Wednesday 27 April 2011

Pomp and more pomp please!

Well there is no denying it Wedding Fever is gripping Chez T-J. I woke up with empathy butterflies for Miss Middleton, recalling the swirling surges of adrenalin flooding my own diaphragm the hours leading up my big day.

This was mine. June 8th 1996. St Mary's Hay on Wye. My Westminster Abbey.

I love Royal Weddings, one of those times in your life when you remember where you were, what you were doing and who you were with. You also feel uplifted by the ascending mood of the whole country in a unified day of celebration. A tidal wave of smiles, flag waving and God Bless Em everyone.

On April 29th 2011, where will I be?

Here! Beautiful, wonderful Sark. Multum im Parvo (much in little), a tiny Channel Island where street lights, pavements, cars and motorbikes do not exist.
Who will I be with?

My fabulous Hubster of course.

What will we be doing? Flag waving, chin chin, its all going to be about red, white and blue!

They have been pitching their tents since Monday! You cant beat the passion of a true Royalist, no matter how barking it looks, acceptable I say, absolutely de rigeur in fact!

The boys have been practicing their pomp, at the crack of sparrows this morning!

God Bless the Queen, the pomp, circumstance and the ceremony. We will be there every inch of the Mall with you Ma'm and country. xxx

Tuesday 26 April 2011

Live and behave like a dog!

Want to know the key to true happiness?

Find your inner dog!

Today I read that one of the most amazing stories reported from the Japanese earthquake involved a group of children who had stayed alive for days buriend under the rubble. They passed the time with games like counting the drips of water, and this focus on the present, rather than the dire straits they were in, is the very thing that kept them alive.

Fur-babies live like that for every second of their lives. Nothing is more important than NOW.

For Radish nothing is more important or more wonderful and fascinating than giving Hollie a nice loppy kiss!

For Sparky, he couldnt appreciate and adore this snuggle more if he tried, right at that moment, its all that matters.

If only we could try and do this more, then we would find the key to happiness. It takes practice but it can be done, why are we dwelling on the past and worrying about the future. Cluttering our minds with pre-occupations that we have no control over. We lose NOW and NOW is all that matters.

Come on everyone lets start today and practice finding our INNER DOG!

Sunday 24 April 2011

Happiness is made, so we can share it

Friends are more than pictures encased in frames on your fireplace, each friend is a life and a love encased in your heart.

And so it was, Mother Nature blessed us all once again with still air, blue skies and warm, warm sun.

All the ingredients were there, good food, nice wine, beautiful weather, the final and most important ingredient - FRIENDS

If you wish for perfect friends then you better look for them amongst the angels. I know a few Angels so it happens.
Fantastic Easter Barbecue - end of!

Laughter really is the best medicine, having been in a fight with my concrete driveway 2 days ago, all thoughts and feelings of tender bruises and aching muscles and bones were just a faint memory.

Marcel Proust has the last word:
Let us be grateful to those who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners that make our souls blossom

Saturday 23 April 2011

Happy Easter!

"Bring flowers to strew His way,
Yea, sing, make holiday;
Bid young lambs leap,
And earth laugh after sleep"
Extract of an Easter poem by Katherine Tynan

I like it, yea sing like holiday indeed. So hard not to, it is such a wonderful Spring, so much better than 2010 in more ways than one. No 2010 was not a good one, 2011 is a great improvement.
Delighted that my Easter decorations could go outside this year, adorning the near budding Wisteria, I think its a lovely display, if not slightly kooky!
Formal crystal vases are so passe. How about a teapot and a milk jug - why not? This comes from inspiration I have gleaned from the very talented Miss Pickering, a wonderful florist and in her world jam jars and coca cola bottles do very nicely thank you. Check out her website, I am delighted to call her my friend and her wonderful hound too, they both have their own blogs, yes the hound too and you thought my Dear Radish slots were quirky?

We are having a BBQ today for a mere 17, moi with no human babies, just the fur ones, is in charge of childrens entertainment eeeeeeeekkkkkk!

Do you think an Easter egg hunt will do the trick? Thank you Dmama for coming to the rescue and its all for Chaaaarrridy mate.
Whilst on the subject, Dmama is called Dmama because she is Mama to everyone and especially to me. I have another Earth Mother friend and she is known as Mother Hen. Both are wonderful, amazing ladies, that I love dearly. But (dont start a sentence with a but) the interesting fact is neither of the Earth Mothers have met eachother but both of their husbands are universally known and referred to as the Captain! Coincidence? I dont believe in them.
Wonderful bread rolls, fresh today from Dmamas kitchen!

What are you all doing this weekend?

Friday 22 April 2011

Not such a good Friday!

One sprained wrist, grazed hands, shins and knees and I am proper feeling sorry for myself.
This is the face Hubster came home too. Is it looking sorry enough for itself? On his return, I dissolved into a blub of snot and salty tears, they had been brewing, but a comforting cuddle spilled them over.

Still there is more of the Good Friday yet to enjoy and I will do my very best at that. "Come on, bag up your tears, its only a scratch" Dad would say!

Bagging them up Dad, Bagging them up for you xxx

Thursday 21 April 2011

The bend by the signpost that points the way to Spring

Today with camera in hand, I turned the bend by the signpost that points the way to Spring.
I took a few steps closer to the joy of this season, the vibrant hallelujah chorus to gardens, woods and lane.

Is it purely evolution that is responsible for the hazels covered with powdery tassels, for the almonds sprayed with pink petals, for the hawthorn bursting with bridal-white blossom.
Is it really just evolution that stains the copses with bluebells and cowslips?

I like to think that blind evolution could not of itself created a butterfly's wing. Only Mother Nature could have designed it. This is the month of miracles, the season of new life, when winter breaks the seals and life springs triumphant from the earth and bough.

Talking of new life, Radish my fur baby, is also enjoying his very first Spring and Sparky his gracious older brother is also enjoying, what I hope with all my heart, is not his last.

Home is where my heart is

I'm making myself at home
Relaxing in the comfort of my garden chair
Cherishing the place I love best
Work is forgotten, I'm having a rest

Can I face the effort and the strain -
Of packing all those cases once again
Rushing to Paris, Nice or Rome
No, for today I'm making myself at home

Happy Birthday Ma'am, I hope you are making yourself at home too on this beautiful Spring day.

Wednesday 20 April 2011

Let it Bee, Let it Bee, Let it Bee

First of all a Bee is not a Wasp. Obvious you would have thought. My first meeting with the Leicestershire and Rutland Beekeepers Association highlighted just how many people dont know the difference.

So just in case!

This is a Bee

This is a Wasp

I wont insult anyone's intelligence by pointing out the differences as they are pretty clear dont you think? Please dont kill a honey bee. They are little miracle workers, their only interest is pollen and lots of it.

If a bee stings you, it is because it was frightened and it will pay with its life, it will die, you wont.

I am not on the other hand condoning the killing of wasps or any creature for that matter, just that wasps will sting you just because they want your glass of pimms or your strawberries. Pretty good excuse I suppose.

Awww Strawberries and Pimms, let me ponder that for a moment, oooh ahhhh...................................... sorry back to the subject matter.

Now here's a thought? How many animals can you think of that produce delicious food without any intervention from humans at all? Even cows need our helping hand.

Chickens, geese and ducks? Eggs? Yup! Any others?

Liquid gold and all from a teeny little bee. Not forgetting beeswax of course!

I am excited about the journey ahead, dont worry bee happy!

Tuesday 19 April 2011

Dear Radish!

Between bouts of sunbathing yesterday, Radish had a little delve into his post bag. This one caught his attention.

Dear Radish

Guide dogs, dogs helping the deaf, dogs licking tears and not leaving your side when you are ill, dogs detecting diseases. Why are all of you such natural healers and so kind and caring to us humans?

Baffled but grateful

Dear Baffled but Grateful

Its going to take you humans a lot more time to chew on all the ways dogs are helping and healing you. We're very patient, especially with patients. Get it wag wag! Bet you didnt know I could tell a joke or two, laughter is so good for the soul.

So back to the question, why do we want to help you, care for you and serve you? The answer, of course, is that we do it all for love. Its as simple as that - we love you.

Earnestly yours

Monday 18 April 2011

Today is about being not doing - Carpe Diem!

Monday is dolly domestic day. But I took a note out of the dog's books as they lay sunbathing outside the kitchen door. Who is the mug here I thought as I heaved the washing basket downstairs.
It is a beautiful spring day, the weekend was a homefest of us and furbabies, I longed to keep it going, that magic, that joy I feel on such days.
Heeding the call of the garden, I capitulated without much struggle. Out came the lemonade decadently served in a champagne flute. Even I cant justify alcohol on a Monday and definitely not flying solo. Never ever drink on your own!

The lemonade is delicious, it has ginger and pear juice in it too. Lilac and forget me nots harvested on this morning's dog walk and a gentle little book.

The washing can wait - besides it could be raining tomorrow and one just has to seize the day.

Getting back to basics!

A lovely weekend getting back in touch with the simple things in life. Gareth and I took a tour of the Rutland countryside filling our basket with scrumptious goodies on offer locally. Homegrown asparagus from Manton.

Home farm reared spring lamb, colston bassett stilton, locally made ice-cream, Victorian lemonade and jersey royal potatoes all from the fabulous Northfield Farm.

Whilst we were there we were tempted to stop in the April sunshine and enjoy a chilled glass of wine and a chat with Clarissa Dickson-Wright who was taking tea there.
I have had an on/off love affair with Northfield Farm but it's definitely back on, or was it that the weather was so beautiful it was just so wonderful to be alive and nothing was going to spoil my mood and time with the Hubster!

Dinner was equally simple, basic yet absolutely gorgeous. A fresh rainbow trout from Rutland water, simply seasoned and barbecued. Chargrilled asparagus with salt and lemon, never add olive oil! Jersey Royal potatoes slavered in salty butter and a smidgen of homemade parsley sauce. All served on one big old junk shop platter. A dry glass of rose, jaunty conversation! Perfect, one to remember.

Sunday 17 April 2011

Bee happy!

I've always loved them. In fact Deborah in Hebrew means Bee. So its seems fitting that I indulge my eccentric side further my learning to be a bee keeper!
My first meeting with the Leicestershire and Rutland Beekeepers Association is on Tuesday night, in the pub of course, my kind of people I can tell. There is a huge amount to learn so it will be next year at the earliest before I get my hands on my first hive.
Bees are fascinating, intelligent and magical creatures. The miracle of producing liquid gold as they do has always amazed me and the day when I fill my very first jar, will be a very proud one indeed.

Debee is habee!

Friday 15 April 2011

The things they dont tell you!

When your little furry bundle of cuteness arrives, you are too busy picking up poop and cooing over your new fur baby that you give little thought to what may lay ahead.

In common with babies of many animal species,including our own, puppies discover their new world mainly with their teeth. Oh how we chuckle at other peoples puppy tales of chewed up shoes and handbags, until it happens to us!
Oh yes its true as you can see we have been there. Not sure Hubster was chuckling, they were a pair of his favourite casuals. Always the favourite/most expensive, puppy's seem to know these things!

Once the teething is over, baby teeth are long gone and the new gnashers emerge, I naively thought the chewing days were over. How wrong could I have been. They had only just begun, as the new pearly whites had to be tested for their chewability. I think Radish, scores 10 out of 10!

The dog sofa, ok not so bad, it's only the dog sofa!

Our sofa, now that's not so good!
The umpteenth dog bed, do they make them puppy proof anyone??
Not even the garden furniture was left unscathed, Ok it was a freebie from the pub but thats not the point!

And for the final flourish our lovely maple wood dining room table!

Dear Darling Fur Baby Radish
When is your chewy phase going to stop?