Our lives are built around routines. They can give our days structure and help engender a sense of wellbeing.
Not too long ago my life was straight jacketed by the rigid routines and demands of life in the English education system. But our good routines were still there to prop me up. An example was breakfast. From sometimes as early as February, we would sit like two old ducks, enjoying breakfast on our morning patio, listening to the birds and watching the hens. That seems long ago and far away now and is something we haven't got into the the routine of doing since moving house in January 2011.
This new period has seen our lives tumbled about with each day dominated by the varying demands of developing Cordwood. Early on, the work was mainly outside, reclaiming and developing the gardens. Then we moved to house building and also maintaining the areas we'd developed. Recently we've added shopping around for appliances, carpets, flooring. We are operating on about four fronts at the moment and it is difficult keeping each of these plates spinning.
weeding the Cedar Walk
On the garden development front, the Cedar Walk circular path was finally finished yesterday thanks mainly to beefy barrowing from Patrick and Trev. The joke was on Trev here, as he was with us when we developed the circular walk but had to leave it unfinished because we ran out of chippings for the path. He'd been heard commenting that he felt sorry for the poor sucker who had to barrow chippings all the way down to the final section. Trev was one of those suckers yesterday. Thanks pal - and job done.
On the garden maintenance front, I'm pleased to say that the developed areas aren't 'running away' from us this year. I have established a routine which sees the first two hours of each day given to garden maintenance. So, I've scythed the path around the boundary; scythed the drive edge and entrance; cut back and weeded our mixed native shrub boundary hedge; kept the path mown through the orchard; weeded the part of the Woodland Garden where the weeds were most enthusiastic and removed wheelbarrow loads of willow herb from the Cedar Walk. We had a great day yesterday, when seven of us cleared the Cedar Walk on both sides.
On garden development we've not only completed the Cedar Walk but also had a family day when the whole of the undeveloped section of the Woodland Garden was cleared. I've finished 'lasagne gardening' the drive edge with cardboard, manure and chippings and begun to do the same on the woodland edge nearest to the bungalow. The great piles of cardboard keep coming and they can all be used. Jill raids the dustbins at work for cardboard and Jay is mining an endless resource at a furniture store. I've begun planting native shrubs into the Cedar Walk ... and seeded our huge lawn. News on this tomorrow-ish...
In 'Waxwings' the paint-athon continues and I have one of Jill's lists here in front of me of what to do next and with which paint! Skirting boards and architraves next.
And also on today's list in her handwriting is to sort flooring - several calls to make and the joy of more lists on Friday when we look for wall lights, doors and handles...
But look, a glimmer. Here's a photo of an impromptu breakfast on our new 'terrace'.