travel

This Must be the Place

Well, it’s certainly been a while since I managed to write a thing. In the meantime, the usual amount of stuff has been happening. So I’ve been photographing, note-taking and generally procrastinating over the events of the last month or so. Get ready for a mismatched, cluttered, catch up style post. Let’s get this rudderless ship back on track!

Finished Projects

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This month I made my friends a snuggly housewarming gift in the form of this stripy cushion cover. I crocheted it freehand and immediately started making another so that I could write a pattern to share with you. The #2 is in a brown/purple chunky yarn with some teal accents – noice.

catch up Jun153

The stripy blanket is complete. My magnificent octopus. Every day I see it on the sofa it brings me joy. I have already started the next one. I don’t want to come across as prescriptive, but everyone should crochet a blanket.

catch up Jun152

I also finished making a little vest top from some adorable fabric a friend brought me from Copenhagen. I say finished… it hasn’t had its final press yet, and it is a little too big. I have lots to learn about sewing clothes to fit!

Recorded a demo

Yeah, so.. I’m in a band now? If you follow me on other forms of social media you may already have gleaned this. We have been playing gigs around Sheffield for a few months and thought it would be a good idea to record some songs. We went to Old Pig Farm studios, near Oughtibridge.

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The process isn’t complete yet, but we are well on the way to having some credible material. I hadn’t been in a recording studio for some time before this, but now recall that it is a singular experience (so…much…coffee). Credit to John at the Old Pig Farm for beautifying our folky stylings.

Went to Cumbria – Ate Meat

catch up Jun154

Bank holiday weekend? You bet your ass I went to Cumbria! And it was beautiful, despite a rather harrowing journey northwards, including 3 trains and a bus from Oxenholme (via Kirby Lonsdale. Seriously). My visit was the usual heady mix of being very well looked after, sitting in a range of comfy chairs and looking at the sea. Blissful. This time I didnt make it into Carlisle -sorry Carlisle – but I’ll be back before too long.

Bishops House

catch up Jun151

Things have been busy for me at the Museum of late, I’m now on the committee which runs the museum and have taken on some new responsibilities. We have welcomed a couple of different groups to the house for visits in the last month and I couldn’t be happier with the feedback. We have also had the pleasure of hosting a postgraduate intern who has been extremely helpful and positive – I’ll be sad to see her go!

So there you have it, now we are all up to date. Thanks for reading!

Computerspielemuseum, Berlin

Welcome to the second of my posts reporting back on our trip to Berlin. The Computerspielemuseum (computer games museum) was second on our ‘must visit’ list after the Zoo. As a young child I was not totally sold on games and consoles (with the exception of Tetris on the Game Boy of course) but as an adult I have cultivated a love of computer games that any 12-year-old boy would be proud of.

One of Berlin’s more alternative museums, this one has its home on the huge and imposing Karl Marx Allee, very close to where we were staying in Friedrichshain. Arriving before the museum opened, we wandered around a nearby graveyard and enjoyed a cup of coffee in the sun.

Being a bit of a traditionalist, I didn’t want to take any photographs inside the museum, but it was pretty much as you would expect it to look – a modern space with a slightly industrial feel, a colour scheme of greys combined with acid neon, and everything wall mounted in squarish boxes. All of the interpretive text was written in German and English, with a concise and engaging style and plenty of high quality images and quotes.

The range of interactive exhibits is really impressive, including a small arcade containing original working machines which are playable for free. I was particularly impressed by an entire wall dedicated to groundbreaking games both good and bad, which could be previewed by aiming and firing at the relevant item using a joystick.

Though the majority of the interpretation had a global focus, due attention was paid to gaming during the GDR in the form of Poly-Play – a colossally expensive arcade machine with a variety of games. The one I chanced upon had me shooting deer in a rather sparse coppice. Enchanting.

We paid about 13 euro for two tickets (1 adult, 1 student) and it was worth every penny. A unique experience and very enjoyable – my face on this embarrassing photo with the life-size Link says it all.

Life Lately: Family Edition

First things first: I didn’t finish the dress (see last post). It was all too much for me, so I think I’ll stick to making tube-shaped skirts without a pattern from now on. At least I can make them fit!

Aside from that making fail, there is lots to catch up on. I’ll start with the museum news – applied for job, had job interview, did not get job. Consequent brief period of disappointment, followed by acceptance. How would I continue to blog and make if I was working full-time? I tell you, I probably wouldn’t. Which would be a crying shame. ONWARDS!

Next up, another visit to Cumbria for my Mum’s wedding, which was very simple and touching. It took place in a rural Quaker Meeting House – perfect for the ceremony, which was silent, broken only by the vows and occasional testimony from friends and family. On to Hesket New Market to give gifts and eat lunch. I had made some rather snazzy tea towels with luxury, sorbet coloured linens, which I believe were well received. I very much enjoyed making them, contemplating as I did so the work that would have gone into a bride’s trousseau. After lunch and the departure of Mum and Val, close family gathered at my Grandmother’s house for lazing about in the sun, which was jolly nice, a really good opportunity to spend more time with people I don’t get to see as often as I would like.

The guests witnessed the marriage by signing this certificate

The guests witnessed the marriage by signing this certificate

The rest of the week was spent at Chez Finn, hanging out with his parents and many-a-brother. Lots of wine, even more football (quiet exasperation), fires and bats in the warm evenings and generally being spoilt. Bliss. One afternoon we went out for a walk around Talkin Tarn, the Carlisle dweller’s staple body of water around which to perambulate. Traditional practice is to complain about the lack of ice cream on the first half of the walk, acquire ice cream in the middle, then reminisce about said ice cream all the way back to the car. Except this time, there were bonus cygnets. Win!

cygnets at Talkin

 

My Dad and I went for lunch and a walk in the wood at Armathwaite, another classic afternoon destination. There was much inhaling of Honeysuckle, some surprise fungus and an impromptu visit to my cousins’ new farm, where dozens of swallows delighted us with a daring flight display in and out of the barn windows.

So, back to Sheffield now, on with the work, feeling well-loved and looked after. It’s been a fortifying week.

 

Inspiring Skinburness

Exciting looking fungus. bonus points for the clever fellow who can name it

Exciting looking fungus. bonus points for the clever fellow who can name it

Baby samphire, maybe?

Baby samphire, maybe?

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The obligatory bluebell close up

The obligatory bluebell close up

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A couple of weeks ago I went back to Cumbria to do a bit of family visiting and get a million hugs. It was the perfect opportunity to relax and just focus on eating, walking and sleeping (and playing with a kitten!).
I stayed with my Mum and her partner in Skinburness, which is right on the coast near Silloth. You know the Morrissey song ‘Every Day is Like Sunday’? Pretty much that.
However, it’s a pretty soothing place to visit, particularly when one is being fed steak and told not to help too much with the washing up. It was super dark and quiet during the night, which made a pleasant change from our house in Sheffield.
Although the weather was very changeable and both myself and my Mother feeling fairly weedy, we succeeded in going for a walk around Grune Point, a grassy gorse-y pointy type landmass with some marshy bits (insert more appropriate description here).
So these are the photos I took that evening, in an attempt to capture the sort of barren yet somehow edifying environment up there. I will let you be the judge of my success.
Stay tuned next time for tales of the Silloth Charity Shop haul… its going to be a treat.

I’m Back!

First things first: I must apologise for the hiatus. I had meant to post before leaving the country (hurrah!) but typically things got too hectic and there was NO TIME.

So, just to get you back up to speed, I have been in Sweden! Finn has family near Malmo so we got to spend Easter cycling, eating pickled fish, drinking schnapps and playing quite a few games involving throwing things at other things. It was great!

Not having been a seasoned European traveler, I didn’t really know what to expect of the trip, but the travel itself was surprisingly stress-free and boy was it worth it! The bits of Sweden that we saw (the very southerly bits) were incredibly beautiful and I felt very welcome, despite being prohibitively British (always a major hurdle).

Coming home there is plenty to catch up on – I am behind schedule with all of the making and online shop-ing, but hopefully more news on that soon. I am finding the stocking and listing on my Folksy shop pretty stressful, but this may be due to having too few pieces and a whole heap of procrastination…

There are  few projects that I am excited to share with you over the next couple of weeks. Until then, I leave you with a few of my less incriminating holiday snaps.

Glad Påsk to you all!

Ales Stenar or Ale's Stones. Iron Age sexy

Ales Stenar or Ale’s Stones. Iron Age sexy

The obligatory 'looking herioc on a thing' shot

The obligatory ‘looking herioc on a thing’ shot

Most Southerly point of Sweden

Most Southerly point of Sweden

Finn found a very sandy Panda on the beach

Finn found a very sandy Panda on the beach

The brickwork that got the quilter in me all excited

The brickwork that got the quilter in me all excited

Sonic and Pokeballs at Boulebar (personal highlight)

Sonic and Pokeballs at Boulebar (personal highlight)

Turning Torso, Malmo

Turning Torso, Malmo