Monday, 22 December 2014

Christmas Wishes and Helleborus

Hello - well all we need is a little dusting of snow -only a touch will do to finish off the Christmas preparation - it is wet and windy here - and I must say it feels pretty cold -I am linking today with Macro Monday and am posting pictures of my Helleborus - I love them - so wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year   xx Jane

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Odds and sods

Well hello you bloggers out there - hope you are all ok - it has been a funny old month here - OH  has tripped over and smashed his ribs up - so I have needed to take over all manual duties - which has been a bit of a laugh - with me with a gammy hand after my broken wrist in the summer - having difficulty even  with getting into a jar of bolognese sauce and having to flag down the first person to pass the drive gate to unscrew the jar to much hilarity - anyway we have survived and now are able to fit in the odd social event and get out and about.

A trip into Shrewsbury
- Christmas Shopping and a spot of lunch at our favourite coffee shop
on Bear Steps
- lots of atmosphere and lots of past history in times gone by - close by
St Akmunds church
-take a glance in the other direction - Grope Lane -
Click on to get the bigger picture
Christmas lights are so pretty this year - my header picture was taken on Wyle Cop.- this is Mardol

 Nantwich is a little town in Cheshire a place we sometimes like to visit - this is  the church tower of St Marys

- on the way back home that day we decided to call at Moreton Corbett castle - there was a beautiful sunset
and perfect conditions for a few pics
- and of course to  top the list - a visit to Shrewsbury Station
and a long wait rewarded with a steamer on the station
Very atmospheric
- it was a cold frosty evening
 and earlier that day we caught this steamer roaring down the line
-pic  taken from a tiny bridge over the line -imagine the excitement -  best wishes to you all  - Jane  linking today to My World Tuesday

Monday, 24 November 2014

Looking back - my entry for Macro Monday 2

I am posting to Macro Monday 2 - I feel the need to dream of summer days and the buzzing of bees in my garden -I  tried this year to encourage the bees and butterflies by setting their friendly plants.

So relaxing to spend time in the garden - working away to the buzz of bees - you know we take so much for granted in our busy lives - relaxing with nature can be so medicinal and rewarding

 The foxgloves below are semi wild I think - they are self setters - meaning they self seed here and there but always they look fantastic and add style to the garden


the pictures posted are my favourites from the different seasons of the year - this Red Admiral butterfly below  seemed to wait patiently for the picture to be taken - or maybe it was blissfully supping the nectar of the plant

This shot below was taken last summer while out on a dog walk so is not my garden and I am not sure what the plant is - do you know? 

This bee below was blissfully browsing in the gardens at Hidcote - a fantastic garden in the Cotswolds well worth a visit if you can - click on the pics for a better look
Do you know I feel really uplifted - thinking of those summer days -Happy Macro Monday to you all - enjoy your day 

Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Forest of Dean and a few days away

The Cistercian abbey of Tintern was founded on 09/05/1131 by Walter de Clare - Lord of Chepstow - we spent quite sometime trying to get a good shot - in fact it became to be a bit of a challenge  so much that we may have to return again to have another go!! - below is my best shot to date
- I had found a picture of the Abbey in a magazine - taken by Wye Valley Studios  I have attached the link - the Abbey was taken from the other side of the river - the river was in flood this time and the afternoon was drawing in so reluctantly we gave up - the pictures on the link are amazing I think - but of course so much equipment is needed for those kind of shots and a strong shoulder is needed to take the weight.

Earlier  that day we walked the paths deep into the forest - the trees  were so colourful in their autumn shades
on the way back to Bream we stumbled across a railway restoration building -so we followed the path down into the valley for a better look - OH was well pleased with the find  and I must admit it had a strange fascination for me too - not so much the workshop
but the old trains waiting
to be rebuilt
and the forest all around
seemed to give a mysterious feel
to the place

 meanwhile back at the ranch !! well we stayed on the edge of the forest in the village of Bream - the common land stretched out in front of the cottage and the forest trials were to the left in the picture - sheep grazed the common land
and chickens definitely free range
were just over the garden fence  and occasionly in the trees

apparently wild boar roam in the forest but we did not see any -  so no pics of them sorry

Thankyou for calling

 Best wishes


Friday, 24 October 2014

TheTower of London and the Dordogne

Hello again - we have just returned from a visit to the Dordogne in France - fantastic scenery - lots of laughs with the group we were with . and  brilliant excursions and a good quota of free time in Souillac our base,
We stayed the night before in London prior to catching the Eurostar to Paris - so we caught the underground to Tower Hill to visit the Tower of London - to see the Remembrance Poppies- well it was daylight when we started out - but night had fallen when we arrived and it is pretty much only round the corner!!- yes you have guessed it - we took the wrong line - it should have been the Circle Line - anyway we finally arrived and it was spectacular
it was very emotive and so silent  at that time - we wandered around for quite a while and then moved on towards the river -
Tower Bridge always looks so splendid -
click on the pics to get a better look -then we made our way back to the Underground making certain we caught the circle line !!!

 The folowing day we met up with our group for the week at St Pancras and away we sped on the Eurostar to Paris -  Gard du Nord
was massively busy and with no time to spare we joined our group to catch our connection to Austerwytch to board the train for Souillac in the Dordogne  400 miles on !!.All went well , with glimpses of Paris on the way
- I worried about the wheels on my trolley case on our station dashes but they stood up to the test and their guarantee statement!!.

We sped north through France at the speed of light - well not quite but pretty fast - admiring the changing countryside from large agricultural expanses t small patchwork meadows - picturesque farmhouses and barns
- sampling the catering facilities on the train - a trolley laden with I don't know what - you name it - he had it in stock - he didn't  speak much English - and we don't speak much French - so  a fair amount of pointing  and laughing  took place- the outcome was ok  - 2 small bottles of red and a bar of unknown chocolate !

Our hotel base was in Souillac and it was extremely good our room had large white shutters opening out onto the view of the church tower
- complete with chiming bells - but you know allthough the chime was quite loud we never heard it through the night - now whether they turn the chime off or perhaps our senses were dulled by the free flowing wine at dinner!

I had chosen this trip because although there were arranged trips out - there was also plenty of free time to view the local town -

 We were amazed at the clean tidy flower laden streets -
no litter - no bins - so refreshing - and amazing scenery at every turn -

We went on several tours out first one was to La Roque-Gageac - the journey in itself was amazing - chateaux at every turn perched miraculously on the sides of steep sided cliffs
- and the day ended in a trip on the River Dordogne
on a traditional boat -
we also visited Rocamadour with unbelievable scenery -
houses and churches perched periously on the sides of the cliffs - and it is said that pilgrims climbed to the top on their knees to repent their sins - every turn was a picture to be taken
- the whole region is a gourmet region - specialities being pate de foie gras - I am vegetarian so this is abhorent to me - walnuts - now we did sample a little walnut liqueur but I found it to bitter for me  but OH thought it good - we did not purchase any because like the truffles for sale it was pretty expensive!!  - moving on from Rocamadour - and I must say here that our local lady coach driver was amazing - she wheeled and turned the coach through the narrow streets and in one place - the coach park - the back end of the coach appeared to hang over the side of the cliff and we could see the houses below
- Rocamadour is built on three levels we were on the second level - to reach other levels you must either walk up winding steps cut out of the cliffs - whch take you past tiny churches and chapels
- the atmosphere was amazing it was Sunday and all of the churches were full to the brim with local people and tourists passing through  - the singing - candles and incense burning at every turn - or lifts operate between the levels of the town - as we steamed out of town we were brought back down to the practicalities of modern day living
- a car boot at the top of the town!!

On now to Martel and a ride on the Truffadou train - this line has been restored - it was used to bring the truffles into town - OH and myself are"anoraks" we love a steam train - and this one was a little gem - see what you think this is off you tube my version was a bit topsey turvey

The train stopped at a little stone hut - all the wares were  quickly put on sale - even a litter bn was put in situ  - we bought a poster
- for our summer house - as soon as the train pulled away - they quickly closed up - vanishing inside the shop!

Another excursion took us to the medieval town of Sarlat -
again a mixture of wonderful  old buildings flowers and coffee shops - we were so lucky we had sunny days up till the last day and then it threw it down - water rushing down the streets - up until then I had wandered how the flowers looked so good because I had never seen anyone watering them - but it seems - no need

We caught the train back down to Paris - the train was 55 mins late - so we missed our Eurostar connection - we were very thankful that we had our tour guide to banter with the powers that be to get us on the next train to London  -Take care -thanks for calling - have a lovely week - Jane

Friday, 12 September 2014

Time moves on

Well it seems like for ever since my last blog - but time moves on - a lot has happened - the garden is now finished and the summer house is in place
- a few hiccups on the way including  a fractured wrist for me - painful ouch! - slipped on a muddy patch and threw my arm back onto a pile of stones - everything takes forever to do one handed - I am becoming quite skilled with my left hand ! but the weeds have taken advantage in the allotment - OH has become efficient with chores he never really understood such as hanging the washing out and ironing - but he has kept the home fires burning so to speak - my cast is due to come off on Monday and from then onwards I hope showering with a plastic bag over my arm will be a thing of the past.

The garden has done its best to live up to  its new image  - and my hanging pot took first at the Shrewsbury
Show see below - click on the pic for a better look- and now there has  been another blip on the horizon my pictures won't load properly - anyway I have found another way around this it is a bit long winded but it will suffice until a better method turns up!!

Well it is approx 3 weeks later and a better method has not turned up - I havekept my spirits up by uploading pics and bits to my facebook page and kept in touch with my gardening friends on 'Grows on you 'web site - but the  deep attachment I have to ,Janes Blog clings on - so here we are again - oh I have started off another blog Somewhere in Shropshire - which will be more of a picture blog

My wrist is stronger now  so I am able to take pics again - and do most gardening jobs and dog walking is back again for me - OH has walked the dogs - but everyday Blue has looked at my feet waiting for the walking boots to go on - and to be fair I knew how she felt - because I missed that walk down the lanes and fields - we have been out and about the last few weeks  - two steam rallies - Onslow and Malpas - and a family get together -

Malpas was a sunny day unlike the rainy sunday for Onslow - no pictures taken by me for Onslow - but I took a few at Malpas wrist is getting stronger at last - the atmosphere was electric as always at these steam revival rallies - you name it - you could see it -
dogs catching a ride on on miniature engines - and of course
the fairground -
 and all the fun of the fair  - and of course the best till last!!

Finally a shot taken last weekend of my home town Shrewsbury - a shot of the Welsh Bridge
- bye for now - enjoy your weekend - Jane x