Category Archives: written posts

And so a word for 2012

For a few years now I have chosen a word to help guide me through the year, the first 2 years this worked well, Now and Edit gave me guidance and helped me form some good habits which I still have.

Last years trio of play on one sound of word has not proved to have worked, I chose sow, sew, so.
Well I sow seed, watch and weed but no seed grows.
I sew only utilitarian items like new curtains, my artistic textile muse is still asleep.
It was so (as intensifier) wet, dry, wet.
So on and so forth (continuing) so it rains and rains!

I only started thinking about a word for 2013 in the last few days and was even wondering after last years disaster whether to bother then ‘declutter’ came to me. For me it is a follow on from ‘edit’, I need to be strong and get rid of more things as I have just too much that has been accumulating all my life. I will never be a minimalist, but somewhere halfway between that and where I am now would be good.


©Copyright 2013 Frances Caple. All rights reserved. Content created by Frances Caple for Island Threads.

awards and warnings

there has been an award circling garden blogs recently, when I bogged about my textiles there were no awards circulating the quilt community, neither when I was blogging with the BBC island blogging community, it seems to be something garden bloggers do, I only came across these awards after I joined blotanical, until last night I had never seen an award free blog badge, I understand it is a way of showing appreciation to a blog that you like and a way to introduce others to blogs you enjoy, these awards often ask for personal info and as I posted recently I do have problems talking about me personal, I recently read 2 blogs where the recipients had politely declined,

so I want to give a very big thank you to Donna at Gardens Eye View for giving me the Versatile blogger award I do appreciate her sentiments and am touched that she should think of me, I hope she will forgive me for not fully participating,

I thought as a chocoholic I would do a fun list of 7 chocolate things I like, all edible,
1 chocolate bars
2 chocolate cake
3 hot chocolate
4 chocolate biscuits
5 chocolate cheesecake  
6 flaky chocolate
7 chocolate ice cream

I am afraid I can’t introduce you to 15 blogs as I have a hard time trying to keep up with the blogs I like reading, I don’t look for new ones any more as I can’t fit them in I realise I am probably missing something good but we can’t have everything, many of the blogs I read like Donna have already received the award, I hope my readers understand,


a warning to any gardener in an area where there are rabbits, deer and creatures that will eat your best plants, when I moved here there was no sign of rabbits close to the village, there were rabbits in the area but they never came into the village, into gardens, so rabbit protection never even occurred to me, for 6 years I lived in this blissful ignorance, then a baby rabbit appeared one summer, it did a bit of damage but not much or so I thought, it was later and especially when I look at photos of the garden pre rabbits that I realised quite a lot of plants had ‘gone’
the rabbit it seems is very crafty and lulls you into thinking they have gone and are not feeding in your garden any more, last year I hardly saw them around and found no damage but in the last month they have made up for that and several plants that were growing well including new cuttings planted last spring have suffered sever damage or disappeared completely,
so if you have something living near you that has not eaten your garden yet beware they could start at any moment, think about and even start to erect fencing to keep them off your veggies and plants, if you can’t protect all as you have a large plot then fence off your veggie patch and perhaps fence off an area for plants you like that these creatures like too,
my first task in the garden now I have decided, is to get that chicken wire up around my fence, there is a large roll of chicken wire in my shed doing no good at all, it’s a job I do not like but the next time I find myself lagging I will remind myself of my missing plants,  

©Copyright 2011 Frances Caple. All rights reserved. Content created by Frances Caple for Island Threads.

word for 2012

sow sew so

the last 2 years instead of making new year’s resolutions I have taken a word for the year,

the first year my word was ‘now’ as I wanted to spend less time thinking about things but just get on and do it, I found it worked well for me and has instilled a good habit to not think oh there is so much to do where do I start but instead to think this needs doing so does that, I’ll do that,

last year I chose ‘edit’ and that has worked very well in the form of ‘edit out’ I have sorted and got rid of lots of things I had long ago forgot why I was keeping them and the garden has improved greatly from much editing, I did not however do much ‘editing in’ in the form of going for more walks but I think I have the right to blame the weather for that!

this week I have been thinking of a word for this year and the word ‘calm’ kept coming to mind but it is not ‘me’ that needs calm it’s the ‘weather!!’  

my word for this year is ‘sow’ ‘sew’ ‘so’ in all it’s forms of spelling,
as I said in my previous post I want to grow more veggies which will require me to ‘sow’  seed and after the success of the seeds in the new bed last year I want to also ‘sow’ more flower seeds,
I have not done much textile work for a long time  and want to  ‘sew’ something, if I hand ‘sew’ while watching a dvd it will stop me eating as much as I have been, which is too much,
so this brings me to ‘so’ with it’s many, many meanings, from looking in my large dictionary 3 descriptions of ‘so’ are:
3 (intensifier) it’s so lovely, I’m so happy,
7 and so on or so forth, and continuing similarly,
8 just so, arranged with precision,
my interpretation of these 3 is that some things will continue the same and some will become better which will ‘intensify’ my pleasure of them,

what word would you chose for your year?

©Copyright 2011 Frances Caple. All rights reserved. Content created by Frances Caple for Island Threads.

thankful Thursday

very late last night I had a break through, I decided to work on and went to bed around 3 am so got up later than usual and as I needed to go to town got the morning bus, I thought I’d post an update on my dilemma of yesterday, I started planning my made up woman with family by thinking of people I know and myself at a younger age, I also took several breaks and yesterday evening worked through some of the exercises on my current studies, I then started flipping through some of the numerous language  books I have and that was when I got the ‘light bulb’ moment and started writing, I know it’s a spoken assignment but I can’t just say it I have got to write first, by 2 am I felt I had a good start so opened the recording programme and gave it a go, I did 3 tries and they are not too desperate but do need more work, the assignment needs to be in by next Thursday 12th Jan. so I have almost a week to tweak it but at least I have something started, I think one reason it threw me so yesterday was the previous assignment we had to write about very much the same things so I had expected something different but I guess they are following the old teaching rule, say it once repeat it then say it again, it is a good rule and does work, for anyone who may be interested my made up self is,

a designer late thirties, married with 1 daughter, I have a sister who is married with 3 children (I have always wanted nephews and nieces), I live in a small village with 1 church, 1 food shop and post office, no supermarket,

so the place I live is very near a description to my area, one of the subjects we studied for this assignment was directions, getting from A to B and one of the things I should include is ‘location’ so I think I need to add some directions,

now some garden news, when I was in the library last week I found they had a new gardening book,
the RHS Fruit and Vegetable Gardening by Michael Pollock,
it is proving to be a good read, it has even included ‘peat soil’ in the section soil types ~ nearly faints in amazement ~
reading all these blogs on allotments and their bountiful crops, I want to grow more food and so need to learn much more,
the amount of rain we have had this week I will soon be able to swim in the lower part of the garden, must make a note to see if I can improve drainage,

update, from some of the comments I have realised that because some people are reading on blotanical they only see the most recent post and this post is part 2 of wet wordy Wednesday, the Wednesday post will explain that the made up me is not a dream or wishful me but a person that better fit’s the criteria of an assignment where I have to talk about certain aspects of myself and my family or a made up self and made up family,

©Copyright 2011 Frances Caple. All rights reserved. Content created by Frances Caple for Island Threads.

wet wordy Wednesday

it’s a grey day inside and out today, I managed to join in with wordless Wednesday every week last year but today the first Wednesday of the new year has me beat,

as well as the weather I have a language assignment due next week and I just looked at the last part of the assignment which is a speaking part and I’ve got to say personal things about me! I find that difficult in english, we had to write personal things in the previous assignment, I didn’t include everything on their list as I hadn’t realised I ‘had’ to and lost marks because of it, I have difficultly talking personal in this way, we can make up a person but I also have difficultly with role play and lying, just posting to ask if anyone else has difficulty in this and have you found ways of coping with it,

spam blogs

as I said in my bringing my blogs together post my original blog after I deleted it in May 2006 was taken over by a spam blog, I had never heard of spam blogs neither had most bloggers I knew then, if I had been aware of spam blogs I would not have deleted my island threads blog but either just left it or made it private so it could not be seen, a spam blog is one that just has advertising on and lots of links usually, they take over a deleted blog name as there are usually several links to the blog name sometimes lots of links, there were a lot of links to my blog not only on other blogs but on websites too, my blog name was taken very quickly I deleted it in the morning and it was a spam blog by the afternoon, I didn’t know until the next day when friends e mailed me to ask what had happened, I had thought when I deleted the blog that it would just show as no blog of that name it just never occurred to me someone else would take the name especially that fast, so if you ever stop blogging but think you wish to keep your blog name do not delete it leave it or make it private, you will have worked hard to create all those links to your blog so don’t let anyone else use them for their benefit,

when replying to Marguerites’ comment I realised I had omitted to say anything about keeping a check on the links you have on your blog (if you have one) I have replied in the comments but felt it should be in the body of the post so add it here, if you find any of the links you have on your blog open to a junk/spam page delete immediately, the reason the spam bloggers do it is because people do not check their links and delete the spam ones, if everyone did that then the spam blogs would gradually decrease because they couldn’t get and keep the links, I told all the people I knew had links to my first blog yet years later I still found some people had not deleted the link,

tuesday morning update: I realised this morning I should have added if you find a link someone has on their blog or website leads to a spam blog or website then tell the blog/website owner that there is a spam link on their blog/website, from personal experience they won’t delete it but do not be put off by this, I think the reason people don’t delete is they haven’t time and mean to do it later then forget but if more people finding the link tell them eventually they will delete it, if we want to cut down on spam/junk then we all have to do our bit,

the blog was with blogger, when I started the blog blogger was run by the people who created it and if you needed help, ask about something you could reach by e mail a real person, at the time that I deleted my blog blogger were selling to google, when the spam blog took the name island threads on my blogger dashboard was a warning about my blog being a spam blog and it would be deleted, I informed them I no long had the name as I had deleted my blog, they said thank you for telling them and they had contacted the new blog owner and would give them a month then if it was still a spam blog it would be deleted, this was from the original blogger people, unfortunately google took control before the month was up and google do nothing, google know islandthreads is a spam blog but leave it, I do not believe google when they say they are against spam they lie,

while I am talking blogs there is something I want to say/explain to bloggers with blogger who have their comment set to only allow people who login to google or open id, when I first saw open id I thought it seemed good I could log in to my wordpress account and leave a comment …………… ah no there was a catch, the first and only time I started to login through open id a page appear from wordpress telling me google was trying to access my wordpress account! I stop and refuse to use it, so if you have a blogger blog with the comments set to only accept people who login to google or open id (give google access to their blog) I will not be leaving a comment on your blog, there are several blogs I read set up this way and I often want to comment but can’t, I realise the blog owners possibly do not realise this so that’s why I am explaining, I only comment on blogger blogs if there is the option of name/url

well I guess that’s my semi rant over back to normal Wednesday :o)

word for 2011

last year I chose a word for the year 2010 to inspire and guide me through the year, I chose Now as I had been procrastinating and avoiding doing things and generally wasting time, the word worked and as the months passed helped and encouraged me in a way I had not thought of, I found that by just getting on and doing something Now I spent less time dwelling on all the things that needed to be done in both home and garden,  the result was I got more things done,  I have been considering a new word for the new year but kept wanting to just continue with Now, what was stopping me was the feeling that if I did continue with Now it is standing still, not moving on,
then the word Present came to me as it also means now and also has the meaning of a gift, each new day is a gift, to have a house and garden in a rural area is a gift (to me), I am lucky and have lots of gifts, in the Present would mean I could continue to concentrate on what I am doing now and not worry about how much needs doing,  but I was not totally at ease with Present, no reason just a feeling,
then after reading Carolyn’s post about editing her garden the word Edit kept coming back to me, I have been Editing things ‘stuff’ in my home very slowly for a few years now, I sort of Edit the garden but must admit the wind does most editing in the garden though I can start to Edit out anything that is not wind and rabbit proof,
Cat has chosen her word for 2011 and gave a link to dictionary so I looked up Edit and in my home dictionary, they talk of Edit in terms of writing and films etc., the words used improving, clarity, selection, rejection, rearranging, remove, expunge, eliminate, arrange,
so the word to guide and inspire me through 2011 is EDIT,
what would your word be?

and just for KC did you Enjoy 2010?

gardening at 58 degrees north

after reading Catharines’ plant suggestions I did a search for Tricyrtis formosana and found it is Toad lily which I had heard of, in the links that came up was this one to a post with plant suggestions for gardening at 58.5 degrees north (I can’t work out how to do the degree symbol in wordpress),

I love Piet Oudolf garden designs I saw his name on some photos of plant designs in a gardening book I had from the library years ago and did a web search and just love his style,

I’ve printed off the list of plants and for the first time feel I have a starting point as I find most books and programmes just don’t address the conditions I experience here, there is one book I have found useful but feel it deserves a post of it’s own so I will write it later this week,

post script ~ I just went back to Noels’ blog and found it is written by Noel Kingsbury who wrote the gardening book I am currently reading Natural Garden Style, isn’t life full of coincidences……