Thursday, 6 November 2014

Trying a little something

I have been a little quiet I know-could be so quiet around here that I'm the only one reading this anyway...which is fine.
Been having a bit of a rubbish time of late, family stuff, ill relatives, failings out and me feeling very low just some of the issues. I do really try not to feel down or low but it's not always that simple is it? I'm finding I am sleeping a huge amount at the moment, always a 'sign' I find. I kind of think if at least I am able to be aware of my moods then that must be a positive thing surely?
Anyway, enough of that. Since we have moved we have pretty much lived a quiet life but in the last five weeks we have three sets of weekend visitors which has been great, we eased ourselves in with just two people, a friend of D's from school and his partner. We had a nice sociable afternoon and evening which led into a very late night and a huge amount of washing up the next day after a yummy cooked breakfast but to be honest I even enjoyed that part too! Two weekends later we had a crowd descend on us, three of D's cousins, their partners and a teenage child...again a hugely late night including cocktails and lots of chat. Next morning, even more washing up but not a cooked breakfast. Two days later we got a dishwashers-the one that is integral to the kitchen has never worked-unlike the oven that managed to work for three days after the move! Did you know that if someone sells you integral appliances in a house you buy there's no pressure on them to either make sure the items work or that they tell you if they don't...very annoying...
Anyway, onto the last visitors we had some friends stay this weekend and again a good time had by all (I hope) as were cocktails again, sadly we are now out of tequila :0(

So, that leads to the little something I have been trying out. I have been looking for a crochet pattern for a heart for quite a while, a 3D one not a flat one and last night I found one here:

I went to bed last night thinking of these very sweet hearts and as soon as D went to work I got going. Mine is obviously nowhere near as good as the lovely ones on the blog but then it is my first! I'm planning to make many more though I have to say! Yet again I am having trouble posting photos but if D can help when he gets in I'll pop it on later

Be well all x

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Swapping christmas

I know I have mentioned the 'C' word again but I have just signed up for a crafty swap here:

I have put my name down for swaps in the UK, there seem to be a few people over here with the majority being in the UK, I really like the idea of fitting as much as you can into a tub....I like the challenge!

Anyone fancy joining me?

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Starting Christmas

I'm probably a little late starting christmas presents in October but I think I'll be fine, we hve such a small family and an even smaller number who will appreciate handmade gifts.

I have made a quite plain granny shawl for an aunt of D's-she is very unwell and I am planning on giving it her soon. She is in hospital at the moment, as she was 2 weeks ago (she has been home in between but was readmitted yesterday). The last time she was in she was struggling with being cold and as she had a 'drip' in her arm it was very awkward to get a dressing gown on without dislodging it. Another relative said to her while I was there that what she needed was a shawl. I thought I may have had some wool at home that I could use but it turned out I didn't have enough of any one wool. So I bought a couple of balls of James C Bretts 'Marble' chunky-I love this wool it's so cozy and is also sold in 200g balls which makes it a very good buy at under £5 a ball. I haven't taken any pictures of it but this is the colour I chose-D asked me to try and get a wool with blues and purples if possible so I went for this one, it's actually a bit darker than it looks on the pic and is kind of peacock shades. It didn't take very long at all and I am really hoping she will like it.

The other Christmas gift I have now finished is for D's mum. She collects blue and white pottery and has a huge collection on a beautiful dresser. I was looking on Pinterest recently and found a lovely picture of a crochet cushion cover in blue and white. When I showed it to D he straight away said how it's 'Just like my mums pottery!' So, I tried and tried to find a pattern that exactly matched the one we had seen but I struck out. So I went to an old favourite and made some squares using Patricia Hewitt's 'Sunburst' pattern. I used three shades of cotton 'wool' and made the border to each square in a white yarn.

 I am really pleased with it but just hope his mum is too..only time will tell!

Monday, 25 August 2014

Please don't be silent..

A few hours ago I found out that someone I knew-not a good friend or family member has died. It was a terrible shock, she was a mum of young children, she herself was young and as far as I knew she had not shown signs of being unwell. The thing is she wasnt unwell it seems she became a victim of domestic abuse. I will not go into details-they do not count. What does count is the number of (mainly-but not solely) women who are assaulted-or worse by the person who professes to love them.  Yet again, I am breaking the promise to myself to keep this blog 'light & positive'. I am going to admit hear that I have been a victim of domestic abuse-not D, never D. In the years before D, the father of my children told me he loved me, he would cuddle me in bed, kiss me goodnight. He would also tell me how I should 'get rid of' our 6 day old son because I was feeling weepy & down. He would tell me how I wasn't 'quite right in the head' because I saw a counsellor for a while. He would call me fat & tell me how sexy other women were. All things that are probably quite minor. He also made me have sex with him in return for money or for clothes. If I refused he would be angry and have terrible moods. One day, he took it further and told me that night he was going to assault me or 'batter me up & down the house'. And all this time I did nothing. He didnt do anything that night but about a year or so later he did and still I didn't leave. It took years for me to leave. It isn't easy and if you haven't been through it I don't think you can fully understand it.
Eventually I left, it's years now and there have been many flashbacks and scary times. I upset D because he knows that after all this time deep down I still think that one day he will show his true self, I love him more that I could have ever imagined and trust him as much as I could trust anyone.
If you are suffering, please get help, start here:

Sunday, 24 August 2014

can you tell what it is?

This is a kind of halfway house of a post. I am partway through making something and although the crochet part is finished there is still another day (hopefully thats all) to be done on it.

I have been through my stash and decided I have quite a large one (oo-eer) and that really I cant justify buying anymore until I use up at least some.
I very rarely use aran wool but I bought quite a bit-6 balls for a throw-that I have never completed and that I'm not overly enamoured with. So I decided maybe it would be good to use all that up and then I know I have only two (more special) balls of aran in all of my stash. 
I decided to give a ripple a go-I have done it before-twice-once with a cowl/scarf which again, is ok, but not something I cant live without-I know I'm abit flighty with my makes. The only time I tried it I made a baby blanket- a rainbow one and I loved it, the end product...making it was a nightmare. However, after making this itam I cant see why, this was a drem and as I was using aran yarn I was able to use a 5mm so it grew at a reasonable rate.
So here we have it...on my knee as I hook away. 

And here it is laid out on the runs almost exactly from one end to the other conveniently, any guesses? thats it pretty much in its entirity-Since the photos I have added a thin border-of doubles down each side and there is some slip stitches needed...any ideas?

I'm hoping to finish it tonight or tomorrow morning and I will post a picture of the finished item-unless Ive made a pigs ear or it, then I'll deny this ever happened!
Juliet x

Thursday, 21 August 2014

In my handbag I did cheat here just a little. There were some bits of paper, receipts and bus tickets that I didn't include, but to be fair they weren't exactly exciting-not that the other stuff is!

The picture is a little bit dark, unusually this is not because my camera on my phone is rubbish, it's simply because I was in a dark place-literally. I was in a pub-having breakfast with my daughter. She lives in a town that doesn't really have much in the way of nice coffee shops-the nearest they had was a McDonalds, but then that was closed down through a lack of business (!!) so we cant even go there for a chat and a coffee.

So, we went to a Weatherspoons for breakfast, which although fine, is not as good as a nice coffee and cake emporium!

While she was busy, filling in a job application, I decided to follow others and show you what I lug around with me on a daily basis. Now I'm not sure if it gives a picture of the 'true' me but here goes:

Ok, from left to right:
-Black sunglasses 'bag' no sunglasses-not sure where they are, bag worked well!
-Keys including Disney Magic Kingdom keyring (from visit to Disney Paris when kids were 3 and 6)
-Tags on keyring-Tescos clubcard, Pets at Home and a Mexican I cant remember the name of.
-Green tree perfume spray, present from daughters holiday in spain last year. Love this fragrance and have a few different products with this fragrance, so fresh and summery.
-Soap and Glory lipgloss, claims to plump up your lips...hmm. I like the sensation though!
-Number 7 Mascara, I keep this in my bag so I know where it is-I use make up very irregularly it's a handy way of knowing where it is, otherwise it would be gathering dust elsewhere, somewhere 'safe'.
-Really comfy pen, I find I write such a little now that having a comfy pen helps!
-Bright red lipstick- an experiment, an experiment best not mentioned again.
-Purses, two. Purple one underneath is my everyday purse, it's quite large and has places for cards etc and two sides for coins. Sadly the fabric side of the coin part is coming away. Hopefully it will last until Christmas-January sales are my usual purse hunting ground. Second, spotty purse. Cath Kidson treat. I use this for vouchers and similar stuff relationg to shopping but that are not used every time I shop.
-Cold and flu tablets, just a handy addition I find, not so much not that I am not working with children though!
-Packet of tissues, the ones with the extra soft addition for delicate noses-ha!
-Some tomato ketchup, just because you never know when you will need it!

Whats in yours?

Monday, 18 August 2014

Recently read

As a child I had always read lots, it wasnt at all unusual for me to spend all day reading and I would love to get transported to the wonderful places in these books, where the sun always shined and where there was (usually) a large loving family. I am in reality an only child of only children who werent particularly family orientated. I loved Secret Seven and The Famous Five. Another huge favourite of mine was Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfield (hope I got that right!).

As I grew older and the time came where I shared a bedroom with my (ex) husband he would hate me to have a light on in bed so reading into the night because something I used to do and not something I 'did'. With D, who is a heavy reader-for work and for pleasure it is not a problem but it is only in the last few weeks that my mind has felt settled enough to properly concentrate and I am now reading every night before I go to sleep and I am loving it again!
I am though limited to either charity shop finds or free books on my kindle as I am under a tight budget-and its always good to have money put to one side for wool :0)

Recent reads I have enjoyed have been:
Room byEmma Donoghue.
This took me a little while to get into but it was well worth sticking with. I dont want to give too much away but it's the story of a young boy and his mum and for the majority of the book they are the only characters. The book was funny in places but also so very sad. The ending didnt seem entirely satisfying to me somehow but I dont know how I would have changed it. Really good read.

A perfect home by Kate Granville.
 A Perfect Home

I loved this, I enjoyed going to bed at night to be able to get my little fix. I have already downloaded another of her books and am looking forward to getting going on it soon. The characters were very believable and so well drawn. In what could have been an unsympathetic storyline I felt the characters held out well. Nice beach read

Itsy Bitsy Spider by Willow Rose.
 Itsy Bitsy Spider (Emma Frost Book 1)
Sometimes I like books that are abit scary-I really like Karin Slaughter type thrillers and I thought thats what I was getting here. It kind of was but more supernatural in places. If you are scared of spiders dont even go there!

Tickled Pink by Christina Jones.
 Product Details
This is another one from my 'chick lit' folder. It was ok, but it didnt pull me in. Having said that I did 'have' to read it to the end to see what happened. I got it as a free read and as such have no complaints.

Darling Girls by Emma Burstall.
 Product Details
I read this about 18 months ago and loved it. The only one I have read in years that I HAD to get out at breakfast time and read before work. Cant recommend enough and I keep my eyes out for any other freebies by the same author!

Friday, 15 August 2014

Our summer

I've just read a post on another blog about how the seasons are starting to change and thought it would be a good idea to document some of our summer. This will be a picture heavy posting-I have made the pictures as small as I can but if you click on them they will enlarge. It's mainly garden stuff so if thats not what you like to see and read about then step away now and I wont be at all insulted x.
I may have mentioned before (!!) that we moved in May. Before this it had been years since I had been responsible for a garden (and to be honest even then I hadnt taken much interest). D has never really had a garden so the pair of us are novices. We  moved to a house that probably had quite a bit of money and care lavished on it several years ago, and then for the last few none at all and the garden is pretty much the same. We have ideas of what we want but we are realistic and also think that this first year we just need to see what we actually have!

So, when we moved in, there was huge holly trees overhanging the lawn. This meant that the lawn was dying because it was so dark, no pictures of this but you get the idea. So we chopped and chopped, D got some big hedge loppers and then an even bigger set and we have been saving the thicker branches for kindling (probably for next year). 

As summer went on, things started to burst into flower. We have lots of roses but these are the only pictures I seem to be able to find
 We were both really surprised by this (showing our lack of knowledge) but there are actually two different coloured-and sized- blooms on this plant. After speaking to people in the know we find that this is actually common..aaah well.
Then, our next development was a plant that I was convinced at first was a gladioli, wandering round my garden doing Dame Edna impersinatins during this time, I'm hoping you can see why this poor confused novice gardener would get it so wrong yet again..

They do kind of look like gladis don't they?
The days went on and things started happening to them-did I mention these things were huge-almost to my shoulder!
 Before finally, they flowered! Aren't they pretty?

A much more knowledgeable friend was able to name the floer and its a Campanula...who'd have known-not us obviously!

Lastly, when we moved in there was a large bush at the end of the garden and it had some tight round buds on it, then, one day they burst open into something I have never seen (not saying much)

   Again, we were reliably informed that these are a type of Buddliea (a globe Buddliea). We have a couple of the more usual sort of buddlieas in the garden- I also know them as 'butterfly bushes' as they are particularly attractive to them and we have also noticed that they are popular with bees and during the really warm weather they were absolutely full of buzzing flapping beauties.

Amazingly we have had some success with our vegetables-I planted lots of seeds anticipating an earlier move than we actually had and many were lost in the move and the days and weeks afterwards where I was simply overwhelmed by the house and unpacking that came with it. However, we have now started to harvest courgettes-an old favourite that even I can grow! Even more excitingly, I noticed yesterday that we have some tiny tomatoes just appearing on our bushes. It wont be a glut but they will be tomatoes we have grown and from seed. I had done this years ago but everything feels new and more importantly is very appreciated by D rather than someone who couldnt see the point when there are shops..hmm. I have other vegetables on the go but caterpillars seem to be taking hold so I'm not sure what will happen but as I had manly bought them as seedlings to grow for the chickens it wont be any great loss if the wildlife that gets them is slightly smaller winged creatures. 

Finally, as I said earlier, the seasons definitely seem to be changing and a couple of days ago everything felt very cold and miserable and my proclaimation that we wouldnt light a fire until September went right out of the window! 
And here I sat rocking, and dreaming..
and a little bit of crochet.
Infront of this..
not a great picture I know, but here it is before the blaze was even dreamt of, 

I feel so lucky to be living in this house, that seems just right for me and D. I know we will be happy but that does not mean I am living in some sort of Pollyanna world. There are horrible things going on, people we love are deeply hurting at the moment, both physically and emotionally. Some of them will get better and one day will not hurt. Some of them will never get better but also one day will not hurt anymore, that hurt is for us. We have moved to a different area from one that we knew, we have moved further from some family and closer to others. We have taken a financial 'hit' in that I had to give up work before it broke me, but this enabled us to move areas and I am lucky that D never blames or hints at how the reason we are financially worse off is my 'fault'. Hopefully, I will get some work soon, or one of the irons we have in the fire will start to come to fruition and help us. We are healthy and happy and I hope you and yours are too x

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Here we go

well, what a performance!
The PC at home is under construction. It had a problem, D decided to fix the problem and now we need to fix the fixing..hmm. Anyway, not a problem you would think as we both have smart phones, I also have a tablet, D has an Ipad and a Macbook (both work items so not always available and also Im always wary of what I put on them! ) Anyway, Ive been desperate to get posting so yesterday I decided to get a grip and use Ds Macbook, how hard could it be I thought, HA! Anyway, I even tried getting a child to help me but no luck-we are a family of non Apple users...however luckily we have a nephew who is a total Apple addict and he has just given me remote assistance on how to get pictures onto my mem card from Facebook so I can post on here. The only way I can work out to get pictures into any sort of documentation on here is via FB at the minute so I'm probably making it difficult for myself but I really cant stress myself out anymore by working out an easier Apple friendly way!

Rant over! 
Well, we have been quite productive this last couple of weeks getting some decorating done.
When we were in the process of moving we decided we weren't going to rush into decorating, that we wanted to be patient and do it 'right' and not on a really tight-just moved budget... That was until 2 weeks ago when D said "I can't stand that bloody pink any longer!" So, the plan changed. We pulled out our big pot of cream emulsion and got cracking. First we did the tiny bedroom-both 'spare' rooms were the same colour and neither of them are our bedroom but apparently it was just too much for D as he walked past them on the landing...and I will show you why:
The two bedrooms-one is a guest room and one is now my craft room were both painted in the same colour and painted very badly. The following photos are from the guest room which is a decent sized double unfortunately we didnt take any pictures of the tiny-now craft room but the decorating was of the same amazing standard and horrific colour! are you goes:

 That is the skirting board, yep you can see just how much care they took to get those edges nice and sharp! followed by the fireplace:
Again you can see the care and attention gone into the application of the beautiful pink paint..are you getting the idea of how awful this was? The thing was, when we were cleaning before we started painting, the pink paint all came off the mantlepiece with a damp cloth so why on earth was it still there?
The final glory, the window words can really explain can they?

Anyway, we got the little bedroom done first and it's amazing, I have never had a room just for me before-apart from when I was a child and had my own bedroom, this is different. It's the equivilent of D having his office and studio up in the attic and it feels so good.
Do you want to see how it looks? 

Its really the tiniest of tiny rooms but I think its going to be very useful. This is the storage area, there's two units and both are pretty full but i think theres still room for more wool-there's always more room for wool surely?

The white Ikea unit has boxes in, each is filled with a different type of yarn, one is just Stylecraft Special DK! another has chunky, another cotton DK, depending on what I have the most of. There are also pattern books and magazines stored here. The silver shelves have more 'boring' stuff in underbed boxes (for that I mean not wool!). There is a wicker basket I have had since I was a teenager-its amazing its still going-its got bear making bits and pieces in it. the stacking multi coloured round boxes have bits and pieces in them, ribbons, tiny christmas baubles etc. I'm sure these will change as I use them and find the best way for me. 

Now, the curtains were abit of an experiment-or the tie backs were. It was just after K had her miscarriage and I so wanted to be making something but I had just put away the blanket I was making for her baby and couldn't face anything big. I decided I wanted a tie back for the curtains-I knew the curtains wont really be closing and that I just wanted something pretty. I was also fairly sure this was a practice so I just used an acrylic DK-I want to get something more substantial-and maybe that will be what I bring back from our (soon) holiday. Anyway, I decided to make these tie backs in a variety of colours-you cant see the back but they go into pinks and purples. 
 Again, as it was a rushed job I simply hung them onto the hooks which is why they dont hang quite 'right'. But i really like them and the colour that they bring to the room. 

Lastly, I wanted somewhere to sit but sadly I'm not in a position to go and buy a new chair simply for me to use on the odd occasion, however, we have some garden furniture so I decided to dig one out of the cupboard-the most comfortable one ofcourse!
I added my large hexagon blanket to add abit of extra colour to the corner and I'm ready to sit for all my worth!

 Well, thats what we've been up to, the other bedroom (guest bedroom) is nearly finished so I may share that in a few days-if you'd be interested..if I can still get this machine to work!

Be well..x

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Feeling sad

I want to apologise before I start this blog, it may be a little graphic, or may bring up feelings that are difficult so if you have had experience of miscarriage feel free to leave now.

In my last blog, I mentioned my daughter was pregnant. No longer. She went with her partner for the 12 week scan and were told there was no baby. As simple as that, no baby. She had to go to the hospital the next day to take some tablets to finish off the job. So, she went home, both of them distraught, she searched and searched the internet for reasons, then for miracles. She thought she'd found one but it was not to be.
A few days later, my daughter and her partner took themselves to the hospital for some medication that would expel the remains of her baby. I was called to the hospital, she was being so brave and refusing all pain relief and now she was in such pain. Her partner was desperate, "what can I do?" He asked her when nothing seemed to help. "Get my mum". So, that's what he did. I got to sit alongside her, I managed to get her to accept strong painkillers, convinced her being brave wasn't what she needed now.
Being brave is what she needs now.

I'm sorry if this upsets anyone, I decided when I started this blog it wouldn't be anything personal. It would be happy things after a particularly horrible time. This was meant to be a way of me celebrating my achievements, my makes, my happy things. But this is just too big a thing to ignore. I can't get my yarn out and concentrate, I can't take happy photos, because this feels like a horrible all encompassing time.
I haven't been a regular poster especially with our house move and internet issues, I'm not sure where to go with this now.

Thursday, 19 June 2014


I'm just dipping my toe...the last time I was here I was talking about being ill and house moves (I think)
Now I am better- for now, and we are all moved, which is a very good thing. I have to say it was probably one of the very worst days I've ever had, when D heard me saying this last night to a friend he was genuinely shocked and said it couldn't possibly have been. However, I stick by it, I wont go in to boring details but let's just say the removal people turned up at 9.45 in our original house and made their last delivery at 21.50, they were great but we just had so much stuff!

So, we are all settled but have been having internet problems, hopefully now sorted...also I had forgotten how to get on this page to upload!
The animals are all settled in, the cats are ok now-two of which are Persians and are quite nervous so it's taken a while. The chickens are also settled and have just recently had their first 'proper' outdoor explore..

As you can see we have plenty of greenery for them..for now-it took them less than a week to turn the area inside their run into a 'scorched earth' image as seen before at our previous house!
In other very exciting news....there's a grand-baby on the horizon-very exciting but early days yet, although I have started a large project of a cot blanket-now I've worked my way back on here I will take some photos to show 'you'..whoever 'you' are, maybe its just me after all..!

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Poorly Cleo cat...

 I'm not sure if I have mentioned it before, but we have a visitor, a feline visitor. We are looking after her while a family member is unable to-she should be here til about June/July. Now, our cats dont really mix with others as they dont go outside of the backyard unless they are supervised.
This is for a couple of reasons. Firstly when D got them, they were about 6 years old and had always been house cats so they have never really got used to it and secondly because they are pedigree cats, I am not entirely convinced someone wouldnt try to take them-we were burgled one and Cleo went missing, we were both devastated for an hour or so until she turned up, I was secretly imagining someone taking her in a pub and selling her to someone who thought they could breed her. Luckily she had not got far-infact only as far as the living room curtains...for a cat of very little brain she did very well!! 

There she is being all brave and seeing the nasty burglars off (snigger)

Anyway, back to the visitor. She doesn't like Cleo or indeed Slinky, but especially Cleo Because she is very nosey and also very friendly, new cat hates this and shows it every time she sees a very hissy and sometimes smacky way and on Thursday afternoon Cleo was at the rough end of another smack, no big deal she just lay back down and continued snoring.
But, when I came back a couple of hours later her eye was all gunky. I bathed it with cooled boiled water, she wasn't happy at all. By that night it almost (or indeed did) look like her 3rd eyelid was coming out, it was horrible and she looked even more miserable than normal!
The next morning we took her straight to the vet, he examined her (after we had poured her out of the cat box) and said it was possible the smack had done it, but that the eye was definitely damaged and had become infected but the infection was caused by her rubbing it. He has given her some daily drops and we continue to bathe it each day as well. Additional to that, she now has to wear a big cone on her head..which causes much hilarity around these parts, although we are very sympathetic and letting her get away with things not normally allowed round these parts.

And here she is just after the doctors-she has dye seeping out of her eye, shes not really radioactive!

I never even thought about it before but because of the cone not only is it difficult for her to walk through doors, cat-flaps and the like, its also very hard for her to get up steps-shes only tiny and she kind of has to jump and now the bottom of the cone gets in the way so she sort of has to leap with her arms stretched right out-it doesn't stop her from getting upstairs, she just does it in a more amusing way now! Another difficulty for the 'coned' cat is also eating, again, the cone gets in the we set up a special feeding station - its an upside down philladelphia cheese tub (empty) so that they food is high up so she can get to it..except she still uses the bowl and smears the food allover her new plastic accessory.....with the extra plus that she can sit for hours licking the stinky inside of her cone as she cant reach any of her furry bits now!

She is due to go back to the vet on Friday but the vet seemed to think she would heal well and be back to normal by then...but the cone stays til then!

Hope you haven't had to start wearing any plastic cones round your necks to stop you scratching...but if you have please post pictures!!

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

As promised...
I mentioned last time I'd been making some cushion covers for when we move-to go on the dining chairs. Well Ive very nearly finished one but seeing as today is the first day in over a week when we've had decent light to take pictures I thought I better go for it!
This is the pretty much finished cover-I'm in the process of doing the seams.
Not sure whats happened there but it looks like the picture is upside down! Ah well, you get the idea. I love the Dark blue and after speaking to D I think I will be doing the other 3 in dark blue as well. 

I have got nearly enough circles done for the next one and am loving the ease of the pattern, I am not usually able to crochet and do something else-eg chat to someone but this one, I can give a very good impression of someone doing this. 
Im not great at sewing in the ends as I go, I like to get a few done and then do them all-so I will choose 25 for the first side of the next cushion and do those before sewing them together. 

Other than my crochet I am still keeping busy with my seedlings. They are doing really well even if I do have far too many!
These are the courgettes, I think we have about another 6 plants at the same stage and this will be it for this plant-I read somewhere recently that 2 plants will do for the average family....hmm 
I have grown courgettes before and was really successful so I am not really too worried about them. 
I also started off doing 'just a few' tomato plants and ended up with 32 sprouting. I have disposed of some that werent really doing too well and we now have around 22 left. They are doing well but although they were planted at the same time as the courgettes they are much smaller (probably a good job as we are running out of window sill space!)

I have also planted some peas (some inside, some outside) but no real sign of them yet and some flowers-the sweet peas are doing well and will be potted on this week and some others that I have read are good for companion planting that are just starting to make an appearance. 
These are all in the hope that in the next few weeks we will be in our new home. If we aren't we are going to have a yard that is full of pots..and some very happy chickens!
Do you grow anything and maybe have some handy tips for me as a relative newcomer..?

Thursday, 13 March 2014

been awhile..

I think maybe I need to explain my long (ish) absence. The last time I posted we had just accepted an offer on our house and been accepted with our offer on what (may) is going to be our new house-I cant get too positive about it incase I jinx it all. We are still plodding along with this takes a while, although we saw our finances guy the other day and he said it could go through within 4-6 weeks, with that in mind and with my usual pessimism I'm thinking 8-10...who knows!

The other thing that has kept me away is that I have been! Not ridiculously ill, just ill...but it kind of dragged on and I was given medication that made me very sleepy and kind of 'I cant be arsed with anything'. Its something I have had before (kidney stones) so I knew when things were getting bad and when I needed help. It has also involved months of me feeling uncomfy and people saying "go to the doctors!!" in angry and concerned ways and then me saying "no, its not bad enough yet!" Then suddenly it was bad 'enough'. Im fine now, it looks like some of the stones have 'passed', I'll let you work out what that means but I also think some are hanging on as I still have a grumbly sort of ache. I am also still waiting for an appointment to go to the hospital for a scan to confirm I have got kidney stones...less said about that the better or I will get a bit grumpy.

Anyway, I have had a bit of a hiatus, simply because I spent quite a while not being able to sit up..then a while just feeling shattered followed by this last week of gradually getting myself back into it. I made a very small blanket for a friend of my daughter whos baby was born far too soon to make it and that in itself took it out of me -emotionally and physically. I didnt take a picture of it, but it was beautiful I think, I made it as pretty as I could in the short time I had and I am hoping it will have helped.

In my last post I mentioned I had started a new project for the 'new' to us house. I think I said I was making a 'runner' using this  brilliant pattern for our Poang  chair however, I have changed my mind and I have made two  5 x 5 squares that are currently being edged and will become covers for our dining chair cushions. My question is, bearing in mind I like my home to be a little different, would you do all four cushions with a dark blue 'frame' for the squares or would you use a different colour for each one? I have just gone to take some pictures and the camera battery is dead I PROMISE I will take some pictures and include on the next post...but, any thoughts anyone? I am liking the idea of different colours and my inital idea is to do one in ( look here ) meadow, one in a violet and the 4th in an oatmeal that I cant seem to find but that I have lots of...what do You think?

Thursday, 20 February 2014


What a few days!
We haven't had the bad weather lots of people have in the UK and I am really grateful for that. But we did have some bad winds which led to our back gate getting broken and seeing as D was out of the country I have had to fix it by wedging a wheely bin up against it to make sure Mrs P and Flossie don't get out-as they love to be nosey! I wonder where they get that from!

While D was away we had some news that we have been waiting for ages for-it looks like we might have had an offer accepted on a house-the week before, we accepted an offer on ours! Its very exciting but I won't really be able to accept it until we get the keys!
In celebration of that I started to crochet something and I promise I will get some pictures taken as soon as possible. I am not quite sure what it will be yet-I had thought about joining in with a 'granny a day' type project, but being realistic and saying I'd be doing the equivalent of weekdays only (5 squares a week). Anyway, we got the house news and D was away, so I was on my own...and I just wanted to get going on something for the new house so I went for it. I am following the pattern for 'flowers in the snow' from this lovely page:
and I have to say I am loving it. It is going to be a great stash buster as even a really tiny amount can be used for the very middle of the 'flower'. The main difference I have made is that the outer colour on my 'thing' is a very dark blue. Again I will be adding some pictures but I am having mega PC problems today-its probably me that's the problem. (I managed to mess with my Etsy settings and thought I had completely locked myself out...when I got my tech assistant to help me remotely-my daughter on her mobile phone, she had no problems at all she uttered the fateful words "you are using your email account to sign in with aren't you? Whoops, I was using the wrong email address...don't tell her will you!!)

I then was able to deal with the huge excitement that was the first query from a customer on my Etsy shop...I saw an email notification last night but it was very late so when I have eventually accessed my messages today I was feeling so excited...until I opened the photo she had sent for me to create for was knitted! I can knit, but I've not done it for years and to be honest I just prefer crochet-nothing wrong with kniting for all you fans, its just not for me :0)

So, now I am feeling a little deflated in the shop-type way, but am happy that people are accessing my little shop, I am also feeling more than a little excited but fearful about the house sale-only fearful about it maybe not going through, everything about the house is good and it will be 'our' first home after all this time (I moved into D's house so its always been just his, so this will be different)...right I better get going with my huge list of jobs but I think after the massive stress I just had due to my lack of techy-ness I need a coffee
See you soon!

Friday, 14 February 2014

 I found this list of questions here >

and thought it might be was until I managed to delete everything when i got to number 10!

1. What scares you?
Worms. I had a horrible experience when very young where, as a joke, my dad threw some soil at me when he was gardening, it went into my wellies and there was at least one worm in it. It has always affected me, not as much now but its still there.

2. What is your favourite word?
"Good morning"...from D

3. Who was the last famous person you saw in real life?
 I rarely spot anyone but when we were in New York in 2012 D tried to convince me that someone I couldn't see was Richard Nixon. It took me a minute or so to realise he's dead (1994) When I turned round it was a funny looking old gentleman with an afro- and thinking about it, it could have been Phil Spectre. However, I won because the next day, I did see someone famous, it took me ages to work out who it was though. It was Loretta Switt the actress. (she was 'Hotlips in MASH)

4. What was the last film you went to see and why did you choose that one?

Gravity. I heard a lot about it before it came out and it just sounded interesting.

5. How much cash is in your purse right now?
Probably just over or just under £5. I'm like the Queen I rarely carry any cash.

6. Which piece of clothing do you most regret buying?
Not sure, but it will be shoes, I often buy shoes hoping for the best and try to squeeze my weird feet in them!

7. What's the oddest compliment you've ever been paid?
I was teaching a three year old boy. He was doing something that he shouldn't and he saw me seeing him. He immediately stopped and smiled very sweetly at me and said "aaw you're nice you aren't you? Obviously a charmer.

8. Which book do you love so much that you want to buy a million copies and thrust them at people?
The Time Travellers Wife. It really drew me in and the depth of their feelings for each other was so moving.

9. What's your karaoke song?
I dont do karaoke but I do sometimes singalong when I'm on my own. The last time was yesterday singing with Adam Ant on TV...I was 13 again!

10. Were you named after anyone?
I was named after a song title. It came on the radio when I was at work one day and I mentioned that little nugget of information to my supervisor. Her reply was "were you? What's it called?"

11. If I gave you £1000 right now, what would you spend it on?

I would love to say something really silly and interesting to make me sound more interesting, but actually I would probably add it to our savings as we are in the middle of buying a new house..boring I know

Feel free to have a go at the questions, let me know if you do though-I'M very nosey!

I hope everyone is safe and cosy in this horrible weather. Stay safe

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Nothing much to see here..

Bit of a slow few days blog-wise. Been too dark to take pics really and I've been busy with other stuff so not much to post anyway...we're in the middle of some house stuff that takes time but isnt photogenic..and the weather generally does not lend itself to interesting walks or visits.

The chickens have been very funny this last few days, living up to their 'silly' name. We, I'm ashamed to say still have got our Christmas tree, Ive been trying to take some small bits off and burn them but its been so wet and we only have a chimenea to put it in so I was fighting a losing battle really. Anyway, we had a viewing on the house so I thought I'd better move it, what with it being February now :0/   
So I put the tree in the flower bed that the 'girls' have, (used to be a flowerbed until they and their predecessors adopted a scorched earth policy as D says), so there's lots of bed and not much flower now! Anyway, before I let the girls out of their run the other day I propped the tree against the compost bin. I went out a couple of hours later and they weren't outside which is very unusual whatever the weather. when I went out later it was starting to go dark so they'd gone to wasn't til the next day I realised they were boycotting outside. I stayed outside for a while, pottering and trying to tempt them out..but no, they were too busy staring at the tree! By late afternoon they had obviously had enough and went out, but not near the tree. Just in case anyone's worried, their food and water is 'inside' where they were waiting/sulking. They're back to normal now, even Flossie who nearly had a very embarrassing accident today when the open gate blew shut while she stood behind it so it nearly pushed her flat on her beak..luckily shes a fast mover and got out of the way by shoving Mrs P in the other direction.

Seeing as there's no pictures of anything productive, how about a picture of a sad looking cat

During the very hot summer he got far too warm so there were regular damping downs to be had...he didn't like it but I'm sure he felt better afterwards!

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Etsy shop

I have just added a link to my Etsy shop. I'm not sure if I will get any business this way but I thought it must be worth a try. I have only got three items listed right now but I am also able to offer items to order, starting with variations of the items listed.

The first item is a ripple blanket made for a relative of my partner to give to another family member. She was absolutely thrilled, telling the newborn that this was his 'forever' blanket. I was so touched and thought what a lovely way to describe the blanket that I have decided to use it in my descriptions.
I had been trying for a long time to 'crack' the ripple pattern so I was so happy to be able to manage it for such a special item. You can also see wobbly bear in this picture, he is kind of wedged, tummy sticking out in a grumpy manner. Even the beautiful rainbow he was sitting on didn't cheer him up!

The next listing two listings are the same pattern and layout but the different colour schemes make a big difference i think.

This is probably one of my favourite things I've ever made if I'm honest. Its quite a simple design and I'm always a bit unsure of my colour choices, but this one is just right, I love it. Different bear this time, one I made. She has a little smile and what is supposed to be a flower band on her head, shes a bridesmaid don't you know :0)

Lastly, the second flower blanket but this time a very girly one. Back to wobbly ted for this one, again he's wedged and looking a little happier this time. Again, I really like this one it's very fresh and I think having both the pink and lilac rather than just one colour throughout calmed this one down. I think just one colour may have been a little too giddy.

I hope you like them, have you got any favourite 'forever' things? I'd love to see, x

Friday, 31 January 2014

Rainy days

Yet another miserable day or maybe that's just me!
I started a project last friday full of good intentions-I'd probably be able to get it all done and finished over the weekend, it was only granny squares, how hard would that be!
Well, a week later it's still not done! On Saturday D offered me the chance to go out for the day, a drive out. I asked to go to the sea! so, off we set, then the rain came, it was truly torrential, the motorway was packed, flashing lights everywhere slowing us down. In the end we came off and ended up going for lunch instead, still a nice day, just not the one we had expected. Sunday, I dont even know where Sunday, or even Monday went. So I only had the chance to do a little of the project. Anyway, I plodded on, needing to do 30 squares, not a huge amount. I got about 26 done and decided now was the time to block them and sew the ends in to give myself a change. And here, some of them are:
When I was choosing the yarn, I had D help me and the brief was that I wanted shades of purple (we added a kind of washed out pink as well) but looking at them on this blue and white plate it looks much more blue. I do like it...but...I'm not sure and to add to that I have started joining them using a slip stitch and now I have got 8 joined I realise i prefer it with the seam showing if that makes sense-I have sewn it so it ends up with a flat face and i prefer the back...hmm there's very little chance of me being able to undo the joins, I could just make another 8 squares and start joining again, but that will mean I need to order more of the main colour....aaargh! I'll have to think it over, maybe have a chat with D-that often helps because he sits and nods and I talk it through and work out whats the best thing to do without any real input from him although without him listening its just not the same!

Anyway, today was so miserable I resorted to taking pictures of inside flowers. The rain was really coming down at the time, ignore the pot outside the window, that's what I'm trying to do!
Aren't they beautiful-the best 90p I've spent in a while! I got them just over a week ago and all the buds were tightly closed, now they're shouting out to be looked at! I got two tubs of these little daffodils and also a bigger pot of these:

I LOVE purple so these are just fantastic, again only a few pennies but so beautiful. I'll leave you with an even closer-up!
Be well