Tuesday, 24 November 2015

A lesson in not procrastinating

Can you guess what this is?
Can you guess what this is? From a distance I think it looks a little like the shadow of birds lined up on a wire although, admittedly, less so close up. I’ll leave you to ponder that one while I preach a little about putting things off to the last minute. 

Procrastination is one thing; but when you go through the panic process and then realise that the solution was literally on your doorstep, that puts you into a whole new realm of stupid. 

On Friday – yep, this Friday – I have a Christmas wreath class for a small group of ladies. It needs to be a small group as it needs to be at my house. And it needs to be at my house because the hall I use only has one plug socket – and we’ll be using hot glue guns. (And before anyone suggests a four-gang socket… that would trip the electrics. Ask me how I know.)

The class is really easy to prepare so I was quite relaxed about it. All I needed was a big load of pine cones, and this is where I was beginning to stress because we simply haven’t had chance to get out for any walks lately. Finally, on Sunday afternoon we headed off in the car on a pine cone hunt. Halfway to our planned destination, the petrol light came on (aaagh, forgot to fill up when doing the supermarket shopping!) and we quickly established that the only money we had was the “trolley pound”, which wasn’t much use. 

Still, we found a Scots pine tree by the side of the road and thought we’d take our chances. I grubbed around beneath the tree for a while but only found about 20 small ones. A reasonable start but at that size I’d need to double my requirements.  

Onward… and we drove past hundreds of trees… all of them the wrong sort. 

Eventually we reached our woodland walk and optimistically headed off into a group of Scots pines, bag ready to be filled to the brim.

Turns out that pine cones are actually quite hard to find. They bury themselves (ulterior motive being to get their seeds into the ground) and, of course, are quite well camouflaged. But we painstakingly raked our way through the undergrowth and found probably just enough, although some of them were a bit manky. I wasn’t thrilled, but they’d have to do. 

Back at home, hubby said: “You have looked down the garden, haven’t you?” Er… no I haven’t actually. I confess that I don’t often go down the garden between October and March. 

Anyway, you guessed it: within minutes I had a panoply – nay, a plethora – of pine cones, perfect for the project. Well, I say perfect. They were pretty grubby, so I washed them. And quite wet (due to rain and subsequent washing) so they’re all closed up. Hence the development of my Heath Robinson-style drying method featuring a cooling rack and two lanyards. 

It puts the cones into the hottest part of the fireplace and casts a rather pleasing shadow on the wall.  Had you worked it out?


  1. Oh I laughed when I got to the end of your tale! I would have offered to post them from here as we have lots but you wouldn't have got them in time. Englishrose


    1. Well now you tell me! The class was last night! :)


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