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Thursday, 27 June 2013

Made the move

Wimbledon fortnight and what a first few days it has been.

Wimbledon always means it's time for strawberries and cream, yum yum.  We have lots of plants at the allotment and a few in pots here at home.  I wandered down the garden yesterday to get the washing in after a lovely sunshiney day and we had a little bowlful ready for picking.

This variety are called cambridge, very sweet and delicious they were too.

Whoop whoop..... i've cut the hardanger square for the community centre box frame.  I always get in such a flap when i have to do this bit, do you?

All went well, no major disaster.  I guess i need more practice as i can see a few little tails.  It's been a long time since i did any hardanger.

The designs from Polstitches Designs called Starstruck. The link in their freebies to the chart is still there but doesn't work unfortunately.  It was the first hardanger design i ever stitched on a forum and was done in small weekly parts for us firstimers.  We had lots of encouragement and help and i was so pleased to learn how to do this.  It was much easier than i thought it would be and so very effective.  I hope if you want to learn you get the chance to give it a go.  It was great to restitch this lovely design.

My fabric was a piece of Sugar Maple 28ct lugana called Majestic, and the threads, Polstitches Magical Times in perle 8 & 12.  All of them have been sitting in my drawer for quite a while.

A little progress on CCN Santa Village this week too.  Mrs Claus has been building her cookie shop and was up on the roof last night adding tiles and making sure the chimney was swept clean!

July 1st sees the end of google reader as i am sure all of you are aware.  I've been waiting till the last minute and secretly hoping that they would have a change of heart and i could stick with reading blogs the way i have been doing, i dislike change and am not very good with technology.

It's got to be done - I saw a few of the blogs i read had gone over to 'feedy' but as i dont do facebook i have decided to go with 'bloglovin'.  I think i've imported them properly across and added the bloglovin button to the right sidebar for you to follow me if you would like to.  Another learning curve!

Please, if i don't comment on your blog in the next couple of weeks and you usually do get a comment from me, drop me a note, just in case i have made a total mess of it and done it all wrong and i will add your blog manually, i would hate to loose the blogging friends i have and miss your lovely crafting delights.

***a little message for Lesley at Unnumbered Stitches, i have been reading your new blog but am unable to comment, not sure if the settings are different to the old one, i had no problem leaving you a little note before. There is no email button to get in touch with you and you are a no-reply so cant let you know that way either. Thanks.

Sunday, 23 June 2013

What a week!

I've had a really fun and busy week.

Lots of crafting activities taking place at the local Community Centre. There is to be a large box frame around the noticeboard constructed with samples of lots of different crafts being shown in it.

The ladies from Soft Touch have been in the centre this week showing us new crafts ... like i need another hobby to add to the ones i have... watch out bank balance, you might need a little lottery win to boost the coffers.

All the ladies from the stitching group i go to were invited.  It's been great fun with the other ladies and i've learnt lots of things. 

We were given a beading mat (we can keep this and the needle), some thread and a simple small design with just three colours
By the end of the morning i had 1 ladybird on my bookmark.  I'm loving this and now have 2 more little ladybirds added (although i did have to frog it out once as i mixed up the black/red and it looked like one of them had been trodden on!)  It's addictive and i think i'll be doing some more beading (Lindsay you were right, it's such fun, i'll just need a bit of practice!)
Silk painting was really funny, lots of silly mistakes on this one with the gunky black pen that keeps the paint in its supposed area on the fabric.
My finished version of Peter Rabbit in the grass
Papercraft was something i wasn't really looking forward too, i've never had a real interest in this before.  Lots of different cards/papers to choose from to make a 6" square of your choice.
I chose a worded themed one as my group at the centre is the Book Borrowers and hopefully this will get chosen to represent my group in the finished box frame.  The little sunshine is part of a map and the background card has printed verse on it.  Imagination running wild with this one.  I'm happy with the finish.
Decoupage and flowers using old maps and pictures.  Very fiddly and gooey with the glue that was used.  The curled edges were easy winding them round a pencil, that was simple and effective.
Paper folding was even trickier, you needed 4 hands to hold this together to get a nice uncreased finish, not bad for a first attempt.
We've had homework too.   Using crafts that you enjoy, come up with a 6" square of your choice.  A few ladies at the stitching club only do cross stitch and they are doing some beautiful squares.  I chose to do a crochet flower one ....
and a basic knitted basketweave pattern
I've stitched a hardanger one too, just need to do the cutting out bits, i'll show you that next time.
At the Book Borrowers we also celebrated our 1st Birthday this week.  We've come full circle and been meeting and discussing books for a whole year.   I was shocked to count up the books i have read since it started.  60 in total ... thats amazing!!  We had a lovely time at the party, played a few silly games and ate lots of lovely food.  We even had balloons and a birthday cake was made by my daughter.

Parlour night came round again and i made a little start on Mrs Claus Cookie Shop, just a few stitches added this week.

With all this crafting activity this week computer time has been very limited and some days actually non existant, i'm way behind with blog reading and answering emails.  I'll get round to you all this week as things return to some sort of normal. 

Hope you had a lovely week too.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Perfect timing...

Hubby arrived home from the allotment yesterday with a wonderful surprise.

Even with the recent weather we have been having here in the UK, not the nicest for the time of year, he was able to cut our first posy of sweet peas.

The perfect way for us to remember our late fathers, they both loved the smell of these beautiful blooms and the scent in my home was so lovely as i awoke this morning.

Happy Fathers Day
We miss you both very much xxx

My thoughts today are with all those who have angel dads like us.  I know of a couple of blogging friends who will be experiencing their very first Fathers Day without their beloved dad, my thoughts are with you ladies {{big hugs}}
I came across this little verse the other day, i thought i'd share it with you ...
It's good to travel light through life
Too much can weigh you down
So cast away the tiresome things
That make you fret and frown
Abandon grumps and silly gripes
Forget the fears that blight
If you just hold the things you love
Your heart's forever light
by Margaret Ingall
We'll be spending some time with our daughter and her family today as she is cooking a Sunday roast for her dad.  It'll be a nice treat for me too, it always is when someone else does the cooking instead of you!
Have a lovely Fathers Day remembering the happy times that you have spent or do spend with your own dad.
Love and {hugs} to you all


Monday, 10 June 2013

Could this be the perfect stitching spot?

I'm looking forward to trying my new space when the sun comes out again and warms up the temperatures, its turned quite cold today after a nice but cloudy weekend. 

Hubby took advantage of the cooler weekend weather and ripped out our old rotten wooden arbour that held up my lovely thornless rose Zephirine Drouhin. The flowers have a beautiful scent just like turkish delight.  He made a new wooden arbour from scratch and laid a new slabbed area underneath to house my latest purchase of a lovely bistro table and chairs. 

His assistant nuisance from next door (Jasper) was on hand to give some technical advice on the electrical wiring for the water feature.  I think he was really checking to see if there might just be fish going into it for him to guard!

With the recent sun we've got some nice bright and colourful flowers emerging

Outside looks summery, but if you came to visit me and saw my stitching area inside you would be forgiven for thinking i was about to put the Christmas decorations up and you've missed the second half of the year.  All my stitching these past few days has been Christmasy things!

Stocking-a-long Friday and a bit more progress on Nativity Stocking

May's ornament was stitched, but it just didn't get made up in time, i got that sorted this weekend.  I chose Maisons Rouges by Cathy Roy from Le Chalet des Perelles blog. There were 2 free designs to choose from in December 2012, i love the little reindeer so decided to do this one first. I'll maybe do the other later in the year, perhaps in a different colour?

The ornament for June came from Just Cross Stitch ornament edition 2012.  This time it was the lovely one by Judith Tuttle from Twisted Oaks that caught my eye.  The Little House Mouse is such a cutie and i'm pleased with how he turned out.

I was thinking as i was putting these ornaments together yesterday in my conservatory watching hubby hard at work in the garden....... I wonder how many stitchers get stressed with all the things they have commited themselves to do thinking they have plenty of time and then deadlines loom close.  I'm in a bookmark exchange that needs to be posted out really soon.  I knew about it at the stitchers meet up back in April and i have been putting off starting it to do other things and now the deadlines near it's got to be done .....NOW. 
Do you find you have such good intentions and sign up to lots of different things?  What's on your regular stitching list that you've said you will do?
For me, i have :-
Wednesdays SAL with the parlour ladies at NH - a design by LHN, CCN or TSG - I'm doing the CCN Santa Village each week during 2013 (although i have been doing more than 1 night a week on them)
Fridays - stocking-a-long - Nativity Stocking
Christmas Ornament SAL - 5 have been done this year, so i've missed one month
Monthly challenge free design at NH - Not compulsory and i have missed a few...sorry Christine
Now i have typed out the list, it doesn't look much obligation stitching does it so why have i not had a finish with Shores yet this year? 
Maybe the new 'sitting in area' in the garden will get lots of use for a stitcher. Or, as DH said when he was putting his tools away yesterday and i was outside with a book in the late evening sunlight trying out the new chair....... maybe it will be used by a book reader instead.......  mmm yes, now he's mentioned it, i guess that could be where my valuable stitching time goes to since the Book Borrowers started!
I'm looking forward to reading what things you have signed up for at various blogs, forums etc and how you manage to plan your stitching each month. 


Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Finish, finish, WIP

As promised i'm back with the LHN Little Hill finish.  There was only the bottom floral border to add and that seemed to stitch up real quickly.

It's been a lovely project to do and was started when i had an actual stitching evening with my internet friend Barb instead of our virtual Wednesday evening back in mid April when i visited her part of the UK for a little holiday.  It will always remind me of the fun and laughter we had that evening.

Block 11 of Shores of Hawk Run Hollow is complete.  This has been a WIP for so long, i started it back in February 2011 so it's time it was finished. One more block to go.....

and here's how the full thing looks, i love it, although it's going to cost an arm and a leg to have it framed properly!

Friday and i was back to the stocking-a-long with Linda and the other ladies after missing a couple of weeks with being sick.  My choice is Nativity Stocking by Janlynn.  Nearly all the long leg part is stitched, soon be time for the shaping of the foot. This is definately going to be finished for when the man in red comes down the chimney.  Oh to be organised with the Christmas stitching so early in the year, unlike the rest of my life that just ebbs and flows at it's own pace, but i have to say, i am not complaining about that, i seem to be very peaceful and contented recently.

We all know how expensive stash is here in the UK compared to the USA.  My brother has just returned from a little trip overseas and has brought me some lovely stuff.  I gave him a list of some DMC threads i wanted for upcoming projects and he got them together with a whole load of both whites (B2500 and blanc) and black - they are always useful and i am always running out of them.  He also picked up some 28ct and 32ct fabrics and a fabulous DMC thread chart that shows all the different threads and their colours and numbers, he thought i would like that.  He also thought some gold needles would be a nice addition to my sewing box.  A wonderful haul to receive from a non-stitching chap - thanks little bro!

The weather has been so nice here recently i've been taking advantage and spending a bit more time outside reading a book or just soaking up the sunshine in the garden.  Agatha Raisin has had another adventure, her latest release Hiss and Hers. 
It's hard to think i had never heard of M C Beaton and Agatha until the Book Borrowers started last June.  I have read all 23 or her adventures since then.  Quite a wait for her next adventure now as it's not released until October.  Agatha has brought great enjoyment to my reading and also lots of fun and laughter to the group as we discuss her adventures each week as the other ladies work their way through the list of books. 
I see i have lost a few followers.  It would be sad to think they have gone because they feel my writings are way too boring and there is nothing of interest to read here.  If so, never mind, you can't please everyone all the time.   I do think that we all go a little quiet over the summer months and computer time is limited with being in the garden and having the lighter nights here in the UK when we are enjoying other things and annual vacations of course.
For me, my blog is more of an online diary for me to keep track of what i've been doing and to share with online friends i have made over the past few years. 
........ to those who do stop by and leave a little comment, it really is appreciated and i fully understand if you just drop in and have a quick read and not comment if you only have limited time at the computer. We all have lives and families that need our attention.
Time for me to stop by some of my favourite blogs and have a read and see whats been happening in your neck of the woods and what wonderful projects you have created.
Love and {hugs}