Here comes the sun…

…for at least two days according to the forecast (and then the snow’s back…)so I had a wizz round the garden with the camera.  You’ll be glad to know my camera issues have been resolved so the moaning will stop!.   With the  help of Ebay I now have THREE cameras!  When I went back to the nice and long suffering man at the London Camera Exchange with the new Olympus camera that I couldn’t get on with,  I took along the ‘steam’ camera that Tim had bought on Ebay, a Fuji Finepix 6800Zoom which had seemed so ‘state of the art’ when I had one nearly a decade ago.  I showed it to the nice man and said, ‘I just want a camera that takes pictures like this’.  And he couldn’t sell me one.  He said he had had the same camera for about four years, it has a fantastic lens, Tim had got an incredible bargain from Ebay and he gave me a full refund on the one I had had since November!  What amazing service.  He suggests I go back later in the year when the next generation of cameras comes in to see what would suit me.  Meanwhile Tim went back on to Ebay to get a memory card for it and bought a second camera for the same price as a memory card, and finally found an F650 (again at a bargain price) which was the model that I wore out last year.  So I have no excuse now for not filling my blog with lots of pictures – in focus!

As it’s St David’s Day and my daughter was born in Wales I have to include daffodils…

..but a little trip round the garden found things popping out in the sunshine.

It was interesting to see things from the perspective of someone very short…

Slightly out of focus, but Higgins hasn’t had a lot of photography practise so far…

Just to be completely greedy, I  had a pink tulip moment when I went shopping this afternoon,

…and then in the ‘slightly sad and lonely’ bucket, I found these, which just begged to come home with me to be appreciated…

…and I had some help arranging them…

It’s amazing what you can train a dachshund to do…

Growth Spurt

Over the last few days I’ve been watching a hyacinth growing…you can almost see it with the naked eye, but I recorded it more simply with daily photos…

It’s not the most floriferous hyacinth, nor the most colourful, but it’s scent is just as amazing as any of it’s more spectacular cousins and it’s filling the ground floor of the house with the smell of Spring.

Meanwhile, in the garden…

The crocuses seem to have pushed up over night.  Hold on a minute though, what’s that brown shape in the top left hand corner…?

Just checking, are they edible?

From a dachshund point of view, the answer is probably yes…Oh dear…

Higgins has also had a growth spurt, the little black coat he wears for his walks has become like a sausage skin, so we decided to buy another one from Equafleece, this time in a more stylish colour.   His immediate reaction when we tried it on him was “Oh, NO!  A walk!” cue a mad dash to hide in his bed…

He’s just a little ‘weeny’, in every sense of the word!

Lurchers and Llamas

Ok, that’s it, we’re bored now…it’s all …too…WHITE….

 We were off to the other side of the county today for lunch with my cousin and after a lovely day yesterday it was a pain to wake up to frost, ice and gloom and then sleet. We had a phone call from said cousin to warn us they had a couple of inches of snow, but as it seemed the main road was clear and they had a tractor to get us out of any trouble we might run into on the track to their farmhouse we decided to brave it. 

Apart from the nice people, and the good food, we wanted to see their lurcher.   They have two – lovely gentle dogs and I do love  lurchers. ( We used to have one, an enormous blonde called Spike, who was a complete wus,  having little Higgins was really going from the sublime to the ridiculous!)  However the whole family was devastated about five months ago when the young one was stolen.  Despite the theft being witnessed (and the dog being microchipped) a poster campaign, a reward being offered and information being past all round the county there were no clues or leads and every one was so upset.  

Amazingly, and so happily, about three weeks ago she was found in a field somewhere near Skegness(quite a way from Norfolk)  by a lady who runs a greyhound rescue centre who just happened to be driving along a road she had never travelled on before who recognised her from the poster that had been circulated.  Because of her job she had a chip reader at home and was able to identify her and phone to give the good news.  The whole thing hung on so many happy coincidences it was incredible, and although she was very thin when  she first came home she is now looking good, and full of bounce (as the footprint in the middle of  Higgins ‘ little jumper demonstrated) 

So, a lovely Sunday roast, and syrup sponge and custard – heaven – and then a snowy, slippery walk to try and shift a couple of calories.

I did try to get a picture of both dogs together, but look at the difference in the leg length, Higgins never managed to catch up!

He did meet another creature for the first time….Fergus…

Which was quite interesting…

Mwah!

I don’t think I could cope with the real thing, but I did find another llama I would have loved to bring home…

Isn’t he gorgeous?

I found the monocrome theme continued…

…and although I love snowdrops…

I so long for some colour. So it was nice to get back for a cup of tea and look at my cousin’s latest knitting project.  Craftiness runs in the family, and she is an expert on spinning,weaving, knitting, crochet  and  dyeing.  This was a departure, freeform knitting and crochet.  I’ve done a little and it’s fascinating, but this was spectacular.  It’s a shame the light means the photos don’t really do it justice but WOW, after all that white, we need those colours!

It’s mainly hand dyed silk, with little bits of llama and hand spun fleece.  I’ve just realised I was so excited I didn’t ask what the finished article would be, a knockout waistcoat?

It was a busy day, and very exciting for a small dog with very short legs. A lot of sleeping has been going on.  Higgins has obviously been having colour withdrawal symptoms too.  I bought a new fleece blanket yesterday, with the sofa bed that is going into the studio in mind. Higgins is testing it…

Royal Arcade

Just a short post today. I wanted to share my photos of Norwich’s beautiful Art Nouveau Arcade.  I visited my hairdresser, and as I sat there with my hair covered in goo, knitting away, I realised what a lovely view it had of all the tiles in the upper part of the arcade.  Jon let me take a couple of shots out of the open window, on condition that I didn’t  let any pigeons fly in, or drop my camera on the head of an unsuspecting passerby.
Back on ground level …

Yet again it was a very cold day, so in the interests of not spending any more money, I didn’t dally in town.  By the time I got on the Park and Ride bus my hands were far too cold to carry on with my knitting…

…and in fact needed help with photographing it when I got home…

(Henry is more than a little peeved because Higgins, who had been hogging the fireside all morning while Henry was upstairs on our bed,  decide that the floor was a little hard and dragged his bed across the floor and pushed it up against the fireguard making quite sure there was no chance of Henry doing his usual bully boy thing and chasing him off the hearth rug.)

Talk about smug…

Valentines Day…

…and it was nearly not cold.  Although I have become so lazy I was terribly tempted to curl up on the sofa with the Sunday papers I knew this was a rare chance for some sea air and a mud free walk so we donned warm coats and hats, Higgins too  (well I haven’t manage to get him to wear a hat yet, I suppose I could tie his ears under his chin like a head scarf) and set off for Waxham beach.  Even there we had to wade through mud to get to nice clean sand. I’m so glad we chose a portable dog who can be popped under an arm and kept clean.  It was worth it though…

Although he still has all his puppy playfulness, Higgins is now very much a ‘grown-up’ even if it is in miniature,( but is still a complete ‘Cuddle Sponge’!)

Marking Time…

This is what I feel I’m doing at the moment, marking time, waiting… Waiting for the spring, waiting for my studio to be build, waiting to climb out of the muddle of boxes that surround me in which I have packed all my materials so I can’t find anything… 

My sanity has been saved by having some wool and fleece  to hand so I have been needle felting pincushions.  As well as the two I made as prizes (which I got in the post this morning despite the snow and ice)…

I have made a couple more with a view to selling them when I get my Folksy shop up and running (another ‘Watch this Space’ moment!) It’s a comforting thing to do, needle felting.  It’s very tactile, it’s like magic feeling the change from soft fluffiness to springy firmness happening in your hand with just the action of the needle. And the colours are cheerful, just what we need with all this whiteness!

The sun shone yesterday and so Higgins and I managed to go out for a walk.  It really hasn’t been that easy in this weather.  Higgins is very much a fairweather walker, and any suggestion that we might go out in inclement conditions sends him scuttling behind a chair, or burrowing under his blanket, and I am easily persuaded not to bother myself!  However yesterday he was kitted out in his jacket and carried beyond the point of no return so he made the best of it.

I took the steam driven camera along and I’m getting such good results it makes me very frustrated with the Olympus (which is packed up to go back to the shop tomorrow)

As I sit here I am looking out at two very chilly chaps building the studio as the snow blows all around and into the cups of tea I have just taken out.  I suppose it concentrates the mind towards getting the roof on, I’m really glad I’m sitting in here at the computer!

The sky looks blue, it isn’t, it’s snowing!  I’m looking forward to showing this view in a few months when the sun is shining, the flowers are in bloom and there is a glass of something cool and delicious on the garden table!

Woops, late again…!

I’ve been conspicuous by my absence so far this year and a m only slightly comforted by the fact that most of my favourite bloggers seem to be in much the same boat.  I had such good intentions too! 

So, an update.  Firstly, Higgins is just a little less of a dog this evening having gone to the vets to be modified today.  He is rather sleepy and subdued just now but we are assured in a day or so we’ll be struggling to stop him bouncing around while he recouperates.

 Thank you for all the guesses for the use of my mystery object in the last post. I have had a lovely time reading them.  I’m going to keep it running for a little while longer and see if I can find a couple of  prizes, one for the most accurate guess and another for the one that makes me laugh the most so do please keep them coming in.

My final excuse for being a little tardy with my posts is an eye sight problem so I spent this morning while Higgins was safely at the vet with the optician.  I’m hoping the amazing  space age super duper lens being flown in from Germanyin a week or so will do the trick. Judging by the price I should also have Xray vision and be able discover new planets without the aid of a telescope so seeing the computer screen clearly will be a doddle. 

Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible…