Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Last Post

I'm sounding the last post for this blog. I have decided to cut back on my writing and time spent on the Internet. Yes, indeed, time to change my ways and put energy into things that really count in life. My blogspot, Writing For Joy, will continue with regular postings for the time being. My Wrinkly Writers (wordpress) will also have regular comments on 'this and that' added as appropriate, but all others will only be added to if there is something specific to report on (such as books or awards to add to my author blog etc).
My thanks to all visitors and especially those who have left comments.
Of course, IF I am suddenly inspired to write another novel and the characters refuse to stay dormant in my head, then write I must. But that will mean less blogging, not more!
I have started on art work again. Walking is getting harder but best to make the most of what can be done even if it has to be done slower. Sitting too long at one time is not good! Taking snaps with my camera is a good way to keep in touch with our outdoor activities. But the photos can go on Writing For Joy — some of the landscapes I will turn into pictures with ink, crayon and paint. Here are a few snaps of a walk we did on Good Friday. From home we walked under the Hoad to Booth's Supermarket for light refreshments. Walking down to Canal Foot, along the beach to Plumpton, across the fields back to the canal, along the canal again to lunch at Booth's Supermarket. On the photographs, you will see Industrial Ulverston side by side with Ulverston's lovely landscape.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring Is Here — another wedding anniversary!

It was our 58th wedding anniversary on Spring Day. Just like when we married, the day was really dull to start with. The following day the sun shone and the spring flowers glowed. I took photographs to remind us of the joys of goodbye winter — hello Spring! I took them through our windows rather than outside. Yes, those plants in the bay window are still the same ones that were there in the Late October photographs! A couple have finished flowering but the plants are still growing strong! Like our marriage? I guess that is so — solid foundation with strong roots, blooms past their best but we look at our children and grandchildren and rejoice in the fruit! Soon the garden will be a mass of blooms and it will go on through summer and autumn. Even in the winter flowers appear. Not a lot but greatly valued for the cheer they give.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Living Water!

Jesus sometimes spoke of Living Water — the water that he gives to believers, water that He connects to Life Eternal, a spring bubbling up for all to receive. Bubbling up! That is what seemed to be happening when I had the Holy Spirit entering into my life. For a while I would suddenly be overtaken with JOY bubbling up, impossible to contain. It just had to be released! Now, every time I see bubbling, swirling, dazzling or brightly reflecting water, I am uplifted for reflections of a glorious period in my life are again refreshed. I don't have to ponder on the reason for it, to experience the beauty and joy is itself uplifting and refreshment to the soul. Add white birds to these wonderful glittering patterns of brilliance, and my heart sings, 'How great thou art!'

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Pheasant

The pheasant

A royal visitor to our garden

clothed in robes of silk

glowing in the sunlight

copper and gold,

purple, blue, red

white scarf snowy white.

he stands on the rail

six feet from our window

does he know he’s free

from gun and dog

strutting on the lawn

beneath the tree?

stay pretty bird

in sunshine bright

nature’s living treasure

for eyes to admire

not guns to blast

but to give us pleasure

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Pride Before a Fall! (trials of ageing?)

Here is my latest book. It is now released as an eBook — print version to follow in a few weeks. (Go to Dare Empire bookstore for book details etc as well as ordering in Kindle or pdf.) Quite a bit of interest has already been shown.

I had an opportunity to show off my books when invited to an event that I really thought not exactly suitable for an author but it was my Magpies Nest Publishing that presumably caught their attention. I don't like going out at night, partly because I get up early and am tired in the evenings and partly because, with my eyesight problems I can't see very well at night. Street lighting is not much good for me as it tends to cast long shadows I can't see into.

The businesswomen's showcase event last Tuesday night. I guess I stood out as the old granny! Not much interest shown in books. A lot of it was 'women's stuff'. One or two stopped by to look at the books. Not in a good place really. I was told to choose an empty table. So I chose ground floor near the door. Then someone asked if I would mind moving because they wanted to link to the one next to it. Being ever the obliger, I began the move (I had a lot of books, a showboard, leaflets, bookmarks, business cards, posters etc) Then someone came and said that it was her table, she had only just popped upstairs. So my hubby carried everything up the spiral staircase for me. By then the best tables had gone. Anyway, we set it up. All the real activity was happening downstairs but a couple of talks brought folk upstairs. Those that did stop to chat (well they did have to answer my question - 'do you do much reading?') showed interest. I gave three books away and I was asked if I would give a talk to a new group just starting. About books? No ME. She was interested in the way I changed my occupations to fit in with family life etc. Who knows? Something may come from it. My most memorable thing that happened during the evening? My hubby had gone to get the car and put my stuff in it. (No way could I have carried it down the spiral staircase) When I finished chatting to the woman interested in my life, I went down to the exit. I walked outside to see if he was having to wait with the car on a yellow line. I have difficulty seeing at night. The nearest car was not ours but another one like it was just up the road. I turned and set off — literally! I fell over a low wall I did not see!

A lady nearby came over and told me to stay still. No need, apart from a huge swelling on the side of my right shin, bruises on my thigh, hip, arm, swellings on my hands, minor grazing, I'm quite all right. Dear oh dear — I know old biddies should stay home at night! I should take my own advice!

NEWS FLASH — The Dark Mirror now in paperback!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Creaking Branch

The Creaking Branch

I rise each morning, a creaking branch
Bowed and hurting
But unafraid
To meet
Each new day’s challenge.
Love keeps me strong.

The Tree of Life to which I’m grafted
By hands divine
Flows with sap
Of Holy Spirit
Strengthening me
With unquestioning love.

Loss of family and faithful friends
The sands of time
Flowing faster
As life moves on,
While in the flesh
Immortality has yet to dawn.

Life is challenge, pain, joy, love
Grief and sorrow,
Memory loss
So unkind,
But swells of ecstasy
Bring healing from the Tree of Life.

Flood, fire, tempest, earthquakes
Cannot destroy
Eternity —
Though Earth may die
The Tree remains

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Snowdrops — dancing in the breeze in white ballet dresses!

How lovely to get the simple early flowers to cheer us on winter mornings. The little snowdrops in their ballet dresses are a joy to behold as we go outdoors and return home. They are all over the garden now — popping up on the lawn, half-hidden under bushes and gracing patches of dull soil. We have a few flowers in the porch as a welcoming party for us and all who call.
Consider the flowers of the field — no celebrity in their glory cannot be arrayed like one of these. True beauty is natural and remains so when unadorned. Millions may be spent by women (and men) on the latest fashion whether clothing or hair styles or even cosmetics, but my darling little flowers — God's gift to all — outdo them all!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Walking the Hoad Footpath in Winter Sunshine

A sunny day in January and what better activity than to go for a walk? Since I have been having knee trouble for quite a while now, I have gradually avoided rough and hilly walks. But for whatever reason, yesterday I was determined I would do the circular walk around the Hoad Monument and take a look at the renovation work that has been done. Actually, it is not far to go. Years ago, I took our dog a walk up there most mornings. We set off complete with camera. I took a photograph each side of the walled path — seaward and inland. Further up, the Monument and then out over the bay. Near the top of the hill, we photographed the mountains beyond the fells and also looking down over the Smith-Kline-Glaxo works and canal. The path down the other side is a bit rough to start with, that is for anyone with knee problems, but it soon becomes smooth and the rest is easy. We diverted to have a pot of tea at Booth’s Supermarket, where we sat by the huge window and looked up at the path we had taken. We took the town uphill roads to walk home. Nothing like fresh air and nature to heal the heart and mind! Soon after arriving home, a heartwarming sunset!
I think it is true that a lot of people suffer mild depression at this time of the year (SAD). The usual dark, cold, wet days often cause a feeling of weariness. How lucky we are to have footpaths almost from our doorstep! But in Cumbria, few homes can be far from places to walk. Okay, we don't have the bright city lights but I know which we prefer.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

1949 Fashion Sketches — an Awakening to Fashion

1949 Fashion Sketches — an Awakening to Fashion

A short while ago I looked through an old art folder of designs I did in 1949. (I was just sixteen at the time) I had forgotten that I sketched quite well considering I only had one and a half terms at the Nottingham College of Art. I left the Dress Design Diploma course early because my dad had been seriously disabled for quite a while, and I needed to earn more than the little I managed to get from sewing. I wanted to be able to contribute to the running of the home. My poor old mum was going out cleaning, looking after my dad, coping with all the household chores, as well as having to bear the brunt of my dad’s temper. (It was hard for any hard-working man to realise he was no longer the bread winner. Hardly any benefits in those days and, from his chair in the kitchen he tried his hand at many things — leatherwork, vacuum cleaner repair, pram upholstery and so on. What with that and terrible night cramps her suffered, his nerves were worn thin) It also has to be realised that we had not a single electric gadget and all cleaning and washing had to be done by hand. Such was the lot of most working-class families. In those days, men went out to work and wives looked after the home and family. Being wife, mother, and domestic was a full time job. I got a job in a shop before I told the college I was leaving. The tutor said I could get help with materials but there was no way of meeting the thirty shillings a week pay I was to get working.
But I still wanted to be a designer. Through a friend of a lady who paid my mum to clean, I had an interview with the manager of the outerwear department of a large Nottingham clothing manufacturer. So started my career as a dress designer. It was quite thrilling to see my designs in shop windows, even more to meet someone in the street wearing one.
When I started writing about ten years ago, I used some of my own experiences to provide an authentic setting for my first book, Awakening Love. I broadened the story out and gradually developed strong characters that were to carry the tale onwards to a new emerging generation. So the Love By Design trilogy was born.
The whole history of dress design is reflected in the pages of the Love By Design trilogy.

For more info on the trilogy go to my author blog
To buy eBook versions of the trilogy go to the Dare Empire bookstore
For printed books go to Magpies Nest Publishing and read chapters and reviews. PalPal purchasing. Free delivery in UK.
Printed handcrafted books AGPress — free delivery in USA (Awakening Love - USA title is DESIRE)