Wednesday 18 January 2012


We are no further with the decorating, life has whizzed passed and we are living in upside down world where dishes, pots, pans etc are secreted in every place in the house, other than the place they ought to live - the kitchen. At least the dust has settled and I'm sure by the 15th wash-down, it will be safe enough to begin our painting.

The roosters have gone.... can't quite tell you where, for fear of exposing myself to recrimination from the sproglets. For now, let's just say they went to the poultry auction.....

The cold has finally arrived and I have been forced, on three nights, to light my paraffin heater in the green house. So far, the plants look fine and I ventilate the space well when I can. It's these chilly days when I sit in my office and write and edit and edit and write, that I want tea and hot buttered toast and stew and potatoes and very possibly Coq au Vin! I'll have to check my freezer for good ingredients!

A new cat has appeared on the site. He looks very like Tabby or Benny and from a distance we thought it was one of our boys. But this one is tubby. He's really friendly and I can't believe he doesn't belong to someone. For now he's content to sleep with the horses in the stables, though he has politely asked to come indoors and soon I feel sure he will suss the cat-flap. I'm not against him adopting us really, I just don't want Tabby or Benny to leave home because of him. We'll see what happens.

The 9yo has been petitioning for lambs and while there is a stable we can use to house some cades, (orphans we'll raise by bottle,) our fences are only good for corralling bigger beasts. What. To. Do? I suppose it electric fencing, but this is a whole new foray for us. The farmers around here have all raised cades and they tell me 'NO, DON'T DO IT!'

Then again, that means that they've done it and have had that experience. I'm pleading the Doubting Thomas card on this one, basically I've got to see how bad an experience it is for myself.

IF we do get 2 cades, one for the 9yo, one for the 7yo, they'll be long-term pets, raised as lawn mowers...... hmmmm, we'll see.

This morning I was reminding the sprogs about rehearsing guitar for their Thursday lesson. I've constructed quite a good rewards chart on a white-board in the kitchen (covered in dust!) and have displayed pretty decent prizes in the glass cabinet of the Welsh dresser. A friend remarked that this was like an elaborate arcade game and she's quite right. With 7 points the sprogs get to choose a prize. This morning the 9yo won a bottle of mouth wash. Don't mock! Whatever floats their boat is in that dresser.

Guitar practise is one of the steps in my incentive programme........ I'm sure I did something similar to car dealers when I worked for Nissan a zillion years ago!

'Don't forget guitar tonight,' said I. 'You've got to learn the new tune you've been given by Thursday, so's your teacher can test you.'

There were groans from the back seat as we drove to school this morning.

'We'll check out your tune on the Internet again,' I said to the boy. 'So that we can try to remember how it goes, as I just don't know it.'

It's easy for me when they get set a tune like Jingle Bells or Twinkle Twinkle, I know those tunes and can hum along, but this new one La Bergamasca, though sweet, is new to me and I can't quite fix it in my head. Therefore can't tell if they are playing the correct notes or not but it's great to see and hear it being played online.

'How old are you mummy?' Boy asked.

I smiled, clever ruse really, trying to change the subject.

'I'm 46 but I want you to tell everyone that I'm 43.' I replied.



'OK,' he said. 'But if you're 46 you should know the tune. Mr Burgess, [the guitar teacher,] said it was a really old tune and as you're really old, you should know it.'

'Good point,' said I. Sob..... that's not S.O.B....just sob! sniff.


  1. I was asked the other day if I remembered the Second World War! And I too am "43"!

  2. Tattie: Second World War!!! You got off light, last year he asked if I'd seen dinosaurs. 'Only in a club in North London,' I replied. 'But I think they were actually Mid-night Munchies....' 'Nuther time, nuther place. 'Nuff said.

    I think 43 is the new 20..... next year I'm going to be 43 again, and the year after and the year after.....

  3. LOL I've decided to stick with 40. It has been a good year so I dont mind extending it!

    We have been doing renos and I have no idea where most of my things are. At least my business stuff is all in one place...tho I noticed, it's covered in dust!

  4. My daughter once asked if they had sidewalks when I was a little girl. I believe I was 27 at the time.

  5. Wylye Girl: See, you son't look a day over 29 to me...

    Suburban Princess: Bum! Why didn't I think of 40!! Dust is very mobile... it has even reached the ironing at the very top of the house..... oh wait, maybe that's just because I haven't touched it in some time...

    Gail, Northern California: Ha, ha. You reminded me of someting; I worked in New York State on a camp in the '80s and one of the 9yo campers asked me if we had cops, TV, shops or music in the UK. I assured her we had.

    'We've got great pop stars here,' she said. 'We've got Wham, Phil Collins, Duran Duran and Sting. Who's famous in the UK?'


  6. Cats, dogs, children with guitars, hens and a green house to worry about. You are a busy 43 year old!

  7. Happy belated. I decided this year I was turning 21 again, for the 25th time. Hooray! Loving the chutney! Hope the renovations go by quickly and without incident.

  8. Mother Hen: It's bonkers here... My mum clearly thinks I look like a prune, as all my Christmas gifts from her were on the same theme; anti-aging serum, wrinkle cream, poly-filler....

    Cross the Pond: 21?... sigh, maybe I'll go for 21 next year after my mother's gifts do their business on my visage. Renovation going well, though the plumber mentioned that my teracotta cabinets looked 'curry-colour.' Not sure if that was before or after digestion! Grrrr.


The Archers at The Larches

Lou - Chicken whisperer....

Lou - Chicken whisperer....

Snowy and Moon

Snowy and Moon