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Dartmouth and other Adventures

Hello Readers,

Sorry for the last month or so, I’ve been playing MegaCubeX on my Xbox in my bedroom with the curtains closed!!!!!!!

Only Joking! That’s why I am called Outdoorcae!

I have just come in from watering the allotment, I don’t normally do that job but for a change I thought I would catch up how things were going up there.

As some of you may know, I am currently off school for the 6 weeks holiday that all children get!  My mother has recently been making some amazing cakes! Her Lemon drizzle are my favourite.

Earlier I went in my hot tub for an hour this time without my massive enormous swan! (see my blog entitled Swan Invasion!) If you have been reading my blogs for a while you will know what that meant!

In School I worked hard ALL year and achieved the award of Year 5 pupil of the Year 2018! This is the fourth time I have won Pupil of the Year throughout my school life.

If you live in the UK you will know what our weather is usually like (Even in the summer), however this year we have had one big long heat wave with temperatures getting up to at least 45 degrees in my greenhouse – who needs to go abroad!!!

Last week my Mum, Dad and I had a massive sort out in our allotment, we dug a few of our bean plants that had died because of having an infestation of black flies (I think they are called aphids), our early pea plants that had stopped produced peas, another bag full of lovely new potatoes, carrots, parsnips, onions, Kale, and beetroot. A lot of this we used in our sunday roast chicken dinner that I helped my smelly dad make.

Having cleared all this we were left with space to plant more, so over the last few days i have gradually been planting some more veg, eg radish, carrots, potatoes, beetroot & lettuce. I’ve also left space to plant more next week so we will hopefully get our next harvest spread out rather than all at the same time. It maybe a bit late in the season to plant some of these but you never know with the weather we have been having they may be ok.

I also picked a few cucumbers and a lot of tomatoes from both inside and outside the greenhouse.

We also cut down the brambles that were hanging over our allotment from our next door neighbours garden. All the waste helped to fill our compost bin right to the top.

As i left to go to school on one of the last days of term i noticed that the apples on my apple trees had got much bigger and were starting to ripen, hopefully one or two will be ready for september when i go back to school as I love picking them on my way to school and eating them for my mid morning snack.

I think I may have mentioned my sunflowers a few times before, but the ones that came from seeds that i bought have had to be chopped down as the had past their best, and the heads were so big they were making the plants bend right over which was damaging some of my other plants. I have kept the sunflower heads and they are drying out in my greenhouse, there are thousands of seeds in each head (Which I think is incredible). However, the sunflowers that i have grown from the seeds that i was given by Joe and Angharad are still growing.  The flower heads are starting to form but are not yet in bloom and they are still getting taller.

My chillies and peppers which are growing in my greenhouse seem to be doing really well

I was on holiday last week which is why i didn’t post a blog as I was too busy enjoying being outdoors. Whilst I was away my amazing grandfather volunteered to water our gardens and allotment.

My holiday was in Dartmouth, in South Devon. My father used to go here when he was a child so he has been really eager to show me and my sister what he always described as amazing. I now know why he loves the place so much.

Whilst we were away we did a range of activities, and I’m going to mention a few of the things we did. We went to the holiday home of the inspiring author Agatha Christie which is called Greenway House and is a National Trust propert, which is good for us as we are members. Rather than driving to the property like we usually do we travelled in the unusual fashion of catching boat from Dartmouth directly to the quay at Greenway House, passing Agatha Christies famous boathouse on the way. This boathouse was the scene of one of her most famous books – Dead Man’s Folly.

We also had the pleasure of visiting another National Trust Property called Coleton Fishacre which was the home of the people who used to own the Savoy Hotel in London. The house was really nice but it was the gardens that really impressed me. They were very big and full of amazing flowers. These flowers really attracted the bees and there were thousands all over the garden, which if you have read my other blogs really pleased me as I am a beekeeper and love them. The garden sloped away right to the cliffs overlooking the English Channel and the views were amazing.

On the opposite side of the river Dart is a village called Kingswear, where there is a railway station. This station is part of the Dart Steam Railway and on way day of our holiday we caught a ferry across the river and then had a Steam Train Ride from Kingswear to Paignton. The name of the locomotive that pulled us to Paignton was called Braveheart. We had a quick walk around Paignton but didn’t like it at all so caught another train called Lyndon Manor back. The carriage we travelled back in was called Anna which is funny as that is the name of one of my Aunties.

One evening we drove to a local beach called Blackpool Sands which was lovely but the thing that really caught my attention was the fact that they had the equipment for a 2 minute beach clean

The weather was so nice while we were away that we took a few dips in the creek where we were staying and also in the sea at a cove called Castle Cove. The water was so amazingly clear and beautifully clean.

My sister and I took turns using our bodyboard, even though the water was really calm with no waves we still had fun jumping on the board and falling in the water when we werent expecting it.

My mum is very good at catching crabs and showed me how to do it using crabbing equipment and bait. We tried different types of bait but found that the crabs in Dartmouth must be quite posh as they only seem to like M&S bacon

As most of you will know i love running and in particular i LOVE running parkrun and have done well over 50 adult parkruns now. Well a few weeks ago my dad and I decided we wanted to try and do the parkrun alphabet, which is to try and run a parkrun beginning with each letter of the alphabet. So on the way down to Dartmouth we stayed in Exeter the night before so we could do Killerton parkun. This was a beautiful trail run around the ground of Killerton House, but more importantly ticks ‘K’ of our alphabet list.

We have a list of parkruns beginning with letters that we haven’t yet ticked off and we are hoping to start getting to some of these soon.

While we were away in Dartmouth, my dad and I ran quite a bit (Well he did every morning but i wanted a lie in some days). We ran from our apartment in Warfleet down to Dartmouth castle and took in the beautiful views looking out to see, before we then ran back into Dartmouth town and along the river front and around the town. While we were in the town we usually picked up breakfast for the family to eat when we got back to where we were staying.

I am a member of Rhondda Paddlers Canoe Club and a few weeks ago we had our Annual General Meeting (AGM), and in this meeting I was voted onto the committee as the junior representative. One of the things that I am keen to do in my new role is to help with club fundraising, and the first thing I am trying to do is get people to use the Easy Fundraising Web Site when shopping on line. If people then use this website the club will get donations for all online shopping they do. Click on this link if you are interested in helping me fundraise for our club

Rhondda Paddlers

Unfortuately the club has now finished for the summer but will be starting again soon when we go back to school.

In one of my recent blogs I talked about my birthday trip to Llangorse climbing centre, will here are a few photos of that brilliant day.

Click here

You may have seen that I have a YouTube channel and post Vlogs of the different things I do, you can see these videos here

Outdoorcae YouTube Channel

If you want to get hold of me you can using any of these:

Twitter – @Outdoorcae

Facebook – Outdoorcae Blogs

Facebook Page – Outdoorcae

Instagram – Outdoorcae

YouTube – Outdoorcae

Blog – Outdoorcae.com

But bye for now!

Keeepppp Garrdeeenninggg

Outdoorcae

My YouTube journey and my latest Vlog

Hi all,

I’m so sorry for the time gap between this post and the last. Summer is a very busy time of year for me but over the next few days I will get My General update published,

Anyway, today is a short blog just to share a link and make everyone aware of my YouTube channel. In case you didn’t know YouTube is a very popular free media site. If you have an account like me you can post videos, if you don’t you can simply sit back and relax and enjoy whilst other people do the work for you!

The reason I started my YouTube channel was when I found out that I couldn’t upload videos to my blog. I looked at all the options I could’ve used and I thought the easiest and cheapest way was to make myself a YouTube channel.

I did all the behind the scenes work and now though I was ready to start making vlogs to go with my blogs that would make the action more alive!

It wasn’t as easy as I thought but with a bit of practice I uploaded my first vlog.

So that where it brings me today and if you follow this link below it will take you to my latest vlog.

Click on me

In this vlog I am in Llangorse multi-activity centre crossing a quite tricky high bridge and the video has a very unique start! (I fall!)

I would love it if you could view the video above,

Keep a eye out for an even better blog coming out some time soon!

Until then…

Keeeppp Garrrdddeenninggg

Outdoorcae

Hanging Around!

Hello everybody,

I have got so much to tell you about. In fact, I could right a thousand words just about today. I’ll try not to bore you too much!

We have been picking tomatoes 🍅 recently, which is a very big relief to me as I spent a long time worrying about them ripening. They are lovely and when you cut them up they have very symmetrical insides! This is very important to me as well as I absolutely hate it when objects aren’t the same!

On Friday I left school at noon and went home to go to Portsmouth for my mums graduation 🎓. She has been studying for 3 years and still carried on with working, being a mum, a wife and other general stuff. She is now a graduate of Portsmouth University and has a masters in Forensic Accounting AND has Msc after her name! So this is me saying thank you and well done to her. We all had a great day and got to stay in a hotel which I enjoyed. I am like the hotel inspector when I stay in hotels and like to check the cleanliness and quality of everything. It is one of my favourite TV programmes and I like how blunt she is.

So as well as all that excitement I had the privilege to have a birthday adventure day doing all outdoorsy stuff. Now as my blog is called outdoor cae I can use this day in my blog and show everyone how much I like doing outdoorsy stuff. It was me, my sister, our parents, my friend and my sisters friend.

A friend of my fathers did the coaching and we went to a multi-activity centre in Llangorse which was about an hour away from our house. We had an absolutely brilliant day, my favourite part was the outside high ropes courses. I found the obstacles quite easy…

But inside the difficulty level stepped up and I became more out of my comfort zone. We did caving, bouldering, abseiling, zip wires, bridge crossing and other things that I can’t remember.

For caving we had to go in a very narrow tunnel and in different directions. Whilst in this passage of fake caves you got very hot and start sweating! Bouldering is climbing up climbing walls but without ropes. I have done abseiling before but this time was even more epic, I lowered myself down and slowly walked down the wall.

I did 3 Zip Wires, One was inside and the other two were outside at the end of the high ropes courses. Another thing that was inside were the bridges, we were tied onto a moving wire that kept us safe. The adults and the kids all had a fantastic day. It’s good to challenge myself whenever I can.

In the allotment we have had some lessons learned. The main one is to be more prepared for how big things can grow to! The pumpkins 🎃 took over the garden – literally, and we have had to sacrifice them as they were like triffids!! The leaves also had some sooty mould. We did have two small pumpkins 🎃 but we definitely hadn’t bargained for how invasive they were.

The green beans have grown well but we have an infestation of black fly and it’s really bad. We have boiled up rhubarb leaves to make a spray but not having much luck. We are organic at the moment but may have to use a chemical spray to get rid. We have also learned that we need more space than planned for peas and beans.

I am growing some sweet peas but I wonder if they will ever flower 💐 as they are as tall as me but no flowers yet. It’s a shame as they smell lovely.

My sunflowers 🌻 are huge and I’m sure I will win the competition for the tallest. The heads are massive and I am going to keep lots of the seeds. I may even sell them as they are from huge sunflowers 🌻 . Maybe I will make my fortune!

The cucumbers 🥒 have been very successful this year and we have picked quite a few. We have plenty more to come. My mum had a home grown parsnip for tea this week and we enjoyed carrots 🥕 and an onion that we had also grown.

The potatoes 🥔 have been great and we have just dug up our second batch. We have also replanted more seed potatoes 🥔. We will have to wait a while for those. Not sure how many more strawberries 🍓 we will pick now. They have been a little disappointing in taste but there have been plenty.

I finish for summer break in two days so I am looking forward to getting out and about and having more adventures to tell you all about. I’m planning to climb Pen-y-fan and do some more waterfall walks and don’t forget plenty of gardening and visiting gardens.

Next year I plan to grow pineapples 🍍 and bananas 🍌. Ha ha, just joking as I think I may struggle as they need tropical conditions all year!!

What ever you get up to – Keeep enjoying everything outdoors and indoors.

Outdoorcae

Heatherton trip!

Hi everyone,

Today’s blog is just a quick one to tell you about tomorrow’s trip to Heatherton!

My school are taking us there and I am very excited, I am taking a camera so expect lots of photos and maybe a vlog or two!

Here’s a link so you can have a look yourself to see what it’s going to be like for me!

Heatherton.co.uk

I hoped you liked today’s quick update!

Outdoorcae

Hot Weather!

Hello All,

This time of year is very busy for everyone, I am sorry if my blogs don’t come out some weeks but do the others. The main thing I love is being outdoors!

I have been thinking this week that my blogs would want to include more YOU! If you would like a picture or a story or just a quick explanation of what you like to do then please email me by clicking this link below! This way when I havent got time to do a blog, I can just copy your message and paste it either in its own post or in one of my big posts.

Outdoorcae@outlook.com

Firstly I’m going to talk about Gardening!

This weather has been fantastic for the garden and all my plants are doing so well, however there is a down side – watering!!!! I spend about an hour everyday making sure that all my plants (Veg and flowers) have enough to drink. This is even more work this week as some of my relatives are away and I have volunteered to water their plants as well, this isn’t really a problem as they do so much for me and my family.

With everything growing so quickly I have had to have a big thin out of some of my veg, so I have really cut back on my parsnips, cabbage and sprouts. If i hadn’t thinned these out each of the plants would have been fighting for space and light and none of them would have grown properly.

My Tomatoes are going incredibly well! One had started ripening so now they should all follow its lead! I’m Very excited for my first tom to eat! When my uncle came round he gave me his first tomato! it was heavenly!

My cucumbers are coming all the time now! We have about 15 growing at the minute and 3 are ready to be picked tonight! When you eat one it’s quite hard to stop cutting your self another and another slice!

My peas are doing extremely well, We have picked too many to count now! I have a bag of them in my packed lunch each day!

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The other day I went up to my allotment and dug up a bag of my potatoes, The original potatoes had rotten and were huge!

My Carrots are also getting quite big now! Some are purple and some are orange! I can’t way to try some with my Sunday lunch! But the BIG question is should I have chicken or beef? Why don’t you tell me below! Here’s a photo a weird looking one i pulled up

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My beans are coming on nicely! They have started growing into green bits now! I hope they grow bigger soon as I absolutely love them!

Now that my allotment is in full flow we have turned our garden development plans to our front garden, at the moment we have a lawn with planters all around (and a few trees) but we think its time to do something more exciting with it. So my mum and i have decided to rip up the grass (well I make my dad do this bit) and turn it into a more flowing garden full of different planting areas. My dad and I have started to extend a stone wall at the bottom of our garden and have now put in a pond with some water lilies and some marginals and today we installed a pump into the pond so it has a nice little fountain in it. We are going to keep on working on the area around the pond and hope to eventually have a bit of a rockery with some succulents – when we have finished the wall and topped up the soil.

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We have two small apple trees in the front garden and these are full of apples which are not quite ready to pick, but I can’t wait for them as I love picking a fresh apple and eating it on my way to school.

It was my dad’s birthday recently (But he is grumpy and doesn’t tell anyone as he doesn’t like birthdays) and he had a lovely kitchen compost pot where we collect our peelings etc ready to take to our big compost bin in the garden

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And the final news for my garden section today is – we have taken delivery of our new gardeners beehive which is not like a normal beehive its more like a bee hotel. We don’t have to do anything with it apart from set it up and wait for bees to find it. We haven’t put it together yet but hopefully we will soon. As you can see from the photo below we havent even unpacked it yet.

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Next I’m going to give you a basic round-up of everything else in the last week,

I will be joining a scout group in September! I am so excited. I hope that it will be fun and that I will enjoy. I am quite sad that I couldn’t join my uncle johns group but it was a little bit awkward that his group meets on a Friday night, I can’t make that evening because I’ve got other commitments to go to.

Today I have been making another one of my chocolate cakes, this weeks cake was a practice for a my mums birthday cake next week. I love baking and think that i must get this from my mum as she is the worlds best cake maker. Here are some photos of some of the cakes I have made over the last few weeks.

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As I’m sure you are aware, dad and me LOVE parkrun and have run loads (I’ve run over 50 and am a proud member of the 50 club and wear my 50 T with pride. Anyway, we have set ourselves a challenge of trying to the parkrun alphabet, this is doing a parkrun starting with every letter of the alphabet (this isn’t fully possible as there isn’t one starting with X, but lets hope there is soon).

Of all the runs we’ve done we havent done one beginning with A so yesterday we went to the new Aberdare parkrun, its was only their 4th event but it was an excellent parkrun, in such a lovely park and organised by such enthusiastic volunteers. I’d recommend that everyone gives it a go.

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Last Tuesday I went to canoe club again, were i helped my dad teach a group of kids. I’m loving kayaking again now and can’t wait for club this week as it’s the first of our outdoor sessions. I get to wear my new wetsuit but still hope it’s not to cold.

It’s been so hot this week! I have really wanted to melt at some points! I’d often think that I would die for an ice cream! But we bought a lovely Kilner drinks dispenser that i keep filled with water and ice which make our drink so refreshing in this heat.

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We went for a walk around Brecon yesterday and ended up in our favorite shop Likeys, it’s an amazing shop that sells gear for the outdoors and I’d recommend that everyone goes and has a look around. The staff there really know their stuff and are always so friendly. I was lucky enough that my dad bought me some new flip-flops and they are the best footwear I have ever worn.

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Don’t forget to check out my podcast (on iTunes or soundcloud) and  my YouTube channel for other ways of seeing what I’m up to. You can also follow me on instagram, Facebook and twitter where my username is OutdoorCae, and you can use any of these to get in touch with me (EG Facebook messenger)

I think its time to sign off this week but my final note is Wimbledon starts tomorrow and I’m so excited. I’m a massive Federer fan and really hopes he win again.

So make sure too…

Keeepppp Garrddeeennninnngggg

Outdoorcae

Plant Progress

Hi all,

Did you notice the alliteration. (Plant Progress!) Been busy recently so haven’t been able to right a blog, but here I am back enjoying the powers of the internet.

Todays blog is all a Garden Update on all my plants in my allotment, So here it is.

Tomatoes

My Tomato plants have Toms on them and they are quite big too, my only worry is will they turn red or is the energy going into their size.

Cucumbers

I have picked and eaten a cucumber already, We have been incredibly lucky this year and Planted our Crops early. This could have ended up meaning that we lost everything but the weather has been kind to us.

Marigolds

The only reason we grow Marigolds Is they keep of the insects of our plants, I also think they look quite pretty.

Peas

I am regularly picking pea pods and tonight my family and I had them cooked with our roast dinner,

Beans

We can not pick our beans yet but again I can not tell you about this because I do not know my self.

Carrots

Our Carrots are still small but sweet enough to eat, See the photos below or Open the link at the end of this blog for a picture album.

Radishes

We have picked all of our radishes and there are none left but that is the best bit of gardening you grow then you eat!

Lettuce

Did you know that when you pick your lettuce you can do a little trick that will then make it grow again. See this video to see how to do this

Click Here

Do you have any other plants I haven’t included today that you want me to give you their progress, Fill in this form and I will do another update!

Any Photos from today’s blog will also be visible from this link,  Photo album

If you have any feedback on this change please contact me on this form.

Tonight I made a cake! I loved it! 

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Finally Yesterday I went to BBC Gardeners World show and you’ll never guess who I met, Carol Klein! She is my absolute gardening hero and to have met her and have a picture with her is a dream come true,

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Anyway,

Thanks so much for reading today’s blog

Outdoorcae

General Updates!

Hello everyone,

I’ve been planning to do a blog for a long time giving you a full update on how everything is going in the allotment, I will see if I can write it and display lots of photos and then publish it in the week!

My birthday is the next approaching event and I am so so excited, I have made my birthday list and it is hung up in pride of place on my fridge, (I am really hoping for dogs)!

Over Half term I have been away at my Caravan but back at my allotment my plants were almost calling out for water, every night I popped home just to feed them!

We are now regularly picking radish and lettuce which my mother and father really like. Also we are picking strawberries which saying I love is an understatement! Also my sister really likes spring onions.

In my greenhouse I love growing anything that I can get my hands on, Cucumbers were one of my exceptions however as I grew a few then gave up, but I did plant some more a little time after and bought one from RHS Cardiff!

When I came to check one night I saw that there was a cucumber sitting there as if he was having a relaxing lay on a lounger in Spain! I was so startled I actually told everyone I could think of!

Earlier I got my dad to drive me down to my grans because I wanted to give her some of my tomato plants! I have grown so many different plants and we have loads as everything we planted grew!

Here’s a collection of photos of my tomatoes. I have used google drive so all you need to do is click on this link – Click here

Soon it’s about time to start thinking about what I’m going to sow next, now I have grown most of my veg and will soon be picking it it’s probably about time to start new plants in the greenhouse, then when we have eaten all of what we currently have growing we can make space to start winter crops.

As my Favourite parkrun was cancelled on the weekend I chose to go to a new one called Riverfront! When I first thought about it I assumed that it would be along the main road and by a river! But I was wrong! When we arrived (Me and my Dad) we followed some marshals and found our way to the start line!

When we started running we left the main road and made our way to a lovely coastal path! It was not at all what I expected and that is in a good way!

Also on Apple notes I have made a list of my parkrun ABC which is a list of parkruns that begin with every letter in the alphabet,

If I go to canoe club this week I have got a brand new wet suit! Wet suits are designed so when water goes inside the suit it fills up, keeps you warm and stops other water from getting in! I think they are very well planned out!

Some Friday nights my family and I go to our caravan and that’s exactly what we did over half term! When we were away we still had to come back every night to check how the garden was doing! We still had lots of fun and we were constantly either playing games, cycling or going on long walks.

We went for lots of walks and visited some of our favourite places.

One late evening we were down for a walk in the country park when I said to my dad those bee hives over there look dead, we don’t know if this is true but as far as we can find out they were absolutely dead,

As I am a eco councillor in my school it is my job to make sure that our local community stays as environmentally friendly as possible,

This week I noticed in my weekly copy of First News that on Tuesday the 5th of June it is World Environment day and I decided that my school should do something special on this day, our topic this year is Plastic Waste and we are doing all that we possibly can to help save the planet.

And Finally, Me and my mum built a wigwam out of sticks and bin bags! Here’s some quick photos to show you our masterpiece,

The next day it was falling down so as a early birthday present I had this from Argos!

For the next two nights then I slept in there and had all my meals in there! What a silly billy I am!

Just a few reminders,

My Weekly Podcast comes out every Monday so look out for more outdoor madness then!

On Twitter I am @Outdoorcae

On YouTube I am Outdoorcae – Click here

And of course the blog is at Www.Outdoorcae.com

That’s about it from me today but this week I am focusing on the blog so look out for more of my adventures here at Outdoorcae

Keeepppp Garddeennnniinnnggg and enjoying everything outdoors!!

Outdoorcae