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I would like to say a big thank-you to all of you who responded so kindly to the news of my mother-in-law’s death.  I was quite moved by all your comments and I have duly passed them on to Richard who also sends his thanks.

Chris and Richard cannot do anything now until probate is granted and that may not take place for some months as there is a queue.  We will probably meet up with the family in Manchester as usual just before Christmas and have a meal together in memory of Joyce.

Cymbidium Orchid

Cymbidium Orchid.  I repotted this Cymbidium many years ago when it became terribly pot-bound and split it into about six new plants.  I gave away two and kept four and this one plant has decided to flower again at last.

Cymbidium Orchid

Cymbidium Orchid.  The flowers are so exotic!

Richard is slowly getting used to being retired – a difficult thing to do after having worked continuously for many decades.  He has taken possession of his new car, done a fair amount of work in the garden and he is taking turns with me driving Elinor to college.

Elinor is coming to the end of her first week back at college.  She is finding it all quite challenging but so far has coped bravely with all the changes to her routine.

Elinor's Art

Elinor’s Art.  When Elinor attended her enrollment day she was asked to produce a piece of art work that gave some idea of what she was like or what kind of things she liked.  She loves fairy tales, myths and legends.

Elinor's Art

Elinor’s Art.  The students were supposed to find an old book and use it in the project – either cutting it up or sticking things in it.  Elinor couldn’t damage a book even an old already-damaged one, so she inserted her pop-up picture into a book of myths with paper-clips.

I am trying to get on with the back-log of household chores I should have been doing through the summer.  I had had such plans, but somehow the time slipped away and I still have two freezers to defrost and lots of cupboards to sort out.  Having two one-week holidays to prepare for and then get over is definitely more work than a two-week break!

Great Crested Newt perhaps

Great Crested Newt? (Triturus cristatus)  

When I moved my wheelie-bin full of rubbish from it’s spot near the house in order to take it to the end of the drive for emptying, I saw this creature had been hiding underneath.  It obligingly waited while I ran into the house to collect my camera.  Great Crested Newts are a protected species throughout Europe as they are becoming quite rare through loss of habitat.  If this is a Great Crested ( or Great Northern or Warty) Newt, and I suspect that it is, we will have to be very careful how and when we do any pond maintenance.

Perennial Sow-thistle

Perennial Sow-thistle (Sonchus arvensis)

I have been seeing a lot of these big shaggy flowers as I drive about the countryside.  The flowers are about 4 or 5 cms across and are such a bright cheerful yellow – not a common colour at this time of year.  They are large plants and can grow to about 2 metres in height.

Perennial Sow-thistle

Perennial Sow-thistle

Common Toadflax with Yarrow

Common Toadflax (Linaria vulgaris) with Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

This is a verge by the side of a fairly busy road on the way to Norwich.  I saw a lot of these little yellow Toadflax last year but never managed to photograph them.  I was determined to get a photograph of them this year and parked off the road and walked back to see this group, dodging fast-moving articulated lorries as I went.

Common Toadflax

Common Toadflax

I hope you agree with me that it was worth the trouble I took to get this photograph.  I think these little flowers are really special.  They are little yellow snapdragons and can grow to about 50 cms in height.

Before I finish I thought I’d let you know that I will be adding a little music now and then to my posts.  It will be up to you if you choose to sample my choices; they will be quite varied and you may find something you like!

Thanks for visiting!