Just some later summer sunflowers, before they go.
Warm woollen mittens: the latest gift knitting, in an attempt at a cute, tasteful, trendy-knitting-book-style, still life. Not well done really, that edge of the the mat adjacent to the mittens is compositionally very irritating.
However, I was quite pleased with the mittens themselves, and thought perhaps they merited some coordinated props, blue china fragments, marbles, a late hydrangea head, and some old books, the ones one's mother read from in an old-fashioned, spoiled and sheltered childhood spent immersed in a mythos of horses and the countryside, some of the time at least: Kilvert's Diary, Borrow's Wild Wales, Lamb's Essays of Elia, and of course Jerry, the Story of an Exmoor Pony (or maybe the top one is Samuel Butler's Erewhon, which in fact I've never read and which doesn't really conform to the nostalgic, bucolic, middle class English idyll of the others, but it was still a bookshelf familiar from my personal Olden Days, and anyway, it's blue).
The knitting is for a grand-daughter's eighteenth birthday in a couple of days, I'm fairly certain this won't spoil any surprises and that she doesn't read here, as I understand she is something called a Youtube vlogger and so probably ignorant of the very existence of old-fashioned blogs in general and this one in particular. She's a dear girl anyway and fond of unicorns, I believe, or she was five minutes ago but not any longer and I'm probably hopelessly out of touch. She was very appreciative of her very long Hufflepuff scarf for her sixteenth anyway ("one of the best things I own") and still wearing it sometimes, even in the aforesaid vlogs, so I'm hoping she'll humour me. The original design, a very basic chart, was for horses but I converted it to unicorns, and made the rest of the details up.
The fibre of the linings is made from the hair of humanely reared, free-range, gently combed unicorns.
Tom's constructive endeavours have been rather more practically useful; re-roofing part of our corrugated iron hangar barn in clear pvc.
I did in fact spend a fair amount of time up a parallel ladder myself holding ends up, standing at the bottom of his passing things, lying on the corrugated iron holding things down, and generally being an unskilled roofer's mate, a job which took me back a bit. (I know the photos look a bit pale, I lightened them up lot as they were too dark and shadowy, being contre-jour).
Last oddment, toad in the hole:
Quite a small one, with pretty little coppery eyes. I thought it might be one of the midwife toads which we hear chirping and chiming all spring and summer long but rarely see, but the eyes give it away: midwives are unusual among batracians in having a vertical dark pupil/eye slit. It took up residence one day below a rose bush, but was gone by the next morning.
Off in a day or two to the Low Countries with high hopes, for a little while. Staying on-line but still somewhat scarce. Be seeing you.