I've been a sick chicken. My poor lungs have been deeply unimpressed by some invading bacteria, so I was banned from doing anything much at all by the doctor for three days during the week, and spent a quiet day pottering around cleaning tack and gardening gently in the sun today. I really wanted to see the horses, but am prone to unexpected, uncontrollable bouts of coughing, which do not fit with my philosophy of calm quiet around my girls. Anyway, I need to go on a feed run tomorrow, so I'll see them even if I'm still rattling and barking.
I had lots of fun cleaning Mum's old saddle today, and it was a happy thing slurping up the leather oil with great enthusiasm. It does need some minor stitching and a bit of a check by someone who knows about these things to see if it will be safe under the strain of a girth. I worked on the stirrup leathers, which are very dry, and may not make the grade (I'm not giving up on them yet), and think the stirrups are super, even though they are a little tarnished. I gave Zanny's new bridle an oil too. A lovely thing to do in the warm sun out in the garden.
I also did some weeding and cleared out the glasshouse, ready for seed planting. I got this fantastic commemorative Yates seed tin from Mum and Dad for my birthday, and am anticipating some planting very soon. Some of the seeds can be planted directly where they are to grow, and others will need cosseting in seed trays in the glasshouse. Johnny did some minor improvements to my plant support system and re-installed the end panel, which had fallen out and remained that way for ventilation in the warmer months. He also got me some compost soil builder for the two beds along the sides, and some more lime chip for the central walkway, just to make it look all pretty again.
I'm really keen to get all of my garden looking beautiful and interesting, and I think I'll take a lot more inspiration from Monet's garden. Visiting Monet's garden at Giverny is right at the top of my "Bucket List." I haven't really got room for a pond or an oriental inspired bridge, but I'm sure the flower borders and plant combinations would look just as fabulous here as they do in France. Especially on a lovely sunny day like we had here today. Maybe I'll get into doing some painting again.
Ps. One of those amazing moments I have had in life has been to stand in front of an original Monet painting exactly where the artist himself would have stood or sat to work on his creation. Seeing some more original Monet paintings can go on my "Bucket List" too.