“The children of Houla were not killed by random shelling. The UN yesterday revealed that they were murdered one by one. The militia came in the night armed with knives and guns, and the young victims were executed with a bullet to the head or a knife to the throat.” – The Times, 30th May 2012

For those that follow what happens in the world of blogging, last Friday was declared a day of protest against the killings in Syria, promted by the above article from The Times. I didn’t join in. I had nothing against it but I had a house full of housework to do, lunch round a friend’s and then a small child to entertain until bedtime. And then, it being Friday, my main plan was to flop on the sofa. If I’m honest, I also thought ‘but I want to write about lovely crafty things!’ And so I vaguely turned my back on it.

But the facts of the matter keep going round and round my head and they will not go away. And then last night, flopped on the sofa, in front of the news, they reported more killings. Men, women, children. And this morning, with the radio on they strted talking about it again. About the houses that were purposely burnt down with people in them. About the children who had their throats cut.

And despite how much I think ‘don’t think about your son, don’t think about your son’ the thought remains with me that it is someone elses child. And I don’t want to be one of those people who harps on and on about politics or charity (although sometimes I am that person) but ffs if you can read about children, lots of children, purposefully being killed, one by one, on purpose and it doesn’t affect you even the slightest bit then there is probably something very wrong with you.

I don’t think military intervention will solve everything, it never normally does. And I’ve done my share of protests, contacting MPs, fundraising and all the rest over the years and know how well some of those work. But if for no other reason that if that was my child then I would want to know that someone else gave a monkeys about them having their throat slit, we do have to raise awareness about this. Everyone has the time to go and fill out the petition on Save the Children’s website. Please go and sign it and add your name to the list of people who don’t think its acceptable to turn their backs on this.

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Yesterday in Sainsburys I explained the concept of the Jubilee to Jacob. “Basically, the Queen is having a big do, and she has decreed that everyone has to bake a cake and put up some bunting or they’ll get their passports taken away.” He seemed impressed with my understanding of current affairs. He did however also point out the ready rolled icing, and when I explained that Mummy was going to make the icing herself, laughed out loud at me. Which¬†amused the other shoppers even if I did have to face publicly getting my baking dissed by an 18 month old.

We hadn’t planned on doing anything other than the obligatory Cakes And Bunting, but John came home from work last night ¬†with the news that one of the volunteers at his work, Jo, had arranged a street party and any profits were to be given to The Storehouse. So we thought we better go, if for no other reason than there were likely to be cakes there and Jacob was refusing anything without sugar in it again. So off we went and it was lovely!

Proper Jubilee Cakes!

Jacob also got to play his first game of Pass the Parcel (with some help from his dad) and won some Haribo. They’d not yet been part of his healthy balanced diet, however I was reliably informed that eating Haribo counts as a developmental landmark and predictably he loved them.

I’m off now to plan the rest of our Jubilee¬†celebrations¬†which should mean putting up lovely bunting from The Fabulous Moms Guide and baking some cakes, however as usual how much I achieve tonight is likely to be in direct¬†correlation¬†with how much sleep I’ve had (not enough) and how much wine I consume (probably too much).

Whatever you get up to this Jubilee weekend, have a lovely time x

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Hurray! It’s finished!!!!

Part of me wants to say ‘well, its not all that’ or point out some problem with it and generally put it down. But you know what? I’m actually quite pleased with it so I’m going to do my very best for once to just be happy.

Two Tree Island, Leigh on Sea

This copper bangle is the first thing I’ve made as part of my Silversmithing class. Obviously you are supposed to start with something relatively easy, but I wanted to do something that reflected the view of Two Tree Island that I love, with the marshes, mud flats and sea-water all joining together and constantly changing. This has meant that I have spent bloomin’ ages cutting pieces out of the copper but if nothing else my sawing skills have improved immeasurably and I am getting a lot quicker at replacing broken saw blades!

Next to do is some heart shaped earrings, and this time I’ll be cracking out the silver I bought at Cooksons last week. Will update when they’re done…

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Eight years ago the Husband (who was then The Boyfriend) and I moved into our flat. We’d been hunting for ages, been gazumped, been fed up and finally, in my lunch break one day I’d nipped in to the estate agent’s over the road and found The One. Bigger than any other place locally. Nice Road. Not horrifically priced. The Boyfriend went to view it, an offer was made and low and behold it was ours. There was one small issue though, it was a bit of a state.

The previous owner had been an old lady and when The Then Boyfriend was shown around the property, the estate agent had refused to enter due to the stench of urine. We ripped out wet carpets, took the dead bird out of the dining room and after a couple of years even managed to get the bathroom done up and remove the old lady handles to hold onto while you do a wee. (Of course, there was the mild issue of the fire the next day which kind of messed up new bathroom, but thats another story for another day.)

The package awaits...

Anyway, throughout all of this wee soaked, messy flat, can’t ruddy afford to fix it fun, my father in law used to regularly tell us not to worry, the place had ‘lots of potential’. And, sorry Mo if you’re reading this, but IT USED TO DRIVE ME BLOODY INSANE!!!! ARGH!!!!!!! Because potential is all very well and good but without the cash to back it up it’s no ruddy good what so ever. And so as such the term having potential is always used round ours as a term of abuse rather than endearment, however, all this changed yesterday.

Because yesterday I arrived home (late, stressed, with small child that needed cleaning) to discover a package on my doorstop and despite the fact that I had small child to look after, housework to do and dinner to cook, this small parcel was there in the back of my mind, waiting for me. It was a small parcel of potential.

The loot...

The contents are an order from Cookson’s I’d put in the day before (and for those not in the know, ie me a month ago, Cooksons are the shop EVERYONE uses to buy metal from) so this morning over breakfast I finally got to unwrap my goodies. Some squares that will one day become earrings, a long strip that may be a ring, a rectangle that I have no idea quite what I’m going to do with but is’t that half the fun? My thumb still hurts a bit from Monday nights class, but I’m already looking forward to the next few weeks and what these tiny bits of silver might metamorphosize into. It has some potential, lets hope I have enough to do it justice.

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