Wednesday, 24 April 2013

What a beautiful day {for a chat on the porch}

Everyday Ruralty

Patrice!  THIS is the kind of day that I wish I had a house like I see in the good old US of A.  With a long, inviting porch, with the sun shining beyond, making the day warm, and a breeze blowing through.  Me, sitting in the shade, enjoying  a perfect kind of day.  Birds singing.  Butterflies, all golden yellow, flittering around. A good book, and my feet tucked up as I enjoy my swinging seat. Better still, friends and family sitting talking with me.


I can dream, can't I?

I have no porch, but the description of the day is bang on.  It's a gorgeous day in rural Bedfordshire.  Birds, butterflies and breeze.  I, however, am inside with poorly children.  I went out with Simeon for a little while earlier, but he kept trying to go over the edge of the lawn (which results in a drop onto the path), so we came back inside.  Honestly, these babies who insist on moving around.  Three other children have a virus, and they don't want to move very far at all.  It is our delayed Easter break.  Nothing like spending it indoors.  But, do you know what?  God is still good.  All things for a reason.  And, at least I am being forced to rest.  That can be bad, surely?

So, on to our chat, Patrice.

1.  Do you prefer to drive or be driven?

Ah, tricky.  I do love to drive.  I really enjoy pretty much any kind of driving.  Every kind, except driving in London.  Those people are CRAY-ZEEEEEE.  Seriously.  They just keep moving all the time, and if you don't make the decision to change lanes sometime YESTERDAY, you run into danger moving from lane to lane.  Scary stuff.  It's either all crazy go, go, go, or else deadlock.  Either way.  No likey.  I drove through the centre of London one night, to show the children the famous landmarks at night.  For a start, it took me FOUR attempts to get the right road to bring me in front of Buckingham Palace.  FOUR.  We had a good tour of Parliament Square and another enormous loop around the BACK of the Palace and down Piccadilly to Whitehall, before going back through Parliament Square. Not to mention how long it took to go that way at night. I won't be rushing to do it again.

Back to the question.  I do like driving.  Even though we have a minibus, it's lovely to drive.

Driven?  Not especially.  It DOES mean I can sleep on long journeys, but I don't like being in control, and get a bit nervous.  That, and travelling anywhere but in the front makes me ill.

So, drive it is.

2.  What's your favourite jam, jelly or preserve?

I'm not sure what the technical difference is between the three, really? I LOVE proper strawberry jam.  I remember having it as a child, and trying not to break the household rule "do NOT dig for the whole strawberries"!  I love raspberry jam on Scotch pancakes.  You can NOT beat it.  Oh, and preferably made with Scottish raspberries.  Ginger jam, I also love. And, I am a huge fan of marmalade.

Slight problem.

I have realised I have a problem with gluten.  The best place to have any of those things is on TOAST.  Especially a huge hunk of home-made white, toasted under the grill.  But, my stomach does NOT like it.  It means I don't get to sample such things very often. Sad, but true.

Let's move on before I cry

3.  Do you have any special plans for this spring or summer?

I did have some ideas of things to do, and places to go.  They have been somewhat changed.

"Best laid plans of mice and men gang aft awry."

Thanks, Rabbie, I agree.

I want to do more work in the garden.  Last year was my first year with something decent to work on, being in the new house.  I would like to add some flowering shrubs.

Mock orange blossom - one of those scents that throws me right back to my childhood.  It's a delicious, heady scent.  

Lilacs - another lovely scent, and my favourite colour, to boot.  So many different shades and types of panicle. 

I also adore jasmine.  I have some already, but up the side of the house, on the way to the bin, where you can't really catch a whiff of the scent.  I would like one closer to where we sit in the garden.   

I'd also like to plant some annuals, and maybe get some better seating - think "something that you can put your feet up, and recline slightly".  My dream would be a swinging chair, but I think, with children, this may not be a plan. 

There are also some inside jobs that need to be done.  I have an end of my kitchen that I want to get sorted so I can use it to do sewing and to keep my craft things.  I have this in mind....

I'm seeing fabric folded, in those dookets.  And, yarn all stacked neatly, looking all colourful and beautiful.  Some kind of hanging thing on the end, to keep rick-rack and threads in.  Ohhhh yes.  

We also need to rethink sleeping arrangements.  Elijah really needs to go in a bed, and Simeon in a real cot. But, that is probably going to involve a bedroom switch with the girls, and having a triple height bunk. 

So, yes, a few things to think about. Probably some day trips thrown in, as well, and hopefully people coming to stay.  We like people coming to stay! :-)

4. The next question asked things about GMO, pesticides and allergies, all relating to food.  It said to skip and have a cookie if it was of no great interest. 

Is it ok if it's a brownie, instead?

5. Do you use nail polish often? Finger nails, piggies, or both?

It's GREAT for stopping a ladder in your tights from going any further.

That's it.  That's my answer! 

Along with all other make-up, I gave it a miss quite a few years ago.  The reason is three-fold.  Firstly, Robert isn't keen.  He thinks I look beautiful without, so I am inclined to believe him, as I love him loving me in my raw state. Secondly, I had one too many incidents of my chidlren getting to the make-up and causing havoc. Life is too short to worry about lipstick in the carpet.  Eliminate the lipstick, and "voila", problem solved.  Thirdly, I don't have the time.  I hardly have time to brush my hair, for pity's sake! And, don't you need to have steady hands for such things as nail varnish?  If you knew me, you would know that was not a strong suit of mine.  

So, there we have it.  Albeit, the chat has taken 2 days to materialise, but, hey ho.  I have sick kiddos.  Life gets like that.  So, now I will go and change some dirty nappies/diapers, and allow my life to hit back to reality.

See ya next week!


  1. Lol to the brownie... And I've *tasted* your brownies - they are worth dropping all the food worries in the world for ;)

    Sadly, you wouldn't dream of sitting outside around our house today, or yesterday, or - according to the forecast - any time soon. Maybe England is best after all ;)

  2. This is a great post, Caroline! I loved listening in to your chat! I like the tabley/deskey/craft binny piece of furniture! That would be WONDERFUL!

    Sorry about the gluten issue.....hard to find a good substitute for toast...We try out several options here (because we have friends who can't eat gluten..)and fortunately...they keep coming up w/ some new ideas!....even in the brownie department!
    Hope your day is lovely!

  3. Beautiful flowers add so much to the enjoyment of a yard, your choices are my favorites too.

  4. I'm sorry you must be inside with sick children, but a rest is a good thing. I like strawberry and raspberry jam. I have never had ginger jam. I love marmalade!I'm gluten free too. There are crazy drivers on this side of the pond too. That sewing cabinet looks wonderful. Have a great week!