Much of a muchness

Things that make you go 'hmm'…

Category Archives: Dance

Let’s celebrate!

It has been like Christmas around here. Lovely people have been been sending lovely bloggy awards my way. It’s been quiet recently and then suddenly, like buses, three come along all at once.

First off Charmaine Zoe over at Tales of Terror from the Black Lagoon (great blog title!) said that I am a ‘Kick Ass Blogger’

an award which originated at Mamma Dawg’s. In her words

Maybe they’ve got incredible, original content. Or they’re overflowing with creativity. Is it someone that helps you become a better blogger? Or a bloggy friend you know you can count on? Or maybe it’s someone who simply inspires you to be a better person… or someone else who sends you to the floor, laughing your ass off. Whatever the reason may be, I’m sure you know at least a couple of bloggers that kick ass. Well… why not tell ’em so?

Here’s how to send them some love:-

* Choose 5 bloggers that you feel are “Kick Ass Bloggers”
* Let ’em know in your post or via email, twitter or blog comments that they’ve received an award
* Share the love and link back to both the person who awarded you and back to http://www.mammadawg.com
* Hop on back to the Kick Ass Blogger Club HQ to sign Mr. Linky then pass it on!

To get codes click on the button above which will take you to KABC HQ – don’t forget to link up the person who nominated you for the Kick Ass Blogger Club.

OK. Done all that. My five ‘Kick Ass Bloggers’ are *drum roll*

Pete @ My GPS Cameraphone

Teresa @ Life, Homesteading and Everything

Amy @ In the Fishbowl

Tom @ Burnt Maze

Jenny @ The Latest Whatever

Next up. What can I say? Those of you who are acquainted with Lord Likely and his Astonishing Adventures will probably have an inkling of what is to come. (Insert you own double entendre here).You can read all about his ‘Golden Cock of Excellence’ award here.

In his inimitable fashion, he explained why I was receiving this accolade thus:

Lady Diane Aldred: supremely creative English rose Diane has been a regular reader of my wondrous journals, and for that she deserves honouring. Plus, with any luck the receipt of said award will endear her to me, and we shall wind up entwined in a passionate embrace, possibly whilst nude.”

In reply I just have to say – consider yourself endeared, we will have to see about the rest :-) The award itself is a little – how shall I put it? Ah yes, outré, for a wholesome blog such as this one (especially as some of my readers might be of a nervous disposition), so if you would like to see it, please click here. Now go and have a lie down.

Recovered? Right the next one arrived this evening courtesy of the lovely Diane CA @ DianeCA’s Metamorphoses.

She received this from Sandee @ Comedy Plus and from her lovely husband Renny @ Renny BA’s Terella, so she is doubly brilliant!

The rules for this award are:

* The winner can put the logo on his/her blog.

* Link to the person you received your award from.

* Nominate and link to at least 7 other blogs.

* Leave a message on the blogs of the people you have nominated.

Now you know how obedient I am, so here are my 7 brilliant blogs.

Diary of a 70’s Teen

Scratchbags

Your Neighborhood Reverend

Nanny Goats in Panties

Subu.Inc

Astrid

So there you have it, speeches optional.

I watched the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics this afternoon – well some of it – it went on for hours. It was quite awesome and putting aside any issues or disquiet that any one may have about the Chinese government’s policies or human rights record, there was no denying that they have set the new benchmark for opening ceremonies. London is going to struggle to get anywhere close to this stunning performance in 2012.

Here is a 30 second round up the BBC broadcast at the end of the 4 hour coverage this afternoon. The quality of this isn’t brilliant but if I find a better clip I will swap it over later.

This is the ad that the BBC has been running  for the games. I love it.

And finally, here’s something that might give you an inkling of how successful the UK Olympic Games opening ceremony is likely to be. These are some UWE students (University of the West of England in Bristol) organising a charity balloon launch. Sigh. I despair.

Parlez-vous français?

You know the song ‘New York, New York, so good they named it twice’? WELL……

I noticed that I have been nominated in the ‘Top 100 Female Bloggers’ list over at Enkay Blog. The list is calculated using a combination of PR, Technorati authority and Alexa ranking which all sounds very complicated – so complicated in fact that I make the list at number 50 AND number 51. This blog is so good they named it twice :-)

Every once in a while, I get an email from someone asking me how I make my books. I usually send them links to various wonderful web sites with tutorials and videos of the process. I made this book yesterday. It took me ages as I documented every step of the process and I have decided to share this with you all. I know that this is risky, as I plan to start selling my books (yes, yes, I know, I keep saying that, but believe me it WILL happen. Promise!) and by showing how it is done to the world and his wife, I am ostensibly reducing my market. I am banking on the probability that a lot of you are far too busy (or idle) to make books but for the interested few, there is now a tutorial. If you check out the tabs at the top of the page there is now one called ‘HOW’. (It had to be a short page name as it wouldn’t have fit in if I had called it ‘TUTORIAL’. I have also had to change the title of the CONTACT page to E-ME. Got to keep things tidy…..

I’d be interested to hear from anyone who tries it out so that I can explain anything tricky more clearly or if anything doesn’t make sense.

Now then moving on from a country which shall not be named for a while, to another of our European neighbours, France. When I was at school (Withington Girls’ School for the record) I was given a French vocabulary book. Our French teacher, Mrs Petit-Jean, was having a clear out and she gave us all a copy of this little book as she was otherwise going to throw them away as they were a bit(!) outdated.

Over the years since, this little book (published in 1949) has made us laugh at the quaintness of the vocabulary which now seems so antiquated.

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There are several entries which really make me wonder quite who the book was aimed at….check out the last entries on page 29…

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And after all the useful and innocent animal sounds…..

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Presumably after having his throat cut!

I hope I never have to use the phrase at the bottom of page 93…

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Schooldays. It all seems so long ago. It was so long ago. It’s quite frightening when I think back just how long ago it was. I remember it all so well though – it’s yesterday I have a problem with…

I do remember that I went to see the film WALL.E last week. It’s so good. The animation is astonishing and it’s a very sweet story with a topical, environmental message. And as a Mac fan(atic) I found this which I stumbled upon very amusing…those of you who have seen WALL.E will ‘get’ it.

There were lots of very cute little short videos on the WALL.E website – here are a couple. I think they are hilarious.

My next expedition is to London on Thursday. I am going to the Royal Opera House to see the Guangdong Acrobatic Troupe of China perform Swan Lake. You may remember the amazing video I posted last week – should be wonderful, I’ll let you know…

A nice day out

I had such a nice day yesterday. My girlie mate, Amanda, suggested we had a girls’ day out and we decided to go to Totnes in Devon. We chose Totnes as some friends, Sarah and Joe, have an art gallery there called White Space. It’s a really lovely gallery, selling a wonderful range of contemporary art. We went to see their Summer Exhibition which started yesterday. It was really excellent – you can view it online here. It was hard to choose a favourite but here are two I particularly liked – the first is ‘Peonies’ by Sarah Bowman and ‘Misty River Dart’ by Wendy McBride.

Of course, no girlie day out is complete without lots of shopping and a nice lunch. We managed to find both. After some very successful clothes shopping (a skirt, a top and a gorgeous little flimsy cardigan/wrap thing) I was thrilled to find a small but wonderful stationery shop called ‘Paperworks’ – a little gem and I bought some very pretty papers which you will no doubt see adorning some new books over the next few weeks. After a walk by the river and a cup of tea and a piece of carrot cake (Diet? What diet?) we decided to head for home but on the way back we stopped off in Lyme Regis, a beautiful little seaside town, on the Dorset/Devon border. You may remember Lyme Regis as the setting for the book/film ‘The French Lieutenant’s Woman’

The harbour wall where Meryl Streep is walking is known as the Cobb and dates back to the 13th century. Amanda and I walked the length of the sea front, past some very pretty thatched cottages and houses which I suspect are holiday homes, to the Cobb and then walked to the end of the Cobb to pose for our ‘Meryl Streep’ moment. It was quite breezy as you can tell from the windswept hairstyles, so no clues as to my new hair do just yet…

The views are quite spectacular. We could see across Lyme Bay to Burton Bradstock, which as you may know is my favourite local beach (see my header photo). The whole coastline here is called the Jurassic Coast, as it is full of fossils. We were amused to notice the lamp posts are all decorated with ammonite motifs to celebrate the rich heritage of this pretty and historic town.

Of course, by now we were hungry again so we bought a bag of chips to fortify us on our journey back home. All in all, a splendid day. So here for your delectation and delight are highlights of our day out (not including the shopping successes and the chips….)

Incidentally, I want to mention a competition I won over at Go Smell the Flowers a while back. Jim and Em regularly run competitions, the current one is to win some Belgian chocolates, by suggesting/inventing a new Olympic event. The prize I won was a year’s supply of flowers from Flora 2000. I have sent some as birthday and Mothers’ Day gifts and they have been absolutely beautiful causing much joy and earning me big Brownie points. I’m going to keep the rest for myself, I think. So thank you, Jim and Em, the prize is being much enjoyed.

And finally…a couple of things I found while Stumbling around. This must truly be the most disgusting snack ever invented. If you know of a worse one, I’d be intrigued to hear about it. Here it is.

A Krispy Kreme donut bacon cheeseburger. I can feel my arteries furring up just looking at the photograph. And next, today’s lesson.

Oops.

Anyways, amazingly the sun is shining so I am off into the garden to try and make a start on my tan before my upcoming holidays. Of which more next time…..

I just had to add this which I received from my friend in Los Angeles, Claire and then read about in the Sunday Times here. Watch the frogs which are quite clever and amusing and then keep watching. You will be astonished.

I’m back!

It was a wonderful weekend. On Friday, I went to Wimbledon with my friend Amanda and we managed to cadge a lift from a friend, John, who was driving up, instead of having to catch the train, so that was a great start to the day. When we arrived, there were security checks and my tiny Swiss Army penknife which is attached to my keyring was confiscated from my handbag. This was so irritating as they only seemed to be searching bags so if the keys had been in my coat pocket, they would not have been noticed. Some security. Note to would-be trouble makers – carry your machete in your coat pocket….

It started to rain just as we arrived but play was only delayed for 90 minutes so we did not have long to wait before watching Roger Federer walk onto a sunny Centre Court. He won his match against the French player, Marc Gicquel, in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3, 6-1. We then watched Serena Williams and Amelie Mauresmo play a thrilling first set which Serena narrowly won but in the second set, Amelie seemed to be carrying an injury and played below par and so Serena won easily. So all in all, a very bad day for French tennis players.

We managed to slip out between matches for a little refreshment  – my summer favourite, a glass of Pimms!

After an afternoon of tennis, we met up with John and Bob for a Wimbledon tradition, strawberries and cream – caused me no end of problems as I have an aversion to licking wet wood and the strawberries came with a wooden spoon! Still, undaunted, I ate the strawberries with my fingers and drank the cream from the bowl – not very ladylike but needs must… and of course, we had a glass or two of champagne.

The next day, I had to be up early as I was going to Glastonbury Festival with some other friends. #2 son had gone on ahead as he was camping and he sent a message that it had rained on Friday night so not good news. He said that he and his friends had put 10 tents in a circle with a tarpaulin on the floor, a gazebo on top of that and then covered the whole assembly with another tarpaulin so their encampment was snug and watertight! He learned his lesson after last year when they got soaked and never really dried out plus, it was so muddy, they had nowhere to sit down for 4 days.

By the time I arrived on Saturday, the sun had come out and the weather was warm and sunny all day – such a treat. Highlights of the day were Seasick Steve, Crowded House, James Blunt, Manu Chao, The Raconteurs  and a shambolic Amy Winehouse who manged to get into a fight with some of her fans….

This is my favourite bit – Crowded House singing ‘Weather with You’ and the wave at the end was fantastic! Did you spot me? In the middle, towards the back :-)

The next day, we saw John Mayer and bizarrely, Neil Diamond, who seemed to struggle to get the crowd going until he sang ‘I’m a Believer’ and then of course ‘Sweet Caroline’ which brought the house down. He should have just come on and sang ‘Sweet Caroline’ half a dozen times and everyone would have been happy. I love the way everyone sang the backing vocals as well as the main tune…

The weather stayed dry all the time I was there so I must thank you for all your kind comments and wishes – they worked! here is a small slide show of photographs from Wimbledon and Glastonbury.

Keep off the grass

This is another of those plastic coated cotton fabrics. It’s really fun and waterproof and wipeable. Which I found to be quite useful when I spilled a glass of juice over my work area. Oops.

It’s all very odd. I was checking my stats and for the last couple of days I have had a huge spike in page views. Everyone seems to be reading a post I wrote in September last year called ‘Back to the Drawing Board‘ – 1107 page views yesterday. It was all about an album I made for my (then) boyfriend’s son and was also the post where I first tried out the woven binding – which I repeated using foam a few days ago. Very odd indeed! Today, there is another spike, this time for another post in September called ‘Double the Fun‘. I don’t quite know why these old posts are suddenly so popular but I’m not complaining!

I’m going to a dinner thing tonight. As usual, I have been trying every item of clothing on in my wardrobe looking for something suitable to wear. It’s black tie so I need something dressy. My only problem is that I have put some weight on since Christmas, which I have been trying half heartedly to lose. When you have no will power, it’s hard, believe me. I think I have found the solution though….

Now that’s my kind of diet. Maybe I should exercise more but then there’s always the danger of this…..

….instead of this.

Now that’s what I call exercising to music. Very cool tune isn’t it? Well, these guys think so…..