Sunday, 28 April 2019

The Wild Remedy and illustration...

The weather turned quite stormy over the last few days and it seems like a dream away when we had such glorious, hot Sunshine & beautiful blue skies for the Easter Half term. The temperature has really dropped a few woolly jumpers have come back out of the wardrobe to keep me toasty.  I was enjoying the Sun light through my Cottage windows but the Cottage now suddenly seems darker. 
  Today,  though it does seem slightly warmer (ish)... My daughter has had a sleep over with her cousins so 
I thought i'd spend some time in the garden (between little April Showers), So I walked up my narrow steep steps to the Hill top part of my garden to feed the birds and say a 'Hello' to the Robin that seems to hop around the Alfresco table on the lawn...The Blossom on the Apple tree's is in full bloom now~ Very pretty.  I have had a few days to sort out pots and yesterday Myself and my Partner Stevie visited a wonderful Traditional, Rustic Garden Nursery, Milton Abbot, Devon....I love looking around the old glass and brick greenhouses and polly tunnels filled with new shoots of veg and trays of young shooting flower heads. Lots of fruiting tree's, cherry blossoms... Lovely little shop with seeds, tools, plant foods ect...Garden Ornaments in the walled gardens and herbs.  We last visited in November (I think it was) was slightly bleak then but Now its really come A Live with Spring!...
This year my plans for more salad and herbs has really taken off...I do not own a greenhouse ( Its on my list of wanties)...So I've been growing lettuce and tomatoes on my bright kitchen window...They will be taken outside soon when the weather turns a bit warmer and brighter again!. I decided to get a few different varieties and see which grow best...I'm 'New', well, New~ish to growing from seeds and ive found ive lost quite a few shoots after a few inches high...I'm teaching myself as I go...learning from my mistakes. And when you don't own a green house I find its hard finding space on bright window ledges for all my new shoots. We had a glass fronted, hand made cabinet top with stain glass type doors...I saw on BBC iplayer, Alys fowler's 'Edible Garden' series that she was using a type of cupboard with glass doors. It might just protect my veg, salad and fruit shoots from the blustery skies and bugs!...but keeping them warm and sunny as well...Another thing I really need is a water butt to collect rain water in as the steep steps is hard going carrying watering cans up and down.  On another note, I was just thinking of a valid lesson learned last summer when Sophia had her paddling pool up there~ I kept the water for weeks in the pool when she wasn't using it and on a few very hot days I went up there and sadly, to my horror LOTS of bees had died in it!!!...they obviously landed to drink and couldn't get out.  So the best thing to do is to have a shallow bowl with stones, pebbles in it for the bees to land on and then drink. And cover over paddling pools.
 I really L*O*V*E bee's. And its so vital to help them any ways we can as they do so much for our eco system...

Oh my, this is a beautiful area and only a stones thow away called Harrowbarrow in Cornwall.  Such beautiful Spring lanes towards the village and lots of farmers fields and community garden surround the village. We often have a few hours walk there in the fresh air...say 'hello' the horses, watch the rabbits across the fields and take in the breath taking views. My Mother's cottage isn't far away so we often stop in for a well needed cuppa tea and a slice of cake afterwards.

Talking of nature and good well being...I was given this wonderful book called 'The Wild Remedy', 'How Nature Mends Us Diary' for Easter from my Lovely Stevie by fellow blogger, writer and maker of beautiful silver jewellery~ Emma Mitchell (Silverpebble2 on instagram)...
I have only read snippets (before bed usually) and its really inspiring as I also suffer with depression. I don't like broad casting it as Its private to me and I try to keep things a lot to myself (which I know isnt always helpful). But Nature has always healed me through really hard days, weeks and months...Absorbing myself  into walking and my art has always been my way of dealing with it...Its not something you really get over, I dont think anyway...but you can help yourself to channel positive energy through simple, cost free, natural ways of healing.  I also often write little nature notes and notes to myself. Especially, I used this when I was a single Mother for 8 years. Just to remind myself of the 'good' things,  the 'proud' things...the little things that gave me 'joy'...keeping my Father going through his Cancer treatments has made me value my life and focus on the 'positives' as well. On that note...My Dads out of Hospital (for this week) and coping so far...He's really amazed us all. He's still needing more treatments but at the moment he feels a lot more mobile and stronger. 
But he's still sleeping a lot. he's still got fight in him and seems so much more up beat about life.
 So thats a real 'Positive' at the moment too.
I have never been a 'towny' type person, Shopping in the malls on a Saturday is something I dread with a passion. My real 'Joy' is the sounds of the sea, beach combing, walking through woodlands listening to the birds...enjoying nature through the ever changing seasons...
I think getting back into blogging has really helped my mental well being too...reminding me of the 'happy snippets of life'...and all the things im so grateful for...I have such a Loving, supporting family.

I'm still busy with new artwork/illustrations...Must head off to the Printers at some point then I can add these new ones to my etsy shop...

Lovely to sit down with a cuppa this Sunday afternoon...Peaceful...relaxed.
Before the new, busy week returns...

Thanks for visiting,

x     K a z z y    x

Saturday, 20 April 2019

Easter Apple blossom & bluebells

Its a very English thing to do to talk of the weather...
But...Its been a beautiful Easter Weekend so far. Glorious warm hot weather after such a bitter cold, blustery week. We have have been making the most of my partners 5 days holiday off work...Super long, Easter weekend. He is such a hard worker and working as an engineer with steal is Proper Hard work!. He so deserves some well needed days off. We have headed to Coastlines of Cornwall, Through Bluebell woodlands and primrose banks, found hidden coves and visited Cornish Market towns... And been up to the Tors and celtic stones of Dartmoor passing newly born lambs and white Dartmoor ponies....
Bluebells emerging such a beautiful sight...Also my lovely old hill top Apple trees are blossoming~ exciting!!.
~~~~~ * ~ * ~ * ~  * X *  ~ * ~ * ~ * ~~~~~~
My lovely partner Stevie gave me a beautiful bunch of Cornish tulips from the local Market...
The Polperro Heritage coastline walk passing Polkerris bay, Par Sands and all the little coves in between.
Spring time Illustration...The blackbird and fairy with Spring flowers.
I am still busy in the background getting commissions completed and sent off and still in need of adding illustration prints to my Etsy shop...(shop link in right hand sidebar). Sometimes there are just not enough hours in the day. 
Spring time is such a wonderful time in the seasonal calender so many buds emerging and watching the lambs in neighbouring fields is such a joy!~ I'm easily pleased.

I hope you're enjoying a relaxing Easter weekend...

x    K a z z y    x

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Darling buds of Dartington....

I must admit this time of year cheers my soul immensely...
Spring has started to blossom...And we've had four whole days of blue sky even if a bit chilly.
We had a wonderful drive to Dartington estate, Devon...Its about 5 mins drive from Totnes town.
(country estate that is the headquarters of the Dartington Hall Trust, a charity specialising in the arts, social justice and sustainability. The estate dates from medieval times.) 
It was grey and drizzly that Saturday afternoon and we almost headed home after our jolly little shopping trip to Totnes. But we fancied a walk despite the weather...So we parked up and headed towards the Dartington Hall. To our delight the tree's had come into blossom and the skies were brightened by the candy floss effect of the blossoms hanging from the trees. So very pretty all the pinks and whites of cherry blossom trees.  Like confetti in a slight breeze. Towards the gardens were lots of hellebores, grape hyacinths, daffodils, tulips and early shoots of bluebells just starting to peep through...Lots of woodland walks, nature trail and meadow land leading to deer park...including medieval great hall, lots of estate building and an arts campus...also cafes/restaurant, cinema in the old barn and lovely visitors shop with cards and books and small gallery space....We had hot Cornish pasties from Totnes and brownies!...But we had our picnic in the car as the weather was not ideal to sit on the benches. I had not been on the nature trail woodland walk before...But it was really worth doing the longer walk as we passed willow branch sculptures of deers and stag including metal cut out shaped ones too...They looked almost real from a distance in the deep woods towards the river. We also were luckily to spot the steam train passing on the other side of the river Dart. 
bunches of flowers in Totnes...Totnes is a market town and civil parish at the head of the estuary of the River Dart in Devon, England within the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
And the bonus of this beautiful place its free (but with a donations box for visitors to give what they can)...small charge for car park. Wonderful place for families to explore.

....I have had such a busy week...But at some stage (a.s.a.p) I will be adding new illustration prints to my etsy shop (link in right sidebar)... Inspired by Spring days 'The Bumble Bee ~Moth Fairy.

x    K a z z y   x

Saturday, 16 March 2019

March Moments...

Oh' the joys of the Great British weather...This month has been rather a mixed bag!.
I feel sorry for those early Spring buds when the weather turned so warm, then suddenly the storm clouds blew them almost out of their roots. Hale stones and blustery winds most of this week. Then some afternoons the Sun has come out for very short spells. My hill top garden has been battered around quite a bit here in Devon. I think now I am really ready to say 'good~bye' to this winter weather and start to enjoy some warmer Spring-like days.  I have at every opportunity been buying from the market square and super market little bunches of daffodils, roses and tulips and in last years pots the hyacinths bulbs have brought me lots of colourful delights on a grey day...
My way of dealing with dark, heavy skies is to fill the home with Spring blooms.

So that even if the weather is miserable I wont fill miserable in doors. I think I have been on a low eb these last weeks...Life has been busy, my daughter has had a lot going on with School and her amazing opportunity to work with the Royal Shakespeare Theatre Company on the Matilda production. School at this age seems so tiring for her. I worry she spends the rest of her time on her phone apps and I am trying to get us both to spend more time talking together between our rushed days of getting from A to B. As the days zoom by and we've hardly spoken. I know life is busy for all of us. And I've been spending a lot of time on the phone to my father who's going through a very difficult time with cancer. I do feel physically and mentally exhausted. I think we all do as a family. My partners shift patterns are extremely tiring too. So we all seem on a low eb and weather just doesn't help!. I think sometimes as the Mum of the house hold you're constantly trying to keep everyone 'going' and 'positive' and 'fed' and take on their issues with work and school that sometimes I just reach that point where I need 'time out' just to relax, wined down and re-charge my old batteries to be better at coping and dealing with everything that life throws at me. I'm O.k..I have had a better day today.  My daughter is at a sleep over with her cousins and myself and steve have been so very lazy!...Actually i'm still in my dressing gown and while the weather has been just utterly pants outside i've been snug inside with hot cups of milky tea enjoying craft and art inspirations on pinterest and catching up on your lovely blogs. I've really needed this, just 'time out' for 'me'. We all need these moments.  I have been having a 'love and hate' relationship with Instagram lately. I think its great for these fast paced lives we all live. Quick chat, quick snaps...but lately i have found it shallow and less meaningful. I also find I miss so many feeds as the feeds change so quickly and lots of accounts I follow seem to be 'ads' now. Maybe I like blogs for that less fast paced type style. I feel I can sit calmly enjoy reading at my pace...Why is life like a tread mill?...anyone one else feeling this way?. 

I have started to really think about how to improve my Life too. Mentally and physically I need to exercise more...Its so easy for me to jump in the car, I must walk more, I miss my walks.  I do walk on weekends, but I want to do more during the week days. My health seems to be lacking with the feeling of tiredness even when I've had a good nights sleep and lastly my diet. I need to make changes to what I eat. 
With my dads health it has really made me think about making the most of my life...After all you only get one.
Ive been enjoying my books by writer and gardener Alys Fowler. Its made me want to have a more allotments style, small plot in my hill top garden and grow a few more vegetables this Summer....
Home grown produce is something i really want to get more serious into.  I love the fact that when we moved to our hill top cottage we already had two wonderful apple tree's with different variety apples of reds and green cooker's. Also a large black current bush that produces so much fruit, also lots of herbs which I have planted over the last few years...But I want to grow much more.

Please do not be fooled by the blue sky photos in this post...That was on the days before the stormy skies.
My twinny stayed with my father for 4 days while he recovered from an operation on the tumour on his face.
He still has another operation and more cancer treatments this next week ~Poor thing he's really fighting this horrid cancer but its tough on his body and tiring but he seems 'good' as he can be this week in his spirits and was laughing and joking with me on Friday over the phone...he is resting today (so very tired) ;(.
Sometimes when I complain I think of my father being so brave...and then I try and turn my mind to positive ways of dealing with my emotions.

Looking forward to the weather turning to Spring over the next few weeks,
I hope the weather is less blustery where you are my dear blogging friends?,

x    K a z z y   x

**** Just wanted to add i'm having a few issues when loading my photographs, for some reason they look slightly blurred trying to get my partner Stevie to help me on this...It might be because I load them from my mobile phone? ...Do not adjust your eyes its my issue this end.

Monday, 18 February 2019

Out of routine...

The weather has really warmed up here in Devon these last few days...Glorious Sunshine!.
We have had the odd grey cloud and little bit of Rain~ But we wont dwell on that.
Up high on the hill in my steep part of the cottage garden the views have been wonderful...Hazy Sunshine skies...There was enough sun to dry the washing in a gentle breeze.
My daughter started her Half term week. I always love that feeling of not needing to go by a routine on precious time off...School, work and general busy days take their toll after a while. Its nice, so Nice to just take time off the tread wheel. My partner though still at work so not so great for him...But we did have a lovely family Weekend by the sea in the Cornish village of Cawsands/ Kingsands. Its one of those less busy spots. Well, less touristy. Summer months can be at times with the ferry running. Its my little hidden gem. We arrived late afternoon and it was quiet and peaceful. Just the sound of laughter and singing from local pubs and a few dog walkers.  A lot of the pretty cottages are holiday lets these days. The narrow streets are so sweet and charming and they lead you down to the seascape...Myself and my daughter love beach combing...looking for sea glass and pretty shells...I also love to find stones with washed out holes in them with the Cornish black and white lines running through them. Stevie spotted a Falmouth buoy bobbing around in the sea obviously had come loose from the boats...The rock pools always fascinate me as well, So much life when you look so close. The fresh Sea air...Just makes your body feel at ease, free of any worries.

(My washing blowing happily on the line)

My lovely new book 'Down to the river up to the tree's' ....
We had a few trips the weekend before to Buckfast Abbey Gardens and to Trago Garden centre for a few things for the garden...

In my spare time (usually evenings) I've been making and creating...
LOTs of new illustrations 'to be' printed up for my Etsy shop (link in profile)...My last cake topper commission really inspired me. She has asked me to do more for another party so its a busy creative time at the moment...

I've had some lovely emails and messages via here and instagram about my father...
Thank you for thinking of him~ He has an operation Weds...then more treatments. He's feeling like a yo-yo all the 'backwards and forwards motion' of hospital treatments. So he's quite fed up and run down. Trying to keep the positivity going and telling him he's doing so well...but he's finding it all so much. Its hard for me being so far away...My twin sister hopes to get up there these next few weeks. I hope to do a Spring- Summer trip. 

Its getting late and I better look through the cupboards to find some food for tea.

x       K a z z y       x