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In our back yard….

14 May

Hubby has just pointed me in the direction of a folder on his computer titled “Cerdyn Villa wildlife”….

…. so I’ve had a peak

…and now I’m sharing some of the content with you… all of these have been seen in or from our garden

We do have more visitors: bull finches, tree creepers, crows, blackbirds, pheasants, red kites, buzzards, foxes, blackcaps, red starts , wrens… which he’s still trying to catch on his point and press camera…

In the meantime, did you spot the odd one out?!

Taking a breather…

10 May

You can’t beat a few moments of mindfulness at the end of a busy day

Life as a semi retired  (!) rural B&B owner, DIYer, gardener, decorator, car mechanic, and family diplomat can be pretty exhausting; but it’s all worthwhile when you can live somewhere like this and at the end of a long day, flop into a sunlounger with a pint of beer, a clear blue sky and the sounds of lambs and birds….

This hubby deserves his precious moments….

There’s nothing quite like this at the end of a long day

 

 “Good morning from Cerdyn Villa” 

4 May

We’re situated in this delightfully tranquil, rural location, on the edge of Llanwrtyd Wells, in the very heart of Wales. It’s like a huge welcoming cwtch ( that’s the best word in the Welsh language… A cuddle with a cherry on top)… And here’s a little Cerdyn Villa morning catch for you… Perhaps you might visit sometime…..

Focus, Aspire, Inspire

23 Feb

I have been inspired, as I often am, by certain bloggers I follow.  This time my muse is Debbie of My Random Musings.

As I flutter around in random formation, flitting from this project to that; this passion to that; this idea to that; this demand on my time to that; I get through my days,week and months in a blink of an eye.  Completing a lot of stuff; dipping my toes in many a pond and having a great deal of fun but it all kinds of floats around in a mishmash of activity without borders, direction or guidelines.

That’s all very well.  A nice, jolly, unfocused existence, guided by optimism and chance, but I really would like to look back on a year without being completely surprised by how I got from January to Christmas and the circuitous route I took to get there.

I’m not saying I don’t love the surprised.  I do.  That’s the problem.  I enjoy the freedom of it a little too much.  Sometimes to the point that at any point in the year I’m not really sure what sort of ground I might find under each footstep.  More importantly I’m not moving forward.  I’m treading the beautiful waters in which I wallow and am allowing myself to enjoy things as they float by; maybe latching onto them for stability for a few moments; but never really reeling myself in.

I’d like to be able to say my starting point was A by goals were B,C and D with a few distractions via M,Q and W, but I made it to D by the end of an allotted time.  I’d like to measure my achievements as well as list them.

So *deep breath* I’m taking Debbie’s advice and starting with a bucket list:

1.TWITTER – I’d love to have over 500 followers before the end of the year, a small hop rather than a leap  – in my mind I already know I really want 1000 but let’s be realistic about these things. This is me

2. ALSO TWITTER – I need to find help and learn how to use it more effectively – I love talking politics, parenting, art, religion, tourism – I don’t want to focus on one topic – I love to RAMBLE and REACT and REFLECT as he mood takes me and the words grab me but I must more effectively access the right people for each topic otherwise I am aware I may bore, or worse, annoy my followers

3.BLOGGING – again I want to ramble randomly so I’m aware I need to be smarter with my tags/metatags/linky’s/sharing . Again I need advice .  I can find lots of blog share site but I’m not interested in fashion, cosmetics, hair and makeup and I’m in the UK… I need to find other companions  – as fun as some of those I follow are – I need more of the random eccentrics out there.  I won’t put a link as you’re already here but feel free to have a look round if you can make it to the end of this post 😉

4.ALSO BLOGGING – I need to set a goal for ‘followers’ but I don’t really want followers so much as interactors – I’ll continue writing it even if no-one reads it because sometimes I can’t sleep until I get whatever it is out of my head.  however, it would be lovely to have a few people who felt inspired to discuss my content… Lets say I’ll aim for 36 new followers / contributors in 2017, 20,000 views

5.TEACHING – this is new to me, I’m loving it – teaching stained glass to members of the community as part of a funded Community Project – my goals are to be proud of the finished product, have it installed by the end of summer and to both blog and Vlog the process.  My aim is to obtain another teaching commission for 2018

6.STAINED GLASS ART- let’s get proactive instead of reactive.  Last year I started thinking about Christmas stock mid October – about 3 months too late when I had zero old stock to sell and had to close by order book on 5th Dec because for some reason we decided a holiday before Christmas would be relaxing.  It was.  The run up to it was definitely not.  So. START making Christmas glass in the summer.

7.ALSO STAINED GLASS – I am really really bad at marketing myself, my skills and my ETSY shop (I bet you are thinking ” whoa, she has an Etsy shop?!”) – I looked at my Etsy shop today and all items have expired.  I’ve not been updating my existing ‘made to order’ items or creating any new ones.  Target – never have my shop empty. Create 2 new designs before summer (lets say end July).  Anyway, here’s a link to the shop ..don’t look yet, I’ve written this but I haven’t done it yet, give me a few hours!!

8. ALSO STAINED GLASS – my favourite moment in the artistic process is creating a new design and making it for the first time.  I love most of all the commissioned one-off pieces.  As an artist rather than a commercial maker, the fun and challenge is in the original design and the presentation of it to the individual who asked for it.That said I really need to focus on marketing myself as a designer and maker of one off commissioned glass panels… If I could get 3 more commissions for 2017 I’d be a very happy bunny.

9.BED AND BREAKFAST – Cerdyn Villa is, in my mind small and perfectly formed .  I love that we run it like we are having friends over.  I love that we spend hours talking to our guests over breakfast or sharing our wine/beer in the garden on a rare warm sunny day.  Yes its a business, but mostly its a lifestyle choice.  What I wanted to do last year was to start running weekenders for like-minded people – eg: an artists retreat, a classic car enthusiasts retreat; that sort of thing.  Basically fill our 3 rooms and maybe have 4 or 5 campers come along – welcome drinks evening around a bonfire, breakfast together, some form of group activity, an evening meal together, possibly everyone heading to the local pub together for a pint, some other activity and away they go – fulfilled, enlightened and loving our home and this little village. My target is to run a first one in 2017…In September *better warn hubby*

10.ART  – as an acrylic artist I am again pretty crap at self promotion.  I would however be very happy to paint 2 more original spacescapes to add to my series and arrange for them to be exhibited somewhere before Christmas.  I’m not a mass creator of sellable art I just want to follow my passion and paint these for me – but be brave enough to put them out there for others to look at.

11.FACEBOOK.  I amalgamated my art page (Pink Butterfly Art & Glass) and our B&B page (Cerdyn Villa B&B into one with a view to create a ‘lifestyle hub’  The page is Pink Butterfly Art & Glass at Cerdyn Villa B&B or @CerdynVilla – I’d love to grow that to 1000 likes.

12.LIFESTYLE HUB – with so many facets to life I set up (with a lot of help from my friend and  mentor, Dinah) a ‘one-stop-shop ‘Lifestyle Hub’ combining my blog, Facebook, B&B website, art and twitter into one place from where everything can be accessed.  I need to make it more visible (how? – ok arrange more time with the gorgeous Dinah – for that but mostly for coffee and cwtches).  Plus I promised I’d start a VLOG... so my target is to set up a VLOG!!!

So there you go.  I shall continue fluttering about randomly rambling my way along but at the same time (yes I do plan to multi task), I shall keep my mind on these goals and moreover I shall report back in January on my success/failure/adaptations to the above.

Wish me luck, I’m going in!

the end of summer….

15 Sep

I had so many blogs I wanted to write in a timely fashion this summer.  But time for timeliness was lost to busy-ness and busy-ness was loss to craziness and a certain amount of chaotic-ness, sleeplessness and general tiredness!

It was a whirlwind summer, one that promised to be longer than most (which it was) but to fit in the extra length, time was most certainly speeded up and the resultant rapidity of activity, organisation and enjoyable experiences blurred into one mass of euphoria and exuberance.

I wanted to write to you about all the gardens I visited.

The vibrant and magestic Bicton Park Botanical Gardens, near Exeter:-

The tranquil and contemplative Burrow Farm Gardens in Axminster:-

…and the hidden gem of Hergest Croft, in Kington, Herefordshire; with its perfect little tea room and plant nursery

I wanted to wax lyrical about the wonderfully wacky two weeks of the World Alternative Games culminating in commentating for the World Bog Snorkelling here in Llanwrtyd Wells.

I wanted, but failed, to fit in participating in any of the adventures of the fortnight – although I wanted to Office Chair Race, Husband Drag, Ditch Run, Pea Shoot, Crazy Shop, Worm Charm, Race Chariots, Wrestle in Gravy, Run Backwards, Cycle Slowly and dress as a Zombie; but the extra activities in town meant extra work for me .

Then there was the fabulous Imp Club National event at Hatton Park World in Warwickshire which involved camping; cars; a rally to the British Motor Museum in Gaydon (fabulous thoroughly recommend it); and strolls along the Grand Union Canal tow path.

Meanwhile there was still work. I was busy managing five other people’s garden’s ( I love these jobs). I had my own house than needed painting and some extra shifts in our local caffi.  Mum and Dad wanted (and did) visit.  Our B&B proved extra popular this summer with both new and repeat visitors.  fitting in a hectic self employment based multitude of work activities alongside a heavy social schedule has been both incredibly exhilarating and exhausting in equal measure.  There are people I love who I have not seen or spoken to in the last 8 weeks….  forgive me until October, I will be back.  …and events i didn’t fit in (sadly) especially the Pink Car Rally which is fabulous fun and for a great cause… next year….

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And then I wanted to share with you all the fun of our long planned , end of summer party where we dressed the entire garden as an enchanted landscape themed for Alice in Wonderland; complete with appearing and disappearing Cheshire cat grins; card guards, tea party and lawn croquet….


I was seriously keen to play the Proud Mum and rave about the excellent achievements of my son and his friends who all sat in nervous anticipation of their A level results until they could finally relax and revel in their exceptional successes this summer  – how proud am I to know them all.

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I was determined to discuss with you the trials and tribulations; nerves and nausea caused to these teens in the preparing and planning for their next chapter… for many it’s this weeks move into their university halls.  Sick with excitement, doubt, fear and anticipation; worry about making new friends; living away from home; learning in a new way; taking responsibility for their own finances.  I drop Jason at his halls tomorrow.  As I type this (or in between paragraphs ) I’m preparing his ‘final supper’; his favourite meal; one he feels he’s unlikely to ever eat again…. well, at least until he comes home for his dad’s 60th; or the Christmas holidays… or in fact any weekend or weekday evening he wishes!!!! So it’s Thursday and I’m preparing a Sunday roast with all the trimmings and my mum’s very indulgent rice pudding recipe.  I sense a heart warming afternoon, playing board-games, having a good old laugh and possibly a few tears (mainly mine); probably a sleepless night and then tomorrow a drive to Cardiff.    I plan to be the ‘cool mum’ the one who offers ‘just the right amount’ of support/detachment/emotion/comment… I plan to leave with a hug and a smile and let him get on with it…. we all know what they say about the best laid plans.

Anyway, this shall begin my last weekend of summer and I plan to write an addendum next week…. stay in touch people… and why not tell me about your summer.

It’s lovely when people tell us they’ve had a good time …

7 Sep

We had a good trading weekend in Builth Wells at the Antique Fair. We sold steadily and made a nice profit, which doesn’t always happen but it must have been our turn, Some of the Traders took very little and we find that is how the Fairs are at the moment, very un-predictable and patchy. And we […]

via LLANWRTYD WELLS! — Boxofmisc

There’s no Place Like (Our) Home

23 Jun

 

When you live in your special getaway retreat you never need a getaway!!

Cerdyn Villa, our home, your retreat, our bit of ‘heaven on earth’, in the middle of the Heart of Wales, in the quirkiest town in the UK, Llanwrtyd Wells

There are weekends of insanity and partying in the town if you want it- Man v Horse, Real Ale Wobble, World Bog Snorkelling, World Alternative Games, Welsh Open Stone Skimming, Mountain Bike Chariot Racing.

There is open space, picturesque expansive vistas, tranquility and natural beauty in abundance for walking, cycling, driving, bird watching, relaxing, sitting, meditating and being at one with nature.

There is our home.  A home away from home.  A place to relax, potter, sleep, laugh, chat. A place to simply BE.

We found our home by luck.  We wallow in the good fortune of living here daily.  Come rain or shine.  Our own space.  The surrounding space.  The community.  The Friday nights with friends .  The reality of this magical spot in the the heart of The Heart of Wales.

 

 

 

Food Critic…

4 Jun

soft boiled agg and soldiers

It’s sometimes challenging running a B&B.  Last week for example, I had staying with me, my most challenging food critic.

On day two he’d had boiled egg.  Did he want them the the next day?

“Less talking, more cooking”, says he.  Apparently the yellow wasn’t quite runny enough for his soldiers the day before.

Thanks Conner, aged 7.  Sound advice!!

 

Snuggled at the heart of The Heart of Wales

18 May

PICT0049Llanwrtyd Wells is unique as a destination in its location, attraction and personality. margreet - llanwrtyd centre

Snuggled at the heart of The Heart of Wales it is a gateway to the largest area of unspoilt countryside in the whole of the UK, including the magnificent Cambrian Region, Abergwesyn Valley, Epynt Mountains, Black Mountains and Brecon Beacons.  Its position, nestling in the Irfon Valley, offers a diverse landscape expanding out in every direction; forestry, mountain ranges, glacial valley, waterfalls, winding roads, bridle paths.

british bluebells

It is the perfect base for touring the whole of Wales. It’s the perfect base for exploring and discovering hidden gems. It’s the perfect base to find yourself at one and alone with nature; to find peace and tranquillity; flora and fauna; wildlife and bird life.

spectacular expance of landscapeIt was from Llanwrtyd that mountain biking and long distance walking began in the UK.

These activities continue todCerdyn Villa - abergwesyn valleyay with tourists coming here to explore our stunning and challenging landscape. It also continues here alongside our penchant for the eccentric, with Llanwrtyd Wells being the birthplace of quirky events such as The Real Ale Wobble; Man versus Horse (originally also verses bike); Bog Snorkelling and, more recently, Mountain Bike Chariot Racing and the bi-annual World Alternative Games.

scenic route crumbling old farm house majestic on hill topAs a town, we are recognised as the smallest in the UK, with little over 700 residents, we are smaller than most villages!  Our heart is huge.  Accommodation providers offer amazing value and exceptional service relying heavily on recommendation and repeat business (a great plus for the traveller that we are not on the tourist trail).

cynghordy viaduct

 

Despite our size we have 3 pubs and 4 award-winning restaurants.  Foodies indeed, offering quarterly farmers markets with locally produced, grown and prepared delicacies; and an annual Food Fair to tickle your taste buds.  There’s even a cookery school if that’s your passion.

mushroomsThe inspirational landscape, with its wild ponies, sheep, red kites and diverse bird life draws artists and artisans to its heart.  It’s a great location to visit amazing artists; discover hidden artisans and off the beaten track art havens.

Whatever your reason for travel, there is something for you a spectacular landscape away. But if you want to park the car and explore on foot, bike or train we have enough at hand to keep you entertained.

To find out more about us and where we live www.cerdynvilla.wales cerdyn villa guesthouse

enquiries@cerdynvilla.co.uk

 

How do you chose where to stay on a weekend break?

1 Aug

Well? what are your criteria?

“.. anyway,” said one of our very lovely B&B guests over breakfast this morning.

Cerdyn Vill
Cerdyn Vill ” full” breakfast

“I won’t penalise you for not having a Corby Trouser Press in the room”,

Pause. Mischievous grin…

“..although I did use one once to warm up a pizza…”

Maybe we should invest in some in case our  future guests get peckish.

This is a

This is a “Trouser Press Free Zone”      Cerdyn Villa Guest House, Llanwrtyd Wells