Tuesday, March 31, 2009

You Really Should See The Garden!

I decided not to bore you all with too many pictures of our trip to England and Spain. I'll just give you a glimpse periodically. What I know you really want to see is the renewal in the garden! We did not have too much rain until we got home so the daffodils are not as numerous as they could be. They have finally started to bloom! The Herbal Husband and I have a lot of clean up, but hopefully once our colds get better, we will be full steam ahead! Also, I'm guest blogging for The Herb Companion magazine every other week. The editors of the magazine are looking for bloggers. So if you are interested in herb gardening like me, please look into it.

Monday, March 30, 2009

A Special Visit to Grafton Underwood

The village of Grafton Underwood was a place of intense activity during World War II specifically between 1943 and 1945. There was an airbase there that covered approximately 500 acres and housed up to 3,000 Air Force personnel. Our 92 year old friend, Jim Sweeney, flew B-17s out of Grafton Underwood. The photo at the top is a memorial to the 384th Bombardment Group, Jim's group. We also went to St. James Church dating back to the 12th century that has a stained glass window commemorating the 384th Bombardment Group. We carried an old photo of Jim and showed it to the people of Grafton Underwood. They were all very kind and had great respect for our armed forces. We went to lunch near Grafton Underwood and found a poster which was identical to the placard below. We then went to Kettering to the Tourist Bureau and were able to purchase one for Jim. We think he will be pleased. It was a very emotional visit and a moving tribute to the brave men and women who fought for freedom. The village also has an official crossing for ducks! Some place special!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

This Gentleman Has a Great Deal!

This is an allotment outside Geddington on the way to Grafton-Underwood. The Herbal Husband and I stopped briefly and had a chat with this gentleman. He paid four pounds for his plot! I would say that is a bargain. They use an old form of measurement called a rod. Each rod is about two pounds. The average plot is twenty pounds or ten rods. On one of the allotment sites, the prices vary greatly and you will learn a little history about the allotment. He will easily feed his family and have vegetables and herbs left to share. Here is a look at the rest of the plots. It was still early in the season. You can see allotments all over the countryside. It is a beautiful process and as long as it is properly maintained, it works very well. Join a community garden in your area. You will benefit and you can share your knowledge with other gardeners.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Quick Tour of Derbyshire

A quick visit to the largest county in England, Derbyshire. The upper top pictures are from Derby where the toy exhibit was. The Derby Cathedral, a flower shop called Scenta Flora that sold herbs on the outside stand and had bay laurel standards and a waterfall in the main town square where families could gather. The Wye Needlecraft Shop is in the lovely town of Bakewell in the Peak District. It was an awful day weather wise, but there were people hiking, biking and kayaking like they do at Ohiopyle, PA. The final picture is Shardlow on a cold crisp late afternoon on the canal with the barges. Derbyshire is a destination you should not miss!

Friday, March 27, 2009

My Favorite Cat? Yes, He's Gorgeous!

A little history is needed. I had a cat for a very short time in my life. Her name was Tammy. She was banished to the basement by my mother because she used my mother's living room couch as a scratching post. What cat doesn't? She also was found sleeping on the stove after dinner. Not good. Tammy ultimately ran away. Probably she knew I had an allergy and didn't like the basement. Well, this picture does not do Monty any justice. He is much more gorgeous than he looks. He is a big piece of cheddar cheese with caramel stripes and is just as full of character. I don't have him in action. I wish I did. He would come down the walk at the Holden House when we were coming back from dinner and put his paw on the door to be let in the house! Then there was an afternoon that he "played" with the Herbal Husband just outside our room's door. The Herbal Husband stuck his hand out the door moving it around and Monty loved it! Then Monty decided that we must want a personal visit. NOT! He started to come into our room and looked up at me as I was shrieking, NO MONTY! He ran out the door quick! The ultimate was when we went to leave we found Monty in the boot (the trunk) of our car maybe hoping for a ride to London! He does like mischief! Here he is with Angie.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The Real Reason to Go to England!

The Herbal Husband turned into a senior in early March and the Dinky Toys that he collects turn 75 this year. Derby was picked to host an exhibition of Dinky Toys in the Silk Mill Industrial Museum. So it became a reason for me to drive on the wrong side and see an area of England that we had never seen before. The exhibit will be on until September. Big boys and their toys!

And Behind the Curtain Is. . . .

this beautiful Turner like landscape! Isn't it great! Loved this area of England. Well, let's be truthful, I love England in every area. There are a lot of parts of England left for us to explore. Now that I got my driving legs under me, I think we will be able to see England as it should be seen! Swans are the Queen's birds! They even like to visit Shardlow! Hope you will get to visit some day too! More about Derby, Shardlow and Monty tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Away We Go to Shardlow!

We took a train to Derby, England after landing in London and rented a car. I then drove us the six miles or so on the WRONG SIDE of the road to Shardlow. It is a beautiful little village known for its barge building facilities and located on the river Trent and the Mersey Canal. Holden House Bed & Breakfast is owned by Angie and is helped by her father, Barrie, so it is all in the family. It is a very restful place to stay. We stayed in Room 2. I'll show you what's behind these curtains tomorrow! We will also talk about Angie's beautiful cat, Monty! He is a character! Yes, I know I fell for a cat!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Back on the Planet...But Just Barely!

Well, we got back last night from a wonderful trip. Glad to be home and back in the garden. I'm only going to tease you where we went and will blog more about it in the coming days. This morning the Herbal Husband made me an omelet with cheese and chives! It was a beautiful thing. Something we didn't get much when we were gone.

Tomorrow it's off to . . . . . .!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Another Herbal Timeout!

Well, I have decided that it's that time again for a little break. No, I'm not going to stand in the corner, but I'm going to take some time away from blogging. Sooo hope you won't mind (talk amongst yourselves) and the Herbal Husband and I will be blogging again soon!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Celebrate the Herbal Husband's Birthday!

It's official! The Herbal Husband is a senior citizen! Whoo Hoo! I had lemon verbena cake for him! He's looking forward to spring on a very cold day in the 'Burgh!