20 July 2011

W.I.P. - Work In Progress

This one is practically a "guess what it is" not so much because it's a bad photo (I console myself) but because it's a photo of a door painted black. It's my new kitchen blackboard.

I have so many many "projects" begun and ideas streaming through my head that I'm now wantonly starting new projects before completing old ones. I still have the bedroom door panels to paint but that requires copious stirring of the paint and a fair amount of surface preparation (so dull). So instead I'm doing an easier and more enjoyable quickie in the shape of creating a blackboard on my cleaning cupboard. Today is the day for coat number two. Keep your fingers crossed that I don't get completely covered in paint this time around because I have a lunch date to keep with my husband.

In other news, I've just found out that my oldest friend (from nursery school days) is finally on Facebook. Hooray for the internet for keeping me up to date with the people in my world. 

18 July 2011

My new sweet addiction

I haven't eaten these for years and years but today I bought a bag for the jar on my husband's desk.
They are really sweet, really chewy, really fruity and really yummy. Five stars for Beacon sweets for keeping up the tradition.

15 July 2011

Another Awesome Tea Party

Lovely, lovely, Pippa at The Thrift Collection is having a tea party on the 27th August. And she says: "If you've got any unwanted clothes, accessories, shoes, bags and general awesome stuff you'd like to get rid of, bring it to the tea party and we'll buy it off you then and there!"

So you get to get rid of your unwanted goodies and use the cash to buy some awesome stylish vintage clothes. And she's got cool clothes for girls and guys. Way to go, Pippa!

See you there - and if you're not a Durbanite, let your Durbanite friends know!

12 July 2011

Owl imprint from BBC news

From BBC News, this almost perfect imprint of an owl that bumped into a glass window. It is presumed that the owl survived the impact because it could not be found in the area outside the window.
The silhouette was left by the bird's powder down - a substance protecting growing feathers

11 July 2011

Copyright Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew

In the shop at Kew, they had carnivorous plants for sale. I would have loved to buy some but of course there are customs restrictions on bringing plants into South Africa. What I really enjoyed was this sign on the shelf in front of them. So much more delightful to read than the cliched "lovely to look at, delightful to hold, should I be broken, consider me sold".
Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew: sign in front of carnivorous plants in the shop

10 July 2011

Where WAS sanehelen?

Mystery house name
On 31 May I posted a question with this photo. The answer was that I was on holiday in the UK, staying near Kew Gardens. This sign was just on the gateway of a house that we passed on the way to the post office. 

Our trip took us to London (the flat in Kew Gardens), Suffolk (postcard-perfect, rural England), Whitby (also postcard-perfect, a seaside town), York (where everything is within walking distance, and old and new are side-by-side) and back to London. There were many times that I had to pinch myself to check I wasn't dreaming. 
Scrumptious pie in Kew

Near the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew was the most wonderful café that served tea and scones and delicious lunches as well (just look at the photo of the pie I had for lunch one day). The area around Kew Gardens is so beautiful and restful. The streets are tree-lined and there are loads of restaurants and interesting shops. The Kew Bookshop took up a lot of our time. There are so many bookshops in the UK and as a book-lover and newby-writer, spending time in bookshops is a favourite pastime of mine.

Narrow side-street in York

In York I spent some time just wandering around the streets of the city. It is one of the few walled cities and the city centre is a meandering maze of streets which cross over two rivers. 

07 July 2011

Learned something good today

The i heart market is on this Saturday, 9th July, just at a different venue (see right).  I feel like it has been arranged just for me because I wasn't home on the 2nd of July and thought I was going to miss this month's market. Yippee!

06 July 2011

Make do and mend

Ever since I was given my first cross stitch kit, I've loved sitting quietly and stitching. I bought this kit at Hampton Court Palace where the Royal School of Needlework (who did the lace for Catherine Middleton's wedding dress) is located. 

I'm itching to get started on the kit but first I had to do a little bit of housework. Because I love stitching, I don't mind patching things that need to be given a little extra lease on life. My stitching is very mediocre but I do enjoy it. I have to be very careful darning socks though because I tend to make a lump in the sock that is worse than having the hole!

An old friend once told me that she enjoyed making bead necklaces because she found it relaxing. So on the strength of that I bought my own beading kit but found that it wasn't so relaxing for me. Doing cross stitch or mending does hit the right spot for relaxation for me so I guess it's different strokes for different folks.
These are my stitching housework bits and bobs. I had to patch two bags (left, and below left) and while I was away I had to add some extra velcro onto my bag (right) to keep it closed more easily.

04 July 2011

Back at home (and so glad to be here).

Well, we are back at home and I am so relieved to be here. There really is (as Dorothy said) "no place like home". We had a truly wonderful holiday but to be back in my own bedroom and my own kitchen with familiar possessions and kitchen utensils is like a holiday in itself. The sense of comfort from what is familiar is impossible to achieve anywhere else but at home.