Thursday, 17 August 2017


Finishing my last picture was like saying goodbye to an old friend - or finishing a good book - or coming to the end of a good TV box set - it's quite sad and somehow embarking on something new fills me with a little bit of anti-climax.  I enjoyed doing my picture of the bird and the glass balls and I have chopped and changed my mind about what to do next.  At the eleventh hour this morning, before I went to Sheila's I finally settled on something which again will challenge my capabilities - it includes wood and glass and flowers and a butterfly!!!

Ok so my morning's creativity looks like a child has been scribbling - the process is that you take your original picture and then with the help of some carbon paper you trace out key features so that you can get positioning, shape and perspective correct and then you start, generally working top to bottom so that you are not leaning over an area you have already worked on as the pastel pencils are soft and easily smudged.  My picture is of flowers in a glass bowl sat on a wooden surface and should ultimately look something like the picture underneath my effort - I think the wood is going to test my patience!

I was well impressed with my lunch today - courtesy of Klaus - it was a meal in a packet and it was delicious and has given me a load of ideas for reproducing in the future.  Basically the meat (a piece of pork loin) was placed in the bottom of the package and then the vegetables (uncooked) were placed on top with a little soup to provide some liquid and then wrapped up and left to cook for an hour at 180 degrees and it was delicious.

On my return to Villa 10b John suddenly decided that the time was right to redecorate the lounge!!!  I think this is (a) because his mum is coming to stay and (b) it is considerably cooler.  Actually having Janet to stay has galvanized us into action so that we are tackling things we have just been talking about and putting off.

The lounge was in desperate need of a freshen up - the woodburner is great but it seems to cover everything in a fine layering of sooty dust which is unnoticeable if left untouched which is my general approach but once touched makes everything look filthy.

John had sorted out the paint so we knew exactly what we had available to us - I think we had purchased a shed-load (literally) of magnolia in the sale in readiness for this very moment.  The plan is to freshen up the two magnolia walls, paint over the coffee coloured wall with magnolia and then tackle the raspberry pink wall which John doesn't like but which I don't mind as it matches the sofas.  If we run out of time then the red wall will remain as it was only recently painted.  I have a feeling that it is going to take a bit of covering up!  It may be cooler but you wouldn't think so when you are painting inside but we cracked on and decided to do a wall at a time and got the easy one between the lounge and the kitchen finished first.

With us both in the cats remain around the house within shouting distance but they seem to find the most inappropriate places to snooze.  This afternoon we had to remove Charlie from on top of John's newly ironed clothes and then found Boo in my towel basket.  I had left the cat blanket thrown over the top and he saw this as an invitation to make himself at home.

It was a blood moon and partial eclipse this evening.  The eclipse was supposed to happen sometime around 9.30 and earlier I had seen the moon clear, big and red but I didn't take a photograph.  By the time it came to the eclipse it was very very cloudy so I was lucky to grab a very quick photograph when the moon momentarily appeared from behind the clouds.

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