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.

I just printed off the boxes and filled them in.
I just printed off the boxes and filled them in.

We went off into the void with our friend Judy and spent the week teasing her unmercifully. Fortunately, she can hold her own and should not be seen as a pitiable victim. We have a time share membership which gives you points to “spend” rather than ownership of just one week in one place, so we elected to use some of our points and went to Sunset Bay on the Spanish island of Tenerife. We had a very nice  apartment with a lovely view to the sea and have spent a good deal of our time walking along by the sea, looking across at La Gomera and calling in at various bars for liquid refreshment. (It may be that said liquid refreshment contributed to both the teasing and the tolerance of it.)

Although the apartment was, for the most part, very nice indeed, there were some really annoying drawbacks. There were TV sets in the bedrooms but one of them didn’t work. (They came and mended it though.) There were missing knives in the kitchen. (Again, they were replaced when we complained.) The coffee maker didn’t work, at which point we decided to go out for coffee. And the WiFi was rubbish. Absolutely useless. If there was no WiFi, I would be disappointed, but having the promise of WiFi and them failing to deliver is absolutely infuriating. You can imagine my response to the customer satisfaction survey, can’t you?

When I got home, I got a call from my son’s fiancée’s mother to say one of her friends had let her down and would I like the spare ticket to go and see Bryan Adams? Would I? Oh yes I would. Very excited about that.  I will spend the next four days deciding what to wear, as if it matters to anyone but me. Will the ageing rocker in me win out and send me off in blue denim and cowboy boots? Will the fantasist in me triumph and send me in the most glamorous outfit I have (not very)in the hope that the man himself will notice me in the crowd and invite me to his dressing room for …. whatever? Or will common sense win the day and send me in sensible shoes and a loose top? I suspect there’s no contest but we’ll see.

Wildflower Cottage 1I mentioned recently going to an event for a favourite writer called Milly Johnson and that her new book comes out in June. I shall, doctors permitting, be going to the launch at her local library as I have for the past couple of years. She always holds a raffle for local charities and she was asking for prizes on her Facebook page, so I thought I might do a picture/ZIA for her. The thing is, would anybody want to win it? Anyway, I started one and then got it wrong. The book is called Sunshine Over Wildflower Cottage, I think, so that’s what I thought I’d do.  I got so far then messed up the sunshine and I don’t think it is curable. I’ll start again but, if any of you have any ideas to make that sky work… (I was doing it on the plane home and my lines were too wobbly.)

And now it’s Diva Day and she asks for stripes, which is a nice challenge, even if I sort of did it already with the boxy one above. So the one for the Challenge is going to be white on black. Actually, looking at the piece of card I have chosen, it’s navy blue, but the contrast should still be good. Let’s see what I can come up with.


I added bits of colour but it didn't improve. Ah well, it is what it is.
I added bits of colour but it didn’t improve. Ah well, it is what it is.

Well, not what I thought it would be at all. I just couldn’t think of anything, so just wandered from pattern to pattern randomly filling in spaces. Most unsatisfactory.

But that’ll have to do for now. Until next week, world, be good -ish.




32 thoughts on “Black o’er Bill’s Mother’s

  1. I want to come live your life ;-). It’s funny how people can feel that way; “The grass is greener”‘ and other sayings… Other people’s lives seem so much more exciting and exotic and interesting! I could tell you about my (dreary) life in Southern California and despite my conditions, between life chapters, it would probably seem desirable to an outsider! Just as yours does!
    However, I still want to come and visit!!! Lol

  2. I just LOVE the “boxy” square tangles. Totally appeals to me!
    And the sunshine over the cottage and wiggly lines looks great to my eye – it’s a happy, relaxed little sketch.

  3. I really like the tile you’ve drawn with the sun and the cottage. It really doesn’t need “fixing,” just make it look like the sun is coming up over a hill…a tangled hill, of course…and Bob’s yer uncle, it’s done! My Nanny used to say she had “gone around Robin Hood’s barn” to get somewhere. Like your “Bill’s mother,” I have no idea where the expression came from!! Hope your week is better…more like wonderful…ish!!

    1. Thank you. I think I’m going to continue with it and add some colour too. I’ve not heard the Robin Hood expression before but it’s the same idea isn’t it? I love the vagaries of the English language, don’t you?

  4. Thank you for writing your adventures on the blog, I like to read them and I recognise a lot what you are telling us about the appartement on Tenerife. I also have some same memories…
    For this week, my favorite is: stripes in the box, the nice composition and the well chosen tangles give a beautiful result.

  5. I understand where you’re coming from with the weather. We spent our first day in Edinburgh experiencing gloomy clouds, less gloomy clouds, sunshine, rain and sleet—-not necessarily in that order and more than once for all of them. You definitely could have gone with the boxes for your stripes. I was quite sure that’s what they were and they’re very nice. So, is your black tile. A twofer!

  6. Wobbly lines are perfect for a ZIA like yours. I love the whole look of it. Yes, a simply filled hill would finish it off. Do show us the final one next week please 🙂 I enjoyed reading about your adventure too!

  7. Lol, love the title! Sometimes I feel so homesick reading your blog 😦 You need to come over and visit us here in Ireland, it has been gloriously sunny and warm these last few days. Of course I wasn’t here, we were away too, but you could have borrowed the house and gone paddling in the sea. Amazing what interesting blog posts can be made out of the weather, it must be because it resonates with us all whatever country we live in. Your striped tile for the Diva is very original and I like it, what a coincidence that you had already sort of done one with boxes.

    1. We visited Ireland a couple of years ago. Did the Ring of Kerry, the Connor Pass and Valentia Island and stayed in Dingle. So very beautiful – when we could see through the mist and rain!

      1. Just getting back to you regarding your comment on my blog. I too am a Dr Who fan, Dr Who was my first love, beginning with the first Dr. Star Trek came next, then Star Wars. Hence my current TV love of The Big Bang Theory. Have you seen it, hilarious 😀 Anyway the real reason I came back is to say if you do get round to doing tangle folk for your granddaughter the Step Out is here:-

  8. I like both striped boxes!!! My husband lived in he Midlands for more then 20 years and I’ll ask him if he has heard that expression. I’ll be back to tell you ….

  9. I love your different tiles 🙂 The tangled boxes are so wonderful and filled with great variations of patterns. And your Zia with the sun is amazing, I would like to have it hanging on my wall at home 🙂 Great work!

  10. That cottage ZIA is so delightful! and I love the drama of your black/navy/dark diva challenge entry! the colors you added are perfect…sort of gleaming.

  11. Love your post – I’ve learned a new expression. Too bad no one in the states will understand when I use it. Your tiles are terrific, especially that bit of blue in the stripes. I say go for the fantasy outfit – what have you got to lose?

  12. Love your tiles! All of them. To me, if the sun had straighter lines the ZIA would lose its charm. I think it is delightful! And I am especially drawn to the tangled boxes. Enjoy the show with Bryan Adams – in whichever outfit you decide! 🙂

    1. Sorry Jeanne, I’ve only just seen this. I have a jpeg file that is just the squares. When i get back from holiday I will post it on here or on my pinterest for you.

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