gnomes

Following on from my Dannyboy books I started a gnome collection. I know that is odd but two characters in the stories- Theo and Pam were based on two friends of mine and after the book was published the real couple bought me a small garden gnome and wrote ‘Theo’ on his chest in indelible ink. I popped him in one of my big containers and he was really sweet. Then they bought another with the caption- ‘Pammy loves Theo’ – so now there were two. Then shortly after on a trip to the local refuse recycling place, I saw a sad gnome waiting to be thrown away. The man said we could have him and Dumpy joined the crew. I am just wondering if this is the start of a collection I never intended. Watch this space. My friend who gave ,me the first one and who actually gave me the nudge to write in the first place is very ill- thinking about you- you know who you are xx

Theo and Dumpy

gnomes

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blood everywhere

laceOur beautiful Lacey Pointer who is Mum to Dannyboy the star of my cozy mystery books, ran out into the paddock and caught her ear on something. You would think a murder had been committed- what a mess. Every time she shook her ears the blood went up the walls, on the ceiling, on the floor. It would not stop and we wrapped it as best we could and set off for the vet. I discovered something new- you can get tissue glue to seal wounds- like glue for skin. Lacey had the glue, padding, stretchy bandage and the crinkly cover bandage that sticks to itself. It was wrapped around her head like a turban and she felt very uncomfortable. We loosened it and then had to buy more supplies to redo because the next morning she managed to get it off and the whole ear shaking, blood spreading thing started again. Another day on and it is in place and no more blood so far. She is such a good girl and never any bother at all. Here’shoping she’s on the mend.

bit late

Blog a bit late today- I am writing for a client and getting close to a deadline- would much rather be out potting up plants or trimming dogs. My first ever book was Janetta’s Garden and features Dannyboy the Pointer with the sixth sene. It’s a cozy mystery and I simply started and wrote until I finished to see if I could do it. Writing is addictive though and I haven’t stopped since. The books combine my great loves- gardens and dogs. They are available at http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=sheila+muckle&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Asheila+muckle if you would like to see them. As a ghost writer I am finishing one and have four more in the pipeline. Good job I like doing it but it puts my own on hold for a while. Underway is a fantasy book for children featuring those seven lovely Havanese dogs. Have a lovely evening- the real Dannyboy says it’s dinner time.

.janettacovernew

wild things

One of the wonderful things about Caithness is the clean air and the wild flowers are fabulous. I can see the sea from my kitchen window and the armeria down at the harbour are wonderful and the wild primroses on the cliffs running down to the harbour are so pretty. In Rumster Forest you cannot walk without stepping on the wild orchids and the nature reserves to protect these wild flowers are wonderful- and all of these places are great walks for the dogs. The Gordon Setters love the forest run and find deep pools for a swim as well.– on the downside the midges are horrific in July and August- so rollPrimroses at Lybster harbour

Armeria

Thrift growing on harbor wall

ap1Lybster harbour

on September.

secret garden

I have gardened for over fifty years and made gardens big and small but now age and living in the far north with a lot of dogs brings its problems. I now have a secret and small garden behind a fence where the cat can reach but not the dogs. In the picture you can see the girls gazing through the fence at Ginger who knows full well that he is safe. He teases them and then nicks back into the greenhouse. All the plants are in pots and tubs now and the place looks better for it. Behind the small garden is a stretch that once upon a time was an entrance for farm vehicles and it has hard core under the grass. This isĀ fastened off now but makes an ideal setting for a meadow- well I tell myself that and don’t cut the grass. It has orchids, lady’s slipper, wild violets and loads more beautiful flowers. A pleasure to look at and Ginger fins himself a sunny bank away from the dogs. The gnome incidentally is called Dumpy because we saved him form the tip.

4girlsginger800

thunder and lightning

When I was a little girl- in the 1950 s- aaghhh- we used to go out as a family at the weekend. Dad had a little old Ford sit up and beg car that we were so very proud of and then a 1939 Wolsely that had leather seats and was really quite posh for the time.My Nan saw some beautiful blue flowers and went to pick a few. The days when it was not forbidden ! A little boy ran up and said “Don’t pick those missus. It’ll thunder and lightnin’.” And it did- with a vengeance. I have called Geranium pratense- thunder and lightning flowers ever since. There are some growing outside of my front gate up here in Caithness.geraniumpratense

hostas and friends

The flowers of hostas match the leaf quite often. Hosta fortuneii has tall, quite elegant flowers, Hosta reversa has chunky flowers like the leaves and Hosta Golden Tiara has pretty flowers like the smaller leaves. I love foliage and I love green flowers and the peculiar flowers of Plantago rosularis are something different. Not pretty maybe but different. The plant came from a great gardening friend of mine who sadly passed away a few years ago. The plant always brings good memories. A much newer friend gave me two plants of cherry tomatoes- no name- and I grew them on. All of the plants she gave away to people have tomatoes and her own have none. That is always annoying when that happens. I’ve given plants away before that have thrived for other people and my own have withered away- heigh ho- life is very strange.

H.fortueiiflowhfortuneii

H. Golden Tiaraflowhtiara

H.reversaflowhreversa

Plantage rosularisplanrosularis

Tomatoestomatoes