Thursday, December 31, 2009

End Of Another Decade

Another year almost gone and the "noughties" too - it's amazing how quickly it's flown by! Seems only yesterday we were worrying about the Millenium Bug and watching the thousands of rockets explode overhead back in 1999 at midnight.
We have started our celebrations early with a nutroast and sprouts. The poles from next door have given us some carva and a tuppaware of strange looking mysterious foodstuffs that looks vaguely suerkruatish. Despite having lived here for a couple of years they barely talk any english so finding out what they are up too is difficult. They are off to Manchester it seems and not having a party as they did last year. We gave them a bottle of carva too.
The 90's seems to be the theme tonight Michael Jackson on the ipodplayer and now some There's A Guy Who Works Down The Chip Shop Thinks He's Elvis. A little clouds formed round the light bulb - the candles are blown out . The carva has gone to Hazel's head she says - how we shall get to midnight is anyones guess!
Party streamers are dangling from the paper chains. The crackers have been pulled. I got a tiny jigsaw puzzle of a parrot. Hazel got a three card trick. The smell of burning wax and oranges. Thinking of the days - believe me. Days we remember all our lives.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Santa Snowman Race

Here we are at Granma's and the special crackers this years contain either a racing Santa or a racing Snowman which definately was one of the highlights of Xmas Day - the exploding pudding and the renegade parsnip coming a close joint second.
I feel about three stone heavier now and my brain is turned to mush. The game of Monotony didn't help. I fell asleep during Dr, Who so missed most of that. Not many jokes from the Queen this year - she really should get Adam and Joe to write her scripts.
Hopefully going for a Boxing Day walk after a nice light salad today although we a have a ton of leftovers to get through. We seem to have bought enough stuff for a longish seige.
Now where is that extra thick pair of Xmas socks?

Sunday, December 20, 2009

At Last! Some Snow!

Everyone else seemed to get the snow days before us but a little arrived today to give a nice frosted look to the garden and environs (whatever they are?).
Full of festive spirit we are embarking on a morning of breadmaking using the breadmaker gadget borrowed from Hazel's Mom. It's whirring away now sounding abit like a cement mixer. Hopefully the results will be more edible than cement!
Hazel's Mom and her sister had a brief breadmaking binge when they first bought it a couple of years ago but after the initial novelty had worn off they consigned the breadmaker to the cupbaod under the stairs.
Hazel is considering making a cake for her Mom as it's her birthday tomorrow. We are are all sledging over there to watch her blow out the candles on the cake etc.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Nice walk around Shackerly Mere this morning while the sun was shining. We saw several robins or maybe the same one flitting about just in front of us - from branch to branch and turning over dead leaves to find bugs. He very kindly posed for this photo by the water's edge. part of the lake was frozen over and seagulls were skidding along looking most comical. The ducks too seemed to be in good spirits despite the cold and diving and splashing around as if they were at the beach at Brighton in July!
No boot sales today sadly but yesterday I walked into town and got a few "stocking fillers" and two scratchy records - one by a child progeny who plays the piano and sings Inka Dinka Do, the old Shnozzle Durante song- the worst version I have ever heard! The piano playing is Grade Two level and quite acceptable - her only claim to fame is that she starred in the film Girls Girls Girls with Elvis back in the 60's. The other record is a sleeveless copy of an old 50's Brunswick label 10" LP called Country Favourites Vol. 1" and it has a couple of real gems on it including Goldie Hill's "I Let The Stars Get In My Eyes".
Hear them at my Boot Sale Sounds audio blog.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Peter Quinnell

We are the proud owners of a Peter Quinnell assemblage that arrived today by courier. Sadly the glass had shattered into lots of tiny bits but we quite like it without the glass - you dont get those annoying reflections distracting you!
Peter was game enough to suggest a swap for one of my collages so I was very happy. We have several of Peter's boxes he made with Magda Archer ( Magda is now married to comedian Harry Hill but still a working illustrator with books coming out for Harper Collins and cards at Polite ) when they were working together - the graduated from the RCA at the same time that Hazel did ( or was it the year after?). We have always enjoyed the humour in their work and Peter has carried on that tradition with his "solo" work. Peter lives with his illustrator wife - another RCA graduate Claire Fletcher and his daughter in sunny Hastings by the sea. His recent exhibition was hung on the side of a very wind blown and surf sprayed beach hut on the pebbly beach.
Hazel and I used to enjoy trips to Hastings when we lived in London as it was within easy reach of Waterloo station. The wonderful tall wooden net drying sheds there were an inspiration for Hazel's "Currant Drying Sheds" - one of which is now in the collection of the Crafts Council of GB.
Back in the 90's when we still lived in Lambeth Walk we exhibited with Peter and Magda and some other artists at the Roupell Gallery just behind Waterloo Station. The show did very well and even got 2 minutes on a late night arts programme on Thames TV. Peter now does illustrations for book covers , magazines and shop window displays in Oxford Street as well as teaching at Hastings School Of Art.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Crinklemess Is Coming

I have 15 minutes before penultimate piano lesson of the year to write something sensible. I have neglected this blog for a while. Well, all of them really. I must try and catch up.
Today, which is fresh in my mind , was fraught with all kinds of misfortune like the huge Q's in most shops, the post office and the bank. I could not face any of them so consequently didnt get the xmas stamps or post the parcels and cards I had taken along. Luckily WH Smiths had a small supply of 2nd class stamps which I bought - the whole lot! So anybody else asking for stamps will be miffed.
I'd taken my prescription into the chemists earlier and told them I would collect it in 20 minutes or so but it completely went out of my brain and I only rememebers on the bus home. I phoned up and told the bewildered girl on the other end of the phone what had occured and she said I could pick them up tomorrow. So another trip into town due. Another library sale was on but mostly the same books and CD's I had looked at last time.
No other bargains. No sign of Treena or Betty in Age Concern. It was very busy - more like a Saturday. The Crinklemess Rush has begun in Ernest.
Enjoying the repeats of many Alan Bennett films and documentaries on BBC 2 and 4. Great to see again some from the 70's that I missed the first time round.
Time to tickle the ivories.