Magicool

I bought a can of this for my daughter to take to school with her during this mini heatwave we’ve been having. She’s absolutely rubbish in the heat. We’ve had tears this week. Actual tears! Now, yes, I do realise children of today are incredibly spoilt and pampered… yes, yes I know you just had to…

Garden Successes

OK so we’re well and truly in the clutches of summer now. We’ve had a bit of a heatwave where I live, with temperatures reaching the mid-30’s which for us Brits is considered to be hot, hot, oh God why is it so HOT?! We’ve all been slapping on the sun cream and running fans…

Sweet peas 

I planted my first ever Sweet Peas this Spring.  I planted a variety in a fairly large pot in some good quality compost. Then I made a wigwam of bamboo simply by thrusting the sticks into the soil, bending them to meet in the middle and then tying them together with some twine.  As they…

Cotoneaster

My cotoneaster has really come into its own this year.  I cut it back quite severely last September as I don’t think it had been cut back… ever? It was all looking a bit Sideshow Bob but the branches are now down to the ground in a weeping willow fashion.  Covered in tiny pink flowers,…

Dune Raffia Clutch

I’m a very organised person. I have clear outs and Spring cleans and tidy ups all the time. But as I’ve said before I’m a bit crap when it comes to organising myself. I keep saying I’m going to diet but I don’t. I am FOREVER moaning about my hair and promising to cut it/dye it/shave…

The One

Currently giving The One by John Marrs a go.  A decade after scientists discover everyone has a gene they share with just one other person, millions have taken the test (a simple DNA mouth swab) to find true love with THE ONE…  Except what if you’re paired with someone in another country? Or a gender you’re not…

Top Heavy Dresses

If, like me, you are top heavy then buying dresses sometimes feels like Mission Impossible. I have liked many a dress only to try it on to find it is either a) shapeless and sack-like, making me look twice as big as I am or b) well fitted to all parts except the front which lacks coverage…

Basildon Park 

We recently visited Basildon Park, a National Trust property near Reading in Berkshire. The house was built between 1776 and 1783 for Sir Francis Sykes.  It was never completed and had several owners. In 1914, it was requisitioned by the British Government as an army convalescent hospital. In the late 20’s, the current owners attempted to dismantle the house…

Roses 

We recently visited the National Trust property Basildon Park and got to walk round Lady Iliffe’s  beautiful rose garden.   We went on a Bank Holiday Monday that was a bit grey and wet (aren’t they always?!) but I have to admit it made the rose garden no less lovely. If anything the glistening droplets…

Alliums

April – Alliums popping up in between the hydrangeas  Last year I loved my Globemaster alliums so much I made sure I planted more this year. I added some Kings & Queens bulbs which are a dark purple and white. The bag was mixed and turns out I only ended up with two white ones…

Quebec House

If you’re a regular reader of this blog you’ll know I went to visit Chartwell the other day. On the way home we also stopped in at Quebec House.  It’s literally a 5 minute drive down the road from Chartwell so it seemed silly not to.  Whereas Chartwell has a large house and expansive gardens and grounds…

Chartwell

Last weekend we made use of our National Trust passes and drove down the road to Kent to ‘Chartwell’, the home of Sir Winston Churchill.  We toured the house (cameras are not allowed) which is set out as it would have been in the 1920’s. There was also an exhibition charting Winston’s life, both personal…