Sunday, 11 September 2016

August. And a bit of September

Well if I don't do this post soon it will be too late and in my dotage I will be wondering what I did with my life during August 2016!

First a gorgeous surprise arrived in the post from Mary-Anne Richardson of Magpies Mumblings.
We've been blog friends for many years and it was a generous and beautiful and unexpected gift.
Isn't it pretty?

Mid August I had a lovely visit from a college friend I first met 47 years ago.
We are still close and had a very happy four days together. We had a super 'Beatrix Potter ' day, visiting Hill Top Sawrey and Yew Tree Farm. Connected with Beatrix. We crossed Windermere on the ferry and experienced the ridiculous and controversial new ticket machine, which was later the subject of a an item on the local BBC news!

Shortly after that we had a week in Dorset. Lyme Regis to be precise.
When we arrived at our last minute accommodation we were a bit daunted by the exterior view at first.

But it was like opening a craggy oyster shell to reveal the beautiful Mother-of-Pearl interior,
Entering the door at the top of the steps revealed and lovely apartment with French Windows opening onto a gorgeous little patio overlooking the sea.

We had a most beautiful relaxing week . It was a complete joy to walk about the town and down to
the sea and relax in the very comfortable apartment.

Lyme Regis is a lovely town. Real English seaside with something for everyone.

We did get the car out on one or two days , We went to Beer.
Very quaint.

Lyme Regis harbour is so interesting
The light is glorious.

There are so many lovely places to eat as well.
We ate in The Harbour Inn. A seagull swooped and ate half my hake!
And one day we revisited The Anchor Inn at Seatown. Still fabulous.

On our journey home we took a detour to eat in Wells at the most wonderful vegetarian restaurant  The Good Earth. Really worth a detour.

And the Town Cryer of Wells will offer all sorts of helpful advice like car parking tips.

Its always good to get home though.

Usualy at this time of year we are in Symi but not this year.
I made a moussaka to help us get over it.
I used nearly every pan and every utensil.
It was worth it.
Even better when we ate the other half a few weeks later, defrosted and reheated it was delicious.

Hetty had a haircut at a different place, much nearer home.

I finished a piece of felt.

And a mirror.

Then.... the scaffolding began.

By the end of last week every surface of our house was covered.
We are having a new roof, some pointing and while the scaffold is up my husband is painting the hard to reach bits.
Its a good job he has a head for heights but I can't help worrying.

And meanwhile I'm preparing for Yarndale.
Stand 17 . Come and see me.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Trip to Oxford.Picture heavy post

We went to Oxford for a couple of days. Stayed in a cheap and cheerful Travelodge with a saggy bed but it was ok.
Our main reason was to visit 'Art in Action' the very last one. 
We've been a few times before and had always said we'd go again, and as it was the last it was now or never.
Its a feast of every kind of art. Painting , print, sculpture, textiles, ceramics and so on. It was wonderful. 
Here are a few photos.
I took this one for my son's friend who does drawings on the underground. (I'll credit this photo when I find the catalogue!)

It was delightful to sit under lovely trees and listen to the music.

 The Gardens at Waterperry nearly made me cry. 
I wish wish wish I could grow things like this.

 I have one delphinium which hasn't yet flowered!

Please enjoy these garden pictures. Sigh....

The sculpture area 

In the Textile Tent I saw Carol Naylor, who once gave a workshop to our textile group and stayed with us.
I also met Este McCloud whose paintings I have long admired.

I can't begin to convey the loveliness of Art in Action. 
So sad it's over.

 In the evenings of our trip we dined in lovely places found by my husband who was tasked with finding said beautiful places.
The Perch, Binsey was one such.

 Lovely place, delicious food.

You could walk through fairy-lit arches to the river.

 Not mad on this picture 
but it shows the fairy lights.

 Oxford is a place I have often driven past and never explored. It's truly beautiful with so much history (obviously.) 
I popped into a church where Cardinal Newman had preached and Gerard Manley Hopkins had been curate. 
Just there..just passed by and there it was..amazing.

I liked this alternative to a brass plaque on a door, such a beautiful stone carving to announce yourself.

 We met my cousin's daughter  and her daughter in The Barefoot Bakery Jericho,where we ate lovely toasted banana bread and I bought a super blouse in a charity shop. Very very lovely stuff in Oxford Charity shops! Noa-Noa, Toast, White Stuff, Gudrun Sjodern.
Here are Freya and Fiona in the cafe.

The cakes were delish.

 I was envious of the vegetation which springs out of every crevice voluntarily. 
Imagine the trouble I'd have trying to grow hollyhocks in my garden?

 And my cousin had an 'accidental artichoke' in her garden!!!I don't think I could grow one deliberately.

 Then we set off for the Ashmolean Museum.

I'd wanted to visit since I did a research project on The Minoans when I was at College, and it wasn't disappointing. Many of the objects are reconstructions but it didn't matter. There was so much to see.

After the Archeology we looked at the paintings and found a concertina-playing sailor in this Holman Hunt painting.

After lunch in the (sadly over-rated) rooftop restaurant we tootled along the road to the Pitt-Rivers museum
The first part is spectacular enough, the natural history section.

My husband was a bit worn out by then so became a specimen himself for a few minutes.

Many many bones.

A beautiful building.

Then we went through to the actual Pitt-Rivers bit. I was blown away. It has hundreds of glass cases each holding many artefacts from all over the world. I wish I could remember all the different categories. A lot of photos follow to give an idea of what we saw.

A case of combs


Votive tokens

A garment which looked like silk but was made from seal intestines..aleuit.

Bark cloths

Bells rattles and xylophones.

Lamellaphones are a kind of Jews harp mouth instrument.




Don't know what this is, but it's so cute.

As is this!

Masks..again..different ones!

Eel and rat traps and one was a hedgehog trap


Axe heads. I took this because we found a similar one on the beach at Cley in Norfolk years ago.

an of course a  hat made from a fish!

Skates and snowshoes!

Carved spoons

More combs

General view showing the totem pole.

A case full of things made from recycled materials. Guitar!

Mind boggling and I'll never feel as if my house is cluttered again. I have my own little Pitt rivers type collection here you know! Butter paddles, rolling pins, scissors.....

I could spend days and days in the Pitt Rivers and more days in the Ashmolean. Both are free, the staff are fabulous in both and children are welcomed in both.

On the third days after visiting my cousin at home, we went into town and saw many sights and sounds and really too many people. 
I was glad to get out. 
Here's a young man doing a show on top of a telephone box, as 
you do.

So Oxford was wonderful and we enjoyed every minute but its always nice to be home isn't it?
And breathe....

st of my pictures can be enlarged by clicking on them.

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