We've been a lovely ride out today and took a picnic lunch with us - just on the spur of the moment, the weather was perfect (for me) slightly overcast and quite warm. We travelled a few miles over the county border into beautiful Shropshire, through the country lanes and mostly enjoying the peace and quiet and lack of traffic.
We enjoyed the freedom of picking a lovely, scenic spot to eat lunch and settled down and chatted for a while, then off again exploring the villages and hamlets we came across.
(Sorry no photos as I'd left the camera at home.)
As we wended our way along we passed a plant nursery, Trev slowed down (even more) and asked if I'd like to visit it...he knows me too well! To my utter delight we'd discovered Barlow Nurseries. I wondered around in awe of the beautiful, healthy herbaceous plants absolutely covered in beautiful, buzzing bees :o)
Now, I'm still trying very hard to fill up my back garden border again (since the new fence was erected) and have decided it needs to be even more bee friendly! So it will come as absolutely no surprise to know that I came home with some beautiful bee friendly plants. In fact I was almost having to de-bee them to get them in the car ;o)
(Photos taken hurriedly at 8.45pm.)
(Please excuse the barbecue cover)
A HUGE clover - like flower
Erysimum linifolium variegatum
Two beautiful, healthy Lupins. 1 x pink and 1 x red (above still in bud)
and finally for the worlds biggest courgette hater (me)
I'm determined to like the blasted things and figured if I grow them I'll eat them!
If you are ever in the Newport, Shropshire area do please give them a visit - you won't be disappointed :o)
Now, a few views of how the borders have filled out a little more.
Aconite and yellow Corydalis Lutea
blue self-seeded aqualegia, corydalis and aconite
various pots surrounding my arum lily
The apple tree - no blossom this year :o(
The opposite border against the garage
with pulmosa (lungwort) forget-me-nots (amongst others)
Gorgeous foxgloves, and behind the bottom of the ivy where the robins nested...
(I can't remember if I updated that situation? There were two babies that fledged the nest, unfortunately one of them landed inches from a sleeping Sid cat who awoke before I could do anything to save it :o(
(The other did well.)
Finally, beneath my kitchen window.
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Now for the 'what would you have done?'
I received an email last night asking me if I had any information about a female Staffordshire figurine, similar to one I have (which I posted about here). I happily agreed to help if I could and was duly sent some photos of the figure in question. It had been in the wars, the head had been off at one point and stuck back on. I studied the photos carefully (they were quite detailed) and came to the conclusion that I believed it was a copy and not an original. There was no signs of wear or dirt ingrained on the base, the crackles in the glaze were perfectly bright and clean even though the gold appeared to be rubbed, and the expansion hole (to me seemed) to be in the wrong place. It also appeared that it was made from a hard paste body and not a soft paste. I gave a potted history of Staffordshire flat backs.
I was really in a quandary. I wondered if I should go ahead ? I would certainly like to have it queried if it had been the other way round. So I mentioned my doubts(in more detail with photos to support) and decided to question it's authenticity, BUT I stressed that I'm no expert and it needed and expert evaluation as it was difficult to tell the difference with any certainty from a photograph and needed 'handling' to confirm one way or the other.
I was not surprised therefore to receive another email questioning my thoughts. I again stressed I believed it really needed expert evaluation, and I would be truly delighted for her if I am wrong.
I'm neither cross or upset by the reply I'd received, in fact I thought it was very well written.
My question to you is this, do you think I was right to tell her? Or should I have kept quiet about my doubts?
Please let me know your thoughts, I'd appreciate them.
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Very quick update on Mom.
The appointment has (finally) come through from the Memory Service for next Wednesday. Of course she doesn't want to go ("I haven't got a problem with my memory - everybody forgets things"), but her Doctor (bless him) asked her to humour him and go to see them anyway :o)
I shall take her and see what happens. In the meantime she's lost her (replacement) false teeth! They've vanished into the ether again. So it's back to the dentist for another £200 set :o(
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Hope you all have a great week.
I've been having a change around on here and haven't finished yet..