Garden & Project Shack {Update} #HDYGG

As I looked out of the window on Sunday I felt uninspired by the garden.
It was damp, muddy and the scrabbling chickens were not helping.
I planted some Spring bulbs a few weeks back and that part of the garden is safely fenced off from the inquisitive chooks.
Determined to find something out there to raise my spirits I took out the camera, bravely switched it to manual and explored.

Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
The trees were still demonstrating their Autumnal hues whilst leaving carpets of work for me to rake up.
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
The tree adjacent to my shack always confuses me as I'm never quite sure when it should flower - with its buds and pink it looks like it should be currently Spring.
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Outside the greenhouse the Pyracantha is bursting with red berries giving a distinct feel that Christmas is on its way.
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
The end of the garden remains untouched following some hard digging a few weeks back. I'm not sure what to do with the space next to the husband's shed. It has a nice view back up the garden so am torn between turning it into an area within which to sit or just leave it wild and let the children play down there and get muddy.
Autumn Garden // 76sunflowers
Neighbouring trees hang over the rickety old picket fence adding some much needed colour to the garden.
Project Shack // 76sunflowers
Project Shack // 76sunflowers
The exterior of my shack cannot hide the fact that I have neglected it this year - it is crying out for another coat of paint and some cracks in the wooden panels need filling somehow.
Project Shack // 76sunflowers
Project Shack // 76sunflowers
Project Shack // 76sunflowers
Project Shack // 76sunflowers
Inside I had a good tidy up and clear out as the kiddos have recently taken my space over.
I cleared the table top then realised how much the orange wood of the interior makes it look like a sauna - maybe a fresh oilcloth on the table will break it up a bit.
I am tempted to paint internally too but it will be one of those jobs that has to be done right.
I covered the lower half of the shelving unit with my, never to be finished, t-shirt quilt. It actually works quite well and hides boxes of work books and files.
My 'Project Shack' has been on-going since 2008 and looking back to this post in 2012 it seems to be progressing the wrong way!

One day I will get on top of it all.

How is your garden looking at this time of year? 

Linking up with Annie...
Simple Wanderlust

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Childfree time {Me & him}

Childfree time {Me & him} // 76sunflowers

Being a parent is hard.
It can be stifling.
All consuming.
Tiring.
Monotonous.
Relentless.
Yes, this sounds negative but it is true.

Parenting is hard when you don't get a break.
Not just a break from the children to go to work but a BREAK...with the other important people in your life.
The other half.
The other half of you that can get forgotten.
The other half of you that you love, and loves you - warts and all.
The other half of you that made you a parent.

Time away from the children is needed.
Time with just the other half of you is needed.
Childfree time is needed.

Eventually we got some.
Over 24 hours of time to be me and him, not mummy and daddy.

Canal walk // 76sunflowers
Canal walk // 76sunflowers
Canal walk // 76sunflowers

We walked and we talked - just like back in the day.
We watched the barges meander by, took in the surroundings and spotted my dream home across the water.

We went to a pub for ale and cashews - just like back in the day.
We didn't have to clock watch - just like back in the day.
We wandered around the supermarket picking out comfort food in the form of pies and fancy mashed veg - just like back in the day.

And then the kiddos came home.
I had missed them but felt good, not guilty.
I love them unconditionally.
I love him unconditionally.
We just need some childfree time to appreciate that.

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Project 365 #47 {A sandwich week}

It has been a bit of a nondescript week.
The work days tend to lead to less interesting photos so it's nice to have them sandwiched by some good days.
Here's the sandwich week.

Project 365 #47

Project 365 day 320 - Autumn at Lacock // 76sunflowers
Project 365 day 321 - Chickens // 76sunflowers
Project 365 day 322 - Sun from the Lane // 76sunflowers
Project 365 day 323 - Bath Society Cafe // 76sunflowers
Project 365 day 324 - Phonics // 76sunflowers
Project 365 day 325 - Chai Latte // 76sunflowers
Project 365 day 326 - Canal Walk // 76sunflowers

Day 320
The in-laws took me and the kiddos to Lacock and the local garden centre today - where Christmas has arrived already in a non too discreet manner. Luckily Lacock was its usual beautiful place still showing that it is in fact still Autumn and all thoughts of Christmas should be buried away until at least the end of the month.
Day 321
Finally we moved the chooks today. They had soon turned their patch to mud so it's back to the shingle again for a while.
Day 322
I caught the sun, on the afternoon school walk, going down over the fields where planning permission is being sought for 500 plus houses. This will alter our feeling of living semi rurally massively and this saddens me.
Day 323
The husband brought this back from Bath today giving the game away he had been to his favourite coffee shop, The Society Café.
Day 324
Work day today so always harder to snap something of interest - hence the work based photo.
Day 325
Tired tonight and annoyed that the pub is never an option for me on my way home from work. Puts my weekend off to a bad start again so I went and sulked in the bathroom with a cup of Chai Latte and a steaming bath awaiting me.
Day 326
A rare day without the kiddos today. I got over my sulking and following an appointment in Devizes we drove to Bradford-on-Avon for another walk. Today we followed the canal path for an eight mile walk and finished the day off with a pint of Wadsworth in a pub back in the town. Perfect.

Linking up with The Boy and Me...
TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky
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Bradford-on-Avon {Country Kids}

Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers

Last weekend saw our family day being spent locally going on a walk from Bradford-on-Avon to Freshford.
We regularly pop to Bradford for a stroll along the canal and a play on the park but we are now encouraging the kiddos to stretch their legs further on some proper walks. A post by Bradford-on-Avon Mum reminded me of a walk I had done with the husband many years ago.
The plan was to walk along the river then through the fields meeting up with the canal at Avoncliff. Then, carry on to Freshford before returning back and heading into town by the canal.
It didn't quite end up like that!

Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
In the fields we discovered willow mazes where we unsuccessfully tried to lose the kiddos. At this point the boy found his favourite thing to have on a walk, a stick of course. It came in handy to get us through the mud; thick, oozy, mud!
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
We made it through and clambered up the banks to get to the canal aqueduct at Avoncliff. In this photo the canal is behind us going over the River Avon.
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Then it was onwards to Freshford. We passed through a lovely gate under an old oak tree into the field adjacent to the river - here the girl spotted some beautiful cobwebs in the grass. Finally we were in the village of Freshford where we rested opposite the pub - yes, opposite the pub and not in it! The plan was to turn back and retrace our footsteps through the mud. In his wisdom the husband suggested a trip back on the train - stubborn me wanted a big walk but once the kiddos had this option in their head there were cries of, "We're so tired, it's too muddy to walk back!" Etc etc. Stubborn me started to walk back. I soon changed my mind.
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
I'm so glad I did as the walk up the hill to the station was a joy. The station was like stepping back in time - so peaceful. The children couldn't remember the last time we went on a train so they were rather excited - even though it would only be an eight minute journey. 
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers
Back in Bradford-on-Avon, it was time to run to the park. It was a little muddier than last time but that's what waterproof trousers are for.
Bradford-on-Avon walk {Country Kids} // 76sunflowers

As the sun began to drop in the sky we wandered back to the car for a mug of hot chocolate and marshmallows.
Next time we will walk further!

Linking up with the super Country Kids...

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall
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Lacock Abbey {National Trust} #HDYGG

Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers

Yesterday I spent a lovely hour wandering around the grounds of, local National Trust property, Lacock Abbey.
Regular readers will know it is one of my favourite places and has become a bit of a repeat feature on the blog.
For that I do not apologise!
I never tire of the place and every time I manage to photograph something different.

Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Autumn was showing that, despite the hints of Christmas and Winter around the corner, it was still the season in charge.
The sun shining through the Beech leaves in the Botanic Garden, Autumn leaves providing a backdrop to the sparkle of the sun and the beautiful reds on the Abbey walls - all a sight to behold.
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
The contrast of black and white was on show in the Botanic Garden. I loved how majestic the flowers still looked despite nearing the end of their seasonal life and can you spot the bees busying themselves amidst the flowers outside the greenhouse walls?
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
The greenhouse was open - inside was awash with pots of colour.
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
The doorways and windows in the Tudor Courtyard caught my eye - not only spotting the plants and flowers creeping around them but having the urge to peek through and think about the history that has taken place behind them over the years.
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Lacock Abbey {National Trust} // 76sunflowers
Inside the medieval cloisters I had to snap my favourite tree, defiantly fighting time with a sturdy prop. I stopped and looked in more detail at the architecture of the walls and windows and questioned how on earth they built such an amazing structure over 800 years ago - it really does put modern housing to shame.

A picnic in the car was calling so we only went halfway around the grounds today.
I'll be back again soon though to walk through the orchards and have a go on the rope swing - as the sign on the way in noted, 'It's not just for children!'

Linking up with Annie at simplewanderlust.com...
Simple Wanderlust

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