Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Little Holiday In France


We just recently got back from a lovely little break in France, just what the doctor ordered! It was lovely spending a few days with my parents and I think my Dad really appreciated having Jack out there to help him with some jobs.

The weather was kind to us all week, a few cloudy spells but for the most part it was warm and sunny. Dad and Jack were busy building a shed in the garden, it's flat-pack which is a fantastic idea as it was so easy to put together. They're painting it an olive green colour and it looks lovely sat nestled between the old stone barn wall and the Hibiscus. Jack also helped Dad with some strimming and other jobs (anything with an engine and Jack is a happy boy!).

 Shed building in the sunshine
The house and gardens are looking fantastic now; the shrubs my parents planted have all taken well despite fending for themselves over a warm summer. The tomatoes had gone mad while my parents were back in England and my mum has buckets full to use; I suggested making a nice chutney or some pasta sauce as they can't eat them quick enough in salads and sandwiches. The peach tree in their garden is also full of fruit and they're lovely and sweet; mum made a lovely peach jam which they enjoy on fresh French bread most mornings (they're living the life I tell you!). 
 Dad's self-built Boules court in the garden, we had many games and I am pretty useless!
We didn't go on many trips out while we were there as it was just nice to relax at the house and sit in the garden reading a book or doing some crochet. We did enjoy a couple of lovely lunches out in Saumur; one at Le Panorama Bar which overlooks the Chateau, town and Loire River and another lunch at my favourite restaurant L'Entracte (formerly called Brussels Café) where I enjoyed some tasty Moules Mariniere!
Jack, Dad and Mum enjoying a nice drink at Le Panorama Bar
Haven't yet managed to visit Saumur when there hasn't been renovation work going on at the Chateau
Jack and I also had a nice afternoon walking through the forest near to my parent's house foraging for goodies. We came home with lots of mushrooms (we'd managed to pick mostly poisonous ones oops!) and a bag full of chestnuts (the trees are overflowing with them at the moment and they're all over the roads and tracks)
Lots of chestnuts ready for roasting on the fire
Hazlenuts from the tree outside the house too
We also had a drive out to the vineyards at Bourgeil. They're as far as the eye can see and are weighed down with grapes at the moment. The specially-designed tractors that harvest the grapes are very odd looking as they hover directly over each line of vines but quite fascinating to watch. I got out of the car at one point to take a couple of photos and "borrowed" a grape, I was surprised at how lovely and sweet they were. Bourgeil is quite a famous red wine region.
Vineyards at Bourgeil
We had a lovely time anyway and I was so glad the weather was kind to us too so we could spend time outside. It was lovely lighting the fire in the evening, I love watching and listening to a real log fire. That will be our last trip to France for 2015 (two visits this year, three last year), but I'm excited at the prospect of some nice holidays out there next year. We hope to take Barry with us too now he's getting better with car journeys. He'd love walks through the forests and my parent's big garden to run around, I'd just have to make sure he didn't take too much of an interest in the next door neighbours' poultry, sheep and donkey!
Mum and "Tulip" the donkey. We'd give her a carrot every evening along with Horace
Horace the Percheron Stallion
Barry had a lovely holiday with Jack's parents at their house back in Cambridgeshire while we were in France. I think he totally tired himself out running around their big garden, eating all manner of things he shouldn't and rolling in everything else! We have him on some anti-anxiety medicine from the Vets at the moment which is made from a natural milk protein and so far it seems to have really helped with the car journeys. He no longer cries, shakes or vomits and instead just lays in his crate watching the world go by or has a snooze (they are anti-drowsy as I didn't want anything that sedates him). It's so nice to see him happier in the car and we're continuing with the short trips to make sure he's used to the car. Hopefully we can wean him off of the medication soon and he won't be so stressed out about going in the car, he even jumped in the other day as if to say "where are we going?" which is totally unheard of! He hasn't let us out of his sight anyway since we've been back and jumps straight into my lap at every chance he gets, I did really miss him.  
We enjoyed a nice lunch out on Sunday for Jack's brother's birthday. We also picked some lovely apples from the trees in Sarah and Richard's garden and I enjoyed lazing in the sun by the beautiful windmill that sits in their garden.
The beautiful 'Cattels Mill' Windmill that sits in Jack's parents' garden. More photos of the mill on this website for anyone interested http://www.windmillweb.net/gallery.htm 
One final note (before you've had enough of all the photos!); I read a brilliant book while in France called "Pigs in Clover" by Simon Dawson. It is one of the best books I've read this year and really hilarious. Not only that but it was also heart-breaking in places and has really opened my eyes to the "good life" vision (I knew before that it's not half as "good life" as what you assume and you have to work harder than you've ever worked before). It's also made me realise that however much money I think I need for a smallholding I'll need more! I've been doing a lot of research into it recently though and it is definitely still my dream that I hope one day I can achieve and it's probably best to be better prepared now even if its still years and years away. Anyway, I definitely recommend this book and a second book has recently been released which I'm also itching to read. They do have a website too; http://www.hiddenvalleypigs.co.uk/ 
Hope everyone is enjoying the sunshine and having a lovely week! :-)
Em x

Monday, 28 September 2015

Blenheim Horse Trials

Sorry it's been a while since I last did a blog post, I've been in France all of last week which was lovely. Back to reality today, but the sun is shining which is making this Monday much happier :-)

A couple of weekends ago we went to the cross country day of Blenheim Horse Trials (three day eventing), held at Blenheim Palace. I'm a horsey person, though sadly don't have my own anymore so these events are perfect for me to get my horsey fix. We used to go to Burghley Horse Trials every September without fail when I was growing up, but sadly Burghley is too far away now so I was keen to see what Blenheim was like as it's much nearer to us (40 mins down the road). Our friends were visiting for the weekend from Cambridgeshire so it was lovely to make a day of it and we couldn't have wished for better weather. We all came back with tanned faces and weary legs!

This was also Barry's first horse trials and he loved it! There are thousands of dogs at these kind of events and cross country day is fantastic for walking the dog around a beautiful estate while watching the eventers too. Barry wasn't too keen on the horses thundering past but I'm glad he didn't take too much interest in them (some dogs manage to get off the lead and chase after the horses!). He loved meeting so many dogs and even found some water to have a swim. I was very angry and sad to hear just how many tannoy announcements there were though for people who had left dogs in their cars. I cannot begin to understand why you'd bring a dog to an event like this where they are most welcome (but kept on a lead) and then leave them locked in a hot car?! It was particularly warm that day too and police had no choice but to force entry into a number of cars to rescue distressed dogs. As I say it makes me very angry, especially as the fields where cars are parked are at least a ten minute walk from the jumps and shopping tent village.

Barry post-swim
Eventer galloping past Blenheim Palace
There are lots of shops and stalls at Blenheim and I had a lovely time browsing the big craft marquee for ideas for me and also gift ideas. I don't like to mention Christmas too early but I'm trying to be really organised this year and make lots of presents as opposed to just going to the shops and buying everything, so that means I need to start early!
British rider Oliver Townend
We had yummy hog roast rolls for lunch and Barry's pleading face meant he got some of Jack's ice cream afterwards!
In all, we had a really lovely day. It was tiring with the heat (we'd all dressed for rain and chilly weather) and all the walking, but the fresh air was lovely and we all slept well that night. I'm hoping to visit Badminton Horse Trials next year; they're held in Gloucestershire so not too far away. I've got a couple of horsey friends who I'm hoping will come with me too as it's always fun with a group of you.

More blog posts to follow when I get a moment, including a post on our recent little holiday to France :-)

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Crochet Mesh Scarf

I finally managed to finish my crochet project - my first ever crochet project might I add! I made a lovely mesh infinity scarf and I'm wearing it to work today because our office is always freezing cold.

It took me a fair while to do but I think that's only because I'm still mastering how to hold the wool, crochet hook and keep the tension right! I'm getting there anyway and pleased with how this came out. The wool is lovely (my favourite colour too) and it wraps around my neck twice to keep me nice and warm, or 3-4 times if you're Barry (sorry but he does look so cute modelling my craft projects!)

Here it is on my neck! It is the same colour, just different lighting!
A couple of my friends have seen it and complimented it - little do they know that they'll no doubt get at least one Christmas present this year that's made of wool! I've already made a start on my next crochet project (As I said in a previous post, I've totally got the crochet bug and it's also really good for de-stressing), which is a blanket for our bed. It's inspired by the wonderful crochet blanket my Nan made years ago for my parents. My Mum took a photo of it for me and mine will be the same style, but only in three colours; white, stone grey and dark purple in order to co-ordinate with the colours in our bedroom. I'd like to think my Nan is looking down on me very proud that I've finally managed to master crochet, especially as she taught me to knit when I was little.
Nan's beautiful crochet blanket, which now resides in rural France at my parent's house
I'll hopefully have some photos for you soon to show you my progress on the blanket; as yet I've managed to do a big purple square which makes up the middle of the blanket, next colour to do is white. I found a lovely bits & bobs wooden box in Wilko which fits perfectly with my sewing/crafting theme in our guest bedroom. At the moment I've filled it with wool, needles and crochet hooks. I've got a big old mirror sat behind this box on top of the chest of drawers which I'm yet to restore. It needs a bit of sanding and re-varnishing and then I may well decorate the edge of the mirror with something else yet, but I'm undecided.. Lots of ideas, so little time!

A Walk Up The Ridgeway

The weather has been pretty miserable here in West Berkshire for the past few days and I've been off work poorly too. I've barely had the energy to get out of bed, but I'm a big believer in "fresh air does you good", so yesterday I donned the wellies, warm clothes and a rain coat and took Barry for a 3.5 mile walk which he loved even if I struggled. I do feel much better today so there's something to be said for forcing yourself to shake off the germs and persevere (that's what we were made to do as kids!).

I tried a different route yesterday as I wanted to learn a different loop to do to keep Barry interested as he likes change just as much as I do. I was sure to still go past his favourite little stream (which is in fact the River Pang, eventually flowing to the Thames) so he could have a swim. He's obsessed with water and especially likes chasing anything on the top of the water, i.e. dandelion fluff!

Barry having a dip and a slo-mo shake!
We then carried on along the route, crossed the road and continued up a by-way and onto The Ridgeway, which is also a by-way (restricted during the winter months). It's times like this when I wish I still had a horse because it was beautiful up there and I'd have loved to canter along admiring the view while Barry tried to keep up. One day I'll have a horse again (I hope). It was sunny when we reached the Ridgeway, if a little windy, but there were lots of walkers and mountain bikers around making the most of this ancient road. Sadly no horses to be seen but Barry sniffed out and had a chew on some horse 'parcels' along the track; I assume for sustenance or just because he enjoys eating anything and everything (he has an insatiable appetite for doormats - we no longer have one in our hallway as I'm fed up of picking up all the bristly bits and buying new mats!).
The view behind us of the fields that surround our village - sky a bit too bright in this pic.
I can imagine that the view from up on the Ridgeway at any time of year is  spectacular as you can see for miles. I'm sure these hills are pretty unsubstantial to some of you but to a girl who's grown up in Flat Cambridgeshire and the Fens these are remarkable! I do love Cambridge countryside, especially the Fens though and try to visit some of the RSPB reserves each time I'm back that way.
Panorama from the Ridgeway (a sand and stone track at this stage).

There were beautiful wildflowers along the way too and despite these chilly mornings and driving rain it reminds us that it isn't quite Autumn/Winter just yet (though it feels it!).

We were also followed most of the way around by Buzzards and Red Kites, which I frequently spotted soaring above us.

We then left the Ridgeway trail and headed down a bridleway that leads back to our village. This bridleway runs alongside Summerdown Stables' gallops; the racing stables run by trainer Hugh Morrison. Sadly no horses were out exercising as I'd have loved to see that, but I will pop there again sometime, or the next village to ours also houses Mick Channon's racing stables and gallops. The horses certainly must get a workout galloping up the Ridgeway. It took us an hour to do our 3.5 mile walk and I think it tired Barry out for about five minutes. It was certainly good to get fresh air and clear my mind, which I have a very hard time clearing a lot of the time!
We had a fairly quiet weekend anyway as I wasn't feeling great and after all the recent bedroom furniture/decorating purchases we needed a quiet weekend at home to rein it in a little. I cooked a lovely roast lamb leg on Sunday for us both and made a delicious shepherds pie with the leftovers on Monday night, not to mention a few portions for the freezer. I always buy a big joint when on special offer as they always work out great value for money for us two, because I usually manage at least 3 meals out of a joint.
I did also have to give the Buddleia a bit of a prune out the front of our house as it was growing over the walkway and we kept getting soaked each time we brushed past it. I did keep the flowering branches and they're happily sat on my kitchen windowsill in a vase. You'll see in the photo below that Jack also got to christen his new hedge trimmers and give the privet a good haircut. The privet had grown totally wild since we moved in and had reached the bathroom window above the kitchen! It's much tidier now and we have a bigger driveway again, plus I'm sure the haircut will give the privet a new lease of life.

Here's a link to more info about the Ridgeway, if anyone's interested
Have a good week everyone :-)

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Late Harvest

Yesterday the wheat was finally cut behind our garden and it was wonderful to watch the Combine working. For weeks we've been wondering when they'd get around to harvesting, but finally I think the weather has been dry long enough.

It was a lovely evening too so I took Barry for an energetic walk around the Millennium field in the village where we bumped into his two new best friends Chester and Lola (two gorgeous French Bulldogs). They only live a few doors down from us and the owners are very nice too. It's all a good confidence builder for Barry especially getting to play with dogs more his size as he is still rather nervous. He's discovered his bark now though and the art of chasing back! I also walked the neighbour's dog over the weekend, another Lola (so many show girls around here!) but this time a Staffie. She's so affectionate but a bit of a tank too and usually bowls Barry right over!

Barry was rather intrigued by the Combine and tractor, giving it a little warning growl as I lifted him up so he could see it over our back fence.
Beautiful evening yesterday
I had a lovely weekend with my Mum, who came to stay with us from Friday until Monday while my Dad was on his walking holiday in Whitby. Their Norfolk home went live on the holiday company website they're using for holiday lets back on Thursday and they already have two bookings for September so they're very pleased and just a little relieved after all the time and money they've spent on giving the place a freshen up. It'll be a lovely holiday place for couples and families with the beach less than 10 minutes walk away and pub, shop and café less than 5 minutes walk from their bungalow too. They're also allowing up to 2 dogs which is great, especially for dog owners like us when we're looking for a dog-walking holiday. I took Mum to the Woodspeen on Sunday for a roast (I've been twice in one week but it was that good!), which was very tasty and impressively presented.
 Sunday lunch at The Woodspeen - my roasts never look this well-presented, usually because our plates are piled high with lots of delicious veg!
I also took Mum to Millets Farm Shop as I wanted to get some more of those lovely corn on the cobs, which we've enjoyed a couple of times now. There was a chilli festival going on with lots of tasting samples; I tried a piece of chocolate and chilli fudge which was really good, except in my haste I picked a piece up from the "hot" plate and it nearly blew my head off, I walked around the farm shop for the rest of the trip trying to get the feeling back in my tongue! Note to self, read label next time even if very excited at thought of food freebie...
Jack made a start on his shed at the weekend, but sadly he's very busy at work and hasn't had much more spare time since to carry on. We've got a quiet weekend at home planned this weekend so hopefully the weather will be kind to us so Jack can continue with the shed building and I can continue with the tortoise run building/landscaping.
Finally, I've managed to master crocheting granny squares, hurrah! I've totally got the crochet bug now and keep thinking of all these things I'd like to make. I'm currently doing a lovely mesh-style scarf which I'll hopefully have photos to show you shortly. If these cold mornings continue then I think I'll be wearing the scarf much sooner than planned. Not only that but our work building still has the air con blasting out and my hands are permanent blocks of ice, so perhaps wrist warmers should be next on the agenda.
Enjoy the rest of your week :-)

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Recent Sewing Project: Shopper Bag

Just a small blog post about a shopper bag I recently made for a friend. She's sausage dog mad and when I saw this fabric on EBay I had to get it and make something for her. She recently moved house so I thought it may come in handy and she was delighted when it arrived with their new home card.

It's the first sewing project I've done in a while actually and I loved getting the sewing machine out. I made the handles on this bag a little too long I think, but it always annoys me when a bag doesn't have long enough handles for you to shove it over your shoulder when carrying other bags and trying to get the key in the door! I must get around to making some more things soon on the sewing machine; I've seen some fantastic patterns for a peg bag which I'd really like to make and the lovely little silk jewellery bag an old work colleague bought me has just about fallen apart so I need to make a new one of those too, it's just finding the time to get around to getting all the sewing bits out and having some needle n thread therapy.

Anyway, here's a photo of Barry modelling my handiwork!



I had a nice birthday yesterday, though sadly the majority of the day was spent at work!

Jack took me out for a lovely meal last night at a restaurant that opened about a year ago just outside of Newbury called The Woodspeen (http://www.thewoodspeen.com/).

The food there was amazing, probably one of the nicest restaurants I've been in. I had a lovely starter of Scallops, chicken wings and black pudding which was really tasty, while Jack had a terrine with amazingly fresh brioche (I must learn how to make it!)
My starter
I had beef fillet for main which came with an array of different vegetables, but the best was the beer cooked onion - so good! Jack had a lovely big steak (he's a big steak fan) with triple cooked chips which were amazing (have I already said amazing?)
My main; beef fillet, smoked potato, runner beans, beer cooked onion and truffle
I'm very grateful to Jack for treating me to a posh meal out, made me feel quite special on my Birthday! Especially as I'm usually more than happy to go to the local pub or to Nandos! Jack cooked for me on last year's birthday which was equally just as good, but it's nice to make the effort to go out sometimes and make an evening of it. The Woodspeen's prices were very fair for the quality of their food and the service was fantastic. I enjoyed it so much that I'm taking my Mum there this weekend for Sunday roast!
Mum arrives tomorrow and we have a quiet weekend planned. I'm sure I'll get home tomorrow to find she's let herself in and is cuddling Barry on the sofa, he's a ladies man is our puppy and loves being cuddled! I think we plan on going shopping in Newbury on Saturday and Jack is going indoor sky-diving on Sunday (as I've said before, he'll give any sport a go!). My Dad is going on a walking holiday in Whitby with his friends this weekend; they're all members of the CAMRA club and love real ales so it tends to be an energetic version of a pub crawl with 20+ mile walks in between pubs. My parents then leave for France next Tuesday and won't be back in England until November/December, so I'll miss them a lot. We are however going out to France in a few weeks' time which we're excited about.
How quickly this year is zooming by...

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Typically British (rainy) Bank Holiday Weekend!

I've had a lovely last hour or so reading through everyone's bank holiday weekend blogs. Sounds like only a few were lucky enough to get some sunshine, most of us got the horrible grey skies and miserable rain. Oh well, that's England for you and since when do we let the rain stop us from having a good time! I've loved reading through everyone's recent posts and looking at their lovely photos :-) This is my tenth blog already, this blogging malarkey is quite addictive!

The sun did appear for most of Saturday

I started the weekend with a nice walk on Friday evening towards the Ridgeway - it means more hills but I had my comfy wellies on and Barry bouncing along in front which meant I couldn't go too slow. He's certainly come on leaps and bounds (literally!) since his fractured leg fiasco and it's great to see the muscle definition returning to his bad leg - it still looks a lot smaller in comparison with his other hind leg but that's also because the fur is still growing back.

Jack also came home with beautiful flowers for me on Friday :-)
My best friend arrived late Friday night after a tiring journey from where she lives in Suffolk. I don't think the roads were particularly kind to her because of the bank holiday traffic and she was glad to arrive before midnight! It was her first visit to our new house so it was nice to show her around our home and the lovely village we live in. We also made sure to celebrate her recent news on becoming a qualified Veterinary Nurse, well done Jess!
We were up a decent time on Saturday morning to make the most of the weather - we were told by the weatherman that Saturday was the only decent day and they were right. We had glorious sunshine all Saturday morning and ventured to nearby Millets Farm Centre near Abingdon, Oxford (http://www.milletsfarmcentre.com/). I am so excited that I've discovered this place as it's fantastic. They have a large farm shop which sells their own produce or produce sourced from the local area. They also have a garden centre, falconry, maize maze and the most exciting part; pick your own! I can remember visiting the local farm to pick strawberries when I was very young but sadly this seemed to almost die out a while back, so it's lovely to find a local farm which does let you pick your own and they had a variety of things to choose from. Jess had already brought me a sack full of goodies from her and her fiancé's allotment (marrow, squash, runner beans and beetroot), so I picked my own sweetcorn cobs, Victoria plums and raspberries.
Picking raspberries
We had a great time picking our own produce in the sunshine and the prices were very decent too (which makes it all the better at the end of the day). The plums are very ripe and tasty and I can't eat them quick enough so I may have a go at making a plum jam. I've also seen on my BBC Good Food calendar that next month's recipe is for a plum crumble cake so perhaps I'll give that a go. I have frozen the majority of the raspberries too. We had the sweetcorn cobs last night and they were delicious.
My 'pick your own' haul
I will definitely be frequenting Millets Farm Centre in the future, it was just so lovely to wander around and pick what you needed before heading off to pay. I'm sure many of you (smallholders, allotment holders etc.) get even more satisfaction when your hard work has also gone into the growing of the fruit and veg and I too hope to have this joy next year when I hope to grow my own veg and fruit, but in the meantime I like this alternative and it certainly beats the dreaded supermarket shop sometimes! The farm has a pick your own potatoes event in a few weeks' time which I may try and go along to, as I've only got a few potatoes growing in the garden and I don't think they're going to amount to very much. I may even be a big kid next time and try the Maize Maze if I can persuade Jack to join me!
I had a lovely weekend with my best friend anyway; we only see each other every few months so it was nice to spend a whole weekend together to giggle and catch up, and Jess gets married next year so there was plenty to chat about. I do miss my old friends back in Cambridgeshire and it's hard sometimes being away from everyone you know. Luckily Jack and I do enjoy each other's company and we're the best of friends too, though I know how much he likes time with the 'lads' the same as I need time with the girls. We took Jess for a lovely meal in our local pub, the Crown and Horns (http://crownandhorns.com/) and I had a lovely homemade pie and chips, yum. We also went out for Sunday roast in Newbury so in terms of eating... yes we've done a lot of that this weekend! I did however kick this morning off with a healthy home-blended juice of banana, raspberries and blackberries so I'll hopefully start this week as I mean to go on. Jess headed home on Sunday afternoon so Jack decided to finish the tortoise run in between the rain showers. He has managed to get it done and I'm so grateful as it looks great. I need to paint it (if the weather will let me!) and get designing and building the inside of the run, so I hope to have photos for you all soon.
Because of the persistent wet weather yesterday, there wasn't a lot I could do outdoors. I popped into Newbury for a few bits but then spent the rest of the day on the sofa determined to learn how to crochet. I say determined, because on many occasion I have attempted and only succeeded in throwing the hook and wool back in the bag in anger!
For the most part, this is how I feel when crocheting!
However, for some reason I actually seemed to understand it this time, hurrah! I spent all afternoon practising double crochet, half treble, treble and such like and they're starting to sink in. I'm afraid my pictures are very un-exciting and un-inspiring as all I kept doing was practising, but practice makes perfect and let's hope I have something substantial to show you next time. I'm just very pleased anyway as I love knitting and I find that easy and I've been so frustrated that I couldn't crochet. I'm trying to read and understand crochet patterns now and though I seem to understand what they're asking I must be going wrong in more than one place because mine just don't look like their example pictures :-( Try and try again I suppose... I'd love to make a patchwork blanket so I'm hoping to successfully crochet some squares soon, but at the moment I'm struggling (all tips welcome, pretty please).
Nothing exciting, just practice
Jack has also requested I crochet matching Christmas jumpers for him and the dog and I did tell him to get stuffed for at least another three years - that's if I can even master a square by then, let alone a jumper! Perhaps I should stick to sewing and knitting...
The dog found crochet very boring
Finally, I did manage to have two trips out to the garden centre this weekend which was nice; I definitely think summer has left us now and autumn is arriving so it was nice to get some ideas of adding some colour in the garden for these approaching colder months. I'd also like to get some bulbs planted in the front and back gardens too at some point. I've bought a huge lavender plant to put in the tortoise's new run, it's not poisonous to them and they don't tend to eat it anyway, preferring to use it as a good hiding place so it will add some nice colour to the run and hopefully survive the winter if it establishes in the ground soon. I got a Hebe with purple flowers for their run too. The Lobelia in the pot by our front door has also almost finished flowering now so I'm going to replace them with a large Chrysanthemum plant I got which is covered in little purple flowers and as long as I keep removing the dead flowers they'll keep flowering for quite some time, at least a little colour out the front of our house, especially as the Buddleia has almost finished flowering and other than a few weeds in the big bed there's no other colour. You can't tell that purple is my favourite colour can you?! We'd like to plant a miniature apple tree out the front as it's quite a sunny position and I think it would like it there. My question to all my lovely new blog friends is when would be the best time to plant said apple tree? Should we wait until next year now?
It's my birthday tomorrow and I'll be stuck at work all day, which is rather depressing. I used to always make sure I had my birthday off just so it didn't become any other working day, even if I still didn't actually do anything but we have a busy month end at work and I work in finance so that combination means no such luck for having my birthday off. Oh well, Jack is taking me out for dinner so I look forward to that :-) 
Happy four-day week everyone!
Em x