Wednesday, 15 April 2020

Spring Weekend


This weekend has been a happy jumble of all sorts. Days have passed slowly and gently, unhurried  and relaxed. I have given over trying to maintain too much structure to our time at home, instead I'm learning it's better to take things day by day and adjust my busy mind accordingly.

Lily and I had lots of messy fun making Chocolate nests. A few weeks ago I had made sure to get in the ingredients we would be using, and I can't tell you how difficult it was not to help myself to some of the chocolate during that time. It was calling to me, even from the highest shelf.
Talking of chocolate, we have eaten such a lot over the weekend, in fact, the Easter bunny arrived super early here, with foil covered eggs hidden all over the garden.  





As well as the chocolate nests I also baked an orange and rosemary cake using some of the fresh rosemary from the garden. It was delicious, if a bit sticky, served with a marmalade glaze.








I have been very fortunate to receive some plants from a nearby garden centre which, sadly, would otherwise have gone to waste, so the garden has been treated to a much needed injection of colour. I returned  home from a lovely afternoon walk to find I had been gifted several pots of tulips, some fritillaria and some blue anemone. Some beautiful flowers, which are quite clearly enjoying this sunny weather.  The sweet peas, which I saved from last year's crop are already looking promising and the spinach in the raised bed is growing fast. Over the weekend we also sowed the carrot and beetroot seeds, and the two different varieties of sunflowers, always a favourite of ours, have  begun to sprout. Once again, I'm feeling such gratitude to have this outdoor space at the present time.


Home learning begins again this week and I am happy to be able to put this in place once more. I'm easing us in gently, however, although the topic this term is much more fun, and it helps that we are getting a little more input from the school. Each afternoon we are getting out for our daily walk, making the most of this time to stretch our legs, appreciate our surroundings and enjoy the gloriously sunny weather.
J. X

74 comments:

  1. Your posts are so beautiful and calming Jules... it's much appreciated by me. Our local garden centre delivered plants to the hospital, and staff were invited to take 2. Unfortunately my husband commutes on his bike, so was unable to benefit from their kindness.

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    1. Thank you, Scarlet, that's a really kind thing to say.
      I hate to think of some plants going to waste and that's a really lovely gesture from your local garden centre, such a shame your husband couldn't manage to bring any home with him. I hope you're feeling better. X

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  2. It was a strange Easter weekend not being able to please ourselves if we wanted to go out or not, but we enjoyed spending time together at home and taking our time over things. I always used to make chocolate nests for Easter, I still do sometimes, but not this year. Your photo has me wishing I had though now.

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    1. That was my first thought, Jo, but then I realised we probably wouldn't have gone very far anyway. We often stay home on Bank Holidays, in order to avoid the crowds. I'm glad you were able to enjoy a more relaxed time at home. X

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  3. What a lovely post Jules - you sound so relaxed - I think the lockdown is quite suiting people if it wasn't for the horrid reason behind it. More mini eggs though - I never got to buy any or see any and now everyone's blogs seem to have pictures of them to tempt me and I am certainly feeling a need to eat one now!
    How lovely to receive those plants - I am trying to resurect any bedding and annuals in my pots that survived the winter to try and make a cobbled together summer display.
    Hope the home schooling goes well - are you learnng very much yourself? I learned a new fact or two at Little L's last school assembly about volcanos!! Stay safe and well. x

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    1. Thank you, Vivien. Relaxed? I think I'm trying to convince myself :)
      Mini Eggs are sooo good and the colours so pretty. I'm glad I stocked up when I did. The nests are always fun to make and, as expected, they didn't hang around for long.
      Our home learning is going well, keeping it fun and relevant definitely helps. I haven't learned anything new, although there's time yet. X

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  4. Chocolate and growing plants, those are two welcome things indeed! Enjoy! PS I would have gotten into the chocolate myself.

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    1. I feel quite proud that I kept away from the chocolate, although I've more than made up for it since :)

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  5. The siren call of chocolate.... none left here to call, thank goodness. Your Easter weekend sounds lovely, I see the weather was really beautiful in your corner of the world, too. What a difference the sun makes! We are still waiting for our seeds, they have been on order for weeks. Fingers crossed they arrive before it is too late to plant them out. Have a lovely week x

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    1. Ah! you hear it too. It's not only me then :)
      Fingers crossed your seeds arrive soon. X

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  6. Everything looks so good & fresh from the garden to the bakery. My seedlings are a little leggy, not enough sun,and to cold to put out, we'll press on and be thankful and hope I can nudge them along until garden time, in another 6 weeks..

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    1. Thank you, Faith. It's still early days for the seedlings, but they look promising. Fingers crossed. X

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  7. Chocolate certainly help in these times. Looks like it’s been beautifully sunny in your garden of late. That marmalade cakes sounds delicious. B x

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  8. Your nest cakes look absolutely delicious! Well done to you for managing to avoid eating the chocolate! The orange and rosemary cake sounds delicious also.
    How lovely to be gifted flowers! We bought some bluebells before lockdown which I planted 2 weeks ago and it's nice to have those as well as a mist of blue bells and a few others!
    I was really happy to pick up 2 cucumber plants from Londis yesterday as we went to get a couple of bits in town whilst posting my sister-in-law's birthday present. It's a bit early to put them out so will have to keep them in the utility room for the moment.
    Hope the return to home schooling goes ok.

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    1. The nests taste delicious too, Kezzie. We'd like to make some more but they will need to wait until I can go shopping again.
      The plants were a wonderful surprise and were gratefully received. The garden had been lacking in some colour and to now see some new seedlings appearing makes me very happy. It must be lovely to have bluebells in your garden. X

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  9. Cakes all look scrumptious and I am glad to hear the home teaching is also going well.

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    1. Thank you, Pat. They've all been eaten now. :)

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  10. I love seeing the black and white kitty-cat! I visited England about 11 years ago and bought a puzzle Threatened Wildflowers of Great Britain. And here, on your blog is a picture of the purple bell-shaped flower from the top of the puzzle box! I enjoy reading your blog, but seldom comment, and never Follow. Thanks! Looks like it was a Happy Easter!

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    1. It's lovely to see you here, Ruth, and thank you for your kind words. X

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  11. What a gloriously cheerful post - your photos are so uplifting and I am quite envious of the chocolate nests, even though I couldn’t eat them πŸ˜„πŸ˜„

    Whilst routine is important, you are the one who wisely said to me that our emotions are going to be up and down as this situation continues, therefore, adapting each day to how you both feel makes incredible sense.

    Thinking of you and sending hugs from our end of the county to yours. xx

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    1. Thank you, Jayne. I couldn't even offer you a chocolate nest, as they have all been eaten!
      I think that as the weeks have gone on we have needed to adjust our days accordingly and being gentle on ourselves is just as important (if not more) than trying to keep on as we were before.
      Sending hugs right back at you. X

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  12. Only one of my tulips like yours has actually flowered. None of my late tulips has even appeared above ground. Now that my conservatory/dining room is not receiving visitors for the duration, I've brought all my trays of seeds indoors. They are loving it. I can hear them oohing and ahing in delight in the sun whilst I do my jigsaw. My children will have been around Lily's age when they last had a big egg hunt on Easter Sunday. We were staying with very indulgent (childless) friends in Berlin. I don't think we ever did it at home. What rotten parents we were!

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    1. The gardens and seeds are loving the sunshine just now and, no doubt, all the extra care and attention they are receiving.
      I don't believe for a moment you were rotten parents. Sensible, yes. I have a feeling the Easter Bunny may just be leaving eggs in a basket by the door next year :)

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  13. Your photos, are a Feast For The Eyes!!!!!!!

    And exude Joy and Peace and Spring and .... Everything nice!

    Thank you!!!!

    Stay home
    Stay safe
    Stay calm
    πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ

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    1. Thank you, WoW. I'm glad you like them. X

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  14. Just had to say that, about your photos, first!!!!!!! They-are-gorgeous!

    Seems to be so Wise, to not worry about as much structure, as is the usual norm. These are different and trying times. All of us need, comfort... More than rigid rules and schedules, it would seem. Especially, little ones.

    No... All routines do not go by the wayside. That would be just as *not-the-best-idea.* But what works... What brings calmness to the family... Those changes, seem wise.

    Oh your baking! And oh all that chocolate! -grin- I have not been able to have chocolate in a long time. Please have some _more_, for me!!!!!!! I'm sure Lily will be happy to comply, with my request! -smile-

    Again, thank you for your lovely and comforting post...

    Stay home
    Stay safe
    Stay calm
    πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ

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    1. Thanks, Wow. As the weeks go on I am adjusting our days accordingly. I have been thrown a few curveballs but am making the best of our time at home.
      Lily is always happy to eat chocolate :)
      Stay well. X

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  15. You have a beautiful garden and getting those extra plants will help even more. So glad that they weren't thrown away. The cake looks delicious, we went for the orange option this year and are enjoying a rather large piece each day in a bid to avoid the chocolate.

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    1. I was more than happy to put the plants to good use and they were very gratefully received. X

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  16. A great selection of photos Jules, and how nice that you got some plants from the garden centre. I love the blue flowers and the foil covered eggs but my favourite as always just has to be Mog - she looks adorable :)

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    1. Thanks, Eunice. Mog is practicing her innocent look. Don't be deceived. X

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  17. Oh Jules...I really think your cat would have preferred a mouse hunt! x

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    1. It's lovely to hear from you, Jackie. Everyday is a mouse hunt for Mog. X

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  18. Oh my favourite egg nest cakes. The sunshine does make you appreciate your outside space. I do feel for the garden centres. I know some are delivering to try to claw back some business. Perhaps something can be salvaged if they do reopen in May.

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    1. The chocolate nests are a delicious treat and, happily, something Lily is able to eat.
      I've been loving this sunny weather we've been experiencing and I'm sure it makes all the difference to how I'm feeling just now. X

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  19. Your pictures of the spring flowers were so very lovely. How nice that you were gifted with them. So many businesses are not going to return when this is over and gardens and nurseries are going to be hard hit. Their season is short and their flowers have been ordered since December but, here, they are not allowed to be open. I am hoping that sometime in May, some limitations will be lifted. It is so sad to see my neighbors lose their livelihood.

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    1. I was very grateful to receive the plants, it would have been such a shame for them to have gone to waste. Sadly, there will be so many businesses which won't recover from this time. Stay well, Arleen. X

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  20. What a lovely post! Those chocolate nests look very tempting and your garden is coming along nicely! I hope you will share the recipe for the orange and rosemary cake because I have both growing in my garden!

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    1. Thank you, Bless. The recipe for the orange and rosemary cake was from an email from 'the simple things' magazine. I'll hunt it out for you. X

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  21. Back again...

    Put on your thinking cap,
    I have a question for you tomorrow.

    πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ

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    1. I'm intrigued now. I'm a little behind with my blog reading, but I will be sure to catch up in the next few days. X

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  22. It' such a blessing to have an outdoor space to be. I am spending so much time out in the garden or out on the verandah where there's the blue sky above and the warmth of the sun. Your Easter photos are just lovely. MegXx

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    1. It is such a blessing, Meg. I'm sure the sunny weather is making a huge difference to how I'm feeling right now. X

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  23. What a beautiful post Jules. It's lovely to have a garden to enjoy, I feel so sorry for those without. Your Easter weekend sounded just perfect.
    Stay safe and well xx

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    1. It's lovely to hear from you, Eileen. I've been thinking of you and hoping everything went well. Sending you lots of love and warm wishes for your continued recovery. X

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  24. And I am back with link, to my Pertinent Question.

    Link to my latest post, is in my Sig. Line below.

    So.... What happens AFTER??????

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    1. Thanks, WoW. I'll be sure to have a read. X

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  25. That gorgeous cat of yours has made my day, what a pretty thing!
    My Mum used to make those nest cakes for me to take into work.
    I've no idea what happened to our snakes head fritilleries, they seem to have vanished from the garden. How lovely to get some free plants, so sad that so mnay are going to waste. xxx

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    1. Mog is a very sweet cat. We feel lucky to have her. X

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  26. It looks and sounds like you're having a lovely lock down and apart from no school and work nothing much has changed which is good. What a lovely surprise to be given some plants, I really need to try and find a delivery where we are that doesn't involve spending ridiculous amounts of money! That's quite a haul of Easter eggs Lily has there lucky girl :) Take care and stay safe. xx

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    1. We're trying to make the best of it, Suzanne, and Lily has adjusted brilliantly. I'm sure it would be a different story if we couldn't manage to get out for a walk each day, and for that I am so very grateful.
      I hope you and your family are keeping well. I'll be over for a catch up later. X

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  27. What a lovely gentle and beautiful post. I am glad to hear that you are managing to find a routine that works for you, that is so important at this time isn't it? How lovely to come home to a gift of plants from a local garden centre, so many businesses have been effected haven't they.

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    1. Just like everyone else at the moment, we are muddling our way through. Some days are more productive than others and that's fine, it's all about what feels right at any given time. I hope you and your family are keeping well. X

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  28. We have lots of shoots poking through in the garden now. It's reassuring to know that in some areas, life goes on as normal. Let's hope we can soon, too.

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    1. It feels reassuring to see the signs of new life. I go in the garden and check on my seedlings each morning, whilst I enjoy my coffee. X

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  29. Lovely post and photos. The orange and rosemary cake sounds good :)

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  30. Yummy ... those little nests do look so tempting, I couldn't have stopped at one.
    How lovely to be gifted the plants/bulbs, what a nice treat that was.

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    1. The nests are VERY chocolatey, Julie. Even with a sweet tooth like mine, I'm not sure I could eat more than one at a time. X

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  31. Hi, Jules. Firstly, I'd like to apologise for not visiting your blog for quite a long while. I've had neither the time nor the inclination to go on my computer. I have managed to find a bit of 'me time' and have crocheted a new blanket for Rachael. I'm happy to see you and Lily are keeping well and safe. Best regards, Jane x

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    1. It was lovely to see a new post from you, Jane, the blanket is beautiful. I hope you're keeping well. X

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  32. April 18, 2020

    Thank you
    πŸŒΈπŸ’œπŸŒΈ

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  33. Gorgeous photos. The choccy nests look absolutely yummy and making me peckish!

    Julie xxxx

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    1. I managed to get some more eggs when I did the weekly shop, so I think we'll be making some more later today. X

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  34. Your photos are gorgeous as always, I especially like Mog! Such a beautiful cat.
    Love your posts Jules. Relaxing to read in such a crazy time, and you have such an appreciation for nature, and you always make me want to eat cake! xx

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    1. Thank you, Sadie. We're very lucky to have Mog, as she's such a good cat - most of the time :)
      It's very kind of you to say that. Just like yourself, I try to keep my blog focussed on the happier things in life.
      Always eat the cake. :)

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  35. All such lovely photographs, and those little nests do look very delicious :)

    All the best Jan

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    1. Thank you, Jan. I've made some more of the nests, but using plain chocolate this time. X

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  36. Those easter nests look delicious and your garden is looking wonderful. I know how fortunate we are to have a reasonable size yard to be able to get out in every day, and often of an evening. It certainly helps to stop and enjoy this simpler life we are leading now. School's back for us too and even though we have a basic routine, we're taking each day as it comes depending on how we're all feeling. xx Susan

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    1. I often bemoan the garden as for around six months of the year the weather is just so wet that we can't get much use out of it. I feel so very fortunate to have this outdoor space now.
      I've learned I need to ease off a little with Lily's home schooling, going with how we feel on each given day. X

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  37. Oh, I remember those birds' nests from childhood. I love chocolate, too. Your garden sounds so exciting.

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    1. I think the nests will always be a favourite among children and they are such fun to make. X

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