Wednesday 29 November 2023



The past month was restful, I used my car less and walked to my allotment, spent more time with Mollie, who likes having her chin brushed.  I took everything at a slower pace.

My youngest son left home, although he had been planning for some time I wasn't really prepared and am feeling 'empty nest syndrome'  He's sharing a cottage with a friend nearby and sends pics of what he has cooked for dinner (I used to send pics to him of what I was cooking for our dinner entitled  'daily stodge'! I'm glad he's keeping it going).   To get myself adjusted I painted his old room white and made an office space for my work from home days.  It's really nice to have a quiet room to work in but I miss him, of course.

I loved looking out of my kitchen window during the first few weeks of October because my shed was covered in the most beautiful red leaves entwined with flowering ivy which attracted bees.

On the allotment I took delivery of  a tonne of manure, it was hard work shovelling it from 100 yds away to the plot in wheelbarrows but worth it.  I moved my composters around a bit to make a square space for growing pumpkins next year.

Wonderful news:  the plotholders who applied to keep bees on the site have been granted local council permission, the hives will arrive in late April.  I have asked to help as would like to learn as much as possible.  After a year helping I intend to do a bee keepers course and then maybe keep my own.

 We have eaten something from the allotment every week - most recently an assortment of pretty, purple green and white heads of cauliflower, delicious roast or as cauliflower cheese.  My sprouts are coming along nicely as are parsnips and leeks.  We had some good size pumpkins, a glut of beetroot and pattypan and plenty of salad leaves. 

It has been a productive Summer on the allotment and I have spent many happy hours not only tending but just sitting and enjoying the space.  As someone who suffers anxiety it has been very therapeutic.

Having watched Gardeners World recently I was inspired to plant saffron crocus, they arrived  with shoots and I thought it may be too late planting to expect flowers this year, but the flowers bloomed only a few weeks later and I  harvested about 40 saffron strands. 2 strands per flower.

 As the Winter creeps in there may be less work to do on my plot but I will still visit regularly and can be busy planning for next year.

I joined a gym thats more local to me and go swimming when I can.  Just started back with a pump class (weight lifting) and use the rowing machine which we have at home.  As there is less to do on the allotment this will provide the exercise I need during the winter months.

I am reading Raynor Wynn's third book, Landlines -  this latest is very much like the first (Salt Path) and is a good read.   In the background is the challenge of her husband's irreversable health condition, their walks motivate and empower them.  If you like wild camping and walks in adverse weather and challenging terrain, you will enjoy this.  

Mellieha, Malta Sunshine Break

We had a week in Mellieha, Malta, staying at DB seabank all inclusive. My packing was 7 lightweight tee shirt/cotton tops, 3 sho...