Yesterday was crisp and sparkling, so I decided to take the Newfies up to Blackdown Rings – an Iron Age Hill fort just north of Loddiswell – about 20 minutes from home. The views from the top are stunning, you can see for miles and miles…
Though Ben and Daisy quickly lose interest – they’re eager to hurry along to their favourite part of this walk… Soon after their invasion in 1066 the Normans built a motte and bailey castle on top of the old iron age earthworks and although all traces of their building have long since vanished (it would have been a wooden structure) a whole series of pits and hollows remain …..
Which in the winter months fill with clear, fresh peaty rainwater. THIS is what the Newfies adore.
I think Daisy in particular has been watching too many nature programmes! I am sure she’s pretending to be a hippo – and of course she isn’t content with swimming around once, but has to go back and do it all over again just to make sure I’m watching her!
And yes, that is a brisk and bitter wind you can hear throughout this video – very sorry about that! It was just a bit chilly down in the shelter of our village, but very cold indeed up on Blackdown Rings with a bitter north-westerly blowing straight from Dartmoor! I was very pleased to return home, and begin work on the new blind for my kitchen window. I’m redecorating, as you know, in honour of Rosie & Dan’s wedding. My Cornishware jars look very pleased with their newly refurbished home ….
When I went into Kingsbridge to purchase header tape and blind cord for my blind, I was delighted to find 3 1/2 yards of vintage Sanderson fabric – the same that my parents had for their bedroom curtains way back in time! And for just £5! So I snapped it up – it works brilliantly with my pink gingham ….
I’m using it for a trim down the sides – and also for the lining – my blind will look just as pretty from the outside as in. It’s still a work in progress, but I’ll be sure to show you when it’s done.
Before announcing the winner of my Valentine Bunnies giveaway, I’d like to thank everybody who entered. The weather here has been so grey and stormy, but I’ve felt so cheerful reading all your lovely comments and dreaming of warmer days to come ….
Rather like my naughty Miss Daisy – seen here snoring gently after a morning’s play with her best friend Lionel. I’m sorry I don’t have a prize for everyone – I so much wish I did. But after working the random number generator I’m pleased to announce the winner is comment number 3 – that’s Kathleen Robertson. Well done Kathleen and as soon as you send me your postal details your prize will be on its way to you! There’s still a chance to win my completed Valentine Bunnies stitchery over on my Facebook page though …..
I remember that growing up in the seventies needlework was simply not taught once I reached secondary school. I attended an all-girls school and in an age of feminism and women’s rights, teaching domestic science was considered to be a very bad and totally unnecessary thing since, as a liberated woman, I would be too busy forging a career to worry about looking after my home.
Whilst I’m a total supporter of equal opportunities, I think it’s a great pity that for so many years the domestic arts were completely ignored. It’s fantastic that sewing has recently seen such an amazing upsurge in popularity and I was delighted to receive an email from Amol at Terry’s Fabrics asking me to share her infographic. I think it’s great and I hope you will too …
And I so totally agree that it feels wonderful to make something out of virtually nothing!
I had another “times gone by” moment today when I came across these winter-flowering pansies planted along the wall of our village bus shelter. I remember my first sighting of winter pansies back in the 1970′s and my amazement at seeing what I had previously thought were summer flowers in the depths of winter. I am sure they must have been around long before then – but certainly not in a sleepy Warwickshire market town.
Whilst winter pansies bloom all through the colder months, there hasn’t been much else in the way of flowers around lately. But now I’m back to walking the dogs again I’m beginning to see the very early signs of spring all around. Too small and shy as yet to make good photographs, apart from these daffodils I spotted in a south-facing, sheltered part of the woods. They’re very well ahead indeed …. a herald of times yet to come!
I am still taking it easy, though my knee feels so much better already. Ben and Daisy are home now, and doing their best to persuade me to venture into the great outdoors. We did manage a short walk together, just along the road this morning, but friends are coming to give them “proper” walks for the rest of this week until I have my stitches out. It’s so grey and muddy outside, it’s no hardship to cosy up on the sofa in my workroom and bask in the very pink glow of my new rug from IKEA (a treat to myself last time I visited Rosie in Bristol)…..
And enjoy some hand stitching – I have plenty of wedding projects to be getting on with! I think I’ve made enough little mice now ….
(from my Pincushion Mouse pattern on the free patterns page) They are a very mischievous collection who are partying among the jars Rosie’s collected for her sweet table. I’m also busy embroidering guest names for the place settings – to be matched with lovely pastel floral fabrics and mounted in small hoops …
Only 60 more to go!! But luckily I have a new little friend to keep me company – look who’s perching on my sewing machine …
A little lovebird – I think he’s looking for his sweetheart – another handstitching project for me!
The lovebird pattern will be in the February issue of the Bustle & Sew e-Magazine. There’s beginning to be a bit of a romantic theme developing – but then it is Valentine’s Day next month.