Friday, 17 February 2012

Seven times around the sun

Feel like I've lost my moorings a little! January and February turned out to be unexpectedly busy. Lots of important things that needed attention have taken me away. Thank goodness for small projects for I have been beavering away through trips and hecticness. This morning, home again and  faced with having fallen way behind on the domestic front, I decided(as I am wont to do) that all that could wait, and instead I needed to come here to share some of the special happenings from these past weeks : )

Something about painting came up in conversation recently with smallie, and he said 'I never paint, you don't let me'. Gulp. While pondering whether this was true, instant inspiration came as to what to give him for his upcoming birthday. I'm not a huge fan of kids paints I've got to say, or kids brushes, or the massive clean up job afterwards. I passed that aisle in our local arts supplies shop and headed for the artists paintboxes, brushes and watercolor pads, not so expensive after all.

The morning of his birthday, not yet dressed for the day, with breakfast barely over and his packages just opened, he began to paint. There was something wonderful in the air around it.
 We are both loving this little set, easily packed in his small backpack to Nana and Papa's last weekend and its getting daily, totally independent use. Sometimes we paint together. That this little prince of my heart would be the hand that beckons me finally back to painting seems precious and only in-keeping with the quiet magic he has always brought.

He wished for a cycling day to a special, favourite spot with a castle for his birthday. 
A single rotation of my bicycle wheel under the canopy of trees and I instantly felt revived, we all did. 
 The problem with all this crafting I've been focused on is it has me firmly planted on my derriere. Not good.
I was also reminded of how I miss the movement and air of my pre-driving days.
For smallie and his dear friend that day was all about the bikes and balloons, binoculars and bubbles and perhaps most exciting of all... doing skids ; )

 By the end of that day I also realised that ouch, I so need to felt me a saddle cover!

A lovely friend and fellow fibre-artist Linda Grant came to visit, always a lively exchange of ideas and enthusiasm between us. She'd been telling me about Peg looms and the lovely rhythmical nature of the craft for students. Hearing her tell of it inspired me get a simple one for the handwork room at school and she kindly walked me through the basics. I've been reading in a Steiner publication that the gesture of weaving is akin to breathing... Love that.

 I (happily) seem to be surrounded by people whom when I say 'I'd really like to get one of those', respond with 'you could easily make one of those' or 'I could make that' and I often end up grumbling under my breath. Because...really? We simply can't make everything, not with all the other things we need to do on the average day. And yes, I too cherish the idea of settling into a handmade chair with a handstitched blanket and drinking out of our own pottery mugs. Yet ultimately I'm a realist, with my feet on the ground and I'm ever more aware of time and what we can honestly and fairly expect to do and get done while also working (some of us two jobs!) outside the home. 
All this, a pre amble to what smallie did when he noticed me trying my hand at weaving on the new loom. Without saying a word, he dug out a block of wood he's held onto for a long time. Found some discarded colouring pencils that were surplus to requirements and on their way out, in a charity bag by the door.
I said nothing... just quietly reached for my camera and watched.

He set to work, weaving away beside me. Just. Like. That.

...These are the things I want to remember : )


  1. Mia, you need to write a book. Your style is so - well - comfortable is the only word I can think of. It's full of love too and wonder. Smallie is astounding isn't he? He looks so happy painting away and then to make that loom. Wow! What if you want to make something larger? Clearly these looms are quite small. I use a cardboard loom but I can imagine the peg one is much easier to use and one can use chunkier materials.

    Super blog as always.

  2. Thank you Gina, would just love to create a book one day! Always so lovely to have you here : )And yes, wonder is the word, love how children can inspire us.
    About the loom, you can buy (or make ; )a much longer loom for making bigger pieces. Check this out:
    And yes you're right you can recycle and weave with old jumpers and clothes etc. Do I feel a new project for you and Jim coming on..?! x

  3. Lord, Mia, I really just can't keep up with ye! Wonderful - absolutely love it, especially when he digs out the tools and gets going! Fantastic! Don't know about the ' I'm a realist and got my two feet on the ground part', but otherwise you are such an inspiration! So nice to see that you got over yourself and let your poor fellow hold a paint brush - mummy doesn't let me - indeed! Tough, when you got an artist as a mother ;D We'll catch up soon xxx

  4. brilliant, lovely, makes me wistful in a good way. happy birthday to your dear son, what a love he is. truly mia, you have such a good life. and i try not to be envious of it all. losing myself in your photos and words, always seems to be enough.
    thank you for sharing,
    lori xx

  5. How beautiful is all that!!!!!! Wow Wow to Luka's ingenuity and how our children bring us gifts so often briniging us to where we need to be. Thank God for Motherhood and childhood and all we can learn.
    Thanks too for inspiring friends who bring such warm hearted thoughts to mind. Back in Autumn Madeleine wanted a paint box like Beatrix Potter, and we bought a watercolor set and went off to the beach for two days .We painted for hours in the sunny windy Fanore, it had been so long since I had painted outside and sketched the passing breezy moments. I wouldn't have done that without her. Though Now, Being as she is, she wants a bigger set, more brushes and ink pot: ) x

  6. My boys just recently said the same thing..."why don't we paint?" and in my head I said, "because of the mess I'll have to clean up!" I happened upon a sale of childrens art supplies and bought a bag of goodies. What I'll remember...the silence and the deep breathing of the three boys at the table lost in painting. It was cool. Love reading your blog. Franci

  7. Painting must be in the air :) My little girl paints with me- she does all the underpainting- which comes through in the actual painting and imbues the work with something wonderful. Your son is indeed resourceful- I always feel I have "suceeded" as a mother when I see my children think and act laterly and independently... And I have EXACTLY the same views re: childrens art materials- especially brushes- thoose awful nylon/plastic things, ahhh, the frustration!! I'm so delighted I have found you in Blogland!!

  8. I would like to pass on to you the Versatile Blogger Award if you are interested...see my post.

  9. Why thank you Natalie : ) I'll just go check it out!

  10. just....beautiful. every.bit.of.this.