I lick your nose!

As previously advertised today is my birthday! Hooray! I feel as though I have been thoroughly spoilt by my friends, family and workmates and would like to take the opportunity to say thank you, thank you, thank you.

Birthdays are an usual creature. They’re a lovely opportunity to expresses how thankful you are, to have someone in your life. I see them as that, a chance to say ‘Happy Birthday – I love you and I’m really pleased that we are family, or that we’re friends – insert correct term here. Or I really appreciate that you are here, if love is too strong a term. So, Birthdays are lovely.

I’m not a present mad person (I much prefer to give presents!), although I grateful for all of the thoughtful gifts I have received! One present I had been desperate to see, was a beautiful Dragon made from glass. I’ll provide a link to the artist shortly so that she can take credit for her gorgeous creation.  It was bought a few months ago and I’d been cruelly denied access to it. I wasn’t allowed to cuddle it either! But today that all has changed, bwahah…

Dragon!

Lewis and Rosie, very kindly, clubbed together and bought me a book of poetry, written by cats. It’s called I could pee on this by Francesco Marciuliano and it’s hilarious. I would definitely recommend it. My favorite poems include such classics as, ’I lick your nose’ and ‘Tiny boxes’.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful day.

maybe...

You may stare at me for many hours – I am a book!

boooks

 

Well, at least that is what I imagine Lewis is saying…

Beneath him is my reading for the Summer. I have been introduced to Robert Jordan by my very own Robert. Although I am only reading the second book; I’m looking forward to getting my teeth into the series.  I’ve also been listening to some Bernard Cornwell as audiobooks. I’m  fan of Sharpe, but really enjoyed listening to the Last Kingdom and the Pale Horseman.

Just some of my many recommendations for any writer! The advice I’ve come across over the years, has been to read, read, read and read – whilst I’m on a break between semesters, this is what I intend to do!

…I have far too many books….

Fi

Daily Prompt: State of Year – Sunny with bright spells and a threat of cloud.

So, this is my response to the Daily Prompt: Write up a mid-year “State of My Year” post.

Well, the state of my year is currently a mixed bag! It’s my birthday tomorrow, so I’m feeling particularly chipper and excited for the next few days to come. I’ve already been given the most thoughtful and touching birthday present, but I’ll be writing more about this at another time. All I can really say, are children are awesome and I love my little nieces and nephew to absolute bits. (Their parents are pretty amazing people as well!)

Perhaps this year needs a comparison to last year?  This July I have a different job to last year, and I love my job. I thoroughly enjoy wandering into work every morning and seeing where the day takes me. This time last year, I had several very close friends. This year, I’ve managed to maintain the majority of those friendships, but I’ve also gained the clichéd soul mate. Soul mate is a very strange term for me to use, I don’t consider myself to be a new-age hippy by any means. I mean quite like scented candles and walking barefoot, but I don’t want to live communally. But I’ve been very fortunate, that after a very very very verrrrry long wait, I found the right person. Or rather, we found each other. It’s very hard to put into words how happy I am in some areas of my life. A frustrating thing for a writer.

I’m also half way through a Master’s course in Creative Writing, and not only do I have one adorable and personality-filled kitten, I have two!

However, this time last year, I was elated that I had finished my manuscript. I was filled with buzzing enthusiasm and energy and determined to have my name in print. So far this year, I’ve been far more successful in my blog, and I’ve also completed a few other projects as a writer. As mentioned in a much earlier post, Rob and I co-wrote a murder mystery event for over twenty people. I am proud of our achievement.  However, so far this year, I’ve realised that the manuscript needs another of the endless re-writes and I’ve not managed to give it any time.

Writing is something too easy to side-line. It comes after the washing up, the laundry, the tidying. I comes after spending some quality time with friends and family and trying to keep friendships maintained. I can’t help but feel a knot of worry growing. I’ve been provided with an amazing opportunity to send my manuscript to a friend, who happens to be an editor. He may even recommend it to his friends who publish books – in my genre!  I can hardly bare thinking about it. I am currently so excited and so determined to give everything ‘my all’ but at the same time that I feel as though I’m (quite happily) running flat out on a treadmill, or down the road of life.  But if I don’t slow down soon, I’m going to miss an important turning.

New rules are needed. Writing needs to move up in my priority. Blogging is good for this, I’m forcing myself to blog something each day, even just a photo. But if I can take time out to write the blog, I should be taking time out to work on my manuscript – again.  I’ll set myself goals – this week, I will write 500 words of the new beginning. New words, not the words I’ve already started writing out.

I’ll let you know how it goes…

Scottish Thistle

photo

Over the weekend I was fortunate enough to visit the historic Hatfield House. Hatfield house is famous as a home to Elizabeth I. The spot that Elizabeth learnt that she was queen of England, and her Sister Mary wasn’t going to have her executed (as she was deaded) is also located on the grounds. I have to say it was a beautiful day and the grounds are beautiful. If you have a chance to visit, I recommend that you do. The entrance fee to the house is a bit steep at £15.50, but £3 to wander through the extensive grounds and gardens is well worth the money on a sunny Saturday afternoon.

I spent a few hours happily snapping photographs with my phone and have started to edit them, so they’ll start trickling onto this blog over the next few days.

I have to say at this point, that I love scheduling posts! I can go to work tomorrow, guilt free, in the knowledge that my blog is still receiving attention and fresh updates.

Now, the photographs. There were several bunches of thistles, and I took this photo for my dear Mother, the victim of my short story regarding her culinary skills.  My Mum’s family are all Scottish by blood. She was, however, born and raised in England. She’s as English as they come, but she’s not allowed to watch Braveheart. Mother + Braveheart results in several weeks of impromptu lectures about the English and Scottish freedom, neeks n’ tatties (leeks and potatoes) etc etc etc… and so it’s banned from the house. However, this thistle is for you Mum.

I seem to apply the same pixlr filters to all of my floral photographs and I’ll post up the order that I work in shortly. As ever, please leave me a comment and let me know which version you prefer, the edited version, or the raw image.

Fi

Thistle.Raw

Related articles

Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs – Rise Again

Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs - Rise Again

My response to life after blogs Daily Prompt. What do I do when I’m not writing? I paint or draw, I take photos and go for long walks. I live in constant amusement from my cats and every day I feel thankful for my amazing family and collection of friends. I’ve been a very fortunate person – but still. Life? Life is getting back up again. It’s realizing that every day is different and that the world changes. Tomorrow is a new day, and unless you can predict the future, (if so, please tell me the lottery numbers!) there is always hope.

The image is a photograph of a piece of acrylic art I created a few years ago. It started as a photo edit of a sunset. I created a pheonix from some clouds. I liked the photo so much that I painted it onto a small canvas.

Fi

Soft Waves

beach1

Please find another pretty picture from me, again edited with Pixlr. I’m really enjoying this free app and the edits that it’s capable of.  There is a huge variety of tools, although I would like a bit more control over where filters start and stop, so I could highlight certain things. But it is a lot of fun! Please find the raw image below.

beach2