Sunday, 20 December 2015

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you a Happy Christmas,
 Jolly Holidays 
 and a Wonderful New Year!

 My next post will be in 2016.
 (Is it just me, or does that sound impossibly far in the future?)

Monday, 30 November 2015

Who needs inflatable reindeer?

Now that the Halloween decorations have disappeared (thank you to the person who finally took in the coffin that was propped up next to their front door for over a week!), and I’m hoping we might have heard the last of the fireworks until the New Year, I suppose it won’t be long now before the first flashing lights, plastic snowmen, rooftop sleighs and other symbols of Christmas appear on the houses around us. After all, they’ve been in the shops for weeks.

I’m not a Scrooge, I do enjoy Christmas, but I think my Grandad had the right idea when he’d say sternly, ‘There are only twelve days of Christmas,’ if anyone in the family started the celebrations too soon.

But, with the days becoming shorter and drearier in these few weeks before Christmas, I would like to brighten up my outside space without spending a fortune on tacky decorations. Will this do?

Our special car needs special cleaning cloths (or so I’m told), but they also make colourful flags for the back garden.

And I’m glad I had the foresight to plant these sunny chrysanths in the front garden. They’ve survived our first frost, torrential rain and gale force winds.

Do you decorate the outside of your home at this time of year? A simple holly wreath? Or an all singing, all dancing winter wonderland? 

Monday, 26 October 2015

Cheap, cheerful and eco-friendly

One of the joys of visiting new places is that you get the chance to see other people’s gardens.

Yes, I’m that nosy woman who looks over hedges and through gateways exclaiming, ‘Oh, look at that!’

I want a veg patch like this ...
... and I must have a purple and silver flower bed


Perhaps, when I am Rich, passers-by will want to peep into my lovely garden. If so, they’ll be very welcome.

But I wouldn’t need much money to copy this idea that I found during our holiday in Scotland. A greenhouse made from plastic bottles. Simply brilliant!

It was in a garden attached to a primary school. I do hope it inspires all the children there to become passionate and knowledgeable gardeners.

Have you seen any good gardening ideas lately? 

Monday, 7 September 2015


When I am Rich I’ll be able to employ someone to organize my holidays for me. I’ll tell them where I want to go and leave it up to them to book the accommodation, make the travel arrangements, research the area and draw up a detailed plan of where to go and what to do each day.

On second thoughts … I’d rather make my own adventure.

 See you when I get back!

Saturday, 1 August 2015

Mystery solved

I couldn’t understand why the path outside my front door was littered with cherry stones. How had they got there? The nearest cherry trees are two streets away.

Then I noticed this young starling on the roof.

When I am Rich I’ll have lots of cherry trees in my garden – some for me, some for the birds – but I’ll have to find a way of teaching them to eat their food where they find it.

Do messy eaters annoy you?

Friday, 19 June 2015

Watching the workers

When I am Rich I’ll have plenty of beehives dotted around my garden, and dozens of Californian lilacs (Ceanothus).

The one Californian lilac I’ve got is a bit of a problem. If I let it grow to the size it wants to be I wouldn’t be able to see out of my front window. Even with annual pruning it takes up a large part of my tiny front garden.


But I’m pleased it’s there because as soon as the first clusters of blue flowers appear it attracts all sorts of bees.

 I don’t know where they all come from, but I could happily watch them all day. It's so relaxing, watching other people work, isn't it?

Friday, 15 May 2015

What am I bid?

When I am Rich, I’d love to have beautiful, original artworks in every room of my house. And perhaps a few sculptures for the garden …

But even if I had £115 million to spare, I wouldn’t be tempted to buy a painting by Picasso, da Vinci, Turner or even my favourite, Van Gogh. I’d rather use my money to support living artists than give it away to secretive collectors, dealers and auction houses.

But, at the risk of being hypocritical, I can’t help wondering how much Christie’s would be able to get for this masterpiece:

Do I hear 50p?

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Up in the clouds

When I am Rich I want to live in a house with panoramic mountain views.

Until then, I’ll have to improvise with clouds ... and my imagination.

I live in the Cambridgeshire fens. It’s certainly not the worst place on earth, but it is very F L A T!

What would you like to see from your window?

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Hunting hares

When I am Rich, I’ll invest in a really good telephoto lens for my camera in the hope of getting a photo of a running hare that shows more than a brown blur.

 Until then, I’ll just have to try snapping them when they’re still.

 Trouble is, they’re very good at playing hide-and-seek.


Saturday, 17 January 2015

You win some, you lose some …

Not a good start to 2015.

At least, that’s what I thought when I saw my entry to MagicOxygen’s short story competition hadn’t made the shortlist.

Trying to be optimistic, I decided to look on this not as a failure, but as an opportunity to find another home for that particular story. It might do better in a different competition. Perhaps a paying magazine will accept it. Who knows, one day it could even catch the eye of a top agent or publisher!

And then I noticed an even brighter silver lining.

One of the things that persuaded me to pay the £5 entry fee to the competition was that Magic Oxygen pledged to plant a tree in a Word Forest in Kenya for every entrant.  

Look, they’ve sent me the GPS coordinates so I can see where my tree will grow.

View Larger Map
So now I still have a completed story ready for submission – and a tree in Africa!
I plan to go and visit it When I am Rich.