Saturday, 30 August 2014

Yarndale Shout Out!

Hello from the blogging stranger over here at PJ mansions! I've just had a reminder from Angel Jem about meeting up at Yarndale - something I had mentioned back here - and was wondering if there are any takers. I think I'm going to try and get there on the Saturday so how about we all meet up at the main entrance at 1pm? What do you think? Any other ideas would be greatly appreciated!

Hope you are all okay out there - I have been lurking (ooh dear that does sound spooky) but haven't quite got my blogging act together again yet!

So with a meet up in mind I'll leave you with the words of Brian Ferry - 
'Let's get together
Come on come on let's get together
I've made a mouse and the tail is made of leather.'
- at least that's how I think it goes.


Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Enchanted Enid.

Before I embark on my newest witter can I just say a heartfelt thank you from mum and myself for the lovely comments left on my last post. She's had a 'bit of a time' of it lately but the pacemaker is now in and we are expecting cartwheels in no time at all. 

Now this post could be divisive. I'm aware that Enid Blyton isn't everybody's cup of tea and from recent evidence she probably isn't someone who I would want to have met but - oh - those books of hers!

From the earliest age I always had my nose in a book but as I try to remember which ones they all come up Enid. 

My favourite had to be this one.

Never mind the dandy outfits the fact was there was a wood that was inhabited by fairy folk, and - this was the best bit - the animals talked! 

A talking bunny - every eight year old girls dream?

Reading that bit back I realise I've used the word 'fact' there - to me this place was real!

The wood was home to a magical tree that transported the children to faraway lands where adventures were waiting. Some lands were more desirable than others. For example in Birthday Land you just had to wish for something and it would appear, whereas Dame Slap's school was a terrifying place. But to me the tree itself was as magical as the lands. You could travel down Moonface's slide that ran from top to bottom, or sit on a branch and share fresh home made biscuits with Silky the fairy.

I'm going to share something with you now that I don't condone - in fact it's something I've railed against all my adult life - but look what I did ...

... I wrote all over the inside cover! Several times it seems!! Oh dear. But it was my 'best book' and obviously I had to mark that in some way! I even marked the contents page each time a chapter was read.

I don't think Enid would have approved.

The back covers of these books had a tempting array of 'rewards' which I used to pore over and covet.

From fairy woods I moved on to a slightly more 'grown up' version with 'The Children of Cherry Tree Farm'.

Following the same premise a city dwelling family go to stay with their country relations and soon find that a whole host of adventures await in the woods. In a timely situation that we probably wouldn't conceive of in this day and age, the children befriend a local wild man, Tammylan, who then teaches them about the local flora and fauna.

Alongside them I also learned. I remember reading that a very comfortable bed could be made out of moss and heather, and that a 'slow worm' was neither slow nor a worm but actually a legless lizard! In the days before t'internet Enid provided valuable information to a young nature lover like myself.

I continued with 'The Naughtiest Girl series followed by Malory Towers. Tales of independent young gals who sorted out right from wrong at their respective boarding schools. 

Then came the Famous Five and, my preferred crime solving gang, the Secret Seven. Alongside these were The Put-Em-Rights and The Mystery of ... series. 

Most of Enid's tales were based around children. They seemed to exist in a separate world to the adults (sadly something which her own children experienced only too well) but with strength of character and camaraderie anything was possible. As a young girl this was perfect escapism and encapsulated an innocence that has seemingly diminished in our technical age. (Although saying that I'd still like to think there were fairy folk at the bottom of the garden!)

I'm going to return to the talking animals now and leave you with a final word from Topsy.


You can find out more about the books here, and more about Enid herself here.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Catch up!

You'd think that my excuse for being absent for such a long time might be really interesting. Perhaps I've been hiking the Himalayas or rescuing rare sloths from the forests of Peru. In that case I must apologise. Life at the moment has just quietly been slipping by and before you know where you are it's the middle of August. 

Summer holidays always mean particular things for us. All year we'll discuss things that might need doing in the house and happily put it on our 'to do in the holidays' list. This allows us to feel like we are actually addressing certain issues in a methodical manner without actually lifting a finger. Needless to say the list is never finished. But we have been busy decorating. Want to see?

This is my favourite bit at the moment. Or at least it was until Mum told me it was the same colour as a double yellow line. And yes the picture is a bit dark and a bit wonky but I was trying to focus whilst sitting on the piano. Poor Jessie dog didn't know what was happening. I suppose I should have closed the lid first.
I don't have a photo of our living room but that's now a lovely sash red - strangely making me look forward to cold Winter days when we can light candles and have a crackling fire! And then there's the perennial glossing - yawwwwwwwwwwwwn.

Back to Summer!

We've had a fair few day trips. Last week we visited Biddulph Grange in a vain attempt to actually make use of our National Trust membership. It was beautiful. 

This bit however is always my favourite.

Although feeding the fish was a close second!

We also enjoyed a trip to Ludlow which took us through the most stunning Shropshire scenery. I thought of  the lovely Dorothy as we passed the turn for Blists Hill. We bought sweet peas from the market - aaaaah the fragrance - frequented the charity shops (for that is the law), and wandered along past the castle to the river. I wish I could show you the pictures but no - they are stuck on my little iPad thing and I haven't got a clue how to get them off. They are very nice though! 

 Back home the obligatory holiday jigsaw is taking up the kitchen table.

Anyone else enjoy a good jigsaw? Mr K is baffled by them and can not understand why you would spend so much time putting something together that ultimately gets taken apart again!

 And crochet? Ah yes there has been a little of that. Inspired by Jennifer I decided to make a start on the Flowers in the Snow blanket. Now bear in mind that my half finished king size ripple is approaching it's third birthday you might have thought that I would concentrate my efforts on getting that finished but no - not me - I delved into my stash and happily started crocheting little round flower things.

Only one hundred and fifty to go!

Other than that there isn't much more to report. Poor old mum hasn't been too well and is waiting for a pacemaker, and poor old Jessie dog is still struggling with her arthritis. But we're lucky - some of the news stories of late serve to prove that.

So there we go. An uneventful catch up perhaps but a catch up nonetheless!
Hopefully next time there might be something more exciting to report.

In the mean time - what would you do with this marrow?