Friday, 31 December 2010

Goodbye 2010

As I am writing this, the sun is just starting to go down on the last day of 2010.

I have never been a fan of New Year.  I don't like the idea that we are leaving an old year behind, never to see it again.  It is quite a sad time, really... but this time I will be quite glad to say goodbye to 2010.  It hasn't been the best year, yet amongst all the darker days, there were also some sparkling diamonds, and those days are the ones I want to remember most.

The highlight of my year was definitely seeing Wintercraft in print.  Since then I have enjoyed reading all of your comments here on my blog, I've received wonderful emails from readers, and met some of you face to face at signings and school visits.  It has been a real rollercoaster and I want to thank everyone who has read this blog over the past 12 months.  It has been a pleasure to get to know all of you, and I look forward to chatting with you more over the coming months. 

I have a feeling that 2011 is going to be a great year.

I hope you'll pop back and visit now and again. 2010 may be over, but a new world of possibility starts here.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Christmas Tree 2010

Here's a quick picture to show off the sparkliness that is our 2010 Christmas tree.

I hope you are all having a wonderful December!

Friday, 10 December 2010

Winter & Wintercraft

It is still freezing outside, icy snow is thick on the ground, and feeding the local birds has almost become a full time job now they are struggling in the cold.  An old starling who isn't strong enough to fly with the others is taking shelter in our garden shed, and crows have started visiting our tables to take away suet and grated cheese.

Most of the smaller birds are happy to flutter about and wrestle over the seed, but our resident robin does not like being watched by a regular feline visitor.

Whenever cat and bird meet there is a tense face-off.

The robin stares down the cat, chirps at him and hops up to within paw-swiping distance.  The cat looks confused at the sight of a tiny bird strutting aggressively forward when it should be flying away, but this feisty robin is not to be trifled with.  She is very happy to show the cat who is in charge.  She chases him - wings flapping - until he clambers away over the wall, then stands guard, watching him slink grumpily away. 

Our garden has acquired a little red-breasted guardian, and she is taking her job very seriously indeed.

This week was also a good week for book news as Wintercraft has been longlisted in the children's category of the People's Book Prize!

The People's Book Prize finalists are chosen by readers who vote for their favourite longlisted book online.  So if you enjoyed the book and would like to cast a vote, you could help carry it through to the final stage.

To see the nominated books, click here.  All you need is your name and email address to register on the website, then click on the book cover, fill in your details and mark the voting box on Wintercraft's featured page.  Voting closes on February 28th 2011.
Can Wintercraft make it to the final?

Now it's time for me to pull on my boots and feed the feathered garden-dwellers with jugs of suet and seed.

Don't forget to put food and water out for the birds in your garden this winter.
Our feathered friends need all the help they can get.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Snapsnots Of My Snowy World

The snow here is getting thicker and showing no sign of melting away.

Our resident robin is more than happy to pose for pictures whenever a camera is in sight.

Nella doesn't know quite know what to make of it all.

Maisie is enjoying rolling about and digging holes in the snow piles.

The local pigeons wait patiently on the roof, hoping to snaffle some seed...

...and the world is a wonderfully white, wintery place.

Is it snowing where you are?