Sunday, 19 May 2013

A Buddha that brings fertility? ...

Now we are well into the month of May car boot sales are in full swing across the land. Yay and thank goodness for that! With the extra long cold winter we've had the few booties that have continued through out the year have been deserted and the ones that started in Spring haven't really sprung. Bring on the milder, drier weather and other peoples tat, that's what I say!

Here lies the problem!

 My husband, and the keeper of sanity in our home was ready for this years season of booties and when I came home from my first trip of this year and wandered through the door with my plastic bag of goodies he sprang out of no where and administered the surprise technique (that gets me every time). "Lets see what you've bought"? "Did you stick to the list"? "OMG, how much stuff have you got in those bags"? were some of the questions fired at me. Ahhh, what list, damn I told him I'd written a list of necessities, grrr where can I hide the new smoothie maker, quick, eeeek ~ was what was running through my mind. Damn. He was on it ~ the new season of booties and a bargain obsessed wife! He was not gonna take this matter lightly!!!
So, the upshot of it is I have been allocated £5.00 a week out of the monthly budget to spend on 'second hand stuff'. Main reason being, my two bags of bits and bobs contained the most random selection of other people second hand cast offs imaginable from a juicer to a Buddha to a coat. Even more stuff to find space for in our stuffed to bulging home. My husbands rationale for this £5.00 budget is that it will keep the volume of stuff down to a minimum, meaning that come the end of Summer he won't have a garage and shed full of my bootie bargains. Very wise. This was what part of the garage looked like last year ...

However with that said the juicer has been juicing non stop since bringing it home. The lovely lady sold it me for £3.00, cheaper than buying a bottle of squash fruit, and we have spun to a pulp all manner of fruit and veg. Carrot and apple, apple and mango and banana and almonds are our favs so far. My son however is  more interested in pilfering various items from our fridge and giving them a quick whizz just for the satisfaction of mushing something up. The amount of food that has lost a side, slice of sprig this week is mind boggling!

Also, my lovely Buddha sits happily in our kitchen window. If anything he is a reminder to start that diet I keep meaning to be on! The lady I bought it from said that he meant something and if I rubbed his tummy then that 'something' (she'd forgotten what kind of luck this one brought)would come my way. I wandered off clutching him hoping and praying I hadn't just bought the Buddha that brings fertility to its owner!!!

 The current climate is not good for our boot sales:
I have already noticed this year that the common or garden boot sale is not the same as in previous years. As this blooming recession drags itself into get another year people are looking for:
Ways to bring more money into the home.
Ways to save spending more money.
These two put together around a field, open car boots and trestle tables makes for stalemate throughout West Oxfordshire.
Sellers need a decent price for their things and buyers are looking for a real bargain. Lots of sellers, lots or buyers but of late hardly any money changing hands. This will very soon result in sellers deciding that the £8.00 pitch fee just isn't worth paying when they are left with £15 odd pounds for all of their time and effort and a boot load of stuff to take home again. Such a shame if this does happen to our booties. I must make a sign saying "save our boot sales" and go about waving it in an angrily!!
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My fav photos taken this week are these shadowy delights ...
I found this delicate lil lantern blowing around our garden, it now lives in our kitchen window looking lovely.

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So our new mirror is up ~ yay, (previous post here)

I'm really pleased with it. When your sat in a large British Legion hall surrounded by over 500 lots for sale you can start to doubt your judgement on ...
Size: Everything looks small in such a big room.
Condition: It's possible but very tricky to start picking things up, turning them over and inspecting their every detail before the sale begins, especially large items. What you think is in OK nick can hide some nasties once the hammer is down and the thing is yours
 (I can't begin to tell you how many times I've been caught out on this one).
Really liking it: It can be love at first sight but when it's being held up by the porter and bidding is well underway that nagging doubt sneaks in, did I like it? Do I like it? Why did I mark it in the catalogue? Eeek hammers almost down am I gonna bid?
Anyways, this mirror has proved all good and my instinct didn't let me down.
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OMG!! How cold has it been this week? Brrrr.
The only sign that it really is the middle of May and not some old manky winter month is fields scattered with lil lambs ...

and hedgerows in full bloom.
Grrr, sorry about the blacked out bits on these photos. I have a new phone and have spent way too much time trying to work the damn thing. I am beyond caring about random wrongness for the time being!!

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Just wanted a share with you a pic of my fav lil concession within The Old Flighthouse. I love it! I know it's very stereotypical English but still, how I would love to snuggle down under a tartan throw and a wee dram in there.

(rubbish photo, blame the new phone).
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Anyways, until next Sunday ... bye y'all xx

Friday, 17 May 2013

Rain showers ...

Rain showers and grey skies,
Depressing, drab, dull, wet, annoying, blah!
I have been forced to enjoy our new and improved patio area from behind the window this week with the downpour of intermittent showers.
In order to get a good view of my pots and flowers before they wilt and wither away I have taken up residence on the floor perched uncomfortably on a cushion.
I'm on the verge of Googling "a decent summer for a change" and in desperation doing some kinda strange ritual. Grrr ~ where is our summer?  #stamps foot
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I have been listening to this all week. It is sooooooo beautiful and deserves your click and ear time. Enjoy xx
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As soon as a dry spell came our way we fled the house and headed straight for the most beautiful wooded area known to man.
Sadly, these photos are too dark as grey skies above meant light was scarce.
A heavenly carpet of Bluebells to make the soul sing.
Sadly, the skies continued to darkened and all too soon our time was cut short.
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Very boring topic alert!
I am going to tell you about my new washing line, whats that you say? "no, it's too boring ~ move on"!  Nope, I insist that you hear all about it!
I have a new washing line ~ hurrah.
After only ever having a twizzily around rotary one we decided to go all traditional this time. The total cost of £1.99 all in had some sway on the matter, 2 free acrow props and wire costing £1.99 was the real reason behind ditching rotaries.
These remind me of the lines you see in gardens with a row of old ladies pants and a few souvenir tea towels pegged out.
Still, at a cost of £1.99 we will now join the club and festoon our garden with pants, etc ~ it'll be like bunting just undercracker stylie!
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 Take ... a retro pot for 50p
a couple of sprigs of blossom
Add the two together and ... voila
50p's worth of gorgeousness
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My fav photos taken this week ...
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Squeezing every last drop of dry fine weather out of this week, this is the view from our local dog walk along the river Windrush ...
Oh how we're making every ray of sunshine count so far this year!!
(you may have gleaned by now that I am becoming more and more dissatisfied with the sun/rain's effort so far this year ~ grrr)
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Well that's it for this week ... I'm off to paint my face in some garish colours and sacrifice something to the sun
(hum, what would the sun want? #baffled)?
Anyways, until next Sunday bye y'all xx

Sunday, 12 May 2013

So ... art? ...


I have had art on my mind this week. My daughter would like to pursue her dream career in which art is the main focus, in order to do so I have been trying to help her work towards being in a position to build a portfolio and obtain an apprenticeship for when she leaves school. This is the start of a very long journey for her and I want to ensure she has excellent foundations on which to start building her dream upon. Part of this entails having one to one lessons with a fantastic and talented artist who will teach her the fundamental basic skills of art. The first lesson was this week and they studied perspective.  With so much talk of art flowing through our house of late I have started to really notice the art we have dotted around our home. I have gradually added pictures to our wall as and when I've come across them or have been drawn but it has never struck me how much art is a big part our of home until now. I have just wandered around a few rooms and taken a few snaps to show you what I mean ...

My sons study of a chair, drawn when he was 6 years old.

A drawing I did for my Grandma when I was 4 years old.
This is my daughters style of drawing people when she was 7 years old. She would only draw very angular shapes and features which annoyed her teachers but demonstrated she had her own individual style at an early age.
A drawing I did of our lovely dog Maisey. I am never happy with my drawings so hardly ever put pencil to paper, that's one of the downfalls of being a perfectionist.
My brother-in-laws artistic photography.
A snippet of the art scattered around my daughters wall.
A drawing I did for my daughter as a birthday present for her 8th birthday. I wanted to demonstrate to her that drawing something that is special and of meaning to the recipient is one of the most thoughtful and meaningful presents anyone can give and part of you remains within that piece of art for ever. Little did I know this one, single drawing now symbolises her chosen path in life.
Happily, other peoples original art also adorns our home
and finally I have taken these pics of drawings scattered under books and hair products in my daughters bedroom ~ practise drawings as she calls them and ones she draws whilst on car journeys. She wouldn't thank me for showing these as they are not her fav's but the drawings she classes as her better ones and the ones she takes her time over are in her new portfolio.
So as you can see, this is just a small insight into how art plays a large part in our lives I just hadn't really noticed until now.
Art exhibitions are always a fav too, I love to spend the day with my fab friend Tina trawling the Tate Modern and V&A, etc. We have been to countless art exhibitions over the years and my personal favs have been Tracey Emin's and Francis Bacon's as the most memorable. Their life is expressed in their art like no other I have seen.
A piece of art I would love to own? Anything (no matter how big or small) by Sam Branton. I keep dreaming that one day I'll own and cherish a lil something by him.
So ... art! I'm thinking of having lessons myself now as watching my daughter learn is making me wanna pick up a pencil!!
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Whilst shopping in our local market town this week we set a family challenge:
Girls to find the prettiest thing for sale in the 99p shop
Boys to find the ugliest thing for sale in the 99p shop.
The 99p shop all of a sudden became fun.

For the prettiest my daughter and I chose these two and I have to say I was rather tempted with the glittery star spokey dokeys. There was a moment when I did actually wonder if I could get away with putting them on my bike? Anyways, they were overlooked for Hello Kitty plasters instead!
For the ugliest my husband and son chose a Brucie mask and pickled gherkins!!!
Oh what fun was had in the 99p shop :D
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For the love of Tulips <3
I was lucky enough to purchase 5 stems of homegrown fringed Tulips recently. They are such unique flowers and I never tire of their ever changing beauty.
I took some photos for them and was really pleased with how they came out ...
 The orange ones are my fav.
Here are some on display in the farm shop where I purchased mine from ...
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I have fallen head over heels in love with this amazing wallpaper
It comes in two colourways, charcoal and pale grey ... well, it would just have to be hounds in grey for me!
With my love of Greyhounds (bordering on a slight obsession with the amount I have re-homed over the years) mixed with my love of furnishings is a match made in heaven. Oh how I would love just one roll to adorn a bit of my home ~ big sigh. Dream on!
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With all of the strong winds we've had the end of this week I came across a sight that made me feel really sad on Friday. It was the most beautiful, perfect, snugly teeny tiny nest laid in the road along a lane in our village.
 I was immediately filled with sadness, this work of art lovingly and expertly created with a view to housing an impending family had been ripped out and lay broken on a road.  Before a car came along and ground it into the tarmac I scooped it up and looked to see where it could have possibly come from. A needle in a hedgestack! I decided to bring it home ~ this still racks me with guilt.
It is such a beautiful lil thing and the attention to detail making a snugly feather lined interior melts my heart. I feel so, so sorry for the lovely owners of this tiny bundle of perfection and I really hope some good has come of them being made homeless. There have not been any eggs inside and hopefully they will re-build another gorgeous home but in a more secure location in which to raise their lil family.
(the wilting petals from my posh tulips have not gone to waste and surround this lil home)
x x
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After being battered with such stormy weather we were rewarded with such a stunning skyline ...
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This weekend saw a sale at our fav auction house. My friend and I were very restrained and came away with one purchase each. I have to say I am slightly envious of my friends purchase ~ a pair of framed 1700's ornithological hand coloured engravings. Subtle, muted colours with that 'genuine, authentic aged to perfection look'. My purchase wasn't too shabby though, a black and gilded framed mirror circa 1800's. The frame is original but the mirror inside is modern, with a price defo not to be sniffed at ~ £23.80 ~ who is worried, not me!
It needs a clean but I'll have to go steady on the harsh cleaners as it's quite fragile in places (I'll have to curb the OCD tendencies)!!
And, once clean, this is where it will eventually live ...
This mirror above was bought from Marks and Spencer's for a tidy sum of money, this was before the I had ever stepped into an Auction sale room and had no clue what bargain'tastic delights await inside.
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 Anyways that's it for this week folks, until next Sunday ~ bye y'all.