Doodling and dawdling

Can you see the words hammered into the bowl of the spoon?
Can you see the words hammered into the bowl of the spoon?

Some weeks ago Rachel and I went to a book launch for a local writer called Milly Johnson. She writes romcoms/chiclit and the stories tend to be set in our area and they are both moving and funny. Margaret Attwood is probably not shaking in her shoes but they are a good read and we both enjoy them a lot. So the book being launched was/is called Afternoon Tea at the Sunflower Cafe and I bought  a copy, got it signed and listened to Milly giving a talk which was absolutely hilarious. She’s very down to earth, with a salty sense of humour and a quick wit, so we had a great evening.

In addition, there was a raffle, in aid of the local hospice, a cat rescue charity and something else, but I can’t remember what. Rachel and I bought loads of tickets because it’s for a good cause and we won a couple of things, one of which was a silver teaspoon, whose bowl had little sunflowers and the name of the book hammered into it. I’ve been wondering how to mount and frame it and I eventually came up with this, which I’m going to put into a box frame.

ASIDE- Fortunately, I do proof read what I’ve written. (It may not always appear so because I know mistakes still get through but that’s the gremlins, nothing to do with me.) I just re-read that last paragraph to see that “we won a couple of thongs…” If ever there were two things that shouldn’t appear in the same sentence, it’s me and thongs.

So, moving on, as they say.

Of course, it always looks better in sunshine.
Of course, it always looks better in sunshine.

Today the loved one and I went out for a trip to a local (About 20 miles away) stately home called Hardwick Hall. Built in 1599 by one of the most powerful women in the country and friend of Queen Elizabeth 1st, it is a masterpiece of renaissance architecture, set in beautiful gardens on a high ridge, overlooking the Derbyshire countryside.  Her name was Elizabeth, Countess of Shrewsbury, otherwise known as Bess of Hardwick. Hers is a fascinating story, look her up if you get the chance.


Not a bad little pad is it?
Not a bad little pad is it?

And the day was warm and sunny, so we didn’t go in the house but sauntered round the gardens. When we got there the car park was quite full, so we were dreading everywhere being crowded, but it wasn’t. Yes, there were people about, with dogs and children, most of whom were pretty well behaved, but there was plenty of room to take photos and sit in the sun for a while. We sat in the herb garden, breathing in the scents and trying to identify some of the more arcane plants. It included both culinary and apothecary’s herbs, so there were some odd ones, like opium poppies and mandragora, marjoram and fennel, chicory and Jerusalem artichokes. Hmmmm – that’d be an interesting soup, wouldn’t it?

And then tomorrow, Monday, we’re off on our travels again. We tend to avoid holiday resorts during the school Summer break. (We prefer children in small numbers) This is just a short break, to La Rochelle on the west coast of France, Monday to Friday. We’re hoping to go out to the Ile de Re on the local bus if the weather is nice enough. Last time we went, however, the Town Hall burned down – not my fault, honest – so the loved one says we have to be careful not to damage anything in case they blame it all on us.

This is the Mairie about ten minutes before the fire broke out.
This is the Mairie about ten minutes before the fire broke out.

I wonder what the French is for “Not guilty”. It’s a beautiful town and there are lots of nice places to eat overlooking the marina, the old harbour, the beach and the Restaurant de la Paix is so fin de siecle, it’s worth paying just to sit in there.20150908_100717

The harbour entrance.
The harbour entrance.








I’m hoping to have Wifi so I am hoping I can still do the Diva Challenge (I’ll just add it at the bottom here.) but if not, I’ll see you in a week or two. Bye for now, world.


Well we do have Wifi  So Im going to tell you ll about my day. Sorry.

Having arrived from the UK yesterday afternoon and found our city centre hotel sOme 2km from the city centre,on foot, we decIded to walk back into the centre this morning to catch a Bus to the Ile de Re. I have done a year’s walkin in two days and thEn I go on a bus. I dont do buses. Buses are cheap and cheerful without the cheerful. Anyway, we got to the us staTion And this is what we found. I man, this is what I call going for a ride.

20150908_100750YOu Dont get many of these in English bus stations.



Having trouble with Wifi so Im cutting this short. This weeks Diva ChalleNge is to use Chris Titus’ New Pattern CanT a grid based loosely On Florz. I used it to fill Abundies but it didn’t come easily so I used less and less of it as I went on.

Not the bes picture Im afraid.
Not the best picture Im afraid.

And that will be all for now, I think, until I get a it more profficient with this new soft touch keboard for my tablet. (Hence the random capital letters.)

Bye for now, world, see you soon.






8 thoughts on “Doodling and dawdling

  1. I was wondering if the random capital letters were some type of code. 😉 One thing that’s nice about Europe is how easy it is to bop over to another country for a few days. Of course, that proximity has also resulted in a lot of bloodshed and carnage over the centuries too. Hopefully, the latest refugee crisis won’t swamp the EU. Oh dear, how did i manage to get from tangles to world wars? Sorry. OK, back on track—at least for a bit. I really like the way you tucked Can T into those Abundies—-a tangle I’ve never heard of, so I’m going to scoot over to when I’m finished here. PS: Most travel bloggers I know (i.e. they are often blogging from the road) maintain that they’ve tried blogging using a tablet and soft keyboard and that it’s too frustrating, so they go back to lugging a laptop around. OTOH, if you don’t mind a few random cApitAl letters, maybe it’s doable. My tablet is ancient so I’m unlikely to be testing it for myself anytime soon. PPS: And then there are those thongs….. 🙂

  2. Nice fill for your Abundies. I just saw an episode of the show “Who Do You Think You Are?” (famous people tracing their ancestry) where the celebrity in question traced his family back to La Rochelle who lived there while King Louis XIII laid siege to the city. It looks like a beautiful place now and must have some fascinating museums and such.

  3. I love your abundie filled canT. No wondering what I can fill with it too. Never heard of Hardwick hall looms great and I’m from UK.i love the carousel 🎠 did you have a go? Haha I would have but then I have small ones so I just pretend I’m going on with them 😉

  4. Oh, I just love my armchair travelling when I visit your blog! Thank you for taking me to places I know I will never see, but that I know I would adore! I love how you framed the silver spoon – so lovely and appropriate for the topic of the book. What fun! Also, I love how you tucked those CanT tangles into the Abundies. Somehow that pattern just seems to work with (or appears as a morph of) almost everything! So glad I stopped by today!

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