7 Jul 2017

Five on Friday

Hello everyone!  I hope that you've had a good week.  As it's Friday here is my blog post for Five on Friday hosted by F.A.S.T.blog. This week I'm sharing some collages made up of photos taken in Italy earlier in the year in March except for the photo of the butterfly on the scabia flower which was taken at a different time (during August).
However, I'm starting with one of the latest lot of flowers in our front garden, the pink jasmine hedge, some new 'Joie de Vivre' rose bushes that were grown from cuttings and the lovely lavender.

In March some one had not collected the oranges on this tree!  I've put the image with the one of the butterfly.  It's amazing to see so many creatures, butterflies, bees, lizards and crickets, but then in Italy the weather is warm during the day even in the early months of the year.  Our home is sheltered yet still on the mountain slopes of the region.

A local town always looks attractive with the planters in the public areas planted up with seasonal flowers. The bushes of rosemary and bottle bush were also in flower.

Thank you Tricky and Carly for hosting

As always thank you for your visits to my blog and for your kind comments. I'm keeping well as is my husband, but now I'm taking a blogging break.
Wishing you a good Summer,
Linda :) 

4 Jul 2017

Looking forward to another time in Italy.

The greatest joy of all when in Italy is having the opportunity to spend time with my husband's family who live nearby. He's the youngest son and as well as a brother he has two older sisters and two younger sisters. All of them have adult children living in the area with their own families except for the couple who lived in England who moved back to Italy on retirement. My husband's father had a first family, was widowed and then married again, but he died suddenly when my husband and his younger sisters were young.  My mother-in-law was a kind, hard-working woman.  She travelled several times to England for holidays which meant that my own family and friends got to know her too. 

The photo on the left is the only one that my husband has of his father. The original is tiny.  His mother is wearing the traditional regional costume.  The photo on the right was taken when Mamma came over to England for a holiday.
Above and below in the first collages is her home where she lived with her daughter and where my sister-in-law and her family continue to live. Our nephew is building upwards to give them more room and separate apartments for the growing family. 

My husband's youngest sister and husband also have a growing family as their son and daughter both have young children.

Below is my husband's sister and husband who lived in England before they moved back to Italy. We enjoy their company and their hospitality in their lovely home. We're really looking forward to our summer holiday with them as two of their children and some of their adult grandchildren will be joining us and our own children and grandchildren.  It will be very special for everyone.

Finally, it's always good to visit my husband's oldest sister who lives in a ground floor apartment opposite the home of her daughter and son-in-law in a gated courtyard complex of family houses. She's quite frail now after falling and damaging her back, but still sits and helps her daughter by doing small domestic jobs such as folding linen and preparing vegetables. The photo below was taken when we went to visit a couple of years ago and found her gathering salad leaves in the vineyard and vegetable plot.

30 Jun 2017

Five on Friday

Hello everyone!  I hope that you're having a good week. As Friday has come around again this is a Five on Friday blog post. Thank you Tricky for hosting.
After the recent sunny weather we're back to rainy days. That didn't deter me from meeting a friend on Wednesday at a local tea shop. We try to get together a couple of times a month for a catchup chat before browsing the charity shops or visiting a special event. This week my friend enjoyed a scone with her pot of tea and I had a chocolate brownie with a cup of coffee. We haven't a particularly sweet tooth as it's the drink and chat we look forward to, but the cup cakes always look attractive and tempting! 

We have many small businesses in my local high street including independent bakeries making bespoke cakes for special occasions.  I spotted this fantastic peacock, probably crafted in marzipan, adorning a cake in one of the shop windows. 

I snapped this display in a bomboniere shop when we were walking around a local Italian town. The cake for a little girl's first holy communion party is surrounded by the little ornament gifts that are traditionally given to guests along with the boxes to put them in.

Have a lovely weekend!
Linda :)

28 Jun 2017

Floral Bliss #27

 I'm joining Riitta's Floral Bliss and sharing the highlights of our garden in June.

Some pinks were brought in doors for a small arrangement and the orange and yellow roses (below) are from a gifted bouquet.

The white rose was one in another bunch of roses given as a gift and grown from a cutting by my husband and was then transferred into a flower bed

The miniature allium 'White Star' is growing with mossy saxifrage  'Touran Neon Rose' and the saxifrage 'London Pride' in a raised bed. 

Below philadelphus (mock orange), allium, pink patio rose and the climbing rose 'White Star'.

The climbing rose 'White Star ' has masses of flowers this year and has grown to the top of the supporting post.

I got rather protective of my white delphinium and kept it in a pot in the covered yard before putting it outside with the other flowers in containers. 

white and red oriental poppies

There are some apples (above) and pears (not shown) left on the young trees although the high winds earlier in the month didn't do them any good.  We might have a few that will mature. We had some strawberries - even a few homegrown are special!

We still have two lemon plants  that were grown from the pip of a 'giant' lemon. Below is the smaller one. They'll probably never produce fruit here in the UK, but were fun to grow.  An olive tree is also in the covered yard with a peach tree, a pomegranate and other plants that need some shelter and warmth. 

'Cardinal de Richelieu' gallica rose was transferred to a sunnier corner of the garden. The colour is amazing, but the actual blooms are small and it's not a prolific producer of blooms as it's still a young plant.

On the other hand,the shrub rose 'Brother Cadfael' produces masses of flowers and will be blooming until the end of the year.

There are many other varieties of flower I could have shown, but it's the pot of lilies that's the highlight in the garden at the moment. I haven't included the flowers growing in the front garden where there are other roses (Joie de Vivre and Arthur Bell, both floribundas).  Lavender will be the next plant to flower.

26 Jun 2017

Edale Village, Derbyshire

Continuing from my last blog post.....
After leaving Tideswell we drove back into Hope Valley and then along the Vale of Edale to the village itself. It's a long lane covering several miles from Hope village to Edale, but there are magnificent hills on either side and this makes the area such a popular place for walking. On one side is the River Noe and on the other are the hills that include Kinder Scout made famous in 1932 when ramblers walked there as a peaceful mass trespass to highlight the fact that at the time access to areas of the open countryside, 'the lungs' for those living in the smoky industrial cities, were denied them. Further freedom-to-roam rallies were held in the area, but it was not until 1951 that the Peak District National Park was created, being the first in the UK. These days there are designated footpaths so that walkers can enjoy the experience of a ramble in the countryside.
From Hope onwards there are few farm buildings or cottages, although there are one or two places for walkers to stay over night. There are several 'booths' in the Vale.  A booth was originally a cattle-rearing place usually a shed or stone building to provide shelter. In the 13th century they were called 'vaccaries', but were also places where sheep were kept.  

The Trans Pennine train route runs through the Vale these days and there's a station near Edale village.

We passed the station, the Ramblers Inn  (where we sometimes stop for refreshments and something to eat) and this time came to the village which is a dead end, but where the villagers and visitors have most of the facilities they might need;  the village stores, the school, the church and the inn. 

The Ramblers Inn

the village school

The 16th century Old Nag's Head was on the packhorse route that headed in several directions.   Horses would carry raw wool, yarns and woven pieces in the panniers on the horses back and The Old Nag's Head building was a smithy and then an overnight stopping place with accommodation for the packhorse men.   The Old Nag's Head is now the official starting point for the Pennine Way footpath from Edale to Kirk Yetholm in Scotland which attracts walkers from far and wide.  The trail is 297 miles long across beautiful countryside and how I would like to go just a short way along it! I chatted to one walker who had been staying overnight at the inn who originally came from England and now lives in Boston, Massachusetts who was doing the Pennine Way walk in his retirement.  He said it would take him three weeks or more to get to the end in Scotland.  At least so far the weather has been on his side and I do admire those who can go trekking and hill walking.  It must be a wonderful experience walking in unspoilt places with breathtaking views from the top of those hills. 

Instead we went into the Nag's Head for a welcome drink and a substantial lunch of fish and chips.
I left Mr. P to finish his drink and rest after our morning's walk-about in Tideswell and I went for a walk towards the woods where a stream runs down the hills and along the land behind the pub and cottages. 

The narrow packhorse bridge crosses the Grindsbrook.  The walls of the bridge are low so that the panniers on the horse could clear the top of it easily.

These were the views from the top of the stone steps of Kinder Edge and The Nab Hill.

Instead of walking upwards there looks like a good footpath that leads back to the Ollerbrook Booth area, the lane back into the Hope Valley and then beyond where there are other moorlands and different challenging hill-walking trails.

Instead I went back to the village and joined Mr. P. for a look at the church.

The Church of the Holy and Undivided Trinity is the third that has been built in Edale. Before that a chapel, which was later rebuilt, stood on a site within the old graveyard on the opposite side of the lane.  The present church is built of stone quarried from Nether Tor east of the Pennine Way at the top of Grindsbrook and the stone foundation was laid in May 1885 and consecrated in 1886.  The tower took 4 years to build. 

Leaving Edale it's possible to take a circular route back through the spectacular Winnats Pass and then take the road into Castleton.  This is one of our favourite places that we're drawn to time-and-again.

We had a quiet weekend and I hope you did also.  I think I've found out the best size of photo to edit for Blogger using a new editing programme, which I'm getting used to! There's nothing much I can do about photos I've uploaded onto the blog in the past except they take up too much room and probably slow down my laptop. I'm trying to declutter my files when I can.I don't know if visitors have problems viewing my blog. I'm thinking about getting a new laptop - eventually.  Meanwhile I carry on blogging as before (as and when I can) in order that I have some sort of a journal that might also be of interest to others.
Wishing everyone a good day.  Thank you for coming by,
Linda :)