Thursday, 27 June 2013

Waistcoats and writing

I am pleased to say that 'Manic Month' at work is now drawing to a close. We have been so busy with festivals and school groups that there hasn't been a minute to draw breath! This is wonderful and has been great fun but I am now needing some relaxation.... I have a day of shooting planned this weekend (yes, I know how odd that sounds in the same sentence as relaxation) and a days holiday next week which I plan to spend taking photographs and pretty much not a lot else.

Out of work the highlight has to have been Prom Night. DS#1 looked most handsome - he scrubbed up pretty well. I finally finished the waistcoat and bowtie (still sewing it the night before!!) and I was
more than happy with them. We managed to tie the bowtie too... thanks Mr Youtube Man.
He doesn't look too bad!

I made this!

He met up with a group of friends and they all went off on a vintage bus. They all looked awesome.
Inside the bus it was all bunting and Muse!

The sewing bug has continued and I have made a couple of storage bags and some curtains for the kitchen. Next project is a 1950's style dress from Clothkits. It's all ready to go!

I have been continuing with my Journaling. I am almost evangelical about how useful and enlightening it is proving. It also gives me more reasons to buy lovely stationery (not stationary). My creative journal is allowing me to indulge in pretty 'stuff'... finally I know why I have been stockpiling every magazine published since 2008.... cutting and sticking! Yay!
The Journaling prompts are still throwing up some difficult things to think about. I have started facing up to some of my not so pretty bits but also have had the opportunity to reflect that considering everything I haven't done too badly! (no raised eyebrows at the back, thank you!)
I have been writing a list of 5 things each day that I am grateful for... this has been hard on some days but it does show that no matter how crap you think your day has been, there are some shiny moments! Even if they do involve chocolate.. or shoes... or small animal shaped erasers!

Today I am grateful for:
  1. The opportunity to work with some fab people.
  2. A quiet evening to catch up on reading, writing and blogging.
  3. Hearing from people I care about.
  4. Spam sandwiches (most welcome during a busy WW2 school session).
  5. My bed.... it is beckoning!
What are you grateful for today?

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Trying not to overthink it!

Phew.... can't believe it's Sunday night again - where did the weekend go?
I had another super busy week at work, two WW2 days plus other school groups and training and catching up in the office.
I started my Journaling course too this week - this is a follow on from the Unravelling course where we explored the idea of keeping a journal. I found this quite a useful tool and so am learning some more techniques. Step one discussed privacy... Hmmm... not that I'm putting any deep secrets in there (yet) but if anyone found it they would know for sure what a mental basketcase I really am :-D
My big discovery of the week has been not to overthink things too much - text messages - conversations - times when I've made a COMPLETE idiot of myself (Kathy, if you're reading this we need to talk!!!) I need to stop analysing everything!

In other news I have been continuing with photography themes - this week flowers!

One of my lovely Unravelling friends, Louise, has been trying to give me some tips. I am trying to learn!

I have been busy with the sewing machine too this week. DS#1 has his prom next Friday - how exciting - the suit has been bought, along with new shoes and belt. He decided he wanted a bowtie and waistcoat which we have tried to theme with his girlfriends dress. It has been a most pressured project, my first from the Great British Sewing Bee book. I still have to tackle the buttonholes, oh dread :-( but so far I am pleased with the results. Tying the bowtie, however, is another thing! Many Youtube viewings later and I know roughly HOW it's done but cannot get it to look as neat..
Still, nearly a week to practice! I'll just try my best not to overthink it too much!

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Roll out the red carpet!

It has been a whirl of activity this week..... work has been crazy busy as we got ready to host the very first Ffennell Festival. Ffennell is the name of the chap who owed the Hill End site - leaving it for the further enjoyment of young people. It is nothing to do with the vegetable! Though Ffennell soup could have been on offer maybe?

The Friday was a chance for Primary schools from Oxfordshire to come along and join in with loads of activities on offer. I was on the World War 2 experience 'bit'... meaning I got to dress up as Peggy the Landgirl once more.
Saturday we were open to Joe Public. I got to pose about by our 1928 Austin 12/4 and frighten people off trying on the gas masks! The magnetic mine proved a draw (see what I did there?) and I had an interesting conversation with a military archaeologist who promised to send us some more military goodies (most of which I had no idea what he was talking about but it all sounded most exciting!)

If it wasn't for the mini's in the background we could almost be in the 1940's!

 The other highlight of the week was...tadaa.... the premiere of Sherlock Holmes and the Stolen Emerald. This was the short film that DD and I were extras in earlier this year.
We travelled to the Genesis Cinema in Whitechapel dressed in our finest premiere going outfits. (we seemed a tad overdressed for Whitechapel Nando's but hey!) The cinema is beautiful - the site goes back to the 1870's as the Paragon Theatre - seeing such stars as Charlie Chaplin appearing there.

My iPhone couldn't really capture the grandeur of the place :-(
One of the amazing costumes from the film.
The evening was brilliant. Apart from the all important viewing of the finished film (which was fabulous) there was question and answer sessions from the lovely Celine Terranova the director and other cast and crew plus assorted Sherlock aficionados. We also heard from Carla who curates at St Barts Pathology Museum, a  really funny talk.
DD and I left before the shmoozing got underway as it was a LONG journey home and I had to be back at work for 7am... oh the life of a lovey! Should you want us, please contact us through our agent :-D

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Shiver me timbers!

Unravelling is done :-( well, in reality the process has only just started but the course is officially over! Some of us plan to keep in touch and keep suggesting new projects to try which will be great. 
I have been embracing the new unstressed me-I have rediscovered my interest in yoga tho I have had to admit that the 40 plus me is nowhere near as bendy as the 20 year old me! Still, small steps and I'm already feeling the changes! I tried to embrace herbal tea but still cannot find one that doesn't taste like cat wee! Any suggestions gratefully received :-) 
I've had another trip to the seaside, Weston super Mud this time. In the rain. It was possibly the wettest day ever. I took DD and DS#1. We sat in a cafe looking out of a birdpoo smeared window at some miserable donkeys on the beach whilst drinking hot chocolate! But it was a great day! 
The children said they enjoyed it anyway! 

More sea related shenanigans were had with my evening at the opera. Opera Anywhere performed Pirates of Penzance at Blackwells bookshop in Oxford and I was lucky enough to go! It was awesome! I've never seen live opera before and loved every minute of it. To top it off, my lovely friend Jackie works at Blackwells and so I got a guided tour too! Even saw the roof garden with some spectacular views! 
I feel this is a brief lull before the chaos begins next week, we have a huge festival at work which will mean all hands to the pump. It's also the launch of the film that DD and I were in... We're off to London for a gala premiere! Watch this space!