Sunday, 13 August 2017


after a little random visit to Mumblings blog I realised from her post 'Why do you blog?' that I should blog more about the things that interest me and stop trying to please/conform.

What does a wood fairy blog about? nature, wildlife on her doorstep? well I do genuinly live next to the woods and have got a very real wand made specially for me, I grew up believing I was a fairy and have never let anyone stop me believing.

But I do have worldly interests too, I would never blog about politics and have ceased with religion as I realised that some followers might be disappointed to learn that after 15 years in a very close church community (twice a week within a housegroup, with my children in a youth group that became too controlling), I no longer go to church, that doesn't mean I don't have faith - I do - and I still have a connection with that church, drop in socially ocassionally and have remained in contact with some of my friends; but I don't share all of their beliefs, don't conform and don't want a label any more thank you. 

I don't silk paint any more,, it got boring, expensive and I felt I didn't always do well enough so it wasn't worthy to put on my blog so I just stopped all that and feel much better, I gave my inks to a friend who will have a lot of fun discovering what they can do.

I like painting, being spiritual and going to Brighton beach, I also like material things like shopping, holidays, home decor... I want to be creative but it comes in stops and starts - sewing this week maybe, watercolour occasionally, gardening, decorating my house, who knows.

me being me (and not holding my tummy in!)
Like you, I am just me, being me and my blog dwindled a bit because I couldn't keep up the posts that I felt fulfilled what followers wanted - I had run dry.  I now realise it really doesn't matter - follow me if you will, leave me (and some have) if you're bored - the reason I blog is to connect with  people in far flung places - I find your part of the World very, very interesting, dear follower.  I use my blog to express myself and to keep a sort of online diary of my life for posterity.  That's it - nothing more.

I should add that blogging has given me some long term fabulous penpals (thank you Nana and Pompom), a real life meet up (thank you Elizabethd) fun swaps  (remember secret postman?), the confidence to buy and wear vintage, second hand and non high street fashion clothing (thank you Vix), emails from blogging friends who give advice and help and lot of inspiration for being creative and adventurous (amongst many others Julie, Catherine, Nancy) .   All really good reasons to continue blogging.  So thank you to those that follow and those that post and long may it continue!

I will leave you with a picture of a rescue dog I used to walk, who knew life was short, for living and
totally enjoyed every moment of his weekly escapism - I hope to be more like him as time goes on.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

I won an EBay bid for another Karisa skirt (reversible, wrap,made from vintage sari silks), this one is mid length and was mine for a fiver!  It's very swishy, ideal for holiday packing as lightweight and versatile and when washed dries within an hour if I do lots of smoothing on the floor when its damp it almost can miss the iron... perfect for our trip to Costa Rica later this year.

I am aiming to take very little in my suitcase as we will be moving around a lot starting with the Cloud Forest and ending at the beach.  Swimwear doubles as undies and beach kaftans are wearable into the evening with a pair of leggings and a little vest.  You can never have too many sarongs in my opinion, the more sparkly the better too - so I am currently keeping my eyes open in the charity shops.

I haven't been able to pick elderberry this year due to the very wet weather and not having an escort available to get to the remote places where I find them.  The UK weather is cool and we have had torrential downpours here so no woodland walks.  My 'escorts' are busy - oldest graduated (YAY!!!) but doesn't allow me to post his pictures here ... both boys are working at the airport until year end saving up for travel, there is much shift work and people arriving and leaving at 4am so we are all adjusting to being woken at odd times, no hot water and the 'wrong' food (curry for breakfast?!).

I noticed on Susan Branch's blog she has 'my' Beatrix Potter book as a giveaway.  I treasure mine - given to me by my penpal Nana.

  It looks like BPs very own scrapbook with letters and pictures and in the back is her tiny black and white first edition book which I colour in sometimes.  Like me, Susan loves all things Beatrix and appreciates what an important impact she made in her lifetime and with her legacy of land left to The National Trust.  I hope to visit Hilltop and see Beatrix's garden and little house one day.

Our house is in need of the feminine touch methinks, we have all been busy working and I have neglected home making for some time.  The only picture/decor is a huge map of Vietnam on the wall - a long distance travel plan - it's really fun to plan a trip and watch it grow, researching places to go, train timetables, etc.  very fun!  Travel is all anyone talks about in this house in fact!    My son's army burgen bag has become enviable and may get stolen soon, I now trawl the internet for sensible walking boots instead of fashion shoes and lie in the gym sauna imagining myself on a beach, in the shower I am in a tropical rain forest and in the garden I am hacking my way through the jungle when I clear the borders back!  Imagination is a wonderful thing (often crushed as children grow but luckily my mother thoroughly embraced and nurtured it, which is why I am, of course, a fully grown wood fairy).

I would like to live in here.  One day I will go back to claim this, if it's still there.  Such a pretty little mouse house, I regret not buying it years ago.

I'm off now to read Meadowland again, it was very good last time round so think it deserves reading again.  .... have a lovely August, I will .. doing lots of Augusty things that I can look back on in the Winter months, despite the rain it's a month full of outdoor opportunities don't you think?

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Hello blogland, hope you have been enjoying Summery days out.  I have been in the woods walking with my friend next door and also with hubby ...

Cob nuts are out although the squirrels always get there first! and blackberries will be ready to pick in a couple of weeks.  The elderberry are beginnging to form and should be ready for picking mid-August so I am checking progress in the hope of making more of this...

I have also been in Brighton often this month, taking the fast train it's only a 30 minute journey and the best part of the day can be spent exploring The Lanes and sunbathing on the beach...

 I am always coming across new graffiti/art..

The beach was fairly empty as it was very windy...

I didn't dare venture in for a paddle  as there were red flags up.

I love seeing the little houses in the mews off The Lanes, a combination ofo neglected, tatty rentals with the odd gem of gardening determination - it must be hard to get things to grow well in the salty sea air...

I mostly browsed charity shops although this is a pretty place, Waiste - they sell vintage clothing and also have a whole floor devoted to plants  The combination works well ... this is a picture from their own website as my camera couldn't do them justice.

I particularly liked their current window display plants which were suspended moss balls like this
and am interested in giving it a try. Not sure how they are watered without a big mess on the floor though!

Source Google images

This is my tiny front garden, it attracts a lot of bees (we have been honoured to be chosen for a nest site on the garage, they swarmed a few weeks ago - wish I had seen it!).

I felt  bit like Ambercat after stuffing myself with delicious fudge from my blogging buddy, Nana
this huge and very heavy package of best quality Scottish fudge tablets arrived in the post as a surprise (thank you Nana)  .... with this pretty card.

I don't feel guilty at all for eating so much of it because
hubby and I will be celebrating our 35th wedding anniversary on Monday, I just started
celebrating early!

Saturday, 15 July 2017


I had no idea what a Kariza skirt was until I found one in a charity shop.  I love silk (who doesn't) so always search for silk items ehen scouring the chazzas.  So the purple patterned silk of this lovely vintage skirt caught my eye.

quick feel confirmed my hopes and there it was, a reversible, silk wrap skirt, all mine for £4.99.  A good wash later and a bit of research and I have found it is made from recycled Indian sari silks.  I am very pleased with my find.

On you tube there are lots videos of how to wear my Kariza different ways.

Kariza, a Brazilian native raised in a world of color, costumes, and drums of Carnival, her stage for a blossoming career. After attending college for fashion design in Brazil she moved to the United States in 2000 and made history with her world famous Kariza Wrap Skirts! Due to her extensive creativity and vision, she was able to create a multi functional concept by styling  one piece of fabric with over 100 different ways to wear!

Monday, 10 July 2017

seaside views

A lovely day out at Brighton soaking up the sun and a bit of paddling in the sea as hubby had business in the area and was able to drop me off for a few hours sunbathing.

 this enterprising couple are using phone boxes for a pop up cafe serving falafel and candyfloss

Just look at this fabulous Harley three wheeler with custom crash helmet.

 Second hand clothes in this shop are mostly £5 a piece they had a lot of Hawaian shirts but I was looking for shorts, lots of the buildings along here have hand painted art above the shops.

I think that bump is my knee, not my stomach.. just saying

You aren't allowed to feed the seagulls here but that doesn't stop them eyeing me tucking in to my chips. They can be aggressive, I dozed off to find about 20 of them surrounding me and trying to get the empty polystyrene box which I was saving for the waste bin. 

This beautiful picture is all embroidered, displayed on sale at the library (which has the best toilets).

I liked these ceramic seagull ormanents, seen in the art galleries in the arches along the seafront.

It was a cheap day out as I got a lift and my lunch was supermarket sushi and then some seaside chips!  I am sure I will back in Brighton for another day out soon, hope you enjoyed the views. Thanks for stopping by, leave a comment and I will know you passed this way. Bye for now.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Hello Blogland, how are you? 

While we have lovely weather in the UK, I am being more adventurous with the odd day out.  Last week it was a trip to London.  The train took only 35 minutes fast into Victoria and an easy 170 bus ride to Chelsea took me to The Physic Garden, it's shaded leafy side entrance is on Swan Walk.

It's the oldest botanic garden in London and was founded in 1673 by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries for the purpose of training apprentices in the identification and use of medicinal plants. It subsequently became one of the most important centres of botany and plant exchange in the world. (copied from the website).

Ordinarily I would avoid guided tours as I don't like being herded, but to be honest if I hadn't joined this one (free/volunteers and superb)... it would have been a day trip totally wasted.  My guideValerie made everything come alive, explaining how the founders used the Thames River to visit the gardens, collected their plants/herbs for various potions and scurried back to their gardenless abodes to create medicinal concoctions.  She explained plant by plant what each one did (poisonous, medicinal, edible, to make natural fibres), how the gardens came to exist and how they are funded/maintained today.  It was 45 minutes well spent.    How fabulous is it that people love these gardens so much they volunteer to work in them - their only reward is first dibs at the honey from their own hives within the gardens.

This is Hans Sloane, when I arrived I thought it was just a boring old statue, when I left I thought he was the most important thing there:   I learned he not only became a leading physician in London  (sometimes summoned by the Royal Family - but treated the poor free) but went on voyages abroad to find and bring back plants which are now in the gardens ... he brought back Cocoa from Jamaica, (introducing it to Cadbury's chocolate empire).  Originally used as a hot milky drink, it was intended as an elixir.  There's more - much more - I could tell you but you would do better to use Google as there is so much to learn, better still come and see for yourself.

I worked in Chelsea for a mineral exploration company providing services to Saudia Arabia/region.  I was a 20 year old, typing telex (remember those anyone?) flight paths for mineral exploration for their aircraft, no room for type errors there or they would totally have a wasted journey.   (due to a successful flight path I had the pleasure of holding a piece of raw gold found on one of their explorations, but that would be a story for another day)... I had no idea in my 20s where the name Sloane came from when I lunched in Sloane Square off Kings Road Chelsea where I worked, I was more interested in sharing my Waitrose supermarket sandwich with King, the company security dog who sat faithfully under my desk waiting for biscuits/treats - what a shame to have worked within a short bus ride of these fabulous gardens and been unaware of their beauty.  Lucky me that I now have time to discover these wonders.

I have had trouble uploading some of my pics, but saw Beladonna, devils cherry, which  must not be touched (or eaten) known throughout European Folklore for its halucinogenic and fatal poisonous properties.

None of the gardening staff could tell me what insect is eating the leaves, although I have since read that cattle and birds can eat the berries and plant without harm.

I really enjoyed learning about the properties of woad as an antiseptic (which warriors of old painted their bodies with - smelly brown stuff but perhaps it wasn't just to scare the opposition so much as to heal any potential wounds... there were plants used to make dyes here too and I learned that the root of the Iris plant gives us oris which is a fixative in scent and pot pourri.

Two hours was enough and then I took the underground to South Kensington to see the Natural History Museum.  There was time to ponder over dinossaurs, insects and rock formations, then a swift journey home in time for tea!

My costs for the day were minimal, just my train fare, a supermarket sandwich/water and the entry fee of £10.50 to the gardens, the museums in London area free.

Back soon, thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

the weekend

It has been lovely and hot all day, during the evening there was a nice breeze so I sewed for a while in the garden. This is a beach cover up I made from a sarong I bought for  a fiver last year and never wore, I liked the fabric so decided the pattern would lend itself well to this revamp.

The gold edging for the neckline was 38p a metre from Fabricland and there was virtually no sewing other than giving it shoulders and cutting/edging the neckline itself as the sarong had a nice rolled edge on all sides.  I might do  again as it's a very easy and cheap make.

I was in Brighton yesterday and took a moment to snap some very pretty graffiti - every time I visit  Trafalgar Road the graffiti has changed so this was a refreshing surprise.

I always visit the library if I have time as they have some very good art books to ponder and also some of the cleanest toilets in Brighton! ... then it was onwards for a spot of beach therapy.  Just the sound of the sea gulls and the rolling waves charges my batteries.   I was on a budget so my lunch was a vegetarian scotch egg, bottled water and a banana on the beach.

The charity shops around here are a bit pricey for me but I really appreciate the window displays, this one in particular gets really good vintage stuff and the staff love dressing the windows to perfection.  I expect this black and white theme was all designer and definitely vintage.  Dresses like this don't ever go out of fashion and we're made to last.

Tomorrow it's the gym and some garden sunbathing.... hope you're enjoying your weekend wherever you may be.  Thanks for stopping by...