Saturday, May 7

Birthday Lamp..."Spice Works"!

Today is my son's birthday, which always means that I'm a year older than I think.
Ben works with I.T. stuff that I can only imagine and shudder!
Part of the work involves an I.T. community called .."Spice Works" .
It has a logo of chilli peppers and a sort of creature.... looks to me like some dragon!
We're still on the family lamp theme for birthdays, so Ben's choice was one for "Spice Works"

I've put this up to show off the glaze....

...and that's what it looks like when lit up.

So it's now in pride of place at his home and looking good....
just like him!

Friday, May 6

Maddy's "Do".

The incorrigible Magdalene a.k.a. Maddy to her friends
...and I'm proud to be one! ...
is putting on an extravaganza par excellence in September.
"Hollywood Honeys"........."Screen Sirens"  etc.
So we're talking here about Judy Garland, Marilyn Monroe, Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich et al.
And all this coming from the staff and gang at

I was watching with envy, the Italian Garden Journey of the rather delectable Monty Don.
On the southern leg of his "Grand Tour", he visited the Villa Cimbrone in Ravello on the bay of Naples.
Beautiful House
Beautiful Gardens
Beautiful People!
they all went there in the 20s and 30s.
And one of them was....Greta Garbo
They went apparantly for peace from the hoi-poloi!
And that , they say, is where she first uttered the immortal words..
"...I have been to the Amalfi coast and there I was left alone...
-I want to be alone"

So in the greater scheme of things  i.e. the show,
your's truly has put on the fedora titfer,
slipped on the velvet smoking jacket,
covered the sad eyes with shades 
and clutched a cigarette holder in her paw!
[ don't smoke, never smoked!]

Then, a photo session with the talented Tracy Sanderson McAiney.

I did my best to keep in character...

....but eventually the giggles broke through!

Greta didn't sing as far as I can tell, but I'm going to say the lyrics of that gorgeous piece,
"Mack the Knife"

I've just got to spruce up on the sexy Swedish accent,
and that's not easy for a Belfast girl!

Wednesday, May 4

A Poem for Thursday.

Above the grassy labyrinth
Wood browns flirt and flutter in pairs
Catching rays of gold
On mottled wings.
So new life emerges
Playful coquettish
To fly and suck
On summer's nectars.
The struggle from
The winter's binding
Strengthening flight
And damp moss perfumes
Dappled sunlight.
While blackbirds claim
Old Territories and sing.

Pumpkin Jug

I love this jug which Alan made for me many years ago.
I regularly have to go and retrieve it from the studio as the classes have a go at making their own one.
It looks wonderful with simple garden flowers
and wild flowers from the field.

Tuesday, May 3

Any excuse for a Party!

Well this weekend gave us the best reason for a looooong time.
All eleven of us were together!
Ha! You thought it was something else?
Well that's sort of right,
 it was after all a bank holiday
and that made the weekend go on for two extra days.
Plus the sun shone and the flowers bloomed and the summer house beckoned.

So the following are just a few of the mad moments from our "Royal Wedding Party".

 .....suggested by Tina, my lovely daughter-in-law 
and organised by us all.

Moi...checking that the colours are flying.

All faces turned one way.
the delightful daughter
and founder of

Is this also a knobbly knee contest?

Kate...eldest granddaughter...
and blogger on


No point in coming to a do
without getting on your best goodies!

Ahhhh....the bride!

Cake baked by Tina and topped by Nini
...joint efforts.

So we had
coronation chicken
german potato salad ( after all there's a lot of that in
"The Family". )
Pasta...for the kids...any Italians at the do?
Welsh cheese..... for the "Wales" couple.
And royal icing on the cake!

(spot the flags!)

...son enjoys the sun...

Tina enjoys the wine,

Kids enjoy the freedom!
no school.

But that's not the end...oh no
not by a long chalk!
Afternoon tea was imbibed up at the summer house.
Joined by some lovely friends,
we continued to eat to the health of the newly married couple.

Well I believe that their parties went on all night!

they might just be shortbread biccies...
...but they sure look royal to me!
Made and painted by Nini.

Hats were essential
as were flags of all sorts may I say.

If you look back you might see the flag of Cornwall, Eire and Spain
just so as not to offend any!

A quiet spot to relax and enjoy the feast.

and back up to the table
 for seconds.

Son and son-in-law kept up the serious business of dish-washing and fresh pots of tea.
A good old English tradition!
I mean the dish-washing of course!

Nearly at the end of a weekend
and a girl must make sure that her face is still radiant!

....a lot of slumping in the sun
and gentle snoozing....

what a good end to the bank holiday.

I do hope and pray that this young couple are somehow able to work it out,
in spite of all of the shenanigans surrounding them.