Cat coasters, because you never have enough cat themed stuff around.

raonaid:

Amazing! Totally going to do this for my parents Christmas!

Originally posted on Simply Yarn - when thread becomes something beautiful:

I share the love for yarn with many of my real life friends, We share and we discuss many different ideas, patterns and techniques.

In fact, It is not uncommon to send each other pictures to tempt ourselves into prove we can always come up with something new.

My best friend and I also share the love for cats, so when she sent me the picture of these cat coasters I fell in love with them in an instant.

Cat crochet

They were linked to me from a Facebook page, that in its turn redirected to a craft website. The bouncing from website to another wasn’t finsihed. These coasters were indeed featured in the Etsy page of Shanna Compton called hooks and balls.

I think it is important to give people credit for their work, especially if their work inspire you to create something similar.

RIght, now that I had uncovered…

View original 609 more words

Science, Craft and Poetry – A Long Overdue Update

I have been a very poor blogger in the last month. Work has been very busy and I’ve been trying to get my PhD in order. I have been trying to increase my productivity and be more positive. It’s working! I am now much more positive and I can start to see it all coming together and becoming more joyous about my work. I have been working on a raft experiment which is all finished and has been sent to the lovely people at Propath to be sectioned and stained. Looking forward to the results coming back…All fingers crossed.

My Babies in an Incubator on Day One
My Babies in an Incubator on Day One
SiHa cells on a collagen plug being fed with E media
SiHa cells on a collagen plug being fed with E media

I have also been doing lots of craft this month. The highlight so far being a Dr Who skirt made from a pillowcase I bought in a charity shop for £3! I have also bought a Buzz Lightyear duvet and a sheep duvet on Ebay which I am going to make into a skirts too. I am tempted to move on to dresses but going to try and get skirts down to an art first.

Homemade Dr Who skirt
Homemade Dr Who skirt

Finally I thought I should end with some poetry. These two were written at a Relaxation and Reflection workshop run by the lovely Christina Thatcher and Charlotte Nock. The aim of the first poem was to talk positively about your body and the second poem is based on something I do to relax.

Sorry for my selfishness

I am abusive to you both

and for that I am sorry

you did nothing to deserve this

and, I have no excuse for my actions

They were selfish

acts often driven by vanity, haste or lust.

You have both stuck by me

even when I forced you out in the cold

broke your bones when I

was too drunk to care

then made you work for eight hours straight

to fuel my drunken binge.

I have never taken to to be pampered

never a whole night off

never really respected you

for what you do for me.

So, my companions

the the who walk with me through life

Right foot

Left foot

I am sorry for what I did

Those shoes were too small

they didn’t stretch to fit

and those socks weren’t clean

so this year I make a vow

to think of you more often

and be kinder to you

(unless I really like those shoes,

available only in a size too small

but then, at least

you will look fabulous!)

Fear

I hold inside me a mild fear

of being pregnant at 16…

I am 24

I alos have a fear

of being the world tallest woman…

I’m 5ft 6″

So I watch documentary after documentary

so I can make a plan

incase I end up in a South American jail

or become a child genius

or decide to join a cult.

I hold inside me a mild fear

of not being prepared.

16 and Pregnant

Robert Burns

My Luve is Like a Red Red Rose – An Interpretation

Today (25th January) is Burns Night where we celebrate the life and works of the Scottish poet Robert Burns. Today is also St Dwynwen’s Day which celebrates the Welsh patron saint of lovers, a Welsh Valentines Day.  To observe both these events I decided to recite a love poem by Burns, My Luve is like a Red Red Rose. When I read it out to my flatmate she saw something else in the poem and we wrote an interpretation of the original.

Robert Burns
Robert Burns

 

My Luve is Like a Red Red Rose

By Robert Burns

 

O my Luve’s like a red, red rose,

That’s newly sprung in June:

O my Luve’s like the melodie,

That’s sweetly play’d in tune.

 

As fair art thou, my bonie lass,

So deep in luve am I;

And I will luve thee still, my dear,

Till a’ the seas gang dry.

 

 

Till a’ the seas gang dry , my dear,

And the rocks melt wi’ the sun;

And I will luve thee still, my dear,

While the sands o’ life shall run.

 

And fare-thee-weel, my only Luve !

And fare-thee-weel, a while!

And I will come again, my Luve,

Tho’ ’twere ten thousand mile!

Suzy and I, just as serious  and sensible as Mr Burns.
Suzy and I, just as serious and sensible as Mr Burns.

 

A Luve is Like a Red Red Rose – An Interpretation

By Rachel Houghton and Suzy Youngman

 

My love is like a green, green zombie,

That rises from the dead,

The only way to kill him,

Is shoot him in the head!

 

As grey thou art my crippled corpse,

From underground you lie,

And I love you still my dear,

Until the dead do rise!

 

Until the dead do rise my dear

And the army’s overrun.

Then we shall meet again my love,

Under the fading sun.

 

Join with me, my only love,

Heal my rotten heart.

Thou this world be broken

This is just the start!

Faith and Love

The road ahead may not be easy,

the journey not always fun

and I can’t promise how it will end.

But it’s yours.

It’s always yours and only every

will be yours.

And you have to walk it alone.

But do not be afraid

because others walk on their own roads

on their own paths that will only every

be theirs.

And when in the hum of voices

in the chaos of bodies you

find someone who wants to

walk beside you

In faith and in love

Walk beside each other.

Roads never becoming one but inseparable,

neither leading or following,

but together.

As tides change and paths change

be patient, be kind and be faithful

in her and in Him.

The road ahead may not be easy

the journey not always fun

But I can promise it’s worth it.

 

The Image that inspired this poem.
The image that inspired this poem.

Wonderfully Shit -Poetry

My home is wonderful.

My house is shit.

Black mould paints the walls,

sits on my books before dancing in the air.

I clean with Detol, Flash and Vanish.

It always comes back.

 

Then the cupboard lost its door

exposing beans, peas and Gobin Pie.

This at least is edible.

The milk in the fridge shouldn't be solid

and I'm sure ham should not be green.

My house was shit.

My home was beautiful.

Our vodka family
June 2011...decided not to take our tree down too early
Bye bye flat :(

 

 

Science Poetry

I was recently at the MITReG conference in Swansea. I had a good day listening to all the presenters talk about their work and got a chance to talk about my work. I did spend some time during the day writing a poem about viruses. I won't lie is not the happiest poem in the world.

 

Visitor

 

In my little coat I wait

I bide my time

 

I get in

I know where to go

I swim though everything you are

I find the control centre

 

I'm in

Coat is off

It's time play

I make a new me

We grow

Inhabit every bit of you

Untill you can take life no longer

We have outstayed our welcome

 

On go the coats

Quietly leave you

Now cold

Abandoned

Time to find a new.

 

sunshine-award

Sunshine Award

sunshine-award

I am very touched to have been awarded a Sunshine Award by Charlotte over at Strictly Holistic. It’s nice to know that someone has been reading my blog and liked it enough to tell me, apart from my mum and Adele who give me feedback on almost every post, Del even considers my posts to be a direct conversation with her and replies to some by text.

Anyway, away from my ramble, thank you Charlotte!!

So here are the questions Charlotte posted and my answers….

1. What is your favourite season and why?

I’ve never been massively attached to any season but this year I am loving autumn. I am enjoying looking at the leaves all turning orange and red and the days getting colder.

2. Do you have a favourite holistic treatment? If so, what is it?

My knowledge of holistic treatments is very limited, however from my limited experience I have found mindfulness very useful. In dealing with depression and stress it has given me a cleaner way of looking at life. If I am stressed I am finding time to take a few deep breaths and think ‘Being stressed is not going to help things’ and I get back on track.

3. Where do you feel most at peace?

My bed is pretty awesome, but I don’t always feel peaceful there. I do feel very peaceful in a bookshop, I love the smell of crisp new books and the quiet chatter of other people among the shelves. Oh! I also generally feel very peaceful in a coffee shops…but this is a rather expensive way to be peaceful.

4. Who is the most inspiring person you know and why?

I am not one of those people who have a huge list of people I admire, however my mother has always inspired and guided me on the path that is right for me. I am also very inspired by my PhD supervisor who has been a fantastic support in the last two years and inspires me with what I can do with my life and my career.

5. What is your favourite creative outlet?

I enjoy writing although some of the things I write are completely rubbish. I do wish I was more ‘arty’ and post-PhD I want to explore my creative side more.

6. Are you a cat or a dog person?

A total cat person, although Hayley is trying to convince me to a more neutral stance.

7. Name a book or film that has moved you….

I have never cried at a movie more than The Notebook, I watched this movie with my flatmates and the three of us spent at least half an hour weeping.

8. What is your favourite quote?

“Leap, and the net will appear” John Burroughs

“Brum…like a shit Herbie” Adele Moore

9. What is the most inspiring place you have visited?

I love churches. Regardless of my past/current/future religious views I think being in a large beautiful church is inspiring. I think churches also bring out a massive sense of community that you can’t find anywhere else.

Chester Cathedral

10. What is the best thing for you about blogging?

I like having an outlet for things that I write and it inspires me to keep writing. I also like using it to look back on things that I have done and how my writing is slowly improving.



Part of accepting the Award is to nominate 10 People, drop them a lovely comment about them being nominated for the Sunshine Award on their Blogs and post their names and the links of their Blogs in your post.

Dear nominees, if you like to accept your Award, this is how you go about it. :)

1. Include the award logo in a post or on your blog.

2. Link to the person who nominated you.

3. Answer 10 questions about yourself and write 10 questions for your nominees to answer.

4. Nominate 10 bloggers to receive the award. Link your nominees to the post and comment on their blogs, letting them know they have been nominated.

Here are ten people, whose blog posts I really enjoy reading:

The various authors at Nursing Clio

Bryan at Faithworks

Helen, Olly and Martin the Soundman over at Answer Me This who always make me laugh

Becca at Art of Stumbling who has some awesome artwork and poetry

Rachel over at Sapphire Street who makes me very envious of her awesome relief printmaking

The 20-something  nurse over at Nurse Eye Roll

And another nurse over at Your Art Matters and Reflections on my Nursing Practice

Gendermom at Gendermom who writes some really interesting posts that have made me think alot more about transgender issues

Steph over at She Said What? also has some amazing and touching posts…especially the post about coming out to her children

and finally Meg at MegKingston who was the municipal liaison at my first Nanowrimo and has some awesome pre-nano posts

So the 10 questions I would like to pose are:

1. What is your guilty pleasure TV show?

2. If I gave you £1000 what would you spend it on? (I’m not going to so don’t get your hopes up!)

3. Where would you most like to visit in the world?

4.Who is your favourite Friends character?

5. If you could have one superpower what would it be?

6. If you could change the ending to one book/movie/tv show what would it be?

7. What is your perfect day?

8. What is your second favourite colour?

9. What is your feeling on moustaches?

10. Apple or Android?

Enjoy guys and thank you again Charlotte x

DSCF0660

Urban Art in Bristol

I recently went visiting a friend in Bristol. After we had coffee and a catch up I went exploring for art. I wasn’t disappointed!

I firstly went a wander round Castle Park and saw St Peters Church. Then went looking for art. I sadly didn’t see any Banksy‘s but I loved my day around Bristol and need to go back again soon for some more exploring.

 

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Photo courtesy of D hughes

Of Average Women and Toilet Cubicles

Jo Swinson at the launch of Debenhams size 16 mannequin range

This has been a very positive month for women in the UK with Debenhams introducing size 16 mannequins to represent not a plus-size women but the average women. However, I believe as a nation we still have one issue to address in the fight for female equality…toilet cubicles.

 

I ask you dear readers who is designing toilet cubicles?

 

Well…I assume many people design toilet cubicles seeing as almost all public and private buildings have a toilet or two. However are average sized women designing them? I think not!

 

Photo courtesy of D hughes
Photo courtesy of D hughes

The reason for my sweeping assumption is that many female toilets are not build to size. Once you’ve added the obligatory, and very useful, sanitary disposal bin there is no room left to sit down. When the average UK woman is a size 16 we can assume that the derrière of many women will not be comfortably accommodated with the sanitary bin squeezed against their closed legs. Heaven forbid you would want to open your legs even a slight bit to obtain some…access.

 

The only option to attain a comfortable visit is to move the obtrusive object, but with toilets being economical in both size and shape this option is sometimes an unachievable feat. Also surely the touching of sanitary bins goes against the nature of them. The introduction of touch free sanitary bins is called revolutionary and will protect women from coming into contact with harmful bacteria…but the point of this is lost when you consider the countless women who have to move the bacteria laden contraption every time they wish to use the facilities.

We spend on average three years of our lives on the toilet and I don’t think it’s too much to ask for an extra few inches to make time spent in the lavatory a bit more comfortable. Being British we do not speak of such things as toilets and sanitary bins but this issue is one I believe should be raised. If men were made to huddle together around a smaller than necessary urinals I’m sure we would all know about it.

 

So please architects of any gender, when you are designing that beautiful £20 million building spare a thought for the women who will use the facilities every day and make the toilet cubicles accommodating for the average woman.

 

Cubicle Size Guide
Cubicle Size Guide

Pretty Petty Pity – Poetry

Winning was never important to me

it’s the taking part that’s key,

but when I met you that all changed

playing scrabble makes you deranged.

You begin to sweat

I begin to fret

and when you lose we fall out,

you huff and puff and sometimes shout!

And even when it’s not a game,

you look at me like I’m to blame

when you are not at your best

even when its not a test.

It’s a good thing you are pretty

and I’m not petty

cause I let you win out of pity.

Hayley and I in hats
Hayley and I in hats