Monday, 28 October 2013

Autumn Haze

Autumn in OakenShield

Last Sunday the clock moved an hour back; that's it really.... winter is inevitable
We saw the last of this year's gloriously long and exceptionally beautiful summer days and the arrival of cooler autumn temperatures.

It's been a gentle autumn so far....

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

To Autumn
by John Keats

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Get Arty

For the last month or so I have been attending a weekly session of art lessons with a group of like-minded ladies.

This week lesson was all about contour drawing; we were not allowed to lift our pencil off the paper while drawing - much like a spider moving on the paper around the object.

We had to use a sharpened bamboo stick dipped in watercolour in order to create the final product. I found it both challenging but enjoyable - would definitely stick to this type of painting!
(Get it.. stick?! I'm punny that way.)

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Garden Updates

What started out as my little project to turn the grassy area near the courtyard into a cottage flower garden quickly turned into one backbreaking endeavour.
I am reckless that way...
The family knew that.
Often, I would be the one entangled in some sort of foolhardy task, and I never learn from the past.
I have a memory of a goldfish

Step 1
Removing the grass
the task was made easy by using the turf cutter machine.
The grasses were then rolled up like carpets, really heavy carpets I might add...

Eventually, we managed to removed most, if not all, traces of grass.
It took us a good six-hours of turf-stripping plus two days of removing those rolled-up grasses.

Now comes the fun part...
planting and transplanting all sorts of perennials

Here comes the grump...
Inspecting the work done thus far

Monday, 21 October 2013


 Spending the day driving along the northern coastal villages of Scotland with my girlfriends