Term finally ended with Pirate day for the younger ones. Our two pirates look more like pickpockets from Fagin's gang . The treasure they are searching for is red-tailed bumble bees. My son, like most small boys, is fascinated by small winged or creeping things. ( He is also mighty proud of his sister's boots, which he has borrowed - he is convinced they make him look as cool as Johnny Depp)
And a birthday for my eldest daughter, who said goodbye to her primary school, and prepares to take the next step onwards in life. Granny baked her a beautiful cake, with crystallised Pinks on it, as requested. It feels like such a momentous step forwards, and part of me mourns the loss of childhood - she is growing up into this beautiful young woman before my very eyes, and so fast.
And I have to show you the fruits of Steve's hard work. We have a deal in our house. Steve works the allotment (but I have start the seedlings in the greenhouse, and do all the pricking out and potting on ) and I am supposed to be responsible for the back garden. Well, the allotment is looking stunning - finally coming into it's own after 3 years of reclaiming it from the wilderness. It is organic, but Steve is a traditionalist. He double digs, and follows his rotation plan, and I occasionally sneak extra catch crops in little gaps. At last, we are eating almost entirely from here. I am SO proud of him. He works extremely long hours at work, six days a week, then arrives home, picks up his tools and at least one of the children, and does another couple of hours working on the allotment.
I, on the other hand, am ashamed to admit that I have let the back garden turn into a jungle. I feel like I have been run off my feet, just trying to juggle work, childrens taxi services, cooking, (cleaning has completely gone out of the window) dragging water to 6 horses, and trying to keep the kids ponies vaguely fit, and two dogs who haven't had the sort of walk they would like ( a decent 3 or 4 miles) for at least a month. My temporary job finishes on Monday, thank goodness, though the money from it is also much needed, as it will pay for my winter hay delivery.
I haven't even got round to staking the tomato plants in the greenhouse, or tying up my sweet peas, which are sprawling across the flower beds. My grape vine is threatening to swamp the apple tree, and the runner beans fell over and I didn't get around to picking them up. The grass is knee high, and the bindweed and ground elder is creeping back. So, I am in disgrace, and need to devote some time to sorting the mess out. I am hoping I can persuade some small hands to help me.
I will keep you posted!