Monthly Archives: February 2010

We are Living in a Technological World

We headed into Central London yesterday morning and as the train rolled down the tracks I looked around me. Okay, the day wasn’t perfect, there were some rain drops falling, but at this moment the sky was clear, the sun was shining, everything looked lush and green, a few blooms along the way showing that Spring could be on its way…

Everyone in our car section was talking away or sitting silently, concentration furrowing their brow. They weren’t talking to each other though or concentrating on reading a book; they were all, every single one of them with a phone in hand. Even my adorable red-head, was finishing off a game before he tucked it away to talk to me.

I could just feel the bangle, diamond, dripping lace cladded Madonna singing “We are Living in a Material World”, however I am not a Material Girl. I say this with a grain of salt because I know that I am a Blogger. But, I have my limits. Here was a perfectly beautiful day, the train was on time (sometimes a rarity) and not one soul was talking to each other or looking out the window.

Have we become so technologically advanced in this world we feel we don’t need anyone else, that we can shut ourselves off from everyone by hiding behind our technology? Now, I know I could talk the hind legs of a mule, but I am quite happy in silence, just watching, just observing. I hope that I never become so technologically advanced that I forget to look around me, to take in the sights, sounds and smells. To just sit quietly or talking hand-in-hand with my man as we ride on down the rails.

On a happier and less ranting note, Cath Kidston had the gorgeous material I have been after and so I stocked up on some, I have great plans for this: I am making a yoga mat bag, if I can bring myself to bring my scissors anywhere near this sweet pattern.

And we visited a store we have yet to discover, I LOVE this about London, no matter how long I have lived here and how well I know my way around the big streets, the side streets, the cut-throughs, there are still things to discover. We found La Fromagerie and I am in LOVE. Gorgeous cheese, Poilane bread, beautiful white bowls filled with candied fruits, fresh produce.

We slid back the heavy glass barn door to enter the cheese room, it was just everything you would have wanted! Walking in there was heaven! I could have just sat down right there on the floor with my fresh Poilane bread in hand, a knife to smear on goats cheese and lived in happiness for eternity.

(The image used was only an example, I have nothing against Apple, I am a Mac girl through and through, thanks to my husband, I have left the world of PCs and gone to the Dark Side…the images of La Fromagerie are copyright to them, since we forget the camera)

P.S. It must have been a truly foxy kind of week, because while entering Anthropologie and heading upstairs I found this vintage children’s playing card made into a greeting card and he decided he wanted to come home with me, so he did….

Reynard the Fox

At times I am an insomniac, I lay my head down on my pillow and it is as if there is a little electric spark that shoots into me and the wheels in my mind begin to rapidly turn. Last night was one of those nights.

As I lay in bed my sweet redhead asleep beside me I heard an awful screaming noise. So at 2 something in the morning I got up and went to the window. I was afraid it was a muntjac that was caught in the fence across the road. The screeching sounded like one of their calls.

As I peered out into the night, I saw nothing and all was still. But, I caught a glimpse of something in the parking lot across the street, something that just glistened as a a tree sprinkled the light around from the street lamp above.  It was my fox, my Reynard.

I wrote my Master’s thesis on the medieval depictions of Reynard imagery as a teaching/morality tool in both the secular and nonsecular worlds.  I have always had a soft spot for the fellow.  There he was, wandering around, I watched him, he didn’t seem to be in any distress, so I still didn’t know where the noise had come from. I have been lucky enough to see him a few times over the years. I am always struck by the fact that in front of me is something truly wild, strolling down the main street that by day is crowded with people and cars.

He walked to the fence, but the shiny dark green painted bars were too close together for him to slip through, so he jogged gracefully over to the parking lot entrance, I wanted so badly to run downstairs and get my camera, but I couldn’t, I didn’t want to miss him, I was grounded to this spot.

He disappeared for a moment behind some hedges and then suddenly there he was just standing at the entrance, looking majestic, his long tail billowing out from behind him, the wind brushing his fur around.  He looked up; he looked at me, as if he knew all along I had secretly been watching him from my bedroom window. We just watched each other for I am sure what were mere seconds, but felt like long minutes. He was beautiful.

Then, he turned right and headed down deeper into the neighborhood and vanished into the darkness.  I have no pictures to show for it, but that makes it even sweeter, it was our secret, our moment, when the rest of the world was sleeping.

The Hungry Caterpillar

I loved this story when I was little. I continue to give it to friends for their children. I am the book gift giver. I think books are very important, especially instilling the love of reading in a child at an early age. My parents always read to us.

We loved being read this story when we were little, sticking our fingers through the little fruit holes and wiggling them around like we were the tiny caterpillar munching away.

I especially loved the picture where has was fat. He looked adorable.

While looking on Etsy (I need to really work on setting up my shop soon!) I came across Sara Carr, who is a beautiful knitter.

And, as I was scrolling I saw “Kevin the Caterpillar” and I could only think of being little. He is adorable! This alone would make you want children to be able to dress them in little caterpillar scarves! I am crazy, I know. He is just too cute!! Check out her Etsy page, she has a lot of other amazing little animals she has created as well!

There is even a plush Kevin with little knitted caterpillar legs!

Smile

This is what is making me smile this morning:

1)Gorgeous roses scattered around the house and cheering up little corners. The grocery store always has good deals and I am came home on Saturday smiling, arms laden with 3 big bunches of roses all bought for about £7, I was very happy with my little rosebud collection.

2)As my cutie pie stepped outside to head to work, we opened the door to the most gorgeous big fat flakes of SNOW, I have my fingers crossed that it keeps coming down, I wouldn’t mind being snowed in for a few days….

I hope there is something in your morning that makes you smile!

I’m "Cut-Out" for It!

While attending the NEC a few weeks ago, we found the wonderful stand that sold Rob Ryan’s gorgeous cards! I have liked him for awhile now and love that he is doing cards, which are an affordable luxury to the masses.

I have always loved the art of paper cutting and have always liked that Rob Ryan takes this to a whole new level. His cards have such an air of whimsy to them. I used to sit at my kitchen table when I was little, cutting out heart garlands and angel garlands, making snowflakes to dot around my room. I loved the crunch of the scissors through my paper and the never quite knowing what the final product would look like, or if the garland would even stay together, or had it been cut to close to the edge?

Although, I know he uses a knife, I started out with scissors before I upgraded… I would trace a pattern onto my paper and slowly begin to cut away sections of it with my craft knife. Maybe this was why I loved printmaking so much? One flick of the wrist and your image was created by what you left untouched around it, or by you carving that away and leaving your image raised and ready to be inked.

I can’t wait till some of these arrive in my friend’s shop, I want to stick them up in frames. I have a card obsession you see! I collect cards I love. Some have been with me since my days in College and carried on to me obtaining my Master’s pinned into my little board of inspiration, of reflectiveness, of happiness.

I have a box of cards that slowly as I find the right frames or homes for them they go out, one by one, some being changed around with the seasons.  These cards in his new collection are just beautiful! So, I can’t wait to get my hands on them, especially “City Story”, we are eternal newlyweds and this card really appeals to me!

gcr1316citystory
  “We had nothing, we had not much, we had enough, we had everything. This was our city story.”

 

Visit his site to learn more about him.

Hopping Along

Ooh! I know we are now in the second day of Lent and we should be being good, but, I couldn’t help it! Tonight I ran to the grocery store to pick up some bread and he just jumped right into my basket and hopped home with me!

And, he was delicious!

Pancake Tuesday

Today is Pancake Tuesday in England. It wasn’t until I moved here that I celebrated Shrove Tuesday with Pancakes! So this morning we turned these lovely strawberries into this wonderful breakfast! Yuumm!!

I can’t believe that Lent is already upon us! Where has this year gone so far? We are already two months into it and I still feel that Christmas was not that long ago. In my household we not only thought of something to give up but my parents also incorporated something to add on.

So each year we would add on things, like help out at the Soup Kitchen, volunteer for Meals on Wheels during our Easter Break… I have always liked this idea of adding on “good” things during this season and using it as a way to help others, instead of being depressed about what you might have given up. It is something that I now continue in my own home.

So, today we are working on our list of ideas for things we want to do to help others during the Lenten Season. Even if it is just something as simple as a friendly smile and a “Good Morning” (people don’t do that a lot in England and coming from the South where everyone speaks to each other, I find it strange). What can you do to help someone else?

Last Minute Valentine’s

Just case you still need to get your sweetie a Valentine or you need to make some last minute ones for friends the gorgeous A Field Journal Blog has a very sweet Valentine download.

What could be better than a homemade card? They are adorably retro with all the little hearts, very 80’s. You could dress them up with a sprinkling of white, red or pink glitter.

Like me, she also remembers being little and having fond memories of school days’ Valentine parties and secret message exchanges, munching away on heart shaped candies…

Click  below to go to her site and download your Valentine pack to make cards with or use to decorate a bag of sweets for your sweetie pie!

(All images are copyright to A Field Journal Blog)

Owl Be Yours

Just cleaning the house this morning and getting ready for the weekend. I love going into the weekend with the house fresh and ready for anything: relaxing, unexpected guests….

I am also busy wrapping up my Valentine’s surprises today so I can hide them away for the Big DAY.

Cooking has also taken over my kitchen, I am making another batch of cupcakes, the house smells wonderful. The heavenly scent of chocolate is permeating every nook and cranny! Oops, I hear my buzzer time to go and pull the last batch out…..