Thursday, 29 May 2014

Local Lingo

Cornwall and Devon Flags

We all like to learn a bit of local language if we're going on holiday somewhere to help endear ourselves to the locals.
Most people will know the odd French phrase or perhaps Spanish or Italian.

I thought it might be fun to dig out my West Country phrasebook and teach you all some local lingo!

When we first moved to Devon and met out neighbour, we really struggled to understand what she was saying because she was speaking broad Devon and her kids used to translate for us. We bought a phrasebook as a bit of a giggle to bust out at dinner parties to try and impress them!

The pronunciation of the words is much softer than the Bristolian accent. It is still "farmer" sounding of course, but it is lovely to listen to.

A few things my friends and I use regularly are things like:

Maid - female, young woman, daughter.
"The maid is out milkin' " / "pass me that book maid"

Bey (no idea of correct spelling but it sounds like "bay") - Boy, male, young male, son.
"The bey is out with his friends" 

'ere - hello/alright - greeting
" 'ere Soph!" 

Now this is merely a taster for what is to come. I have seen words such as: "orted", "muxy" and "yark" in my phrasebook that I'm sure I will cover at some point! 
I can tell I am also going to learn a lot from this series!


Monday, 26 May 2014

Dartmoor Dog Walk

After I rode BH this morning, I needed to take the dogs for a walk but I was really struggling for inspiration.
I didn't know which route to do that they haven't done recently.
Laying in the garden with the doggies and dozing in the sunshine made up my mind.
We travelled about 25 minutes in the car to a place called Harford on the edge of Dartmoor.
I haven't been up there with the dogs for months and it's such a lovely place. Today was the perfect day for it as there is a lovely stream for the dogs to paddle and swim in and plenty of space for charging about!
The stream for dibbling in
We dibbled about in the stream and walked down to a rock pile that I climbed up and just sat on enjoying the view. 

View from our perch in the sun

The dogs pottered about and then came and joined me for a sit in the sun.
There were loads of bluebells out which looked stunning.
A carpet of bluebells
It was absolute bliss and I was very at peace with the world in that moment.

Monty dog

I can't wait to get out and explore more of Dartmoor with the dogs.
Stunning views
What did you get up to over the long weekend?


Sunday, 25 May 2014

Weekend fun

So it's Bank Holiday weekend!
The weather is being so weird - it is torrential rain in some places and 2 minutes up the road is broad sunshine!
It is proper wet rain - I know you know what I mean! 

On Saturday, I rode Fern while it was dry and then went out with my friend in the afternoon to go to a couple of tack shops and for a cream tea.

We were both very restrained in the tack shops and only bought essentials. The horses don't need any more rugs!!
The doggies got a new toy that has lasted 24 hours. It was a rabbit and now it is just a rabbit skin and the stuffing is all over the lounge!

We headed over to Totnes for a cream tea at Anne of Cleves.
Totnes is the most hippy but lovely town. It is so lively and there is so much to see. They say it is twinned with Narnia!!

Anne of Cleves is the most twee tea room. It is tiny and the staff wear black with little white frilly aprons. The window is full of delicious cakes and we enjoyed our cream tea and watching people going past stop in their tracks and look at the cakes in the window - they are in such a trance they don't realise that you are watching them from inside. It was pretty amusing!!
The cakes and cream tea at Anne of Cleves are well worth trying and I highly recommend them!
The windows display from outside


Lovely tea room Anne of Cleves

I went to my friend's house this afternoon for her baby's first birthday party. They had an amazing cake for him which was The Hungry Caterpillar. Do you remember that? I loved that book!
Hungry Caterpillar cake

The weather was beautiful this afternoon and the view from their house is amazing. It was a lovely afternoon.

Amazing view

Tomorrow's activities will depend on the weather! 

What have you been up to this weekend? What has the weather been like where you are?


Friday, 23 May 2014

Sulking puppies

The poor dogs have had a bit of a boring week and are making me feel very guilty today!

Mother had to go up to London on Tuesday to visit family so the dogs have had to stay at home all day while I'm at work. 
I go home at lunchtime and let them out and play with them and then we go for a walk after work but they are a bit cheesed off.
Normally they get 2 walks a day but the weather has been a bit hit and miss this week so it's been pretty darn boring!

On Tuesday evening, I went to a friend's house and saw her super cute 2 week old Labrador puppies. I tried to smuggle one out but failed!
2 week old puppy and mummy
I came home and went for a very late walk round the village recreation ground with my friend. The dogs had a great time thundering about as fast as their legs could carry them, digging a hole in the kids sandpit which we had to fill in, paddling in the ford and chasing each other and another dog they met.

Pups on the playing field

On Wednesday, the dogs spent the afternoon at work with me chewing pens they found under the desks, emptying paper out of the bins, chewing it up and generally being quite irritating. After work, we went to a local Woodland Trust wood which they love. I attempted to take some photos and tinker with settings on my DSLR....

On Thursday, we went to the village again and did a different route, they played with sticks, chased each other and did lots of sniffing.

Monty dog

I had to go and pick mother up from the train station just before midnight so I took the pups for a ride in the car with me. Dixie had her pyjamas on as it was a bit chilly and she's such a jessie if she's cold. 
We went onto the platform and waited for the train and they were so excited to see mother when she arrived. Mother was really surprised to see them there as well. I wish I'd got a picture of them on the platform waiting for the train. It was so cute!

This morning we've all gone off to work again and Monty was curled up in front of the Aga sulking and Dixie was....

Dixie tucked up in bed
Yes, she was in between the folds of her duvet sulking.
She then moved to a different duvet and got inside that one as well. Hopeless!

At least it's a long weekend so we can go for lovely long walks and they'll get lots of extra attention. I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that the weather stays dry(ish).

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Forgetfulness and rain.... a bad combination!

Three times in 3 days I have been caught out by the rain!

On Sunday I went to an early morning fitness boot camp and the grass was wet so I left my trainers in the sun all day when I got home and totally forgot about them. I remembered them Monday morning but they were damp with dew so left them out in the sun again as it looked like a beautiful day.
Later in the day, it absolutely heaved it down so I had to text mother from work and ask her to get them in and put them next to the Aga to dry. What a kerfuffle!

The same day, I'd left the windows open on my car whilst at work because it was hot and only remembered/discovered that I'd left them open when I went to get in it at lunchtime..... very soggy seat!! Thank goodness for keeping lots of dog towels in the car so I didn't get a soggy bum as well!

On Wednesday, I quickly shoved my dirty horsey trainers on to go and sort the horses in the morning before work. They weren't being very co-operative so I had to trek across the field through long wet, dewy grass to get to them.

Needless to say my feet got wet so my trainers were left in the sunshine all day Wednesday to dry them in the sun.

I found them this morning after an awful lot of rain last night......

They were sodden and even had water pooled in the bottom of them!

I darined them out but they are too soggy to put in front of the Aga at the moment so they are currently in the sink in an attempt to drain a bit of water off them before they spend several days in front of the Aga!

It is so frustrating when the weather catches you out but even more frustrating when you forget to bring your things in from outside!! 


Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Meet the ponies....

The other animals in my life are my horses. They are like my children!
I have got 2 horses and they are the reason I am permanently poor but I wouldn't be without them.
They have both had less than brilliant lives before they came to me. I'm convinced I attract special needs animals!
My babies

Meet Brown Horse:

This is Brown Horse ('Apache' for posh) - AKA: BH, Brown, [censored]!!
He's 11 years old and around 15hh. He's unknown breeding but probably Connemara X Clydesdale - he definitely wasn't bred on purpose that's for sure!!
I've had him for nearly 6 years and we have been through an awful lot. He has cost me a fortune in vet bills, his behaviour has been very erm... challenging... but he is my baby boy. He's such a mumma's boy. Loves being the centre of attention and hasn't got a bad bone in his body.He is like a naughty child who has had far too many sweets. He is high on life all. the. time.
His favourite things are causing mayhem and injuring himself as well as cuddles and bottom scratches.
He has a huge fan club. Everyone that meets him loves him.
I could write so much about him but I'll save it for another post!
The boy wonder behaving himself (for once!)
Who wouldn't love that face?!

Meet Fern:

This is Fern - AKA Moo Bear, Princess, and other things!
She is 11 years old and around 15.1hh. She is from Romania and was destined for a lasagne. Her passport is signed off for human consumption!

She is a very sweet little horse who rarely shows emotion and I assume this is because of her past. She rarely wants fuss and she can be quite opinionated especially when it comes to going in the trailer! She hates drain lids and road markings. She is even sometimes terrified of her own shadow if she sees it following her along the hedge!

She loves going for a gallop and it's so lovely to see her enjoying herself.
She is steady, comfy, sensible - the polar opposite of BH!
Her favourite things are treats and neck scratches (when she's in the mood).
I love this horse dearly and she's a little diamond.
Princess Fern


Monday, 19 May 2014

Super Sunny Weekend in the Westcountry!

What a fantastic weekend of sunshine we have had!

Friday evening was spent riding the horses down to the village with my best buddy, sploshing through the tide and meeting friends and riding to the pub with them. Unfortunately we weren't able to stop for a drink as well but we'll definitely try and do it soon!

Saturday was baking hot so I plaited Fern's mane up to help keep her cool and we went for a lovely ride round the tracks and lanes. I took my new GoPro camera out so will have to share the videos.

Both horses had a bath which was desperately needed. Fern was shining like a conker and BH's white bits were actually white!
Clean shiny Fern

Jobs got jobbed and the doggies had a lovely walk somewhere we've never been before which they enjoyed.

Mother and I went to the local pub for dinner and I enjoyed a lovely cold pint of Cornish Rattler cider. I recently went to Healey's Cider Farm where they make Rattler and sampled pretty much everything!! I've been converted - I rarely drink, but cold cider is so refreshing!

Sunday was just as gorgeous and I was up and out at a fitness bootcamp by 8am before it got too warm!
Home for breakfast in the garden and then headed out on Fern again for a lovely long ride round her favourite route. She was flying along and it's so lovely to see her enjoying herself.

Breakfast in the garden with a dog on the table!!!
Beautiful bluebells in the wood

I went to visit a friend and her baby for a couple of hours in the afternoon and it was lovely just laying in the garden chatting.
Mother and I took the dogs for an evening walk when it was nice and cool.

I love weekends like this! I've seen all my best friends and been making the most of the sunshine. Proper job! (As they say in the Westcountry!)

Did you get out and enjoy the weather? 

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Meet the puppies...

I think it is high time I introduced my doggies as they will feature quite regularly on my blog.
Most of the photos I take of the beautiful countryside are when I'm out walking the dogs so invariably there will be a dog or two (and usually a rear view) in the pictures!

Meet Dixie:
Dixie is a 1 year old Parsons Jack Russell. She's a rubbish example of a JRT as she is the biggest wimp out. She rarely play with toys and hates ball games. She stands between my legs and hides while I chuck the ball for Monty.
If she gets upset or scared then she clambers at me until she gets picked up. 
Her favourite things are cuddles and running really really fast.
She loves to get other dogs to chase her but she will only pick dogs that can keep up but she can still beat. She doesn't like losing at all!
Dixie on the beach - her favourite place! 

Meet Monty:
Monty is a 1 year old Cairn Terrier. He is 6 weeks younger than Dixie.
He is the sweetest little dog in the world and he loves to play ball and is low maintenance, puts up with Princess Dixie and is just the nicest, most laid back character.
Monty's favourite thing in the world are belly rubs. He flops down, rolls over and just stares at you until he gets what he wants! 
He also loves to play ball but he's not very good at giving it back!
Monty on the beach
We hadn't had a dog in 8 years and then suddenly we got 2 tiny puppies within 6 weeks! It was a tad chaotic to say the least!
They are great buddies now and even greater partners in crime!!

Best friends


Tuesday, 13 May 2014

In the garden...

It was such a nice sunny evening today, I managed to take some pictures in the garden before the sun went down.

Everywhere is so colourful at this time of year, it's all too easy to rush about in day to day life and not stop and appreciate what is around you.

The hedges in the lane are also bursting with colour.

Have you been out recently and taken in all the natural beauty around you that we can all take for granted?

I am so lucky to live here in this beautiful area.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Soggy Saturday

The view between rain showers
Stunning view from the top of the valley

I had to go to Plymouth earlier so on my way, I called into one of my favourite tack shops to replace a couple of buckets my dear horse annihilated a couple of weeks ago and I accidentally (on purpose!) bought Dixie a lovely expensive new fleece rug! 
Team GBR fleece
She loves it and it's so snuggy and warm! It's also a Team GBR one so it's super cool.
When I got back I stupidly sat down and put Badminton Horse Trials on the telly and it was so hard to tear myself away to take the dogs for a walk!
Hiding in the barley
My puppies being impatient!
We had a nice walk except we got caught in a horrible ice cold rain shower. I got brain freeze and had to stuff Dixie down my jacket as she hates rain and wind!
Ominous clouds....
We have spent the rest of the afternoon in front of the fire watching Badders. 
It was so exciting - a challenging course that caught lots of people out and there were so many fallers, hairy moments and some superb riding and stickability! I haven't been to Badders for years and I hope to go next year with a friend. 

Didn't ride the ponies today because of the weather but I did get chased around the field until I scratched BH's bottom! 
That horse is so special!!