Jaye’s Week ( In the garden, not the Office)

Yesterday afternoon I had planned on writing and working on a trailer for one of Anita’s books, but the sun was shining, and I couldn’t be asked.

We sat outside, drinking coffee, surrounded by all the jobs I have been neglecting so far this year. Not really my fault, for the weather hasn’t exactly been conducive for gardening lately. It’s either been freezing cold, raining, or both. So, I wasn’t feeling too guilty.

Maybe a little guilty about some of my bonsai perhaps, as there are a couple that desperately need repotting as they have used up all the goodness in their soil. There was also an orange blossom that I bought earlier in the year that has outgrown its pot.

Before I knew it, I was hard at work, and enjoying every minute.

I was also promising to spend a lot more time in the garden in future.

My favourite, at the moment

They say you are closer to God’s heart in a garden, and all I know is I am always happier when up to my elbows in rich garden soil, surrounded by all the wonders of nature.

I thought I would close with some of my favourite bonsai, the acres. Especially the ones with different colour variations in the leaves. I love the Lacy ones too and have included the one that refused to be a bonsai. It outgrew every pot I put it in, and eventually I planted it in the garden.

I hate to say this, but in a way, I hoped it would rain tomorrow so I could catch up on my writing! (or maybe not!)

#Throwback Thursday…

How to Juggle a Couch! ( or the most fun you can have without actually laughing!)

Most weeks in our house are usually a mishmash of incidents, some good and a few of the other kind. But whatever happens there is never a dull moment around here!

This past week has excelled itself, hurtling from one mini-disaster to another. At one point, I contemplated staying in bed, just to break the cycle, but as I am the nosiest person for miles, I couldn’t bear to think of anything happening without me. Seeing as how I was born with a sword in one hand and cleaning mop in the other, I could usually cope with anything!

It all started to go wrong when we spotted a fantastic bargain in our local charity shop, a two-seater couch in black leather. It was in perfect condition and a price that would n’t bring our bank account to its knees. So without thinking things through, we bought it, to be delivered the following day.

But what to do with the dilapidated broken down couch in our living room?

The local council have a collection service, so all we had to do was get it out of the house. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? In case you were wondering, it definitely wasn’t.

We are both in our 70’s and not the fittest people on the block, but we were determined. We would do this, even if it meant dragging the couch out of the house in pieces. A not so small nightmare later, two broken and bad-tempered women sat on the old couch in the front garden, swearing never again. We didn’t understand why it had been so difficult, it was a two-seater after all. We clearly remembered the day years before when it was first delivered, so either the couch had grown, or the house had shrunk.

The next day, tempers and difficulty forgot, the new couch was delivered and peace reigned once more. How I wish the story ended there.

At this point in the story, I can blame Anita for what happened next. She had seen (and fallen in love with) another couch in the charity shop, which she assured me, would be far more comfortable than our old three seater. You couldn’t make up what happened next.

To cut a long and painful story short, we bought the three seater and managed to drag the old one out. Slightly easier this time as it could be dismantled. Shame it was so bloody heavy though!

Shortly after the new three-seater was delivered, it became obvious that the blessed thing wasn’t comfortable at all, and had to go. By this time we were exhausted,  unhappy and tempers were flaring. Again!

After three days of juggling large, heavy and unresponsive pieces of furniture, I have banned the word ‘couch’ from ever being spoken of in my hearing again. The furniture we have will just have to last, for there is no way I am going to lift anything heavier than the kettle for the foreseeable future!

Another Interesting Post from Nebari Bonsai…

Hawthorn winter pruning and wiring

Brian VFDeciduous April 10, 2021 3 Minutes

This hawthorn has grown rather slowly over the last few years, and I attribute it (right or wrong) to my increased use of fungicides. Regardless, over the last few years, I have let it mostly grow, and now it’s time to sort out what it’s done.

The tree has a tendency to throw upward- and downward-growing shoots at junctions. It makes the tree look more ramified than maybe it is, but time to clean it up.

Pop over to NEBARI BONSAI for loads more info and images…

#Jaye’s Week …

Anita came home from the hospital after having the pacemaker fitted with a digital monitor, something that will be plugged in next to her bed to record her heart activity while she sleeps. This amazing gadget is linked to the hospital and can alert them and us in the event of another heart attack. It will also record if it has been called upon to restart or shock Anita’s heart back to a normal rhythm.

Knowing what to do when or if this ever happens, is extremely complicated, so the next home visit from the heart failure nurse will be full of questions.

And speaking of questions, there seems to be far too many answers now, none of which are helping us to know what is really going on at any one time.

In fact, we are more confused than ever as each doctor/person we speak to, seems to have a different explanation of what’s going on.

Anita is progressing, albeit slowly and that’s what really counts, isn’t it?

Ten days later, Anita began to have trouble breathing again, so it was back to the hospital to have her checked out.

It all seemed like the worst kind of Déjà vu.

Before the pacemaker was fitted, Anita was getting on well, doing small jobs around the house and even walking to town almost every day.

This simple procedure seems to have sent her back to how she was in the beginning, something she is not happy about!

They were very thorough with their checks, and everything was deemed normal apart from the fluid in her lungs, but no explanation as to why.

As the next lockdown starts, I am hoping to knuckle down and finally get cracking with the writing as my muse is getting so tired of waiting for me. 

I just wish she could learn to type!

Good luck to those of you who are taking part in NaNo this year!

Jaye’s Week… #WIPWednesday

#WIP Wednesday

I spotted this hashtag this morning, on my travels around the blogosphere.

And it made me think of all the works in progress that I have now.

Unless I am working on one, I try not to think of the others too much as it can get a little depressing, but they are always there, lurking in the background.

The main WIP is the new story I have been trying to outline for what seems like forever. This involves an old character, so I know him like the back of my hand. The antagonist, however, is new and I’m having the devil’s own job getting to grips with him, for I think the antagonist is just as important a character as the hero and needs to be written well. So far, he is Mr Nobody!

Having caught up with the housework last week, the garden must be the second WIP. So overgrown, I get rather overwhelmed when I look at it, especially when an old tree fell over out there last week, but determined to get to grips with it, even if it takes a while. That’s if it ever stops raining!

Which brings me to what I think is the last WIP. The project I started as a way of relaxing, but which so far has had the opposite effect. Browsing through Pinterest, I saw this amazing stained-glass crochet pattern, and the challenge to master it was born. I love to crochet, but some of the more complicated stitches are usually a bridge too far for my aging brain, but when has that ever stopped me?

Overtaking and more important than any of the above, is caring for Anita.

( she wouldn’t like to be regarded as a work in progress, so this is just between us)  I am consumed with the complicated business of getting her back on her feet. It has been a week since the pacemaker thingy was installed and the wound is healing well, but she is still weak, lightheaded, and very breathless. I think at least one of her medications is not agreeing with her, but which one? The nurse will be here this morning, so we will see what she thinks…

Review for Maljie ~ Teaching a Cat to Dance #EpicFantasy ~ @JimWebster6

Maljie. Teaching a Cat to Dance

In this volume we stand shoulder to shoulder with Maljie as she explores the intricacies of philosophy, marvel at her mastery of pre-paid indemnification plans, and assist her in the design of foundation garments. When you read this, not only will you discover just who wears the trousers, but you can indulge in a spot of fishing and enjoy the quaint fertility rites of our great city. This book contains fashion, honey, orphans, and the importance of dipping your money in vinegar to ensure it is safe. Indeed you may even learn how to teach a cat to dance…

Our Review

Teaching cats to dance sounds like something our politicians do all the time, a bit like ‘gilding the lily’ or something equally preposterous. The fact that this is something to with Maljie does not surprise me at all.

Port Nain is not only a quiet place to live, it has some weird customs too. Most of which will usually end up involving one of my favourite Port Nain characters, Maljie.

If there’s a better, more profitable way to do almost anything, you can bet she will find it. As for teaching cats to dance, I imagine she could do that too, should the notion occur to her and the price is right.

Jim Webster’s stories are always well written and so good to read. I love reading about Maljie and all the residents of Port Nain…

About the Author

Someone once wrote this about me

“Jim Webster is probably still fifty something, his tastes in music are eclectic, and his dress sense is rarely discussed in polite society. In spite of this he has a wife and three daughters.
He has managed to make a living from a mixture of agriculture, consultancy, and freelance writing. Previously he has restricted himself to writing about agricultural and rural issues but including enough Ancient Military history to maintain his own sanity. But seemingly he has felt it necessary to branch out into writing fantasy and Sci-Fi novels.”

Now with eight much acclaimed fantasy works and two Sci-Fi to my credit it seems I might be getting into the swing of things.

And long may you continue, Jim!

Having trouble uploading the Amazon preview link, so give this one a try…

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Maljie-Teaching-Cat-Dance-Webster-ebook/dp/B08K84QJ5C/

The Launch of Shadows… Anita’s book of poems…

Shadows, a collection of poems by Anita Dawes
image by Jaye Marie

Anita has always wanted to see her poetry in print, and I think this is because they mean a little bit more to her than her fiction work. Probably because they are closer to her heart and soul.

Now, I was an editor long before I became a writer, so I thought compiling a book of poems would be a walk in the park.

It wasn’t.

I started with the eBook, which as you know, doesn’t have pages, it just rolls along until the end. I uploaded 100 of Anita’s most popular poems from last year, all suitably separated by a fancy divider.  I wanted to use colour for these, but thought it might be too expensive, (or complicated) 

As I was scrolling down the poems, it occurred to me that this system wouldn’t work for the paperback version.

The one thing you don’t want, is what I think they call Widows and Orphans, where you have half of the poem on one page and continuing the next.

The next problem that hit me was that all these poems were different lengths, so fitting them all neatly on the pages was going to be difficult, complicated to say the least.

One problem lead to the next, when I realised this book would need a TOC, or table of contents.

I haven’t done one of these in ages so had to scrape my morale of the floor and search the house for my thinking cap.

Which leads me to the last problem.

At least I hope it’s the last!

My brain keeps letting me down right in the middle of a procedure. Every time I have a good thought, half of it seems to vanish in a puff of smoke and I’m left with just enough to drive me crazy!

I tend to write a lot of notes these days because of this new development, but it happens so fast now, I often don’t get to the pen in time.

Sometimes the rest of the thought pops up again later, but then I must remember the first part and marry them up!

So I would be grateful if you find any howling errors, to let me know, so I can fix them!

What with one thing and another, I haven’t been able to do any marketing, so I’ll be playing catch up forever with this one. I have tried to add the link but unfortunately, it doesn’t feel like behaving. The link on the cover in our sidebar isn’t working either so not having a great day! I seem to have done everything right, so must be this new editor. Methinks its time to ask WP for help…

There will be more about this book, but feel free to add some feedback in the meantime…

What the …

You won’t guess what this photograph is…

I desperately need a new camera, for its absolute crap at taking night photos…

But I tried to capture it anyway, and although it’s terrible, it did make me laugh!

 

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terrible image by Jaye Marie

This is the view from our front door, and the white light is the street lamp.

Drum roll please…  the orange light is…   THE MOON …

To say I was disappointed would be putting it mildly, but compared to what is going on at the moment, nothing to speak of really…

Hoping everyone is keeping chins and spirits up… difficult, I know, but one day we will laugh about it. (at least I have been told that we will)

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