Homeβ€Ί Cancer Expert Q&A Hubβ€Ί Cancer Coffee Break

UPDATED: RENAMED: Gardening, 'all shapes and sizes, hints, tips and pics' thread!



  • AnnebAnneb Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    My hydrangea, so prettyπŸ’˜πŸ’˜πŸ’˜

  • AnnebAnneb Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    Our grapefruit tree

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭

    @RobertA @Sunshinedaff @Chilali1531 @Anneb

    Hello everyone

    We are home now and have had a busy week tidying up the garden for the winter and making tomato chutney. I have now planted out cauliflowers, red cabbage, purple sprouting broccoli and kale for the winter. I have left the hanging baskets out though and they are swinging about in the wind and the cosmos are doing a dance outside the kitchen window! I lasted a day after coming home before putting the heating on.

    No Lou, I don’t think you will be wearing your shorts again until next summer. Glad that Hannah has settled in well to uni and hope that she will stay safe and away from the dreaded virus. I was singing Balamory too - it is such a pretty place. We also visited Skye but totally different to Mull and have now been told that all the Scottish islands have different scenery.

    Rob, the weather you describe is what we have here today! We were so lucky with our weather in Scotland and yesterday afternoon we sat out in the sunshine for a while which was lovely but such a change today!

    Ali, so glad you had a good break too. I love Collioure and that area is so beautiful but it is a long time since we visited. Hope that you are continuing to feel better.

    Margy, I empathise with you totally!! Both with rugby and football our boys and Geoff would watch the big matches and scream and comment throughout! Tanya and I would be elsewhere. Crunch time came when I had cooked a Sunday roast and they wanted to watch and eat at the same time - I was not popular when I said absolutely NOT!! Our youngest became a football online journalist which suits him very well!!!

    Take care my friends and stay safe.


    Michele x

  • LouiseJLouiseJ Posts: 686 mod

    @Anneb ,@NanaBubbles ,@Chilali1531 ,@RobertA

    Good afternoon everyone!πŸ˜€

    Welcome home Michele, I hope you found your garden and produce in a good state, and it sounds as though you have been really busy since your return, planting in the veg! I am just about keeping in top of the potato plants growing, they are almost at the top of the bags, but some haven't taken at all.

    I have planted a raspberry plant too, which is in the green house for winter, it is growing away quite happily. The cucumber is still going strong, we have another one almost ready to pick and the tomatoes don't seem to know when to stop!

    Margy your garden and plants look fabulous, did you bring that grapefruit tree with you from your old house or have you grown it since you moved? They look beautiful, I bet they are very tasty. I hope your evening hasn't ended in too much of a depressive state for Pete and Beau, you had a nice supper though, lolπŸ˜€

    The shorts and flip flops have definitely gone away now, I am even wearing socks! special ones a friend sent me with koalas all over them! they are my favourite. 😁 Last night my feet were so painful I rubbed Vicks gel all over them, I have read this works. I am not sure it did, but will try again tonight.

    The rain has given way to a beautiful sunny afternoon, maybe we are in the eye of Alex? It is very warm too, lovely.

    So we saw Hannah off to uni, now been sorting Phoebe and her driving test, managed to get a slot for Feb!! lol, had another go and have moved it to early November. She has also applied for two jobs, Waitrose and Tesco, and has got interviews for both next week! Awesome especially as she is autistic and this sort of thing is torture for her. If successful it will be her first job. Will let you know!

    Right, today so far, has been quite successful, better than yesterday, a cup of tea is definitely in order! Phew!

    I hope you have a peaceful afternoon and evening,

    Chat soon,

    Lou xx

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭

    @LouiseJ @RobertA @Chilali1531 @Anneb

    Hi Lou

    Just a quick note to say that if you can get some Neal’s Yard Arnica Ointment for your toes that might work better for you - it’s what I use on my arthritic toes all the time. It’s not too expensive - about £12 if I remember rightly and you can get it via Amazon. You only need a little so it lasts a long time so I rub it on when I get ready for bed and then put warm socks on - koala socks sound very cosy! Hope this helps.

    This might be of help to everyone else too as it is very good for achey muscles, as well as sore joints.

    Very best wishes to Phoebe and hope she is successful with her interviews. Our grandson is on the spectrum so I do understand what a big deal this sort of thing is. Best of luck to her.

    The garden was in fairly good shape on getting home but, like yours, the tomatoes were going mad. However, it is so much cooler up here now that I couldn’t see that the remaining green ones would ripen so picked all the ripe and nearly ripe ones a big bowl full, kept some for eating and made the chutney with the rest. I think my tender plants will need to be put into the greenhouse very soon hence the need to clear the space.

    Have a lovely weekend everybody.


    Michele x

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭


    PS I think Boots also do an arnica cream. Michele x

  • LouiseJLouiseJ Posts: 686 mod


    Good morning Michele,

    Thanks for the Arnica tip, I just wanted to check you meant the one used for bruises etc? We always have that at home since the girls were tiny. I have also told Mark who has feet issues, he is already on the case!

    Mmm, that is a good idea to pick the green tomatoes, I have a few going red but loads still green. Anything other than chutney I can use them for?

    Rained all night here, flooded the back gate again, Mark has been out to try and make a clear runway for the rain. Very much an indoor day today, some painting, family tree search, and baking I think is in order. Oh and maybe some ironing whilst watching tv, haha. πŸ˜€.

    Have a good day everyone,

    Chat soon,

    Lou xx

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭


    Yes, Lou - the very same! I am quite into herbal based remedies if I can use them as ointment/cream. I hope it helps you.

    Raining here still but the wind has dropped thankfully! Definitely an indoor day - and all the same things as you except the family history search! No flooding here yet though. How is your painting going? I have started a smallish oil of a polecat, of all things! It is just a really nice photo in soft focus which my grandson liked so thought I would paint it for him. Have a big basket full of ironing after our Scottish trip but I’d rather paint so might rush through it in front of TV, then afternoon free for painting/baking. 😊 Just been for our flu jabs and I was really impressed with our local surgery’s organisation bearing in mind Covid. They are giving the jabs to the most vulnerable people first as they don’t think they will have sufficient supplies for everyone. Doesn’t bode well for the Covid vaccine I think.

    Anyway, have a good weekend.


    Michele x

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,200 mod
    edited October 4

    @Anneb @Chilali1531 @NanaBubbles @LouiseJ

    Good afternoon everyone. It is lovely to read all of your posts.

    I love your photos Margy. I am particularly fond of hydrangeas and yours is really pretty. We have a fake one in our lounge to kid ourselves that it’s still Summer, but one glance out of the window soon puts that right.πŸ’¨πŸŒŠβ˜”οΈ. Our local soccer team, the Jersey Bulls play in the Combined Counties League División 1. They played 26/games last season and won them all, but were not promoted as the season was cut short due to COVID, notwithstanding they had already collected enough points to guarantee promotion in a full season. It isn’t looking any better this season as isolation restrictions are in place between Jersey and the UK making it impossible for visiting teams to travel.

    I hope you managed to avoid the worst of Storm Alex Ali. Some of our news reports indicate that you have had some pretty nasty floods. I know you needed some rain but not that much.

    Hi Lou. I hope that Phoebe's interviews go well. It must be very challenging for her and her courage is admirable.

    Haha Michele, with the weather we have been having, the ironing and painting options sound very wise. How fortunate that you were able to enjoy some decent weather for your break in Scotland.

    Rob xx

    PS. Here is our hydrangea.

  • Chilali1531Chilali1531 Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    Hello Everyone

    Today we’re having a real mixture of weather. Wind, rain, grey, then bursts of sunshine. We wanted to plant some cabbages & leeks in our wooden troughs but didn’t manage. Did get out for a quick walk in the park during a brief dry spell & it was lovely to smell the autumn leaves. We’re lucky we live 3 minutes walk from a nice park with a small lake so it’s perfect for dog walking. We have to now wear masks in the street here, including park. Toulouse is one of the worst hit cities in France now.

    Yes Rob, the torrential rain we had in SE France has been devastating, buildings & bridges washed away in mudslides etc & lives lost. They said there’d been the equivalent of 3 months’ rain in one day! So far here in the SW we’ve just had a lot of rain & wind but no damage done. It’s quite a lot colder than usual for this time of year, often we don’t need heating til Nov & Peter is still in shorts. Snow on the Pyrenees has already fallen quite heavily, my son Daniel & girlfriend are there this weekend & sent some nice pictures. Hopefully we’ll get up there soon & get a good bonfire going with all the leaves.

    Im wrapped up on the sofa watching tennis (French Open) which seems strange as it’s usually in early June & hot. Since coming off the steroids I’ve got a few aches & mouth, throat are a bit numb- side effects which I’ve had before but it means immunity is a bit low. Been making ginger lemon & honey drinks to boost me. Peter’s making one of his meat loaves for dinner so I’ve asked him to put lots of garlic in- it smells yummy !

    Hope you all have a good week... fingers crossed for Pheobe! Ali XX

    Snowy Pyrenees

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,200 mod

    Hi everyone

    Wow, that is a fabulous photograph of the Pyrenees covered in snow Ali. The weather has been shocking and it is so sad to hear that people have lost their lives. Our supermarket shelves are bare as the boats have not been getting in from France with fresh fruit and vegetables. It is actually quite calm and pleasantly warm here today and it is lovely sitting on the balcony enjoying a relaxing day. We are a ten minute walk from a pleasant park and there is a Portuguese café there where they bake fresh rolls every day. Mary and I often have a stroll around the park and enjoy a coffee and a roll, still warm from the oven. We also love the Portuguese custards (pasteis de nata). They are made with a really crispy puff pastry and a rich custard caramelised at the top.

    Chat soon

    Rob x

  • AnnebAnneb Posts: 104 ✭✭✭


    Dear Rob

    I love your Hydrangea. I am going to look out for one as beautiful as yours and Mary's xxxxx

  • Chilali1531Chilali1531 Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    Hello Everyone

    Autumn has definitely arrived here in Toulouse. We quite often have lovely warm sunny autumns but not this year. The last two weeks it’s gone cold, windy & rainy. You have to choose your moment to go out for a walk. Our local park has some lovely trees with red maple-like 🍁 which inspired me to paint some stones using the leaves as a stencil.

    Not much is happening in our garden. We keep pulling the cacti out of the rain. I’ve planted some crocus & daffodils in pots for spring.

    It’s soup season so yesterday I made a v spicy red pepper & butternut with lots of garlic, turmeric & paprika. I could taste it ! Those little Portuguese custards look very nice Rob. We need little treats to keep us going don’t we - especially when it’s cold. I’m still off sweet things but Peter likes a bit of cake at « goûter «  time (4pm). I’m not a great cake baker but I can make quite a good carrot cake when I get inspired.

    Wére going up to the Pyrenees this weekend. I’m looking forward to seeing the colours, lots of beech & oak trees there. Hopefully we’ll find some chestnuts to roast.

    Keep warm & safe everyone

    Ali xx

  • LouiseJLouiseJ Posts: 686 mod

    @RobertA @NanaBubbles @Chilali1531 @Jimjam @Anneb

    Good evening everyone,

    Well we have had a mixed day here, some lovely sunshine but showers also, I think the next couple of days are going to have more rain in them!

    Ali, I agree, autumn has definitely arrived, although the temperature in my green house this afternoon reached 30! it certainly wasn't like that in the garden!

    I have managed to sort out some of the summer plants and am in the process of sorting the strawberries for next year. I had a look at the spuds, they are going nuts, I am not sure if I am doing it right, I chucked some more soil on the top of them, but couldn't completely cover them as they are higher than the bags!

    Two bags which haven;t sprouted turned out to have baby potatoes growing from the seed potatoes, but no greenery...go figure?!

    I have now picked all the tomatoes off the vines and they are in a kitchen drawer with a banana, I hope to ripen. If they don't ripen I have found a lovely green tomato jam recipe with apples and ginger, I thought that sounded delicious.

    So..update on the job for Phoebe, she was offered both positions! We are so proud of her, it has been very challenging for her, even answering the telephone and speaking had to be planned to the letter. She accepted the Tesco offer as they seemed to be more onboard with autism than the other one, and she has an induction day on Thursday. Plus we were finally able to open a bank account for her and they were lovely to her.

    We have enjoyed watching the French Open too Ali, it has been great to watch some live tennis, especially as Wimbledon was cancelled this year.

    The photo of the mountains is just stunning, absolutely beautiful. I hope you have a lovely weekend up there relaxing in the peacefulness of it all.

    Rob I love custard tarts, like you get here with the nutmeg on top, but I have yet to try one of the Portuguese tarts, a coffee shop in Ringwood sell them, I may try one next time.

    Ali, that soup sounds delicious, I really must get my act together and make some soups, they are great for lunchtimes and very healthy too.

    I was wondering....I suggested to Phoebe we put Christmas up early this year! What do you think? Usually we are ready by Thanksgiving (US), but maybe I could do it earlier? I am at a loss this year for buying gifts etc, my brain just can't think of anything! I am also not in the mood, maybe that's why I have though about putting everything up early, perhaps that will help! lol! who knows, I don't! Haha.

    Ali, how have you got on with family tree research? Have you been able to start looking?

    Right, best go for now, dinner is ready, so will chat later, Bake off is on tonight...yay!

    Chat soon,

    Lou xxx

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭

    @LouiseJ @RobertA @Chilali1531 @Jimjam @Anneb

    Good morning everyone

    Apologies for not participating for a while.

    Lou, I hope you are all doing well and enjoying the autumn colours outside (or spring!) So pleased for Phoebe! Really well done! How is Hannah getting on? Cornwall seems to be reasonably ok for Covid thankfully so hopefully she is enjoying her new life. How are your aches and pains? Hope the arnica is helping.

    Ali, your stones are beautiful, I love the autumn colours and the little owl. There is quite a large acer in a friend’s garden with the similar shape leaves to the one on your large black background stone which are just gorgeous and I picked up some fallen leaves a few years ago and did a watercolour painting of them. I think acers/maples are just wonderful plants.

    I am glad that you had no damage from the recent storm, the pictures on TV looked horrendous. I hope that you are doing ok without the steroids. I had a phone call appointment with my Endocrinologist on Monday who treats me for adrenal insufficiency - she wants to test my cortisol levels to check the level of hydrocortisone which I need so have had to drop down the usual dose, and stop my asthma inhaler and anti-itch hydrocortisone cream then before taking anything, go down to the surgery for a 9 am blood test appointment on Friday. Joy!! Of course, without my inhaler I have been coughing and getting some very funny looks from people - ‘has she got the virus? she’s coughing!’.

    Rob, your hydrangea is just gorgeous! The ones in our garden are all pink, can’t remember what soil type that means we have - must be alkaline I think as we can’t grow azaleas and acid loving plants. The pasteis de nata are scrummy! I had never had one in the UK until our local Waitrose cafe opened and they sell them there. Unfortunately, it did open up for a while after lockdown ended but closed again last week - probably just as well as it is a great place to meet up with a friend and my waistline is better not having cakes just now!!

    So looks like we are heading for lockdown again from half-term and I can’t help feeling that this is like closing the stable door after the horse has bolted!!

    I have been making the most of any dry days in the garden, preparing everything for winter and planting out violas and wallflowers that I have grown from seed for the first time ever! Quite pleased with myself although it is a small triumph really! I have made a couple of ‘bulb lasagnes’ like Monty Don on Gardeners’ World. The main one has small alliums on the bottom layer, tulips in the middle, and daffodils on the top. Then have planted some wallflowers and violas on top of that. The violas make me smile as the variety is called ‘Johnny Jump Up’ so can’t wait to see how they get on!

    I am amazed at your spuds Lou and wonder if they have steroids in the compost!?! Only joking, haha! I have also grown some red cabbage and cauliflower plants from seed and have planted curly kale at the back of the Veg Trug with the little plants in front. It has been quite cold up here at night so have put the cover back on now. It doesn’t seem long since we had lovely warm weather and the tomatoes were there. Your recipe for the green tomatoes sounds wonderful Lou!

    Well, as it is a nice day here despite being cold and windy, I am going outside now to do some more jobs.

    Look after yourselves everybody.


    Michele x

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,200 mod
    edited October 16

    @LouiseJ @Chilali1531 @NanaBubbles @Anneb

    Good afternoon everyone

    The Jersey weather is still unsettled and so we have been using the car for shopping. At least it makes it easier to pop an extra bottle of wine in the bagπŸ˜‰.

    We love the Aussie wines Margy and I have a weakness for the McGuigan Black Label Shiraz which is inexpensive and goes perfectly with a nice tomatoey pasta or steak. Mary and I discovered Australian wines on our first visit in 2000 and we were surprised at how good they are. We are thinking of you heading into Spring as we move into Autumn here. Mary and I watched a programme about the Ghan railway last week. It was fascinating - for more than two hours there was no spoken commentary or music, just sounds and voices of railway staff and occasional bits of information flagged onto the screen as it travelled from Adelaide to Darwin. When we were in Adelaide a few years ago, we had the chance of going to Alice Springs on the Ghan. It was leaving at 3.00pm, arriving in Alice the following lunchtime. As were staying in a gorgeous hotel with a fabulous Thai Restaurant, we chickened out and stayed in the hotel and flew to Alice the following morning. Lovely city Adelaide.

    I have always been partial to French wines too Ali and Mary and I love the Bordeaux region so we get the best of both worlds when we visit. We also like the Charente Maritime region North of Bordeaux where they produce a vin de liqueur known as the Pineau des Charentes. It tastes a little like Cognac but it is sweeter and very moreish. Sadly, we cannot get it in Jersey and I haven’t seen it in the UK either. Your new stones are gorgeous and what a great idea to use leaves as stencils - so interesting and effective. Enjoy your weekend in the Pyrenees. It will look amazing with the Autumn colours and roast chestnuts too.

    Oh Lou, Phoebe has done amazingly well and it sounds as if she will have some lovely people around her. I trust that her induction went well yesterday too. I think it is a good idea for you and Phoebe to put the Christmas decorations up early this year. It has been an extraordinary and difficult year and some sparkle and colour will add some fun and a smile and you will have extra time to enjoy them. I hope that Hannah is settling down well and enjoying her Uni experience too. It will be lovely for you all to be together at Christmas.

    Hi Michele. I hope that your appointment went well this morning. Do you have to travel far? I think we tend to take our proximity to the doctor and the hospital for granted. They are a fairly comfortable walk for us and there is also an hourly door to door bus service if it is too cold or wet. We had our flu jabs yesterday and there have been hints of a Coronavirus one being available before Christmas. We will see. It must be frustrating that your local Waitrose café has had to close again. Meeting up with friends for a cuppa and cake is one of the pleasures in life.

    Have a lovely weekend and stay safe everyone.

    Rob xx

  • LouiseJLouiseJ Posts: 686 mod

    Good afternoon everyone,

    Well it has been a bright day here, chilly, but lovely to see the sunshine.

    Friday...again! How does that happen?

    Our last growing cucumber has bitten the dust, or rather, something else got it. I found it fallen off the branch onto the greenhouse floor, and it was already eaten by something. I have cut it up and placed it in and around the bird bath. I am sure it will be eaten by one of the wildlife creatures! All the sweetcorn failures were gobbled up rapidly!

    The temperature is dropping quite quickly now as the sun goes down, the heating is well and truly on! Margy, I know you are heading into the opposite scenario, lol!

    Yes, I said to Phoebe just now, I am putting Christmas up earlier than usual. I am heading down to Falmouth tomorrow for a flying visit, staying overnight.

    Phoebe's induction went well, and she has her first shift tomorrow, she is very nervous about it all.

    Michele I too hope you appointment went ok and you didn't have to hang around for long.

    Curry for dinner tonight for us, it winked at us when I was looking around the shop! πŸ˜‹

    I hope you all have a peaceful and restful weekend, chat soon,

    Lou xxx

  • AnnebAnneb Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    @RobertA @LouiseJ @NanaBubbles @Chilali1531

    Well hello everyone,

    I am back in the land of the living...lol...I have been still working 5 days a week (so much for Semi-Retirement and relaxing) and it has been taking a bit out of me. Very lethargic. Went and had my annual checkup this week and go to the specialist on Monday for results. Having a few other problems and know I will have to have more tests...but hey.... we are all used to that , aren't we....lol...πŸ˜‚

    yes Rob, Adelaide is a beautiful city. However they breed a terrible sportsmanship ethos. it doesn't matter what sport is being played they boo the opposition, continually. Adelaide is renown for it all over Australia. I hate watching anything played in that state, just so unpleasant.

    Yes our wines are beautiful. I haven't bought an imported wine for probably 25 years. Pete and I were going to go on the Ghan this year. We were going to cruise from Sydney to Darwin , spend a week there and then travel the Ghan back to Adelaide and fly home...all planned but thanks to Covid that didn't eventuate...lol...so for another day.

    Michelle , how did your tests go, or do you have to wait for the results. I hate the waiting...makes you so uneasy.

    Lou, did your bed arrive. Where did you buy it from...I was telling Pete about the wait and he asked if you bought it from Australia and it is on a slow boat to you...🀣🀣

    Yes our spring is truly here, lovely light rain which has the farmers dancing around and my plants as well. it rained last night and I was sitting outside ( another story you will love Rob...as to why I was outside at 10pm) and it was late and pouring rain and 20 degrees. I couldn't believe how warm it was.

    Rob , we are down to the wire with our Football and Rugby Semi Finals this weekend. So our AFL team...Richmond was playing.... 2 minutes to go and only 4 points the difference. if the opposition had a chance to kick a goal in that time (extremely possible) they would have won.....well I could not handle the pressure after 2 hours of footy that was just so close...and had to go outside .....but Rob , how silly am I .....I was still watching through the glass door....lol...πŸ˜…πŸ˜…πŸ˜…

    So Richmond now will play in the Grand Final next Saturday. If they win it will be their 3rd Premiership in 4 years. unbelievable team.

    Also in Rugby our team, Melbourne Storm won their semi final and are now into the Grand Final next weekend. I may have to leave home next weekend, not listen to a radio or tv and go camping....lol

    How are you going Ali? Your photos are just to die for, like a post card. It must be so beautiful to have the pleasure of going to the Pyrenees for a get a way place to recoup. You lucky duck🀩 I hope you are going well and coping with everything you are trying to cope with. xxxx

    Now Lou, are you trying to beat me with the ChristmasπŸŽ… tree this year. You have to give me some sort of warning as to a date ...lol.....you have to give me a fair chance....lol...lol...

    We have all the outside top path ready for the concreters that were coming this weekend.....its raining...so a no go....hopefully next week....

    well I had better go...latish Saturday afternoon here and I am doing roast lamb and all the trimmings. So I had better go and start trimming...lol... or I will be disappointed with the end result.

    Stay safe, well and happy my lovely friends.xxx

    Wouldn't it be so lovely to catch up one day in the not too distant future...xxx

    Love and hugs

    Margy xoxoxoxoxoox

  • AnnebAnneb Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    Waiting, waiting, waiting for good sunny day to concrete. The last thing we have to do renovating...thank heavens....so pleased when it is all finished

  • AnnebAnneb Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    The roses are looking great, i love sea daisys. My favouite xxx

    The storm is brewing again

    Love to you all xxxx

  • LouiseJLouiseJ Posts: 686 mod
    edited October 17

    Good morning everyone,

    Up early here, getting ready to drive to Falmouth. I am a bit slow this morning, not a good nights sleep, again. Forced myself to stay in bed an extra hour though, knowing I had a long drive ahead of me.

    Margy, @Anneb , Christmas..... well then how does November 1 sound? Given we are heading into stormy waters again here at home, I just feel I should be ready, even if shopping isn't done, the house will look Christmassy. πŸŽ… πŸŽ„Mind you I haven't mentioned it to Mark yet, I am sure he will be thrilled to get back in the loft! lol 😁

    You had your check up too this week? I hope you don't have long to wait for the results.

    As for the mattress, it was due to be delivered today...yay! Until we had a phone call on Thursday to say it wouldn't be! Apparently the stuff used to make the springs etc is also used to make PPE! Goodness knows how long we will have to wait now! No pint in cancelling the order and trying elsewhere as we wil probably have the same issue with another supplier. Unless Margy, you and Pete could go fetch one from one of your stores and fly it over!! Hahahaha. 😁

    Right I should really drink up my coffee and get a wiggle on, otherwise I am going to be late!

    Margy, stop it with the roast lamb talk, you know it's my favourite, haha, πŸ˜€

    Chat to you all later,


    Lou xxx

  • Chilali1531Chilali1531 Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    With all this talk of Christmas I just couldn’t resist posting this .... even tho it may be considered poor taste by some... Ali XX

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭

    @RobertA @LouiseJ @Chilali1531 @Anneb

    Good morning all

    Hope you have a good trip to Falmouth Lou. What a nuisance about your bed, I do hope it comes soon for you and you can get a decent night’s sleep!

    Thanks for asking about my tests Margy and Rob. I am very lucky because the surgery where I go for blood tests etc and get my prescriptions is in the next village so very close and easy. I had my blood test at 9 am yesterday and the result was online last evening. Normal cortisol levels are 100 - 1000, mine was 25 so I think that will convince the Consultant Endocrinologist that I do need the hydrocortisone! I then proceeded to cough half the night because I have been off my asthma inhalers (steroid which would influence the result of the test) and my lungs were trying to sort themselves out - what a performance! I must admit in the middle of the night I was wondering whether the Covid had caught up with me but all good now, thankfully, and no temperature etc! Just half asleep - Geoff would say “no change there then!” Ha ha!

    Geoff and I watch rugby, well him more than me if truth is told, but we both enjoy the Australian/New Zealand/South Africa games where the players are so much faster than here! We also enjoy the Aussie wines very much, particularly the dark reds! We were in Adelaide 2 years ago next month and went on a wine tour up into the Barossa valley which we enjoyed very much and yes, Adelaide is a lovely city! We were there for Remembrance Day and, as my Dad, who was in the RAF, spent a good part of his war years flying with an Australian Squadron, we were able to go and pay our respects at the amazing war memorials there. He always said how much he liked flying with the Aussies. We then drove down the Great Ocean Road to Melbourne - another lovely city.

    Ali, your picture is very amusing! Geoff likes cooking Christmas dinner for us but the first year he did it, the turkey’s funeral would have been a cremation! I can’t get my head round getting ready for Christmas just yet, although I have started tucking away some presents for the family. The grandchildren are thinking about Halloween and Guy Fawkes night just now as well as half-term coming up. I think their Mum is NOT looking forward to half-term as it seems no time since they went back to school at the end of the summer and she could work uninterrupted and go into the office when she needed to! My son went with his family to Chartwell last weekend, Winston Churchill’s country house in Kent, where he took the photo below of the different sorts of pumpkins they have grown - I love the striped top ones! They have obviously had quite a good harvest there.

    Lol! The photos did not come up in the order I expected!! However, the two of our garden show the white cosmos which are going mad! The second (just above) also shows a glimpse of the enormous wood pigeon which comes to our garden a lot, sitting on the bird bath! I have told him that he needs to go on a diet as he waddles across the grass but he still hoovers up any food available! He is quite tame really but huge!!

    We picked all our apples last week from our small trees and now have a box full to last us a while. They are fairly small apples but very juicy and sweet tasting. We had no pears or cherries this year, we had a late frost which stopped the pears and the birds ate the few cherries that survived!! We have a flock of house sparrows and tree sparrows as well as dunnocks which all fly together and they had lots of babies this year so it has been a noisy garden - haha! I love to see them though as they are all on the decline as a species! They are now eating the wild blackberries which grow against our back fence.

    Well, lovelies, I have rambled on so will close now. Take care of yourselves.


    Michele x

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,306 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hahahaha πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜†, Ali, I think it is a perfect idea. The only problem we have is not knowing 30 people to invite over!!!πŸ˜‚.

    So.....all of you are invited!! Guess that takes the guest list up a little, haha!

    I ventured the idea of early Christmas start with Mark yesterday.....it was a Del Monte moment πŸ˜‚...he said yes ( for those too young to get the reference, sorry, the girls are always telling me off for using references they have no understanding of!!)

    Lou 😊 xxx

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,306 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @NanaBubbles @RobertA @Chilali1531 @Anneb

    Good morning from Cornwall! It is still dark here, no idea what the day looks like.

    I have just mastered how to use a Nespresso coffee maker to make some coffee in my room. It is lovely!! ( The only thing is, not sure if I am going to pay extra for it.. lol. Oh well never mind, we don't have one at home)

    Staying in a beautiful hotel, very impressed. They have everything sorted really well for Covid restrictions etc. They are so welcoming.

    The bed was more comfortable than ours!! Can't take it home though ☺️.

    Michele, it is great you were able to get the results back so quickly, hopefully you can get the meds soon too, I hope being able to use your inhaler again will very quickly help with your asthma.

    I loved reading yours and Rob's Australian adventures, perhaps you should collaborate on some travel memoirs, you both make it sound fabulous, and I could picture it so clearly.

    When we arrived here yesterday there were two couples watching the Rugby in one of the lounge areas. We had to sit in there whilst waiting for me to check in. I expect Mark was watching it at home too.

    Mark went to collect Phoebs from work and snapped a couple of pics. She has been offered till training too, so she may get extra hours, not just in the door.

    Pics below of her and a view from the hotel.

    Oh yes.. last night's dinner....yum!!

    Ali, I hope your weekend at the cottage is going wonderfully, and the weather is good for you.

    The autumn colours on your latest pebbles are very striking, beautiful.

    Margy, as ever, you and Pete always have your hands full with garden, home improvements, it is looking great, and you are almost there. Love the stormy photos, the sky is very dramatic.

    Have a great day/ evening everyone, chat later,


    Lou xxx

  • Chilali1531Chilali1531 Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    Dear friends

    We are having the most wonderful weekend here in our Pyrenean hideaway. The views are stunning with the snow capped mountains & autumn colours below. It’s rare to have so much snow ( so low) in early October. It’s cold (-2C at 8 am today), but I can sit outside wrapped up in a blanket from midday. I’m managing some small but not too steep walks which we have around the house. My legs feel v heavy & don’t move easily ( neuropathy) but am managing. I tend to only show my frustration to my poor husband Peter... I do know how lucky we are to be able to come here & less than 2h drive from Toulouse.

    Michele, I do hope your breathing problems are getting sorted. Love the pumpkins, gorgeous colours. Garden looks good too. Keep rambling btw !!

    Yes, great stories about Australian train trips - I’d love to go on that train - staring out at the landscapes, sounds fab. My brother has invited us out again but I fear it’ll be a while before we can go. I only know Sydney & a small bit of coast 4h south.

    Good luck with all those tests Margy. I’ve got one for the heart end of next week, always a bit nerve racking. Your garden looks as stunning as ever, glorious roses!

    Yes I know Pineau de Charentes well Rob. A bit like Muscat. I’m a bit of a Port fan myself. A nice little glass in front of the fire is my tipple which I’m happy to say I can now do & actually fancy !

    Hope your trip to Cornwall is going well Lou, lovely hotel view. It’s always a treat to stay in a nice hotel isn’t it ? After years of camping with kids, I do enjoy a few nights in a nice hotel ! Really well done to Pheobe, can’t be easy for her.

    Time to get on my boots & get some fresh air. Take care everyone, Ali XX

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 116 ✭✭✭

    @NanaBubbles @RobertA @Chilali1531 @Anneb

    Good morning everyone

    Thanks for all your good wishes. I am feeling better today thankfully - breathing more easily and hardly coughing now that I can use my inhaler again. I still have to have a lower hydrocortisone dose for another 3 weeks and then drop down again on my 12 noon dose and then repeat the tests again. I shan’t look forward to that. I did try to explain to the consultant that no steroids except the hydrocortisone for 3 days before the tests is a big ask to be without my asthma inhaler but she was insistent so I just have to trust that it is all in my best interest.

    Ali, what beautiful places in your photos, thank you so much for sharing them - they bring joy to the soul with them!! Glad you can sit outside in the afternoons as that will hopefully do you a lot of good too. I am a trained reiki master, although I only use it on myself and a little distance healing these days, - we are taught that the mind and the body work in sympathy with each other for wellness, so the beauty of these places will not only do you good mentally but physically as well - and that’s before you take into account the energy of the natural area. I hope everything goes well with your heart tests and that you enjoy the rest of your weekend. πŸ’“

    Lou, I am glad that you are having a good trip and enjoying the Falmouth Hotel. From the photo I am guessing you are staying in one of the hotels overlooking Gyllyngvase beach but would love to know which one as we might have a trip down and it is good to know that they are well organised for Covid. Hope the weather is good for you. Well done to Phoebe getting a job and getting herself established down there. What course is she doing by the way? I expect you will be so pleased to see each other this weekend! I expect the rugby match being watched would have been the Exeter/Racing 92 game, Exeter being the nearest team for the locals to support in the premier league as the Cornish Pirates are in the league below. Exeter comprehensively won too! Hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend too and safe journey home.

    Margy, I looked again at your photos and your roses are stunning! You will enjoy all your renovations as the summer comes but then ......Christmas! Do you eat turkey for Christmas dinner? Well, we have made a start at organisation by ordering our turkey. It will be interesting to see where we are with lockdowns etc by then.

    All for now folks. Take care.


    Michele x

  • Chilali1531Chilali1531 Posts: 104 ✭✭✭

    Good morning folks!

    Heading back to Toulouse today, but yesterday we had a little walk to find chestnuts & hazelnuts, then roasted chestnuts on the fire. Yum ! The French are very big chestnut eaters in all forms, chestnut jam, purée, glacéd... a bit too sweet for me, I prefer them just roasted.

    Ali XX

  • PositiveLady10PositiveLady10 Posts: 77 ✭✭✭

    Hi all,

    I just had to post this photo of my Spanish Dragon in my garde,it’s 1 of 2,waiting for the other one to wake up!!!

    The flower pictures are an inspiration,my garden is what got me through ,

    Barbara ( Positive Lady 10) xx

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,200 mod

    @Anneb @NanaBubbles @Chilali1531 @Sunshinedaff @PositiveLady10

    Good evening everyone. My goodness, you have all been busy and I have so enjoyed all of your posts.

    I trust that your annual check up results were good Margy. You really must go for that semi retirement. Your home is so beautiful and after all the work you and the boys have been doing, you deserve the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of your hard work. I looked up Richmond Football Club and I am impressed. I had not realised that they play at the MCG - what a stadium that is. When in Melbourne, Mary and I stayed at the Hilton on the Park, fed the possums and visited they MCG. We also had kangaroo steaks on the Colonial Tramcar Restaurant. We visited the Dandenongs, fed the wonderful brightly coloured birds and travelled on Puffing Billy. Wonderful memories. Well, back to the football club, I looked up their song ‘We’re From Tigerland’. I just love the words. Were you singing the song whilst peering through the glass door in the rain? β˜”οΈWow, two finals in one weekend. My football club, Middlesbrough have had four in my lifetime and only won one of them. The league Cup in 2005. What a pity you had to cancel your great holiday this year. I hope you can do it next year.

    Oh Lou, what a lovely hotel. Your dinner looks great too. It’s nice to be pampered occasionally isn’t it. Mary and I have only been to Falmouth once and we stayed in a guest house which had clearly been photoshopped in the ad. How lovely to see Phoebe at work though I don’t think that I could work on the tills. I have only just grasped how to use contactless. 🀣 Haha, I don’t envy Mark having to go in the loft for the Christmas gear. We don’t have a loft now so I don’t have to - we now have to rent storage space in town. I think that most of the stuff in there is Christmassy but if we bring it all up to the apartment, there won’t be room in it for us as well.

    I just love your photos Ali. They are gorgeous and I can barely imagine how beautiful your hideaway is for real. I am not surprised you are having a lovely time. I love roast chestnuts too and I fondly remember working in York where I could buy them from a street vendor and they would keep my hands nice and warm whilst I was eating them. You may have done that yourself of course. I am sorry to hear about your trouble with neuropathy but at least you can enjoy a glass of port now. Does port go with roast chestnuts?πŸ˜‰. Fingers crossed for your tests, they just keep coming don’t they and it is always an anxious time.

    Hi Michele. Thank goodness you are able to breathe more easily now that you can use your inhaler again. Wow, I did not know that you are a trained reiki master. I was a bit sniffy about reiki initially, but my counsellor encouraged me to take an interest and I was amazed when I first tried it. Now I recognise that it really is effective in bringing down stress levels and reducing anxiety. Talking of Australia, Mary and I travelled the Great Ocean Road from Melbourne, the opposite direction to you. How interesting to hear that your Dad was in the RAF and flew with an Australian squadron. It must have been a proud and emotional visit to Adelaide to pay your respects.

    Hi Barbara. Your Spanish Dragon is spectacular and beautiful. I have never seen anything like it and no wonder it is an inspiration to you. I think that it must be really rewarding and satisfying to create a beautiful garden and to be able to forget about illness and doctors for a while.

    Rob xx

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