Heigh Ho! Heigh Ho! It’s Off to Patreon We Go…

The poet Lord Byron once said "IF I don't write to empty my mind, I will go mad" and when I think back to that fateful day many years ago when curiosity got the better of me and I picked up a copy of Dolls' House Magazine in my local supermarket which then went on to change my life - I understand where the man was coming from!  Hello and welcome to my Patreon page as the artist, storyteller and 'Head Mouser' over in the Mouse Town... St M's is also home to a gang of unique mice, a brood of chickens and two Little Big Cats who love nothing more than sharing the tales of their musings, ministry and mishaps from Merryworth Town - even though I'm usually the one attending to most of the work including the designing, creating, researching, blogging and the cleaning up!

That’s ONE Crooked Hen!

“When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laughter broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.” If the author of the enchanting tale of Peter Pan is to be believed then Sir James Matthew Barrie will not doubt be reassured to discover …

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Those Gnarled Branches and Fallen Leaves…

“You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know.” So said William Wilberforce, a Yorkshire lad and THE leader of the movement to abolish the slave trade. If you are like me and love to go in search of elusive ancestors throughout the vale and dale of the County of Yorkshire; this blog could be just what you are looking for as I follow in the footsteps of my North Riding family, and as there are plenty of them, I have many miles to travel!

A NO ‘Happy Ending’ Bouquet

On July 29 and on an incredible and much more summery day over 36 years ago, the world was 'lost' in a sea of enthusiastic flag waving, military parades, dubious hats, the soaring strains of Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance, swathes of ivory taffeta and unbridled patriotic fever to celebrate the wedding of the Prince of Wales to …

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Flaming June!

It only seems like a week ago to the beginning of last month when I had spent the morning looking at some images of two brides who had both married on the first day of June some years apart and my memories of being surrounded by buckets of glorious sunflowers, fragrant roses and lush foliage …

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A Portrait in Flowers…

Dear Diary... Although the doors to my little flower shop have been closed as of late - my floral endeavours have been continuing albeit in more of a fantastical way as the Crooked Hen and I've been busy creating some plants which would struggle to find a definition in any botanical guide! However, I have …

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Screaming Carrots? How Exquisite!

Dear Diary... Events took a somewhat eventful turn in February and although not entirely unexpected, the last few months have been of upheaval and change as I have moved abode some twenty miles north to York and as this ancient walled city is my hometown, I have been fortunate to have met with much delighted …

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Blood Sweeps the Land in November for a Fallen Soldier…

As November 11 is Armistice Day, I thought I'd share the story of just one soldier of the 11 million other military personnel who perished in the First World War. For it was on a cold and very rainy day that I found myself in the shadow of the magnificent Tower of London, for although I had been determined to see the display of the Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red in the tower moat since it had begun - my visit as the Friday after Armistice Day and although many of the ceramic poppies had been removed; the sight that remained was still a very humbling experience. As I watched the volunteers plucking the ceramic poppies from the muddy ground and then placing them in their cardboard nest, I recalled my feelings of disappointment that I had been unable to buy one of the poppies.

Twenty Three Years After THAT Verdict and the Protest Continues!

This is THE post that I should  have shared yesterday but I did not on account of a lack of time, natural light and inclination! Despite the issues of time and natural light notwithstanding for as I had published six (yes, six!) stories about the anniversary of THAT Verdict by yesterday evening; the only inclination that remained was for me to crawl away into the dark night and watch a trashy movie with only a huge slice of cake for company And no, the trashy movie that I watched was NOT about the Simpson Matter!

Father AND Daughter Reflected in a Different Light?

I think the thing which has most troubled me about the death of my father, is that I have been left feeling so troubled by it as I had always imagined I would be indifferent to any news of him but how else to explain my sense of rage as if he has slammed the door in my face for the final time or that profound sadness about the beautiful and charming grandson he barely knew. Or the black void in which all of my questions about my relationship with him have tumbled into and which are now swirling around like confetti, to be forever unanswered and I have to find my way through the ‘If only’ and What if’ on my own...