Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Low Earth Orbit

Just had to post this stunning video of our beautiful planet, featuring footage provided and authorised by the European Space Agency (ESA). The music is by ambient psy-trance duo Grains of Sound and appears on their album Sine Language - Volume 3 (Under), the final part of a three-volume concept album about the transcendent power of music to communicate beyond the barriers of time, space, and culture...

Click here to view video full size, and here to listen to their whole album.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Game of Thrones Update

Over the past few months we’ve been avidly following the filming of Game of Thrones, HBO’s upcoming television series - click here for my earlier post and set photos. I’ll be glued to this series anyway when it premieres next April as I love the whole fantasy/medieval thing, but the fact it’s been filmed pretty much on our doorstep makes it even more enticing.

HBO recently released a new, behind the scenes video (see below) and the amount of detail in the sets and costumes is amazing. The snowy woodland location is Tollymore Forest Park
in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains (one of my favourite weekend walking haunts), and I should probably mention that the sunny scenes were filmed in Malta… if it looks wet, snowy or bleak then needless to say it’s Northern Ireland!

Friday, 3 December 2010

Flower Power Friday

"What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity. These are but trifles, to be sure; but scattered along life's pathway, the good they do is inconceivable."
~ Joseph Addison

Sorry I haven’t been around much recently in blogland. I’ve been busy gearing up for a few craft fairs, plus one of our beloved house buns has been quite poorly and needed a lot of tlc. Touch wood, she’s on the mend now and I’m gradually catching up on everyone’s blogs. Hope you all have a magical weekend!

Sunday, 14 November 2010

New Jewels!

I’ve recently added some new bracelets and necklaces to my Midnight Raven Artisan Jewellery website. As usual, there are loads more sparkly creations waiting in the wings for me to photograph – soon, very soon, I promise!

Luciana bracelet (Medieval Passions collection)

Wild Spirit bracelet (Balsam for the Soul collection)

Summer Memories bracelet (Enchanted Garden collection)

Friday, 5 November 2010

Flower Power Friday

“If you would attain to your highest, go look upon a flower; what the flower does willessly, that do willingly.”
~ Johann von Schiller

“When we look into the heart of a flower, we see clouds, sunshine, minerals, time, the earth, and everything else in the cosmos in it. Without clouds, there could be no rain, and without rain there would be no flower.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Samhain Blessings

It’s Samhain at last! Time to celebrate the end of the harvest and also contemplate the cycle of death and rebirth as the cold, winter darkness looms.

The veil between our world and the spirit realm is at its thinnest tonight…

A sacred time for celebrating the memory of departed loved ones and honouring our ancestors…

Samhain marked the start of the New Year in the Celtic calendar, so this is a wonderful opportunity for letting go of anything that is holding you back. Look instead to the future and focus on the positive attributes you wish to bring into your life.

Wishing you all a very blessed and magical Samhain!

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

An Ode to Autumn

“Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the mossed cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimmed their clammy cell.” (read more)
~ John Keats, Ode To Autumn

“Go, sit upon the lofty hill,
And turn your eyes around,
Where waving woods and waters wild
Do hymn an autumn sound.
The summer sun is faint on them -
The summer flowers depart -
Sit still - as all transform’d to stone,
Except your musing heart.” (read more)
~ Elizabeth Barrett Browning, The Autumn

“O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn’s being,
Thou, from whose unseen presence the leaves dead
Are driven, like ghosts from an enchanter fleeing,

Yellow, and black, and pale, and hectic red,
Pestilence-stricken multitudes: O thou,
Who chariotest to their dark wintry bed

The winged seeds, where they lie cold and low,
Each like a corpse within its grave, until
Thine azure sister of the Spring shall blow

Her clarion o’er the dreaming earth, and fill
(Driving sweet buds like flocks to feed in air)
With living hues and odours plain and hill:

Wild Spirit, which art moving everywhere;
Destroyer and preserver; hear, oh hear!” (read more)

~ Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ode to the West Wind

Friday, 22 October 2010

Flower Power Friday

“More than anything, I must have flowers, always, always.”
~ Claude Monet

“The flower that smells the sweetest is shy and lowly.”
~ William Wordsworth

“In joy or sadness, flowers are our constant friends.”
~ Kozuko Okakura

Saturday, 16 October 2010

A Bewitching Halloween Party

Beware the little black bunny in the witchy hat. She may look sweet and innocent, but don’t be fooled by that twitching nose and cutesy little tail, for the Countess…

and her fearsome sidekick, would happily have you for breakfast…

Together they rule with an iron paw from the lofty heights of their velvety castle, and every Halloween throw a spooktacularly creepy party where nothing is quite what it seems. Two human servants cater to their every whim, not least the Countess’s gruesome habit of bathing daily in carrot juice to keep her fur so beautifully soft and silky. Rumour has it she’s a rather distant cousin of Erzsébet Báthory.

Her lady-in-waiting has been working fiendishly hard this week preparing for the party and ‘tis feared she may have muddled her wheatgrass shots with absinthe. It’s not the first time this has happened and would certainly explain a thing or two!

And so without further ado, you are most welcome at this darkly enchanted Halloween party! Come and meet the other guests and help yourself to an array of magical nibbles – all unbaked for the undead…

The eye of newt pâté is really quite delicious washed down with a glass of the finest vintage venom…

Or maybe a cup of witches’ brew and a Green Goblin Cupcake will enchant your tastebuds?

The Brain Splatter Cupcakes are to die for…

Fancy a slice of the Rest in Torment Pie? It’s truly out of this world…

Thanks for stopping by our macabre Halloween Party! Please excuse the unruly behaviour of some of the guests…

They’re only allowed out once a year and like to live it up a little…

(Photos © M. Ellis and P. Jordan)

And last but not least, a huge thank you to the wonderful Vanessa at A Fanciful Twist blog for organising today’s ghoulish event – click here to read Miss V’s party post and for links to the entire list of Halloween cyber-partiers.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Prelude to a Party

Just a quick reminder that we’re participating in Saturday’s Halloween blog party organised by Vanessa of A Fanciful Twist. The Mad Tea Party back in June was brilliant fun, and since Halloween is my favourite festival of the year by far, I’ve been whipping up some weird and positively unsightly raw dessert creations like a woman possessed!

Feeling in need of a little atmospheric music, I stumbled across this haunting Darklily video on YouTube last night – hope you enjoy it too, the magician sequences are pretty cool…

Anyhow, check back on Saturday for some party pics :-)