Yarn, Yorkshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Archive for April, 2015

SHAKEN!

Tales of Twisted Fibers

On April 25, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal—the country that I’ve made my home—causing widespread devastation. The quake, the worst to hit the country in over 80 years, has wiped out entire villages, and claimed over 5500 lives (this number is increasing by the hour), injured and paralyzed many, and rendered countless homeless. The United Nations estimates that over 8 million people have been affected.

Five days after the quake and we are still digging out a few lucky survivors from under the heap of rubble that is what’s left of Kathmandu now. Those whose houses have either been rendered uninhabitable or reduced to rubble are living out in the open. Food and clean drinking water is in short supply, creating panic among the people. The situation is much worse outside of the capital city.

Though emergency relief materials, including food, water, water purifiers, and medical supplies, are being…

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15 for 2015- April!

Even slower progress with my 15 for 2015. First there was Easter, then there was a moving along of life’s tasks. On the good news front, we have had two offers on my Dad’s house, but as yet neither are able to proceed, due to having properties to sell. We shall see. Even better,my brother and his wife came back from Cyprus and have gone to live with Mum. A home for them and care with company for Mum. Mum has Alzheimers and trying to support her from Yorkshire whilst she is in Wales, has been hard for all of us. Mr P, my brother, is slowly getting into the swing of what needs to be done. The first few weeks saw me phoning, emailing and texting with so much information, but that has eased. And I no longer get phone calls from Social Workers, Carers,Benefit Advisers, Solicitors or Doctors.  Optimism is rising.

I have created a page up top, that contains the full list of 15 for 2015, so that I don’t have to admit to some slow progress or bore anyone with monthly updates on each idea, but can stay positive focusing on what I have done.

15 minutes walk x 4times a week, am now exceeding this regularly, but don’t want to get complacent. Easy when the sun shines but come November this may be harder.

14 bags to a charity shop – 1 more gone, total 6,need to improve!

13 animal photos. Here is my favourite from this month. That makes 7.

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12 get togethers with friends. Last night, super meal out with two old school friends and their husbands. First time the chaps have met and they got on brilliantly, whilst Rachel and Gill and I need to do this more often. Really great fun, and haven’t laughed so much in ages.

9 handmade cards. Another made, this time for Ms J . Happy Birthday Ms J, 14 today! That makes 8.

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5 projects for charity. Finally found a charity in need of some crochet skills. A work in progress, so this remains at 1. Meantime I am looking for my next charity to help with my skills, knitting ,crochet, sewing etc

1 Railway journey. For a couple of years friends have been telling me how good rail cards are. Did I listen. No! I preferred to drive everywhere. I like having my car with me, because you never know.. A very good friend asked me to go and stay with her this year. A car journey to her would be a nightmare, so I thought I should go by train, and to encourage me, I added 1 railway journey to my 15 for 15 list. LIFE HEY? You just never know. I’ve not been to visit her yet, but one of my boys has moved, he has a parking space, but not one for visitors. He got a second bedroom just so he could have people to stay. But no parking space. Street parking limited to 2 hours only between 8am and 8pm, then residents only. I priced up a nearby car park- £83 for the duration of my visit. Only one thing for it. I bit the bullet. Got me my rail card and had that railway journey. The weather was brilliant whilst I was with him and we had a great time. He has a lovely flat. The bed was very comfortable. And I have to confess it was easier and less stressful by train, and cheaper, and I got to walk everywhere too! Glad I did it, and having it on my list gave me great impetus. So after all that. 1 Railway Journey is first objective achieved , would you Adam and Eve it?

Love to hear how everyone else is doing with any plans they made this year.

I’ll be quiet again over the next two weeks. Things to do , places to go, but I will still be reading all my favourite blogs, and leaving a liberal splat of comments.

 

Wildlife walk in Scarborough.

I had some shopping to do in Scarborough. Afterwards as the day was sunny, I bought a picnic and headed out of town to Oliver’s Mount. 

Named after Oliver Cromwell who reputedly had  guns there during the civil war, it is now known for its motor cycle races and the impressive War Memorial.

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The views over the bay are amazing. I can’t believe I never before got out of my car to look.

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Bit hazy. The castle is on the headland. Anyway after lunch I headed down the mount intending to go round by the mere and onto the supermarket. I happened to notice people walking at the mere,  so parked the car and set off. It was lovely. How come I never did this before? So many ducks, geese, swans and  moorhens . I don’t think I’d even registered how many different sorts of geese there actually are. If anyone knows their names I’d love to know. With no apologies for the number of pictures that follow, here we go. PS this is just a small selection, everywhere I looked was just gorgeous. The only thing I didn’t take a picture of was a class of 8-9 year olds , with teachers, dressed up as pirates!

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Geese

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Ducklings

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Different geese. The one on the left was very aggressive, I beat a hasty retreat.

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Geese communing with nature.

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The mere. .

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Bless Them!

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Treasure island?

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Mum, Dad and babes!

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Who needs Manet?

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There is a small green boat moored to that island.

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Light reflections.

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Flowering currant

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Celandine’s, I think

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Love this one, but got a wet knee kneeling too close to the edge.

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Goslings!

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Seagull, not missing out!

My favouirte picture I am saving for my 15 for 2015- April update.

It was such a lovely unexpected stroll. Love to hear of any unexpected strolls you have taken recently.

 

Sensory thoughts- Touch

Touch, now here at last is a sensation that doesn’t fade with age, if anything it becomes more important.Elderly people love to touch an animal, as stroking a cat or a dog can calm someone down who is in distress. I have even heard that holding chickens is beneficial .

And a hug is always welcome. My Dad used to love being presented with the latest great grandchild for a cuddle.

So in no particular order here are my likes and dislikes..

Clean sheets- I love the cool smooth feeling from air dried clean sheets.

Not so clean sheets- the day you know you just have to change them, they are so warm and cosy, like being in a burrow or nest!

My Dad used to stroke my forehead to get me to sleep when I was poorly. The memory still calms me down.

One of my boys  ( I shan’t name the one ) loved the feel of the nitty comb! WEIRD. Especially as I was usually freaking out about nits at the time. I finally discovered stay in coconut spray conditioner, works a preventative treat.

Babies, the feel of that newborn skin, the feel of their podgy little legs, bliss.

Water, be it paddling in cool mountain streams or swimming in the warm sea on holiday. Just being in water is relaxing.

And that lovely feeling you get when you shower away the sea and sand. Feeling clean is such a pick me up.

Walking on a beach barefoot, the cool English beaches or the heat from a holiday beach. Sand on toes is just such a good feeling.

But oh not a pebble beach, too hot in August and too painful always from the stones.

A nice cool breeze on a hot day, that cools the skin at the back of your neck. Or a ride in an open top car or bus with the wind whistling through your hair.

Tree trunks, I don’t actually hug trees but I come pretty close, something very reassuring about a tree trunk.

Moss, oh so soft and tactile. New leaves on trees, when they are still the palest of greens, I like to just stroke them gently, welcoming the newness of life.

I can’t stand the feel of a budgie or any other bird on my head or skin, totally gives me the heeby jeebies. Along with moths. I leave a room with a moth flying around. hate itif they brush against me.

Best feeling of all. Having my hair brushed or combed. Can’t beat a trip to the hairdresser.

Back in March I had a small operation on my scalp to remove a Basel cell growth, a non malignant skin cancer. It was quite a brutal process involving local anesthetic, scrapping, cutting and cauterizing. I was told off for being too stoical, and was given two extra shots of anesthetic. Anyway the point is,  at the end of the 20 minute appointment , out goes the consultant and the obligatory two students. I get up to go.The nurse said No don’t go yet, rest a while, and she came and sat down next to me. Very gently she parted my hair and with a comb,combed my hair, as she said it was messy from the operation.Her touch was so gentle,it was like magic. I very nearly cried. And that is how a nurse should be!

Love to have your comments on touch! Do you like or dislike the same things as me?

 

Yarn Along!

Life is looking better, but fingers crossed still for good news!

I have been reading a lot recently, but rather than bore people with each and every book, I have updated the books 2015 page. Best so far for this year was The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. Consumed in two days flat!

I’ve also been crocheting. The most relaxing and least taxing of my crafts, especially if all I do is granny squares.

Here’s the lap blanket I made Mum for her birthday next month. Hopefully the colour of heather moors.

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Those blobs be flowers

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And I am still crocheting blankets, actually got two on the go, here’s one of them.

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I came across this book at Dad’s house when I was clearing out books. It’s written in the 1960’s when life was very different. The forests were still being planted, for Pit Props! No wonder the National Forests have had to go into the tourism industry to make them pay. Included in the book are several drives and walks, and it mentions good view points. Problem is that now the trees have grown, or in some cases felled, the views are different.  The photos inside are wonderful. Horses are used in the planting and felling, and so many men working in the forests. The only women depicted are enjoying a walk with their children. The women look just like my Mum did in the 60’s. Thoroughly enjoying this little treasure.

Linking with Ginny for Yarn Along

 

End of the tunnel!

There is I hope light at the end of the tunnel for some of the issues that have been bothering me for over a year. Easter was a time of mixed emotions, Mr J and Master H were here, but it was tinged with memories of my Dad who loved having my family at Easter, and worry over other matters. But today with the sun shining and some promising news there is light at the end of the tunnel. So here is Easter.

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A walk with a son

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and a grandson

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and a train

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a walk with wild daffodils

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a drink in the cafe during the daffodil walk

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and rolling eggs down the hill on Easter Monday.

Back sometime next week , with I hope some more light.

Hoping all your troubles are little ones and you have  a good weekend full of fun and laughter.

Sensory Thoughts- Taste!

Ah Taste. Such a personal sense, what one person likes another loathes. Are you a Marmite lover or hater. I love Marmite as does one of my boys. The other two hate it.

Does food really not taste as good as it used too or is it age changing our taste buds? Certainly children find flavours  stronger than do older people. But I think there is something to be said for food not tasting as it did, certainly in my childhood. Has anyone been watching the BBC programme about food and changing diets since the war? The children in this programme complained that the food was bland in the 50s, no spices , or added chemicals and very little sugar. But does all that added flavouring just mask poor quality food? I think food may well have been blander then but it tasted of what it was supposed to be and not what some food scientist thought it should be.

Last year on holiday I ate chicken which had been reared by the restauranteur on his farm. And oh MY did it taste good. It tasted of chicken. Like it used too!

And who can deny that food from the garden or allotment just tastes , well better, more of itself. Warm tomatoes straight from the greenhouse, bliss. Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries or bilberries from the wild,  or the garden, just can’t be beaten by the commercial equivalent flown in from abroad in an unripen state.

Proper Butter, not some horrible spread. Mmmmmmm. On toast or jacket potato.

Homemade lemon curd, I know I have eulogized about this before, but it is divine. And it reminds me of my Granny.

Homemade lemonade. On a hot summers day. DElicious.

Proper Pork Crackling! Need I say more.

Happy times are also remembered in the food we eat.

Holidays in Greece don’t begin till I have had my first iced coffee overlooking a fishing harbour. Then I relax.

My sons tell me one of the things they best remember from our camping holidays , were the chocolate Penguin biscuits they had with an early drink on the first morning, when we needed to decamp and get on the road again. The South of France is a long way for little boys in a car!

And do you find that as you eat something it starts off conversations of the “Do you remember the best… we ever had was…” The conversation we have year after year regards fish and chips. The best ones we ever had was in Hayfield in the Peak District. We had gone for a walk. It was WET and very very windy. We got about 1/5 th along the way before we gave up. Soaked to the skin and miserable we had over an hour to wait for the bus home. So we retired to a cafe. That fish and chip lunch and pot of tea has never been surpassed. Was it the food or the weather? I don’t know but we have never forgotten how good it was.

Children eat the weirdest things as they try to find out the edible from the inedible. In my case I apparently had a penchant for coal. But as I can’t remember it I deny it.

And in pregnancy our tastes change.Mr T was all about tinned peaches , the other two had me craving fudge. I don’t like tinned peaches much! Now fudge is a different matter.

My best weird taste of all has to be salt water. Not any salt water. But that lovely saltiness of the sea on your skin after a day on the beach.

What do you think? Does food taste better with added flavourings? Which is your favourite herb- mine has to be tarragon, or maybe dill, or then there is oregano.  Do you have a favourite food memory? Or what weird taste do you like?

Thank you for reading. Hot cross bun day today. With real butter mmmmmm!

 

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