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Saturday, 13 March 2010

ZESTY LEMON, GREEN BUTTERFLIES AND A GOLD HANDBAG

So here we are again in Daisy Cottage continuing our massive spring clean and our 'Things To Do' list.

We came down last night and were very good and went to bed at a decent time in order that we could be up and about early.  Granted we did pop next door for a drink but hey, that's tradition!


Up at the crack of dawn, well 8.30 ~ which is surely the crack of dawn on a Saturday, I opened all the windows and doors letting the lovely fresh air and the sounds of the village awakening stray in to the kitchen where I listened to RTE 1 whilst waiting for the kettle to boil.  Saturday mornings on RTE 1 radio are excellent and if you've never tuned in, you really should.

First job was to pop over the road to the hardware store to buy some lemon paint for the downstairs bedroom.  I spent ages in and out of the store (to see it in daylight as opposed to electric light) with various colour cards until I found the exact shade of lemon I wanted ~ a zesty, fresh lemon.  While the girl was mixing the colour for me we wandered around the store and I don't know if any of you are like us in such stores, but we tend to find things we really need even though it wasn't even on our list.  Today I spotted some really pretty little handles which will be perfect on my scarlet coloured 'bread and butter' cupboard.  When himself finally gets it painted that is.

Himself then spotted something else we need ~ a solid fuel burner for the living room of Daisy Cottage.  This was another thing not on our current list of 'To Dos' but when did that ever mean anything?  We got a list of sizes available and the man spoke about fitting them and so on with us.  But best of all, we found out that they are ONE THIRD of the price of the same solid fuel burner elsewhere.  Needless to say, this well priced solid fuel burner is now on our list of things we really need!

While we were in the store the man who was trying to retrieve stuff from my broken hard drive (Full story here) rang asking if we'd managed to get the external hard drive he was waiting for.  No, we hadn't yet so he said that a store in Donegal Town was selling the correct one, so paint, solid fuel brochures and various other bits and pieces stored in the car, off we set to Donegal Town, discussing all the pros of having this now much needed solid fuel burner in Daisy Cottage: safer, warmer than an open fire, cleaner, less expensive on fuel for our guests, and on and on and on.  Enough!  We are convinced, we do NEED it!

Donegal Town, even on a March morning, has lots of tourist milling about and they along with locals doing their Saturday morning shopping made the town it's usual busy place but we got parked on one of the main thoroughfares and set off for the computer shops to check out best prices.  We found just the external hard drive we wanted and himself even managed to secure as discount on the already reasonable price.  Little did he know that said savings would soon be whipped away.

I wanted a pretty jug to hold the wooden spoons in the kitchen of Daisy Cottage.  At home I have about a dozen wooden spoons beside the cooker and I find it impossible to imagine how you could cook with access to only one wooden spoon.  Anyway, I already have 3 in Daisy Cottage but purchased another 8 of various sizes in Donegal Town.  In one of the little gift shops I found a beautiful old fashioned style jug which would be perfect, save for the colour of the flowers on it ~ purple.  I wanted red.  Asked man in shop, nope, only purple.  Oh well.  So off to another shop where sadly they didn't have the jug I wanted but they did however have the prettiest little butterfly and crystal windchimes.  And in green, to perfectly match the wood on the frame of our Great Outdoors Under Cover.  They were mine!  I love the sound of windchimes ~ not the big ugly bamboo ones but the delicate tinkling of tiny glass and metal ones.

My pretty windchimes

On the way back to the car we passed a shop selling plants, you know the sort of place you just HAVE to go into?  Yes, one of those.  I love white flowers which are lightly scented and slightly wild and I love too cottage garden plants.  Here, I managed to find a number of shrubs and plants which fit the bill including a white Buddelia (fabulous for attracting butterflies), a white flowering Mock Orange, two white climing roses (for the Great Outdoors Under Cover) , a white Spirea, some glorious Aquilegia, and also a Lady's Mantle, the flowers of which may not be that stunning but the velevety leaves more than make up for that ~ they have the most beautiful way of allowing raindrops to roll gently along their surface.  I can't wait to take macro shots of that later in the year.

On our way back to the car I remembered my sister and her husband were attending a wedding in Donegal Town today so as the computer guy lives in their hometown I thought I'd ring my sister to see if we could drop the external hard drive off with her to take home tomorrow for him to pick up.  We met at the hotel where the wedding meal was to take place and it turns out the new bride and groom had married in the church our son and his fiance will soon marry.  My sister looked gorgeous in a very elegant Karen Millen dress and tiny Betty Boop style slingbacks ~ all ready to party while her poor sister returned to toil in Daisy Cottage ... pass the tissues.  Actually she loves going to weddings and I loathe going to weddings so she was happy to go in to join her friends and enjoy the wedding and I was even happier to be heading back to Daisy Cottage and not a speech or a piece of wedding cake to have to put up with.

Back to the car and on the road back to Daisy Cottage (with food to make a giant Irish breakfast ~ at 2pm!).  Oh no!  Forgot the white paint for me to paint the (new last year) furniture in the downstairs bedroom a 'distressed' white!  Back to Donegal Town to get the white pai ... HANDBAG SALE screamed the sign!  Paint, distressed or laid back was promptly forgotten.  The most gorgeous brightly coloured bag was beckoning me.  The about turn nearly yanked my husbands arm from it's socket as I changed direction from the paint shop to the bag shop (we are so romantic, we hold hands, all say awwwww).  Anyway, he: WHERE are you going?  Me: I forgot to get my mum a present for Mothers' Day (tomorrow) and there's a gorgeous handbag in that window.  A bit of a discreet tug of war took place, he pulling me to the paint shop, me pulling him to the handbag shop (HANDBAG SALE, HANDBAG SALE, HANDBAGS). 

Needless to say, I won.  Nothing, and I mean nothing, comes between a gal and a handbag sale.  Once inside the shop I said 'mum would LOVE that bag'.  Really, says he, it looks more like one you would like.  (Cue song and paraphrase: He Knows Me So Well).  Mmmm, possibly, says I.  Oh well, lets look for another for mum.  And then I spotted a box full to bursting with handbags ~ all reduced to €10, I kid you not TEN euro!  I tore into the box, and I have to say much of it was um let's say, not to my taste.  But there among all those not so pretty bags was the cutest little gold handbag.  For ten euro?!  I double checked with the girl that this bag was in fact meant to be part of the bargain box and it was.  Cut to the end, I got the brightly coloured handbag that had beckoned me from the street (it being Mothers' Day and all that and I'm a mum too), my mum will have a really cool black patent bag with great gold chains and beautiful big button closers on top, and to put the cherry on the cake I chanced asking for a discount as we were buying 3 bags (mine, mums and the gold €10 bag).  I got the gold bag for FIVE euro.  The bargain of the year so far.


My gorgeous gold handbag relaxing on a cushion in Daisy Cottage

Oh, and we did get the paint too.

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