Thursday, March 18, 2010

'The broom blooms bonny, the broom blooms fair'..

Today's title is a line from a song on one of my folk music CDs, and it exactly fits the sight we get each morning when we walk the dogs over the campo. I believe I said a week or so ago that the broom was all in bud and about to break open, and now it has. The whole area is a mass of yellow and on the warmer mornings, we can hear the gentle buzzing of the first bees of summer, waking up to enjoy the abundance of flowers. There are quite a lot of wild flowers out now. I remember that March was the best month for them last year. This year they are a bit slower because it is still quite cool and there is a lot of standing water from last month's storms. The water table is full and it has no-where to go. But there are still plenty of flowers to enjoy. One of the most prolific is this mauve one. It is a bit like something from the cabbage family, and it grows everywhere that there is a patch of soil, from the campo to the highways and also the gardens. It makes a cloud of lilac and is so pretty, and it blends in lovely with all the yellow flowers everywhere. We are so lucky to have such a pretty place to live.
And the flowers are not only out on the campo. We have quite a few in the garden even though most things are a bit stunted because they are confined to pots. We do have one small square of earth in the corner of the front garden and this is home to a beautiful jasmine. It grows very robustly and we were quite ruthless when we cut it down in the autumn. But this spring it is up all over the wall again and it is a mass of buds. You can't put a pin between them. The buds are a deep pink but the flowers are almost white, and although only a few are open so far, the scent is strong. It wafts in through the sitting room window and I love it. In front of the jasmine we have a baby mandarin tree which shows no sign of growing or of producing any flowers, but at least it is still alive! All around its base, there is a circle of ivy with pretty variegated leaves, and inside this we planted a ground-cover succulent with small orange daisy-like flowers, that was a cutting I pulled up from the beach outside our flat in El Calón, and another trailing plant that we bought from the garden centre. I don't know what it is, but it has very interesting flowers which are just beginning to open. Quite soon it will be covered in them. The two plants together have swamped the ivy though I see it is spreading out from underneath them again now, and it all looks very nice together.
I have had a busy week starting with a ladies day at our pastor's house on Saturday (the men were away at a conference), followed by a very nice Mother's Day service on Sunday. I was leading the prayers, and Chris came to the service, and then we, and a dozen or so others from the church, all had an excellent Sunday roast at the bar/restaurant where we meet until our new premises are ready next month. Then on Tuesday we had a coffee morning to raise funds for the things we need to furnish the new church. I baked a load of cookies and took some of my marmalade and chutney, and came home with some of other people's chutney instead! I also renewed my supply of English books so I can do some relaxing reading when I get the time. Wednesday was my usual sewing group and today I have been to my monthly scrapbook club. I did the first page of Jonathan's book so maybe I will get on with that now. So although I don't exactly do a lot, I do keep busy and the days fly by. I am still trying to make my lace and this time I am doing a pattern called 'rose-ground'. It is more difficult than any I have done so far and it uses a lot of bobbins. But they are so pretty with all their coloured rings of beads on the bottom of them. These are called 'spangles'. I have been given some lovely ones. This week, a lady from my church gave me about forty pairs of bobbins that she no longer uses, and several of them have lovely painting on their shafts and they have spangles to match the paintings. I love them all. For this little piece I have 56 bobbins hanging, and it is hard to keep them from muddling up. Even one extra twist of a thread can be seen quite clearly in the finished lace. I have made this piece once already, but it had several mistakes in it and I decided to have another go. This one isn't perfect but it is much better than my first attempt. My teacher always tell me not to worry about the mistakes but I like to get it right before I move on. Hopefully it will be finished before next Wednesday and I will start something new then.

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