All pictures and entries on this blog are the © copyright of the author unless otherwise stated.
Please do not take anything without prior permission. Thank you.

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Gifted Gorgeousness - July

Coming to the end of the month, I had better get my GG post done.  

A bit of a finishing off spree this month of things that have been sitting in the workbox for way too long.

A gifted chart from an old stitching friend.  My Four Seasons Sampler by Giulia Punti Antichi.  I finally added the last few stitches this past weekend.

 
Completed my pair of socks for the Yarndale Sock Line organised by Christine at Winwick Mum blog.  After Yarndale these and all the others donated will be gifted to someone in need.
 
 
I belong to the local knitting group and this blanket for prem babies joined the collection to be handed over.
 
 
The gift of friendship on a forum and we have been stitching a SAL for the seasons of the year.  Everyone chooses their own design to stitch for each season, I did Prairie Schooler Spring and now i have the PS Summer made up to accompany it.
 
 
Thank you so much for your kinds words of support and comfort in my last post, it really meant a lot to me and for the emails, cards etc that have been sent.
 
I had a very special gift box parcel arrive in the post from Barb, thank you my friend for your thoughtfulness.   An M&S rose, tea bags and shortbread to enjoy.
 
 
 
I'm sure you all know what Gifted Gorgeousness is all about - but just in case you don't ....

It is a chance for us bloggers to show off gifts we have received.  It could be yarn, a thread, a piece of fabric or something that's not for crafting but was sent/given to brighten your day. 
 
You can read more about 'GG' here.  It's the brainchild of Jo at Serendipitous Stitching
 
 
Love and blessings
 
Julie x
 
 

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Relaxing holiday and a bombshell

DH received an email with an offer too good to miss. A few days at the coast with 70% off - of course we took advantage of it last week.

Hunstanton, one of our favourite places to enjoy some downtime in a lovely caravan.

The veranda overlooked two lovely ponds with mamma ducks and their babies where little rabbits also came out to play in the evenings. 

 


 
It was a relaxing holiday, no sight seeing this time of the area we know so well as I was not feeling the best yet again.
 
A teatime simple sandwich picnic at Brancaster beach, 7 miles along the Cromer Road (the main  coast road)
 

Sand as far as the eye can see both the left and right, popular with dog walkers


 
Local fishermen enjoy their sport and the residents are friendly too

 
Evening strolls along the long promenade that stretches all the way from Hunstanton famous cliffs at one end, right through to Heacham beach. 
 
 
The walkway stretches for about 3 miles, all concrete and the area has had a lottery grant for refurbishments that are at present being carried out. 
 
All the way along the sea washes in and out and the sun is setting over the sea. 
 
 
(taken on a different evening)
 
 
Old Hunstanton is another lovely sandy beach, the lifeboat station is here, open a lot of the time to the public to have a look round, a cafĂ© opposite and the disused lighthouse that it now open for holidaymakers to rent.  Miles and miles of beautiful sand - perfect for children and on Friday there were 7 coach parties of school children enjoying some bucket and spade time - noisy fun, but it was lovely hear them - 1 coachload were from a local school to us at home!
 
 
I did some reading.   Shock of the Fall is not a book I could say I would recommend, but it was the book group latest read and having studied psychology I found it interesting.  The Domenica De Rosa, One Summer in Tuscany (she writes under the name of Elly Griffiths too, you may have read her detective stories) was very enjoyable - a writers course on the island of Tuscany in an old castle and what happens to those on the course and the family who live there. 
 
 
Time to open the meet up exchange when I got home as I had missed opening day on July 4th being away.
 
Gill (no blog) has made me the loveliest sunflower scissor keeper and matching fob and included some pretty scissors too.  Thank you Gill
 

 
I stitched for Justine, I too chose a scissor keeper and included some pretty scissors.
 


 
Arriving back home I have had two hospital appointments to attend, two different consultants to see and some unexpected news.  As regular readers will know, I have not been in the best of health for quite some time.  Lots of dr visits and medications to try to help but to no avail. 
 
The latest visit brought a diagnosis for me that we were not expecting.  A disease that we had never heard of before.  It is so rare the consultant tells me that there are only about 1000 in the world who have it.  It's serious, no literature available at our hospital as it's so rare and most consultants don't see a case of it in their career, so we were sent home to look it up on the internet.  There are times when you wish that the internet was not so accessible as the words you are reading on the screen are very scarey.  You open another link and read more doom. 
 
I have relapsing polychondritis (RP) - an auto immune disorder that attacks and eats away at the cartilages of the body - the body is held together with that.  No rhyme or reason where it will strike in the body, it can be life threatening if it attacks the heart, lungs or the windpipe area.  It's likely to be progressive over time and incapacitate and disfigure me (He thinks the nose has started this process already).  He feels that a lot of what I have had over the past many years could be attributed to it and as I have gotten older it has taken more of a hold.
 
Right now, well, we are a bit numb.  I'm taking very high dose of steroids to try and get this attack under control a bit and will be for a few weeks.  We see the consultant in 6 weeks time when he has had the chance to look through the latest round of tests that he ordered and I had on Monday.  He wants to also check back on some extensive MRI ad CT scans and other stuff I have had over the past years to see if he can see evidence there too.
 
Being positive, at least we know what we are dealing with now and the medical profession are involved to help as much as the underfunded NHS can do! 
 
If, in my resting periods these next weeks I drop by your blog and leave a note, it might not make any sense as the steroids take effect, but please know that it did to me when I wrote it......
 
Thanks for stopping by my blog and for your friendship and support in the past.  I felt i needed to share this news with you as we are not sure where this latest pathway will take us and what the future will hold and of course we are taught as children it's good to share.  I did smile when I thought that the disfigurement that might happen wont be seen by most of you, I can hide behind this screen as when you are reading my rambles you will still imagine the picture of me that you have always had in your mind ........
 
Love and blessings
 
Julie x
 

 

Thursday, 29 June 2017

The return of the mojo? and June GG post

Dancing on the ceiling?  mmm not quite, but it does deserve a hearty drink and a pat on the back!

Finally the crafting fairy has waved her magic wand and given me a nudge.  A little knitting has been taking place and i have a finish.

You've seen a few of these before, I think I've knitted 5 school cardigans so far.  This ones much bigger and will be saved till the new term in September.

 
As it is a gift for my granddaughter, it will fit the bill for this months GG post with Jo over at Serendipitous Stitching..... yippee, another thing caught up with and ticked off the June list. 
 
A few little cross stitch x's put into a project as well.  The meet up exchange is complete, enveloped up and sent out and I have received my parcel ready for opening day next week.   Just the monthly challenge that needs to be done before Saturday - not a hope of that, but never mind, Christine is quite forgiving!
 
 
 
Love and blessings to you all
 
Julie

Monday, 12 June 2017

Not much of anything really

 
It's been a bit Alice in Wonderland here recently ....
 
 
White rabbit - I'm late, I'm late ... with the monthly challenge design finish. That should have been finished at the end of May.  You were right Jo, it was a snowman with a wooden leg, a pirate snowman!   Thanks to Christine for choosing our monthly design, this one came from Aliolka.
I cannot take credit for finishing this one.  I stitched it but a lady at my craft club did the actual finishing - a new challenge for her she said - I think she did a great job.
 
 
 
Cheshire cat - smiling from ear to ear when DH harvested the first cucumber of the season for us to eat at the weekend.
 
 
 
Dormouse - aahhhh it's tiring doing nothing, i've been very lazy with my stitching.  Just a little progress on Four Seasons, a frog came along on the over one lettering.  I have been putting a few little crosses into an exchange piece that needs to be finished soon as well.
 
 
The Queen of Hearts - a little time spent with DH at the community allotment project and harvesting of some delicious strawberries that made beautiful jam.
 

Mad Hatter - A sale at Wool Warehouse of sock wool, too good to miss when they send you a little note telling you ..... but i must be mad if i think i will get it knitted up in the near future.  Free postage if you spent a certain amount so it was a good saving.  It'll just have to hide away in the cupboard for a while.

 
Tweedledee and Tweedledum - squabble, squabble, who is right?  After some discussion we found out that it is in fact a blackbirds nest that has fallen out of our tree.  They had fledged and in the recent high wind last week it was blown onto the driveway.  My granddaughter has taken it to school to 'show and tell'
 
 
Alice - I think i must be taking the shrink me pills as the days seem to be shorter and there is so much to do that doesn't get done these days.  There have been changes at work and home and I'm still battling health issues that are slowing me down and making me rest so much more.  I keep smiling and just do what has to be done, crafting things will get done when i have five minutes or perhaps my book will get a little more attention.  Of course, there is always something nice to look at out of the window when the birds come to the feeders and that wastes a bit more time......
 
Love and blessings
 
Julie
 



Monday, 15 May 2017

Gifted Gorgeousness - May

15th Day

Just in case you don't know what Gifted Gorgeousness is all about -

It is a chance for us bloggers to show off gifts we have received.  It could be yarn, a thread, a piece of fabric or something that's not for crafting but was sent/given to brighten your day.  Have you made or given a gift, that counts too as does a free chart you have found and have used, given by the designer.  Did you previously receive stash that you have finally got round to using? 

You can read more about 'GG'
here.  It's the brainchild of Jo at Serendipitous Stitching


Gifts come along in lots of different shapes and forms. Not always in an envelope that drops through the letterbox or wrapped up in nice paper and hand given for you to open.  

Since my last GG post, I've had a lovely gift.  The chance to use a friend of DH's holiday bungalow at the coast for a few days rest, relaxation and convalescence after a prolonged time of being under the weather (as the old saying goes).  I'm just not firing on all cylinders and still undergoing further and ongoing hospital stuff - the joys of the NHS.

Nestled in fields as far as the eye can see from the kitchen window and a five minute walk away out of the back garden gate, a deserted out of season beach.

 
Peace, tranquillity and quiet contemplation... perfect!
 
Time spent in the garden listening to the waves, a little stitching on this month challenge.  A gifted free online chart chosen by Christine.  Here's a quick teaser of the design I finished stitching.  Reveal of the finish as usual will be the last Sunday of the month. 
 
 
 
A little knitting - another school cardigan gift for my granddaughter.  She's growing like a weed and will celebrate her 6th birthday later this month.
 
 
Who gives germs as a gift?  I awoke mid week to a cold, not a gift I really wanted!  Quietly sitting in the sun room reading passed the time with tissue box on hand.   A couple of nice books.  Daughters of Castle Deverill is very good, the second part of a trilogy, the first being Songs of Love and War which I read last month.  The third and final part is due out later this summer.   Black Rabbit Hall, nice story with a few twists and turns that were unexpected - I'd been recommended this one last year.
 
 
 
The gift of laughter - we did giggle at these goats munching away up the cliff with the sea in the background.  You don't expect a sight like that at the seaside!
 
 
I gave the gift of some of my lunch to this chap!
 
 
And just so I don't get the wagging finger and a telling off from Jo that this post is not quite shoehorned into GG here's the sock wool - that was a proper gift at Christmas from DH and before I went away the second sock was completed to make my pair in the hollyberry colourway from West Yorkshire Spinners.
 
 
and an update on the winter block of My Four Seasons, the chart being a gift quite some time ago.
 
 
 
With being away I'm behind on blog reading so will be stopping by your blog to see your GG post as I catch up on what else you have been doing.
 
Love and blessings
 
Julie
 

 

Monday, 1 May 2017

April's challenge and a gift

April came and went... a few nice things happened and a few infuriatingly stressful times too, but you don't want to hear about those.

Being the last weekend of the month means its reveal time for the monthly challenge over at Needlecraft Haven chosen by Christine.

I used the lovely silken threads I showed you in my Gifted Gorgeousness post.  They stitched up really nicely using 2 strands on 22ct golden aida. I went for a traditional red/green combination.  


I have a person in mind for this as a Christmas gift so decided to put it into a little frame and add the wording ribbon along the bottom.   The frame only cost £1 from a well known supermarket so a bargain gift.

Sunday, April 30th is also the birthday of a family member.  When sorting out I came across Royal Blossoms 2007 by Just Nan.  The charm was stapled to the chart - when did I do that?  I decided that would make the perfect small gift and use up more of my forgotten about stash.


Stitched on a piece of 28ct jobelan from a Polstitches grab bag using the asked for threads it turned out well and fitted into a 4" x 4" frame perfectly.  This frame has a double mount so the depth of the bee doesn't matter.



Such a detailed Queen Bee charm?


1st May is May day so we have an extra days holiday, time for plenty of stitching, reading, gardening or are you out and about having fun doing other things.

Thanks for taking time to visit

Love and blessings to you all

Julie 


Sunday, 23 April 2017

Fun with friends


 Yesterday I took a little drive to meet up with a few friends from Needlecraft Haven. 

Clare organises our meet ups but due to her recent accident we met at her home.

I took a small spring planter arrangement with me as a get well gift.

 
We each brought our needlecases we had made in the meet-up exchange after the autumn meet up.  A great collection and all so different. 
 
The fronts -
 
 
and the backs -
 
 
There was a book exchange....
 
 
I received from Angi - not an author I have read before

 
Gill went home with my book
 
Last Dance in Havana (Paperback)
 
The theme for the goody bag this time was 'My Favourite Place'  -
 
I came home with Angi's and what a 'beach bag' filled with delights it was.  Thank you Angi
 
 
Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of the bag I made up.  It went to Clare's mum.   I didn't choose an actual place, thinking outside the box this time, I decided my favourite place was 'Anywhere I can have a little hygge time i enjoy' and put into my parcel a book about hygge, a large candle, fabric and threads, a sponge for a nice bubble bath, a mug with hot chocolate sachet and a well known chocolate cake mix (I decided not to add a cake itself as some ladies venture to us on the train and I thought it might not survive their journey home).
 
I gave a little RAK gift to Justine.  She's named her Hyacinth as there was a lovely bunch in a vase and Justine has been smelling them all day and the pink and blue colourway reminded her of the flowers. 
 
 
There was the usual show and tell.  I had a little Prairie Schooler spring finish from the Gift of Stitching magazine (Brigitte, this was one of the charts I had printed out and found in the sort out!)  

 
I'm going to do the others in the Seasons SAL this year.  Summer next then. 
 
One sock completed.  Gill had a read through Christine's lovely sock book, so maybe we might have another sock knitter in future.
 
 
We had a lovely day and it was good to see Clare in person and how she was in herself.  She took a pic of us in her garden bedroom (that's a double bed in the conservatory to you and me lol) and you can see us on her blog post together with the other gifts the ladies brought and her more detailed write up of the day and the exchanges and swaps.
 
I hope you have all enjoyed a lovely weekend
 
Love and Blessings
 
Julie