Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Pottering



potter (verb): to occupy oneself by doing minor, pleasant tasks in a relaxed way.

I love to potter. It it my favourite way to relax. Some days are frantic, as we dash madly from school to playdate to shop to school again. Others are tedious, and I feel lost in the constant, unrelenting demands of the children. But mostly our days are happy and Angus and I go at a pace that suits us both. Today, John is off, and he is joining our day of happy domestic pottering, or "puttering" as the Americans say, a fantastic word.


The sun still shines, although it is much cooler, and I have washed the quilt ready to pack away until next autumn. We've done some gentle gardening. When I say gentle gardening, I mean I sat in the garden with a cup of coffee and watched Angus water the plants with his little blue watering can. Many flowers have started to bloom now, including these chives. Paint charts have been consulted, tester pots ordered and the decorator has been to give a quote to paint our living room. Best of all, I finally got around to hanging the collection of pictures that have been cluttering up the sideboard. Clockwise from the top..the Spring Flowers print is by Lou of the gorgeous little green shed blog; my completed Winterwoods Sampler from Alicia Paulsen's Posie Gets Cozy blog; a framed RHS print; my beloved collection of postcards with the initials of our little family; and finally a small watercolour of a  French cafe, bought by my parents in Paris and "borrowed" by me. When I saw it hung behind a door in my Mum's music room I thought it wouldn't be missed.


Do you like to potter? Do you have time to potter? Please tell me what you love to do to relax.

42 comments:

Sandra (Stamping For Pleasure) said...

I love to read or craft when I relax. I love being transported to somewhere else via the magic of the printed word and someone else's imagination. See . . . you've got me going with the poetic way with words that you have! xxx

Jooles said...

Ooooh lovely....your pictures look gorgeous.
my favorite kind of pottering is making the house 'pretty' none of that cleaning business, but picking flowers to bring inside or arranging candles...that kind of thing.
have a lovely week
love jooles x

Hazel said...

I love to potter! I am an arrange-er... In a not so OCD way I like to organise things by colour or shape (I don't go crazy when they get all messed up again!) I find it visually appealing and very relaxing! Does that make me crazy ;)

Donna said...

I love pottering days. I love your arrangment of pictures - your cross stitch looks lovely among them. I'm coveting that Roberts Radio :)

kitty loves custard said...

Its true! There really is nothing like a good old potter!
I too think your pictures look amazing.....I'm also loving the lamp! :D
xKarenx

Rachel said...

I love to pootle - I think its a slower version of pottering! I have booked friday off work sans small people just for pootling about.

Andrea @ little buckles said...

Pottering is wonderful. I started nesting madly during my first pregnancy and haven 't stopped since. But I do feel guilty that I'm not doing something more constructive when Scott is hard slogging it in the workshop. There is my little shadow who takes up alot of time too :) lovely photos and house. Love Lou's work :)x

Colette said...

I love to potter too, should spend more time actually 'doing' though ;)

Karen said...

Pottering is a wonderful way to spend the day - it is one of my favourite types of day. I love your photos an that patchwork is super beautiful - did you make it?

cassie said...

most of my puttering around is done in the kitchen or the garden. the rest of my house would like some attention too, though... i love the combo of that lovely radio and your orla lamp!

Gillian said...

Oh Sandra, how beautifully put! I am not poetic at all, I can assure you. I have always loved reading since I was a child, but lately manage about twenty minutes before I fall asleep at night.

mags said...

One of the benefits of your children growing up and living alone is the freedom to potter!! I love to have a cup of tea in bed at the weekend and read lovely books and mags, and then get up and start with a bit of crafting .... with a knitting, cross-stitch, crochet and sewing project on the go at one time, I can pick which one suits my mood! Lovely! Shame about having to go to work ... it gets in the way!

Gillian said...

Jooles, I know exactly what you mean! Not actual housework, but making everything look nice and welcoming. I love that.

Gillian said...

Yes! Arranging, i love to arrange stuff. You are not crazy at all! All my books are in alphabetical order (i know, i know) but sometimes I toy with the idea of arranging them all by colour!

Gillian said...

Thank you! I do love that radio...I am addicted to the radio and can't get through the day without it. Drives John mad!

Gillian said...

Thanks Karen! I love that lamp, although I have to be less precious about is after one of the kids sprayed it with fruit juice a while back...never did find out which one of them did it!

Gillian said...

Pootle! Good word, I like the idea of a slower style of pottering. I bet you are looking forward to Friday, a day of child free pootling, bliss!

Gillian said...

Yes, pottering is very like nesting, isn't it! I never thought of it like that. And you are doing something constructive...childcare, running a household, getting meals on the table (ok, that's what I tell myself!).

Gillian said...

You're right, there is a balance! Pottering can easily slip into "oh, I forgot I had that magazine" and before you know it I've spent an hour with a cup of tea ignoring the children.

Gillian said...

Ah thanks, Karen. I made the quilt last autumn, it was my first one. It is full of horrid mistakes and rather wonky but I learnt a lot doing it and am hoping to make one for Bella when I pull my finger out and get cracking!

Gillian said...

Thanks Cassie...that Orla stem print keeps cropping up in various parts of the house. On a mug, a cushion, a towel. I even have the wallet in that pattern. Tragic, I know.

Gillian said...

Your Saturday mornings sound like heaven! Mine usually involve early starts, tantrums, spilled cereal and juice. And cuddles. It's good to know that lovely time to yourself awaits when the children grow up!

Julia said...

I love to potter around my garden, my kitchen, and really just around my house and Charlotte's room making everything pretty...it's so relaxing! I also enjoy reading magazines and blogs and enjoying a nice glass of wine. Love your gallery wall and the lamp is adorable! Oh, and your chive flowers are so pretty!

Anonymous said...

i like to potter. i do it more than i realise. i love these photos of your home. xo

Gemma Mortlock said...

Hi Gillian, Just discovered your blog ... hello :) I love to potter, i love to potter around my allotment, dead heading the flowres listening to the radio and if im not doing that i love to knit, crochet, cross stitch and doodle, anything to keep my hands busy and im happy! xx

Col @ Hello Olive said...

Your photos are lovely and your collection of prints look great! x

Monica said...

oh, i'm big on pottering lol, and i love your version of gardening - perfect. :D
also like the shades you've chosen, love muted greens.

Anna said...

Yes I love a bit of pottering too. And since the weather has been so lovely my pottering has extended to the garden, which I am really enjoying making look pretty.
I like the collection of pictures on your wall. I always have difficulty finding pictures that I like and this part of redecorating a room ends up being the hardest for me. A room never looks finished without nice things on the wall, I think.

Charmaine said...

lovely photos, love the selection of greys on the paint charts x

Gillian said...

Julia, I agree with all of the above! Making things pretty is so much fun.

Gillian said...

Thank you. I think if you're at home with kids you can't help but potter a little.

Gillian said...

Hi Gemma, nice to meet you! Thanks for stopping by. Your pottering past times sound a lot like mine. Although I don't have an allotment (sadly) but if I did I could happily while away an afternoon with tea in an enamel mug and the radio on, pretending I was gardening...

Gillian said...

Thank you!

Gillian said...

I love muted green and now you mention it, that shade does crop up all over the house.

Gillian said...

Thanks Anna. I am the opposite - I have picture to hang on the wall before I've made the sensible decisions about paint colours, flooring etc! xx

Gillian said...

Thank you, I am really into grey at the moment, but want to pick the "perfect" shade so that it looks chic not like the inside of a battleship! Off for paint tester pots at the weekend...

Jen Walshaw said...

I too am a potterer and a pootler and everything else too!

Colette said...

HaHa! Glad I'm not the only one ;)

Annie @ knitsofacto said...

Pootle is one of my favourite words, and pootling one of my favourite activities ... I just need more hours in the day to indulge in it properly!

cassie said...

not tragic, fantastic! i have an orla handbag with the stem print on it. the other day i noticed i had it on, plus a hoodie with a very similar stem print and a canvas bag with yet another similar stem print on it. either i was very good at matching that day, or it was a big of stem print overkill...

Gillian said...

Judging by the response I think everyone here is!

Gillian said...

My Mum informed me yesterday that my Grandpa was a great "pootler" and spent a lot of time pootling in his greenhouse.