Tuesday, March 17, 2015

A little tale of the cat kingdom

Such a nice feeling, being able to open the fridge and have it bulging with fresh goodies and thinking what to have to eat, the new recipe of spinach rice went down well again along with the vibrant stir fry.  
We stopped off this morning on our way back from a doctor's appointment to visit the fish counter so today's lunch was fresh mussels in a white wine sauce, with a zingy salad.  I am determined to shed those extra pounds that have crept on, I know it's going to be hard due to all my levels being all over the place, but with the warmer weather creeping on, portion control and fresh produce it must work, surely??!! any tips gratefully received
I think I may try walking round the block each day too, its up and down hill so must be a bit of a work out, especially for me with the fibro, would be nice to do some yoga too, have to look into that
When Rebecca brought me back home she decided to stay until teatime today, we both felt reassured by being around and I´m pleased to say she is feeling a little better, so she has gone home to be with her girlies (cats)  We have put strategies in place for our comfort zones, discussed possibilities and probabilities, so all is very positive and forward thinking
I posted a photo of this plant on 29.1.15, where I said I would post another when it flowered, I say this because I can´t find the original one, but anyway it looks very pretty and is a haven for the bees who visit it all day long. 
We have a couple of other plants that need to mature, but in some of the high winds their pots were lifted off and smashed to the ground, resulting in broken stems.  I have planted these pieces and they seem to be taking, so, a very positive result as we can now dot these around to find the best growing space for them.
Last night our TV viewing was the football!
I am not a particular fan of sport, but as with all things give and take is in order
Last night it was between Reading and Bradford, an FA 1/4 final replay
Chris has followed Reading forever, and his Dad and Grandad before
In fact his father´s ashes are buried near the goal post
so it was very poignant last night for his team, that has been suffering its struggles, to reach this point.
can you picture the scene, nail biting, edge of seat stuff
various comments of encouragement and then...within minutes.....
Reading score..............roarrrrr, jumping about and other whoooops.......
there were cats flying everywhere from their safe little havens, where they were soundly asleep
wondering what the dickens was going on,
two raced the length of the house for the cat flap only to collide in their rush,
 others looked totally bewildered when they arrived in the dining room
 then decided it was best to see if any goodies were in the food bowl
other ran then turned and glared
they had just settled down again thinking it was safe
they scored again..........
the noise was so deafening it was difficult to register it was from one person
that did it
they all fled
every single one of the 9 - disappeared
have to admit so did Rebecca and I
there was another repeat performance with even more volume when a 3rd goal was scored
It was only after this when things quietened, did peace reign once again in the cat kingdom
goodness only knows what will happen in the semi´s
right, off to do tonight´s dinner
what to have, ooh let´s go and look
take care

Monday, March 16, 2015

Splash of colour

Although it seems a while ago now, I did enjoy my second hot stone massage, unfortunately we continued to have things go wrong, including having water cascading down the landing walls, down the stairs into the dining room and lounge - all because the electronic sensor in the float switch of the top water tank ceased. All fixed now though and we did have beautifully clean stairs (they are all tiles, so no damage).  At last apart from one thing, all the pumps and systems seems to be working, but sshhhhhhh don't say anything!

I had a lovely Mother's day (for the first half) as Rebecca had stayed over so we started off with some beautiful gifts, a fold away shopping bag, candle holders and vanilla scented candles, a beautiful amethyst crystal and a rose quartz one too.

We decided to investigate the market at Pedreguer, about 35 minute drive away.  It was very large and we only managed to see half of it.  There were some very good plant stalls and as I got a bit carried away, we had to do two trips to the car....

I also bought several plant plugs of tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, and cauliflower, these were to go with the lettuce plants I have already been bringing on. A medium sized rosemary, a lavender and a pot of chocolate mint found their way into my box too.

This is a photo of a huge thyme plant that Rebecca and Antoni gave to me

We had a lovely break for coffee and a bite at the cafe, then continued on for the veggie shopping.  We had taken the bag on wheels, something everyone seems to have over here and hunted out the bargains.  We found strawberries 2kg for 3 euros, avacados 2kg 4e, carrots 4kg 2e, 2 large cauliflowers for 1e and 3 large heads of brocolli for 1e, they were the best deals but we ended up having to do a double run back to the car to unload  the goodies.  We shared everything out and filled our fridges with the thoughts of brocolli soup, carrot, apples ginger and lemon juices and smoothies packed with yummy fruit and roasted veg. A 2kg bag of lemons was only 1e, freshly picked and unwaxed, the zest knocks you back when you grate it.

Sadly this is where the day started to go down hill.  Rebecca had been experiencing pains and rapid heartbeats etc for a little while and on our journey back home had started to feel unwell.  The whole thing was beginning to feel very frightening so we ended up in the ER. Mention pain, palpitations and the heart and boy do they move! Hooked up to the ECG machine, etc and results and Rebecca whisked into the doctor straight away.  X ray, bloods, calming words, then the wait for results, but then they lost a phial and had to retake 'what!' more waiting, but we were eventually allowed home about 10pm, we arrived at 5.30, with the promise of chasing up the Doppler tests, a new appointment with the consultant and some meds. 

The doctor was absolutely brilliant, and very easy on the eyes!! he had total empathy with us as he had also been on the journey with his young wife, sharing his story with us whilst at the same time trying to compose himself. He was very reassuring, took all the time Rebecca needed and promised all the follow ups, he also suggested that this may be because Rebecca is trying to gain back her life and it could be her body´s way of saying no been through enough and not ready.  We shall see.

Whilst it was not the planned Mother´s day it in fact reinforced the very essence of the meaning, just being a caring, loving, supporting Mum ready to do whatever is necessary, and we did spend the whole day together.

 Jo asked  what projects we had been working on recently so I thought it was about time I posted something. 
 A Mother´s day card for MIL, I chose size 11 seed beads for the butterfly

A random mix of little motifs ready to be made into either gift tags or notelets

Miniatures have been featuring a little heavily of late, these are a pair of rustic garden chairs I made from bamboo skewers

I have been asked to take the next club workshop which will be making flowers and pot plants, so I asked hubby for an arbor to fix trailing plants to, space for troughs and hanging baskets.  This is what he has made so far

Now I need to make the flowers, similar to the ones in the garden above and design the garden, some will be thread, others from tissue paper, an office hole punch creates just the right size for making petals. Mind you glasses and tweezers are a must lol.

Just made some carrot, apple, ginger and lemon juice but it disappeared before I could take a photo, yum.  Turkey marinating in lemon, ginger, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and garlic so must go and make the spinach rice and stir fry.
take care

Friday, February 20, 2015

Ouch - the week that was

What a week! The gas tank needed filling up, the leccie bill from over Christmas period came in, a 5cubic metre load of logs were delivered, also a tanker of water for the house

If that wasn't enough, the pump for the dirty water system has packed up,although it seems it can be refurbished rather than replaced (phew), but we need a tanker to clean out the pit,  the water pump in the Casita isn't working and some how, some where all the water from its depositos has disappeared, which means another tanker of water for them before we can sort out the problem.

To cap it all despite our best efforts of finding out why the dishwasher wasn't working, the plumber has discovered its pump has died.  Apparently he said most of it is due to the very high calcium levels in the water here, everything just furs up and pumps, machines etc,  only last about 5 years! Great! Just have to buy a pair of marigolds.

Oh and because of all the very high winds we have had in the last few weeks, the level in the pool has dropped by about a foot, the wind just seems to whip it up and sucks it out, so we will need another tanker of water to top it up again.

So looking forward to next week for my massage, going to need it by then.

Never mind, it's the weekend, just carry on crafting :-)
Enjoy the weekend whatever you may be doing
take care

Thursday, February 19, 2015

A treat

This morning I had my treat and thoroughly enjoyed it. Hubby's valentine gift to me wasn't flowers or even chocolates (can't eat them anyway!) it was one of these 

a wonderful hot stone massage
(and no its not a piccie of me lol)
Rebecca treated me to one last year whilst in Exeter, every one is different but today's was very relaxing with a mix of  stones and hands, certainly helps the fibro. Today the therapist used the stones on my feet, an area we all seem to forget about just how hard we work them. They certainly felt better afterwards.  I think I wafted out of the treatment room rather than walked, to the comments of you look very relaxed!
I really enjoyed the aromatherapy massages that Rebecca used to give, didn't mind being a guinea pig on those occasions! She had a wonderful technique, very calming and caring, such a shame she is unable to do them anymore. Maybe in time.

I have been having a play with random miniatures but the light conditions have been so dull for the last few days I haven't managed a good photo. On my to do list.
take care

Monday, February 9, 2015


There I was a few days ago saying about the almond blossom being imminent and how we were in the naya enjoying the warm sunshine.  Should have kept my thoughts to myself..... the temps have plummeted and we even had a snow storm, ok it didn´t lay here but just above us on the mountains it certainly did. It didn´t hang around long but its unseasonably cold and although the sun is shining it is struggling to reach double figures, I don´t do cold, makes the fibro worse, however the blossom is starting to appear and it´s beginning to look pretty.
I joined Ancestry a couple of years ago and have been delving into the past, I have enjoyed the fact that if I have contacted a fellow tree holder we have been able to swap stories and help each other on our way.  This week it was the other way around, someone contacted me which was lovely and they were from a branch of the family that I knew very little about, my father´s maternal side.  I knew two  great Uncles had emigrated to New Zealand and had become very wealthy businessmen, with one of them becoming Mayor of Lyttleton, (funny enough the same area hubby used to live) and a gt x 2 having a cow keeping business in Chelsea, then a pub in Essex. I didn´t know that a great x 3 was gate keeper in Hyde Park and owner of 14 cottages and land in Suffolk, or that his eldest son exhibited along side Turner and Reynolds in the Royal Acadamy. There was a sad side though as another gt x 2 uncle and his wife disappeared from the radar and left the young children in an orphanage. Still looking into that one.  My new found rellie was so sweet giving me information and it certainly filled in many gaps, feel quite enthused again.
It´s DIL´s birthday this week, so it was thinking caps on in plenty of time to make the post.  As an addition to her main present, I made a little needlecase for her, as I had noticed when staying there that she didn´t have one.

Hopefully a little bit nicer than leaving her needles in the packet

Last week I was keeping Rebecca company for her scan, she was not looking forward to it because of what happened last time when they bodged it, so I thought a little gift might help.  I made this so that I could put a little message inside, along with a opal moonstone crystal for her

The scan went ok and we returned Friday for the results, but unfortunately some of them were not available.  Why they left it so near to the consultants appointment is beyond me especially when both are like hens teeth to get.  So we are back again soon for further tests etc, hey ho......
I will leave you with this little gem, talk about busted.............

Lucy has been in Jackson´s shop and is now sporting the latest fashion in collars..... a miniature window................
take care xcx

Friday, January 30, 2015

Back to minis

It´s been really warm these last few days and we have been able to sit in the naya in the afternoons doing some crafting. We have decided to resurrect our miniatures, after putting everything on hold for so long it´s nice to be able to feel we are able to do this.
We had several projects on hold, including a wonderful bureau that hubby was making.  He had cut and assembled the main unit and it had stood languishing in the cabinet just begging to be finished.  He took it all apart and stained all the pieces, reassembled and polished it

There are still drawers to be made and then sourcing items for the ink wells, pens and paper
I had designed this rug and finished the main stitching using 22 count and cross stitch, so all that was needed was to finish it off

Thinking of the haberdashery shop, I trawled through some of my archives and started this little embroidery.  I should really have used 40 count silk gauze and tent stitch, but I didn´t have any so had to make do with 40 count evenweave, cross stitch, not ideal but it worked.
I have since finished the design and it is ready to be attached to a floor embroidery frame

I showed Chris what I wanted, he did a quick drawing and it is now just waiting to be stained and the embroidery mounted. 
I have started a bell pull now, but the light was not the same and I have had to use the magnifier at times which is not so comfortable and I would really like to source some silk gauze as I think it would be easier.
Today has been about 20C out of the wind! but we have had such terrific gusts its a wonder we have not suffered more than a few smashed pots.  It has been reported that gusts of 134km were recorded in Alicante last night, don´t think we reached that here, but we sure did have the snoring rattling doors keeping us awake.
Rebecca and Antoni have just reached the UK after spending a week in Venice for their anniversary.  It was bright but very cold and last night they were awoken by some strange noises coming from the streets.  They realised that the strange contraptions they had seen were portable pavements being laid down because it was a high tide and it had rained so everywhere was flooded with over a foot of water.  Obviously the powers that be had this all worked out, must be a case of been there, done that, many times.
They had a lovely time but did say that everything was very very expensive, even a 30 minute gondola ride was 80 euros, so they took the water bus to explore some of the islands and attractions and waterways, but what a lovely adventure.
I have placed my supermarket order for tomorrow and have included extra for Rebecca so I can go and stock her fridge up for her, for her return. Fingers crossed the snow doesn't fall at Gatwick!
Have a great weekend
take care


Thursday, January 29, 2015


I use a lot of lemons and several years ago we bought a couple of lemon trees, the one on the terrace is obviously planted in the wrong place and is very sorry for itself and the other is in the courtyard.  It flowers and starts to fruit then somehow loses the will to continue, today I spotted this.....

One lonely little lemon, it would be nice if it would hold on this time.  So it´s a good job that Antoni shinned up his mother´s tree and brought me these

It might seem a strange thing to say, but the fresh lemons taste completely different, almost sweet with full of flavour zest and of course no wax on them.

I did harvest the last of the chillies and have popped them in the freezer ready for use

A friend contacted me a couple of weeks ago asking if I was interested in any embroidery threads. It was rather a sad story as she was selling loads of crafting things for a friends family as she had sadly passed away and they didn´t have a clue as to what to do with boxes and boxes of stash.  The nice thing was the money raised was going to charity.  This is what I bought.....

There are over 350 skeins of thread, mostly DMC and Anchor and some Mayflower, she said she only wanted 10c a skein but as I was having the lot asked for 30 euros, although I did up it to 35e for the good cause.
We have been after some pool side loungers and whilst outing and abouting we spotted a sale on and so stopped to browse.  Unfortunately the loungers were not very comfortable and even the sale prices were extremely high, but I did find these two wonderful little planters with their friendly bugs attached. Couldn´t pass them by as I thought they were fun, so I bought one for Rebecca too, bargain price, they were only 5e each.

Took this photo mainly as a reference, a sort of before and after, the plant really needs repotting but we are afraid it might snap.  It closes up in the heat of the summer to protect itself and as the weather cools you can see it opening up until it does its thing with flowering.
I shall take another photo when it blooms

We have the first of the almond blossom just gently unfurling their petals, very soon the whole valley and surrounding areas will be beautiful candy pink

 take care

Sunday, January 11, 2015

First post

Happy New year to everyone

The gig NYE was a resounding success, the music quiz went down well and the predicted excidus just after midnight didn't happen because everyone was on the dance floor having a great time.  We also had an invite to return for a future event.  Win, win!!

Daniel, Shine and Leocia took off just after Christmas to visit Madrid, it was a surprise to us and we did feel rather deflated as we were so looking forward to having a full two weeks with them. They did return on the 2nd and on the Saturday all 7 of us went to Maria's restaurant for lunch, which was absolutely heaving so this took all afternoon, but was really enjoyable and I took advantage of having cuddles with Leocia.

As part of Leocia's christmas present I knitted a pretty cardigan/jacket with matching hat

I asked for a photo and Shine decided a fashion show was in order
The hat fitted fine, but the way Leocia is growing I don't think the jacket is going to last very long.  I knitted it for age 6-9 months and she is only just 5 months now!! Big girl!

I had already started to knit another jacket and had finished the back, but decided to undo it all and start again this time for the size 1-2 years

This was Leocia's main present, lots of sounds, textures, music and quite comfortable, and they managed to get it in the suitcase!
Really sad when we had to take them to the airport on the 5th, just have to rely on skype

We have one terrace where in previous years we have turned it into a veggie patch, as long as you plant early and harvest most things before July before everything gets burnt its ok, we also have a water outlet in this area for irrigation.
Apart from keeping the weeds down, for the last 3 years we have not touched this area, with Rebecca's illness and Chris's accident, we had neither the time nor inclination, but this year we decided to clear it and give it another go. We are trying to get our mojo back and enjoy once again the things that were put on the back burner

The weeds were over 7ft high and everything is covered in bind weed, nightmare!
Chris had to go to the town hall to get a burning license and being very careful managed to get rid of the first batch of debris
about a 1/4 of the way there, I can see digging up the bind weed roots is going to be a mission, a slow process being careful we don't overdo it
It's fun thinking of what to plant, but will we get there in time? We are thinking beetroot, spinach, pumpkins etc and perhaps keeping the toms, peppers and the like in the inner courtyard.  We have about 10 types of chilli ranging in heat and colours from chocolate to yellow 
We are having a warm January with temps about 20C which at least makes it quite pleasant to work 

Well, hope you all enjoyed your weekend,
take care