Wow! Bluetit

Over the weekend I watched this bluetit fly in and out of the nesting box on my garage wall so, while my dinner was cooking this evening, I thought I would try and capture it on photo. My patience was rewarded when I saw it land on the clothes line. ‘Don’t press too soon,’ I told myself and waited for a second. Lo and behold, I did it on the second attempt!  I’m so proud, I can’t explain, not only that I’ve photographed it, but that it should choose my garden in which to nest.bluetit 001

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My summer house

Almost finished. Just need a new patio and the garden tidying up.cabin complete 001

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Update on my garden project. The base is down. (It is straight. I’m just a rubbish photographer.) Now to await the delivery date for the cabin to arrive and be assembled. base 001

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My garden project

i have always wanted a conservatory, but there isn’t room on my back and it faces east  – or wherever the sun rises – so there is no sun near the back door after 11 0’clock. I decided to transform the outhouse attached to the side of the house into a garden room. That would have been too expensive though. I finally decided on a summer house at the bottom of the garden. The problem was the pond. The fish all disappeared a year or two ago, so all that was left were newts.

Hubby and oldest son helped me remove the 20-year old wadge of iris/water lily/marsh marigolds whose roots had fused together over the years, but I have far done most of the rest myself.

Two weeks after starting my project this is a picture of some of the stones – there are 2 more piles besides these – that I removed from around the pond  and the rockery beside it, as well as a pile of bricks I dug out. These I have been bashing with a sledge hammer to make hardcore while I have a rest from filling in the hole.

The concrete base is being laid on Tuesday. Will post another photo when it looks a bit neater.


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Car insurance

My car insurance is up for renewal and all the insurance brokers and their grannies are after me. A lovely lady rang me and was asking me questions at ten to the dozen, so fast I could barely understand her. After each and every one she would say, ‘Okay, cool, lovely, no problem.’ I have a low threshold of noises that go on and on, and voices that go on and on, and could feel myself becoming more and more irritated. Eventually, I had to say something and ask her to stop saying it. She managed most of the time, but occasionally fell back into her usual patter. Poor girl. She was supposed to ring me back with the quotes, but didn’t. I wonder why!

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Starlings update

Further to my post last September about the starlings in the tree next door. Well, their home has been chopped down. The tree is no longer a tree, just a few stumps. Those poor starlings. Where did they roost last night? Hopefully they found another warm place to rest their weary wings.

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Wow and double wow. It was snowing gently this morning so I checked through my kitchen window for thrushes in my back garden, as they only ever seem to come when it snows, for some reason. No thrushes, but in the apple tree I saw three robins. Wow, I thought. I’ve never seen three robins sitting amicably without fighting. There they sat, their colourful red breasts facing the weak winter sun, as if they were sunbathing. Every now and again one would come to the feeders and they would change places, like a ballet. Then, lo and behold, I couldn’t believe my eyes when another one appeared, Oh, dear, I thought. Now, there’ll be trouble. But no. All four of them sat there, at each corner of the tree and then three flew onto the feeding station at once, all onto different seed containers. My camera was in the front room and I knew that as soon as I went to fetch it, they would disappear.I ran for it and when I returned, wow, they were still there. But guess what? The battery was dead!

A blackbird disturbed them eventually, and they flew away. Thrilled that I had seen such a sight, because everyone says robins are territorial and don’t suffer invaders gladly, I  made a cup of tea. When I looked out again, they were back. All four of them. I stood and watched them for several minutes until they departed once more.

I may not have proof that I saw them, but it was certainly a sight to behold and made my day.

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Using certain words

I read lots of writers’ blogs to gain advice to improve my writing. One word many experts say not to use is ‘get’ or ‘got’. We should use a more imaginative word such as, ‘he arrived home’ rather than ‘he got home’, and so on. ‘He got out of bed’ is easier on the eye than ‘he arose’ but, because all my books are set in Victorian times they would have said the latter, and I like to keep my language appropriate to that period.

I shall continue to strive not to use the dreaded word, but when you see in a writers’ magazine a winning entry for a short story that contains four ‘got’s in one paragraph, it makes you wonder why you bother.

What do other writers think?

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Readers wanted

I have decided I am too reticent about myself and need to make my name better known so I am trying an experiment to gain more readers of my 7 novels and 2 children’s books. My very first book Looking for Jamie – a Victorian drama – is FREE on instaFreebie.

Sign up now. If you like it you may want to buy the next 3 in the series that have already been published, and the fifth one soon to be, as well as my other books – all set in Victorian times.

It will probably be a flop, as all my other efforts have been, but it’s worth a try.

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I have just read a book that I enjoyed, despite a few odd punctuation issues, cliches and repeated phrases, but I read to the end. On Amazon it is in the top five on Victorian kindle books. Very nice for the author, and all credit to her, but to be honest, I may sound big-headed here, but I didn’t consider it to be any better than my books, yet none of mine are even in the top 1000. I use social media as much as possible – Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc, but all to no avail. Where am I going wrong?

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