The Gamekeeper's Cottage, egg tempera painting by James Lynch
Several years ago Himself commissioned the artist James Lynch to paint a portrait of our cottage as a present for my birthday. Because James likes a bird's eye view we erected our scaffolding tower on the lawn and he climbed up to draw and make colour notes. He sat, in very nonchalant fashion, balancing his sketchbook across an upturned leg. He looked like a court jester and Himself got out his sketchbook and sketched James at work. (I should have got out my sketchbook and sketched Himself, and then the dog could have borrowed a sketch book and sketched me and then......)
James went back to his studio (see post, 'Open Studio') to work on the painting and Himself disappeared into his carving room, the little building with the chimney, below, and produced this carving.
After a week or so James phoned me and asked, "Do you want me to put in your neighbours house?"
"No, not really", I replied.
Bas-relief polychromed wood carving by Peter Murphy
It's my birthday today.
water-colour by Rosemary Murphy
Here's my china doll. She is so small that she can sit comfortably inside a tea cup.
The celebrations started early, yesterday in fact, when friends came bearing gifts. We didn't drink tea because one of them brought fizz. Pam brought a beautiful cake (no photo to show you - we've eaten every last crumb) and John and Judith this deliciously coloured auricula, bought at Hidcote gardens.