Saturday, 31 August 2013

My Month in Numbers - August 2013

Hello again welcome, welcome  - so nice to have you drop in - - I have been wondering you know - how has the end of another month come round so quickly??? It was only the beginning of August just yesterday - - - and it was still summer, whereas now the year is definitely on the turn.

It has been the most glorious of summers - and I am hoping to prolong it a little as we take our first holiday abroad since our world fell apart in June 2012 - we are off to Sicily very soon - another step forward anyway on this long road we travel. However - on to some numbers - alongside the lovely Julie of Notes on Paper, who invites us to join her in summing up our month with numbers as the starting point. She also has a shared Communal Count - so hop over to her blog for full details.

So - for this month I have noted that I needed - -
1 - new suitcase for the above mentioned holiday - and I have to admit to more than a little excitement about going since the BBC showed Montalbano on Saturday nights last year - it looked just so beautiful!
Have received - -
1 - unexpected gift - from the Artisan, which links in so well with the above. He knows that I only read on holidays really - (there is a story there I guess - but one that is hard for me still) and that I love a book set in the area/country we are visiting - - and he picked this up for me whilst on a climbing trip in Belfast last Bank Holiday weekend.

Have taken - -
1 - trip to our lovely Theatre - this time to catch a local production of Cats - - Our island is blessed with considerable talent musically - - and their productions are semi professional in my opinion, so my outing with my friends was a delightful evening.

Been a part of - -
2 - days slipping back in time as our village - and vintage transport system, celebrated the 1940's and our island's involvement with that period in our history.

I have already made - -
3 - blackberry crumbles! Unheard of to have our blackberries ripe so early! This of course led to 3 lovely half hours on the beach picking them, with the ensuing purple stained fingers and minor scratches. I just hope there are some left after my return from holiday.

And now to Julie's Communal Count - -
I had [a]
14 - visitors - including Mum & Dad, my sister, our eldest daughter, 5 friends, 1 Market Researcher   - - and 3 baby sparrows who ran around our garden for a whole day, recently fledged we thought therefore still gaining their "wings" and really needing to improve their flying skills - they spent much of the day hiding in the undergrowth of our tree and fluttering a few inches above the gravel - - (I was very glad that last month's cats didn't visit us on the same day!! though have been back again since).  Usually we are 3 - me, the Artisan and our youngest daughter. Only one of our visitors actually stayed with us.

Leading to
8 - days with my "fledglings" back under my roof as L---- spent a weeks holiday with us, and therefore requiring a very early start to get to the airport -

5.35am - - the earliest I got out of bed, which is very unusual - my days usually begin about 7.30am - I'm definitely a creature of habit!
Which I think rounds off my numbers quite nicely for this month.

Thanks so much for dropping in. Don't forget to hop over to Julie - she will have more "number crunchers" joining her, and she will give you a warm welcome.

'til later,

Bannaghtyn, J x

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Island at War - - -

"Come along, come along - we don't have all day" the Commandant hustled the disparate group of women and children, peering out of the carriage windows looking rather forlorn and more than a little bewildered, " have you got your cases? - well hurry then" bustling them out of the train's carriages - - "move up, make room for more!" she ordered briskly and the group of Internees - - "Enemy Aliens" in these troubled times - - rounded up - - moved by rail, packed off across the sea, moved once again by rail and ending in this beautiful bay - - to be billeted with landladies whose guesthouses and hotels held countless empty rooms - - -

It will only take a little imagination for you to all take a step back in time with me?
Please board the train standing at platform 2 - - it has a good head of steam now and is almost ready to depart - -

For this last weekend our island slipped back in time - - - to Make Do and Mend, Dig for Victory, Keep Calm and Carry On, and remember that Careless Talk Costs Lives! - - and so remember an Island at War.

 There was lots of period atmosphere with steam trains coming into the station being met by the Home Guard Re-Enactment guys complete with gun placements, A Field Hospital in the waiting rooms, Vintage Cars, Steam Engines, The D-Day Darlings singing on the platform as well as many locals dressed in appropriate costume - Land Girls, Soldiers on Leave, Housewives and even Ladies of the Night!! leading small groups round the village sharing some of the stories from when the South was the Women's Internment Camp.
 There was a wonderful exhibition of  paintings and photographs in the British Legion Hall and the Station Booking office - a Sale of Goods from the Grand House in the Church Hall, one of the local hairdressers had turned her salon back to the 1940s - and was offering a"Victory Roll" hairstyle along with and afternoon tea and cakes.

We had sandbags and taped windows and the vintage bus was taking visitors up to Cregneash village where the Land Girls were working hard, A touch of Glen Miller  - - then a few dance lessons in the Barn at Church Farm and for those in the know an evening Dance at a Secret Location with Supper served by the NAAFI,  - - -
All in all a busy weekend - - - perfect for when you have visitors!

- - - and now back to the 21st century - - where I have to share more wonderful happy mail from Julie's Etsy store. These were a custom order and I was so excited when the postie knocked this morning - - but had to contain myself . However when I got the opportunity to open the envelope  - well see for yourselves

I really couldn't be more delighted with my packs if I had chosen everything myself - but I am very much enjoying seeing what Julie has managed to find in my themes - and it is so much more fun  discovering what she has found - - I really recommend it - -it doubled my pleasure in my mail anyway!

I hope all is good with you all - -
Thanks for stopping by,
'til later

Bannaghtyn, J x

Friday, 16 August 2013

Simply a Moment - August


Thursday -  August 15th - 9.50am

There is a feel of Autumn in the air as I head down the path to the beach - and the earth holds "the scent of water" after last night's rain though now the sky is blue and the sun is warm on my face. Already the leaves are turning on the sycamores and everywhere underfoot my feet crunch on "helicopters" as my son used to call the seed heads from this tree. The path is steepens down the cliff here - even though it is made in steps I am very much aware that I need to watch my footing  - realising I am still "twitchy" going down steps (after a fall down stairs some 20 years ago resulted in a very nasty broken bone!) -  it is very wet after the rain and the fallen leaves are damp and slippery. The path turns sharply and seems to disappear  - though I know a sharp turn left will take me to ever steeper steps - now on a very peculiar angle - subsidence? or just the hands of time? I always wonder as I make my way carefully down them.

I am greeted by a fresh breeze as I step onto the pebbles of the beach at the bottom, blowing my hair away from my face with more strength than I expected -  I am fond of this pebble beach on my door step - my home is named for this small cove and often I am the only person on it - as I am at this moment today. I make my way carefully across the pebbles - - Mother Nature ensures there is life everywhere - even on a salty seashore  - bindweed,  nettles, wild mustard, dock (witches fingers I always called it), ox eye daisy, and tangled brambles all scramble through the pebbles.
I catch the aroma of freshly washed seaweed here on this shore as I seek my first blackberries of the season, and the hush, hush, hush of the waves rolling the pebbles on the tide line - its timeless rhythm brings its own tranquility, disturbed only by the soft scream of the whistle of the first steam train of the day from the village station. I smile at the thought of the small steam engine setting off on its' frst commute of the day. The sun is warm on my back - my fingers stained purple with the blackberry juice as I add them to my pyrex bowl - just enough for a crumble will do nicely I think  - - - - -

a yapping dog disturbs my peace - - - - a small family has joined me on the beach and are at the tide line with 2 dogs, a black labrador? gambolling in and out of the waves on the shore - the other a small yappy terrier - - - I look at my bowl's contents - - standing up straight - I realise I have been longer than I thought so pick my way carefully across the pebbles to climb the steep path home - - -

Just around the middle of the month - Alexa at Trimming the Sails pauses to take stock - just for a moment - to look, listen and be aware of the moment -  then record it -  and invites us all to join her and record our own moments - this is my August moment - and if you follow this link you will find many more magical moments - - and perhaps you too have one to share??

Thanks for dropping in
'til later

Bannaghtyn, J x

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Happy Mail

Weekend hasn't been easy for me - - some days are not , and this was one of them - however skimmming through my favourites I happened to click on Julie's EtsyStore (Notes on Paper), and she had some new Bird Packs - and I LOVE birds - - Needless to say I placed a little order - - and look what tumbled out of the package that landed through my letterbox at lunchtime today! All this wonderful papery goodness for me to play with!
There is so much variety in these packs - different images, text, textures, page size - just take a look if you like someting a little different for your creativity.

And getting one of her envelopes is like an unexpected birthday - This was my previous order!!

Thanks for stopping by,

'til later
Bannaghtyn, J x


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