Tuesday, July 22, 2014

In the garden

Fog at night

Two of my favourite authors and series.


Saturday, March 15, 2014

Linen dry quicker by Lochness

Linen dry quicker by Loch Ness, which I'm sure they do. But for our purposes I'd like to talk about tea towels.

 Tea towels come in all shapes and sizes, made from fabrics such as cotton, terry towelling and linen. They are printed or woven and have all manner of patterns and designs on them. Do a search on Google images for tea towels and you will find an endless supply to look at. Do a search on vintage tea towels and you will find even more.
Nearly everyone has tea towels, and I'm sure that most people have a favourite that they go back to again and again. I have a few favourite Irish linen tea towels.

When my great aunt on my father's side passed away I inherited some of her linen's. One day a couple of years ago I was going through the pile of these linen's and I came across some old Irish linen tea towels.

These tea towels are aged, have a few stains here and there, and even a hole or two but overall have a fine quality to them. They are woven with coloured stripes and a message that is quite quirky, which says " linen dry quicker by Lochness".

"Linen dry quicker by Lochness" conjures for me a mental image of clotheslines full of antique linens flapping in the breeze by that famous body of water Loch Ness. A romantic image by any means, but totally at odds with the use of a tea towel for drying dishes.


These tea towels are huge measuring 29" x 22.5". They are thicker than normal tea towels, very absorbent and do dry quickly! I can't really explain why these tea towels appeal to me so much -  it could be that one of my fore bearers used them, it could be the quirkiness, or that they are big and dry a lot of dishes before they get really wet. A long search on the Internet did not supply me with any details about them. There was the odd bit of history about linen and a very short history of tea towels but I could not find anything about these particular tea towels.
Going on guesswork I think my great aunt had them from the 60s or 70s as a lot of her linen seem to come from this period.
If you do have any information about these tea towels please let me know.
I have been using them for about two years now and they are a firm favourite amongst my vast tea towel collection for drying dishes, covering food, and mopping up the odd water spill on the bench, plus I do enjoy looking at them.

Do you have a favourite tea towel that you use in preference over other tea towels? Tea towels come in handy for so many things. You can wrap food in them, use them as placemats, use them in place of wrapping paper, decorate the walls with them, make bags, cushions, curtains and aprons with them, and of course dry dishes with them.

Sunday, September 08, 2013


When you step out the door and all you can smell is mesmerising pollen, you know that Spring is here in all its glory. I love the smell of so many flowers all mingled into one tantalising scent. Ok this also means wicked hay fever, but its a small price to pay for enjoying natures amazingness.

Here are a few small flowers from my around my place.

Grape Hyacinth

Hyacinth (It never grows upright for me, just sprawls)

Parma Violet de Toulouse

Star Flowers

Hoop Daffodils


Viola Odorata

Viola Odorata

A posy of pink geranium, double white geranium, french lavender, violets and yellow oxalis.

I love spring.

Sunday, September 01, 2013

Have been watching...

Its been a while. Sadly there has not been much sewing as I have a problem with my hands. Sewing is now a very long and slow challenge for me.  To keep myself entertained I go to the library. That place of salvation for the mind.
My local library has books, audio books, cd's dvd's, magazines, ebooks and more. Nearly every time I go I peruse the dvd shelf (as well as the books). Not one to go to the movies often, I tend to catch up on dvd, sometimes even years after a film has been released. And so it is that when I browse the dvd section I find myself attracted to foreign language films. I don't do it on purpose, most of the time I am unaware that the film is not an english language film until I pop it in the dvd player to watch. I read the cover and the film sounds good so I borrow it and take it home.
So far I have seen quite a lot of foreign language films. Good, bad, and some have just been truly bizarre.
 Here are two, one recent and one a while ago that caught my interest and that I enjoyed.

This weeks foreign language film is "The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc Sec".

The film is a romping adventure set in Paris in 1912.  Our heroine Adele is a writer in search of a cure for her ill sister. Her search takes her on an adventure to Egypt complete with tombs, mummies, a bit of grave robbing and some villains.Meanwhile back in Paris there is a Pterodactyl terrorising the city.
The characters in the supporting cast are varied and most likeable. Adele's character is single minded, full of great quips and extraordinary bravery. 
Very much a great film to watch, adventure, drama, and comedy  all rolled into one.  We enjoyed it immensly.
I rate it 4 out of 5 stars.
Kiddlet rates it 5 out of 5 stars.
In case you are worried about watching a film with sub titles, don't worry, you forget you are reading them after about 5 minutes, and the joy of dvd's is that if you do miss something you can go back and re-read it.

The other foreign language film that has stayed with me for ages is "Lemon Tree"

Lemon Tree is a story about two different cultures, countries and women. It has so many layers to it that you will think about it for ages after you have watched it.
A Palestinian widow who owns a lemon grove on the Palestine/Israeli border fights the Israel defense minister who moves in on the Israel side of the border and whose security team see the lemon grove as a haven for terrorists and decide it has to go. 
The film gives us a rare insight into the lives of the Lemon grove owner and the Israeli defense ministers wife. It tells the tale of both sides of the border. The cultural, the personal with its daily struggles and the politic. Its quiet, moving, and holds you in its spell.  
If you like your films to be a little bit different from mainstream offerings I would recommend you give this one a go.
I give it 5 out 5 stars.

Hopefully more film and some books reviews here soon.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Sometimes all you need is a little brightness

Miss Pansy is a happy soul. Very bright and colourful, Miss Pansy likes to be the life of the party. Feeling blue? Miss Pansy will help cheer you. She has a great sense of humor, just looking at her makes you smile.