Monday, 27 August 2018

Week 34/52 - Every day I tell myself we are getting closer to Summer, that is how I have made it through Winter!!

Of course we still need to make our way gently through Spring first which happens to be one of my favourite seasons of them all.  My garden is slowly waking up and if we could get a few more lovely days to warm up the soil I think all my spring bulbs will be up and out!!

At the moment all sorts of lovely things are flowering, and I have been buying lots of colourful things to add to the garden.

With sky that is blue I have enjoyed being out the back in the garden in the afternoons.  I re discovered lots of garden art, the perks of having a good friend that passes me her seconds!

The Gerberers I found at the Supermarket in a reduced to clear trolley, all they needed was a DRINK!!

I am loving finding plants that have self seeded and have found themselves a permanent spot in the garden.

All my climbers are budding up, like my Clematis.  This year it should be lovely, likewise the Wisteria.

Our local fruit shop is selling large Mandarins at the moment and by golly they are tasty!  I have been getting my daily Vitamin C fix via these.

The Op Shops are so so at the moment for me.  But I did come home with two Tiles and a cute Wade Whimsy.   I remember when they came in breakfast cereal, talk about showing my age!!

It's not all gardening and op shops, I treated wee Oscar to a dress up.  He wouldn't move for me, he just stood still with that 'WTF are you doing to me' look on his face.  Cute or what!!

One sunny afternoon I took a drive out to a Daffodil Farm as they grow and sell beautiful flowers.  You can pick 5 bunches of 10 flowers for $20, now that is a good deal.  No one runs the shop, it is all based on honesty, put the money in a pot or write down your intention to pay on line giving your name etc.  How cool is that in this day and age.

Top left is the 5 bunches I purchased.  I only used half and added some Tulips I had bought from the flower lady on River Road.  Bottom right is the other half of all the flowers in a vase seat belted into my car as I dropped them off to Jaks girlfriend Alex as she like me loves Spring Flowers.

I spent Friday out and about with Bint Webber as she had retail shopping to do in town so I went along for the ride.  We had a beautiful lunch at Donovans Chocolate, mine was so big half of it came home.  Anyway we ended up at Bunnings where I got 10 plants @ .95 cents each, and they went straight into the 'Garden Bed'.

I also found a parcel in my mail box from my fabulous friend Lou-lou-belle.  She gave me the set of Blue African bracelets when TOF was in hospital, the Yellow set was in the parcel. Love you Louise to the moon and back!!

The evenings here can still be a little cool.  As TOF is an early to bed kinda guy, and I'm a stay up late person, so I get the pets for companyToebee (top left) almost smiles while he sleeps.  Big just finds a spot and relaxes.

Sheba and Oscar are usually snoring away on the couch with me, always up for a snuggle coz dogs are like that! Unconditional love all the way!

Thankfully our couch is huge, as the youngest member of the fur family needs to S-T-R-E-T-C-H out as long as he can get.

Forgot to say when I went to the Daf farm I continued on to Gordonton.  I love visiting 'The Mandarin Tree' a gorgeous little gallery that stocks Dawns creations.  I bought the funky candle holder except I have been using it for cone incense. I also went to Wairere Nursery and came home with two shrubs!  The Donald Trump loo paper was in a parcel at my front door when I got home, a wee purchase from Ali Express!!! OMG the things you can buy off that site. 

Saturday was forecast for BEAUTIFUL WEATHER but someone got that quite wrong!  TOF and I plus Max and his girlfriend Toni, plus all our dogs x 4, decided we would still head out to Raglan.

Our Sheba and Max's Stella are total water babes, they had so much fun in the sea, with a stick.

Kia is happy to run on the sand and chase the other two.  Oscar I kept on a leash as there was no way I wanted him wet and covered in sand.  He still had his fare share of fun.

This trio of wet and smelly rode home in the back of TOFs truck (Toyota Surf), but we did stop for a Steak and Cheese pie and a coffee before leaving Raglan.  The rain set in as we drove home, so much for beautiful sunny day!

This was Sheba later that night, you could say she was 'knackered'!

I had a 'stay at home' day today.  While waiting for the washing to finish I sat at the outdoor table under the SUN umbrella with a brew and some Super wine biscuits, great dunkers!  I was planning.  I want to re vamp TOFs sacred vege garden.  I want some raised beds to make it easier to tend to for both of us. Now to put the plan into action.

Oscar had a cunning plan of his own.  He planted himself next to the Celery, with grand ideas of growing big. Works for plants!!

With washing done and hung, I potted about in the garden.  Dead heading, weeding and even planting.

I emptied and scrubbed a couple of bright pots and then re planted them.  Above is a Gardenia from Wairere Nursery.

This is the other Shrub I got from the nursery.  The flowers are vibrant and adorable.

 Visions of Spring.

My most happiest place of all is coming to life again!!

I picked some Freesias and bought them inside to enjoy there fragrance.

Growing failed so Oscar retired to our bed,
yes dirt and all!!
Thankfully it was dry and brushed off.

That wall got some additions today (plenty of room for more).  I faffed about at home doing STUFF.  All ready for work tomorrow now.

Before I sign off from the weekly round up, check out how long my hair is getting! Fingers crossed it keeps getting longer, like down to my BUM!!

Pic of the week: 
'the friendship continues'.


Sunday, 19 August 2018

Week 33/52 - Spending time enjoying myself!!

Unbelievably another week has disappeared.

Well at the beginning of the week on my Monday off work I picked up my friend Nina and we drove out to Gordonton to 'Do Lunch'!!  We have been trying to catch up for what seems like forever.  We went to Profs, a very nice little cafe in the grounds of Woodlands and had a seriously yum salad each.  So yum that I recreated it last night for my dinner.

A base of baby Spinach leaves, topped with Haloumi Cheese, beetroot, red onion, sliced Almonds, cranberries, pistachios, avocado, and orange, with orange juice as a dressing.  I added some cooked chicken, and it was as good as the one I paid for on Monday.

On our way home we called in @ Zealong and had a walk among the bronze sculptures. Telling the story of Tea.
It was pretty cold and started to lightly rain so we wandered back up to the Shop to have a look and get out of the weather.

Inside this award winning shop we were offered the chance to taste some tea.  I chose Earl Grey on the left, with Rose petals, Lavender and Bergamont peel. Nina chose Lady Gatsby a lighter coloured tea, both were so nice.  I ended up treating myself to one of their little tea pots that our samples were in.

After work one afternoon a went out to visit Dawn. She was busy loading her kiln and sorting things to go to a Gallery in Taupo. We decided we would go together on Friday, which is what we did.

We actually made it to Taupo, which was a surprise as both of us have no sense of direction when traveling. I'm usually too busy looking out the window.  We had a brilliant drive even tho the weather wasn't at all pleasant.

After we had delivered all the stock to L'Arte Gallery we went to the Cafe on site and had lunch. The table numbers were made from plumbing bits, very cool. Lunch was delicious and we shared some cake after with our pot of tea.

The owner and artist at L'Arte has made some amazing Mosaic features in the garden. The colours popped even on the raining day we were enduring.

Thankfully the rain stopped long enough for us to have a mooch about in the garden. I would love to have walls and stairs as colourful as those.

What a fabulous place L'Arte is, tucked away in the hills at Acacia Bay, Taupo. So glad I went and I intend on going back. Maybe another road trip with Dawn?

These beautiful painted rocks were sitting on the large chair in the above photo.  We have Tron rocks in Hamilton, so we took them both.  Dawn placed the one on the right in her friends garden at Aria (in the countryside) and I am taking the one on the left to Hamilton Gardens.

Before we made our way back to Hamilton we drove back down the hill in Acacia Bay to go Lake side.  On a good day you would see the snow covered mountains across Lake Taupo, but there was mist and rain, but you knew those mountains were there as it was a bit on the chilly side.

We took a wrong turn when leaving Taupo but we were still heading North so didn't worry.  Then we came across a sign saying 'Te Kuiti', so Dawn thought we should go visit her friend Jo an artist (painter). Well she actually lives on a huge farm high on a hill in a place called Aria which we finally found thanks to a phone call to Jo, a text from Jo giving us instructions, and google maps.

This is the view from the house, I can imagine it is very stunning on a perfect day and I here the sunsets are amazing!  We had a cuppa and I had a walk around outside.

Such lush green paddocks,
hills and valleys that seemed to go on for ever.

This flock of sheep were watching me over the fence watching and photographing me.  There were baby lambs but unfortunately for me they were in another paddock. Or is that lucky for TOF as I could have snuck one home.

It was dark by the time we got back to Dawns house, but we agreed that we had had a fabulous day out.  Day tripping in New Zealand is the best.

On Saturday TOF and I dog sat Max and Toni's two dogs.  Sheba had such a great time, Oscar tolerates these two year olds. 

Kia (the tan dog) is so adorable, a real little snuggle bum and very friendly. Stella is adorable too but for ever on the go so to get a photo of her lying down was a bonus for me.

Sheba loves the two  year olds but oh my it knackers her out some!!

Jak turned 23 on Saturday but was busy with friends so we arranged to get together today.  But I had to go decorate his ute and letter box that night when it was dark!!!  He is my baby after all!!

And send him text messages and birthday madness via Messenger of me and TOF.  He doesn't think we are mad, he knows it!!! 

This morning Jak and Alex came around with some of his Birthday Cake that Alex had got him and we were joined by Max and Toni.  The birthday boy opened his presents, we ate cake, and chatted and laughed outside under the decorated umbrella I had thrown together.

The weather held off and was pleasant all morning so once everyone had left I mowed the lawns.  I also did a bit of dead heading and pruning.

The garden has been well watered of late so everything is growing rather well.  Thankfully FLOWERS are starting to turn up again.

The return of colour you all know is very welcome. 

So it is Sunday evening and I am relaxing with the pets that are all spread out on the couch next to me, TOF is on call so asleep. 

I am ready for the next week
and all that it delivers me.

I leave you with this thought: