At home at Shoestring Cottage

Shoestring Cottage

Feeling grateful

Sometimes, after a tiring few days at work, I just love being at home. Shoestring Cottage is far from perfect and wouldn’t grace the pages of a glossy magazine, but it is bright and comfortable. I love living here and I am grateful that we own our home.

You may remember that we did a bit of budget DIY earlier in the year. I am glad we made the effort as the lounge looks so nice with the sun streaming in.

The hallway will be next but not for a while.

Student update

Our French language student is proving a lovely house guest. I did the right thing in choosing simple and unfussy meals this week. She likes her food fairly plain.

She is lucky as this week spring has finally decided to arrive and we are having lots of sunshine.

In case you missed it, I wrote a blog post on hosting foreign students here. It certainly helps with the Shoestring Cottage finances.

A Thai treat

Shoestring CottageThe meal plan I published for Shoestring Cottage last week went out the window on Friday. My daughter decide to cook us something special. She made a fabulous Thai meal, bought all the ingredients and cleared up too. I love it when she is home from university!

Shoestring CottageDinner consisted of Thai green curry with prawns, massaman curry, rice and a cashew and mango salad. She also made a cod satay starter and a gluten free chocolate pud. It was delicious!

Shoestring CottageFortunately this was before our student came. I don’t think she would have liked it.

Everything in the garden…

…well, it is a bit of a mess actually. The weather has not inspired us to get any work done.

I finally spent a few hours on Sunday potting up some plants I bought at B&M, which is quite good value for gardening stuff I find. I also bought lots of ornamental bark to try to keep the weeds at bay.

Usually at this point we have loads of seedlings everywhere and are planning the vegetable garden. This year we have decided to give the veggie patch and ourselves a rest. The garden is really big and there is just to much to do. We are going to take it a bit easier and try not to do everything! We will focus on the first section of the back garden. The rest will be grass.

I would happily spend hours doing the garden in an ideal world. In reality neither of us have more than two or three hours a week. It can feel overwhelming.

Decluttering Shoestring Cottage

I am still slowly but surely decluttering (this has been going on for months!). I dragged some unwanted items out of the shed last weekend and offered them for free on Facebook. It saved us having to take them to the tip as I don’t think anything was good enough to sell.

As ever people are unreliable, even when you are giving them things for free. One person came but the other two keep rescheduling. I may have to re-list the things if they don’t come in the next couple of days.

4 thoughts on “At home at Shoestring Cottage

  1. Your home looks so beautiful, Jane, especially with the sun streaming in like that. No wonder you love your home … well, it’s your home! And I’m sure in time you will decorate your hall, equally on a tight budget. There’s nothing like having a splash of fresh paint (in the right place, I mean!) for brightening up a room.
    Those meals looked gorgeous, what a lovely daughter not only to cook but to clear up afterwards!
    It doesn’t surprise me that the great British public mess you around even when you are offering things for free!
    Margaret P

  2. Your living room looks lovely. So bright and cheery. We’ve redone 2 of the kids bedrooms over the last 6 months but can’t do the next until it’s vacated in the autumn! I suppose we should tackle the attic in the meantime, but the promise of summer makes it hard to want to hide ourselves away in a dark stuffy attic after all the gloomy weather we’ve had recently!!

    I know what you mean about the garden – and we only have a smallish courtyard garden in the back! I want to put a lot of annual colour out there, but because we’ll be away for a month in the summer, and everything is in pots, I’m trying to hold back as I know from experience that even leaving the offspring in charge of watering for just one week is asking for trouble!

  3. I too, had a very big vegetable garden, and eventually had to let it go. I was quite sad at this, however winter rains made it quite difficult to get the work done – then, hooray! I would get summer mozzies. But the joy of eating, and giving to friends, fresh vegetables and herbs: priceless.

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