dear diary :: calm before the storm

We came up to the cottage with the intention of getting away from everything and having a rest.  That was the plan – but of course we are so used to doing things and not resting that we still packed the boot of the car with gardening tools – the gardening tools for heavy work such as the hedge trimmer and pruning pole.  We never learn.

DH’s cold has kept him inside, just resting – I am trying to dodge the sneezes as I really don’t want to catch it.  When he was at work he never had colds or flu – I can’t ever remember him having a day off ill, so where is he catching this from now he is at home most of the time.

I did very little yesterday other than make some tomato soup; it feels quite foreign to do nothing.  After lunch I went for a walk around the garden and then down onto the beach.  I actually like the greyness at this time of year it has a kind of sombre tranquility when the colour of the sky merges with the colour of the sea.

The weather must have been quite bad whilst we were away as there is seaweed strewn over the little steps down to the beach, suggesting some very high and forceful tides.  I had a mind to collect some seaweed for the garden but then got diverted taking photos. There are still a few pockets of colour here and there in the garden and the trees are turning a lovely golden colour before the leaves fall.

This is a good time of year to get on top of the weeds but my knee is not good at the moment – I have a hard cyst called a Baker’s cyst developed at the back of my knee in the crease and the fluid makes it hard to bend it when I kneel down so weeding has been a bit of a struggle this afternoon and two hours has been my limit.

Having so little to do here has given me a chance to catch up with my favourite blogs and even leave a comment or two.  I will make the most of this quiet time because come the weekend the pace will increase again as we will be going down to North Yorkshire from here to stay with my daughter so we can visit my mum and take her out for a couple of days, and then look after the grandchildren a couple of days. Then we can go home and catch up with the jobs piling up there. I am savouring these few days of calm. Looking at my diary it will be almost November by the time we get back home – a sobering thought.

I have also caught up with a bit of reading.  I downloaded the accompanying ebook to an audio book I got from Audible a while ago.  It is called The Kaizen Approach and part of the ‘lean’ process of doing things.

Kaizen is all about changing things in small steps and I love this idea as it fits well with our hectic lifestyle at the moment.  Not that I want it to be hectic – far from it but at the moment with so many family members needing our support we have no option.  Kaizen is all about small – taking small actions, identifying small moments and giving yourself small rewards.

So with Kaizen in mind I am looking at making a few small changes to the way I do things. A while ago we tried eating our meals earlier at 12.30pm for lunch and 6.30pm for dinner and it worked well so I can’t for the life of me think why this has slipped back again. But it has and 2pm can be the norm for lunch and 7.30pm for dinner, which is too late and not good for the digestion especially as we are now getting ready for bed earlier than we used to unless there is something riveting on the TV …and that is not often. One of the changes will be to go back to the earlier times.

There are other changes I need to make too – I decided that cleaning the whole house in one day like I used to is not viable anymore – I don’t seem to have the energy I once had and even doing upstairs one day and downstairs another has proved just as exhausting. So I have been trying to get most of the rooms deep cleaned, reorganised and cleared of clutter so that I can keep up to them on a rota basis over the month. Our office / craft room is still the worst of the rooms with all the paper mountain but I am reducing this bit by bit by scanning important items onto the computer.

Did I mention we have another event coming up that will need my input – it will be little Freddie’s Christening in November (my elder daughter’s little boy who will be 10 months next month). We have the church booked for the baptism and a local village hall for the feast afterwards. The cake maker is on standby and as we did for the birthday party in April we will be ordering the food from M&S and I will make a quiche or two and some desserts.

The village hall does not have any crockery, cutlery or tablecloths but it does have a little bar that they can staff for a small charge. We will be having finger food and using the plastic plates I always reuse for parties….the tablecloths are posing a bit of a problem but we should be able to find enough from various family members. It is going to be a military operation on the day picking up the food and setting up the hall before the service at 11am, crikey…no room for error then. So before I can think too much about Christmas I need to get on with the arrangements for the Christening.

Not much other news at the moment – when I looked at the tasks I set out to do at the beginning of the month (see my October intentions) I have more or less covered them all – only the crafts have fallen behind, but then they always seem to.

Welcome to all the new followers it is lovely to have you on board x

14 Replies to “dear diary :: calm before the storm”

  1. I’ve just read your last post as well as this one. I’m sorry a few more problems have cropped up, it’s so difficult when things are not necessarily in your control isn’t it! I loved the photos of your days out with your grandchildren, the Abbey looks a great place to visit and I would love the Victorian village! Well done on getting your garden ready for winter, ours still needs sorting, but it’s been so wet here, I really need several dry days for our clay soil to be less heavy. Glad you’ve had some quiet time before the Christening and hope your hubby’s cold disappears soon 🙂


    1. Thank you Ann for all the good wishes.
      Clay soil must be the hardest – my sister had it once and I nearly broke my trowel and hand the first time I went to dig over a border for her – she had some lovely plants though so some must do really well in it. Ours is rich and loamy in Yorkshire and here at the cottage on one side is peaty because of the wood and the other sandy because it is near the beach! A few sunny days is what we all need especially for the vitamin D quota. x


  2. Busy, busy, busy.

    I think your husband gets sick now he isn’t working because when you keep on working you don’t notice it AND your body just keeps going. Pause, and your body falls apart or catches every niggle. And you notice it. I am the same, as are most teachers, with term breaks.

    I’m off to look up the little changes system. Sounds like something I prefer and can manage.


    1. Little changes system? Is that something invented by WordPress to ease people into their all new singing and dancing and frightening new upgrade??
      DH used to work all hours not coming home unti 7.30pm and leaving at 7am and working weekends. Sometimes he would walk in from a day in London and then we would jump in the car and head for a weekend in Scotland – he has a life of leisure now compared with his previous one. I think he gets sick because he has more time and is absolutely bored not working – but he had no choice as the building industry here was on its knees a while back and architects practices were going down overnight. DH was nearest to retirement then so was first to go in the redundancies. Shame he really enjoyed his job. But I know what you mean about getting ill when you pause – it has happened to me.


  3. The change of seasons and being around little ones (aka – lovely little germ factories) may have also contributed to DH’s cold. Then there is life stresses and its attendant plagues–which certainly have been visiting you more than anyone would like. Whatever the cause, let’s hope that the cold clears DH’s system soon and avoids you altogether. Sorry about the Baker’s cyst. From what I’ve read, placing a cold pack on it and raising your leg above your heart, when possible, will help reduce inflammation. I’m sure the idea of finding a doctor while your on the road doesn’t appeal, but try not to overdo things. Hope you get relief soon. You clearly need to rest before you head off into a week that will entail a lot of energy, physically and mentally, from you both. xo


    1. Yes he may have caught it from when we went up to look after my daughter and the grandchildren but it didn’t come on until a few days after we left – luckily I am OK so far.
      The cyst is a tricky one to get rid of – I am trying al sorts of things – the doctor can only offer anti inflamatories which I can’t use or take because I have a reaction to them. Other than that the doctor just shrugged!!


  4. I hope your husband is feeling a little better now. Your cyst sounds painful I hope you can find a way to reduce the swelling.

    The Kaizen method sounds intriguing I am off to have a look into that.

    I hope your christening goes smoothly, it sounds like a lot to organise!


  5. Just popping by to say hello 🙂 Your little cottage sounds delightful and is exactly the sort of plan we have in mind a few years down the line. I’ve never heard of Kaizen but tackling anything in small steps sounds good to me these days.

    That’s definitely an early start for getting everything set up for the christening but it sounds like it’s going to be a lovely event so worth the effort. xx


  6. Val, your photos, as usual, are gorgeous – you have a real eye for colour and placement. Good luck with the upcoming christening, it sounds like a lot of work!


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