Friday, 25 May 2012

A little break - -

- - from blogland - got a few things to see to in "real" life. Back soon!

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

The Sound of - -

- - my life. I was so sad to hear last night that Robin Gibb has lost his battle with cancer, and as I watched that snippet on the news I realised that the music of the Bee Gees has been there in the background almost all of my life -  I can't call them my favourite band - but they have always been there - well their music has - right from the very first hit Massachusetts when I was about 12/13. through the Saturday Night Fever era - (oh happy days! ) to Islands in the Stream and later songs - in the background and you know - I can't think of a single song of theirs that I dislike? I hadn't realised just quite prolific song writers they were - or how talented in their field yet I don't think  I possess one of their albums or singles.
They spent their formative years here on my island home and have been back to visit and play in local music festivals  - and so I would like to thank them for the pleasure they have given me all this time, even though they didn't know it and without me really knowing it either!  - -  Rest in Peace, Robin - you and your brothers will be missed.
 Image from GettyImages.
I have thought about their songs rather a  lot today - and would find it really hard to choose just one as a favourite I have found the lyrics running throuhg my head as I work - and have even been tempted to burst into song (NOT to be recommended I can tell you!!)- but amongst those on my shortlist would be Words, To Love Somebody, Heartbreaker, Islands in the Stream, New York Mining Disaster and Jive Talkin'..
Which of their songs might be on your shortlist I wonder?

 Thanks for stopping by.
'til later
Bannaghtyn J xx

Saturday, 19 May 2012

I finished - -

- - little album I made at our last craft club day - no photos yet admittedly - but it is all decorated and all the tags and photo mats are made ready for pictures to be added. As I am planning on adding photos of my niece's "Prom" I won't be able to share it once the photos are included, I thought I would post a couple of pics now.
It was made using Laura Denison's (of Following the Paper Trail) "Stack the Deck" binding - check out her You Tube from December 2011 for instructions. I love it - it is such a neat binding system - and the little albums look so "professionally finished" - even when I have made them!!

There are six pages - and as each page is a pocket there are two tags in each one, so I can get plenty of photos in the album and have room for journalling. I used Prima paper and embellies - from the Nature Garden collection - and I think the soft neutrals in the colours scheme will make the photos of the jewel like prom dresses really "pop".

Today we have been "up the mountain" - on the Electric Railway - just for a change. It was a reasonable day - though still a little cold, and we did get something of a view before watching the drifting fingers of mist of Manannan's Cloak spread over the mountain top and hide everything from us! The cafe was warm and pleasant though and we enjoyed coffee and cake before we headed back down to Bungalow Tram Station. In the waiting room I found several of this year's "World Book Night" donations - all from different "givers" - to be part of an initiative called Ride & Read - and I quote " Enjoy browsing a book and then return it to your nearest ---- -- --- Railways waiting room for another traveller to pick up and enjoy". We liked this idea - a kind of mini "book crossing" so chose to borrow Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson - as neither of us has read it. I will return it to the Steam Train station when we have read it - but am going to keep a note of its number - to check its travels on the World Book Night site.

Thanks for stopping by -
'til later

Bannaghtyn J xx

Monday, 14 May 2012

Good Mail Day - -

- - got home today to find this on the mat! Such a wonderful introduction to the world of Mail Art. - thank you so very much to Sarah - who was the lovely lady who popped this amazing piece of art in the mail for me. I have to also say a huge "Thank you" to Ginger - because I only received this as a result of her MAIL ART EXCHANGE 2012. I am now the lucky owner of a fantastic piece of art - how cool is that?
I can only hope that my offering gives as much pleasure as this has given me. Mine was travelling across the "pond" - and I have no idea how long it may take - as I can wait up to 30 days for packets and letters to get to me coming in the other direction. I just hope it doesn't take too long!

Thanks for stopping by - I do appreciate your visits.

'til later -

Jen x

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Keepers - - - -

I thought I would share ten of my favourite books - those that in my head I call "Keepers".
 I read avidly as a child, teenager and young adult. The birth of my first child put a stop to my gallup somewhat - - - and when 2 more joined our family -- my reading slowed to a fullstop!! Well - at least for just me - I did lots of reading aloud of a variety of children's stories!! It recovered slightly when I was  able to read for pleasure for me alone by reading on holiday. But that was the sum total of my reading for many years.
However as you probably already know dear reader - I love words - so reading has been something I have made a conscious effort to get back into - and initially I found myself going back to old favourite "re-reads".  - -  and re-read I did - - - many books not read for years - and to my delight - still the old magic was there , transporting me to another time, another place, other scents and other sounds - - almost I have forgotton a books' ability to take me completely out of myself - - so that I often have to shake myself to return to my real, mundane world of 2012 and the present day. Do all readers experience this feeling I wonder? I know I do - and for me it is how I judge a book - am I there in the story - or on the outside looking in?
Anyway - I have chosen books for this list from my recent "re reading" - and trust me - it wasn't easy - based on that rather simple premise - am I there or looking in? These are all books I think of as "keepers" -those I don't want  to pass on to other readers. (selfish of me ? - probably yes!!)
So here they are - in no particular order - just 10 books I have read more than once -  and very likely will re read again. -
1] Rebecca - Daphne du Maurier
2] The Luteplayer - Norah Lofts
3] Green Darkness - Anya Seton
4] Thomasina - Paul Gallico
5] How Far to Bethlehem? - Norah Lofts
6] The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
7] Murder on the Orient Express - Agatha Christie
8] The Dean's Watch - Elizabeth Goudge
9] A City of Bells - Elizabeth Goudge
10] Frenchman's Creek - Daphne du Maurier

Do you have favourite books you re read ?  Or favourite authors - looking at my list I can see I have I would love to know if you have.

I am sure there will be many more interesting posts on than this, today in blogland - find them with Shimelle.
As always its lovely to have you stop by
'til later

'til later,
Bannaghtyn J x

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Mail Art Exchange - -

- - - I have had a productive weekend - been a very busy little bee indeed. I am taking part in Ginger's Mail Art Exchange for the first time this year - and have my very first envelope all ready in the post - I am a complete beginner at this - so hope it is OK for my partner in the group.
As a beginner I had to do some research to find out as much as I could - and was delighted to find so much information out there on "ye olde world wide web". I have ordered a copy of the book that started  this journey I am now setting out on - it was one of Sian's "Pass the Book" - and I really fancied having a good look at it.. Ginger is a star for setting up this group:)
Here is a photo of my envelope - before addresses were added - so thanks for looking. I am not going to post the contents ------ as I do firmly believe that the first person to know the contents of a parcel or envelope should be the person it is addressed to. Can't share as I forgot to take a pic - !! Ooops!
Last week my eldest daughter was staying with us for the week so I didn't get much crafting done - too busy spending time with her - very important to me as it was Christmas last time we were able to be together. We had a good week all round - starting with our visit to Northern Ireland - and already I am missing her company. However - daughter number 2 is home for a week before she starts her final exams for her degree course - so she has filled the "space" if you follow me! She is a little stressed - the final element/project/module (not quite sure what to call it) of her course has not been easy for her and she has got herself worked up about it. I am doing supportive mum as well as I can.

Thanks for dropping in.
'til later

Bannaghtyn J x

Sunday, 6 May 2012

The Maypole - Storytelling Sunday

Today is Storytelling Sunday at Sian's - so today I share with you a memory -  and for lots more stories drop in on From High in the Sky.

- Granny opened up the big table in the room at the back of the shop and mummy tipped out her shopping bag - a myriad of soft colours cascaded across its surface - pale blue, soft rosy pink, lemon yellow, and white  - rolls of crepe paper, followed by yards and yards of wide ribbons in similar colours, and cheap and cheerful artificial flowers. "Here dad" said mummy to grandad - scooping up the ribbons and thrusting them into his hands - "should be long enough, I think, can you nail them to the top of the pole?" "Aye" he answered, "I can do that" before disappearing out to the yard.
Mummy tuned and looked at her small daughter - dancing with excitement at all this prettiness - "Is it my dress mummy? Is it my dress? Can I be pink? Can I, Can I??" Mummy laughed - "How about pink and white?" she asked " I need to make enough for all of you". - - -
- - so there we were, one sunny May Saturday afternoon - many years ago - dressed in crepe paper frocks - made by my mummy - dancing around a Maypole adorned with ribbons fixed on by my grandad and trimmed with flowers by granny, and yes , we did weave in and out to make a pretty pattern down the pole with the ribbons - - - followed by high tea, that as I remember it - - seemed like a street party. Happy days!!
Chilldren dancing around the Maypole at a summer fair in Dulwich park London. Photograph: Alamy

Hindsight makes me think that it was probably just we children who "picnicked" outside for our tea - but there were a good number of us - K-------, E-----, D----, W-------, K------, J--- , some whose names escape me and little old me. But when I do look back down those years - I only see smiling faces, and sunshine - and it always brings a smile to my face.

Image from The Graphics Fairy
This is brought to you as part of Sian's Storytelling Sunday - and more stories can be found here

Thanks for dropping in
'til later
Bannaghtyn, J x

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Oh what a - -

- - brilliant weekend we had! Even the weather - and as you may know dear readers - British weather can be very unpredictable - was kind. Blue skies and sunshine greeted me as I woke - and although there was a chill wind - it remained with us all weekend. Our hotel was central - and so comfortable, the shopping was only 5 minutes away - and the new Titanic, Belfast only  a 20 minute walk along the waterfront.
We had booked out time slot for the Titanic building - good job we did - tickets were sold out for the weekend we were there.  It was PACKED - there were even monitored queues to get into the souvenir shop!!!It is a fabulous experience - in spite of the queueing - and we were there 3 hours - and I am certain there was so much else I missed! We did get in almost on our timeslot - only a couple of minutes late - so it is well organised even with its obvious, huge popularity - and I am sure it will calm down when the novelty wears off. It really is a "must see" exhibition/experience - and the building itself is - in my opinion anyway - beautiful. Very, very modern - and each of its 4 "points"really does look and feel like the prow of the "Olympic Class" liners. I really am glad we went - and I intend to go back again.
 Belfast is a great city - everyone was very friendly and welcoming, and we did take advantage of the City Tours to see the murals and other buildings of interest- as well as a trip to the Giant's Causeway, so we feel we managed to pack quite a lot into our weekend. Our hotel was one of the Malmaison group of "boutique" hotels and was in an old warehouse building, now converted into a luxury venue. It really was a great place to stay and the staff were lovely - at all times. The food was excellent too! I have added links but I am not receiving any commission or anything - and opinions are my own - Just thought you might like a little "nosy round".
Our Causeway trip was also very good value - and  on a very comfortable coach. We got to see some of Northern Ireland's beautiful scenery with an excellent driver as our guide - and once again the weather was kind - blue skies and sunshine! 

All in all we had a  really great weekend, and I am looking forward to adding my photos and thoughts to my "Week in the Life" mini album. Though it looks like I will also have to do a "Weekend in Belfast" one as well - for daughter number 1!! No crafty pictures yet - but will post when my album has a few photos in it!
Thanks for stopping by.
'til later -
Bannaghtyn - J x


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