Tuesday, 3 June 2014

The laburnum arch at Bodnant,North Wales.

 We had a free day today so decided we would pootle down the coast to Bodnant.Bodnant Gardens are just outside Conway in North Wales about 45 minutes by car from our house.Bodnant is famous for its azaleas and rhodedendrons but also its laburnum arch.This week is the week to see it.It is truly magnificent and the photos don't really do it justice.If you can see it on a sunny day it is amazing but today was cloudy.
                                                   A closer look.
 Today we went in a part of the garden that hasn't been open before called the Yew Dell.This is looking down into the dell.
                                  Back to the main part of the garden and some beautiful irises.
                               They are part of this circular garden.
                                 A view from the Rose Garden over the lily pond.
                                 I wanted to share these photos with you as it is such a special place.I just 
                                 wish we had a sunny day for better shots.It was very busy,lots of coaches and
                                 cars.We then had a pub lunch and home for a quick snooze as I was so shattered
                                 with all the walking!!

Sunday, 1 June 2014

My mandala for Yarndale 2014.

Last year we made bunting for Yarndale.This year we have been asked to make a mandala.Only one.These are going to be put together to make a huge wall display,I think.I have chosen what I think will be colours that are not quite so common so I can recognise it when I am there.I didn't spot my bunting last year.There was just so much of it.I was quite pleased,well really pleased, that I could follow the pattern!I couldn't understand why my cross bits were going the wrong way and then realised I am left handed and going the other way.
I have painted my mandala with PVA but it isn't rigid.Does anyone know whether it should be?

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Yarn bombing my garden.A start...

                          I thought I would share with you what I have made this week.I had a busy,busy week but managed to fit in a bit of knitting.It is amazing the patterns you can find on Ravelry.
This is Mr Owl.I think I might make a few more of these-different colours and sizes.
                                         Two cute ladybirds.
                                          A couple of butterflies.
                                          I think I need more baby hedgehogs.This pattern is
                                          from Little Cotton Rabbits.
                                          Hopefully more to share with you soon.A much quieter week ahead.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Our little Ruby has got scarlet fever!

We should have been spending today with our daughter and family but we had a phone call to say Ruby(6) has got scarlet fever.She has to be in quarantine for 24 hours and on antibiotics for ten days.We hope Emily doesn't get it but also Sarah our daughter who is Type 1 diabetic doesn't get it.My OH has no spleen so he has to keep away too.
We survived our busy week but I was very tired!I did manage to take some photos of some of the azaleas and rhodedendrons in our front garden.The photos don't really do them justice.They are gorgeous this year.

Sunday, 11 May 2014

I love being busy.The week coming up.

I do like to be busy and every so often we get a week that is packed full like the one coming up.
Social History Group meeting.The subject is Industrial Archaeology by Fiona Gale a local archaeologist in our area of North Wales.
In the afternoon meet my Welsh speaking friend for a cup of tea in town and a catch up.(Must walk and not be tempted to jump in the car.)
TUESDAY.9.10 am appointment at the doctor's.I have throbbing noises in my ear and the pharmacist told me to get it checked out.I also have sciatica and eczema which nothing can be done about.I have had the ear problem for weeks but have had to wait two weeks for an apptmnt.Typical it is not as bad as it was.
P.M.Final planning meeting for Weds Science conference where I am involved with the catering.
Be at the conference early as I am doing tea and coffee for 80.Two speakers.Amazing Space followed by an Audince with Charles Darwin.Conference finishes at 1pm.
45 minute drive to pick up Emily and Ruby from school,give them tea and take them to gymnastics.
THURSDAY.My Reading Group in the morning.The Light Years by Elizabeth Jane Howard(must finish the last 100 pages before then but am quite bored with it.)
6.30pm.Eleven of us are going to the local Chinese restaurant.In before 7pm get a special deal.It is always a good night out with this group of friends-5 couples plus a widower.Lots of laughter.
FRIDAY.Tea and a toasted teacake with my best friend and knitting soulmate.
P.M.May need a sleep this afternoon before Quiz Night at 7.30pm.
Need to find some knitting time in between to do more for yarn bombing our garde.I have aleady made two hedgehogs,two ladybirds and a butterfly and half way through an owl
Pictures next time.
So for those of you who thought retirement was not for you I hope a glance at my week will show you it is anything but.
Enjoy your week.Barbarax

Monday, 5 May 2014

Yarn bombing.What do you think?

 This is what we saw when we visited Anglesey Abbey just outside Cambridge a month ago.It seems covert crafters created these as a prelude to the Tour de France cycling race which is going to go through Cambridge this year.Knitters are being asked to make miniature jerseys which will adorn the city.

 My two grandsons,Finlay and Angus,by the tree house.(That's not our pushchair!)
 This is the front view of Anglesey Abbey.I am afraid Grandma and Grandpa were too tired to go round the house having walked ,what seemed like miles,to the Discovery Area with the boys!
 This last weekend we had a few days up in the Lake District.On the way we stopped at Sizergh Castle near Kendal.Yarn bombing again on The Knoll.This is a community project involving schools,groups and individuals.This was a pretty convincing owl.
 How about this bullfinch?(We have a resident pair of bullfinches in our garden).Yarn bombing here included knitting ,crochet and felting'
                                          Sizergh Castle garden.Beautiful.So what do you think about yarn bombing.?I think it is a bit of fun that brightens things up.I am thinking of doing it in my garden.The grandchildren would love it.Giant ladybirds,owls,butterflies,flowers.My mind is buzzing.Any other suggestions welcome.Will the neighbours think it is a bit of fun or will they think I have lost the plot!!

Monday, 31 March 2014

Amsterdam etc

 A week yesterday we went to Amsterdam in the Netherlands.We love art and one of the main reasons for going was to go to the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijks Museum to see great art.We were very well organised and booked our tickets ,on line, and in advance.Unfortunately our plans were scuppered because President Obama was in town ,en route to The Hague for a Nuclear Conference.He was visiting the museums on the day we had booked our tickets and all the museum area was closed!Much  panic followed but we did manage to go the following day.The van Gogh museum was interesting but a little disappointing as most of his famous  works are elsewhere(all his sunflower pictures are in London).We were more impressed with the Rijks Museum especially the Night Watch by Rembrandt.There were more works by him and also Vermeer.
We had a hotel just  off Dam Square which was very handy but in an expensive area.Two glasses of lager were 9 euros!
Above is a photo of me with the famous "tulips fromAmsterdam"
 A typical Amsterdam scene.
 Looking the other way from the same bridge.
Typical houses and bikes everywhere.I tried to upload more photos but they disappeared.
While in Amsterdam we visited Anne Frank's house.This is a fascinating story and so humbling to read it and see where they hid.Anne died in Bergen Belsen just before the end of the war.Her father,Otto,survived and in 1947 found a publisher to print the diary.If you havn't read this you should.
We also visited Rembrand's house.This was so interesting.It is a three storey canal house built in 1606.He bought it in 1639 using money from his wife Saskia.The top floor is dedicated to his etchings and there was a man there demonstrating how it was done,also someone showing how he mixed his paint.You see his living quarters as well as his studio and get a real"feel" for Rembrandt.
It was a great trip.We walked miles and miles and my knees were great(thank you Mr Wooton for my replacements).We got back on Wednesday evening at 10pm and on Thursday at 11am we were off to Cambridge but that is a story for another day.............