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Monday, 27 February 2012

Challenge reveal time again

A lovely sunny weekend, it was wonderful to see my crocus bulbs open up fully as i drove onto my driveway.

The snowdrops are just about to open too although my daffodils are still little buds.

It wont be long till i look out of my window and see a sea of yellow loveliness brightening my day.

Spring is definately on it's way .... yippeee!!

A treat to celebrate our anniversary and DH had booked us seats to see Calendar Girls at the theatre.

He took the afternoon off on Wednesday and we went to the matinee performance. It felt a bit naughty him being off work and us having a fun afternoon out midweek. It's ages since i've been to the theatre and i do love it. The performance was very funny and well acted, we both enjoyed it very much. Has anyone else seen it whilst it's been on tour?

February challenge reveal

This month the design was from Happiness is cross stitching.blogspot. There were two designs to choose from, a little kitty or the love freebie. The album can be seen here.

I made mine into a felt stuffed heart and gave it to my daughter as we babysat Isabelle whilst she and her partner went out for a meal for the evening to celebrate Valentines day. I thought it would be a nice reminder for her of the evening out.

A quiet weekend, DH was making the most of the sunshine and good weather and was in the garden and i sat in the conservatory and finished off Isabelle's cardigan. I also completed the stitching on the spring exchange piece, just need to make that up now and then get it into the post to my partner. It's a secret exchange so no reveal till we all open our envelopes next month.

Clare has finished her page on my RR and you can see it on her blog. Thanks Clare, it looks great. I've sorted threads for Jaclyn's which i have and it's waiting on the frame for my attention later this evening.

An extra day this month being a leap year and it will be the anniversary of DH's fathers passing, its strange being on a day that only comes round once every four years.

Live well, laugh often and love much

p.s don't forget if you are a member of The Stitcherhood and want to be in with a chance of the travelling pattern coming to you, please comment on the post below.

Friday, 24 February 2012

The Stitcherhood - Travelling Pattern

The Travelling Pattern has been on holiday with me and is once again ready to set off on it's mystery tour.

Count Your Blessings by Shakespeare's Peddler

Here's my version

I found the little 3" square frame in my finishing drawer when looking for something else recently and was waiting for just the right project to go into it.

When the travelling pattern arrived, i thought it might just fit and calculated if it was stitched over 1 it would be perfect. Fabric choice was a hard one, but the 28ct yellow gingham won in the end. I didn't have any of the Sampler Threads so used DMC instead. I love how it turned out.

If you would like to be the next Travelling Pattern stitcher there are a few rules that need to be adhered to :

1. Comment on this post saying you would like to be part of The Stitcherhood

2. By leaving the above comment you agree (if you are chosen) to stitch the design and send it along to the next person in a timely manner. If this means dropping eveything in your rotation to concentrate on this project, so be it. If you cant bring yourself to do this don't sign up.

3. You must have an active blog to partcipate. if you have a blog but never post to it you wont be chosen to be the next stitcher.

4. This is a giveaway type traveling pattern. That means you must follow it from blogger to blogger to enter each time it is ready to send along. Commenting on this post doesn't make you a guaranteed part of The Stitcherhood.

This Travelling Pattern has been a quite a globe trotter and so far been stitched by:-

1. Sharon of its daffycat Oklahoma USA
2. Karen of Karens Handiwork, South Carolina USA
3. Patty of Hanging on by a thread, Florida USA
4. Terrri of chocolates for breakfast, stitching for lunch USA
5. Lynda of a cozy little place for stitching, Oregon USA
6. Nataly of Natalys needle creations, Massachusetts, USA
7. Erin of fairy tales and french knots, NY USA
8. Jo of Serendipititous stitching, Suffolk UK
9. Mouse of tales of a a stitching mouse, South Yorkshire UK
10. Sally of stitchyangels treasures, East Yorkshire UK
11. Lesleyanne of Lesleyannes life of stitches, Northamptonshire, UK
12. Michelle of stitchercraftplace, Staffordshire, UK
13. Kath of kaths stitching heaven, Barnsley, South Yorkshire UK
14. Christine of The Alchymyst's Study, Cornwall, UK
15. Kate of Kate's Flossbox, Tyne & Wear, UK
16. Julie of Julie's Stitcherknitter Journal, Leicester, UK

Deadline for commenting is midnight (UK time) Wednesday 29th February 2012 with the winner to be announced shortly after.

I wonder where it will go to next?

Monday, 20 February 2012

An anniversary and a Birthday

What did you do over the weekend?

DH and i woke to a lovely sunny day Sunday and decided to take a trip to the coast to celebrate our wedding anniversary. Some quality 'US' time was needed. A quick breakfast, filled the flasks and packed the picnic hamper with goodies from the cupboard and we set off. Impulse trips are the best! The CD player booming out some of our favourite tunes on the 2 hour trip and we were happy.

It was very windy when we got there but lovely to wander along the beach wrapped up in scarves, gloves and coats and soak up the calming atmosphere and recharge our batteries. Not brave enough for a paddle in the sea this time, but the seagulls and a couple of horses that were having such a fabulous time galloping along the waters edge seemed to be having fun. I've never seen horses along this part of the beach before.

We parked the car at Huttoft car terrace and enjoyed the picnic inside the car out of the wind with the window down watching and listening to the lovely sound of the waves crashing onto the shore. We sat there for a while, we read the newspaper and watched families and fishermen having fun. Another walk and all too soon it was time to return home and back to reality, but we had enjoyed our simple day out together and it certainly had blown away any cobwebs!

Saturday postie brought the travelling pattern from Kate. Shakepeare Pedlars, Count your Blessings is the Stitcherhood chart that is going around in blogland.

I've sorted fabric and thread this morning, so this weeks plan is to sit and stitch when i can and get it travelling onto the next person soon.

Barb celebrated her birthday last week so i can now show you what i made for her.

She had admired the cushions i had recently made so i decided it would be a nice surprise to crochet one for her birthday. This one is different to the others as it only has 4 granny squares and flowers and a border around the edge to compliment it. I'm pleased to say Barb loved it so that makes me happy. Wool is the lovely Stylecraft Special DK in the colours camel, khaki, grape and plum.

Isabelle's cardigan is progressing well (forgot to take pic of that), and i've made a start on the Spring exchange piece this week (can't show you that).

What i can show you is my latest purchase and it's Lily's fault i bought it!

She showed her latest pair of wonderful socks she is knitting and a link to an online wool shop Kemps that were having a sale of sock wool - £3.99 for 150g ball is a bargain. I just had to buy 2 balls didn't i. It's keeping my other sock wool company in the cupboard for now. My late FIL used to say stock is as good as money, if thats the case, i am a millionaire with all the wool/stash i have!

Enjoy your week whatever your plans

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Happy Valentines Day

We dont usually buy gifts, we just give each other a card.

It's the same card we have had for the past 10 years. A really lovely card which we save and put into a new envelope each year. It's not being mean, just being thrifty!

When i was in the supermarket last week passing by the valentine things and thinking to myself "I wonder how much of this stuff will be left on the shelves this year with the current economic climate and people short of cash to buy basic essentials" i spotted the little heart shaped frying pan. DH does love egg on toast and it somehow hopped into my trolley. It certainly started our Valentines Day off with a giggle this morning when he came downstairs to see it on the table and he went off to work with a smile on his face.

Amy dropped off the wool for Isabelle's cardigan and i made a start. Isn't that what nanny's do? Grab needles and pattern and drop everything else to get cracking on whatever the family wants?

Do you do the same?

It really is a lovely soft yarn, Amy made a good choice. King Cole Smooth DK in fuschia pink the label says especially soft for babies. It's knitting up lovely and quite quickly too. This is the pattern. The edging frill is a killer to do, it takes ages but does look so effective when it's finished and the cardigan is being worn. Isabelle has had lots of lovely comments when wearing the one i made before.

While i had the camera out i took a snap of my new wool for MY pair of socks. It's gone into hiding in the wool cupboard after i took it out of my lovely knitting basket to put the new project in. I also have some other deadline stitching projects to do this month, so it might just have to have an extended holiday in the cupboard for a short time.

Wishing you all a very Happy Valentines Day. Did you receive a lovely card or gift from the one you love?

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Another Sunday and another crafting update - can't think of a better title today!

Freezing temperatures by day and even colder by night, the snow has been hanging around this week, but today we've had rain and the last of it has now finally melted in my garden.

I've spent a quiet afternoon sitting in the conservatory watching the birds coming and going on the feeders in the garden and thinking a few things over that have taken up brain space over the past couple of days where decisions need to be made and i'm not sure what i want to do about them.

I did make up this months challenge piece at Needlecraft Haven. It was a quick valentine design to stitch. As usual though there is no reveal till the last Sunday of the month.

I also finished off my Christmas monthly ornament for February too.

This design came from the JCS Ornament preview edition that i received from Mary Ann in her giveaway last month. It's by Debbie Booth at My Big Toe Designs.

I found a small piece of 40ct linen in the oddment box and decided to use that to make it smaller than the 32ct recommended. Just a little stuffed pillow finish and my ribbons drawer contained the perfect match of ric rac braiding to put around the edge and use for a hanger. I'm happy with the finish even though my mind was not really on making up nice things this afternoon.

Other WIP's i've stitched on this week...

William Morris' Hare had some attention for a couple of evenings. It was nice to add some of the blue flowers this time. It's so strange to stitch on aida after such a long time using the higher count fabrics and i dont seem to get so much accomlished of an evening. Does anyone else find that? When you stitch on aida it takes longer? I think i have to concentrate more otherwise i am trying to go over 2 holes instead of 1.

Wednesday evening The Sampler Girl design came out again for the SAL and we are now almost finished with page 1, just the middle flower design to start and then onto Page 2. I really enjoy my Wednesday evening on this one and have to be really strict with myself not to get it out again during the week. I'm not sure if it's the pretty pink fabric or the colours in the design but it is a pleasure to stitch each week.

Another member of the family has asked me to make something for them and are keen to purchase just the right colour wool themselves, it'll no doubt be arriving early next week. DD has asked if i will make Isabelle another cardigan as she is fast outgrowing the one i made here and she loves the design and fit of it. Looks like the knitting needles will be out again very soon and it wont be the socks i had planned to make for myself with the new wool i purchased a couple of weeks ago. Did i show you that? no i dont think i did.

I've been lucky enough to become the next member of The Stitcherhood and will be the 16th stitcher to receive the travelling pattern from Shakespeare's Pedlar called Count Your Blessings. My address details have gone to Kate @ Kate's Flossbox ready for it to be mailed. Welcome to the new followers who have come over here following The Stitcherhood, i'll make a start as soon as it arrives so you dont have to wait too long to be in with a chance of being drawn to receive it.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Brrrrr it's chilly

It arrived last night, the snow that is. It started late afternoon and by the time i went to bed we had a few inches. A young man had an accident outside our home and fell off his moped, he wasn't injured just a little shaken. He decided to walk the bike home for safety, best idea i think.

DH and i were nice and toasty warm in the sitting room with an open fire to keep us snuggly all evening. He with his Danish subtitle programme and me hooking away on a little project, you can see below.

Cold nights recently and DH has been taking the hottie bottle to bed with him to warm his feet. On Friday he asked if i could 'just whip up' a new cover for it... whip up a cover? 'hhmmm i guess so' i said. I decided that a crochet cover would be nice and let the warmness out without burning his tootsies.

I sewed it together this morning and here's what i managed to 'whip up' for him. It's not perfect by any means but it'll do the job, using oddments from the wool bag. He's pleased with it and thats all that matters.

Wednesday my lady managed to get herself dressed and is no longer just sitting in her bloomers.

I also managed to errect a little of the long fence too.

I do like the fabric this is stitched on and look forward each week to my evening on it.

My card a month for the SAL is also complete this week. Another Just Nan design from the Heartfelt chart.

Perfect for the month of February it's the Love one and i used some of the valentine sticky's to add onto the card. DS was eyeing this up as it was being stitched, i wonder if he'll ask if he can have it now it's completed.

Shores has also been on the frame this week. I borrowed a lap frame from one of the ladies at the stitch club to see how i got on with it. Stitching this on 32ct makes it quite large and the excess fabric thats around the edge does make it hard to hold on to in the normal clip frame. I seem to have made quite a bit of pregress for a couple of evenings and am able to stitch two handed with the lap frame.

My back garden looked like something from Narnia this morning when i sat in the conservatory with my cup of tea. Very pretty but i wont be venturing outside today.

DH and i were commenting about Mr Moe and his love of snow, he would have been hopping around outside this morning jumping and catching imaginary things in the snow, it was such fun to sit and watch him, it was his favourite time of the year, happy memories.

The sofa has my name on it for this afternoon, a film and a roaring fire and i'm sure i can find some stitching to keep me company as i while away the hours whilst the big snow keeps me inside.

Stay safe my UK friends, i hope it hasn't inconvenienced you all too much and spoilt your weekend plans.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

A new start

Pinch, punch, first day of the month, and hello to February. I woke today to a lovely sunny morning but shivered when i looked out of the window to see the sharp frost that we had. The pavements were white over and i heard people scraping car windscreens before they set off to work.

Opening my kitchen window blind, i noticed my kitty weather vane (a surprise Christmas gift lovingly made for me by DH many years ago) was outlined in frost and pointing to the north, that would explain the cold wind and the snowfalls that i heard the weatherman on the radio predicting for the weekend as i ate my breakfast.

I stepped out into the garden to feed the birds and noticed the lovely fir tree in next doors garden and how wonderful it looked against the blue sky with all it's pine cones hanging down, a favourite place for the grey squirrel to hide with his friends.

That pic looks like a spring day, not the coldness of a winter morning.

The camelia leaves and buds show the real frostiness of the morning. They are supposed to be in bloom later this month, not sure that will happen though. I think they'll be somewhat later this year. Although, i have seen some pics of a camelia in flower on the south coast of the UK already this year. Too cold to be outside today, a day inside playing with crafting things i think.

December i was asked to review a kit by Yiota's cross stitch. I chose a William Morris design called Hare.

I said i would start it January. Busy with other things the days passed by, and with only 2 days left of the month i thought i had better put needle into fabric and make a start.

As all the fabric is covered i decided to use the aida that came with the kit, it really is nice and soft and the threads are stitching up nicely. No knots and tangles at all. Here's where i got to after a few hours. Looks just like a blob, but its the bit under the hare's chin as i started in the centre of the design. Stitching up nicely and now it's on a frame i'll be able to pull it out and do a bit each week ... yes, i know we all say things like that and it doesn't happen.

It does mean i have a few WIP's on the go right now as well as the monthly SAL projects, the challenge and the Spring exchange and the RR that i signed up for. Why do we do it to ourselves!! Maybe the wintery weekend weather will be welcome so i can sit inside cosy on the sofa, snuggled up under the blanket with needle and thread and make some progress on things.

Stitch club tonight, so that means this weeks evening in the parlour with The Sampler Girl SAL ladies will be happening, thats if i dont chat too much with the other ladies and come home and have to frog it all out again!

Waving to the new followers and commenters, it's nice to see you here, thanks for stopping by.