Lletty's Blog

Croeso! Welcome to Lletty Cottage a lovely five star holiday cottage for two in Carmarthenshire. www.llettycottage.co.uk

May 20 Carmel Woods, Aberglasney Gardens and Rufus the Mad Cat! May 20, 2018

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 8:10 pm

DSC08199The sun shone in the sky, the breeze was warm, the company exceptional and Carmel Woods looked very inviting.  The Walking Well group led by Philip set off on a trek through the woods , along some lanes, up some tricky footpaths   and back crossing a flowering meadow before heading home via The Hangout for refreshments.


DSC08059As seems to be usual on our walks we met a very friendly collie, who wanted us to play but we were too  focussed on our walk!


In the woods there were a fine collection of wild flowers.

Right in the middle of one footpath was the first orchid to be seen  this season….there were plenty more just waiting to bloom.


There were stiles to climb over or just miss out altogether!



Look forward to returning to the woods later in the year when all the wild strawberries are in fruit.


Bluebells were blueing the wood but it was the wild garlic that took centre stage.


Walking along the lane we were watched with a concrete eye  to make sure we didn’t pick any of the flowers in the hedges…we were  very well behaved …well…most of us!


There were campions in full pink flower.



Of course there were our bright yellow Welsh poppies  brightening up every hedgerow we saw.  A perfect walk …thank you Philip.


I’m very fond of Aberglasney Gardens and at present the gardens are looking wonderful. In the Ninfarium, the indoor garden, the Bird of Paradise is in flower and so too the Clivia.



As always I took far too many photos..too much choice of marvellous flowers and vistas!

Back home our amazing climbing mad Rufus! Why he wanted to climb up the garden trellis I have no idea…but he made it!  Trouble is he need a helping hand down again!!

The lilac trees are in full flower in the garden and their scent is filling the air.


Early morning walks around the garden are my favourite. It is usually very peaceful, the sun is low , the dew is on the grass and the birds are singing.


Sometimes it’s just pleasant to sit under the yew tree….

DSC08122….and watch our mad cat posing for a photo!


It’s also a good time to look at  the seven goslings,  seven ducklings and five moorhen chicks on the Pond Field…there is no better way to start a day!



May 7th Hot, Hotter and Hottest May 7, 2018

Hooray! The sun was shining on a May Bank Holiday…hard to believe but it happened! The blossom was blooming  and the sky was…well…sky blue!

The weekend started with a Walking Well Walk around Dinefwr. Philip was on other duties preparing for a Beer Festival in Cwmdu so Helen led the stroll around the park.   She made an excellent job of herding all of us  …all women plus three dogs…through the tracks and fields  and getting us safely round  so we could all enjoy a coffee and cake in The Works Llandeilo at the end.

DSC07643Sam, the puppy, was delighted to join the group for the first time and made friends with everyone very quickly.


He was soon into his stride showing everyone the best route up the hills and down the dales!


We all stopped and watched as a herd of young calves ran towards three walkers, who just kept  walking steadily on. I’d have bolted! It was a lesson well learnt though that the calves suddenly ground to a halt and started grazing. I’ll try to remember this next time  calves are chasing us!


We were surrounded by woodlands painted blue with bluebells but it just needed that shaft of sunlight to make the scene come alive.

DSC07665Sam didn’t worry about the bluebells as he bounded up the hill towards the castle.

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Everyone needs a rest half way round!

Next time we’ll all try to sit on this newly carved bench…if the bench fairies will let us!

DSC07810A visit to Singleton Park in Swansea for a Fun Car Show was next on the weekend list of places to go and see.

Red was my favourite colour!



But there’s always an exception!

DSC07822DSC07826DSC07829DSC07843Leaving the show we enjoyed a stroll through the park…just a small part of it. This time the bluebells were perfect with the colours highlighted in the sunshine.


We passed through some ornate gates into the formal gardens which were amazing! Quite unusual these days to see the plants all  planted in rows and very regimented but very beautiful.


The Plant Sales at Singleton are the best! I should have brought my wheelbarrow to carry the plants!

Onwards and upwards as they say as our next stop was Penllergare Valley Woods penllergare.org.  Just off the M4 motorway surrounded by other busy major roads is this garden of delight actually hidden away in a valley. It’s an historical site with great interest but more on that another time!

There were more bluebell woods,  lakes, bird song, waterfalls and miles of paths.

Also  some pretty bridges and a great cafe too…what more can one ask for?

Back home everything is springing! The lawn needs constant cutting and the weeds need constant pulling!  But hey who can complain when the blossom is the best ever!

The rhodo has flowered well too!

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But best of all we have seven goslings swimming on the pond with a very proud mum and dad…what a brilliant Bank Holiday weekend!


April 24 Home and Away April 24, 2018



View from the garden

Well..  hope that wasn’t it…I mean Spring! The glorious sunshine, the warmth, the buds opening and everywhere greening up …oh it was all so wonderful  while it lasted  but now today it is raining  and the heating is on again! Thank goodness I have my photos to remind me of all the  spring flowers bursting open  in the garden, my Walking Well walk and visits to familiar places with family visitors this last weekend.


Driving to Myddfai where our walk was starting took far longer than usual. Traffic  wasn’t allowed on the main A40 road  as a sink hole had appeared! The detour took us through a small, local  village and the queues were very long with  huge lorries having to navigate  carefully through the narrow roads.  It should all be fixed in 10 days!!! After the late start,  with the sun  shining,  we all set off on our WWW  through the lanes around Myddfai  and  across the fields of Llwynywormwood, the estate owned by the Duchy of Cornwall.


We crossed over pretty bridges  and enjoyed  seeing DSC07390

all the wild flowers growing along the banks, especially the violets, celandines  and primroses.




As Prince Charles wasn’t at home the sentry box was empty! Discussions were held on who should be  Christopher Robin  and Alice!


Fair do’s  to Philip, the path was a lovely one with only one wet spot which was easily avoided!


Delicious coffee and cake were the order of the day at Myddfai Hall and Visitor Centre. Thanks Philip for another lovely walk.


The National Botanic Garden of Wales    is a great place to take visitors as there is so much to see and do there. In the largest single-span great glasshouse in the world  there is the largest collection of Mediterranean plants in the Northern Hemisphere. The flowers looked at their best.

A visit to the Edwardian pharmacy is  a must when at the Gardens. I love looking at all the bottles and packaging of medicines and recalling some of them from my youth! I might have to bring my tube of Savlon here soon. I had a rose thorn in my arm  recently and reached for the Savlon and oddly read the sell by date…October 1993…anyway it still works so I’ll keep it! DSC07476DSC07473

In the Apothecary’s Hall   there’s an excellent exhibition of patchwork plants.


There is always something new  to see in Plas Pilipala (Butterfly House).


No guessing who this butterfly was trying to imitate and frighten off its enemies!


Another day of visits took us to Laugharne and Dylan  Thomas land!



Great to see my friend’s painting of Dylan for sale in  the house.  Jayne Russell 

In the house there was a new exhibit made by Itchy  Fingers Textile Group and very good it was too!


After a tour around the house and reading through all the poetry  books  we headed to the coffee room and enjoyed a morning coffee with  slices of bara brith….very tasty!


The rain was holding off quite well but after another short amble through the village we headed for Brown’s Pub  and sitting under the photograph of Dylan and Caitlin we enjoyed a delicious lunch and cocktail (Penderyn gin and vodka!) …a lovely  light headed end to a day out!


Back home although the lawn is drying out…well it was until the downpour today …the borders have been looking rather desolate  and bare. However, with the sunshine  everywhere perked up  and  started looking bright,  purposeful  and  beautiful.

There are the usual visitors in the garden  a pheasant that races through the borders and a very patient  and stoical Mrs Canada Goose, who is sitting  on her eggs on the island in the pond.



The lime tree looks stunning as it comes into leaf and its base surrounded by celandines.


Not surprisingly the bog garden is  thriving  but getting rather too wet!


Despite all the recent wind and rain the blossom is steadily appearing on the fruit trees and thinking positively  the trees may benefit from this extra dose of rain today! Fingers crossed!




April 6 Lovely Walks and Visits April 6, 2018

Interesting fact to start my loooong post! 5000 snail species living in GB ….and I think they are all in my garden!

DSC07058How refreshing to feel a bit of warmth in the air and feet on dry land instead of sloshing through muck and mud…today our Walking Well walk was certainly that…a  lovely amble through the country lanes  around  Dryslwyn Castle…thank you Philip!


Being nosy, looking over garden fences, it’s amazing what one can see…it’s the Flower Pot men but no sign of Little Weed!


How wonderful to see all the shadows from the trees  on the lanes and signs of spring flowers in the verges. First time this year to see the wood anemone  shining out amongst the celandine.


We followed along  the lanes and their ups and downs and finally came to the castle mount. From the lane to the  castle was quite a climb but well worth it for the view…..but unexpectedly,  it was very windy on top! The result of the recent rain could be seen in the flooded land below. Over to the west the forecasted afternoon rain could be seen  approaching in the darkening clouds heading our way.



Time to make a hasty retreat downhill to our cars and wend our way to The Cottage Inn, where we all enjoyed a hot drink and some indulged in a plate of chips too!

Over Easter Jim and I  took ourselves off for a day out…again! We drove to Penderyn Distillery ( an hour away).We drove through the Brecon Beacons passing Pen Y Fan ..highest peak  in  South Wales …which then was still covered in snow. There were numerous cars and walkers and climbers everywhere all wrapped up against the bitter wind and all looking cheerful!


We went on a tour at the distillery and it was excellent …so too was the whiskey sample! We just had to buy their  newly designed bottle and contents….well it was only fair after such a good tour!


Later that day we drove on to the National Trust at Aberdulais for lunch. The old tin plate works hold a fascination for me with its wonderful history, racing water and old buildings.


Climbing up the steps gives a great view of the works.



The  views  and sounds all around are amazing so it’s no wonder that famous artists …Turner for one.. used to come here to capture the scenes.


We enjoyed a delicious lunch in the school room, where children, who used to work in the mine …7+year olds…received  some schooling after work.


Yesterday, with the forecast being SUNNY and WARMER another outing was planned! Brecon, only 40 minutes drive away through beautiful countryside  was our choice of destination!

We parked the car next to the river Usk and found the Promenade. This is a beautiful footpath alongside the river leading to a  weir  and a cafe!



We sat outside the cafe,  in the sunshine, enjoying our coffee and   the perfect view across the river towards the Brecon Beacons


We followed a different path  along the river  back into Brecon and found   the path was called The Captain’s Walk and very beautiful it was too!

Brecon is full of lovely surprises with  an excellent bowling green, quaint cottages, a splendid statue of Wellington and some beautiful bridges!


Also on the top of the hill there is the magnificent cathedral.

After a  delicious lunch in The Pilgrims Restaurant, at the cathedral, we returned home ..still in sunshine and hoping for more days out in the warmth very soon!

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March 25 Llangadog Walk and Classic Car Show March 25, 2018

It wasn’t raining, it wasn’t snowing and it certainly wasn’t freezing cold so it must be Philip waving his magic wand again  to give our Walking Well group pleasant enough weather for our walk around Llangadog.

We all met on the bridge overlooking the Sawdde river.

DSC06770DSC06769We followed the road around the perimeter of the common where all the sheep roam freely  and passed through the village of Felindre into the fields beyond.


There must be a new initiative to sign walks which are near the railway station  and the Heart of Wales line. Hopefully, these new signs, showing the Cynghordy  Viaduct   will help walkers to keep to the track and not get lost!

Passing  on through kissing gates…(no kissing allowed!) and through farmyards with cattle in barns and lambs in fields  we reached a stopping point outside a lovely old farmhouse.


All beautifully behaved animals …even the lamb helping  to put out the washing!

DSC06793Lovely to see buildings like this alongside  fields full of  sheep and  lambs  and a grazing horse, who was not over impressed with seeing us all.



The track led us on through the farm fields. In  the distance the railway bridge over the Towy river could be seen and a couple of Canada geese flew overhead as a sort of flypast to acknowledge our walking accomplishments!


Of course no walk led by Philip would be the same without a bit of mud. However, this time he did offer us a rest on a bench!


The river was flowing rapidly  and  some sharp eyed walkers saw a kingfisher swooping by….I didn’t…maybe I should stop talking and start looking!


Thank you Philip for a lovely walk that we all enjoyed.After such a  springlike walk some walkers returned to our house for a coffee and biscuit.

Yesterday  we caught the 5.39 train from Llangadog to the NEC Birmingham …again!


Coming into New Street station at Birmingham we passed a train pulled by a double headed Class 37 Diesel  locomotives  with everyone on board enjoying a Rail Tour. (Thought you’d like to know that detail!!)

This time, at the NEC, we were going to the Classic Car & Restoration Show…as one might guess not my idea  even though I do love cars. Years ago my heart was set on  a Triumph Vitesse with a V8 engine!! Over the years we have  owned a Sprite, Midget, Morgan, Mini, BMW …..etc… and to see all the wonderful cars on display in the Show and all the restoration work going on was really great and interesting.

There were a few  classic bikes too.


…there were even classic caravans. I’d love one of these! The teddy bears on display are the exact ones that my brothers and I had as children ….maybe we are classics now!!

‘The Morris Minor was the first British car to sell a million units and as that milestone approached, BMC decided to create a special edition car – a common event now, but a rarity in the 1960s.

So the Minor Million was created. Mechanically a standard 948 Minor 1000 this special edition of 350 cars was distinguished by vivid lilac paintwork. 350 ‘Millions’ were produced in December 1960. Every showroom had a car on display on the official launch date -4th January 1961.
The actual millionth car rolled off the production line on 22 December 1960′.

Everyone used to own a Morris Minor…our family did and we’ve still got one! Wish it was one of these lilac millionth ones though…they are worth a fortune!


Even the police used minis !


Special treat was to see, hear and smell some amazing traction engines…our grandparents used to own similar…wish we had them now!

DSC06915 Never liking to waste a moment on our days out we stopped off on the train journey home at Shrewsbury to spend a couple of hours.  Such a lovely town full of character and  interesting shops!



The guns are pointing into town from outside the regimental museum.



Even the pretty flower borders were laid out in a very organised and orderly fashion!



Shrewsbury has much to offer with all its  shops and history. The statue of Darwin outside the library is really  special.

Travelling back to Llangadog later on the Heart of Wales line we missed all the wonderful scenery as it was dark. Even though we were rather tired after our days excursion we remembered to turn the clocks forward  so I’d be up early and chirpy for my visit to Aberglasney to see David Cowdry’s  Art Exhibition and the display of spring flowers. Both were wonderful and the garden in the spring sunshine was beautiful.


Wish there  were more hours in each day to fit in all the things I want to see and do….but this weekend I think I’ve filled in every second…thank you for reading and sharing the weekend with me….a great start to Summer time!



March 18 All in a Day March 18, 2018

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 3:30 pm


Don’t know where I bought this ‘daffodil’ bulb but it is so pretty and a bright way to start a snowy day! What a difference a day makes!

5.39am is not a time that I am usually acquainted with but yesterday there we were on Llangadog station awaiting the train to zoom us off to Birmingham. The train didn’t exactly ‘zoom’ us it was more of a diddly- dum sort of ride but it was on time, it was nearly empty and it was taking us through the beautiful countryside of Wales on the Heart of Wales line.

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The first part of the journey was in the dark but as  the countryside awoke R L Stevenson’s poem just became alive!

‘Faster than fairies, faster than witches,
Bridges and houses, hedges and ditches;
And charging along like troops in a battle,
All through the meadows the horses and cattle:
All of the sights of the hill and the plain
Fly as thick as driving rain;
And ever again, in the wink of an eye,
Painted stations whistle by.’


We arrived at Birmingham International right on time at 10 and set off to the Education Show  where we were meeting our daughter, who had a stand.

To say we felt  as though we were in a parallel universe  surrounded by people from another planet is an under statement! One forgets  how we used to live  before our retirement to the countryside when crowds and noise were part of our daily routine. At the NEC not only were there hundreds of people going to the various exhibitions but one of the exhibitions  was  the MCM Birmingham Comic Con! We were surrounded by many people dressed as characters from all the comics  etc…very surreal!


The storm troopers let us pass and we found our daughter and her stand.


Not sure where she gets her computer genius from …but it sure isn’t me and  she has such amazing ideas.              is wonderful!

After   one and a half hours at the exhibition it was time to head back to the station to  catch the train home.

Couldn’t wait to get back to seeing the countryside again!   Interesting brickwork and castle silhouette  to see from  Shrewsbury station, where we waited when we changed trains.

The snow had gone from much of the countryside so there was time to keep up to date on  my iPad with the rugby matches and to stop taking photos! Well I did take a few!

But the rugby was excellent too! Well done Scotland, Wales and Ireland on their special St Patrick’s Day.


We crossed over the Knucklas  (Welsh:  Cnwclas, meaning “green hillock”) viaduct with its spectacular 13-arch span which  was completed  in 1865.


We arrived back at Llangadog safe and sound and on time  just as the snow fall became heavier!


Through the night the snow continued to fall and the wind to blow. This morning everywhere   looked beautiful  but the birds were annoyed that their feeders had been  empty yesterday!  After filling the feeders and putting seed on the table it was soon gone and had to be replenished frequently. I think Senior Citizens should be given  a bird pension to help feed the birds as it is a very costly hobby …but one that gives the greatest enjoyment and pleasure.

Hey…go away …I’m not feeding squirrels too! Well just this once then!



March 2nd Mystery Garden Bird and Pro Climbers March 2, 2018

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 8:35 pm

Just a quick post to wish everyone a belated Happy St David’s Day. We were going to celebrate with Leek soup for lunch  and Welsh cakes for tea but the weather intervened! The bitterly cold wind blew and blew and the temperatures dropped  and dropped and our pipes froze! The house is warm and toasty  but no water meant cooking was  a bit of a waste when there wasn’t enough water to wash up…. and I’m a VERY messy cook!

Anyway,  we have  fortunately missed the really bad snowstorms  but the wind has caused real problems for all the little birds. They have found it difficult to land on the feeders!

Today we have had an assortment of different birds  and I’d like to know what this one is. It’s the size of a puffed up song thrush and sat for a long time outside the kitchen window. There have been redwings in the garden today  but this one looks different …any ideas?


These are the redwings today.


The wagtails were busy finding worms in the frozen ground and staying well camouflaged on the  snowy grass.


Just on the branch under our mystery bird hopped  the tree creeper usually seen running up and down the fence or tree trunk.


The nuthatches were out in force today with at least four fighting for food at the same time.


Blue tits, Great tits, Marsh tits, long tailed tits and coal tits all visit the table but not when my camera is handy or when I can get them all in focus !!




No bird table would be complete without our robin.



tel:01550779245   Proclimbers







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