Saturday, February 29, 2020

an extra day

Hello ♡
It's been a while. Once again
2020 has not been easy so far, but I have hope!
If you know me though Instagram, you might have seen that my grandmother passed away on the feast of Saint Brigid, and her funeral was yesterday. 
She had been ill since autumn (and not doing well for much longer) and for the past few months we knew what was coming. We have sort of spent the last month mourning her, and figuring out what life is like now without checking on her every day and worrying about how she is doing. But it is so comforting to think we have another saint, a St. Maryann, praying for us now ♡
Over the years I've realised that I deal with grief by concentrating on new life. Every little beauty that hints of spring is cheering me; new leaves and pollen catkins, days warm enough to sit in the grass with a hot cup of tea, early flowers blooming and my dear turtles waking up.
A day or so after grandma passed, I found some Gulf Fritillary catterpillers in the garden. So (of course) I threw myself into setting up my big mesh butterfly house for them. 
In the end I found 8 catterpillers, and my sister and I named them all after painters ~ Bouguereau and van Gogh, Davinci, Michelangelo, O'Keeffe, Picasso, Kahlo, and Dali. 
Yup, we're nerds. 
Rare Disease Day was today - Happy Leap Day, by the way! - and I'm still dealing with all my lovely rare diseases. I'm up to 7ish diagnosis (Dysautonomia, POTS, Hashimoto's, Celiac or extreme gluten sensitivity, chronic fatigue syndrome, and fibromyalgia), but have started some new meds that we hope will help! I always over do it at Christmas time, but I think my body is finally beginning to recover just in time for real spring ♡
Until then, I'll just keep curling up with a hot cup of tea under a pile of blankets and cats. 
I hope you all have had a lovely February!

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Happy Birthday, Tasha Tudor!

Anyone who knows me well knows that I am terrible with Time, and have a tendency to lose track of it, and then go wandering about the house in search of where it has gone.
So it should be no surprise that in the five years since I first heard of about just how interesting a life Tasha Tudor lead, I have not realized it was her birthday until that evening twice, and have missed it completely three times…
But not this year!
This year I actually was reminded on August 27th that dear Ms Tasha Tudor was turning 104 the next day ~ and so my dreams were off!
Luckily, in a house with three cats, an extended family of dolls, many teacups, it is never very too difficult to make an afternoon feel like something out of a Tudor picture book ~ you just have to be in the right mindset. As I can never really depend upon myself to be full of vigor and vim when I want to be, I’ve become fairly adept at setting low expectations and being pleasantly delighted if those expectations are exceeded. A bit pathetic sounding I know, but I’ve found myself to be happily surprised more often than disappointed, so it works well for me!  
So, plans for a tea time for the next day began, including getting Ophelia and Imogen Bergamot out of their cedar drawer and into their best clothes, deciding on the prettiest china teacup, checking the garden for which flowers are ready to be picked, and thinking of different easy baking that I could do if I feel up to it tomorrow ~ while knowing there is a packet of gluten free chocolate covered biscuits in the pantry as my backup plan.
Of course, the best laid plans…
We have a trio of very strange cats, and when our old man cat, James, snuck out the back door with me when I went to gather flowers, the two younger girls went berserk. For the rest of the day the girls acted like they had forgotten who James was, and every time they caught a glimpse of him a huge three way cat fight would be sparked again!
After breaking up a half dozen fights, and grabbing a little nap, I finally managed to get the flowers in a vase,  make myself a cup of tea, and get out my Tasha Tudor books. Each book has such beautiful photographs, they transport you right to her New England farm, and spark dreams of gardens out of fairy tales and houses filled with a thousand old treasures.
I believe the extended Bergamot doll family may be plotting a very long list of clothing they wish me to make after seeing some of the pictures. I on the other hand am swooning over her walking spinning wheel and that beautiful old loom.
Someone has posted a few clips of the Japanese Tasha Tudor documentary, and I definitely suggest taking a look! It is so neat seeing her walking through her gardens, and putting a voice to her lovely paintings.
Now I am going to curl up with The Secret Garden and get lost in Tasha’s water colored flowers.
I hope you had a beautiful day today, that you managed to find a few quiet moments to enjoy the simple happiness of beautiful books, old dolls, or a hot cup of tea.
And as Tasha Tudor would say,
Take Joy!
* The books in this post that I have been enjoying today are: The Private World of Tasha Tudor; Tasha Tudor's Heirloom Crafts; Tasha Tudor's Dollhouse; Tasha Tudor's Garden; and The Secret Garden, illistrated by Tasha Tudor :)
By the by, if anyone has experience with cat troubles like this, please let me know! We have been dealing with this spontaneous fighting for the past six months, have brought them to the vet and all seems well. We use cat pheromones, catnip, anything we can think of, but Charlotte especially will go from curling up next to James for a nap, to acting like he is an evil invader howling and hissing and chasing him around the house. The poor old thing can hardly get a moment’s peace some days!

Thursday, March 14, 2019

It's been a really, really, hard year.
But let's not talk about that.

Let's talk about my new best friend.
His name is Grant, and he's one of seven sheep a friend of ours has. 
He's as sweet as a puppy, and has even fallen asleep with his head in my lap.

And doesn't that make a hard year a whole lot better?