Monday, December 31, 2007

eye shopping to the max

'Eye Shopping' is what my grandmother's maid Rosie called it. A friend of mine was regailing me with a 1 million pound shopping trip she organised before christmas. The aim was to spend a million pounds in one day on things that could be taken away on the day (no multiples allowed). She set off with a photographer, model and journalist - this was of course for an article not for real - and set out to spend spend spend. They splashed out on a £5000 Christian Dior outfit. £95,000 Raeburn bust, a ferrari, a £25,000 sailing boat, a mere £15,000 on hiring this hotel in its entirely for friends to stay over for dinner for one night (peacocks and highland cows thrown in gratis). My friend was begging them to increase the bill by putting more expensive wine on it.... in the end they only managed £920,000 in a day. They missed out she said by failing to get a motorbike. When she told us this story of the million pound day over Christmas lunch we of course leapt in with what we would have bought first class round the world ticket, Anne Redpath paintings by the dozen, a vast order at Raeburn Fine Wines. This kept us amused for simply ages.

I do think that the pleasure of thinking about what we would spend the money on theoretically was probably near equal to having actually having spent the money on it. The pleasure of having bought something evaporates quite quickly but the pleasures for example of ending up with an experince last longer.

I did spend £9.37 on wool today to go towards making a blanket for a knocked up cousin. I'm aiming for something like a wooly heirloom which will do the infant into adulthood. I have to do some serious knitting in the next few months.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

What would Leslie do ?

a great blog by Lance Arthur of the wit and wisdom of his friend Lesley Harpold.

P.I.L lyrics?

A correspondent thinks my Leith Walk graffitist has quoted some P.IL. lyrics.

Meanwhile I move from bed to steaming my sinuses as I'm on day two of a cold. Housework is neglected...

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Interesting website of an Indian Classical dancer via Under the Firestar

Things to be happy about - cool website via 52projects.

Article about green travel at the Independent

Monday, December 24, 2007

This is a Christmas tree outside the Conran Shop in London. I don't get a tree as I don't have a bay window which seems to me the essential component for a tree or a separate living room. There just isn't the right spot for it though I suspect Frida cat would love it and attempt to climb it. Second last present purchased today- the one other person who needs something lives abroad and as I won't be able to get to a post office before January I might as well leave off the buying of the present until then as well.

I have also failed so far on the to me from me present - H will be horrified to read that I have indeed purchased an alarm clock at the princely sum of £2.50 and awfuly pleased, I did make a special trip to buy sheeps milk yoghurt as a treat and will consider the conumdrum of the to me from me present in the New Year when hopefully there will be more funds.

I've written the last of my cards while listening to Kings College Cambridge and will in a while work up the energy to wrap things. I'm ahead of myself anyway as I don't have to give any presents over until the new year when my brother comes up. More truffle making on hold as Lidles failed to provide any double cream. I shall make some more biscuits instead.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

'When it's over, I want to say I have been a bride married to amazement, I've been a bridegroom taking the world into my arms.’

Mary Oliver

from 37 days

Saturday, December 22, 2007

wonderful graffiti from Leith Walk - I've just processed 2 films only abouyt 8 pictures came out - hardly any from my London trip.... but this one did.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Mrs Claus strikes again - she thinks the elves have terrible taste

behind all around

Normally by now I've decided on my Christmas card design even if I send them after christmas, decided my 'to me from me' present. But due to starting a job last week I've (gasp) bought cards ... I'm behind with my shopping and have no idea what I'm going to buy myself. It might be new cashmere gloves (though I'm desperate for a new alarm clock !), or even process a few films out of the hundreds knocking about the place. A friend is passing through Edinburgh so I'm meeting her for brunch tomorrow and hoping to get on with things.

I did make truffles though - I'm a newbie at truffles and they seem quite successful so a few more might be made before the new year.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

fun freebie gift tags for people with colour printers from Angry Chicken.

66 ways to find more courage from Christine Kane.

I just need to find the strength to go up town and face the post office!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Check out Art Calling on my blog roll. I've met Sarah who writes it - we know each other via an email list we belong to and have managed to 'meet' both in the virtual and real worlds.

Monday, December 17, 2007

on oldie but a favourite

Spring frosting - very frosty this morning when I left the house... the links looked beautiful and bright I can forgive a lot if there is light.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Today its frosty and the frost hasn't melted. Never mind I have knitting and salmon for dinner.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Spring blossom 04 but the Jasmine which grows over my party wall is still flowering on Dec 14th - whither climate change?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

half Roma poet

David Morley has a really interesting blog. I heard him at a poetry reading in London last week.

Lighting shop on Leith Walk (purple in honour of my friend S who is coming up to Edinburgh on her way north)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Writers are often asked: “How do you write? With a word processor? an electric typewriter? a quill? longhand?” But the essential question is: “Have you found a space, that empty space, which should surround you when you write? Into that space, which is like a form of listening, of attention, will come the words, the words your characters will speak, ideas - inspiration.” If a writer cannot find this space, then poems and stories may be stillborn. When writers talk to each other, what they discuss is always to do with this imaginative space, this other time. “Have you found it? Are you holding it fast?”

from Doris Lessing's Nobel Prize speech.

Read Living Small's commentary here

one day the spring will come

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I think this is from Rose or Thistle St

Monday, December 10, 2007

Cool reminder from here.

Sunday, December 09, 2007


My friend Sarah Gillam has a site specific exhibition on in the Women's Library London.

'Clear' is composed of site-specific, temporary drawing installation celebrating the history of The Women’s Library building on the site of a Victorian washhouse. Original architectural plans and archival photos inspire drawings made directly onto walls around the building by the artist.

Its free admission and closes on the 21st of Dec. I saw the opening but it was great to see it again on Friday. It was a less hurried viewing and I was able to appreciate the history behind it more.

We went for a curry off Brick Lane afterwards passing the Whitechapel Bell Foundary - 500 years old and a sign on the door welcoming browsers 'no obiligation to buy' I wonder how much a bell costs to commission?

We also saw a video art exhbition which had some quite interesting pieces in it but can't for the life of me remember the gallery name.

South Bridge in the fog. This was a really weird afternoon when I took it. Balmoral Hotel, Post Office Building, St Andrews House and the Castle all blanketed out by the white. Very disorientating. So much of the time when creating we are in the same position blindly ploughing on with no idea of the path or vista before ourselves.

"My advice to writers anywhere, published or not, is to love what you do, and forget about the rest. Writing is always hard work, always difficult, there are days of despair, that are times when the thing really isn’t working, but you have to be able look underneath all of that, and find the place of private commitment that is yours and yours alone. If that is there, and if it is real, you will be able to carry on. If it isn’t there, then you will be vulnerable to whatever other people have to say about your work – good or bad, and that is not right. For anyone who works alone, creativity is not about consensus. This isn’t to say that you behave like an arrogant shit – it doesn’t matter whether your gift is great or small, it matters that you care about what you do, and find enough satisfaction in it, through good times and bad. And remember, experiment is important, and the right to fail is important. "

Jeanette Winterson

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

London report

Muswell Hill : Blonde curly headed toddler kisses the window of a shop as it has a display of ginormous fake gingerbread people in the window.

Moorgate to Fenchurch St Station: I scurry along consulting my A-Z and one of the churches has a peel of bells at 6pm which floats out over the city workers leaving for home.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

choc almond cake for tea

100 g of flakes almods ground in liquidiser but so there are still some big flakes. Mix with 3 eggs, some sugar, a dash of veg oil and fairtrade coca. Put into oven about gas mark 6. Await friend and make pot of coffee.

Its so DARK!

We agree that we are letting out our inner pagans, lights etc are needed to chase away this dark.