Saturday, 23 February 2013

Yay, is Spring finally springing? ...

Yay, Spring has sprung and colour is starting to illuminate gardens and homes. Our home has been lifted by bright yellow daffodils, pink Tulips and hyacinth.


I paid a whole one pound more for our hyacinth as the cheaper versions were almost in full bloom. I am so glad I did. I now get to enjoy the spectacle that is tight green buds starting to turn a shade of delicate lilac as the prettiness inside starts to form. The two tone colours are as beautiful as the flower in full bloom in my eyes.

Whoop whoop for Spring.
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 This weeks ten minute wonder was spent creating a pom pom garland. Wouldn't the world be a dull place without pom pom's? Pom Poms = fun name and to be around, they = fun! Anyways, enough about my love of them ♥
Basically the three ingredients used were pretty thread, a handful of pom poms and a needle (or iggle as my daughter used to call them which has stuck in our house). The iggle and thread went through the middle of the pom poms, two loops were tied at the end of the thread and ~ voila! A pom pom spectacular :)
Wouldn't it be great to combine pom poms and glitter ~ two obsessions in my life. Hum, thinking cap on!!!
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I spent a very enjoyable Saturday being taught professional photography with the lovely Kate Bishop. I have been wanting to learn how to correctly take photos for a long time now and being tutored by someone who's work I admire was very exciting. My head is buzzing with iso, aperture, shutter speed, exposure and back lighting but ... I have learnt soooo much from Kate and could not have chosen a better tutor/course to teach me. Thank you Kate x
Kate can be found here ...
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This week has been Nation Chip Week and all things chip like have been celebrated up and down the UK. A lil chip fact for you: When Charles Dickens was around Britain had fried fish warehouses - shops that sold fish and bread. But a few decades later we discovered how delicious it was to add chips - and our fish and chip shops were born!

Bring on the chips!!!

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I have been a very lucky girlie ~ yippee. My Dad was given a huge pile of magazines to pass onto me , all of which have been collected by their owner over several years and have avoided the recycle bin as they were her favourite copies. They made their way to me as a result of a declutter. These are the most fab present ever, a pile of magazine heaven.  The lovely lady must have very similar taste to me as every copy is full of the most gorgeous interiors. The very first copy I picked up featured this home ...

An interior to die for and a great source of inspiration. I can't wait to steel a few quiet moments to devour each magazine page by page.

However, steeling a few quiet moments is easier said then done in our house. My quiet spot in the sun with my new (to me) magazine was soon invaded!
Firstly by Bessie Bear Puppy Dog and her baby (her baby being her fav teddy that she carries around),

Soon followed by my son and then Dib's the cat,

Grrr ~ my moment in the sun was all too quickly over and I found myself surrounded by a boy, a dog, a stuffed smelly dog and a cat all frolicking around on my magazine !!

Peace and quiet, wherefore art thou.?

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This weeks bargain purchase is ...
This pretty hand painted picture of garden birds, costing a whole £3.00.
It is now looking very in keeping on the wall of my summer shed ~
a very pleasing find indeed :)

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What have I been listening to this week ...
Suzanne Vega ~ Tom's Diner

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Yay of all yays, yippee and a whoop ~ our new chair was delivered yesterday. I love, love, love it and had no idea that heaven is actually chair shaped. Sadly, I'm not able to show you a pic as our hot water tank has split and is leaking hot water so, with lack of space being a bungalow therefore using the airing cupboard as our place to stack a tonne of stuff, our house is in a real state ... but hopefully next week our living room and chair will feature in amongst my ramblings.
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My fav photo of the week ...

It's got to be an image of Spring :)
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And that's brought us full circle, until next Sunday ~ bye y'all xx
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Saturday, 16 February 2013

Bring on the sparkly stuff ...

I started this week missing glitter. I haven't glittered anything for weeks now ~ this wrong had to be righted asap. Bring on the sparkly stuff ...
I mixed PVA glue and glitter and my sole aim was to bling up a dinky glass jar ready to display spring blooms. However, I found I had loads more glitter glue left over, never a bad thing in my opinion. In search of things to be glittered here is what got covered in the stuff ...
My dinky jar and then onto ...
Man, how I lurve magic sparkliness that is the mighty glitter.
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This week my mind has been racing ahead into our future, our grand plan has always been to move to Wales.  When our first kiddywinkle was born we carefully assessed our children's future and our future and drew up a 20 year plan. This being we would stay in Oxfordshire and see our children through education and further education Oxfordshire stylie and when our second child (who was still a twinkle in his Daddy's eye at this point) had left school and was settled into further education we would up sticks and move to Gods country. We are over half way through our 20 year plan and this year sees our next chapter only 9 years away. Wow. Oxfordshire is our home and we love it here but when we reach a certain point in our lives we want to move to our second home, the Gower. Our children have grown up knowing this is our intention and have incorporated Wales into their futures too, looking to Swansea university as a possible next step on their ladder. So anyways, 9 years and counting ~ will my West Oxon World become a South Wales one? Here's hoping :)
Spending every opportunity in Wales since our kiddywinks were babies
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With this week being half term our home has been full of noise, dirt and activity. My son is a chip off the ol' block and when he discovered a tonne of old boxes in the garage his eyes lite up and he said "don't throw those away, I can make something out of them". His bedroom currently resembles an electrical store but big plans are afoot to transform bland boxes into ... armour! Yep, give a kid a cardboard box and the possibilities are endless!

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What have I been listening to this week? This ...
 The Twang ~ two lovers.

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Thursday saw St. Valentine’s Day — a day to declare your affection for that special someone. My special someone has known me long enough to know I don't buy into Valentines, literally. I can't bring myself to waste £3.00 on a card and then further hard earned pennies on anything to buy just to mark the day. My husband is over the moon with my anti-consumerism, it lets him off the hook. No trawling the shops looking for present inspiration for him. Just because we don't spend our money on Valentine paraphernalia though it doesn't mean we don't mark the day. No siree. We had the most delish home cooked meal consisting of prize cuts of meat and a posh side dish. In the absence of two cards I turned to my most fav blog of all time ...

 Alisa Burke's blog makes my heart sing every time I visit and the lovely Alisa did not disappoint on Valentines day. She painted the below for her viewers to download, and download I did ...
I printed off a large copy which, in my opinion is a gorgeous alternative to cards. But, do yeh know, at the end of the day ...
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With the arrival of much welcomed milder weather a lovely long dog walkies was arranged for Saturday avo.
I joined my lovely friends and lil Bess did the same with hers ...
 Four terriers (aka a pack) had soooo much fun playing and turfing anything and everything out of the surrounding hedges, including Deer's ...

This looks like a tranquil shot, what you don't see is a gaggle of terriers in tow giving it some!!!

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 My fav photo of the week ...

 Part of the woods we walked through Saturday avo.

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Until next Sunday, bye y'all xx


Saturday, 9 February 2013

Starting new beginnings ...

Finally, after many hours thought and preparation our Living Room is starting new beginnings. It has been emptied, wood work sanded, picture hooks removed and polyfilla put in the holes, curtains taken down, and walls washed ready to be repainted.
With the room empty it evokes memories of why we fell in love with our lil 1960's bungalow 8 years ago. Double aspect windows, a south facing patio door to let sunny summer light flood in and a working fireplace to cosy around during the long winter months all take centre stage when the room is empty.
(If you have detected Estate Agent lingo within this last sentence well done you, in a former life I did indeed work in an Estate Agents and am fluent in all things double aspect, Jack and Gill style and compact but with all mod cons)!!!

The possibility of a whole new layout is really exciting. The reality is not as exciting because the furniture has been bought specifically for that space over the years and will only fit in the place it come out of. Anyways, a girl can dream for now.
I'd forgotten how difficult it is to decorate with children and animals around. As soon as you start to look busy they get bored and want your time and attention, no matter what their age, size or breed! Before day one of painting was through a tin of gloss paint (no less) had been knocked over, picked up and cleaned/smeared with toilet paper eliminating animals and incriminating one of our children as the culprit?
I have to confess my lovely husband did most of the work as I was still feeling ill with the fluey-type-virus. I came in to give my moral support but ended up flaked out among the dust sheets and paint fumes.
We are still in a state of flux as we are replacing our carpet at the end of the month and we're still awaiting our fab new chair (yay). Pictures are still to go up on the walls and the table needs to be sanded then waxed but there is light at the end of the tunnel, finally ~ yay for that.
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With our living room needing to be emptied the furniture had to go somewhere ~ now that's my kinda patio furniture!!! ;)
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Also on the theme of new beginnings the Lunar New Year starts today (which also marks the start of the Chinese New Year as this falls on the first day of the first month of the Lunar calendar and the year of the Dragon has been taken over by the year of the snake).
For many countries and religions this is a big celebration ~ whoop whoop. Happy new year folks.
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This week saw my friend and I attend our fav auction. This month wasn't full of the usual goodies we have become accustom to (think house clearances must have been a bit thin on the ground). Here is some of what was up for grabs ...
We still managed to bag some bargains though. The first was two boxes of assorted glass for £12.00 which we split the contents and cost between us. This is my half ...
A beautiful cut glass vintage decanter
and these lovely sets of glasses.
This is the remainder that will be donated to the local Guides annual Jumble sale.
We also bagged a totally amazing buy but as it's a present for some very lucky person you'll have to wait a few weeks before I can reveal this special purchase ... tbc, wink wink!!
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Whats going around and around in my lil head this week?
This ...
What a fab blast from the past xx
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What have I discovered this week?
The most amazing Pheasant in the whole wide world! Yep really, daft pheasants can be amazing. Take a look at this beaut ...
He's a Reeves Pheasant and I want one ~ badly. As my Dad is a hunting, shooting, fishing kinda Dad I'm thinking he can source me one from a hedge or something. In the real world they are rare and probably can not just be plucked from a bush, but you know I live in hope.
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What made me smile this week? ...
Living on the edge in good ol' Blighty ;)
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  Until next Sunday, bye y'all xx

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Thoughts have wandered off to warmer days ...

 Unfortunately, this week has seen one of the many flu viruses strike our home. My poor son succumbed the beginning of the week followed by me the end. This means I have been grounded all week, not great for providing material to write about ~ sorry but I'll do my best x

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Finally, this week began with the sight of tarmac and normality.
Bye bye snow.
Whilst being surrounded by snow and winter my thoughts have wandered off to warmer days, namely to the beach.  I have decided that by the end of this year I want to have whiled away sunny days foraging for treasures, my tick list of beach combing treasures to find are:
1) Driftwood
2) Pretty shells
3) A heart shaped stone
4) A sea creature to photograph
5)A piece of glass that has been worn perfectly smooth by the sea.
I can't wait to feel the sand between my toes and the salt wind in my hair, come on Spring ~ don't be shy, we're ready and waiting for you.
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Spring is starting to appear in our patch of the world by way of fresh green shots peering through worn brown autumn leaves ~ yay.
Lil snowdrops have started to appear in pretty clumps ...
and delicate flowering buds bring welcome colour...
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Paintgate! The ongoing saga of choosing paint for our living room took a completely bonkers route this week, resulting in many a trip to Fired Earth being taken and our sanity tested to the max.
In brief:
We decided to go with Fired Earth paint as they are our fav.
We painted over 12 of their tester pots on the wall.
Overwhelmed, we went back to Fired Earth with a mood board (containing colours not the state of our tattered emotions).
The lovely lady emparted a wealth of knowledge and help.
We came away with all of this paint ...
Once home it looked too dark for our room.

It all went back!
After several weeks of angst, over 20 tester pots, a fed up husband and a paint induced head ache a decision has been made.
We are painting it the exact same colour it already is! Yep you did read that right.

We are officially a bonkers West Oxon couple who have injected way too much cash into the tester pot market and have taken paint way too seriously! Total Loons.

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My fav bargain buy to share with you this week is this really pretty vintage cushion cover. Not everyone's cuppa I admit but it's most definitely mine (as my friend describes my taste as granny chic). I bought it two weeks ago at a local charity shop for £1.00, an absolute bargain but not an easy find as it was buried at the bottom of a box which was full of tatty table clothes. Since then I have been searching for the right size feather cushion pad, again not an easy task as the cushion pad (as with most vintage finds) is a non standard size. With said cushion pad now in my mitts, both have been married together making a scrumptious, pretty and unique cushion.
The decoration has been hand sewn on to silk and it must have been a labour of love for some lady who appreciated fine home furnishing. Hopefully the very talented lady who made such a lovely thing will be happy to know that I appreciate and love it as much as her x
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I just wanted to share with y'all the usual scenario when taking photos for a blog post. As soon as I point the camera at something either one of our dogs or cat will show an interest thinking "whats that then, what have you got there"? They will appear from no where and immediately start sniffing, circling and even nibbling the beautiful thing I am trying to photograph.
Below are just a few of this weeks spoils ...
Cat tail in the shot. If the cats there you can bet your bottom dollar puppy dog will soon arrive on the scene. Eating the very flower I'm trying to photograph.
It's like having toddlers all over again!!

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This weeks fav photo has to be this ...

 Simple yet delicate.

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Until next Sunday, bye y'all xx