Sunday, 5 November 2017

Distracting Tactics

Last Tuesday I was going to be doing the pub quiz which I was more than a little nervous about so to take my mind off things I took myself off to Salisbury for a nosey around. 

The Salisbury Museum has a special exhibition on at the moment celebrating local author Terry Pratchett who sadly died of Alzheimer's in 2015.

We all have to start on something! 

A very recognisable ensemble.

The Octavo. 

His actual writing station.  The desk has hidden compartments, including one for the cat. 

And just incase you were wondering what is on all those screens! 

Some of Paul Kidby's original art work. A'Tuin herself.

The full cast.

Death and Binky.  I hope he and Terry are now sat by the fire with thier feet up.

And my favorite character, Cohen the Barbarian.
There was obviously plenty more on show from both Terry and Paul and well worth the visit.

I then took myself across the Close to the Cathedral and on a Tower Tour!! It's not something John could have done even if he was with me, lots of very long, narrow spiral staircases! 

Our first stop was a look down the nave to the Quire and Trinity Chapel.  You can see the font which was made by William Pye and installed in 2008 to celebrate the 750th anniversary of the cathedral.  Both Olivia and Cillian were christened there.  

Looking up to the vaulted ceiling which was once very brightly coloured until the reformation. 

The tower topped with the spire.  The roof to the left is over the nave. The first set of windows in the tower was where it stopped originally, square and squat.  Someone had the bright idea for building the rest on at a later date.  Good job they made good foundations back then!  Remember this photo, I'll mention it below.

Inside the roof over the nave.  The white under the oak beams at the bottom is the lime plaster they backed all the stone with to hold it in place.  That and clever cutting of course.  We walked along the walkway to the left to the end. 

Through a door and into the tower.  There were a couple of wooden staircases like this too.  They needed to save weight that's why they're very scarce in the covering department! You can see all the various rods and girders added over the years to stop the walls pushing out with the weight of the tower and spire on top.  I am now on the gantry walkway around those lower windows in the photo above. 

As part of a fundraising scheme when they refurbished the tower they reset a lot of the glass and asked for donations to have inscriptions put on them.  Several local dentists provided drills no longer used for teeth and you could write your message for posterity. 

As we have just had a major refurbishment of the bells and cradle at our village church it was great to see these three in a very much more accessible space! These windows are the upper row of windows in the above photo.

And the big one which sits underneath the others.  

They rang the half past while we were there. A Westminster Chime.

This is looking down through the floor hatch from the bell level. 

We then climbed to the top level of the tower which is the bit where the main spire starts and there are mini ones surrounding it in the photo.  This is looking up into the spire itself. 

A drawing showing all the beams and structural work carried out to make sure it stays up there! 

Very high up now. We had climbed 332 steps which is 225 feet above the ground. 

On the horizon is Old Sarum where the first cathedral and castle were built.  It is said that the clergy couldn't put up with the military being in charge and charging so much for the use of water from the well which was inside the castle.  It had been dug out over 500 feet deep so not as though the church could really dig another one easily.  Instead they chose to use the water meadows down by the river which was owned by the church and to decide exactly where an arrow was shot from the site of the old cathedral.  The arrow actually hit a deer and the deer ran on and it was 2 miles until it finally collapsed and died on the site of the current cathedral. The church you can see in the foreground was built for the workers to use during the 38 years of the build. 

And there is the actual spire.  The tallest in the UK.  It's still another 185 feet from where I was standing to the top. 

It was a fascinating trip up and amazing to see the workmanship up close.  Certainly took my mind of that quiz!! 

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Quick Round Up

I've had a busy couple of weeks.  I've made sure everything for the exhibition next week is ready.  Not that I'm showing much more than a few books but there are three other artists and it should be a good showing. 

I also made three sets of these cute Scandi style advent stockings and I'm auctioning them on one of the dog sites for the GSP Rescue trust. Fiddly but mindless to do.  

A doggy friend had a 50th birthday so I made her a tweed A5 notebook cover with her pointer and labrador on the front. Sadly her beautiful Pointer died the day after, he was a much loved elder statesman of our group.  

My Wimborne branch of the West Country Embroiderers didn't have a web presence and it was a little frustrating not having anywhere to check up on dates etc so I built one for them and it is now live  HERE.  I really quite enjoyed putting it together and I think they're all pleased with it.  

On a dog walk recently I had this little nest fall infront of me.  

It's too small for a robin so probably Finch or Dunnock.  You can tell it was in a tree next to the horse field from the horse hair and baler twine! So beautiful and delicate but strong enough to raise a brood. 

This tiny, beautiful little pup annoying Ruger on her first day...

is 6 today!!! Though she's a very grown up and sensible dog, she still has her moments.  Love you Ellie pup!!!! 

I also wrote and hosted a Pub Quiz at our local on Halloween and I think it went rather well.  Lots of positive comments and money raised for the fund for the refurbishment of the loos into disabled access.

I'm off the rustle up some cards for the gallery next week.  Have a good weekend!! 

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Second Time and Nearly Out

Still deleting numerous unknown blogs. I have no interest in food, (I’m a serial and failing dieter), fashion (if it doesn’t go with jeans and dog fur/drool/mud I’m not wearing it), beauty (ditto fashion), or small humans (unless they’re my grandchildren)! This morning had a bit of an eye opening with young ladies showing a little more than I really need to see thank you very much. 

I have now started transferring all the blogs I follow to Feedly and will imminently be deleting my Bloglovin account. I hope I’m not missing any of you when I finish!  I do love my evening perusal through what you’ve all be up to. It has been quite good having a clearout too though, quite a few are now non functioning! I’ll still be here on Blogger boring you though but there won’t be a follow me button on the right (there is an email notification one though). I may find out if Feedly has a button to add at some point but I’m becoming a little tired with it all at the moment. 

Not having a great week, had a few hiccups like the car door smacking me in the face rather hard when I parked it on a steep slope, my glasses being scratched and finding out I didn’t take out the insurance on them, having a very upset tummy yet again which is likely to do with my gallbladder removal and several other little things all adding up. I’m clinging on like mad not to slip into the whirlpool at the mo.  The sun will shine again soon!!  

Wednesday, 25 October 2017


I am having major issues with Bloglovin.  I am having rogue blogs added to my feed, 1273 at last count, and it's becoming a daily slog to unfollow them each day whilst they try and figure out what has happened.  At some point the next move is to DELETE my Bloglovin profile and start again. 

If I have already deleted you and I was a follower, apologies I hope to find you again soon.  

If I dissapear, and I do have 60 or so Bloglovin Followers, please try and find me again soon at View From Our Hill or bookmark me some other way. 

If you are the arse of a blog who decided to add me to a chain that has caused all these problems may you have gremlins and bugs for the rest of your blogging life! 

Wish me luck XXX

PS Check those you are following in your account to make sure there is nothing rogue there too! Go to your bloglovin Profile top right and in the grey bar it will tell you how many you are following.  If it doesn't look right, it probably isn't! There may be a lot, usually with 1 or 2 followers and foreign names. 

Monday, 16 October 2017

I Made the K&S This Year!

After last year's trauma of being really ill and then deciding to take myself off to Harrogate to catch up with the K&S in November, it was a relief to make it through to the day without cough, cold or anything else for that matter!  Maggie, Fiona and I picked up our press passes, which we were very grateful for as the bag checks and security meant the queues were right back to the coach park.  I know it was for the right reasons but you would have thought they would know that only 3 people on the door would struggle if you know how many hundreds of tickets you have sold. 

As always I took myself off, with instructions to scout for the WoW mag of course, and made all my purchases first.  I like getting that out of the way before settling back to enjoy the galleries and demos.  It seems a lot of the photos I thought I had taken didn't actually make it to my phone, probably my stupidity or iOS 11.  

I did find this lady, Yoko Hagen, and all her lovely Temari balls and as I have a basket of prepared balls waiting to stitch perhaps I should dig them out and get on with a few!! 
They looked smashing on her tree too. 

I caught up with Marian Hall of Textile Snippets.  Her three Xenotopia pieces were amazing to see for real.  Larger than I thought they would be and you certainly have a perspective in them that you don't quite see on the screen. 

I loved the EG Page 17 display.  I think it could have been in a much larger space to be honest! 

A nice piece from Jean Littlejohn.

And Jan Messent. (Love her work)

This Game of Thrones piece by Lise Leigh caught my eye, it was beautifully stitched. 

And these cute chickens by my near stitchy neighbour Rosemary Jarvis. 

There didn't seem to be as many galleries this year, or perhaps I just was in zombie land.  I did find the day tiring even though I'd taken extra iron and because of the match at Wembley the coach wasn't going to leave until 5pm.  A lot of us were ready to leave by 3.30 really.  It's still nice to spend the day with creative friends though. 

Even Maggie managed a demo stint on the Art Van Go stand.  

Back home now and nothing too exciting in the purchases, nothing to show really, and I can make a start on a few pieces that have been waiting until after the show. 

We have a huge, multi stemmed Hawthorn partway up the back garden.  Sadly two of the trunks decided to start to collapse recently.  With some careful planning and cuts with the chainsaw John managed to direct the falls to miss the topiary trains.  We now have a much smaller, safer Hawthorn and the trains are intact too.  I dont think they would have survived the big blow that is currently trying to strip the trees of leaves at the moment!

The much thinner tree is on the left and there has been an awful lot of branches to dispose of which John has been gradually dealing with.  Thankfully a lot will be seasoned for the log burners. 

Stay safe in the storm which is the end of hurricane Ophelia! 

Monday, 9 October 2017

Garland Finish and Walkies!

I started a pick up and go project HERE back in June and I've just made a last dash to finish it.  

Of course I adapted some of the patterns suggested at Shiny Happy World and included some beads and sequins.  I made double the amount to give a set to Elsa too.  Quite pleased with it but I'm now short of a pick up and go!! I'm sure I'll think of something in no time! 

While in Ireland I actually bought myself something. 

Not just an enormous cotton reel but actually....

The amount of times we go away and I come back with the same money in my purse as I don't seen anything worth buying.  I'm a terrible shopper at the best of times and being confronted with often unnecessary, imported tourist stuff turns my blood cold, but this I quite liked. Kitchen roll is so you see the size better.

Yesterday was the day of our sponsored walk for GSP Rescue UK.   Please note the fantastic patches on the backs of the dog coats made by the lovely Benta at Slikstitches!! 

It was perfect weather especially as we took the dogs too.  

They looked very smart in their jackets but it was soon quite warm and they were stripped off so they could have a bit of a run too.  

Our local newsreader, Sally Taylor MBE, was there walking with another group and she came over and made a great fuss of the dogs as she owns a GSP too! We finished 12 miles in just over 4 hours which was good going as it included a few pup stops as well.  

My hips and knee are protesting quite a bit today but the toenails seem ok this time! 

We have raised a fantastic amount for the charity, thank you if you have given. The Rotary Club have 20% but they put on a superb walk, well stewarded and catered for and deserve it.  The 80% goes to our dogs.  There have been 30 helped this year so every penny counts! Just Giving page HERE.

Now to clear away the felt bits and start something new and not get too excited about Ally Pally at the end of the week! 

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Sorry, Been Having Fun!

We went back to Ireland last week.  

The same amazing place we went to in 2014.

Which has its own beach.

Willow still can't swim well, but she's improving!

Seaweed has to be rescued, you know.

Loads of day trips to other beaches.

It is their Dogliday after all.

Plenty of fun was had.  The only thing I made was happy memories.

Plenty to be getting on with here now though, I haven't stopped since we arrived home!