Wednesday, 31 December 2014


I had high hopes on Christmas Eve of posting on my blog photos of some delicious treats!

Christmas cakes decorated with the help of Charlotte!

Cheese & Rosemary Sables.

Nigel Slater's sausage danish plus a few mince pies made with left over pastry that the seagulls really enjoyed!

These were so much better!

However Christmas Eve passed in a flash as so did Christmas and Boxing Day.
Lots of fun and laughter was had by us all, a busy time but an excellent time.

We've had long walks in the winter sunshine 
and yesterday enjoyed a coffee and some lunch looking out to sea at Aldeburgh.

So tomorrow we start a fresh new year. Lots of projects planned (yarn delivery has arrived this morning) and a fourth grand child to look forward to.

Thank you so much for following my blog through 2014.
I wish you all a happy and healthy new year!

Monday, 15 December 2014


Yesterday the christmas tree was squeezed through the patio doors into the lounge. 
I was making sausage rolls in the kitchen at the time and when Michael called for me and I walked in the lounge I had a - Oh deary me, what a big tree! moment.

 Last night I got Michael to put the fairy on the top and drape the lights round it as I couldn't reach the top. Today I have spent the afternoon putting the baubles and other decorations on and I do think it looks very pretty. (The bucket at the bottom needs some attention but I'm leaving that for another day.)

I do like the fact that it still has a couple of pine cones on it, that's what sold it to me in the first place. If it hadn't been for them I wouldn't have got one quite as big but then knowing my past record, I probably would have.

I bought this santa decoration the other day when I was in the tourist information centre in town. I had to buy it for Michael as I thought it very appropiate as we have a boat just like that in our garage.

At long last I am beginning to feel a little more christmassy and I'm now off to listen to christmas music while I wrap some presents.

Thursday, 11 December 2014


Here is our christmas tree!

Outside it looks huge
and inside I feel it's going to look even huger!
(I wasn't sure if huger was a word but according to google it is so I'm using it!)

What swayed me to choose this one from all the others at the garden centre is that it still has a few cones on the top. 
Michael and I as always had our normal christmas banter as we paced along the rows of christmas trees.

"That's enormous, have you any idea how large that's going to look in our lounge!"
My reply, "It'll be fine, I like a tall tree!"
"Oh no it isn't, not when you've cut it and trimmed it a little, it'll be perfect!"

We left the garden centre with the tree.

So now we have the tree in the garden. We do have a slight problem in that the patio doors aren't opening as well as they should but by the weekend this should be sorted and the tree will appear in the lounge ready to be decorated.

On Tuesday I moved the lounge round leaving the gap ready for the tree, looking for those extra inches of floor space that are never going to be there!
Am I the only one that does this?

Once the tree is decorated and the christmas cards are opened I will hopefully then start to feel a little more festive!

Next time fingers crossed I'll have some photos of my decorated tree to show you.

Monday, 1 December 2014


On Friday when I did my shopping in town, I joked with my butcher.
"Am I going to get 20% of my pound of sausages today?" I asked.
"Ah no, sorry" was his reply. 
We laughed!

Thankfully the rest of Friday passed quietly in the little market town where I live but following on from Black Friday I decided to create my very own Productive Saturday. 

When Kate asked me to make her this chevron blanket she did say she would really like it to be finished to coincide with the completion of her newly decorated lounge.

While the decorating is yet to be finished, I am very pleased to say the blanket is!
One job finished off my "to do" list.

Now I'm sorry but I am going to blow my own trumpet here. I am so pleased with my christmas stockings.  I did fly into panic mode on Saturday morning when I found my marker pen had dried out completely and attaching the labels was my first planned job of the day.

Thankfully my husband came to my rescue. Coming in from the garage he made us a coffee, plied me with one of those nice biscuits from M& S and grabbing a pencil and paper redisgned how I was going to attach the tags.

So I must say a huge thank you to him as his new idea is so much better than mine ever was. The 3 double sided tags are on the side ready to be written on with my new marker and then I just have to slot the little hanging down strips into each of them and hand stitch them to make them secure.

I lined the stockings with a piece of flanelette sheet, to make them a little thicker which I bought so cheaply from Poundland and then put in a blue lining for Jacks and red for the girls.

All I hope is that Father Christmas has enough toys on his sleigh on the 24th to fill them up!
Hope you all have a great week!

Tuesday, 18 November 2014


I've decided that before I start anything else I need to get some things finished first. 

Christmas stockings for Charlotte Jessica and Jack which I had made up my mind to buy ready made but then saw this fabric and changed my mind. 
They are all cut out so I'm hoping to spend this coming Saturday sewing them together.

The chevron blanket that I'm making for Kate is just four rows and one yellow colour block away from completion. I really love it and could easily persuade myself to make another just for me.
But before I am persuaded I need to finish off some christmas presents and get yarn ordered to make baby goodies again this time for Kate who is expecting in March.
I have a bag full of sock yarn which is making my fingers itch to make up but I am having to be strong willed and I'm leaving it to one side or to be more correct, hidden behind the sofa, until I have a little more time.
Last Thursday I had the urge to declutter the lounge, the bags of yarn arranged on the chair all of a sudden were an eye sore. So without further ado, I hoovered the lounge in all of it's nooks and crannies, pushed the sofa forward a tad and stacked my bags of yarn behind it. It looks much tidier, husband is impressed and the yarn isn't far away!

I am giving you just a hint of what I'm making with some very bright orange wool. These are christmas presents and all will be revealed fully when they're finished.

And finally here to be finished is Jack's car seat blanket, also a christmas present. I have made this quite a bit longer than the pattern suggests and now I only have to add the border to it.
(Thankfully, Kate's blanket doesn't have a border!).

Quite a lot to be going on with but I'm getting there!

Sunday, 9 November 2014


Sad faces, brave boys,
marching around muddy grounds.
Mad birds singing more like shouting.
Smile to sadness, people got sadder, frightened and worried.

We shall never forget them.

By Charlotte

On seeing the wonderful display created by these young people,
I don't think they will!

Thursday, 6 November 2014


On Friday, our bag packed in the car, we set off to drive up to Scotland. Unfortunately we left a lot later than planned so we joined heavy traffic up the A1 but thankfully my crochet was in reach and I managed to start and nearly finish a hat for Jack for christmas. Unfortunately, (again!) I had made a gigantic mistake, I think probably after I'd dropped the crochet hook. It had slid down the side of my seat, laying at finger tip reach. After plenty of guts and determination to retrieve it and fading light, I crocheted on only to find far more stitches than I started with and in the end I ended up undoing it all when I got to our hotel.

We were up in Scotland to attend a surprise 60th birthday for a friend of ours, my family and hers had been the best of friends for nearly 50 years. She didn't guess a thing about the party so was so surprised and then a short time after doubly surprised to see me sitting there too.

It was a really lovely evening and so nice to catch up, laugh and reminisce about old times.

While we were away we drove over to the coast, here at Largs we watched a ferry head off on its journey to one of the islands. I wondered if the people waiting to board were returning home or perhaps they were visiting, working even. Who knows, I'm just always intrigued by ferries and their travellers.

Moving down the coast we stopped at Ayr for a brisk walk. Michael wandered along the beach picking up small pieces of driftwood to go with our collection we have at home. I'm hoping we'll now have enough to make a table lamp base for our lounge. I remain ever hopeful that this little project will be completed over the winter.

Our few days in Scotland were over so quickly but we did have a wonderful time. On the way home, I remade the hat and since being back I have nearly finished another and made a dishcloth. I'll post some pictures in my next post.

Thursday, 23 October 2014


It's Thursday and I have a nice day planned ahead of me. I'm looking after my grandson Jack while his mum has a well deserved spa day. After giving him his breakfast I thought I'd start our play day by introducing him to the art of blog writing.  He is sitting on the floor next to me eating his bricks and trying to pull the tail off of his cuddly giraffe while I catch up with my news.

I thought I'd show you this picture first and wonder if you may be thinking I'm dabbling in a new art venture?

But no, not at all. This is all courtesy of our lawn mower on Saturday which must have picked up a stone and threw it with all its force at the patio doors. Not a sound was heard, we only noticed it when I went outside to peg some washing out and to wipe off a self portrait of a pigeon which had arrived on the same doors a few days before.

The window man has been, the glass measured and hopefully all will be back to normal sometime next week.

My parcel has now been opened and all of this yarn is to make Jack a chevron crocheted car seat blanket and you may be thinking that is a lot of balls of wool.

And if you are thinking that, then you are right. I must have had some kind of calculating crisis because I ordered way too much. Fortunately, we have another grandchild on the way, unfortunately we don't know whether it will be a boy or a girl, so colours could be an issue.  I have definitely got enough yarn to make another and possibly another one after that!

I've had more mishaps this week, so I definitely feel I've had my fair share!

I have an american style fridge freezer and yesterday I went to open the freezer and realised the door hadn't closed properly since it had been opened the night before. Normally, the freezer bleeps when the door is left open but it wasn't open far enough for that to happen. We were lucky, the meat had remained frozen and the stuff in the drawers at the bottom were ok too, it was just everything else that was on the soggy side and 2 boxes of liquid ice-cream flowed down the drain a treat!

Mishaps always seem to occur  here when I haven't got a great amount of time to deal with them.
Why this morning when I knew Jack was arriving I had to pop just a few bits in the machine for a quick wash I'll never know but that's what I did and in with those few things popped a hidden tissue of the variety that shreds to pieces. Lovely!

I'm hoping the rest of my day goes smoothly, Jack is now having a nap and I'm going to make myself a coffee. I have a friend calling in in a short while and we're heading off to the tea room by the river for some lunch. As well as teaching Jack the art of blog writing I feel he should also be introduced to the term " the ladies who lunch!"

Saturday, 11 October 2014


Before I start hurtling through my post I must say thank you for all the comments I have been receiving on my blog, they are much appreciated.

I'm so pleased, the chevron blanket that I am making for my daughter is coming along so well. I'm still having an issue with the dark grey blocks as there is definitely not the same length of yarn in a ball as the other colours. However, if I do have to buy some more to finish it then so be it, I'll have to see how it goes.

In the meantime another parcel arrived for me on Thursday and it is still sitting there waiting to be opened. I am being very patient but I know what's inside, it contains all the yarn I need for the christmas gifts I'm making for my grandchildren.

All will be revealed over the coming weeks as I progress through the bag of goodies, keep going with the chevron blanket and dabble with all the yarn projects I bought at Yarndale. Will I be busy? I think so!

Today, the garden beckoned for my attention. Considering I'm usually pottering outside at some point during each week, things have gone a bit wild and the garden has had a serious growth spurt. Although we've had a couple of days here where the temperature has dropped today, it was nice to be outside and when the sun did shine, it was quite warm.

This summer we did grow cucumbers in our green house, got a suprisingly large amount of runner beans from just four plants and finally picked our own courgettes which were definitely very late starters. However, we haven't really had the enthusiasm for growing vegetables this year so have decided we're going to give it a miss for a while. We have an excellent farm shop just up the road and they sell plenty of home grown produce.

So, tomorrow the veg plot is going to be transformed back into a flower bed and there will be lots of spring bulbs and summer colours to look forward to.

I thought I would leave you today with a few more photos from our stay in Yorkshire. Michael took these with his camera and only downloaded them this week. I think they're really good!

Boys do like their steam trains!

Yarndale weekend - Malham!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, 3 October 2014


Where was I on this warm and sunny day?

Sandsend Yorkshire!

We'd been staying in Whitby for a few days and walked along the beach on Wednesday from there to Sandsend.
The weather was unbelievable, so many people were out walking and the view from my chair outside a beach side cafe as I sipped my coffee and indulged in a small piece of cake was stunning!

We'd travelled up to Yorkshire first staying in Malham, ready for a weekend of 

Well, I loved that!
It was such a great event, plenty to see and plenty to buy.
I didn't see my mandela but know it was up there somewhere!

The yarn bombing in the park was excellent too.
My grandchildren joined in at home trying to guess what yarn bombing was and happened to call me on face time while we were in the park.
So, they were very excited to actually see the bikes and decorated lamp posts, although I was told afterwards that it did look at one point as if I was actually talking to the trees.

So what else did we do once we'd headed off for Whitby?

Well, we went on a steam train
(no photos I'm afraid)

walked up and around Whitby Abbey

we drove over the moors 

and walked down to Robin Hoods Bay which is where Kate had her first paddle in the sea at just over 1 year old.
(So a nostalgia trip for us)

Now we're back home

and I have lots of lovely things to look forward to making.
More socks  - ( I must not buy any more sock wool!)
Dish clothes
and my list goes on.

The brooch is by

I already have one which I really like that was a gift last christmas and I just couldn't resist having another. they're such beautiful colours.

So plenty to keep me busy.

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014


Here's an update of what I've been making in the last week or so.

This chevron crochet design is definitely addictive. I think that this blanket that I'm making for Kate will grow quicker than I first thought. The yarn that I'm using, Drops Merino Extra Fine has a great feel to it but it does have an annoying feature. Each colour block that I've completed so far has had varying amounts of usage for each ball. The off white and the light grey have been completed in one ball with some excess, the dark grey, I only managed just three rows out of the four and the mustard, well, I would have had enough to complete the whole block but a join in the middle of the 4th row, halted that.
So I seem to be collecting quite a lot of oddments which I suppose is one of those things. I did give it a try and joined the yarn mid row but it just didn't look right and I knew the join was there. For me there wasn't any point continuing down that road.
I like Kate's colour choice and think it will look a very striking blanket when she's got it draped over her black sofa.

I made one of these waistcoats in a pale blue colour for a teeny tiny Jack but now teeny tiny Jack has grown into a little man he needs a much bigger size. I just loved this pattern from the word go, it's a Drops pattern and knitted in Drops Baby Merino. I bought the yarn as part of my "new baby" stash when my daughter in law found out she was expecting. Knitted on a circular needle the waistcoat didn't take long to knit up and the only seams are the ones on the shoulder so not a lot of sewing involved.
I'm looking forward to seeing him wear it.

Thursday, 18 September 2014


On Monday morning when we woke there was a chill in the air and I thought perhaps it was time to put my knitted blanket over the bottom of the bed ready for the colder nights approaching.
I changed the bedding, laid the blanket which has spent all summer folded on the bedroom chair over the bed and then my brain had a sudden thought and on impulse I pulled it off the bed again, dragged it downstairs, opened the washing machine door and plunged it in. My all singing and all dancing washing machine hasn't got a cold wash so I set it to a 30 degree quick wash and left it to get on with it's work.

You might be thinking at this stage that that's not much of a drama but, when I tell you, the yarn I used was hand wash only and this was it's first ever contact with any water, hot or cold you will probably think that my impulsiveness could do with some reining in.

I was so pleased with this blanket when I finished making it and it does look lovely on the bed but it does shed fibre and I thought the wash might help with this problem and better to do it now while we still have warmth in the sun.

When the cycle was finished I don't know how I managed to stay quite calm, as soon as I opened the machine door there was so much fluff flying around the kitchen and one look at the blanket within, well it looked like i'd felted it.

Anyway, not panicking - much! I took it outdoors where the fibres just filled the air and I managed to pull and stretch the blanket back to shape and hang it on the line.

The blanket has thankfully made it back on the bed and looks good. However, the yarn fibres are still caught up in the grass and in every nook and cranny imaginable indoors.

So today, I thought I'd try and hoover them up before I go outside this afternoon to have an afternoon of crochet - the chevron blanket is totally addictive! (pictures next time)

So why I started to do something else on impulse I'll never know but I thought I'd just wipe the paint work here and there and do some bending and stretching getting down to areas where only the little people who visit this house ever see.

Well, all I can say is they must think granny never does any cleaning!

Honestly, how much tea and coffee do we actually drip over the paintwork?

Finally, the job is done, it's 1pm. Lunch time is beckoning and I'm heading outside with my chevron blanket and a seat in the sun.

Hope you are enjoying the sunshine where ever you are!

Saturday, 13 September 2014


My two models, one of them being rather a wriggler, love their new dresses. I have to say a huge thank you to my friend Diane who was so patient with me and helped me all along the way from cutting out  the fabric to finishing.
I'm very pleased with them and I am now feeling much more confident using my sewing machine.
 Jolly good job really because I have new projects to make in the pipe line.

I've also finished this baby blanket this week. It's been sitting there waiting for the border to be crocheted for quite a few days. I think this was because I really wasn't sure if the off white border would look right but now I've done it, I really like it.

I hope the new parents like it too!

I do try to have fresh flowers in the house throughout the year but since the beginning of summer have resisted buying any as I've been picking my own sweet peas and dahlias.
Last Friday I was tempted by some lovely asters in M&S that filled 2 vases.
Then on Saturday my son in law gave me a lovely bunch of flowers as a thank you for darning two jumpers. 
(I know, I'm becoming a sewing geek!)
All of these flowers are still looking good today!

So on Tuesday when there was a knock on the door I couldn't believe it, more beautiful flowers.
A re shuffle of vases was a necessity!

This lovely arrangement was sent to us because my husband has been at work for 40 years.
Sorry for the cliche, but where has all that time gone!

Also this week, having been reading Heldasland's blog I decided to have a play at making a collage for a new banner for my blog. For me, doing something like this is a time consuming event. I start off having a little dabble here and a little dabble there and then before I know it an hour or two has passed and I have a revamped blog with a partially completed banner and then a mad rush to get out of the house to go and do the food shopping.
I shall leave it as it is for a while, I do quite like it.

Now to reveal my new challenge. I have been patiently waiting for this yarn delivery
but today it has finally arrived.

I'm joining the chevron craze, can't wait to start.
I'm making a new blanket for Kate's soon to be decorated lounge.
She wants it finished by tomorrow but we've had a compromise and agreed I'll finish it by christmas.
I shall be getting underway later today after I've done some tidying in the garden, my sweet peas sadly have finally stopped flowering!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, 4 September 2014


I can remember it all so well, my first day at school. 
When I was 5 going to any pre-school, nursery or playgroup was unheard of.
On that day when my mum waved goodbye at the classroom door, it was a very new bewildering experience for me and it was on that very day that I found my first friend.

Throughout all of my primary education Gaye and I were inseparable. Sometimes we loved each other and other times we fell out big time. I remember once when we both had to go to the headmaster's office because we'd been fighting in the playground for something or other.
We were both horrified as by this time we'd made up again and so were quite distraught when he gave us 50 lines each, saying how sorry we were and we would not fight again.
Unfortunately for me I didn't have my listening ears with me and couldn't remember what I had to write so I wrote 50 lines saying - I'm sorry I fighted with my friend.
That got me into even more trouble and more lines, oh when I look back, it does make me laugh!

When I was 11 my family moved away and my friendship with Gaye continued through our teenage years but sadly since then we have just kept in contact on birthdays and at christmas.

So fast forwarding all those years until today, another day in September.

Venue RHS Hyde

The gardens looked stunning!

Some of the newer beds and borders looked amazing

the different shades of green and

the late flowering sedums and the grasses were at their best.

Lunch was long and lingering.
The conversation, non stop.

Two friends, who met one September

enjoyed such a perfect day.

I don't know what you fink but I fink my spelling has really come on over the years!