The story of A Daffodil; a Poem; Happy un-Birthday Wishes; and a Handmade Card . . .

Back in January of this year, we had a smattering of snow here where I live in the South of England.  Now snow in January isn’t anything unusual – for we are in the winter months and winter can bring forth all sorts of weather – snow being one of them.

But what made the snow stand out for me was that I had one lone little Daffodil blooming in my garden.

It came to my notice in December last year. It grew taller and taller, over Christmas and into the New Year.  All alone, it stood up against winter rains, winter colds, winter winds and … even the cold smattering of snow could not rob this darling little thing which seemed to take on a personality by the time the snow came.  I’d began to actually talk to it, telling it that it was too soon for it to be poking its head out of its warm little bed.  I begged it not to unwrap its beautiful petals just yet, for it was far too cold. And then, determined to do its own thing, it unfurled and bloomed.   I talked to it daily, telling it how beautiful it was and how thankful I was for it to be there to greet me each day.  Even through the smattering of January snow it continued to be determined to stay with me.

Then the really bad winds came.  Those winds blew and blew, and the little brave daffodil fought on.  The wind was relentless and blew stronger and stronger – seemingly determined to take out the proud daffodil like some vile hit man who’d been hired to put an end to the joy of the Daffodil.  And it did.

The strong, violent wind blew the Daffodil over, and in doing so, broke the stem.  I felt dreadfully sad and had a moment of truly disliking winter winds with a passion.

It was during January that I shared the little Daffodil with a fellow blogger who I love to pieces.  Rabbit, of RabbitPatchDiary.com.  Rabbit posted a blog post on the 14th of January 2018, called  ‘To Love the Winter, Too’ – which was a total joy to read.  I commented on the post and within that comment I told her about the little Daffodil in my garden, saying:-

. . .  “. . .  it’s still Winter here in the United Kingdom, and yet …. there is a daffodil blooming in my front garden.  It grew and grew over Christmas, and a couple of days ago it burst into a great big smile.

I’ve explained gently to it that it’s a little early, and that the Sun hasn’t yet warmed up enough to shine the heat upon it and make it feel the rays of wonderment that I know it would normally enjoy. I just hope that it understood and is willing to hang around a little, until the sun does come out with some beautiful sun rays, just for this happy little daffodil.” . . . 

And this ↑ comment inspired Rabbit to compose the most beautiful poem which she blogged about, titling the post  ‘The Brave Little Daffodil’.  When I read the poem it made me choke back tears – for I knew that the Brave Little Daffodil in the poem was in fact my very own little Daffodil.

In a comment I told Rabbit that I would post a photograph of my Daffodil on my blog.  I’d taken a photograph of the Daffodil on the 16th of January and although the surroundings of the beautiful flower were dreary, dull, wet, and not terribly inspiring,  the appearance of the Daffodil was enough to bring joy to my heart.   I tried to make a post with the photo, but for some reason I just couldn’t make the words of my post show the wonderful feelings that this spark of wonderment had given me.  I failed totally.  So put it to one side, telling myself that perhaps I should just email the photo to Rabbit.

However, I now know why I wasn’t inspired to make that blog post at the time…  for something was happening which I needed to wait for.  Time had to pass in order for a whole triangle of love and inspiration to come into force,  and now it has.

A little while ago I realised that I’d missed a much-loved bloggers Birthday.  The blogger: Beverly of  ‘MoreInkPlease.com’ (aka LateBloomingDesigns), and hadn’t made her or sent her a card to celebrate her Birthday.  So I did what any decent friend would do …  I made her a Happy Unbirthday Card and posted it to her.  Late for her Birthday, but on time for her Un-Birthday!

Happy UnBirthday Card for Beverly 1

But what I didn’t know what that Beverly (of More Ink Please) was working on her own creation(s) which had been inspired by the Daffodil and the incredible poem which Rabbit (of Rabbit Patch Diaries) had written.

Beverly received her UnBirthday Card, and then confided in me that she was making something for me and a ‘something’ for someone else, so to expect something through the post soon.  (My excitement at this news is something I won’t share as I get so stupidly excited about Happy Mail that you’d think I was a child on Christmas Eve).

True to her word, a couple of weeks or so later, I received a package from Beverly, and upon opening it I found this incredible handmade card  . . .

Daffodil Card made by Beverly MoreInkPlease.com

. . . and was instantly touched deeply by the hard work which had gone into making those incredible Daffodils on the front of the card.

Cards are always beautiful things to receive, but a handmade card means the world to me.  Gifts are lovely – but for someone to ‘donate’ their time to you by making something for you is absolutely priceless to me, and because I feel like this I was instantly choked with emotion and gratitude that Beverly should go to SO much trouble.  But then …. I opened the card …. out popped a letter which Beverly had hand written to me, and … inside the card itself …  was the original poem which Rabbit had written in honour of my Winter Daffodil.

In the letter, Beverly confided that she’d made two of these cards, similar to each other but not the exact same, and that she’d sent the twin card to ….  Rabbit [of RabbitPatchDiary.com] – the writer of the poem!

This combination of two incredibly beautiful hearts joined together in one place and inspired by one lone little daffodil made the tears spill over my lashes and onto my cheeks.

As usual Mr. Cobs laughed at me and my tender heart and handed me the box of tissues.  I could barely speak to tell him why I was crying, I was so moved.

Let me share the poem which Rabbit wrote about my daffodil, with you :-

Very far away from me,

across the wild and open sea,

A brave little daffodil blooms,- I know,

because a fairy told me so.

He asked the rose to come along-

and the coral bells to sing their song-

But only the brave little daffodil.

had the courage and the will.

And so one cold and dreary day,

when springtime seemed so far away,

The fairy spied his gift of gold-

blooming, in the world so cold-

and so she did , what we all should-

she shared, when she found something good.

written by Rabbit of Rabbitpatchdiaries.com

. . .  and that was the poem that Beverly had collected up from Rabbits blog post, printed out and fixed into the inside of the amazing card which Bev had made for me.

The Brave Little Daffodil Poem by Rabbit

Finally I now I know why I hadn’t been able to post the photograph of the little Winter January Daffodil when I originally took the photograph back on the 16th of January this year.  ‘Time’ was waiting for the right moment for that Daffodil to bring about somethings which would require the Daffodil to be shared, so that it’s full and complete story could be told as ‘one’ and everything arrive together in one place.  Right here.  Right now.

So here, for the first time, is that one, lone little Daffodil, on a dreary Winter January day, stood all by itself in wet chipped bark and with little colour from anything else (except some small, evergreen conifer trees) to keep her company.

Daffodil taken 16 January 2018

‘Time’ made it so that I couldn’t find the correct words in order to share the Daffodil back in January.  And now, now that the sides of this wonderful triangle which was being made have come together, the time is right and I can share it.

Daffodil 16th Jan 2018

I’m so sorry Rabbit that you’ve had these weeks of waiting for a photo to appear.  I knew that it would happen, I just didn’t know when, or how, or why it was being made so difficult.  But now I do.  ‘Time’ was making me wait for everything to come together.  And, finally, now it has. 

Thank you all for coming and letting me share these wonderful people with you.  I’m so blessed to have them in my life.  If you haven’t met Rabbit or Beverly before … have a little look around their blogs.  You might just fall in love with them too!

Hoping your Thursday is behaving itself for you, and that your day goes smoothly, gently and uncomplicated as can be.  May joy be the undercurrent and contentment be the result.

Much love to you ~

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#WorldWatercolorMonth

Three Little Fishies ~ an ATC/ACEO – painted for World Watercolour Month

Down in the meadow in a
little bitty pool
Swam three little fishies
And a mama fishie too
“Swim,” said the mama fishie,
“Swim if you can.”
And they swam and they swam all
over the dam
.
Boop boop diten datem whatem choo
Boop boop diten datem whatem choo
Boop boop diten datem whatem choo
And they swam and they swam
right over the dam
.
Three Little Fishies 1

#WorldWatercolorMonth

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The idea of painting Koi Carp popped into my mind and so I went with it.   Never painted fish before so this was a surprise choice for me!
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Painted in ATC/ACEO size – 2.5″x 3.5″
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The poem is one I remember singing with my girls when they were little,  and I remember singing it with my mum when I was a little girl  (back before dirt was invented – at least it feels like that some days).
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.Anyhoo … 
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HAPPY MONDAY!  Yes, I know that you perhaps might not feel overly happy that it’s Monday … but hey …  you have two choices:  You can either feel miserable all day and totally miss out on any smiles which could come your way.  OR  …  you can choose to feel happy that although it’s Monday, You’re Alive!  Now that surely has got to be an improvement on the alternative.  So choose happy!
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But … you don’t have to.  However,  remember that which ever you choose,  happy or miserable,  it was YOUR choice to feel that way.  So you can’t complain that life has given you a rubbish day, because you chose ‘miserable’.
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(This is why I always choose ‘happy’.  It always ends up being the best choice I’ve found).
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But … which ever you choose, may your day be peaceful and may you feel like you’ve made a positive difference in someway to someone else.  Be the smile that someone else needs.  Just do it.
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Be nice to yourself  …  and each other.  It helps the world to go around in a much better way.
Sending love ~
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Four tiny works of [he]art, called ATC’s / ACEO’s

Morning all, and a very Happy Monday!  Something a little different from the norm today.

Some folks might already know exactly what an ATC or an ACEO isbut some may notso I’ll give a short explaination to make sure that we’re all reading from the same hymn sheet and no one is at a disadvantage!

ATCs and ACEOs are  2 1/2  x  3 1/2  inch  works of art.  The only real difference between the two is the commercial (for sale) intent of the art piece by the artist.

  • ACEO = Art Cards, Editions, and Originals are virtually the same as ATCs, EXCEPT  they were created with the intent to be sold.
  • ATC = Artist Trading Cards were created with the intent to trade them only. (i.e. given as a swap with someone else, and no money changing hands).

While art is subjective, the quality of craftsmanship and materials used are important, so there are guidelines:

Examples of ‘Sub-par’ works are:

  • Collage elements falling off / poorly glued / glue showing
  • Cards of the wrong size  (It’s a very strict size of 2.5″ x 3.5″)
  • Computer print outs which haven’t been made by the ATC maker, and poorly drawn over.
  • Cards created with little to no thought (i.e. a sticker or rubber stamped image on a plain piece of cardboard with little to no extra effort)
  • Scribbles on a plain piece of paper

Basically you should make what you would dearly love and want to receive.

Ok .. schools out.

I like to paint my ATC’s & ACEO’s – but have been known to make the odd fun art card which may have beads, images, book pages, musical manuscripts and all manner of other things attached to them.  It’s just as the fancy takes me.  However, these ATC’s / ACEO’s which I share today have all been painted, on water-colour card, pre-cut to the correct size.

This first one was inspired by the Lavender plants in my garden.

Lavender pot

The colour of the mount is actually more like the green in the photo at the head of this post.  The flash has changed the colour here and made it look more like a sage green.

The mount in the photo (the surrounding green board) is from a selection of different coloured mounts I asked a framer to make for me, in the right size, with the ‘hole’ cut to the correct size to take the ATC/ACEO.  The mounts are not a requirement for an Art Card – but personally, I really love having the mounts if I want to frame a card.  The Art Cards themselves are so small, they could easily get lost inside a frame, so I love to use the mounts to draw the eye inwards to the art.

This next Art Card is again inspired by my garden (and again, the green mount has been washed out by the flash):

British Bluebells

Bluebells.  ATC/ACEO – 2.5″ x 3.5″ in size.

I have Bluebells in little groups of flowery hats for fairies,  all over the garden.  When in bloom they look like a fairy milliner has set out a selection of different sized Bluebell Hats, ready for any passing fairy to try on for size.

Of course .. there are some Bluebells which are of the larger size … and I should imagine that the Fairy Dress Designer is kept busy making beautiful skirts and frocks for those fairies who wish to be dressed by the best!

This next Art Card is something from the Fairy Gardens up and down the lands ….  It’s official name is Taraxacum –  or – to you and me: –  a Dandelion Clock.  But you and I know them as they really are:  Fairies, or Fairy Wishes … which are meant to be picked and blown whilst making a wish!

Dandelion Wishes

Make a Wish!  An Art Card ATC/ACEO of 2.5″ x 3.5″ in size.

Although it first appears to be painted simply in black and white, it has three different greens, two different whites,  a very soft grey colour and black.  It also has some cheeky dots of glitter dust.  Well …  it’s a Fairy Wish …. it would have been rude not to include glitter dust!

Information about Dandelion plants from that font of knowledge Wiki:

Taraxacum is a large genus of flowering plants in the family Asteraceae, which consists of species commonly known as dandelion.  They are native to Eurasia and North America, but the two commonplace species worldwide,  T. officinale and T. erythrospermum,  were imports from Europe that now propagate as wildflowers.  Both species are edible in their entirety.  

I’m teaching my Grandson, Little Cobs, this poem (which I loaned my Art Card to, as a background)  and trying to get him to remember to say it before he blows a Dandelion Clock and makes a wish ….

1 Dandelion poem by SA Hall

Dandelion poem written by S.A.Hall.

And finally, in this set of four ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards – aka ACEO’s) is a little bunch of Delphiniums, tied up with a bow of green …

Delphiniums

ATC/ACEO – A Bunch of Delphiniums,  painted in the size of 2.5″x 3.5″

The spring green coloured bow is something which is allowed in an ATC/ACEO.  It’s all part of the art.

If you’re interested in finding out more about ACEO’s/ATC’s,  and perhaps making some yourself then there are lots of forums which are dedicated to this art form.  One here:  ATCs For All .com  and I’ve also found another site which gives information which you might find helpful here: artpromotivate.com  …  but Google will be your bestest friend if you’d like to see more.

There are also a bucket-load of video’s on You Tube which you can watch – ranging from a couple of minutes to …. oh, well, how long is a piece of string?!!!

Some people take their Art Cards extremely seriously and will spend hours on them.  Some make them for fun and to pass a bit of time doing something which has no stress.  Other’s make them for no reason, and some folks make them, and swap them with other makers.  Some people make and sell them … and some of these artists have quite a following and can command quite high prices for such a tiny piece of artwork.  And then there’s me …. who makes them and will either keep them, send them to someone as a surprise, or I’ll use them on a handmade card … or even use them in scrap-booking.

A Bunch of Flowers

Have a go!  You don’t need to paint, you can glue, stick, draw, … anything  Just do have a go  … and if you do … please blog your lovely artwork and let everyone see it.  You might just be the person who inspires others to take up this fabulous little pastime,  and you might also find out that you really like playing in this tiny frame!

Before I toddle off …. 

May I take a moment to say HELLO  to some new followers who no doubt will become friends with us all eventually.  I won’t name names, but please feel welcome to comment on blog posts and introduce yourself.  If you have a blog yourself you can bet your sweet bippy that people here will come and visit your blogs and you might even pick up some new followers yourself too!

Anyhoo Happy Monday  and …  have a truly wonderful week!   Thank you so much for coming and joining me in having a coffee round the kitchen table.  I love seeing you here.

Sending squidges and lots of Monday love to all.  Be good to each other and  … may your God go with you.  ~

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I’ll Rope You A Star ~ a handmade, little stars, Wand.

Rope a Star  Wand

Did you know … that a Wand isn’t in the least bit magical?  It can’t do a thing.  It has absolutely NO power. NOTHING Let me explain more . . .

All a wand actually is,  is a ‘tool’ on which to focus your attention.  Believe me, if wands themselves really could do ‘stuff’ all on their own, I certainly wouldn’t collect the pretty wands which I do! (or any other sort of wand for that matter!).

Let me take you back to your school days   Imagine for a moment that you’re sat in the classroom, and you’re giggling and whispering with the girl next to you.  Suddenly the teacher’s voice BOOMS out, and shouts your name!  You look up and see him standing there, with a cross face,  hands on hips.  He looks right at you,  gives you a stern telling off and tells you that you’re disrupting his class.

Embarrassing eh?

Now let’s replay that scene again . . . 

The teacher’s voice  BOOMS  out, and shouts your name!  You look up and see your teacher standing there pointing his index right at you.  He’s looking very cross.  Looking directly at you but still pointing his finger at you, shaking it the merest amount, he raises his voice and tells you off, – all the time he’s doing this he continues to point that finger at you.

Can you see (and feel)  how much more ‘menacing’ the whole scene becomes simply because he’s pointing his finger at you?

That finger doesn’t have anything magical about it, and yet it seems to hold so much more ‘power’.

That’s exactly the same as a wand.  All a finger pointing at you is doing is focusing your attention.  (and the person who’s pointing at you’s attention).  A wand is exactly the same thing.   It just focus’ the attention.

Well now I’ve blathered on about how wands don’t have any power, you can perhaps now understand why they don’t ‘freak’ me out, and even why I love to make pretty, magical to the eye, wands!   And this  ‘Rope a Star’ wand is magical to the eye.

Rope a Star  Wand

The inspiration for this wand came from my childhood.  My mother used to tell me a poem, song, or story (I sadly can’t remember which) when I was little, but I do remember that I loved it.  Sadly I cannot remember what the story, song, poem was – and my mother has passed on, so I can’t ask her about it – but I remember a line from it which went something like:  ‘I’ll throw a rope out and rope a star just for you’ …  and that line conjured up such wonderful images inside my little mind,  and it still does now.

So I decided that I would throw a rope out and rope a star –  but this time I’d make mine a rope which wrapped itself around a wand, and the stars would hang from the wand itself.

There are little silver stars which dangle from lot’s of places on the wand, and there’s a crescent moon with stars hanging from the heel of the wand (at the top end as you’re looking at it in the photo.  The ribbon and star cuff around the top of the wand is removable.

Over the years I’ve tried to find the poem, song or story which mentions this ‘roping in a star’ and I’ve never found it.  But if you happen to know it or know where to find it, I’d be thrilled if you could either let me know or pop a link into a comment so that I could go and find it.

Star Light Star Bright1

Have a truly blessed rest of your day, all,  . . .  and a fabulously twinkly, star lit night. 

Cobs siggy sml

A Craftaholic’s Prayer

A Craftaholic’s Prayer

Dear Lord,
I’m going to need some notice
Before my days are done.
You see,  I’m a craftaholic.
A fact not known to some.

My craft room, it is bulging
All corners, crannies and nooks
There’s loads of boxes under the bed,
(I hope no one ever looks!)

I tell myself when shopping,
“No more craft bits today,”
But craft shops are like magnets
Drawing me their way.

I’m totally at their mercy
Just “need” a dozen of each.
Then I hurry home to hide them
Before the family starts to preach.

So Lord, I’ll need a little time
To dispose of all this stuff.
And Lord,  can we just keep all of this,
between the two of us?

I couldn’t find any details about who wrote this poem so if you know please leave me a message to tell me who to credit.  I think I’ll be turning this into a sign for my craft room.  It’s so apt!

Happy Crafting all.

Cobs siggy sml

A Thank you from The Cobweborium Emporium

The Round-Tower of my Heart.

The Round Tower of my Heart a pin / brooch  handmade by  Cobwebs

The Round Tower of my Heart
a pin / brooch
handmade by
Cobwebs

This tiny piece of (almost) nothingness was based upon the last few lines of a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  Although I’d read the poem before,  (way back in my teens),  I’d forgotten about it until I opened a book to read one evening and found the ending of the poem at the very start of the book.   On the opening page, were these last eight lines of the poem:

I have you fast in my fortress,
And will not let you depart,
But put you down into the dungeon
In the round-tower of my heart.

And there will I keep you forever,
Yes, forever and a day,
Till the walls shall crumble to ruin,
And moulder in dust away!!

Those lines have stayed with me ever since – and I’ve never forgotten them.

It was because of the last four lines of the poem that I decided to make The Round Tower of my Heart pin/brooch.

The Round Tower of my Heart pin.

The Round Tower of my Heart pin.

It’s really quite tiny to look at with the naked eye – at less than an inch at it’s very widest point,  and although 2″ tall it looks smaller because of the design.  (measurements in the photograph are in centimetres).

I purposely made it with a nod to the more whimsy, but in very dark silvery grey/black, as I wanted it to feel like it was, although a little foreboding and from the depths of somewhere that was dark,  actually a quiet, gentle, beautiful place (hence the whimsical beauty of the piece) – but that it was also a place which kept that within its walls a closely guarded secret, and away from the prying eyes of others.  Down in the dungeon; in the Round Tower of my Heart

Thank you so much for visiting, and having a read.  I hope the pin brooch is something which holds something for you.

Have a wonderful rest of your day.

Cobs siggy sml