Friday, May 27

High Drama

I had intended posting today, but not quite this...

'Twas yesterday when I was out and about in Haddington (Peter Potter Gallery) and St Boswells (Tweedside Gallery), that Hugh's plans for the afternoon were shelved rather rapidly....
He'd lit the stove and gone on to do other things. When he returned to the kitchen there were lots of sparky noises emanating from said stove. Outside the road was thick with smoke. He moved dogs from kitchen (sensible man) and called the Fire Brigade.

Two hours later the fire in the chimney was extinguished. There was no internal damage. They advised Hugh to have the chimney swept again (it was only done a month ago) before lighting the fire. So that was duly booked for Monday

This morning before breakfast I investigated the occasional ticking noise from the stove and lo, the flue pipe was warm to the touch. There were wisps of smoke emerging from the chimney.

After a little contemplation, and breakfast, the Borders' finest firefighters were summoned once more. Green Watch from Hawick came rushing to the rescue, lights flashing, sirens scaring sheep and cattle for miles around. The fire had reignited from a pile of soot in a recess in the chimney (That's the short version of the saga). Another two hours elapsed as water was trickled down the chimney, the stove pipe was removed, a hole in the wall chipped out with a hammer and cold chisel, and the offending soot removed.

The fire is out. I am fairly confident of that. Green Watch departed with a dozen eggs for their lunch (they'd already missed breakfast on another call, I think). Now we await the loss adjuster appointed by our insurers before we can think about finding someone to fix us back together again...

We were very fortunate. It's only after the event that you start to consider the might-have-beens...

Sunday, May 22


I finally finished off some cushions. The stitchery part is the enjoyable bit. The tidying it up and making it into a cushion cover, and making a pad to fit (if it's not a nice easy square) is rather less enthralling. But at least the flowery linen one above and the rose heart below are done and off my list. This fabric was a present from Katie and was surprisingly difficult to work with as it has a bit of stretch in it and kept blunting my needles. But the two cushions do show you the lovely effects of using variegated cotton perle thread (available at a very reasonable price from a Tart near you...)

Today was wet and windy, which made it a fine choice for a Woolgathering. Ali and Anne, Janet and Tricia, Jakki and Lizzi and I sewed and knitted and braided and finished off various projects very happily in the village hall. Anne had brought a huge stack of knitting magazines that she'd finished with so we went away with a collection to read through. And we are looking forward to Woolfest at the end of next month and wondering what we'll succumb to this time. At Harlow Carr I didn't only photograph tulips - the little potting shed had been painted a lovely sky blue inside and hung with old but serviceable garden tools. And who can resist auriculas? Though it does seem an odd choice for Douglas Bader, unless there's a hidden connection. You'd think he'd have merited a plant that was reaching skywards rather than these little titches...

Sunday, May 15

Smitten... tulips...Hugh and I were down in the East Riding of Yorkshire last weekend. We stayed at a very fine B&B and had a day exploring on the Friday. First we headed to the coast to admire the birdlife on the cliffs at Bempton. The gannets were majestic, the fulmars slightly scary and the puffins were just lovely! We only saw them on the wing but they are such chubby little critters that they really don't look like they ought to stay aloft at all.After a sojourn further down the coast to Hornsea we decided that kiss-me-quick and amusement parks (closed) were not for us and headed off to Beverley. I hadn't been before and thought it a lovely town with great architecture.The main reason for the trip was the LRO Land Rover Show at Driffield. Hugh has long wanted to go and it was a birthday treat. We had a grand time there on the Saturday. Next day we visited Harrogate en route to stay with friends. We visited RHS Harlow Carr which the RHS describe thus- Harlow Carr is a garden dominated by water, stone and woodland and is very much part of the surrounding Yorkshire landscape. We seek to push the boundaries of design and planting styles, creating displays that are beautiful but sometimes provocative. Careful gardening techniques, reflecting our respect for the environment, ensures that wildlife will flourish in the garden.
I liked the whole place but the tulips stole my heart - well, them and the leaf mould teapot!

Wednesday, May 4

Tarty Goodness

There's no particular reason for posting Tintin and Snowy - I just think they are rather quaint and stylish and a little eccentric. These are all good qualities which I wish to encourage in our wretched one-size-must-fit-all world.

The next pic is self-explanatory, isn't it?
And here we have an array of small but perfectly formed sewing kits which I have made up. In wee snap-shut tins with button images on them are needles and threads, buttons and safety pins and pins and dinky little felt pincushions.

Off on a little adventure now....