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Posts Tagged ‘garden’

The lovely sunny autumn days have inspired me to get out and about around the Vicarage with the camera on my mobile phone. I’m enjoying finding beauty in the detail. Victorian brickwork seems particularly good for this.

 

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All the usual things happened this afternoon:

1. We had a barbecue. Rev Ted and his family joined us, together with Dreamer, for a lovely lazy lunch to celebrate the Queen’s 14th birthday. (FOURTEEN! HOW DID THAT HAPPEN?). We ate lots of salad and fruit as well as the obligatory meatfest. Because it’s after camp where we’d overindulged in carbs in a big way. Our insides need to recover a bit. There was lots of laughter and many tales of teenagers in Devon.

2. The family from over the road who have no garden and lots of children had a picnic in the churchyard. I’m very glad the churchyard is there for families without grass outside their house. They asked me where we’d been and I told them I’d been to Devon with lots of teenagers. They looked enthusiastic when I told them that the twins (aged 9 now) would soon be able to join us.

3. Gone let himself into the garden, very drunk and smelly. He talked at me for ages about how hard he’s finding things, and the Queen brought him some crisps to eat (he didn’t want a cup of coffee). Then he asked for food to get him through the next few days and I rummaged through the cupboards (which haven’t been restocked since camp) for some things he can eat. He’s not able to prepare much because he broke the microwave. So he says. Then I came into the house to get him a new notebook for remembering things.

Whilst I was in the house, he stripped off his TWO fleeces and started to help himself to the Joker’s damp t-shirt from the washing line. When we let him know that this wasn’t totally acceptable, he stormed away, swearing as much as possible. He took the bag of food, but thankfully not the t-shirt (it’s a favourite Dr Who one). I’ve put the washing on again. And I’ll see if I can get some cheap t-shirts next time I’m shopping.

So it’s good to be home. Tales of camp to come next week. Spoiler: we had a great time.

The garden is the place to be today

The garden is the place to be today

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We get a few things chucked over the wall into the Vicarage garden – mostly it’s stray footballs and wrappers from fast food that greet us on the rare occasions we venture into the borders with gloves and trugs. But yesterday I spotted something a little more unexpected as we spent a day with a few friends from theological college. I gazed out of the window as we were chatting and saw A DOG.

Scampy dog

Since our garden is fenced in pretty well, this is not something we’ve encountered before. And you’d think someone would have missed the poor thing. So we went out and found a rather smelly, but quite friendly hound, who’d obviously been sleeping under a tree. It may have been there for a day or two, although the Vicar thinks he would have spotted it when chopping wood yesterday. And although the garden gates were open for a while, it seems more likely that someone had sent the poor animal over our wall. He had no collar on.

We called a couple of doggy local friends to see if they recognised it but nobody did. So then we called Sandwell Council’s out of hours dog warden. Who was with us in less than an hour. He told us that our canine visitor was about 4 years old and not microchipped. Then the warden popped him on a lead whilst he wolfed down some dog food that the Queen had run out to buy for him.

He seemed like a very sweet even-tempered dog, and I might have been tempted to keep him if I hadn’t known that the Vicarage cat would object outrageously. So he’s been taken to City Dogs Home in Stoke – they’ve not got his pic up yet, but we’re going to keep an eye on it and give them a call to see how he’s doing. They take 7 days to check them out before starting the rehoming process. It’s sad to think someone abandoned him, and a bit annoying that they were so cheeky as to leave him in our garden, but we were impressed with the warden and the system which enabled him to be taken care of so quickly.

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Today the tree surgeons came and took down a tree at the end of our garden that had started to lean rather precariously.

Here it is before they did their stuff:

And here is a short video of the tree coming down ending with a lovely clip of the tree surgeon’s local accent.

We’re glad the tree’s now safe. And particularly pleased at the fuel it’s supplied for next winter…

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We came back from a week’s holiday in Scotland late yesterday afternoon. We couldn’t get the car on the drive to unload it as the drive is full of skip for debris from the attic renovations. So we parked near the back gate so we could take our stuff in through the back door. Tired and happy, we planned to unpack as fast as possible and get everyone into bed ready for school and the start of a busy term.

As soon as we’d emerged onto the pavement, just next to the churchyard, we realised things might take a while longer than we hoped. The half dozen or so kids playing there were very excited to see us and wanted to fill us in on all the things that had happened whilst we were away. The most prominent episode had been some naughty kids hopping into our garden over the wall and causing some damage to one of our (thankfully) cheap plastic tables. All the kids wanted to tell us the same thing at the same time and transmit their information in those squealy high pitched voices they save for important communications.

It took a while but we managed to convince them that we’d soon come to terms with our loss. After we’d unpacked. Our kind neighbour was also annoyed on our behalf about the vandalism and garden invasion and came to tell us the details. We were just relieved that the Vicar had packed the trampoline away before we left for our holiday, as we’d have been quite sad to lose that. When we go away in the summer we pack away the monkey swing too. Maybe that’s what attracted the cheeky table-destroying monkeys into the garden in the first place…

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The Reading Rule

Last month the Vicar and I spent some Nectar points on a garden swing. Sitting on it is incredibly relaxing but we had to make some rules about usage by children as we anticipated that over-vigorous swinging might ensue.

So the rule is:

You can only sit on the swing seat IF YOU ARE READING

This is working very well. I occasionally break the rule myself, but as it’s my rule I think that’s okay. Sometimes I just sit there with the Vicar or a friend and talk. But today the kids were on the swing, obeying the rule, which I found very heartening:

Reading (from L to R) Dr Who, Roald Dahl and Harry Potter

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There’s been more stuff nicked from the Vicarage garden this weekend. I think this is worse than the coping stones – it was done right before my eyes outside the kitchen window. I was so outraged I took a photo…

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