365:118 Greenhouse

We'd a staff meeting today - 250 of us crammed into a telly studio to do some creative thinking. Some days I really like my job - just not the commute to Shepherd's Bush from Belfast via the ever busy Heathrow.

365:117 Happy birthday Ellie

Aunt Ellie doesn't speak much, but she's good on dates when you get her started. She remembers when all her siblings were born, her parents too, and all the wedding anniversaries. She knows when she was born - it's today's date she struggles with.

I gave her the envelope with a birthday card and as soon as she saw the card she looked horrified, then mad and told me in no uncertain terms "I'm not 80!".
Oh yes she is.
I'm told by the time some of the family had a wee party for her later, she'd come to terms with the idea! It's nice to know that even when most of your mind has wandered to another place, you've still the sense to be vain, but never pass up on the chance to be the centre of attention and to party.
(Note to family members reading this - Ellie's to the extreme left of the black and white snap - and yes, on the extreme right in what looks like a very fetching saggy one piece, is dad and beside him, granny. I think he looks about 3 so probably taken in 1939.)

365:116 Stitchin' time

my camera case - very unsophisticated, but made in front of a toasty fire one night when I wanted to sew something... anything... and a new camera needed a bag. Black linen and a few threads to hand and... hey presto - a wee pouch to cushion against the bumps and lumps in my handbag.
Will buy a snazzy case some day - the new camera (Cybershot 14mp/HD) is overwhelmed by the size of the case bought for the last SLR type camera.

365:115 Sympathetic background...

...for Ali whose dad died this morning.

365:113 and 114 Catching up!

Friday was train day - very low on inspiration, so have settled for the real Holywood - Co Down. May day dancing round the May pole on Monday at the town's medieval fair.

Then Saturday - and shopping with the girls. Mum wasn't sure what size the shoe was, Fi got to read the sole and Ang had a good laugh. Next stop Moulin Rouge Mum!

365:111 and 112 On the red eye again

And for once, I had an hour to kill before the flight home, so a few shots to include today. First off... two early starts in a row, so the dashboard blur on Wednesday - says it all really if you can read the time. I'm not an early riser by nature.

Then from London on Thursday, The bus/tempo shot amused me - from the sublime to the ridiculous really. (They're "tempos" in Nepal - what are they called in the UK? Bicycle rickshaws? Anyone know?)

Next is All Souls', Langham in the background and the lunchtime crowd at the Oxford St / Regent St junction. It's the church I used to attend when I lived in London.

And finally, my favourite. The staircase. One of life's ups and downs - I love this one - it's in the Liberty Store just off Carnaby Street.

365:110 a giant job..

They've been painting Samson (or is it Goliath?) for a very long time. I think they've mixed it up with the Forth Bridge or something. The other shots below were taken a couple of years ago when my father, brother and I went to have a look-see from the top of the crane. Quite a view. Look closely and you'll see the red tour bus... but you'll need a magnifying glass. The domed building is the Belfast Odyssy and most of the waste ground is now built on.

365:108 and at the other end of the scale

From the fantastically yellow wet-the-beds yesterday (which used to be cultivated by the Victorians - good for salads etc), to the subtle sophistication of an orchid. For a while, I lived in Seychelles, and in Mahe, the orchids grew like weeds!

365:109 going, going... almost gone

Slowly it's being dismantled... and no one told me where the hamster would be re-homed.

365:107 Just fine and dandy

from a distance I thought the council had gone into random daffodil planting - up close, there are some very healthy dandylions around this week.

365:106 Here's looking at you kid.

Mum and her friend Margaret at the BB Old Boys Centenary Choir - dad was on stage with the "boys"


365:105 Running out of inspiration...

Not very original, but it was on the desk and it's getting late!

365:104 Study time again

...didn't quite manage to take the point though.

365:103 Postcard pretty

The view from a friend's house... I love the candy colours of the houses in Ballyholme. The tide was out far today, so no water to be seen in this shot.

365:102 Gorse or Whin?

In one county it's gorse; in another it's whin. It seems to have two smells too - in strong sunlight, it's almost like coconut; other days it's like vanilla. Today, I'm just grateful for the splash of colour it brings to the wee roads near the village where even a blast of salty sea air can't knock the blooms off.

365:101 happy days

Here comes the sun... and the wild garlic along the road into the village. Is it my immagination or is this a little earlier than usual? I always associate the garlic with bluebells and May? Anyone else locally spotted the bluebells out yet?

365:100 And so it continued both day and night

But enough said (rather, the least said..) Here's some more (awful) music.

365:099 And we apologise for...

...this break in transmission due to circumstance beyond our control... and in the meantime, here's some music. (Uh... let's be delicate here.... would an attack of the Groomsport Gallop... or Kathmandu Quick-step... or maybe the Bangor Bolt... mean anything to anyone? In other places, the bucket and bog boogie?)

365:098 And it continues.

The endless easter break. Good news on the motorways.

365:097 So why am I working?

...especially when everyone else in Belfast seemed to be still on holiday on the Wednesday of Easter week? Oh to have such clear car parks every day.

365:096 There IS hope

... and as everyone else was off work for Easter Tuesday, I decided to take a day off too. This was one of those perfect rainbows - the kind that gives a double smile - and between the stronger arc and the paler one, the sky has that special. washed dove grey shade. Now if only all those buildings and traffic lights and other drivers and laws hadn't made it so hard to take a photograph.

365:095 Quiltin' cousins

Had a wonderful day at Alex's - with two quilts rattling through two sewing machines and the clucking going nearly as fast as we caught up on all the gossip. I love quilting days - we're a couple of sew 'n' sews.

Got home to find the Sandyknowes and Killowen gangs here - just sorry they didn't stay longer. Had a revolving door yesterday - lost count of the number of cuppas made - but always good to see folk. Think I need a baking day though - the boxes are all empty!

365:094 Keep it simple!

It's the Begginers Bible we use for the pre-school Sunday school - the kids are all 3 or 4 and we have about 25 of them. Each child gets a copy when they "graduate" from the "walkers creche". I love the illustrations.

365:093 Chocolate OD

1. Buy Easter eggs for the kids.
2. Deliver Easter eggs
3. Withdraw - Would be great if you could tie a duster onto them when they're flying round the ceiling with far too much energy ;o)

365:092 In preparation...

...for tomorrow's leg of lamb lunch. Lovely.

365:091 Hey ho, hey ho...

...it's off to remedial class (for theology) we go.

Quote: "...and I thought they'd be good for illustrating a children's talk on Joseph and the rest of Jacob's seven sons... no wait... was it seven?"

Oh dear, oh dear, back to the drawing board - and where to start?! I'm definitely grumpy.

365:090 Time out

One of those days when there just didn't seem to be enough hours in the day.... this was quittin' time - at least I'm off for Easter now.

365:089 24 hours of chaos

So the weather delivered: snow, ice, floods and hail. We had the works. Some poor souls were stuck in their cars on the Glenshane Pass for 7 hours while the emergency teams dug them out. We had to turn back from the Stoney Road because of flooding - this shot was at the corner of the main Newtownards Road - fast flowing water well up the trunks of the trees. Quite astonishing weather.