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Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Happy Holidays

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and you were able to spend time with those you love and have some fun times.
I was very lucky and received some lovely gifts from stitching friends.  Thank you so much for your kindness to -
Kathy (no blog) 
and my lovely hubby thinks I need some more sock knitting wool!
Santa brought a bag full from the wool warehouse ......
For us, Christmas was not what we had planned.  Both DH and I have been quite unwell with sinusitis and chest infections,   Hubby has also been on a course of steroids to help his asthma and prevent a hospital stay.   We had the quietest of times, but still happy ones spent together even though we were resting and recouperating. 
I haven't picked up a needle, sewing or knitting in two weeks, but I did finish off a gift for Maggie before I was taken ill.  She celebrated her birthday yesterday so I can share with you what I made for her.  A pair of handknitted fingerless gloves.  I hope you had a lovely birthday Maggie.
2016 is coming to a close.  I have had some wonderful times and some sad ones this year. 
I've had a good crafting year and made quite a few things and as always on my final post of the year, i'm going to add a list of my finishes here just for my own personal reference in the future.
75. Fingerless gloves
74. Book Borrowers Christmas bookmark
73. Isabelle's Christmas cardigan
72. Sally's b/day sheepie bag
71. Tina's b/day socks
70. Goldfinch socks
69. Hatty elephant
68. Ornament Exch @ NH
67. Winter SAL
66. Joyful World SAL - October
65. Raffle bunny for meet up
64. Wellington socks for DH
63. Joyful World SAL - September
62. October challenge @ NH
61. 3 covered coat hangers
60. Hat and Scarf set
59. Pink christmas socks
58. Round and oval covered rope baskets
57. Joyful World SAL - August
56. Lillie's cardigan
55. Christmas gift socks
54. Dresden Plate quilt block
53. Joyful World SAL - July
52. Sept challenge NH
51. Redwork covered tape measure
50. Alpaca hand warmers
49. Autumn SAL
48. Pink frilly cardigan
47. Red aran cardigan
46.Red Cardigan
45. Knitted breasts!!
44. Spring meet up Coaster exch
43. Yellow/blue socks
42. July challege NH
41. June challnge NH
40. Joyful World SAL - June
39. Stripey socks
38. Isabelle's birthday cardigan
37. Barbies bridesmaid dress
36. Blue baby blanket
35. CCN - Place of our Own
34. Joyful World SAL - May
33. Pink waistcoat
32. Red socks
31. SIL's birthday Socks!
30. Joyful World SAL - April
29. DS' birthday pool/snooker hanger
28. Stitch for Syria square
27. Easter bunny egg cosy
26. Bunny for June
25. Joyful World SAL - March
24 Stitch for Syria square
23. Pink socks
22. Tra La La - Chasse a l'oeuf
21. Hedgehog Quilted Placemats
20. Spring SAL
19. NH Feb challenge -
18. Isabelle's red cardigan
17. Joyful World SAL ~ February
16. Crochet cushion cover
15. Sheila Sheep - Barbs Bday
14. LHN Kitty Sampler
13. Biscornu Exchange
12. PSS Day 12
11. Socks for me!
10. NH Jan challenge - Aliolka
9. PSS Day 11
8. PSS Day 10
7. Joyful World SAL ~ January
6. RAK bunny for Linda
5. Blue socks for DH
4. PSS Day 9
3. Dec Challenge @ NH
2. PSS Day 8
1. Craftshare oven mitt challenge
I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your support over the year and your visits here.
Wishing you all health and happiness in 2017
Love and blessings to you all
Julie x

Friday, 16 December 2016

Gifted Gorgeousness - December

The 15th of the month means it's time for this months Gifted Gorgeousness post, it's the last one of 2016.   I've really enjoyed seeing everyone's gifts sent and received this year.

Created by the lovely Jo over at Serendipitous Stitching, a way to show what kind and wonderful people crafting folks are with their lovely gifts they send out to others.  The very laid back rules are quite simple and can be found on Jo's sign up page at the top of her blog.

Decembers link up post is here if you want to see what other GG folks have been making/receiving.
This time I've got a couple of hand knitted gifts to share with you -
Isabelle's Christmas cardigan .....

A pair of socks that went to Tina for her birthday last week ......
Sewing machine was out for a birthday gift for Sally.  I made a little sheep bag to hold some sheepy goodies as we all know Sally has a liking for little sheep.
One side.....

the other, and it's contents ....

Happy Birthday wishes ladies, I hope you enjoyed a lovely day.
I received a lovely little gift in the post this week.  An envelope from the lovely June.  Just look at this lovely little robin, isn't he adorable.  He's now adorning my Christmas tree.  Thank you June for your kindness.
Yesterday my skill swap exchange from Lindsay arrived.  Do you remember Hatty that I knitted up from a kit she had for her grandson ...

and in exchange Lindsay has beaded me this sparkly Christmas star ornament.

Thank you Lindsay, it's wonderful and looks perfect on my Christmas tree.
My Book Borrowers group have had their Christmas party.  A bookmark was made to accompany the latest Debbie Macomber book - 12 Days of Christmas - that I bought to go into my package for my partner. 
Have you things to show in this months gifted gorgeousness?  I'll drop by and have a look if you are in the link up on Jo's blog page. 
Blessings to you all this festive season

Saturday, 10 December 2016

Advent blog hop 2016

Thank you for visiting here to open Day 10 in Jo's advent calendar blog hop 
If this is something you have not yet seen this year or you have missed any of the previous days you can find the whole calendar with links to previous beautiful work, and future days to come here
We are asked to share a sample of our Christmas stitching -
I've chosen to share this one with you .....
 A hardanger design that a group of ladies were talked through and shown in detailed steps via an internet SAL at a forum I belonged to way back in 2007.  It was learnt a band at a time and taught by Lynda herself, the designer from Loopylou Designs.   It was wonderful to watch it grow little by little and gain new skills. 
Aptly named hollyberry, i can't believe I actually stitched it - I haven't done anything like it since though!  It seems to still be available together with lots of other lovely designs on the website.
Jo's question for the advent blog hop is -
Decorations - do you have a favourite decoration you must have on display every year, maybe an heirloom, one the children made or something with a special story behind it?
For me, our family favourite and special Christmas decoration is the hand knitted nativity that my late mother-in-law made using Jean Greenhowe's Christmas Special pattern booklet. 
 I remember my late father-in-law helping out with the cutting of the cardboard bases for each of the characters, so a combined effort by them both.  It means a lot to us and is the first thing that comes out of the attic when its time to decorate our home.  It is over 25 years old and testament to the great crafting skill Betty had, she was a wonderful and talented crafter.  

We still have the original raffia used as straw that lays on the floor of the wooden stable that my own DH made to house the beautiful characters.  There was a light at the top that worked but its since broken, so now we have added some battery operated sparkly lights amongst the straw that give a gentle glow to the scene.

Wishing you all a very happy and peaceful festive season celebrated with those who hold a special place in your hearts.
Love and blessings to you all
Julie x


Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Ornament exchange reveal

It's almost a week since the opening of the Needlecraft Haven ornament exchange and i'm only just getting round to showing it to you.

A problem on the forum with people unable to access it due to yuku upgrades etc and other issues so quite a few hadn't seen each others and the reveal of who sent to whom in this secret exchange was delayed.  There have then been problems with our local server getting updates to make it smoother running - we'll see about that one, and if you can get online its been a bit hit and miss or throws you off just as you are doing something.

This morning all seems well and I've been able to upload pics so here you are - this is the one I received from Tina (no blog).   The perfect design for me, thank you Tina.

I made a double sided one for Clare using the Lizzie Kate 12 Blessings designs and added a rouched trim.  I also sent some Christmas choccie in my parcel (you can see that in Clare's pic on her blog)

In my last post I mentioned the Joyful World SAL October was near complete.  It is now....
December 1st the gallery opened for the winter SAL.  The fourth and final one in my collection from here is all ready to be put up on 21st December when the winter solstice arrives with the shortest daylight hours of the year.
Better sign off now whilst the going is good as they say and the internet is still playing nicely.
I hope your Christmas preparations are going well and not causing you too much stress.  We had a little pre-Christmas meal with family who live some way off this weekend as we wont meet again till the New Year.
Blessings to you all

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Say hello to Hatty

Brrrr it's a cold one today.  We woke to a severe frost and the weatherman was saying it was the coldest night so far!!
DH has the right idea when he gets home from work.  A nice warming cuppa and now he can't potter in the garden as its too dark, he winds down with an hour at the table with a puzzle.  He completed this lovely one last week.
Is there anything that you or your family do now the dark nights are here that you don't in the summer months?
Stitching and knitting always gets more attention this time of year, but there are also secret projects being whipped up to send out, although there are not so many parcels as there used to be when I first started to join forums and blogs.  The postal service has seen to that with it's many increases in prices and weight and size rules.
I sent a little envelope out to Lindsay.  Regular visitors may remember that Lindsay and i did a skill swap last year at this time.  I knitted a little penguin kit for her and she made me a beautiful beaded ornament for my Christmas tree in exchange.
This year at the meet up she asked if we could do it again and asked if i would knit Hatty, a kit from a magazine ....

She knitted up lovely and went off in the post to Lindsay for her grandson.
I'll be sure to share what beaded delight Lindsay makes for me when it arrives.
Other knitting and the socks are complete and wrapped up in nice Christmas gift paper ready to send to Santa.
A little stitching on the Joyful World and October is almost complete, just the little hedgehog to add, so i'll show you that next time.   A little reading arrived with my newsagent.  He is able to get hold of the JCS Ornament Edition for me at a fraction of the cost if I was to order it online and pay postage but it is a little late getting to me.

A few nice ones in there this year.  Some I would have liked to have stitched for my partner in the ornament exchange we are doing at Needlecraft Haven.  All completed and sent out in plenty of time and I have received my return parcel.  December 1st is the opening day, another to share with you next post.   There is also the winter SAL to show you that I have been stitching when the gallery is open on the forum.

Sunday was the reveal of the monthly ornament challenge.  Unfortunately, I only printed off the free design this month and kitted it up, I didn't get round to putting a stitch in, sorry Christine.

I hope you are all staying nice, cosy and warm and finding things in your days to please you.    Sending blessings from my home to yours.


Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Gifted Gorgeousness - November

The 15th of the month means it's time for this months Gifted Gorgeousness post, i'm only a day late this month so that's good :-)

Created by the lovely Jo over at Serendipitous Stitching, a way to show what kind and wonderful people crafting folks are with their lovely gifts they send out to others.  The very laid back rules are quite simple and can be found on Jo's sign up page at the top of her blog.
Novembers link up post is here if you would like to see what other folks have had gifted to them and are gift making for others.
The  meet up of the Needlecraft Haven forum was a day full of gifts and giving and I blogged about that in the previous post but here are some other gifts that fit this months GG post nicely.
Sock gift knitting -
Here's the wool I was knitting with last Saturday that I forgot to take a pic of in my post about the meet up. West Yorkshire Spinners 4 ply from the birds collection called Goldfinch.
Christmas gift making - for my granddaughter 
Found this great pattern in the local wool shop.  It uses Sirdar Snuggly wool, it's so soft to knit with.  She loves a short sleeved cardigan with a soft cotton long sleeved t-shirt underneath, so this pattern is perfect. 

Gift of a free chart -
A few stitches make a WIP of Octobers Joyful World SAL chart 
A gift from Mother Nature -
Not a very good picture of this months super moon, too much cloud and a shaky hand!
Gifted myself some hygge time -
The library left a message that a book I ordered was ready for collection, so I picked it up and took the opportunity of using one of the hot chocolate drinks from my meet up goody bag exchange and snook an hour to myself in the afternoon whilst my boys were at work..... how naughty!
The gift of friendship -
Thank you for stopping by to see my Gifted Gorgeousness post for November.   Love and blessings to each and every one of my readers.
Julie x

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Autumn meet up

My second Saturday outing this month was yesterday.

A day with stitching friends from the Needlecraft Haven forum organised by Clare.   The local scout group had kindly let us use their hall for the 9 of us to meet.  Some ladies I know well, others I haven't seen for quite a while and this time we had a new visitor.  It was lovely to meet Justine.

There was lots of lovely work on show for us to drool over ...

My own bits...
Justine and Gill (no blog)
Angi (no blog)
Lynn (no blog I know of)

A table for stash to be sold/gifted/swapped ...

The morning is spent with lots of lively chat and laughter and catching up with everyone and what they are working on and looking at their project they have brought to stitch on.  I'd taken October of the Joyful World to work on but that didn't get a stitch put in as I had also taken sock knitting and Maggie and Tina are both keen to have a try at that so I was able to show them the heel turning part - I've forgot to take a pic of the new pair that are on the needles, the wool is from West Yorkshire Spinners and Maggie was very impressed with it, she'll be getting some of that ASAP lol.
Clare made us a lovely lunch ...
After lunch it's time for some fun and the exchanges to take place.

The book exchange is always fun and causes giggles, there is always one lady who pulls out a ticket for their own book so a little swap has to be done.

I chose the book donated by Angi, an author from Cambridge I had never heard of and will look forward to reading over the dark winter evenings.  Thank you Angi.

The book I donated was by a local author who lives in Nuneaton where we were meeting, Rosie Goodwin's Ribbon Weaver was my choice and went to Tina.

We have a goody bag exchange - the theme of which is given to us a month or so before the meet up date.  This time the theme was a favourite film.  It's not compulsory to take part in any of the exchanges and some choose not to.

A raffle ticket is placed under each bag ....

and it's partner is placed under one of Clare's fabulous cakes that she makes on the theme of the bag.  I didn't get a pic of them all, but, as I brought my cake home for DH to enjoy, here is one of them.  Isn't it brilliant - a film reel and popcorn topped cupcake...
Each of us open their bag in turn and we all try to guess the film that's been chosen. Lots of fun and giggles during this event.  It's interesting to see how each of us interprets the content of the film with various gifts.  Great choices the ladies had made, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Moulin Rouge, 101 Dalmatians and West Side Story.
I chose the bag filled with lovely goodies by Clare. Her favourite film was The Holiday.  There was even a DVD of the film inside so I will be able to watch it.  Thank you Clare.
Gill got the bag I made up.  She guessed it after the first parcel inside was unwrapped.  I was really surprised as I thought I had picked a film no-one would know.  Here's what i put inside - my film being an old one, The Adventures of Greyfriars Bobby.
We each take a prize for the raffle table.  The monies raised from this goes towards paying for the forum to be advert free for us all. 

I made a knitted bunny (forgot to take a close up pic of her before I took her) and also took some notebooks and pens.
I was lucky and won a prize ...
All too soon the day comes to an end and we have to say farewell till the next time.
Thank you ladies for your company, I had a lovely day.
Looking through my photos to do a blog post I realise I didn't take any of the group this time.  My mind must have been elsewhere as I seem to have said 'I forgot' on a few of these pictures....  must be my age, or it was the excitement of the day puddled the old brain cells lol.   Perhaps some of the other ladies who were present got some snaps if you visit their blogs.
Blessings to you all this remembrance Sunday