It's hard to believe but baby Amelie has had her first birthday this week. We seem to have been celebrating for quite a few days, with a big, noisy family party as well as a day in Birmingham at the Sealife Centre. Laura posted some lovely baby photos a few days ago on her blog if you'd like to see more.
Birmingham hasn't enjoyed a great reputation for its architecture and probably with good reason but the canal area around Brindley Place is really attractive with a fascinating mix of old and new. That's where the Sealife centre is as well as The Ikon Gallery, Symphony Hall and the NIA concert hall.
The latest addition to the city centre is the fantastic new library. You may have seen it featured on the BBC's Culture Show this week. Our friend Steph Redfern has been to visit and she has some amazing photos over on her blog. I've added it to my list of things I must do.
There are loads of restaurants around the canal basin too. We opted for Cafe Rouge - who'd have thought Amelie could read French already!
Back home it's getting harder and harder to keep up any pretence of sophistication. We are gradually being taken over by everything plastic and gaudy. Why does it have to be so pink!!
Amongst the partying and days out I have been making time for a bit of painting. This little guy only has his first few brush strokes of colour. I shall be adding much finer feather detail when I have a minute to spare. I'm planning to paint all the birds we see in our garden - that penpal challenge has a lot to answer for!
I've also rescued this quilt top from the 'to do' pile. Now that the text has been added I'm excited to start the quilting but!!!! When I was searching through a crate of hand dyed fabrics for something completely unrelated to this quilt I found a glorious piece of fabric that could have been made to order!
Here's a close up that I think shows why I have to add it to the quilt in some way. I hadn't intended for the quilt to be very big but it seems it will be have to be a bit bigger!
As DMTV members will already know, the words on this piece are a quote from Ernest Hemingway's Old Man and the Sea. It's all about hot, white beaches - well I can dream can't I?
When Laura and Jamie printed the old boat image for me I commissioned this one too. It's also going to have text from the same book. This one will say, 'In his dreams he heard the surf roar'. I think as autumn has arrived so abruptly this week I shall enjoy working on these beach and fishing boat inspired pieces. Maybe memories of the hot sun and the white sand will shorten the miserable winter months for me!
Thanks for visiting - I love to know you're out there! Linda