Sunday, 28 February 2010


Little Audrey is now finished and at the moment takes pride of place on the top shelf of my little shelfling.

She shares the unit with my little felt horse and a gorgeous tea cup that I found in the junk shop. I have a looong way to go though before the shelfling starts to look as full and interesting as Kazzy's.

The weather is appalling today, so it's going to be a stay inside and play day. Thank you to everyone who left such supportive and caring comments on my last post. I'm going to play with my website, while tucking into some homemade bread and jam with pots of tea, to keep me going.

Thursday, 25 February 2010


I'm sorry that I've not been posting much this week, but I'm just too low to pass on this much fed-up-ness! I think a combination of over work, a crushing routine and poor health has just knocked me off my feet.

All I can do is delegate some of this work and take an hour or two to rest. Whenever I feel this bad, it's good to remember that it could be worse - I could be a milkman, up way before dawn, in all kinds of terrible weather for an ungrateful audience snug in their beds!

Edited to add: Actually, even after half an hour blogging, I'm beginning to feel the return of my mojo!

Monday, 22 February 2010

So sad.

I just wanted to say goodbye to a very special person. Darling Renee, I will miss you so very much, your slightly irreverent comments and your hilarious view of life. Tears are streaming as I find I've run out of words. I hope my love reaches out to you as you journey on.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

I'm back :)

Well, here I am all refreshed and ready to start again. Where did I go? Well, actually, no where!

As part of The Artist's Way, I needed to take a week off from reading books and magazines and to be sure not to fill the space with other external influences like the radio, TV or pc. I decided to take this a step further and had a diet detox and life cleansing week. It was lucky that this all coincided with a half term week off school as I roped the children in and we went for some wonderful walks.

Our best walk was to the Devil's Armchair. It was a very cold day, but gorgeous in the shelter of the hill. We found some vast rabbit colonies under twisty, gnarly hawthorns and I came home with an awful lot of inspiration for future paintings.

My son found peace on the hillside while the moomin and I did some sketching.

Later in the week we visited a friend who lives near to my favourite woods. Sadly it was raining so we couldn't manage a walk on that day, but the bright side was that we got to play with her adorable puppies.

Moomin wanted this one Soooooo badly :(

I found some time to shuffle everything around in the kitchen and ended by putting most of it back!!! This is one of the gorgeous items I bought a couple of weeks ago.

I'm still trying to find a home for this pretty shelf. It actually doesn't fit in many places, and I'll probably have to redecorate to accomodate it! Actually, the house needs a face lift, but that's all in the future.

I learned an awful lot this week. The biggest issue for me is time. I just don't have enough to fit everything in and so some things will either have to go, or take a back seat. First on the list is housework, I'm going to completely ignore it from now on, haha!

I have missed all my lovely blogging friends though, and the first couple of days were hard going, so I'll be looking forward to some time visiting you all soon :)

Monday, 15 February 2010


I am on a retreat this week, which means no pc's, tv, radio or books. EEEK! I'll explain all when I get back at the weekend :) Have a good week all :)

Saturday, 13 February 2010

I'm getting there!

Appologies to all my lovely blog friends for not visiting you regularly. I'm soooo snowed under with last minute preparations for today's pony tack sale, that I've barely had a moment to blog much at all.

The show is in aid of the EPS, the Eriskay Pony Society, of which I'm a member due to my little Merlin being a rare stallion (rare indeed!). So I'm half way through a last minute painting for them plus dashing out a couple of horsey bookmarks. The last thing you want to see, though, when you are already in a panic, is a flashing light on the printer. EEEK, I'm low on Cyan blue and a replacement cartridge is £10.00 just for the one colour! If I order from the manufacturer a whole set is over £40, but that is for six colours! I know it sounds a lot, but I like to use the good inks, as they have a guarantee of longevity and quality, but right now I don't even have time to dash out to buy them. The solution is to print more black and white prints, and then borrow hubby's printer (when he's not looking) for the bookmarks!

I've also been working on my website. Sheesh it's giving me a headache! Getting to grips with the unfamiliar HTML is making me all googly eyes :) Still, slowly I'm pulling something together, and for those of you who already run your own website (one instantly springs to mind), big respect to you, as now I realise that it's not as simple as I first thought!

Right, back to the grindstone now, and hopefully I'll be able to show some nice pictures of my EPS stand at the sale.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Artist Date.

I had a great Artist's Date this week and it was exactly what I needed, walking through my favourite woods with snow lightly falling and words tumbling through my head. A flask of tea in my backpack and a note pad and sketchbook was all I needed for an inspired couple of hours.

When I've been with my dear friend, the Woodelf who lives in these woods, we've walked for hours and hours without recrossing our path. The woods are vast and sit in between at least 3 villages.
Starting out, my long path lay before me.

An hour into my walk and the snow fell thicker and the wind picked up. I was looking for Grandmother Yew, but without my map I soon lost the way. Instead, I sat in the warm and relatively dry shelter of a pine copse and wrote a couple of pages of descriptive ramblings.

You can just see the white spots of snow, but not many fell here.

I took a few pictures of myself above the Yew grove, but didn't really want to take the extra time to go down there. I felt quite self conscious and then noticed a large black dog watching me, it's owner a little farther back giving me a very strange look! One of the pictures was very blurry and looked like something from the Blair Witch project!!!

On the last leg of my walk, my path was blocked by the flooded river. This is normally just a muddy puddle, but today it was deep and swift flowing, high above the top of my wellies. I had to find a way around, but it wasn't far to the little bridge and then I was back in the heart of the village and the real World again.

Saturday, 6 February 2010

A week of lovlies.

It's been a very upty downty week here at the Retreat, but one of the horrors turned into a day of loveliness. I set off for my Artist's Date, which is meant to be a day of inspiration for your inner artist child (as set out in the Artist's Way, which I've mentioned before) and it turned out to be a thoroughly horrible experience.

It would seem that any city, in fact many places, are thoroughly dire in February, and as I entered my chosen place for the 'date', a dark and heavy gloom settled upon me. It wasn't helped as I noticed that an enourmous willow tree that I used to lay under on hot sunny days had been replaced by a block of new and ugly flats. It was such a gloomy trip in fact that I simply turned the car around and aimed for the hills and the woods. I found myself in the tiny and cute village of Westbourne. The Gallery that I'd had my first experience of the snobbery of gallery owners was gone and in it's place was a shiny new shop filled with more lovlies than a cake shop! I cooed and ahhhed over all the gorgeous items and even bought a couple of yummy pieces (photos to follow) and persuaded the shop owner to let me snap a couple of piccies.

How could I choose just one item?

I couldn't, so I chose two!

Today was the exact opposite as the Artist's date. It started out with an unexpected find down a little alleyway in Petersfield. A shop filled with as many delicious delights as above, but at a fraction of the price. Oh dear, I bought another little shelfling!

There were tea pots and cosies in delightful colours and designs. Some new and some vintage,

which was definitely the charm of this shop, the old and new combined.

After a trip around a pine and recycled wood shop, we then stopped off at the wonderful 'Barn'. A haven for all things Gargoyle and Grotesque. This was great, as I want to make more Grotesques and inspiration was here in spades.

Some lovely and some not so!
A tiny Grotesque came home with us, but my heart was with a large Dragon scratching his ear! Maybe I'll go back for him :)

Sadly the day hit a bad spot when Moomin and I had a disagreement, but I know this is because she is going on a residential trip next week and our emotions are running high. Goodness, I'm going to miss her!