I've been blessed with a wonderful summer holiday. The weather here in Blighty as been unusually sunny and warm..very warm. However the very best thing is that I've been able to spend time in the company of two amazing artists, Lucie of LucieTales and Petra of ScorchedEarthonEtsy and it's been fantastic.
So part one will cover Lucie's stay and part two will cover my stay in Petra land!
This is Lucie and Loic's second visit to my county and this time we had more time to chat, go book hunting and visit National Trust properties. And drink tea and go to the now legendary Studley car boot, where you can pretty much buy anything you could possibly need. They were again based in the love setting of Aston Cantlow and we had a few fun evenings eating and chatting.
We then went on a visit to Packwood House. The gardens were in full bloom and packed with a riot of colour.
The yews represent the 12 apostles and they are huge!
Inside Packwood is full of rich, carved oak panelling and tapestries adorn the wall. It's great to share these visits with Lucie and to talk about books we enjoy and ideas for our work. This time she was lucky to find my little studio tidier!
All too soon they're visit was over and it was time for them to drive their mobile library home (seriously they are big time book lovers!) and time for me to pack for Lynmouth.
I didn't have one of the best starts to this trip. My cat Smokey was ill on the morning I due to leave. So I had to race her to the vets and pay out £100 on cystitis treatment and then brief Heather on the medication to give her. Thankful she's made a full recovery. Then when I set off I drove into M5 motorway hell, literally 10 mph for 2 hours! Once off the motorway I was cruising along the coast road until my sat nav decided to redirect me onto the ROAD FROM HELL! It was a bumpy, pot holed track that you could not see around the corner if another vehicle was heading your way and there was a sheer drop to the valley floor! I didn't drive the car for 2 days after that.
The place I was staying at had a view right across the bay and meeting Petra was fantastic. She really has a warm and cheering personality that puts you right at ease and like Lucie time flies in her presence.
Here she is with Fern
Me and Fern did a lot of walking, up cliffs, down valleys and through woodlands. Petra lives in a stunning part of England and I got the chance to nose around her studio and check out the enormous amounts of glazes she has. Her garden is wonderful and full of birds and squirrels. A big shout out to her lovely partner Foxy: it's such a small world because he used to work in my town!
Don't hate I have a box full of Petra goodies gifted to me and some gorgeous bead goodies from Lucie too.
Below is the valley of the rocks, Fern is paddling in Watersmeet and Lynmouth.
The statue is Damien Hirst's Verity, me and Petra, Heddon Mouth and Heddon Valley and Lynmouth Harbour.
Inside our holiday let, the view from our window and the beach.
I've had an amazing time and truly wish this summer had lasted longer. I hope you've all being able to enjoy a great summer with friends and loved ones.