Tuesday, 30 August 2011


So what has old Nora been up to?
So much.
So so much.
I had wonderous tales to tell.
Tales of muddy wellies.
Tales of Molly the pig.
Tales of lost and found.
But all of this shall now have to wait.
Because it is time for some Ninjarisation.
The Ninjas have been lucky.
They have been featured, all be it in a teeny tiny way in a national magazine.

Drum roll please.
Open if you will your September issue of Mollie Makes magazine, turn to page 14.

Sunday 18th September,
The Ninja's and their car related antics featured on the events page.
With I may add a really rather spiffy picture of the work in progress.
Whats that? You don't have a copy of Mollie Makes?
You really want to see the piece, well blink and you will miss it,
but your wish is my command!

If you are just hanging about on the afore mentioned date, twiddling your fingers, scratching your nose, wondering how to fill the day, then join us.
The Lambeth car free day is in West Norwood in sunny London town
from 12 O'clock on the 18th.
There will be lots going on, including I have been informed a roller rink!
All this and a knitted car!
The Ninja's and their many friends and families will be there,
heavily disguised in
"Hilda Ogden Chic"
so they will blend seamlessly in.
And here, as if you needed more I share with you some of the wonderful work that has sprung from the needles of Ninja H.

A clever girl all round really.
The car logo and a Ninja flag.
But a girl who's mother (a knitting obsessive herself) threatened to disown her recently if she didn't just "stop it! "
And who's girlfriend (also a ninja) threatened to leave if she didn't stop knitting on the train, bus, tube...
I say Ninja H we need you more than they do!
Love Nora xxx
p.s check out what other clever creative types have been up to here.

Sunday, 21 August 2011


We, well mainly the blonde bombshell, have had some very unwelcome visitors on and off since easter.
Every time we thought they had gone they came back.
Finally the summer holidays roll around.
One final round of treatments, no going back to pre school, no playing with other infested children and voila we were nit free.
Then last week he started scratching again.
I checked, couldn't find any, though by this time the poor boy doesn't like us even looking in his hair.
I treated him any way, used the nit comb, used the very expensive electric nit comb.
All to no avail, they are back back back.
His hair is so fine they just slip through the combs and I suspect they are now immune to every chemical treatment known to man.
I have even been massaging tea tree oil in to his scalp.
But these are South London nits they are keepers.
So this evening the Hippy made the decision I couldn't.

I got upset and very stressed, but the boys thought it was hilarious.
And now we have our own little suede head,
a little too long at a no 3 for a full blown skin head.

I am being brave and telling my self it will grow back.
But this does mean I have also to face up to the fact he is no longer Blonde and I'm going to have to drop that part of his name.
Though Bombshell does suit him in a little too well.
Love Nora xx

Tuesday, 16 August 2011


There are some things I do enjoy in life.
I enjoy a good swapsie and I enjoy a bit of tinkering about with fabrics and thread on my sewing machine.
And so that is why I do so love joining in with Beth from Do what you love when she organises her stitched post card swaps.
This time round the theme was "Bloom"
Starting with a spot of light machine embroidery

I moved on to titchy bias strips.

With a bit of normal, if somewhat tricky stitching on the side.

And it must be said I was blooming pleased with the end result.
I hope its recipient will be too.

I have received my card in the swap, but its so gloomy today that I can't do it justice on the photographic front.
Next time.
It is really wonderful and I can't wait to show you.
I have so much to tell and show you and yet time is not my friend at the moment.
Muchos muchos day job stress and busyness as well as a considerable amount of knitting is making for a slightly scatterbrained and distracted Nora.
My bunnies are away at the moment having grandparental fun and much as I am enjoying the lay ins till 7 am every morning, some days I haven't woken up till 7.30! shock horror! I am really rather missing their shrill demanding voices and boney pokey elbows and scabby knees.
Tomorrow lunch time I shall be back to being a grumpy frazzled mum on top of every thing else.
Happy Holidays.
Love Nora xx

Saturday, 13 August 2011


This week I been on a quick work related trip to Madrid.
Possibly more successful, though only just, and just as theatrical as
Tony Hancock's Spanish interlude after which this post is named.
I flew out on Wednesday evening, arriving just in time for a late dinner and a few ice cold beers with some work friends.
Got up on Thursday morning and made our way to the theatre only to find ALL my fittings had been cancelled for the day.
As I was flying home that night this was a slight problem.
How ever after a lot of grubbing around in the dustier reaches of Madrid's theatrical underworld we unearthed three of my performers.
So this meant I had quite a lot of time on my hands.
Boy it was hot out there!
I did a lot of walking on the shady side of the street.
A few blocks away was the most wonderful place.
I was only vaguely aware of Sorolla and his reputation for the capture of light in his paintings.
But not anymore!
The museum is in his home a cool and welcoming oasis in the dusty mid day city heat.

The gardens were beautiful, lots of water, children running around and office workers eating lunch.
The house was beautiful but the paintings were breath taking.
They reminded me of the Glasgow boys style of painting.
It took me a while to realise that this was his private collection of paintings, so most of them were of his young family.
The photos just cannot do any justice to what I saw.
What I found most refreshing was seeing so many painting of his children running naked and free on the beach.

Its a sad but understandable thing that we don't like our children to run around naked in public any more.
This was a glimpse back in to a less knowing more innocent time.
My boys, even the Ginger Ninja who is 8 now and a little more aware of himself, love running about with nothing on.
There is nothing like that feeling of unencumbered freedom.

My absolute favourite was not one of the most acclaimed paintings in the museum. In fact it was tucked away in the stair well.

I found this little snapshot of family life so moving.
The scene was set, the cushions plumped, the flowers arranged and the children in their best clothes.
The eldest girl and boy and all settled, ready and waiting,
but where is the cheeky little darling?
And then in she runs full of mischief in only her vest and a pair of boots.
Every one laughs and the picture is painted anyway.
We all have some one like that in our families.
There is always a child that cannot keep their clothes on.
There is always someone who is everyone's darling.
There is always someone who steals every scene.
It actually seemed a little like being an interloper viewing such an
intimate family moment.
But what amazing talent to be able to draw me in the best part of 100 years into the future and have me so captivated that I am making up stories about it.
Needless to say I will one day be going back.
The only shame is that I did end up with work to do and so couldn't go to the other side of town and see Picasso's Guernica.
Ho Humm can't win them all.
Love Nora xx

Friday, 5 August 2011


The Ninja Knitters are hopefully, fingers crossed, going to have
a tiny little guest appearance
in the events section of the next Mollie Makes magazine.
Really rather exciting.
But, and there is always a but!
Contact was made some time late yesterday
and I needed to get photos and information to them by today.
All I had was 32 knitted squares and a couple of nearly finished wheels.
But with a bit of creative thinking, the emergency enrolment of a blanket my Great Grandma Daisy knitted me when I was 3 and
an interesting shooting angle we had lift off.

I roped in the help of Hayley my glamorous assistant from the day job, and we spent an enjoyable hour frantically stitching and then mucking about in the street with old blankets and scraps of knitting.
Well it made a change from the crippling weight of costumes we are struggling with at the moment.
Happy Day!
Love Ninja One (Nora) xxx

Thursday, 4 August 2011

My big little man came home the other day.
He had been to the Cambridge Folk Festival with his Dad.
He left as a clean well adjusted child with a slight (ahem, strong)
South London accent,
and returned to the welcoming arms of his mother looking like a very grubby new member of Goldie looking chain.
Returning from a folk festival as a prototype bearded, real ale drinking,
tyedyed t-shirted hippy would make sense.
But not my boy.
In Fact this Photo does not do justice to the new look,
somehow a lot of the dirt has been magically removed from his beautiful white outfit.
WHITE! I ask you, who would put a child in white?
especially a child at a festival?
You also can not see a. the true magnificence of the hat,
or b. the fact that his hair is dyed blue.
He was very proud of his lighter.
I thought "oh its just an old empty one that he's picked up."
I am hoping not to be proven wrong.
But I am expecting the opposite.
Off now to tackle the K2 of washing they brought back with them.
Love Nora xx

Tuesday, 2 August 2011


Or so one on line thesaurus claims.
A Ninja is an elusive creature, shy and retiring, they blend seamlessly in to the crowd with a series of cunning and perfectly executed disguises.
A Ninja works secretly with other Ninjas to bring joy through the medium of knitting to the lives of the citizens of South West London.
The Ninjas fame it would appear is spreading.
Word has spread as far as the local council.
The local council have approached the Ninjas in an official capacity.
The Ninjas have said yes, no problemo we can knit you a car by mid September.
In private the Ninjas gulped, took a deep deep breath and told them selves
to stop panicking.
They drew upon every contact and underground network they could think of.
And now there are prototype Ninja cells at the sea side and in the deep Wiltshire countryside.
The needles have been polished, the yarn bought, the pattern worked out and the great work begun.

After much debate and internal wrangling Ninjas have decided that crochet is also a legitimate form of expression.
To which end I bring you hub caps!

The Ninjas will keep you informed about the progress of their not so top secret, for once, project through the kind loan of their friend and confidant Flaming Nora's blog.
Though Ninjas can also be found on facebook.
Love Ninja One. xxx