Grape Hyacinths - Muscari

Grape Hyacinths - Muscari
A sea of blue

2011 - My second year of blogging in Brittany

I felt I would like to share some of the photographs I have taken so far this year and some from other years. I live in a beautiful part of Brittany and just love being here. It's a lovely place to photograph and enjoy being in through all the seasons and hopefully this blog will show you where I live my life.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Photos for Mandy

Here they are, Mandy. 


Friday, April 18, 2014

Birthday visit to Cornwall

A week away in Cornwall and now I'm back home.  The weather was wonderful in England and the sun was shining still when I got back here so I'm a happy bunny who has spent most of this week sunbathing and reading - I know the hat is not high fashion, but it is essential to shield the brightness.
I was reading my Book Group book, Never Coming Back by Tim Weaver.  I've just finished it this afternoon and have now started Symposium by Muriel Spark.
For my birthday evening Brett and his parents, Colin and Val, invited me, Matthew, Libby and Charlie to dinner which was lovely.  We had a great evening, far too much booze, and yet somehow I woke up the next morning without a headache or a hangover - way to go! 
Libby, Charlie and I visited Lanhydrock House on Monday.  This was because Val, who works there, organised our entry - thank you, Val - it was a brilliant day out.  Yet again, the weather was glorious and we had a lovely time wandering around both the house and grounds doing an Easter Egg Hunt.  We had lunch there and Libby walked back up to the car park while Charlie and I rode on the back of the shuttle buggy, facing backwards which was a bit disconcerting as there was nothing to hold us in!

The gardens were beautiful and because it was April they were filled with my favourite flowers - tulips.
This is a view of the kitchen filled with cooking pots in brass and copper, jelly moulds and huge tureens.
It was lovely to see Mia again after six months.  Obviously she didn't know me at all and understandably took a little while to stop crying after I'd entered the room!  However,  by the end of the week we were fine and she was pulling herself up to standing using my legs.  I can't believe how much she has grown - she's so lovely. 
Charlie too had shot up since October last year and it was lovely to spend time with him.  He has made some friends now where he's living with his Mum and Matthew and seems to have taken to tree climbing as well.
The ferry ride was calm and after having a drink with friends from bowls who were doing the same trip, I went back to my cabin and actually managed a few hours sleep for a change. 
The campervan was packed to the gunnels on the way home and it took ages to unload it and find a home for everything.  I was back in St André by 1000hrs and very happy to be back with all the animals.  The next morning saw an increase in numbers as my little white bantam had hatched a baby chick overnight - lovely!
I am just waiting for my first guests of the year to arrive for Middle Cottage.  I hope they will be the first of many.  I have various friends coming over this year too and I'm really looking forward to the summer months.

Three things I like:

1.   Getting Belgian chocolates for my birthday from a special friend.
2.   The wonderful sunshine we've had this week - it's changing for the weekend.
3.   Being back home again.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

La Boissière and flowers in the lane

On Tuesday evening, with a friend, I visited a restaurant I had not been to before.  We had been going to a different place but on arrival found it closed so drove on to La Boissière in Guingamp.  On the Tréguier road we drove off up a steep drive into a wooded garden and having parked walked round to the front door. 
It was 1940 hrs and we were welcomed by Véronique Monfort who showed us to our table in the empty, but well-appointed dining room.   Her friendly service made the meal even more enjoyable.   Within the following half hour two more couples arrived. 
Thomas Monfort is the chef who presented us with such delicious  food.  The photos have all been taken from the internet as I forgot to take my camera.
The whole evening was enjoyable and I would definitely recommend La Boissière to anyone looking for a very good meal in very pleasant surroundings.  It was not a cheap evening and I would like to go back to try their set lunch menu, which is obviously quite different but much more reasonable. 
Last night was the every 6-8 weeks quiz at St Gilles Vieux Marché.  Our team came second as we often do, although we have won once in the last six months.  We fall down on the sport questions as none of us has any knowledge of sport so have to work particularly hard at the rest of the quiz.  It's always good meeting up with people we haven't seen for a while and having an enjoyable evening.  
The little white bantam is continuing to sit on eggs in the feed sack so I hope that eventually we may have some little chicks.
Myosotis, forget-me-nots, are covering the ground everywhere at the moment and the wallflowers in my neighbour's garden scent the whole area.
This is a little bank beside the bread oven in the lane, studded with primroses, muscari and speedwell. 
The sunshine attracts not only me to the garden, but all three cats as well who want to get in on the act of sunbathing.  Although it has not been very hot this week, we have had 18°C in the shade and, without a breeze, it has been very acceptable out there.  Luckily we seem to have escaped the pollution that has been affecting much of the European mainland and the UK.

 Here is our calvaire with muscari, grape hyacinths, at its base.
The sunshine is out again and I'm just off up the lane to collect today's eggs.  The hens are all laying well at the moment and I'm getting duck eggs too.  This morning I clipped one wing on each of the six week old chicks so that I will be able to put them into an open run in the next week or so.
I was posting letters in the local village this morning when Virginie from the local bar/restaurant came out and asked if I could give her some of the poppy seed from the flowers which grow amongst my vegetables.  I am so happy when someone French asks me for something as I feel that I have been accepted here in my little bit of heaven.  I drove home, poured some saved seed into a glass jar and popped straight back to the bar to give it Jerome, her husband. 

I've just found out that a dear friend, Kathy, is going to have a heart by-pass in the UK as soon as possible.  She has been ill for for a while now but they have only just correctly diagnosed her.  My fingers are firmly crossed for her operation and good recovery and I can't wait to give her a big hug when she gets back to Brittany again. 

This was the beautiful sunset tonight looking from my field.

Three things I like:
1.   Hearing that my very good friend, Heather, has got her latest all clear from cancer.
2.   Searching for recipes for the duck legs I have in the fridge and finding a tempting one.
3.   My life here in Brittany.