Thursday, 22 February 2018

Smiles In The Garden: Spring Is Almost Here!

Hello Honeys,
How are you today?  Our furbaby Jade and I have been in the garden.  We have blue skies, fluffy clouds, our beloved peony roses are looking for sunshine and it won't be too long now till Hubby has to get the lawnmower out for the lawn's first cut of the year ๐Ÿ˜Š

I love this time of year! Everywhere I look I can see little signs that the garden is beginning to wake up from it's long winter nap.  Soon there will be roses, in the shape of those much loved peonies, and lavender by the back door and an abundance of gorgeous roses in our tiny front garden to greet guests too ๐Ÿ˜Š 

It's starting to look like spring in the garden honeys...

Every year I snap lots of photos of the roses in our front garden honeys, they never fail to make me smile ๐Ÿ˜Š  You can see them dotted all around this blog (in the search bar to the right hand side type roses in and you'll see what I mean) but there are (quite) a few downloadable printables too, my favourites of which you can find here and another, which shows a gorgeous rose in the rain can be found here.  Enjoy honeys ๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ’‹

For today though, let's open the back door and see what's waiting for us shall we?

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

All Change! Planning & Prompting - How A Notice Board Will Help Improve My Blog...

Disclaimer: I haven't been paid to promote any products, just sharing my latest little project that's making me ridiculously happy x

Hi Honeys,
How is everyone?  Here we are running towards the last week of February and the days are getting a little longer, the skies a little brighter and today we've reached the lofty temperature of 8 degrees! That's almost a Summers day here ๐Ÿ˜Š

In an effort to make up for last year, when our dreams of an organised, down-sized home were knocked off track by my health issues, I'm trying to set in place some organisational systems to help us to get back on track.

My latest project though is aimed squarely at myself, and at getting this blog back up and running.

Planning and prompting - How a notice board will help improve my blog...

So, having determined to (try) to get myself back on track this year I thought I'd start by actually planning my blog posts. Yep, you heard me dear ones.  "Rosie! You mean you don't have squillions of posts scheduled months ahead?" I hear you say..... Well, no honeys.  In my drafts folder right now there are... I'll check and do a screen cap for you....

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

My First Mini Organising Project Of 2018...

Disclaimer:  I haven't been paid to write this post. I'm just sharing my first mini home organisation project of the year and hopefully some smiles too ๐Ÿ˜Š

Hi Honeys
How was your weekend?  Mine has definitely been a mixed bag.  At work on Saturday evening I was hit with the worst case of the chills. To begin with I just felt as if it was getting colder.  Just the usual evening temperature drop since it was after 6 pm, very dark and the store I work in has a metal roof so all of the heat mostly goes up and out.

A couple of hours later I felt as if my bones were literally made of ice.  Such a chill honeys and I couldn't stop shivering.  By the time home time rolled around though I was actually burning up, even though I still had that awful, frozen, chill in my bones. When I got home I had my shower, got all bundled up in my warmest nightie etc and hugged the hot water bottle Hubby made for me (thank you sweetheart x) I settled on the sofa under a huge sherpa throw.

During Saturday night and through Sunday I just felt so completely drained of energy honeys but at least the chilled feeling, and temperature, had gone by mid Sunday.  Yesterday I started to feel a little more like my self which was such a relief.

There are so many bugs, viruses, flus and what-nots going around right now and having been ill for over four months with the last chest infection (which turned into bronchitis and led to my having a CT scan) I just really don't want to catch any of them.

Late yesterday afternoon, annoyed at myself that I didn't get anything done, not even catching up with laundry, over the weekend, I put on a load of laundry and set out to find something to do ๐Ÿ˜Š

Rosie's First Mini Organising Project Of The Year...

There was a project I'd asked Hubby to do for me that he hadn't gotten around to yet.  We'd even bought a Variera shelf insert (the larger of the two sizes available) for this little project on our last trip to Ikea.

"Why not try doing it yourself?" I thought.  Why not indeed.  This is what happened honeys...

Thursday, 1 February 2018

Happy Homemaking Haul

Disclaimer: I haven't been paid to promote any products, anything mentioned in my little smiley mini haul below was bought and paid for by Hubby & I, just sharing my latest homemaking smiles.

Hi Honeys
Happy February ๐Ÿ˜Š It feels as if the holidays were just days ago but here we are on February first. Of course it's still very cold and we even had a little sleet and snow yesterday (it didn't hang around though thankfully) but we're finally heading towards Spring and I can't wait ๐Ÿ’ฎ

Spring is coming - time for a spring clean!

Spring around here means two things.  The first of course is my absolute favourite of the two... laundry!! Lines and lines and lines of lovely laundry pegged outside in the spring sunshine, gently floating in the breeze... joy!!

The other spring joy is cleaning the house from top to bottom.  Throwing windows open to let in the lovely fresh air and making a start on filling boxes to take to our little local charity shop.  I was ill most of last year honeys and didn't get anything I wanted done to our home but I'm determined (with Hubby's help - thank you sweetheart x) to make some headway into organising and purging our home this year ๐Ÿ˜Š

So, let's have a look at our latest home buys shall we? Why not grab a cuppa?

Friday, 26 January 2018

Super Easy, Super Yummy, Vegetarian Rigatoni Bolognese

Hi Honeys 
How are you today?  Do you remember all of that lovely snow recently?  All gone now, replaced with rain and a breeze so icy and sharp it could chill a nose off a face... or feels like it anyway.  It's definitely still mittens, scarves, hats and layers weather outside ⛄ 

I'm so wishing for spring to arrive.  Only eight weeks to go now until the clocks change here in UK and it really can't pass quick enough.  We're starting to see glimmers of sunshine now and again but I so long to peg lots of lovely laundry outside and to see our much loved garden wake from it's long, long winter sleep.  I miss seeing our beautiful roses when I open the front door honeys ๐ŸŒน

Super easy, super yummy vegetarian rigatoni bolognese

It's January and my resolutions for this year are pretty much the same as they were last year.  Last year I promised I'd make some headway into organising and downsizing the amount of clutter we have in our home and I also promised I'd try to take more control of my health too.

I have the most wonderful Doctor and I'm blessed to attend a great clinic at the hospital for my arthritis, but last year was truly awful, health wise, for me.  The constant joint and muscle pain went off the scale, restricting my mobility even further, to the point I wasn't coping at all well anymore. 

As if that wasn't enough, in the later part of the year I had a chest infection which turned into bronchitis. I battled this for over four months leading to yet another new experience. I had to go have a CT scan.  I was taken off my arthritis medication (it flattens my immune system) for several months to allow my chest infection to try to heal but this allowed the arthritis pain to run riot.

The result was that I didn't do much de-cluttering or have a chance to look into the pilates or yoga I'd been told might help my spine pain or anything else to be honest honeys.  I wasn't in the driver seat last year dear ones. I woke up every day and tried to make it to bedtime. 

Not a good way to live and I'm so determined to make an effort this year.  I really can't live another year like last year so, first thing first, I'm hoping to pro-actively do something about my health.  I've gotten myself two beginners Yoga and two beginners Pilates dvds, and I'm changing our diet to a far healthier one. 

To that end I was rummaging about on Pinterest looking for recipes and stumbled across a fabulous vegetarian version of one of Hubby's favourites, Bolognese ๐Ÿ˜Š  I clicked on the link and it took me to a wonderful recipe and a fabulous blog written by a lovely lady called Trinity.  I'll include a link to her blog so you can go say hello honeys but first I'll show you a version of her Vegetarian Bolognese.

I hope Trinity doesn't mind but I left out some things (neither Hubby nor I are fans of celery) and added others (I had to add the rigatoni pasta it's taken over from macaroni here lately as favourite pasta ๐Ÿ˜Š) I would have loved to use fresh basil but I didn't have any on hand  but I'll show you what I did and you can tell me what you think of it ๐Ÿ˜Š

To the kitchen dear ones....

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Fresh Snowfall, Feeling Calm & A Happy Furbaby...

Hi Honeys,
We had a fresh fall of snow yesterday and it was so beautiful I wanted to capture it before the never far away rain arrived and washed it all away.

So, I grabbed my camera and out into the garden I went with our furbaby Jade...

Fresh snowfall, a serene garden and a very happy furbaby

I do adore our little garden.  I still miss our gorgeous sycamore trees since the local council cut them all back.  They hid the view of that large ugly metal fence in the lane behind our garden, but more than that honeys they gave our beloved garden the feel of a secluded little space where I could escape the world when life got overwhelming.

In the Spring we're hoping, when the always unpredictable weather allows of course, to create a little seating area.  We were hoping to do it last year but with what must have been one of the wettest years ever it just wasn't possible.

Do you remember the beautiful bench Hubby bought for me a while ago?  Almost two years ago in fact.  It's still in it's box waiting to be assembled and take pride of place in the garden.  I can't believe the weather has been so dreadful for so long.  Maybe this year we'll be surprised by mother nature with an actual summer ๐Ÿ˜Š

Rose bench - A gift from Hubby and soon to be part of our little garden seating area.

As you can see, it has a wrought iron fretwork design of roses on the back rest. I can't wait to see it as the centre piece of our little seating area and to be able to sit out in the garden, watching lots of lovely laundry floating around in the breeze ๐Ÿ˜Š

For now though, we have snow and, as I said, I wanted to capture how beautiful the garden looked before our almost inevitable rainy lead up to Spring begins.  Let's have a look shall we?

Friday, 19 January 2018

Spring Is Coming! Peonies Have Appeared...

Hi Honeys
I'm so happy I could just burst!! Having opened the back door to let our furbaby Jade out into the garden to see if her squirrel friends are about (like the ducks on the canal she loves to visit, she adores the squirrels but they don't ever want to play with her bless them) well standing at the back door I noticed something...

I'm so happy I could burst honeys! Our peonies have started to shoot, maybe Spring is on her way after all :)

I then wandered over to the huge pot our much loved peonies grow in to see if I was actually seeing what I thought I was seeing and.....

Our much loved peonies begin to push their way through the earth in spite of the frost, snow and ice...

It's true! I did spot tiny, precious shoots fighting their way through the soil looking for sunlight!  This is wonderful honeys! I always judge how close spring is by our beloved peonies appearance each year.

Part of my brain tells me that, according to the calendar at least, we have a little over nine weeks till the clocks roll forward and we welcome Spring, and as much as I look forward every year to losing that hour.... don't judge me honeys.  I'm awake before the birds are every day so an extra hour in bed is just an extra hour for me to wait till anyone else wakes up to keep me company ๐Ÿ˜Š

Well, anyway, as I was saying ๐Ÿ˜Š as much as I look forward to losing that extra hour (I don't mind the hour itself, more time for me to read or do a puzzle in the morning but it can be lonely) well it takes us closer to spring you see.  I am so not a winter person. Spring is my release from the cold and the long, dark days that seem to drag on forever.

I'm reminded of the wonderful Harry Secombe singing "If I ruled the world, every day would be the first day of spring"  and I wholeheartedly agree ๐Ÿ˜Š  Such a beautiful song with wonderful lyrics ๐Ÿ’–

So now that the peonies have begun to grow it'll be no time really until they look their gorgeous self and make me smile every single time I open our back door...
Beautiful Peonies in Bloom

What's making you smile today honeys?  Are you looking forward to spring as much as I am?  I've just glanced out of the living room window and the snow is coming down heavily again.  I have to leave for work in around half an hour too, time to get all bundled up warmly ๐Ÿ˜Š

Stay warm and safe dear ones, till next time, huggles always xx