I’ve talked about my writing journey before but how about the reading one? Do you remember which book you first read by yourself or the one that was always read to you as a child because it was your favourite?
I can’t remember what was the first book I read myself though it wouldn’t surprise me if it was a picture book. Once you pick up a few words, going through a picture book to find those words for yourself because you can now read them, is special. This is yet another reason why a well produced picture book is important in a child’s reading development. They build confidence in reading and with that comes the wish to read other things. A child that lacks confidence in reading will be reluctant to try something they don’t already know. [Read more…] about Reading Journeys
Burgeoning Spring; a film star’s wedding; can Jane land a job?; Bill Goater; a life’s ambition fulfilled; more despoilation of the countryside, but Nightingales still hang on – for now.
It’s Spring 1956, and Gran is enjoying the first Cuckoos, nesting Blackbirds, and news of a Willow Warbler singing at Baddesley. Daffodils, Violets and Primroses are up, and Tortoiseshell and Brimstone butterflies are on the wing. Indeed, on April 9th:
Jane counted thirty-three Brimstones between Otterbourne and Winchester when she went to Winchester shopping. Both she and I have lost our hibernating Tortoiseshells today and our bedrooms seem quite empty without them! There was a Slow-worm in the garden, enjoying the warm sunshine in the shelter of the Heather.
It is a pleasure to welcome back Anne Wan to Chandler’s Ford Today and also to welcome her illustrator for her latest book, Manners Fit for the Queen, Sally Goodden. [Read more…] about Picture Books and Other Hooks: Interview with Sally Goodden and Anne Wan
Complete pruning of climbing and bush roses before new growth becomes too strong. Cut back ornamental grasses and other perennials left for winter interest. [Read more…] about 2019 February Gardening Tips by Wellie
Every day the media carries reports of wars, diseases and many evil things. There are times when reflections on this state of affairs involve a religious dimension. People from many faiths might pray for a better world and sometimes hope that their prayers might be answered. [Read more…] about Have You Ever Thought How Much Happier the World Would be Without Disease, War and Crime?
I’m hoping that Chandler’s Ford Today readers might be able to identify the location and some of the children in this photograph. Maybe its Sherborne House School. My mother, Joyce MacNoe is top centre, and my aunt, Jane Goater, is third up on the right. All these children would have been born in the 1930s. [Read more…] about Who are These Children in Chandler’s Ford?
Poles Lane is straightened; snowdrops from Ladwell House; flower arranging with sinister orchids; The Lake is frozen; a loved tree is felled; articles by Barry; five new birds and a Starling visits 99 Kingsway.
February 6th 1956 is a Spring-like day, Gran taking much pleasure in the newly shooting Dog’s-tooth Violets and great numbers of Narcissus cyclamineus showing buds in the garden of The Ridge. She:
…heard a very enjoyable concert on the radio this evening, in which Denis Matthews was the very able soloist in Mozart’s Piano Concerto in B. minor. I had previously listened to an excerpt from Winnie-the-Pooh, that classic by A.A. Milne, in Children’s Hour, with equal enjoyment, so no-one can accuse me of being conservative in my taste, even though there are programmes to which I have not the least desire to listen.
There were two differences to Thornden School’s summer production of Guys and Dolls. The first was that it wasn’t in the summer, it was last week (29 January to 1 February). The second was that it wasn’t in its usual location of Thornden Hall.
Image Credit: Stuart Wineberg, Lionel Elliott, and the Chameleons.
If there were ever such a thing as a Chandler’s Ford Today “works outing”, it is when Janet and I go to the latest production by the Chameleon Theatre Group. This time it was to enjoy the classic fairytale, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves.
[Read more…] about All the Fun of The Panto: Ali Baba and The Chameleons
This year, the Chinese New Year Celebration in Southampton will start early. Even though the Chinese New Year this year is on Tuesday the 5th of February, you can celebrate it two days earlier in Southampton.
It is the Year of the Pig.
The Chinese New Year celebration is organised by The Chinese Association of Southampton (CAS). It will take place at WestQuay Southampton on Sunday 3rd February 2019 from 11am. [Read more…] about Chinese New Year Celebration at WestQuay: Sunday 3rd February 2019 from 11am
THE QUEEN, CHANDLER’S FORD LIBRARY, ANNE WAN, AND SALLY GOODDEN
What do the above have in common?
They will be appearing in Chandler’s Ford Library on Saturday, 2nd February 2019 between 10.30 am and 12 noon.
Hang on… let’s revise that a moment. [Read more…] about BOOK EVENT NEWS: Anne Wan / Sally Goodden – Chandler’s Ford Library
It is pleasant to be offered a small savoury amuse bouche in a restaurant to savour before your meal arrives. Also, to be offered a post-prandial mint chocolate or small liquor.
Restaurants theme themselves to appear more interesting. The Cricketers out here in Colombo is decorated with bats, balls and stumps. The Slug and Lettuce chain may be themed but I have no intention of finding our as neither are to my taste. [Read more…] about What’s not on the Menu
Freedom to –
“The more people chant about their freedom and how free they are, the more loudly I hear their chains rattling.” ~George Orwell (1903-1950)
We’re a free country, aren’t we? Well, kind of. We are encouraged to think so. Our government tells us we are. The more they tell us the more we wonder. [Read more…] about Freedom
Several years ago I was invited to serve on a European Council relating to the welfare of performing animals. I don’t know whether it actually started or disappeared into the mists of EU bureaucracy. I have interests in teaching animals and recently took an opportunity to spend some time with a delightful camel in France. [Read more…] about Camels, Smallpox, Big Cats, Wolves and Philosophy
Dear readers, please be assured that I’m not mad. It’s only January and I’m talking about Selwood’s Christmas tree – their bright, stunning tree that gives us a glimmer of hope on those endless cold, dark evenings.
While I processed a backlog of my Chandler’s Ford Today emails today, I came across an email from Richard Bright, the owner of Selwood. [Read more…] about Why am I Talking about Selwood’s Christmas Tree in January?
The Master Builder’s House at Bucklers Hard; the “Any Questions?” botanical expert; a lone rabbit at Farley Mount; an aunt dies; a pipe bursts; thirty-eight pounds of marmalade and two days at The Severn Wildfowl Trust.
The new year begins, and that morning Gran is uplifted, writing:
I was delighted… when my kitchen spider, who has lain inanimate for weeks without food on her great batch of eggs, suddenly descended on a silken thread to the window-sill and then ascended again with tremendous agility to her eggs. I thought she had been dead a long time and was overjoyed to find her well and active.
Phil, a friend of ours from Sheffield, England, is over here in Perth, Western Australia at the moment visiting family … on Saturday, he visited us in Glen Forrest, as he has done for the past eight years.
On this occasion, he presented me with a copy of Barbara Hillier’s book, ‘CHANDLER’S FORD, A PICTORIAL HISTORY’ (1994 edition – Front Cover shows Fortune Court and a VERY blue sky) … Phil bought it via Amazon U/K from a bookshop in Reading, Berks … [Read more…] about A VERY L–O–N–G Shot from Australia
The origin of stories is an interesting one in itself – oral was king long before print became a reality. It had to be given the lack of literacy as we know it now but what I find great is that the oral tradition is still hugely important and will remain so. This to me implies a consistent flow of stories over the centuries and long may that continue. The world of stories should not remain static (otherwise it will stagnate and what stagnates dies). [Read more…] about The Story of Stories – Ali Baba
Right now is the height of the pantomime season and I’m looking forward to seeing The Chameleons’ production of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves soon. It should be great fun (as Robin Hood was before). One common element to pantomimes is the use of magic. It comes in somewhere to make the character change directions or to rescue them from what seems an inescapable problem.
So let’s pretend the fairy godmother has turned up for us and, being the kindly soul she is, offered us three wishes. What would you go for? Firstly, the ground rules (you knew there would be some, bureaucracy gets everywhere!). [Read more…] about Three Wishes