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Here we are at the end of summer.  We had a power cut last night and ended the beautiful day with a much needed early night.  No power of any kind.  No lights, no hot water, no phones, nothing.  This happens fairly freqently in this little corner of Somerset.  The art of success lies in remembering what was on so that it can be switched off.  This avoids rude awakenings in the small hours – which is often when the power comes back on again.

 

So, this morning was an early start.  A beautiful start.  A wander round the valley in the cut fields was a bank holiday treat.

I am intrigued by the array of stunning webs and the ingenuity of how spiders link points together.  They use what they have available and make something beautiful from it.  The dew and early sun add drama and impact.  And it all starts again the next evening.

Late swallows are chattering away and leaving with friends to mark the turning of seasons.

summer end 17 007

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Lost in Stitches

Lost in Stitches of every kind.

Knitting.  I have found my complete love of this craft again.  Not just in the mindless, habit formed repetitive actions, but the absolute joy of yarns, colours, and the slow making of stitches, one by one.  Combinations of colours or textures.  What can be achieved by two sticks and some lovely string.  Slow production made by repeating methodologies stitch by stitch.  Sensuous pleasure induced by making.  The shawl is made with my handspun and hand dyed fibre.

Sewing.  Autobiographical recordings of daily walks.  Again, the step by step repetition of a meditative action keeping pace with my steps and thoughts.  This series of textile recordings have become something of their own thing,  I simply have become the tool of their making.  I am fasinated to see the years work as a whole.  Currently I am working on number 46, so my year is almost up.  What then?

Somerset beaches?

Stitch.  Ummmmm……. Beautiful, elegant, bouncy, challenging, noisy, affectionate, and so on.  Equally driving me loopy and filling me with love.  Stitch is firing on ALL cylinders.  She is growing at a phenomenal rate.  When I bought her collar, I gave it 6 months.  Well lets just say that it possibly has just 2 weeks left.  Her age?  Oh, just 14 weeks yesterday!

We took a trip to Kilve.  Kilve is an absolute favorite place of mine.

Kilve August 17 057

Tattered

My ongoing textile work is finding a direction at last.  I have done a piece a week.   I am currently about to start piece 44. The piece starts on Sunday and ends on Saturday.  I set myself the boundaries of between 10 and 30 mins a day.  I have become quicker and now the boundaries have changed to 3 arm length threads a day with the set up day being Sunday.  The work is about landscape and is personal and intimate to me.  It is abstract, but the content is about boundaries and walking journeys across the landscape I live in.  Daily routines of stepping across the landscape with the dogs.

 

To prepare some of the fabric I dye it with plants found in my landscape close to home.  I also bury the fabric.  Today I dug up 2 lots of fabric which I buried around Christmas time.  Here is the result of one – in tatters!!  The other fell apart as I tried to handle it.  Lesson learned?  Dont leave it too long!!

 

Stitch has moved into the house.  She has a crate to sleep in for a while as grumpy granny is a bit too grumpy at times.  Stitch decided that this was a good place to store mum, and shut her in this morning!  Not quite the idea, but creative!

Aug 5th Stitch into house 014

Butter wouldn’t melt?

The garden is looking great – well where we had reasonable control over the pups at least –

 

Phew!! Almost there……………..

Almost there!  Pups have been leaving for their new lives with the remaining ones mourning their loss.  Fewer pups I thought would be less trouble, but they have more space and are bigger and bolder and…………!

Its exhausting having pups.  I don’t think there is a good time of year.  They are a huge amount of fun alongside destructive, messy and exhausting, and thats before the accidents happen!  They do not have any sense of self preservation and even when you imagine you have everything covered, they will find a way to fall over, bash into each other and generally create havoc.

Then they sleep.

 

A lifestyle choice definitely.  Accessories come cheaper and in less destructive forms.  A puppy is a challenge in just about every possible way.  They will test you to the limit everyday.

Then they sleep.

I can see that life may develope into something resembling normal.  Except that ‘normal’ will now include a small challenge (I say small, but legs are growing at an alarming rate…there must be giraffe in the mix…).

I finished something!!!!  Just have to say it once more.  I FINISHED something!!!

Tweed pups 8-9 weeks 17 026

So, slowly I am developing some ideas into reality and plans afoot include new dyeing plans, new designs AND an exhibition next year.  Well if they dont all get eaten by sharp small teeth that is!!

Tweed pups 8-9 weeks 17 025

Happy Tails

Nearly at 7 weeks!  So, CHALLENGING………….

Beautiful little characters and only 2 not reserved.  Possibly only 1 as lady viewing tomorrow.

Just play, play, play………….. and sleep, sleep, sleep

STITCH

ECHO

NATO

BALOU

HARRIS

BOBBY

MERLIN

ANNIE

LUNA

Thats it for now!

Changing Scale

Well here we are at 6 weeks!  Unrecognizable chaos reigns.  I am being held responsible for changing the scale of just about everything.  Gaps have shrunk, heights lowered (a positive improvement), and the empty flower pots (well they are empty now) get stuck!  Swinging between hilarity and despair with no middle ground this week.  Pups from 5-8 weeks are pure hard work.  Also, thankfully, they are very funny.

We have 3 pups left looking for homes now.  More people looking this weekend.  Lets hope the little hooligans will not intimidate them.  As a collection they are formidable these days, haring round at high speed and then forgiven as they crash out in littered piles just where they drop.

Just a note to add…..Life in the form that we know it has been suspended until further notice………….One day normal stuff will return and relative peace descend once more.  It will won’t it??

Helpers

9 little 5 week old ‘helpers’!  Hummmmm……..

We have beaten up the dustpan and brush, thankfully this will now no longer cause problems.  The brush took some beating but finally was submissive and now lies quietly mangled as a warning to any further attempts to introduce such creatures.

There have been a few attempts from plants to intrude and wave in the wind, but we are now in no more danger from these silent intruders.  Phew!

Photographing busy people is sooooo hard!  I introduced a couple of new toys and limited the number of puppies to 2 in a brave attempt to get some pictures.  The success rate varied.  The toys came off worse.  This was preferable to the mass escape this morning.  All 9 puppies swarmed round the entire garden dragging dust sheets, compost bags and garden tools with them.  The result was an hours peace to clear up the devastation while 9 babies slept off their intense activity.

Keeping this family cool in the heatwave has been a nightmare.  Full time activity and not much else has been done this week.  Temperatures were dangerously high and trying to keep everyone hydrated and cool was such hard work.  Play times were 5.30am and 11pm.  The rest of the time was inactive.  However, we now have cooler temperatures and full activity has resumed!

Pictures of Balou.  Balou is very blonde and not as red as he looks on my laptop.  This little chap has a lovely longish coat and is very pretty.  He is very friendly and playful.

Bobby.  This is my favorite in the litter.  Such a solemn puppy.  Everyday he has trouble with his legs.  By the evening he has mastered where to put them, in what order and more or less what they are useful for.  Every morning he has to re-organize them because they have grown!  Poor boy its all so confusing!

5 weeks June 17 005

Stitch 1.  This pretty girl is bold, confident, playful and intelligent.  That is a polite way of saying she is soooo naughty!  She is an escape artist, bounces on everyone to get them up, constantly lively and playful.  She is sweet natured and extraordinarily pretty!  (She has to be!!)

The next 2 are Harris and Sika.  Harris is the longcoat chap.  He is stunning!  He is spoken for.  The only smooth coat in the litter is Sika.  I LOVE this boy!  His conformation is beautiful and he is a balanced, happy, friendly boy.  He will be a dog who will be stopped in the street to be admired.

Next along is Merlin.  Merlin is the darkest in the litter with a very long coat.  Merlin is confident and considered.  He will play with the best but the ‘ideas’ are generally not his!  Sweet little chap who will be absolutely gorgeous!

Annie and Tabitha next.  Tabitha resembles a tortoishell cat in colour.  She is so so pretty!  She has a thick long coat.  A balanced person, good all round really.

Annie is the reddest in the litter, the others all favor blonde.  She is another good all round puppy.  Not a ringleader.  She has a good coat, thick and long, and a very black nose.

Finally Stitch 2.  Totally gorgeous!

5 weeks June 17 033

So!  The puppies are now interviewing!  They will change in the next 3 weeks of course, the blonde ones will get blonder and coats will grow etc.  But now they are 5 weeks they are beginning to show how they will be.

Nothing else this week!  Life will return to ‘normal’ soon!