Welcome to our blog.

..... We make
..... We explore
..... We nuture

Three children *** Two dogs *** Two parents *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That's us!

We've been blogging since January 2010.

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Just a thought….

"A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe."

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Life

Thank you….

  • Louise Houghton Fantastic. I often am in a state of indecision regarding our black refuse bag. We always burn a lot in the winter in the Rayburn... 23 Apr
  • Kim Carberry Ahh! How lovely! It sounds like you have had a fab week. That church looks fantastic. Well done x #WotW 21 Apr
  • Anne How lovely that you have had time to re-charge. It sounds like you've had a lovely week. I love your daughters church, very creative. #wotw 21 Apr
  • The Reading Residence Your analogy about recharging is so true and I've never really thought of it like that before. Food for thought. I love looking round old... 21 Apr
  • Stephanie Robinson What a fabulous post - and a gorgeous quilt - and yes hindsight, it gets us every time but great advice in this post -... 20 Apr
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Time to smile

"God has an inordinate fondness for stars and beetles."

- J B S Haldane

I’ve been featured by

nature studies

And Action

This is our first week of the Easter holiday. It’s been a good start. The weather has been kind and the children have settled down to being a merry band of friends again. They shook off the dust of school. The age and school differences soon diminished. They were ready for adventures again.

I restrict screen time. It’s not perfect, but it does mean that I don’t spend the whole day talking to the backs of their heads. They need to look for other alternatives. We are hugely lucky to be surrounded by woods and fields, on all sides. Places to explore. Spotting nature. Especially as they are old enough to go off by themselves now.

Whether on foot or bike.

So long as they go with at least one other.

The track is suitable for mountain bikes and goes on for about a mile, until you would need a machete to get through. I’m not sending them into the woods with one of those! They have had so much fun this week, riding their bikes and pushing their limits. Each day they show me new bruises and tell me new things they’ve spotted.

New skills they are acquiring from being out there and doing.

They’ve also had fun doing more stone crafting and playing badminton in the garden. They’ve spent a few days helping me to clear the kitchen garden, ready for planting.

It is all action here.

The dogs are loving all the energy this week. Sometimes they join the children. Inbetween, they catch up with sleep. Ready for the next adventure.

Word of the week: Action

The Reading Residence

Country Kids

Sharing. Good idea.

Hurray! A Rainy, January weekend

The frost has gone and replaced by rain. Not heavy but enough for me to change my dog walking route and opt for a quiet weekend. I’m not keen on mud season. I seem to spend too much time trying to keep mud out of the house, only to start again the next day. One day, I will just give up, throw seeds at it and see what plants we have growing in the house by summer. Might be quite interesting. Peppers and tomatoes growing in easy reach for my salad preparation.

My theory is that there is always an upside, or silver lining, if you look hard enough. This weekend was good. We did the Big Garden Birdwatch as a family. We do it each year. Despite the rain, there were a good number of different types of birds, to count. Improving everyone’s identification skills.  There was also a creative vibe bouncing around the house, hitting everyone. Even the Pup whittled a stick by the fire, although it looked more like an attempt to make kindling rather than a great masterpiece. I live in hope.

After homework was reluctantly, by some, complete, the paints were out. All three children, at one stage, were busy painting. Birds, feathers and eyes. Just experimenting away from the pressure of a classroom.

They finally enthusiastically decorated the gingerbread house. We are coming up to Candlemas, half way through winter. It seemed a good time to mark it with gingerbread. We’ll be celebrating with Candlemas activities later in the week, as usual. I wouldn’t miss it.

I love the jelly bellies they gave the gingerbread men. The tummy buttons sank down due to lack of room. Not that any of it lasted long after this photo was taken. A small piece was reserved for today’s packed lunch.

In between it all, I was creative too. I positioned the old Singer machine at the end of the kitchen table and started on a patchwork. Not for long. Middle daughter hovered.

It wasn’t long before, she reappeared with patchwork squares, cut up and ready to go.

I didn’t mind, did I?

I was hardly going to say no. Especially as she went on to bake the cake in the top photo, later on in the day.

For her patchwork, she laid out the squares on her bed. Running up and down the stairs to fetch the next strip to sew. Loving using her great great grandmother’s hand cranked sewing machine. There is something rather special about sewing with this machine.

She finished it too. That evening, when I went up to say goodnight, I found she’d laid the finished quilt top on the end of her bed. It looked pretty, but lacks the warmth of a quilt, yet. Next stage is to sandwich the layers and quilt it. My patchwork is a long way off that stage. Partly as I’ve changed the scope. It started off as a small pincushion, but as I eased into the process, it grew to a cushion cover and then full steam exploding into a lap quilt.

I’m enjoying making the stars. Up to now, I’ve favoured handstitching over machine piecing. This project is changing my mind. Even cutting them out is obstacle free. I’ve figured out the best way to construct them, so they are a joy to make. Diamond bunting spins out from behind the sewing machine, when I’m in full swing. When I had a chance, I should add. I’m heading for a scrappy quilt. Mixing patterns with a nod to random, as it progresses. Opinions on favourites change as each new star is formed. I’m really, absolutely enjoying this quilt. It is not a quick one, but I don’t mind. The old Singer sewing machine is perfect for the job.

It was a good weekend. As the children grow, weekends are subtly changing. No afternoon walk this weekend, as we had hoped, but there was less screen time. (Not completely free, although they do seem to learn cooperation through Minecraft than I never anticipated. And coding too, which is good as it’s in context.) There was more making and reading. More family time. Together.

So how was your weekend? Hope you had a good time.


 

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There have been cases when people lifted my photos and words, and used them without credit to me or asking permission first. Using them for their own commercial gain. I have now added a level of security to deter people from doing this. Apologies to people who do play nicely. If you would like to use any of my photos, please contact me.

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