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Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Desirable residence?

Charming lodge with original features set in beautiful countryside.

 Two main rooms - probably 8 x 8 feet and 12 x 8 feet - plus tiny kitchen - needs updating!

 Bathroom/kitchen requiring modernisation.

Roof (what roof?) needs repair but look at that sky!  It wasn't for sale but oh how I wanted it!!!

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Out and About

It seems ages since my last post - my feet don't seem to have touched the ground lately so apologies for not having visited as many blogs as I would wish nor leaving as many comments as I like to.  I did post a quick post earlier in the week but changed my mind about it as it had been done in a rush so appologies to those of you who found it on your dashboards only to find it gone!!

The day after my last post I spent the day in Salisbury with friends - plenty of gossiping but no photos I am afraid!
 Then on Friday 16th a friend arrived to stay till Monday and we were busy exercising our tongues most of the time but we did also go out and about and on Saturday we were here at Montacute.  Luckily we dodged the showers and were inside the house when it rained.  I loved the bark on this amazing old tree - could it be used in a knitting pattern perhaps?!

 See the sun did shine some of the time.  Having finished here we had a cup of tea in the village and then went to Ham Hill to see the views although as it was by then a bit cloudy we didn't stay long and got back to the car just as the heavens opened.

On Sunday it poured with rain all morning but on Sunday afternoon we went to Barrington Court and again luck was with us as we were able to enjoy the gardens and were in the house when it rained!

Cyclamen seem to be doing well this year and I have seen loads of them recently - I love them growing naturally under the trees like this don't you?

We finished our tour with tea in the restaurant overlooking the garden and then had a poke about the craft shops in the old barns - there was a new (or new to me) patchwork shop there which had loads of lovely books and I bought some ribbon with Love, Live, Laugh woven into it and another with Follow your Dreams.  I shall use them in my crazy patchwork (if I ever get enough spare moments to do any crafting!)

 Then on Wednesday we did another walk again from Sherborne but this time in a different direction - north towards Sandford Orcas.  Again the path was along grassy lanes...

under the trees...


and along an old drovers' road.  I imagined the drovers with their flocks or herds making their way along here in all weathers and could almost hear their footsteps.

Much of our route was sheltered and quite warm and there were a lot of flowers here and there including this clump of Michaelmas Daisies which the butterflies were enjoying.

Sometimes it was cloudy but..

sometimes the sun came out too.

After the heavy rain we had had the path was often muddy!

But we were wearing our walking boots so we managed to pick our way through the puddles.

Here you might be able to make out Glastonbury Tor in the distance if you can enlarge the photo?

If berries are a sign of a hard winter then I guess we are in for one of those!

We stopped for tea as before but this time we were within earshot of a B road so it wasn't quite as fabulous as the previous week's tea break but enjoyable all the same.

On the home straight now - wind blowing in my hair and making it more like a demented poodle than usual but how lovely it felt!

Not much further and we were back to the car tired but feeling very righteous and pleased with ourselves after another great walk in the beautiful countryside - this time just under 5 miles I think

Next day I said to my husband "I don't think I could do another  5 mile walk today even though the weather is good could you?"  and he replied "Maybe not but we could do the short one round Milborne Port"!  So we set off after lunch on a short walk round the nearby village this time in Somerset rather than Dorset.  The county boundary is a wiggly line round here and we had travelled from Somerset into Dorset and back into Somerset to get here.  Here is the church.

This used to be the pump house (and to think I had always thought it was just a bus shelter!) and alongside it the well now beside the busy A30.

This used to be the school.

This part of the village was all buil tbetween 1818 and 1822 and is called Newtown!  Many pretty thatched cottages but no more photos as there were too many parked cars for a decent view!

These two little dears were enjoying themselves in their little enclosure and wanted to know if I had anything to eat - which of course I didn't although a little further up the lane we passed a table with boxes of apples of various types and a notice saying "Help yourself" - sorry piggies!  Everywhere I am able to help myself to apples round here as it has been a good year for apples this year and everyone who has a tree has more than they know what to do with!

 Yesterday I did some much needed housework, washing and ironing and a trip to the shops to replenish the stores as today I knew I would be out all day doing a scrapbooking day!

If I take as long to do all my family photos I will be 100 before I am half way through but it was an enjoyable day and I can now breathe a sigh of relief as the diary for next week is comparatively empty!!  

What did I see outside the village hall in Broadwindsor where we were to do our scrapbooking but another box of apples with a notice to take what you wanted so tonight we had apple sponge for pudding!

Hope to have a bit more time to visit you all next week but don't hold your breath as life often has other plans I find!!  Enjoy the remainder of your weekend.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Tea at the Ritz? No thanks!!

Tea tastes best if made fresh and drunk from a porcelaine cup doesn't it?   Well not necessarily - my cup of tea this afternoon tasted like ambrosia (whatever that is?!) in spite of being a little on the strong side, having been in a flask for several hours and being taken in a plastic cup complete with little insect!!  Want to know why?...

Well this afternoon we decided that we didn't need to wait for our neighbours to return from holiday to take a walk with us we would go on our own.  So after a lunch we set off to Sherborne where we followed the path suggested in a leaflet we had picked up in the Tourist Office there a while back.

The route led us through some stunning countryside and covered about 10.5 km (according to the leaflet).

 Sometimes the path wandered through woods,

 sometimes deep between the hedgerows,

and sometimes along country lanes - we knew they were proper country lanes as there was grass growing down the middle!  Here we are together taking the photo!  After we had been walking about an hour and a half we decided to stop for tea and this time we had come prepared.  We sat on the grass bank in a field gateway alongside this lane and drank our tea and ate the Chelsea bun I had halved (I only had one and anyway we didn't want to undo all the good the walk must have been doing did we?) and brought with us and I wouldn't have swapped places with anyone in the world at that moment.  The sun was shining, the sky was blue, all was quiet apart from the wind soughing in the trees, the mewing of the buzzards and perhaps an occasional pheasant making their peculiar coarse cry in the distant woods.  Nobody came by we were completely alone and I was aware of one of those magical moments which live on in the memory for I felt so completely content that I wanted it to never end.  I fished the little insect out of my tea and never has a cup of tea tasted so good and the shared bun too seemed even more delicious than when eaten at home.  SHEER BLISS!

Tea over we packed the empty flask and cups back in the rucksack and set off again.  The sky was so blue - this photo could have been taken in some foreign country don't you think?

 And what about this one?!

The route took us through Sherborne Park and this is the little hunting lodge there - obviously not used now as it was shuttered up!

 Here it is looking back and just look at the colour of that sky - and to think I had fetched in my washing before we left home in case it rained!
 The path led us alongside Sherborne Castle grounds and goes up across the ploughed field - you can see it as a green line.  By now we were walking into the sun which was getting lower in the sky so this photo looks a little dull but it wasn't!

Looking back...

 Here is Sherborne New Castle - am I envious of the people living there?  Not at all as I can walk the parkland enjoying the wonderful vistas without any of the responsibilities and return to my own little home afterwards!  I was so happy I could have skipped but my arthritic toe prevented me going quite that far!!

Here you can just see the Old Castle on the other side of the lake.  It is a ruin but it does date back to Norman times so I guess that is not too surprising!  The New one was built by Raleigh so is not exactly modern!!

 That's the castle in the background - I just loved this tree's shape and seeing it against the blue sky.

 Nearly finished - the path leads us back to the car park past this view of the Abbey the other side of the railway........

... and up this slope and when we reach the top we will be almost back at the car park.  We got home at 6.30 having had a fabulous walk and perhaps now you can see why I would prefer my cuppa out of a flask and in a plastic cup than to be all dolled up taking it in a china cup at the Ritz.?  If we don't sleep tonight it won't be because we haven't had enough fresh air and exercise will it?   Hope you enjoying coming with me on our walk today?

Monday, 12 September 2011

Let them eat cake!

Having visited Su over at Living on the Edge and seen the cute little cupcake she had made for Gina's Pink Friday Party I decided to have a go and make a cake or two myself.  After all they are non-fattening and in a very good cause.  So here is my first attempt:

However when I looked at it I felt it needed that little je ne sais quoi if it wasn't to be misconstrued as something a bit dubious!

A little angelica I felt added a soupcon more class - what do you think?!  I plan to make at least one more and maybe several if I can find the yarn - strange isn't it how even with a basket filled with yarns one never has quite the right one for the project in hand?!

In memory of our friendship Trudi this one's for you.  (3 years ago almost to the day my friend Trudi died of this horrible disease)