Wednesday, 27 January 2010


I've been thinking about green and moss a lot lately, and also about how I'm writing less and less. I went through the archives of my blog yesterday and I used to post a writing exercise quite frequently.

With that in mind, I'm going to start doing some unstructred freewrites, or prosepoems. Here's one I wrote earlier.

I’m walking barefoot on the spongy moss, like blankets under my feet. The green carpet scrolls on ahead of me, carelessly spilling up tree trunks and cutting through paths. The tiny plants lift up acorns and other small things, as if the forest is putting its most beautiful art on pedestals just for my viewing; an outdoor art gallery that changes its displays four times a year. You should visit; it’s free entry.

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Gareth Thomas...

...and the Daily Mail. Article here

Best part: "With 100 caps to his name - more than any other player in Welsh history - he has one of the fiercest reputations on the field, and a row of missing front teeth to prove it. At 6ft 3in and 16st of pure muscle, his masculinity has always been an absolute given."

Implying that now he's out, he's no longer masculine. Wtf? Try telling him that to his face, Helen Weathers.

Oh how I loathe those fucking fuckers at the Daily Fail.


Oh. My. Goodness. I am the world's worst quilter. The top looks okay, but underneath is a snaggle-toothed mess of folded over fabric! I will carry on with it, as it was only a test anyway, but I think my quilting future lies in tied quilts.

Then I only have the edging to fuck up!


For some reason, Blogger have changed their fonts. I used to use Verdana on 'smallest', but now that looks skinnier than it used to, and therefore less pleasing to my eye.

I am having Hell trying to sort it out.

Thinking of quilting

I've inherited some lovely cotton material (2 sheets, and 2 pillowcases) from the 70s, after my Mamgu who died recently. The sheets are beige with orange and brown flowery tree branches on them, and little birds perching on the branches. Amazing! I've never quilted before and I don't want to mess up the sheets, so I'm going to practice on the pillowcases. One of my volunteers in work brought me in some lovely fluffy bath towels (bless her, I told her I'd just bought a futon for my study for when people stay over and she brought me in a bag full of things: a duver cover and pillowcase set, two bath towels, two hand towels and a toy dragon, or as she said to me "and a dragon, just for fun". What a lovely lady!)

The pillowcases don't have the birds on them, but they're still pretty.

What I was thinking of for the back was two more pillowcases that I got as part of a set from Ikea last year. They don't really match, but I quite like that.

I don't mind if this quilt goes wrong because it's a test one for me. If it works, great. If not, then I've not wasted too much fabric. I'm going to use the fluffy towels as batting (I read about that on a blog) because I don't want to use up the lovely big bit of fleece my Mam gave me.

Quilting, here I come.

New blogs and resolutions

I never make New Year's resolutions. I used to, but would then feel disheartened when I didn't stick to them. This year, however, I'm brimming with resolutions - and not doing too badly about keeping them. So far ;)

Woke up this lovely Sunday morning full of plans to make porridge with apple sauce and cinnamon (my favourite porridge combination, although hubby has made porridge and jam for me which is also delicious) but we were so full after last night's bolognese that I just made some coffee instead and we stayed in bed and had a cwtsh.

I've been reading so many lovely blogs lately (list in a minute) that I've added a new resolution: I will blog more, take more pictures, and blog more about the crafty things I do. Here are the fab blogs I've been reading:

Creative Yarn
Little Birdie Secrets
Miss Mardi Nowak
The Small Object
Green Bee

Inspirational people, all. They've certainly inspired me. I'll be here more often. See you around I hope x

Friday, 22 January 2010


A poem I wrote years and years ago, about my Mam. It's quite apt now as I'm learning crochet myself.


The bright, red wool curls
around fingers that should be tapping keys,
writing reports.

A glass of wine waits on the stool
as she counts the hooks and knots
of a crocheted spiral.

She's making him pretty neck pouches
of coloured wool because he can't afford to buy them,
and she likes to see him happy.

Ms Jackson

I mean Mahalia, of course. She is my heroine.

Mahalia Jackson

Monday, 18 January 2010

Learning crochet

Goodness me it's easier than I thought!

Here's a pic of my first crocheted creation: a lovely, warm nipple shield.

Finally, I can look at sentences like "Ch 3, dc in same st, 2 dc in each dc around; join with sl st in top of beg ch" and know what it means.

I'm still learning, but plan to make an easy sc blanket with chunky wool and a 12mm hook to start. Fast and easy is always a good confidence builder.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Book meme

Nicked from Sheenagh Pugh (but it's okay, she nicked it first)

1. Which book has been on your shelves the longest?

The Hobbit

2. What is your current read, your last read and the book you'll read next?

Current read: Troll Fell by Katharine Langrish, because I needed something easy after...
Last read: David Zindell's Neverness books.
Next Up: The Horrific Sufferings of the Mind-reading Monster Hercules Barefoot: His Wonderful Love and His Terrible Hatred by Carl-Johan Vallgren, because I've been promising Nina I'll finish it for ages

3. What book did everyone like and you hated?

The Time Traveller's Wife, put it down after about 20 pages

4. Which book do you keep telling yourself you'll read, but you probably won't?

Ooh, I dunno... Crime and Punishment, War and Peace

5. Which book are you saving for "retirement?"

See above

6. Last page: read it first or wait till the end?

Never! If a book is any good I'll wait, if it's not I'll get rid of it. I'm not one of those people who have to know what happens, if I don't like the book or the characters then I don't care what happens to them

7. Acknowledgments: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside?

I like them

8. Which book character would you switch places with?

Lol, great question! When I was about 8 I'd have said Frodo or Tolly (from the Green Knowe books by Lucy M. Boston), when I was 15 I'd have said Nothing (from Lost Souls by Poppy Z. Brite), but who now? I'll have to come back to this question

9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time)?

My tatty copy of Hounds of the Morrigan by Pat O'Shea reminds me of a lovely holiday in Cornwall when I was 7 or 8.

10. Name a book you acquired in some interesting way.

I once bought a black, leather briefcase in a jumble sale for 5p when I was 6, and when I got it home I discovered a book hidden in a pocket inside - Eva Ibbotson's Which Witch? A book I love and still read.

11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?

Yes of course

12. Which book has been with you to the most places?

Drawing Blood by Poppy Z. Brite

13. Any "required reading" you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad ten years later?

Nope, it's all still awful. Step forward Jane Austen. I also disliked William Golding's Lord of the Flies when I was in school and, if anything, it's become even more disturbing.

14. What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book?

I once found a beautiful and very old bookmark in a book about table-rapping from the 1800s

15. Used or brand new?

Used if they are old, new if they are new

16. Stephen King: Literary genius or opiate of the masses?

He's alright, I've read a few of his books but found myself skimming quite a lot

17. Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book?

Yes, but only once. Interview with the Vampire the film is way better than the yawnfest that Anne Rice wrote

18. Conversely, which book should NEVER have been introduced to celluloid?

I won't get started on Lord of the Rings! One that made me quite angry was Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. They got rid of really good bits, and replaced them with special effects-laden bits that totally underwhelmed. A pity, as the book is rather special

19. Have you ever read a book that's made you hungry, cookbooks being excluded from this question?

In the Hounds of the Morrigan, there is a description of a meal that sounds delicious. Mushrooms cooked on a hearthstone, hot soup with butter floating in it "like a thousand golden suns", and fish cooked in their skins on the fire.

20. Who is the person whose book advice you'll always take?

Michael has introduced me to some fantastic books that I would never have found otherwise, and Nina has been spot on every time so far; my book taste is most like my newphew Bryn's though, we like similar stuff!

Friday, 8 January 2010

Podcast 9.0 'How To Seduce A Straight Man'

My first attempt at mixing. Some of the mixing is more successful than the rest, but I'm happy with how it turned out.

A selection of songs that attempt to describe how to seduce a straight man, a useful little musical guide for the discerning homosexual in us all.

This player might not work with all browsers. Sorry.

Download here.

Takk – Sigur Rós
Einleitung (from Also Sprach Zarathustra) - Richard Strauss
Spank – Jimmy ‘Bo’ Horne
Killer – Adamski
My Insatiable One (piano version) – Suede
U Talk 2 Much – Sultans of Ping F.C.
Witch Doctor – David Seville
Soldier Boy – The Beatles
Pushin’ Too Hard – The Seeds
Tonight We Fly – The Divine Comedy
Wicked Little Town – Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Roses and Teeth for Ludwig Wittgenstein – Matmos
I Feel Love – Donna Summer
Girls and Boys – Blur
I Open at The Close – The Sorting Hat
Wig in a Box – The Polyphonic Spree
Shut Up (And Sleep with Me) – Sin With Sebastian
Time to Pretend – MGMT
Golden Gun – Suede
This is Hardcore – Pulp
In the NA – The Hidden Cameras
I Would Die 4 U – The Space Cowboy
Pam V – Super Furry Animals
Xxzxcuzx Me – Crystal Castles
Was it Something I Said – OMD
Origin of Love – Hedwig and the Angry Inch

DISCLAIMER: Following these instructions does not guarantee you will seduce a straight man. My tongue is firmly in my cheek here. You can't pull straight men. If you do ever pull a straight man, then he's not straight, dear.

Mam Llanelli

Mamgu (Welsh for Grandmother) died on the 20th of December. I still can't believe she's gone.

I am so very angry at the rest of the world for carrying on without her. I find it hard to understand that people can still be having fun now that she's gone. I want to write about her, but it's still too raw yet. I'm fine for ages and then a little thing makes me break down; a carved wooden lizard that she brought home from Australia, her face smiling from a frame, remembering a dress she had with buttons that looked like snail shells.

I miss her so much.

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