Monday, November 26, 2012

presents for particularly nice people

As Vintage Tea Time expressed disappointment at the paucity of present ideas in my most recent post, here are some more lovely things that you may want to give to particularly nice people.

The charming Flour Girls, handmade from flour and salt, come from Skerries, Co. Dublin. There are six of them at €22.00 each,

including guileless Róisín

and Niamh the daydreamer.

Garrendenny Lane is changing focus and clearing its existing stock. Among the bargains are a few things from the lovely Penelope range from Greengate.
Penelope table runner from Garrendenny Lane

Myself, I own the Penelope apron and am quite the figure of fun as I feed the birds wearing it over my eighties-revival legwarmers and artsy dresses. 

And finally, a blanket.  Stylists always fling them casually over sofas for that perfect touch of colourful warmth, and I'm damned if I'll be left out of the casual flinging. 

The dear Foxford blanket from Clery's was a childhood stalwart,

and for a more modern alternative there's the beautifully simple
Lighthouse Stripe range from Runaway Coast,
also available in fuchsia and other, lesser colours.

It's traditional in my household to complete the present-purchasing by the 1st of December, so that we can then put all our oomph into being smug and having a glass of port at lunchtimes.  I am well on the way along that thorny path and hope you are too. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

alphabet magnets

I haven't bought your Christmas present yet, despite brainstorming day and night and plaguing Google with your hobbies and your size in slippers. Along the way, though, I've spotted quite a few things I'd like myself, and postie is bringing them in avalanches to my door. 

alphabet magnet set from Nice Day Designs

The daughters, aged 5 and 7, would be offended now by being bought the alphabet but if I could get away with it I'd get them Ruth's charming magnets

While engaged in humanitarian Xmas browsing, I also spotted that a new book, The Irish at Home, featuring 35 beautiful Irish homes, has been published without my house in it. Surely some mistake?   

Monday, November 19, 2012

giving the new spectacles a chance

We are unalike, you and I. When you don't blog I know that it is because you are Tortured By Fame, but when I go a few weeks without posting it is because I can't see my screen.

"Give them a chance," the expensive young optician said of my new spectacles, through which everything was a distorted haze. Giving them a chance has been very enjoyable: unable to see emails, work documents or hungry-looking family members, I had the luxury of drifting into the glad old reverie of storage solutions.

What can I store in my new seaside tin, bearing in mind that the household theoretically eats no biscuits?

Amid the peace, I realised that my persistent daily thought is "What have I forgotten?" Your birthday, of course, and the request for nothing homemade in my lunchbox any more, please Mama, and the medicine, but also that worrying category of things that I've forgotten that I've forgotten.

Homemade Biscuits

What I have been able to do is garden, and I can sense my interest switching full-force from cushions to gravel. If you are a gravel expert and habitually post about gravel issues, please get in touch now and I will follow your blog and read your gravel-related tweets.

I have a vision in mind of how a sandstone gravel courtyard would look, amply planted with juniper trees and hardy perennials, with myself in a sundress and fancy wellies sitting at a pale blue wrought iron table next to the mosaic feature, but Scottish Husband says I will need a backhoe digger.  How the heart sinks. Could you direct me to your archive posts on backhoe diggers?
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