Well hello blog, so nice to see you again. No reason for not blogging, no excuses and no promises to try harder; just life. I am sorry not to have been keeping up with commenting on others blogs, I have peeked at some and it's lovely to read what everyone is up to, I shall endeavour to leave more comments but it's a busy time of year (when isn't it!).
You will also find me over on Spinspiration today sharing recent spinning and knitting projects, come and pop over and share a recent blog post of your woolly projects, doesn't have to be spinning - all fibre addictions hobbies welcome.
Do you like my title? No? I guess it is a little boring but hey. It's also a nod to the spam comment I received on my last blog post in October "where has she gone?". Thanks for your comment, however I shall be ignoring it.
Since my last post (when was that again?) we've had fun at home and out and about, maybe some pictures can tell the story ...
Halloween spent at the Tudor House
Winchester torch parade
some natural dyeing with my girl
meeting inspiring authors ~ Jacqueline Wilson
Art exhibition and shadow play
lights and bubbles
late night out (rare!)
late night reading
fast asleep on her book
lunch with friends at guild meeting
raiding Mama's buttons
Busy times flown by, busy times ahead. Lots of spinning and knitting has been happening, and is still happening, crafting for Christmas. Lots of fun helping out at school for Christmas performances, the fayre and other planned events.
So what's everyone else up to? Care to share? (mmm ... should check your blogs shouldn't I!)
Remember my first spinning wheel? She came to live with us in May 2009. Started my love of spinning and fibre crafts.
I'm blogging over on Spinspiration today for the return of Woolly Wednesday, come over and see where she is now. I have now been joined over on Spinspiration by some new co-bloggers; Kelly has now moved back to her homeland and is loving life back there with her family. All fibre addicts lovers are welcome to join us for Woolly Wednesday, whether you are spinning, knitting, felting ... or any other wool crafts.
Grab a coffee, or whatever your preferred drink is and join me there ...
Marwell Wildlife Park was again the place of choice for the birthday day out, we went the day before her birthday as the weather was glorious that day and it gave her the day of her birthday to enjoy at home.
Another wonderful trip, this year courtesy of a friend of Alex who works at Marwell - exciting for Imogen to "know" a zoo worker, one of those things that often comes up in the "when I'm older, I want to be ..." conversations. I'm not so sure she's that keen on the cleaning up of the poo! An inevitable part of the job.
Imogen had a fun day, we all had a fun day ... we saw all the animals which is no mean feat at such a big park. Even the elusive Red Panda moved a little in his tree and Imogen spotted him first this year as she proclaimed she would; and the normally lazy Coati were more active than we have ever seen them.
Imogen was very taken with the Red Panda this year and a toy one came home with us, named Whiskers.
Imogen on the tube slide
I found some cheeky Meerkats!
Imogen loved rolling down the hill
Here are some more images of our day and some of our favourite animals there ...
Giraffes including 2 babies this year, another on the way
Marwell has a great record in the breeding programme
Snow Leopard waking from a snooze
Hey ... cool Lemur!
(captions on a postcard please)
New Tiger arrival ... he was huge!
(going through his arrival checks ... and eyeing up a big chunk of meat nearby!)
The Penguins are always popular - we visit at the start and the end of the trip
Our beautiful, fun, loving, creative, imaginative little girl is seven.
Seems suddenly so big, but yet still small, enjoying the simplicity of life, often found with her head in a book, always full of questions. Always drawing or writing; creating stories, her own films, events with such wonderful abundant imagination. Precious.
One of her gifts - a photobook from birth to Seven
This brought many smiles
Time for a birthday ice cream at the wildlife park
Lovely gifts appreciated with such joy, she only asked for the latest Jacqueline Wilson magazine! And yes she did get that, and various Horrible Histories things, books, science-y things, toys and some Poi. Oh and tickets to see and listen to Jacqueline Wilson at half term, she literally squealed with excitement at this!
Another wonderful year, looking forward to the year to your 8th!
A few other things to blog about soon, but today I want to share with you the work of a local artist who I have had the pleasure of spending time with in recent months, and the pleasure of contributing to a piece of her artwork that is now on public display for all to see and contribute to.
It was the opening night last week and we all went along and had a lovely evening chatting, knitting with friends, and taking in the wonderful Blue Jumper.
knitting continues whilst Sarah talked about the blue jumper
Take a look at the blog to find out what The Blue Jumper is all about, which has been a "collaborative, community knitting project" added to by over 400 others, and has travelled around the region to many groups.
The exhibition is free to visit, you can and will be encouraged to pick up some yarn and add to the piece, jot a few words down on a card which are on display too. There is also a mesmerising video of contributors hands knitting away. Currently in the Bargate Monument Gallery in Southampton until 14th October, do go along and see it if you can.
Here are some images from the opening night, and some from earlier in the year when The Blue Jumper and Sarah visited the Guild ...
The Blue Jumper in all it's glory
and spreading it's wings
The names of all who have contributed are written on the walls
When The Blue Jumper visited the Guild in July
my contribution on opening night
I was very pleased to finish "blue", maybe add jumper on a visit soon!
All our best wishes go to Sarah for her exhibition, a much talked about piece around these parts; it really inspires community spirit as people sit around to chat and knit, whether friends or strangers, we are all connected through the jumper.
Whoosh, another school holiday is over and Imogen is back to school today. Year 2! How? When? What happened there? She is super excited to be in the oldest year of the school.
So after all the other exciting times and adventures over the holidays, we ended them with a trip to Kent where Alex was taking part in a course for work to do with thermal imaging in the mammal world. I thought it a great opportunity to go along and spend the day at the Wildlife Park where the course was being held.
So we went among to Wildwood and had a lovely day, Imogen and I explored the whole place together, talked to the keepers and listened to a few animal talks. Very excited to see the Wolves and the Beavers, and many other wonderful mammals. Oh how I would love to see Wolves re-introduced in the wild in the UK, such a beautiful animal, so misunderstood by our ancestors ... maybe one day.
Here are a few of the animals we met ...
Tortoise, look at those claws!
Meeting Bison in the Forest
Red Squirrels - such a rare sight in many areas unfortunately
(and difficult to capture on a camera!)
The stars for me, and I think for Imogen too, were the Wolves and the Beavers. The beavers were all asleep on the first walk around but we popped back to check and were treated to them swimming and then eating.
One of the Wild pack
Hand reared Wolf - Mishka aged 12
Mishka and her sister Nadja were saved by the keepers after the wolf enclosure flooded and their mother was stressed unable to find the cubs, unfortunately they then had to be hand reared as they had been in contact with humans, but their lives were saved.