Saturday, 6 October 2012

Raining conkers

Those of you who know me well will remember that there are lots of special images during the seasons that I just love. In autumn one of them is conkers.  Oh yes I have never ever grown up when it comes to conker season. I still get a thrill when I find my first one, which I did a few weeks ago. I even found out from my son's girlfriend that she went to pick him up from a night out with the lads at the weekend and found him and his friend climbing a lamppost trying to reach some conkers. He is 23! I think my love of them must have rubbed off on him. As a lad he always had pockets full of them. Every year my daughter and I always exchange texts of " Found my first conker!". You can tell that it does not take much to make me happy.

After the delights of my Dad's birthday party last Saturday my Hb and I decided that a good long autumnal walk would be perfect. We had noticed that our local trees were  full of ripe conkers and we would go to our favourite haunt to find some.

I just love seeing those beautiful brown conkers peeping out from their prickly cases.





There are several very mature horse chestnut trees in this particular park. They are all grouped together and there were hundreds and hundreds of conkers amongst their branches.











We spotted lots on the floor still in their cases. After a few minutes we noticed that we seemed to be targeted by something up in the trees which was knocking them down and almost hitting us. We did a few dances out of the way and looked up expecting to see a squirrel. We were amazed that it was not a squirrel up in the branches.......





It was a parrot! I quickly zoomed my camera onto him and got this shot of him opening up the shell ....
and this even clearer shot of him picking up the conker in his beak and tossing it down to the ground at us!
We gathered up some "treasure" including some "cheese cutters" to bring home with us. We still cannot resist filling our pockets.



Aren't they beautiful? I think this year they are extra beautiful after all the rain we have endured. I suppose that is one good reason for a wet summer.

Even Billy wanted to take a peep at them too when I put them in the garden.








He looks as though he is guarding them, bless him.
That evening a very talented lampworker Claire of  Rowanberry Glass I have known for some time listed some amazing beads and jewellery on Etsy and amongst them was none other than a conker necklace. I just knew I had to buy it and was so lucky that at 9pm,when they were listed, I quickly put it in my basket on line and it was mine. It arrived on Thursday and I am so delighted with it.







It was really hard to photograph in the sunshine but it quite stunning. The bead is glass and Claire has added little leaves and a silver chain.










So now I have my very own glass conker and can wear it even when the conkers have fallen and winter has arrived.

As the year is racing along so quickly my challenge card just has to be a Christmas card today. Vivienne close your eyes but there are only 80 days left til Christmas :0)



Isn't she a cutie?

She a stamp drawn by the talented Mo Manning and is called Little Elf Mim. I thought she was very apt swinging here from the branches like that naughty parrot in the tree.


I coloured her using really traditional Christmas colours with my Promarkers and highlighted her with my Prismacolor pencils. Unusually for me I also cut her out. I used some shiny foil Christmas die cuts in the background and some gorgeous double side satin ribbon from my stash on the bauble. The second thinner red ribbon reads Happy Christmas.I used some diamond dust on her hat and top to give some extra sparkle.


I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

DP2 (Mo Manning) Challenge anything goes #155
Cute Card Thursday #237 lotsa ribbon
Simon Says Stamp Glimmer and sparkle
Sparkles Christmas challenge Traditional I have used very traditional Christmas colours.
Forever Friends Fortnight Challenge Anything goes #46
Charizma Cards #39 badda bing (bling/shiny)
Winter Wonderland across the miles
Crafty Hazel's Carol singing
Holly Jolly Glitter and bling
Make it Monday Linky Party #109
Fashionista Challenge anything goes Christmas
Totally Gorjuss anything goes #152


It was very wet and windy yesterday and has been literally raining conkers around here. The weather for the weekend though is looking good. This morning the sun is shining and there is a gorgeous blue sky. Strictly has started again on BBC1 , a sure sign that the countdown to Christmas has started too. I just love watching the dancers teaching their new recruits. As a dancer myself it really is much more difficult than it looks.  Enjoy your weekend.....Keep Dancing!

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x



62 comments:

  1. Well after all the conker talk I thought we were going to get a conker card! ;) Never mind the little elf is very cute!! :)
    I too love conkers, the thrill of finding them never leaves me and I'm quite a bit older than Matt!!!!
    You have found some beauties and as for your collecting pal, what a cheeky chap. On an autumn day in the UK, one would expect to see a squirrel not a parrot!!! :)
    Your necklace is sooooo pretty Jane, I really do love it!
    It a lovely day here, bright autumn sunshine. :)
    Happy weekend my friend,
    Vivienne x

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  2. Wonderful photographs Jane :) That conker charm is stunning & so is your card.
    Hugs
    Tracey
    x

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  3. I think we are all children at heart when it comes to conkers Jane, I still get excited collecting them. Why I collect them I never know, inbuilt from childhood I guess.

    Some beautiful autumnal pictures and another delightful card with the Mo image.

    B x

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  4. Fabulous photos, conker collecting is compulsive isn't it, no matter what age we are!! x

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  5. Marvellous photos and fab conkers. And your card is delightful - thanks for joining in my CHNC challenge 93 - hope to see you again soon. x

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  6. Wonderful Christmas card Jane. Love the image and how you added the sparkle to the hat! Wonderful emblishments. Thanks for joining us this week at Holly Jolly. Regards Meighan

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  7. Lovely Christmas card. Great choice of image and colors. Thank you for joining us at Holly Jolly this week.

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  8. I just love your necklace! I like picking up chestnuts too. I'm not really sure why, but it seems like something that needs done. Beautiful card, and a happy belated birthday to your dad. Love your cakes :)

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  9. I have not got a conker stamp Vivienne...now there is an idea ;0)It's been glorious here, such a lovely sunny autumn day. Keep dancing!
    Jane x

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  10. Glad to know there are more children at heart out there Brenda ;0)
    Jane x

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  11. I so agree Rustic Village!
    Jane x

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  12. Thanks Meighan, I like using diamond dust..despite it being very sharp!
    Jane x

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  13. Hi Linda, I am thrilled with my necklace. We did have such fun last week at my Dad's party and the cake all went!
    Jane x

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  14. Hi Jane I too truly love autumn it really is a beautiful time of year. Your card is beautiful and vibrant thank you for joining us this week at winter wonderland love linda

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  15. Thanks Linda I love the colours at this time of the year and of course the conkers ;0)
    Jane x

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  16. Gorgeous conker pictures and what a wonderful surprise that green parrot was :) I love finding conkers too, the collecting of them each autumn is a joy that has never worn off for me either! Your little elf card is very cute....reminding me just how near xmas is, especially for those of us making things for it!
    Hope you enjoy the rest of the weekend.
    Helen x

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  17. We have lots of parrots around Helen...they seem to survive the winter too. Another conker fan...they are irrisistable aren't they ;0)
    Jane x

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  18. Hi Jane, your post and card are lovely! Such a beautiful creative spirit you have. :o) Thank you for the sweet comment on my LOTV card.. I adore their images, too. :o) (Dance is my ultimate creative passion!) So happy to be playing along at MIM with you!

    Hugs and blessings!

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  19. Jane,
    What a surprise to see a parrot out in the wide open. Is that normal for UK to have them out and about? We only have them in cages here. I love the conkers, are they edible? The necklace is really lovely and a great present for yourself. I'm a fan of that!!!
    Have a great weekend, raining here : (
    xoRobin❤

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  20. Wonderful creation! Thanks for playing along at Charisma! xxx

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  21. Great to see you here Karen, we share our love of LOTV!
    Jane x

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  22. Hi Robin, we have quite a lot of wild parrots in the South East..my Mum and Dad have them around in their garden. They are very noisy! Conkers unfortunately are not edible they are the fruit of the horse chestnut. The edible chestnuts are from the sweet chestnut tree which is not so commonly seen in our parks and open spaces but found out in woodland. Have a lovely weekend,
    Jane x

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  23. I saw your card on Make it monday and sure glad I came to your blog as not only is your card beautiful. I love Mo images. but the chestnut photos and story is awesome and love the necklace you purchased. I love chestnuts also that deep red shinny color is awesome I use to dye my hair that color in my younger days.

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  24. Hi Jane,
    Your Little Elf Mim is so adorable and beautifully colored. Your DP and ribbon choices are very festive. Thanks very much for joining us at the Fashionista challenge, good luck.
    Wishes,
    Katie

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  25. Hi Jane, I enjoyed reading your story about the conkers, lovely photos too.
    Your card is delightful and just love that Mo Manning image. Thanks for linking up with MIM this week.
    Remember, to be in the running to win the prize from our sponsor this week just leave a comment for another entry. Be sure to mention you saw them on Make It Monday. The more entries you comment on the more chances you have of winning!
    Hugs, Sandy :)

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  26. A brilliant card!

    Thank you for sharing at Sparkles Christmas Challenges this time
    Good luck in the draw

    Shaz x

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  27. Good Sunday morning Jane! What a beautiful post! Those conkers look amazing and the parrot even more - I don't think you see them often in the trees there!
    You found the most sweet jewelery!
    Great that you have started already Christmas cards - this one is so wonderful!
    x Teje

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  28. what a wonderful card, thank you for sharing it with us at the Winter Wonderland
    Hugs Kate xx
    ps fabulous parrot great photo's and lovely necklace

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  29. Their colour is awesome isn't it Billie, thanks for visiting me here,
    Jane x

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  30. It was a great conker day Sandy..and we found some beauties. Thanks for your kind comments.
    Jane x

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  31. Good morning Teje, the parrots around here are quite well known, there has been a flock around for some years now but I agree they look very strange in our English trees. Enjoy your Sunday,
    Jane x

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  32. Hi Kate, thanks for visiting and your kind comments :0)
    Jane x

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  33. Sorry Katie, I nearly missed a reply to you, thanks so much for visiting me here. I was delighted to have found your challenge and to join the fun,
    Jane x

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  34. Lovely autumn-Sunday to you, Jane!

    It's been wet&gray here this weekend, and this wonderful post brightened my evening so much! Your autumn looks so much more interesting (those conkers and a PARROT!) than our gray and wet here... And your new jewelry...Just perfect for this time of the year! Thank you so much for sharing these, and the cutest Billy-boy again!

    Have a great new week soon!

    Yours,
    Mia

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  35. I am glad it brightened your day dear Mia. It really has been a glorious weekend here, wall to wall sunshine but it is chilly. Billy sends a purr, he is on his green chair as I type ;0)
    Jane x

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  36. aw thanks hun, and may join you in that glass of wine, it has been a while since I had a glass mmmmmmmmmm red white or rose oh that will be a rose then :)

    bottoms up cheers
    Hugs Kate xx

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  37. It's rose! So delighted for you Kate...cheers!
    Jane x

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  38. Delightful card! I so enjoyed reading your post! I didn't know what a conker was, until now! Thank you for joining us this week at Holly Jolly!

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  39. They must be totally English then Paige? Great to see you here and glad you now know everything about my love of conkers!
    Jane x

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  40. This is a wonderfully festive holiday card. So glad you shared it with us this week at Mo's!

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  41. Happy Autumn to you too, Jane!!
    My favorite photos are the ones with the parrot and Billy guarding the conkers!!

    Love this card, too.
    ((I think you'll have a couple of packages for the post office)) o-;

    Best wishes,
    Anne
    PC22

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  42. Hi Anne I was most surprised how clear the parrot photos were as I just quickly snapped them and he was high in the branches. There is a certain parcel going in the post this morning and I sold 3 more cards at the weekend which was lovely. Take care,
    Jane x

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  43. Thanks Tracey I just love this sweet stamp,
    Jane x

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  44. Loved your conker tale, Jane and who would have thought you'd find a parrot in Britain, in October - certainly not something you would see here in Wales! I haven't noticed the conkers yet, probably because there aren't any in the village itself, but I shall have to keep an eye out for them on my walk later! I'm sure I will find some use for them as decorations, with Christmas around the corner! Your conker charm is just beautiful, Clare is obviously a talented lady!
    Your card reflected your story brilliantly with that little Mo Manning elf swinging on her bauble and you've coloured her fabulously! Thanks for being my newest follower, Lisa x

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  45. What a beautiful, well crafted bead! I love your fun card! Thanks so much for playing along with us over at the Simon Says Stamp Challenge Blog!

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  46. Beautiful card,love all your photos too, especially the parrot!
    Many thanks for joining in the
    ♥Cute Card Thursday Challenge♥
    this week! Debxx

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  47. Thanks for visiting here Lisa..do have a look out for those conkers but I agree the parrots are usual for the UK although they are seen here all the time,
    Jane x

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  48. Hi Jingle and thanks,
    Jane x

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  49. That photo is fun isn't it Deb, thanks for your kind comments,
    Jane x

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  50. Gorgeous card. Thank you for playing along at Sparkles Christmas this month.
    Debbie x

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  51. Fabulous Christmas card and super fun..love your photos of your chestnut trees... thanks for joining us at Simon Says Challenge blog

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  52. Thanks Joy, I really enjoyed sharing these photos..and my card ;0)
    Jane x

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  53. I love this post as I'm a little bit conkers bonkers as well! I have a little dish full on my work desk, sadly they go dry so quickly, which I find a bit depressing. How fabulous is your glass conker! I'm not surprised you were pleased to sneak that into your basket. Lovely card as well. Beth/thelinencatxx

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  54. They do dry quickly Beth but aren't they just so beautiful to find fresh out of their shell.Luckily my bead will shine always ;0)
    Jane x

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  55. Your Christmas card is lovely - as is the Conker key ring! All our conkers are long gone around here, that park looks like a nice place to take our doggies for a walk! Thanks for joining the challenge at Forever Friends, Lisa (DT) x

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  56. Beautiful pictures,Fun card, love the color combo...Thanks for joining us this week at Totally Gorjuss!!

    Hugs,
    Patricia

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Thanks so much for leaving a comment; I really enjoy reading every single one of them.
Jane x