Monday, 31 March 2014


My grandchildren came here on Saturday evening and hid this plant in the dining room so I would find it yesterday morning.

And the little cards that came with it, just make it such a perfect gift.

The plant will eventually make it out into a pot on the patio to hopefully flourish year after year and the little cards will be kept with all their other cards and notes that they've written over the years.

This weekend saw Michael unveil his new boat to the world.
He's spent time in the garage throughout the winter on this gull dinghy, painting it and getting it ready to sail.
On Saturday, it was time for it to move to its spot in the sailing club and therefore free up some space in our garage. Michael hasn't sailed for the past few years so he's looking forward to taking it out on the river. 
As for the new found space in our garage, well I can't see it being like that for long. Something will come along to fill it!

While he tinkered with the boat I photographed this blanket I finished in the week. Knitted again, in Drops Eskimo.

I really do like this pattern, it knits up so quickly. This time I made it slightly longer than the blue one I knitted for Jack, I thought I might as well use up all the yarn.

Now do you remember this little chap?

He was a present for my birthday back in February and through all that nasty weather I couldn't bear to put him outside, he has been perched in my dining room. However, at the end of the day, he is a solar light and so on Saturday as the sun shone down, out into the garden he went. 
Since he's been out there I can't count the times I've mistakenly thought I had a big "live" bird in the garden and even exclaimed as much. I'm sure I'll get used to him eventually.

 As darkness descended, we found not only does the peacock light up but he glows, pink, then green, then white. When I was telling my daughter in law this morning, (the present giver), even she didn't realise that he would glow quite so colourfully. 

He does look lovely in the garden, I just hope he doesn't frighten off the hedgehog who ambles through our garden at about 10.30pm each evening.

It was nice to be at home yesterday for Mother's day. My daughter collected my parents and we all had dinner here during the afternoon. I cooked, Michael and Kate cleared up. It was all very relaxed and we all had a lovely time.
I'd already planted up some fresh plants in a planter on my mum's patio during the week and she went home yesterday with yet more plants and a box of her favourite florentines to enjoy.

The one good thing about moving the clock forward is that when our family left yesterday we still had some time to take a walk. First stop was the sailing club to make sure Michael's boat was as he left it and then we walked up onto the seawall and along the river.

It was all very peaceful and still.

In just a few more weeks this stretch of river will be full of yachts and sailing dinghies.

Monday, 24 March 2014


Although our grandson Jack is still sleeping in his cozy moses basket in with his mum and dad, they are busy getting his new bedroom ready and have bought him new cot bedding and matching curtains.
His room has an oblong window and a small round window but the curtains purchased were to fit a wide window and so long that they would drop down to the carpet.

Hence the question, "Mum, could you just?"

After some measuring and decision making I agreed to alter this one pair of curtains to fit both windows and would also add some blackout lining. I had to alter the tab tops as well as there is very little room between the ceiling and the top of the oblong window, so the curtains will have to run on a narrow pole.

I made a start during the week and managed to get the new curtains cut out so on Saturday I could spend the time inserting the lining and sewing them up on my machine.

I was really pleased as I didn't expect to get them finished so quickly and though this photo doesn't really do them justice I've just had to include it. This is because I had to get my husband to help me prepare the perfect photo which entailed him going to the garage, finding some rope, burning the rope end so it was sealed, threading it through the tabs, tying one end to the top of the lounge door and him climbing onto the furniture to raise the other end of the rope level while I took the shot.
He did suggest while balancing on the chair with one hand on the wall to support himself that I should wait and photograph them when they're hanging in Jack's bedroom but no, I couldn't wait, I needed the photo for today.
Afterwards, when reviewing the taken photo we both agreed, having made all the effort the photo  and the curtains actually didn't look good at all. 

 They look much better here, folded up neatly.

I was pleased also to finish this jacket for Jessica this weekend, I've just the buttons to put on. I've now got to make one for Charlotte and hopefully I'll be able to give them to them for Easter.

Please don't tell anyone, but I'm actually enjoying all this new found sewing enthusiasm and really pleased that I had my new sewing machine for Christmas!!

Sunday, 16 March 2014


It was so wonderful this week, to just be able to pop outside and feel some warmth in the sun. 
 Filling the house with fresh air as doors and windows could be flung open and
being able to peg out washing, knowing it would be dry later in the day.

I spent Tuesday in my garden, washing out my little greenhouse and making new neat borders, weeding and digging until dusk. I didn't do much in the garden last year but this year I'm going to make much more of an effort.

Then on Thursday I met a friend at RHS Hyde Hall for lunch, it was lovely up there and we couldn't believe it was warm enough to eat outside. 
Although we were restricted to the path areas we were still able to have a good stroll around and I took a few photos to share with you.

The scarecrows were there ready to wish us a fond farewell as we were leaving!

Yesterday saw me out in the garden again, this time planting up seeds and sorting our small front garden. Neighbours passing by, stopped and chatted. It was a relaxing pottering day.
Knitting has certainly taken a back stop this week but as the saying goes, a change is as good as a rest!

Monday, 10 March 2014


Wasn't it a glorious weekend?
Two whole days of sunshine!

On Saturday evening we were meeting my cousin and her husband in London for a meal so Michael and I decided to go earlier in the day to have a wander.
We parked in Butlers Wharf and wandered along by the river, finding a bar with a table outside to sit and have lunch. We live about an hours drive from London, so go there quite often, yet we still try to find somewhere new to visit each time.
This time, I'd scoured the internet before leaving home and having established  that neither of us had ever been to the Museum of London, we set off for there after our lunch. We spent more time there than we thought we would, all very interesting.

It always amazes me how the skyline in London is ever changing, new architecture stands side by side with the old.

We stopped at a cafe by St Paul's catherdral for a cup of tea,

before setting off again across the Millennium bridge to the Tate Modern Gallery.

 Looking down the Thames both Tower Bridge and the Shard glistened in the sun.

The Tate is a favourite of ours to visit as well as a mystery. Some things we understand, appreciate and really like, other things we're not quite so sure about. When we leave we certainly have plenty to talk about.
As dusk was falling we stepped out onto the balcony of their cafe so I could take the perfect photo.
St Paul's, the Thames and a boat passing by.
I waited, (I'd already missed one boat!) and then snapped.
The result, St Paul's minus the spire, the boat off centre and all taken by a very shaky hand.
I don't think I'll win any prizes with this one.

Yesterday we went to our daughter's for a cooked breakfast and then spent the morning in their garden. Michael mowed the lawn while Peter filled in the hole left by the unwanted fish pond and I helped Kate de head several hydrangeas. 
(I could have taken some lovely photos of their garden but oops I forgot!)
It was so lovely to be outside again!

In the afternoon back at home Michael tinkered with his boat while I prepared the dinner. Our son and his family came to eat with us and it was a very special occasion just because it was a first time visit here for baby Jack. 

They all went home fed, tired but happy. Michael and I were finally able to sit down and relax catching up with Top Gear and Call The Midwife.

We certainly had a great weekend!

Sunday, 2 March 2014


Ta da!
Our grandson has finally arrived. Not a February baby as we were expecting though if it were a leap year---------!
So, baby Jack arrived yesterday on the 1st March at 3.37pm, weighing nearly 8 and a half pounds.
Obviously totally and utterly gorgeous!
But then I would say that, he's my grandson.

I've been itching to publish this post for days and now I finally can!

When we were waiting for the birth of our first child we had no idea whether we were expecting a boy or a girl, so we chose fairly neutral colours for the nursery and we decided to paper just one wall with a woodland scene. My dad volunteered to hang the wall paper and I remember him saying that it was the nicest piece of wallpapering he'd ever done!

34 years on and I find myself thinking the very same as my Dad.
Considering this is the first  thing I've made using my sewing machine, I'm really chuffed to bits with the new bedding I've made for the moses basket.
Just after christmas I made a pattern from the old bedding, really enjoyed choosing the fabric, picking bikes because our son was bike crazy when he was a boy and getting to grips with the machine.
There were some swearing moments along the way. I did continually put pins into my fingers and somedays thought I was undoing more stitching that I'd actually stitched, but in the end I managed to get it all finished.
Most definitely, it's the nicest piece of sewing I've ever done!

Over the last couple of months I've been busy filling this treasure chest with goodies.
As well as homemade gifts there are baby grows, swimming trunks and presents for 2 big sisters.
(Swimming trunks? You may think a slightly weird gift for a newborn in February but we are a family that loves the water and we swim often so swimming trunks are essential!)

So also inside this chest is a blanket to keep him warm!
I've just got to add his birth date to the label. I've done that now.

Just a few knitted bits and bobs made in the first size. 

And a last minute pair of socks which I knitted up far quicker than the pair in the picture above.

For all my knitting I have used either Drops Fabel, Baby Merino or Alpaca.
The blanket is in Drops Eskimo.

Lots more baby wool in my stash but as I posted before, I'm taking a rest from blue.
I'm going to wait till Jack grows a little before I start up again.