*****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..*****

Sunday 14 June 2020

For Magda.

Tuinkabouter has had a makeover. Keith got busy with his paintbrush. he is clearly happy with his new look, because he is smiling.

Jo xx

Day 136 :Seedlings and Bird Bath.

Dear family, friends and followers.

I am still here, just felt like posting another video. Taking some time out from writing the blog, so you can expect more video's for a while.

Pop back soon xx

Friday 5 June 2020

Day 127: Rain and an hour out.

Dear family, friends and followers.

Wooo hooo we have had some rain. After the record breaking temperatures we have had this Spring, it was a lovely to have a drop of welcome rain. The garden was definitely singing with joy, because watering the plants with canal water or a hose is never the same.
I knew the rain was coming, so made sure I tied the Peony's to the tree. Peony's can get battered by the rain if it become heavy and I did not want the blooms breaking off.
I woke up at 6 am to the sound of rain gently tip toeing across the roof. Whilst being woken at 6 am would normally make me cross, I was actually really happy to hear the sound of rain. It is very much needed, not just by me but by farmers, other gardeners and I am sure many more. Due to the rain, it meant there would be no painting for gardening done. I was getting day off yayyyy. Well when I say a day off, I did still have jobs too do. The back cabin and engine room needed a clean. Due to the roadworks going on the dust has been awful. There is a light dusting of the road works dust inside and outside of the boat. I think it is this dust which has been upsetting my skin. There is obviously something in the dust which my skin does not like and it has to contain either Nickel, Thiarum, Cobalt or Neomycin. I am suspecting Nickel. Thankfully I have creams onboard to help. I will be so glad when the roadworks are done. Anyway I needed to get rid of the dust which was gathering on surfaces. The back cabin was cleaned first and the floor washed. I then did the same to the engine room. I had intended to have a go at the bathroom, but got distracted with Farm Town and chatting with friends online. The bathroom could wait for another day.
With some of the boat chores done and the rain coming and going over the past couple of days. I have popped out and done some weeding from time to time, just so that I can get some fresh air.
We had a Scarlet Tiger Moth come visiting in the garden. They are beautiful and always welcome to sit on plants in our beds.
The Poppies in the garden are doing well.
I plant to take seeds, once they have dried out and plant more next year.
Yesterday we had our first picking of Strawberries, normal and wild ones. They were lovely and sweet. We will not get many this year, because the plants were young when i moved them last October, but next year we should get a better crop.
This morning my seed order arrived. I immediately got out into the garden and put the seeds in. I am a little late with the beans, but we will have a late crop, which is fine by me.
This morning I rang the GP to see if I could have some more cream for my skin. She has given me some more steroid cream and more tablets, so we will see if I can get it under control. I do however think, it will carry on until the roadworks are done. I am not about to sit inside with the doors shut to keep the dust away, because that would drive me bandy, so I will keep taking the tablets and using the cream. I had to leave the Arm this afternoon, to walk into town to get my prescription. I was a little apprehensive, because I had no idea what to expect, now that the restrictions are being eased. Both of us have kept to the Arm and our own peace of heaven, whilst the world outside has been doing its own thing. But needs must and I needed to get my cream and tablets. I donned my mask and set off from the security of the Arm. My first encounter with someone else was just after leaving the Arm. it was a man walking along the pavement staggering along. I then realized he had a bottle of alcohol in his hand, so I decided the best thing to do was cross the road in order to get past him. I got up into the town and there were a few people milling around, which was a little surprising, but very little is open. There is a couple of coffee places, the chemist, M&S and the post office. I was glad I was wearing my mask, because people certainly did not seem to know what social distancing was. I got to the chemist and it was very well organised. There were markings on the floor to tell you where to stand. Once I got the counter, it is shielded in perspex, with a little hole for you to pass either money or use the card machine. The chemist on duty and the others working behind the counter were all in masks. There was a woman at the counter when I got there and so I waited for my turn. When places are that well organised, it makes you feel safer. having picked up my prescription, I then legged it back to the safety of the Arm. Although it felt okay to be out, I will not be rushing to do it again. I am still of the opinion that it is all happening too soon and people are not bothering with social distancing.

Pop back soon xxx

Tuesday 2 June 2020

Day 123: Keeping occupied.

Dear family, friends and followers.

For those who have been popping in and not seeing any posts for a few days. We are fine. I have been pretty busy with lots of jobs and just keeping myself occupied.
I have moments of total and utter madness and this happened on the 28th May. I decided that we should have a vegetable plot on the 27th May. On the evening of the 27th when it was cooler, I began moving some of the plants which were in the area where I wanted to dig a vegetable plot. I made sure each hole dug, was filled with water to give the plants a chance to survive in the heat, which we have been experiencing. On the 28th, I was up early to do the paint jobs and then I dug over the new vegetable plot. it is about four foot square and will be good enough for what we want. I then had the fun of going online to pick seeds. I have gone with lettuce, beans and other salad items. I am waiting for them to arrive, so I can make a start. I have put some Dwarf Beans in pots in my mini green house, but nothing is showing yet.
One of the plants I moved was our pale pink Peony. It had been in bud when I moved it but it has now flowered, so it looks like it is happy in its new home. I am hoping it does better than in its original position, because it seemed to be struggling.
On the 29th, first job for the day was to rub down our bird table and give it a coat of paint, because it had not been done for sometime.
I have painted it the same colour as our fence panels around our patio area and really chuffed how it has turned out. Once the paint was dry, I put some large holed wire netting around it to stop the bigger birds getting onto the table and pinching all the food. The wood pigeon and magpies are really naughty at nicking the food before any other birds get a chance to get close, well not anymore.
With the heat rising more and more, I spent the afternoon inside the boat, rubbing down both of our stoves and giving them both a coat of heat resistant paint. I like to do them every year to keep them fresh and in good condition. It is also the time to check the door rope on the saloon stove and the glass. I also check the fire bricks to make sure they are still in good condition. 
The back cabin stove is always easy to look after and again I check the fire bricks and the fire rope around the top of the chimney. Having changed it last year, it is fine for another Winter.
Later in the day, when the temperature had dropped, I went out and watered the garden. I am so pleased with how well the Peony, which was already in the garden has done. It is really stunning.
Friends with Peony's have said that this has been their best year yet and I am so glad we are on our mooring to have been able to see both of them in flower. Whilst Coronavirus has affected so many people across the UK and world, with so many losing their lives, being in lockdown on our mooring has meant we have had the pleasure of seeing our garden grow.

Both Keith and I have been busy with paintwork.
Keith has been painting our aged water cans, which sadly no longer hold water, but are still okay as a decorative item on the boat. We do have a new can, but want to save it for when we have the boat completely repainted in a couple of years time. Getting hold of water cans is so difficult now. There was a company in the Black Country doing them, but they have now stopped and the ones from China are cheap and do not last.
Because I paint the rest of the boat, I leave Keith to do the water cans.
On the 1st June, yes we are now in June and Summer is here our brackets and catch arrived for our new gate.
It took us all of five minutes to hang the gate. I think that has to have been the quickest job we have ever done. Really pleased with our new gate, which used to be a table top.
Having had a busy few days, I took it easier and just pottered. I put some straw under the Strawberries in the fruit patch and laid down some bark chippings. I also undercoated our mop poles. There has not been a dull moment over the past few days. We also had a food delivery, which was most welcome. We are still locked in here and will remain so until at least July 1st. No boats are allowed in and the site manager has now put our work boat across the entrance, because with the lifting of some restrictions we have had people coming in paddling canoes and we have had to politely ask them to leave. There is a sign on the bridge saying we are closed, but of course people never read signs. One person even said he had not seen the sign. It is huge and I was tempted to say "You need to go to Specsavers". Anyway with the work boat across the entrance, nothing is coming in now. We are not even open for the services.
Why are we taking such drastic steps, now that some restrictions are being lifted?
The reason is we have elderly and poorly people here at the moment. Of the residential moorers I am the youngest at 58. Our oldest is in his late 70's and has underlying health issues and we have visiting boats here who have been with us all Winter who are in their 80's and one of them has Leukemia. We also sadly have another person with terminal cancer, who is very unwell, so we are not taking any risks with anyone's health here. With the relaxing of the restrictions, there are more people and cars about and not everyone is sticking to the 2 metre distancing and I have not seen any masks being worn, not even among the men working on the road. So for now we are completely locked in. Others can take risks with their lives if they wish, but we want to keep everyone here safe.

I hope that you are all keeping well and safe. The canals are now open again and with cruising there will still be risks at locks and moorings. I sincerely hope that all our boating friends remain safe out there and for anyone on the land, please look after yourselves, because life is so precious.

Pop back soon xxx


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