Sunday, February 17, 2013

I have recovered...

from the Haggis well enough to tell the tale.
IT wasn't as bad as I thought it would be (sheep's gizzards and various spare bits, mixed up with a fair amount of fat and oatmeal served with mashed 'tatties and neeps, that's turnip for you ignorant folk) but the fun thing was the ceremony surrounding it. Our host played a video of himself giving the "Address to the haggis" at a Burns night ("Oh Prince of Puddins" was about all I could decipher from the Scots brogue) . The haggis itself is rather gluey and I could imagine it stickin' to yer rrrribs on a cold Highland moor, being served up in the middle of an Aussie summer was possibly not fair to the Haggis. After the meal we kicked back with a wee glass in our hands and watched a video of The Highlander, well, anything with Liam Neeson is okay by me.
A quiet afternoon and some etegami making, still a little bit infatuated with making stamps,( not always successfully) I do like the dog though.

There are at least three other people in our etegami clique who are as besotted by dogs as I am.
I have been listening to songs from my youth and this one "Vincent" by Don Mclean is just about my favourite of all time. Anything by Carol King comes a close second.
A stamped version.

Friday, February 15, 2013

One of the joys...

of getting older, (received a missive the other day from the Labor party inviting me to a workshop on issues confronting the elderly, I was only momentarily insulted and then started to stare reality in the face!), I digress.  As I was saying it is nice to be retired and have more time (or less whatever way you look at it) and I got to thinking that now I do have more time for my friends, no longer tied down and busy, busy, busy. Looking back however that busyness was sometimes just an excuse for laziness.
So as usual I have made a postcard using a carved dragonfly stamp to remind myself that friends are all.
And on that note we are off tonight to a Scottish friend's house to eat...Haggis and work our way through his extensive whiskey collection....just wee sips mind you...(makes funny Scottish noise approximating throat clearing).

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Devil makes work for idle hands....

so, just in case he is lurking around I try to keep busy while doing mindless things such as watching TV or listening to trashy audiobooks. Hence, my ongoing obsession with knitting. Not the useful,"oh what a beautiful sweater, did you make it yourself?" kind of knitting, but fun knitting. In order to do this I trawl the internet looking for patterns such as this one;, by Rian Anderson, a Grommit lookalike.
So while the Universe dictates that I spend a lot of time sitting around, the least I can do is clutter it up with silly stuff like this.

Monday, February 4, 2013

If my heart had wings...

It would fly a million miles and deliver my valentine etegami personally to all of my wonderful online friends in the Etegami Fun Club.
It would make an extra special delivery to our etegami "mother" DosankoDebbie who is currently snowed under (literally) in Sapporo. It is Debbie who has opened up a great wide world of friends through her Facebook page and her gentle guidance in the mysteriesof of Japanese "picture letters", all the while tolerating our individual interpretations of the "rules".
It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words and in many cases that is true for a lot of us, Japanese, and westerners who do not speak the other's language. Sometimes the picture is enough and at other times Debbie will help by translating Japanese to English and vice versa, it is no surprise that she has spent a lifetime in Japan and made her career being a translator.
So a big Happy Valentine to you Debbie for opening up a world of friends for me and many others who cannot easily go out into the world as we would like.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

These beans are not for throwing!

This season in Japan is called Setsubun and householders traditionally throw roasted soybeans across their doorstep in order to scare away monsters and the ill fortune that may have accumulated over the previous year. It also marks the day before the official start to spring but here we are going into autumn and my soybeans are  ripening into yummy crunchy edamame my favourite part of a Japanese meal. I certainly won't be throwing them anywhere but down my greedy throat!
Wild wet weather has almost destroyed the veggie garden so today is a day of cleaning up and replanting for the winter season, I'm thinking nice sweet round Japanese turnips, heaps of coriander (cilantro) and nice tender "pick as you go" lettuce.