Saturday, 29 March 2014

This Week: March #5

A quiet photo week.

1. A 2nd birthday present for her pal Bibby. It's her birthday tomorrow - fingers crossed it fits! Feels so good to be sewing regularly again. I've got a few Oliver + S dresses lined up next...
2. New hair 'dips' are very popular.
3. Raindrops + camellia. The camellias are in full bloom in the garden - such a huge swathe of colour when we look out of the window.
4. A drink stop at the library. She was very pleased to have her own cup of milk (and ended up with an impressive milk moustache!).

The Year in Books - March

My book of choice for March was Girl Reading by Katie Ward, picked up for pennies in a local charity shop. I'm still rather undecided as to whether I loved it.

The book is made up of seven 'chapters', each a standalone episode in their own right, but all linked by the continuous thread of a woman reading. The book starts in 1333 and moves through the centuries touching on motherhood, love, bereavement, sibling bonds, suffrage and independence. Each 'chapter' is fascinating - a great deal of historical research has obviously taken place. Ward writes in such a beautifully descriptive manner you can become completely immersed in each story. But therein lies the reason I found the book so frustrating. I wanted to know more about each character. I wanted to discover more about all those unsaid clues left by Ward in each chapter. I wanted to know what happened next. One of the things I love about getting lost in a good book is getting into the head of the main characters. In Girl Reading, I felt like I'd just got to grips with each character and then suddenly the scene had shifted forward a century.

An enjoyable, interesting read, but one I never felt I could really get my teeth into.

My intention for getting this post written towards the start of the month rather failed - I'll have to write again at the start of April about the next book I've got lined up (as you can see in the photo above). 



After breakfast most days, she requests the crayons and a big piece of paper. The post-meal art time seems to have spread to lunchtime now too.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

The Garden Diaries: March

So much newness, so much colour. The garden is really getting going now. I can't wait to see what it holds for next month.

Camellia and early evening sunshine / daffs / the first anemone / blue and buds / flowering currant / japonica

March has been a month of seeds. After finding a few packets of out of date seeds, I've got about 30 pots of sweet peas in the conservatory, along with cornflowers and a few toddler-planted sunflowers. Sorting through the stack of veg seeds, I can see April will be busy with getting things planted too. Once I get myself organised and sort out putting in the raised beds at the bottom of the garden.

Sunday, 23 March 2014

This Week: March #4

1, 3 & 5. A house full of flowers. Just how I like it. Daffs on the mantel and old roses on the table that were replaced by bargain neon pink roses. (Plus a pink amaryllis that I really must photograph). 
2. Lots of beading and drawing this week. She finishes breakfast and does a 'round and round' motion with her hand to indicate she wants a crayon. I'm all for it - creative time, plus I get to finish my breakfast and drink my cuppa while she draws meows and babies. 
4. The result of another post-breakfast crafting session after we got out the glitter glue. She was fascinated by her sparkly hands. 
6 & 7. The best 3 £1 coins I've spent all week. A £1 easter bonnet hat and a duster from the poundshop, and a windmill from the supermarket (that kept her happy the whole way home, phew). The hat is a new favourite dressing-up prop and the duster is being well utilised (brilliant!).
8. I've been rediscovering my sewing machine this week - a pillowcase for my girl, and a skirt for baby. A toddler sized skirt was added to the list after a mega nap time today. 
9. A quick moment of crafting for a friend who's just bought his first house. I think I'll be making a second of these for my little bro who's just flown the family nest into his first flat. 



Excited to be at the farm with your pal Bibby, but not so sure about the goats.

Joining in over at Practising Simplicity.

Friday, 21 March 2014

22 months

Dear my favourite girl,

On Sunday, when it was exactly 2 months until you are 2, I had a bit of an argh moment. How is it this close to your second birthday already?! (And what are we going to give you for your birthday?!)

It's clear we're looming closer to toddler tantrum territory. The episodes of 'NOOOOO NO NO NO' are gaining frequency - we're having to try very hard to keep a straight face at times. 

At 22 months old you are...

Loving: Baby, Mog, going to the swings, wearing your new hat, reading 'Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush', cheese, rolling, dogs, cats, lions, singing The Wheels on the Bus and Old Macdonald - and suggesting animals for each verse, trains, helicopters, aeroplanes, drawing, painting, playing with beads, stickers, raspberry jam, spotting colours, watching Sarah and Duck. 

Not liking: Going in the pushchair when you want to walk, having your nappy changed. 

Favourite words: mummm  dada, down, deddy, baybeeee, gone, bah (bunny), baa (sheep), brmmm, shoes, keys, cheese, zip, drink, swing, zzzz (bee buzz), raa raa (the noisy lion, but has come to mean all things tv!), round and round, maooo (cow), bubub (bubbles), bang!, ball, bowl, tea, tree, dihdih (digger), titch, stih (sticker), nee-nah, train, choochoo, meeoowwww, nee-nah, scheeee (sleep), bee bees (blueberries), big, grrrr (yes!), mohhhh (no), jeeee (green, or any other colour), manma (grandma), daada (grandad), dar (star), bobper (popper or bubble), bees (beads), boon (spoon), Gggge (George), Bibby (your friend), ub (up), nam nam nam (eating), O O (Auntie H), Tate (Auntie K), boo (blue), lellow, lady, door, bin, ahhh (cuddle), uh uh (monkey), hu hu (woof), dog, elephant noise, buck buck (chicken), ee ee (mouse), dair (hair), toosch (toes), 
schiim (swim), duck.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

This Week: March #3

A gloriously sunshine filled week. Vitamin D ahoy. (We'll ignore the small matter of the toddler who forgot how to sleep).

1. Afternoons spent reading in the garden - it felt more like June or July at times. (And then the sun went behind the clouds and it felt like March again).

2. Sweet pea shoots. I found a few half packs of sweet pea seeds that needed to be planted by June 2012 this week...I've bunged them in pots and we'll keep fingers crossed.

3. Jewel colour anemones - a present for a friend who was bravely allowing us to all come and stay with her at the weekend. I'm pleased to say she, and her lovely house, survived!

4. Pastel houses/pastel sky. This was the view from my friend's living room window on Saturday evening - just beautiful.

5. A Sunday morning wander up to the Clifton Suspension Bridge, after a huge brunch (waffles with bacon and maple syrup - I want that for breakfast every Sunday morning now).

Hope you've had a sunshine filled week.



Eleven photos in, and already two of them feature duplo. Sitting in the sunshine spot on the rug, getting the hang of building.

Joining in over at Practising Simplicity.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Oh Sweetpea

I'm not entirely sure how it's Thursday already. Somewhere in between wishing I was asleep, wishing she was asleep, and drinking a shedload of strong tea, I seem to have lost some days.

While I try and find them, head over to Garlic and Sapphire to have a gander at my latest gardening task...

(I was going to share the link to my latest G&S post on Monday...4 days later and I finally remember!)

Saturday, 8 March 2014

This Week: March #2

Not enough hours in the day this week. A good week though. Sunshine, flowers (I've decided the top ledge is the best way to show off shy faced hellebores), plenty of playdoughing, playing with the ribbons (while I made birthday presents - including bacon jam. Woah.), and some surprise flowers from R.

P.S. Happy International Women's Day - For some interesting and thought provoking reading, head over to Any Other Woman. I especially liked this post.


Post-nap pink cheeks, curls and smiles.

Joining in over at Practising Simplicity.

P.S. This was last year's 10/52 - such a difference.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

The Garden Diaries: February

What a difference a few weeks, and a bit of sun makes. (Just don't look at our lawn - it's currently swamp-like after being trampled over by workmen for the past week).

Garlic shoots - most seem to have survived and haven't been snaffled by the birds or mice / a blue tit hiding in the silver birch. We're getting many more birds visiting the garden which is good / turns out even overgrown salad leaves look lovely in the sunshine / sweet peas potted up / lime green hellebores / dogwood heading skywards

Joining in with Annie's How Does Your Garden Grow?

Mammasaurus and How Does Your Garden Grow?

Monday, 3 March 2014

We Like to Read: There are Cats in this Book

There are indeed cats in this book. Some very well named cats. Moonpie, Tiny and Andre in fact. They are all now firm favourites in our house.

There are Cats in this Book is a wonderfully interactive tale with plenty of flaps, cleverly layered and shaped pages, and direct instructions from the feline friends to keep toddlers busy. Some of our favourites include the page of boxes, where the cats request that you open the lids (and then thank you as you do - polite cats, these), and the page when the cats get wet - they need to be blown on to be dry and fluffy again (hence the final photo!).

After a quick google, I've discovered a video of the author Viviane Schwarz reading There are Cats in this Book, and discovered that she has also written a book called There are NO Cats in this Book!  (and for folk that can knit, here's the knitting pattern for Moonpie, Tiny and Andre!)

Joining in with Tigerlilly Quinn's We Like to Read link up.