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Showing posts from August, 2012

We Captured the Castle

‘I really don’t understand why more people aren’t in the sea!’ I exclaim happily after an exhilarating leap about in crashing waves. ‘Because,’ says Si, who with my daughter, Rose is staying with us for the holiday weekend, ‘you’d have to be NUTS to go in! It’s FREEZING!’ Ah, that would explain it then. It’s true it’s not exactly toasty on the beach or in the sea, but at least it isn’t raining… at the moment. We’ve had lots of visitors over the last few weeks, but as the weather doesn’t seem to know that it’s the summer holidays, we’ve learned to adapt to whatever it’s throwing at us that day. For me and Tom that means a trip to the beach whenever there’s a sniff of sunshine. I’ve been trying out some daily disposable contact lenses just for swimming, rather than risk losing one of my gas permeables. Now I can brave bigger waves, which is great fun – well, I think so. My girls swam in the sea from an early age and despite a horrible incident of near-drowning in Greece, they stil

Cae Hir

At Cae Hir We’ve seen a wonderful garden on Countrywise ,’ says my sister who, with her family, is staying with us. ‘It’s not far from you. Shall we go and see it?’ Although Tom and I enjoy introducing our visitors to the attractions of this lovely part of the world, those regular trips can lose some of their charm if repeated too often. It makes a real change to go somewhere new to us. It’s also interesting to see how other gardeners are dealing with the challenges of this summer; the non-stop monsoon since April – apart from a handful of dry days – has rotted our veg, turned innocent shrubs into towering triffids and the lawn into a meadow. Cae Hir Both Ma and my sister are passionate gardeners; Ma, who hates not being able to get outdoors, can make the saddest specimen grow. My sister’s a wonderful plantswoman who creates elegant designs. Looking at the jungle that’s our garden at the moment just brings out my impatient streak and I feel like taking a shredd

Author's Corner and Bits and Pieces

Today I'm over at Choc Lit's  Author's Corner  blogging about the secret of success... my research shows there are no short cuts, unfortunately. My apologies to all for being a tardy blogger and even tardier visitor.  Despite all of us doing our best to hold our nerves, the fast-approaching wedding seems to have created a frenzy of off-line activity.  I can't even begin to describe the trouble I've had looking for shoes (I have found some, thank goodness, two pairs, in fact, phew!; shiny heels for the day and some flatties - which looked very pretty in the picture but look suspiciously like slippers sprouting cabbages in real life - for evening). The wedding's also galvanised me into attending to all those bits of essential maintenance I've been putting off too long; that niggling toothache - who wants to grimace through their daughter's wedding day?  Spare contact lenses - imagine squinting through the whole occasion!  And I've arranged long

Don'ts and Do-ers

There must be some equation to the effect that the bigger the occasion, the worse the outbreak of bad behaviour.  I remember a few scraps at birthday parties when the girls were little and the usual round of ‘who’s going to eat what with whom’ at Christmas time, but the run-up to Lily and Russ’s wedding has certainly brought my blood close to boiling point several times.  It’s astounding how many people seem to forget that this is not about them, but a young couple marking the start of their journey together as husband and wife.  It is Their Special Day.  Surely that’s not too difficult to remember, is it? On a happier note , I always admire the ‘can dos’, folks with a zest for life, and feel a bit sad for the ones who talk about the things they ‘used to do’.  It’s not about getting older - Ma’s a good example of someone whose lively curiosity is undimmed by age and infirmity - but about seeing opportunities rather than the lack of them.  So it was a lovely surprise when we go