A Simple Woman's Day Book

FOR TODAY ~ Tuesday 20th August 2013

Outside my window...I'm gazing at the undulating landscape. I can see for miles over the farmland down to the river bank. There's a big expanse of sky stretching for miles plus the woods. 
I know that I'm very lucky to have this view from my window and trust me, I'm appreciating it. Maybe a little too much some times because it does take my attention. But then I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing. Well not all of the time anyway :$
The photo below was taken before 6am, just as the sun was waking up for the day.

Unfortunately the sun obviously wasn't feeling particularly strong today...maybe it had put too much effort into yesterday...so it's decided to go for a little rest. The sky has a thin grey blanket now with baby blue patchwork woven in-between. If I gaze right across to the hills beyond I can see what the weather is likely to do in an hour or so. At the moment the clouds are looking rather heavy, but there's brightness and hope that the sun will have rested soon and be back with us.
The grass in the field outside is now a vivid green and growing quite high. It waves to me as the soft breeze passes by.  I'm hoping that the farmer decides to put sheep in for the coming lambing season. When we lived here previously we had lambs to watch and keep us amused. Now that was distracting! If no-one is listening I'll admit I must have spent hours watching their antics! (That information is just between you and me you understand ;D)
From a side window I can see my son's handy work from yesterday. He cut a huge laylandii hedge that must have been over 15ft in height! See what happens when you go away and leave these things...they grow!
I was a little nervous with him perched up the ladders with an electric hedge cutter in hand, but we managed without incident. I was the safety adviser for the job and stabilizer for the ladders using my humongous weight to keep them stable. Don't forget I'm married to 'Captain Safe' so those sort of things get drummed in over the years!
Muffin is contently curled up in her basket. She's enjoying having a 180 degree view even without leaving her bed! Typical female...she doesn't like to think she's missing anything. There's the odd gruff and little snorting noises resonating periodically but generally she's silent.

I thought I'd include the photo below in this section of my day book because it was taken at the end of one day last week. I never normally featured this part of the day which is a shame...so here you are.

A misty sultry August evening.

I am thinking...that the owl we've heard "terwit-terwooing" hopefully will be a regular visitor to our garden. 
When we first arrived here there were very few wild birds in the garden, but now with three feeding stations constantly being replenished we have an abundance! 
Here's just a few that we've seen so far...robins, wrens, blackbirds, bull-finches, goldfinches, blue-tit, great-tit, magpies, wood-pigeon, buzzard, sparrow-hawk, crows and chaffinch. And seagulls on occasions in the field.
They don't seem to be bothered by us at all and just go about their business leaving us to watch them with wonder. 

I am thankful...that I'm able to appreciate nature and all of its wonder. I'd hate to be oblivious to it's splendor. I hope that I've passed this on to my children too.  

In the kitchen...hmm...no cakes or baking. I had a Date and Walnut cake in the cake tin, but it seems to have disappeared in record time. Maybe if time permits I'll bake something this afternoon. I did see Nigel Slater bake a very scrummy looking lemon cake last night.  

I am wearing...jeans, long-sleeved t-shirt and zipped sweat-shirt. Slippers are keeping my toes cozy just in case! Oh yes and a revelation I'm wearing nail varnish. It's not as it seems because I'm wearing it to hide the state of my nails after gardening for three weeks! Now I know where that saying 'green fingers comes from! 

I am creating...'thank you' cards for all the wonderful pressies and kind thoughts from friends and family across the globe. I'm really behind but trying to get them into the post as soon as possible. I may even be able to show you one tomorrow if I get to finish it! 

I am going...nowhere! Ha! 
I couldn't resist that one after travelling for 24 years but seriously I'm not really going far at the moment. The main reason being that we are managing with one car. My car is somewhere on the high seas...still on it's way here from Australia. She's having her own little adventure but she should be here in a few weeks. It hasn't bothered me too much up to now as there's always something that can keep me occupied here, whether it's indoors or outdoors. I'm going strictly with the weather and it's been good, so I've been able to have lots of fresh air! 

I am wondering...why we have butterflies who are insisting on living in the house with us. I've now seen three. They're pretty insistent too. I've gently guided them to the open door and watched them fly about outside only to turn around and come right back in. They like to settle in the inglenook which is fine during the day but we are lighting the fire sometimes at night now. All of a sudden we have butterflies flying around the room away from the heat! Very nice but it's really bizarre. 
This particular chap took a liking to the kitchen and settled on my mint plant. I'm thinking they are coming in as the temperature starts to cool. I'm not sure if they die or whether they settle somewhere for winter. I've got so much to research because what I did know about UK wildlife and plants seems to have disappeared.   

I'm reading...Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey. 
Even though I haven't finished reading this novel (what's new?) I'm recommending it anyway because it's sensational. Yes I said sensational.
I'm really quite annoyed that I'm not able to spend as much time as I'd like reading it, but then that's always the case, especially at the moment with settling in after our big move. 
The book covers really tough topics...racism, injustice, hypocrisy, jealousy, abuse, a beautiful love story, and a wonderful best friends story. I have the feeling that I'm not going to want to finish this book. I've also heard that the audio version is fantastic too, so maybe I'll have to sample that too.

About the Book:
Late on a hot summer night in 1965, Charlie Bucktin, a precocious and bookish boy of thirteen, is startled by an urgent knock on the window of his sleep-out. His visitor is Jasper Jones, an outcast in the regional mining town of Corrigan. Rebellious, mixed-race and solitary, Jasper is a distant figure of danger and intrigue for Charlie. So when Jasper begs for his help, Charlie eagerly steals into the night by his side, terribly afraid but desperate to impress. Jasper takes him to his secret glade in the bush, and it's here that Charlie bears witness to Jasper's horrible discovery. With his secret like a brick in his belly, Charlie is pushed and pulled by a town closing in on itself in fear and suspicion as he locks horns with his tempestuous mother; falls nervously in love and battles to keep a lid on his zealous best friend, Jeffrey Lu. 
And in vainly attenmpting to restore the parts that have been shaken loose, Charlie learns to discern the truth from the myth, and why white lies creep like a curse. In the simmering summer where everything changes, Charlie learns why the truth of the things is so hard to know, and even harder to hold in his heart.

About the Author:
Craig Silvey was born in Australia on New Years Day 1982. He is a novelist and musician. 
He grew up on an orchard at Dwellingup in South-West of Western Australia. He currently lives in Fremantle.
Jasper Jones is Silvey's second novel (debut novel was called 'Rhubard') Jasper Jones was published in 2009 by Allen & Unwin Australia. The film rights for the novel have been sold to the Australian director Rebecca O'Brien. Silvey is also the singer/songwriter for the indie/pop/rock band 'The Nancy Sikes

I am hoping...to organise a trip to Glasgow for next month. Well its not really a hope it's going to have to happen so I need to sort out the details soon. 

I am looking forward to...each day. I know that sounds a little twee...but that's the truth. I just look forward to each day and what it might bring. I adapt my day accordingly to hopefully get the most out of it. Sometimes that's not easy but you can always find something if you look hard enough.

Around the house...Everywhere looks quite organised and tidy considering just under a month ago there were packing boxes EVERYWHERE. Just don't look in the spare room please...it's still chockablock with our bits and pieces. 
The logs are stacked alongside the wood burner which warms my heart...we'll be fine when (not if) the weather turns. There are also books on the bookshelf which always makes me feel happy and content.
A favourite quote for today..."There are only two ways to live your life: one as though nothing is a miracle, the other is as though everything is a miracle" ~ Albert Einstein 

One of my favourite things...Is to know that I have so many people who care about me. It's a good feeling. 
A few plans for the rest of the week: A bit of everything really...you name it and I'll probably be doing! Well within reason obviously...no ski-diving this week! 

A peek into my day...I'm as busy as a bee!

Bee busy on my tree.

 So that's it for this week; I hope you enjoyed your visit and if it's your first time reading my day book entry, I hope you'll be back again soon.
Don't forget to pop over to The Simple Woman's Daybook and check out the other day book entries.
Thanks for popping in...I really appreciate your time especially if you stop to leave a comment.
I see your flags flying around my globe and it makes me smile. 
It's good to know you're out there listening to my natterings. 
https://secure.quebles.com/content/hotmail/emoticons/1511763.gif I hope to see you again soon...Have a wonderful week.
Have fun and hopefully the sun will shine for you!!!

A Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY ~ Wednesday 5th June 2013

Outside my window...There's a cool wind whipping around this morning which is causing the few remaining leaves to dance and twist as they fall to the ground. There's not many left to fall by the look of it, but they keep coming! It's surprising how little time it took for the cold to come calling. The heating is going up and down like a fiddlers elbow!
There are buds on the hibiscus and the lilac bushes just outside the dining room window, but I'm reminded that I won't see them spring into life. I'll have to make sure my new garden holds lots of delights. I haven't seen that garden for over 12 years other than photos, so it will be wonderful to get reacquainted once again. It'll be like meeting an old friend.
Even though I scooped the pool of leaves yesterday...the wisteria leaves have fallen like confetti covering the surface, but I'm trying to ignore them for today. I can hopefully delegate that job tomorrow. 
I can hear all the noise from a demolition of a house nearby which always seems sad to me. All the stories and history are being loaded into a truck. I'm hoping that they are going to be sympathetic and do a good job giving the old house new life, but I don't think I'll still be here to see how it takes shape. 
The sky is heavy today with light grey clouds although they don't look heavy enough to carry rain so maybe we'll be lucky. The birds seem to have disappeared...I can't see or hear any. Maybe they know something I don't?
The radio is on low with perfect background music to accompany my blogging and art work. I've got lots planned and I'm determined to do them first before I tackle a little ironing. I'm feeling pretty smug because I cleared the whole of my ironing before the freight left, so I only have minimal bits and pieces...namely work shirts today...so it's all manageable. 
Muffy is curled up beside me but a little nervous with all the banging from the demolition...I think she thinks it's another thunderstorm like the one we had midweek. The thunderclaps had her quivering and quaking. She stares at the door expecting a huge salivating fanged monster to come crashing through to get her! (Imagination may have got a little out of control there) It's such a shame. 

I am thinking...of the very tragic loss of a young man's life last weekend. His funeral will be held on what would have been his 21st Birthday and my heart is so heavy thinking about how his family will cope without him. He was one of my son's friends and it's been terrible watching my son trying to cope with the shock and acceptance that he's mate is no longer around. I'm so proud of him but it hurts to see his pain.  

I am thankful...for every member of my family and friends! 

In the kitchen...clean as a whistle as they say! There's no baking and not much cooking going on these days because basically my entire kitchen has gone ~ oh how I miss them. Each meal is an invention test as on Masterchef. All my equipment is rental and therefore it feels like I'm cooking with strangers. They don't know me and I don't know them. So far we're managing to get along but it's certainly different! 
I can't tell you how many times I've gone to a drawer or cupboard for something before I remember it's no longer there. I guess you can't teach this old dog new tricks! 

I am wearing...warm clothes because apparently I'm being told constantly to 'hunker down' and how cold it is here at the moment. Now let me explain that it may well be heading towards winter for Melbourne and for an Aussie it may well be cold, but really I can't say that 14 or even 12 degrees celsius necessitates hibernation   
I'm sure I've softened up over the years living in warm climates but with our UK move coming up, I'm trying to toughen up. Just between you and me the fact that I'm wearing thermals has nothing to do with it! 

I am creating...Oh I'm so excited. I've got a few designs up my sleeve and plan to draw later today. Hopefully I'll be able to post them before the end of this week. It's a lovely feeling having that delight ahead. It's been a really tough week so far, so I'm going to use this drawing session as a special treat to help me take my mind away somewhere...I know not where ;D

I am going...to meet my girlie friends for an afternoon tea. I'm so looking forward to this as it's been on my tick list for some time. Who knows I may even get to write a post on it but I'm not promising...you know what us girlies are like when we get together. I'm getting my pinkie perked and ready for my china teacup! 

I am wondering...why my big toe nail doesn't grow at the same rate as all of my other toe nails...it seems so slow and there again they are slower than my hands nails. Why is that I wonder? 

I'm reading...The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

(Details taken from Booktopia)

Don Tillman, professor of genetics, has never been on a second date. Then a chance encounter gives him an idea. He will design a questionnaire—a sixteen-page, scientifically researched document—to find the perfect partner. She will most definitely not be a barmaid, a smoker, a drinker or a late-arriver. 

Rosie Jarman is all these things. She is strangely beguiling, fiery and intelligent. And she is also on a quest of her own. She’s looking for her biological father, a search that a certain DNA expert might just be able to help her with—even if he does wear quick-dry clothes and eat lobster every single Tuesday night. 

When rights to a debut novel are sold in more than thirty countries, you know a book is generating serious buzz. I am glad to say that this feel-good debut delivers what the hype promises.

I'm really enjoying reading this charming and amusing book and recommend it as your possible next book.
About the Author:

Graeme Simsion was born in 1956. He is an IT consultant and data analyst with an international reputation. He has taught at four Australian universities and is currently a Senior Research Fellow at Melbourne University. He is a founder of Pinot Now, a wine importer and distributor, and is married to Anne, a professor of psychiatry who writes erotic fiction. They have two children. 

In 2007, Graeme completed his PhD in information systems and enrolled in the professional screenwriting course at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. He has made a number of short films and his screenplay, The Rosie Project, won the Australian Writers Guild / Inception Award for Best Romantic Comedy Script in 2010. While waiting for The Rosie Project to be produced, he turned it into a novel which in June 2012 won the Victorian Premier’s award for an unpublished fiction manuscript.
Readers of The Rosie Project will know that Graeme Simsion has a first-class sense of humour. At professional conferences he has given addresses from on top of a ladder, dressed as a duck, and he once engaged a group of spellbound chartered accountants in community singing.

I am hoping...that our move back to the UK goes smoothly and we settle back quickly. There's so much planned I don't think our feet will touch the ground till at least September! I just hope that by Christmas we can switch off and relax...get the fires roaring, Aga churning out fabulous food, family and friends visiting and generally enjoy being settled at last! 

I am looking forward to...seeing my family up close and personal again. I haven't seen then for three years! I can't imagine where that time has gone. It's so frightening. I spent three hours on the phone to my sister on Saturday so just imagine how many hours we'll spend nattering when we're together. 

Around the house...there's only minimal furniture due to our impending move. Everywhere is clear and clean within an inch of its life as this week we have had the pleasure of having to have noisyparkers..(cough)... stickybeaks...I mean... potential tenants to view the house. I'm hoping that the first family to come through the door wants to live here so that we don't have to keep having inspections. 
I wish I could say I've found my reading glasses somewhere in the house but unfortunately there's no sign of them turning up yet. Maybe as a friend suggested they might appear at the other end in a packing box. I think they decided to go AWOL on our doggy walk, but I like to think that they'll be found on the other side as it were. I'll certainly let you know if that happens. They'll probably turn up when I buy a new pair...isn't that what always happens?!?!?
I've possibly binned heaven knows what over the last few weeks because I've found a bag of chilli seeds and scrunched up kitchen paper in a bag in the freezer yesterday. Don't ask me????? 
Lock me up NOW!

A favourite quote for today...Seize the day!

One of my favourite things...I always find this question a tough one to answer because I have so many favourite things. I've probably told you a good few of them over the last year or so...hmm...which to choose for today?
I'll just go and pop the kettle on whilst I think....

Well I suppose by what I've just written it should be a cup of tea. It starts my day. I was going to challenge my son that if he gave up drinking coke I would give up my cuppa...for a whole month! Thank goodness he didn't take up the challenge because quite frankly I don't think I'd have been able to do it! 
There's music too...it surrounds me.
My artwork that went missing for so many years and I'm so grateful that we've found each other again. I realise now it's who I am! 
Looking across at a vase of flower...they make me smile and I don't think I could live in a world without trees and flowers. 
Oops...it says one of my favourite things...okay I'll stop there but before I do obviously my hubby and children would always be my most favourite things. That goes without saying! :D
A few plans for the rest of the week: Work, rest and play but not necessarily in that order...I'm making the most of each day : D 

A peek into my day...Well it's actually 3 peeks into my day! 
We've been visited each morning by a flock of corellas and this morning they made so much noise that they disturbed Muffy from her snoozing! 

And this is what she was keeping a close eye on...

Here's a close-up but unfortunately all of these photos were taken through our bedroom window, so they aren't as clear as I would have liked...

Who's a pretty boy then?

 So that's it for this week; I hope you enjoyed your visit and if it's your first time reading my day book entry, I hope you enjoyed it.
Don't forget to pop over to The Simple Woman's Daybook and check out the other day book entries.

https://secure.quebles.com/content/hotmail/emoticons/1511763.gif I hope to see you again soon...Have a wonderful week everyone...whatever is on your plan.
Have fun!!!