Friday, March 30

ten reasons to love Used Dog...


reason one:
its been over 11 years since we found you, abandoned twice with little hope, at a last chance shelter. you looked at me with those 'puppy pound' eyes, (just as you have every day since) and melted my heart.

reason two:
you taught 4 young children how to love a doggie, you gave them memories to take into their adult lives of 'our first family dog', something so simple and yet such a gift

reason three:
you wear a floral neckerchief

reason four:
you keep secrets better than anyone else i know

reason five:
you taught a pesky dog how to be a little less pesky and in return, said pesky doggie taught you in your twilight years to be a 'little pesky'

reason six:
when you spy a squirrel at the bottom of the yard, you still believe there is one half of a 2 year old greyhound inside of your aging 13 year old body

reason seven:
you fall over, but always pick yourself up

reason eight:
despite the odds stacked way way against you, nearly 5 months on you are thinking about changing your name from Used Dog to Miracle Dog and quite rightly so

reason nine:
you are without a doubt, the most preciously peachy second hand forsaken soul i have ever found

reason ten:
for nearly 12 years you have been my constant canine companion, my best friend, and my good fortune


she and Used Miracle Dog are thanking you most kindly for all the 'fingers, toes, paws, claws, wings and hooves' crossing over the past few months ~ Tif 

Thursday, March 29

a little ray of sunshine...

Mr Sun appears to be busy across the pond.
however last week he did pop by briefly

 but alas, with little warmth.

such was our overjoyment at his little appearance
(albeit a brass monkeys appearance)
me and my chickie peas launched ourselves into 
'spring mode'
i got busy with the kitschy fake flowers

whilst they got busy with pecking

and a 'little bit of laying'

later that day, Polly kindly came by to thank me
for their new spiffy springified coop.

i thought to myself,
how thoughtful and kind.

the next day Mr Sun was shining down elsewhere.
Bingo B who loves a bit of 'sunbathing' meowed
"hey, don't go, come back Mr Sun... i'm over here"

i pointed out to Bingo B,
(in the nicest possible way as she is rather old and batty
and i did not wish to upset)
her attempts were most admirable.
next time she might have better luck
if she waves in the right direction


Wednesday, March 21

going cold turkey...

i appear to have a new addiction, as with most addictions it creeps upon you unawares. now as addictions go, i do believe it is on the lower scale, closer to 'harmless' and quite far from 'dangerous' but then again, is it...

i am blaming my newly acquired addiction on Ivor the ipad and a little pesky doggie who lives in a suitcase. 

it started with the occasional 'instant pic' and now has escalated into daily pics. and whilst i'm confessing, i will mention, the daily pic i post to the world wide web is only one of many i took that day and deleted. and that is where i know my addiction has got out of control...
 i have become secretive with my instant 'little olive' pics!

 i snap them, look at them, warm my heart with her sweetness in them, and then delete them for fear others would see my need to photograph my little doggie countless times in a suitcase throughout the day, as a sign of insanity. 

yes an addiction that you wish to hide or fret what others may think, is a worrisome one to have. so today i took my last 'happy snap' of a little pesky doggie with legs of little length and am going cold turkey. 

i have told myself for one whole week i must go without taking a pic and posting it out for others to have it pop up on their feeds, roll their eyes and go, "seriously, not another". i am not even allowing myself to take sneaky secretive ones either, no sirree! none of this, 'just let me take one and delete it, no one will ever know' business, for that is a rocky road for sure.

so cold turkey is it, i am not sure i am strong enough, i am not sure i can make it through and to be honest i am not sure why i have to really, but i do! because the little voice inside my head has told me so. has spoken loud and clear "Tif, get a grip you daft addicted bat" and therefore i must listen.

i am already shaking, it has only been 40 minutes since i took the final, 'no more for a week after this one' instant joy happy snap... the one you see just above this, the one where little olive is being pesky, waiting for folks to walk past in neon anoraks, (flaunting their keep fit ways at us) so she may woof at their flaunting ways alongside her buddy 'used dog'. i note how handy it must be for her that i placed the stool there last night, how convenient she has a little 'leg up' at the front. i note how sweet and perfect her little patches are and her velvety over-sized ears, i note... i note i need to go cold turkey


Friday, March 16

a ‘crafty day’ workshop at Hope & Elvis, old blighty...

Tif and Rachelle (panini & bernina) are delighted beyond all delights to offer 2 ‘crafty day’ workshops this summer in old blighty. If you have a crafty soul and a granny chic heart, then perhaps you may wish to spend quality time with 2 crafters whose love for handcrafted and secondhand goodness knows no bounds.

Tif and Rachelle (dottie angel & ted and agnes) will spend the workshop wisely wearing their rose coloured specs and showing you how to make a lovely piece of ‘handmade whatnot’ you may then proudly hold in your hands and return to your clan with tear of joy in your eye, exclaiming
“me and my crafty soul made this today!”.

Teaming up with the ‘ever~so~peachy’ Louise of Hope and Elvis at a wonderful setting in Nottinghamshire, the day will comprise of a morning and afternoon class, a ‘most delightful’ lunch and heaps of vintage textiles, trinkets and treasure to rustle around in.

Both days are offered over one weekend, so if you are a Saturday folk or a Sunday folk, hopefully one of those days will suit you nicely. This lovely event is a ‘one off happening’ for this year! Tif and Rachelle are more often than not, separated by a large pond, so to have their crafty granny souls together in one place is a rarity indeed.

Spots for crafty souls on these workshops are limited, so in the pursuit of fairness, places will be reserved on a first come basis only.

Very important thing to note:
Booking will OPEN at 7.30am Monday 19th March UK time
And not before!

All nitty gritty about the workshop, including booking is handled by Louise,
So to find out more, to see how, what, where you book your ‘crafty day’ place, before you set your alarm for an early Monday start, please look over at this very nice page

Yes, it is quite true to say, Tif and Rachelle, along with their little vintage suitcases will be most thrilled to be travelling to meet so many lovely crafty souls this summer in Nottinghamshire.

footynote: it would appear those pesky passing gnomes have been up to no good with their pesky ways and my font. despite this, i have offered them shelter for the night and a thimble full of orange stew :)

Sunday, March 11

a serendipity moment...

i do like a bit of serendipity
and of late, 
serendipity appears to find me wherever i look.
last weeks serendipity moment went a little like this

mentioning her peachy store
amd so i ventured forth with my friend Marjan.
not only did we find the most wonderful vintage emporium
but a new thrifty friend and a roll of spiffy vintage paper.
i marvel that only 3 days before finding my little roll of paper 
 i had stood in our small front hall 
and felt quite distressed at the nakedness of our front door
after 4 years of living in mossy shed.

and 3 days later, 
i stumble across the perfectly perfect solution

i have noted our 'fully clothed' front door,
has gone unnoticed by my lads of three.
i have come to the conclusion this can only be
because the shed has become 
all a 'bit of a blur of florals' everywhere they look
and thus, they are no longer able to see it


Wednesday, March 7

venturing out of the shed...

yesterday i ventured forth on a mission,
a mission long overdue and put off for the longest time.
and what may that mission be i hear you ask.
well the mission of buying a pair of jeans...
~ pause ~
yes, worthy of a pause as folks across the land,
gasp, inhale and then exhale with a nod of understanding.

i have two criteria when it comes to jeans,
they are always worn with a frock or smock 'a top'
and they must be able to 'do up'.
the former is not a problemo due to a closet full of frocks
but the later over the past few years is.
i only had 3 pairs in my closet,
2 stopped being my fine friends at 41 and 3/4's year of age
and the last pair, 
the used to be 'loosey goosy, needing a belt pair'
well since turning 43 we have not been on the best terms.

as most do in my circumstances,
 i have looked around for others to blame,
namely Mrs W. Machine and Miss T. Dryer
but when i have looked around, in doing so
i can no longer deny the growing derriere
that has latched itself behind.

so on Monday i bravely went out,
now please note, i do not live in the epicenter of denim fashion.
i am quite sure if i caught the bus 
and headed to the heart of the big city.
it may be a little different.
however i did not wish to catch a bus
so i stayed closer to home.
home where you have the choice of teen jeans
with interesting faded areas and quite a bit of bling
and on close inspection, a lot of lycra.
now in my experience jeans with lycra
do not do. 
or i could cross over the walk way into the 'mom jeans' department
where i become really frightened and out of my depth.

after wandering around not knowing where to look,
i stumbled into the lads department.
i started to note, firstly,
lads 'washes' of jeans are far far preferable
and secondly,
they do not have to deal with bling or lycra.
i chanced upon a pair with a nice 'ordinary' wash
and dared to try.

new 'lads' jeans in ordinary wash, but look dodgy in this photo, i am blaming Ivor 
on driving home to my shed, 
my newly 'dared to try' jeans next to me on the seat
i wondered if 43 is not only the age where your derriere starts to spread
but also if its the age you start to go into changing rooms
and decide if the item 'does up' without causing discomfort
then it 'will do' and promptly buy it
without any care how it actually looks.

i told myself, (to calm my fretting ways).
i have not crossed this line, no sirree!
instead i will believe
 my 'lad' jeans are perfectly edgy bohemian
when worn 'rolled' with a frock and clogs.
to encourage my 'lad' jeans to give off this appearance
i added a decal to my well worn silver clogs.
(when i decal something, i always feel better)

and this morning as i tippity tap this tale,
clothed in 'lad' jeans, frock & decal~ed clogs
i have also added to my attire
my rose coloured specs
(they come with a life long guarantee and never fail me)


Sunday, March 4

a 'sabbatical of sorts'...

my philosophy

"if i go to sleep at night
knowing i have visited my imagination,
however fleeting it may have been,
then i know i have spent
my day wisely"

most of what i do relies upon,
my spontaneity,
my imagination
my family

those three sweet things in my life
have got buried of late,
and so i have decided to take
a 'sabbatical of sorts'.

to dig deep 
and recover the things 
which make me happy and whole.
allowing me to continue 
upon my chosen path
clearing away the draining debris
which has become a daily distraction.

for now,
my store is closed
and my blog posts will be sporadic.
i will continue to pen postcards
across the pond 
and dabble with Ivor when inspired

darren dictionary has informed me
a sabbatical is taking time out 
to rest, 
to grow 
to learn
and that is exactly what i plan to do,
alongside of spending quality time with
my lost spontaneity, my misplaced imagination 
and my patient family

i wish to live by my philosophy again.
and in doing so, 
i truly believe,
one day soon,
i will look over my shoulder
and see standing beside me, 
in all her bohemian, eclectic glory,
dottie angel
waiting patiently for me...

~ Tif ~

Thursday, March 1

discoveries of the utmost kind...

i love a day when a discovery is made,
a discovery of minute proportions in comparison
to many in the world,
but one which changes something within your own.

i would not say my discovery is worthy of calling our local paper,
nor climbing upon our roof to shout for all to hear.
however i do marvel at its discovery
for once again i am left, 
upon discovery of my discovered thing,
marveling how something you have had all along,
can upon one moment of 'ah ha'
become of use.

" we are a little sad, our lives in the kitchen no longer required, due to worn out spots & blobs of cooking "
last week,
 upon wrestling my growing braids into place
upon my bonce.
i noted as always the front looked done,
and the back did not.
i noted this is because in fact, i had done the front
and as always, neglected the back.
after 2 nights sleep, 
the neglect was even more in evidence.

to tame the matted back and highlight the smooth front
i rustled around in my scarf collection.
but just as i had thought before my rustling began,
all scarves in my possession just would not suit.

and so as one does,
i thought of ties, and when one thinks of ties
one thinks of apron strings
and without further ado,
this very thought led to some careful snippity snipping.
after keeping waistband and ties intact
i had myself a natty bit of vintage string 
to adorn and control the growing nest upon my head.

such was my delight, upon seeing it from Ivor's point of view
several more half aprons 'volunteered up' for the chop.

 " yippee! yippee! a new life, how thrilling to spend our days wrapped around Tif's birds nest hair "
they did not fret nor fear 
their bodies would be left discarded and unloved.
for i told them of my crafty plans... 

" oh how loved we feel again, our strings in Tif's hair & our body bits as a perfectly peachy cushion "