Sunday, 25 November 2012

Its snowing ... !! x

Hello, isn't the weather awful at the moment ... and no its not actually snowing where I am! Its only been snowing in crochet. The last couple of days I have had a bit of crochet time given to me and so I have been making snowflakes.
The snowflakes are going to be both on my tree when it goes up next month, and they will also be added to the presents I will give as part of the festive season.
Oh my, but hasn't it rained recently! It was so good this morning to get out of the house and venture around my beautiful town.
And while the rain can be so destructive, it can be so beautiful too. I love the reflections in these puddles.
Along the lanes you could see how big the puddles had got!
The oak tree had nearly lost all of its leaves, I love the structure of the branches as a child I used to draw trees drawing branches off branches to the smallest of twigs. It is something I want to do again ... to just sit down with my pad and pencils and just draw and lose myself.
Windfall apples

 In this little town you are never far from the countryside and that is why I love it so much here.

The river is up ... and so are the flood defences, much to relief of the residents, these are amazing they are just metal planks that slot one above the other! Magic!! It is a little surreal to walk along when the river is really high as it runs past you at shoulder height ... a little scary and amazing at the same time!!

And many taking the opportunity for a photograph!
And then it was the slow walk home ...
The reason for the crochet time ... is the dreaded lurgy!! I have been able to fight off a cold for the last couple of months, but one has crept up and got me so out comes the honey and lemons ...
Mmmmmmmmmm ...
... there are always advantages to having a cold and at night when I know I have nowhere else to go a drop of whiskey may find its way into my honey and lemon ... for medicinal purposes only of course!
And note the cup and saucer ... the dignified way to drink hot honey and lemon!
And so its all about relaxing for me for the rest of the day and so I decided to finish off Rosie Ragdoll
And also do a little reading ...
I have recently subscribed to 'Pretty Nostalgic' after reading about the magazine in blogland I purchased a copy recently ... and what delights I found within! It is an independent bi-monthly home and lifestyle magazine that focuses on vintage living and nostalgic values ... and is completely British, and celebrating all that is!
So, when I saw them at the Birmingham Festive Gift Fair I couldn't resist!! With the subscription I got the Pretty Nostalgic "Home" book.
And I thought I would share some of its delights ...

... and this is why we love to create beautiful things 

... I love this page there is so much pleasure for me here ... teacups and saucers, milk jugs and other delightful things.

Sigh ... dare I say it but I love this too, although I will probably keep to Thriftwoods plan for housework ... I may add a few things from here too!

Well I am definitely doing Christmas shopping at the moment, and I have started the making for presents thats on Decembers list ... and in December I may even write some letters.
And here are the Pretty Nostalgic rules ...
Live your life the best you can
Be yourself and don't follow fashions
Evaluate how you live
Try to live by traditional values
Spend some time making your house a home
Focus on family and friends
Work out what is important to you
Don't automatically buy what you think you need - slow down and think before you spend
Get out of the habit of doing what everyone else does
Appreciate what you can learn from the past. Just because something is old doesn't mean it isn't relevant today.
Appreciate what you already have
Treasure family items and heirlooms
Keep family traditions and rituals alive
Think about what makes you happy. What made you happy as a child - what are your fondest memories?
Break a few rules - eat pudding for starters if you fancy it, but appreciate and savour it.
Focus on life's simple pleasures
Get a new perspective on life

Oh, these are very me!! And maybe there are a few blog post subjects there too!!
Oh, and before I forget may I introduce you to Rosie Ragdoll ...

Sitting pride of place on my mantelpiece.
So its time I wish you all a good evening ... and keep warm!
bye, bye!



Sunday, 18 November 2012

Crafty Christmas Shopping ... !! x

Hello, what a beautiful day its been today. It was so frosty outside this morning, a very crisp day and the sun shone gloriously!
I ventured out on a run this morning ... I haven't been out all week as I felt so bad running last weekend I thought I would have a break. It paid I ran well, still walk run walk, but the walks of one and a half minutes broke up two minute and seven minute runs.
I did have to stop and take a picture of my favourite oak, it was caught in sunshine with frosty grass surrounding it ...

The rest of the morning was spent visiting the local Hobbycraft with Soo ... now this is a very dangerous shop to visit and was full as expected of glorious Christmassy things to tempt and delight!!
And so my shopping list of;
12" Cross Stitch Ring
34 x 34 Grey Aida
White Cotton DK
Extended to include those items that 'jumped' into ones basket of;
3 x cross stitch patterns for christmas cards
2 x Christmas Garlands
3 x Christmas Decorations
2 x Jam Jars
Make your own Christmas Crackers Kit
A set of tiny little pegs with wooden hearts on them
Fortunately they had £5 off if you spent £25 ... yippeeeee how well timed was that!!
Every year I like to make things for the Family, I always do special cross stitch cards for each of them, Christmas Crackers for the table with their own specially brought present and little Christmas Stockings filled with a chocolate for the Christmas table.
I feel a little more prepared to get these done in time ... but no doubt I will still me here on Christmas eve finishing them off!!
The cross stitch ring and aida are for a Christmas Pressie I am creating for a friend, I want to write a little saying in cross stitch ... something from Literature ... I just need to decide what ... Austen ... Shakespeare ... oh decisions!!
Oh PS they didn't have the size or colour of aida I wanted hence why its crossed out above.
And while I was there in some lovely fluffy pink wool I left a tiny bunny to be found by a fellow crafter ...
Please may I introduce you to "Petal".
I hope she found a good home!!
You should have seen me look for a quiet part of the wool aisle ... and then pop her on the shelf and then pretend I was taking pictures of the wool!!
Here's me making her last night ...

This afternoon has been housework, baking and cooking ... the smells coming from the kitchen are a delight!!
I have made my own Granola for breakfast ...
red pepper soup for lunches this week ...
and a carrot, walnut and fig cake ... yummy!!
(I just hope the more 'well done' bits don't detract from its taste)
I had better say bye bye for now and get on with some crafting!!
Soon I may need your thoughts on an crafty idea I have ... !

Monday, 12 November 2012

My weekend ... and chocolate buttons!! ... x

Hello again, I have to share more of my weekend ... but I am going to save the best bit to last!! I have already told you about my Sunday Morning so may we rewind back to Saturday ... and shopping!!

It was a trip to Malvern, as I knew which shops were there I wrote a list which would take me to The Knitting Parlour and Stitch 45 and obviously purchases were made in both!

So at Knitting Parlour the two balls of Rico Baby DK were purchased to make a Christmas present ... so no more will be said on that one until Christmas!! Although I am having fun as its crocheted on the round and the joins are slanting, so now I am thinking of adapting the pattern.

At Stitch 45 I brought the 3 bits of felt, the black is for the backing of my green man and the green and red are for making a few more different coloured autumnal leaves ... so my green man isn't going to be very green!! I am hoping to spend a bit of time on Sunday starting to create the leaves.

While in Malvern there was also an Arts and Crafts fair ... wonderful! I didn't have my camera with me to take pictures of all the delights I found ... but please trust me they were wonderful! The wicker basket contained a Christmas pressie purchased at the fair and does contain wonderful delights for the recipient ... but no more will be said about that either!!

Finally and by no means least there was the purchase of a butter knife ... for £1! Bargain!

Then to Sunday ... after my walk and taking pictures of the frost and autumnal colours (see yesterdays blog!). It amazed me how much colour was still around in my neighbours gardens, so I thought i woudl share again the colours in my garden thanks to the pansies ...

It was such a lovely day on Sunday ... sunny and frosty ... beautiful!!

Now if I may I will take you to the best bit ... and its one of those simple things in life ... lunch at Mom and Dads! Mom had created a feast and Lunch was delicious ... but the best bit was pudding, and it was the simplicity of this one that also brought back sooo many childhood memories.

 ... chocolate buttons and custard ...!

Mom and Dad had brought come chocolate buttons especially and were saving it for Christmas, but as my sister had especially requested custard for pudding on Sunday it seemed an opportune time to reveal the surprise. So the custard was duly made, we like it thick so the spoon will stand up, and out it was served into four bowls ... and then Mom headed towards the fridge. My sister and I thought we were having the chocolate swiss roll that was hiding inside ... but no out she brought three packets of chocolate buttons!!


Have you ever tried it? Its a must if your haven't, the chocolate melts and makes the custard all chocolately too, and it is sheer heaven!!



Sunday, 11 November 2012

Sunday again ... ! x

the nights have drawn in and I am sat at home after a truly relaxing day! It was meant to start with a lie in, but the cats put paid to that ... you know when they are no longer happy to wait for their breakfast I could hear bangs and crashes from downstairs, Evans began grumbling as I think Prilly was picking on him a little judging by the bits of fur I found.
So I lasted till 8 o'clock in bed and then I got up to a beautiful frosty morning, this is what autumn is to me.
So I got dressed and first of all popped to the shops to get a Sunday paper and food for the moggies. I then dropped these purchases back home, grabbed my camera and ventured back out into the morning.
The frost looked so pretty on these leaves it seemed a crime not to record them ... naturally beautiful.
It was early enough that the sun was still rising so the shadows created were long ...
the photo above makes it look like I was walking a long dress, I was in more sensible walking attire ...

I love my Doc Martens, a total impulse purse a couple of years but they were worth every penny!! Note the BIG jumper too ... its huge but is so snug and warm and the perfect partner for a autumnal walk.
But these poor nettles weren't as snug and warm ... brrrrrr.
And so to frosty views ... and it looks as if in the distance the farmer has got the last of the hay in too.

While on my walk I went to take a photo of my favourite oak tree, I have decided to take this tree through the seasons as a way of recording the year.

But today there was a little poignant reminder of the day left, that it was so unexpected made even more thoughtful and touching.
The barbed wire seemed also a stark reminder of the war my Granddads fought in, and it made me stop and think for a little while and say thank you.
They added to the effort that made ourt lives what they are today, and for that I shall be always grateful to them.
And so on I ventured ... admiring the frosty morning.
A fence post.
My favourite tractor ... not mine obviously but one I admire for possibly drawing one day.

The sheep enjoying the sun ... but not the frosty grass!!
This local farm has a studio avaliable to all for Mellow Monday's I am sooooo tempted one day to book a day off work and book myself in ... I feel much in need of a Mellow Monday instead of the usual!!
Cobwebs ...
More frosty pictures ...
I love this leaf, I love the frost caught on the leaf ... sometimes my photos amaze me.
A simple fence post all frosted up!
What was meant to be a short walk, was filled with lots of photo taking, after which I headed home and to my yummy breakfast (nothing exciting just weetabix and hot milk but yummy all the same!!)
And the papers, every so often I indulge in one of the broadsheets knowing it will last me all week.
The perfect partner to my week of breakfasts!
And so that was just the start of my Sunday ... I will let you know more tomorrow.
bye bye!!

Friday, 9 November 2012

Cosy nights in ... ! x

Hello I hope you are wrapped up warm and enjoying a cosy night in after a long week.
Wasn't it cold last night, for me there was only one thing to do ... and that was to cuddle up with the cats and crochet
Evans was curled up on my lap which does make crochet not as easy to do, but is all very lovely and warm on a cold November night.
I have recieved my last submission back from Pauline at Crochet Design. My quadruple trebles gained a 'Very Good' which is a relief! The triangle of trebles worked to point didn't fair as well. In her letter to me Pauline did say that the triangles included in the diploma are otherwise known as ...
"those ... dreaded triangles"
So at least I know its not only me struggling to complete them!!
I think I may concentrate on other samples before I go back to the "dreaded treble triangle"
Tonight is a well deserved night in. I have had the slow cooker going while I was at work and came home to the wonderful smells of slow cooked chicken and mushrooms with brown rice.
And I have created this evenings menu for his arrival here ...
And as its Friday it seemed a must that a nice chocolate pudding was also part of the menu
(but not homemade ... I'm not that good ... thank you Co-op!!!)
And of course a bottle of wine
A thank you gift from the Concert Band I play the flute with for my time as their Treasurer ... hic! The wine rack is too full to fit it ... so I'm afraid it just needs to be drunk!
And as its the weekend I have treated myself to a bunch of flowers as a reward for a long hard week.
And so thats my Friday evening ... and here is to the weekend, two glourious days to do whatever we wish to do.
Enjoys yours and see you all soon.
bye bye

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Tunisian Crochet ... ! x

I have been lent a set of Denise Interchangable hooks to try out ...

And so today I have spent a quiet day getting to grips with the art of Tunisian Crochet. I have been using thr instructions that come with the Denise Hooks along with those included with the International Crochet Diploma.
I think I have cracked it ... although I need to be aware of the use of hooks as it wasn't a flat sample I produced ...

The reason I think is that I should have used a smaller hook to do the foundation chain and then the right size hook for the wool I was using. I was using aran wool with a 4.5mm hook which would have been perfect for double knitting so the stitches where a little tight.
I do love the stitches that tunisian crochet produces though, I was doing the simple stitch ...
The Denise Hooks are plastic, but they are lovely to use ... and I think there maybe a purchase soon!!!
Off to practice a little more!
bye bye