Tuesday, 16 January 2018

2018 Projects

So we are back in Aberdeen after our big London adventure. And I am currently unemployed so need to structure my life with some projects:

Trying different work: I am currently volunteering at a museum of Catholic history, working on an art exhibition. I'm really enjoying it and learning about working with images, structuring an exhibition etc.

Reading projects: I am missing the art in London so will be doing lots of art reading. Also trying to see as many arty things as possible, I am currently finding and photographing urban art. I also got to love walking in London and here there is the bonus of the countryside so will be reading about landscapes, the countryside, walking and will be illustrating landscapes. I have recently got back into knitting so will be reading on that. Suggestions needed for a fiction or history reading project!

Fashion projects: I did not buy anything in the sales! And I got rid of two binbags of clothes to Oxfam. In 2018 I will be spending less on clothes and trying to assemble an intelligent and high quality wardrobe, rather than impulse buying weird stuff all the time.

Social projects: we have joined a gaming club, which meets in a gothic themed pub on tuesday nights, and will be using shopping money saved to eat out more. This week in our favourite local restaurant, Maggie's Grill.

Food projects: Inspired by me and Leen's themed dinners I am working through my cookbooks. First up Gastronomy of Italy by Anna del Conte. So far beef stew with spices, lamb and potato stewand spaghetti with tomato and bacon have all been delicious. I also plan to do foods of Poland and Ukraine later.

Saturday, 13 January 2018

Architectural Dundee

A lot of people seem to think that Dundee is an ugly and unappealling city. Having lived there for many years I can definitely refute that. I was in Dundee for a few days over the holidays and spotted one of my favourite buildings; the Tower Pharmacy on Perth Road. 
This is an extremely interesting circular building which dates in its details from the C18th, but due to it's strategic site and unusual shape I think may be much older and possibly based on the early fortifications of the city. Huge blocks of masonry survive at the back of the tower. Skeletons have been discovered under the tower from the medieval hospital that stood here.
There is a crescent moon on the top, This is a muslim or Saracen symbol installed by a sea captain, Morgan, who lived here.

Friday, 5 January 2018

January Birds

I spotted these two little birds in a lovely shrub which was flowering without leaves. The one on the left is a robin and on the right a coal tit maybe? I looked at them for a bit as a break from heaving some boxes of crockery down the stairs to take to the charity shop. Unpacking includes clearing out of so far: three binbags of clothes, four boxes of kitchen equipment and two boxes of books. The flat is so weirdly clean and tidy and newly decorated I am trying to not cram it like a junk shop. 

Friday, 15 December 2017

Bonus New Year Resolutions Post

A lot of posts beginning with B this month!

New Year Thoughts 2018

I will continue to live more boldly, trying new things and staying out of my comfort zone.
I have joined an art class and will stretch my art more
I will eat fruit every day
I will walk more and go to the gym once a week
I will clear out the flat
I will climb Bennachie
I will get a new job
I will think about buying a new home
I will say yes to more new experiences
And no to things I don't want to do
I will make good use of all my London experiences

Do any blog readers have any resolutions?

Bananas on the Balcony

A picture of my banana plant at it's peak on the balcony. Having a balcony made me realise how amazing it would be to have a garden. The banana did not fruit but the tomato plants courtesy of my stepdad's son Andrew were fantastic. The banana also reminds me of the amazing huge banana plants in the herbaceous border at Buckingham Palace as I zoomed past in the golf cart.
There may be a bit if a gap in pictures and blogs for a bit as we are both moving and going away for xmas.
Until the New Year!

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Baroque In Hammersmith

This is Bradmore House, in Hammersmith. The front facade is a rare and lovely example of English Baroque architecture from the C18th. The formerly very grand house, of which this was a small wing, has had a rather chequered history, being demolished in 1913. The front and two interiors were saved. The front was re-erected as part of the bus garage and the interiors given to a local almshouse and the Geffrye Museum. In 1994 the area was again redeveloped and the front rebuilt with a matching building behind (now a Chinese restaurant) and the Geffrye Museum interior reinstalled. 
The house is in an unappealing location as part of a shopping centre but this front facade can be appreciated from the churchyard over the road. It is one of my favourite local buildings. 

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Backs of Places: Kensington

This is a small mews by South Kensington station. Mews were back lanes used to access the rear of posher buildings and for stables and staff living. Typically stables and or a coachhouse would open onto a cobbled yard or alley and people who worked with the horses would live above. They are now very desirable homes. In London it is always fun to explore small alleys where you may find older houses, obscure shops or interesting street art.