Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Tuesday, 30th June 2015 - Murray's Wedding Ring

I had a chance of a lie-in but my mind thought otherwise. What a glorious day.

Murray played tennis for me while I got very hot and steamy with piles of ironing. I don't find him a very entaining player. I like a bit of racket throwing or ball abuse.

With the tractor mower out of action it is down to the little petrol one to tackle the grass. Tim said it mayb difficult to start. I was determined to get it going. Pah, easy with arms as mighty as mine. I started and Brett finished. Good team work.

My guests arrived early having managed to get across the channel through the strikes and tyre burning. Their room was not ready. They were happy to sit in the shade of the garden with tea and honey fudge cake whille finished their room in a heat haze.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Monday, 29th June 2015 - March Bronze 'Fallen Angel'

I awoke alone. No Tim. No guests. Very unusual. Quite delightful.

We have blue tits nesting at Little Holt. The fledglings are just learning their basic flying lessons. The cat brought me one in this morning to show me. 

I took a trip up to Farnborough. It was over thirty years ago when I worked at the hospital and flat shared in Pratts Bottom. Interesting memories I have from that time. There was a service of celebration and thanksgiving for Si's Dad. A thoroughly enjoyable service which may sound odd but it really was. There was a stunning bronze of a Fallen Angel in the graveyard. 

Steve drove me home. He is good company. I did my art homework and had an interesting art class. I think I may have undone all the good work I did previously. Bugger. 

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Saturday, 27th June 2015 -The Stings

Following a double shift breakfast the day promised sun and fun.

It was the Benenden Village Fete this afternoon. I walked hand in hand with Hetty, Harriet and Bella to the village. It was a busy affair. The little ones soon learnt how 'unlucky' a lucky dip can be. It is cruel to have jars of sweets lined up and very minimal opportunity of sampling them. A very drippy ice-cream was a little bit of a softener. Throughout the afternoon I managed to inbibe three glasses of sparkling wine, one from Vivien, one from Alan and another from myself. Hetty and Bella rode ponies and bounced on a castle while The Stings played in the back ground. They still need to work on their rendition of The Wheels on the Bus.

Harriet and I had an evening together eating a wide variety of vegetables while watching Fifty Shades of Grey. It was much better than we anticipated. Harriet and I both got a bit confused by a couple of the sex scenes. It had one if those 'Oh, no it can't finish there', endings. Not a literary epic but good Saturday night entertainment when the men are away. It was good to spend an evening with my gorgeous daughter.

Friday, 26 June 2015

Friday, 26th June 2015 - Glass Animals - Hazey

Porridge all round this morning. Easy.

Tim has packed and gone to Atlanta for a week. Leaving me all alone to cope with my guests.

I walked and walked this evening. It was beautiful. James Blunt followed by Maroon 5 joined me. I just hope that I did not sing too loudly. Some songs get a bit naughty and it is not until you have the words directly in your ears the realisation dawns. Oh well, the birds were noisy too.

Tom is at Glastonbury helping on a cocktail bar. He has introduced me to Glass Animals. I am rather taken with their music. If you pop to his bar he recommends a Dark and Stormy. Dark rum, spicy ginger juice and lime. I like the sound of that very much.

I indulged in a stir fry this evening as Tim is not that keen on all those bean sprouts.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Thursday, 25th June 2015 - Twinkle Ingedient

I paid a visit to see Mum. I left exasperated. Enough said.

Thank God I have a litre of elderflower vodka steeping. I just hope the jar that I had used for pickled eggs is not tainted. Not a terribly charming combination. Mrs Cropley from the Vicar of Dibley comes to mind.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Tuesday, 23rd June 2015 - Meadow Brown 'Devil'

Michael gave us some of his time, which is very much appreciated, to inspect our hive. The clicking of a queen cell means an imminent emergence. Good or bad we are not too sure. It was all put back together and we have been instructed to leave well alone for a couple of weeks.

A Natural History programme on Radio 4 told me about the Meadow Brown and its evil connotations. Was it a coincidence that I saw one on my walk this evening? Is it PC to catch and pin one? I have plans for a future painting relating to the Golden Ratio, mythology and butterflies. Exciting.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Monday, 22nd June 2015 - Departing Rain

We have had a lot of rain, more persistent than torrential.

 Tim and I managed a smooth car changeover. I am not sure one car is going to work in the long term. I don't want my style cramped.

I love my art class. I had a thoroughly engulfing evening. 

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Sunday, 21st June 2015 - Birthday at Bodiam

What a busy busy day.

Guests, breakfast, rooms to turnaround followed. It takes me less time to put the ingredients in the bread maker than to toast a couple of slices of bread. I amaze myself with my skills. 

We slipped in a bee inspection. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing. We found lots of capped queen cells which we know is not a great sign. It could mean our old queen has died or Ill or something else which we have no clue about. This instigated an email for help to Michael. We now have to wait for his reply. This could take a while.

I cooked sausages to put on sticks for Lindsey's birthday lunch. The were gluten free. Not as tasty as the ones from Wards the butchers containing lots of tasty cereals and additives.

We headed over to Bodiam for a lovely windy picnic. Alice, James, and Fizzy arrived with a containers full of delights. A search party went out to find Lindsey. Technology failed us with no mobile signal. The birthday girl was located. We drank and ate and sang and played skittles with new rules invented by Hetty. A most enjoyable, afternoon.

The Evans family ventured off to the castle in search of dragons.

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Saturday, 20th June 2015 - New Rubber Belt

We had a pottering day.

Late night + early mornings = scowly Kate

Tim started cutting the grass. He needed a new belt which seemed to involve the Hoover to blow out the old grass. Hetty was most amused.

Friday, 19 June 2015

Friday, 19th June 2015 - Dinner in Clerkenwell

What a delight to have a car go in for its MOT and not be concerned it will come back with faults and expensive advisery notes.

Tim and I ventured up to the smoke this afternoon. We took a trip to meet our new family member little Ethan. He is eight weeks old and has those lovely lop sided smiles. Back on the train heading to Clerkenwell. It was hot and packed with people. Champagne served on the terrace at Jo and Elaine's was just perfect. The food was wonderous and inspired by Ottolenghi. 

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Wednesday, 17th June 2015 - Shelley Morrow's Embroidery Course

What a most lovely day I have had.

Tescos came and delivered my provisions 

Harriet and I spent a wonderful couple of hours in Wadhurst at the Wing gallery. We were learning to transfer line drawings, mine were naked, onto calico and embroider them into a picture. We did not finish but it has given us plenty of ideas for future work. Thank you Harriet for finding this treasure and I look forward to you finding us the next one.

I found a few weeds for removal in the garden.

The bees seem to be doing what bees do. Si has had two hives swarm which is a little concerning.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Tuesday, 16th June 2015 - Vietnamese Coriander

Tim has gone for the night. Sometimes it is a good feeling to have a night doing my own thing.

Mum has had the paramedics out yet again. I even got to speak to them on the phone this morning. What wonderous people they are. She had her bag packed to be admitted. She has to take codeine for the pain that keeps her calling them out. Lindsey took her shopping and medication this afternoon. We had a de brief over tea and came to the conclusion that our hands are tied. She does not want to move the the lovely new McCarthy and Stone apartments in Cranbrook which could be ideal. We feel a little perplexed as what to do.

I had a surprise visit from Sarah Garwood. It was great to see her and here all her stories. She is looking rather gorgeous.

Tonight I am having chicken, samphire and green beans because I can. Oh, possibly with a glass of white wine.

Monday, 15 June 2015

Monday, 15th June 2015 - Sandra's Garden Condensed

I have a naughty mother. Her latest exploit was a fall in a pub. She has gone from a bruise to a possibly cracked rib to a definite broken rib. 999 has been called and advised her on pain relief but did not admit her as she is really perfectly fine. This is the second time 999 have visited her in as many week. I think she has 111 on speed dial. She also makes Drs appointments up to three weeks in advance just in case she is ill. She is an exasperating character.

I have caught up with my ironing. Yippee. The house looks like a Chinese laundry festooned with duvets and sheets. I was wondering whether the steam will keep my skin young and youthful. 

I have cut down on my caffeine intake as Mr Holford says too much could be bad for me. I wonder if that is the reason I feel I am dragging myself around.

My art class was held in one of the students garden. It was stunning. Ponds, bridges, trees, bee hives, flowers, sheep...I didn't know what to paint so I squished it all up together and painted it all. There was a grey legged goose with six goslings pottering about, that it a lot isn't it? 

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Sunday, 14th June 2015 - Pastry Feast at Hallwood

I should have been lying around in bed as I had guests to need me this morning. I was hoping for a mug of tea or something. Tim read his iPad for a while then went back to sleep. I got up and made my own tea.

Another Victoria produced today for new guests. Tim told me they are not so nice frozen after I had got  a couple of slices out the freezer so I had to make a fresh one to avoid ridicule. He seems to be enjoying both!!!

We met Sarah and Nigel at the Biddenden food fair. We stocked up with twinkles and plenty of yummy pastry based goods to take back to Hallwood Farm. I had a most enjoyable time on the Invicta Herb stand. The couple running it were very entertaining. I came away with a Vietnamese Coriander. Harriet tasted it and very cleverly guessed the coriander part. It looks nothing like it. Clever girl.

Back to Hallwood where Sarah and I pondered over a book I found necessary to buy. The Hedgerow cookbook by Wild at Heart. We found possibly four but definitely three recipes to try. Turned out to be not such a bargain at £5 a recipe but it amused us for a while.

I had my first Pimms of the year made for me. Thankyou Wickhams for sourcing the ingredients at such shirt notice. 

I merrily greeted my new guests with fruit infused breath. 

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Saturday, 13th June 2015 - Pudding Next

My alarm woke me, I went back to sleep. It succeeded ten minutes later to get me from my cosy bed. Tim was sleeping so I gave him a jealous Paddington 'hard stare' and hoped he felt it through his eyelids.

I plugged Maroon 5 into my ears and got on with turning around two rooms. Satisfyingly done.

As I was coming back to reality, I love a good dream, Bella and Harriet refreshed me with a mug of tea. I was very thirsty. Wish I could remember what I had dreamt about I think it was dehydrating.

Harriet took Bella to the Cranbrook Windmill. Such a lovely thing to do. Bella is rather fond of a windmill.

We headed out the door on our way to Hythe. Then decided it was a beautiful day for a drive in the MG. I went back into the house to get my wooly cardigan, scarf, coat and sunglasses which prevent my eyes being whipped by my hair. It was a lovely drive. Mike's house is nearly complete and looking stunning. Following a tour of all three floors we had dinner at The Woolpack in Warehorne. Worth going for the interesting decor and even more interesting toilets. Out of the last three pub meals I have had the one at The Bell and Jorrocks was my favourite.

Friday, 12 June 2015

Friday, 12th June 2015 - Mother and Son

The rain this morning was cleansing. The heat has continued to rise as the day progress with another mighty downfall early this evening. It is still piddling a bit now.

I am amazing. While cooking breakfast I got a loaf of bread started and made Jamie Oliver's tomato soup. That is multi multi tasking. God I am good.

Elizabeth came for coffee via her on-call 111 job. Brenda came for bread and soup. We took advantage of taking a road trip to East Sussex and visited Aldi to stock up with tinned goods.

Tim and I are babysitting this evening. It is very convenient. We just have to plug in (and turn on) the baby monitor. Actually, Harriet turned it in for us. All seems quiet so far. I hope they are having a romantic evening at The Woodcock.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Thursday, 11th June 2015 - Preschool

My day started at an unpleasant manic pace but slowed as it progressed. Following breakfast, Tescos delivery and room cleaning.

Tim and I had a lovely time at Hetty's preschool. It was grandparents day. Hetty showed me round the garden. Then we had tea and many different cakes. The deliciousness of Harriet's were commented on many times. We finished off with some singing. I am a very proud grandma.

In trepidation I made my annual trip to the dentist. I really hate it even though my dentist and hygienist are very gentle. I don't need to get terrified for another year and have a tiny toothbrush so I spend even more time brushing.

I have unwittingly joined Tim on his 5:2 day today. It was a perfect day for a salad. 

I wish fruit flies would bugger off.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Wednesday, 10th June 2015 - Ellen and Jack

While I was ironing Tim was booking in more guests for this evening much to my grumpiness due to being a lazy devil and not having made up the room. It is now and looks mist charming.

I have made a bit of a boob with arrangements for today. I blame it on a misprint in the Morris programme. Book group and Morris clashed. The solution was to have both at the same venue. Perfect and nobody realised my mess up and possibly thought it was carefully orchestrated. Our book I Am Pilgrim got mainly good comments. At over 900 pages it is the longest book we have read. I had a bit of lamb rump at The Bell and Jorrocks. Lovely food and great puddings. Sarah, Pippa, Kath and I were entertained by music and song from The Weald of Kent Morris as well as Steampunk Morris. It was well worth the late night.

Tuesday, 9th June 2015 - Necessary Products

I have a concern and not found how to resolve it. When cleaning the bnb rooms I sometimes come across a pill, usually on the floor. The last one looked important. Do I phone my guests that have now departed in case they become ill due to lack of medication? But then if it is not theirs they will think I am sluttish in my cleaning as it could belong to a previous guest. I put it in the bin with a tiny bit of guilt. 

Kat, a friend of Harriet's, is a hairdresser and tackled my hair this evening. She has done a good job on an awkward customer with not the greatest head of hair to work with. Tim complimented me. I wonder if this is to make up for the fact he asked me (four days ago now but these things lodge in my mind) if I had got on the scales recently. It is going to take more than that for me to bury a grudge.

Monday, 8 June 2015

Monday, 8th June 2015 - Time Keeper

I woke thinking it was Sunday and it wasn't until I took my prescribed medication which helpfully has the days if the week on it that I realised it must be Monday. This is an easy failing when working seven days a week as there is no break for a weekend. The days all merge into one long, long, never ending week. To be honest it makes no damn difference what day of the week it happens to be.

I took my coffee and sat and watched the bees for a while. I was not investigated today so think I am safe having a drink break with them. They seemed to be coming and going in a merry way. They seemed to have an imposter that was thrown from the hive in an energetic manner. All seems well in the hive. I am reading Bee Keeping for Dummies which is strangely entertaining me.

Either of my many many watches don't work or I don't like them. I bought myself a new one.

My art class was great. I got lost in time. At last I have found the solution of how to crackle acrylic paint. This has been a mission since I saw it in a book a couple of months ago. Satisfyingly sorted.

Sunday, 7 June 2015

Sunday, 7th June 2015 - Iris and Foxgloves

My ironing piles continue to grow and probably blossom if I don't get on with it. I blame the weather. It is far too lovely outside in the sun to be sweating over an ironing machine. While I planted out my selection of plants Tim made pizza. He cooked it in a hot frying pan which made for a lovely crispy bottom add finished it off in the oven. I have a problem. I labelled the plants when they were potted up. There seems to be a discrepancy between the labels and the plants. Same label different plant. I have a feeling I may have told you this previously. Double the pleasure then.

The foxgloves are giving us much delight. They are stunning this year.

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Saturday, 6th June 2015 - Professor and Lecturer

I was interrupted from my cleaning tasks by Michael. He very kindly gave up an hour or so of his time to share his bee knowledge with us. We all got togged up. I do like a man in a bee suit....could it be the mystery of what is behind the veil? Having previously had my intelligence equated to his four year old son I thought it best to just listen. The lecturer in Michael emerged. I 'think' I learnt quite a bit but am keeping quiet until I have revised. Tim got stung through his veil. We were told to go and deal with it. I expertly scraped the sting from Tim's forehead. It was a tense time. Tim reacts badly to wasp stings. It seems it is not the case with bees. Michael rather loudly informed us he had found the queen. I thought you were meant to be calm and quiet around bees!!! I may not correct my teacher on this occasion. Thankyou so much for our lesson.

I continued with my cleaning. I was looking forward to a visit to the Bell and Jorrocks to see Alan and catch up on gossip but Tim missed his text. I did some early evening gardening instead. We had homemade fish cakes and butternut squash with chickpea curry. An unusual but surprisingly tasty combination.

Friday, 5 June 2015

Friday, 5th June 2015 - Men Without Hens

It is 6.45am and while I prepare a bowl of mushrooms the back door is wide open to the sounds (crows fighting over stale bread) and smells of summer. I am wearing a new pair of linen trousers which are perfect for the hot day to come. My only concern is that they look like PJ bottoms. If I ask Hetty she will tell I look lovely, she just sees my charming self. If, I ask my partner I may get something I don't want to hear, he sees beyond my charm.

I had a lovely day at The Wealden Times Fair today with Liz. We drank, ate, chatted and bought just a little bit. It was rather quiet compared to previous years.

This evening we had a yummy fish pie at Mike and Pippa's then wandered up to The Woolpack to meet up with a few people and watch a band. 

Falling asleep naked with the breeze from an open window breathing across my back is gently erotic....while Tim softly snores next to me. Goodnight.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Wednesday, 3rd June 2015 - Contour Drawing

I started weeding a smallish flower bed. I extracted most of the plants making it a much easier task to replant with as many of the pots from the greenhouse as possible. I hope the bare earth will cover over soon.

Tim suggested I wore thermals this evening. A strange suggestion unless you are going out in the topless MG. There were quite a few other Morris at The Globe and Rainbow. It is summer so I had to drink Campari and soda while admiring some fine dancing.

My tutor would be proud of me practising my continual line drawing.

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Tuesday, 2nd June 2015 - Victoria

Eventually I have found making chocolate brownies for guests a little tedious. Flapjacks are quick and easy but just not quite right to have with tea and Tim and I find ourselves eating far too large a quantity of the butter and sugar ladened devils. I roamed the Internet and have found a rather successful Victoria sponge. It sounds a little plain? Filled with buttercream and homemade black currant jam it becomes a delight. And it can be frozen. So proud of my success.

 This evening Tim and I met Mike and Pippa at The Woodcock to catch up on family news and a bit of gossip. We have not eaten there since it has changed landlords. We had to try it out for research for our guests. I had a lovely bit of pork. We can recommend it but not if you are a vegetarian.

Monday, 1 June 2015

Monday, 1st June 2015 - It's All In The Preparation

A call from Tom confirmed that he is on the final furlong to becoming a Doctor. Excellent news.

I have been helping Harriet out just a little bit today. She does not ask for help. For one so small she has a huge amount of stoicism, bravery and just bloody amazing. It is a cruel disease. I admire her greatly.

I was not feeling hugely enthused about my art class this evening. It was great. I had a wonderful, wonderful time. I love my art class.