Monthly Archives: October 2016

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Tying Up All The Loose Ends

Tying Up The Loose Ends...Those Blinds!, Rocking Dog

Tying Up The Loose Ends…Those Blinds!

Like the swallows that have gone on ahead of us, we are heading south. It’s been a couple of days of tying up all the loose ends. So….the three Roman blinds which have mathematically troubled me, are complete. I have left comprehensive instructions for my boy and hope that the lovebirds will figure out the mechanics of blind hanging. I rather think a very helpful and DIY savvy father in law will take them in hand. I hope my mathematics and perfect folds will be celebrated!

Meanwhile there have been presents to wrap and send. I loved the zoo animal wallpaper found in a John Lewis oddment bin. I added an alphabet Christmas decoration, an Anthropologie purchase. Meanwhile a Rocking Dog Advent calendar is winging its way up to Northumberland for a new little family. I know it’s early but there’ll be plenty of time to choose lots of lovely little trinkets to fill those pockets. No, Michael….. NO!

The Fridge needs de-fooding so there are various cunning Rocking Dog “bottom of the fridge recipes” to use up all that veg’. Soups, savoury crumbles and a large tray of roasted vegetables are favourites.

As for the packing it’s scary, and makes Andyman very tutty and grumbly! The big question is will those lanterns make the cut!

Mother To Son Wisdom, Rocking Dog

Mother To Son Wisdom

Plain To See, Rocking Dog

Plain To See

Clear The Fridge, Rocking Dog

Clear The Fridge

Last Minute Wrap, Rocking Dog

Last Minute Wrap

Another Wrap, Rocking Dog

Another Wrap

Will They Make The Cut?, Rocking Dog

Will They Make The Cut?

Come On A Walk With Real Live Rocking Dog

Come, Walk With Me, Rocking Dog

Come, Walk With Me

Real Live Rocking Dog loves a good early morning ramble. Yesterday it was still, positively silent, and there was a characteristic autumnal nip in the air. Mist clung to everything. Cobwebs sported pearl like dewy droplets and ferns dripped their moisture like exotic Amazonian rain forest flora.

The fox had been busy overnight. There were four tell tale feathery piles along the trail. Later I spotted the wily white tipped tailed gentleman during my afternoon walk. He sat staring at me nonchently for a while before heading off into the undergrowth. Real Live Rocking Dog was oblivious to his presence.

There is foraging to be done, rose-hips for syrup perhaps, blackberries for pies and crab apples for jelly. Mushrooms have literally burgeoned overnight and get you questioning “are they fit for eating or not?”

With the cold chill, rust coloured leaves are leaving the security of their branches. They will form a cushioned pathway and in time form humus. Absorbed into the earth the hedgerows will brim with renewed growth and vigour heralding the spring.

After his walk Real Live Rocking Dog loves nothing more than to sit on an upstairs window seat watching the world go by. Even better the experience for him if the radiator is on and someone comes to wrap a blanket around him. A spoilt precious pet indeed!

Skeletal Flora, Rocking Dog

Skeletal Flora

Make Syrup?, Rocking Dog

Make Syrup?

Dewy Web, Rocking Dog

Dewy Web

To Eat Or Not?, Rocking Dog

To Eat Or Not?

Fox Filling!, Rocking Dog

Fox Filling!

Billy Goats Gruff, Rocking Dog

Billy Goats Gruff

Autumn Mist, Rocking Dog

Autumn Mist

Sour Harvest, Rocking Dog

Sour Harvest

Bountiful Berries, Rocking Dog

Bountiful Berries

A Lost Rocking Dog Fortnight In Pictures.

The Rabbit, Rocking Dog & The Wardrobe, Rocking Dog

The Rabbit, Rocking Dog & The Wardrobe

Where have you been Rocking Dog? Chasing my tail, yes chasing my tail! Broken sleep has meant writing my blog has been difficult to contemplate. That doesn’t mean to say I haven’t been busy, I have managed to find some creative fuel! So this post is dedicated to the lost Rocking Dog fortnight.

Last week I took my 86 year old neighbour clothes shopping in Bath. I hope I have as much style and verve for life as Molly if I’m still around at 80 plus! In between octogenarian Gok styling, I managed to nip into “Anthropologie”. I left Molly downstairs with a VERY patient and friendly member of staff whilst I legged it upstairs for knobs. Sale knobs were quickly chosen, Bloomsbury inspired ones for my Bloomsbury inspired painted doors and whimsical porcelain rabbits for a wardrobe (more on that later!) We ended our trip in Waterstone’s. Molly was so happy…with her bags of clothes and books. Good job!

Another morning was spent with another friend in Tetbury. We made a beeline for “Domestic Science” where we drank coffee and ate cake before perusing four or five floors of vintage loveliness. If I ever win money Andyman can head to the car showroom (isn’t that what every man would do? excuse the stereotype) and I would head to Tetbury for antiques. I spied a particularly lovely set of Swedish chairs, but didn’t even bother to glance at the price tag!

Other vintage moments included chancing upon “Rag and Bone” in Bristol. This just could very well be my new favourite shop. I bought a lovely set of bobbly brass curtain rings for ¬£10, whether they’ll be used for curtains or incorporated into Christmas decorations remains to be seen. After “Rag and Bone” Liv and I headed to River station for eats. The previous evening we had eaten the first mince pie of the season, a little Harrod’s number. Sorry and excuse my boastfulness I still think Rocking Dog’s mince pies win hands down! No Michael, no, it really isn’t time yet.

Talking of pies I made chicken pies in traditional enamel dishes for a night with friends. A retro 70’s dessert followed, Chestnut Turinois. The wood burner was stoked and we celebrated the start of autumn and enjoyed the joys of friendship and the circle of life.

The daily walks with Real Live Rocking Dog have been wonderful with blue skies and a plethora of wildlife. Deer, the heron, kingfishers, moorhens and ducks intermingle with the joy of observing leaves turning to rust and copper hues. Just as Real Live Rocking Dog begins to enjoy his warm woolly coat he is destined for the dog groomers later this morning. He’ll need a sleeker cooler coat ready for his road trip to Italy later this week.

Poor Andyman is getting rather perturbed by the amount of stuff destined for Umbria. I seem to think his car is like a Tardis. Of course unlike Dr Who’s iconic Tardis, our car is not deceptively spacious! Included in the haul are oak shelves and paint, together with the rabbit handles to make a wardrobe into a larder cupboard. Is this genius or madness, only time will tell!

This week I am expecting 300 jars to arrive. At some point these will need to be filled with delicious things. Is it too ambitious to pickle and preserve this week, somehow I think so. Perhaps I can bring back prized Capri lemons to marmalade, preserve and pickle. I am enjoying the brilliant book “The Land Where The Lemons Grow” by Helena Attlee. I always thought a lemon was simply a lemon…..but it is simply not.

In December I am momentarily coming out of Heaven’s Cake retirement and am rustling up a vintage wedding for a lovely couple. Stupendous cakes, vintage china, steaming mugs of cranberry zinger and of course the obligatory pots of tea. It will be perfectly lovely, especially if there is a dusting of snow.

One of the loveliest tasks over the last week or two has been to work on a quilt with my brave friend. She gallantly cross stitched and embroidered panels to insert into a play mat. It now resides across the pond with her new scrummy little grandson. So much strength, so much love, so much care to behold. x

So there it is a potted history of the last two weeks- well the nicer bits. A John Lewis member of staff and I fleetingly talked about tasks such as laundry, cleaning, shopping etc.. being so damned time consuming and yet so annoyingly unconstructive. It always feels feeble describing how you have spent a few hours just doing domestic dross! However I am not complaining, hallelujah for automatic washing machines, dish washers and cordless vacuum cleaners, yes absolutely blooming hallelujah!

Have a great week and hope there is not too much domestic dross to deal with in your household.

Bloomsbury Knobs, Rocking Dog

Bloomsbury Knobs

Bloomsbury Door, Rocking Dog

Bloomsbury Door

New Haunt, Rocking Dog

New Haunt

Bobbly Brass, Rocking Dog

Bobbly Brass

Lovely Lunch, Rocking Dog

Lovely Lunch

Mince Pie Tasting!,Rocking Dog

Mince Pie Tasting!

Prefer Mine!, Rocking Dog

Prefer Mine!

Chicken Pie, Rocking Dog

Chicken Pie

Autumnal Daily Walk, Rocking Dog

Autumnal Daily Walk

Creative Hub, Rocking Dog

Creative Hub

Domestic Science, Rocking Dog

Domestic Science

Jars To Fill, Rocking Dog

Jars To Fill

Wedding Food, Rocking Dog

Wedding Food

Stoking The Fire, Rocking Dog

Stoking The Fire

Sewing Something Special, Rocking Dog

Sewing Something Special

Waiting For A Light Bulb Moment!

A Light Bulb Moment, Rocking Dog

A Light Bulb Moment

Oh dear! I have been off the radar for a while! Busy but quiet, do busy and quiet actually correlate? Unfortunately I haven’t been able to give brain space to blog space. I am waiting for a light bulb moment, and think there just could be an ambient flicker!

Wishing you a wonderful weekend and enjoy the beautiful autumn sunshine. Love Rocking Dog.

PS. I made a set of six cushion covers literally in my sleep. I think that possibly rivals the two tier wedding cake which I baked and iced with absolutely no recollection! Insomnia it’s a strange old beast!