Sunday, 7 March 2021

The Distancing Diaries - 6th & 7th March, 2021


 As is usual on a Saturday, Jon was up first. He saw to the lads, made tea and brought it back to bed where we lay and read until 8.30am. After he'd gone downstairs to put the sausages in the oven and make coffee, I stripped and changed the bed, loaded the washing machine and hung the laundry out to dry - Jon's new washing line worked a treat. 

After our veggie sausage sandwiches we made a start on the garden. 

Our fence, which runs parallel to the avenue, is topped with trellis which to passing scumbags is an open invitation to lob their litter through the gaps. To beat them, Jon has ordered some heavy duty netting to attach to the trellis and form a barrier. In preparation for the installation some serious chainsaw action was called for. Once cleared I got to work with my grabstick managing to fill a sack with empty vodka bottles (the litter lout's spirit of choice), endless cans of extra strong lager, sweet wrappers, pop bottles, numerous unused bags for life (why?), builder's rubble and even the interior of a car door.


We were having a coffee break in the shelter when postman Izzy arrived with our passcode for the census which has to be submitted online on 21st March. There was also a exciting parcel from my friend Katy.

By 2pm we'd done what we needed and downed tools for the day, retiring to the house for the last couple of slices of beer & chilli bread liberally spread with butter.


Sticking to my Wear:Sleep:Repeat challenge I rewore Friday's Anokhi dress, layering it with a charity-shopped rust poloneck and a fabulous 1960s tan suede jacket which was in the sack of clothes that my friend Cheryl had dropped round on Monday.


The details: Kashmiri papier mache bangles (India), vintage French high-heeled wellies (jumble sale) and a 1970s necklace of my Mum's


I've been thoroughly spoilt with my friends' clearing out this week, haven't I?  As well as the clothes and jewellery Cheryl passed on was this groovy 1970s mirror, now taking pride of place in the bathroom.


I spent an hour crocheting and then took myself upstairs for Self-Care Saturday (eyebrow & lash dyeing, nail painting, epilating legs, deep conditioning & washing hair). Tea was pizza with salad & a few jacket wedges followed by copious amounts of rum & cola, a couple more episodes of Deutschland 89 and the previous evening's Grayson Perry Art Club.


I was up first on Sunday morning, sweeping the kitchen floor, putting the last of the paperbacks outside and bringing mugs of tea back to bed where we lay and read until 8.30am. We had a couple of slices of toast for breakfast, watched the Andrew Marr Show and I finished the crochet I'd started yesterday, a hat for my friend, Jeni.


Jon had bought something online that needed to be collected from the seller's home, a  five mile drive down the road, so I decided to tag along. It was the first time we'd left Walsall since 2020 and it felt like such an epic occasion that I decided to wear the vintage dress I'd treated myself to for my birthday and which Ivana immortalised in her art.


In line with my Wear:Sleep:Repeat challenge I wore Cheryl's suede coat over the top and with my hair super soft from a deep conditioning treatment and weekly wash, I swept it up into a fishtail plait.


The details: Indian Jhumka earrings (from Cheryl), Gohill's exotic snakeskin boots (bought in 1966 by my favourite teacher who passed them on to me), Barry M Blood Orange nails, a stack of tribal bangles (including one that Katy sent me in yesterday's parcel), vintage Spanish leather coin belt made in San Sebastian (another of the treasures Cheryl sent my way).


Our road trip was to collect these wooden raised beds which I'd spotted on Facebook. Jon was toying with the idea of making some himself but when he'd priced up the cost of the wood it was cheaper to buy these.


Just like last Sunday it was a gloriously sunny day but bitingly cold. Frank supervised (he's very good at that) as Jon played around with positioning the beds in the best position for sunshine. Tomorrow's task will be laying some weed suppressant (aka cardboard) underneath and filling them in readiness for crop planting when the danger of frost is over.


Meanwhile I cut back the ferns and raked the area over as we're planning on moving them to the pond area later in the week. I then wrapped my eBay sales ready for Monday's post office run. 


Lunch had been a half a chocolate waffle each I'd found lurking in the back of the cupboard so we were ready for our tea after all the excitement of a roadtrip to the outskirts of Dudley & some physical labour.

Tea was another pie from Tony. This time, spinach and pine nut with Greek feta and red peppers. Yum!


We'd just finished eating when Ray popped over the road with a freshly baked sourdough loaf. That's tomorrow's lunch sorted, then!

The entertainment for tonight is The Great Pottery Throwdown and episode 3 of Bloodlands which, if you haven't seen it yet, is tremendous. The European drama Facebook page, of which I'm a member, has a number of posts from people refusing to watch it as they can't stand James Nesbitt, prejudiced by Cold Feet. They're mad, he's a fantastic actor when he plays in straight (Bloody Sunday & The Missing spring to mind) and it's co-produced by Jed Mercurio, the genius behind Line Of Duty.


Stay fabulous and see you soon!

48 comments:

  1. Vodka bottles the preferred beverage of litter louts? Good heavens, Vix, you may have an infestation of gopniks. (Look for sunflower seed hulls. Gopniks live on sunflower seeds.) Good luck to Jon with the netting strategy. It's certainly a better choice than a prickly hedge, as a friend of mine discovered when trying to retrieve debris from its depths.

    Cheryl's Coat (as this garment shall be known, henceforth) is exactly right for your skirts' length. I'd welcome it into my wardrobe for the sake of its color and texture, and forgive it for being suede. How do you clean suede, Vix? Which of your magic wands/rituals do you prefer? * And then there's another Ray's Sourdough Loaf! My friends gift me tired towels for the cats' beds. *sigh*

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    1. I had to Google "Gopnik" but you could be right, the East European version of the British chav, trashy types who favour sportswear and antisocial behaviour! Mind you,at least sunflower seed hulls can be shared with the birds. Our chavs prefer their food deep-fried and served in polystyrene!
      I was very excited by Cheryl's generous gift, the coat is just a joy. I shall respond to the suede cleaning question in my next blog post. xxx

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  2. At that point, I might be sitting on the other side of the fence with a bat. A car door too! Good lord, people have some nerve.

    The suede coat is fab-looks like it was made for you.

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    1. If I ever catch them littering I might not be held responsble for what I do with my grabstick!
      I'm delighted with my suede coat! xx

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  3. I love it all, except for the litter of course. That second dress is really beautiful and the coat goes so nicely with it. You two sure do stay busy! I'm looking forward to seeing your garden in the spring. Enjoy that beautiful sourdough bread - yum! :)

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    1. Thanks so much, Martha! That sour dough was absolutely delicious! xxx

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  4. Here in Canada, all beverage containers have a deposit on them. You take them back for a refund. You hardly ever see empties lying around. Boy Scouts would hold bottle drives to raise funds. The homeless pick them up. Containers to hold them in hospitals and the funds used for clothing for homeless patients.

    I loved Line of Duty. Wasn't shown on mainstream TV here but on an app.

    Your meals always look better than mine. Bit of a downer since I became allergic to eggs and milk.

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    1. They've toyed with the idea of introducing a fee to drinks containers here but, as usual, it's all talk and no action. It's a brilliant idea and it sounds like everyone benefits.
      The new series of Line of Duty kicks off in a fortnight - it's on the calendar. If you can find Bloodlands I can't recommend it enough.
      I'm sorry about your allergies, I'd hate to have to follow a restricted diet. xxx

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  5. Food is making me hungery.
    Coffee is on and stay safe

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  6. That suede jacket is wow!!! i hate it when people use your garden as a bin!! bloody cheek of them. We had the garden man round to have a look at my redesign as we have to put it in to the local government office for approval yupp more paperwork. We cannot move the pond Because it is part of the original house design, but he okayed everything else. Which is nice . We cannot do it so we have to get someone in. So Paul called a friend who had set up on his own. And I played with my watercolours which he really liked!!
    So we now have to wait for the local government to play it , it should be back my Wednesday.
    Your lucky to have wonderful friends like those I love that mirror. Ours is looking tatty in the bathroom . But it’s perfect for the kids. I like James Nesbit I don’t understand why people don’t like him. Take care and keep safe love and hugs

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    1. I'd dead happy with my suede jacket! Aren't people vile? It'll probably get worse now the kids are back at school although it'll be pop bottles and sweet wrappers rather than vodka and Polish lager (I hope!)
      That's brilliant that you have to have official permission to alter your garden, I wish they'd introduce that here. it'll stop everyone removing their front lawns and tarmacing them so they look like dentail surgeries rather than family homes! Loads of love. xxx

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  7. What a cheek people have, chucking their rubbish in your garden. Lets hope Johns netting sorts the problem. We're really enjoying Bloodlands, although I have to say when last weeks episode ended with him shooting the old man I almost leapt out of my chair!. We watched McDonald and Dobbs last night. I was born about 12 miles from Bath and worked in the city when I left school so I like watching it for all the familiar streets etc

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    1. Episode 2 was a bit of a shocker, wasn't it? I remember Lorcan Crannitch (Jackie) from Cracker, he was a wrong 'un then!
      I haven't seen McDonalds & Dobbs but love Bath. Jason Watkins (and his kids) visited our stall at a event we did in London and chatted for ages, he's absolutely lovely in real life. xxx

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  8. shocking what people do to your garden - I would want to lie in wait and jump up and yell at them!! Lovely accessories on your post this time and the fishtail plait really suits you. I am enjoying Bloodlands too. Those raised beds look quality. I've noticed your plates of food always have lots of colour :) I think colour affects us mentally and physically in all aspects of life far more than we acknowledge and am certain you are slim and beautiful because you eat colourfully !! weird comment? :)

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    1. It really makes me cross. There was I thinking how clean the avenue was looking and it was all in my garden!
      That's not a weird comment, it's really astute. I think colour does hugely affect us in every aspect in our lives from interior design, to our wardrobes, our diet and the great outdoors. the sun is shining today and the sky is a wonderful shade of blue which makes me feel energised and raring to go! xxx

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  9. I’m so in love with your Anoki dress and it looks great with the suede jacket.
    Looks like you’ve had a busy weekend. I’d be hysterical with folk chucking stuff over the fence. Let’s hope the new netting does the trick. I’d end up bopping them if I caught them.
    Our trip over to Todmorden was such a treat on Saturday even though it was only the market we went on. It was sad to see the shops closed. Last time we were over there was 10th December. But needs must when you’ve run out of savoury tarts.
    Raining here this morning with storms by Wednesday. As long as it waits while we get back from the market it can do what it wants heehee.
    Bet you can’t wait to get started on the plant boxes
    Lynn xxx

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    1. I did say I'd pop into Anokhi and get you one of these dresses when we went back...maybe next year!
      Some people, eh? I just don't get what goes through their heads, I really don't. Out of sight, out of mind?
      I bet it felt really exciting to visit Tod after so long. We're so going to appreciate every little aspect of our new found freedoms when the times comes. I shall be first off the plane and kissing the tarmac of whatever country will let us in!
      Glorious sunshine this morning but the rest of the week looks very dodgy! xxx

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  10. Great idea to attach a net to the fence to avoid those pesky litter producers to do their thing. Can't understand this kind of people who damage their surroundings (and other people's gardens)in such a stupid way.
    But the vision of your fabulous tan suede jacket totally changed my mood!, such a beautiful piece and so lovely Cheryl who sent it to you!. And you rocked it with gorgeous matchy colours, your rusty poloneck and delightful dress and even a matchy hat!!. Love it!. Also love this jacket over your birthday dress whose colours look enhanced and fabulous. Lovely accessorizing!
    Great news on your garden preparation for springtime!, hope it brings you lots of lush and happiness!
    besos

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    1. I hope the net forms such a barrier that their lager cans bounce back and whack 'em in the face. Cheeky so and so's!
      I'm always on the hunt for the perfect suede jacket, this one is just worn in enough not to be too precious about wearing it. xxx

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  11. I'm a completer sucker for a nice belt buckle and have a few lovely ones in my collection. I'd love to lean over your fence and lob the rubbish straight back at whoever chucked it over. I can just imagine the look on the their face.

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    1. I'd love to see your buckle collection one day, Cherie! I love them too, I found a leather belt with a big silver H buckle for 50p before lockdown and bought it just in case I ever met a Helen or a Horace. When I got home I realised it was H for Hermes! xxx

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  12. you look wonderful with all the rusty tones around the anokhi dress! gorgeous! BUT! swooning over the marvelous black dress again....... and then this massive belt! the whole look is to die for.
    thankfully we have very few "passersby" as we have a very long driveway..... but once i found snack packaging in the rainwater barrel!
    the new raised beds look great - here the soil is still frozen......
    you have wonderful neighbors and friends - stuffing you with amazing food :-D
    xxxxx

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    1. Thanks, Beate! It seems a bit of a crime hiding the huge puffed sleeves of that dress under a coat but I'm sure they're have their moment when the weather warms up. The belt is just the best thing ever. I love it!
      Gah! Snack packaging in your water butt? The mentality f these people, it's like if their trash isn't visible then it doesn't matter that they are littering. xxx

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  13. I am astonished at the litter picking episode from your own garden. Dirty scutters, indeed. I saw three people, obviously a family, yesterday on my walk. All three had a large blue sack; the woman had the gripper thingy and their sacks were full. They were picking up the shite motorists throw from their cars just outside the road to their village.

    I think you raised bed boxes look like an excellent choice; you'll be able to grow loads in them.

    Loved the outfits and accessories - that coin belt is a work of art. I loved Jeni's hat and Cheryl's coat was superb. What a fascinating glimpse into Katy's parcel. I look forward to seeing the details soon...

    We are saving 'Bloodlands' to watch when we've finished Deutschland 86. We really enjoyed Deutschland 83. I even enjoyed the clothes and I didn't really like the 80s fashions that much!

    Fabulous bread; how nice of Tony to bake it for you. My neighbour brought us home made fruit cake a few weeks ago. It was very good.
    xxx

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    1. Litter picking is becoming a family activity during lockdown, they even sell start-up kits for kids on ebay with smaller grabsticks and XXS Hi-Vis jackets. It's all rather addictive.
      I was so excited about that coin belt, I'd assumed it was Moroccan until I saw San Sebastian, Spain stamped on the back. It's a whopping piece of leather.
      Deutschland is fantastic, excellent plot, soundtrack and fabulous interior design and cars. Leonora is gorgeous, isn't she? I love her wardrobe.
      I bet that fruitcake was a most welcome gift. xxx

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  14. Great work on the fence, I'm sure it'll look lovely soon. I love the Anokhi dress you wore with your fabulous tanned suede coat from the sixties. It's wonderful to see your other outfit as well. So fun to see that beautiful dress I illustrated again. Thank you for including my illustration. Happy International Women's Day!

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    1. Happy International Women's Day to you, Ivana! xxx

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  15. The amount of rubbish those scumbags lob through your trellis is absolutely horrendous. Heavy duty netting to the rescue! Your friend Katy's parcel looks intriguing, and how fabulous is that 1960s suede coat, worn with your Anokhi dress and the rust polo neck layered underneath. I'm also swooning over the 1970s mirror. Can't believe your friend got rid of that!
    Of course your little trip deserved a special outfit, and I bet that stunning dress was glad it got an outing. The belt you wore with it is absolutely amazing too, as are your teacher's snakeskin boots, which I'm swooning over every time you wear them.
    The wooden raised beds were a great find, and will be perfect for crop planting, especially when supervised by Frank! xxx

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    1. Aren't people vile? The schools reopened properly yesterday so it will only get worse (less vodka bottles, more cans of pop!)
      I do love a suede coat, I was thrilled when Cheryl passed that beauty along. She's hoping to move house hence the radical declutter. The mirror is fabulous although it's a bit scary catching my face in it first thing in the morning. xxx

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  16. All that rubbish stuffed into your garden? Miserable little scrotes . . .

    Those raised beds are fab, a really good size. Pottery Throw Down much enjoyed here too. Something I have always wanted to try but never had the opportunity.

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    1. There was I thinking the avenue was looking tidier - it was all in our garden!
      We're excited about those raised beds, the growing list is getting longer.
      I always fancied giving pottery a try as well, not an option at our voluntary aided girls' school. I love the programme. xxx

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  17. :0 :0 :0
    I had to do a double take at your washing line Vix....
    I thought your yellow bed cover was a super sized pair of bloomers!!!
    Good job on the netting. With any luck, when the scutters try to chuck the litter, it will bounce back in their face, mwahaha! The suede jacket and sourdough look gorgeous. Enjoy! Lulu xXx

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    1. Haha! la Redoute divet covers are a very pecular shape!
      I was hoping that the netting would have that effect, too - great minds. xxx

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  18. There's nothing like wash that's been dried on the line - it smells so good! I don't miss taking it in off the line when the sheets or towels have frozen, though (I have semi-traumatic memories of this from when I was at home in my teens!).

    What exciting things came in the mail! I'm gasping over the new-to-you belt - oh my gosh, that is amazing.

    Frank looks like he's a professional supervisor - he has that face.

    Happy Monday, Vix!

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    1. I wish they could bottle that line-dried laundry smell, I'd wear it.
      I nearly fainted when I saw that belt, isn't it incredible? I think I need to book a flight to San Sebastian when all this is over and see if they still create leatherwork that good. xxx

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  19. Your 2nd dress is fabulous and good score on the coat. Wish you could dump the rubbish on the louts doorstep.

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    1. Thanks so much! I wish I could return the litter to the selfish idiots that left it behind and weven more so, ask them why they think their behaviour is acceptable. xxx

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  20. There's a small piece of garden which can only be reached by us or the neighbours-they chucked 3 large trailer loads of their junk in-I reported them to the police for fly tipping but by the time she admitted it it had already been removed by us-The police wrote a report and a number-we were advised by them to buy more cctv cameras-that's 7 now! x

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    1. Ps-and lit fag ends at my back door and glass lager bottles chucked over-of which the local police thought fit to deal with by mediation x

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    2. Goodness me, that's awful, Flis. It's bad enough being targetted by littering scumbags without having to live next door to them. xxx

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  21. Ahhh, I hate litter louts. We get litter chucked in our garden all the time and it's disgusting. Selfish oafs! When I was in primary school, we had to design a bin and my bin detected if any litter was chucked on the ground and then had a grabber which threw it at the offender! Hope the netting works.
    That suede jacket is so beautiful. I really like it and it's a gorgeous length. So pretty it looks with the dresses! I have to tell you I just got a 2nd hand East FabIndia skirt. It's really soft and I look forward to wearing it!
    I really like your new hats. They really suit you.

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    1. I love your bin invention - I think that's the only thing that would make these oafs think twice about their scuzzy actions, being whacked in the face by a greasy McD wrapper!
      I'm excited about your East FabIndia skirt - I've really missed my annual shopping trip to FabIndia, their stuff is incredible! xxx

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  22. How rude of those people to litter your garden. It makes my blood boil too. I must confess I was put off Bloodlands because I am not a fan of James Nesbitt although I did enjoy the early series of Cold Feet.
    Your boot collection is very impressive - practical and beautiful. X

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    1. Hateful people, their behaviour baffles me.
      I think you'd enjoy Bloodlands, James Nesbitt is really scary in it! x

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  23. People can be utter scrotes. Throwing stuff into someone's garden like that!

    That tan suede jacket is a smasher.

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    1. I'm hoping when that netting turns up the scutters won't notice it and their litter will bounce back and hit them in the face!
      I do love a bit of aged suede. x

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  24. I’m so glad you got to use the washing line so soon, my airer is still firmly in use. I think I’ve hung washing out only twice so far this year.
    I have raised bed envy! They look really solid and well made, and obviously a bargain price too.
    James Nesbitt is a superb actor, what are people thinking?!
    xx

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Thank you for leaving a comment. If you have a blog I'll pop over and return the favour.

Lots of love, Vix