February. It's been a busy month and I've spent a lot of time deep in thought. I seem to have many plates spinning; craft, music, work, and I often struggle to find balance and end up getting a little overwhelmed. Sometimes I daydream of moving to a little hobbit house in the middle of nowhere with no electricity or running water, where I can live off the land like stig of the dump. Do you ever feel like that? could you do it? I think I could. Though I'd miss blogging, and Mrs Miggins, and I'd have to have a little TV so I can watch 'Upstairs downstairs' and 'Wind in the willows' ... and a dishwasher perhaps??
I started off the month by sharing our cottage holiday at Mellinzeath Farmhouse, in Cornwall. It's a gorgeous, idyllic place, and both the cottage and surroundings are extraordinary. But before you get booking, you should know this cottage is not for the fainthearted ... A cosy cornish hideaway - Mellinzeath Farmhouse
I then met up with my gal pals for some much needed quality time ... we are all so busy nowadays, so time with friends is precious, and such vital food for the soul. We made our excuses to our menfolk that "we needed to pop out and get groceries" then we quickly scarpered over to Gills shabby shack instead - Gills shop is a wonderful little haven in Chipperfield, in Hertfordhsire .... there are so many lovely things in her shop, and it took all my will power not to break my piggy bank. Gill also features the work of local crafters and artists here, which is really lovely, as is Gill herself.
Ralphy hasn't had a good time of it this month ... he's had a poorly paw. We're still not sure what the problem is, and neither is the vet so he hasn't been allowed to peg it after his ball as he normally does so he's been feeling quite sorry for himself! He's on the mend now though, poor little pup!
"I'm really faking it so I can get sausage and sympathy"
There's have been some glorious mornings of crisp clear skies, and some equally depressing drizzly grey ones, but it's been a joy to see little buds emerging here and there ... I've even spotted little bluebell leaves trying to poke through in a nearby woodland!
One of my friends has a super-crafty mum ... this woman is a SERIOUS crafter. She's constantly crafting for her home, for friends, and to sell. Her name is Penny Perret and I shared some of her work recently in the Brambly Hedge murals post. I popped round to see her this week and took a few piccies. I'm going to do a separate post on her at some point because there's so much to show you, but for now here are a couple of snaps. This is her kitchen - she sourced a super cheap but gorgeous welsh dresser, which she then painted white. She used the bottom half elsewhere and placed the top half on her kitchen worktop! She also made this gorgeous little teabag organiser! I shall be copying this idea for sure - so thank you very much Penny!
I was then given the gift of light by a friend! He makes these delightful little oil lamps using old vintage glass jars and string. This one has 'dog mixture' embossed on the side :-) and when the oil is used up you simple refill it. I highly recommend odourless oil such as Green vegetable lamp oil or you can buy scented oils. Anything else will stink of chemicals.
Since Valentines day was approaching I thought I'd get in the mood but making something 'hearty' (see what I did there??) and crafty. So I made this pretty piece of embellished heart art for the wall. It was so easy to make. The stamp I used is called you and me and is designed and handmade by Nula, from Noolibird. I'm going to be creating more with Nula's stamps because they're is just so much you can do with them. Despite this effort to get in the mood for V day, hubby and I then forgot all about it!
One weekend our little trio headed out for a walk in Much Hadham, in Hertfordshire. It's one of our most favourite walks and includes woodland, tracks and arable farm land. I snapped a few moments and share the story of our day on the blog .... this included a run in with some cockney snowdrops and some very changeable weather! Snowdrops and a delightful walk in Much Hadham.
As lovely as it is, seeing signs of spring it makes me a little sad too. I'm a winter mouse. I miss the fire in the summer, and the light of the oil lamp during the dark evenings. I'll miss huddling for warmth, and wool, and blankets! See, I'm a winter mouse! So as much as I enjoy spring, I'll be making the most of the fire and lamp light while it lasts.