• Alison Cowell

Time in a bottle

I’ve always loved the beautiful Time in a Bottle song by Jim Croce and, as Steve and I acknowledged 22nd June as our return to the UK, it highlighted how much has happened in a year and how quickly time moves.

As much as we are both frustrated at the time it’s taking to get the cottage done, we have made big strides and we know it will be completed eventually. Meanwhile I truly am absorbing everything in my new life; the people, the location, the new walks etc. I know I will look back on this chapter of my life and recognise the privilege of being able to do what we are doing.

Last month, you may recall, Steve started work on creating a new doorway through from the bedroom to the bathroom. That’s been completed now (well, a door still needs to go in but, hey, the doorway is ready!) and the other doorway has been filled in. There seems to be a shortage of plasterboards in Scotland! Whenever Steve orders some, he has to wait for it to be delivered from somewhere else. But the tiles are going on (I convinced him that sparkly grey ones would be fabulous….and they are) and the bathroom is progressing well. I’ve found some gorgeous sparkly accessories (including a diamante toilet seat!!!!! Excitement overload!) but I think I might have to introduce them gradually to avoid complaint.

Sparkly tiles awaiting more sparkly accessories :)

While Steve is getting on with the bathroom, he gave me the task of water-blasting the cottage in readiness for painting. DIY lesson 134: water-blasting a stone cottage results in pebble-dashing oneself and takes a good soak in a bath to remove all the bits …..from all the bits!

Stone me, it's not as easy as it looks

The weather has encouraged the garden to have a mind of its own and no sooner has the grass been cut and the weeds pulled out, the grass needs cutting again, and the weeds are taunting us! I believe that thistles will take over the world, they appear to be indestructible. I adore sitting in the garden reading my book. The sound of silence (apart from birdsong) is beautiful. We are so far from people and roads that you can almost hear your own brain working! Sadly, the lovely little bird house that Steve built remains empty. In fact, the birds seem bemused by it and either use it as a toilet or a place to wipe their beaks after feeding on the special food we have for them. The New Zealand birds were far more grateful.

Toilet and beak-wiping station!

My Mum was 87 on 16th June, which also happened to be Father’s Day. My sister joined us to celebrate the occasion and we had a lovely family lunch in St. Andrews. Mum commented on how quickly the decades have flown and found it incredible to think she is 87 (now in her 88th year as Dad kindly pointed out!). It’s true that suddenly we seem to be another decade older, so it’s all the more important to ensure that you make each day count. Don’t waste your days wishing and hoping- go for it! If you’re not happy about a situation, change it. Time’s too short.

Speaking of time, baby Jessica has just turned 7 weeks old! She is almost 9lbs from the 4lbs 9oz at birth and is a totally different baby already. I’m beyond happy that I have been able to spend so much time with her in these early days. It’s utterly precious, and definitely time that I would save in a bottle.

Jessica and Jenny having brunch


Copyright © 2019 Alison Cowell

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