Sweetbriar Dreams

So where shall we go on our journey today?

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Spring Flowers and Chocolate! Perfect!!

It's been a quick week, I blinked and it had gone.  I'm not complaining but my camera card was sadly lacking and panic set in on what to write this evening!  However, it's amazing what chocolate and spring flowers can do to awaken creativity.

Yes, happy spring daffodils, hyacinths and the gorgeous and delicious Cadburys mini eggs.  We can't get enough of these chocolates encrusted with a crunch shell in this house!  

Of course I did go out during the week but kept to Peterborough (lunch times may have been spent buying secret stashes of chocolate eggs).  I love the Guild Hall on Cathedral Square and the entertainment that surrounds it.  Today there were Gospel Rappers - just standing by the steps with their mics and concentrating on their messages.  They were brilliant, with every word so clearly heard.  

Also on the camera card - the Narnia lamp post!  Another image that hopefully will gradually be filled in as the sap rises and the leaves begin to unfurl once again.

At home, me and Coco have been on longer walks.  We have tried to go as far as we can comfortably as her medication is quite limiting, but I had to show you how she is at the end... shattered!!  She is a brave little thing and is coping so well.

Next week there will be loads on the camera card as London is calling!  Not sure where we will be going yet, we have got as far as Kings Cross on the train in our minds but we still have to agree on where we will be visiting.  I'll take you on the magical mystery tour next weekend!!

Can I also let you know about a Facebook Group called 'Authentic Bloggers' (the link is in my side bar).  This is a closed group to meet fellow bloggers and share information and advice.  I am new but so far I have loved every day getting to know people on different platforms.  See you on there!!

I also need to say a very very big, huge thank you for all the comments on my last post on the button heart.  For those who are going to have a go, Enjoy!!

Have a wonderful weekend and see you in London!!

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Monday, 19 January 2015

Hotch Potch Button Art - A Quick Valentine Ta Dah

It has been ages since I attempted any crafts and so with a quiet weekend and my car keys having a rest, out came the sewing basket and a few bits and pieces.  A little creativity to focus my mind after looking at map after map of my Grandad's research.  Buttons, fabric, cotton and an embroidery hook... what could I make while the Sunday roast was in the oven and filling the house with gorgeous smells?

I have seen lots of different creations just lately using embroidery hoops, lots of different ways to display art and create such tactile happiness.  I loved the buttons I had recently bought with lots of different patterns and different cream and pastel shades and knew exactly what I wanted to create.

With Valentines Day coming up and the fact that I love hearts (I have them everywhere!), I soon had the outline in place.  Valentines Day is not usually celebrated in our home, instead we have a certain Mr Teen's birthday and that quite rightly is forefront on our minds each year, but there is nothing wrong with having another heart to adorn our walls.

I can't tell you how happy this little project was making me feel.  So quick and easy, and so pretty.  I just had to have the touches of signature pink in there didn't I?! 

I loved my hotch potch of different buttons.  Flat, domed, raised, convex, concave, cream, white, pink, beige - a happy mix.

About an hour later the heart was filled with all of these gorgeous buttons.  The heart was fit to burst
and I had to stop - too much??

So, here we are - my first project for the year!  A nice simple one to fit in between writing and Sunday roast.  An hour very happily spent!

I hope you are enjoying your January and getting ready for your little Valentines preparations.

Have a wonderful week.

Take care.

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Sharing with Stephanie at the Roses of Inspiration Link Up Party, The Five Star Frugal Link Up2015 Spring Craft Blog Hop, and Tweak it Tuesday

The Enchanting Rose

My Pinterventures

Saturday, 17 January 2015

The Cobweb of Memories

The North wind doth blow, and the East, West and South too!  Buffeting, knocking and damaging. Every evening it has been relentless, Mother Nature picking up her vacuum cleaner and hoovering Britain's fair land - I just wish she was a little quieter while I try to get my sleep!    So, this weekend I was determined to surround myself with books, notebooks, good old fashioned pen and paper, maps and plans.  No trips this week, just planning them.  Writing must have been playing on my mind as it seemed that everywhere I looked I could see leaves of paper - including the beautiful roses that hubby had bought me.  I felt I could write on these perfect petals.

After the inevitable housework and hanging out the washing to dry (would you believe it, not a breathe of wind!), I picked up one of the many boxes I have of my Grandad's notes and photos and reached up for an open file high on one of the study shelves that is full of maps and plans.  Even though I wasn't walking the streets of London, I was visualising them instead.  Aren't rolled up plans so intriguing, especially when covered in cobwebs? (Very Victorian!).

Did I say I had finished the housework?!  Let me explain before you judge me, the shelf is very high and the box is open at the top - I work full time - It's in a corner that I don't see very much - OK, OK I missed it!... a few times!!

What could be faceless pieces of paper doomed for the shredder, are coiled up pieces of information just waiting to burst out and tell their historical stories, completing the jigsaw puzzle of times gone by.

Each piece so precious with little notes on them on the London Docklands from the 1800's until late last century.  What used to be there, the stories of the people who lived there and the family memories.  Priceless!  One day each one will be in an A3 binder, flat and dust free... one day!

My house is full of books on London that have come from my Grandad's collection but occasionally I will open one of his boxes and I will find something I haven't come across before.  Today was one of those days where I picked up a Bartholomews Map on the Lake District.  Clearly my Grandad's, but it seemed so out of place amongst all his writings.  The rich, fragile paper was glued to hessian and just looked gorgeous!

I very carefully opened this 1920's map and found the faded colours printed on each sheet.  With time the paper has detached from each other but this gave it even more character.  As I looked at the map I noticed little notes, circles and pathways that were written and drawn by my Grandad, obviously where he had traveled to and walked - maybe a trip for me and my family this year?  Until then, I will be looking for a frame that can display this historical and personalised map.

For now though, I am enjoying the wind free, dry, calm weather and I will continue to write about his life's journey and enjoy every cobweb, frayed binding, stained page and his clear informative writing for the weekend.

Of course I need to plan for the future as well, so me and Miss Teen are busy discussing where we will be going in London this year.  The usual haunts of Greenwich, Camden Town and the South Bank will be obvious choices but we want to see things off the beaten track this year.  I do hope you will come and visit with your tea and cake when we tell our own stories.

Keep safe and warm and I do hope if you had these awful winds, and in some cases snow, that you have not suffered too much damage.

Take care.

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Saturday, 10 January 2015

A Medieval Chocolate Box

Excuse me while I just give a satisfying sigh.  Yes, week one has been completed and we are now back into our routines.  Christmas?  What Christmas?  It's surprising how quickly you get back into the day to day running of a family and work again.  As soon as I drove onto the precincts at work, 2015 had begun, the routine of getting my two teens up for school and college was a distant memory and my work time was waiting for me.  BUT, of course, it would be rude if I didn't take you on a walk wouldn't it? So during one lunch time I took my old faithful camera out with me and took advantage of the brief blue sky (it's been so stormy!).  Just a short walk to get me used to it again, but sharing the medieval chocolate box that I have done in the past.

I do love lamp posts and Peterborough Cathedral's grounds are full of them.  They always remind me of my childhood whilst reading The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.  They have had a bit of a clean and this one set against the 'new building' (built in 1496) in the distance was just lovely to see (no Mr Tumnus though!).

The 'new building' is about 500 years old compared to the main Cathedral that it is built onto which is almost 900 years old.  I see it as the visually softer part of this magnificent building with its easy to follow lines of architecture and can be found at the east end of the Cathedral.

As I continued my walk round to the south transept you can see the older part with its Gothic towers (remember my climb up these last year?).  Those gorgeous little turrets that I walked around and drooled at the slates on the individual small roofs. (My past post is here if you want to see them up close).

Along the old cobbled lanes is one of my favourite places and one of the oldest in the precincts, the Monk's Dormitory would have been along here.  My mind always wanders along here imagining the calm and reflection that would have taken place.

Me and my stone walls - call me obsessive but I just love them!

Sometimes I look back and think of fairy tales, Rapunzel would be best suited in one of those turrets wouldn't she?  And Sleeping Beauty waiting for the Prince to break through the barrier of thorns.

Of course, the precincts are also filled with a plethora of buildings in all shapes, sizes and ages.  To think that just walking through an archway from Cathedral Square you are transported into another time is breathtaking... and free!

Not forgetting the ancient gravestones, which are now neatly lined up.  These particular ones are from the 1700's and were beautifully lit by the low (and short lived) sunshine.  

The ground has greenery but no little gems of real life yet (I know, it's only January!).  Again, the sun was behaving and giving those little leaves something to smile about.

But as I continued to walk round to the North Transept, there against a wall were these beautiful smiles of sunshine.  I think it is a winter flowering broom. (thanks to Sue and Janneke, it is in fact a Jasminum Nudiflorum).

The sun had decided that it was time to disappear again so the rich colours of the stained glass windows of the Cathedral were beginning to fade, just giving the last glimpse of deep blues and reds.

The sun dial's natural battery had run out but I knew it was time to start heading back to my office.

But let's just see the main entrance that most people take photos from a distance, the West Door.  The entrance has recently been worked on, in fact the pathways are still being replaced outside the other buildings.  This gives easier access and uniformity to the entrance.

Looking up, you can see the intricate design and the vaulted ceilings for this exquisite building.

And of course the frontage itself from the Norman arch.

Every piece of this place is just a feast for the eyes.  I always come across something that I haven't seen before, or expect to see.  The roots of time have made marks on the building and surrounding area over the centuries, including plant roots in the medieval walls!

The sun disappeared into the shadows and the tree silhouettes made me smile.  A couple more months of deep sleep await and then another year of beauty will begin.

Back to work I went, but I couldn't leave you without another lamp post now could I??

I would also like to say welcome to some lovely new followers.  I'm looking forward to catching up with your posts.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Take care.

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