alithea: (Rainbow River (made by hollycore))
Because I mentioned spring yesterday, it was wet and windy and about 8 degrees C when I walked home yesterday evening, and the heating came on last night and this morning without anyone touching the thermostat. Such is Scottish weather!
alithea: (altar candle (please do not take))
Wishing you all a special time with loved ones over the festive period and hoping the return of the sun brings light and hope, or at least comfort in the darkness, to you all. Much love and safe journey to all those travelling over the holidays x
alithea: (altar candle (please do not take))
Hope this Solstice finds you and yours safe and warm and dry and well-fed, and that the longer days bring happiness with them.

alithea: (Autumn wolf)
I walked home from work in the snow on Friday. And I don't mean rain masquerading as sleet, I mean actual, size of my finger nails, snowflakes. In the city centre. I'm pretty sure this is the earliest it has snowed in Dundee in the 9 years I've lived here. A friend commented on FB that her Dad thought someone had set this years' weather to shuffle - I think I agree! We have had some glorious autumn weather though, which makes up for the lack of summer in my book, although possibly not anyone else's ;)

Now I just need to see the northern lights when we are out at Glen Prosen for the Halloween LARP next weekend!
alithea: (summer_picnic)
Feeling really good today - did my rowing machine exercises this morning, some errands walking round town this afternoon and then finally made it back to t'ai chi tonight. I don't know whether it is just this HIT protocol thing, but either way, it feels good.

Happy Lammas everyone, I hope you all have something to be grateful for this harvest season.
alithea: (summerbench)
The sun is shining here today and I'm wearing my fabby artisan trousers rather than wool tights. Still a bit sniffly but *fingers crossed* this cold is on the way out - my head and ears aren't too bad today. And our wedding rings are ready and look gorgeous from the photo the guy has sent me! Can't wait to see them in person.

Hopefully things are looking up :)

ETA: And Chapter 3 of the Wormworld Saga is up!

ETA 2: Said picture of the rings is now linked in comments (friends-locked)
alithea: (Default)
*Big work meeting on Thursday went pretty well - have comprehensive plan of attack for getting paper accepted in GCB and detailed to do list. Spent the evening at the student union creating my character for the Boy's 7th Sea game inspired by the Dorothy Dunnett books we have both been reading. Can't wait to play her, she's a beautiful and deadly Castillian mercenary with a very bad attitude.

*The Boy had the day off on Friday so we went out for lunch & a spot of pottering, I did two of the three things I've been putting off for ages, and then worked in the evening while the Boy was out anyway.

*On Saturday, I felt a bit crap (that'll be spending Thursday evening in a warm box full of germ-ridden students) so taking it easy won over going swimming. I finished off the work I needed to do for a colleague for Monday, spend 1 1/2 hours on the phone to my folks who had been away on holiday for 2 weeks, and then spent the evening catching up on TV. Dr Who was filler (part of me wondered whether the baby was to convince us that we wouldn't have wanted them to go back and rescue River as one), True Blood was an improvement (I'm remembering there are other characters I love too, primarily LaFayette, and the vampire politics plot should be less irritating than all that Marianne nonsense, which got on my wick heartily by half way through last season), and I'm also watching the re-run of Misfits season 2 because it turns out to be much better than I expected from the trailers.

*Sunday, we took a couple of friends out for the afternoon and visited Balvaird Castle in Fife, which isn't usually open for internal viewing, and Stanley Mills outside Perth (which was more interesting than I was expecting having grown up in a mill area and been dragged to them for umpteen school trips - we got to play with waterwheel models complete with gushing water and sluice gates!).

*And yesterday, I spent my lunchbreak trotting round Templeton woods with the Boy and we saw 5 red squirrels and a waxwing, and had a picnic by Clatto reservoir.

Today is work and hopefully swimming, tomorrow is work and t'ai chi, Thursday is work and roleplaying, and we have plans for 4 out of the next 5 weekends - I approve of autumn :)
alithea: (Default)
The monthly changing headers are all well and good, some of them have been really pretty, but I do hate it when they end up clashing with my default userpic. Oh well, it's rather late in the year for daffs now, I guess it was about time for a change anyway.


Mar. 10th, 2010 02:48 pm
alithea: (Default)
I am declaring it to be spring, although having my lounge window open didn't last long because the traffic noise started to grate on my nerves immediately. However, it is lovely and sunny, much milder than it has been, and the crocuses were in full bloom when I headed up to the college earlier.

Also, I finally have something to show for having spent 3 weeks making a plaster press mould last term, but photos will have to wait because I've come home early from class to get on with some work.

As you were.
alithea: (Default)
I was going to post a picture of my sparkly Yule tree today but I just discovered that both sets of camera batteries are flat so you'll have to wait until I've recharged them!

I finished reading The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly before I went swimming at lunchtime. It took me a little while to get into it, but when I did, I really enjoyed it, particularly when it turned out to have Roland in it and reminded me of The Dark Tower series. Maybe it's strange coming from a 31 1/2 year old, but I still find Coming of Age stories mean a lot to me and this one was particularly timely, reminding me that the important thing about fear is not that we don't feel it, but that we don't let it paralyze us or drive us into doing things we would never normally contemplate. It strikes me that having the courage to face our fears and act noblely inspite of them is a big part of getting the most out of this journey we call life, and as Roland's tale illustrates, it's the journey that matters...

Also, I've been surrounded by people squeeing about Tim Minchin for most of the year and have been thoroughly bemused, but then a friend pointed me towards his Christmas song, 'White Wine in the Sun' and now I get what everyone is on about. For those of you who can't be bothered to click on the YouTube link and listen, it's a rather poignant and touching ballad about how he really likes Christmas because he spends it with his family, the people who make him feel safe in this world, and it sums up really nicely why I don't hold any truck with people who insist Christmas is pointless without Jesus (no offense to the Christians out there whose religious festival has been co-opted, but I think you have to accept that these days, in the UK at least, it is a secular festival to the majority of people who celebrate it)(even though I'm not freaked out by churches and would rather have Desmond Tutu than Dawkins over for dinner). The bit about the hymns particularly stuck a chord (*heehee*) because it is the singing that I miss most about going to Church on Christmas Eve.
alithea: (Default)
I've actually managed to achieve stuff today which is a rare for a Monday. That's what happens when I do things before turning the computer on! As a result, I have a tea loaf cooling in the kitchen and had a lovely walk earlier before the sun started going down. We're in the midst of our first really cold snap of the season at the moment - it's been beautifully sunny for the past 2 days but the pavements are thick with frost in the shade and the big pool at the Swanny Ponds is about 3/4 frozen over.

I can't believe it's the second week of November already, this year is going so fast. I've given up on getting the bathroom finished before the new year, it's just too cold and damp to get the paint dry now. Instead, my plan for this month is mostly to get organised for the festive season in the hope that I'm busy working by December. Speaking of work, what I should be doing is the final edits on That Report as the IFA sent it back again; they are really taking the micky now! Still, it is mostly just proof-reading errors now so shouldn't take long.

In other news, I am frantically trying to avoid succumbing to the lurgy that has hit most of the roleplaying society over the past week. I'm not doing too well because I already have a bit of head cold but I'm dosing myself up with paracetamol and decongestants, and trying to do some gentle exercise, and get sunlight and fresh air every day. Went for a walk along the water front on Saturday and swimming yesterday (although that might have been a bit much, my head was noticable worse afterwards), and a walk around two local parks earlier today. Mage game tonight, which I'm looking forward to except that it involves spending another evening with the plague bearers, still at least they won't be in my home this time ;) Trying to decide if I want to go to a T'ai chi workshop in a couple of weeks despite having not been to a class since January...
alithea: (altar candle (please do not take))
This is a pretty good article about the rise of Paganism in the UK, except for her insistance that Harry Potter helped make "pagan spirituality and mythology part of pop culture". Given that religion is completely absent from Harry's world, the books probably have less to do with pagan spirituality than any other books which include witches and magic that I can think of!

Hope everyone had a good Midsummer's Day yesterday. We didn't manage a countryside visit, but we did have a lovely little feast of Scottish lamb with roast spuds, and steamed carrots and leeks, followed by raspberries with creamy peach yoghurt, all accompanied by elderflower cordial. Yum, yum :)
alithea: (Bones (made by seeaseye))
Short work contract came through, unexpectedly full-time, so I've been a bit snowed under. Still, the money will be good :)

Pottery has finished for the summer hols but I still have some things to put together and my next big project is photographing everything and getting it for sale online. I finally picked up the other painted stoneware pendants I'd been waiting on for months yesterday evening, so they will hopefully be going up on my blog over the weekend.

Was very good last week and did 60 lengths in the pool twice, but haven't really done any exercise at all this week :( Flat wrangling was achieved at the weekend though, in that the kitchen has been re-arranged, and it is loads better for it - looks so much wider with the fridge at the end of the units and my mock dresser (old pine desk with narrow shelves sitting on top) opposite the sink instead. Bathroom has temporarily stalled due to lack of suitable wood trim for the top of the tongue and groove, but hopefully we'll start the painting soon.

Last weekend also involved a cycle ride in the pouring rain, which reminded me of some of the ones i did as a kid during the school holidays, and we finally got to meet baby Samuel, albeit it fleetingly. Not sure what will be happening this weekend - apparently the weather is going to improve (the rain is lashing down just now, and has been on-and-off all week!) so hopefully we'll manage a countryside excursion for Mid Summer.

Oh, and I highly recommend Stephen King's Dark Tower series to anyone who hasn't read it yet; I'm on book 5 and loving it (and there are only 7 in the complete series incase you were concerned).
alithea: (altar candle (please do not take))
I'm hoping the weather will be better tomorrow because we are off to St. Andrews Castle to the Medieval Beltaine Fayre for the day with some friends and I'm particularly looking forward to May pole dancing as I've never actually done it :)

Today however, it is wet and horrible. I need to pop into town to run some errands and I'm trying to talk myself into going swimming (going to get wet anyway, may as well have exercise at the same time!). Have been a complete funk all week, mostly due to feeling a bit yuck, and could do with the endorphins now the lurgy seems to have abated.
alithea: (Spring (from nomnomicons))
It's sunny but very windy here, winter hasn't quite given up just yet and my windows are whistling as usual.

Ended up taking a proper break over the weekend, which is probably a good thing, although I'm still tired today as I actually got up at a sensible time this morning because I'm expecting a heating engineer (who, of course, will now probably turn up at 4.30 pm!). Highlights of the weekend were:

- Ray and Maria winning the ice skating (Robin Cousins soo wants him to turn pro but I think he's going to take some persuading given I very much doubt there is much money in it, still it would be nice to actually have a decent British skater again)

- Managed to get hold of a copy of Fantasy & Science Fiction in Borders - the Ellen Kushner short story is rather good and now I want to read Swordspoint again!

- The Kingdom Beyond the Waves is really rather good; if you enjoyed The Court of the Air but thought he crammed too much into one book, I'd definately recommend the sequel, it's more streamlined and the characterisation is better. The 3rd one will be on my wishlist when it comes out in paperback.


Mar. 13th, 2009 01:50 pm
alithea: (Spring (from nomnomicons))
It was so mild yesterday, despite being really windy, that I walked home from the pool with wet hair and no hood on, so I've decided it is time to banish the ice berries for a few months and break out a spring icon. It's looking quite spring like around here - my clivia is in full bloom, I have pretty little tete-a-tetes flowering, and the tradescantias have been at it too, and the mystery pink thing is still full of flowers! And the park is full of crocuses, still a bit early for daffs up here though, I think. Also, we can tell it is March because Gizmo has decided 5 am is breakfast time...


Back to the to-do list anyway, have been too distracted by pottery-related glee the last couple of weeks.
alithea: (Snow & lights (made by boundary))
The snow isn't so much coming down as flying past my window horizontally. Somewhat appropriately, since today is otherwise celebrated as Candlemass, I have 200 watts of candle bulbs* lit so I can stare at this screen without damaging my eyes.

It will be spring soon...

ETA: and we just had thunder too! I don't think I ever heard thunder during a snow storm before... I assumed it was something to do with the big hole in the road outside but a friend on the other side of town just posted to say she heard it too (ahh, the wonders of technology!).

*I realise this is Not Good but the main light fitting currently has a dimmer switch so I cannot change them to energy saving bulbs without replacing it first, which I haven't got around to because I don't generally use the main light. I don't have sufficient lamps to get enough light in here any other way and was getting eye strain headaches trying to manage with them.
alithea: (Strange Witch (made by vega-ofthe-lyre))
I guess it's the time of year for it but all I want to be doing just now is playing in the dirt - I have plants in need of repotting, shooting bulbs which need potting up, and last night at pottery class I got my first handmade beads back, all glazed and shiny, and now I'm hooked and just want to sit making more and more... Feeling the cool earth/clay beneath my fingers, waiting to awaken, just like the Earth and the rest of us.

Unfortunately, these things do not pay the bills. These hands need to be typing a report and my brain needs to come out of hibernation. Time for a cuppa, I think.

The crocus were beginning to sprout in the park yesterday, though.
alithea: (altar candle (please do not take))
I have cheery fairy lights, dinner smells lovely and a friend is coming to join us for the evening soon. I hope everyone else is as blessed today and that the returning sun brings much light and love to you and yours!
alithea: (altar candle (please do not take))
Have a magical evening, everyone.

I'm off for a walk in a local park with some woods and a rather old untended graveyard, to leave some offerings of thanks for this year's harvest, and generally be a bit witchy :) And tomorrow, some good friends are coming over for dinner and The Boy has something of an autumnal feast planned to welcome in the Celtic New Year.

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