What a difference a day makes!

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Glorious sunshine yesterday on the west coast but bitterly cold. Boats in the marina at Dunstaffnage  Рviewed from the car park at Poppies after a delicious lunch. Then a drive up the coast to Glencoe. In the shelter, the sea was mirror calm and the reflections perfect. The landscape wore a golden- brown glow in the afternoon sunshine. The moon added drama to the Pap of Glencoe in the late afternoon glow as the sun was setting.

All the laybys through Glencoe, and out on to Rannoch Moor, were packed with cars and mini buses and all the occupants were all out taking photos. We were amazed at the number of people, certainly far more than we would normally expect to see at this time of year.

Today everything is monochrome – except for the red gates and beech hedge. Snowing steadily. Our first white stuff this year.

Very frosty

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Our weather has gone back to being very frosty and sunny, which is much better than the unseasonably mild and grey of before Christmas. No snow yet in the garden but yesterday morning the hills were white with a fresh covering. Wales, the Midlands and the southern counties seems to be the recipients of all the latter at the moment. I am sure that we will not escape the white stuff for too much longer.

Complete contrasts today – white with frost outside and tropical orchids in full bloom inside. For the past sixteen months I have had at least four in flower at any one time and sometimes more. In our previous house I could rarely get them to flower again and if they did it was years between. We brought four in flower with us when we moved into this house last September and there has been a succession of blooms ever since. At the moment these four have pride of place, with four more currently with flower stems at various stages of development. Some are about to flower for the second time in this house! I am absolutely delighted with the success. The plants must really like the growing conditions in their new location.

It was quite interesting to read in a friend’s Christmas letter that he currently had seven orchids in flower. He was thrilled as this was a first for him. Like me, he has struggled to get them to flower again after the initial purchase. Ours obviously like being above a radiator (the latter are not on very often), no draughty windows and lots of light from the big windows. Oh, and the occasional watering by me.

 

Recent discovery

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A recent discovery whilst we were checking part of the collection. Lots of marginalia in this 17th century book and then we came across this – a love letter to “Mrs Janet Paton (possibly Laton?) Library Keeper At Inerpeffray”. We do not have a Mrs Janet Paton (Laton?) on the ¬†list of Keepers, so we are quite excited about discovering exactly where she fits in. A challenge for me to research in 2018! And who was the Albert who signed the letter? And who was Mr John? Who knows!

To Mrs Janet Paton (Laton?) Library Keeper At Inerpafry

Mrs

I have many things to say but they seem

cold & impersonal than thy books So Sending

you my Love: and Service

I bid you Adieu

Albert

Chair project completed

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Just completed the re-covering of hubbies favourite chair. It has been very difficult but really quite pleased with the result. Now to sort the electrics in that room and then finally get rid of THAT carpet which was in situ when we moved into the house just over a year ago. I have been very patient!!

East coast visit

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We have just been to Northumberland for a few days. Business, visiting old haunts and meeting up with dear friends. Some gloriously sunny days but it was bitterly cold. Just looking at the sea made it extra chilly! Always love these views but rather strange to see, almost on the horizon, the castle on Lindisfarne shrouded in scaffolding and white plastic sheeting whilst the NT carry out major repairs to the structure. It never ceases to amaze us just how busy this part of Northumberland is these days, even at this time of year. Oh for the days when you could almost have Bamburgh beach to yourselves!!