Friday, 7 March 2014

Birdsong, thrifting and stripy cushion Ta Dah!

I'm writing this at 5:30 in the morning, having been woken up by the dawn chorus - usually this only happens in the Summer when it's too hot to sleep with the window closed. I do like it; it's one of those sounds, like bell ringing, which is naturally joyous and, unless it has been a late night, it's lovely to lie in bed listening.
We're very lucky to have the river with its island at the bottom of the garden. There are lots of trees and, consequently, lots of birdies too. 

Gratuitous picture of a blackbird on the crabapple tree in the front garden, taken whilst playing with my zoom!

We feed them on the cherry tree close to the dining room window and it's not unusual to see flocks of long tailed tits, nuthatches and woodpeckers, none of which I had actually seen before moving here. It was only when listening to Radio 4's 'Tweet of the Day' that I realized how ignorant I am about birdsong. The chaffinch apparently calls out 'pink' or 'choop' - who knew? Well, possibly Bill Oddie or Chris Packham but certainly not me. So, my new thing for this week has been to try to identify more birds by their song. I knew the obvious ones - magpie, crow, pheasant, cuckoo (we have one every Spring that I love hearing but which drove L mad when she was trying to revise for her A levels!) etc but I want to recognize the others too. So, this little beauty came 'winging' its way from Amazon:

I have downloaded it to my ipod (!) and, when I'm not in the car meditating, I'm listening to the birdies; it's really rather lovely. Only 1 small criticism - they should announce on the disc which bird you are hearing before they play it, that way you could listen whilst doing something else. Unfortunately, they don't and you have to keep looking at the screen or accompanying booklet to find out which one comes next. It's going to take a bit of practice - this dawn chorus still just sounds like a load of tweeting!

I thought I'd quickly insert a couple of photos of my ipod sock. E made it for me for Mothers' Day a couple of years ago and I love it to bits. I REALLY must learn how to rotate photos!

I bought a new mug yesterday when I went into town to visit the library. It's an Emma Bridgewater one from the 'Flowers' range - this one has Zinnias on it. It's funny how we all have a favourite type of mug; I love these EB ones - the shape and the colours. R prefers a Denby mug with a curved top that I can't get into at all; the tea just doesn't taste right and I find them uncomfortable. The only thing about the EB ones are that they are rather expensive. This one, however, was from T K Maxx and was half the price, so it just had to come home with me! Here it is in a little 'vinaigrette', as Annie would say, with a small vasey thing and a little bowl, bought from a charity shop for £1.99 and 50p respectively.

This week, I also finished my stripy cushion. I thought I would try learning to crochet ever increasing circles and followed the pattern on Lucy's website.

I'm rather thrilled with it; it took me a while to be able to 'see' the stitches but once I'd got the hang of it it was really quick to make. Ready to see it? Here it is:


Here it is with its Blankety Buddy on the sofa:

I think it will live here, on the bedroom chair. At some point I think this chair needs a bit more of a makeover but, for the moment, the cushion will do.

I've since received a very exciting parcel of yarn through the post and have now started on a Stripy Blankie a la attic24. I can see that this crochet thing is going to get out of hand!

Anyway, today I'm off to 'Ruby's Vintage and Retro Fair' at the local college. It appears a couple of times a year and I've seen the adverts but never actually been, so I thought I'd nip along and have a look whilst E is at her orchestra practice. It can be the next 'thing' on my list - I'll let you know how it goes. Have a good week. x

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