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Thursday, April 27, 2017

Three on Thursday - quick on the draw with the camera

I'm joining Mary Lou is sharing 3 photos on a theme. 

At this time of year the swans on the river seem to fly about a lot - just a short way up and down the river - and I can never resist whipping out my phone to try to capture a shot.  It really does remind me of the quick draw scenes in traditional western movies. 

Often I don't get my camera active in time, and sometimes I manage a photo but the swan is not in focus.  This week I've been concentrating on capturing them landing and here are 3 that I managed






Monday, April 24, 2017

Memo Monday is blooming

A big wave to you all on a blue sky morning



but don't be deceived into thinking it is warm - weather forecast says we will not make it up to 10C today.  But the blue and all the bloom on the trees and the new leaves do make for a lovely walk whichever direction I go.

I was surprised to notice that I also have some bloom inside - I think my geranium plants enjoyed 6 weeks without central heating while I was on holiday as they seem much healthier this year and one has flowers - this one has citrus smelling leaves


And something new I learnt this weekend?  7 minutes in the microwave renders a whole aubergine soft and cooked and ready to use in a dip - saved putting on the oven for just an aubergine.

Hope you all have a good week with some sunshine

Thursday, April 20, 2017

3 Faces on Thursday

When I was wandering in London on Saturday I had my eyes open for a theme to use in joining Mary Lou in her Thursday invite to share 3 photos with a theme.

I was drawn to the faces on all of the lampposts along the walkway by the river



and as I wandered along I saw a crowd watching people on one of the small areas of sand beside the river - they were creating sculptures in the sand, including this amazing face


and in the Tate Modern gallery I was intrigued by this knitted two faced piece by Louise Bourgeois



Monday, April 17, 2017

Memo Monday - the Tate and a green field

A big wave to you all on a chilly spring morning

An unusual weekend for me.  On Saturday I had 5 hours in London before boarding a train back to Scotland.  I had no plans so decided to stroll along beside the river and then visit an art gallery and food market.

I went to Tate Modern and walked through the 'sculpture' galleries which have a wide range of pieces, including one that you could walk on



and another you walked through


I really enjoyed this installation - a circular concrete area outside the building - periodically a fine mist was sprayed out - like really thick fog in places.  It provided fabulous light for photos and as the ground became wet wonderful reflections too.  I was lucky to see it as it is only there for 2 weeks.

The Borough food market was full of people and  lovely food.  I enjoyed a duck wrap, piece of banana bread and fruit punch and bought some bakery for the train and some hot cross buns to take home



The reason that I was in London on the way to the train was that I had been down to attend my uncle's funeral.  He had chosen to be buried at a green field site - a beautiful area with trees and a pond and lots of wildlife which will become a nature reserve.  Caskets are woven from willow and markers are trees and flat plaques. There is a lovely glass pavilion where the humanist celebrant spoke and where we came back for food after the burial.  This is the first time I've been to a burial rather than cremation or memorial.  Another first for me - there was an official photographer there taking photos of all the people.



It was a beautiful setting and felt totally appropriate for my uncle.  Good to see all of my cousins - a shame that it takes a funeral to bring us all together.

Wishing you all a good week.









Monday, April 10, 2017

Memo Monday - what is the collective noun for sloths?

A big wave to you all as I sit in a nice patch of sun having just put my washing out on the line to dry - a sure sign of spring.

This weekend I did something not exactly new but I last did it in 1981 - met up with 2 school friends and we worked out that was the last time the 3 of us were together - we had each seen each other in pairs since.  Anyone eavesdropping as we chatted and joked would have thought we last saw each other last month - seems a pattern of friendly chat created through 5 years or more of seeing each other everyday at school is easily reignited 30+ years on. 

Saturday morning before I met them, I was at my regular crochet, cake and chat group and showing off my latest make

cute finger sloths.

One of the ladies in our group is planning a craft stall to raise money for charity and I agreed to make her plenty of sloths to sell - which led us to wonder what is the collective noun for sloths.  Google didn't have an answer - we thought a snooze would be appropriate - or to be contrary an excitement.  Anyone know the answer?

Wishing you all a good week

Monday, April 3, 2017

Monday memo - birthday sushi

A big wave to you all on an April morning with a nice blue sky and sun shining on all the flowers in my garden.

Something new this weekend was learning to make sushi - my sister's Japanese friend brought all the stuff we need and cooked up the rice so that we could all make lots of delicious sushi to celebrate my Mum's birthday.  Lots of fun learning and making together and, of course, eating it all afterwards.


And an app recommendation - photoscan - as the name suggests it scans a photo and does it really well and is easy to use.  Very handy for taking a photo quality copy of an old photo or any image that you want to have digitally - and it is free.

wishing you all a good week

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Three on Thursday calm waters

Thursday morning means I'm joining Mary-Lou in her Thursday meme taking three photos with a common theme.  My theme this week is loosely that all were taken on the same walk - on Monday - but also they are all examples of me loving how the windless day and sun and fog over the land on the horizon were combining to give a lovely almost abstract  look and good reflections





Monday, March 27, 2017

Monday mail memo

A big sunny wave to you all on a blue sky Monday morning. 

The local yarn bombers have been busy with a lovely display of flower panels for Mother's Day and they have added some new pieces to the ones they displayed last year


lovely to see lots of people stopping to look at them and take photos.

I actually received an interesting package in the mail this week

a lego like set with a  base tile that can stick to the wall and clever pieces designed to allow you to construct hooks and a small shelf and also to make pictures - as shown on the packaging.  I backed this on Kickstarter as it looks both fun and useful

Hope you all have a great week with some blue skies

Thursday, March 23, 2017

3 yellow on Thursday

I'm  joining Mary-Lou with her meme choosing three pictures with a theme.  I've noticed on my walks how yellow is the dominant colour for flowers at the moment: daffodils, gorse and the crop of rapeseed in the fields






Thanks to Mary-Lou for the prompt to keep my eyes open during the week so I can share 3 on Thursday

Monday, March 20, 2017

Memo Monday - empty benches

A big wave to you all on the spring equinox - for the next six months we have more hours of  light than dark each day - sounds good to me.

I enjoyed a full afternoon of rugby on Saturday - 3 test matches in a row with plenty of drama.  End of the 6 nations for this year so now I have to wait a few months for more test matches but I will not be totally deprived as I've discovered that many of the super rugby games from NZ are available on YouTube within a few days of being played - there really seems to be no end to the treasures available there.

Over the weekend I was looking through my photos from my NZ trip, deciding on 6 to print big for my wall.  These are 2 that I chose - I do like to take photos of empty benches with a view



both are North Island beaches with fabulous soft sand.

Wishing you all a great week.


Monday, March 13, 2017

Memorandum Monday spring is sprung

A big spring wave to you all.  On a lovely Sunday walk I was pleased to see so many signs of spring growth (and a picturesque remnant of last year) and I've noticed that the geese and swan couples on the river are staking out their nesting spaces.  Definitely feels like spring



During the week I finished the two crafting projects that I shared last Monday


a collection of flowers made with my 3D pen (it extrudes plastic that sets fast) - I just need to decide how to display them

and my crochet dragon



I'm very pleased with how the variegated yarn worked for this project.

I also made something for the first time with the tiny 1.5mm hook that Santa gave me - and 4ply cotton yarn.  I was inspired by this decorative piece as I browsed through my new magazine and made it that afternoon


that is a button in the centre - good bit of stash bashing.

Wishing you all a good week - plenty more crochet projects jostling for my attention and the weather forecast promises dry weather so I should be able to find more signs of spring.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Memoranum Monday gets crafty

An extra big wave to everyone after all those weeks away.  My sleeping patterns are back to normal although I always find my digestive system takes longer to adjust to the 12 hour time difference.

I was pleased to open up the box where I had packed away all my crafting projects before I went off - and very pleased that I had taken the time to note where I was at on the pattern for each item.  Nice to sit on the sofa in some sunshine and work on my crochet dragon


I also had a play with my 3D pen working on an idea I'd had to make a batch of basic flowers - pleased that the basic idea works and working on refinements and deciding what I'll do with them


the stone and button are there because I used them to help create the depth when I made the petals

Wishing you all a good week with time for creative endeavours


Saturday, March 4, 2017

Hobart

Home again and caught up on sleep and unpacked. 

My last stop was to Hobart in Tasmania - the only Australian state I had not previously visited.  Pleased to see and smell  some familiar Australian gum trees (that smell evokes Australia for me)


The two things that I associate with Tasmania are fabulous produce and a sorry convict history and I sampled both in my short stay.

Sunday morning Hobart hosts a fabulous farmers' market where everything really is sold by the producers - I bought cherries fresh from the trees and had some local honey to take home and several tasty baked items.  I passed on the freshly bbqed octopus tentacles


I visited the site of the women convict 'factory' (what they called the places the convicts were held and put to work).  Half of all of the women convicts sent to Australia were sent to Tasmania.  The site shows the size of the yards and cells and has a growing collection of related items.  The stark walls were in total contrast to the beautiful setting and blue sky


An interesting city and very easy to navigate with its lovely harbour and grid layout.  Every day I of my visit there was a different massive cruise ship in the harbour - I've been interested on my travels to see so many cruise ships in Auckland, Wellington, Sydney and Hobart - clearly a boom industry.


and a fitting end to my travels - another wonderful sunset.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Eagles and ferries



Flying out of Wellington airport I had one last Middle Earth treat
Smaug is behind you when you drop your bags and eagles soar over the cafe / waiting area
Just 48 hours in Sydney and I decided to take to the ferries for my full day there. I have visited several times before and been to the key attractions. For me the harbour setting is what makes Sydney unique and I like being on a boat. A day of public transport is capped at A$15 so a bargain day of enjoying the city without getting worn out.  





One more stop before I head home.


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Even more relaxation

another fabulous view with my breakfast on Sunday staying with friends in their batch (holiday cottage) in the Marlborough Sounds - a short 15 minutes plane hope from Wellington. 

It rained on and off all Saturday but on Sunday the morning low cloud burnt off and the afternoon was warm enough for a leisurely swim at high tide in the bay at the bottom of the garden 
Lovely to be surrounded by native plants on all sides with plenty of birds too and the constant sound of Cicadas 

We spent the damp Saturday afternoon on some crafting as I taught my friend the traditional Maori craft of flax weaving  - lovelyto feel my physical memory kick in as I handled the flax and remembered all the steps even though I haven't done any flax weaving for over 6 years



Friday, February 17, 2017

Week in Wellington

Another fabulous view from my Wellington friends' house 
I've enjoyed the full range of weather options from clear sky sunshine to gale force winds through rain and cloudy skies.

I've enjoyed a lantern festival and meals with friends and walks along the beach

And the wonders in the Weta workshop tour - the made all the sets, costumes and props for Lord of the rings and the hobbit - amazing attention to detail and appreciation of craft 


And clothes shopping and museums and glorious sunsets 

And this delicious ice-cream 
Looks like a scoop of mud but tastes of Licorice 

A great varied week in Wellington with plans for a relaxed weekend out of town. Hope you all have a great weekend.