Friday, May 25, 2018

Opera

Last week we needed to drive to Finestrat, a large commercial centre about 40 minutes away on the motorway. Our friends needed to go to so we clubbed together, then decided to return home on the normal road which takes in Altea. 
We booked a lovely little restaurant for lunch called Opera. Everything has a musical theme including the menu, my salad was Ravel. Inside the bar is constructed from an old piano with lots of instruments adorning the walls. With sea views its charming.
They do the most amazing salads, such a wide variety of leaves, melon, pineapple, grapes, our friends were a little skeptical of รก salad´ but soon changed their minds.
I know its a bit sad to snap meals but......

 Goats cheese
 Prawns
 The dishes were deep and the photos don´t really do them justice



Even the coffees were served with flair
Worked out with meals, wine, soft drinks and coffee for 15 euros a head
Not bad.

We have an old Spanish rose in the courtyard, gnarled trunks, twisting and twinning around each other, most of it has unfortunately died, but it is such a feature and the furries use it as a scratching post and climbing frame to reach the roof

We now have another interested party involved, as you can see Felix and Monster are making their inspections
A couple of years ago we started to hear chomping and then wood dust started to fall, a serious amount too.
Its happened again this year, chomp chomp
This is what it is

Apparently it is a Spanish blue bee and they are making nests and burrows in the trunk,  judging by the noise and mess they must be making lots of tunnels.
They are quite large and make a noisy buzz when they fly
We had masonry bees at the farm but they were tiny in comparison.
They are not interested in us, but it´s worth ducking when they are flying around.

Have a good weekend, hope the weather is kind for the bank holiday
take care
xcx

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Pig´s ears

Now I have nothing against piggies, their ears or any other part of them and I know they like to find a nice patch of mud to roll around in to keep cool amongst other things, getting themselves into a complete and utter mess......
To make a pig´s ear is a mid 20th century phrase and means ´completely botch something up, to make a complete mess of it.....
This was first found in print in a 1950 edition of the Readers Digest.
An old proverb dating back to the 16th century says, you can´t make a silk purse out of a sow´s ear.
The English clergyman Stephen Gosson published a romantic story in 1579 and in it referred to people who were engaged in a hopeless task, alluding to what might be the result if someone did try to make something from a sow´s ear, not a silk purse but a complete mess.....

Where am I going with this?
This!!!!

Certainly doesn´t look right
My self challenge of knitting socks.............
I knitted the heel flap, undid it again, learnt about a life line, put in a length of thread through the stitches so if you have to pull back you don´t loose your stitches.

When I was knitting it, it came out inside out, ok turn it the other way, but I decided to carry on, then suddenly even though I was knitting as before, the other side appeared, then just as before it suddenly went back to the other way......odd or what
Even though I pulled the stitches tight when changing needles I still got a ladder grrr
So
I think I will order a short circular one from Amazon rather than 4 needles and see if that makes it any better, before I bow down gracefully.

Not all was a pig´s ear though
I crochet these pot holders/hot mats for Rebecca as I saw hers were rather well loved!
I thought she would like a little parcel so posted it off, unbelievably it took 13 days to reach her, but she was very appreciative.
They are all the same size (two just folded)
Not her usual colours but useful none the less

Off to find something else to do rather than a sock!!
Enjoy the weekend
take care
xcx














Thursday, May 17, 2018

Opps!

Hi, sorry the link didn´t work for the little squirrel video, so do try again. Its only short, taken through the car window. xx

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Furries

Having been to visit some of our friends finca higher up the mountain to water their garden as they have returned to the UK until September, we were so surprised to come across these two red squirrels playing tag across the road.
We stopped and reached for the ever present video camera, but one was a little shy and darted away whilst his companion showed off.
Been living up here for nearly eleven years now and this is the first time for seeing them.


My other experience with furries today was not quite such a nice one.
I got out of bed, walked through the dressing room where Thomas, Benji and Felix were playing chase and into the shower.
After a while all was quiet as they disappeared downstair for their breakfast.
I opened the bathroom door, well I tried too, I was completely trapped
The little rascals had decided to pick at the carpet outside the door and had rucked it all up
No way was the door going to open
there was not enough room to slide something along to smooth it out either.
Nothing for it but to call for help!
The door opened no more than an inch so I yelled
and yelled and yelled...........
I even got a metal container and started to bang on the door
Nothing... nada.... no response....
Its all very well having walls about 2 feet thick but there is no way of making anyone hear
Having spoken with Chris further about it, he then admitted he thought the banging was the washing machine having a tantrum.....!!!!!!! words fail me............

Eventually after what seemed an absolute age (probably 5 minutes) Chris heard me as he walked from the hallway to the kitchen
Hello?!
I´m trapped
Oh!
Oh dear, he said with a little chuckle as he freed the door, lucky for him he disappeared before I could get out............
Strong tape/glue needed to prevent reoccurence

take care
xcx

p.s. next post is all about pigs ears!!!!!!!

Monday, May 7, 2018

From a challenge to pickleitis


On Friday we decided to use my pass for us both to go to the spa.
To start we had it to ourselves but gradually others arrived but it was still not that busy.
We stayed for about 80 minutes then went up to the bar for a coffee and a sit down.
Its amazing how it wipes you out, must be the detox from the salts in the water.
I decided to take up a challenge
Having seen all the lovely sock yarns people have spoken about
I checked out Winwick Mum blog where Christine has very kindly put up patterns and loads of tutorials for making socks.
Not having the correct size needles for using 4 ply I chose to use DK, thinking it might just help in learning the technique.
All I had were DPN´s not a circular needle. Well I did have a 30cm one of the right size but this was way to long and couldnt reach the stitches. So it has dawned on me that I was measuring the length of the cord when perhaps I should have been measuring tip of needle to the other tip??!!

The way I knit is using long needles with one tucked under one arm, obviously not usable with DPN´s. So not only was I fiddling around with four needles, I was having to learn to knit in a very different way.
I struggled to start then seemed to find my own way, got through the rib and onto the leg.
Feeling quite chuffed at this point, I tackled the heel flap.
Well the knitting was ok, but I was only using two needles, the flap was coming along
then the gussett
now I was completely in a pickle, I read and re-read the instructions then gave up as I was tired.
I tried again the next day, nope! no good, so it all came out, back to the start of the heel flap.
Now it is waiting for another day when I am fresher and I think I will have to sit in front of the computer and do it photo by photo.
I really don´t want to give in, but its a bit frustrating, perhaps this is why I never tried before.
Felix was trying to help by jumping for the yarn, then just getting in the way

I think the shape is right, shame about the rest lol
The pattern said to knit after the rib, but it came out inside out, don´t know if that´s right either
Take care
xcx




Wednesday, May 2, 2018

All go

Another busy day
We had to go to the cattery to collect Rebecca´s two furries and take them to the vets for their final good health check. All last minute.com, but it had to be within 5 days of departure and Monday and Tuesday were bank holidays here, so with them being collected for transportation at 3pm we had no choice.
They were so pleased to see us and have a cuddle, full clean bill of health, the check lasted no more than 5 minutes for both and cost a total of 68 euros.
Still better safe than sorry and some one somewhere carting them off for quarantine. 
We then had to return them to the cattery and travel onto Ondara to collect more prints for the clocks.
After that it was to Javea
Rebecca had left several posh frocks in a dress agency, but unfortunately nothing has sold yet, but at least I gave my details as well as hers.

Rebecca has been soaked to the skin in down pours
Feels really cold
and is missing the blue skies already.
However she has been job hunting and has sent off her CV to several places, so fingers crossed.

Opps, just noticed the time, better collect my things ready for weekly Spanish lesson down in our school house
Adios
xcx

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Busy busy

I haven´t posted for eleven days, but my goodness how busy we have been.
We have basically been with Rebecca and Antoni most of the time helping to sort, pack, trips to the storage unit and the dump.
Just when you think a hole has been made, bosh another pile turns up for bubble wrapping and boxing. Thank goodness Rebecca and I had started back in January otherwise it wouldn´t have happened. The house was 4 bedroomed, although one of the bedrooms Antoni used for his business so it was jammed packed. They are moving into Antoni´s one bedroom flat so most of the stuff had to be sent to storage. They will certainly feel the difference. They have given us all sorts of bits and bobs, including contents of the larder and all house cleaning products, some items to borrow others to have, some just returned home here, bags and bags, so our home looks like a bomb has gone off with stuff everywhere until we can straighten things out. Its a good job we have the casita which has become a dumping ground.
Their furries went to the cattery on Wednesday which did make life a little easier without them. They will go over next Wednesday.
They were due to leave on Thursday, but what with some legalities to be dealt with, never a quick option over here, and a huge pile still to pack and sort they reviewed their departure to today.
Yesterday saw us still packing etc but included a complete clean ready for the landlords inspection. 
The spanish are usually late, but murphy´s law, they arrived bang on time and we still had two floors to mop.
They were extremely pleased with the clean up etc and agreed they could have their deposit back, every one warned us that that doesnt happen very often here. But... then they dropped a bombshell that because of their poor management they hadn´t sent bills for the water and refuge for 6 years and wanted 1051 euros. What!!!!!!
Rebecca, quite rightly got a little cross and there were further discussions, how it gets sorted I don´t know. More stress and we are worn out.

However on the bright side after selling their car, we picked them up and they stayed the night, bonus..
Last Sunday was my birthday and we all joined in for a meal at Maria´s, making a party of 10 which was quite jolly and they stayed the night again.
I was spoilt with lots of lovely pressies including a 10 visit pass for the spa in Calpe, something lovely to look forward to, a set of 100 dragonfly solar lights, a beautiful standard rose and a lovely bouquet and more......



I also wanted to make an elephant for Rebecca to take, filled with lots of love and hugs, so this is Elle


As Elle was travelling she needed a passport, so Chris took her photo and made her one.

Rebecca loved her,  so if she feels a little down she can have a hug with Elle
After an early start for the airport run, feeling more than a little jaded, but I shall leave you with Felix
Enjoy the rest of the weekend
take care
xcx