Posts Tagged ‘Words’


Black gingham shoes with rosebud trim by Betsey Johnson

I suppose gingham is a fabric we all remember from our childhood and teenage years – mine were in the 1960s and 1970s – and with a revival of fashion from that era it now seems as popular as ever. Or was that LAST year? But this post is about words as much as fashion – did you know the word gingham came from Malaya?

My mother made me some (more…)

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Yellow moth on Mahonia berries, April 21, 2015

I made a rare observation (for me) of a yellow moth the other day and one thought led to another, as it usually does…

But first the moth. I was arriving home when I saw (more…)

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Succulent cockles – this image is from the Jose Andres Foods website

Although this post is about where the saying “warming the cockles of my heart” comes from, it is also all about cockles – and my most memorable food moment of last year. It’s hard to believe, but that highlight was a small bowl of the most wonderful cockles I have ever seen.

It was late July and we were at the Guildhall Tavern in Poole, Dorset, one of our favourite French restaurants. The cockles on offer as a starter were so fresh, said our host Severine, that they were not even on the menu yet. (more…)

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The Royal Mint at Llantrisant, here in Wales, has struck a special Alderney £5 coin to commemorate the centenary of Dylan Thomas’s birth – click on the image to find out more

This year sees the centenary of the birth of wonderful Welsh writer Dylan Thomas and celebrations have been going on throughout 2014. But today, October 27, is his birthday. He was born in Swansea just after the outbreak of World War I.

Much has been written (more…)

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Antimacassar set for a doll’s house, from the Buttercup Miniatures site…

As a child I floated in a sea of wonderful words, many of which I don’t hear any more – so I am always delighted when I come across them in a crossword. One such is antimacassar, which I spotted again the other day.

We didn’t actually (more…)

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Rainbow colours in a spider web caused by diffraction of light – from Earth Science Picture of the Day

Please indulge me while I share some shiny things with you.
I always get like this in Spring, when the sun grows stronger and nature has a certain sheen to it.

I think it’s a woman thing, a gatherer trait inherited from our Stone Age forebears, who must have spent their whole lives looking for bright, shiny berries to pick and eat.

And in many species it’s the male who displays and the female who appreciates it. Apparently not in humans, but diamonds are still a girl’s best friend. So here I am exploring both sparklies and more subtle lustres – as I look at the words iridescence, opalescence and pearlescence. (more…)

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A gold pendant reliquary from the 17th century Cheapside Hoard to be shown at the Museum of London this autumn. Photograph: Museum of London

I was already musing on words beginning with chap and cheap before, by chance, an exhibition featuring the 17th century Cheapside Hoard was announced. Read about the treasures here.

Cheapside is in the City of London and was the site of a Medieval produce market. At that time it was known as Westcheap, to distinguish it from Eastcheap, near London Bridge. The word “cheap” broadly means “market”.

You also find the word in (more…)

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