Oops – sorry!

What with one thing and another I realise I haven’t updated this blog for over a month. In that time the replacement of the kitchen has progressed, we’ve had Christmas and New Year, I had tax returns to complete, and I’ve had a dreadful chesty cough thing. Finally I am starting to get straight, although I still have to decorate the kitchen and hall in preparation for the new flooring.

So in order to catch up, and looking back at the photos I have uploaded to Flickr, I have decided to post in weekly chunks. The number of dull, grey days we’ve had has meant I have rarely taken the camera out with me anyway, so there are less days to post about.

I’ve also been wondering about taking a break from this blog, which I tend to do from time to time. Although it forces me to take the camera and look for photos, it also means that I take a lot of meaningless rubbish. So perhaps I’ll go for less posts and better quality in future. We’ll see.

Anyway, to get me started I see that I only took the camera with me one day in the first week in December, and those photos aren’t great, so instead I am going to do the promised progress of the kitchen, to the stage where it is finished all bar the decorating and the new flooring.

So, firstly a reminder of what it looked like before I started (I believe it dates back to about 1982 when the house was built, although I’ve replaced the worktops, tiles and painted the cupboards since then).

So this was it before we started.

The kitchen before I empty it The kitchen before I empty it

Monday 21st November: the men arrived and started to rip out the old kitchen. No turning back now.

New kitchen - End of day 1

End of day 2 and there’s not much left. Plumbing and electrics for new lights have been started though.

New kitchen - end of day 2 (taken the following morning)

Meanwhile I’ve set up little replacement kitchen stations around the house.

Tea and coffee making in the living room.

Tea & coffee making facilities

Breakfast and lunch station in the dining room.

Breakfast & lunch station

Cooking station in the sitting room (fortunately I have a combination microwave so can use it as a conventional oven).

Cooking station

And washing up station in the main bathroom.

Washing up station

Day 3 and the new kitchen arrives and is stored in the garage.

Our new kitchen has arrived!

Day 4 saw the arrival of the plasterer.

The plasterer has finished

And on day 5 (end of the first week) the floor was re-laid.

The new floorboards are laid

Day 6 and the units start to go in.

The new kitchen is starting to go in

The new kitchen is starting to go in

From this point on things seemed to slow down. Day 9 and the washing machine is in

Day 9 and the washing machine & dishwasher are back in

The oven is in too.

Day 9 - the oven is in too

In the garden there was a plethora of power tools!

There was a plethora of power tools in the garden

Day 13 and the fitting is complete.

Day 13 - the fitting is complete Day 13 - the fitting is complete and the new fridge freezer has arrived

Notice we have the new fridge/freezer as well.

And day 14, the tiling is done and I am starting to put the kitchen back together.

Day 14 - the tiling is done Day 14 - all that's left is the decorating and new flooring

I’ve moved things around a bit since then but by 8th December I once again had a fully functioning kitchen. I really like it (with the exception of the cooker hood which was not the one I ordered, but it took the guy 2 hours to fit it before I realised, so I’ve decided to live with it).

Oh – and the one downside? The dogs hate the beep on the new induction hob, which I can’t turn off. Every time I turn it on and off they run and hide outside. AEG please take note.

Hole

Monday 26th to Thursday 29th September 2016

I’m really sorry about the absence of posts. Hopefully this one will start to explain at least one of the reasons why I have been a little distracted of late. Plus I don’t seem to be taking that many photos, partly due to the overcast weather and very flat light on a lot of days recently. In fact, a lot of the time I’ve been going out without a camera, so only have iPhone photos if I spot something of interest.

Monday was a good example. Max and I went over Upton Heath for our walk. It was a bit of a dull day and I didn’t take the camera. I didn’t really see anything of interest to photograph either, so all I have is a shot of Max standing in the pond.

Max waits in the pond

And then onto that hole. I can’t remember if I mentioned that last week I decided that the ‘stain’ on our hall carpet was actually a growing damp patch. I pulled back the carpet to find the floorboards were soaked though, indicating we had a water leak under the floor. On Tuesday our plumber came. He started taking up the floor in the hall, but it soon became apparent that the leak was actually under the kitchen floor, so that had to come up too.

The mess in our kitchen

As you may be able to see, the floor is soaked though. There is no obvious leak so a pipe must just be weeping. But it’s been doing it for a long time so before anything else can happen we have to wait for the floor to dry out. This was the situation on the Thursday.

Holes in our floor

Although normally we have a board down across it so that we can walk in and out of the kitchen.

Our temporary flooring

As I write this we are still waiting for it to completely dry out.

So moving onto our Thursday walk we went to Broadstone Rec. I was hoping the leaves might show signs of turning, but on the whole they are still green. I did find this maple leaf on the ground though.

Maple leaf

And this little cluster of oak leaves.

Oak leaves

And I was rather touched by this small personal remembrance left at the War Memorial.

In memoriam - left at the war memorial

I’m not sure if you can read the note, but its in remembrance of the person’s uncle who was killed on 27th September 1916 at aged 25.

A year ago today

On 29th September Max and I were out walking on Canford Heath.

Heading across the heath

A helpmate in the garden

Wednesday 23rd March 2016

No. I’m not talking about either Max or Jez. Today I was busy starting to clear up in the back garden after the winter, and I soon had my little helper back.

My little helper

This particular robin has got so tame he will come within inches of me as I work.

Robin

Not only that, but he sings to me as well. It makes my time working in the garden a lot more pleasant.

A year ago today

Another bird photo for you. Jez, Max and I went for a walk over Upton Heath and came back via Creekmoor Ponds where I took this photo of a moorhen.

Moorhen

Christmas Day 2015

Friday 25th December 2015

I had originally planned for Dad to come to lunch today, but he decided he wanted a nice quiet day at home, so this year it was just me, Chris and the dogs for Christmas.

We had a nice relaxing morning, which started with coffee and shortbread biscuits in bed. Max desparately wanted a bit of biscuit. Here he looks imploringly at Chris, but notice he does not attempt to help himself from the box. He’s a really good boy and knows he’s not allowed.

Go on Dad, give me a biscuit

After Chris had eaten his biscuits Max turned those pleading eyes on me.

Oh please Mum!

You can’t really resist, but he only gets a little bit of biscuit broken off of ours.

Then it was time to get up and put my Christmas socks on.

The Christmas socks are on

They’re getting a bit old now. We opened presents and enjoyed a cooked breakfast. Then both Chris and I sat down at our respective PCs: him to work (!) and me to edit photos. Max commenced the all important job of destroying his Christmas presents.

Wee poor elephant did't last long

After lunch we all went to Delph Woods together for a walk.

A Christmas day walk in Delph Woods

As you can see, it was a bit wet and muddy.

Mud!

Here’s Chris with the dogs by the pond.

Chris and the dogs by the lake

And, as is becoming traditional, one of the trees by the Scout field has been decorated for Christmas.

Christmas bauble

Back near the car park we met our fried Jasper, the lurcher, with his owners and their son. And then we headed home where, after watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom we settled down to a lovely dinner of slow roast pork. Oh, and not forgetting watching Dr Who, of course.

A year ago today

Sitting down to Christmas dinner last year.

Time for the Christmas Pudding

An early Christmas Lunch

Sunday 20th December 2015

We had Christmas dinner early this year. Well, the traditional turkey dinner, that is. The reason is that I asked Dad and his ex-partner Pat over the Christmas lunch today. Pat loves a Christmas dinner with all the trimmings, but she lives with her son now and he doesn’t like Christmas dinner or Christmas pudding, so I cook it for her.

I managed to get on well and by mid-morning the table was set.

The table is laid ready for an early Christmas dinner

I thought it would be nice to have some family photos this Christmas so set the camera up on the tripod.

A toast.

Cheers!

My favourite photo of Dad and Pat.

Dad and Pat

Me and Chris with Dad and Pat.

Chris, me, Dad and Pat

Max wants a kiss.

Max wants a kiss

Dad gets a wash.

Dad get's a wash

Dinner was good too, although I say it myself. And both Dad and Pat really enjoyed it and ate large helpings. which was good. All in all we had a lovely day.

A year ago today

We went for a walk on Upton Heath. Here’s Jez.

Jez

A strange mix of weather

Friday 13th November 2015

We woke up to sunshine and rain this morning, which means we woke up to a rainbow.

We woke up to a rainbow After I’d done my shopping Max and I went over to Upton Heath. We walked up the Roman Road and then out onto the heath, where the fallen tree had been cleared from the path. This was the view down across the heath towards Poole. Clouds and sunshine over Poole Harbour

And here’s a black and white photo taken from up near the viewpoint.

Shafts of sunlight over Poole Harbour So by now I’m guessing that you are thinking that it was a bit stormy and that we were about to get wet. Well, just look at the view when I turned through 180 degrees coming down the hill and looked back the way we had come. What a difference turning through 180 degrees makes

So by now we were in bright sunshine. We walked onto the pond and Max had a short game of cone.

Max And then we headed back to the car. Em route I had another go at taking the trees refelected in the flooded heath alongside the old railway line. I’m much happier with this version. Reflections in a pool

The puzzle is to work out where the trees end and the reflection begins.

And I should not let today pass without mention of the terrible terrorist attacks in Paris. I can never understand such violence in the name of religion. But my sympathies go to everyone affected and their families.

A year ago today

A maple leaf on holly at Broadstone Rec.

Maple Leaf on Ivy

Sunny Sunday

Sunday 25th October 2015

Yesterday was miserable weather-wise. I didn’t take any photos. The dogs and I went to Upton Heath and just as we got to the the most exposed part the heavens opened. I had a waterproof coat on, but my jeans got soaked through and clung to my legs. Jez was not a happy little dog with all that water falling on her.

But today was lovely and sunny, so I got up and sat on the sofa in the sun to do some knitting. Jez joined me.

Jez came to snooze in the sun beside me

Meanwhile, the knitting was proving a bit fiddly.

I've started a new knitting project - it's a bit fiddly

I drove up to Corfe Mullen in the afternoon and we walked down the hill to Beacon Road, where Jez had to have a rest.

Jez had to have a bit of a rest

While she rested a threw a cone for Max.

Max and I play while Jez has a rest

And here’s another one of Max, glancing skyward.

Max glances skywards

Rather than take the longer route round by the tip to get back to the car we followed a couple across the horses’ field.

Walking across the field in the late afternoon sun

That took us back to the bridle path and we walked back up the hill to the reservoir and then back to the car. At the car, while Jez lay down on the grass I took one final photo of Max with the sun behind him.

Max in the sun's rays

After a few minutes Jez got up and jumped into the back of the car, and home we came. It had been a lovely walk in the late afternoon sun, though.

A year ago today

A pretty little fungus on Upton Heath.
Crooked