Things have been moving on in the bike world here.

My beautiful, brand new Montego Divine bike developed a problem. By the end of day one the wheels wouldn’t freewheel and the pedals were sticking.

The bike shop suggested I ‘pop’ it in for repair.

As it’s a 24 mile trip and I couldn’t make it for 4 days there wasn’t much ‘ ‘popping’ going on. I thought I’d try and get my old bike running.

Despite having spent the last 15 years rusting in our shed my old Raleigh Serrano works and so does its prehistoric child.

I also solved the, getting my daughter to sit in the child seat problem, without the use of chocolate buttons. She could not get up on that child seat fast enough once she learned we were shopping for ice lollies. What a good mother.

The Raleigh felt exactly as it did 15 years ago, top heavy and unstable. My daughter sat really still and I peddled slowly. I managed not to tip her out like I did with two of her big brothers.

The trip was pure joy until she realised I was going to give the two extra pink foot ice lollies to her brothers. Tears flowed from under her helmet. She hasn’t completely got that sharing thing yet- ‘but I want all the lollies for me’ .

Fast forward to today .

They key word from the bike shop was ‘POP’.

With assistance I ‘popped’ the massive Dutch bike into our boot which it filled entirely with half a wheel dangling out. I ‘popped’ some old furniture blankets around it, ‘popped’ a load of furniture ties around the bike to stop it slithering completely out and ‘popped’ another tie between the windscreen wiper stump and underside of the car boot door to prevent the boot ‘popping’ open and dumping the contents in a mangled metal trail behind us.

We ‘popped’ off to the big smoke where we ‘popped’ in to the bike shop and the very charming gentleman hoppin’ poppin’ unstuck the pedals and wheels. Hooray!!! He also broke the gears but we didn’t discover that until we ‘d popped back all the way home and popped out for a hoppin’ poppin’ bike ride en famille.

Tomorrow we have some cousins arriving from America for a week. At the crack of dawn, before they arrive the bike will be returning for it’s second repair.

Such a shame because apart from the gears the bike is amazing and I love it and little daughter loves riding in her new pink child seat.

This repair is going to interrupt my guest preparation. Yesterday I spent two hours scrubbing the boys’ bathroom. I’m too ashamed to include before or after photos but lets just say we have a severe limescale problem here with our hard water. In their bathroom the art of flushing has not been perfected by all. There were signs of damp and neglect and on the surfaces, both vertical and horizontal, a general smearing of liquids and solids that had caked under a layer of fluff, dust and hair.

What have I learned? Four shaving teenagers do not need an explosive can of shaving foam each, do not use conditioner, I should read the labels on the bottles and not buy three for the price of two – anyone want 15 untouched bottles of head and shoulders conditioner? And they do not ever, ever throw away empty containers.

Back to the antique clothes.
Here’s one I won’t be cleaning the bathroom in.
A floaty Edwardian white muslin tiered dress.

Edwardian Tiered Multi - Layered Muslin Dress

Edwardian Tiered Multi – Layered Muslin Dress

back of the bodice of Edwardian Tiered Multi - Layered Muslin Dress

back of the bodice of Edwardian Tiered Multi – Layered Muslin Dress

Would wearing this pinny make it all alright?

Victorian Edwardian embroidered pinny apron

Victorian Edwardian embroidered pinny apron


 You can find the apron in my shop the Edwardian dress will be added soon.

Good night!

Catherine Xx

Get well soon lovely new bike


Get well soon lovely new bike





Please don’t let me tip her off this old top heavy bike