Bits, bobs, ‘You’re kidding me on’ moments and a swing…..


When I was little my Mum and Dad put a grown-up swing in the back garden for us all. My sister, brother and I spent hours on that swing and all of us, Mum and Dad included, still make moves to have a go on one whenever the opportunity presents itself.

I sailed for hours looking over the top of the privet hedge on that swing, across the fields, spinney and canal that were our playground. Daydreams and singing aloud happened every time I flew through the air and my imagination took flight.

This morning has been ‘one of those’ and there have been a few ‘Oh you’re kidding me on’ moments, so I stopped. My builder neighbour is at home this week re-building his back porch and just now he looked down to see me standing at the bottom of his ladder. I had a plate of fresh toast, with lashings of homemade lemon curd on it, in my hand and a smile on my face. He knows me well enough by now to just wait and see what my request was: ‘Can I go and swing on your garden seat please?’

It’s sunny out there, and even though we’re fast heading for late October, there is a warm breeze playing through. The sounds of chickens chattering away, birds singing, children playing in the school yard and horses trotting past were all I could hear.

It was blissful and after a few minutes I had ‘swung it out’.

The art of Moodling; imagination needs moodling – long, inefficient, happy idling, dawdling and pottering – Brenda Ueland

I woke up with the word ‘moodling’ in my head this morning and found that it was coined by Brenda Ueland back in the 1930s (bless Google).

All the time we are driven to achieve something in our daily round, to produce a tangible object for the time we are investing, even if our creation is a healthier bank balance at the end of the month. We trade our time for money when we perform tasks for others under the employment banner or we fly without a parachute when we are self employed but in all this activity we look for quantifiable ways to demonstrate what we have achieved.

Lately I have been doing some ‘moodling’ of my own without realising exactly what I was doing. I have discovered that the sky does not fall in if you stop for a little while to try, experiment, create and explore, or ‘splore’ as one of my little ones would say.

My moodling has led me to discover that my idea of making rag dolls from toddlers clothes is not going to fly. I watched a friend of mine sorting through her toddler’s outgrown clothes and as they were of no use to anyone she was getting them ready for the charity bin. Her face softened as she fingered the clothes and spoke about the memories that floated to the surface. That’s when I had the idea of the rag dolls as they would give her a heartfelt snapshot of a moment in time that she could keep. Lovey idea, but not something I have been able to bring into reality with any degree of success. My attempt at a rag doll was taken by Em (trying hard to keep a straight face) and turned into a hand puppet that she teased me with, at some length, peeping out from behind various household objects. Undaunted, I kept moodling through and this has taken my imagination along a different line and I have nearly completed a bag with the clothes and this time it is coming together and has a good feel about it.

Time spent moodling is not time wasted.

As a final note though if Worcester choses to moodle in the hen house once more I will be very creative in how I handle him!! Not a day goes by without this dear dog of ours being in trouble, it is just the depth that varies…..