Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Sunset is still my favorite colour, and rainbow is second

I couldn't agree more with the quote in the title from Mattie Stepanek, there is nothing more beautiful than a sky on fire with either sunrise or sunset. At this time of year they tend to be at a more sociable time so I can get lots of photos as I get up in the morning or on the way home from the nursery. 

Sunset at the nursery

David was in shock on Wednesday when I did as I was told and went to see about my back, it must have been bad for me to give in. For the first time I went to see a physio about it and I have to say it's probably the best £40 I've spent in a long time. I went from barely being able to walk in and move to skipping out like a spring chicken (well maybe more like a middle aged quirky bird) It was so good to not be in agony, it's still uncomfortable but has to heal and I've to go back for a follow up appointment next week. I was even able to bend down and lift leaves in the sales area and move easier for the first time in over a week. Normally I leave leaf lifting until spring but I've got so much to do and am behind with being off, having a cold and my back, I want to work on something that tidies the place up and makes me feel better. Not that its an easy job lifting leaves from a huge expanse of gravel, but it looks so much better once done.

A very pink sunset over the Pentlands

I'm putting the leaves in a ton bag for David who is going to build a leaf bin in the wild life garden for wee creatures. This will give frogs toads, hedgehogs and a diverse range of insects a snug home over winter and through the year. I can then use the leaves one they are rotted down and then we start again, a win win situation for everyone. You can build a leaf bin very easily using 4 stout stakes or posts and some chicken wire. Simply put the posts in at whatever size you want the bin to be, I usually make them about a meter squared. Run the chicken wire round (3 feet high wire is ideal) and staple it to the posts. You can engineer some way of getting into it easily to empty. I very simply put 3 or 4 large nail down the last post sticking out an inch or so and hook the last edge of the wire on to these. You can then unhook that edge and get into empty the leaf mould when the time comes.

Remember we have vouchers available for Christmas gifts

Now that I've started lifting the leaves I want to get on with the job before the wind picks up and moves them around, It's incredibly calm at the moment, unusual for Scotland and this time of year, this is shown itself in the distribution of leaves over the sales area to be picked up. There a lot more this year, they literally dropped straight down and lay where as last year they were in the main blown away. So it will take quite a bit longer to do this job this year.

Nice to see some blue sky

The weather is really up and down temperature wise these past few weeks, we get several days of very low minus temperature and so deep frost then it warms up and is pleasant and dry for a few days, then it drops again. The clear cold days do mean there's a better chance of seeing a decent sunset before I leave the nursery.

SUn setting from the nursery

The trees are light with the setting sun

We went through to the far side of Glasgow to pick up some plants for an order on Friday morning, making the most of a frosty morning to get that task done. I did the cafe flowers in the afternoon once we were back in the nursery and carried on lifting leaves. David did some more digging on the middle terrace for the new garden, at least the soil is defrosted this time. Bizarrely some one helped them self to a plant out one of the nursery borders while we were out this morning. The odd thing is they had to pass the ones for sale in pots in the stock bed to get to the one in the garden!

Berwick Law and the Bass Rock from the Lammermuir Hills

I do often say my life is quite random these days, in a good way, it makes it more interesting for sure. On Saturday I accompanied David to East Lothian where he was teaching the Lammermuirs Hare group how to use radio tracking equipment. this is working towards studying the mountain hares in these hills over the next year or so. We had a lovely lunch with the guy who is leading the group and then headed out to the Lammamuir Hills to put the theory into practice. Bracken and I got a hill walk which was great with lovely views over the River Forth, Berwick Law, the Bass Rock and beyond. Once everyone had had a turn of the radio tracking equipment we headed back to the car at sunset. You can find out more through the Lothian and Borders Mammal Group, a chance to learn more about these lovely animals, get out in the hills and meet interesting people.

The Lomond Hills across in Fife

Bracken grouse spotting

Mist creeping over the hills

Learning about the equipment

Walking over the Lammermuirs

Sunset over the hills

Sunday and we headed to Barter Books in Alnwick for our annual pre-Christmas gathering with David's family, minus family, apart form out kids. Sadly David's mum hasn't been well so she and his Dad were unable to make it this year. Having already bought the train tickets for the kids we decided to have a mini get together anyway. David Adam and I went by car and Ben, Jamie, Becky and Becky's boyfriend Teejay were collected from the train station. We had a great wander around, a lovely lunch and of course bought some books. How could we not when they are all great prices, second hand, it's a great way of recycling and giving books a new home. If you are ever in Alnwick visit Barter Books, it's housed in the old railway station building and they've kept all the original features. It's a real gem of a place.

You couldn't have any other type of Christmas tree in a book shop

So many books

Bracken trying to look intelligent

My goodness it was freezing cold on Monday, I was glad to be off and in the house. No chance of doing anything at the nursery today. I got the house cleaned, cake baked, the study blitzed, lot of paper work cleared out, so much so I overheated the shredder!

Lovely sunrise on Monday

That tree in a pink sunrise
Porridge for breakfast, essential on freezing days

Monday's dinner was creamy sausage canneloni

Making Victoria Sponge

The finished sponge

In a bid to catch up after nearly three weeks of little work dues to being ill and my bad back I went into the nursery on Tuesday while David was gliding. It was back to leaf lifting as I really want to get it finished, it's going to take long enough as it is. Luckily my back is holding up, it's good exercise for the waist too a that bending and twisting. 

Hope you are having a good week and getting organised for christmas.

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