Saturday, 15 December 2012

December Simply a Moment

Hello again. 

What can I say about the past few weeks other than the whole family have been terribly sick? It has taken all our combined strengths to assist each other through the misery that is a viral infection, a weekend spent in the hospital and countless sleepless nights, in particular for my daughter and son-in-law.

As it is now the middle of the month and time for Alexa's Simply a Moment, I thought I could share a few glimpses of some special moments that have taken place since December 1st. These moments are the ones that have carried us through. The resilience of children to bounce back from whatever ails them and the ability to make us all smile when sometimes, in that moment, it may have felt an impossibility. 

The elf is a new addition to the grandchildren's Christmas festivities. They are loving looking for him each morning and also for the small gift he has hidden. 

I managed to attend my grandson's Christmas Concert at his nursery; it was delightful and my first real taste of Christmas this year. The children were all dressed as though ready for bed and sang lots of festive songs. My heart just about melted when I could hear his sweet voice over the other children's. 

The star of the week was awarded to my granddaughter at school and she rang to tell me she is going to be Mary next week in the Nativity. This is very exciting news as my daughter, who always wanted that role but only got parts as an angel and a shepherd, can now enjoy watching her own daughter play the part. 

Our baby continues to thrive despite her recent set-back. Christmas will be even more special to have her share it with all the family. I am so very fortunate to spend so many moments with her.

Time now to put down my pen as my thoughts turn to Christmas Eve being only a short time away and that there is still a lot of catching up to be done. Those among you who are really organised will be horrified to learn that I haven't even written my Christmas cards let alone mailed them out. Definitely time to get my skates on, as my dear grandmother would have said.

Thank you for dropping in and to those of you who have emailed me during this hiatus, I really appreciate all your kind words.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012


For the life of me, I cannot remember where I read the Anne Tyler quote: Turning our ordered life topsy-turvey. It is, however, so appropriate for our family at present. 

All my grandchildren are ill with a nasty virus my granddaughter 'picked up' at school. She has been off school for over a week now; so unusual as she rarely gets sick. My grandson has a milder form of it, and there is hope that he may be able to go to nursery tomorrow. It rather looks like my daughter and son-in-law have the virus, and our baby (who has been back at the hospital for a tummy problem) is presently at the doctor's surgery as it is feared she too may have succumbed to the bug. If my dear daughter was feeling sleep deprived a couple of weeks ago, she now senses that was a holiday in comparison to the past two weeks. 

You may be wondering why I am mentioning this? It is my way of explaining an absence here on the blog but also to offer an apology for not visiting you, of late, dear readers to leave a comment. My mind has been elsewhere and my hands full as I have been at my daughter's house most days. How glad am I that we live in the same village and no transport is therefore required to pop round at a moment's notice.

On a very positive note, our baby is gaining weight. When she was at the hospital, they weighed her in at 8 lbs ... and here she is

She loves her Skip hop alphabet zoo activity gym from John Lewis

As topsy-turvey as life is, this little girl makes us all smile.

I am hoping to be back at the weekend and joining in with Storytelling Sunday over here. The theme for December is Coming Home for Christmas. I am sure there will be some fabulous homecoming tales to be read and and that the happy band of Sian's followers would love you to participate. We all love a story.

Until then, keep well!

Saturday, 17 November 2012

November Simply a Moment


Joining in once more with Alexa's Simply a Moment. You can read other Moments here and there is still plenty of time to record a moment of your own. I enjoy the process of jotting down my thoughts on the 15th of each month, and maybe you will too.

The digital papers are from Paislee Press

Since recording the above, we have been to the hospital and now await the results of those tests. The Doctors were very happy with her progress. I will be sure to let you know the outcome. 

In the meantime, enjoy your weekend.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

What's in a Name?

As you are driving around, do you find yourself looking out for unusual street names? 

Car drawing kindly provided by my granddaughter

On my travels, I usually find a name or something that amuses. Take the couple of names below. 

They were across the road from each other. Wouldn't we like to know how they got their names? What stories they might tell. Did Mrs Mouthey stand accused of gossiping and telling untruths and forevermore have to look across the road for punishment? Or, is it to do with the fact that lye is the smoke created by puffing marijuana. Oh, the things you can find by a quick internet search. 

When I lived in Hong Kong, I also collected street names along with interesting names of companies. My all time favourite was the Lo SLung Bra Company. That missing full stop after the S made all the difference! 

As my granddaughter was on a drawing bonanza, here's one of the family

and an upgraded people carrier now they are five!

I will be back later in the week when I will be joining in Simply a Moment, details of which can be found here over at simply alexa of trimming the sails. 

Hope your week is a happy one. 

Sunday, 11 November 2012

In Remembrance

Today is one for Remembering those who gave their lives, and the sacrifices made by many, in service of their Country during wars and in peacetime. 

You can read about the many ways to remember here.

In an area of The National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire, 2535 Sessile or Durmast oak trees have been planted to represent every British flagged merchant vessel lost to enemy action during the Second World War. Tree reference 19/109 is in honour of all those who served on board HMS Li Wo and my Great Uncle, Thomas Wilkinson, VC, who I wrote about here. The Arboretum is a unique place, peaceful and spiritual, a year-round centre of Remembrance. Do visit if you have the opportunity.

We will remember them.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

A time to be thankful

This November I have so much to be thankful for and to celebrate. During the month, my banner will highlight our baby. She definitely deserves to take centre stage. Her struggle into this world is one we will never forget or take for granted. There were many hands through which she passed and, although I  prefer not to name them here, to each and every one I am so very grateful.

The family are all getting used to having our baby home. My grandchildren are so loving towards their baby sister and give her lots of kisses. My daughter and son-in-law have been enjoying some quiet time with her too now that my granddaughter is back at school, and my grandson in nursery for a couple of days. 

 Granny has a cuddle before she even takes her coat off!

Love that smile

My 3 year old grandson showing me the finer points of 'Angry Birds'. I have to admire him. At age 3, I was playing with a spinner and a wooden top.

Hope you are all having a great week. 

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Storm in a teacup?

The story I am about to tell you took place several years ago when we lived in a different house to where we now call home, though it's in the same area by the sea. At the time, my eldest daughter was about to go off to University, and my younger daughter would commence College that September. We had spent the summer at home, enjoying some gorgeous weather.

Both girls had vacation jobs at our local pub and, on this particular day, had just returned from their evening shift. During that very fine, dry day, I had observed that a neighbour had lit a bonfire to burn his garden rubbish. When my younger daughter went up to bed, she shouted down to us that the neighbour's hedge appeared to be on fire. My elder daughter and I looked out and saw that flames from the bonfire had, indeed, reached out to the hedge and were fast approaching my near neighbours' garden and our own. 

We immediately contacted the fire brigade, and woke up our elderly near neighbours, who had already retired for the night. My elder daughter ran to the neighbour's house where the fire was, but no-one was home. While we were waiting for the firemen to arrive, we decided to make up a human chain with buckets of water to try and stop the fire encroaching into our houses and gardens. The fire was really crackling by now. Everything was incredibly dry, and the fire moved like lightening along the hedge. We asked another neighbour for help as my elderly neighbours were unable to lift the buckets. It was very dark and as our houses were off the beaten track, we sent one of our elderly neighbours off in her dressing gown, carrying a torch, to guide the firemen towards our homes.

While the four of us were racing around with the buckets of water, we heard the fire engine approaching. The fire engine arrived in our neighbours' driveway and as it pulled in, the firemen were already jumping out. However, in their haste, the driver hadn't pulled on the handbrake and the engine rolled slowly forward towards the flames. There were several screams (mainly from my throat) and one of the firemen climbed quickly back on board and brought the engine to a halt. After that slight hiatus, the fire was quickly put out. We looked a very bedraggled bunch; we were wet, tired and smelt heavily of burning rubbish. My elder daughter's legs were shred to pieces from running through the field with the water buckets. Into this scene came the neighbour and his wife, returning from a night out, rather tiddly, wearing finery for a Ball. They couldn't believe their eyes. He had thought that he had dampened down the fire sufficiently to leave it. He was covered in embarrassment.

After clearing up the hose pipe and buckets, we said goodnight to all our neighbours and once indoors, my younger daughter went off to bed and my elder daughter and I made ourselves a drink and, as it was a warm night, went to sit out on our balcony that overlooked the scene of the crime fire. Just then, there was a crack of thunder and the heavens opened up with the heaviest downfall of rain we had seen for weeks. We both laughed loudly. 

If only it had rained a couple of hours earlier, maybe I wouldn't have had this story to tell and be able to join in with Sian's Storytelling Sunday. The theme this month is 'a dark and stormy night'. Well, it was certainly dark and the storm clouds brewed for a long time between my elderly neighbours and the one's where the fire started but, maybe, that's a story for another time...

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Happy Halloween


Just popping in to wish you a Happy Halloween, with a little help from these two Monsters!

They are so excited about going trick and treating this evening with friends. I have a feeling there may be a sugar rush later...

Have a wonderful day.

PS To our friends on the East Coast of America - we are thinking of you.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Home at last

Hello and thank you for supporting my family during this past week. Your kind words have meant a lot to us.

Today is my 67th birthday and what better gift than my daughter and our baby  being home to share it? She still has a little jaundice but we are assured it is nothing to worry about. She is a bundle of Joy and I can't stop looking at her. My heart is overflowing with happiness and gratitude. 

Time to celebrate!

Enjoy your week.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Baby Update


What a week it has been. Our baby is taking tiny steps each day, getting ever closer to the time when she can come home.

Here she is catching a few more rays of sunshine. The jaundice is much improved.

It is wonderful seeing her without all the tubes and leads that were so necessary to her recovery. It has even been whispered that she may soon be able to wear some clothes. She has her eye on some rather nice outfits presently sitting in her locker. In the meantime, she is happy to sport a new line in white sunglasses. 

Yesterday when I held her, she opened her eyes. It was the most beautiful moment.

Her big sister and brother have spent quite a bit of time at the hospital in the family room.

My grandson has taken to 'fixing' all the furniture with a set of tools he found in the toy box. Just call me Bob, he told me.

They are both looking forward to having their baby sister home with them and so are we. Fingers crossed, won't be long now.

Enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Welcome to the World

Sometimes, the world seems to flip on its axis and take you on a roller-coaster ride.

Last Friday night, I received a telephone call from my eldest daughter to say her waters had broken (sorry, male readers). Nothing too distressing in that expected call; it is her third child, and as she is 37 weeks, she would be allowed another home birth. However, at 5 a.m. on Saturday morning, she was told to go to our local hospital due to a loss of blood. 

Once there, she catapulted from being told she was to have a c-section, then that she was to be induced, and further, that she would be given an epidural... In the end, she gave birth naturally to my third grandchild, a beautiful baby girl.

However, after delivery, the baby was whisked away and she and her husband were informed that the baby needed oxygen to help her breathe, they were not to be anxious. Can you imagine having gone through almost nine months' pregnancy and then labour, and not to be able to hold the thing you call most dear? It was awful. As time went on, it became apparent that there was a serious problem and they were told that the baby was to be transported in an incubator by a team from a large neonatal unit to another hospital.They were not allowed to accompany the baby but had to drive there separated from the baby. They had not seen the baby. It was agony.

Upon arrival, they found out that the baby had been unable to breathe unaided but she had transported well and was in an incubator in the neonatal unit. 

The nursing staff at the unit were amazing. They worked tirelessly to give our baby every chance for survival. Our baby clung on for dear life and we all prayed for her recovery. And, recover she has. As each hour passed, we could see small improvements. Her exhausted parents spent hours gazing at her, willing her on to live.

On Sunday, I was allowed to take my two grandchildren to visit their baby sister. It was my first sight of our baby, it was very emotional. At this stage, my daughter and son-in-law had held the baby for the first time. It was joyous!

And by the Monday, our baby was breathing unaided and my daughter was able to hold her and attempt to feed her. 

By Tuesday, our baby has been transported back to the local hospital, all her tubes have been removed - though she still has to be placed under a lamp for her jaundice - feeding is established and we are all smiling.

This has been an exceptionally traumatic time but of one thing I am sure. The will to live is strong. Strengthened by people who love and care about you, and against all the odds, we can survive anything as long as we believe.

Monday, 15 October 2012

October Simply a Moment


As I am sifting through the myriad of things I have collected over the years, my mind is having a running conversation about what I deem to be precious. Something so precious that I can't part company with it. You know how it goes? All the children's drawings and the many cards they have given to me over the years. The photographs, the letters to Santa... Somehow, scanning them to place on the computer just isn't enough. It's their physical presence that matters. I have to be brave though. I am about to downsize my living space and will only have room for the absolute necessities of life. I am fortunate that my two daughters will share the things that are of sentimental and historical value to us all. Items that I have lovingly kept from both sides of our family, things that may not have a lot of value but are important to us. They both have a sense of family history and values that I admire in ones so young.

The dialogue in my head continues and I think, suddenly, of a trip to Bali that the family made when we lived in Asia. There is something I remember that has always stayed with me, something I loved and looked out for, each day we were there. Every day, the Balinese women make small offerings called canang sari which are placed outside their doors and on statues to guard against evil spirits. The making of these fragrant frangipani decorations takes time and skill. They are like small pieces of art. And yet, the next morning, the previous day's offerings are swept away and replaced by new ones. What I felt then, and remember now, is how important it is to make room for something new, a life in which to grow. All the ephemera is not who I am. It is the memories and love of my family and life that matter the most. Like those small offerings, some of my belongings can get swept away but I will never forget them. 

Translated from Indonesian by Kay Moechtar, who I met in Bali in 1989.
Kay sadly died in October 1992 from breast cancer.

On the 15th of each month for a year, I am joining in to record Simply a Moment as suggested by Alexa of Trimming the Sails. You can read about it here. Why don't you take a moment to write something down today? It can be amazingly enlightening.

Enjoy your day.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Autumnal Preparations

Over the years, I have celebrated many Harvest festivals. The ones of my youth, where the Church was decorated with many sheaves of corn and the delightful corn dollies we had made in school or at Sunday school. 

The festivals attended by my own children in Yorkshire and the excitement on their faces as they carried home-grown produce to school on the morning of the Harvest celebration. The ones when we were living in Asia, the Moon Festival, where we would go to a local beach with a picnic and sit and watch the Moon, surrounded by other families, their faces lit by the hundreds of candles that had been placed in the sand.

This week, I had the pleasure of attending my granddaughter's Harvest Service. The Church was beautifully decorated and as I took my seat, I was overwhelmed by how the years fell away as I listened to the familiar story unfold, the message of gathering-in the harvest for the months ahead. The children's donations were made in boxes that will be handed out to those in need in the Parish, and my granddaughter's class participated by singing Bread from our Harvest and Super Sun, quite catchy tunes and very different from the Come Ye Thankful People Come of my childhood.  

After the service, we went for afternoon tea to a favourite local Cafe.

My granddaughter is very excited about the baby sister who is only a few weeks away from joining her and her brother. She has even given the baby a name and I am not sure what will happen if my daughter and son-in-law choose a different one...

As I was sitting in Church that day, I was thinking about how my daughter is presently nesting, preparing for this new arrival and gathering her family ever closer to her. Autumn, a time to appreciate all our bountiful harvest blessings.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Ahoy me hearties!

The theme for this month's Storytelling Sunday Two over at From High in the Sky is 'Let's dress up'. It would seem that I have a penchant for dressing up as a pirate...

In September/October 2005, I spent a month with my friends in Rhode Island. I had always wanted to experience Fall in New England and while I was there, they took me up to Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. I will never forget the colours of the foliage and seeing lots of covered bridges. It was breathtaking

During the visit, my friends had a fancy dress party to celebrate my forthcoming 60th birthday, and the birthday of their dear Aunt Roz. As my birthday is at the end of October, Halloween parties have been a fairly common theme throughout my life but nothing could have prepared me for the party they gave me. Everyone entered into the spirit of it, some of the costumes were amazing. My friend is the cute little 'blonde nurse' in the middle of this photograph.

Not knowing about the party in advance, I hadn't arrived prepared. On the day of the party, my friend took me to a local fabric store and I picked up some stripy fabric from a fabric bin, purchased some thread, went back to her house, got out the sewing machine ... and became a pirate. 

Aunt Roz and I shared a cake and as you can see below, my half of the cake even had an anchor or two iced on top.

Let's move on to 2006. That summer was spent sailing around the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean with friends. While on board, we had a party. We were anchored in a delightful bay off Ibiza and on the spur of the moment, decided to dress up for the occasion. Undaunted by the lack of available costumes, we cut up our food boxes to make eye-patches, blacked a few teeth, donned a few headscarves and made up the motley crew below. Even the on-board teddy got an eye-patch. Well, we couldn't have left him out, could we?

That stripy pirate costume has had a few outings since 2005, this year being worn by my son-in-law at my grandson's birthday party. Not bad for something that cost under £1 to make.

Such happy memories and if you enjoy a story or two, why not pop over to Sian's place and join in the fun. You will be glad you did.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Sweet logic

A day with my grandson always makes me smile. Yesterday, was a case in point. We had been out shopping and to the playground. On the way home, I stopped for petrol. Here's our conversation

For this digital page I have used some of the elements from the kit I recently purchased at paislee press. You can also see them here.

I will be back on Sunday, joining in with a bit of storytelling over at Sian's place. There's a Halloween theme that could involve dressing up. See you there?

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Month in Numbers


It has been some time since I joined in with Julie Kirk's Months in Numbers and this month, I aim to rectify that. I always enjoy dropping by notes on paper as there is usually something really fascinating going on.

The month of September started out with an influx of unexpected visitors. Friends from Yorkshire, Leicester and Rhode Island arrived - at different times! - and we were very happy to see them all.

I have gathered up some of the numbers and placed them in a layout

digital file folders from Splendid Fiinds

One of the highlights of September was participating in Rinda's 2012 Photography Scavenger Hunt over on Gallo Organico. It gave me an enormous amount of satisfaction finding all the items on the list and was such a fun thing to do. You can see a round up of my Hunt photographs here

The grandchildren also feature hugely in my monthly number count. I so enjoy collecting my granddaughter from school on the days that I have her, and I look after my grandson for a whole day once a week. Then there are the odd times when they drop in to see me. How lucky was I to get to see her on the day she lost her 1st tooth and be able to document it too? And, in September she turned 6, another number for the list.

There were lots of other events during September. My younger daughter has now gone back to her own home after another prolonged stay with me. We are trusting that she can manage, with the assistance of her husband and the medical services, to try and regain some normality in her life. It is such a long journey she has been on; 2 years since her diagnosis.

Before I started looking after my younger daughter, I belonged to a local Poetry Group. Since she has now returned to Kent, I have rejoined the Group and was invited to afternoon tea at Amberley Castle to get to meet everyone again. What a delicious tea. Wish I could have stayed the night...

September also heralded a whole year of blogging for me. My 1st year. When I look back over that year, I am glad to have recorded so many thoughts and events that otherwise I might not have done. I look forward to a second year and hopefully, many more adventures.

If you want to check out Julie's September Month in Numbers, here is a link. I am sure there will be some interesting facts and figures to be read.

Thanks for joining me this Sunday. 

Saturday, 29 September 2012

And the giveaway goes to ...


While here for a play, my grandson helped me to randomly choose a name out of his hat. Needless to say, after pulling out the first name, he then pulled out the rest. He would have liked you all to be the winner. 

So, without further ado, cue fireworks


Please email your address to me, Elizabeth and a parcel of Christmas goodies will soon be winging it's way to you in time for the festive scrapbooking season. 

Thank you to those who participated in the giveaway and for all your lovely comments.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

A digital sketch challenge


'Go digital', suggested Sian over at From High in the Sky. The challenge relates to one of her layouts that has been turned into a sketch in the October edition of Scrap365. See here for details.

Scrap365 - October sketch challenge

I have had my eye on this digital download from paislee press for some time. A challenge was just the excuse I had been waiting for. I have long admired the clean style of Liz Tamanaha and the products she produces, and hope I have done justice to those and Sian's other suggestion, 'go really clean and simple'...

I changed the colour of a couple of the embellishments in Photoshop and outlined some of the photo frames with a couple of the digital papers from the download. It feels finished. What do you think?

Enjoy your week!

PS There's still plenty of time for you to leave a comment here to be entered into my anniversary giveaway.

Sunday, 23 September 2012

One year on ... and a giveaway


I can hardly believe it has been a whole year since I commenced blogging under the title Heart.Hearth.Home. When I started out taking tentative steps into the world of blogging, I had not appreciated how much I would enjoy being part of a unique community. 

During the past year, I feel that I have grown as a person. Blogging has helped me to express myself in a way that I would not normally have thought possible. Family and friends have had a huge role to play, providing me with plenty of occasions to write about. The blog has allowed me to share courses I have taken, lots and lots of photographs, and opportunities to join with other bloggers by participating in storytelling, mail art, scavenger hunts and many other things.

Having a Blog has been about writing my stories, getting things out of my head and into print. It was one of the driving forces in the beginning. Researching family history has made me aware of how important it is to record memories. There have been so many times that I now wish I had paid more attention when family stories were being handed down. This blog has given me a place to embrace that wholeheartedly and pass on those stories to my daughters and grandchildren. 

This year, I have met online some wonderful people, people who I perhaps would never have met other than through blogging. It would be great to think that one day I might meet a few in person but for now, I appreciate the bond that blogging has created.

As I move into my second year, I want to widen my horizons even more. There seems to be endless possibilities to where blogging can lead. I am moving forward on a much wider path than the one upon which I took my first step.

Now... if you would like to help me celebrate, please leave a comment below and give yourself the chance to win a box full of scrapbooking goodies. If you would like to comment on the holiday season, all the better. A winner will be randomly chosen and announced on Saturday 29th September 2012. Here's a taster of what could be winging it's way to you very soon wherever you are on the globe. Did I mention there will also be washi tapes, ribbons, surprises...

Good luck, and don't forget to check back next Saturday to see if you are the lucky one!

Friday, 21 September 2012

The 2012 Photography Scavenger Hunt


I have to say that participating in Rinda's Hunt this summer gave me so much pleasure. It meant I was always on the look-out for something from the list. It made me more observant, gave me the opportunity to visit places I might not have thought of. I chatted about it with family and friends, and they would often join me when I was out taking photographs and even, on one occasion, photographed me. I was fortunate enough to find all of the 21 things listed for the Scavenger Hunt.

I have placed the photographs on a couple of digital pages. The background paper is one of my own patterned designs from a collection I am presently putting together. I think I might print the pages off and write on each photograph what it represents and where it was taken. The hunt commenced here and this link should take you to all the other posts.

Two important things struck me about participating in this Scavenger Hunt. Firstly, behind each photograph there is a story. They were not random shots. By having a list to keep to meant the story had more meaning. For instance, the horse photograph is not a terribly good one (and I did see some finer beasts later...) but it was taken in the middle of a thunderstorm and will always be a reminder of the dreadful summer we have experienced this year in the UK. The second, and more important connection, were the many people who joined in and provided me with photographic glimpses into their lives and shared a story or two along the way. Such a bonus!

Thank you Rinda for organising this event. I can hardly wait to see what you have in store for us in 2013.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. I would be delighted if you could pop in on Sunday. I am having a celebratory give-away here on the blog for a special Anniversary. See you then?

Monday, 17 September 2012

Just a Simple Moment?

When Alexa at Trimming the Sails mentioned the idea of jotting down a specific minute sometime during the 15th of September, it captured my attention. It is something I have been meaning to do. Capturing the here and now. If you wish to join in, here is a link to Simply a Moment and some useful hints about recording your moment. 

It is Saturday morning and in an hour's time, I will be taking my granddaughter to her ballet lesson. I have wandered outside, enjoying the unusual warmth of an Autumn morning. This is what I wrote at 8:15 a.m.

I am feeling fuzzy, my head stuffed full of HTML coding. I am pondering about why I am challenging myself with all this. At my age, do I really need to know this stuff? HTML coding is a clever beast, I can understand that. But it is darned complicated. What is driving me on to do this?  My mum comes into my head and I think about how bright she was and how her intelligence was wasted. She never had the chances in life that I do now. When she stopped doing the crossword, when she stopped being interested... She was so very proud of me and my achievements. As I sip my tea, I look up and see a friendly Robin come to join me. Not a care in the world.

The minute is up. I cannot believe all the thoughts that came tumbling out. Time to head off to ballet. To embrace my granddaughter and watch her gracefully float around a hall. 

Thank you Alexa for suggesting this exercise in writing. The time restraint certainly brings clarity to one's thoughts.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Decluttering... or Not

I am having a bit of a sort out at home. There are some things I just cannot bear to part with. Do you feel the same? It has nothing to do with their value but more their worth to me. They are worthy for purely sentimental reasons, and I love a little sentimentality. 

This typewriter is a case in point. 

The typewriter belonged to Uncle Freddie, who I mentioned here and here. It accompanied him to Uganda and back and I am privileged to have some correspondence that he typed on this very machine. How could anyone put a value on that?

Inside the lid there is a guarantee in which it says: This Guarantee does not cover defects due to accident during transport, or to unfair treatment. I imagine that Remington will be delighted to know that this typewriter survived  a sea/overland journey to Uganda, a flight back home, and several house moves and is still in immaculate order.  

If you have a love of old typewriters and fonts, I found this wonderful site called Uppercase. You can look through their latest magazine here. There are lots of historical facts to read about typewriters and I was delighted to see that June 23 was International Typewriter Day. To celebrate, a number of cakes were baked and you can see them here. They are truly amazing. I couldn't have borne cutting into them. 

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend. 

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Mid-week round-up

This weekly round-up of mine is becoming something of a rodeo. All over the place! It was going to be on a Sunday, then became Saturday and now here I am on a Wednesday. 

There are a few things I would like to share this week.

First up is Mary Ann Moss. I just love her quirky writing, reading what goes on in her head. She creates the most wonderful travel journals. You can see a few pages here at dispatch from la.

Speaking of heads (was I?), I read this inspired piece over on Design Sponge in their weekly Biz Ladies column about how what goes on in your head can hold you back. I think this could relate to lots of things in our lives, not just setting up a business. You only have to read the comments to realise that a lot of women feel this way.

For those of us who are computer savvy (or maybe not!), Pugly Pixel is offering a very reasonably priced CSS course that teaches you all those tricky html codes that you have always wanted to know about. You learn how to move sidebars etc and set up a blog in Blogger by following her easy tutorials. Even if you don't want to sign up for a course, her site is worth a visit as there are so many free tips, free downloads and resources for all things digital. If I could only retain a portion of what goes on in her head, I would be very happy. Just the mention of html coding gives me shivers but, you know what, I am going to give it a try. My head is not going to hold me back this month.

Now, who doesn't like some design candy? Go visit Carina Gardner and take a look at her 7th Newsletter. It is a veritable feast for the eyes. How could you not be creative sitting in her studio?

And look who has come to play today. This bundle of mischief certainly keeps me on my toes. Time to sign off and enjoy the sunshine.

Have fun!

Monday, 10 September 2012

Turning Six

It has been an eventful week for my granddaughter. Seven days ago, one of her front teeth started to wobble.  Back to school on Wednesday, to a new teacher and classroom, and still the tooth was hanging by a thread. On Friday, the tooth decided to stop wobbling and fell out. She dashed round to see me after school to show me the tooth and inform me that now the tooth fairy would be able to visit. 

Could it get any more exciting? Yes, it could. The very next day was her sixth birthday and her parents had arranged a disco party for her at a nearby Village Hall. 

Just setting up the Hall and showing off some moves

Mummy and daddy made a gingerbread house and toffee cake pops

During the school holidays, my granddaughter and I stitched together lots of bunting, using off-cuts from my patchwork and quilting days. It was such a lovely day, we wrapped some around a tree and it merrily fluttered as the children sat outside for their picnic lunch.

The DJ's, Peter and Paul, organised team limbo dancing, boys versus girls and then had them all dance backwards under the pole. Everyone joined in the fun. It was the best birthday party ever, said my granddaughter later that day. And you know what? I agree.

Thanks for popping in. Wish I could offer you a cake pop. They were delicious.