Tuesday, 31 March 2020

One day more, with the Marsh family.

Browsing the internet can be a mindless activity. It can deplete your brain cells and turn them to mush. I found this while searching for something that will add a little stimulation to life during this stay at home period. Sometimes you come across a little gem of a video, something that lifts your spirits, something that gives you hope that eventually we will come out of this quarantine.

The Marsh family have obviously worked very hard to adapt this song with their own words. It is heart warming to see them working together as a team and supporting each other. Well done.

Keep your pecker up, it isn't going to last forever. Toodle pip.  ilona

Monday, 30 March 2020

Jamming with the greatest.

Brian May, possibly the best guitarist in the world, (maybe joint best with Eric Clapton), isolated at his home, giving free shows and tutorials, how cool is that. He can't get into his studio, but has a few electrical bits and bobs with him to demonstrate his craft.

In this little clip he asks that people join him on this jamming session, so if you have a musical instrument handy have a go. Check out his other videos for instruction on how to play like Brian.

Eighteen years since this amazing moment happened. Not many musicians can say they played on the roof of Buckingham Palace.

This country has produced some fantastic musicians over the years, I'm glad I was around to enjoy them.

Did a six mile walk today, spoke to no one. I did see a strapping young man wearing shorts, with a child carrier on his back. His little girl seemed to be enjoying her ride with daddy. I thought, good for you.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Sunday, 29 March 2020

What a racquet

And finally......the badminton racquet is finished. It wasn't going to end up like this, it's not the picture I had in mind when I first thought of it, but it's ended up ok. The handle and frame were already pink, I wrapped some bright pink wool with a sparkly element over it. I see the lollipop trees are leaning a bit. 
First I wove the background onto the mesh. Then made up the rest as I went along.

The green leafy trim around the edge was white, I coloured it with nail varnish. There is a little gap at the bottom where it didn't quite meet.

Covered the back with a piece of snooker table green baize. Just need to attach the wire across to hang it.

My first idea was a single tree made with wrapped wool, but I made it too big. I will use it on another project.

I've got another project waiting to be started, if I can find the right bits. And a plan 'B' for a second project. Must keep the mind occupied. 
Onwards and upwards. This lockdown is not much different to how I normally live my life. The only difference is I can't go out in the car on sunny days to another area. Can't stop and chat to people in the street, a quick shout across the road will have to do for now. I don't like shopping anyway and only go when I have to, when I need food for me, food for the cats, and go to the bank. The difference now is that I don't dawdle, in and out, do what I have to do, then get the hell out of there. I don't like crowded places, so it's ok with me to avoid them. And I can continue with the Walk 1000 Miles Challenge because I can walk from my door. I can walk at night in the dark when I see no one, or use the footpaths around the edge of the village. Eventually the situation might improve, just have to keep calm and wait.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Friday, 27 March 2020

An experiment

Today I thought it might be a good idea to embroider a cheesy cracker. I made a start, then thought no, it's a daft idea. Now what? Sew some more and make a collage? 
Toodle pip.  ilona

Leave me alone...........

....I'm self isolating, I'm on lockdown, I ain't getting up, stop bothering me. 
Bugger off. 
OK, Mayze. Sorry to disturb you.  Love from mummy ilona xxx

Thursday, 26 March 2020

A different route today.

Another sunny day, had to go out, it would be a shame to waste it. This morning I did a Billy dog walk around the village. I spent most of it avoiding other people, crisscrossing the road, seems most people dog walk in the mornings. I told his owner that I would be walking him late afternoon/early evening in future, not so many people about. He's only got little legs, and doesn't want to go far, so 30 - 40 minutes is enough and he's ready to go home. 
After lunch I put my boots on and set off for my official exercise walk. I checked the OS map and worked out a circular route for just over five miles. That will do nicely. Most of it was along the edges of fields, official footpaths, public tight of ways. Not a soul about. It was bliss. 
Spotted a dovecote in a garden. When I first noticed it, it had three doves sitting on their perches. Then they went inside, and only one came out to have his photo taken.

This is a relic left over from a national cycle race which came through this village. It was a few years ago now, The whole route was marked with bicycles in gardens, at road junctions, and some on top of sheds.

It's nice to find a bench when you want to sit down. This is a memorial bench surrounded by fields. Someone is looking after it, there are fresh flowers in the vases.

Oooh that's nice, it's warm, a slight breeze, and big open spaces, just how I like it. Think I'll relax here for a few minutes. It's nice to get out to take your mind off what's going on in the world.

Five and a half miles walked today, which brings my total to 250, so on target for the first three months of the year. Five more days and I will be ahead by next Tuesday.

Look after yourself, take this opportunity to get your daily exercise.
Toodle pip.  ilona

WARNING...seriously cute

Let's lighten the mood. A few minutes of your time to forget all about what's going on in the big wide world. Let's have some little pockets of happiness and joy to get us through the day. My Auntie Pat is a member of a cat lovers Facebook group, and little gems like this keep appearing on my screen. There are many more cat on the piano videos, so you might find yourself hopping to the next one, and the next one, and maybe even falling asleep. Enjoy.

Sunny again, aren't we lucky. At least the garden is available for recreation. No need to go to the shops yet, eating what I already have. Maybe another week or so and I might have to get cat food. We'll see, take each day as it comes.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Wednesday, 25 March 2020


I've had a nice day in the garden. Sewing in the sun. Council tax paid at the Post Office.

Something for you to read, not my words, retweeted from Twitter.

A quote from a refuse collector: “In the past 2 weeks, we have seen a 30% increase in Food Waste collected from households, the additional weight is mainly fresh food that has gone out of date and was never even touched, some still in wrappers.

Guidance needed for double-manned trunking. Drivers cannot practice social distancing, are in cab together 13+ hours. Move to changeovers needed. Plenty spare trucks now. Pallet networks, we are told are still flat out.

Incredible! Just had a delivery point argue with a driver stating they wanted the goods in the house! they abused the driver and stated "don't worry none of us have it"! Really people come on can somebody really be that stupid

Absolutely thrilled that 405,000 NHS volunteers have already signed up. We are grateful for each and every one of you - doing your bit in the national effort to defeat

My wife just went to the supermarket. They were letting ten in, ten out. Everybody queued politely and 2 metres apart. When she got in, the shelves were full. Everyone was polite. We can do this.

Final call out of the day before I return home to my family, group of youths blocking a highway with pedal cycles, spitting at members of the public - Parents: WHERE are your children? And what are they doing? 

What is the point if the responsible majority in this country keeping two metres apart when people in London are still packed onto the tube like sardines

Update: We will continue to collect household waste. However from today the brown bin collection service will be suspended in order to concentrate on our core services and protect the vulnerable. Please do not put your brown bin out for collection.

The Humber Bridge Half Marathon has been cancelled. It was due to take place on 28th June. Anyone who has entered will be entitled to a full refund or have the option to donate their entry free to Hull Foodbank.

Good guys: Smokey Joe's Cafe north of Redruth on the A30 is closed but you can still park there and the showers and toilets are available. Throughout all of this, it's the little businesses and individuals that continually outshine the big companies.

There ya go, that will keep ya busy for five minutes. Now going for my daily exercise. Chow.

Tuesday, 24 March 2020

My daily exercise.

My morning exercise walk for today was the same route as I did on Saturday. Taking advantage of another sunny day. Five miles, two hours. So what did I see. Wild garlic in abundance, a lush green carpet in the woods. 
There are vast areas of flat farmland, with not much chance of seeing anybody. Eye spy two people walking over there, I zoomed in, they are a long way off.

Another zoom in to get the tractor.

Over there at the base of the wind turbine are maintenance vehicles. There were no blades turning on all six turbines.

Four tractors were busy ploughing. Down the bottom of the lane is a farmhouse, two people and a dog are walking along the lane. They are a long way off.

Someone has dumped some fencing in the wood alongside the track. What a mess. 
Looks like someone else has decided to have a campfire, they have laid the concrete bases out in a circle to contain it. I expect they will be back and in time the wooden fencing will all be burnt.

Litter is normal here. Youngsters congregate with their takeaways and beer. I wonder if they will still be doing that now. Not supposed to be out in a group.

Busy lifting the turf and loading it onto a lorry.

I was on my way back, walking on a track between two fields, when I saw a group of five people coming towards me, they had two dogs. They were dressed in colourful jackets. I couldn't believe it, they obviously haven't got the message regarding group walking. I veered off to my left as soon as I caught sight of them, and went right over to the other side of the field, to get away from them. 
After lunch I had a lovely afternoon sat in my summer house. Terry is putting a video out every day, I watched it while I was eating my dinner tonight. How did you spend your day? 
Toodle pip. Ilona

Monday, 23 March 2020

How is the Coronavirus affecting everyone

Hello. The Summer House is open and I am sitting in the sun. We have another sunny day today, aren't we lucky. I did a three mile walk at 7am this morning. A quick wave and a Good Morning to a couple of people in the High Street, no stopping.

Just put this onto yoootooob, have a butchers, that means have a look, if you like.

Blimey, it's warmer outside than it is inside, so I'm off back to the summer house at the bottom of the garden.
Toodle pip.  ilona

History repeats itself.

I'm up early on this bright and sunny morning, no rain, so we can go outside. I've got a video simmering which will be uploaded to yooootoooob later. In the meantime I've come across this really good article about the Plague at Eyam in Derbyshire. For those who are struggling to curb their activities by staying closer to home, read it because it is about an important event in history which we can all learn from. The people of Eyam self isolated the whole village so they could contain the disease and stop it spreading any further. They saved many lives by doing this. The story is so relevant today as we find ourselves in a similar situation.
The plague at Eyam, link.

I went to Eyam in 2011, and stayed in the Youth Hostel. Here is the link to the blog post. There is also a short video on there about the story of the Plague. You may be sick of reading anything about the Coronavirus now, but I think this look back into history is something we need to learn about.

Catch ya later. ilona

Saturday, 21 March 2020

Take a walk on the quiet side.

The weather looks nice when you are inside looking out, but when you get outside its not very warm at all. I was cold when I set off for a walk today. Didn't put a heavy jacket on because I didn't think I needed it. I had to keep up a fast pace to try and warm myself up. Off I go along the edge of the field, turn left at that wood down there. 
Past the horsey field.

I came to a turf field, there is a lot of it round here. The soil looks very sandy, must be ideal conditions for growing turf. They have started harvesting it.

That's a mighty big mowing machine.

And a trailer with six pallets of grass seeds ready to sow. Enough for several football pitches I would imagine.

Into a village. This is the garden of one of the pensioners bungalows. In the summer they are often out working in it when I go by. 
A row of rickety old barns, with a splash of yellow daffs. These would make great cottages.

The church has an unusual spire, and a pond in the grounds.

The road goes over a disused railway line. You often see these converted into tracks for walkers, cyclers, and horse riders. Would be good if they did that here. 
Here is a little puzzle, what do you think this is? Seen dumped on a grass verge. Lots of small cardboard tubes. Have a guess.

On my way back now. Still a bit cold.

Arriving back into the village.

I enjoyed that walk. Five miles, two hours. I saw a few people, all with the same idea, and gave them a wide berth. Seems odd not stopping to talk to anybody. I think people understand though, just raise a hand and say Hi is enough. Not being snooty or anything, just want to keep a safe distance. I took a diversion and walked in the middle of a field to avoid a group of five strolling along. I wanted to get past them and I was walking faster than they were. There will be some more walks over the coming weeks. Anyone else getting out walking?
Toodle pip.  ilona

A little ray of happiness.

It's good news from Terry. He is social distancing like most of us, but look at all the toys he has to play with at home in his studio. How many keyboards has he got? How many guitars? Over the next weeks he is going to entertain us, hopefully with a few of those keyboards. How exciting. I will put him on full screen and fill my room with Terry's piano playing.

Looks like a nice morning, I'll go outside and maybe walk, or do some gardening. Social distancing is the thing, something I've been doing for a long time.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Friday, 20 March 2020

Finding things to do.

I've just had a phone call from Ann who is the chair of the Village Hall committee, it is now closed, so no Crafty Club. I watch the village Facebook page to find out what is cancelled, and what help there is available for those who need it.

An early walk gave me a boost this morning, I was out of the house at 7am. The fresh cool air felt good in my lungs as I took deep breaths.

Kept myself busy today. Working on the Badminton racquet arty crafty thingy, it's coming along nicely. It has been a sunny day, a bit chilly in the wind, but ok for working in the garden with a coat on. I was going to mow the front lawn, but then decided to straighten up the paving slabs on the driveway. They are huge things and were slipping sideways making gaps between them. I almost fell over a couple of times when I got my foot stuck. Scoop out the weeds in the gaps, stick a garden fork into the ground and lever them together to close the gaps. Four of them had to be moved. Looks much better now. All squared up, level, and ship shape. Maybe I'll mow the lawn tomorrow.

Not been anywhere today, kept in touch with people on social media. Hope you are all finding things to do.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Driven to despair.

I still follow what's going on in transport even now, it's eleven years since I last sat in a lorry cab. I like seeing pictures of all the new modern trucks that are coming out, and reading up what the jobs are like. My last job was driving a Volvo, a beautiful cab I thought at the time. It was like sitting in an armchair, so comfortable and could be driven with very little effort.

I am picking up lots of comments from disgruntled, and angry, lorry drivers, who are not allowed to use the toilet and hand washing facilities when they get to their delivery point. Large and small companies are putting up notices to say it is now forbidden to enter the building to access the facilities, where as before they were allowed to.

Someone can be driving for up to four hours to get to their delivery point, to make the deadline. They need to have a pee. They have been sworn at, and told emphatically, no you can't use the toilet. One place put in a couple of portaloos outside, with nowhere to wash hands. One driver was told to pee on the ground next to his cab.

It is actually illegal not to provide facilities for visiting drivers. Some deliveries can take up to four hours for the trailer to be emptied, and the driver can't go into the building. No wonder you see plastic pop bottles dumped at the side of the road containing a yellowy liquid.

Copied from T & D Tweet
Yorkshire Envelopes Bingley told a driver who was bursting for the toilet to pee at the side of his truck and they would then bring hand sanitiser out to him. What sort of genius thinks using yards as open toilets is in any way going to help?

There are lots of comments like this. It was pretty bad years ago when I was driving, seems with this Coronavirus things have taken a backwards step. Now drivers are treated like lepers.

Please treat lorry drivers with respect, without them the stores would be permanently empty.
Sunny outside, a bit of gardening I think would be nice.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Thursday, 19 March 2020

What shall we have for dinner?

I had a bit of business to see to in town today, called in Aldi for a few things. Not much fresh fruit and veg left, no bananas, boohoo. 

Deli chiller cabinet not looking too good.

Only large semi skimmed milk left. Too much for one person and I don't like semi skimmed anyway. I can manage without.

No bog rolls, or kitchen towels. Don't need any anyway. A new stock delivery is due tomorrow. The staff looked a bit weary, they are doing a marvellous job of keeping things going. They are rationing now, but they should have brought it in from the start. I guess they didn't know how greedy folks would be. It must be massive task when the shop is ram packed full of grabbing customers. I feel sorry for them. Like working in the middle of a rugby scrum. I haven't been to Tesco so I don't know what it's like there.

I would say that there was enough left for families if they are prepared to change what they eat. It's nice to buy food that you like, but when there is none of your favourites left, try something else. This is a time when you have to be creative. There are people in this world who have no food at all, we are lucky that we have some. 
I've got a massive hole in my bank balance now, but never mind, it will creep slowly upwards again. My daily living expenses are very simple, there will be money left over at the end of each month which will go towards the next car. I hadn't realised, but I had my last car for five years, time flies. As soon as I got it I started saving, and now the cycle begins again. I save up and pay cash for my cars. This one is a beaut. 
Time to do my three miles around our quiet village. Thanks for popping in. Toodle pip.  ilona