Ring the bells! I’ve been a-scrapping and have something to show you!! It's actually a sample LO for the weekly challenge which my UKS team, the Doodlin' Daisies, are hosting next week, so I won't reveal too much about the qualifying elements just yet - but suffice to say I had a jolly good time making this, which is quite different to my usual style. I went wild with the doodles - and to give them more impact coloured them in using acrylic paint. What fun!! The picture is of a flower I found last Saturday whilst we were walking Rocky through the woods behind the house I grew up in as a child. I was amazed to find a thick crop of these beautiful things - rising from the black ashes and charred logs which were the tell tale signs of an old forest fire. It really was a wonder of nature to see something so delicate and beautiful growing from something so ugly.
It really was a delight to find this flower, as to be honest; the rest of the walk was quite disheartening. Many of the trees have been felled leaving huge open and barren looking areas, and the old lake was very over grown - to the point that actually - it looked like land rather than the beautiful open water that used to be in its’ place. Even the pathways were either boggy or overgrown. Amazingly, the waterfall still looked as beautiful as ever though - I took hundreds of pictures and will try to upload some in my next post.
It really was heartbreaking for me to see a place I love and hold so dearly to my heart in such an unloved state. I feel privileged to have grown up in such beautiful surroundings - I truly believe having the freedom to run and play amongst the open, landscaped grounds and the woodland helped shape my imaginative and creative side to my personality. It is also a very historic site, being the former land on which a Sir (John Llewellyn) had his mansion; he was responsible for taking some of the first photographs of the moon through a telescope (the observatory in which this happened still stands - but surprise surprise the commemorative plaque has recently vanished and not been replaced). Sir John Llewellyn was also a great lover of traveling to far and distant shores - and would bring back rare and exquisite Orchid specimens which were displayed in his grand Hot House - the remains of which can be found by adventurous walkers up on the side of the wooded valley. Many places and landmarks throughout Swansea still bare the Llewellyn name in his honour. But otherwise, his legacy seems non-existent.....and the beautiful estate which he once loved so much, and I still love, seems to be forgotten too.
There is a site I came across once, (if you are interested in the sort of thing) all about the Llewellyn family, and the history of the estate - with beautiful pictures of how it once looked here. The opening animation is just a little further down from what used to be the view from my bedroom window. If you click on "The Story" link once you enter the site - the time line has some original watercolours and lovely old pictures, taken by Sir John Llewellyn (a keen photographer) himself, of the mansion, the Orchid hot house, the waterfall and lake the observatory - and at the very end there's a picture of how I knew it all - the little bench in the left of the picture is where my sister and I used to wait for the school bus to come in and pick us up! Also the Science and Nature section (each word is a separate link) has more pictures of the Observatory - which as I've said still stands to this day.
Anyway - hope I haven't bored you all to death with that history lesson there...but it’s something that’s special to me you know!!! So to wake you all up I have another page completed last month for the monochromatic challenge set by Scrapbook Inspirations for the Swansea crop. It opens out to reveal some hidden journaling - a thank you to Lee for the six years we’ve had together. My stab at a simplistic style looked a little lost on the table with all the other marvellous efforts from my fellow croppers - but I was still happy with the result as I feel I achieved the look I set out to.
And finally, a quick couple of pics of how my little patio is looking after the revamp we gave it last week. I’m pleased to announce that we haven’t killed anything yet, and I’ve not been near the nasty itchy scratchy trees that I was allergic too that we planted down in the garden.
Here’s a snap of my little bay tree, the rosemary and the basil in the shelter of the bamboo fencing. We also have some lavender, thyme and coriander opposite them where they can get the full sun they need. The copper strips around the pots are supposed to keep the slugs at bay – so we shall keep an eye on that one. Hope so – cos the roll cost me a fiver and as you can see wasn’t enough to go around the last pot!!
We’ve also had the additions of some little solar light since that picture was taken – which look all lovely now that the dark nights are drawing in. Lee also treated himself to what he deemed as a patio “must-have” – a terracotta chimnea. Fortunately, we had a couple of dry evenings to test it out before all this blooming rain blew in. Here’s a little pic of Lee playing about with the fire (now there’s a recipe for disaster if ever I saw it!) – ‘scuse the poor picture but I really could not keep still long enough for the slow shutter speed needed in such low light. So that’s one camera tripod added to my chrimbo list!!!
Have made a start on the double layout of Buryport harbour I mentioned a couple of posts ago - and so far it’s looking pretty fab and funky. I also have in my possession the most luscious Crate papers from the Cowgirl range, courtesy of the lubberly Chrissie, all ready to create my class for the South Wales crop next week. So tomorrow is going to be a me day! PC and telephone unplugged – no disturbances to my scrapping (so lets hope lil’ sis doesn’t go into labour eh?!) – and hopefully I’ll have something yummy to show you as a result!
Until then, my blogeroonies, take care xxxxxx