A quick trip over to Arran at the weekend with Flora McPuffin. She had a lovely time seeing all the diverse birds over there.
Today is National Unicorn Day. Yes, really. Some of you might know that the unicorn’s Scotland’s national animal. And in these dark, uncertain days, I think we need a miracle to see us out of Brexit, out of te UK, out of austerity.
Here’s our national animal standing proud on the steps of our Uni chapel.
Happy Unicorn day, all
'Revisiting our educational history might encourage us to question some of the prevailing orthodoxies of our time...Perhaps we should ask why there are no comparable radical voices in Scottish education today.'
Hard hitting stuff. in reply @athole lists some possible radicals Sceptical Scot looks like a good addition to my rss reader.
Today’s dots – a freshly baked batch of oatcakes. Time is of the essence with these – they need to be quickly mixed together and rolled out while the dough is still warm, else the mixture sets and becomes unworkable. In addition, the more it is rolled out, the harder it is to use, so these are imperfect – quickly cut out and put onto a baking tray. They won’t last long anyway – they are too tasty, we have so much cheese in the house right now, and they are also perfect for a quick snack.
Holiday time is a luxury I appreciate – time to bake, time to relax. Doodling, reading recipes, recharging my batteries. Knitting – always knitting – more dots here in the selection of yarns I have chosen for a scarf for mum – oddments from projects made for family and friends (I will tell her the pale blue is from a sweater I made for dad, she will appreciate that).
No metaphors today, just happy relaxed writing.
Christmas lunch – vege roast and all the trimmings for me, Niall, Niall’s mum and aunt Lesley. Served on mum and dad’s dinner service, reminding me of Christmasses past with family – busy days with everybody piled into mum and dad’s house a surfeit of food, noise and happiness. Today was quieter, but just as happy. Setting the table I felt so lucky for all we have: uur wine glasses were a wedding present from a friend, and the tablecloth was a gift from a student to Niall’s dad. The mats and cutlery were bought with money given to us when we married. So many memories, such good food, and such good company.
Now I am in my study relaxing. I have a new drawing book to inspire me, a new knitting book to tempt me, new pens to draw with, new notepads to write in.
And a cat who thinks it is time for food. She is right.
Two years ago I bought the material to make a pair of curtains for my bedroom, but the holidays passed and the curtains didn’t get made. The material sat around for a while with Lacey using it as a cushion, and then I packed it away in a bag and shoved it under the sofa. Not quite out of sight or out of mind. I could see the bag out of the corner of my eye, guilt-tripping me, but still they didn’t get made.
Finally, this year – almost two years to the day since I bought the material, I have new curtains. This holiday I have more energy (I have been boosting my B12, maybe that helped; I am happier at work, that definitely helped; a few little motivating things happened, I am sure they also helped).
So here they are. Please note that in order to make these curtains I had two apprentices – one to help with the linings, the other to help with the main material. They were diligent with their help and loyal to their chosen material. Note how cleverly each of them takes the smooth material and ruches it. It’s that attention to detail that I love.
And here they are, hanging at the windowsill at last.
But, luckily, as I hide in my cool study, I have plenty to occupy me. Because this is July, and CLMooc has a month of creativity to inspire me Come and join us, if you will, as we share pictures and poems with each other before joining up with a wider community from the middle of July.
All are welcome. I hope to see you there. If you like, I’ll also send you a postcard.
In the early morning the quad is quiet, with maybe a crow hopping across the grass or a cleaner scurrying about between the buildings.
Later in the day it is busier – students eating lunch on sunny days, academics sitting on benches chatting, tourists marveling in the architecture and taking photos of each other.
What sights has this tree seen? What happy memories do people hold of being in this place? Graduations, weddings, exams, meetings. School children on day trips, alumni back for nostalgic visits, those that work here – like me – wandering out to catch our breath and pause for a moment.