Monday, May 31, 2010

Mrs Brady, old lady!

Girlie weekend! Yahay! Who needs SATC2?

Had a fab weekend with my best friend who flew in on Thursday afternoon and we boogied the night away on Saturday at a dinner-dance at the Signet Library in the city.

Sunday was a bad recovery day - not due to large alcohol consumption, but due to the fact that I'd perhaps got a little over enthusiastic on the dance floor and now my dicky hip is playing me the repercussions! Couple that with the fact that earlier in the day we'd decided to hit the town to shop and by 11am I was ready to go home because I had had enough of pushing through crowds, makes me decrepit and creaking - must up the fish oil intake!

I'd love to be able to maintain the enthusiasm for Saturday morning shopping that I had when I was 20 odd - yeah, this is where the SATC similarity ends with a bump!

The cantankerous biddy in me grumbles at the shoppers who chat in the doorways, the families out shopping with their 15 children in tow who trip you up and just have to shop on Saturdays with all of them and the serious lack of cashiers on the checkouts despite the fact that Saturday must be the busiest shopping day.

I really think I need to be locked away at home until I've had my blue rinse and purchased a walking stick - it'll all be justifiable then - no?

Of course, today I'm back to earth with a crash.

A beautiful day outside - been lousy all over the weekend - and I've got my last exam to revise for - grrr... although keeping that cup half full, books are transferable, once it warms up, I'll take the revision into the garden.

Just like this....

Also got a new toy this weekend. An exceedingly early Christmas present. So, here are a few results from the weekend!


Bug on my bush ;-) - anyone any idea?


Thursday, May 27, 2010

21st century boy

I am like a number 11 bus - nothing for ages, then two at once.

However, I did want to share;

Master Beehive the elder has been on a nature camp for the last few weeks after school. He's been learning to recognise plants, particularly edible ones and learning basic survival skills. It's been a dirty but fun experience as they've foraged in the rain, stalked in the wind and learned to light fires in the blazing heat - yes, come to Scotland - the weather is screwed!

He's about to go off on scout camp and is desperate to put these newly learned skills to good use, sadly, if he'd gone to scout camp when I did twenty odd years ago, he probably could have learned to dig a moat around his tent to prevent it floating away in the rain and learn to lash together a tripod to hold up his wash bowl or a shoe rack or even a small wardrobe - yeah Ikea, your flat pack is nothing to us old school girl guides, we laugh mwahahaha, in the face of challenge!

So...I digress, the activity list came through and he has to indicate whether he wants to abseil, do archery, go on the challenge course etc over the weekend. Archery is his number one choice because, as he told his younger brother in the car back from swimming yesterday evening:

"Archery is a very important skill to have."

Yeah - if you're wanting fresh venison for dinner

or are intending to take out your neighbour from the turret of your castle!

Or, if you happen to be a woodland elf!

I suppose the scout motto is "Be Prepared" and Lord Baden Powell never actually specified exactly how prepared one needed to be so...

Be afraid, be very afraid!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A bloggerary work of art...

I love these colours!

This blog entry is especially for my friend, Michelle, who, when she catches me at the school gate, will berate me for depriving her of the next installment of her bedtime reading. It's funny how blogs are fast becoming the new reality novel.

Personally I love reading blogs. I love reading books too and blogs cannot replace some of the amazing literature out there, but blogs are good in a different way. Perhaps in a fly on the wall type way, but more, I find, in an inspirational way. Blogs that I follow tend to inspire me in some shape or form, either for their craft ideas, beautiful photography, deep wisdoms, ideologies or unusual lifestyles and adventures. Currently mine is none of the above with any calibre, but I'd hate to deprive anyone of their relaxation and, much as I don't blog as much as I did in the US for fear of boring everyone, I will aim to update more often - so Michelle, this is for you xx

Is your crafting seasonal?

Mine is, but I'd never really thought much about it. In the winter I knit and bake, in the summer I garden and sew.

I don't know why either particularly. It's probably all just association; knitting with yarn for the cold weather, bake for comfort and then in the summer (that's a laugh up here - ours has been and gone over the space of this weekend!) I want to be outside and fabrics with lovely sunny prints just call to me and it's so easy to throw together a quick skirt or top. I feel I've really let the latter go over the last few weeks as I've been studying for my exams, but it's time to get some patterns and fabrics out of the stash and run up some new play clothes for the Little Miss.

The garden has done me proud over the winter. I was sure we'd lost a lot of stuff, not least an apple tree that snapped in the wind last winter and was bandaged (literally) to try to graft it back together. Sadly the graft didn't take, but the tree decided to flourish anyway underneath the snap.

We're going to have a great crop of redcurrants, gooseberries and raspberries this year as long as I've not just cursed us.
We've chosen not to grow much this summer as we're both incredibly busy, me with exams and a doula client and classes and Mr Beehive with random financy-person travel. We're just growing a few courgettes, tomatoes and spuds. I'm crossing my fingers and toes that the toms get enough sun this year to ripen.

We've got a fun packed summer set up, the boys are going to go on a cooking course and play lots of cricket and I'm trying to curb my enthusiasm for our big jollybob to Kenya.

I've also bought this book as it seemed to have some great ideas both for now and future summers in our own home where we can finally have our chickens, grow in the earth and make things like the clay oven on page 60!! - mmm.... woodfired home made pizzas baked in a clay oven - yum:

Anyway, it's been a while since I did one of my speedy throw it all together recipes for you, so here's one that is fantastic as a spread in a wrap with a load of veggies or as a baked potato filling with a bit of cheese.

"Good-Green avocado spread"

1 whole avocado
1 can of beans (butter or any white beans)
2 garlic cloves (or less if you're b-feeding)
1/2 a well chopped chilli pepper
1/2 lemon juice

Summer days - kick back and relax.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

May the fart be with you!

The sun is out,
the sky is blue,
there's not a cloud
to spoil the view...

finally, after the hail and sleet of last Monday!

Everything has kicked off into new life - just as I love it. Birth, life, greenery, hippity, hoppity ickle baby lambies...well, okay, not that last bit, that just sounds a bit barfy!

This weekend I've been at the NCT conference in Telford.

Surrounded by several hundred like minded women; mamas, doulas, midwives and educators. We were blessed with the presence of the guru of the birthing world - Ina May Gaskin. Think, George Clooney for the birky wearing, yurt livin', lentil knitting, home birthin' fans.

Friday she entertained us for the whole day with her biography...oh to be a hippy in the 60's in a bus in rural Tennessee...later leading us onto her stories of her mamas in that community who birthed whilst they were travelling.

This moved on eventually to Sphincter Law by means of:

A You Tube birth of an elephant in Sri Lanka;

A Sheila Na Gig from Ireland "tearing out her heart" - or not... probably the same guy that "discovered" the clitoris *wink*

And a story of a mole who went in search of the git that left a turd on his head...

Yes, sadly, we have incorrectly translated it for the American market (and sadly the British too) who seem to be far more reluctant than the Germans to talk about poop and farting, but somehow still seem to talk utter crap all the same when it comes to birth *see here*

Sadly, I have been trying to relive this event for poor Mr Beehive, explaining the weekend to him with great enthusiasm and gusto. I've even attempted to demonstrate Ina May's observations for birth by peering at him (yeah, didn't go down well at 6.30am in the morning), yelling at him to push when he's pooing to make it come out faster and threatening to "give him a poo-easy-otomy" to help him get the naughty little bugger out, but oddly, to no avail, guess she was right and there's the evidence *wink* - sphincter law, cos he sure ain't crappin' on my watch!

Why is it then, in the western world, we tend to walk into a hospital for our babies, don a rear opening robe (yeah, go figure!), allow the world and his mother to peer up our foofs and then shout at us when things don't fit the exact time scale or mould. I'm not even talking births that need assistance, this is often normal, low risk birth, particularly in the US, but sometimes (perhaps to a lesser degree) in the UK too - you saw it on "One born every minute".

Birth needs to be natural, undisturbed and allowed to happen with laughter abundant and the mother feeling safe and relaxed, intervening only when needed rather than routinely or without any sound evidence that it's required.

One of those, "you had to be there kind of weekends" - empowering women and sisterhood all under one yurt!

So....moving swiftly on as we are, after all British and one can't mention pooh (does that come with an 'h' or not?) or clitori (hmmm, one clitoris, two clitori?) or anything remotely sexual especially on the same blog as one featuring a lego death star...

This is what Master Beehive the elder has been working on since his birthday last month. I'm really proud of him managing to do this with minimal help - much to his Dad's disgust as I think he'd hoped for more excuses to "help out".

The jedi death star.

Oh, and Ina May again...
You're probably wondering why there's another picture of Ina May, but I feel the relevance of the Leia look and the death star was just too startling to ignore, couldn't help it!!

Finally, I just want to introduce you to this blog. I was directed this way and am in awe of this lady. Take a read, but you may want a kleenex too in some parts.

Have a sunny "Ina" May and see you again soon xx