Sunday Sevens #139 3.6.18

It’s been another lovely sunny week here in Gibraltar, it has ended as it began, with cloudless blue skies. I hope you have had a good week, where ever you are reading this. Here’s this week’s Sunday Sevens…

Europa Point

Last Sunday afternoon, we took the Little Postcards to Europa Point to play on their scooters and kick a ball about. Unfortunately, a large section had been cordoned off to allow for the redevelopment of the cricket pitch in time for the Island Games, which Gibraltar will host next year. This means that the football court which they used to love kicking a ball about in has gone – a big loss in our family, and it was rather busy with tourists in the only other open space so football was rather curtailed. On a positive note, it was a beautiful afternoon and the wildflowers were looking lovely.

Bank holiday beach day

We were up bright and early on Bank Holiday Monday (not like us at all) and our early morning was rewarded with the beach almost to ourselves. We went along to our favourite beach of Sandy Bay and had a great time. I crocheted, the Little Postcards dug a huge hole which was constantly being filled with buckets of sea water (for some of the time by me – got to get beach body ready – as if!) and everyone had a whale of a time. By the time we left (around 2:30pm) the beach was getting a bit more crowded. We certainly had the best of the day.

Blooming lovely

I have been meaning to share a photo of my orchids for weeks. I have two plants which I had had for a few years and they are currently in bloom again. They seem to be the only house plant that I can look after – I’m rather good at over/under watering others but for some reason these two specimens are rather happy in my care.

Homemade granola

Always on the lookout for something relatively healthy that the whole family will eat, I tried my hand at homemade granola this week. I found the recipe in a magazine. It was very tasty, and we almost had some left by breakfast time…

Watercolour

For the past couple of weeks I have been working on a painting of nasturtiums at my watercolour class. It’s moving on apace. Still got a bit more to do though…

Catalan Bay

I had a lovely sunny morning walk on Thursday through Catalan Bay. It was lovely to see this boat being built/repaired. Apart from the workers getting the beach ready for the start of the bathing season this weekend, I had the place to myself. I will miss these quiet walks when the Little Postcards break up for summer.

Alameda Gardens Tranquility

On Friday morning I found myself walking through the beautiful Alameda Gardens. I do love this part very much. It was so tranquil listening to the water gurgling down the little waterfalls and watching the sunlight reflected off the ripples.

I’m linking with Natalie from Threads and Bobbins for Sunday Sevens. Until next time, I hope you have a good week.

Sunday Sevens #66 15.01.16

Hello there, I hope your week has been good. It’s been good to get back into a routine here as school started again in Gibraltar on Monday, although just as normality was restored I was struck down with a bad cold. The photos for this week are rather underwhelming as a result and were mainly taken at home! Here goes…

Barbary partridge

The photo credit for this one goes to Mr Postcard. He went for a walk up the Med Steps on Sunday last week (I didn’t have the oomph) and on his walk he saw a Barbary Partridge. These partridges are native to Gibraltar and were reintroduced on the Upper Rock recently. You quite often see them but so far I have failed to capture one with my camera because as soon as you realise you have seen one it’s vanished into the undergrowth. Hats off to Mr Postcard for managing to be quick enough to snap this shy creature.

Orchids at golden hour

There has been very little crafting going on this week, I did make it to my first dressmaking class of the year on Tuesday but as I’m pattern drawing at the moment for my next project there aren’t any pretty pictures of fabric to share yet. Will these orchids do? They looked so pretty in the golden light just as the sun was going down.

Morning Moonlight


As I opened the front door to see Eldest off to school one morning, I was struck by the bright full moon in the sky. This was less than an hour before daylight came but it looked magical as the moonlight lit up the water of the Bay.

Pink sky in the morning 

Another moonlight in the morning photo, this time it was on Friday when I saw the pretty pink sky at sunrise. We don’t get to see the sunrise as such as we face west but you still get the gorgeous colours lighting up the sky.

Poorly bunny


I haven’t mentioned before now, but our rescue bunny, Snowflake, has been rather poorly of late. In fact at New Year we were worried we might lose her. It turned out that she had mange. Perhaps she had it when we found her, perhaps she caught it from our newest addition, Diamond (although he shows no signs) we don’t know.

While she was laid low with the mange, an X-ray revealed that she had a chest infection, plus she had an eye infection. I spent the past week giving her children’s banana flavoured antibiotics and administering eye drops and sinus massages (I kid you not) to try and get her well again.

Here she is at the vets (again) on Friday morning. She was just about to have her final mange injection. I’m pleased to say that she has completely recovered from her chest infection and eye infection and the final signs of mange should disappear in the next few weeks.

The amazing climbing bunny

 

Diamond, on the other hand has shown no signs of ill health, in fact he’s positively bouncing. It turns out he’s quite a handful. On Friday I put him into his ‘run’ in the hall to give him a bit more space. It’s made out of an old fire guard and is attached to Snowflake’s run (an old play pen). I never in my wildest dreams thought he’d be able to get out – I was wrong. 

He was discovered wandering around the lounge. He must have climbed up out of the run, went for a wander in the hall (there were poos and straw marking his route) and then went for a run about in the lounge. I’m just relieved he decided to give the wide open front door a miss.

I thought that as Snowflake is having a bit of time post injection in her cage, I’d move him into her run (it’s taller and has chicken wire around it so it’ll be harder to climb out). Wrong again. When I went to check on him later, he’d climbed out of that and back into his original run. 

He now has a lid on it, rather fetchingly made out of old oven shelves and washing line… not the most attractive thing but until we think of an alternative it will have to do… honestly he’s worse than a toddler!!

Crochet

 

By the end of the week I was feeling well enough to pick up a crochet hook again and managed to finish a project I’d been working on since before Christmas. This meant I was free to get on with something new. I’ve been looking forward to getting started on this, and it’s taking shape quickly – one of the joys of amigurumi I guess. 

The lovely book I am using for the pattern was a Christmas gift from my ‘little’ brother and I have got the perfect opportunity to make a little creature. I’m being a bit mysterious aren’t I? All will be revealed soon….

 

That’s all from Sunday Sevens this week, not the most inspiring one I know. Hopefully I’ll be back to full form next week and I’ll be able to tell you about more interesting things! Until then, I hope you have a good week and thanks for stopping by.

 

Sunday Sevens is a weekly blog series created by Natalie at Threads & Bobbins

A stroll around Gibraltar No.11 : Alameda Gardens Part 2

Hello there, following on with last week’s A stroll around Gibraltar No.10: Devil’s Gap Battery , I thought I’d revisit one of my favourite places here, the Alameda Botanical Gardens. A few months back I took you on a stroll here in A stroll around Gibraltar No 7 but there is so much to see in this beautiful green oasis that I reckon it’s worth more than one trip. Plus, this year is a big one for the Botanical Gardens as it’s celebrating its 200th birthday.

During the past year or so, there has been a lot of work done here, especially in the top section along the avenue close to the Rock Hotel. Flower beds have been cleared and improved, sculptures have been added and a rather impressive glass house has been built.

As you can see in these photos, it’s an impressive structure surrounded with beautiful planting.

So what’s inside? Orchids, lots and lots of beautiful orchids…..

They are planted around a small pond and waterfall as well as hanging from trees as they would grow naturally in their natural habitats in Asia.

Apologies for the slightly dodgy quality of these pictures, I had to take them through the window. The orchid house was officially opened towards the end of April and it was open to the public for several hours on the big day. Sadly, I didn’t find out about it until too late, so missed my chance to see these beauties up close and personal. I keep trying the door whenever we visit to see if it’s open, but unfortunately it’s not been so far.

I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it is absolutely stunning. What a great way to celebrate the bicentenary of the gardens. I just hope that it will be maintained in its current state as it’s just gorgeous right now.

In addition to the orchid house and new planting, quite a few of these wooden tree stump sculptures have sprung up about the place. I love the deep orangey shade to the wood. I’m sure the colour will change as it matures over time but I do like it in it’s freshly sawn condition.

When I did my last stroll around the Alameda Gardens I was rather sad that I wasn’t able to include a part of the gardens which is very special to me. Just a little further along the avenue from the new orchid house is a shady woodland area with a stream and waterfalls running through it and a pond at the bottom. I think it’s known as the Lions Pond as the Lions Gibraltar Charity helped fund it when it was built several decades ago. When I went to photograph the area I was sad to see the pond had been drained and there were signs up to say that the area had been vandalised.

One of the joys of living in Gibraltar is that there is very little anti-social behaviour and vandalism in public places (certainly a lot less than in some of the places I’ve lived in the UK). I was so shocked and saddened to find that the pond had been blighted in such a way. But imagine my delight when I strayed back into the woodland area a few weeks back and found this:

Not only had it all been cleaned out, it had been replanted and refilled and was looking even more beautiful than I had ever seen it before.

A year or so after we first moved to Gibraltar a very special visitor came to stay with us: my Gran. She was in her 90s when she flew over to see us with my Mum. She wasn’t too steady on her feet but she wanted to see as much as she could of our new home and as we lived close to the Alameda Gardens at the time, and she was a plant lover, she naturally wanted to explore a bit here. I vividly remember her sitting on the bench overlooking the Lions pond as the little Postcards (there were just 2 at the time) spied into the water looking for fish.

Unfortunately Gran is no longer with us but I always think of her when I come to this peaceful shady spot and I think she would greatly approve of all the hard work which has gone into sprucing it up. It looks just beautiful.

It’s not just the top section of the gardens which are looking fine at the minute, many of the other flower beds are blooming too. These African daisies are just stunning with their purple and orange centres.

I have no idea what the name of this flower is, but there are quite a few in the gardens and I rather like them too!

Another of the wooden sculptures:

Please excuse the gratuitous floral close-ups, I was playing with my camera when I went on this stroll ;-).

I love the lavender flower bed in this raised area, the perfume’s amazing.

Nestling in among some of the flower beds are some headstones. I really don’t know why they are here (other than to mark the graves of people of course) but why they were buried in the gardens is a question I don’t have the answer to right now (one to research later).

If you read my last stroll around the Alameda Gardens Part 1, you may remember seeing the beautiful children’s garden tended by the Alameda Gardening Club. It had a bee hotel and lots of herbs and other eatables growing. That’s not the only children’s plot in the gardens, there’s also this very well kept veg garden at the southern most end close to the Wildlife Park.

I know of a few children who have benefitted from coming to the Alameda Gardening Club, and it’s a very valuable resource for the children of Gibraltar, the vast majority of which grow up without a garden of their own. The leaders do a truly wonderful job inspiring the young gardeners.

So there you go, I have taken you for a walk along the top avenue of the Alameda and it leads us up to this point where you can see the Bay of Gibraltar glistening through the trees. I’m sure you’ll agree with me it’s a really marvellous green space and one which is much needed in such a built up environment. I always feel so much better after a visit. This isn’t goodbye though, I’ll be back for another stroll here before too long, because there’s still more for me to show you.

Thanks for joining me, I hope to see you soon.