One of the lovely things about the aprtment we stayed in in Paris was its library of books on art and photography. I spent a few hours one afternon browsing them, especially enjoying black and white portraits.
At one point I tilted back in my chair and caught sight of myself in a morror and thought 'That's a photograph!'
Simply..April in Paris....
I keep forgetting to ask you if you would, when leaving a comment, say where you are writing from! It is lovely to know and fills me with wonder that we are all in touch with each other sharing our thoughts by pressing a few keys. Here are just some places on this earth I have gleaned over the years - Texas, Wales, Cambridgeshire, Glasgow, Switzerland, West Virginia, Edinburgh, Sussex, Dorset, Paris, Washington DC, Australia, Christchurch New Zealand..please add to the list!
I love this image on the snuggly rug I bought in Stockholm.
It seems to me that the Scandinavians can take a simple childlike image and make it sophisticated and grown-up.
How do they do that?
I only had two visitors last nigt although it looks as if I had a party!
The postman ccalled with some Christmas cards.
And that looks like a bare foot!
Yes, a crazy woman in the snow (I blame Wim Hof).
At least one red squirrel passed this way..
The crunchy topping prevents the smaller creatures from leaving tracks but this looks like a seagull.
It's raining now so all this will soon be gone. It was fun while it lasted.
..feels very indulgant! Love it. We are lucky to have The Blairmore cafe in the next village along the shore. As we enjoyed a delicious breakfast we watched a couple sitting at the public picninc table across the road carving pumpkins, which looked to me like a rather nice peaceful thing to do of a Saturday morning.
Asking permission to use their photograph on the blog I discovered that they have been staying in The Old Post Office for the last three months and come over regularly to Scotland from America. It was lovely to chat with them.
I may not have carved a pumpkin since these in 2010!
When did you last carve a pumpkin?
The Anchor Line is still there. Best affogato. Glasgow has some beautiful buildings.
I can't believe I have never noticed this one before. I forget to look up!
I went looking for a straw hat and came back with a cushion cover. I really like H&M homeware - lots of natural recycled fabrics and very moodest prices. (This was £3.99)
Filed under Simply Fun :-)
One of the delights of this experience was the reaction of little children to the music and moving images.
Have any of you seen it yet?
Thank you for all the kind birthday wishes, and Liz, I hope you had as lovely a time as I did!
Simply..the real deal....
Thinking about why I enjoyed my shopping spree so very much on Tuesday, I realise that it was fun because it wasn't online. And MaryB hit the nail on the head describing it as spontaneous. (It was. We only stopped for a coffee.) We had a good coffee in attractive surroundings - duck pond, beautiful furniture in a big light space with high celings and interesting rafters. It was quiet and of course would not always be so peaceful. Then the full sensory experience of the shop - touching, lifting, smelling, judging the quality, feeling the weight. I was seduced by the delicacy and subtle colours of the ostrich feathers, impressed by the craftmanship of the brushes, enticed by the thickness of the socks, the memory of the pudding...
The jug below was a £5 purchase from the supermarket and came with miniature iris bulbs. Pretty.
When did you last have a spontaneous shopping spree?
Simply..a shopping spree....
Yesterday I had reason to go to Liverpool (of more anon) and on the way back we stopped at Tebay service station in Cunbria - surely the nicest service station in the country! I bought an ostrich feather duster, two gorgeous pairs of cosy socks, a beard brush shaped like a moustache for my son-in-law, Cartmel sticky toffee puddings and a bag of fudge. I haven't had a splurge like that for ages. The big farm shop is full of lovely things. Great fun!
It was delightful to arrive in the gallery on Saturday and find ten or so young children spread around the floor doing their own snow pictures!
We had a lovely chat, and they were clearly enjoying the exhibition and having fun.
Today I met Sheena whose comments on the blog I have enjoyed for years! It was so good to put a lovely friendly face to the name (we had to remove our masks momentarily - who'd have thought it?) I am so glad she and her friend Lesley got a fine sunny day for their trip to Dunoon.
Yet more fun with my friend Lynne Cameron, a onetime student of my Drawing For Non Artists course at the University of York, now a full time painter. See her vibrant work here.
It's wonderful to be meeting up with people face to face again.
Details of the exhibition here.
My painting clothes are even worse than my gardening clothes! Though you do get away with a lot as an artist. People expect you to look a little bit, shall we say, eccentric? Which can be quite fun.
I lost my shoelaces somehow, and thought I should have my shoes firmly attached to my feet for that little boat ride, and a friend had kindly brought me a lovely box of amaretti biscuits tied up with beautiful yellow string...
..for man and beast. It's a very poor photograph but I hope you can see the dog with his lifejacket on! We seem to be in a little fair weather bubble here in the village, and I saw this when I walked down for an ice cream on the shore.
Simply..a wee jaunt....
I asked the Outdoor Centre if they would take me across the bay to my daughter's house....it was great fun and so beautiful out there on the loch!
Simply..not so much a buzz....
It's affogato Sunday again!
What will I wear?
I make no apology for looking for fun and joy and delight and happiness here on the blog.
It keeps me sane, and what use would I be in the world dejected and overcome by its tragedies? In it's miniscule way, it counteracts the angst, fear and aggression out there in the shouty world.
Do check out Rosemary's super list in yesterday's comments and Grace's recommendation in the comments the day before.
Thank you for all the wonderful ideas which just keep coming in your comments. They cheer me on in these hard times, and are evidence, if evidence is needed, that goodness and kindness and love and beauty are still all around us.
Simply..bags of love....
Loving my new shopping bag - a gift from Jennie.
Have you received, or given, any gifts lately?
Why not give someone a surprise gift this week?
Just for fun.
I did a little happy dance when I saw the friendly bus go past my house yesterday for the first time since I came home from Venice.
There has been a service, much reduced and not coming as far as my house. It means such a lot to me (my eye condition means I can no longer drive). It's my independence and my link to the rest of the world and the sight of it was a symbol of the return to normal, to being able to go places!
(Recycling bins of course.)
I did appreciate all your suggestions, but after reading a story about someone who hoarded old shoes, I went through the house binning all the things which once sparked joy but were now sparking regret/anxiety/guilt/sadness/nostaliiia/uncertainty and indecision.
Out went the shoes the boots the sandshoes and the slippers. The dying plant. the old breadboard which goes black when I cut fruit on it, the dusty wreath, an old bag with an inkstain on it, the packaging from the new juicer (the old one blew up!), another pair of shoes which I never really liked, some old tired underwear (is there anything sadder than old tired underwear?) and everything in the fridge past its sell by date!!
Something else which feels really good is spending some fun time with Mary from Washinton DC - long time commentator on this blog. Mary blew into uk on storm Brendan and if the next storm allows and the ferries are still running we meet tomorrow for a Scottish cities trip!
Meantime here is my own little bit of cherry blossom. Prunus subhirtella 'autumnalis'. Photographed mid-December and hanging on through the recent gale force winds.
Simply..on the street, Edinburgh....
..to make the most of my winter.
Keep garedening. Pruning, tdying, weeding, raking, pottering - not leaving it all till spring.
Keep moving. The gardening eill help. It's all too easy for me to hibernate and barely move!
Travel (big plans afoot!)
Think up a really good word for 2020.
An artist seeking a simpler life - (but not too simple!)