Thursday, 22 July 2021

Tatting at the Garden Centre

Skirlaugh Garden Centre and Aquatics is a hidden gem, situated in the East Riding of Yorkshire 7 miles from Hull, it's a medium size garden centre of many faces, you enter through the main door straight into a gift shop, I bought my maid of all work Carmen, a bar of bergamot and ginger scented soap, I know, I'm a fool to myself, but I have learnt that maids who know there are no lagniappes coming to them, can turn  savage and there isn't a lock on my bedroom door! From the gift shop we made our way to the restaurant I just had a black coffee (I usually take it with milk but I was flagging with the heat, I needed a caffeine kick) Carmen had a banana milkshake and a huge slice of chocolate cake, the gormandising fat cow and she wonders why she's 17 stone with type 2 diabetes! 

We saw a badly dressed transvestite at the garden centre, eyeing up a Sweet William, she was wearing a floor length cheesecloth skirt and clutching her pink gerbera, we looked the other way and pretended not to have noticed.

The close proximity to Hull means I have to carry a vinaigrette of smelling salts in case I hear any foul language from the other customers or if I see anyone with oversized Nye Bevan dentures as worn by the over 80s.

Hull people use a strange cant, here are some examples of what I picked up on:
Ere y'ar mam, you bool trolley. (here you are mother, you push the trolley)
Innit mafting? (Isn't it hot?)
I'll get some of them for bairns (pronounced baines, meaning small children)
Notice the lack of the definite article.

Thanks to Carmen for the translation.

I love scouring around old junk shops/house clearance places looking at priceless old tat from homes that good taste forgot.

Hilda Ogden and ceramic horrors.

Jilted Jill is destined to spend the rest of her days as Queen of the shit tip if nobody makes an honest woman of her.

Anything catch your eye?


Tuesday, 6 July 2021

Monstrous Visions In Green and yellow

Just because Christmas tree and Chrysanthemum both start with the letters CH doesn't mean that they go well together Carmen.

I would like to thank both Garden News and Amateur Gardening for their free seeds, they really made my garden look an absolute eyesore. I suspect Carol Klein has a hand in choosing the seeds, as much as I admire Carol I find her taste in plants leaves a lot to be desired.

Shasta daisies can be found growing wild in any hedgerow in the UK.

Cephalophora, ugly, yellowish green flowers, the one saving grace about these plants are their excellent smell of pineapple. 

Cosmos, hideous looking carrot top bush with piss yellow flowers, the picture depicted on the seed packet looked lovely.

Chrysanthemum x Ragwort and by the look of their opening buds, yet more yellow (see top photo) I can't comment on the Zinnias just yet as they're not in flower. 

My maid of all work "that good taste forgot" Carmen, visited a garden centre last year, she came back with a bag of dahlia tubers (cause they were going cheap) and a monkey puzzle tree, yet more green and yellow, you couldn't make it up.


I was looking forward to having a salmon pink garden this year, ah well, there is always next year, if I'm spared.

And one other thing, my Strong Annabelle hydrangea has been looking like broccoli for weeks!

Monday, 14 June 2021


Love the 1970s slack wrist gesture. Ouuuu get hare!


Friday, 28 May 2021

Needle Felt Update:

I know some of you have been sitting on the very edge of your seat, waiting with bated breath for an update on my felt dog creation, well, I'm sad to say that it ended in tears (I knew it would) I followed this Youtube video as my guide and it was coming along nicely, however, I made the body far too big and ran out of wool, when needle felting you can add to it, but you cannot easily take it away, I tried and ended up pulling it's head off. Peggy now resides headless and blood stained (mine!) at the bottom of the bin. I sent off for a better quality one, with proper instructions, I've just finished assembling it's skeleton.

Can you tell what it's going to be yet?
Please excuse the wallpaper it was from the previous owners.

After 3 long months, seeds that I took out of a 59p pineapple (Morrison's finest) and kept inside a tupperware box on a damp bit of kitchen paper have finally germinated.


Monday, 10 May 2021

Mitzi Got Felt

If done properly, needle felting animals can look incredibly realistic and just as good, if not better than taxidermy, no blood and guts are involved for one thing. If I haven't got anything better to do tomorrow I will attempt to make the above dog that I bought from Home Bargains, it cost a princely sum of 99p. I've watched a few Youtube videos on the subject and feel confident enough to give it a stab. I don't know how well it will turn out as it contains no instructions, it just gives you tips and advice, there are no templates with it either. I will post a picture of the finished result in due course. 

I was going to buy a live dog to model for me but having seen the prices people are charging on Pets4homes they can very well sod off, £3750 for a French Bulldog*  the opportunist Cs! 

When I've finished making it, I'll be selling it for 75 quid, if anyone is interested, let me know.

*Mitzi doesn't have a penchant for French Bulldogs she was just using it as an example and would never contemplate buying anything with French in it's title that goes for French mustard, French fries and French marigolds.

Wednesday, 5 May 2021

Sue Wilkinson - You've Gotta Be A Hustler If You Want To Get On

Every time I see a picture of that loathsome actress in the media I'm reminded of this song by the late Sue Wilkinson, I sing it out loud, changing the name Sally to Meghan.

Monday, 29 March 2021

Spreading Chia

Chia (Salvia Hispanica) £1.49 for 200g Home Bargains, food aisle.

Looking for something cheap and cheerful to sow in your borders this year? Try Chia found in the supermarket, baking aisle, they can be grown as an attractive annual and form upright spikes of purple/blue flowers reaching up to 6 feet tall, not bad going from a seed not much bigger than a full-stop. When they reach 4 inches, pinching out the tips will encourage them to bush out and make them grow at a more manageable level.  I take a handful of chia seeds out with me on my evening jaunt, if I see an unsightly patch of land I strew some chia seeds over it.

Friday, 26 February 2021

Current Mood


Dolly on the Dustcart by Pam Ayres

I'm the dolly on the dustcart,
I can see you're not impressed,
I'm fixed above the driver's cab,
With wire across me chest,
The dustman see, he noticed me,
Going in the grinder,
And he fixed me on the lorry,
I dunno if that was kinder.

This used to be a lovely dress,
In pink and pretty shades,
But it's torn now, being on the cart,
And black as the ace of spades,
There's dirt all round me face,
And all across me rosy cheeks,
Well, I've had me head thrown back,
But we ain't had no rain for weeks.

I used to be a 'Mama' doll,
Tipped forward, I'd say, 'Mum'
But the rain got in me squeaker,
And now I been struck dumb,
I had two lovely blue eyes,
But out in the wind and weather,
One's sunk back in me head like,
And one's gone altogether.

I'm not a soft, flesh coloured dolly,
Modern children like so much,
I'm one of those hard old dollies,
What are very cold to touch,
Modern dolly's underwear,
Leaves me a bit nonplussed,
I haven't got a bra,
But then I haven't got a bust!

But I was happy in that doll's house,
I was happy as a Queen,
I never knew that Tiny Tears,
Was coming on the scene,
I heard of dolls with hair that grew,
And I was quite enthralled,
Until I realised my head
Was hard and pink... and bald.

So I travel with the rubbish,
Out of fashion, out of style,
Out of me environment,
For mile after mile,
No longer prized... dustbinised!
Unfeminine, Untidy,
I'm the dolly on the dustcart,
And there's no collection Friday

Thursday, 18 February 2021

Churls Without Pearls


Miss Donna-Marie Duffield 

Donna-Marie is a fish fryer and server at the Happy Haddock fish and chip shop in the sleepy seaside town of Withernsea. She like lads and scrap butties. She is the daughter of Chantelle Duffield of Withernsea, East Yorkshire.


Friday, 12 February 2021

A Taste of Hull - Scrap Butty

I have a friend who lives in Hull (someone has to), he sent me a picture of a Hull delicacy, with the caption "Fancy a scrap butty?" Fearing a fainting spell at the word "butty" I rummaged through my reticule for the hartshorn, thankfully the feeling had passed by the time I had fished it out. What are scraps? I hear you ask. They are the batter bits left over from all that fish frying in fish and chip shops, they are usually free of charge.

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Edible Borders

Are you are looking for something gay and colourful to plant in your summer borders this year that doesn't cost the Earth? Then look no further than the supermarket veg aisle and keep your eyes peeled for Jerusalem Artichokes, they are neither artichokes, nor from Jerusalem, they are native to North America and are perennial sunflowers, producing tall thick stems that reach 6-10 feet high, loaded with yellow flowers, smaller than the sunflowers we all know but just as striking. I bought a bag of them today from the discounted shelf at Sainsbury's £1.50 reduced to 25p I just hope nobody saw me.

If you have got the space Taro root, turmeric and ginger make attractive plants too, you might have to go to Waitrose for them, take advantage of those serve yourself tills, place the taro root, ginger and turmeric together into one of those net bags they provide and put them through as bananas the whole bundle will cost less than 80p.

Thursday, 29 October 2020


I'm still trying to make sense about what happened in our hotel room in Bath. I'm very sceptical about ghosts, there is always a logical explanation for those clicks and clangs and wailing sounds in the middle of the night, but there are some things that defy explanation. I was admiring myself in the floor length cheval mirror situated in the hallway opposite the bathroom door, when Carmen (or so I thought) brushed by without an excuse me, I turned to give her a brusque 'Charming!' only to cut myself off midway when I saw she was seated at a table, deeply engrossed on her ipad when I turned back to face the mirror, it had swung on its hinges and was facing the ceiling. 'Yes please, I'd love one' came the maid's reply. Like what? cried I. A cup of char, said the maid. Talk about keeping a dog and barking yourself,
feeling rattled and trying not to show it, I made tea, I also gave her a choice of the hotel's complementary biscuits, individually sealed for freshness, she opted for the Chocolate chip, I gave her the Viennese Swirls".

I was in fits at the decor. 

Oozing with style and elegance.

Rest assured dear readers, those beds were pulled well apart.

Who's a pretty boy then? 

Looks like a challenge.

Unable to recharge my cultural batteries in Benidorm amid the present difficulties, the maid and I decided to go away, down south, it made a pleasant change. 

Day 1. Stratford Upon Avon
Day 2. Bristol
Day 3. Weston Super Mare
Day 4. Bodmin
Day 5. Falmouth
Day 8. Bath
Day 9. Stratford
Back home.

Monday, 28 September 2020

Give Peace Lily A Chance...

A friend called round on spec yesterday to have a nosy at my new house, it was the maid's half day off, so I had to answer the door myself, my heart sank when my friend presented me with a Peace lily, one of Morrison's finest, I tried hard not to let disgust show on my face, not an easy task, I thanked him profusely and told him it'll take pride of place on the kitchen window ledge, I thought to myself, what a phoney bastard I am, I know exactly where that thing is going. I woke this morning to the sound of magpies tormenting me with their incessant gekkering, when I became fully roused I realised it wasn't the magpies at all, it was my maid of all work Carmen, talking at the front door to a neighbour, a couple of minutes later there was a knock on my bedroom door, she asked me if I knew anything about a plant that had been left on next door neighbours doorstep.

Gone to a good home.


Friday, 7 August 2020

Tree echium

I'm thinking about growing some Tree echium for the front garden, next year. Give the neighbours something to talk about!

Thursday, 6 August 2020

Carmen's Creed

My maid of all work has become very uppity since moving to a house with a higher council tax band than the last one. Tuesday (or chewessdee as my maid pronounces it) morning, she came bursting into my bedroom without knocking, carrying the breakfast tray and reeking of Aventus Creed, my Aventus Creed! I narrowed my eyes at her and with my lips pressed hard together to form a mean slit, I can do that now the Botox has worn off, I picked up the porridge and lobbed it at her head. That's for taking liberties with my Creed.

Again, this morning, she came in smelling of it, it can't be mine she's wearing, I've hidden it. I came downstairs and found this on the kitchen table.
Perfumer's Choice No 9  I picked it up and sprayed some on the back of my hand, it smells amazing, just like the real Creed, she bought it from Amazon £12.50.  By keeping silent she had fooled me into thinking it was the real thing, if she had said from the start that she is wearing a cheap Creed knockoff, I would have said it smells nothing like it, she's is getting very cunning.