Thursday, 30 September 2010

A rainy September day...


...didn't deter this little goldfinch from visiting the bird-feeder in our front garden! I love the way the raindrops are hanging from its tail :-)

I would love to be able to gently stroke those soft feathers.

I confess that I am somewhat scared of spiders but it's that time of year once more when the garden seems full of 'em! So I decided to gird my loins and take some photos. I couldn't get too close though LOL

I was busy cropping this photo to get a better view of the spider with it's dinner (!) and suddenly became aware that I was pushing myself as far away from the computer screen as I could *hehehehe*

The perfect antidote to scary spiders: my precious poochie reclining in a lovely ladylike pose. It's a shame all those biscuit crumbs give away what a messy eater she is ~ and what a bad housekeeper I am ;-)

The Thursday Poem


Young Woman Reading by a Window by Delphin Enjolras


Valentine

Not a red rose nor a satin heart.

I give you an onion.
It is a moon wrapped in brown paper.
It promises light
like the careful undressing of love.

Here.
It will blind you with tears
like a lover.
It will make your reflection
a wobbling photo of grief.

I am trying to be truthful.

Not a cute card or a kissogram.

I give you an onion.
Its fierce kiss will stay on your lips,
possessive and faithful
as we are,
for as long as we are.

Take it.
Its platinum loops shrink to a wedding-ring,
if you like.
Lethal.
Its scent will cling to your fingers,
cling to your knife.

Carol Ann Duffy
(23rd December 1955 - )

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

For my collection!


Sweet little Primrose is another hard plastic doll. I don't know who made her; it only says Made in England on her back. She could do with a bit of a clean and her hair most definitely needs some attention. Her "bodysuit" is rather unusual! I don't think it has been painted on by a previous owner ~ none of my other little hard plastic dolls have this, though.

I had made up my mind not to buy any more larger dolls but there was just something about Amelie that caught my eye. She looked rather sad in her Ebay photo so I put in a bid for the asking price and, well, here she is! Obviously no one else wanted to give her a new home, poor little mite

The only information stamped on Amelie is Made in England, so I have no idea who made her or when but she doesn't seem to be particularly new or old, for that matter. From the 1970s perhaps? She has a few play marks but nothing terrible. Her hair is very matted, though. As she has such a lovely dark "skin", I wonder why she wasn't made with brown eyes? Her amber-coloured eyes really "pop" in her pretty face and I wonder if this put other buyers off her! I rather suspect that someone may well have painted her lips.


Well, I'm very happy that no one else wanted to give her a new home since it meant that pretty Amelie has become a very welcome new addition to my dolly family :-)


Rachel is also very pretty. I don't tend to go for these modern Barbies so much but she caught my eye :-) When I was taking her photograph, I had the feeling that I already had a girl like her but on reflection I must have been thinking about Lorraine ~ although now I've had a look, I can see that they are not the same!

Loretta has the most wonderful platinum blonde hair! She is another Sindy clone from Linda. Her dress is lovely, too, and she came with shoes which is always nice :-)

Lois is in nice condition although her hair is a bit strange! I don't think the dress she is wearing is meant for a Sindy, as it doesn't fit very well at all.

I'm not sure if it's my imagination but Lois seems to have a wee bit of a smirk on that pretty little face of her's! One of my Flickr contacts suggested it might be because she is wearing a Tressy dress LOL

Another Sindy :-) Arabella is rather lovely and is also in nice condition. Her dress doesn't have a label and to be honest, I'm not sure whether or not it is homemade. It does suit her, though.

Phoebe is another rather lovely Sindy, although her hips are a teensy wee bit swivelly! She is in good condition and her hair is gorgeous :-)

My love affair with Tammy shows no signs of abating any time soon, hence the arrival of Virginia from the States a couple of weeks back ;-) She is in lovely condition and I'm thrilled with her.
Isn't it amazing that I kept looking for ages and didn't see any Tammys which were in my price range ~ shipping-wise, at least ~ and then suddenly, I've come across three one after the other!

This skirt came with Virginia, too; it has an Ideal label.
These six little ladies all came together and I was the only bidder, which rather surprised me!

We have Pearl in the deep rose pink outfit, Marla in the yellow dress, Gwenda in the Welsh-looking outfit, Elvira in the silky white dress, Morag in the tartan dress and Prunella in the plum outfit :-)
A veritable plethora of peg-dolls!

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Prayer for World Peace


Dove of Peace ~ Giclee print


We pray to the great Spiritual Power in which we live and move and have our being.
We pray that we may at all times keep our minds open to new ideas and shun dogma;
that we may grow in our understanding of the nature of all living beings and our connectedness with the natural world;
that we may become ever more filled with generosity of spirit and true compassion and love for all life;
that we may strive to heal the hurts that we have inflicted on nature and control our greed for material things, knowing that our actions are harming our natural world and the future of our children;
that we may value each and every human being for who he is, for who she is, reaching to the spirit that is within, knowing the power of each individual to change the world.

We pray for social justice, for the alleviation of the crippling poverty that condemns millions of people around the world to lives of misery - hungry, sick, and utterly without hope.
We pray for the children who are starving, who are condemned to homelessness, slave labour, prostitution, and especially for those forced to fight, to kill and torture even members of their own family.
We pray for the victims of violence and war, for those wounded in body and for those wounded in mind.
We pray for the multitudes of refugees, forced from their homes to alien places through war or through the utter destruction of their environment.

We pray for suffering animals everywhere, for an end to the pain caused by scientific experimentation, intensive farming, fur farming, shooting, trapping, training for entertainment, abusive pet owners, and all other forms of exploitation such as overloading and overworking pack animals, bull fighting, badger baiting, dog and cock fighting and so many more.

We pray for an end to cruelty, whether to humans or other animals, for an end to bullying, and torture in all its forms.
We pray that we may learn the peace that comes with forgiving and the strength we gain in loving;
that we may learn to take nothing for granted in this life;
that we may learn to see and understand with our hearts;
that we may learn to rejoice in our being.

We pray for these things with humility;
We pray because of the hope that is within us, and because of a faith in the ultimate triumph of the human spirit;
We pray because of our love for Creation, and because of our trust in God.
We pray, above all, for peace throughout the world.

prayer for world peace ~ dr jane goodall

Thursday, 23 September 2010

The Thursday Poem


Young Woman Reading by a Window by Delphin Enjolras


Rain - Birdoswald

I stand under a leafless tree
more still, in the mouse-pattering
thrum of rain,
than cattle shifting in the field.
It is more dark than light.
A Chinese painter's brush of deepening grey
moves in a subtle tide.

The beasts are darker islands now.
Wet-stained and silvered by the rain
they suffer night,
marooned as still as stone or tree.
We sense each other's quiet.

Almost, death could come
inevitable, unstrange
as is this dusk and rain,
and I should be no more
myself, than raindrops
glimmering in last light
on black ash buds
or night beasts in a winter field.

Frances Horovitz
(13th February 1938 - 2nd October 1983)

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Monday, 20 September 2010

Changes...


Autumnal Leaves ~ Simon Howden

I expect you will have noticed the changes to my blog layout and also my new banner (which is free from Banner of Blessings). These alterations have been on the cards for quite a while now and are very much a reflection of the changes I feel within myself.

For some time it has felt as if someone had taken a big stick, stuck it inside me and stirred round and round and round, faster and faster and faster. My thoughts and emotions have been muddled, muddied, strewn hither and thither, tossed about and thoroughly ~ completely ~ mixed up! I have been sucked down into the depths where, for a while, I thought I was safe and secure with my feet planted firmly into the anchoring mud. But it was only an illusion of safety; the mud slowly started to suck me in, deeper and deeper. For a while I didn't even notice what was happening, I simply believed that I had reached a place of calm and peace. Gradually, though, I realised that I was losing myself in that mud; it was pulling me down into a place where I didn't belong and I knew in my heart that it was somewhere I didn't want to be. That mud was clinging to me, smothering me, changing me ~ and suddenly I had the clarity of vision to see that I must break free before I sank any further.

The thought terrified me! I am not good with change, with new things, with living life differently. It's not easy for me to step out of my comfort zone ~ even if that means I stay planted in a place where it is not good for me to be. I find myself rooted to what is familiar, even if that familiarity holds me back from living life to the full; I keep myself trapped behind the walls of what I know rather than venture out to explore the world beyond.

And yet, now that it has become clear to me that I really must open the door which I had so firmly closed ~ locked! ~ the fear is starting to subside just a little. Yes, I am still afraid; yes, I am still apprehensive; yes, my stomach still churns and feelings of panic start to rise. But mixed in with all that, tiny glittery sparkling thoughts have begun to shine little beams of sunlight into my thoughts of doom and gloom!

It would be perfectly safe to unlock that door, even open it a little. I don't have to actually step outside, not just yet. I can stand in the doorway for a while, breathing in the scent of a fresh beginning. I can keep hold of the doorframe with one hand, whilst I tentatively reach for that new start with the other. There is no pressure to jump straight in, I can do this slowly and gently. I can savour each new step I take and I know that one day ~ soon ~ I will turn around and realise that I have walked away from that door which I had kept closed for so long. I will be there in the midst of my new life, living it to the full, facing challenges head-on.....and I will never shut myself away again.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Prayer for World Peace


Dove of Peace ~ Giclee print


We pray to the great Spiritual Power in which we live and move and have our being.
We pray that we may at all times keep our minds open to new ideas and shun dogma;
that we may grow in our understanding of the nature of all living beings and our connectedness with the natural world;
that we may become ever more filled with generosity of spirit and true compassion and love for all life;
that we may strive to heal the hurts that we have inflicted on nature and control our greed for material things, knowing that our actions are harming our natural world and the future of our children;
that we may value each and every human being for who he is, for who she is, reaching to the spirit that is within, knowing the power of each individual to change the world.

We pray for social justice, for the alleviation of the crippling poverty that condemns millions of people around the world to lives of misery - hungry, sick, and utterly without hope.
We pray for the children who are starving, who are condemned to homelessness, slave labour, prostitution, and especially for those forced to fight, to kill and torture even members of their own family.
We pray for the victims of violence and war, for those wounded in body and for those wounded in mind.
We pray for the multitudes of refugees, forced from their homes to alien places through war or through the utter destruction of their environment.

We pray for suffering animals everywhere, for an end to the pain caused by scientific experimentation, intensive farming, fur farming, shooting, trapping, training for entertainment, abusive pet owners, and all other forms of exploitation such as overloading and overworking pack animals, bull fighting, badger baiting, dog and cock fighting and so many more.

We pray for an end to cruelty, whether to humans or other animals, for an end to bullying, and torture in all its forms.
We pray that we may learn the peace that comes with forgiving and the strength we gain in loving;
that we may learn to take nothing for granted in this life;
that we may learn to see and understand with our hearts;that we may learn to rejoice in our being.

We pray for these things with humility;
We pray because of the hope that is within us, and because of a faith in the ultimate triumph of the human spirit;
We pray because of our love for Creation, and because of our trust in God.
We pray, above all, for peace throughout the world.

prayer for world peace ~ dr jane goodall

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Finley the Fish


I followed a pattern to knit Finley and I am really delighted that he came out rather well ~ even if I do say so myself! The pattern was in the August 2010 issue of Let's Knit magazine, although I didn't use the yarn suggested. I decided that he would be a great way to use up odds and sods of yarn!

This is my favourite side LOL I couldn't find any black yarn for his eyes ~ although I'm pretty sure I've got some lurking somewhere! ~ so I decided he could have pretty blue ones instead. I'm told that Niamh loves to cuddle him, which I'm very pleased about as I wondered if she might find him a bit scary! I really enjoyed knitting Finley and since I have lots of oddments of yarn, I think I shall make some more :-)

A gratuitous chicken photo of my gorgeous Prudence, who came for her usual chat whilst I was sitting at the computer :-)

Friday, 17 September 2010

Beautiful blue & white...


I've been working on tidying/sorting the dining room ~ there is still more to be done, but it's definitely getting there :-) I waxed my sideboard a couple of weeks back and have now got the china cabinet done, too. This is the top shelf.

The other side of the top shelf.

Middle shelf. I really must get some more candles for those little holders!

Middle shelf.

Bottom shelf.

Bottom shelf. It's not just blue and white china on display here, as you can see :-)

Jolly Molly thought it would be nice to have a change of outfit ;-) Bertie wanted to be in the photograph, too.
The woollen collar is very sweet, from the 1940s I should think. I could never have worn it, though, as it is far too itchy. Luckily, that sort of thing doesn't seem to bother Jolly Molly!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

The Thursday Poem


Young Woman Reading by a Window by Delphin Enjolras


Warning

When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we have no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick the flowers in other people's gardens
And learn to spit.

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practise a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

Jenny Joseph
(7th May 1932 - )

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Gratuitous photos of my pretty pooch!

Just because I love her!

"I may leave lots of doggy crumbs around for you to tread on in your bare feet.....but just look at how pretty I am ;-P"

"Do you mind! It is time for my beauty sleep ~ no more photographs!"

"Look, I've already told you ~ no more photos! I've tried being polite so now I shall just cover up my pretty little face!"

"Oh go on then ~ take my photo if you really feel you must!"

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

More for my collection


The lovely Ursula is modelling some clothes I recently bought for the girls. I'm not sure that "granny knickers" are really Ursula's style ;-)

The petticoat and knickers look as if they would be pretty easy to make patterns from. Perhaps I could streamline the knickers a little LOL

This outfit is in really nice condition. I will have to look out for a simple top to go with the jacket ~ or have a try at making something!

This dress is in lovely condition, too. I think it needs a slip beneath it though, as it is very sheer!

I saw Sasha and just thought how interesting she looked :-) She is a Remco doll and is quite tall at 18". Her homemade dress is very sweet and she has knickers, too, but they are a tad large to say the least! I'm trying not to buy big dolls like Sasha, simply because they take up so much space but I was tempted by Sasha because she has such a sweet face.

Evelyn is an Evergreen doll, like Grace and Gloria. She is in good condition but definitely needs a session in the dolly spa!

Treena is another Sindy ~ obviously! I've noticed on Ebay that Sindys are getting more expensive. Either there are less of them available these days or sellers have cottoned on to the fact that they have become popular collectable dolls ~ probably the latter!

Yet another Sindy ~ this is Sheila ;-) She's in pretty good condition really although I'm not sure yet what is wrong with her left eye. I'm hoping it's not scratched ~ it may just need cleaning. Her hair is pretty messy and quite dry, so she will have to have a session in the dolly spa too at some point. Her blouse has a Sindy label but the skirt doesn't ~ it also needs the popper repairing but that's only a quick little job. Her boots look really nice with her outfit :-)

My second Tammy has arrived hot on the heels of my first! Poor little Betty is not in as good condition as Georgina but she is still very pretty ~ and she has her little playsuit, too :-) Sadly, someone decided that it would be a good idea to cut or bite off the tips of her fingers on both hands, would you believe! I still love her, though. Don't you think that Tammys are just so incredibly pretty?

A closer view of Betty's poor fingers :-(

This pretty little peg-doll is Tilly ~ a new friend for Lavinia and Rita :-) One of my Flickr friends wondered if she could sense a new collection coming on with these peg-dolls.....I rather think she may well be right but at least they don't take up much space ;-D

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Wren Bay by Clarice Fox-Hughes




My friend Clarice's first book :-)

Prayer for World Peace


Dove of Peace ~ Giclee print


We pray to the great Spiritual Power in which we live and move and have our being.
We pray that we may at all times keep our minds open to new ideas and shun dogma;
that we may grow in our understanding of the nature of all living beings and our connectedness with the natural world;
that we may become ever more filled with generosity of spirit and true compassion and love for all life;
that we may strive to heal the hurts that we have inflicted on nature and control our greed for material things, knowing that our actions are harming our natural world and the future of our children;
that we may value each and every human being for who he is, for who she is, reaching to the spirit that is within, knowing the power of each individual to change the world.

We pray for social justice, for the alleviation of the crippling poverty that condemns millions of people around the world to lives of misery - hungry, sick, and utterly without hope.
We pray for the children who are starving, who are condemned to homelessness, slave labour, prostitution, and especially for those forced to fight, to kill and torture even members of their own family.
We pray for the victims of violence and war, for those wounded in body and for those wounded in mind.
We pray for the multitudes of refugees, forced from their homes to alien places through war or through the utter destruction of their environment.

We pray for suffering animals everywhere, for an end to the pain caused by scientific experimentation, intensive farming, fur farming, shooting, trapping, training for entertainment, abusive pet owners, and all other forms of exploitation such as overloading and overworking pack animals, bull fighting, badger baiting, dog and cock fighting and so many more.

We pray for an end to cruelty, whether to humans or other animals, for an end to bullying, and torture in all its forms.
We pray that we may learn the peace that comes with forgiving and the strength we gain in loving;
that we may learn to take nothing for granted in this life;that we may learn to see and understand with our hearts;that we may learn to rejoice in our being.

We pray for these things with humility;
We pray because of the hope that is within us, and because of a faith in the ultimate triumph of the human spirit;
We pray because of our love for Creation, and because of our trust in God.
We pray, above all, for peace throughout the world.

prayer for world peace ~ dr jane goodall

Thursday, 9 September 2010

The Thursday Poem


Young Woman Reading by a Window by Delphin Enjolras


Words

Axes
After whose stroke the wood rings,
And the echoes!
Echoes traveling
Off from the centre like horses.

The sap
Wells like tears, like the
Water striving
To re-establish its mirror
Over the rock

That drops and turns,
A white skull,
Eaten by weedy greens.
Years later I
Encounter them on the road -

Words dry and riderless,
The indefatigable hoof-taps.
While
From the bottom of the pool, fixed stars
Govern a life.

Sylvia Plath
(27th October 1932 - 11th February 1963)

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Latest arrivals


These three girls came from a seller in Holland: Honor, Martine and Patience :-)

Barbara is another clone from Linda. Although she was listed as a Uneeda doll, one of my Flickr friends tells me that she is actually either PMA Debbie or Elite Creations Bonny or Wendy. He thinks she is most likely a Bonny :-)

I really, truly, honestly wasn't going to get any more of these fashion dolls ~ I had decided to just stick with clones and the odd Sindy or Barbie but, well, Samantha was just so sweet..... She is a Simba Steffi Love doll.

I really liked the photo of Bryan ~ and I'm not disappointed now that he's arrived :-) He has such a handsome face, with lovely blue eyes, and I like his body and hands, too.

I think it was just love at first sight for Samantha and Bryan. Doesn't look like any of the other girls will even have a chance with Bryan, since he is quite clearly besotted with the lovely Samantha!

omg, I was just SO excited when I won this Tammy doll as I've wanted one for absolutely ages! I'm delighted with Georgina ~ who I have sort of named after one of my Flickr friends :-) She is so pretty ~ see how beautiful her facial colouring is! These dolls have always looked lovely in the photos I've seen but now that I have one "in the flesh" as it were, I can safely say that Tammy dolls are even prettier than I had imagined :-)

I have to say that Tammy and Sindy are now my joint favourite fashion-type dolls :-D