Black o’er Bill’s Mother’s

Purking up, so to speak.
Purking up, so to speak.

I know there are at least three people out there who will understand my title this week and they are all originally from Yorkshire. Bill’s mother’s is a place, any place, some distance away.  When the loved one looks anxiously at the sky and says, with some regret, “Eeee, it’s looking black o’er Bill’s mother’s” it means the weather in the direction he is looking is rather threatening and there is some doubt as to whether it is worth heading out in that direction. Bill’s mother’s is also used if you have had to take an unexpectedly  roundabout route, as in, “We went all round Bill’s mother’s to get to… ”  I’ve no idea where the expression originates (According to various educational sources, it stems from the East Midlands area of the UK but its origins are lost in the mists.) but it’s one of those very usable phrases to be used only among those of us who understand.

So why am I telling you all this? Because, recently, it has been black o’er Bill’s mother’s every bloody day for at least part of the day, interspersed with rain, wind, grey skies  and occasional glorious sunshine and I’m fed up of it.  I want warmth and blue skies and a gentle breeze and the sound of the sea and… So we flew off to the sun for a week and I’m thrilled to pieces. Continue reading “Black o’er Bill’s Mother’s”

A Day Trip to Scarborough

Greys paisley
Trying out some Helen Williams’ patterns on a grey card.

Scarborough is a pretty seaside town about 80 miles from where we live. Generally, if the loved one says to me, “Fancy a trip to the coast? Scarborough?” I say yes and off we go. (That’s assuming we’re at home, of course. If we’re on Tenerife or Skiathos I am likely to take a different view. It’d be a Hell of a day trip.)

Anyway, today we went to Scarborough for the day. Like many people, we have our habits, so we usually park at the top of Peasholm Park, walk down through the park onto the seafront, walk around the Marine Drive to the South Side, get fish and chips at a cafe  and then get the open top bus back to the bottom of the park and walk back to the car. We work on the assumption that we will have walked off a few calories and therefore can permit ourselves fish and chips. We may do more than this, but the walk around the Marine Drive is the core of the event.

Marine Drive
Marine Drive
Peasholm Park
Peasholm Park – don’t you just love the traditional English theme?








Continue reading “A Day Trip to Scarborough”

Getting Into Swapping.

Not even all the patterns done yet.
Not even all the patterns done yet.

I’ve mentioned the FB page called Zentangle Artist Trading Card Swap, where I’ve joined a couple of swaps recently and I’m finding it a lot of fun. I’m currently working on the April swap, which is spring themed and have decided to do a large piece and cut it into ATC size pieces to send. This is the original, with the line drawings still incomplete.

I then coloured the background with a sponge dauber and stamp pad inks for a base. However, when I started to add colour detail, I discovered that the paper did not want to blend the colours. I’ll have to do a rethink. Anyway, this is that stage.

Spring like colour
Spring like colour

Now to add loads of detail. Unlike my normal way of doing things, I’m trying to take it slow and steady, in a proper ZENtangle sort of way. I’ve only used three patterns so far; Vigne, Henna Drum and a new one (new to me, I mean) that I can’t remember the name of. Continue reading “Getting Into Swapping.”

Hearts of Gold at the White Heart

It’s 5.45 a.m., not a time I’m familiar with, and the dawn is gently peeking through the curtains. I can hear birds scratching in the eaves and very little else. It is a peaceful moment. (Imagine “Morning” from Peer Gynt playing gently in the background.)

“Boo!” shouts Ben as he crawls into my bed and puts his cold feet on my tummy. “Did I scare you?”


“Good. ” he says, kissing the end of my nose, crawls out of bed, out onto the landing shouting “Grandad, Grandaaaaad…” and runs down the stairs to find him.

I am now wide awake, with cold spots on my middle and a sinking feeling because they are going home today. Dammit. Continue reading “Hearts of Gold at the White Heart”