100 Happy days: Week 14

2014-06-30
It was Jema and James’ wedding today – the day was just brilliant, and we’re so very happy for them!

2014-07-01
It’s great being on holiday, but there’s always something special about going home.

2014-07-02
Our little fish babies are getting bigger and bigger. Previously you could hardly see the little guppies, but now you can see them and their developing colours pretty clearly, especially this yellow one.

2014-07-03
The rose bush in our back garden is in full bloom now, showing off its beautiful pink flowers.

2014-07-04
A wee nod to the 4th of July, with good old pizzas, and a stuffed crust one, no less.

2014-07-05
Gareth made up a lovely dessert – strawberry jelly and strawberry mascarpone cream on shortbread.

2014-07-06
A tiring but successful afternoon in the garden, with a fine harvest of Chard Bright Lights for dinner.

100 Happy days: Week 13

2014-06-23
The delphiniums have done really well this year, turning out tall and straight, and I particularly love this purply blue shade.

2014-06-24
Just finished Neil Gaiman’s Stardust. I loved the movie, and I love the book even more. One of the main characters is a beautiful star (as in, from the sky), who is also grumpy and swears. That probably sums up why Neil Gaiman is one of my favourite authors.

2014-06-25
I was away on a work trip to Newcastle, and we stayed just across from St. James’ Park (Newcastle football grounds). That’s was just coincidence – we didn’t go inside, but it was exciting to be up close to it.

2014-06-26
In Newcastle we had a work team-building event, which included a day of orienteering and challenges in Chopwell Wood. The wood was beautiful and tranquil (apart from the mad bunch of us running around in it), and one of my favourite specimens was this little orchid.

2014-06-27
Back home, and tucking into seafood paella – One of our favourites from Markies, which is yummy despite conveniently taking 7 minutes in the microwave!

2014-06-28
Here we are in Belfast, meeting up with my friend Jema, whom I hadn’t seen in years! We also got to meet her charming husband-to-be, and a couple of other uni friends.

2014-06-29
We visited Belfast Zoo, and I nearly died from the cuteness of these little piglets. It’s not a great photo as it’s from my mobile, but trust me they are the cutest piglets ever – Visayan Warty Pig.

100 Happy days: Week 12

2014-06-16
I’ve been playing Two Dots on my phone. It’s yet another variation on the Bejewelled ‘match up items’ format, but the design is just so clean and nice to look at – it reminds me of Scandinavian design. Despite being a little addictive, and sometimes a little frustrating, it’s just so cheery!

2014-06-17
I’d heard about this on Twitter – This person mentioned it to No More Page 3, and complained to Samsung, and then complained to EE after finding out they were responsible for the pre-loaded menu options – this option used to be loaded onto sim cards some time ago, but after it was no longer done the older sim cards were never removed from circulation.

There was a lot of negative feedback about it to EE, and they were quick to respond with an apology and promised a review. And the next day the issue made it into the media rounds, such as this article in the Guardian. While it annoys me that this was ever done, and then conveniently forgotten about, it pleases me no end that all it took was one person to raise the issue – and soon her voice was amplified by many others in agreement, resulting in a positive response from a large corporation. Everyday activism does work.

2014-06-18
I like tea, but I don’t quite live on it, however I didn’t realise just how important my morning cuppa was, until the kettle in the office kitchen broke…I just didn’t feel right. There was almost a crisis, until one brave hero nipped across to Argos and got a shiny new kettle. Here’s to you, little cup of tea.

2014-06-19
Gareth wasn’t home for dinner today, so I had lazy / comfort food: Nigella’s marmite spaghetti.

2014-06-20
We were supposed to head down to Perth to visit some friends, but due to car trouble it didn’t work out. Silver lining: I managed to finish up some sewing, and then I finally tried out the new walking foot that’s been sitting in my sewing box for ages. The last one I tried wasn’t right for my machine, so I’ve been afraid that this one wouldn’t work either, but wonder of wonders, it worked! I can now sew straight lines on several layers of material, and a whole new world of quilting is available to me! That doesn’t mean I’m actually going to whip out quilted delights anytime soon, but the option is there.

2014-06-21
Brazil themed M&Ms. Fun and yum.

2014-06-22 Alpaca farm
My knitting group got to visit an alpaca farm today, which was very exciting! More details in a proper post in the not-too-distant future :)

100 Happy days: Week 11

2014-06-09
We had pulled pork from Tesco – stick it in the oven, and then do the ‘pulling’. Easy and super tasty.

2014-06-10
I do love sea holly. This one was from a shop, but ours in the garden are slowly getting there.

2014-06-11
I was at a conference at the AECC, and the sessions were great, but the food was fab too! These canap├ęs were so cute and yummy :)

2014-06-12
It was Gareth’s birthday today, and this is him wearing one of his presents: Professor Brian Sox, from ChattyFeet

2014-06-13
The World Cup is in full swing, and I was so pleased for Spain when they scored in this match, savouring those few moments of joy until it all went downhill from there…Such is life.

2014-06-14
It was a busy week for both of us, so I finally made Gareth’s birthday cake on Saturday – Nutella cake

2014-06-15
I ordered some items online and they sent a set of teabags with the delivery. A nice wee gift.

Lupins 2014

My ‘lupinarium’ of Russell Hybrids is back, and better than ever! We’ve been told that lupins will come back taller and denser for about 4 or 5 years, and then diminish. Ours are in their 2nd and 3rd year.

We’ve got purples, whites, purple and whites.
2014-06-14 Lupins

2014-06-14 Lupins

2014-06-14 Lupins

The tightly packed white stems remind me of Indian jasmine garlands.
Garlands. Little India. Singapore 14 October 2008
Image by Kathryn Greenhill

Light pinks and dark pinks.
2014-06-14 Lupins

2014-06-14 Lupins

2014-06-14 Lupins

Peach and yellow, pink and yellow,
2014-06-14 Lupins

2014-06-14 Lupins

and new this year: purple-pink-yellow.
2014-06-14 Lupins

My new favourite.
2014-06-14 Lupins

Here’s another new one – I call it Two Purples.
2014-06-14 Lupins

The leaves are lovely too – I must remember to use them in flower arrangements.
2014-06-14 Lupins

Lupins are bee-friendly, and there were several buzzing around today. They move about so quickly, but I managed to catch a few decent shots, which I uploaded to the BeeWatch survey. It’s a project being run by the Bumblebee Conservation Trust with Aberdeen University, to monitor bumblebees in Britain, as their numbers have been in decline. It’s pretty simple to set up an account, upload your photos, and have a go at identifying the type – don’t worry, an expert will confirm this.
2014-06-14 Bee watch

Keep up the good work, lupins!
2014-06-14 Lupins