Friday, 13 March 2015

Tea for two..

So, I'll be visiting with one of my oldest and dearest friends in Philadelphia next weekend.  We've known each other before we had children, through divorces and many miles and years between meetings since we first shared an office back in 1983.  I had promised to make her a tea cosy .... a promise I forgot until last night!

I quickly whipped this one up from a fat quarter I just bought...

and then thought I'd better ask her what colour she would like..... the answer... blue, white or yellow.  Hmmmm.  Rummage through the old fabric stash....
and what better choice than a bit of vintage Laura Ashley, saved from my old kitchen blind, for a friend who shared my excitement when Laura Ashley opened a store in Arden, PA in 1984.  Neither of us could afford to actually buy anything but we did enjoy browsing!

Happy nearly the weekend.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Baking, decorating, visiting, knitting, sewing...'s all been going on this month.  Cannot believe how quickly time is flying but since I declared 2015 the year of getting on with things I'm just cracking on!  

My sister and I are toying with the idea of applying for a stand at Yarndale this year.  Time is running out for us to make our minds up but the thing that is flummoxing me is finding public liability insurance to the tune of £2million.  Anyway, I thought I'd better start making some things just in case I do get a stand.  So far I've produced some crochet rolls - this one is for me :)

and a pram blanket, knitted in moss stitch with King Cole Funky Felt yarn

I did not enjoy knitting this as the needles were huge and I couldn't get much momentum.  Still, it's one more 'thing' made from my 'stuff'.

I have also been fiddling about with teeny tiny half inch hexagons and made some little pin cushions

This I really did enjoy making despite the hole I now seem to have in my finger!

Son number one lives in Dublin and he and his girlfriend are gearing up to move into their first home which has been gutted and put back together so I headed over there to help with the decorating.  7 rolls of lining paper hung - no pasting table so we improvised.  The old knees took a battering and after 2 days up and down a ladder I have to say I was feeling the pull in the old buttocks too!

They had no working loo either so my bladder control is much improved :)

Inspired by the thought of a trip to Dublin and son number two being home it was time for a spot of baking.  Guinness Chocolate cake anyone?

The topping was supposed to be all over the top but the cake was still warm and we couldn't wait so served it on the side.  Greedy, us? No way!

As soon as I got back from Dublin I had a surprise visit from a dear friend from one of my previous lives.  Gill and I have known each other since baby days back when I lived in Winchester so that's at least 28 years.  We haven't seen each other for about 3 so there was a lot of talking to cram into just a few hours.  We managed, especially over afternoon tea at Mallyan Spout Hotel.  Four pots of tea later we headed down to the Beck Hole pub just to see if there was room in this tiny bar for us.

Happily there was so we enjoyed a bit of banter, a lot of selfie taking and then sadly it was time to say goodbye.  That's Gill's halo shining bright on the left

And maybe a spot of Black Sheep beer shining out
 of Alan.

Another ray of sunshine in the month of March has been this little cute-pie.  My god daughter and great niece, an absolute tonic on any day of the week.  Her mum always has her hair done very nicely but Freya decided to try out all my hair brushes giving her the slightly more dishevelled look. Bless her little cotton socks.

So, I'm heading across the pond at the weekend and hoping to have time for a little fabric shopping amidst all the meetings.  Then I head to see another very dear friend in Philadelphia on the way back and that will bring us almost to the end of March.  Where is the time going?

Hope the sun is shining wherever you are like it is here today.


Sunday, 22 February 2015

Happy Hooking

My sister and I held our first workshop of 2015 in the gift room of her shop  - Hooking for beginners.  It's always satisfying to take nine vestal, no, crochet virgins and see their happy little faces as they finally master chains, doubles and trebles.  

And of course, a healthy helping of tea and cakes makes it all the more enjoyable.

I hope you've been having a crafty weekend too!


Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Bye Baby Bunting...

Whilst rummaging around in my craft stash, pretending to be sorting it out I came across some yarn that I've had for an age but didn't really know what to do with it, not having enough to make anything of note.  Then inspiration struck.... a little project for sitting in front of the telly with, in particular the new JK Rowling series, A Casual Vacancy, which I had heard so much about.....something not too taxing...

The bunting didn't take me long to do... finding a needle small enough to go through the bead hole but large enough to fit the yarn through was more of an ordeal..  had to get the pliers out to pull the needle and yarn through the teeny tiny hole...

But quite happy with the finished result.

Oh yes, all those cds .. must get those digitised some time soon ... that's ideal button jar storage space :)  As for A Casual Vacancy - maybe it's just me but I thought it was a load of old tosh, not a single character I liked - apart from maybe the guy who died.  I shall not be watching next week.

Son number three is coming home for a short break today so I was up early to bake a little something for him.  Chocolate and orange cookies, made with love.

oh and some shortbread and a citrus yoghurt cake...

Well, who needs sleep?


Sunday, 15 February 2015

Love and Hate

I've been feeling the love for yarn this week.  Whilst sorting through my obscenely huge wool stash I came across a 4ply granny blanket I started but never finished.  I absolutely love crocheting row upon row of treble clusters, eagerly anticipating the next colour I'm going to use.  I absolutely hate the finishing off bit.  All those ends to sew or weave in ...

But eventually,  two Sunday morning episodes of How I Met Your Mother later, it's time to snip them all off ...

Aaah, now I'm back feeling the love.

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Feeling the love ....

... in the form of baking...

... and a a spot more fine crochet ...

I hope you are feeling the love today too.


Thursday, 12 February 2015

A little bit of cheer ...

... on these grey and misty mornings, as I head out of the door I am greeted by this cheerful little viola

How I love these lovely little flowers.  They carry the promise of Spring and sunnier times ahead.