Friday, 27 September 2013

Wyer work

Ooh what a treat to visit the home of Gail Stokes-Hayward today. Gail knits with wire, making 'Wyer' sculptures of wildlife found around the River Wye. She is currently making four five sculptures for The Huts in the Hills, so I called in today to see how they're developing. Photos of the sculptures to follow, once they're in situ.

Here are some of her ink sketches from her attic room studio wall:

Gail's garden has lots of inviting sheds dotted about including one diminutive shepherd hut. Here's a picture of her washing shed - the cutest laundry room I've ever seen.

Wild Wye Web

Planning is underway for the next series of Wild Wye Web workshops. We're going to be having a taster morning on October 19th in Talgarth with a Muddy Writing Trail up at the Witches Pool. Emma Metcalfe and I will be leading a group of children (with parents or guardians) of all ages up to the waterfall and pool and writing poems together. 10am-12.30pm followed by lunch at The Baker's Table at Talgarth Mill. Email me for more details and to book a place for your family. At half-term we're doing a special three-day creative writing course for eager writers age 8-12 years and a two-day art and storytelling workshop for 4-7 year olds.

At 8pm on the same day The Hay Festival of British Cinema are hosting a special preview screening of PROJECT WILD THING, a new documentary about reconnecting kids with nature. The Director, David Bond, is travelling up from London to be at the event and Ollie's doing a QandA with him after. It's a fun and inspiring film. Free but ticketed events. Tickets available from Eighteen Rabbit at Hay Castle and from The Baker's Table in Talgarth (they'll be doing wood-fired pizzas before the event, but places limited so please book).

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Huts in the wild

So now both the imps are in school full-time and our family settled in one place for a while I've been settling back into work. I have picked up some projects and PR work that are keeping me busy, but the real treat of a job is working on The Huts in the Hills. It's a project by Steve Greenow, whose team did a fabulous job of renovating Pottery Cottage. The handcrafted shepherd huts have just been moved this week onto the site up by Hay Bluff where they will soon be available for hire. I'm fixing up the interiors and doing the marketing. Expect to hear a lot more about these huts!

They are in a beautiful spot, hidden away in the dip below Lord Hereford's Knob and Hay Bluff, beside a stream. The idea is that the three sleeping huts + the communal hut with kitchen and at one and and bathroom at the other, are rented out by a group. I took the boys up a couple of weeks back, before the huts were in place, and they played for a couple of hours in the stream and running around the hills.

The huts are at the lower end of Cae Marchog farm, home to The House in the Hills (above) which sleeps 10 people and has spectacular views of Hay Bluff. I love it up there, so moody and wild, and although only five miles up the hill from Hay it feels like worlds away.

It was cold up there today! How am I going to survive the winter?! 

Hay Bluff with a doble M design blue filter : ) 

Monday, 23 September 2013

Barcelona revisited. Well, almost.

I was supposed to fly to Barcelona yesterday with Sethie, to hang out with our lovely BuenosAiresnowinBarca friends. Plans fell apart when I realised yesterday morning that BOTH of Seth's passports had expired (there was a brief moment where I thought we had found a use for his Argy passport, but sadly no...).

So here we are still in Wales, with new plans to travel to Spain next month, and me fondly remembering my jaunt there back in the spring. 

So, to ease me back into blogging, I'll do some catching up, starting with Barcelona, May 2013. 

Barcelona or Buenos Aires? No wonder it's easy to switch from one to the other.

I'm not a great fan of Catholic architecture, but this church building was fabulous. My favourite space on this trip was probably the club where Vic writes, the Ateneu, but photos sadly buried away somewhere on my laptop that keeps crashing every time I search. So for now, the church, whose name I forget, something to do with the sea perhaps...

We shopped in markets and Tim cooked, we sticky pastries and drank Vermouth at 11am in a bar lined with sifones.

We mooched around Sarria, stopping for coffee and deciding where to go for lunch...

...viewed a possible quirky place for them to live, with views across the city and out to the sea and we stayed out late at a party in the hills and going for a picnic and long walk in the mountains ending down at a beachside cafe. Happy, lazy Barcelona days. Back there in three weeks with our gang of pals now doubled in size!

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Back to blogging?

Well, that's been the longest blogging holiday yet.  Talking about blogging at a social media social in Hay yesterday reminded me how much I enjoyed doing this. I'm off to Barcelona for a few days, but maybe I'll get blogging again after that. See you soon...