Saturday, 27 May 2017

How am I going to do this.One day at a time.

Sum up our Holiday to the Outer Hebrides in as  few photos as poss ,seeing as I took hundreds ,well lets  start  our journey by driving to sons early on the 11th May and  them driving  us to Southampton  for  the flight to Glasgow. I had visions of me standing in bra and knickers  going through the sensors. Took the belt  off my jeans for  it to pass through the machine, then they asked me to remove  my sweatshirt ,good  job had a tee shirt under it.  I was a bit  hot  and bothered by then as I imagined my jeans falling down so was clutching those, then  she asked me to stretch out my arms  ,by which time I  was thinking thank goodness the kids cannot see me now they would be in hysterics.So then she  frisked me , and let me through. Martin sailed through not even  a glance in his direction.So then  off to wait for  our flight for  2 hours. We have only flown on big  planes before so  it was a little bit of  a suprise to see a little propellor plane awaiting. We were  in the first 2 seats. A  young man got on who had the look ,someone famous maybe. The 2  young ladies opposite were  very excited ,he said hello  to  them and then took his seat further back  in the plane. One of them mouthed  at me  "Take That",I then  realised  she  was not being  rude it was a   member of    the   group Take  That. It  was lovely to see  how overwhelmed they were and we caught them  up in the  airport while waiting for  our luggage and she  said  he had his photo taken  with them.They were in Glasgow to  go   and see them in  concert. My  grandaughter was very jealous that  we  had seen  Marc  Owen. (Even if I had to admit I had no idea who it was).With  the events that have gone on this week in Manchester  I thought of how  all those   young  people  had  been like her  just so excited to   be going to  seeing  their  favourite pop idol and their lives cut short. Anyway we arrived at Glasgow airport in just over an hour  and walked  to the hotel ,2mins walk  away. The  Holiday Inn 7th  floor. We had  dinner  here and I had  a free pudding as  we  had to meet  the   holiday rep so  had  to forgo a  dessert.  I  had  ordered it  and  thought I  had  10 mins or  so    to  eat it.  It  did not arrive until  we  said  we  had  to  leave,  so  they said  take  it with you and  there will   be  no  charge.  Very impressed  with  that.  We met Kimberly and she  talked us through our itinery. I did  feel a little out of place ,sitting  eating a chocolate fondue with icecream.  We slept  well no noise from aircraft that seemed to be landing every few minutes ,we  watched for  ages the  comings and goings.
So bright and  early on the  12th we  boarded our coach ,driven by Steve and headed off for Outer Hebridean Adventure. Our first stop  was  Loch Lomond where we had 30 mins to stretch our legs.

A  bit of a grey morning but pleasant enough I  could give you facts about the loch ,but I won't.  We  walked  along the shore and into the little village.
Would love to have visited  the interior but not  enough time. Lots  of Rhodedendrons in the gardens  . In colours I  have  not seen before.
Leaving Loch Lomond we travelled  on  to  The  Drovers  Inn where we  stopped for coffee.Established  in 1705
The top  very right window is  painted on ,due to a window tax.Reputed to be haunted  there is  a web site  you can look at   . It really is old  in decor as well  as traditon . As you walk in  the smell  of woodsmoke greets you ,or perhaps  it was peat.  
Down the years it has welcomed the great and the good through its doors,including Rob Roy MacGregor.One  of  the kilted bar staff gave us a  talk about the history.
Then we were given the opportunity to visit the rest  of the downstairs rooms  . The  residents of which themselves  have become famous being  used as props in  various television series and film.  Steptoe and Son  had  this  bear  in  the corner of  the sitting  room.
A  bit gruesome I thought.
However the guy standing  next to him is ok.
Now for the wolf.
and another room.
It was choc a  bloc with stuffed creatures of all  kinds, I suppose  in  Victorian times  it was the height of fashion to  adorn your houses like this. In fact  Martins   Grandmother  had birds  of all kinds  in  domed containers  all   over her farmhouse. A  bit off putting  I  feel. So leaving  Inverarnan we set off for  Oban to catch the ferry.
Leaving  Oban for a 5 hour  sailing to  Barra.
Not much to show you of the trip over. Sea bands  were on and  tablets  taken , I do  not  like boats ,much rather fly.However  it  was a very uneventful crossing  a few bumps  of  land in  the distance and lots  of sea. I  was so pleased to   get off the boat though.  Coming into   Castlebay on   the  Isle  of Barra.
It was a short drive to our Barra Beach Hotel, and  yes it is about a minute from  the beach. We went  out after dinner to  marvel  at the colour of  the water and whiteness of the sand.
 Yes the sea really was that colour. Where the grass was on the left there was SHEEP  and 2 dear little lambs. I was happy!!!

Of course we had to walk on the beach ,and I did it barefoot , well I had travelled almost 600 miles to see it ,so I was going to walk  on it.I have not done this for I cannot think  how many years.
We sat and watched the sun slowly disappearing.

 So we went back inside a quick drink then bed.
There I will leave you for now ,I will try and do another day tomorrow I will post a pic of Spring Makeover tomorrow too as I told Sally I would. So bye for now ,it you .do not want to see anymore of holidays then I will be stitching etc as normal as soon as I have updated these so I shall see you then .If you would like to leave a comment then please do ,I love getting  a little word  or two from  my blogging friends.
Much love and many hugs
Barb x

Friday, 26 May 2017

Mays Scavenger Photo Hunt.

Hello , I have  joined Hawthorns group where every month you choose 10  subjects from a list  to photo and  then post them so others can  enjoy your choice.  So here goes. The first  one I chose is Lichen  ,this was taken in a  ruined churchyard in the Outer Hebrides.
Not sure what sort it is , but it was very hairy. Next up is Glass.
This is a piece made by my  other half  a Rennie  Mackintosh style plaque.
The hotel we  stayed in on Barra had in its lounge area a piano ,which fitted nicely into third place  on  my list.
I don't play so it was  quite safe.However the boat on the top leads me nicely to number 4,which was Wave.
Not a recent photo ,it was taken just after a big storm. This is the place where I grew up and live near.A little nearer to where we live  I took  this which fits nicely with Silouette .
Taken on a foggy afternoon dog  walk. Onto number 6 I am not sure if  this fits the word Group. This was taken just below Stirling  castle . A group of chimneys.
Whilst I am still  in Scotland (I wish) the other half  bought me some Hebridean jewellery and a woven  scarf , so it  could  be weave or sharp.
My next  one is carrying on from  the sharp them which is stitch. . This is an ongoing blckwork piece I am working on.

The penultimate one is one I took on our first night in Barra ,  a ray of  sunlight across the water. Ray is the word.
I will leave you with a celtic prayer which is my choice for deep.

So I do hope that my 10 choices are ok. I have not done anything like this before and I was so pleased to have found this and maybe you would like to be part of it too. 

Friday, 5 May 2017

Best laid plans of mice and men

Shall  we try again I typed lots in yesterday and must have pressed something and whoosh all gone despite saving it as I went. I thought I would have a draft copy but no completely disappeared. So the best  laid plan  was not to be. So  here we are in May and the header shows the Lily of the Valley that is blooming just in front of the lounge window. The scent is so lovely. I have forget me nots everywhere, they self seed and look so pretty. I took a few photos with my new camera, the old one finally gave up the ghost ,so maybe I  will  get some better pics now to share. I have one red hot poker out but it has 16 more buds so in a week or two it will be magnificent.
The euphorbia behind it looks lovely with the sun behind it. All these are in the front borders.
A yellow peony just about to open. and  we have 3 in bud, right up the top near the road we have 3 echiums which are very stately and attract lots of bees.
 You can see one right at the back, the phormium in the front has 12 spikes on it. So that will be spectacular later , it looks like miniature bananas when  they  flower. Also in the front is this no idea what it is but it is very pretty.

I did manage a close up of the echium not sure of spelling, but the bees wouldnt stay long enough for the picture.
These are standing about 8 feet tall.The sky was blue when I took these ,but today is overcast ,since I last spoke  it has rained once. Even the grass  when Martin cut it today looked as  if it  needed a drink.We did an Ollie walk the other day , he is never far from our  thoughts , such a lovely walk the skylarks were in  full song, they nest in the fields where we walked twice a day.

The birds are emptying the 4 feeders we have on the apple tree every day now. We have 2 very fat pigeons that visit most days and the other day Martin  was telling Sam that his  grandma used to make  pigeon pie, you can imagine the face that Sam pulled. He did not think you could eat pigeon , to which he was told he was going to have one for dinner next time he called .. I have never tried  it and don't think I want to ...but for once  Sam was trying to get out of coming for dinner.
So this week, I have done  a little stitching not a lot as my hands and back have been playing up. I have had an appointment to see the Spinal  Centre Clinic Consultant on  the 24th May ,great I thought at last, then I found it is almost 100 miles away. Martin is not keen  on driving long distances  now but he has said if that is the only one in the South of England we would go. I cannot tell you how releived I was that he said that. DD said she would take me but to be honest she has so little  time off, with family and work committments that  I would not feel happy .The spring makeover is coming along I had  hoped to get the  dog finished to show you but that maybe next time  now.
I will be sorry when this one is finished as it does make me smile.I have got P finished on Spring.Now onto R.
Jubilees sheep is growing  slowly ,and not much more  stitching has been done apart from Elizabeth Bennets dress which has  not got very far either . So those  will  have to wait for their turn to be shown to you.
I am feeling  like a  Harry Potter character , Dobby the Elf. Hmmmm  I hear  you say she has finally lost the  plot. I  have a    SOCK.
It fits !!!!Martin said the next one should be easier, hmmm  not sure about that but that is next on  the needles.So not completely idle. I have been reading though  and could not put a book down my daughter lent me . Entitled  The Woman  in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware. It took me  2 days to read it ,I am now reading another of hers called  The Dark Dark Wood, which has me  gripped too. I will lend it to  Caitlin when I have finished it. I do not need any more  books  ,I  do not need anymore books ,I do not need anymore books,but when did I listen to that!!! .Books  bought this week.
Amazon is really a good friend of mine lol. However we  seem to have another late starting reader in  the family, Caitlin  our 19 year old grandaughter has just found she can lose  herself in a book ,and has taken to reading in her lunch breaks. She has just read, me before you ,and loved it. She said she wanted to read more  of  Jo Jo Moyes books and so she went to  the library. They did not have any she wanted, and she was  surprised when I said  Oh I have all those on your list. Why she was surprised I just don't know ! as you all know I can  never have too many. She then said next time I will just come and ask  you Nan  , you have more books here. She went home with 3 to borrow. In the supermarket yesterday I saw  one I thought she might like ,but I will read it first.
Martin also picked  up 2 by authors he likes, he is a great reader too. I put this in  the basket as  I thought I could "read" it whilst stitching.
It was only £10,99 which for  a talking book is a bargain. I also picked  up this as I love Charles  Dickens.

Then the next thing that arrived was one of the Silver Creek charts  that I ordered. The other one is on order as she had sold out.

So that is all my purchases for this week. We did go out for a cup of tea and a slice  of cake on Thursday of this week. We went to a cafe which has a courtyard sort of garden and I took a few pics for you to see. This a door that is propped  up .

Just loved the colour and ornateness, is that a word, I have never been so do not know  really, but it reminds me of Morroco. The archway into the into the enclosed garden.
You would not believe there is main  road outside ,a little  oasis in the middle of Portland.The wall I loved , it reminded me of the saying A fish out of water.
Can you see it ,he is well camoflaged . Took lots more but too many to show you here. The greengrocer reminded  me of bygone days when produce was displayed like this.
Inside were hessian sacks containing all manner of lovely things. Yum.
Then while we were driving home  across the  causeway just had to stop and  show you  the  sea pinks that lined  both sides of the road, only in May do you see these in flower,

This is taken  just off the road to Portland which is in the distance, Chesil  beach on the right.

Even closer
So that is all for now ,until next I have an update for  you I will leave you with thanks for leaving me your comments, and now I see I have  200 followers ,feeling quite humbled.
Take care all and if you are travelling safe journeying,keep well and I will speak again soon.
Much love and many hugs