Just about bordering on odd, I see things through different eyes.The heading says it all - I live, I love, I craft, I am me...


Midweek micro adventure

Yesterday, after a not particularly constructive day, 
I felt I - in the words of Bilbo Baggins - needed to
 'Go On An Adventure'.

Moss agreed, so when it was time to meet Youngest, Moss and I set off with a plan - 
well ok, the plan was mine but she was so dizzy and excited 
that we could have done anything and she'd be happy!
Our micro-adventure ingredients were:
take away teas,
(from the local nature reserve cafe)
clues and a pen 
(for a spot of geocaching)
and the camera. 
Youngest of course is always up for an adventure...
...and despite being stiff and walking like a wind-up clockwork toy
(he's taken up running)
we set off, following footpaths old and new.
Moss. needless to say,  was d.e.l.i.g.h.t.e.d!
We found what we were looking for,
quickly signed the log book (in this case a slip).
And even more happily, we bagged another cache.
There are few round here, think we'll gently collect them 
when weather and time permit.
There was something special about walking with my son
through damp autumnal woods,
sipping hot tea from cardboard tumblers,
watching a dog charging around in the mud.

It turned a rather mediocre day
in to one far nicer.
It certainly set me up for my next painting.

Now that can't be bad :)

#art #walking #geocachinguk 


Tuesday's thoughts

I find that the first part of the morning, once the house is mine .... 'stops'. More so at this time of the year when it is still dark outside.

I sit down with the remains of my first mug of tea, usually it has gone cold but frugality refuses to allow it to be thrown down the sink. Sometimes it is reheated in the microwave (occasionally more than once) before I finally down it. But today's I drank cold - seemed silly to spend time/money/effort to warm a mouthful of tepid tea.

This is the time I allow myself internet access. Write those emails, post those stories. Update the various facebook pages I manage, the blogs I write. Then, if I am lucky I can get out the to studio around 9am.  I love going out to the studio - I love the view from the window, the birds coming and going, the small patch of sky between the trees, observing the changing garden from robust summer foliage to softly decaying leaves and stalks.

Today is dank, wet and let's face it - dreary. Which does nothing for my mood ergo my creativity. However, I know that going to the studio, switching on the light, the radio and the heating will turn the mood around and get me feeling more motivated.

But first, kettle on - then when I am out there in my little sanctuary, I, with a mug of hot coffee, can watch the birds before picking up the brushes.

I shall just have to generate my own sunshine!

Bring on the day :) 

And you?
What are you up to today?
What little bit of sunshine made you smile?
What ever you do,
have a lovely day xxx


A prickly subject...

Guess what or rather who I almost fell over last night!
 I just popped down to the studio to grab something 
and met this little fellow...
Scoffing slugs
My hero!
Eat those slugs Mr Prickles
my garden and I are grateful :D

Gentle reminder that November's Scavenger Photo hunt is the last for this year, but don't worry it will start again in the new year. However, Julie from Julie's Scrapbook is running a daily scavenger hunt all through December and I shall be joining in - pop over and have a look, there is still time to join in x


Vignettes of the fauna kind

Some days I can not believe how lucky I am to be able to stay at home and paint in the studio. I do treat it like a job, as in - I get myself sorted at home post breakfast, then at 9am I set off with the studio keys in my hand, flask of coffee, basket full of items I'll need during the day and the dog.

We 'commute' through the garden, unlock the summerhouse door and the day begins.

There is a bit of a routine forming, open the door, switch on the lights/radio/heating as necessary, clear the desk, unpack my basket, set up the tripod and camera and finally, before I actually start painting or drawing .... I feed the birds.

Gradually, as they have learnt that there is a source of food topped up daily and especially now as the temperatures are dropping, the variety and number of birds is growing.

I am now seeing all sorts of birds I have heard of or seen in a book, now am seeing in 'the-feather' for the first time! Like the Nuthatch and the Treecreeper -  talk about a giddy moment when first saw either of them.

Now, you can hardly call me a 'twitcher' or 'birder' and I suspect I will never be more than an amateur studio chair enthusiast, but they do brighten my day and entertain which ever cat is in the summerhouse with me :) (you should hear their foul catty mutterings that go with the whisker twitch and the tail rattling).
(Please excuse grainy images - taken through perspex/acrylic glazing)

However, not all my visitors are feathered, I get furry ones too! The neighbourhood cats quietly slip through and sometimes stop in a sunny patch for a bit of feline meditation. Yesterday's little quiet caller was a silent black cat who slipped through the plants and sat next to me (although it had no idea I was there). I quietly took a picture through the glazing and was rather amused to see it flick it's head round to see where the noise was coming from but could not see me so did not run off.
The other drop-in was a rather fat and fluffy squirrel. Now. Vermin or not, they are cute. It is not their fault they are an alien species or carry a virus or look sweet and make folk laugh - yes they are a pest but like a cheeky chappy they end up making most folk smile.
Until it tried to gorge itself on the bird food - then I stopped smiling and tapped on the window - it shot off and flicked it's tail crossly. Several attempts (from various angles of the garden) to return to the feed resulted me tapping on the window, the squirrel finally got the message and scampered off.  I have now liberally slathered a petroleum based jelly on the pole to see if that acts as a deterrent.... camera ready we shall see :)

Any hoo, the side effect of these little vignettes through my day is - I smile a lot - now that can't be bad x

Right, best stop waffling, I've a bit of paperwork to do for TAM and then I can get back to painting, I am halfway through a festive highland coo (just smiled again)

HaPpY ThUrSdAy


Autumn and I

I've already written a post then deleted it. 

So, I gave up with that line of waffle, 
changed my story and started again. 
Welcome to my third attempt...

Autumn is truly here. Frosty mornings, chilly nights and trees rapidly losing their leaves.
The garden has lost the brighter colours of summer
and taken on the shades of seasonal decay. 
I love the way the spider webs sparkle in the softer autumnal light. 
It was such a lovely afternoon that,
once we'd eaten lunch, 
we pulled on boots and layers of woolly things,
and set off for a walk.
We set off up the hill to the playing fields,
there is still a fight to try and keep them,
but local government are intractable
and unaccommodating as ever.
I fear we will lose our small square of land,
due to lack of money.
Moss - with the animal clarity of the 'here and now'
didn't give two hoots (or rather two woofs) about the potential loss,
choosing to wallow in muddy puddles,
race around in mud
and generally have a silly grin on her face.
Having left the playing fields, 
our path narrowed down to a muddy trail.
The gentle scent of fallen leaves and wood smoke
fill our nostrils. 
We followed a stream which Moss splashed through,
the water was icy cold but she reveled in it!
The footpath rose up and over the fields. 
Then dropped back down to join the river,
which wound it's way into our local nature reserve.
The old mill pond, full of rushes and reeds, is almost silted up.
The ducks find it a quiet sanctuary.
The path became rather busy with dog walkers
and promenading couples, we chose to turn off 
and followed the less popular (very muddy) woodland track.
Cue squeals and giggles as we slipped and slid
our way while Moss charged about,
although more surefooted than us, still slipped and fell -
causing more laughter.
Happy Silly Dog.
As we headed for home,
the sky turned to the most brilliant purples and orange.

If this is Autumn, then she can stay,
Summer was a bit of a limp lettuce,
Winter and I don't always see eye to eye
and Spring seems a long way away.

So, yes, Autumn you can stay xx



The veil is thin,
the wheel turns,
the seasons change,
life moves on,
take that step,
take that chance,
change if you have to,
and live.

Blessings be.


A door to the imagination

Thank you photo-hunters for your excellent pictures and stories- a real mix of tales and images, you certainly made my blog-reading-day! I love that, despite you all having the same list to work from, you all have such a individual stories to share. Thank you again.

One or two of you noticed I'd not joined in this month - my apologies, I fully intended too however, I was so so busy (beyond busy) with the art event I was part of, something had to give. (Housework and gardening also fell by the wayside!!) Anyhoo, I thought I would make up for my absence by sharing a story or two of my own leading up to our TAM weekend.

We have, in the village, resident 'fairies'. The small and magical kind - with little wings and pretty dresses. They even have a facebook page where their exploits and adventures are shared.  I first noticed their presence when little fairy doors started to appear in the surrounding area. I was intrigued (as were other villagers) and took photographs.
These little beautifully made doors have working door latches, the cutest little hinges and door numbers and best of all - best of all, are the stories that they bring, the questions they create.
Who lives behind those little doors? 
Where do they come from?
 Are they really magic?

Oh yes the children say, oh yes agree the delighted parents. 

It is wonderful walking along and catching the delightful conversations between parents and children as they spot these little magic doors. Sometimes they vanish, then reappear, other times they have a spot of magical TLC after little hands have tried to open the doors a little too hard. Fairy Magic is strong and protective.

I'd wished really hard that I had one in a tree near me.  

The fairies must have heard me and with a sprinkle of fairy dust and just a day or two before the art weekend - Not one.....
...not two...
...not just three...
but four, four enchanting little portals to another world, 
where fairies dwell and secretly appear
and leave magic
and make smiles
and share happiness.

Thank you Edith Mouse -
your magic is so very appreciated xxxx

Ok - back to business - As usual, our November photo scavenger hunt will be the last of year, December tends to be a little too busy! Julie from Julie's Scrapbook is running her annual Advent Calendar Link up and will be posting all the details on the 1st November - I shall be joining her - hope you will too :)

So, November's words are....drum roll please......

1. Blue
2. Me
3. Starts with a ...... W
4. Rainbow
5. Arch
6. Toy
7. Swirl
8. Brush
9. Nail
10. My own choice

A photograph inspired by a word, 
words inspired by the photograph.  
Remember to think laterally and interpret at you fancy, 
be it a current photo or one from your archives - Enjoy!


October Scavenger Hunt Link up Party!

If you have joined in with my

Scavenger hunt, please link

with me on your blog :)

Please add your name to the

link up tool below,

just follow the easy instructions,

don't worry - if I can do it so can you!

Please just add your Name or Blog Name in the 'Link Title',

Now, let the Link-up Party begin!

Don't forget to leave a comment when you visit :)


Post show recovery mode


*taps screen tentatively* .... hello?

Are you still out there? 
I'm back - sorry I was so quiet, been a bit busy you see.

What? Sorry missed that? 
Oh you were wondering what I was up to. Ah. Let me see...

We've just had our first 'Annual Trawden Artist Maker's Art event' and I am absolutely shattered! 

I would like to write down all the stories that accompanied our weekend but you would probably fall asleep by the time I'd only got quarter way down, there are so many. I won't put you through that.

So, instead, I will just pop in to say hello (oh - already done that), say that I am here, in post weekend recovery position, I have an art studio in a topsy turvy but happy state, have a list of commissions and sales that I have to work through, stock to replenish and coffee to drink (that last one has got to stop though... need to get off the 'hard stuff' and get back to peppermint tea and the like).

Our weekend had loads of visitors, including 'Storm Brian' who although not as large as the hurricanes and tropical storms that upset other events, nevertheless stamped his rather 'moist' mark on our weekend.  However we did not let him 'rain on our parade' and surprisingly we still had many many visitors. At one point, there was standing room only in my little studio with a small queue forming outside. Other artists said the same, saying their venues were full of folk and the hall several times was fit to burst with our wonderful 'bouncer' on the door advising folk to do the trail first before coming into the hall as there was no room - now that can't be bad!

Fortunately my dear Himself had rigged up a gazebo outside my studio door as a porch to help keep Storm Brian out - it happily sheltered my visitors from the rain too.

Right, I really must get on ... below are a few photos taken before we opened the doors, while we still had space and time to drink a final brew and breathe.... will I do it again? ummm - probably. (I can hear my Himself shrug his shoulders and sigh!)

View down the back wall, textiles and art
Gable end, jewellery
Our local nail room kindly hosted a mini display for us
Storm Brian seemed to approve, rainbow over the hall full of artists.
.... and yes,I have included an image of myself.

my name is Kate
I am an artist,
please to meet you x


When in reality ... what I SHOULD be doing is .....

With lists whirling around in my head 
(To-do-list/Must-not-FORGET-list/Jobs-to-complete-list/ must-sort-out-the-garden-and-plant 
the-perennials-out-list, )
 and that uncertain feeling of 
'is there something very important that I have forgotten that I must 'to-do'?' 

We set off for a walk yesterday afternoon. 
I have to be honest in saying I really did not want to go - 
I wanted to work through at least some of those niggling lists 
even if it was only tinkering in the garden planting out a few large seedlings 
while the soil is still reasonably warm.
Which in itself is a form of procrastination.

However, it was worth it.
 I did feel a lot better afterwards and I think that we all benefited from a bit of fresh autumnal air. 
The lists had to wait, 
they wait still, 
but their turn will come.

#staywild #walk #autumn