Sunday 11 August 2013


Even play needs to be taken seriously sometimes!


This is a drill bit which my husband bought to drill a hole to let water into our new water butts.  I don't normally get excited about machinery and tools, not in the way he does, but I love the colours on this.  And it did drill a very nice hole.  We must be the only people in France hoping for rain now to see how the water butts perform!


One thing I love about summers in France is the fact that you can buy large quantities of delicious seasonal fruit at very reasonable prices. We came back from the supermarket with this box of peaches this week. Elsie couldn't resist and grabbed one on the way back to the car. Angus and I ate most of the rest.


When I look at this photo I see freckles, potential skin problems in the future for my sun-exposed d├ęcolletage, crazy hair in desperate need of a cut, held back by not one, but two, pairs of sunglasses and a T-shirt the same colour as my filofax.  Ah, I do so love my new filofax...

I'd never have been able to publish this photo if I hadn't take Susannah Conway's Unravelling course way back in the beginning of the year.  It helped put a lot of things in perspective and I'm still feeling the benefits today.

Oh, and I'm seriously hoping a selfie is in fact a self portrait.


I borrowed this image from my husband.  My eldest spotted the rainbow from her bedroom and came rushing downstairs to tell me. We tried to take a photo, but our cameras were out of charge.

Saturday 10 August 2013


A rare sight in our house - bookshelves with enough room for a slump.

Monday 5 August 2013

Close Up

My new filofax.  This photo could equally as well have fitted in the love category.


My husband told me on Sunday morning that there are enough diamonds in the world to give every man, woman and child on the planet a cupful.  But I wouldn't swap a cupful of diamonds for mine. I've been wearing it on and off for 10 years now and I love it (and the man who gave it to me) even more now than I did when he slipped it onto my finger.

Semi Charmed Book Challenge

In my younger years I loved to read.  I'd read before I got up, between showering and getting dressed, while cooking and in bed of an evening.  Once I read two books in one day (we'd just moved to Switzerland and I had a LOT of time on my hands).  When I had my first baby I read while she fed.  Then she started to grab the book, and failed to sleep and the times for reading slipped away.  Add three more children to the mix and I've read hardly anything for nearly a decade.

But I've been thinking recently about me, and who I truly am, and I realised that I'm not me without a book on the go.  So I decided to read.  It was hard to get back into it and I started a lot of books that I just didn't finish.  And it was especially hard to read fiction.  I think I felt guilty taking time for pure pleasure instead of reading to learn a skill, or something I could place some, albeit arbitrary, value on.  I read a lot of books about religion without meaning to.  I read a lot of self help books.  I read a book about how to write a book. I read a book about how to carry out art fraud. I probably won't, by the way.  I decided I needed to get back into fiction.

So I read Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantell.  It perhaps wasn't the easiest choice but it was a good mix of fact and fiction and I read it slowly over a couple of months.  And I loved it.  Thomas Cromwell was quite a guy it turns out.  I think I maybe even developed a crush on him.  But after my time with Thomas, I found it hard to find another character who caught my attention.

I often work well to a deadline, so I searched around the internet to see if a reading challenge might be the way back into books.  Nothing really jumped out, but I subscribed to a blog which collects reading challenges.  And then, coupled with a chance visit of a friend who inspired me by mentioning he'd set himself a challenge to read a book a week, I stumbled across The Semi-Charmed Book Challenge.  And the book I'd started on the 5th of July fitted not one, but two categories!  I took it as a sign and am now working my way through each of the categories, with the further proviso that, where possible, the book has to come from my book shelves and not be purchased.  (Although I didn't have time to read, I certainly had time to buy a lot of books!)

I doubt I'll win. I doubt I'll even complete it in time. But I am having more fun with reading than I have in a long time.

Saturday 3 August 2013


We polished off the day with some Japanese Slippers.

To make your own, mix equal quantities of midori, triple sec and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker with a pile of ice cubes.  Strain and enjoy.  We reckon they tasted just like soor plooms.


This is day 1 of the August Break challenge (please note that I've even managed to put a little button over there), and is a little late in coming!  This was my breakfast this morning, made all the more special in that two of my children had a long lie, the other two were happy to eat their toast in front of the television and that I was joined on my sunny balcony by my most loving cat, Meg.  I think she's gorgeous and goes particularly well with my favourite skirt!

My breakfast this morning consisted of muesli, orange juice and green tea.  I'm trying to count my calories at the minute so the orange juice was a treat.  I've recently given up coffee and am thoroughly embracing the change to tea.  I managed an early morning cycle today and was looking forward to this tea like you wouldn't believe!  It did not disappoint.

Friday 2 August 2013


I think I'm going to take part in Susannah Conway's August Break (although I'm late in starting because her first photo prompt is breakfast and for the last two days I've been so hungry I ate it before I could take a photo of it.  I shall endeavour to remember tomorrow.)

Here's my circles photo - some hula hoops me and the kids made this week.  Some are made from scratch (and still need to be decorated), and others are up-cycled using electrical tape and old dirty hoops we found lying in the garden.

My eldest has inspired me to have a go at hulaing (or hooping?) - she's so good at it - and, guess what! With my large, heavy, home-made hoop I can do it!  For at least a minute at a time!  I even have the bruises to prove it...  And it's good for you too.  My interweb research suggests it can burn 100 calories in 10 minutes and firm up mummy-tummy.  But for the moment, we're just having fun in the sun.

If you fancy having a go at making your own giant hoop, I recommend this tutorial which we loosely followed.  I chose it over others because she has a happy sounding blog.  And I didn't knowingly copy her photo idea, honest!