Progress

In the absence of any more up to date guest pictures, I have gone back to sunny days a fortnight ago. The picture shows the never ending delight of the Wemyss coast as seen by our son Tony.

We had another cold night with the temperature at our local weather station recorded as a meagre one degree above freezing. This definitely did for the nasturtiums and runner beans….

…though a honeysuckle nearby came through unscathed.

Quite a lot of the morning was spent taking Mrs Tootlepedal to see the doctor. The visit was longer than expected as the doctor was called out on an emergency just before Mrs Tootlepedal’s appointment was due. She came back though and in consultation with our local hospital came to a diagnosis and a possible cure for Mrs Tootlepedal’s ailment. This is encouraging but we will have to wait patiently for a few days to see if it works.

When we eventually got home, we had a light lunch and I decided to go for a cycle ride while Mrs Tootlepedal rested. I watched the birds from an upstairs window as I got changed.

The forecast was for ‘rain later’ so I didn’t attempt anything ambitious but scuttled round my Canonbie circuit, hoping to add a few miles on at the end if the rain held off. It was cold and grey and the light was poor so I only took one picture on the way round, just to prove to myself that I had actually been out.

The lack of dawdling proved to be a sound policy as the rain started just as I got back to Langholm and I didn’t add any extra miles to my trip.

The ran eased off once I was home for long enough to let me walk round the garden. Once again, I was impressed by the sturdy spirit of the flowers in the face of low temperatures.

Phlox are still adding colour all round the garden even if individual flowers are a bit tatty in places…

….and anemones, verbena and lamium are all still in the purple.

Among the flower spotting, I noticed a blackbird on our neighbour’s fence.

It wasn’t hard to find round flowers sticking around…

…and the dahlias in the front bed are giving it their all, though some are struggling just a little.

And if you don’t look too closely, I can still find a colourful corner.

I went off to do some shopping for meals that will suit Mrs Tootlepedal’s requirements and when I got home, I went back upstairs and looked down on the birds again.

A siskin was hoping that there might be some good weather round the corner…

…while a chaffinch was chomping in a determined fashion.

The day was so gloomy by now, that I gave up bird watching and returned to the kitchen. While I had been shopping, some late season strawberries had fallen into my basket at such a reasonable price that I thought that I might turn them into some strawberry jam. I prepared the fruit and got things ready for the evening meal and then broke off to host a Zoom call with my siblings and Mrs Tootlepedal.

It was one of those days when the technology had a little difficulty in keeping up with the demands of the family, and there was a good deal of “Just press the green button!”, “I haven’t got a green button!” , “No it’s the red button in the bottom corner on an iPad!”, “There’s nothing in the bottom corner!” …and so on. It doesn’t help that we are variously on iPads, android tablets, phones and laptop computers using Windows.

Still, it is always fun to talk to them and we will do it all again on Wednesday.

After the Zoom, I put the fruit on to simmer for the jam and made our evening meal of smoked haddock baked in tinfoil pockets. After the meal was over, I added the sugar and made three and a bit pots of jam.

I was a bit pushed for time, so once again, I will not get any marks for presentation. As I am not entering them in a show however, it’s only the taste that counts. I have been eating a slice of bread with bramble and apple jelly on it as I write this post and it tasted fine so I trust that the strawberry jam will come out well too.

I am hoping for a little sunshine tomorrow and better times for Mrs Tootlepedal. She thanks everyone who has been kind enough to offer her their good wishes.

Because of the poor light, the flying bird of the day is in company.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

35 thoughts on “Progress

  1. After me praising the nasturtiums yesterday,it’s a shame to see them succumb to the frost.
    Look forward to seeing them next year.
    Your jams look exceptional and should keep you going a week or two.

  2. It’s always nice to see flowers at this time of year and most of those you’ve shown still look great.
    I don’t know how to make jam but I do know how to buy it and I just might. I seem to suddenly have a craving for it.
    I hope it’s nothing serious with Mrs. T. and hope she has an easy time of it.

  3. Wishing Mrs. T a speedy recovery!

    Your morning temperature was a good 10 degrees below ours today. You still have many bright and cheery flowers in spite of a light frost. We are getting some good temperature swings. Today it was 42 degrees at 6:30 am and 85 degrees by 4:00 PM. It’s a clear night with a gibbous waxing moon smiling down at us, so it will probably be another cool morning. I made one last batch of wine. The birds and bees left us with three trays of usable sufficiently ripe grapes.

  4. Sad to hear Mrs T not been well, I’m afraid I’ve got so much catching up to do with your posts. I have been commuting regularly and knocking the miles up and my steps (via my Fitbit watch). Unfortunatey my ancient bicycle computer’s wheel magnet broke off, so I have to add.my miles manually. Weather has been very up and down temperature wise, but only had rain for the cycle home last night. Glad to say perseverance has made my pedalling get a little easier again. Great to see the blog, cheers, and I hope the jam turns owt nice, as they say. Give our best to Mrs T.

    1. The jam did turn out well even if it was a little oversweet. But that is a fault on the right side in jam. I am glad to hear that your cycling legs are improving. I hope that you continue to get good cycling weather for your commute.

      1. Looks like it’s rain for the next fortnight! I could do with some strawberry jam sandwiches after my morning commutes. Cheers.

  5. Good to see the many colourful flowers in your garden are still giving pleasure to all. I don’t often pick flowers from my garden as I prefer to see them in situ…but today I picked a few and brought the colour inside. Hope Mrs T picks a few of her beautiful flowers to help her feel better sooner.

  6. Wonderful to see so much color in your garden. Mine is reduced to yellows and blues. I have to get caught up with your posts. I am sorry to hear Mrs. Tootlepedal is ailing but am glad she is receiving treatment and I hope she is on the mend soon. Your jam is a luscious color too. Cooler temperatures are perfect for cooking, and you’re making me hungry.

      1. I am sure we have all gained some weight since the social distancing started, whether it’s cooking more, exercising less or just general inertia.

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