment to my soul. Of course the rest of my family love the sea, the beach, the whole thing. It has been something that we have missed and my DH and I had spoken of 'retiring' to the seaside again one day. Well now it looks as though we won't have to wait that 15 odd years to do so.
Clear fresh ocean water gently lapping the shore.
Of course there are still lots of little details to iron out with the powers-that-be before we accept the offer so nothing is set in stone as of yet. Events will unfold in their own good time. But for now it was enough to have spent 3 days in such a lovely town and most of all spent a good few hours absorbing the beautiful ocean views.