Some Photos..

A Russian Squirrel - by Natalia Kolesnikova

A reminder that it is the start of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, I love this photo. I have a sore arm so will not be typing much today  🙂

These are some of the flowers I made at the felting course Saturday night –

Saturday night felt flower #1
Felt Flower #2
Felt Flower #3
Our Lilys are opening
River flower

Bingle Jells…

Tude has taken the dog for a gallop around the bush and I am sitting here trying to digest an enormous brunch. I really should have gone with them but I am running out of time to do the other stuff I had planned like writing this.  The other thing is that it is really hot today and so climbing hills does not seem like such fun. I will walk to the felting course this afternoon as a token gesture and then walk home again, this will help to make me feel slightly virtuous.

Today’s post is on a subject close to my heart – Christmas.  Even though I am a pagan I love it. Actually because I am a pagan I get two celebrations at once. If I am in New Zealand I get to celebrate the Summer Solstice, the longest day, around the 22nd December. Or if I am in the U.K. I get to celebrate Yule, the shortest day. The U.K. is best for celebrating Christmas I think because it is actually cold there. It is appropriate to eat roast dinners, whereas in N.Z it is usually B.B.Q weather. And I even don’t mind that it seems to start earlier each year.  Some of the shop windows in Carterton already have their Christmas trees up.

  • Sparkley Stuff – I love tinsel and decorations. I love visiting other countries near Christmas and seeing the different decorations. I am unable to stick with a theme to decorate trees so mine always look a bit mad.
  • Lights.  I have never decorated the outside of my own house but I love other people to do it. I like to walk or drive around and see what mad decorations have gone up.  When I lived in Swansea I used to walk to work along a hill. One of the houses I passed had the large window of its lounge hard up against the pavement and the people who owned it would decorate the room beautifully.  Every morning I would walk past and they would have lit their fire and switched all the Christmas lights on. I never saw anybody in it. As it was still dark and cold out, it was a wonder to behold and I would give myself a treat and a warm by stopping and gazing in for a minute .  They always had their curtains wide open and no nets so I used to be sure they did it for me and others, trudging along to work.
  • Being around children who still believe in Santa is pretty cool.
  • The peace and good will message.  The world can’t be reminded of  that enough.
  • I have a huge fondness for carols. Possibly because I used to be in a church choir and loved to sing them. Just luuve Bing Crosby’s White Christmas as well.
  • Don’t ya just love holidays – community holidays, where you know pretty much everyone is not working. I like going for a walk on Christmas or Boxing Day and just hearing the hush. And seeing the kids playing with new toys.
  • Presents.  I love them. I just do. Giving and getting, it’s all good.
  • Food and parties – what’s not to like?


Smoked Fish and Wet Felt…

Hot and blowy today. We have been out walking the hound, visiting the charity shop (me), and drinking coffee at our favourite Cafe Bambino where we snaggled the leather sofas and immersed ourselves in the various foreign magazines supplied. The dog was not impressed because the local schools had the temerity to be using their field for sports day and she could not make full use of it – and then we tied her up outside the coffee shop which forced her to whine for the entire time. People, Bah!

She will be even more annoyed when she realises we are going out tonight and she is not.

My lovely husband is in the kitchen listening to Hancock’s Half Hour and making Smoked Fish, Broccoli and Tomato Pasta Salad to take with us this evening. I do love Tony Hancock.  The radio plays are inspired and the other characters so strong. The telly programmes are good to, I think the first one I saw was The Radio Ham in which Hancock is the only character seen. If you like British comedy and haven’t had the pleasure of Hancock yet, it’s worth looking out for.

I am going on a wet felting (as opposed to needle felting) craft course tomorrow evening. My friend Vicky is running it and it is about incorporating other fibres like silk,  into felt. Should be a really enjoyable and social evening as many of the people from our craft group will be there. Also it is being held at Cafe Bambino, which is a big space, and Caroline the lovely lady who owns Bambino is supplying food.

It has been a long time since I did any wet felting and I am hoping it will give me the impetus to make some shawls and scarves.

Tony Hancock. We have a giant poster of this in our hall.

The Jelly Force Field

Well, the garden got well watered last night and this morning. Pools on the lawns.  I slept in an hour later than usual, owing to the darkness and the steady beat of rain.  Even the dog slept in which was strange – normally she is awake before I want to be and slurping me in the face.

We have just discovered the Greytown Library, so paid it a visit out of curiosity. It has superior magazines than our local, which I took advantage of, even scoring the latest Country Living so that I can look at the pretty pictures and drool over the lovely houses. I also put my name on the list for the new Terry Pratchett book, Unseen Academicals.  Hope it doesn’t take to long.

And then I just ran out of puff really.

There is an interesting symptom of Hypothyroidism which I call The Jelly Force Field. The experience of this is like trying to move through a mass of invisible jelly, every move is an effort – you feel weighed down and sluggish. The jelly insinuates itself into your head so that your brain slows as well.

I did make an effort and went with Tude to walk the dog but was regretting it half way along a route which I normally do without a moments thought.  Bollocks.

Back home to the cozy sofa, mags and tea at hand, to try and regain a bit of energy – so I could write this.

Just a thought – if anyone tells you that we were better off in the ‘good old days’, remember me. Because if it wasn’t for those much maligned (and sometimes with good reason, of course) drug companies with their synthetic thyroxine, I and lots of other people would slowly wind down, like the bunny without the ‘good’ batteries and stop 😉

Yesterday I finally made myself the pin cushion I have been meaning to make for a while now. It’s quite a large one, made out of  grey, woollen blanket with the outline of a kiwi stitched in red and with red blanket stitch around the edges. It’s not perfect but it’s mine and it means I am a proper crafts person because I have a pin cushion (beams, proudly like a five-year old).

Today I went to the usual craft group, slightly worried about how I was going to cope with the fatigue, but it went o.k.  As long as I don’t try to hard to keep up with all the conversations and have a laugh, everything is fine. I even got most of a woven brooch made, even though it took a leeettle longer than usual to make my decrepit brain understand the under/over principle.

Tudor has got over the eleven hours busing the drunks for the Toast Martinborough wine festival and as expected, arrived home with a few storys and a bit pissed off because he had just finished cleaning up a pile of vomit that one of the revellers kindly left for him. He has decided not to do it again next year.

I am starting to think I might have to take a bit more control of the amount of books I have on the go. Before I took up making so much craft it was ok, but now I am finding that it is taking forever to get through anything. I am still reading the Victoria Finlay book on gems and also the book on shamanism. Added to these are  Simon Schama’s Hang-Ups, which is well worthy but heavy going and Terry Pratchett’s Carpe Jugulum – for light, but not simple relief. Hiding in the loo is The Pig That Wanted To Be Eaten – a collection of philosophical thought experiments, each just long enough for the average visit.

I am also half way through a Mary Wesley novel I picked up at the charity shop called An Imaginative Experience. I was very excited to find it as I think I have read all her other book and love them. This one is very enjoyable, although it has made me cry once.

It also has one of the most horrible male characters I have ever read about, and the heroine has a Mother that I just would so love to slap. Violent fantasies can be so satisfying. Wesley writes really good bad characters. She is also a bit of a heroine of mine as she didn’t have her first novel published till she was 70, and by all accounts had a very interesting and unconventional life.   There is an entry about her in Wikipedia if you are interested. I would love to read her biography.

I was going to add some photos of my newest creations but the camera has mislaid itself. So you will just have to put up with these 😉

Hearing Tude coming home





Happy Anniversary to Us

It’s been a weird week health and mood wise. Mostly on a fairly downward trajectory, culminating in a doom laden yesterday when I could quite happily have dug a large hole and buried myself.  I have been trying hard to cope well with the return of the hypothyroidism but actually my report card would read – ‘Needs To Try Harder’. It’s almost like I was holding myself together until my Mother left on Thursday, and then I could fall apart.

Today, however, is a different story. Getting dressed this morning I shocked myself by feeling in such a good mood that I looked at myself in the mirror and shouted- really shouted,  Yay!. Then I did it again twice – just because it felt so good. Then I jiggled my naked self about and had another laugh. TMI? – to bad 😉

I managed to keep my mood and energy levels up most of the day. I even did some housework! Granted I needed a few breaks where I just lay down and didn’t want to get up again, but I can cope with that as long as the mood stays up. The house work was accompanied by a good solid dose of comedy, Radio Four – two episode of ‘The News Quiz’  (I love Sandy Toksvig) and then ‘Jo Caulfield Won’t Shut Up’ which was bloody good, I am looking forward to next weeks edition. Those who say women don’t make good comedians are fuck wits.

One of the bonuses of being energy hormone deprived is that you tend to watch a lot more telly. I have just watched Stephan Fry’s documentary on Bi-Polar Disorder for the second time, well worth watching if you are interested in such. Also Wim Wenders, 2004 movie  ‘Land of Plenty’, I don’t usually do depressing, but this was so good it was compulsive. I have been thinking about it all day, looking forward to Tude coming home so that we can watch the rest.

It is our anniversary today – twelve years, OMG! Anyway Tude, the poor sod, is not able to be here as it is the Toast Martinborough event today and he is needed to bus hundreds of drunks around the vineyards. He did it last year and it sounds like hell – but with interesting stories. Like the loon who decided that he wanted to get back to Featherston to catch a train, so he stole a bus and drove it into a bus stop.

Off now for a walk down the shops with the constant dog. Hope you all out there are having a good one too 🙂

Picture 539
First lily flower in the pond
Picture 538
Close up of Water Lily flower

Waa, Waa, Waa, Waa wa wa

I have picked a huge bunch of lavender, roses and jasmine for the vase on the table and am sitting in front of them typing this. The scent is out of this world – almost to much.

The flowers are our reward for weeding the garden today.  I decided to spite my latest test results and damn the torpedoes. I always feel so much better when I can see the results of my labour. And the garden really needed the work – before it got too out of hand.

My Mum helped as well and Tude when he got home, so all is looking tidier.  The urge to get into the garden was helped by the beautiful weather today. No sooner had I put washing out, it was dry. I just love that.

I am less annoyed today regarding the thyroid problem. I was lying in bed this morning feeling sorry for myself when I remembered – it’s not how bad the problem is, it’s how you handle it. So, o.k., I’m going to handle this well.

My husband and my Mother are enjoying a shared pleasure in the lounge – watching Coronation St.  Tude never admits to liking it but as soon as his mother-in-law is about, and Coro is on, he is in there.  I suppose it could be worse – they could both like East Enders :-0

I used to watch Coro when I was a kid, I remember it before there was colour t.v. even. And Ena Sharples was in it. Drinking Milk Stout – whatever the hell that was. As a child I thought it sounded quite nice, sort of like a milk shake or something.  I also liked Elsie Tanners lovely red hair, which is possible now, come to think of it, why I have spent most of my adult life with red hair?

mmm Milk Stout!
They don't make 'em like that anymore 😉

Me and My Thyroid..

Pleasant day with my Mum today. Pretty quiet as well because the weather has packed up again and it was all cold and grey and wet. So mostly we sat around and talked and I worked on some crafty stuff and Mum read mags and watched her favourite soaps on t.v.

In the afternoon I had an appointment with the doctor so I left Ma to have a snooze and took myself off. I didn’t really want to go but I’m glad that I did now as I got to check the results of the thyroid test that I had about six weeks ago.

To my horror my TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) level had shot up from a very comfortable .3 at the beginning of the year to 18!!! –   it’s meant to be between about .3 – 5.  I had thought that something was up as I had been feeling not so hot lately.

This is not good and to be totally honest I am bloody upset about it.

I was first diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditus, which causes hypothyroidism, about 5 years ago. I had thought that I had finally got it sorted out but it’s flared up again.

What this means for me is that I’m feeling tired again, my body is achey and my brain is a bit slug like and I find it slightly harder to compose my blog. So bare with me it you don’t hear from me some days. I just need the extra medication to start working and I will be right as rain again.  🙂


Golden Sundays

One of those golden, happy Sundays, when all is right with the world. In other words – I am in a good mood. 🙂

It helps that the weather has sorted itself out and I am able to walk barefoot again.  Not so hot yet that it is compulsory to wear a hat. We took Polly dog for a walk and lay on the grass at the park and watched the clouds cruise past.

I successfully managed to not get slaughtered at last nights party and therefore am not in the midst of a two day hangover.  Our house is clean and all preparations sorted for my Mothers arrival tomorrow, just need to put some roses by her bed.

This morning I had a big sleep in and my lovely Tudor made me breakfast in bed;  Scotch Omelets – invented by my Scottish father when we were kids, they are actually French Toast but with Marmite spread on the bread before dipping in egg.  I tasted my first home grown strawberry today and it was fantasmagorically wonderful.

The weird virus thing that has stalked me lately has eased off today, but I decided that I would stay home from book club anyway and get everything done that I needed to do without rushing. Good decision, I feel rested and looking forward to whatever the rest of the week brings. Hope you are too..

Found this cool little animation I thought you all might like.