Sunday, July 24, 2011

Red sky at night

Shepherd's delight.

A Suffolk sunset, I meant to catch it earlier, at its most splendid. But was distracted.

I raced down the garden and caught it just as it disappeared below the horizon. I feel ready to exhale now. School has finally finished. Six weeks of sunset gazing ahead. Bliss.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Running for the lemons

If you have been reading here for any length of time you will know that a grey day is sure to send me running for the lemons.

Today has been downright deep grey, the sort of rain that surely should not come on a warm July day. So I reached for the lemons and baked a cake.

This grey wet day my scrumptious eight year old Tilly had her perfect skin painted in blue eye-shadow, pink blusher, lips where painted red. She has so been looking forward to that part, so pleased to see it written in black white - "make-up must be worn". Her unruly long curls were scraped back and constructed in a bun, lacquered into sticky rigidity.

The weekend of the ballet show.

She looked in the mirror when I finished. Was silent for a moment. Then said "I don't think children should wear make-up". We smiled and laughed and hugged.

We watched her dance. So glad that we could pick her out, so happy that she could seem us too. We had inappropriate fits of the giggles too, the Technical Advisor and I, the sort of silent, stomach aching, eye-watering laughter that make you think you might die if you have to hold them in any longer. The row of seats shook with our convulsions.

And I wept a little. When they all came back for the encore and I saw her shining face. She is so very tired, it has been such work and there are several more shows to go but I saw her eyes shine out and I remembered how good it is to be a part of something and I cried with happiness.

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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Knitting as fast as I can

Because I am running out of yarn.

Indeed I already ran out and had to rip back and make the sleeves shorter.

But I did this in a haphazard sort of way, with no proper counting or calculating.

And I did not make them short enough.

So I ran out of yarn again.

Surprisingly, once again I took the devil may care approach, no considered thought or measurements taken.

When ripping back for the third time I decided to employ some maths.

My ever decreasing sleeves should be finished tonight.

I hope.


Friday, July 08, 2011

Life is just a bowl of cherries

The cherries came early this year and for the last two weeks I have been silently begging them to hold on just a little longer, pleading for the birds to hold off
another few days.

Because I simply had too much going on to spend a day stoning cherries.

We have not totally neglected the cherries, there has been claffoutis of course and we have eaten many.

But there simply wasn't time to stone them.

Because it takes a very long time to stone 2kg of cherries.

I had mentally planned it for today, today I could make the time. Today it was raining and blowing a gale, more like an October's day than mid-July. The irony of wobbling upon a wet and windblown stepladder in order to pick the most summery of fruits was not lost upon me and as I climbed higher, reached further, wobbled harder; I considered the wisdom of solo cherry picking on such a day.

But do you know? Later, as I sat in my kitchen with the hum of Radio 4 in the background, I could think of no better day for cherry stoning. And the pleasure of standing over a steaming preserve pan, the cherries rolling and bubbling within whilst the rain tip-taps upon the skylights, well it can scarcely be beaten. A warm and busy kitchen is a very good place to be on a day like this.

And whatever the forecast is for tomorrow, it will almost certainly be the right time to eat sweet cherry jam upon fresh baked bread.

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Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Breaking out the colour

I really love working with natural coloured linen and it is such a great background for those Liberty prints, but this year I noticed that the rather super Ray-Stitch had some good quality, heavier weight, coloured linens. I spent a long time deliberating but in the end I decided to be brave and order.

The deep grey linen arrived it had a lovely handle and I knew that the weight was perfect for phone cases and that sort of thing, but I was anxious.

I always use ecru.

What if my customers did not like grey? What if none of my Liberty prints worked with this grey?

I made a few and took them to Woodbridge on Saturday. Hurrah, they sold beautifully.

Dark, elephant grey linen and Liberty Tana Lawn, in the Handmade at Poshyarns shop now.

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