*****Is going there and back to see how far it is.*****

Hi I am Jo…wife, lover, best friend and soulmate to Keith. Lover of all things to do with nature and the canals. I am passionate about the Waterways and its history.

I hope you will join me in my rambles and do please comment – I love to hear from and meet new people in blogland!

Life on the cut through my eyes.

Daisypath Anniversary tickers
*****Stay safe and warm out there..*****

Monday 28 January 2019

Another blanket made.

Hello Friends and Followers.
Brrrr it was a tad nippy this morning. The temperature was down to –4.5c last night. I actually slept in this morning till 7.55am, which is unheard of for me. I did however keep to the routine of making a cuppa, which was enjoyed beneath the duvet, whilst watching the morning news and weather. You may already know that we may actually have some snow this week and I for one will be out there making the most of it, because I am a complete and utter child when it comes to snow.
Up and about, I sorted out the fires before going out for my morning stroll. It is so lovely to go for a walk on a crisp morning, because the air seems so fresh and the birds seem to sing louder. Once home from my stroll, I got on with baking a cake.
This one is a coffee and walnut cake with cream ice topping. We try to keep our cake consumption down, but when it is cold outside, we all need a little comfort food. Lunch today was the remainder of a mince beef curry and some Indian nibbles I had in the freezer from Christmas. That is all of the Christmas food gone now.
I have completed blanket number three for 2019, which will be sent off to The Border Collie Trust in a week or so with a couple of other blankets I made before Christmas. I will keep on making the blankets for as long as I am donated the wool.

Do you ever sit and wonder how different you life may have been, if you had not made changes?
I most certainly have sat and wondered and I know that if I had stayed the way I was, there is no way I would be the woman I am today. Today I am a confident woman, I have high self-esteem and know that I can do anything if I put my mind to it. This was mostly due to the man in my life, who showed me my worth.
It is so easy for women to sit back and fall into line to keep others happy, but that is not how it should be. Us as women are stronger than we think and I for one know that I can conquer anything on my own if need be. Friends and family are so important in our lives, but the only person who can make us who we are is ourselves.

Pop back soon xx

Tuesday 15 January 2019

Be careful what you look for.

Hi friends and followers.

This morning friends of ours got more than they bargained for when surveying the canal bed at Womborne. LINK 
It goes to show there are some strange and amazing things on the bottom of our waterways. To think that it had been down there all that time and had not been hit by a boat thank goodness.

Own up who has already failed at keeping their New Year resolutions?
I cannot fail because I did not start one in the first place. But I have decided that I need to get a bit fitter before the cruising season begins and we wend our way up and down lots of locks, which are a work-out on their own. I have been walking more, I am so thinking of doing some weight training for my arms, nothing bit, but some small hand weights. The other half uses them every morning, and I am thinking I may well give them a go, once he has finished with them on his railway. He is using them to weight down the bits of landscaping he is doing at the moment. Of course I may also change my mind and not bother. I decided on the walking, because I miss not walking Paddy in the mornings. I used to walk him every morning, before doing the boat chores, but of course I do not have that option now. I could I suppose go for a walk anyway first thing, or better still borrow someone's dog. Today I set off after lunch and went walking for an hour. Before lunch, I did the laundry, brought in the coal, stoked the fires, sorted breakfast and lunch, so I was not idle. There is always something needs doing on the boat.
This afternoon, I am crocheting. I have almost made my second blanket of 2019 for the Collies.  I will be sending off a parcel at the beginning of February all being well.

Pop back soon xx

Thursday 10 January 2019

It is all go.

Hello friends and followers.

How is your January going so far?

Mine has been a busy one and we are on on the 10th day. Because the weather has been so mild, I have been out in the garden, getting it ready for the Spring. It seems the birds already think it is Spring, because I saw a Blue Tit gathering nesting material and the ducks are getting amorous already. I am pretty sure this mild weather will not last, so to be on the safe side, I placed an order for a tonne of coal to be delivered to the boat. I was told it would be some time either the end of this week or sometime next week, but they would ring me to let me know. We also had a boat safety examination book for this week, in fact this morning.

Yesterday Keith went and did the food shopping and whilst out he bought two new tires for Hetty.
She was very very happy with her new rubber. Her old tyres were not wore, but were perished after being stood around doing nothing for the past couple of years. Now Hetty has her new tyres, I will be able to get out and about on her. Whilst Keith did the tyres, I helped Maria and Barry plant some Oak trees in the Arm. Unfortunately some of the trees had to be taken down due to rotting and safety, so it was fabulous to replant some new trees. Not only that the Oak trees have been grown from the Oaks in the Arm. We very much look forward to watching them grow.

This morning it was all hand on deck. We were up early to get the boat ready for our boat safety examination. We took the flooring up in the back cabin and the shelving down in the engine room so that the examiner could get to the batteries and the fel pipes. Just before he arrived our coal delivery appeared.
I had not received a phone call, but it was good to see him. As we were unloading the lorry the boat safety examiner arrived, so Keith went and helped him get started on the boat safety, whilst I did the coal. With the coal delivery done and the driver on his way, we could turn our attention to the examiner and anything he needed to know from us. I am pleased to say we passed our boat safety with fly colours, so that is done and dusted for another four years. Whilst we were certain we were going to be fine, there is always that worry in the back of your mind that he might find something amiss.
After all the excitement had died down, it was time to make some lunch. On the menu today was a 3 shu pie. When we were out cruising last year, we went to Frampton on Severn, where we had lunch in The Three Horse Shoes Pub. There claim to fame is 3 shu pie. Today I made my own version of the pie.
In two small oval dishes, I put mashed potato across the middle of the dishes. I then added Cauliflower and Broccoli Cheese to one end and Chicken and Leek to the other end.
To top it off, I used Puff Pastry as its lid. I put it in the oven for half and hour.
Lunch in a dish. Thank you to The Three Horseshoes for the inspiration. I will definitely be making it again. The rest of my Thursday was spent crocheting, before dinner and feet up for the evening.

Pop back soon xx

Tuesday 8 January 2019

Back to the blankets.

Hi friends and followers.

Thank you for your New Year messages. I hope that 2019 will be kind to us all.
How is the start of 2019 going for you?

Mine has been a mixed beginning, but I am hopeful that things will look up. I am looking forward to our new cruising season, but before that begins we have our boat safety coming up this week. My fingers will be tightly crossed. I cannot see any issues, but one never knows. I am ploughing through getting rid of things we no longer need or wear, because we have very little storage space. Living on a boat, means you require very little to live. I have always said, if we buy something new, then something old has to go and that still applies. It may not be Spring, but I am already doing the Spring cleaning. This week will see me changing nappies, and beginning to clean the back cabin from top to bottom. I have painting I would like to do, but no point doing it when the stoves are lit. I will leave the painting a bit longer. I will be checking the gearbox and making sure that everything is ready for the boat safety examination. If there is any time spare, I will be out in our garden, or do something in the Arms gardens.

In the meantime. I have got on with my blanket making for the Collies.
This is the first one for 2019. There will be many more to follow as the wool donations come in. I love sitting down and crocheting when I have spare time, or cannot be bothered to do anything else.
This morning I spent my time in the laundry, getting the washing done. I want to catch up with the extra washing I have before we go cruising. I like to wash the blankets and curtains, so that everything is nice, fresh and clean.
It is still so mild out, that the flowers in our garden are still growing. My bulbs are beginning to come up. They will get one heck of a shock if we suddenly get a freeze on. Yesterday I ordered another tonne of coal, just in case we have a cold snap. What is not used will come in handy for next Winter. I always like to keep coal onboard when we are out cruising as well. Now that we are not selling coal, we tend to have our coal on the pontoon when we are at home and then take the rest of it with us when we go off. I am not sure when we are heading off out yet, but we both already feel the need to be on the move.
I am off to make dinner and then decide what we will be watching tonight. I do know we will be watching Martin Clunes in ManHunt on ITV1, it is the final part of a three part series.

Pop back soon xx

Saturday 5 January 2019

New Year, new adventures.

Hello friends and followers.
Here we are in a brand new year and already I find myself wondering what the heck is going on. It all began so calmly, but then during the week, I was thrown a curve ball, which has rocked me to the core. I guess you really find out who your true friends are, when it comes down to it. Anyway it is onward and upward. I am all about forgiving people, but words hurt and once said they cannot be forgotten. I guess we will see if a friendship can be rebuilt over the coming weeks. I am a true and loyal friend and hope that things can be repaired.
With this new year, I am on a new adventure. I was given a bicycle by a friend, who did not use it.
Today I took the bicycle to the local cycle shop for her MOT, because we were worried the gears were not working properly. Anyway Hetty passed her MOT. Oh yes I have named her Hetty. She does need two new tyres, because hers are a little perished, but the gears are fine after a few drops of oil and some TLC. I was quite impressed it only cost me £20 to be reassured all is well with Hetty. On getting her home, we have fitted her with a pannier box.
She has a new basket and bell as well. I am already for some proper cycling. Years ago, we both had bicycles, but because we were carrying coal, we had very little room for bicycles, so we let them go. Now that we no longer carry coal, we have the room, so the OH bought himself a bicycle, so we can now go off on more adventures. I am going to be cycling safely, with my new helmet on and a hi-vis sash, so if you see me on the road, give me a wide berth. We are both looking forward to getting out and about on our bicycles.
Pop back soon xx

Tuesday 1 January 2019

Happy New Year.

Hi Friends and Followers.

Here we are falling head first into a brand new year.
Whilst I was away, I did 80 locks. 40 locks to get to our Christmas dinner and then 40 locks to get home again. I realised that I was either unfit or getting mature in my years, because those locks seemed harder than they did a few months back. Anyway we left our mooring and went on our way to our friends for Christmas.
The lock paddles were not the best on many of the locks and certainly tested my strength at times, but we got there in the end.
We did not hurry. On the first night we stopped at Tom O'the Wood, where we went the pub for a pint and a bowl of peanuts. Yes I did say a bowl of nuts. They do not come in bags there, you are given a bowl with them in. Very posh. The next morning, we passed a blanket thrown into the hedge. We both thought that if it was there on the way back we would stop and collect it.
We arrived at our destination and settled in waiting for Christmas. On the first morning at our friends, I noticed that the battery warning light was flashing low battery. It turned out the 240v freezer was killing our batteries, which did not happen last Christmas. The only thing for it was to put everything into the fridge freezer and turn the 240v freezer off. Thankfully there was room. OH then ran the generator for a couple of hours to recharge the batteries. Phew disaster averted. We think we may need to change the batteries before we head out in March.
We spent a couple of lovely days doing nothing much at all. My friend gave me her bicycle, because she had hardly used it. It had a puncture in the back tyre, but the OH soon got that fixed. It has been years since I had a bicycle, so I am very much looking forward to getting mobil again with the aid of two wheels.
Christmas Day arrived. We opened our presents to each other before going to our friends for a fabulous lunch. We spent the day chatting, laughing and watching Elf, which we had not seen. After a wonderful day, we retired back to our boat.
Boxing Day we said "Cheerio" to our friend and headed from whence we came. The first day doing the Lapworth 19 locks, with their hard paddles, but we did meet some lovely people out for their Boxing Day stroll.
The blanket we saw on coming up, was still in the hedge, so we stopped and I gathered it out of the hedge. It was a fleece blanket with a few holes in it, bit I saw potential and therefore it was coming home with us.
We moored overnight at the top of the Hatton Locks. The next morning, it was overcast, but very mild for December. We set off down the locks and were met part way down by a boating friend, who lock wheeled us down the rest of the locks to home.
This was 2017 coming down the Hatton Locks, when we had two inches of snow and sheet ice. So December's weather was really strange, with it being so mild.
Back home, we hooked up and settled in. It was lovely to have the TV on again and to not have to worry about running the batteries down. Both of us were completely shattered.
The next morning which was Friday 28th Dec, I did a laundry wash, which included the fleece blanket we rescued. I will do something with it once it has dried. After doing boat chores, we walked into town to Vision Express to get a new screw put in my glasses, because I seemed to have lost the one that was in there. I was just thankful it did not happen when working the locks, otherwise I may have lost a lens. New screw in my glasses, we caught the bus to Leamington-Spa, where we went to Halfords, to buy a bicycle helmet, basket and bell for my bicycle. The OH also bought himself a bicycle, so we can go cycling together. To get the bicycle home, he had to ride it and I caught the bus. He actually arrived home 15 minutes behind me, which was good going. With the bike stowed away, dinner cooked and eaten, we settled down to watch films. For the first time, we watched Eddie The Eagle. What an absolutely brilliant film. I of course remember Eddie and also remember sitting there watching him at the Olympics and just crossing my fingers that he actually landed the jump on the 90 metres, which as we all know he did. Eddie shows that you should never give up on your dream, no matter how tough it gets. I will be watching it again, because I liked it so much and not just because Hugh Jackman is in it, honest.
Saturday 29th and another day closer to 2019. It was still incredibly mild, so what do you do on a mild day in the festive season. I pressure washed our pontoon. I know, I know how to live it up. Before doing the pontoon though, we got my bike out of the hold. We put the fixed wheel back on, then added the basket and bell. I then took it out for a spin onto the industrial estate. It felt so nice to be back on two wheels. I have always ridden a bike, even as a child. I then went on to have a moped for a few years. I will now be back out there on my bicycle now, which will mean I can go further afield. The washing of the pontoon all began because our neighbours both did theres, so whilst the pressure washer was available, I decided that I should do ours, because the pontoon although fitted with chicken wire is very slippery at this time of the year. I had it all done in just over an hour. Some of the chicken wire will need replacing, which we will sort out in the New Year.
New years Eve. I managed to stay up to see it in with a tot of Whiskey, which we do every year.
May 2019 be kind to you and yours. May it bring you good health, happiness, laughter and sunshine.

I am off to get on with life and to do new things in 2019.

Bye bye xxxxxxxx


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