Saturday, 28 March 2015

Charm personified! ;-)

For many months I have been looking for some unique driftwood models

for my ‘classroom’ in order to use them for some (hopefully!) inspiring creative writing.

Although my budget was limited, I wanted to find something a little different from the norm; 

something unique and maybe something with a story. And then, one day...lo and behold...

I stumbled across  ‘Trysorau Cymraeg'.

I soon found out that  ‘Trysorau Cymraeg ‘ means "Welsh Treasures"!

These designs are handmade in Wales and the artist uses reclaimed materials in order to

celebrate and promote Welsh culture and history. 

I was hooked!

My first 'find' was 'Pembrokeshire Farmhouse'

I read the 'spec' and this is what it said:

'Pembrokeshire Farmhouse - A typical West Wales farmhouse on the coastal path! Set on a base of driftwood from Pendine Beach in West Wales, the farmhouse is entirely made from locally sourced reclaimed materials with a Welsh slate roof.  The 'beudy' (cowshed) has a rusty tin roof and water trough.  The old tree is made from local dried heather.  Rusty reclaimed nails and wire complete the scene for a walk along the Pembrokeshire Coastal Footpath - Welsh Treasure to take home and keep!'

I then added to my first find ;-)

 'Gwalia Bakery and Stores' 

'Made from reclaimed materials and set on driftwood from Llangennith Beach, Gower.  Gwalia Bakery and Stores has a Welsh slate roof. The 'bread baskets' are made from very tiny nut shells and the signpost is made from rusty tin and nails. '

How charming! ;-)

Not content with half a story, I decided to take another look to see what was on offer! 

By now, I was following the said artist on Facebook and watching her creations grow...

and grow. This caught my eye:

The artist asked:

'Do you remember when the local petrol station actually meant someone came out to put petrol in your car for you! In those days, the local garage covered everything from repairing your car to fixing your petrol mower! The one in our village started life as the village hall and still looked like it should be one long after it became our treasured village garage! 
"Pen y Dre" - village life in the 1970's!

I love Pen y Dre as it really captures those days gone by, perfectly.


"Burry View Cottage"... set on the North edge of Gower overlooking Whitepoint Lighthouse.  
The driftwood base was collected from Llangennith Beach, Gower! All made
 from recycled materials, the cottage has a Welsh slate roof and the "wisteria"
 growing up the cottage wall is made from dried heather from the Brecon Beacons. ' 

I'm delighted to have discovered these beautiful pieces!

I often marvel at home simple materials can be re-used and re modelled

in order to produce something extraordinary but, in this case, it was so 

much more than that!

These little models take you back to the past and transport you to these 

quaint and charming Welsh settings. They inspire you to want to find out more

about the history and culture of not just these delightful places but also to delve 

a little more into your own environment, be it a seaside town, a countryside idyll

 or a busy and bustling city. 

After all, history is all around you if you only open your eyes! 

If I'm inspired then I know that the children whom I teach will surely be too!


Trysorau Cymraeg can be found here:

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Happy Birthday to my other half...make mine shaken, not stirred...and with a twist, please! ;-)

It all began, back in early February, when I woke up early; I set about

trying to win an auction, on eBay. As the seconds counted down to zero, I knew that

 I had to beat off some stiff competition!

 There's nothing worse than those last few seconds as your heart pounds

 and you hope that you've done enough to win! 

I had!!!


Of course, this wonderful win isn't the 'real thing' ; it's not the original.

The original would've cost me silly money...thousands, in fact!

Yet, even the facsimile is very sought after!

I know nothing much about cocktails, I hasten to add!

And the book wasn't for me; Mr Snippets had been

showing an interest and although I knew little about the subject, I knew that

this was THE book to buy.

Little did I know that this would be the beginning of something much BIGGER!!

Thus, it didn't stop there!! ;-)

A week or two later we were stalling at the Tavistock Vintage fair.

Having set up my stall, I was mooching around, as you do before opening time!

Suddenly, my heart stopped, my jaw hung open and

I froze, briefly.

There, in front of me, was one of the loveliest cocktail cabinets

that I've ever seen!

I suppose what made this really special was the fact that it was

 surrounded by all the right accessories, which set it off to its best.

But my golly, it was a real beauty!!

Marching back to my stall, like a woman on a very important mission,

I summoned my other half.

' You just HAVE to come and see this!'

I didn't tell him what it was and I think he was probably quite reluctant to

get up from his chair, having settled down with a cuppa

after carrying all my boxes from the car.

But up he got....(which is strange as he's not 

usually THAT obedient! ;-)

To say that he was as 'taken' with the said item as I was, would be an understatement!

But he had to act quickly!

 This was not a time to dither or prevaricate!

Oh no!!

  'And you do have a very special birthday coming up!'

I concluded.

Decision made.

Had we left it an hour, this little beauty would no longer have been on offer.

And, at the end of the day, we were told that the stall holder, 

'could've sold it ten times over!'

I'm not surprised!

Needless to say, it's settled, quite nicely, into its new home!

It's charm personified and it adds a certain something to our surroundings.

Oh yes, we've made it very welcome indeed!

And in the evenings, it springs into life and adds a very

warm feel to the lounge.

There are three of us in this marriage now! ;-) ;-)

All that Mr S has to do now, is to learn to be the perfect bartender!

I'm sure that he'll soon get the hang of it!

And all that remains for me to do is raise my glass and say,

 'A Very Happy Birthday, Hally! 

I hope that this gives you many years of mixing, shaking and stirring...

 not to mention the flipping, the spinning and the throwing... oh and whatever else

takes your fancy!! 


;-) xxx

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Tessier Gardens

I made the mistake of going to football, today!! ;-)

When Nich asked me if I'd like to go with him, I jumped at the chance as I haven't 

been for quite some time. 

It gave me a chance to catch up with Nich and enjoy a few laughs.

The football was dire; I don't think I've ever had to sit through

such an abysmal performance! So enough said about that!

Apart from the fact that had we won, we would've gone to Wembley

and taken part in the final of the F.A. Trophy.

We didn't win.

However, on the way to the football ground we did deviate

and we found ourselves walking down an alleyway, signed posted

to Tessier Gardens.

Well ,what a hidden gem!! 

A lovely little retreat and one to which I'll certainly return.

Still very much clothed in its winter coat, one could sense that

in a month or so, spring will be bursting forth and this little place

 will be alive with colour.

The gardens were given to Torquay Council in 1933 by Mrs Tessier

...a very nice gift, I'd say!  ;-)

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Castle Cary

Our habit of jumping on a train (!) continued last Saturday!

Living in the railway town of Newton Abbot, certainly has its benefits

 and we are lucky enough to have a bit of choice

 when it comes to train travel.

So Castle Cary it was!!

The station is about a mile from the town... 

but it's a very pleasant walk!

One of the first sights to greet us was the Round House.

And as it happens I stumbled across just the person to lock up!!!

A shady character if you ask me! ;-)

Castle Cary is a quaint and interesting town.

I particularly like the colour of the stone, which gives the place

a warm feel even on a cold winter's day.

The Market House is the obvious focal point of Castle Cary;

it's a grade 2 listed building, dating from 1855.

One can imagine all sorts of 'going's ons'

taking place here!

However...the highlight of the day, for me...

Mother's Little Vintage Tea Room!!!! ;-)

Well, what can I say?!

Mother's Little Vintage Tea Room is nothing short of a delight!

You are transported back to the 1930s as soon as you enter!

One of the best tea rooms I've visited!


Appropriate reading material is at hand whilst you wait to be served!

And if you do happen to mention that it's your birthday...(as my kind 'other half' did)...

                     A lovely trip...not too far by train...or any other form of transport

                      if you have it! Trust me to spot this beauty as we were strolling

                      around!! Just my colour too! ;-)