Sunday, 22 November 2009

Internet Cache

I just had a very annoying few hours!

My friend told me he had updated my site, but when I looked it wasn't any different.
I tried everything but still got the old pics up and not the new festive opening page.
I knew it was there but for some reason I was just getting the page that
has been there for months.
So, I refreshed the page over and over, I deleted cookies, history,
bookmarks, more history, everything!!
Then I found a button to DELETE CACHE and lo and behold,
there was my new exciting page with the new bears on it too.
I don't know what it means and hope I haven't messed anything up but
at least I can see the new photos now!!
So if you aren't getting the festive vibe when the home page opens up,
maybe yours is stuck somehow too. They ARE there. I promise!!
Thanks Keith, you have done a lovely job as usual with the site!

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Festive Bears 2009

Well finally (a chest infection later!) here is the photo of my little white bear and another one that I have just finished too. I hope to be able to make a few more before Christmas, but have some orders to complete first, so fingers crossed!
Anyway, here they are;
Jingle Bear (13") and Little Berry Bear (10")
I hope they delight!

Friday, 13 November 2009

Bear making again!

YEAY!! I made a bear today!
Its been SO long since I have been able to and it felt so good.
I have been busy with my other job (holistic therapist) and away on a training course for therapeutic massage, so it was lovely to chill out and make a lovely little bear.
She is a sweet, white little handful bear with mulberry pads, hat and bow.
It was too dark when I finished her to be able to take a photo but I will post one tomorrow.
Warren Bears are up and running again ☺

Saturday, 7 November 2009

It's nearly a month since my last post, sorry.
I had to come back early from Japan unfortunately because I was so unwell, and it took a long time to recover. I think it had all been too much having had swine flu and a serious chest infection whilst still trying to prepare for the trip and then fly out there. Oh well. I tried!
Here are few more pics from my trip....

This one is Big Ben being admired before going to his new home.

And here is Yumi who ADORED Olivia!

This one didn't hang around long.
He sold the afternoon he was finished.
Very cute!

And this was Rieko, after we had all decided we were too full to eat any more Chinese food. "just one more mouthful!" and she finished it all!!!
That was the nicest Chinese I have ever tasted, thanks ladies for taking me there.

And then I had to come back early cos of feeling so ill.
I can't wait to start making bears again, and hope to by the end of next week when I have enough energy, so check out the website after that!
Bye for now.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Saturday update from Japan

Well more bears made and more bears have found new homes!

Here is Rieko modelling Jonny,

and here she is with George who was finished today.

These two bears went off to new homes today...

and here are Patrick and Lucy, 2 other English artists here, with some of their work behind them.

The bad news is, I have gone down with shingles today. I started to feel unwell yesterday evening and by today it got worse and worse. I knew by the afternoon that it was definitely shingles and am feeling very ill. So that's a bit awkward to say the least!

Thursday, 8 October 2009

After the Typhoon

Well I am delighted to report that the dreaded typhoon which decided to come early and was forecast for last night, then also chose to swerve away from Tokyo at the last minute and hit them further up north. Sorry for them, but very relieved for us. It was still a very wet and windy night although Reiko and Yuki slept through and didn't hear a thing, I only got 1 hour sleep so its been a bit of a jet lag day again. I am very relieved though. It was still very windy earlier on, but cleared now, and all is well!
The lady who tried to climb on my shoulder to watch me sewing the other day, came back again today. I think she is lonely and likes to chat which is amusing as I don't do Japanese and she doesn't do English, but it doesn't seem to stop her. She is fascinated with my hands and keeps grabbing them and squeezing them for some strange reason. Big Ben, the bear I made yesterday went happily off with some new owners today, so that was nice.
I had quite a few nice chats today with people who DO speak English (and some English people too!) and one lady of 80 had just decided to learn it, and was amazing already. So it was a busy day and I didn't get a bear finished today, so will have to work harder tomorrow. And on that note, its time to get some sleep.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Still in Japan

I thought I would upload a few pictures from the British Fair at Mitsukoshi in Tokyo for you to enjoy and see where I am and what I have been up to.
A happy new Warren Bear owner with Yuki

and another new owner who seems very pleased with little Samuel.
(A name that sadly proved very hard for them to say.)

Here are the 2 new bears so far.
The one in the blue duffle coat is Big Ben and the other is Marlborough (another tricky name for them!) He looks a bit cross in the picture but its just cos his fringe is squashed down.
This is Reiko and Yuki, the two ladies who are selling the bears for M's Collection here and looking after me so well.

This is a sweet little girl, loving the bear,
who then wiped her mouth on it straight after this photo was taken!!
She said "Hallo" so nicely too!

The typhoon is scheduled for 3pm tomorrow (Thursday 8th) so I hope I will still be here to let you know what it was like! I had an encouraging email from a friend who said he was here in a 45 second earthquake that knocked his beer on the floor and broke a fish tank of piranhas in the restaurant (I presume they are no threat floundering on a dry floor!!) and the local people took it in their stride so I hope they look after me tomorrow. I feel like its having earthquakes all the time. Its a strange thing I always get with jet lag, feeling like the world is rocking and swaying. I know it isn't cos I keep checking all the cabinets around me and they are all very still and not shaking but I swear they should be, it is rocking so much!
And all without the aid of drugs
(well apart from anti biotics but I don't think they can do anything exciting like that!)

Today was fairly quiet - still raining constantly - and I was able to try out the umbrella machine. Everyone here has an umbrella, even just about every man you see, and at the shop there is a special gadget that you put it into and it wraps your brollie. Its just like the Christmas tree wrapping machines and I felt that it ought to be tried out whilst I am here!
So I did!

Anyway, more tomorrow......

Tuesday, 6 October 2009


Well hello from Japan (as you do!)
I didn't get chance to write anything after the show at Hugglets as I went down with the dreaded swine flu at the actual show. By the time we got home, I went straight to bed and was ill for a week and then had the complications in the form of a stubborn chest infection which is on its 3rd course of antibiotics and only just easing. So all my plans to have 3 calm weeks before travelling to Japan never happened. The long walks with the dogs, the various things I wanted to have time to go shopping for (saved a fortune!) the food I was going to cook and leave in the freezer, bears I needed to make ready to bring etc etc. It just never happened. All I did was go to the doctors 3 times! And then get up for my first full day on the day I had to fly 12 hours. Not ideal but I managed it and I am here and finished a nice little 13" alpaca bear in a peachy colour today.
People seemed to enjoy watching him being created, and I even had one lady virtually sitting on my shoulder watching the nose stitching from behind me. I was worried I would poke her in the eye with the needle if she got any closer! Lots of nice people practiced their English on me and all apologised that it wasn't very good - which is a shame they feel like that when my Japanese is non-existent. That was another thing I was going to do in that 3 weeks.... Oh well.
So no photos this post but just to say hello from a different side of the world this time and let you know what is happening.
Apparently we are getting a typhoon tomorrow which doesn't seem to alarm them in the least but I have to say I am absolutely terrified. When I asked what will happen I was told it will rain very hard and be a hurricane, and be dangerous to be out but we still have to go to work. Wish me luck please cos I am very scared.
Will let you know (hopefully!) how I survived!
Bye for now.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Ready for Hugglets on September 13th 2009

Well, at last I am ready for the BIG SHOW tomorrow. I can't believe what hard work it has been making all the bears, and then getting them all ready - photos, labels, layout, packing etc but its all done now! Phew. And I just had a lovely lunch and coffee out with Keith at a local Italian deli just down the road. The table wasn't big enough for all the plates! Getting ready for a show makes you hungry!
So here they are for your delight!
I thought it was about time I did a theme again so welcome to the

Willow 21"
very long and dense mohair in cream and gold
(On the lace collar it has a commemorative bear badge
but you could use your own keepsake if preferred)

Lily the Panda Cub who sits or lies down
13" dense mohair

Magnolia 13"
dense and fluffy white mohair

Jasmine 17"
dense and fluffy white mohair
Sweet Pea 13"
cream kid mohair (incredibly soft)
Capability Brown 17"
vintage quality luxurious dense cocoa alpaca
Radish Little Handful 10" Honeysuckle
soft grey alpaca 13" dense cream and
gold mohair

Briar 11" Poppy
sparse gold mohair 9" caramel and beige alpaca

Lavender 9"
Sparse white mohair

and then because I promised you a picture of "Meg's pond" (and she has just this minute been bathed again following a swim this morning!) here is is looking quite settled and established although with less fish than Wednesday following a visit from a Heron on Thursday!

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Another month has flown by.....

Hello again, yet another month has whizzed by. I must be getting old because it doesn't seem like a month since I updated my blog.
I am having trouble updating my website so although there are lots of Warren Bears, none of them are there for you to see. Sorry about that!
I have just sent another large box off to Japan
and now I am working on some bears for Hugglets in September. I haven't left myself much time!! I have a lovely dense, wavy, white mohair cut out for a larger 17" bear and am in the process of stuffing a 13" panda cub who is looking very cute. I found out that I didn't have another bag of stuffing up in the loft as I had thought I had, and then had to wait over a week for a delivery of another 25kg consignment of it as the factory was on holiday! Its unusual for me to work on more than one bear at a time, so I am not sure which to do first! I have a head full of ideas but not very much time, so must get cracking.

We just had a wonderful 2 weeks down in Cornwall and completely relaxed and enjoyed the beaches and cream teas, fresh seafood, pasties and sunshine etc etc. I really didn't want to come home this time. The dogs had a great time too, racing along empty beaches, barking at peregrine falcons and hang gliders, and Meg tried desperately to catch a seagull which was very entertaining!

We also had another great trip to the zoo this weekend to visit the new Orang utan that has come to keep Rajang company. He was a real sweetie but very shy, and went about with a blanket over his head all the time!! Most cute. We loved watching the antics of the squirrel monkeys too, and the chimps. It was a really fun day with just us two grown ups. It felt really strange not to have some sort of child with us, so Keith had a children's lunch pack from the
cafe instead! Actually it was nice, and healthy too.

Anyway, enough of this, as its not getting those bears stuffed! I will put up the pics as I make them so you can see that I am making an effort for Hugglets!!

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Its nearly the end of July! Where did this month go???

Oh dear, I hadn't realised that it was a month since I last blogged - sorry. Where has the time gone? Oh yes, thats right, I had shingles again so that was 2 weeks wiped off, but since then I have been very busy. There are a few new Warren Bears sitting on the shelves taking the place of the ones who went to Japan last month. And a new little Warren Bunny has happened too, just for fun! Here he is, wanting to show off
as only bunnies do (Bears are much more modest and happy to wait until I get around
to taking their pictures) and also a certain friend of mine in Welsh Wales was impatient to meet him too. As yet he hasn't got a name, so any suggestions will be welcome.
I have been loving doing reflexology treatments and some Tibetan Acupressure head massage too so life has been fun, busy and I seem to be constantly tired.
It's been lovely to get out for a few walks with the dogs again too, despite the rubbish weather. What happened to the "Barbecue Summer" they predicted. It had better heat up a bit before I hit the beaches of Cornwall. It won't be quite the same in a raincoat!
Anyway, the pond is getting more naturalised now, pics coming soon, it has a smart path to it too so I won't have the horror of worm casts all winter (I really hate them!) and Meg is no less fascinated than she was 2 months ago when it was dug.
"She will soon get used to it and ignore it" from he who thinks he knows it all, is as accurate as the amazing summer weather forecast!!
So there we go, July in a few sentences. Beary pics and pondy pics will follow in a day or two I promise.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

What have I been up to the past 7 weeks?? Well......

Well, what a very long time since I wrote anything. I have been very busy having shingles and being really unwell. However I am feeling a lot stronger now, and life has been quite full still with no regard for my illness!!

Just this week for example, on Monday I had a lovely lunch out with Keith and a wander through St James' Park afterwards which was a treat.
Then on Tuesday, I had a little mission (for my best friend who lives in SA) to go to the Radley shop in London (WHAT a hardship!!) to get a handbag in the sale for her, and it would have been rude to not buy myself a lovely purse while I was there >:-))
We took in the Liz Earle shop too and stocked up as I just love her stuff and then my friend (who had also succumbed to a number of new handbags in the sale) treated me to a Lebanese lunch. Wow! Never had that before and I loved it too!
Today I spent most of the day finding boxes, getting quotes and posting bears off to Japan.
I always hold my breath for a week after that until I know they are all there safely!
More bears to make for them, and bears to make for Hugglets in September, but in the meantime I am off to Berlin tomorrow for a few days which should be really fun. I haven't been there before, but am looking forward to it as the hotel has a spa. Say no more!
Oh yes, and last week I qualified as a reflexologist. I am so excited (and proud) because its been 2 years of hard study to get to this. So now I will be dividing my time between my beloved bears and doing lovely reflexology treatments (I hope)
Well, I have put up some pics of a few of the little ones that have just started their journey, and hope you think they are sweet.

Oh and whilst I was being ill, Keith and Andrew dug a pond in the garden which is an ongoing project but one of our little dogs, Meg, just LOVES the pond. She is always to be found by it, and sometimes IN it!

Andrew has done his GCSE's and finished the last one today, so we celebrated with yummy chocolate brownie with added treats in (maltesers and rolos! Try it! Its wonderful! They melt in and mmmmmmmmm.........)

And here is a pic of a little visitor we had the other evening. Gave Keith quite a shock as he was doing the watering!

Sweet eh? Thats all for now.....

Sunday, 10 May 2009

38 Naughty Norfolks went to the woods today........

Well what a laugh we had today! 
It was the annual NORFOLK TERRIER WALK for the South of England. There were 38 waggy Norfolk tails and an assortment of Otter Hound, Labradors and German Shepherd trying to sneak in.Oh and a very bouncy Border Terrier too.
What utter chaos!

It was a glorious and sunny day and we met and chatted for half an hour first whilst they all showed their attitude when on leads. Then off with the leads and into the woods, 

and if our 2 hadn't had trendy little blue bandanas on (courtesy of my friend Sue- hers are the red team!) we would never have seen them again. 
I thought I knew what my dogs looked like but I can tell you, when 38 of them are running riot in the woods, they all look pretty similar and it was only the bandanas that made us sure we had the right dogs at the end! 

It involved a  lovely long walk 
 to the top of Holmbury Hill with wonderful views for miles and 
miles, a team photo at the top, 

and then long walk through bluebells etc back down, via a few very 
muddy puddles and a swim in a pond for some of them 
(and of course, ours were in the "some". yuk!) 

Then we all piled onto the field for a really fun picnic and this year no dogs escaped into the middle of it to run riot amongst the food (as happened last year to our huge amusement as it wasn't our picnic that was affected!)
We wondered about bathing them when we got home, but we went off to a christening and then were drinking champagne, and it just didn't happen. Now its evening and they are in the house........and they stink! 
I wish we had done it when we got home.....

Friday, 8 May 2009

Some new Warren Bears want to say hi!

Me again! 

I promised you could see the new bears, so here they are!

Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Melanie went to the zoo

I had the BEST day on Saturday! 
It was my Birthday, and it started with some lovely pressies from my family and friends, and a piece of yummy cake made by Vianney and Vicky, and then we went off to the zoo for the day. Keith had bought me an ORANGUNTAN experience and I have been very excited about it for months now, and finally, the day had arrived! I just love Orangutans, and even though sadly, Colchester Zoo only has one now at the moment as their female died a few months back, Rajang is a pretty majestic old boy at 41 and I was really looking forward to it. 
We love Colchester zoo, its just such a fun day out. 
We fed elephants by hand. 
We were in the front row for the penguin feed, where they bring them into a room for them to look at the humans! 
We just loved the monkeys and all their antics and for Vianney it was his first trip to a zoo and first time to see most of these animals which made it even more fun. But the best bit was my time spent with the keeper and learning more about Rajang. He is such a soulful old thing, and he looks deep into your eyes.

 I won't  bore you with all the details, (like I have done to my family!) but it amused them to take photos of me in a zoo cage, and I was thrilled that he reached out and touched my hands and was intrigued by my bright pink nail varnish. He made a face and noise that his keeper said is his "happy reaction" and to think a wild creature chose to touch me is very special. We came home to an orangutan cake 

made by Keith which caused much amusement with the children but I thought he did a brilliant job. 

A couple of weeks ago, I had another wonderful treat too, despite the best efforts of the French fishermen to try and wreck it! We went with some very good friends to Giverny, near Paris, to Monet's beautiful gardens. I just love it there and this is a lovely time of year to see them. We had great fun together and it was so nice that they loved the gardens and area as much as we do. Here a just a few photos to help you realise that you need to go and visit them too!

The food is amazing too as you can see..... mmmmm happy memories...

..oh and I AM making bears too. 
I promise! 
I will take some photos and share them with you later in the week.