Monday, 24 May 2010

Crochet Summer Bag....and Giveaway

I first saw this idea at The Garden Bell and thought what a really cute bag. If you click on the link then you can read her post about where she in turn saw the idea. I took the pictures yesterday so a bit bright with the sun sorry I simply could not hide from it....shame.

I was determined to use up some more of the wool left over from making my knitted blanket. I keep finding more of it in my little sewing room and just when I think it has all gone I find yet...another ball of it!

I did find making the handles a little tricky as I was not really sure what length to make them. I added picot edging around everything.

I was not really sure how big to make the squares, and next time I make it a little smaller.

Beautifully modelled by Sophie.

I have put a bit of leftover plastic canvas in the base which I covered with some white felt, just to support it a little. Not sure if it should actually be lined on all sides. Something to thin about for next time.

500th Post Giveaway

Next time will come around very quickly as I have decided for a change to make another one of these for my 500th post giveaway instead of sewing an item. It is not made yet but the wool has been gathered together. If you do not want to use it for wool, sewing etc, then it would make a cute little handbag for the summer. So if you would like to enter then please leave a comment here. If you would like to feature a link on your blog to this giveaway for a second entry then let me know that you have done that so that I can keep everything fair. Entry for this giveaway will remain open until NOON on Sunday 30th May 2010 (UK time). So that I can announce the winner.

Right, off for some beauty sleep, not feeling quite so worn out today, must be the better weather perking me up a little.


Sunday, 23 May 2010

Kitten cuteness

Be warned, this post has an excessive level of cuteness!
Hopefully in a few months time.................

This little bundle of fluff will....................

be joining our little household. (on the right as you look at the picture)

All together now.....Aaahhhh!

Not sure what sex the kitten is yet, too early to be able to tell yet. There is a bit of a story to this....

We got Tiger nearly two years ago from Cat Protection and he has been a success story. He is very old and showing signs of age etc and Sophie did ask that next time would it be possible to have a younger cat. Tiger is very much his own cat and can ignore you for days. He is also a lovely old boy and we wonder if he is lonely. He sleeps a lot and stays nearby all the time, including coming out to watch us garden or on the decking......basically her is never far away from us.

We had always intended to find another rescue cat in the future, but then a friend said that her cat had had kittens. Hubby and I had a think about all the pros and cons and decided not to say anything to Sophie. Quite by accident Sophie brought up the subject of kittens, cats and notices when a new cat has appeared in the area.

So on Friday, after much discussion, we meet up at my work and followed my friend to her parents house which is on a farm. Sophie still had no idea and then said were we going to look at some chickens!!

So you can imagine the look on her face when suddenly a tiny kitten about four weeks old was put into her hands!! The look on her face was a picture. She was so gentle with them and listened carefully to what she was told about holding them. When we asked her to choose one she was a bit stunned and needed it explained that we were being serious. The first thing she said when the penny dropped was "will Tiger mind?"

She picked the one shown in the picture and it was the kitten that I liked too, although the one I was holding was lovely too and settled down in the palm of my hand and laid there, I do not have very big hands so you can imagine how small they were.

Eventually......we managed to pries Sophie away and drove home. Since Friday afternoon guess what the main topic of conversation has been about where Sophie is concerned?

That's right...............cute kitty talk.

Tiger does not take any notice of any of the other cats around where we live and we do not think that there will be problem, we have asked for advice on this and been told that older cats can in fact help younger cats to learn. Of course we shall keep our fingers crossed, Tiger will still be Top Cat in this house.

Roll on the next few weeks.xx

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Childs Play.........500th Post Yikes...

Lego - can not beat it for solving dreary wet Sunday afternoons.

The quilt I made for Sophie is an excellent mat for keeping all of the pieces under control. I love the fact that it is used all the time.

Much time and thought goes into these creations and Lego is one of Sophie's favourite toys. Also Mum and Dad can relive their childhood every now and then too. It is great have a child. What was your favourite toy?



Just realised that this is my 500th post, where on earth did they all come from. I shall be back with a giveaway later. I need to go and sort something out for it. Gosh 5oo posts of ramblings..........bit worrying really isn't it?


Monday, 17 May 2010

Garden Veggie update

The leaf salads are really coming along nicely and we may be tempted to sample something soon! It looks quite attractive as well.

We have only lost one plant and we noticed yesterday that even that plant was still trying to grow a little bit.

Sadly, the French beans are still not doing very much at all but I did see a couple of tiny green leaves so something may be taking place or I am nurturing some weeds! The tomato plants shown here are struggling on but Sophie's plants are doing well but I forgot to take any pictures with this batch, will catch them later in the week.

These flowering plants will hopefully attract some bees over the coming months.

Hubby has developed his anti-cat cover system and is pleased with the outcome! The radishes are coming along well too. Hopefully it will not be long before we can eat an entire salad fresh from our garden. Ooooh look, you can see our beloved decking in the background! Lets hope we can use it this year.


Sunday, 16 May 2010

ATC Swap parcel......

You may remember a short while ago that I was handed an invitation to join in an ATC swap. ladder. Drumming up any custom was difficult even though I thought that ATC's were quite popular, maybe just bad timing with every one's lives. Well I did get four ladies who were game and sent off my cards. I am a little frustrated that apparently one of the cards has gone AWOL and not arrived yet, so I am making another. I thought that I had made two spares but they have vanished! Anyway, here is the card sent to me by Donna over at Brynwoodneedleworks.

A lovely note card was popped in as well. Many thanks Donna for taking part and sending me this card.

I do not know if my swappers have had any luck in passing this challenge on or not but I would certainly like to have another go at making these cards. If you know of a swap or are planning one please let me know as I would like to sign up. I would love to join in.

Had a lovely day in the garden yesterday with the sun shining. I need to upload the pictures. Today we are off to a landscape garden centre to see if anyone can help us chose some plants to replace our low hedge which for some reason started to die off after Christmas and has not stopped doing this.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.


Saturday, 15 May 2010

Santa Claus Quilt Block

This is the second block that I have made for the second round of our Quilting Bee. It has now been sent on to the next person. It is a stylised Santa and was a bit tricky to put together but I got there in the end.

The block plus other ideas can be found at Yvonnes blog. There are several others that I am going to try out too. It is a lovely sunny day here to day and after a much needed lie in this morning I think some time out in the garden is needed.


Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Crochet Spring/Summer cushion

I have wanted to have a go at crocheting a cushion cover ever since seeing some lovely examples over at Attic24.

I used some lovely wool that I had left over from other projects plus some 100 cotton wool that I normally use for making dish cloths.

So over several weeks I have been making lots of squares, so I have been fulfilling my 20 minutes of crafting a day pledge.I am trying to keep up this pledge but often forget to post about it.

I calculated the size and how many I would need then stitched them together. A little wonky around the edges because the cotton behaved differently to the other wool.

I wanted to keep the colour light and summery.

I decided to make the other side of the cushion different, sort of two cushions in one. This enabled me to use up some more wool and by this time most of the white wool had been used up.

I crocheted the front and the back together using some purple wool, leaving a gap to put the cushion pad in and then crochet up the gap. I then decided that the edge needed a little something so I did some picot stitch using some other white wool. I think that you can see the edging in the picture.

This is the biggest crochet item that I have made and guess what? I still have some wool left.


Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Summer Scarf

You may remember that I was making another one of my 'Kelp' scarves in a lovely cream. This wool is acrylic but has a cotton feel to it. I wanted cream for the coming months as even summer days can be a bit chilly and really this scarf is not hot to wear. However it is just right on a nippy day.

'Rose' is modelling it very well here for me. it is just ordinary knit stitch on circular needles and is simply lovely to wear. I have enough wool to make another which I may well list. At the moment I have rather lost the will to list anything.

I have finished a couple of things since the weekend of marking and an ATC has arrived from one of my partners. So so photos to download and more posting tomorrow.


Monday, 10 May 2010

More grow your own.....

I forgot to mention these the other day. These are my peas which are hopefully going to climb all the way to the top of the canes and produce lots of lovely peas! Sunny day so being really optimistic here.

Generally I have very little success with tulips. They either do not pop up at all or manage to push themselves above ground and then get battered by a heavy down pour of rain. However, this year due to a rather nice Easter and light showers recently I have finally got a little show of Tulips to be proud of! Next target is to do the same next year as well. Lovely bright colour I think, really stands out.

There was someone who found all this talk of gardening just a bit too taxing was Tiger! When at full stretch he is almost the full length of this garden bench! He is sleeping rather a lot lately and seems to be finding it difficult to get around on some days, so we are keeping an eye on him. Could be the change in weather, us humans who have joint problems find this and so do some animals. He seems happy enough and eating plenty.

Well my marking is now done and the folders that needed sending off have gone, I hope nothing gets lost but i left it in the capable hands of the exams officer, now we just need to wait.

I am quite tired after having no weekend and for some unknown reason I was wide awake at 5am this morning! Needless to say I do not feel quite so awake now, so I am off to do a little bit of work then collapse in front of the TV for a bit.


Saturday, 8 May 2010

Grow your own....

During the Easter holidays we decided to convert part of the back garden into a little veg patch. We have been thinking about this since last summer after my success with some salad bits and having visited by Sister-in Law's allotment in Seaford. We really needed to wait until now due to other commitments. This is on the right hand side of the house and gets sun light but not too much.

These beds are already raised so we did not want to make them any higher. Hubby used the leftovers from making the decking last summer. Yes, last summer, where has the time gone! We made them to fit in the gap and to fit the cloches that we bought from a local garden centre. This cloche has radishes, tomato plants, some garlic just outside the cloches and various herbs behind it, plus carrots.

This cloche has some french beans (which are not doing very much at the moment) and of course my winning salads that you can see in the picture. This photo is about two weeks old so they are much bigger than this. Not long to go before Sophie can pick her own salad. Sophie really enjoyed being able to do that last year. Behind these cloches running along the fence is my blackberry bush which is doing very nicely and has survived my amateur pruning. Not killed it yet! My loganberry which I thought I had sacrificed for the fencing last year has re-sprouting in another part of the garden so my luck is in. I have had that plant for over 10 years and I have always got a lot of fruit from it. It just pops up where it feels like.

My apple trees are doing really well this year. Last year they tried to blossom but the wind and rain had other ideas. This is just one section of one tree and all four look like this, so hopefully we will get more than one apple this year. It certainly looks very pretty anyway.

This clematis is something of a drama. It has had to be moved twice and 'died' three other times! However, I have somehow managed to bring it back from the brink (one incident was due to hubby giving it the wrong plant food- he is not allowed to touch it anymore!) and I am delighted that it is covered in lots and lots of buds!!

I am going to take some up-dated pictures tomorrow of the garden, it has been raining today, the veg needs it though.

I have got one batch of exam marking done, one more big batch to do by Monday.


Thursday, 6 May 2010

Starter Block - Christmas Quilt

This logo can be found in my side bar at the moment. My first Around the World Quilting Bee Quilt has not yet arrived back to me but I decided to sign up for round two. This is a similar idea but with a Christmas theme. Ouch! I normally leave it until at least August present planning before I type that word on my block, never mind.Here is my opening starter block. Use my faithful log cabin although I did applique the shape in the middle.
Hopefully in this picture you might be able to see I that I used gold metallic thread and one of the built in stitches on my sewing machine. What do you think?
I hope to be even more adventurous with this quilt and I have already cut out hopefully the next two blocks. I have decided to make a few extra blocks for myself this time as well because I keep saying that I am going to make a table runner when I get a decent sized kitchen table. Well this year I will have that chance due to the kitchen re-fit!!
My first quilt is now moving on to the next stage but I have lost track as to where it is. I shall post it once it arrives.
Well, all of the admin work is now done for the courework and the deadline is tomorrow, so my weekend is going to be filled up with paper and adding up marks!
Plenty of tea and chocolate biscuits needed to keep me going I think.
Bye for now.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Bags of colourful fun!

I wanted to try out a new idea for work and over the past few weeks a bag project has been taking shape.

Several fabric choices were given and themes for the bags could be whatever the group wanted as long as it worked, fitted on the bag shape and was created as independently as possible using a range of techniques and materials .

This is my example version. It is made out of a good 100% cotton fabric in white. The double draw string is also made out of 100% cotton cord which has been very good to cut and sew with.

The design was not at all planned and sort of evolved as the project planning developed.

I started off with the flowers which are made of fleece and are left overs from a little fleece top that I made Sophie when she was about 3 years old. I then appliqued the flowers on to the bag using straight stitch. We also looked at how we could add further texture with, say buttons etc. I moved on to adding green fleece leaves and with these I just stitched a straight line of sewing just along the centre to attach them to the bag and give a 3D effect.

I wanted to show the group another way of adding colour and design to their work. So I introduced fabric pens and how to fix them with an iron so that they do not fade or wash out. The pens were used for the stems and spiral bits. They really liked the idea of the pens and after a warning of not to over-do their use on the bags they set to work quite happily.

Sophie has her keen eye on this bag and is really hopeing that it will be her new PE bag for September, which is about when she thinks I will not longer be needing it! It is a little big for her but she looked me in the eye and said "Not to worry Mummy, I will grow into it!" That is what I call determination!!

I did make another one using only fleece which I will show next time.
Off to do some more marking.
Take care

Monday, 3 May 2010

Snowed under...............

Every post needs a piccy.
.............not by the white fluffy stuff either, but work I am afraid. So I am still here, aliens have not been sighted just piles of exam work to mark and all of the associated paperwork. Guess what? This coming week is going to get worse!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have a few things to post about and I will try to do that this week, keep your eyes peeled.

Hope you all had a good long weekend, the weather was good here in sunny, if a little nippy, Cornwall.

Take care

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