stone fruit

I’d intended to order *either* apricots *or* peaches, but somehow ended up ordering both. Too much for me to eat before they go off, so I’ve bottled some of each. 2 apricots, or one large peach, in each of the single-serving (250ml) Kilner jars, should make pleasant meals on winter evenings.

arm protectors

After eight years, the arm protectors on my chair have given up. It’s not so much me – it’s the place that Chelsea-cat uses as a jumping-off point for her frequent daring leaps onto the coffee table!

Sadly, finding anything decent as a replacement is proving rather a struggle, though I’ve ordered a pair of temporary “might just do for the time being” ones.

fleas !

I got home from 4 days away to find that “someone” in the neighbourhood collection of felines has gifted me with a magnificent collection of fleas! In the carpet all round my armchair, and in the bedroom. Highly not amused!
It isn’t the resident Chelsea-cat, who appears clear of them. I doubt it’s the Marmalade Garden Cat, who only ever ventures as far as the kitchen. Probably not Murray or his sister, who I’ve never seen upstairs … which means suspicion falls on the very handsome next-door-cat Enzo. I’m on holiday-cover for feeding him all next week, and will examine him closely!
However, I’m well-prepared, even if the little blighters aren’t usually troublesome until September. Carpets sprinkled, left for an hour while I sat in the garden, then hoovered twice.
Fingers crossed that I win this round.


Yes: I know it’s supposed to be “Flaming June”, but whoever arranges the weather clearly doesn’t! A nasty penetrating damp this morning has crept into my joints and bones, and painkillers aren’t hacking it. Reluctantly, I’ve lit the stove – not so much for warmth as to drive out the humidity, which central heating doesn’t manage even if I turn the thermostat up to a ludicrous level.

Anyway, yesterday and today have been the first tests of the replacement glass I installed a few weeks ago to replace the shattered pane.

lit wood-burning stove

ugh !

It rained overnight, and there’s a kind of pervasive dampness in the air – it may rain again later. Although it’s not cold, as such, I find it impossible to get warm. Even Chelsea-cat has abandoned sleeping on the patio table, and is indoors trying to get onto my lap for a sleep. Wrists, back, ankles all aching!

So, I decided to light the stove. Well, it will be the first test of the replacement glass I installed a few weeks ago, won’t it? Even if lighting a fire in June does seem faintly ridiculous …

It clearly is not going to be a day for doing anything active. WordPress 6 has just been released, so it looks like a project to install that, and to update the assorted plugins I use on this site.

cut flowers

I’ve decided to keep a log for a year of what flowers I have in vases indoors. It might help in planning plants to buy, so that I can work towards filling out any bare spots in the year.

So, from 2nd June, there’s valerian on the coffee table, and a single large alium on the whatnot.

flash photo of vase of valerian on coffee table, sleeping cat in foreground


flash photo of sliver/purple alium


For the past week, I’ve been counting the plastic items I throw out, as part of the GreenPeace “Big Plastic Count”. I’m fairly pleased with the result. What’s interesting is that the great majority of the plastic I chuck is in the form of cat-food pouches – 23 items in a week.

Sadly, Chelsea-cat refuses to eat any other kind of catfood – and when she does rely on the perpetual cat-feeder full of dry food, she gets badly affected and her back legs stop working properly (which I think is a diabetes issue).

Anyway, my results: 34 pieces of plastic chucked in a week in total, of which I noted 23 were cat-food.

Ouch !

Two days ago, the glass in the woodburner cracked, and fell out! I’ve just ordered a replacement, and replacement seal … which, with VAT and delivery, came to nearly £50 !

Today’s weather is vile, and the change to high humidity as usual means that my back isn’t playing nicely. Chelsea-cat finds it vastly amusing to watch me going up stairs on my hands and knees … glad it’s fun for someone!

At least I’m still on fixed contract for energy for another five weeks, so can stick the fan heater on without facing starvation – though it doesn’t do nearly as good a job at sorting out weather-inspired back issues as the stove does.

broken glass propped up against stove which has its door open.

hanging houseplants

I’d forgotten quite what a faff it is to re-pot hanging houseplants! The trailing bits always get inextricably tangled up in the hanging network, and if left too long the task becomes impossible. That was the case with the streptocarpella in the French window … it’s gone to meet its maker. The replacement is the grape ivy formerly in the front room, repotted. A small cutting of streptocarpella has taken its place in the front room.

In the bedroom, the wildly out-of-control grape ivy has been binned, replaced by spider plants formerly occupying the bathroom windowsill and the top of the tall chest in the bedroom.

The whole thing, including sweeping up leaves several times and de-composting the kitchen floor, took nearly two hours for three plants …

grape ivy plant now in French window


spider plant in bedroom window