Saturday, 29 February 2020

Home Sweet Home

Having left sunny Spain it has been rather a shock to the system, with cold, wet and even snow weather. 
Today however is cold but bright, so I ventured out into the garden.
This miniature cyclamen must like its position, it is a mass of flowers.

You cannot beat a daffodil to put a smile on your face.

With a poor show last year the camelia is a picture this year.

Love the colour of this species Deborah given to me many years ago by a friend from France .
She did not know I had a sister also called Deborah, such a coincidence.

I came home from our long holiday bursting with projects I want to work on. A new hexagon project by hand, a block of the week by machine [I am already 6 weeks behind!] and a glass fusing project to name just three.

I have managed to started the hexagon project, more on this later.
1/2 inch hexagon project started from stash fabric.

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Travelling home

We left Spain at 7am on Sunday morning to travel along the side of the Mediterranean in to France arriving at our overnight stop around 3pm.
Kyriad Perpignan Nord, just under 500 miles.

Monday again we were on the road by 7am to drive to Reims, it was an interesting journey along the autoroute past many built up areas and interesting buildings. We arrived at our hotel about 3.30pm
Ibis Budget Reims, just under 600 miles.

Tuesday, 7am start in pouring rain, first we had seen for days, but it soon cleared. We arrived at the Eurotunnel at 10am and changed our 11.50 ticket for a 10.20am ticket to cross back into England.
Arrived home lunch time [clocks went back an hour]

It has been a great almost 7 weeks away and now its time to unpack and start the diet!

4056 miles total mileage in the VW Golf.

Saturday, 22 February 2020

Winding down

Winding down for our trip through France to home starting tomorrow.

We spent one last day at La Mirador, hoping to eat at the Mariposa but it was full!

Such interesting countryside

It is the most peaceful place, with hardly a sound anywhere.

The quad bike track from our trip last week.

Having a quick drink before driving back along the track.

We will be back and will make sure we have a reservation for lunch!
Tomorrow we drive along the coast past Barcelona and into France for our first nights stopover, then onto Reims the next day. 
Final day under the English Channel and home on Tuesday.

Tuesday, 18 February 2020

San Pedro del Pinatar

We have been away from home six weeks now and it is the first time this holiday we have been to see the flamingoes in San Pedro del Pinatar.

It always fascinates me that they are white when they land in the salt flats before they eat the shrimps that turn them pink. I wonder if we ate a lot of shrimps would we turn pink?
Photo a bit shaky as I had to use zoom on my phone camera.

There seem to be more and more flamingoes about this year.

At the end of the causeway there is a large marina with what must be tens of thousands pounds/dollars/euro’s worth of boats. How the other half live.

The seashore was littered with washed up pieces of palm trees, making it feel like a sponge to walk on.

A lovely warm sunny day to wander along the shore line.

Monday, 17 February 2020

The duck gets more clothes

I managed to complete two items of clothing for my ever growing menagerie of animals.

A dress and a top. Having hundreds of buttons at home I could not wait to get back home and had to find a local shop to purchase yet more!

All the patterns are from the book
Knitted Animal Friends by Louise Crowther.

Which animal to knit next? So much choice and even more choice of clothes.

Fused glass

I have just collected my glass from the fused glass workshop a few days ago.
I was so excited to see it, and cannot wait to attend another workshop with Elaine Craven, look her up on facebook if you are ever in the Mar Menor area, it is a great way to spend a day.
The curve is the flowering fruit trees that surround this area of Spain. It will glow in the evenings with a couple of night lights behind it.
The heart with a copper heart between two pieces of glass because it was almost Valentines Day.

I love having glass hanging in my windows at home, so made the two multi coloured hangings, and the piece with the cat and plants, again with copper between two pieces of glass, just to try something different.

The day spent making these items was a real highlight of our holiday.

Friday, 14 February 2020

Patchwork and Chocolate

Having research the area for a patchwork shop, the only one I found was 90 mins away, but it was also in the area of a Chocolate factory that had tours every hour, so we planned a day trip.
At Altea the Patchwork Studio turned out to be in an apartment complex but eventually we found it.
This sign was by the door.
It turns out the owner had moved her studio to her home, but what a treat with walls of fabric and everything that goes with making quilts and sewing patchwork. She was extremely friendly and showed us around and the quilts her students were working on.
One of two rooms and a corridor full of fabric, books and haberdashery.
I bought a little fabric from her before we left.

We then drove to Villajoyosa and the Valor Chocolate factory, we were three minutes late for the 12am tour so picked up tickets for the 1pm tour.
Time for a quick bite to eat, but the service was so laid back we missed the 1pm slot, so no problem we drove to the sea shore and took in the sights before getting back to the factory in plenty of time for the 2pm tour. Problem, closed until 4pm !!  So we came home with no chocolate !

Glass Fusing Day

Having read about a Glass Fusing day before leaving home I booked a place, for 65 euros it was an all day workshop with lunch.

Seven of us attended the class with Elaine in her garden under the shade of a large blind, it was a lovely sunny day.
Maggie, Chrissy and Linda sat on the same table as me and we had a lot of laughs while learning how to cut glass and how the kiln worked etc.
Decked out in aprons we cut glass until lunch and then worked on our masterpieces in the afternoon.

It was a wonderfully organised day that we all enjoyed.

I will post pictures of my completed work when it comes out of the kiln.
A few pieces waiting to go in the kiln.

Cieza Day

The almond trees are just coming into flower so we set off for a day in the area of Cieza just north/west of Murcia.
Starting at the Tourist Office we were given a map of the area but told the flowering trees were late this year and not at their best yet.
We visited the indoor market in the square to use the loos before taking a walk around the town.
We entered the church just as it was being opened at 10.30am sat for a while admiring the beautiful paintings and figures.

This seemed to be the entrance to the convent.

Opposite the church entrance this interesting statue.

We walked to the museum but it was closed. 
Drew some money out of an ATM and drove along the B19 to the B25 to see the flowering almond trees.
The valley will be awash with colour in March but at the time we were there it was just starting to come into flower.
[not my photo]

However the Tourist Office had told us to take a ‘dead end’ road leading to Cueva-Sima Serreta, always game for an adventure we took the narrow tarmac road which gradually disintegrated into a very rough track, my poor car!
Parking the car we walked to the edge of the canyon

Watching where you stepped

It was hard to get a really good photo of the extremely deep canyon

We were alone in this desolated area.

A mysterious large locked metal cover turned out to be a stairway and walkway to the bottom of the canyon.
I was glad it was locked !

The trip was so worth the visit and we enjoyed the beautiful scenery.

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

Breakfast and the pamper day

Sunday we visited the famous Sunday Market at Benijofar for breakfast. We were lucky to find a parking space near the entrance as by the time we left the car parks were a sea of cars making for a long walk before even reaching the market.
Medium for me and large for him! A delicious way to start the day sitting outside in the sunshine.

The market is always so colourful

Love the Spanish pottery

A basket maker busy weaving.

This market has everything for could possible want, including barbers, hairdressers, beauticians, wine by the gallon, double glazing, crafts, fresh food and cooked food etc etc...

Monday I spent the afternoon having a pamper day, hands and feet with Donna, just what I needed.

Saturday, 8 February 2020

Must be Friday

Our usual haunt for Fridays, Quesada Fish and Chip resturant, well worth the 30 minute drive.

Glad there are no calories in food eaten away from home !!

Friday, 7 February 2020

Murcia Bull Fighting Museum or was it?

Continuing on a day in Murcia we went back out into the gardens and spotted a cafe El Club Taurino, which looked like it was themed with bull fighting, but surely this was not the museum?
After some hesitation I braved going in and asking, remember I do not speak Spanish and the waitress did not speak English, but she pointed to a door and we went through... at last the Toros en Murcia Museum.
Knowing almost nothing about the sport of Bull fighting except for the wonderful costumes they wore, we walked around admiring the craftsmanship of the beautiful costumes with their silk and gold work.
The bull fighters all seemed to be so small.

Not sure I liked the stuffed bulls heads, but it is part of Spanish History

One whole wall was covered in hand painted tambourines.

This had been a great way to spend the day visiting three museums and costing us nothing as they were all free, so we headed for Ikea and lunch.
Lamb shank and chips followed by Carrot cake for me, meatballs and cake for Chris.

Biopsy, bruises and a block finish

Thursday I went into hospital at 10.30 for my lung biopsy, the staff could not have been nicer and put me at ease. The procedure meant lying...