My non-working days get kick-started by our usual fruit and yoghurt breakfast, which is then followed by one of my greatest pleasures: choosing my outfit for the day! But lately even that seems to take longer than usual. I'm endlessly dithering over what to wear and when that is finally decided, choosing my accessories often involves a lot of trial and error until I'm happy with the result. This eternal indecisiveness really does my head in.
No doubts about this dress, though. A Think Twice sales bargain back in March 2019, in a mix of solid green and white on green chevrons, it instantly caught my eye when I opened the wardrobe doors on Friday before last. Wearing my favourite colour always makes thing better!
There was also no doubt that I would be wearing red with it, so I started by replacing the dress's matching belt with a red vinyl one with a large plastic buckle. I think I tried about five red beaded necklaces, though, until I finally decided on this one.
The floral brooch, which includes Edelweiss and Gentian, is vintage and was a flea market find.
On my wrist, a red plastic bangle and chunky green bracelet, a charity shop find and a rare retail buy respectively.
The red suede shoes are Tamaris and were charity shopped as well.
The weather that day was another mix of clouds, patches of sunshine and the odd shower.
We were on our way to the garden centre when we passed the charity shop on the outskirts of our village. As the car park seemed relatively empty, we decided to go for it, so we donned our masks, grabbed a sanitized cart and tentatively walked inside.
Even though all shops here in Belgium have re-opened on 18 May, this was our very first visit to a charity shop since before lockdown, as we'd decided to wait until the first rush to the shops was over.
This particular shop which, as most charity shops here in Belgium, is a lot larger than the average UK charity shop by way of comparison, was an oasis of calm. Being back there felt strange and familiar at the same time, and Jos aptly remarked it was a bit like being on a school trip.
While Jos bought a coffee from the vending machine in the cafeteria, I browsed the well-stocked clothing aisles, quickly finding a cherry print dress from retro label Zoë Loveborn, and a funky print long-sleeved River Woods top.
We'd already added the set of Miss Marple DVD's to our cart after we'd just walked in and I grabbed the three-strand necklace form the jewellery display on our way to the checkout.
As everything went smoothly, it was a positive experience overall. So much so that in the meantime we have visited two other shops which we considered spacious enough to be safe.
We continued to the garden centre, where we bought another batch of bread mix and a box of copper tape to safeguard our precious patio plants against the onslaught of slugs. I was very good, as only one plant came home with me: Agastache 'Apricot Sprite'. It's got the tiniest of orange flowers and apricot scented leaves.
As we were treated to a rare patch of sunshine, we had another mid-afternoon snack of homemade scones with jam and cream, which we enjoyed at our little table in the courtyard.
Taking advantage of the lull between showers, I did some well-needed deadheading and tidying up, finding a pair of Siamese twinned Osteospermums and the first flower in our ancient Clematis viticella 'Etoile Violette'.
Saturday's weather couldn't have be more despressive if it tried. Grey, rainy and windy, and with a temperature drop of several degrees, a return to long sleeves was the order of the day.
I rescued this vintage skirt from a box of unsold flea market items back in April and, funnily enough, I wore a similarly coloured blouse with it back then, only with short sleeves. There really is no rhyme nor reason to the seasons!
The flower infused blouse I wore with it on Saturday is Esprit by way of a charity shop. Both the belt and wooden beads were charity shopped as well, while the brooch was yet again a flea market find.
After lunch, we went into garden to put copper tape on some of the worst affected pots. I removed the sorry remains of the Petunias from the Echinacea pot and replaced them with a pink small-flowered Pelargonium we bought the other week.
Meanwhile, Jos did some pruning and trimming, which included removing some of the wild shoots from our Spirea shrub, so that we can now see the table of plants next to the bench from our kitchen window. However, soon it started raining again which put an end to our gardening plans.
Fully intending to do some dusting, I traipsed upstairs, making a start with the desks in our spare room. Apart from a thorough clean, they needed some clearing and reorganization of the accumulated clutter.
I'm writing my blog posts from our main laptop, which we've acquired just before lockdown. This is the one with the blue spotty cover fashioned from a vintage tablecloth. It is sitting on our main desk, which also has our scanner/printer as well as an old-fashioned desk lamp. Our old laptop, which I'm still using to upload my photographs, is sitting on a desktop custom made by my late Dad, fitting neatly between the main desk and the bookcase, which is off-screen on the right. The funky fabric is hiding an unsightly fuse box.
On the top left and bottom right are toddler photographs of me and Jos, while our homemade mouse mat has a collage of family photographs from both sides.
The tin on the bottom left used to belong to my Mum and has been roped in to house USB sticks.
In fact, there's a whole battery of boxes and tins providing storage for a multitude of items.
All were charity shop or flea market finds, except for the one on the top right, which was a gift from Tania, one of our favourite flea market sellers.
This tin, which came with a tiny key, holds a selection of family photographs ready to be scanned. It might look a bit worse for wear, but aren't those decorations delightful?
Sunday's weather was a complete repeat of Saturday's.
My journal says I did some deadheading in the drizzle, washed my hair, removed the residue of the orange nail polish from my toenails in readiness for a new colour which didn't happen, and caught up with the world of blogging.
To lift the overall dullness of the day, I opted for this pink Diolen delight, with a print of yellow and orange green-leaved flowers.
For my accessories, I couldn't choose between these colours, so I decided to use them all: yellow for my belt, orange for my ring and flower corsage and green for my beaded necklace.
Sandals have been banished to the back of the shoe cupboard for now, and I'm once again embracing ankle boots. In this weather, I have been known to wear nylons, but decided to be brave and go bare-legged that day.
But whatever the weather, the garden remains a true sensory delight, and a sight for sore eyes, even if it can only be enjoyed from our kitchen window!
Here's to hoping for sunnier days to come, in every sense of the word.