Sunday, 19 December 2010

Snow is falling all around

Here in the UK we dont very often get a tonne of snow before xmas but this year we had it as early as Nov. I like the look of snow very pretty but hate driving in it our country just doesnt know how to handle so much of it we are not equiped the local council run out of grit etc. I think they should visit Norway or Austria where they have snow every winter.

Here in the Midlands (Warwickshire) we have got off lightly as some areas of the UK have had really bad weather for weeks my heart goes out to those in the north who seem to hit the worst of it each time

some are saying white xmas which would be nice but only a little bit so i can get to Dad's easy

Merry xmas all and whatever the weather stay warm and safe
Gail, Cleo and the tribe

Thursday, 16 December 2010


May your Xmas be full of cheer and the New Year full of love, hope and good furtune

Christmas Cards - Children in Victorian England had the task of writing greetings to their parents in their very best handwriting. Sometimes adults wrote Christmas letters to each other, but this could take up a great deal of time. The printed Christmas card solved the problem. The custom of sending printed cards was started in England by Henry Cole, who did not have time to write letters to each of his relatives. He asked an artist, John Calcott Horsley, to design a card for him. About 1,000 of these cards were printed, and those not used by Sir Henry were sold by the printer for one shilling. This was not cheap, which may be why they did not sell very well. With the introduction of the "penny post" in 1840, it became cheaper to send mail, and as a result of color printing and the invention of printing machines, cards could be printed faster and cheaper. The first company to print and sell Christmas cards on a large scale was Charles Goodall & Sons of London in 1862. The first charity card was produced in 1949 by UNICEF. Richard H. Pease, a printer from Albany, New York, is credited with sending the first specially printed Christmas card in America, in 1851. It managed to make the first mistake in Christmas card history. The card showed a building on which was hung a banner proclaiming "Pease's Great Variety Store."

Cleo my birman helping Santa's Elf
Santa's Helpers

Friday, 3 December 2010

Christmas is coming the geese are getting fat

As christmas approches I feel that with each passing year some people forget the true meaning of the season, so thought it would be nice to hear about how the festive Christmas really got going with the Victorians

A Victorian Christmas

For thousands of years people around the world have enjoyed midwinter festivals. With the arrival of Christianity, pagan festivals became mixed with Christmas celebrations. One of the leftovers from these pagan days is the custom of bedecking houses and churches with evergreen plants like mistletoe, holly and ivy. Apparently, as well as their magical connection in protecting us from evil spirits, they also encourage the return of spring.

No era in history however, has influenced the way in which we celebrate Christmas, quite as much as the Victorians.

Before Victoria's reign started in 1837 nobody in Britain had heard of Santa Claus or Christmas Crackers. No Christmas cards were sent and most people did not have holidays from work. The wealth and technologies generated by the industrial revolution of the Victorian era changed the face of Christmas forever. Sentimental do-gooders like Charles Dickens wrote books like "Christmas Carol", published in 1843, which actually encouraged rich Victorians to redistribute their wealth by giving money and gifts to the poor - Humbug! These radical middle class ideals eventually spread to the not-quite-so-poor as well.

The holidays - The wealth generated by the new factories and industries of the Victorian age allowed middle class families in England and Wales to take time off work and celebrate over two days, Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Boxing Day, December 26th, earned its name as the day servants and working people opened the boxes in which they had collected gifts of money from the "rich folk". Those new fangled inventions, the railways allowed the country folk who had moved into the towns and cities in search of work to return home for a family Christmas.

The Scots have always preferred to postpone the celebrations for a few days to welcome in the New Year, in the style that is Hogmanay. Christmas Day itself did not become a holiday in Scotland until many years after Victoria's reign and it has only been within the last 20-30 years that this has been extended to include Boxing Day.

Father Christmas - Santa ClausThe Gifts - At the start of Victoria's reign, children's toys tended to be handmade and hence expensive, generally restricting availability to those "rich folk" again. With factories however came mass production, which brought with it games, dolls, books and clockwork toys all at a more affordable price. Affordable that is to "middle class" children. In a "poor child's" Christmas stocking, which first became popular from around 1870, only an apple, orange and a few nuts could be found.

Father Christmas / Santa Claus - Normally associated with the bringer of the above gifts, is Father Christmas or Santa Claus. The two are in fact two entirely separate stories. Father Christmas was originally part of an old English midwinter festival, normally dressed in green, a sign of the returning spring. The stories of St. Nicholas (Sinter Klaas in Holland) came via Dutch settlers to America in the 17th Century. From the 1870's Sinter Klass became known in Britain as Santa Claus and with him came his unique gift and toy distribution system - reindeer and sleigh.

Turkey Time - Turkeys had been brought to Britain from America hundreds of years before Victorian times. When Victoria first came to the throne however, both chicken and turkey were too expensive for most people to enjoy. In northern England roast beef was the traditional fayre for Christmas dinner while in London and the south, goose was favourite. Many poor people made do with rabbit. On the other hand, the Christmas Day menu for Queen Victoria and family in 1840 included both beef and of course a royal roast swan or two. By the end of the century most people feasted on turkey for their Christmas dinner. The great journey to London started for the turkey sometime in October. Feet clad in fashionable but hardwearing leather the unsuspecting birds would have set out on the 80-mile hike from the Norfolk farms. Arriving obviously a little tired and on the scrawny side they must have thought London hospitality unbeatable as they feasted and fattened on the last few weeks before Christmas!

Christmas Cards - The "Penny Post" was first introduced in Britain in 1840 by Rowland Hill. The idea was simple, a penny stamp paid for the postage of a letter or card to anywhere in Britain. This simple idea paved the way for the sending of the first Christmas cards. Sir Henry Cole tested the water in 1843 by printing a thousand cards for sale in his art shop in London at one shilling each. The popularity of sending cards was helped along when in 1870 a halfpenny postage rate was introduced as a result of the efficiencies brought about by those new fangled railways.

Victoria & Albert Decorate the Christmas Tree Illustration from "Godey's Lady's Book," December 1860The Tree - Queen Victoria's German husband Prince Albert helped to make the Christmas tree as popular in Britain as they where in his native Germany, when he brought one to Windsor Castle in the 1840's.

The Crackers - Invented by Tom Smith, a London sweet maker in 1846. The original idea was to wrap his sweets in a twist of fancy coloured paper, but this developed and sold much better when he added love notes (motto's), paper hats, small toys and made them go off BANG!

Carol Singers - Carol Singers and Musicians "The Waits" visited houses singing and playing the new popular carols;

1843 - O Come all ye Faithful

1848 - Once in Royal David's City

1851 - See Amid the Winters Snow

1868 - O Little Town of Bethlehem

1883 - Away in a Manger

with thanks to

Full of interesting Christmas information

Sunday, 21 November 2010

New Additions to Barvil Nursery

Welcome aboard Sheltie the sheltie dog and Ruby the Charlie bear who i brought home with me from the New Forest

Also welcome home to Cameron my reborn boy who I started doing a bit of reborning on to see how the process was achieved and my good friend and brilliant reborn artist Nikki Thorpe finished him off for me.

I am rather proud of him although i only did the painting not the rooting as with my arthritis it made it difficult to do with working full time but once retired i may have another go

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Back home

my poster of Deathy Hallows Pictures, Images and Photos

steps are on

frontage finsihed

frontage finsihed
Lovely break down south. Went to Lyndurst in the New Forest i adore the New Forest which always seems like home to me, spent many a happy day round Ringwood, Fordingbridge and Burley as a child.
We also went to swanage which was a delightful day we sat on the front listening to the waves nice and sunny as well .... bonus

hotel had a indoor heated pool and jacuzzi this is the first time i had tried a jacuzzi and I loved it

Got the rest of week off work so today went to fetch carpet and wallpaper to finish off the Laurels ready for the furinture going in.

off to see Harry Potter tomorrow

catch you soon

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Off to the sea side

Cannot believe only after a few months i have 25 followers who join me with my ramblings thank you very much. I have a lovely time going round and reading all your blogs, and feel your all so much more creative than me and have wonderful items on your blogs its a real joy to read them with a cuppa to pass the evenings away.

This weekend I am busy getting things ready as i am off to Bournemouth for a week and half which is in the South of the UK.

have a safe and fun time while im gone - and been told there is a dolls house shop right in Bournemouth so of cos will have to visit

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Victorian Miss

I adore the Victorian dress and as I am going to a Victorian weekend in December I decided to dress in the garb of the day. Going as a plane Jane nothing fancy but I kinda like this type of dress and its amazing how warm it is.

I would love to go back in time for one day to experience the Victorian era for myself I know a lot of heartache and hardship went on and the poor where looked down on but a lot of new and exciting developments happened in this time in history. some people had to fight for it yes but it just fascinates me totally this time.

Here are a few pics of me in my Nanny Macphee type of disguess lol

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Amelia the pendle witch

I have a new doll not a reborn but a witch from pendle

here is the story if you dont know about them
In 1612, 19 women and men from the villages around Pendle Hill, were accused of Witchcraft and taken before 'The Powers' - the local magistrates, Roger Nowell of Read Hall. After his examination, he sent them to Lancaster a journey of over 30 miles. They were held in Lancaster Castle, in dreadful conditions, from April to August 17th, when they were put on a trial found guilty and hanged.

With the exception of Alice Nutter, who was a gentlewoman from a wealthy family, the rest of the accused were very poor peasants, who lived in hovels on the land of various local farmers and gentry. They knew the ways of the countryside, and probably made a penny or two by providing herb potions and medicines, which meant they were regarded with great superstition by local people.

Although the story of the Pendle Witches is very sad, they have achieved international recognition

she is from
take a look some nice wicca items

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Victorian Bliss

Over the weekend our little band of reborn friends held a show and although i dont make and sell reborns i went along with dad to help out and what a lovely show it was lots of general public flowing through all day and they purchased a few dolls.
I fell in love with a Victorian doll pram and Victorian doll which i just had to have, then i saw a lovely reborn so different to my others that i couldnt resist her either, then after a year of looking i at last found my wonderful Silver Cross pram to display my reborns and take on the pram pushes. The older coach built ones are a little heavy for me to lift on my own to get into my little car, but this one is a easy fold down chasis and smaller body, and red. **gasp** and i got it for a bargin price so im well happy and thankful of my work bonus this month to pay for it all lol

hope you like them


Sunday, 3 October 2010

hop along Gail

Last Saturday I had a operation on my ankle to file the cartlidge down I have the grand reveling of said ankle on Tuesday when the bandage comes off. I have throughly enjoy being off work and caught up with reading, and adding bits and pieces to the Dolls house. I really will not want to go back to work in a weeks time lol.

I have even started crocteting and have tought my self a few stiches with a dvd "how to" and help from my good friend Dianh.

I also found a lovely pooh and eeyore bean bag on ebay to display my Ellie-May on

Thank you and welcome to all my followers I really didnt think i would get any at all, but i am nearly at 20 ....gasp!! Its so nice to get comments and take time to go round each persons blog and read all about their hobbies and lives

till next time take care and enjoy life


Sunday, 26 September 2010

Catch up

A couple of days ago I had a operation on my ankle was only in for a day but come out all bandaged up and off work for two weeks and cannot drive for ten days. So taking the time to catch up at least I will be able to spend some time on my Laurels dolls house. I dont know if i want to call it the Laurels or have a new name.

Any way the fron is partly finished the next step is to decorate the rooms and finished the basement frontage.

Today my dad drove me to a local doll and teddy bear fair and I picke up another baby she is Zinny By Marita Winters reborned by the wonderful Elaine Colbert of Ellies Babies here in the UK. I think I am going to call her Pollyanna.

hope you like the pics


Friday, 17 September 2010

show delights

Last Weekend I had a very interesting couple of days on the Saturday I got together with the other members of the “Reborn Treasures” forum, we all meet at shows and like to get together each month. This month we had a lesson in mixing paints to get the correct skin tone and how to paint hair on instead of rooting. We are not setting out to be teachers but share what we have gleamed along the way with each other it’s a friendly set up and we all there to help each other. I was taught to crochet which I have always wanted to do. At the start we did a swap where we all brought along reborn items and did a swap or purchase. The time went by so fast and was a little disappointed when it was time to leave.

On the Sunday I went along to my first doll house fair held at the Stafford Show Ground which I knew well from the dog shows. I was amazed at how popular this type of hobbie is. The gypsy caravans were fabulous and really want to save up to have one of those!! It was great as a first time house builder to just drink in all the different stalls and discuss how and were to put all the stuff and ear mark some items for future buys. I couldn’t resist a set of small dolls, and dad treated me to a nursery set and dinning room set

Cannot wait for the next fair

Friday, 10 September 2010

My Native Indian Girl

At a recent reborn show I came across Mary Shortle and her stand of wonderful dolls not quiet the reborn type I normally collect but this little native Indian I just kept comeing back to look at. I must admit that at first I thought she was an Eskimo but Mary said she was Indian. I had named her Suki but now I wonder if any of my USA friends know of a native Indian name that would suit her better.

She sits in the chair at the end of my pram smiling at all who come through the nursery door I am taking her to our Reborn Treasures meeting tomorrow to show the members, also taking Fay that Debbie kindly sent me

I find that collect just has to be a item that you adore and fall in love with at that first glance


Friday, 3 September 2010

Blists Hill Victorian Village

Today I went to the Blists Hill Victorian Town part of Ironbridge in the UK
Costumed staff give a warm welcome and a fascinating insight into how life was lived in Victorian Times. Exchange your money in the Bank; admire the goods in the Grocers, Bakery and Sweetshop. Find out about curious remedies in the Chemist and see the printer and candle-maker in action.

A visit to the brand new shops on Canal Street is a must. Check out the season’s latest fashions in the General Draper and Outfitters, have a portrait taken in the Photographers, mail your letters and post-cards in the Post Office, select from a massive range of ‘Victorian’ treats in the Sweet Shop and enjoy a delicious portion of traditionally made fish and chips in the Fried Fish Dealers.

During the summer season the town comes alive with even more characters that portray various aspects of Victorian life and during most school holidays there are a range of hands-on activities to try.

Discover what life was like for a Victorian housewife in the cottage and in the summer enjoy a journey on a horse and cart and a ride on the fairground. On most Wednesday mornings you can see red hot molten iron being poured in The Foundry.

We had a lovely meal above the pub and purcahsed fresh bread which is baked thorught the day for people to buy. You can also exchanged cash at the bank to use the old English money of farthing, ha'penny, penny, threepence, sixpence or Tanner then use to buy things which the children enjoy any not used you can changed back in the shop or keep.
In the shop I had to buy a Victorian bear which im calling Miss Bliss to remember my day


Monday, 30 August 2010

Weekend Jollies

We had a bank holiday weekend here in UK which means the Monday is a nation holiday.
On Sunday I went to a garden/craft center close to where I live, they had a big indoor hall full of little craft stalls, a few units outside and a lovely tea rooms. With good home cooked foods on sale to either eat in or take away to cook yourself.

After looking in vane in local town i found a craft bag to put my bits and peices in when im crochetering, and after years of searching found a lady selling a otterman which i remember my mum having across the bottom of her bed when i was a child this one was a small one just right for my flat.

Today the Monday we went 10 miles to West Brom to the Sandwell Valley show where a few of my reborn friends had stalls, they had a good day selling a few reborns. I took along darcy in her pram and had a few really nice comments and a couple of "how werid" but I enjoyed the day very much.

follow me, follow you

After a month of being on this new blogger I have 16 followers wow! Welcome to one and all I hope you enjoy my little ramblings. I certainly enjoy reading all your blogs we have talent abound on this site.

Thank you all for the wonderful comments and new found friendships

please pop back any time you wish

Hug and love

Friday, 27 August 2010

Home at Last

I have made a lovely new friend in Debbie Lee of the THE LITTLE SAINTS NURSERY blogs and when i saw this darling girl I just had to treat myself. But what a long long wait no fault of Debbie's just a very tireing journey for my little poppet, Debbie posted her out at the beginnig of the month and we were both holding our breaths and wondering if she was ok, I then contacted the customs in Southampton who said the parcel wasnt even in the country, but the two days later she arrived and judging from the label on parcel had been sitting in London customs for a week poor love.

But she is home and cuddled, showed off at my place of work and everybody thought she was adoreable, most saying she was a poppet, a sweetie and a ture work of art. I just love her hair and the wonderful little dummy!!

I am just glad she is safe, Now I am debatiing as to putting her in my dolls house when finish or keeping her with the other small mini doll in a little basket in living room where she will be seen more.

After a couple of days of thinking about a name I am going to call her Fay as she is like a little fairy, very delicate.

Thank you once again Debbie for a lovely work of art to add to my collection

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Car boot Bargin

Went along to our local car boot this weekend as I was looking for a crib or moses basket for Charlotte Rose. I found a bargin a wooden rocking crib for £2 no bedding but that doesnt matter. Dad got a nice chair for his toddler dolls with winnie the pooh on for £1.50.

These car boots that have sprung up in the UK are really good if you got time to browse through the nick naks, some granted is rubbish but you can find little gems. One lady does superb baby clothes all in plastic wrapers and most no more than £3. Dad got trousers, cardi, and 4 t-shirts all for a £5....bargin!!!

Decided to paint the outside of dolls house oatmeal as the blue made it look a bit lost as my wall of nursery is blue. but i think once the white of the windows, roof tiles and the black of railings it will look very nice indeed

Friday, 13 August 2010

The Laurels - Phase one

As I am off work with a eye infection thought it would be a good idea to make a start on the Laurels so I rang dad to pop along and help, and off we went the hardest part was getting the glue out of the tubes lol

But we enjoyed painting the base coat and putting it together all ready for the next stage now

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

my nursery room at last

Welcome to Barvil Nursery I have at last got my spare bedroom sorted out and got rid of clutter - mostly to tip, charity. Dad helped me move the wardrobe into the big bedroom and put a shelf up for he office corner. So now I have a couple of dolls pram in the corner of the living room and a nice little office come nursery...Called Barvil Nursery which is the first three letters of my dads and mums names
Barry and Vilma

My picture of Eeyore was a car boot bargain of just 20pence

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Manchester Show 2010

Dad and I went to the Discover Dolls show at Manchester today and thoroughly enjoyed our day. It was all in one room but not too crowded, not as many stalls as the two day show. I saw and chatted with lots of my new found friends within the reborn world and Maxina at Threads for Tiny Tots has said she will make me a dress with Eeyore on or a romper suit as I have been looking all over for one to no avail and if I did find one some lovely person always pipped me to the post on eBay lol.

I purchased a lovely dress for my new adopted reborn Charlotte Rose and a delightful Victorian Pram with a mini babe in to display on my unit at home in the nursery corner. We came away just after lunch as we had a couple hours drive. Rather pleased with the day.