Sunday 29 November 2009

Brief respite

So finally the torrential rain has stopped, the sun has shone briefley, so I thought I would pull on my wellies and go outside to stop myself going stir crazy.
I spotted plenty of raindrops. Does this one look slightly heart shaped to you?

And I spotted some much needed winter flora about to burst into its full glory.

How on earth these little beauties are hanging on is beyond me.

Ive made the most of this totally dreadful weekend by cleaning the house from top to bottom - its positively sparkling!!! Even the skunk pit that is the teenage girls bedroom!! Ive nursed a poorly boy. We thought it might be swine flu, but its looking more like man flu. I'm thank full for very small mercies.

Saturday 28 November 2009

Its a "man" thing.

My husband is the sort of man who can fix anything - as long as it can be fixed with "Gaffer" tape. It is an essential part of our camping gear, and is used widely around the house and garden. He recently discovered that the father of one of the young man's friends had never owned any, and he now considers him a lesser man! He was thrilled to see it so widely used in Paris (although I think this was parcel tape). Now that's what he calls "fixed".

Monday 23 November 2009


I'm trying to like November, I really am - but its not panning out well. The weather is certainly not helping, and I am not a fan of dark nights at all - the odd one or two are cosy, but whole months of them make me feel "caged" especially when hubby is working late evenings/nights. At least in the summer I can sit in the garden until late. I feel like I live with Jeremy Clarkson (perish the thought). His is the only voice I hear. The young man watches Top Gear and repeats of Top Gear, and repeats of repeats of Top Gear until I can no longer bear it!! I love it after the 21st December when I know that we are headed back in the right direction. Ive also had loads of really boring jobs to do too - ie a Summers worth of housework neglect (when I was "playing out") has taken its toll, and being "caged" forces me to see what needs to be done. We have decorated our bedroom, the kitchen is getting a "makeover" (when it could really do with a refit) and the stairs is also having a lick of paint. Ive been making my mum some new curtains as she has had a new kitchen and bathroom - but that's another story for when you feel your blood pressure needs sending through the roof!! Only my mum could make 2 hours in Dunelm Mills unbearable for me. And so, I decided I need to look forward - and this will keep me going through the next few dark months.

Deep blue, calm seas,

Beach Cafe's and clear blue skies,
Warm Rock pools.

Thats better.
Getting back to the fast approaching festive season, check out this post on Lynne's lovely blog. How I wish I could have a walk around this of a dark evening.

Saturday 21 November 2009

My thoughts this morning are very much with the family of PC Barker - the policeman who lost his life in Cumbria. You send them out to work day and night knowing that they do a very dangerous job, but you never allow yourself to think that they might not come home. God Bless.

Tuesday 17 November 2009

Chez Heartshaped

and Harmony reign once more.
Hormonal teenagers, Menopausal Mother and a hubby who needs a shed to retreat to. What a mix.

Sunday 15 November 2009


This weekend my hubby and kids have made me feel like this.
And so this morning, I took off with the only person still talking to me - myself! to Wentworth Garden Centre .
This place has been saving my sanity for years. Its literally a 3 minute drive, or 20 minute walk and is like an Oasis in the desert to me.
They have their Christmas preparations well under way with a series of festive events planned - including late night openings with a Victorian theme every Wednesday in December.

Sorry about this poor photo - I was trying to film in secret!

They have some great decorations. I sometimes feel personally responsible for the current economic crisis as I am not really a "spender" and so I bought a few of the decorations that have been mass produced in China and shipped all the way to blighty in those marvellous container thingy's to relieve my guilt. If the country goes to the wall now - its not my fault.
Santa (who is appearing here every weekend) was in consultation with a 4 year old. I couldn't tell just by looking if they would be on the naughty or nice list - probably a bit of both!

Outside was looking slightly festive too.

It even has a stable with a real manger for the the real reindeer's.

It has lovely gardens that are free to walk around. I am seeing lots of this as winter takes grips. According to folklore it means a harsh winter. A White Christmas would be great!!!

The gardens have no flowers left, but still plenty of colour. If you enlarge the next photo, you can see the entrance to the Bear Pit.

I noticed some really spectacular fungi. I poked my toe in this shot so you could see how huge this was.

This, by comparison was so tiny.
And this made a circle, that I stood in and made a wish.

I then had a wander through the lovely village.

And called in the wool barn and had a good look around.
Back to the garden centre car park via the church path
Where a combination of blue skies,

wide open spaces and a lovely refreshing breeze,

has made me feel calm once more. Families. Can't live with 'em. can't live without 'em!!!

Saturday 14 November 2009

The Battle of the Bounce

The dancing queens crew came 2nd in a recent "Battle of the Bounce" Competition - thought you might like to see it. Can you spot her?

Thursday 12 November 2009

Revealed at last!!!

I can finally reveal my PIF gifts as all the recipients have now received them.

Firstly, for BumbleBeeCottage I made a tote bag and lavender bag in a Christmas fabric as she has a bit of a thing for Christmas (if you pay her a visit, she appears to have her tree up already!!). I also added a button "B" and some snowball buttons to her bag. I also made her 3 Scottie dogs for her tree and a denim corsage with buttons in the centre.

For A Bun Can Dance I chose a yellowish theme as she also has another blog called I choose Yellow. I love the American "Jail house rock" panels so popped one of these on the pocket panel of her tote bag. I also sent her a daisy corsage and a grey felted one and a bag of yellow buttons.

For Andamento I embellished her tote pocket with white buttons and a few beads. I knitted her a neck warmer for her bike rides (you don't want a flappy scarf for such activities) and also made her a lavender bag and a denim corsage.

I have to say that even though I was short of time, I really enjoyed making something for each of these lovely ladies.

I have a new car - do you like it?

Yes - you've guessed it, I am only joking. I missed out on a trip to London on Saturday. I had organised a "Dad & Lad" excursion for the men to go to the MPH show featuring Top Gear Live at Earls Court. I was going to tag along for a lift and had planned to visit Borough Market (for starters!! ) but something cropped up and I had to stay at home. The car above is a Bugatti Veron and is worth approximately 1.8 million and is owned by an Arab Sheik who says he is prepared to sell it. Judging by the number plate, I think he is pitching this at Jenson Button or Lewis Hamilton!! Anyway, the boys had a great day out.

I used up the last of my birthday money in Waterstones last night. I love the Cool Camping books and have stayed at quite a few featured sites. Great browsing for a very rainy and blustery evening.

Batten down the hatches in St Ives Noelle!!

Sunday 8 November 2009

Plan B

Plan A today was for a very long walk across the moors with a pub lunch at the end, however torrential rain and the constant whinging of a 14 year old boy meant that we switched to Plan B.
Plan B involved calling at Woody's on Ecclesall Road in Sheffield for a Full Monty breakfast sandwich and a quick read of the Sunday papers before deciding that the rain had stopped enough for a quick stroll up to the Botanical Gardens.
We parked on Sharrow Vale Road - which is my favorite area in Sheffield - I'll do you a tour before Christmas. It has some of the greatest little shops, charity shops, Cafes, restaurants etc and has quite a villagey feel about it. We called in here for cupcakes to take home for tea.

We then walked via Ecclesall road and called in here for sweets.
They have the most fabulous little room upstairs called the Butterfly Boudoir where you can partake in hot chocolate, cakes, etc.

We then walked through to the recently restored Victorian Botanical Gardens

We wandered through the Pavilions,

where the exotic plants added much needed colour on this grey day.

I admired a mosaic on the wall.

By this time, the sun had actually popped out briefly and illuminated the lovely Autumnal colours.

The grounds house the fine Victorian bear pit. Apparently, this was closed down after a small child fell in and was mauled to death by the bear.

We recreated this most terrible disaster for you using the whinging 14 year old.

Ive said before that blogging makes me look at things in more detail. The statue of Pan in the gardens has some fantastic detailing around it.

Then it was back to spend the afternoon watching my latest purchase. I hadn't caught this when it was in the cinema and after my recent visit to Versailles, I was interested to watch it. I have to say that it was a delicious feast for the eyes. Beautiful costumes, jewellery, flowers, cakes, colours and scenery. And yes - we ate cake.