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Right, so today I rang the garden centre just to make sure they were open, as they weren't yesterday.  It was OK, though, we had a nice drive in the sunshine yesterday.

It was really difficult getting round the garden centre on my scooter, since it was very crowded and there were abandoned trollies all over the place.  They weren't really abandoned, of course, but just left in the way by people who had gone off to find something.  I should think it must be the best day of the year for garden centre takings.

I managed to find a good yard broom.....................excuse me, Patio Broom, as it was described on the label.  I hope we don't get the Broom Police round to confiscate our broom and give us a caution for using a patio Broom in a plain old concrete back yard!  Maybe that was why the Dibble Helicopter kept flying over the yard while we were out there.

I also bought a sack of crushed shells, hoping that they might deter slugs and snails, an incredibly cheap propagator, a few herbs and a couple of packets of seed.  Except that when we got home the seeds hadn't come with us, and inspection of the till roll reveals that they didn't pass through the cash desk.  I wonder what can have happened to them?  Maybe I put them into someone else's trolley?  I did that with something in Morrison's last week!  The man pushing the trolley was quite cross about it.

Charles made a start on sweeping the yard.  We can't let anyone out there until it's perfectly clean because as anyone who has been following my LJ knows, we were visited a few months ago by the Window Smashing Fairy, and of course, the glazier had to break the rest of the glass in order to put in the new glass.  He did his best to clear it all up, but, of course, glass goes everywhere.

I made a start on clearing out some pots ready for my new herbs and John turned his attention to trying to fix the back gate, but it needs some much longer screws and various other remedial works, including a smidgen of bricklaying.  So we will have to go to B&Q tomorrow to get suitable screws, a piece of hard wood for a lintel and some bricks & mortar.  I wonder whether they sell single bricks?  We only need about ten. I shall also get some replacement seeds and a couple of pot plants to replace the ones the cats have destroyed in the sitting room.

I was very pleased to see that the hydrangea has revived;  I thought it was dead, but in the last few days it's sprouted a lot of healthy green growth.  Thank goodness I didn't throw it away.  Amazingly the French tarragon has made it through the winter too.  I've never had that happen before, so I suppose the winter couldn't have been as harsh as we imagined.  As it happens, I bought a replacement today, so I shall plant them together in a larger pot. 

I also bought a pot of chives.  I've always had chives in the yard, but somehow they've disappeared;  I thought it was almost impossible to kill chives but I seem to have managed it.  Last year I seem to have been using an ornamental grass instead of chives.  I wondered why they didn't have much flavour!

I have a card from the garden centre with Offers of the Month from the end of April to the end of May.  It's a cunning trick to make you go to the garden centre each week and give them your name and address, but as it happens I could do with their BOGOF patio roses, because my lovely tiny roses both died off last year for some reason.  I shan't bother with the BOGOF hostas, because they're far from being my favourite plants, but I might take a look at their half-price Japanese Acers and the half-price bedding plants are a no-brainer - no wonder the offer is limited to a maximum of four packs per voucher.

I almost bought some sweet pea plants for the yard, but I've tried to grow them twice and the slugs always get them, so I decided against it.  If I find that the crushed shells deter the horrible little slimy things, I might get some later.  I bet it doesn't really work, though.  I've also, as insurance, bought some slug killer which is supposed to be safe around pets.

I looked around the garden centre, but they don't have any of those free-standing plastic frames for raised beds so I shall have to find the cheapest source on t'Internet and order one soon.  I saw a really good extendable one in a catalogue, but I can't remember which catalogue it was and I can't find it now.  I would like one to grow lettuce;  it doesn't matter how fresh supermarket lettuce is, it's never as good as lettuce which has only been out of the earth for five minutes!

Tonight we're having cold roast beef with salad and Charles' fabulous potato salad.  The Scotch beef from Costco was a great success yesterday, as always, and the Gluten Free Yorkshire puddings I bought Charles were a great success.  He had some of Sainsbury's Gluten Free fish fingers for his lunch today.  It's so long since he was able to eat fish fingers that he was actually drooling as he picked up the FF sarnie, liberally laced with GF tomato sauce.

We were lucky with the weather today as the forecast was for gloom all day, but we've actually had a lovely day.  Sadly the rest of the week is forecast as gloomy, but we'll just have to hope they're wrong again!

blackberry444: (Default)
Today was the first day of the new Diltiazem dosage, although I did actually take the smaller pill when I got home yesterday afternoon.

I've felt fine all day till just a little while ago, when I started getting breathless coming up the stairs. Yesterday when I took the extra pill later, I noticed that I wasn't getting breathless coming upstairs in the evening. My Lovely Lady Doctor told me to take it all at once in the morning unless it made me feel woozy, in which case I should take the smaller dose later in the day. I think I shall have to experiment. I will take both pills in the morning for a week and keep a diary about how it affects me and then I shall take the smaller dose about 5-ish for a week and again keep notes about how it affects me........ If I remember!

Having said all that, this evening's breathlessness was nowhere near as debilitating as it has been recently.

It was a nice afternoon, after rain in the morning, so after John and Charles had cleared all the rubbish out of the yard and taken it to the tip, Charles and I spent some time pottering in the yard. We broached our 2-year-old compost bin and I was so thrilled to see that the magic has worked and we have lovely friable compost. There are a few things which haven't composted completely; most we can't recognise, but, strangely, the avocado pear skins are completely untouched apart from having become black and slimy. I wonder why that should be?

Considering how long it's taken to produce that compost, it's a bit disappointing to think that I've already used about a quarter of it on three large pots. One is to grow my mint plant much bigger. The original pot it was in just didn't let it grow profusely enough, so I've put it in a huge pot which I hope will encourage it to get really big. The other two smaller ones were for planting out my new sage bushes, one purple and one green/gold.  I had to do a fair bit of deadheading as well.  The verbena has only half the number of flowers now that it started with.

The beans are growing really fast, but I see that the slugs have been at one plant and done their best to destroy it. I've moved the tub further away from the wall, because I think they must climb the wall and make a bridge of their bodies to the succulent leaves. Charles put grit round each plant as well. We put grit on the pots of mint and sage, too. It does make them look very nice.

Where the rubbish had been moved, we found an absolutely enormous yellow slug........ugh! and a tiny grey one.  I salted them and just managed to stop Charles disposing of them in the compost bin.  I don't want their eggs in my compost, thank you very much.  I also found a couple of massive snails, which went over the back wall, and John managed to tread on a very large one. Eeek!

Yesterday, when the window cleaner came, we found some keys by the back gate, which appeared to be for a Daihatsu; Adrian-next-door drives one, so I assumed they were his and I left a message on his voice-mail about them. He hadn't phoned back, so when John told me he was at home I went round and they were indeed his keys. He was very glad to get them back, because not only was there his spare car key on the ring, but his only key to the luggage box which lives on the car roof.

Poor Caramel his lovely tortoiseshell cat has had to be put down. She was only 10, but she developed a cancer on her chin which was inoperable and which made life too difficult for her.

Still, he did have some good news as well. He and Sandra have got engaged, the sweet old-fashioned things, and are planning to marry next year. I was so afraid that when this happened he would move away, but apparently she's coming to live next-door. Hurrah!  I must make them a really nice engagement card.  I'm sooo thrilled!

This morning the hat I bought from the eBay shop on Tuesday arrived by post.  It came in a huge box which weighed hardly anything at all, and the postman asked if it was a balloon!

It's not quite as dark a pink as I hoped, but it's still a very pretty shade, what I would call shell-pink, it fits me and it suits me, so I'm delighted with it.  I just wish everything else would come now!

Oh Good Grief!  I see it's Friday again tomorrow, so I shall have to go shopping again if I don't want to go at the week-end.  I get so fed up with shopping.

Maybe I shall go to the garden centre again on Saturday as a reward for the other boring shopping.  The only shopping I like is shopping for books, for CDs and DVDs and shopping in garden centres, which are the only places I ever do any of that browsing "window" shopping.
blackberry444: (Default)
I went out into the yard a short while ago, to take the bin out.  It's pouring with rain, and the entire yard is full of slugs and snails.  They were also all over the wall.  I salted as many as possible, till I ran out of salt, but it looks as though we're being overrun.  I've never seen so many in one place before.

Yuck!  And ick!  I hates the things, I does.

At least I managed to find and order a dress I quite liked which isn't made of polyester and isn't black.  It's actually khaki, which doesn't exactly fill me with joy, but I also ordered a rather snazzy melodramatic kind of cardigan/wrap in the same colour.  I've ordered a pair of pale green suede shoes, so now I need a green hat.

We're off to Stoke on Trent tomorrow for a  CT Board strategy day.  It looks as though it may well rain all the way there, which isn't going to be much fun.


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