Which planet am I on?

I ask because I’m not sure I know really.

At the weekend I was in Cumbria at the Quilters Guild Region 15W regional meeting.  Saturday I gave a talk “The Accidental Quilter” and Sunday I taught a workshop on Goddesses.  I had my camera in my bag all the time but forgot to take any photos (as I do when I’m teaching I must get out of this bad habit).


Caribbean Goddess Goddess summer tree

Then I finally decided what to do for the CQGB challenge “Breakthrough”.  I had started a piece months ago for this but decide it wasn’t working and chopped it up – making it too small for the 90×90 or 60x60cm strict limits (I hate having these limits it doesn’t work for me at all – and only 1cm tolerance.  Embroiderers would never demand this regulation). 

Anyway, now I have my design I have realised that the deadline – 6th November –  is not weeks away but only 12 days to account for postage of info.  I have visitors arriving tomorrow for a whole week so I know there is little chance I’m going to get this done.  I thought I had about two weeks after the holidays.

So do I try and work like crazy?  My work is always very labour intensive and I don’t produce 4 works in a day.  That’s not me – I can do much better than that.  Throwing something together is not my style.

Maybe I’ll get going and try, at the least I’ll have one piece of work in progress……..

New paintings

Three new oil paintings in the “Impressions of Northumberland” series are available for sale.

Impressions of Northumberland 10011

Impressions of Northumberland 10011

15x15x3cm  Oil on Wood Panel  £35

Email me (helen.cowans@btconnect.com) to buy via PayPal

Impressions of Northumberland 10012

Impressions of Northumberland 10012

20x20x3cm  Oil on Wood Panel  £40

Email me (helen.cowans@btconnect.com) to buy via PayPal

Impressions of Northumberland 10013

Impressions of Northumberland 10013

15x30x3cm  Oil on Wood Panel  £45

Email me (helen.cowans@btconnect.com) to buy via PayPal


I have a few things to show you textile wise, but they need photographing.  In the meantime here are some pictures taken at the weekend at Kelso, a small market town about 30 minutes drive north – just over the border in Scotland.

It has a beautiful ruined abbey built in the 12th Century.


And Floors Castle built in 1721.



Thank goodness its October.

Very rarely do I wish time away but September has been a pretty dreadfully depressing month;

Ric archery

1. I caught Swine Flu.  Not recommended if you can possibly avoid it.

2. I had to cancel the Art Trail Open Studio weekend, disappointing for me after all the hard work and for those who were going to visit.  I don’t think the Crossing Borders organisers are very impressed with me as I had to cancel last year too.  But life happens.

3. Land very close to our house has been purchased by a neighbour and goodness knows what we will have happening right next to us.  Large fence / hedge time and I loose my wonderful view but I feel the need to enclose my space and cocoon myself away from the world.  Expensive.

4. The Lawn Mower is terminally dead and and a new one is (another) very expensive purchase.

5. We have two issues to deal with concerning the studio.  A real time consuming hassle and potentially expensive.

6. My cleaner lost two contracts in Wooler and so it’s not worth her travelling to me and thus I am just off to clean the house from top to bottom when I would rather be stitching.  That’s one day a week completely taken up with housework and the next day spent exhausted resting from housework.

7. The freezer door was left open and all the food defrosted (just after a shopping trip too).

8. Someone I thought was a friend isn’t as much of a friend as I thought (which hurts).

9. I have learnt never to trust anyone I don’t know really well.  I am too nice and open and the world is full of complete b*!*&*%ds.  I found this out the hard way this month.

10. I have been comfort eating and put on 3lbs (make that 4lbs).

11. I couldn’t make my monthly lunch date with good friends.

“Life is just one damned thing after another”     Elbert Hubbard

“There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year’s course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word ‘happy’ would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.”     Carl Jung


Ending on a good note (or two);

1. DS has settled into his new school.

2. I have tidied up the office and can see the floor again (though the desk is another task entirely).

3. I’ve had tea and a chat with some good friends this week.

4. Isabel and Emily Guinea Pig are settled in and growing every day – and they love cuddles.

5. I’ve lost a cleaner, but gained a gardener.

6. I’ve had swine flu so I know I’m not going to get it again.

7. I’ve had two beautiful bunches of flowers from friends (nothing is better to cheer me up).

8. I’ve had lunch with a good friend I see only very occasionally.

9. Yesterday I spent most of the day stitching and nattering with friends.

10. My house is cleaner now that I’m cleaning it again (but I do wish it would stay perfect for more than 5 hours).


Time to contemplate the new month and its opportunities…
and take the advice of Buddha…

 Pastel goddess

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”     Buddha