My First Good Thing:
Back in December I entered a competition set by Monica at http://gardenfaerie.blogspot.com/ to work out her favourite modern art sculpture at Meijer Gardens (easy - there were several photos of a bright orange 'thing', which was 'Aria' by Alexander Liberman!) and to identify where the lyrics "Caw! I guess it was alive!" came from.
I spent ages trawling t'internet in search of that flippin' quote ........I finally found it on YouTube done as a song called Mounted Animal Nature Trail by the Arrogant Worms (most amusing!)
Anyway, the upshot of my sheer stubborness not to be defeated by song lyrics from an obscure Canadian band meant that I was the very lucky winner of 'The Painted Garden - a year in words and watercolours' by Mary Woodin.
It's beautifully illustrated book as you can see from the photo below. It's a cracking good read, but you can also just dib into it for the sheer pleasure of looking at the paintings and picking up little snippets of useful information such as 'plant crocuses near lavendar to stop the birds pecking the petals' - a real gem! I love it ...thank you Monica :)
She also sent me some very scrummy 'Twilight Delight' dark chocolate, which I thoroughly enjoyed and which made me re-evaluate my relationship with American chocolate! Me and Hershey Bars have never really bonded!
My Second Good Thing:
Around the same time, Diana at http://voiceinthegarden.blogspot.com/ offered a limited edition print of one of her paintings to celebrate her anniversary of 3 years of blogging. I was obviously up there amongst the best begging letters in her comments box (oh how I can grovel when I really, really want something!) and was honoured to be chosen.
She sent me this lovely print of 'The Train Station', which is hand signed and numbered - but I can't tell you the number right now as the print is away at the framers even as I type. I'm hoping it'll be done within the next few days and I can't wait to get it back! I know exactly where I'm going to put it - which wasn't where I first thought of, but doesn't involve redecorating!!!
Sadly my photo really doesn't do it justice though.Thank you so much Di, I'll treasure it and care for it :)
My Third Good Thing:
This will seem obvious to regular readers as Himself is the star in my firmament in all things tea house (and lots of other things too ....... ooops, starting to wax a bit lyrical and soppy here, but you know what I mean!)
ANYWAY, the reason this time is non-tea house related! For ages now we've had an old clock in the hall which Himself found on ebay. (the clock, not the hall!) It came out of the old Vauxhall car factory and was the master clock used to regulate all the other clocks in the factory as well as the clocking on/off machine. He did some fancy electronic magic to make it work, but really wanted to find a slave clock to run off it.
(ignore the mushy pea green hall ....NOT our choice, but there's no point in decorating here until we've done everywhere else!)
Having finally found a slave clock on ebay, Himself discovered that one clock had a 30 second motion and the other had a 1 minute motion. This called for even greater electronic wizardry so, whilst we'd got the hatches battened down during the great snows, Himself got to work and produced this thing of beauty...........!
The end result was that the slave clock in the kitchen is now wired into the master clock in the hall - so we now have two clocks that actually tell the same (and correct) time! The clock suits the age and style of the house and fits in beautifully. It's also made of the same type of wood as the renovated servants bell box which is in the kitchen.
Ooops, forgot to mention that I'd promised First-born I'd give a little plug to her Etsy shop, http://www.etsy.com/shop/cooplet . She makes gorgeous things out of reclaimed and vintage materials, and all her packaging is recycled. Here are a couple of examples of her work:
..... and recycled envelopes made into notebooks.
Pop in and have a look! Thanks :)