Sunday, 19 April 2015

The Post That Should Have Been About Florence!


Hello My Lovelies,
This should have been a post all about Florence, a post where I shared my photos with you. My hubbie and I have spent hours...and hours...and hours, trying to work out how to get them from my iPhone and onto my iPad, but to no avail, so sorry peeps, you will just have to trust me, it was wonderful! Maybe one day we will work it out, but don't hold your breath...we are both not very technical!

So I thought I'd update you on what's been going on...
Well, I've finished my Granny Stripe blanket, just a dozen or so ends to sew in...and I've started a cushion with the leftover yarn. Unfortunately I think I will only have enough to do one side, so I will need to sew it onto a piece of fabric to make a cushion!
It's been a frustrating few days, I thought I had recovered from my trip fairly well, but have been hit by the most awful, mind and body numbing exhaustion, it hit me like a sledge hammer on Friday, and I've been forced to rest, rest, rest. My balance completely went...this is so annoying as I my head I've got so much to do! But anyway, there's nothing I can do but listen to what my body tells me.
Saying that...
Feeling slightly better balanced today, I was very naughty and built this, very nearly killed myself in the process, something that should have been so easy took me forever. But it's up now, and all I have to do is decide where to put it!
I'm going to get some graph paper and map out my garden, planning where the raised beds will go, a greenhouse (hopefully), and maybe even some chickens! This is a long term plan however, not something that will happen quickly...but if I can decide where these two beds will go, then I can plant my overwinter veg in them. Once these babies are filled with compost, I ain't moving them ;)
This beautiful butterfly has kept landing on me today, I kept wondering if it was my Mum, popping by to say hello, checking up on me...knowing how tired I was. It's a nice, comforting thought...
Will be back with more goings on later in the week...well that's if I can get going!
(Hubbie has just informed me we need an adaptor, then we can transfer the maybe you will get to see them afterall!)
Toodle Pip,
Amanda :) xxx



Thursday, 16 April 2015

Hello...I'm Back!


Well, Hello.....I'm back and fully rested! And what a beautiful week it's been.
It was a wonderful, very busy few days in Florence, and I fell in love with the city and its people all over again! I'm just trying to workout how to get my photos off my phone, and then I can share them with you...
The best thing about returning home, was to go out in the garden, I couldn't believe how much growth there had been, in just a few days! I just love this time of year.
This little greenhouse of mine is now full of seeded trays and pots, hopefully they will all germinate...I love my little 'leanto', I am however planning a proper grown up greenhouse, one built of brick and wood, it's beautiful...some saving to be done! I'm keeping everything crossed that this dream works out!
We've had beautiful blue skies, and some lovely neighbours have removed a very high, very ugly conifer hedge, this has meant I now have more sky to look at, brilliant.
I have a poorly girl at home with me, Little Bea has chicken pox, for the third time! Bless her, she had full on social plans for this week, most of which has needed to be cancelled. She's very itchy, but luckily she's feeling well, but quite grumpy! Lots of snuggles have been needed. I can do snuggles.
I've been missing the wonderful Italian food, so whilst the rest of the family opted for takeaway pizza, I chose an healthier version, which was delicious...we bought some gorgeous balsamic vinegar back with us, don't think it will last long.
Back soon, hopefully with some images of Florence!
Amanda :) xxx
Minnie's glad to be back home too! :) xxx



Sunday, 5 April 2015

Lots of Inspiration and A Dash of Hope.....

Hello Everyone.....I wanted to wish you all a Happy Easter, but even if you aren't religious, or follow any Easter traditions, Spring is a still a great time of hope.


We gardeners really need to be an optimistic, bunch don't we, we pop some seeds in the soil, and we have to believe they will grow, they will flourish, become the plant they are destined to be.
If we weren't optimistic, if we didn't have hope, well what would be the point...we wouldn't want to plant those seeds, and we wouldn't need any hope.
I'm finding inspiration everywhere at the moment, each and everything I read seems to be leading me along to new discoveries, connecting with new people. It feels like I'm bursting with energy, yes it might only in my head, but I'm relishing in these new ideas.


It feels like for the first time in quite a while I've a plan, a new purpose. I know I can't run with it just yet, there's still lots things that need to slot into place first, but I'm hopeful they will. In myself I need to get stronger, mental strength, as well as physical strength.
It's not been easy, but I'm gradually turning my outdoor space around, and seeing the first seeds start to spring to life. I'm looking forward to spending more time outside, now that the days are getting longer, even if it's just to sit and have a cuppa, or glass of something!
I said I'd share with you three blogs which I'm really being inspired by at the moment...
Firstly Kate, she writes a blog Homegrown Kate. It's all about her families adventures on their allotment, how they grow organically and eat healthily, some great recipies and organic growing tips thrown in there too.
Next there's Tricia, from Little Eco Footprints, her blog is full of ways to live gently on this earth, to live well and make the most of what you have.
And lastly there's the blog written by Bec, Think Big Live Simply. Again it's a blog all about simple living.
So my mind is a buzz, and I'm meditating on my hopes and dreams, perhaps they will be caught up by the powers that be, who will gift them back to me. Perhaps they will become a reality. Now wouldn't that be good.
Told you we gardening types have hope, didn't I?
It's finally the Easter holidays here, and in a few days my little family and I will be experiencing our first proper trip abroad, to Florence. I know it's not going to be completely easy, for me physically getting around will be difficult, but there will be plenty of opportunities to sit and observe the Italian lifestyle! And for others in my family there will be the stress of the unfamiliar.
But I'm hoping the sun will be on my skin, and there will be wonderful food in my belly, and a feast for my eyes, with the wonderful architecture and art that Florence has to offer!
I'll be back in a week of so to share our stories,
Amanda :) xxx



Tuesday, 31 March 2015

March Mantle........

Flowers picked a few minutes ago from my March Mantle, but only just, as tomorrow it's April!
Keeping things simple. My new mantra. The images aren't that great, but hopefully you can see the lovely light streaming through the windows, a gale blew last night and I'm so pleased the sun has come out now.
Come on spring, come on warmer temperatures.....we need you!
I'm making lots of garden plans. I've just ordered two large raised beds, and I'm looking at greenhouse options but the ones I like are expensive, typical! I want my garden to look beautiful as well as being productive.
I've always wanted a few chickens too, I'm not sure how chickens and cats get along though, so if anyone has any advice on keeping chickens, I'd love to hear it.
I managed a little crochet yesterday....first time in a while. It felt good.
Once again my head is full of ideas of things I'm wanting to do and achieve, plans rolling around in there, all good stuff, but things that take time, things that take energy. So it's one step at a time, it's as important to enjoy the journey, as it is the destination.
Hopefully back over the Easter weekend, I'd like to share some lovely links with you, things that's been inspiring me just lately! Hope you all have a great week.
Amanda :) xxx
She spends 80% of her time curled up on a crochet blanket, in my next life I'm going to be a cat......but only if my owner crochets ;) xxx





Sunday, 29 March 2015

Enforced Slow Living.......

I've been reading a lot recently about Slow Living, about living a simpler life, taking care our yourself, the environment we live in.......mindfulness. About slowing down the pace, reducing our impact on the earth.
Over the last few years I've experienced an 'enforced slow living'. By that I mean I can't do anything very quickly anymore ;). I'm time rich now, perhaps not what I would have chosen, but actually it's a good way to live. I already practise mindfulness, still a novice, but a firm believer in its benefits, not just mentally, but physically too.
It feels like I'm on a new path. I'm setting myself new goals. Baby steps, but they are steps forward.....well we all have to start somewhere, right?
So, my Slow Living mantra....which I'm sure will change and develop, as I go along the path:
To eat as healthily as I can, unprocessed, whole foods.
To structure mindfulness into my day, it's still a little ad hoc at the moment.
To add 10 minutes of yoga to my day.
To edit my possessions, I have far too much 'stuff'. I've stared on this, but this will be ongoing and there's lots to's something that never really stops.
To try and use only natural cleaning products in our home......I'm learning the amazing properties of bicarbonate of soda!
To grow a few things to eat, even if it's just salad leaves, herbs and courgettes!
It. Feels. Good.
Amanda :) xxx



Monday, 23 March 2015



Last week was all about friendships. I'm blessed with some fabulous friends, we are there for each other through the difficult times, and we celebrate the good times together too. I'm not sure what I'd do without my friends, I know my life would be much more empty without them.
This week I visited Chatsworth House with one of my lovely was a cold but beautiful day. It was nice to spend some time just being us, we sat outside having our lunch, giggling away like a couple of school girls. Just us and the sheep!
And today I get to spend time with my sisters, we are having lunch in a lovely pub. I'm sure there will be a lot of giggling too. Sometimes it good just being me, not a mum, not a partner.......we all need this every now and again. Recharge those batteries.
This weekend has been lovely, two days of sunshine and time spent in the garden.....I've perhaps overdone things a little so I'm taking things slowly over the next few days.
Hope you've all had a great weekend too, wishing you all a good week!
Amanda :) xxx