A Short Break

The ducks, tucked up for winter


Many thanks for all of your comments on the previous post, it’s great to know that the subscriber emails made it through. Fingers crossed that whatever problem existed has now been resolved. It was wonderful to hear from so many readers for the first time, lovely to meet you all and a warm welcome on board!

Things are getting a tad hectic chez rusty duck. I’ve a deadline to get the bedroom (plus collateral damage) into some sort of order in time to draw breath before You Know What at the end of the year. Festive displays everywhere I go and the sudden deluge of ‘Get Your Gifts Here’ emails serve to remind that I’m rapidly running out of time. A pleasant day outside in the garden photographing for Bloom Day? Nope. On my hands and knees scrubbing the floorboards in preparation for liming. I’ve started using the liming wax now. And Mike has been retouching the emulsion paint on the kitchen walls. Between us the place smells like a chemical factory. Hey Ho.

There’ll be a short blogging intermission while we set to and get everything done. Back soon, bright eyed and bushy tailed. Damn it, those squirrels get everywhere.


J x


2017-10-26T10:32:53+00:00November 17th, 2016|Tags: |


  1. derrickjknight November 17, 2016 at 5:49 pm - Reply

    Where’s the robin? πŸ™‚ No need to reply

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:19 pm - Reply

      As it happens, such a thing is not so far fetched. All summer we’ve had a robin which followed us everywhere, including into outhouses. It became quite a problem, having to make sure that he wasn’t inside before closing and locking doors.

  2. Henriet from Holland November 17, 2016 at 6:03 pm - Reply

    I’ll miss you, but just (rusty)duck the blogging for a bit! We’ll fill this page together, all of your fans! We could even do some replies to each other, for you te enjoy!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:24 pm - Reply

      Apologies Henriet and thanks. Back soonest.

  3. ourfrenchoasis November 17, 2016 at 6:07 pm - Reply

    Every year I think to myself “I will be super organised this year and I won’t leave anything until the last minute” and then it just sort of creeps up on me, as if I didn’t know it was coming, which is ridiculous because I did, even in France, the shops have gone Christmas crazy. So thank you for the little reminder, maybe I should get my act in gear now!!!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:27 pm - Reply

      Every year I think we’ve started a house project early enough to be done by Christmas. And it never is. Next year we’ll start in January. Surely that should do it?

  4. frayedattheedge November 17, 2016 at 6:57 pm - Reply

    Even I have had to admit that it nearly Christmas, and plan to blitz the shopping tomorrow (small family, very small list!!). Don’t forget to take progress photos of all your hard work, to share when you come back after your break!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:29 pm - Reply

      Oh, good luck Anne. Even a small list can be taxing. And you can be sure I’ll be taking lots of photos πŸ™‚

  5. Dorothy Borders November 17, 2016 at 8:10 pm - Reply

    We’ll miss you. Look forward to your quick return. Meantime, good luck with all your projects.

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:31 pm - Reply

      Thanks Dorothy. When a project drags on this long all I want is to see it done.

  6. CJ November 17, 2016 at 8:26 pm - Reply

    Nice to see the ducks tucked up safe and dry for winter. Good luck with the liming and painting et al. I shall look forward to seeing the amazing finish. CJ xx

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:37 pm - Reply

      It’s coming on well but hard going, not least the fumes from the polish that goes over the lime wax. Difficult to have the windows open too when the rain (sleet?) is blowing in horizontally! Thanks CJ.

  7. Sue C. November 17, 2016 at 9:57 pm - Reply

    Good luck with finishing the bedroom and other projects. I look forward to seeing the results – and don’t forget by the time “it” arrives the days are getting longer, always a positive!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:40 pm - Reply

      It’s the solstice I look forward to most if I’m honest. By the time January comes around it’s possible to see the difference in the light. Bring it on!

  8. karen November 17, 2016 at 11:07 pm - Reply

    I love those ducks. All the best with your projects. I look forward to seeing them later. Karen x

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:42 pm - Reply

      Thanks Karen. This is a project that needs to be finished. And soon!

  9. Kris Peterson November 17, 2016 at 11:42 pm - Reply

    The arrival of the holidays has been a big shock here too – our Thanksgiving holiday is next week! I can appreciate your sense of urgency. Best wishes with that punch list!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:51 pm - Reply

      I can’t believe it’s the second half of November already. The Black Friday emails have joined the Christmas ones now. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

  10. Caro November 18, 2016 at 1:23 am - Reply

    I admire your determination, Jessica – no distractions! Some local shops here already have christmas trees in the windows, ugh, waaaay too early! Good luck with the final stages of the bedroom renovation, here’s hoping all goes well, although it will undoubtedly make a good story if there are hiccups along the way. See you on the other side!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:54 pm - Reply

      Yes, way too early for Christmas trees. Hiccups? Here? Perish the thought!! πŸ˜‰

  11. Beth @ PlantPostings November 18, 2016 at 2:21 am - Reply

    Have a pleasant break! Everything speeds up around the holidays. I can’t believe we’re heading for the end of November already!

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 8:55 pm - Reply

      I know. It’s the long mild autumn that’s done it. It seems only yesterday it was summer and today we had sleet.

  12. Tahoe girl November 18, 2016 at 4:28 am - Reply

    Love those ducks!!! Enjoy your break. I’m thinking of taking a blog break too but mostly due to political overload here. I’m having a hard time with this reality.

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:01 pm - Reply

      The whole world is anxious. Focus on what’s going well for you, that’s the most important thing.

  13. smallsunnygarden November 18, 2016 at 5:03 am - Reply

    Good luck, have fun, and don’t suffocate yourselves on wax and paint… πŸ˜‰

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:04 pm - Reply

      We’ll try! Thanks Amy.

  14. jannaschreier November 18, 2016 at 8:48 am - Reply

    Enjoy your short break. Look forward to hearing more the other side.

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:06 pm - Reply

      I’m quite sure there will be stories to tell.

  15. Denise November 18, 2016 at 11:44 am - Reply

    Primrose, Camilla and the ‘ens have offered to pop down and be your personal shoppers, to help lighten the load. Or they say they could do some gardening if you prefer. Personally, I wouldn’t take them up on either offer. Xx

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:09 pm - Reply

      If they were to step out on the soil today they would sink feather deep. I fear we have reached the point where it won’t now dry out until Spring.

  16. Brenda November 18, 2016 at 12:34 pm - Reply

    Have fun. Don’t work too hard. And keep laughing.

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:12 pm - Reply

      Laughter of the hysterical kind in abundance! Thanks Brenda.

  17. Sarah November 18, 2016 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    I’m sure the work will get done quicker with a blogging break. Hope everything goes to plan and you are back before too long! Sarah x

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:15 pm - Reply

      Thanks Sarah. I figure the sooner I get everything done the sooner I can start to relax a bit. Last push.

  18. snowbird November 18, 2016 at 8:55 pm - Reply

    Don’t work too hard now!xxx

    • Jessica November 18, 2016 at 9:20 pm - Reply

      Hiya. I’ll try! Hope you’re OK, take care xx

  19. willisjw November 18, 2016 at 10:25 pm - Reply

    Well I love the thought that the ducks get taken in for the winter. Of course I brought our little concrete creatures in for the winter just today, just never thought about your ducks needing a rest…

    • Jessica November 19, 2016 at 8:56 pm - Reply

      They are probably hardy enough. I just don’t like the thought of moisture working into the rust and then freezing. Better safe than sorry.

  20. pollymacleod November 19, 2016 at 11:03 am - Reply

    Looking forward to seeing the next phase of your bedroom, hope it all goes well. I’m in Australia visiting my daughter at the moment, and although the shops have Christmas goodies in I’m just not in the Christmas mood yet!

    • Jessica November 19, 2016 at 9:00 pm - Reply

      Ooooh, fabulous! Yes, Christmas feels a bit different when it’s in summer. Have a great time!

  21. Wendy November 19, 2016 at 11:58 am - Reply

    Good luck with everything!

    • Jessica November 19, 2016 at 9:01 pm - Reply

      Thanks Wendy. It’s feeling like an uphill slog just at the minute.

  22. Jacqueline November 19, 2016 at 4:14 pm - Reply

    Don’t work too hard you two …… I await photographs of before and after …. I love those !!! XXXX

    • Jessica November 19, 2016 at 9:13 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jackie, I’ll do my best.

  23. hb November 19, 2016 at 8:15 pm - Reply

    Best wishes, and good luck with all your projects.

    • Jessica November 19, 2016 at 9:15 pm - Reply

      I thought we’d started this project with oodles of time to get it finished by the end of the year. Why does it never work out that way? Thanks Hoov.

  24. Cathy November 20, 2016 at 9:52 am - Reply

    Tucked up? You can’t call being shoved in a pot ‘tucked’ up – not even a woolly scarf or a thermal vest between them… ?

    • Jessica November 22, 2016 at 7:58 pm - Reply

      Ducks are hardy creatures. I’m spoiling them really, just by giving them shelter from the rain. But, as you insist, I’ll knit them a long scarf to wrap around them all. I hope they can be patient.. πŸ˜‰

  25. ginaferrari November 20, 2016 at 5:26 pm - Reply

    I hope it all gets done… Don’t work too hard x

    • Jessica November 22, 2016 at 8:00 pm - Reply

      It’ll be worth it in the end. I hope..

  26. Caroline November 21, 2016 at 12:33 pm - Reply

    So looking forward to some finished photos, enjoy the decorating time (as much as possible) and the little (please don’t make it too long) break. I feel super organised this year as I have started shopping and squirreling (SORRY) away gifts and new dΓ©cor ready for December.

    • Jessica November 22, 2016 at 8:03 pm - Reply

      Well done. I always say this year will be different and I will be super organised too. For some reason it never is!

  27. Charles November 21, 2016 at 10:10 pm - Reply

    Wood burner flue has started to leak, garden is submerged, Somerset is doing a good impersonation of Atlantis. I imagine Devon must be worse. I am feeling smug as I put new tyres on the car last week, but perhaps they should have been water wings instead.

    • Jessica November 22, 2016 at 8:09 pm - Reply

      Driving around today it’s been quite scary how high the rivers have become. The garden is a quagmire. Somehow I don’t think I’ll be back on it until Spring. Water wings would be useful!

  28. Jackie November 23, 2016 at 9:13 am - Reply

    I will also miss you Jessica, but I think we will all be busy too, so lets hope that the festive season will get us through until we can enjoy your wit and wisdom again.

    • Jessica November 23, 2016 at 10:27 pm - Reply

      Oh, you’re too kind. Thanks Jackie. I have a feeling Christmas round here this year will smell strongly of floor polish.. πŸ™‚

  29. CherryPie November 24, 2016 at 12:28 am - Reply

    I hope you get everything sorted out quickly so that you can relax again πŸ™‚

    • Jessica November 24, 2016 at 10:05 pm - Reply

      That would be nice πŸ™‚

  30. stephanie young November 28, 2016 at 1:29 am - Reply

    it is going to be so.worth.it…..so.worth.it…..so.worth.it. (keep telling yourself!!!!!) Fingers crossed you make your deadlines!

    • Jessica November 28, 2016 at 7:54 am - Reply

      The other benefit of all the activity has been the weight loss. 3lbs just liming and polishing the floor. I have a feeling that’s mostly dehydration though. It’ll be back once it’s done.

  31. surreycottage December 21, 2016 at 11:24 pm - Reply

    Wishing you a very Merry Christmas, Jessica xxx

    • Jessica December 22, 2016 at 4:56 am - Reply

      Thank you. And the very same to you too x

  32. Freda December 23, 2016 at 12:04 am - Reply

    I hope all is well with you and you have a good and relaxing Christmas. x

    • Jessica December 23, 2016 at 8:22 am - Reply

      All is well, thanks Freda. Just taking a bit of a break. I’ll be thinking of you. Take it easy and go with the flow xx

  33. Charles December 29, 2016 at 8:28 pm - Reply

    Enough of the holiday and get back to work. I have just danced over half the lawn with one of those hollow tine devices. I now have blisters. I am not interested in my own sorry life I need to know that rusty duck has ambushed a recycling yard, stolen the goods, devised a cunning plan and planted something interesting. Where are the death defying gardening abseil thAt make me laugh?
    Have a constructive, inventive, horticultural and happy 2017.

    • Jessica December 30, 2016 at 2:12 pm - Reply

      That’s the trouble with the West Country. Waterlogged lawns. Anywhere else you could just leave it to the worms.
      The ducks will be back before you know it with a tale or two to tell. Wild things they are. A very Happy New Year to you too!

  34. Susan Carder January 8, 2017 at 3:32 am - Reply

    Happy New Year! Miss your posts very much but am also wishing you are enjoying your break from blogging and maybe a little more as well.

    • Jessica January 8, 2017 at 7:37 am - Reply

      Hi Susan, thanks, and a very Happy New Year to you too.
      Will be back soon, a week or two at most. I have to do some updates on the blog before the next post. Which I’m dreading given all the trouble that’s caused in the past!

  35. Linda P. January 8, 2017 at 5:54 pm - Reply

    Happy New Year! I miss your blog posts,.I know that you are having a break from blogging and I’m sure you are making the most of it! L xx

    • Jessica January 8, 2017 at 7:56 pm - Reply

      Happy New Year Linda and thanks. I’m missing the blog and will be back soon. Certainly making the most of the break though, there will be plenty of tales to tell. I do hope all is well with you and your family. Take care.

  36. Amy at love made my home January 13, 2017 at 2:59 pm - Reply

    Hello rusty ducks! For some reason you just popped into my head, so I came to check on you. I see you have been replying to comments recently so assume all is well. I hope so. Missed you and hope to see you when the weather thaws out!

    • Jessica January 14, 2017 at 8:16 pm - Reply

      Hi Amy, thanks for checking up on me. Hope all is well with you too. Should be ready to start posting again later this week, weather permitting!

  37. Jayne Hill January 16, 2017 at 9:06 am - Reply

    Morning Jessica, thanks for the visit. Hope you’ve had a decent Christmas et al at Duck Towers and you’re both well.

    • Jessica January 16, 2017 at 9:09 pm - Reply

      All’s well Jayne, thanks. It will take a while to catch up with everyone, but getting there. You take care of that bug!

  38. Daizy January 17, 2017 at 10:34 pm - Reply

    Hi Jessica, I have spent the last few weeks reading your blog from cover to cover (bit like bingeing on a box set ?) and loving every word. Looking forward to the next instalment, and that the dreaded “update” doesn’t cause too much chaos.

    • Jessica January 19, 2017 at 6:29 am - Reply

      Thanks Daizy. So glad you enjoyed it. I’m just about to start on the updates. Nine of them. Can you tell I’ve been putting it off? Wish me luck. ?

  39. CherryPie January 18, 2017 at 12:46 am - Reply

    A belated Happy New Year to you xx

    I hope your house projects are getting under control!

    • Jessica January 19, 2017 at 6:30 am - Reply

      And the same to you Cherie, I hope 2017 got off to a good start. Will catch up with you soon.

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