Monday, 31 October 2011

Sunday, 30 October 2011

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

Friday, 28 October 2011

Catching up with summer.....blue and white


More summer goodies, sweetie~pies :-) 


You know me by now ~ I find it so hard to resist adding to my eclectic collection of blue and white china!


So hard, in fact, that I hardly bother to try ;-)


After all, my loves, who could walk away from something as cute as this little cow jug??


Or this sweet little miniature plate ~ sadly, not quite mini enough for a dolls' house but small enough to slip in with my "big" collection LOL


And as for these three little cuties ~ well quite frankly what's not to love, eh!

Thursday, 27 October 2011

The Thursday Poem





Spring

Nothing is so beautiful as spring -
When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;
Thrush's eggs look little low heavens, and thrush
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring
The ear, it strikes like lightenings to hear him sing;
The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush
The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush
With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.

What is all this juice and all this joy?
A strain of the earth's sweet being in the beginning
In Eden garden. - Have, get, before it cloy,
Before it cloud, Christ, lord, and sour with sinning,
Innocent mind and Mayday in girl and boy,
Most, O maid's child, thy choice and worthy the winning.


Gerard Manley Hopkins
(28th July 1844 - 8th June 1889)

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Catching up with summer.....Gifts

My blogging over the summer was very haphazard, sweetie~pies, but here at last are photographs of some of the lovely gifts I received :-)

A pair of cute little costume dolls from my sister-in-law and her family for my 50th birthday.....


along with some sweet little tins.....


and a lovely haematite necklace and earrings set :-)

A collection of shells-in-a-shell! 

These were collected for me by the grandaughter of a Flickr friend.  Phil and his wife took little Chloe on holiday and she gathered these up as a "thank you" for two dollies I had sent her.  They came addressed to me as "Mrs Sharon ****** (The Dolly Lady)" ~ how lovely was that, sweetie~pies! 

Lucky girl that I am, I also had a wonderful little package of goodies from my dear friend Sandi

This gorgeous little blanket and cushion is destined for the little girl's bedroom at 61 Stove Avenue.  I have been trying to decide on a theme for the childrens' bedrooms (not that I have even finished building the house, mind you, my loves!) but was finding it very hard to make up my mind.  The butterflies and delicate lace trimming on this little set have now made me think that Verity may like her room to be filled with butterflies, flowers and birds ;-)


Sandi also included these wonderful little dolly hats ~ aren't they sweet!  I shall have some very happy dolls indeed when they see this gorgeous headwear.


And last but by no means least, my loves, Sandi also sent me one of her beautiful little peg-dolls!  This little lady is truly gorgeous!  She is now living very happily on the shelf with my other peg-dolls, one of whom was also made by Sandi :-)

I have more photographs yet to show you but will save them for another day...

Monday, 24 October 2011

Start the week with a quote...

image from The Graphics Fairy




A failure is a man who has blundered,
but is not able to cash in the experience


Sunday, 23 October 2011

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

Friday, 21 October 2011

Daisy loves the wood-burner!


On Sunday evening, sweetie~pies, we lit the wood-burner for the first time this season 


I think it is clear that Daisy approves of this new seasonal development ;-)


The rug in front of the fireplace has now become her favourite snoozing spot


Mind you, she isn't best pleased when I ever so politely ask her to move so that I can safely add more logs for her heat-consuming pleasure


She soon gets over being huffy though and resumes warming her fluffy little belly


Cats always find the best places to nap, don't they, my loves :-)

Thursday, 20 October 2011

The Thursday Poem



from Lessons of the War
to Alan Mitchell
Viri duellis nupet idoneus
Et militavi non sine gloria

Today we have naming of parts.  Yesterday,
We had daily cleaning.  And tomorrow morning,
We shall have what to do after firing.  Japonica
Glistens like coral in all of the neighbouring gardens,
And today we naming of parts.

This is the lower sling swivel.  And this
Is the upper sling swivel, whose use you will see,
When you are given your slings.  And this is the piling swivel,
Which in your case you have not got.  The branches
Hold in the gardens their silent, eloquent gestures,
Which in our case we have not got.

This is the safety-catch, which is always released
With an easy flick of the thumb.  And please do not let me
See anyone using his finger.  You can do it quite easy
If you have any strength in your thumb.  The blossoms
Are fragile and motionless, never letting anyone see
Any of them using their finger.

And this you can see is the bolt.  The purpose of this
Is to open the breech, as you see.  We can slide it
Rapidly backwards and forwards: we call this
Easing the spring.  And rapidly backwards and forwards
The early bees are assaulting and fumbling the flowers:
They call it easing the Spring.

They call it easing the spring: it is perfectly easy
If you have any strength in your thumb: like the bolt
And the breech, and the cocking-piece, and the point of balance,
Which in our case we have not got; and the almond-blossom
Silent in all of the gardens and the bees going backwards and forwards,
For today we have naming of parts.

Henry Reed
(22nd February 1914 - 8th December 1986)

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

The A-Z of Me!

not me, my loves, but I rather wish it was!


I spotted this on Retro Chick's blog today sweetie-pies.  I've seen it on other blogs that I like to visit and decided it looked like fun and that I'd rather like to play along, too!  So here is the A-Z of your's truly ~ whether you want to know yet more about me or not LOL






A ~ Age:  50

B ~ Bed size:  King Size

C ~ Chore that you hate:  Cleaning the bathroom

D ~ Dogs:   Well, you know that my precious poochie passed away back in April and that we now have a moggy called Daisy

E ~ Essential start to your day:  A lovely mug of Lady Grey tea ~ the day just doesn't feel right without it! 

F ~ Favourite Colour:  A tricky one but on the whole I think most shades of blue comes top of my list

G ~ Gold or silver:  I much prefer white gold or silver

H ~ Height:  5' 6". I was always the tallest girl in my class at school and was taller than a lot of the boys too, but I feel like I'm shrinking with the height of youngsters today!

I ~ Instruments you play:  Not a single solitary thing ~ I do like listening to music though

J ~ Job title:  Housewife ~ and very proud of it I am too :-)

K ~ Kids:  The gruesome-twosome aka Sam and Beverly, my 20 year old twins (actually they are closer to 21 now ~ eeeeek!!)

L ~ Live:  North Hertfordshire, UK

M ~  Mothers name: Patricia

N ~ Nicknames:  Hubby calls me "lovey" from time-to-time ~ does that count??

O ~ Overnight hospital stays:  Oh yes, I've had a few over the years, the most recent being when I had a prolapsed disc and "stayed overnight" for 2 1/2 weeks!

P ~ Pet peeves:  Frankly, my loves, I have waaaaay more than there is space in this post LOL  I have turned into a decidedly Grumpy Old Woman ;-)

Q ~ Quote from a movie:  Oh dear ~ I can't think of a single one!

R~ Right or left handed:  Right

S ~ Siblings:  A "baby" sister ~ who is four years younger than me

T ~ Time you wake up:  I wake up around 6.30-6.45am ~ but when I actually emerge from my cosy little cocoon is quite another matter LOL

U ~ Underwear:  "Granny" knickers and Triumph Doreen bras ~ how boring am I!

V ~ Vegetable you hate:  I don't know that there are any that I hate exactly but there are some that I just don't fancy and so have never tried ~ like artichokes or fennel for instance

W ~ What makes you run late:  I don't tend to run late to be honest ~ if anything, I will end up being early!

X ~ X rays you’ve had:  I've had a few over the years ~ the last one was when I had the prolapsed disc

Y ~ Yummy food that you make:  I make jolly good Christmas puddings ~ even if I do say so myself ;-)


Z ~ Zoo animal:  Orangutans
 
 
Why don't you join in the fun, my
 loves ~ do leave a comment to let me know so that I can go have a little nose at the A-Z of you, too!

Monday, 17 October 2011

Busy busy busy!



By the end of last week, sweetie~pies, I admit that I felt just like the housewife in the picture above looks!

I simply couldn't stand it any longer so I girded my loins and finally tackled my bulging wardrobe and chest of drawers.  The sight of the mess each time I opened up a drawer or the wardrobe doors was seriously getting on my nerves, my loves, so I just decided to jump straight in and sort it all out.  Naturally, since I did this on the spur of the moment, it didn't occur to me to take before and after photos *rolls eyes* but you can take my word for it when I tell you that it was most definitely not a pretty sight!

I pulled out everything that was hanging in the wardrobe first and piled it high on the bed.  You wouldn't believe the variety of sizes I had in there, sweetie~pies ~ in the end, I filled two dustbin liners with smaller sizes!  Since I am determined to shed this excess weight I decided to hang on to these clothes ~ they are now safely stored up in the loft until I need them :-)  And not only were there the differing size issues to sort through, there were also the why-am-I-keeping-this-hideous-garment questions to be answered!  In the end, I filled six or seven carrier-bags for the charity shop with clothes I really don't care for.  A lot of these items were things that my Mum had passed on to me but I have to confess there were a handful of "what-was-I-thinking" clothes I had bought for myself LOL

Daisy thought it was all terribly exciting ~ she kept racing up and down the stairs, into the bedroom, into the wardrobe, climbing in the chest of drawers when I had taken a drawer out to sort through!  She also had to thoroughly examine each and every pile I had set out on the bed ~ from all angles, including trying to burrow beneath them.  And, of course, she also had to try them out to see which was the most comfy for a potential snooze.  She looked like she was reenacting fairytale scenes which were a cross between Goldilocks and The Princess and the Pea!

I also sorted out my shoes and handbags, plus all the things in my chest of drawers.  Two days it took me, my loves, two whole days!  I was absolutely pooped by the time I'd worked my way through it all, I can tell you.  But my word, it felt SO good to get the job done ~ and every time I open the wardrobe or a drawer, I'm still smiling
:-)

By the way, sweetie~pies, just in case you may be interested I have put some items in my ebay store:



I still have things to list from this first down-sizing/sorting out exercise and will be gradually doing a few more each day :-)

I am sure you noticed that magic little word "first" in the sentence above ;-)  Oh yes indeedy, my loves, this bedroom clear out is just the beginning!  I have decided that the time has come to work my way around the whole of the house.

Watch this space for more exciting ~ well, it is for me at any rate ;-) ~ updates! 



Start the week with a quote...

image from The Graphics Fairy




The best angle from which to approach any problem is the try-angle

Sunday, 16 October 2011

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, 13 October 2011

Total eclipse of the heart ~ giggle giggle!

The Thursday Poem

Young Woman Reading by a Window by Delphin Enjolras



Woman Work

I've got the children to tend
The clothes to mend
The floor
to mop
The food to shop
Then the chicken to fry
The baby to dry
I got company to feed
The garden to weed
I've got shirts to press
The tots to dress

The can to be cut
I gotta clean up this hut
Then see about the sick
And the cotton to pick.

Shine on me, sunshine
Rain on me, rain
Fall softly, dewdrops
And cool my brow again.

Storm, blow me from here
With your fiercest wind
Let me float across the sky
'Til I can rest again.

Fall gently, snowflakes
Cover me with white
Cold icy kisses and
Let me rest tonight.

Sun, rain, curving sky
Mountain, oceans, leaf and stone
Star shine, moon glow
You're all that I can call my own.

Maya Angelou
(4th April 1928 - )

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

A random thought...

image from Danilo Rizzuti
http://www.freedigitalphotos.net




Moss.....Mother Nature's velvet

Monday, 10 October 2011

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Chop chop, snip snip...



hair all gone!

Way back in June, sweetie~pies, my hair had virtually reached my waist but it looked pretty awful as it was in not-very-good condition, which was putting it mildly.  So one morning when I was in town with Beverly, on the spur-of-the-moment I popped into the hairdressers and had it trimmed right back to about my shoulders.  I kept meaning to take a photo to show you, my loves, but as is my wont these days I just kept forgetting LOL  I was rather cross to find that Adrian didn't even notice that I no longer had hair hanging all the way down my back ~ in the end, Beverly had to point it out to him!

I admit that I was pleased with how much nicer my hair looked, my loves, but I still rarely just left it down ~ it was almost always either in a ponytail or a bun ~ as I would get too hot.  The seeds were sown in my mind at that first chopping-off of my locks to go back to short hair once more and I knew that it wouldn't be long before I took the plunge LOL 

So on Friday, that is just what I did and I am very happy to report that I am extremely pleased with my new hairstyle :-)     

Prayer for World Peace


Dove of Peace
www.allposters.co.uk

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, 8 October 2011

A little bit of Daisy~love...


Like most moggies, Daisy is incredibly curious about everything that comes into our home ~ well let's face it, my loves, she is downright nosy about just about everything going on in and around her little world ;-)

So it was no surprise when she just had to investigate the little package which came in the post from my dear friend Sandi.  Actually I received these gifts some time back, so I really must take photos to show you the sweet little treasures! 


After a thoroughly good sniffing ~ no doubt she could smell Sandi's dog and moggies ~ she decided that the next item on the agenda was to make herself comfy on the wrappings.  Daisy, like all our other kitties, loves sitting on paper, bags, etc.


It wasn't too long, though, before something outside caught her attention ~ someone probably had had the temerity to actually walk past her house.....on the public footpath LOL


She also seems to like to sit beside Julia for some reason.  I have often wondered what she makes of my dolls.....


Ah, my little ray of sunshine.  Daisy loves the warmth of the sun on her back :-)


Queen of the castle!  She likes to sit at the very top of her cat tower ~ where she can get the best view of all she surveys ;-)


And this, my loves, is the little minx's latest favourite comfy place ~ curled up in my ironing pile!  She will have to find somewhere else when I finally get through my mountain of ironing :-)

Friday, 7 October 2011

Cheese, bacon & mushroom tart



A simple little dish I made for dinner on Wednesday night :-)  Here's the recipe:

250g pastry (I used puff as I had a ready-made pack I wanted to use up but I'm sure the tart would be just as good using shortcrust)
a little butter (for greasing the dish)
4 large eggs
150ml milk (I used whole milk as that is what I had already open but you could use semi-skimmed or even soya milk, come to that)
200g cheddar cheese, preferably mature for flavour, grated
250g mushrooms (I used chestnut mushrooms but use whatever variety you prefer), sliced
250g bacon (I used back as that is what I had to hand but streaky would be good, too)
 a little olive oil, for frying
salt ~ optional
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 180C (gas mark 4).  Lightly grease a 20-25cm pie dish.  Roll out the pastry to fit the dish.

Fry the rashers of bacon in a little olive oil until crisp.  Set aside on a plate lined with kitchen paper.  Fry the sliced mushrooms in the same pan ~ you may need to add a little more oil.

Beat the eggs and milk together in a bowl.  Mix in the grated cheese and add freshly ground black pepper.  I didn't add any salt since I think there is plenty in both the cheese and the bacon ~ but you may wish to, of course :-)

Lay the bacon in the bottom of the pastry shell, then add the mushrooms and finally pour over the egg mixture.

Bake for approximately 40-45 minutes, until the filling is nicely set and golden.  Keep an eye on the tart towards the end of the cooking time; I had to move my dish lower in the oven as the pastry was starting to get a little too brown!

Serves 4-6, depending on appetite ;-)

I served the tart with couscous and baby spinach leaves.  A nice crisp green salad would be good, too, or lightly steamed vegetables such as green beans.

As I say, it's a very simple dish which I made up as I went along using ingredients I had to hand.  Now that I know it is good and tasty I will experiment with other fillings.  It could easily be made into a vegetarian dish, for instance, by simply leaving out the bacon.  I'm thinking that a layer of baby spinach leaves would be nice, or sliced and lightly fried tomatoes or onions.  It would also be a good way to use up cooked leftover veggies :-)