Planes, puppies and recent outings

It seems strange not to have to take a photograph everyday since completing my 365 Days of Happy Instagram challenge. I’m finding that I’m posting fewer Instagram photos, but that I’m more inclined to save posting for when there is actually something worth posting a photo of. So, for the benefit of those not following me on Instagram, and because I’ve hardly blogged recently, I thought a few highlights might be in order.

Apart from being snowed under with work, the main thing that’s happened over the weeks since the challenge ended is that we’ve moved house. We’re chuffed to bits with the new house, but I’m not going to post pics of it on Instagram or on here, because I want to keep it as our own little secret nest. But there are one or two little details I’ve shared on Instagram, starting with this fabulous late Victorian marmalade pot that I’ve bought for our toothbrush holder. Isn’t it wonderful? So much more practical and attractive than modern toothbrush holders, which never have room for electric toothbrushes and the toothpaste as well.


In the garden, the clematis is blooming with delicate pink flowers in a tangled mess that looks lovely against the roof tiles.


We’re delighted by the birds and other wildlife we’ve been able to spot (or just hear) in the garden since we moved to the countryside. My favourites are the cuckoo and the great spotted woodpecker, who we hear and sometimes see most mornings pecking away at the telegraph pole outside our house. This magnificent toad was lurking underneath the wheelie bin after a rain shower.


Lee took this picture of a fluffy-looking siskin a few weeks ago. It sat for absolutely ages just watching the world go by, and didn’t seem fussed when we went out into the garden for a closer look!


And avian life of the plastic variety: this pot left behind by the previous owners was the perfect place for the flamingo I bought on holiday in Florida a couple of years ago!


I’ve been trying to fit in some flying as often as I can. A couple of months ago I did my first solo four-seater landaway, flying the Robin to Croft Farm for its 50-hour service. It’s a tricky farm strip, so I felt a great sense of accomplishment when I landed and parked up. Lee picked me up in Wilhelm and we flew back together. You can just see the Malvern Hills between the hangars – my very favourite thing about this lovely little airstrip.


I’ve also been over to Wellesbourne a few times to refuel the Robin, as we don’t have fuel at our own airfield. It’s always nice to go back into Wellesbourne, where we know so many people. It only takes five minutes to get there by air, so it’s a good way of fitting in some flying (and radio practice!) before the rigours of the copywriting day begin.


Me in Captain mode on a recent flight with Lee.


A ground-based outing we did recently was to Pershore. Having flown over the Abbey many times, it was great to see it from the ground at last. I loved the little blue house that you can see from the main entrance.


Inside, the Abbey is just as spectacular as you’d expect.


Our love of the Cotswolds continues, and on one of our days off recently we had a lovely trip to Chipping Campden on a warm and sunny day earlier last month. The market hall is amazing – I particularly love the cobbled floor.


It’s a real delight to walk up and down the main street in Chipping Campden looking at all the fascinating architectural details. There are quite a few delightful bowed shop windows, like this one, which are yet another reminder of how much more attractive shops were in days gone by than they are now.


We stopped for lunch at the Noel Arms Hotel, where we’ve been before. Nothing says ‘day off’ like a midday glass of Prosecco!


Finally, I’m still doing lots of puppy cuddling, though a big project with work has meant that I’ve not been for a couple of weeks. This was the adorable scene that greeted me when I arrived the other day: five puppies piled into one small puppy bed!


I’ll leave you with this adorable little chap, who just wanted a cuddle while his brothers and sisters were at play. :)


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