Saturday, 10 November 2018

The Last of the Quickies

Well the past couple of weeks have slipped by and I haven't blogged!  The last of the Instagram pictures are below.












I've been on another couple of workshops, mainly just to take me out of my usual rut, and I've enjoyed them.  No pics, sorry.  I've written another article for WoWbook due out next month.



Also my Sawdust Heart is now on display with all 1567 others. Here is my official one, Number 0002, in the catalogue top row centre, the other is in the village church.



It's the season of rain, rain and rain so I hope you are keeping dry and doing what you love. 


Wednesday, 17 October 2018

More October Quickies

Just an update of the little 15 minute paintings I have be doing for the month of October.  





Some days 15 mins is over in a flash and others I could do with longer but I'm trying to be good.  

Here are the rest of the Honey Boat squash and the gourds I grew along with them.  

I used to always grow gourds when the children were little and now and then we actually found an exciting one!  More often than not they were just the simple ones like these but it's a bit of fun.  Maybe next year!! 

Stitchy wise I put together the pooling cushion.  It's bright and cheerful and the dogs like sleeping on it.  

Last weekend on the Saturday I went up to the Knitting and Stitching Show and didn't buy much at all, which is, I think, good!  I'm still trying to work out if it's because I didn't find anything, I didn't need anything or I just wasn't inspired.  They'd had a change around and there seemed to be a lot less of the galleries. I came away feeling rather flat to be honest.  Usually I have a notebook and camera full let alone the shopping bags.  Not too sure if I'll do next year.  Perhaps I need a break from it.

On the Sunday SiL Mike had a 10k race around Shaftesbury.  It's very hilly and, he said, Gold Hill, (yes the one from the Hovis adverts!) was the least of his worries.  At the same time little Olivia had her very first official run too!  She ran in the children's races around the school field and came first in the Under 5's Girls! So proud of her! 

Every runner had a beautifully made ceramic medal and the winners each received an amazing bowl too.  The bottom part really sparkles like water. 

Well today I had the first part of new crown molar tooth fitting, the drilling out part.  This one particular tooth has an incredibly sensitive and stubborn nerve which refuses to go numb no matter how much anaesthetic he pumps me with.  My wonderful dentist tells me in 35 years he's only had 5 like this and I'm probably number 2! At least each pump of the stuff gave him 30 seconds to work at a time before he could see the gum pinking up again.  I was ok but he was shaking quite a lot at the end and he's a very big man!  It's really lovely to actually have found a conscientious dentist who worries about hurting.  

Big dog walk tomorrow, I hope it stops raining long enough! 


Saturday, 6 October 2018

I Was Brave!

I've been doing a few little painting sketches in a 5 inch sketchbook each day so far for October. 




Only about 15 minutes per painting and not to get too close or fussy with it. 



I've been posting them on my Instagram, Amo107,  rather than FB.



Will I a) get to the end of the month and/or b) actually enjoy using a sketchbook!?

And the reason I've been doing it???

On Monday I went and had my eyes lasered! My near sight started going about 12 years ago and I used reading glasses.  Then about 8 years ago my long sight decided it wanted to join in too!  At first it was just glasses for driving but it slowly become worse.  Eventually I became a permanent glasses wearer, which I hated.  I could see fine 4 to 6 feet but nearer or further was bleugh! 

I didn't like the thought that I wasn't seeing colour properly, I couldn't see the stars at night without a halo and I couldn't take the dogs out in mist or drizzle without windscreen wipers etc.  At my last eye test the optician said I would be a good candidate for surgery as long as I didn't mind possibly having one over the other.  I made an appointment with Optegra Solent and the process was amazing.  After a month of contact lenses to have an idea of what I would have, one near, one far or both far, I went back.  I decided I couldn't get a decent, close enough vision with the varifocal lens replacement for my stitch-work and I would go for distance vision with reading glasses instead.  I can pick and choose readers off the shelf to suit what I need them for, have a pair in every room and in any colour I like as both eyes are the same! 

The op was simple and totally painless and in less than 15 minutes I was having a cup of tea reading my drops instructions. The drops, 14 times a day for the first week then decreasing, are the only problem, and they're not that much of one really.

I'm loving seeing everything bright and clear not through smeared lenses. And the vision will settle more over the next month probably only improving!  Can't be bad.

I've started a little of the garden clearing, weather and eyes permitting, and loved finding the Honey Boat squash I though we'd lost in the heat.  They are a Butternut alternative that tastes like sweet potato.  I'll do them again next year.  Perhaps I should add them to my to paint list!

The last of the produce went into anther ratatouille for the freezer.  This is something I've done since the kids were small and a great way of clearing up the last tomatoes, courgettes, peppers and anything else needing using.  I don't season it other than salt and pepper and then it can be a base for anything from curry, pasta, Moroccan or just as something to put chicken breasts on in the oven, all seasoned to suit. 


We also went back to Pembrokeshire last week and had a lovely end of summer romp.  The girls certainly didn't seem to mind! 
This Saturday coming I will be with Maggie Grey as part of the Workshop on the Web team perusing the Knitting and Stitch show at Ally Pally.  If you see us please come and say hello! 

After all that painting I think I should go and find something stitchy to play with.  Not sure what though.  Perhaps I'll find inspiration at the show!

PS, I seem to be having the comment emails again at last!  Took them long enough. 

Monday, 24 September 2018

September is Done

Last week my friend Karren and I had our exhibition at Shaftesbury Arts Centre Gallery.  I forgot to take photos!  Here are a few of the bits I was showing that I'm not sure if you've seen anyway. 



It can become confusing as to what I have shown here, on FB or on Instagram. 

I had quite a few books at this one which is the reason why I didn't have them at the Art Weeks. 



I've promised myself no more exhibitions for a while for now. I just want to potter and play without a deadline.  Saying that I do have one in 2020 and I know how fast time flies! 

I finished my second Cosmic, in denim and white this time.  The other is off to the USA.  I will be raffling this one soon.



I then discovered crochet pooling. Its a way of adjusting your tension whilst crocheting a colour change yarn so the change happens at points you want it too rather than randomly. Quite effective! 

At least I can watch TV with this one. 

I attended a  workshop last weekend at The Purbeck Artisan Workshop with Michelle of Harbour Wood Designs.



That was a fun day out and I shared my space with Coconut!!! 

Our dog walk out where we actually managed to meet my friend Lin was fabulous.  Lots of lovely sunshine, running around and laughter. 

The Grands have been having a great time learning how to drive the tractor. 


Not bad for 4 and 2.  There was also a bit of motorbike sitting but that's not quite as much fun as steering yourself. 

The garden is due for a huge clear-out this winter.  So many of the trees and shrubs have had too much space and we are going to reduce them.  Some of the hazels will be coppiced too.  The trouble with a huge garden is getting rid of the stuff but between the compost heap, the shredder, the chipper and the fire we just about manage! We try to be as eco as we can! 

When we stayed in Pembrokeshire our friends gave us a recipe for liver cake for the dogs.  We had to make some of course. 



It was very popular.  Most of it is in the freezer as it's quite rich and just a treat. We loved our time in Pembs so much we will be going back for another visit soon.  Can't wait! 

I'm not too sure what Blogger is doing.  I still don't have any emails to say if you have commented on my posts.  That means I don't have an email to reply to you directly so I have been going back and doing so on your actual comments.  I have tried everything suggested on the Blogger Forum and, like many, many others, nothing works.  

As I am now going to be a potterer and player I will go off and potter and play.  Have a good week. 

Sunday, 19 August 2018

Time to Catch Up!

A picture heavy blog post I'm afraid.

We've had a busy few weeks here.  First the garden was taking up time but then the heat got the better of it.  The dogs didn't think much of it and were glad of their 5am walks in the cooler part of the day. 





The moth trap has had a few more outings.






We are over the main season for moths now but I will put it out a few more times before winter I'm sure.  I have a scrappy list of what we have found and should really make a proper recording for the garden.  The lack of insects this year has been alarming! 

We've been out strawberry picking.  Some did actually make it to the hut!


August is our special month.  First is Cillian and my birthday.  We went to Paultons Park and Peppa Pig World a for a fabulous day out. 

Our wedding anniversary and  barbecues, 



John had his super special birthday. I bought him another bike to tinker with.  

I think he's enjoying rebuilding this one more then the AJS! I'm sure he won't muddle the two up, they are mostly in box bits now.  It's nice to see him fiddling about and the bikes are a much more manageable size than the cars! 

I've done a little bit of creating.  I have been struggling in many ways, the heat being the least of them.  At least that seems to be over now.  There have been a few books.




But not enough.  I am working on a few more pieces and hopefully they will be ready for the September exhibition. 

I also took a glass fusing workshop with Linda Rowe.  She was one of the ladies I exhibited at in Cranborne and she only lives up the road from me.  



There has been the village fete, the pub birthday and a few other things like Farnborough Airshow which our daughter puts so much work into and which John actually managed to visit this time.  He was very proud to see our stand there.

We have also been away to Wales and had a most wonderful time with the girls. Poor Ruger is a bit too old to put up with the car journeys now so he stayed home with Tully and sitters. 



Our house had it's own gate onto the shore which the girls loved. 

We met up with friends, also Pointer owners and had some lovely trips out. 



  


Can you see the new born seal pups in the last photo?  they're about a week early apparently but a delight to see, even from the cliff tops! 

I took along some crochet and also managed to collect a huge bag of treasure from the beaches which I will have to sort. 


On a moor in Wales I had cathartic moment of tears for absolutely no reason and I finally felt at peace. It was as though my body clock paused for a moment and then started moving forward again. I hadn’t realised how much I had been fighting time backwards over the past few months. I’d had a moment of battery crash on freshwater beach and everything was a stark reminder of how much I had been through at the beginning of the year and how fragile we are.  I have been on the support team of a friend who has had major bowl and ovarian cancer since Christmas and after being given weeks to live is now doing fantastically well after surgery. She is currently touring the country with her dogs and I'm meeting her next month.  There is also the news of my C&G tutor Laura Kemshall and her bowl cancer.  She was having the anaemia at the same time as me and we shared in our iron infusions all be it at different hospitals!  It was a shock that I had been treated, diagnosed, operated on and in recovery before they even discovered her tumour.  I cannot tell you how grateful I am mine was benign and I have an amazing support team. My blood tests a couple of weeks ago were good and I am about to have an appointment for the scan I have to have regularly. 

This week we have relatives visiting from Australia and New Zealand.  We found them through Ancestry DNA and we met three of them last year.  I also have a birthday treat day out with Elsa.  After that it's all go for making some things!! I think I'm a little happier now I feel my body clock has caught up and can move forward again! 

We are now off to a Paddock Party so have a great week.