Monday, 18 August 2008


This is our August garden, with all the rain we've been receiving, it's gone crazy! but I love it wild. It's just a shame we haven't been able to use it as much as we would have liked, but who wants trench foot? We really must get in there and tidy it up before winter sets in.
I must admit, my brain seems to have skipped the summer mode and headed straight for Autumn, I find myself making mental lists and plans for:-
1. Preparing the garden for winter.
2. Digging out winter attire, I can already be found wearing my knee length suede boots, this does not feel odd to me, people around me have noticed, the British are very polite, they say nothing......
3. CHRISTMAS SHOPPING!!! yes, I'm starting next week....
4. Laundering all our lovely blankets and quilts ready to dress the beds. I think , after much deliberation, this is the way forward, going back to the good,cold old days when we didn't have C.H. and we did have to put on extra jumpers. We cannot afford a 60% rise in our fuel bills. Please, if anyone has any good ideas on this topic, please let me know.
4. Oh yes! I've been planning a menu of hot soups and stews (and eating a few along the way too)

I have also started knitting up some scarves ( I AM LOSING THE PLOT). I call this my "mindless knitting", no counting of stitches involved so I can let my mind wander to those all important lists and yet I can still communicate with the children, the busy hands keep me calm:)The scarves look dead boring at the moment but I'm hoping a few flowers and buttons will jazz them up a little.
The children have watched me mindlessly knitting and asked if I could teach them how to do it,EEeeek! So we gave it a go.......... it was fun and wiled away a rainy hour, but I think George is a bit dispraxic and needs loads of time and practice and Poppy is just too young at the moment, one day they'll get it.
I got this book out of the library having it in mind to do crochet flowers on the scarves, but it may as well have been in dutch!ssooooo, I've ordered a crochet book from Amazon recommended by a favourite blogger of mine 'attic24' sorry,forgotten the link thing again, So hopefully, I will get the hang of it.

I saw this teapot in a charity shop and had to make it mine. It has replaced my trustee red pot that alas had a wicked chip on the spout. the only thing is, the cosy I made last year, as you see from the pic, does not work with my new pride and joy, so, a new cosy is planned to wile away the cool autumn evenings while curled up under one of our blankets.

Oh dear! I have gone on a bit, sorry about that, just call it my mindless blogging.....
MMmmmm, time for tea xxxxxxxxxx

Monday, 11 August 2008


I have found myself, on returning from our phantom holiday, wandering around the cottage making mental lists of "things to do". The list is sadly endless at this point in time. One job desperate for attention was Pop's room.
When Pops came along, all her worldly possessions could fit into one small vintage nursery trunk that I had found during my student days, as with George, five years on, storage has been a major issue. Toys filled the said trunk and toppled out spreading chaos all over the floor. A few months ago we were preparing my wren house studio and discovered shelves at Ikea perfect in every way, especially the price, £29! Ikea come to the rescue yet again, we buy a set for Pop's and I spend a whole day sorting through , baggin , shelvin, binin. I was so pleased with the result and I think Pops was too, she could find things she forgot she had and her bedroom seems twice the size now. We also bought a stack of wicker baskets which did the trick in containing all the annoying little bits like yoyos, bouncy balls, musical toys etc. Result!!
The bed cost us £32 from a bric-a-brac shop in Brecon, it's very shabby, but as they say, it's chic! it's covered in an old fifties patchwork i bought off an antique dealer friend and an old welsh quilt I had in exchange for some sewing repairs.
We hung some pictures and found a use for some old dummy boards I'd made a lifetime ago, brightening up some corners. The bunnykins clock was a christening gift for George, and a favourite of ours.

I do like a bargain but I have been known to spend a bit on toys, saying that, the children only have them at Christmas and birthdays, so we feel justified. I think it's important that George and Pops should value what they receive, being a maker myself, workmanship and quality is important to me and I want things to last, as heirlooms, they might even be the antiques of the future, that would be lovely....

This is the dolls house we got Pops a few years ago, as a child I always wanted one, so obviously I couldn't wait to get this for her, there's something magical about life in miniature don't you think?Pops plays out all life's scenarios with the little people living inside.
The painting was done by someone at college the same time as me, I think it was a swap. It's quite naive, but I love it for this reason, it's perfect in this room.
This Noah's Arc is made by 'East of India', again, simple and naive but robust enough for heavy duty playing with ( even though a label states it is not a toy).
The plan is to paint the draws and cupboards with a lovely eggshell paint, but I can't decide on the colour, any ideas?
Oh well, enough of my waffling, I must be off, I have that mental list to deal with.
I do hope the sun shines on you wherever you are today. Annie x

Saturday, 2 August 2008


At the beginning of July I took it upon myself to book a campsite. Myself and my family were desperate to get away from it all, even if it was just for four days, it has been a bit of a roller coaster around here these last few months with one thing and another.
I have been reading the memoirs of Daphne du Marier's daughter and the setting of Fowey in Cornwall inspired me to take action.
Penhale farm campsite was truly spectacular, as you can see in the pic, with views out to sea. This being only the second camping experdition undertaken with the children I did my damndest to make it special, we took our lovely welsh blankets to ward off the cold night air, we bought a snazzy cooker with grill and some comfy folding chairs. much to Andy's amusement, there was a table complete with table cloth and our trusty teapot complete with cosy. I felt I had done my best to make it work.

Fowey was, indeed enchanting, the lovely narrow streets, the harbour with the little boats bobbing about, reading the book and it's place in history, it was, in theory the perfect choice.....

Monday night, our first under canvas,was noisy and very wet. There had been severe weather warnings. Morning, we thought, that wasn't too bad.

Tuesday we had a lovely day,firstly going to Truro for a look round,got some good things from the charity shops and a nice lunch, but the best part of the day was driving to The Lizard, the most southerly point of Britain, a wild, exciting place, we celebrated with a cornish cream tea, cor!

Nature is truly a wonderful thing and I am often in awe of it, but oh my God! Tuesday night, in that tent, exposed to all that nature could throw at us, it frightened me. Apparently, there had been further severe weather warnings. The noise was incredible, and myself and Andy soon realised we were in trouble, looking out of the bedroom pod, we could see the tent had risen about six inches and everything was soaking.All the pegs had come loose and the tent was virtually flat on top of the children in the other pod.

To cut a long(night)story short, we were awake all night, soaked, the tent was wrecked and we packed the car all through the night. We new our Fowey holiday was over.

George was awake and alarmed by the whole situation. Poppy! well, she slept through the whole ordeal,AMAZING......

The week before had been glorious, it seems so unfair, four days thats all we wanted.....

Before heading home, I went round some of the lovely shops in Fowey and consoled myself with a few treats to take back to Gloucestershire with me.

It was sad our cornish break ended so disasterously, but a few good things came out of it. Both myself and Andy were of the opinion that camping is not for us, strictly cottage hire from now on,WHOOPIE!

The last few days were spent in Hay-on-Wye, I love this place, with all it's book shops and individual gift and antique shops, and pottering around here. Atleast we were dry,warm and stress free. We did get about a bit didn't we?!! (she writes, laughing hysterically)

Please let me know some good holiday weather stories, restore my faith, PLEASE X

Friday, 1 August 2008


Emma Bridgewater china............

Lovely Billy Holiday..........

old china bought for next to nothing..........

hand made goodies........

my swap with Mrs.Custard, it's perfect there......

my mannequin, she's a doll..............

Birthday cakes and party bags...............

our leaf and bee lamp, our wedding gift from Andy's parents.......

and christmas of course!!!!!