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Sunday, 29 May 2016

Monthly challenge reveal time

Today is the reveal for the monthly Christmas challenge design chosen by Christine over at Needlecraft Haven. This month is was from Rev de Fil.
I opted out this month as I had already stitched it for Sally's birthday in December. 
 (pic borrowed from Sally's blog as I cant find mine)
Next months design has been released today and is really cute, i'm looking forward to stitching that one.
We had a birthday in the family last week and a certain little lady turned

Lots of gifts to open ...

and new toys to play with ...

The sleeveless cardigan (free pattern on ravelry) I was knitting was finished on time ....
The Barbie bridesmaid dress I showed you last post had already been given earlier in the week and passed the inspection and fitted the model (I wasn't sure it would, it looked to be too big as I was making it up) 

With all the excitement of lots of new toys, friends at a birthday party and happy times there was not a mention of the granny clanger....... YET!
I've been on some strong meds this week for a reoccurring problem so no cross stitching as I've not felt like concentrating on the counting so I started some knitting....
 and here's a stripey sock. 
 6 ply wool does knit up quickly.  This is another free pattern from Ravelry called Blueberry Waffle Socks by Sandy Turner. Instructions are great and very easy to follow and these are DH's new favourite design.
I've been spending a lot of time just sitting in the conservatory looking out at the birds in the garden on the feeders and reading a little.
We've got a new security guard on duty ...
and mamma starling is feeding her babies, they are bigger than she is!

Words got round about the delicious offerings and we have a newcomer.   We also had a nuthatch yesterday but I was too late with the camera to capture him. 

and this poor baby was left behind for 3 hours when his family flew off.  He just sat there until they came back later in the day and mamma fed him and he flew off with them again.

sorry the pics are not better, but I had to take them behind the window
I've just spent an enjoyable afternoon catching up with blog reading.  Lots of lovely things have been stitched and made.  Plenty of new stash people have been purchasing too and some good books people are recommending that I've added to my reading list.
Lots of crafters have been spending time in their gardens now the growing season is fully underway and flowers are blooming in abundance in some parts of the country/world.  Crafting activities do not seem to grow so well in the warmer months as we spend time in the outdoors.
Talking of outdoors, my DH is at this moment mowing the lawn and i'm about to hop off here and make a nice cup of tea and a find a little treat for us to enjoy in the sunshine that has finally appeared today after a rather chilly start.  
I hope you are having a lovely weekend spent with those you hold dear.
Love and blessings

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Gifted Gorgeousness

The 15th of the month so that means it's time for a Gifted Gorgeousness post. 

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

My knitted baby blanket is finished and ready to be gifted to the mum-to-be.
Such a lovely pattern and so effective and simple and easy to knit at the knitting group, and not many stitches un-knitted like on a lot of my other projects after a mornings chat and cheer.

Other gift knitting that's been on the needles is clothing for a barbie doll collection. 
The conversation went ......
Isabelle - Nanny, can you knit me some clothes for my dolls
Nanny - I think I have some patterns, i'll sort them out and you can choose something you would like
Isabelle - I might like a granny clanger instead
Nanny - *oh no, not another of those fiddly felt clad clangers, me with eyes wide open and thinking fast*  let's look at the dolls clothes patterns first before you decide
Next visit - with patterns duly found and in my bag (and not a clanger pattern in sight) 
Nanny - I've found the dolls clothes patterns
Isabelle - *turning her nose up at the quite a few I have* mmm I don't like any of them
She then spots the booklet for a wedding party - a pattern picked up in a charity shop - one of those 'this might be useful sometime' purchases
Isabelle - Nanny, I think i'll have the red one first (the bridesmaid doll outfit)
Nanny - ok, i'm sure I have red, green and white wool at home
Isabelle - Then I might have the others
Nanny - Yes, but I might have to do other stitching or knitting so it might take a while to get them all done
Isabelle - ok nanny
After I put my coat on to leave, a kiss and cuddle goodbye and she says "will you bring the dress next time you come" - the dear little lady thinks I have a magic wand that can whip up something in no time at all!
Then her parting shot as I walk up the driveway "then I think you can make me granny clanger" ..... aaarrggghhh noooo!   
I'm keeping my fingers crossed that she has forgotten about granny clanger next time I visit, and no, the dress is not completed yet, it was really fiddly along the bottom hem and had to be unknitted a couple of times as I was watching TV and made a mistake! 
Isabelle has a birthday at the end of the month and I am trying to get a cardigan knitted up for her birthday parcel ....
A gift that I haven't created by just had to share with you is for Isabelle's birthday and was knitted by the lady who runs the knitting group.   Her granddaughter is to be invited to the birthday party.
The base of the basket is using a Carte D'or ice cream box that is covered in knitting.  
Well done Tricia, a fabulous gift that Isabelle will love.

The chart from my recent CCN finish was gifted onto another stitcher - firstly to Angi, who will pass it on to Gill who will send it on to Barb

What's in your GG post this month, i'm looking forward to reading about your gifts received and sent.
 and blessings to you all
Julie  x

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

New homes

CCN Place of our Own has had the final stitch added to it.  The chart will now be off to a new home and I need to find a new start.

Another place of our own was being created this morning too. 

Looking out of my window this morning, I smiled to myself as I watched ....

a little robin is building a new home and nesting in the ivy on our garage wall ....

I spent quite a while watching him fly back and forth with bits of stuff in his mouth

I just hope the cats which live next door, and my own dear Midge, keep away from him and his family.
DH treated himself to a new feeding station a couple of weeks ago - the old one had seen much better days.  Don't look too close at the bottom of the garden, repairs are still ongoing to the fence that was storm damaged earlier in the year and the logs from the fallen tree are still stacked down there.

The birds seem to approve of the new 'restaurant' filled with lots of nice treats.   We've seen such a lot more activity.  Robins, blue tits, starlings, jackdaw, collared doves, magpies, blackbirds, long tailed tits, great tits and coal tits have all been visiting, we've even seen some house sparrows and hedge sparrows and they haven't been about for a long time.  A simple pleasure, sitting watching the activity .... happy days.

May's finish is now on display of the Snowflower Diaries SAL.   I see next months design came out yesterday as well.   An animal that hadn't entered my head would be on them appeared, she does look sweet though.

I've  had another finish too, the baby blanket I was knitting is ready for its new home.  As its only a few days till Gifted Gorgeousness i'll show you that in my post on the 15th.
Love and Blessings

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Sunshiney start to May

Goodbye April and thank you for taking your cold wet showery weather away. 
May has brought us clear blue skies and nice warm sunshine - very welcome indeed.

The end of a month means it is the reveal of the monthly challenge.  The design chosen for April by Christine was from Romy's Cross Stitch.  The chart can be found here.  

This is my version ...... 

The little bells were from Lindt chocolate bunnies at Easter and they have a lovely jingle sound.  I'll have to wait till Christmas for more free bells from the reindeers! 
There are 4 finishes in the forum gallery so far but others are added when they have been completed at any time of the year.
May Day arrived, a bank holiday weekend so an extra day off for those that work.  I've been resting a lot and made a start on a baby blanket for my great-aunt.  She is to be a great-grandmother at the age of 91 and asked if I could knit up a little something for the baby boy that is due in the summer.
As I knit with throwing the wool over the needle, my left arm stays still so I've managed a little knitting.
It was a free pattern from Deramores blog a while ago - paper pattern is now available to buy from their site - it's called Blanket in Deramores Baby DK number 1001 (it also comes in a digital version).  A nice repeat pattern of 8 rows which gives the lovely finish and is sized for a car seat, pram or cot blanket.  We chose the pram size as it would also double up for the car seat as baby grows.  Two shades of blue and the white will also be the border.
Joyful World SAL has also had a little attention.  I'd started this last month but it got left as I was finding it difficult and painful to stitch.  
I made a few changes to mine.....
Bird - changed to a blackbird and gave him brown legs
Cats - mine have green eyes, and I added a pinky nose and whiskers
White flowers - changed to blue as the forget-me-nots are out in my garden this month
Fabric choice was an oddment of 28ct quite stiff lilac linen (no label) something a little different and not a colour i often choose, but, the colours really do look nice on it.  I just need to make it up and stand it on the easel before the month has gone by too much more.
I've been blog reading and am almost caught up, you've all been so busy making such lovely things.  I've seen amazing WIP's and finishes, charts that appeal to my taste and others that look really nice but not something I would like to stitch myself.  Bloggers are on holidays and having fun.  Some have exciting and happy news to share, some are not so well and I also read some sadness too. 
Sending {{hugs}} to a couple of ladies who I know are not having the best of times at the moment

Blessings to you all
Julie x