Wednesday, 31 August 2011

john dilnot

now we've finally finished a room we've been able to begin un(bubble)wrapping some of the art that's been stored in the loft since we moved into the house two years ago. the print on the wall in the grey room is by john dilnot. in fact we have three of his screenprints; birds, beetles and garden pests. in a demonstration of our almost telepathic levels of connectedness m and i bought the birds and beetles for each other for valentines (this was in our childless, dual income, moneyed days!). they remind me of the boxes of pin-stuck insects in the manchester museum.

i would love to own one of the box pieces, this one is particularly beautiful. it's called 'somewhere and nowhere'.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

are we nearly there yet?

l-man and o-o are asleep upstairs so i can't do anything useful (like finishing painting the bathroom window frames), instead i've had a quiet sit down and made an etsy treasury inspired by the camping holidays of my childhood. we had an 2 man orange 'vango' tent (which in this case slept a family of five), those seventies sleeping bags which were made of 100% synthetic fibres and brown plastic crockery. this blog really is excessively nostalgic isn't it?

recently rachel's made a confession regarding her teenage music tastes. as a dyed in the wool geek and as an act of solidarity i feel i must reveal the following;
1. at the start of secondary school i wore 'virgin' socks (thanks to jo for reminding me of this name for them).
2. i had a kind of canvas satchel as my school bag.  not one of those army surplus, vaguely alternative indie schmindie ones, this one was huge and blue with yellow piping.
3. i played something called the baritone horn in the school band. cellos, guitars and saxophones are sexy and cool, baritone horns are most definitely not.

were you a geek at school? do tell.

Monday, 29 August 2011


turns out, an august birthday is no guarantee of clement weather. we had the planned picnic at our house instead of in the park. never mind, the tiddlers enjoyed the plentiful supplies of birthday cake and the opportunity to hang out on the dangerously steep steps leading down to our patio while contesting the ownership of the much coveted golden star balloon.

sketchbook monday

a double sketchbook monday because i forgot to do it last week; peacock with floating eyes, sketches for shipping forecast print, cheese plant leaves and a nice charles eames quote "the best you can do between now and tuesday is a kind of best you can do."
i enjoyed this book about charles and ray eames.

Friday, 26 August 2011


o-o is the big two! happy birthday honey dripper. here he is wearing his birthday crown. he has spent much of the day posting his farm animals through the windows of his new fold and go barn.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

victory is ours

unfurl the cyber bunting, percussionists of the internet, a drum roll please! two years after moving into the house we have a finished a room.

here are the floating shelves i mentioned earlier, constructed by grampy b with blood, sweat, tears and a fair bit of swearing; this is the building that right angles forgot. we have moved the majority of the books, a task that has proved to be a trial by tessellation. i have put a rudimentary classification system in place, what a geek, but mock all you want, at least we can find things now. some books have been donated to the saint vinnie's charity shop down the road and negotiations are ongoing about the fate of m's collection of slightly out-of-date 'rough guides'. m is loath to EVER part company with a book, i'm more of a 'if-you've-read-it-and-are-unlikely-to-do-so-again-then-let's-make-room-on-the-shelves' kinda girl, what's your take on this home library dilemma? hoard or purge?

the fulfillment of our storage dreams means we're selling our ikea 'besta' bookshelves, locals, have a gander here.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011


bought this animal atlas sticker book for o-o in dave's comics (the non hip one). best £1.50 i've spent in a long while, literally hours of entertainment. something about the style of the illustrations reminds me of the images in those books the jehovah's witnesses used to post through your letter box in which animals of all species and humans of all races were depicted happily coexisting in paradise. 

o-o has a quite flamboyant stickering style, i'm trying to be relaxed about the inaccuracy.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011


we went swimming this morning. o-o hasn't been may times and he's a bit nervous. i should take him more often but the depilation preparation puts me off. the smell of chlorine took me back to childhood weekends at stretford baths (other smells evocative of that time are fag smoke and salt and vinegar crisps, in those days when people used to counter the good effects of exercise by smoking and eating junk food as soon as they left the changing room). after swimming i always used to have a bag of those reconstituted potato snacks that were shaped like fish and chips, not sure they still make them. they were delicious, i remember tearing the bag open so i could lick the salty flavour off the inside. 

my gran was a good swimmer in her day. she used to go with her uncle. here she is, my dad's mum. i made a graphic short story about her, you can see it here. my welsh gran, the one from the other beach photo, couldn't swim, when we went to the sea side she used to watch us anxiously from the shoreline shouting 'come back, don't go too far out!'. 

Sunday, 21 August 2011

atomic chairs

i've just added these lovely little chairs to the shop. it's a bit of a wrench for me to sell them. i love the shape and the patterned vinyl (wish i could have a dress in the yellow!). alas we have far, far too many chairs and are constantly tripping over them...

Friday, 19 August 2011

mum tip #2

save yourself a right faff by doing baby led weaning. they're ready to start when they can sit up unaided, grab an object and move it to their mouth (this tends to be at around about 6 months of age). i got this book which had some useful information. in a nut shell; you give your baby finger food and let them feed themselves, gradually phasing out the milk feeds as they become more successful at eating solids. we started o-o off on steamed veg and fruit but he quite quickly started tucking into whatever we were having. the tiddler joins in at family meal times; no tedious mushing up, ice cube trays of frozen puree or expensive jars of gloop... i found it the perfect solution for a lazy bones like me (and o-o loved it! photo above is of one of his first forays into the world of solid food).

Thursday, 18 August 2011

red sky at night...

...shepherds' delight.

last night's beautiful sky over brighton chimney pots.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

pigs & puzzle

we spent yesterday morning visiting a local farm. and then look what arrived in the post today. isn't this little porker puzzle fab? an ebay purchase and another addition to my burgeoning collection of vintage toys, i kid myself that they're for o-o...

very chuffed to see my old lady swearwords print here and here. thanks to linda and lucy!

just listed this book in my etsy vintage shop. great illustrations.

love this article about dressing toddlers. o-o has some red braces, so handy, especially with the big washable nappy bum. the girls' jeans for boys tip is great. am currently on the look out for a bow tie for o-o to wear to his great granny's big 9-0 birthday bash and then to his own party, can't believe he's going to be 2. my pal joe mc always rocked a dicky bow for special occasions in his toddler years, it's a hell of a look.

Monday, 15 August 2011

lucky number seven arrow

lovely vintage lucky seven arrow from my friend rach's super etsy shop.

sketchbook monday

when i started work as a teacher i found i had inherited my predecessor's collection of crumbly 1970s letraset, happy days.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

at a snail's pace

we're back! after three weeks away i'm planning to stay put for a while (mainly in order to avoid having to listen to owen's much loved sing-a-long CD in the car). first we spent a lovely quiet week spent in carmarthenshire racing snails, shelling peas, visiting dylan thomas' boat house, digging on the beach and inspecting castles (took me back to happy childhood hours spent perusing my well thumbed copy of 'the usborne book of castles'). 

then me and o-o stayed in manchester while papa m and grand papa b cracked on with some serious home improvements. grand papa b fought valiantly against the walls of cheese and erected some splendid floating shelves in the alcoves in the front room. m completed a decorating task of epic proportions painting the hallway, o-o's room, the window frames and the floor. 

while the patriarchs 'got a bead on' doing the DIY me and o-o had a jolly time catching up with my 'up north' friends, quaffing tea / rum and ginger / frothy milk, visiting grampy m's allotment, blackberrying (so early this year!), deer stalking, reading the millennium trilogy (several years after everyone else) and weighing up the viability of exiting a petting farm with a stolen piglet stowed in the pushchair without being detected (alas in this modern age even petting farms have CCTV). 

seriously though; stealing is wrong, as is throwing things, setting fire to bins, smashing the windows of local shops and generally scaring the beejesus out of people. as idris put it; 

london come on!! this ain't it!! fallback from this shit!!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...