Sunday, 2 July 2017

July 2nd already and the bonus...............

.............................of a Sunday Post

Years ago when I wrote a regular diary for the Suffolk Smallholders monthly magazine, for a year I did an extra page called 'Country Days and Country Ways' , which involved using my books to research country sayings and weather information, I enjoyed doing it.

The plan with this new blog that went with the new house was to introduce more country bits to the posts but actually my new blog has turned out to be just the same as the old one, blimey I even repeated an old post for goodness sake!

So here's some country sayings from " The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady Colouring Book",

(hope you can read them) which I treated myself to  recently after finding my watercolour pencils when I unpacked all my craft stuff. I kept seeing colouring books at car boot sales and in shops  but they were all sort of hectic patterns and I wanted something more like the colouring books of my childhood. I already had The Edwardian Lady Country Diary with the coloured paintings in to copy. The above is my first attempt at using the crayons for about 20 years and I'm cross that I went over the lines on the J!  I only have a pack of 24 crayons which didn't really give me enough scope to faithfully follow Edith Holdens lovely water colours. I've put a pack of 48  on my wish list (along with the 106 books already on it!) Quite fancied 72 colours but they are way too expensive. As Christmas is months away and my April Birthday even further I may have to save up and buy them myself.

Edith Holden writes "Days Of Note" the first being July 3rd - Dog Days Begin. Dog Days? what are they. Had to look it up.............

dog days. the sultry part of the summer, supposed to occur during the period that Sirius, the Dog Star, rises at the same time as the sun: now often reckoned from July 3 to August 11. a period marked by lethargy, inactivity, or indolence.

 Don't fancy lethargy or indolence but   6 weeks of inactivity sounds good! Although it's not going to happen is it?....... I'm starting on painting the living room this week.

Everyone knows about St Swithin's Day and the 40 days of weather the same as the 15th but that in reality that doesn't happen either. Someone once recorded that on average only 17 days of the forty will be have rainfall. According to another saying in another  book  I have, you have to wait for after St Swithins  to use any windfall apples although I think they would still be a bit sour.

What about the 25th. St James's Day? I couldn't find any weather lore for that day, just this rhyme.....

Till St James day be come and gone
You may have hops or you may have none.

So it's no good looking to see if there are hops on our plant for a few weeks.

She has also quoted the rhyme
A swarm of bees in May is worth a load of hay
A swarm of bees in June is worth a silver spoon
A swarm of bees in July is not worth a fly

We've never kept bees but our neighbour at the smallholding did and her bees used to swarm at all times of the summer, but presumably if they swarmed and were re-hived in July it wouldn't give them time to build up a strong colony or give any honey before winter. Someone will tell me if I'm wrong.

Those are the days of note in July and I'll be back tomorrow...the 3rd to see if I've become lethargic, inactive or indolent!

Just noticed this is post number 100 on this new blog, I've got lots of posts in drafts and scheduled as I shall be a bit busy with the painting so apologies if I don't get round to commenting on your blogs for a few days

Back Tomorrow


  1. Like you the colouring books I have seen are far to hectic, but this one looks interesting. I already have the book.
    Julie xxxxx

  2. That looks a lovely colouring book, Sue. You've reminded me that I have a set of water colour pencils but I haven't used them for ages!!! Must dig them out. Meg:)

  3. That looks a lovely colouring book, Sue. You've reminded me that I have a set of water colour pencils but I haven't used them for ages!!! Must dig them out. Meg:)

  4. Yes, you're correct about the bees - they may be strong enough to survive the winter but they won't make much honey this year.

  5. Agree with Athene above - we used to keep bees years ago and you are quite right - they need more time to build up winter supplies.

  6. When is St. Swithin's day? The 15th of June or July? I sincerely hope we don't have rain for the rest of the summer! I like all these different sayings. Adult colouring books, as they are called here, are very popular at the moment. -Jenn

  7. Colouring is very relaxing, I've never used water colour pencils but my mother in law was very good. On a different note Sue, I want to try a couple of Suffolk boot sales which ones would you recommend please?

    1. There is Wednesday and Saturday at Needham Market near the lake. Friday Street on Sundays which is up the A12 at the Aldeburgh turn off. First saturday of July and August at Melton near Woodbridge or right along the A14 to Woolpit which is every Sunday OR the little ones at Stonham Barns on Sundays - our nearest now. Or just remembered one in Ipswich at Foxhall Stadium on the outside of Ipswich on Sundays. That would be the nearest to you coming up from Essex.
      Not sure about recommending which is best.

    2. Thank you Sue, we will combine it with a day out.

  8. That colouring book looks lovely and I agree with you about the others being too hectic. I already have the book which I must dip into again.

  9. Wonderful post! I love things like this. Colouring can be quite relaxing. I have images to stamp and then colour though sometimes I fret over what colours look good together.

  10. When I was a child growing up in the US; I can remember adults saying to each other "We're in the dog days of summer"