Friday, 31 July 2015

A New Rose Bed

Finally after returning from the USA last week, the weather warmed up slightly today and I felt 'charged' up to do some gardening.  In the weekend we had bought some more roses for the garden so today I dug a new bed for them.  The front garden is still a 'work in progress' but pleased with the progress I managed today.

I used to use the front lawn for guinea pig grazing, but now only have the two, they only need a small amount of space, and my regular cavy boarders have all (but one) passed on as well, and I haven't been actively advertising boarding for a couple of years now so I thought I would utilise the front garden another way! It has been awkward to get the lawn mower round to the front to mow this lawn so I thought I would turn it into a big rose garden!

I forgot to take a real 'before' photo, as this is shortly after I started digging.

From another angle.

Not sure how much of the lawn I will turn into a bed yet, so just started with one big enough to plant the four rose bushes and have space to walk round either side.

More progress need to did it over a bit more and put some rose compost in as well.

I laid the roses out to work out the length the bed needed to be - all very 'scientific' ;-)

Roses planted - as you can see a fair bit of tidying up still to do, but on a whole I am pleased

Looking towards the house

The four roses planted are:
Ingrid Bergman
Dawn Chorus
Golden Beauty.

My husband then took me out to lunch and we finished the afternoon off with a wander round the Garden of the Rose...and yes brought home two more roses as they had 'buy one, get one free' as they are only open for two more days this season.

Now the question is whether to plant the two new roses in pots to have out the back, or to extend the bed!

Ingrid Bergman

Dawn Chorus

A couple of other flowers in the front garden.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Three Post Card Watercolours.

I have been painting some postcard sized water colour paintings...

I did this one just before I went away.

The next two I did today.

This was an experiment...

Quite pleased with this one.

Journal 52 - Week 30

Funny how one thing can lead to another....I was thinking that the prompt for last week 'Positive Change' was challenging in that I really didn't know whether I could actually 'do' Postive Change...that is until I finished this weeks prompt which was 'The Road Less Travelled'  This journal entry just happened, and it all poured out and I think it was positive indeed - so perhaps one thing led to another?

You can find the prompt  here:  

This is what happened!

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Journal 52 - Weeks 28 & 29

 The prompt for Week 28 was 'Mail Art' and can be found here.

This was my take on it.  My attempts at 'tea staining' were well...pretty atrocious really!

The prompt from Week 29 was 'Postive Change' and can be found here.

This is mine....

Still working on this week's prompt.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Every Day in July 1- 13

So I am continuing to challenge myself with 'Every Day in July'

#1 Caricature - I have never done anything like this before, so it was quite a challenge.   I decided to draw my friend Jane holding one of her newly born alpacas.

#2 National Icons

#3 Desert

#4 Summertime - this was supposed to be 'Henry' on the beach in NZ....not very happy with this, but have decided to record the 'warts and all'

#5 Yuck - I really detest flies, but can't help admire the amazing colours of some.

#6 Something in my pocket - seems I did two of these  - my pocket....

...and my son's pocket.

#7 Something Reflective

#8 Dreamscape

#9 Shadows

#10 Horsing around - my horse - drawn from a photo I took of him the last time I saw him alive.

#11 Puzzled - Hands are VERY HARD!

#12 Fall - I wanted to draw someone falling, but all attempts were disastrous - yup some 'warts and all' I am not sharing!   so did this instead.

#13 Stones - taken from a photo I took at Boothill Cemetery in Tombstone last year.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Painting with Water Colours.

After painting for a year now I decided it was about time I tried to also use watercolours as well as acrylics, so here are my first attempts.


Finally one I have already shown in a mosaic, which was my first watercolour...

Gooseberry Jam

It is that time of year again when I make gooseberry jam...

Picked gooseberries

I left a few on the plant this year that were a bit small - hoping they will be ready to make another batch in a couple of weeks time.

'Top and tail' the gooseberries


Place in a heavy based saucepan with just enough water to cover the gooseberries  - I use 500 ml water for every 1 kilo of gooseberries.

Simmer the gooseberries for 10 - 15 minutes until they are soft but still hold their shape.

Add an equal amount of granulated sugar and stir until dissolved

Once the sugar has dissolved bring to a rolling boil and boil rapidly for 10 minutes.  Test for setting point then pour into sterilised jars and seal.

Yum, yum yum!