Wednesday 30 January 2013

Great expectations

My last post was on the 9th January and you might remember that the UK weatherman had promised a significant fall of snow right across the country. So boots were lined up by the door in readiness. Here in our part of the Lake District we waited . . . and waited  . . . and waited, but it never came. Whilst the rest of Britain was covered by several inches of the white stuff, and 5,000 schools were closed because of it, we looked out on a damp brown landscape all week.

But then . . . . just when we thought it would never arrive we awoke the following Friday to this pretty scene. The garden had been magically transformed overnight.

Hooray! There was a scramble in the playroom as boots were tried on. Belinda and Posy (two of the more sensible dollies) found boots and coats that fitted them well. They bravely plodded about in the snow for a short while but then I think the cold began to bite their fingers and toes and they came back indoors to warm up.
Of course, not everyone in the playroom is as sensible as Belinda and Posy. Any size of boot was put on by these three rascals and they wasted no time in testing the snow . . . and got well and truly stuck so had to be rescued.
The smallest and bravest of all were these little Long Tailed Tits. They flew around our garden in a flock of twelve and fed throughout the snowy days. They didn't squabble and politely took turns at the variety of bird feeders. Such a joy to watch.
And as for us humans? As we live in a fairly remote spot I had filled our two freezers with lots of goodies to keep us warm throughout the days of our snowy confinement. However things did not go to plan. Within a few hours on the first snowy day there was a power cut and the outage continued for three long days. What a disaster. When power was finally resumed the snow had disappeared and the rain had returned and the food in the freezers had melted.
I confess I felt really annoyed and downhearted about the way things turned out. However I constantly reminded myself that, although somewhat limited, we had everything we needed to keep us warm and fed throughout the three days. I often thought of the ever growing number of people who live under bridge arches or populate shop doorways in our largest cities. How do they survive in conditions like these? Things are back to normal here of course but for the many homeless people in our cities I'm afraid their wait for better conditions might be a very long time coming.

Wednesday 9 January 2013

Puzzling snow

Unlike many other parts of the world, snowfall in Britain can never be predicted. Some years a few flakes are seen in late November. They flutter about for a bit and then completely disappear until the following year. Other years can bring a deluge and we are buried in the stuff for several weeks which causes total chaos throughout the country.

As our white stuff is so unreliable I get much pleasure from looking at snowy scenes like the one below. It was painted by one of my favourite Dutch artists, Anton Pieck (1895 - 1987).

Here is another of his winter worlds. I can feel the frosty night air as I imagine myself hurrying across the busy street on my way home to a cosy fireside and a plate of hot buttered toast.

We always complete a few jigsaw puzzles during the dreary winter months and this Christmas my husband was given this large puzzle depicting Anton Pieck's 'Carol Singers.'

A lovely puzzle for the festive season, we completed the colourful singers on the first day which left us with the more challenging surrounding areas to finish on day two.

If you are familiar with the story 'The Elves and the Shoemaker' you might think this little elf had come to lend a helping hand and correctly fit a few pieces of the puzzle whilst we were asleep. But you'd be wrong . . . . .

This is the rascally little fairy that Kate captured last year and he's full of mischief. Luckily Kate spotted him running away with two pieces of puzzle.

She chased him across the playroom floor and just managed to catch him before he'd had time to hide them. And so we finished the puzzle on day two and thanks to Kate there were no pieces missing!

Today the weatherman told us that Britain might get some snow next week. On the other hand we might not! Our weather is totally unreliable so anything could happen!

Tuesday 1 January 2013

Playroom mountaineer

The first day of 2013 and playroom antics are already in full swing. The bunny boys decided to build a castle from bricks and being quite fearless one of them decided to climb to the topmost brick.

But inevitably disaster struck. The haphazardly balanced bricks wobbled and the little mountaineer tumbled to the floor and landed on his head.
Luckily kind Kate was on hand to comfort the invalid who was feeling very sorry for himself.  
She bandaged the bump on his head and the scratch on his leg and then took him to Merrily Ann who is always happy to read a story to anyone in the playroom  
Sitting snugly in the big chair with Merrily Ann the poor wounded bunny made a speedy recovery.

Of course it wasn't long before all the other bunnies noticed the special attention you can get if you are wearing a bandage.

And so bandages became the fashion of the day and luckily Merrily Ann was happy to read stories to a whole armful of bandage wearing bunnies.

Happy New Year everyone.
I hope 2013 will be fun year for you all.