Tuesday, 2 March 2021

Marching in

 The weather was beautiful on Friday and Saturday so Mark turned over the borders.  The ground in this middle one was still quite water logged so hopefully the ground will start to dry off a bit now.  

I cut everything back in this middle at the end of last Summer so it does look rather bare at the moment.

The grass is still really spongy, if March is kind it will start to dry out soon.

I cut my white rose right down last year, fingers crossed it will come back!

He made a little friend while he was out there too, aren't little robins so sweet?

On Sunday we cleaned out my little blue house and washed everything so it's spick and span again

Molly was glad to see the sunshine too :-)

I'm glad we made the most of the sunny weather because yesterday it was really dull and very cold again, not  much above 3°C all day.   We still made it out for a walk though, we met Jenny and Arty at the park and after feeding the ducks and squirrels they were able to go on the play equipment as there weren't too many kids around.  Arty loves the swings, Bonnie not so much.

I finished my second Prairie Schooler Santa for the #12in21ornamentstitchalong just got it finished on the last day of February.

This one, like my January Santa, is from the Prairie Schooler book No. 62 and I will be finishing them at a later date.

Mark is finally off furlough again, thank goodness, hopefully things will start to improve with the work situation as places plan on opening up again and I think he is glad to be doing something again.  Of course it also means that I have time in the house by myself again, I've been craving some time on my own for weeks, lol

I've got a new sewing machine that i'm off to play with now.

See you soon

Saturday, 27 February 2021

Turned out nice again

It was half term last week and we had Oliver for a few days while Jenny was at work, I think he just wanted a change of scenery, and nanny provides nice food and snacks 😊

It was a decent day on the Thursday, quite windy but at least the sun was out so we went a walk over the fields and up onto Wychbury Hill.  As you can see the field was very muddy, good job we had wellies.

Once over the field the walk takes you up through a small wooded area, which again was very muddy. Someone decided it would be a good idea to walk in a particularly wet, sticky muddy puddle and got his wellie stuck!  Off came his boot and he landed in the mud, luckily he didn't fall in, but his one foot was submerged in mud so his sock had to come off before putting his boot back on, always fun and games with kids isn't it.

Once through the mud and at the top the view is fantastic, it was very very windy up there though.
 I didn't take any photos of the monument this time, it was far too windy to hold the camera steady.  Iv'e shared photos of Wychbury Hill and the Monument before though, last June, they are on this blog post if you want to read about it.  

We decided to keep going forward rather than re-trace our steps so we headed for that mound you can see in the middle distance.

Looking back, there's the monument in the distance, we are about halfway to the mound now

We saw some crows (at least I think they were), they seem to have found something to take away, wonder what it is?

We're at the top on the mound now and I recently found out that there is an Iron age hill fort within those trees beyond, something to explore another time.

Oliver needed a sit down and wasn't in the least bit interested in the fantastic views

It looked like we might be caught out by the rain on the way back, but luckily it held off.

Now we have to head down to those trees and into the field beyond to make our way back out onto the road and home

We are so lucky to have this lovely green space and quite a few public footpaths on our doorstep, I  know we really should make more time to enjoy them.

And in case you are feeling down because of all the restrictions still going on, I'll leave you with the reminder that was posted at the bottom of the hill.

See you soon

Sunday, 21 February 2021

Short and sweet today

This week was half term, Arty was still at nursery when Jenny went to work but we had Oliver for a few days, and tomorrow is a Bonnie day, so not much rest here!  

I haven't done much of anything since Thursday except prepare food, snacks and play games.  Kids take up so much time and energy!  They don't say it's a young mans game for nothing, I'm shattered!

We enjoyed it though and today we managed to get all the housework done by 1pm so I've been able to have some time on the sofa this afternoon and finish a stitched piece.

Some Bunny Loves You by Cottage Garden Samplings

Stitched on 32 count, one over one with the recommended DMC threads


Started: 1st February 2021 - Finished:  21st February 2021

Ohmygoodness, I absolutely LOVE it!

I found the frame in The Range for £1.99 and I think it's perfect for this piece.

I laced the stitching onto some card which I had put wadding on and mounted it in the frame, without the glass. 

Mark very rarely comments on anything I stitch or knit but even he said this is a perfect match😁

Because I finished this project I now get to start something new next week πŸ˜‰

That's it from me today, like I said, not a lot of crafting gone on this week, I did manage a lovely walk with Oliver on Thursday, (we haven't had a good weather day since then), but I'll save those photos for another post.

See you soon

PS:  Someone asked in the comments from my previous post if dunking my Elizabeth Jackson piece in tea and coffee had altered the colour of the threads.  I'm happy to say that it did not, I stitched her in DMC so I don't know if that's the reason why it didn't.

Sunday, 14 February 2021

Remember Elizabeth Jackson?

 Nine years ago this month, probably almost to the day, I started stitching on Elisabeth Jackson.

(Two photos from my blog post in February & March 2012)

The photo above shows how much stitching I'd done and was the last time I worked on her, March 2012.

Fast forward a good few years and I joined a group on fb where people posted their unfinished projects and asked if anyone would either finish it for them and send it back or alternatively you can put you unfinished project up for adoption.

I still had some affection for Elizabeth and didn't feel I wanted to put her up for adoption, so, I asked if anyone would be willing to finish her for me.  Lo and behold a lovely lady called Nadia said she would do it for me.  We didn't know each other so it was a bit of a leap of faith for me to pack Elizabeth up and send her to someone else to stitch on, but pack her up I did.

That was back around the end of July last year.  Nadia messaged me a couple of times letting me know how she was getting on but the last time I heard from her was around October/November and then with Christmas and New year to be honest I forgot about poor Elizabeth until Nadia messaged me to say she's done!

I received her back in the post last Wednesday, do you want to see?

Elizabeth Jackson 1824 by Samplers Revisited

Nadia did an absolutely brilliant job, she's a stitching angel!  The back is as neat as the front, you would never know that two different people had stitched on this, I'm so happy 😁

The lighting in the photos is not brilliant its making the fabric look slightly different in all of them, I would say the last photo is more true to colour now.   To tell you the truth, I didn't really like the colour of the fabric, never did, it had a yellow tinge, and that was probably one of the reasons she got put to one side.  So, when she arrived back I gave her a bath in tea and coffee, and put her in the oven to dry 😨

But it's ok, don't panic, she came out fine.  I'm still not totally in love with the fabric colour but it's toned down the yellow-ness and given her an aged look.  I like it.

 As soon as lockdown is over i'll take her to be framed.

I now only have one very long term WIP left, I won't be asking anyone to finish that one though as I know once I force myself to pick it up I will like working on it.

What's the longest WIP you have hidden away?


Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Wednesday walk and book talk

 It was far too cold to take Bonnie out for a walk on Monday, It kept trying to snow all day but never settled, the wind made it feel even colder.  We had planned on going to a local National Trust property, most have lovely grounds to walk in, although at the moment none of the houses or cafe's are open.   There was a smattering of snow yesterday morning and still very cold but the wind had dropped and the sun came out for a while.  I only went on a local walk, to the church at the bottom of road, back up and around the outskirts of the estate.  I like walking when the weather is like this, cold and crisp with a bit of Winter sunshine, in fact, I prefer walking in this kind of weather than in the Summer.  I always think when it's cold, you can wrap up against it and get warm and cosy, whereas when it's hot there is no way to get away from it.  That's my logic anyway :-)

I finished my latest audio book while walking, The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

I almost changed my mind about choosing this one but I'm so glad I didn't, it was an excellent listen, the narration was by Julia Whelon and she did a brilliant job of bringing the story to life, I could picture everything so well.  

Here's the blurb, (copied from Amazon)

Texas, 1934. Elsa Martinelli had finally found the life she’d yearned for. A family, a home and a livelihood on a farm on the Great Plains. But when drought threatens all she and her community hold dear, Elsa’s world is shattered to the winds.

Fearful of the future, when Elsa wakes to find her husband has fled, she is forced to make the most agonizing decision of her life. Fight for the land she loves or take her beloved children, Loreda and Ant, west to California in search of a better life. Will it be the land of milk and honey? Or will their experience challenge every ounce of strength they possess?

From the overriding love of a mother for her child, the value of female friendship and the ability to love again – against all odds, Elsa’s incredible journey is a story of survival, hope and what we do for the ones we love.

My knowledge of American history is near to none existent and I had certainly never heard of The Dust Bowl, I had to go in search of more information.  
The sign of a good book for me is when it makes you want to find out more, and this did, I love that. 

I gave this book 5 stars, and I don't do that very often.

My bedtime reading was another one from Matt Haig, The Humans.
If you have read anything from Matt Haig you will know that his books are all different, he must have the most vivid imagination and insight to come up with his subjects.

(The blurb from Amazon)

After an 'incident' one wet Friday night where he is found walking naked through the streets of Cambridge, Professor Andrew Martin is not feeling quite himself. Food sickens him. Clothes confound him. Even his loving wife and teenage son are repulsive to him. He feels lost amongst an alien species and hates everyone on the planet. Everyone, that is, except Newton, and he's a dog.

Who is he really? And what could make someone change their mind about the human race . . . ?

This one might not be everyone's' cup of tea but I really enjoyed it, there was a lot of truth about humans in those pages.

I keep a list of everything I'm reading and listening to on Goodreads, there is a link in the sidebar.

See you soon, stay safe and warm


Sunday, 7 February 2021

New knitting

The second pattern in the Year of Dishcloths was released on February 1st, this is the Amour dishcloth.  I had just enough pink cotton to knit this one

This one came out slightly bigger than the first one, but that could just be because of the different cotton I used.
I'm not going to use these this year, I've got a drawer full of knitted dishcloths and I like to choose a fresh one to put out each night.  I'm going to knit these throughout the year and have a nice little pile of new dishcloths for use next year

I've had this Stylecraft special DK in my stash for almost three years.  I bought it when I went away with Joanne and Bonnie to Great Yarmouth in 2018.  I ended up buying a new pattern because those I have are only for babies, I was able to buy a downloadable pattern on Deramores instead of waiting for it to come in the post.  The back is all done but I found all that knitting time made my tennis elbow pain flair up so I've put it down to rest my arm for a few day's

Yesterday the rain kept off all day, there was even a bit of sunshine so I decided to take the short drive to Haden Hill Park for a walk.  Everywhere is still muddy after the snow followed by all the rain but Haden Hill has tarmac pathways so there was no need for wellies.

There were lots of people walking about but it's quite a big space so it was ok, I spent a good couple of hours walking and listening to my audio book, it was nice to get out on my own for a while.

Take care