Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Sasha girls in Scotland - part 4

Laura and Florence complete their blog about our May half term to Scotland (see also Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3):

On the second Saturday of our visit to Scotland we joined the family on an outing in Edinburgh.  In two days they had already explored the Museum of Childhood, had an open top bus tour, visited The Elephant House cafe where the first three Harry Potter books were written, been inside St Giles Cathedral, seen Blackfriars Bobby statue and grave, visited the University of Edinburgh Art Degree Show and had a private pre-arranged tour of an important no longer open to the public building in Edinburgh as part of a history project.

We walked from our B&B all the way up past the Castle to the Camera Obscura on Castle hill.  After viewing the Camera Obscura show of the city (10 minutes in the dark with a birds eye view of the city projected onto the large white dish table) we went outside onto the viewing decks for a magnificent fresh air sunny view of Edinburgh.  Wow!  It was so impressive.  DollMum looked at the list outside of other camera obscura's around the world (not many) and realised that she had also been to the only one in the Southern Hemisphere in Grahamstown (SA) and the one in Aberystwyth (Wales), apparently there are three others in Scotland.
The Camera Obscura sign on the tower
Florence and Laura view Edinburgh from the Camera Obscura
View of St Giles Cathedral (in the distance down the Royal Mile)
After that, we worked our way down the several floors of the museum exploring all the optical and scientific exhibits which taught us quite a lot about optical illusions in a fun way.

Mirrors played tricks on us in the Camera Obscura museum
Singing Cats and Piano playing dog automata in the Camera Obscura
Singing Cats and Piano playing dog automata in the Camera Obscura
Laura's left eye magnified 50x in the Camera Obscura
Laura's right eye magnified 50x in the Camera Obscura
Laura played with coloured light shadows
There was an amazing optical illusion room which tricked your eyes into believing that relative sizes were different from reality:
DollMum's younger daughter is only double the height of Laura!
DollMum's elder daughter is a giant, Laura is tiny
DollMum's younger daughter is bigger than her elder daughter
Laura is tiny compared to DollMum's younger daughter
Laura is tiny compared to DollMum's younger daughter,
while her elder daughter has short legs for a change
DollMum's daughters are the same size, while Laura is tiny
When we had finished at the Camera Obscura we walked all down the hill to the moat gardens, past the galleries by Princes Street and sat in the gardens eating ice cream in the sunshine.
Eating ice cream on a slope in the Edinburgh park
Eating ice cream and watching the world go by
We really enjoyed our day in the sunshine in Edinburgh (Laura had more fun than Florence who spent most of the day strapped to the side of DollMum's camera case rucksack watching everyone).  On Sunday we had the long drive home and were pleased to get back to all the others in the doll and bear family to tell them all about our adventures in Scotland.


Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Sasha girls in Scotland - part 3

Laura and Florence continue talking about our visit to Scotland (see Part 1 and Part 2): On Tuesday of May half term we visited the Scottish Deer Centre in Fife where we didn't just see lots of varieties of deer, but also otters, wildcats, a falconry display, wolves, lynx and ELK which were enormous!
Laura and Florence meet some deer
Reindeer resting - they didn't look ready to pull a sleigh!
A very large Elk - it would take about 10 Sasha's and Gregor's standing on top of each other to get onto his back
Watching the Otters - they were great fun
Two otters
The large tame owl decided to sit on our table in the falconry display
He was very impressive but also quite naughty, he didn't always come back when called
A magnificent falcon
The lovely kestrel
Laura does the tree top walk (above the Elk) - we didn't see any Red Squirrels unfortunately
On Wednesday morning, just before we left the Kingdom of Fife, we met Archbishop Desmond Tutu and a group of African dolls which live at the house where we stayed.
Laura and Florence meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Archbishop Tutu as a glove puppet
African dolls on the bedroom mantelpiece
African dolls on the bedroom mantelpiece
On Wednesday morning we travelled to Edinburgh.  That afternoon it rained very hard in the city, so we stayed indoors while the big people went outside and got wet (silly people).
Florence, Clemence and Fuzzy bear, Laura
sit in the bedroom chair at the B&B in Edinburgh
In fact they didn't take us out for the next two days which were not rainy, even when they visited the Museum of Childhood which was filled with lovely dolls and toys (many more than those at Kellie Castle). Apparently they told us there weren't any Sasha dolls in the museum and DollMum says she will blog about this separately as she took lots of photos.  But we are disappointed they didn't take us to visit all those dolly cousins (who were almost all stuck in glass cases).  Don't worry, we did get an outing in Edinburgh and will tell you all about that soon.

Monday, 23 June 2014

Sasha girls in Scotland - part 2

Laura continues the story of our half term holiday in Scotland:
On the Monday of half term we visited Kellie Castle in Fife.  It was a fascinating place, though unfortunately photos were not allowed in the Castle (which was really a very grand country house with turrets).  In the top of the house is a nursery and in the two turrets we met some lovely antique toys and dolls, though none like us Sasha girls.  We were allowed to explore the gardens of Kellie Castle which were beautiful (and photos were allowed).
Florence and Laura enjoyed the Kellie Castle gardens
There was a pirate for a scarecrow in the garden
The piratical scarecrow
We found a nice bench in Kellie Castle garden
We had a good conversation on the bench
We could see Kellie Castle in the distance through the garden
Such a beautiful view under the arch
Kellie Castle from the garden
We found an old millstone in front of Kellie Castle 
Laura and Florence on the old millstone at Kellie Castle
We could see the turreted nursery at Kellie Castle,
where we had met some lovely toys and dolls
We turned around to admire the view from Kellie Castle
Laura and Florence on the millstone at Kellie Castle
We really enjoyed our visit to Kellie Castle in the sunshine.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Sasha girls in Scotland - part 1

Hello, Laura here.  We've been on holiday in Scotland recently and would like to share some of our adventures with you.

Florence, Clemence bear and I travelled on a VERY rainy day in the car with the big people at the start of May half term.  We weren't impressed with the weather but were very pleased that when we arrived in the Kingdom of Fife, the sun was shining through the clouds.

Florence, Laura and Clemence bear arrive in Scotland
On Sunday morning we went to church with the family.  Florence did some drawing with my girl during the service while Clemence and I watched and we met an old Rocking horse in the vestry after the service.  He very kindly allowed us to ride him.

Drawing during the service
Florence works on her drawing of the Pascal Candle
We ride the handsome old Rocking Horse in the vestry
The Rocking Horse is on a swing stand and was in the Vicarage attic for years.
He thinks he was made nearly 100 years ago.
During the afternoon we visited the Verdant Works Museum in Dundee which explored the history of the Jute industry in the city and how important it was for that part of Scotland.  It was a very interesting place, with lots to explore and find out.  Clemence enjoyed it but became very tired after the first few exhibits, so climbed into my girl’s rucksack for the remainder of the visit and went to sleep.
At lunchtime Clemence flew on the wooden spoon.  We think this tired him a bit.
Clemence and Laura look at the big ledger desks in the Verdant Works office
Laura and Clemence try out the ancient copying machine in the Verdant Works office
Jute was a worldwide trade, it made Dundee very influential.
Laura checked out all the different woven fabrics and fibres in the Verdant Works
Laura was captivated by the amazing weaving loom in the Verdant Works
Laura and Florence sat on a big pile of raw jute in the Verdant Works 
The process of turning the jute into a variety of useful
woven materials was very complicated but fascinating 
We tried out some weaving ourselves
There was a Marvellous Mechanical Mill at the Verdant Works
(which reminded us a bit of the Mouse Mill from Bagpuss)
This lovely Victorian doll was stuck in a glass case in the Verdant Works -
we felt quite sorry for her 
There was a school room in the Verdant Works -
the old fashioned desks were very uncomfortable
It was colder in Scotland than in England but sunnier than back home, where it apparently rained most of the week.  So we were glad we had brought cardigans with us.  Florence was very pleased to be wearing her new dungarees from Vintage Sasha, the first set we've ever managed to get (they sell so fast).

I will continue telling you about our adventures in another post.