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

Thursday 21 October 2021

Gardening time.

Hello, one and all.

How are things with you all?

The weather has been a little up and down this past week, which has meant very little has been done in the garden since rebuilding the bug hotel. Yesterday began promising. We were up very late for us 9.25am and with us wanting to get our morning stroll in, I said we could do a walk, which would take us into town for a coffee and a late breakfast at Wetherspoons. We took a long route into town and we enjoyed a lovely breakfast in Wetherspoons, before strolling back to the boat. We had not been home more than fifteen minutes, when there was a huge clap of thunder and the rains came down in truck loads. After heavy rain and a thunderstorm yesterday, the sun came out this morning and I decided today was the day to get on with sorting the garden out. 

What was our old vegetable plot, has been turned into a flower bed. The vegetable garden is now behind our bunkers. I moved plants and shrubs and added new one. I also moved the bird bath on the log, so it is closer to the bird table. This year I have planted some bulbs. I am a little late in planting them, but the ground has been very wet and I have had other things to do. 
I am hoping that when Spring comes, everything will fill the gaps in nicely. I am going to plant more Lavender, especially for the Bees and Butterflies, which I hope in turn will use the bug hotel.
The previous moorer, left a couple of mirrors behind when she left and we decided today to put them up on our shuttering at the back of our staging. 
I am hoping the two mirrors will reflect the plants in front of them, so we can see them from the pontoon. We will see what happens. They make a nice touch. I had lunch and then tidied everything up and away. I felt I was done for the day. These days my energy levels wain after lunch. This getting old lark, is absolutely no fun at all. Still progress was made.
Whilst I did the garden, Keith worked on one of the rag rugs he made for our back cabin a few years ago.
For some very odd reason, the hessian had developed a split in it and so surgery was required.
We now have two smaller rag rugs.
They still fit nicely in the back cabin. Hopefully they will last a little longer. At some point, I will need to wash them, which is always a worry, because they can fall apart when elderly. I usually put them in a pillowcase to wash them, just in case bit comes out. Talking a washing things, the one job, I did get done whilst the weather was up and down, I washed the hold strings. They get very grubby and stiff, throughout the year, so we take them off five at a time and I put them in pillowcases and wash them. Why, do I put them in pillowcases? Well they have metal S hooks on them, and I do not want them clattering around in the washing machine, so putting them in pillowcases stops this. I secure the tops of the pillowcases with a cable tie. It works well. I do the same for any of the cabin strings. 
Right time for a coffee and to get my feet up.
Have a wonderful day.

Pop back soon xxx


Monday 11 October 2021

Bug Hotel building.

Hello everyone.

How has your day been?

My day has been a busy one out in the garden. But before all of the garden fun, I enjoyed a nice cup of coffee in bed, whilst watching the news of the day. Once up and sorted out, we went off for our morning walk.

We had the 28 acres to ourselves on our walk. Well when I say to ourselves, we did meet up with a few Squirrels, a couple of Rabbit and we heard the Buzzard over head.

Back on the mooring and today was the day our old bug hotel was going to get a revamp. We moved the hotel from our old mooring and I was never really happy with how stable it was. It was only held together by 4 temporary posts and a tarpaulin roof.

We dismantled the old hotel, stick by stick and log by log. 

At the bottom of the hotel, we came across one of the residents, who we moved to a safe location, whilst we worked on making the Common Toads home safer.
Once, I had cleared some of the soil away, we began to construct our new hotel. We recycled some of the old wooden fencing, which was taken down on site. I am all about recycling where I can. 
Once the walls and the roof were on, it was time to rebuild the hotel.
It did not take long to fill the new hotel up with the logs and sticks.

With the hotel almost finished, we added more bee hotels for the solitary bees we get every year. We are both so chuffed with how it has turned out. We look forward to inviting our new residents into their new home. 

Pop back soon x

Sunday 10 October 2021

We all struggle.


Hello one and all.

Today is World Mental Health Day, and I bet every single one of us has struggled at some point in our lives with how we feel mentally. I know, I have had some very dark days and times and to be honest the only way I have gotten through them is to talk. Talking, is such an amazing healer. There is an old saying "A problem shared, is a problem halved" and this is so very true. 

Never feel like you are on your own, because you are not. There is always a listening ear available. Never sit alone with your worries and fears. Reach out and ask for help.

Pop back soon xx

Saturday 9 October 2021

A dedicated follower of fashion?


Hello family, friends and followers.

Firstly, how are you?

Here we are another step closer to the time of year where the adverts on the TV are already centred around on big day and the shops are gearing up to crazy season. Yes, I am talking about Christmas. Mid September, I saw my first Christmas TV advert arghhh and the shops have been putting out Christmas things including food already. Sure some of the food will be out of date, by the time we reach Christmas Day? I am not one for a the hype, but I will say I have already bought two presents, just because they will not be available again and I wanted them. So, if you are like me and think Christmas comes too soon, because of all the hype say "Yay, I am not alone".

Another, thing that I do not go with is fashion. I am most definitely no fashion icon and never have been. The last time, I was anywhere near fashionable was in the 19070's, when I had a pair of Red and White hot pant and I felt like a million dollars, or should that be pounds? I always wanted the tartan strips on my jeans when Bay City Rollers were all the craze, but never got them. It is true to say I like comfort over fashion and that is why I am going to share with you something that has changed my life, as far as comfort is concerned.

A couple of weeks ago, we went into a charity shop to get Keith a pair of trousers, any trousers his size, because one of his old pairs were threadbare and were only any good for doing the dirty jobs on the boat, such as blacking or changing the oil, or for working in the garden. We picked up a lovely pair of Regatta walking trousers and a pair of M&S Blue Harbour Chino's. Both pairs fitted him like a glove and so they both came home with us. I then got to thinking how comfortable the Chino's looked on him and wondered whether they would be comfortable on me. I find buying trousers a problem, because I am short and I do not like drop waisted trousers. I like high waisted trousers and jeans, but fashion today dictates I cannot have what I want. Anyway, I decided I would try on his Chino's and woo hooo I was hooked. They are the most comfortable trousers, I have ever worn. They fit perfectly and I love them. Okay they button up differently, but hey who is gonna notice, when I have a blouse of a jumper over them and to be honest, I do not care. It is sad to say, that much of ladies fashion is purely to look good, it is not about the comfort. I am all about the comfort and I am not bothered about wearing men's trousers, if I feel comfortable. Because, I was so comfly in the Blue Harbour Chino's, I bought myself a pair on Ebay and I think I maybe living in them, until the end of time. I also have a love for dungarees. Maybe the dungarees bit, is because again they are comfortable and you do not have to worry about the waist bit. This woman is for comfort. If There were decent Chino's made for women, I would buy them, but they are either drop waisted, straight leg or just not comfortable. Where as the men's are perfect, so thank you Blue Harbour for making this woman very happy.

Changing the subject. We have been busy again in the garden. On our patio area, we had two tubs, containing Honeysuckles in the corners. They have been in the pots for 8 years and were definitely pot bound. My thought was to remove the tubs from the corners, take up the two paving slabs, and plant the Honeysuckles in the ground. This would give the Honeysuckles more room to thrive. First task was to get the slabs up, to see what was underneath. This took a crowbar, a shovel and brute strength and a few choice words. But, between us we managed to get the slabs up. Thankfully, underneath there was soil and not loads of concrete, although the previous person, had put dabs of concrete on the slabs, which actually did nothing. 

My next job, was to get the Honeysuckles out their pot. It was fair to say, I struggled to get the plants to vacate their pots. In the end we had to tip the pots up and prize the plants out kicking and screaming. The tubs did not fair well and are destined for the scrapheap. 
When replanting the Honeysuckles, I put some manure in the hole first and watered it well. 
With both Honeysuckles in their new homes, I gave them a good watering and asked them to thrive. Now is a good time to move shrubs etc. I have a lot of plant moving to do in the garden this Autumn, which I will post about when the time comes. 

Boat news. I have been taking the hold strings off and washing them bit by bit. They get so grubby and stiff,. Washing them softens them and also makes them look a lot cleaner. Next week we are off out for a Boating Buddies day, with two ladies from Canal and River Trust. We have done this on two previous occasions. With most of C&RT's staff  being office based, the organisation wants their staff to experience life afloat for a few hours, so they set up Boating Buddies, where those of us who live afloat, take out the staff for a days cruise and introduce them to what we do everyday and we also get to tell the history of the waterways and the things which need improving. As I said, we have done it twice before and it was fantastic. The weather for next week is looking good, so fingers crossed the ladies should have a great day with us. If you are a boater, and think you would like to get involved, why not contact C&RT Boating Buddies. Now that Autumn is officially here, we have the stove lit. The immersion heater has been switched off, because our stove gives us hot water as well as heating and stove to cook on. With energy prices going up at the moment, the chance to save money on the electric is a welcome one. I bought our fuel in the Summer, at Summer prices, which means we benefit from a cheaper price. The amount of fuel I bought, will last us the Winter. We do not need any diesel, as we are almost full. Autumn evenings are chilly, so it is nice to have the stove lit, but at the moment during the daytime, it has been unseasonably warm, which has meant we have had the doors and windows up, because it has been too warm on the boat. It is a fine line, when keeping the fire in or letting it out. 

What has your week been like?

It is now the weekend and this morning, we walked up into town. The market was very busy, but having donned our masks we felt absolutely fine and I had the hand sanitiser with me. We sat outside for a coffee at the Tuckery, then got a few items off the market for Keith. We then went to a jewellers to get a ring enlarged, so that I can wear it. When I get it back, I will tell you the rings story. By the time we got back to the boat it was getting on for 11am and my thoughts turned to lunch and what I would be doing for the rest of the day. I will share that with you another time. 

Have a lovely day. Do pop back soon xxx

Monday 4 October 2021

Strange bangs and an opps moment.


Well hello one and all.

Here we are into a new week and moving onward through October. Yes I said October. I know, I am still trying to work out where 2021 has gone, especially as we seem to have spent so much of it at home. But enough of that, I think we can all say we have had enough of Covid-19 and what comes with it, even though we are still being very careful.

In my post title, I have written strange bangs and that is because, when you are woken up at 1.20am by loud bangs early hours of a Saturday morning, it is going to set your brain a racing. I almost shot upright in bed, which woke poor Keith up. At first there were four loud bangs coming from close to our boat. I lay back down and wondered if I should go and investigate. I am not the bravest of people, but I was having thoughts of someone breaking in on site, or someone in distress. It went quiet for a few moments, when there were four more loud bangs. I decided to be brave and jumped out of bed and donned my slippers. To make sure I did not disturb anyone who may be around outside, I opened the engine room doors very quietly and crept outside. Our security light came on, but the banging continued. The sound was coming from by the main gate, which had me wondering was someone trying to break in? I crept up the steps and kept low, as to not draw attention to myself. I could hear voices, so I kept low and managed to look between the hedge and the gate post. I saw a car and three men. One was lying on the floor, with two others bent over with torches and it appeared that they were trying to either change a tire or repair something to do with a wheel. At this point, I kind of realised they were not up to anything naughty, so I would leave them to it and head back to my nice warm bed, because I would be absolutely no use to them in my PJ's and slippers. As I got back inside the boat, Keith was just getting himself sorted to come out and see what was going on, which was not needed. Back in bed, there was the banging again and they began shouting. I was almost tempted to go back out and ask them to keep the noise down, but then thought, maybe that is not what they wanted to hear, but at 1.20am in the morning some people need to realise they need to keep their voices and noise down, because noise seems to travel when it is so quiet. On reflection, I could of asked if they needed any help. But the sight of me in my tartan PJ's and slippers, may have been more than they needed to see and Keith would have been no use. Anyway, about half and hour later, the banging stopped and I heard a car drive off, which could only mean they had fixed the problem or decided to carry on regardless (There is a movie title in there somewhere).

The weekend, was spent actually having an Autumn clean out and a bit of pruning. The weather was not the greatest, because we have had a lot of rain, which has made the ground very muddy under foot, but I wanted to get some cutting back and pruning done. I wanted to plant some bulbs, but the ground was too wet. With the gardening jobs done before lunch, I turned my attention to having an Autumn clean. Yes I know, we all try and do this in the Spring and I did it in the Spring, but I felt the need to go through the cupboards and drawers and have a tidy and clear out. I hate keeping things I have never used or worn for more than six months. I had a dustbin bag full of rubbish and a bag with things for the charity shop. If someone else can get some wear or use out of anything I am getting rid of, I am glad. These days we throw away far to much stuff, when in fact someone else would probably love the items. The rest of Sunday was spent watching movies. I love a good movie on a Sunday, because I like to relax on Sundays. Movies for the afternoon were 'Sweet Home Alabama' and 'How do you know', both films starring Reese Witherspoon. 

Here we are Monday and it is a day of sunshine and showers. No gardening, even though the sun is out, because the soil is too wet. We got out for our morning walk. This morning it took us around our local cemetery, which is 28 acres and is beautiful. The workmen were there busy trimming bushes, putting up scaffolding and cutting the grass. There was a notice on the gates, saying they will be turfing new graves soon. There is always something to do. Back home, I riddled the fire and made it up for the day, made a coffee and carried on with my sorting out. Lunchtime was calling and I decided we would have jumbo fish fingers, with peas and potatoes. I opened the freezer and pulled out the fish fingers and grabbed a bag to get the peas out. The bag I grabbed was the sweetcorn, the one big problem was the plastic sealing clip on the bag had come undone, so as I pulled the bag out of the freezer, the clip came off and the sweetcorn went all over the place.

There was sweetcorn all over the place. I managed to save most of it, but sadly I had to sweep some of it up with a dustpan and a brush, so it had to be binned. I hate binning food, but this had to go in the bin. Note to self: Check food bag clips before taking things out of the freezer. Along with our fishfingers, potatoes and peas, we ended up having some sweetcorn as well. On the plus side we had two of our five a day and the floor got a good wash. 

As the afternoon has worn into the evening Facebook is down, as is Intagram and Whatsapp. I wonder who pulled the wrong plug out? Castaway is on the TV tonight. Oh I do love a bit of Tom Hanks. Time to put my feet up and contemplate tomorrows jobs.

Pop back soon xxx


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