Willow weaving, snow and wedding plans

I have one thing to say ...... brrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Winter is definitely here. It's been a busy week as we get drawn towards Christmas kicking and screaming. In the nursery I've been continuing to sort through stock plants when the weather is too wet to be outside. I am getting there with them, although less potting up as it's winter. On Wednesday I did the cafe flowers, adding in some white Solidago from the florist in Biggar. Along with the pine foliage, rose hips and cones they looked quite festive. For some reason I forgot to take a photo.

Before, you can see where it was woven before and the bottoms of the long branches of this years growth

On Thursday morning the weather was dry and not too cold so I headed to the bottom terrace to start weaving the neglected willow. It runs right along the top of the banking and round to the far side of the Whitmuir building, reaching over eight feet tall at some points. I am going to take it back down to where it was woven into a short "fence" before, allowing more light into the cafe and the terrace where we are creating the wild life garden. I started by cutting out any old or dead wood, then any branches not big enough or in the wrong direction for weaving. It was then a case of starting to weave, cutting out excess branches as I went. I'm quite impressed myself considering this is the first time I've done this.

After, this is probably about a quarter of the whole length to do

At lunch time the dry weather gave way to heavy rain so I retreated indoors to do paperwork and some potting. The rain got heavier as the afternoon wore on, and when David and I decided it was time to go home we were greeted by snow outside! In the dark we hadn't noticed it was now snow falling past the window!

By the time I got down to the car and it de misted to drive home, the snow was much deeper,
and it was slidey journey home. The result was chaos on the roads around the south of Edinburgh and
David took two hours to do a half hour journey on his way back in the evening from a meeting

By Friday morning the snow was still lying but disappeared as the day went on. The wind was picking up into what is now known as Desmond. David came over at lunch time and we decided to tackle more of the tunnel. Although it was a bit nerve racking as the tunnel lurched in the wind.

Looking pretty in snow

But it has stood up to the 50 mile gusts so far. We spent part of the afternoon levelling the next bit of the tunnel and putting down mypex and then the plants. I'm really pleased with how it looks so far and also can't believe how many plants there are in the tunnel already, we've been busy (you can't see the rows and rows of plants behind me).

Progress in the polytunnel

By Friday night the rain and wind were very bad, it sounded like some one was firing frozen peas at the window! We cosied up with a bottle of wine and some chocolates and a warm fuzzy dog and caught up on some TV viewing. On Saturday I arrived at the nursery in one piece despite the wind, rain and overnight flooding. There was some interesting flooding at Romano Bridge where the fields had been replaced by lakes and the river had disappeared. Fortunately there was no damage at the nursery, just pots and plants blown about. It rained all day and the wind howled all day, and I headed home in the early afternoon before the roads got too flooded. As it was I had to turn back on one road as it was too deep to risk the car.

My kind of Christmas tree, Barter books, Alnwick

On Sunday we had a day off for David's family pre Christmas meet up. For the second year running it was held at Barter books in Alnwick. The weather was much calmer and sunny as we drove down, picking Jamie up off the train and minus Becky and Daniel this time. I love this place, it is a book lovers paradise and a must if you are passing through Alnwick. They also have a great cafe where we all met for lunch, the food is good and situated in the old waiting room of the station. You can read about this unique quirky place here.

Brter Books, Alnwick

Big lights, Barter Books

Having a coffee before we left Barter Books

The nearest I'll get to a halo! Ha ha, Barter Books

The badly flooded Tweed at Berwick on the way home

Monday was annual Christmas truffle making day! A day spent in the kitchen up to my ears in chocolate, but in the end nine different varieties, seven hours of making and over 200 truffles, I rarely eat them as I sicken myself making them, but I have it on good authority they are good. Most go into nice wrappings as presents and the horde of boys finish the rest.

Gold dust rum truffles, a bit if bling!

Fruit and nut fudge

Lemon and white chocolate truffles

It's a chocolate thing

On Tuesday we had an appointment with a wedding photographer in Peebles, who's work I like. We had a look at albums and more of her work and have booked, seems crazy when the wedding is so far away, but as is the nature of these things, they book up so quickly and far in advance, so that's venue, caterer and photographer booked, more organised than I thought. After our meeting we decided to walk Bracken along the river before the forecast rain, unfortunately the rain beat us to it, but there was an impressive rainbow and the river was in full spate after the heavy rain. 

A walk along the river in Peebles

Rainbow across the river

Double rainbow, you can just see the faint outer rainbow

A drookit duck on the river

A heron keeping an eye on things

Colourful Sorbus berries on the riverbank

After our walk we found a nice wee cafe and had some warming coffee and scones, we then had a wander around the shops, doing some more Christmas shopping, which is nearly done. Then it was home to warm up, do domestic chores and catch up in the house.

I cant believe how fast time is going, it's been another busy week, I hope you are having a good week.

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