We’re near the end of April and though the weather is definitely more springlike, it’s still got plenty of wintry bite. Irish weather, eh?! yesterday we had a fierce hailstorm. The TV weather forecasters call such showers of hail followed by rain with cold north winds ‘ Wintry Micks’ – okay, not really. Wintry Mix. And, this morning, following a very cold night, there was ice on the car. How very rude.
I could hear the wind last night and pulled the quilt around my ears (it’s a feather and down and felt like a warm cloud… ahhhh) to shut out the windy squirls and skirls. It could have been the bagpipes at Shrimpies place on Downton though.
I’m reading a collection of Victorian ghost stories and came across the following words: ‘The house was subject to many external annoyances’, and thought it very apropos. Of all the stories in the collection, my favourite by far is one called ‘Playmates’ by A. M. Burrage. It’s a very sweet story about invisible playmates who turn out to be ghosts and not imaginary friends conjured up by a lonely child.
Did you have any imaginary friends? I had ‘The Germans’ that I, apparently, chattered and played with for a very long time.
This month’s book club selection is David Baldacci’s ‘The Guilty’ which I’ve yet to start. I got sidetracked by various other books that jumped into my library bag, including Sophie Dahl’s ‘The Man With the Dancing Eyes’ which charmed me enormously. It’s a short book that you would read in half an hour or so but is a delight, especially as each page has beautiful illustrations by Annie Morris. Gorgeous little book.
Home renovation is still ongoing. We basically have only weekends and evenings to devote to it so progress isn’t exactly zipping long. Still, progress is being made and the downstairs bathroom is nearly finished. Then it’s time to look at the sewing room. Then we’ll be looking to install the new fire surround and mirror in the living room. A big job. Redecoration and new flooring. We’re trying to work to a one-room-a-month schedule so we’ll see how it goes.
The sewing room is obviously one of my favourite places but I get so fed up vacking in there. Lint, thread and fibres, those cardinals of carpet crap, cling like cooked eggy bits in a poacher. We’ve decided that the carpet needs to go and we’re putting down laminate flooring which will make clearing up the bits an absolute doddle.
The lounge still has a machine on the dining table, the sewing room still being full of stuff to be organised, so am happy to say that my sewing passion can still be indulged. Last night I dropped the dog feeds and had a play with some free motion sewing to appliqué a spring hare onto grey linen. Everything else is hand-stitched and overlaid on fine cream gauzey linen to try to create a naive, primitive effect. I like the end result and hope to make a cushion from some charcoal coloured tweed and sew it onto that.
A lavender bird came singing into spring as well. This one is slightly different to the Samsara birds that I usually make. The top semi-circle is stitched on over the filled semi-circle giving a padded edge. The photo doesn’t show it very clearly but IRL it looks quite cute. My lavender is nearly all gone so about time to get another kilo from Blackadder via Amazon. Can’t remember how much the last kilo was but it was very reasonable. I do freshen it with pure lavender oil from time to time as it takes a while to get through a kilo of dried lavender and it naturally loses its scent a little.
Here is the Lavender Birdle looking perky hanging from a decorative (well, it is now) coffee pot.
Signs of spring are definitely here. These two planters are resplendent with daisies and purple pansies. Buds are appearing everywhere and the hydrangeas are full of promise to be as blowsy, ostentatious and outrageously colourful again as they have been in previous years.
I was looking for a USB and couldn’t find my regular one so dug this What-O Gent USB out of the drawers. He’s quite a splendid chap and when I got him, around 6 years or so ago, his 2GB was fairly respectable. Not any more, as you know! These days, you need a capacity of around 64Gb to command techy ‘respect’. I confess, his 2Gb was more than I needed and the only large capacity device I really need is my back up drive, a 2 TB bad boy . No doubt, Moore’s Law with its predictions of exponential growth, will see this device as somewhat lame and lacking in a year or two. Until then, it does me.
Well, back to the other stuff that must be done today. Have happy thoughts and a good day.