Sunday, 27 January 2008

rooky-raveny-crowy affairs

This is what I call big black birds whose identity I am uncertain off. It should include jackdawy affairs as well. In the summer we see swifty-martiny-swallowy affairs. I do try to learn which is which, but it all goes out of my head again.

Anyway, today there were lots of rooky-raveny-crowy-jackdawy affairs on the telephone lines. But, only about two or three on each line, and, most significantly, always near the pole. After seeing these for a few hundred yards, it dawned on me that they were staying near the pole because the line is saggy and they would not be stable if they were nearer the middle of it. So, then I wondered how they learnt to do this. They have a reputation as intelligent birds. Do they learn by landing in the middle of a line and then doing an ungainly swing around it and gradually finding the edge a better bet, does their mum/mates teach them, or is it in the genes? If it's the first of these, I hope I one day see one at the swivel stage.

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Satish Kumar

I have just watched the most beautiful programme, which Simon had recorded. It was presented by Satish Kumar, whom I have known of via the journal Resurgence and the Schumacher College and have vague recollections of from earlier times when I expect my parents read his work, as they were peace activists. But I have really known little about him myself. He walked across the world for peace, he was a Jain before that. In this Natural World programme he walked around Dartmoor, and drew parallels between the things he saw through the year and what is happening in the world and his philosophy on life. It was simply presented, he did not preach, yet it was very powerful and moving. The importance of the honey bee to the future of all life on land, the need of the damsel fly, which predates the dinosaurs, to live in clean water, people as part of nature, not just controllers of it. The photography was stunning, it was very uplifting, and makes me want to read and understand more.

“Sadly, the human species considers itself as a superior species – and, in that, we try to control nature, manipulate nature. The way we treat our animals… forests… our oceans and rivers, and land and soil – that appears as if we are at war with nature. And in waging war against nature, we create problems for ourselves, because we ARE nature. And global warming, pollution of rivers, depletion of resources, is like cutting the branch upon which we are sitting.”

'You are, therefore I am - a declaration of dependence'. The title of one of Satish Kumar's books.

Monday, 21 January 2008


Phew, all that felting has exhausted me, then getting it on here, that was worse. I will just lie here for a while.

Needlefelt Challenge

This is the first time I have taken up a challenge set online. It is from M Embellish, and the subject is 'Sandwich'.

I started by making a sandwich of needle felted
wool with an inner of bought felt (hope that is legal!?) on my embellisher.

Then I cut the sandwich into thin slices.

I laid the slices sideways.

I made a red piece of felt on the embellisher.
I lightly hand needle felted the strips into place, to hold them when using the machine. I wanted a few gaps to let the red show through. Then I used the embellisher on it.

I cut it to size, about 2 by 3 inches. I added a few beads.

I'm quite pleased with it, for a first go. I think it has come out with more definition than it would have if I had simply used pieces of roving on a background. The beads could have been a bit more zingy and there could have been a few more red areas showing through. It is an open sandwich and 'normal' sandwich in one! It will probably appear as a card in due course.

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

common ground

Yesterday I made a start at adding comments to other people's blogs, as I want to make this process interactive and make contact with people. I put a comment on the Cowboys and Custard blog, as I have enjoyed reading it for some time, and it seemed a friendly place to start! Michele contacted me by email and we have lots of things in common - love of and periods living in Cornwall, love of felt making, and, perhaps strangest of all, an appreciation of the work of Geoffrey Oryema, a musician from Uganda with a tragic past, who plays and sings the most moving music. Oh, and cats who look similar! Thank you Michele for making me so welcome to the world of blog communication.
This picture is of young lads leaping into the sea at Trebarwith Strand. Tombstoning I think? At first when I saw them, I looked away in horror, and thought it all extremely dangerous, and the rocks below seemed to be directly beneath them. Then, I thought, 'just one photo'. Then, of course, I was desperate for them to jump, and silently goaded them on. It took several shots to get an actual one of someone in mid air! They all seemed fine and full of the excitement of it all when they got out. I think it is a local rite of passage.
There was no intended connection with my above post when I chose this shot, but I can see a 'jumping in' connection! I just wanted a reminder of summer, so dreary is the weather at present, so wet and generally gloomy. But, you do have to jump in to get the full benefits of life. I won't be doing this particular jump next summer though.

A New Addiction

Using the embellisher day and night?
Washing the floor?
Doing the laundry?

Nope. None of these, although I would at least like to be using the embellisher. I have been introduced to Scrabulous (Scrabble to you and me) on Facebook. Now I have 8 games going, and have to keep checking if it is my turn! I suppose it is slightly brain expanding, and it can fit around other activities, well, it must. I will be back on here later, must go and check if it is my go...

Monday, 14 January 2008

felted brooches

These are some of the felted brooches I have made with my Janome embellisher. I have sold/given as presents quite a few, so these are what is left! Until I make some more. I love using the embellisher, but seem to get through a lot of needles. I now also have a sewing machine, so hope to bring the two together and add machine stitching to the felt. This is a rubbish photo. I notice people apologise for their photos on other blogs, but they mostly look fine to me! I guess it is acceptable to blame the light at this time of year.


Here is a picture I did some time ago, and which I have sold, and I am pleased with it. I was actually quite torn about selling it. I love the idea that it is being enjoyed on someone's wall, well I hope it is being enjoyed!

I discovered recently on another blog I visit ( must find which one and attribute this) how to spell bleurgh! This is how I have been for the past few days, have just slept and slept.

Did a picture of the view over the sea I posted a few days ago, but Wendy, our tutor at the art class I attend, after pulling all the components apart, decreed it a 'a bit of a disaster really'. Now, I don't always agree with her, but, on this occasion, I do. I have had it around, with the aim of just catching sight of it every now and then. It is not pleasing! I will not, therefore, be posting it here. I may well put up pictures, embellished things with which I am not totally pleased, but not yet!

Monday, 7 January 2008

me agen

hallow, i thinck thees fotos ov me ar a bit betta than that uther wun.

wot du yu thinc?

purr-haps i am showing mi aje a littel bit? Wel, i am 12. Du i looc a bit mene? I hope so.

Excuse me

I had thought this was my blog, for serious discussion of crafty matters, but it seems it has been hijacked by sundry pets. Oh well, I have not had any time to create anything anyway, so I suppose it keeps the blog going for the animals to have a go.

Today, Simon and I brought his mum back from the hospital in Truro, where she has been all over Christmas and the New Year after fracturing her hip. She was very happy to be home and had thought through all that she needed to do to make being at home possible.

My next major task is to do my tax return for the last financial year. That will be a bundle of laughs, but it cannot be put off any longer.

Sunday, 6 January 2008

My go, my go, my go.

I'm Ebony, I'm 16, but I love playing and go all nutty about the place. I am also staying with Simon and Vanessa, but I will go home when my Mum, Elizabeth is home (she comes out of hospital tomorrow, 7th Jan.) and settled and a bit more mobile. I'm a bit deaf, and I make a strange, strangled sort of miaow sometimes, because I cannot hear what I'm saying. I'm no trouble at all, I don't take any nonsense from that Ted, I just bash him in the face if he gives me any hassle.

Me again!

Hi, this is another of me, Barney. I think I am a handsome chap. I can spell better than that daft cat as well.
This is a section out of the first letter i wrote, to relatives in Austria.

'Today, I went upstairs with Simon and he left me in his study for a little while. He had very kindly left two boxes of chocolates on his desk for me. I only managed to eat one box, the other one fell under a filing cabinet which was very annoying, as I could not get it out. When Simon came back, he was cross with me, I suppose for not having eaten the second box of chocolates he had given me. He won’t let me have them now. Sometimes there is food on the floor in a little bowl as well, but Simon always stops me eating that, I don’t know why. He says it is for Ebony. Why doesn’t she just gobble it all up when she gets it, silly cat, she obviously does not need it. It is a good room to go in, I like it there, you never know what you might find. Oh, I like Simon too, he is looking after me a lot, he says we spend so much time together that we are ‘one’. That is silly. He is human, I am a dog. How would that work, a humog, or a dogum? I don’t think so.'

OK, the next post can be for Ebony.

Hello, I'm Barney

This is me, Barney. Ebony, who will get her turn, has to just make sure she is in there too, doesn't she? Not satisfied to let this one be about me, oh no.

I have moved to Michael House, since my Mum, Elizabeth, had a fall and broke her hip and cannot look after me any more. It is OK here I suppose. I will do more posts soon.

Saturday, 5 January 2008

stewpid dogs

this iz a terriborl foto ov me, but at leest i du not hav a silli hat on mi hed. i luk a bit bashd up, mi eer haz bene like this for meni yers.

wen the uptite, Vanesser, luked for fotos ov me to put on heer, there wer no uther wuns, just pikchers ov the DOGS. Disgraseful. this must be remedeed forthwith.

Friday, 4 January 2008

And forward to 2008

This picture was taken along the coast from Boscastle, heading east. Windswept, the tree is struggling and succeeding to live in an inhospitable environment. I hope there are not too many parallels in my own life! I plan to try my hand at making a watercolour and a felt picture from this image, possibly imagining it at sunset or in the summer. It may be too ambitious, but I shall have a go.

Looking back to Christmas

If I just look away, maybe that strange thing pointing at me will go away. This is so humiliating.

OK, OK, enough of the forcing me to pose with a silly hat, you upright's idea of a good laugh. I would like to get on with eating this poinsettia (poisonous? oh), or maybe finishing off my toy doggie, or perhaps even licking that bowl you kindly left there for me.

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Just like that!

I have just started this blog, which I plan to use primarily for craft and art related things, but also for more personal musings than I use the Michael House blog for. I started a Typepad blog, but have realised that it is bonkers to have my two blogs with different providers, so, I deleted that one, woomph, just like that, it was gone.

This is a piece of felt I have made on the embellisher. It is card sized, well, it is a card, then I decided I wanted to keep it and it may even get framed.

I love using the embellisher and have lots of ideas for things to do on it and my sewing machine when I get that going.