Tag Archives: Cerdyn Villa

Another day (plus an hour) in the life of…..

30 Oct

It’s 3:45 pm and I’m in my fave relaxing place, the bath. Another typically atypical day in the life of moi.

Today began with the end of yesterday. As days tend to do, merging seamlessly from one day to the next without any blank no man’s space in between. But this day started with a groundhog moment. Heading home from a Halloween party at 1amish we get in and start our tomorrow. Or is it today? I guess technically after midnight becomes the next day but if you’re still in the throws of the previous day and have not been to bed yet does that mean it’s still yesterday? By which I mean not yet today. Making today still tomorrow?. Confused? I am now!

Anyway. We got in and started doing all those things we prep when we have guests in the b&b. John checks the Ray burn is still alight and adds more coal to ensure its still cosy warm at breakfast time. He sets the bread maker so (later) in the morning the gorgeous aroma of freshly baked bread will waft up the stairs and entice the guests down for a delicious Cerdyn Villa breakfast. I  prepare all the breakfast ingredients. We maybe set the table. Clear the kitchen.  Set the dishwasher and washing machine.

I check my phone for the time. It’s still just after 1am…..Am I in a time warp? No. It’s  daylight saving.  (Could have had an extra hour at the party).

So we go to bed at 1:30am which is really 2:30am but I’m all relaxed ‘cos the guests want breakfast at 8am , which is really 9am so I have loads of time?!?!

Hubby goes upstairs like this..

…and shortly after we realise getting back to his normal handsome self is not going to be easy… the transfer is not coming off. He tries makeup remover. Nope. Soap and water. Nope. My facial scrub.  Nope. My super luxurious body scrub. This bugger is not shifting. He starts scratching at it with his nails…. it’s half off when he goes to sleep. And as we feel we have so much time in the morning with our groundhog hour, we figure we’ll sort it then.

Suddenly it’s 7:55am, which may well really feel like 8:55 am but even stretching that extra hour it still mean’s we have 5 real minutes before we find guests salivating to the smell of fresh-baked bread and longing for their full cooked breakfast. Eek. Hubby has the morning after Halloween party face and I’m not sure our guests can handle it. Then I remember how I got my transfers off. Aqueous cream or vaseline. Rub it in and the transfer slides off. Oops.  Hubby is under the impression that it would have been more helpful and less painful had I remembered that seven hours previously.  Oops poor Hubby and his beautiful raw face!

Anyway. Lots of happy well fed guests who shared a laugh at Hubby’s expense. By 10 am, seven breakfasts have been served and cleared. Guests have checked out. Rooms are stripped. Dishwasher is loaded. Washing machine is going full pelt and I’ve made us a brunch after all its 11am in our heads!

It’s a gorgeous day. Sun was shining when we woke, (thankyou day light saving for repositioning 7am in the 8am slot) and I still had half a dozen plants that needed to go in the ground before the first frost; Hubby had the lawn to cut and the garden furniture all needed moving/storing ready for the tree felling to take place next week.

Four hours of strenuous digging, weeding, plant moving and clearing in my poor neglected garden and I can barely stand.   So Hubby sends me for a soak. And here I am. Soaking,  blogging and enjoying a nice cuppa.

Did you remember to turn back your clocks?

Lucy At Home

Rhyming with Wine
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Please don’t bring me flowers….

31 Jul

My attitude to cut flowers is funny old thing.  After all I love gardening, dead-heading, weeding, pruning.  I lo20170731_183610ve seeing the garden in full bloom and I’m aware that some flowers need picking to encourage more flowers to grow.  Plus sometimes the rain, wind or our chickens damage a flower stalk so I’ll pick it up and stick it in a vase.

On the whole though, I’m not a cut flower person.  I mean they look lovely in a vase in someone elses house in full bloom on a visit or in an arrangement at a wedding or on a table in a restaurant.  But when I actually have them at home they just make me sad.  They arrive at their peak and then you plonk them in water with a bit of food to prolong their life and you just watch them wither and die.  Its tragic.  Not to mention that in the confines of the house either, and sometimes, both Hubby and I will have an allergic reaction to the scent which is often quite overpowering when indoors.

I remember sometime back writing about my wishes for end of life.  I wasn’t being morbid but I felt I should document the things I feel strongly about.  One of my key requests was to have snowdrops, crocuses, and daffodil bulbs buried with me and absolutely no cut flowers.  I don’t want my relatives and friends coming back to dead flowers, a bit too much morbid symbolism.  But with bulbs they will flower and multiply year on year, and my plot, under what ever tree wherever that will be, will live on and bring joy and colour long after I’m gone.

funnily enough i also have a problem with house plants.  In a garden I will nurture and tend, water and maintain but the minute a plant is in a pot in my house I look at it with bemusement as it droops or withers.  I never remember to water it, or re-pot it or feed it.  I’m an indoor plant murderer (remember that should you ever feel inclined to gift me a plant – if it has to live indoors I WILL KILL IT!!! ).  It’s a shame really because I actually love orchids but once the initial flowers die off I have absolutely no clue how to tend it to ensure I get new life in future years.  I’ve had two sad-looking specimens on top

of the piano for a year!  I kid you not, in fact I am going to provide photographic evidence right now…

see, I told you!

 

 

Our garden here at Cerdyn Villa B&B

3 Little Buttons

Lucy At Home

Designed by Berni

30 Jul

A very good friend of mine keeps telling me to take credit where its due and to shout from the roof tops that I design stained glass windows.  She tells me now is the time because this latest design of mine was recently officially unveiled by HRH Prince Charles and its a blooming masterpiece!

Community Stained glass Project – Welsh Legends themed window at Myddfai Hall

HRH Prince Charles unveiling our window on 9th July 2017

 

stained glass window, mabinopion, welsh legends, physicians of myddfai

the finalised design for the 3 panels making up the window

She is right of course. (because she is very wise).  This window is the culmination of six months work, created through a most wonderful community project in Myddfai Hall, Brecon Beacons.  I had the honour of designing it.  Pulling together the ideas from those engaging in the project and translating those ideas into this image and then scaling it up and selecting the appropriate glass to make their imaginings a reality.

It’s hard to put into words the joy, pride and sense of achievement this project brough not only to me and the co-teacher, Lesley Griffiths (if you ever need a bespoke table or lamp, she’s your woman) but also to every one of the 30 members of the community who took part.  I think I should leave it to them to articulate our joint achievement

 

If you are looking for a bespoke stained glass panel, window or sun catcher then get in touch, I am happy to do design and scaling up only; design, and make; or design and teach you to make it!!  No obligation quotes.  Pricing depends on size and complexity of design.  If you have a budget in mind I will happily let you know if your dream piece is possible within it!

I work from my home studio in our B&B in the Heart of Wales  Berni Benton, Pink Butterfly Art and Glass at Cerdyn Villa

email: pinkbutterfly@cerdynvilla.co.uk

 

 

Lesley and I with the panel we gifted designed, made and gifted to The Prince of Wales

 

 

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

 

150 years in the Heart of Wales

6 May

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Today celebrated 150 years of Llanwrtyd Wells Station.

Things have changed a lot.  Originally the Heart of Wales line ran multi-coach trains throughout each day bringing Victorian ladies and gentlemen, here to take the healing waters at the wells. It was a vibrant community with many shops and the line  transported goods as well as people.  It made the heart of the Heart of Wales accessible to All.

Llanwrtyd_Railway_StationThese days, whilst the station itself looks much the same, it only runs four single carriage trains each way each day.  But its still an essential asset to our community.

Llanwrtyd is at the central point of the Heart of Wales Line which runs between Shrewsbury and Swansea.  It is the only real public transport we have and it connects us to the rest of the UK.  My parents, for example, who live in Essex, visit us here at Cerdyn Villa, using the trains (Southend, London, Swansea, Llanwrtyd) and then a five minute stroll to our front door.

150 stationThe station buildings have recently undergone a transformation as far as re-purposing is concerned.  Community Transport have an office there.  There are weekly community coffee mornings and the elderly are transported to and from here for their morning tea.  And since the closure of our bank in the town aquare, Credit Union have set up a pay point in there , open every Tuesday and Thursday.

Inside there is a small IT suite with WIFI connectivity; a conference room and a sitting room filled with armchairs and sofas surrounding a lovely log burner.  Then of course there’s a small kitchen so teas/coffees and snacks can be prepared.

Outside there are well maintained gardens thanks to a group of volunteers from within the Llanwrtyd community, Friends of Llanwrtyd Station.

Today, the station, community rooms and gardens hosted a celebration. There was a picnic and live music.  The local school children from Ysgol Dolafon performed some beautiful country dancing. The last ever station master of Llanwrtyd Wells, John Davies, unveiled a plaque.  Our Mayor, peter James, gave a speech. And of course, the obligatory raffle.  (Anyone living in a small community knows that pretty much everything that happens is funded through the selling of raffle tickets!). Whatever was raised will be used to buy plants to keep the station looking as gorgeous as ever.

I can recommend the Heart of Wales Line for a scenic train journey or as a practical mode of transport; and if you should find yourself stopping off here at the midway point, I’m only a stones throw a way, so book a room and stay the night, Llanwrtyd really is a relaxing place to be.

 

 

 

BC – Socialising with social media…

2 May

This afternoon I had some super quality time with my absolutely fantastic friend and superstar motivator, Dinah. I’ve written about her before, but just in case you missed it I will tell you that she is absolutely amazing, and hugely inspirational.

Today after tea and choc brownies in the garden surrounded by some of my free roaming hens, she set to work helping me to refocus my mind on where I want to be in the mysterious world of social media.

The dark art of www presence and successful social media integration. We (she), added vloggin’ to my bloggin’!

Seriously guys I now have a YouTube channel, the means to upload a video to my (this) blog, and I’m on Instagram (ooo, get me, down with the kids!)

My promise to her was to take photos of EVERYTHING and share my moments on there ( there being the aforementioned Instagram). AND, write a blog EVERY DAY for two weeks under a different category… If you’ve seen my blog ( @and I know you have ‘cos you’re here reading it), then  you can see there are several subject headings under which I ramble.

Anyway. I like a challenge and I hate to disappoint, so you guys are my witnesses and this is the first blog of the fortnight… I shall categorise this under ‘friends….’ but also under ‘social media & networking’ so tomorrow’s will not be there, I promise…

 

Oh, and here’s a little “cerdyn villa cwtch” ( yes I’m calling it that because the phrase came up in conversation with Dinah, and I thought it was brilliant!)…

Lucy At Home

Life: Mine: It’s full: Very full

9 Apr

15016351_1247664865307784_3338542209251484497_oI’m a woman.  I’m self-employed.  I’m fairly ‘alternative’ and, am told, slightly ‘eccentric’.  I wear many hats.  Not all suit me…

Life gets confusing and chaotic……

Here’s perhaps why….

13912605_1298769933474183_1529318925936773135_n???????????????????????????????I’m an artist, I occasionally do pet portraits, I often do stained glass commissions. I do have an Etsy shop, which I manage in a very ad hoc way.  I promise to keep a stock of my designs but the artistic bit of me is really only interested in the bespoke commissions and one-off designs , so I struggle to find time to hold stock.  So I make my designs to order.

20170322_123236I teach stained glass.  It’s a new string to my bow.  I love it.  I find it immensely satisfying and it brings me huge amount of joy.

I run a B&B.  This involves being really nice to (mostly) lovely people, talking (a lot), keeping the place clean, ironing sheets (even though I’d never iron my own) and cooking really gorgeous breakfasts.  I do this with my hubby.  We love working together.  It works.  Coming to stay at Cerdyn Villa is like staying with friends (so we’re told) and that, my lovelies was the plan so things her are going well

breakfast

I manage our business website and various tourism pages on social media.  Some of these pages… “www.cerdynvilla.wales” is our lifestyle hub (ooo fancy!), it leads you off to “Pink Butterfly Art and Glass” – my Etsy shop; “Pink Butterfly at Cerdyn Villa” -our FB page combining our B&B and my art; http://www.cerdynvilla.co.uk – our B&B website; “rose-tinted Ramblings” – my blog; “Home of Bog Snorkelling” – the tourism FB page for our town; “@Berni_Benton” – my twitter account

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m a gardener – I look after six people’s gardens.  Mostly elderly ladies, some of whom like to garden with me and its as much about the company as the weeding and pruning.  I LOVE weeding (does that make me odd?  I don’t care, I LOVE IT!)

peanut butter cheesecakeI work shifts in the local cafe and cover for the owners if they go away.  Sometimes I even bake some cakes!

I blog.  For fun, but mainly to keep me sane and promote my work(s) (not necessarily at the same time). Its called Rose Tinted Rambling, but you know that because you are here now.  It’s mainly a brain dumping ground.  Most thoughts evolve whilst I’m either ironing or weeding and I can’t rest until they’re typed.  So there! I try to categorise to avoid you haven’t to read the ‘boring shit’  but I’d say there’s pretty much something for everyone here.

I  advocate for a local elderly lady and manage her finances. It’s my ‘pay-it-forward” – we should all have one.  It’s great to give back.

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I volunteer, Working to help run the weird and wacky events in Llanwrtyd – I am the commentator at the World Bog Snorkelling and Man v Horse.  They gave me the job because, and I quote “if the PA system breaks I’d still be loud enough for everyone to hear”.  Hubby said he could hear me from the house last year and I was three-quarters  of a mile away….

… I hasten to add the mic was working that day.

I am responsible for keeping our household accounts.  Although hubby takes my figures and does the scary bit of filling in the returns and sending them off

I do all the food shopping, planning and feeding. Sometimes I do this well.  Other times we eat out!

I ‘manage’ a tenanted house with 5 flats.  Not for fun, at all, but because the landlords were neighbours but now live in Spain.

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We keep hens, that means they have a house that needs cleaning

11182523_1594413547510404_4888338233642762611_oI’m a mum………

………………………………………….

……..in my spare time (!!)

I do a bit of yoga and belly dancing

a vision in red

I look after my own garden (sometimes I get dressed before I start)

11168862_1046829525379356_5330321855820313332_oI’m a member of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party (say hello to Lady Lily the Pink).  I even stood for the Welsh Assembly

I soak in a bubble bath

I enjoy a good live band

I read the occasional book.  mostly I read blogs  and watch TED talks

I snuggle on the sofa with my Hubby and watch Netflix

I play board games with my boy(s) – son and hubby

I eat out with friends

I eat in with friends

I drink out with friends

I drink in with friends

Sometimes I just drink…….

I love my life, but planning is difficult.  Impossible actually.  So it appears chaotic.  and sometimes it really is.  It also appears disorganised.  But actually it rarely is.  ….

….it just feels it

Logistically its a massive challenge.  It’s so far removed from the 9-5 life I used to lead.  I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

diaryofanimperfectmum

Even the Red Bull crowd think we’re crazy! ….

29 Mar

We are lucky enough to be eccentrics in the eccentric capital of Wales , running our B&B ( Cerdyn Villa) from the teeny-weeny town (smallest in the UK) of Llanwrtyd Wells and enjoy being actively involved in the weird and wacky events we run.
Last year we had a visitor to the World Alternative Games from RedBull TV, Here’s what they tried….
come along and see for yourselves….

Red Bull TV at the Bogs

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Did You know….Manfred Mann’s Earth Band and its link Wales?

6 Oct

Here’s a little known quirky story about our amazing home in the Heart of Wales:-

the Good Earth, Manfred Mann, Earth Band, album, 1974, music, recordIn 1974 Manfred Mann released an album titled “The Good Earth”.

Those who purchased the album were entitled to rights over one square foot of the earth situated at Llanerchyrfa, in the Abergwesyn Valley, Brecknockshire, Wales. That’s just up the road from our home, Cerdyn Villa, here in Llanwrtyd Wells.

On the inner sleeve of the album was a registration coupon. If you returned it before 31st December 1975 you became the proud owner of one square foot of the 10 acre plot the band owned. This was part of the promotion activities linked to the album to ensure this piece of land was not taken over by forestry and instead remained unchanged. It was an ecological aspiration…..

…and here it is today, the plateau in this photo…

the plateau owned by fans

the plateau owned by fans

How do I know all this? Well I bumped into a BBC Wales reporter, who then got in touch with a chap called Gordon Green MBE (look him up) and my hubby, and the three of them went off today in search of the Good Earth Project and found it!

So, now you know.  Maybe you own the album? Or even one of those square feet? If you do, why don’t you make the pilgrimage here to visit it…