Friday, 29 October 2010

Past Times

Phew the last day of the half term holiday and I've finally managed to put my feet up!  My week as a registered childminder has been spent with the littlies on a Halloween theme and we have carved a pumpkin, watched spooky films, been up to our eyes in crafting and yesterday had a Halloween party .... I'm exhausted and surely getting too old for this sort of thing ..... or is it the young ones that keep me active in mind and body????

The weather has been horrid so we have been confined to barracks and this morning one of the littlies brought a DVD with her called Greyfriars Bobby .... a charming tale set in 1858 about a cute little Skye Terrier who sat by his master's grave in Greyfriars Churchyard, Edinburgh for 11 years.

Whenever we watch a film together I like to have a little Q & A session afterwards just to see how much of the story the children have absorbed and try to help them understand that some stories are based on fact and that children had to live in the most awful conditions in Victorian times.  We then try to compare this with the lives they lead today and to emphasise how fortunate they are to have comfortable warm homes, food in their bellies and parents to look after them.

I told them about my Newcastle nanny who was orphaned during 1919 when her widowed mother died during the Flu Epidemic ...... nan was aged 14 and one of 9 children, they were sent to a Convent and nan was put into service soon after ... her experience must have been awful because from that moment on nan fell out with the Catholic Church and would never speak about it save to say that they had to walk around sometimes in bare feet and she worked morning, noon and night and was lucky to get a Sunday off if the lady of the house felt she had worked hard enough.  I had to explain what a convent and a nun was and one of the littlies piped up like the ladies in Sister Act ..... had to chuckle at that one!

We finished the day watching the original Lionel Bart version of Oliver .... this has to be one of my all time favourite films

How cute was Mark Lester and Jack Wilde, sadly no longer with us, the perfect Dodger.

We had a little tear and sang the songs and again reflected on the lives of children in those days.  Now it may be just my age but I was surprised that the eldest child (now in year 6) had never heard of Charles Dickens .... surely his novels convey a message that should still be retold in our schools .... what do you think??

Enough of the serious stuff ..... I've got the weekend to myself and tomorrow I will be here



and here

This is my favourite wool shop based in Baldock, Hertfordshire and they are re-opening tomorrow in larger premises so it would be rude not to visit.

Must get some housework done too as next weekend we are off to the Spirit of Christmas Fair at Olympia ........ having visited the Country Living Fair in Islington last year I have to say that I much prefer the Spirit Fair.  I'm hoping to squeeze in a visit to Liberty and Covent Garden too.

Have a great weekend whatever you are doing x

Sunday, 24 October 2010

By the skin of my teeth ......

Yesterday was the day of the Northampton Vintage & Homemade Fair.  We set off in plenty of time and in our wisdom decided to avoid the motorway and go the scenic route .... first big mistake!  Flaming google maps sent us all round the houses wasting time and diesel and an hour later we ended up on the motorway desperate to stop to fill up and no idea which way to go when we got into Northampton.  Thank goodness DD1 was at home so I phoned her and she gave us directions which helped but we still managed to get lost in the town centre.  Time was ticking by and I thought we'd never get there so I rang Anne of Vintage at the Corner House who was jointly organising the event with Debbie of Vintage Wants Not Needs to apologise for being late and to ask for help.  Debbie's dear hubbie rang me back and was a perfect satnav and guided us into the fair with just 20 minutes to go before opening time.  A journey that should have taken an hour had taken 1hr 45!  We also passed a nasty accident where a motorbiker had come off his bike .... there were lots of people there helping and then this afternoon I got a call from my brother who had been driving in the same area in the early morning and in the pouring rain and darkness he had aquaplaned across the road and into some woods.  His car is a total wreck and someone must have been smiling on him because he walked away with just a few bruises.

Anyhow .... back to the fair ..... I managed to get set up in record time and everyone there was so lovely with offers of help and a cup of coffee.  The atmosphere was perfect and there were visitors by the coachload .... a big round of applause for Debbie & Ann who had organised the event to the highest standard.  We had such an enjoyable day and the bonus was that I was able to put faces and real names to some bloggers that will be familiar to you all ..... Wend @ Ticking Stripes, Sharon @ Clover Cottage but I missed Jo @ Hesta Nesta somehow!   It was very busy and I made lots of sales and chatted away all afternoon ...... can't wait now till next time !

Thanks again Debbie & Ann for a splendid afternoon x

PS I'll make sure I get there in plenty of time ;-)

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Just a quickie ...

Flying visit this morning as I am just getting on top of organising my stock for the Northampton Vintage & Homemade Fair on Saturday 23rd October ... I can't believe it's almost here and I just hope that I can get all my bits in the car!

Just had to show you this too .... whilst browsing at the bootie at the weekend this dear little thing lay on top of a box of old postcards .... when I opened it up I knew it was just waiting there for me ..... 1958 was a very good year and mum was right I am a Monday's Child.

Friday, 15 October 2010

Another day ..... another question ??????

Following on from yesterday's theme 'out of the mouths of babes' ...... the early morning question today from Ellie was "nanny why didn't you and grandad wait for me before you got married?"

Flip explain that one!

On the 3rd November we will have been married for 31 years the heck did that happen?  Is it really 37 years since our first date at the high school youth club?   I can't be that old already!

In those days it was virtually unheard of to live together and is was taken for granted that you would go out for a decent amount of time, get engaged, get married and set up home together in preparation for the patter of tiny feet.  We saved hard for years for a mortgage on our first home which was purchased in 1978 and stood empty for 12 months before we tied the knot.  Mainly because having paid a hefty deposit on the house we had nothing left to furnish it with and I don't think we would have dared move in  anyhow.  The house was £14,000 and the deposit was £2,000 plus fees.

Bit of a long winded explanation for a 6 year old don't you think so I just left it that we couldn't even wait for her mummy (and aunt & uncles) and we didn't know she was coming.  She seemed quite happy with that explanation.

I wonder what tomorrow morning's question will be ?????

Thursday, 14 October 2010

What do you want to be when you grow up?

This was the question posed to me by my 6 year old grand-daughter at half seven this morning.  Although  bleary eyed I had to chuckle ;-)

At age 52 I thought I may already be grown up but it got me thinking.  Do we ever really grow up?  What do I want to be?   

In her young eyes she obviously thought that I had time to do more ..... then she stopped and thought about it and said but nanny you are a childminder .... so that's my excuse for behaving childishly now and again .... splashing in puddles ........ get excited about snow ...... messing about with glue and glitter  .... watching Disney DVDs .......having a giggle ..... and loads more that I can't get my menobrain to think of at the moment.

Then I thought back to my school days when girls were encouraged to become secretaries or nurses ..... I had chosen to go to college but my dad said I would be better off applying for an office trainee position at Vauxhall Motors ..... that was in the days when it was huge and most of this town was employed there.  His logic was that I would get paid for learning.  I applied to the Bank of England too and can vividly remember aged 15 getting on the train to London on my own and finding my way to Threadneedle Street for an interview.  I sat quietly in the waiting room while everyone else went in and then the receptionist realised it was lunchtime and they had forgotten me.  She quickly arranged for me to have lunch and two very posh blokes took me up to the restaurant and bought lunch .... I sat quietly listening to them talk about their families and they quite obviously lived in a different world to me .... it was all horses, private schools, clubs, golf etc.  I was just the girl from the council estate who went to the local comprehensive.

I was offered the Vauxhall traineeship and a trainee position at the Bank of England and chose the former.  I can't say that I regret the decision but I do wonder where I would have been now if I had gone for the latter.

If I had my time over again I think I would choose college and I would love to be an archaeologist .... I've got the Time Team gene and would love to dig around in the muck to find out about the past.

For now I am quite content being a childminder and granny knit-knit .... I am happy being me.

What do you want to be when you grown up ?????


Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Don't you just love a man bearing gifts .......

I've tried to resist joining in swaps recently mainly due to lack of time and not enthusiasm ..... it's a lovely challenge finding out about swap partners and then choosing things to send.  Beki over at Ramblings of an Everyday Mummy recently organised a pin cushion swap and my lovely partner was Shirl over at IndigoShirl  ... please take a few minutes to visit these lovely blogs if you haven't already.

My swap from Shirl is absolutely fab and I love it all .... how is it that blog friends know more about the things I love than my flipping family do!  Here it is .....

Can't you just smell those strawberries ..... lovely oilcloth fabric which will come in very handy during cream tea season next year, a delicate cross stitch flower, tiny felt strawberry hangers, a strawberry scented tea light in a pretty glass dish, two dinky little cups to add to my miniature collection, a vintage knitting pin box with needles, some pretty fabric to add to my stash and the pin cushion of course!  Thank you Shirl x

The other swap was a Summertime Swap organised by Bloomin Myrtle via the SCC ... this box of goodies arrived this morning and again I am overwhelmed by the generosity of blog-friends.

I've been busy over the past few weeks with craft markets & fairs and have three more to do this year.  Last week my table looked somewhat flat and I was surprised at the amount of stock I have sold over the past months so I'm working on some new ideas to perk it up a little.  On the 23rd October I will be here

I am so looking forward to being there .... this will be my first V & H and one thing I am not short of is vintage goodies from toys to books to craft items to kitchenalia to textiles .... those of you who visit regularly will know what a clutterholic and collector I am so I will be bringing a load of it along to share with the good people of Northampton.  Most of all I will be able to meet lovely blog friends and of course spend a little cash myself ;-)

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Love for Lilian

As most of you will know from my Avatar I just love the baby/children prints from the 1930s  by Lilian Rowles.

I am overjoyed this week to add some more to my collection

These charming prints were presented with the Lady's Companion during the month of April 1930 and they are in super condition.

Also on my shopping list was an old tin of buttons

the buttons were great in themselves but the tin ..... am I ever likely to come across another one .... this one is called Two Eyes of Blue and hasn't she just!