Lyrics

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I was writing a song recently, which was quite a new experience for me.

Anyhow, my song wasn’t really about anything, I was just rambling on about poetry and music when this line popped into my head.

I thought about it for a while and found it very interesting. I decided to put it in my song, in fact it’s the first line…….

What comes first?
The tune or the words?
There was me,
In my skinny jeans,
Begging you to teach me,
Teach me how to fly!

Fly, fly, fly, teach me how to fly!
Why, why, why, can’t my songs be like the music?
Music……

I was sitting there,
Mama always told me not to stare,
But couldn’t help it.
I was strumming my guitar,
Never knew I’d get this far.

‘Till you taught me,
taught me how to fly, fly, fly.
Taught me how to fly through the sky.

So I’d like to tell you,
How you saved my life,
Giving me the lyrics,
Teaching me to fly.

So, what does come first? The tune or the words? I think it depends if you are more wordy or musical. For me it’s definitely words, how about you? Please let me know in the comments.

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Some of my favourite lyrics.

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Staff And Rachel’s Wedding

Staff and Rach

Staff and Rach

We were invited to our friends, Staff and Rachel’s, wedding. It was a lovely day, everything was perfect, exactly how they’d wanted it.

The whole room fell silent, I remember the silence ringing in my ears. Only the fairy lights twinkled from their places entwined over the wooden boughs of the ceiling. The atmosphere was expectant and people turned to look at the little doorway through which the bride would enter, causing a rustling of fascinators.

The curtain was drawn and the guests drew in their breaths, a bridesmaid stood there quietly.  She wore a navy blue dress and reminded me of an ancient greek goddess. Clinging onto her hand was little Charlotte.  She was wearing a white dress and the hair on her head was curled into sweet, wispy curls.  People smiled as she walked by, swinging a little wand of willow.  The next bridesmaid walked quickly and I could hear the hard clack clack of her heels on the shiny floor.  Her dress swayed softly as she went, her head bowed, her hands clasped together.

The curtain was drawn again and I looked over to Anna who was pulling a bow across the violin she held. Her eyes were closed and a smile much like the Mona Lisa’s played on her lips. Secretive, but happy, as if only she knew the secret to making such heavenly sounds. The music rose and fell. I turned back round to see the curtains opening.

Through the tiny gap, rapidly widening, I saw a swish of ivory. I watched as, slowly, a beautiful bride appeared. Her Father stood beside her, he was proud and smiling. She looked straight ahead to her future husband, a gentle happiness and eagerness in her face. Rachel’s dress was stunning. Dainty lace, a woven web of tiny flowers and leaves, covered her chest and arms. Silky ivory folds cascaded down her body and swirled around her feet, like a waterfall into a whirlpool.

She took her first few graceful steps. She held her head high, her golden hair pinned up. She reminded me of a swan, the way she glided down the aisle, her snowy train trailing behind her.

Staff stood waiting, his expression emotional, his eyes full of love and adoration. For a few moments all they saw was each other. Until the celebrant broke their trance.

Everyone present there that day could not help but be mesmerised by the sight of Rachel meeting her groom. They held hands and looked at each other with such fondness that it brought a wide smile to every guest’s face.

Photos!

Rachel and her Dad

Rachel and her Dad

 

Outside taking wedding photos. Staff and Rachel, Staff's parents in background.

Outside taking wedding photos. Staff and Rachel, Staff’s parents in background.

Beautiful!

Beautiful!

Staff making his speech

Staff making his speech

 

 

 

All dressed up

All dressed up

Me, Evan and Irys

Me, Evan and Irys

 

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Lavender biscuits

Lavender biscuits

 

I thought this was really cool

I thought this was really cool

These showed us where to sit. Aren't they lovely?

These showed us where to sit. Aren’t they lovely?

Irys looking pretty

Irys looking pretty

Evan wearing a proper tie for the first time!

Evan wearing a proper tie for the first time!

Selfie with Dad

Selfie with Dad

 

Selfie with Irys and Mum

Selfie with Irys and Mum

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mum and Dad in the photo booth

Mum and Dad in the photo booth

All having fun in the photo booth

All having fun in the photo booth

Dancing with Charlotte in after the ceremony.

Dancing with Charlotte  after the ceremony.

Pose!

Pose!

The delicious wedding cake. Four layers: red velvet, victoria sponge, chocolate and lemon drizzle. WE ate this whilst dancing along to a energetic folk band!

The delicious wedding cake. Four layers: red velvet, victoria sponge, chocolate and lemon drizzle. We ate this whilst dancing along to an energetic folk band!

A few helpful tips and points from Andy

Today I was sitting in the manor house kitchen, sipping yannoh and chatting, when Andy came in.  “Hey Gracie,” he says, ” I’ve just read your blog.”  ” Is it all correct?” asks Mum, ” I mean all of the facts and figures?”  ” Well,” Andy answers ” I’ve made a few notes of things you could change, add or include.  Do you wanna come up to the office now?  We could discuss it, you can make some notes of your own”.  ” Sure.” I reply and I follow him up the creaky wooden staircase to what all of us call the ‘Top Office’.

The next hour or so was spent in a comfy chair, with a view out onto the wheat field, discussing extra information concerning wheat, illnesses, spelling mistakes, varieties, questions and so on.  I learned a lot in this short period of time, these are the main points that Andy talked about.

Now for Summer Harvest! Part 2.

 Why Do We Grow Heritage Wheat?

Heritage wheat is taller than modern wheat.  The reason why our ancestors grew tall wheat is because it grew higher than the weeds and so cast a shadow over them.  Obviously no plant can live without sunlight, so, simple as, the weeds died.

Now farmers want to put chemical fertilizer on, if they put it on the tall varieties of wheat they’d get super huge and topple over.  Therefore they have to create a small type of wheat so that when they put the fertilizer on the wheat grows to the right height.  But the weeds can grow easily in short wheat, so now what do we do?  Easy, we spray the field with weed killer!  Ah, but what if you’re an organic farm, like us?

Now you’ve covered your wheat field in weed killer,all the weeds are gone.  In most fields of modern wheat it’s all the same variety, unlike a lot of heritage wheat where it’s lots of different types.  Without the weeds the illness just passes from plant to plant to plant.  Whereas if there were weeds the disease would hit one and stop because that species isn’t affected by it.  Because all the plants are identical the illness spreads mega fast. So?  We can easily spray the plants with fungicides to stop diseases.  Oh no!  The organic problem has just popped up again. Eeeeeeeeeeek! Here come some pests, ahhhhhhhhhhhh, what can we do?  DON’T PANIC, we’ll just put some pesticides on. Grrrr, why does that same old prob keep ruining everything?!

So you see how many chemicals and horrible, disgusting, artificial substances are in the bread that you eat?  If we all just grew heritage wheat, all these things wouldn’t be needed.

Thanks Andy for your advice.

If you want to learn more about heritage wheat visit Andy’s wesite:

http://brockwell-bake.org.uk/

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Harvest!

Harvest weekend is here at last!

Harvest weekend is here at last!

Imagine this:  a field of beautifully  golden wheat, it’s perfectly ripe and sways gently in the warm, humid, summer breeze.  Harvest  weekend has finally arrived!

Where I live, on a farm in Sussex, the harvest is a big deal for everyone, men, women and children alike.  Everyone  has to muck in and pull their weight.

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Tiger enjoying herself.

Tiger enjoying herself.

Loading up the trailer

Loading up the trailer

Long ago scythes and sickles were the only means of harvesting, but recently they have been forgotten because of modern technology such as combine harvesters.  Not only do combine harvesters do the job in a very short amount of time, they also save a vast quantity of human sweat.

Working in the early evening sun

Working in the early evening sun

Everyone helps out.

Everyone helps out.

Andy, our chief baker here on the farm, is incredibly knowledgeable about all sorts of grains, baking and the whole process from grain to loaf.  People say that he is one of the most learned people about wheat.  He specialises in something called heritage wheat.

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Heritage wheat is very old wheat.  Wheat that you might say is not used by any farmers anymore, except growers of this heritage grain.  It’s Andy’s passion to reintroduce these old varieties back into use.  You may wonder how he gets hold of the grains, well, that’s simple enough.  There are two different ways.  Number one is a seed bank, there are usually one each country.  For every type of grain that is ever cultivated, they save about 180g.  People can get it from the bank in tiny quantities. Number two is more romantic, but probably less used.  It’s  where you visit an old mill and with special permission, take up the floorboards and gather the ancient grains that have fallen through over hundreds of years.  The absolute maximum age that you can still grow wheat at is around 40 years old.

The main reason why types of wheat get wiped out, is because of illnesses.  Most types last 8-9 years before an illness that can take them over forms.

Once you have the grains, maybe fifty or so of them, you sow them.  Then when you harvest them, you find that each head has say fifteen grains in it.  Again you sow all of these seeds and the numbers keep multiplying.  Soon you have a whole field of heritage wheat.

Anyhow, because we were harvesting heritage wheat, it seemed only proper that we did it traditionally.  Plus we were all wanting to do it with scythes and sickles.

We must get it in before tommorrow, because it is due to rain.

We must get it in before tommorrow, because it is due to rain.

Before the harvest Andy worked extremely hard, sowing, reaping, sowing again, reaping once again, he’d been nurturing this wheat for 7 long years.  We just came to help with the cherry on the cake.

All weekend long us workers harvested, sometimes having breaks to sit in the shade and sip cool icy water or run down to the river and have a refreshing swim.  Our wide-brimmed straw hats bobbed among the long yellow stems, as we waded through, collecting the heads of the Orange Devon Blue Rough Chaff, which is dark and furry and leaving the tall, light, velvetty Old Ken Hoary.  Us kids would run up to the taps and fill jug after jug of cold water, then pour it into cups with a splash of ginger cordial for the other workers.  We’d cut sheaths of a certain type of wheat and tie it with tape, writing its name, whether Welsh Hen Gymro or Chidham Red.  We separated the weed from the wheat, all the while munching on crunchy grains.  Each tastes a little different, Old Kent Hoary is slightly spicy, ODBRC is more sweet.

Evan working hard

Evan working hard

Chewing grains of wheat

Chewing grains of wheat

where's Irys?

where’s Irys?

Ah! There she is!

Ah! There she is!

At noon we all walked down to the manor house for a delicious and totally traditional lunch of pickles, cheese and , of course, bread! We all talked pleasantly and discussed the afternoon’s work.  The puddings were all made by me, they included flapjacks and rhubarb & plum crumble. In the evening there was music, meat, a campfire and beer.

Yum!

Yum!

The grand finale of the harvest weekend was when we loaded all of the sheaths onto the tractor trailer and followed it up to the bakery were we unloaded and had a team photo taken on the trailer.  Then we all rode back to the field to do it again!

Such a wonderful photo, full of beauty

Such a wonderful photo, full of beauty

Daddy!

Daddy!

Tiger looks like a proper country girl here!

Tiger looks like a proper country girl here!

This is Andy proudly showing off his the product of his hard work

This is Andy proudly showing off his the product of his hard work

 

Lulu waiting to catch the sheaf that is about to be thrown down to her.

Lulu waiting to catch the sheaf that is about to be thrown down to her.

Well done!

Well done!

Overall I loved doing the harvest, getting a feel of how it used to be for people in the books I read, like Laura out of Little House on the Prairie, and learning so much.  This weekend has been part of my homeschool life education.

 AwesomeTeam photo!

AwesomeTeam photo!

ME!

ME!

Lulu, Evan, Tiger, Irys, Dad and Me

Lulu, Evan, Tiger, Irys, Dad and Me

Tiger and Ev on the trailer

Tiger and Ev on the trailer

 

A good view!

A good view!

Summer Sunsets

Happy smiles

Happy smiles

Everyone has dreams, ideas, things that float about in your head, but only some people have a special and unique ability to put these thoughts and daydreams into a beautifully woven web of words, music or paint.  Some of these people are poets, artists, musicians, authors, playwrights, singers and lyricists.

I hope to become a few of these things. I would lovefor my name to go down in history as an author or a singer, but I know that it is unlikely, I am happy just to have these as hobbies that I enjoy. The thing I do hope to be successful with is poetry, it is something I love, I am passionate about and  I do a lot of in my spare time. I like to share my poems and inspire people to have poetry as a pastime. It allows you to get your emotions out, capture your feelings and grasp an aspect of life and pin it onto a piece of paper

Some boys, including my Dad and Brother, might think, “I’d rather go fishing”. Well, the way I see poetry is rather like fishing. I have a theory that everyone has words swimming about in their mind, your pencil and paper are like your rod and  net, you catch the words with your pencil and put them on your peice of paper.  Some people are naturally talented at poetry, while others are more practical, really it doesn’t matter, it’s the enthusiasm that makes a difference.

So let me know, whether you already love writing poetry or you have just decided to begin, what have you written about?

Here’s my latest:

SUMMER SUNSETS

A windblown, carefree figure
silhouetted on a hill,
summer sunsets swirling,
I will love you still.

Time freezes
when I’m with you.
The sun stoops down to kiss you,
she leaves an amber burn upon your cheek.

Will you stay with me forever?
Under the skies of beauty.
Will you answer me “never”,
when I ask if you will leave me?

We’ll swim in the moon’s waters,
dance with the planet’s daughters,
sleep in the sun’s quarters.

The stones will sing us songs,
the stars will bang great golden gongs,
the bells will ring,
a hundred birds begin to sing.

My Granny And Me

Me & Granny

Me & Granny

At the moment we are in Essex staying with my Great Granny, who has just had a hip replacement. We are cooking and cleaning for her, chatting with her and just hanging out. While we’re here we’ve been doing things differently than when we usually visit, normally granny does everything for us and spoils us. Now we are doing things to help her.

We have to be more helpful and do more jobs. We have to be considerate, which means knowing when to be a bit quieter and when to have a nice long chat. We’re being more thoughtful, we do things for granny, like little jobs, without being asked. All these things are good, it’s important that we don’t always think of ourselves. Being here with granny is a chance to show her how much she means to us all.

Hanging out with granny is really nice. I like to talk with her, she has lots of knowledge, experiences and memories to share with me. We have lots of fun times together playing games, listening to music, watching films and discussing books. We have similar tastes in all these things so we both enjoy them.

She is the best granny I could ever wish for and I want her to know that.

STOMP

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On Saturday I went into London to see STOMP, a musical production with music made from junk only.  I was with my Uncle Sean, it was my birthday treat.

It’s all rythmic,  clapping, drumming, bashing, stamping, stomping, ect.  At times it was really funny, there was great dancing and the performers were extremely talented.  They played with a great selection of junk, from barrels to hose pipes,  from trolleys to match boxes and lighters.  It was amazing to think that these everyday objects were all they had to make music with.  It’s kind of music, acting, dancing and comedy rolled into one, which made it very entertaining.

 

the stage with scaffolding and junk

the stage with scaffolding and junk

 

 

I’ve picked my two favourite tunes or acts or whatever you might call them, to tell you all about.  The first one is called ‘newspapers’, it’s funny, and a great racket. They rip up the the papers and rustle them. One man even has a tuneful coughing fit!!! With rattling of pens and flapping of papers it has to be my first fave.  My second is called ‘walkers’, it’s where three men put on ski boots and strap them to huge oil drums. They walk around, using the stage as a drum and their own legs and feet as drumsticks. The funny bit comes at the end when, after these big, muscular men come stomping in, another man goes walking in on paint pots. It’s hilarious. Another awesome one is were they harness themseves onto ropes and swing from scafolding. Then they sway to and fro, hitting pots and pans that have been strung up.

Watching the performers was fascinating, they are so good at what they do. When they dance they are perfectly in time, their music is amazing and they are so enthusiastic.

I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Thanks for taking me, Uncle Sean!!!

 

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Jools on the drums

A couple of weeks ago I went to my first proper gig, our friend Jools (a really really talented drummer)  was playing the drums and singing with a lady called Kristin McClement and her band. They were all really great musicians. Kristin is also a part of a band called Willkommen Collective.

They were playing in an old church building with a really high ceiling and by candlelight, it was beautiful.  The music was different to any I’d heard before, it’s kind of folky.  The atmosphere was really nice and the music was amazing.   All of her music is very emotive and expressive.  Go and listen to her music at: http://kristinmcclement.bandcamp.com

The point of the gig was to launch Kristin’s new album ‘Wild Grips’. It will be released on the 23 Febuary, 2015.  She’s got different shows coming up too, I really recommend seeing her, she’s really good.

This is how Kristin explains her album:

The Wild Grips refers to our wild nature. Hidden behind the glance of every stranger lies the struggle to make sense of these troubling times. What can we pull from the rubble of our modern world?

The album invokes a sense that there must be something more meaningful beyond the windows of our offices, shopping centres and rented houses.

Produced and engineered by Christian Hardy of The Leisure Society, The Wild Grips is a wide-eyed rendering of modern folk song where the acoustic and the electronic rub alongside.

Here’s a link to her website:  http://www.kristinmcclement.com

ONE CHURCH BRIGHTON

ONE CHURCH BRIGHTON

 

Full Band Show

Full Band Show

 

Kristin

Kristin

 

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