Much of a muchness

Things that make you go 'hmm'…

I’m a hothouse flower…

Well, that’s all my travelling done for this year. Unless some miracle happens, I am doomed to the rain and grey skies here in the UK until next year. It was 37°C every day I was in Mallorca, clear blue skies – I loved it. I am definitely a hothouse flower.  I arrived back in the UK yesterday and today it is raining. Sorry to bang on about the weather again but it does get me down.

Anyways, before I went to Mallorca, I was very busy making two albums and boxes for the friend I was going to stay with and for her daughter, who gave birth to a beautiful baby boy back in May. It was my friend’s birthday (a significant one) and as I couldn’t think of a present to buy her, I made her the album of photos of her first grandson. I asked her daughter to send me lots of photos of the baby and she kindly sent me nearly 500, so it was a very enjoyable task to go through them and choose the best to go into the two albums. (I printed them on to double sided heavy weight paper using my Canon Pixma Pro 9500 printer using archival pigment inks, for the technically minded among you)

Here are photos of one of the albums – one was pale blue and the other was pale green. The photo on the front was taken in the baby’s bedroom.


My friends have THE most beautiful house. I am especially attached to it because I helped to choose it several years ago after a whistlestop visit to Mallorca when we viewed 18 houses, with 4 different agents, in 2 days. The house they bought was the last one we viewed – on the way back to the airport. They grow all their own fruit and vegetables – there are olive, almond, carob, apple and pear trees, grapes, tomatoes, plums, damsons, sweet potatoes, figs…the list goes on. Idyllic times.

It was a fabulously lazy holiday (even by my standards) – wonderful friends, great food, lots of swimming (well, floating about on an inflatable reclining chair), lots of reading, chatting and bobbing about on boats. I even managed to keep up with the cricket while I lay by the pool, thanks to my faithful iPhone. In fact on Saturday, I was following The Ashes, the Man U (my team) v Wigan footie match (5-0! Keep it up boys!) and the Formula 1 qualifying (go Lewis!) from the comfort of my sun lounger. A very sweet day on the sporting front.

lollingI even managed not to drop my phone in the pool…

Just before I left for Mallorca, I took part in an event which happens every year in my town, Bridport. There is a carnival which takes place on Saturday and then on Sunday evening, there is a torchlight procession from the town hall in Bucky Doo Square to the coast at West Bay, where there is a huge bonfire and a firework display. It was a fine dry night so 1500 people took part, the walk takes about an hour and it was very atmospheric.


Milo was in kennels while I was away. I picked him up yesterday. He was in a disgusting state. He smelled terrible, his feet and fur were matted with smelly mud and worse (horse poo?) his coat was full of matted lumps, his eyes were streaming and irritated. I was told the dogs are allowed to run around and play together in a large paddock which is covered in bark chippings. Apparently it had rained while I was away. He has only stayed there overnight before so I was not prepared for the consequences of leaving him there for a week. When I complained about the condition he was in, (I said the standard of care was outrageous) I was told I was outrageous for not wanting my dog to have fun. I dread to think how long they would have left him in this state if I have had gone away for a longer holiday. The sad thing is that I had recommended this kennels to several friends as it appears to have good facilities. I shall be spreading the word and am now on the hunt for another place to take him when I go away.


Poor little pooch. Dog groomers for him tomorrow.

14 responses to “I’m a hothouse flower…

  1. strugglingwriter August 25, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    That book is beautiful as always. I’m sure your friend loved it.

    Too bad about Milo. I remember our dog always having a smell after being in a kennel, but never with stuff in the fur. That’s stinks.

    I’ll comment more when I have more time. Just saying hello.

    One bit of news for me is that the baby is now crawling (he’s now 6 months old)!

    • Diane August 28, 2009 at 8:57 am

      I think she did like it. He’s such a gorgeous baby and the photos were so lovely it was a great project to work on!

      It’s a pain about Milo as the kennels is the closest one to me and I’m having trouble finding a replacement – and yes, it did stink!

      I can remember you breaking the news that you were having a new baby! Where does the time go? It’s crazy! I’m glad he’s progressing well and hope he is sleeping better now too :-)

  2. Daddy Papersurfer August 25, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    I’m actually glad you had a lovely time but I’m not looking forward to you complaining for the next few months – I’ve never known such a moaner – tsk.

    Lovely book, of course, lovely piccies, of course, and Milo’s slightly muddy tootsies made me laugh. The state our dogs used to get into would beat that into a cocked hat. We used to throw them into the pond to clean them up – they were working dogs so don’t start complaining! – they loved it.

    Lovely to have you back – strangely, I miss you when you’re away ……

    • Diane August 28, 2009 at 9:02 am

      Whinge, whinge, whinge, moan, moan, moan…but only about the weather. I’m quite a cheery soul normally.

      They were not slightly muddy – they were caked in poo and mud, as was his undercarriage too. The rest of him was thick with dust and his eyes were all gunged up. Milo is most definitely not a working dog but to let him get in that state is ridiculous! (Oops! Moaning again)

      Nice to be back too. Sort of.

  3. 70steen August 25, 2009 at 10:09 pm

    I too am a hot house flower hate returning to the rain and damp but spookily I settle in so quickly!
    Poor Milo what an awful mess he is in .. next time we could meet half way and I will have him when you next jetset (however, he will need his nuts trimmed before then).. Layla would love the company :-)

    • Diane August 28, 2009 at 9:04 am

      Forecast for the weekend not so bad for us – but rubbish for you lot oop North. You should head South!

      That is so kind of you to offer! I’m still considering the ‘nuts’ problem. Need to have a long chat with the vet…

  4. Teresa August 26, 2009 at 12:26 am

    Diane, dear! I’m happy to have you back even though I know you’re not as happy to be back to dreary weather. Have you tried taking vitamin D? It’s not equal to real sunshine, but it might help lift your mood. I know it does me when I don’t get enough sun.

    You do such beautiful work! What a lovely, lovely album!

    Oh man, now you make me want to move to Mallorca! I don’t know about the torch-carrying carnival of your home town though…it looks like a mob scene from Frankenstein (is my imagination working overtime?)

    You know, my farm dog is covered with mud, poo, and burs all the time…LOL! But, you’re right: Milo should not be looking like that from staying in a Kennel. I hope you find a better place for him!

    • Diane August 28, 2009 at 9:07 am

      No, I don’t take any vitamins – probably should but I can never remember to take them!

      Mallorca is gorgeous (if you stay away from the touristy bits, but that is a smallish area, the rest of the island is beautiful.

      I had another look at the procession pic! Ha! It does look like a crazed mob! Do crazed mobs follow Samba bands and dance about? :-)

  5. Gerri Ward August 26, 2009 at 6:05 am

    WOW ! The book is absolutely GORGEOUS ! I would luv to travel to Mallorca one day, I see it’s solely BEAUTIFUL ! Thanks for sharing your lovely photos and that pool looks sooo inviting!
    p.s. I hope MILO feels better and I don’t BLAME YOU for being PEEVED ! ! !

    • Diane August 28, 2009 at 9:09 am

      Thank you, they did turn out well.
      Mallorca is very beautiful and the weather is divine. I could happily live there…
      Milo has had to be shorn to get rid of all the matted fur and is looking slightly ridiculous at the moment – poor pooch!

  6. Aerin August 31, 2009 at 7:47 pm

    That album is adorable. How long did it take you to put something like that together and how much did it cost, if you don’t mind me asking?

    • Diane September 2, 2009 at 4:05 pm

      It mostly depends on the number of photographs printed in the album and how much ‘tweaking’ they need. The album I show here took the best part of a week to make. It was a gift so I didn’t charge for it but I am very happy to take commissions to make personalised albums. Contact me if you are interested to discuss it :-)

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