Thursday, 29 August 2019

Hello Walter

I have swapped a day at work so have today off and will be working all day tomorrow instead so I thought I do a quick post.

Meet Walter Bear 🧸


I came across this free pattern on Ravelry some time ago and I got all but one arm and his ears made up, his eyes were in and the stuffing of the finished body parts was done, then it got put in a bag and I forgot all about it.  I have no idea why I abandoned it when it was so close to being finished, more than likely something else grabbed my attention.

Every so often Oliver would ask me if I's finished it so a few days before we went to London I dug it out and over two evening I finished it off.

The hardest thing about this little bear was the nose, I think I stitched it on about three times before I thought I looked ok,

I think I pulled a little too much when shaping his face, you can see on the photo that it look pulled, but in real life it doesn't look that bad, must be the angle of the photo.

I thought he looked a little naked so knitted him a cardigan too, I couldn't find a free pattern for a little jumper, if anyone know of one please let me know.


I put Walter in a gift bag and gave him to Oliver when we were on the train, he loved him and said that he loved his nose, lol the one thing I struggled with!

Forgot to say, the pattern is by Janine Holmes on Ravelry, and I used Drops cotton, in case you are interested :-)

See you soon
-X-

Saturday, 24 August 2019

Lovely Lively Brighton

I had a few misgivings as we arrived in Brighton.  First impressions were of  a rundown seaside town well past it's hey day, a little bit scruffy and lots of graffiti.  But we both changed our mind once we had got a chance to have a wonder around.  
There are absolutely loads of shops in an area called The Lanes, just a short walk from the front, lovely independent shops selling everything from jewellery and clothes to records and plants.
  
You are spoilt for choice for places to eat too, Chinese, Indian, Greek, Turkish, Thai, Japanese as well as the usual pub grub and of course fish and chips.  We tried one of the Greek restaurants on Tuesday night and it was wonderful.

The weather was kind to us too, although from these photos you would think otherwise!

It was late afternoon when I went a little walk down to take a look at the Bandstand and the sea, It was quite warm but very very windy, that's whats whipping up those waves.  
I love watching the sea but I wouldn't like to have been as close as these kids!



Our hotel was right opposite this beautiful Victorian Bandstand, built in 1884 it is said to be one of the finest examples of Victorian Bandstands surviving in England today. 
It is rather lovely, don't you think?


Another building from the Victoria era is the Grand Hotel, It was built in 1864 and still looks very impressive 
It was at the Grand Hotel In 1984 during the Conservative Party Conference an assassination attempt was made on the then Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, she of course survived but the bomb killed five other people.


The Upside Down House on the beach, It looks rather quirky but we didn't go in.


Brighton has a pebble beach, so this pool is a great idea for the kids


Looking back from the Pier


The i360 viewing tower is on the seafront, and despite the fact that I not like heights you should all know by now that I have to go on the highest things, lol




The pod takes you up 450ft, you don't even realise you are moving.






The building of the Royal Pavilion started in 1787 it was built in three stages and was a seaside retreat of King George IV.  The rooms all have Chinese or Indian themes, I was taken with the dining room and the staircase which was wood but painted to look like wicker, very clever, and must have taken an age to do.
There is a no photographs inside the rooms, rule but I did manage to take a sneaky one of the dining room before I was told off by a rather stern guide :-0

That chandelier is HUGE, there is a dragon at the top which is carved from wood and is 10ft long.

There is more information HERE if you are interested.






We also took a trip on one of the tour buses which was quite interesting, funny thing happened though, the tour was advertised as £14 each, ( but you do get three tours), we got on and paid by card, we were charged £20 for the two of us.  When I mentioned it to Mark and he looked at the ticket we had been charged the pensioners price😮😮😮 Cheek!! 

I've got another two years before that privilege, we had the last laugh though because it saved us £8😁😁😁 

We didn't go straight home on Wednesday, Mark had to go to his office to pick up drawings, (the firm he works for is based in Portsmouth), and from there we decided to stop in Marlborough, Wiltshire, we stopped off there a few years back when we visited Stonehenge, it's only a little town but has some nice shops and pubs.  

Mark has the rest of the week off too so I put him to work in the garden yesterday morning moving some plants and emptying the window boxes, cleaning windows and putting weedkiller around the drive, while I gave the house a good clean, we were all done by early afternoon so I was able to sit and do some stitching on Arthur's Christmas stocking, (I will get around to taking a photo this weekend).  Today we have emptied the shed and evicted the spiders and put everything back nice and tidy, I have also given my little blue house a good clean and washed the curtains and the rug, It was too hot to sit in there this afternoon though, but it's all clean now for me to do that tomorrow.

I offered a book on my last post, there was only Tina (no blog) who said she would like to read it so Tina, it's yours.  I will message you later but if you are coming to stitching on Wednesday I will bring it with me.

Another long post, I seem to have an inability to keep things short, lol

Have a lovely Bank Holiday weekend if you are in the UK, it looks like August will go out with a heatwave so being British we will all be making the most of it 😎😎 because it could all change in an instance!

See you soon
-X-

Sunday, 18 August 2019

A visit to one of my most favourite places

Oliver will be in year 2 when he goes back to school in a few weeks time and they are going to be learning about Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot, Jenny said it would be good if he could actually see where things happened so we planned a day trip on Saturday as a surprise for him.  

He loves history programmes and is into reading the Horrible History books, so where better to go than London.  We had a great day, just the three of us, we can get the train straight though to Marylebone from our local station, it takes a little over 2 hours, but it seems like no time at all when you are on a train.

Apart from the sights, he loved the Lego shop (of course!!) and the M&M shop, Jenny had booked us a table at the Rainforest Cafe for tea, which is a fun experience, it's decked out as you would imagine, like a rainforest, complete with sounds and animated animals.  I thought the food and drinks were on the expensive side, (£4.50 for a small bottle of coke!!) and the cheapest adult meal was £20.  
But having said that, the food was good and the portions quite large and I suppose you are paying for the atmosphere.  Oliver loved it, so that's what counts.

Our first stop had been Buckingham Palace to see the changing of the Guard, but after waiting for around half an hour security came and put a board out saying that there was no changing of the guard ceremony that day (boo).  I did feel sorry for an American couple who were getting on a boat this morning so wouldn't get to see it, they said that the people at home wouldn't believe they had come all this way and not got to see it!

There were things we didn't get to do, the London Eye didn't have tickets available for any times we could do that day and we didn't have time to climb the Monument, we have already talked about taking him down again soon and we will get tickets in advance next time.













It was a long day, we got on the train at 7.20am and did't get home until 11pm, needless to say I needed a lie-in this morning!

I have managed to get into the garden for an hour this afternoon just to give the grass a quick mow and tidy up.  Lots of things are now passed their best, but the roses are still giving flowers.  We have had quite windy weather and it's blown my Sweet Peas over, I keep twisting them back but they keep getting blown again!


My one Dahlia that didn't get eaten my the slimies





I had to pop to Lidl this morning and came back with a blueberry plant.
I've no idea how big they grow, Mark planted it up in this pot, it's quite a large pot so should be ok for a while


We've both got next week off work, we are going to Brighton for a few days (until Wednesday), I don't know what we will do for the rest of the week, I would like to have at least one day at home doing nothing but stitching, I haven't picked anything up all week and I really need to crack on with Arthur's Christmas stocking.  It's Bank Holiday a week tomorrow, so it will be a nice long weekend to tag onto our week off, then it will be September, you can already feel a change in the air in the mornings.  
Anyway, this post is already longer than I planned, (will my posts ever be short, lol)

I'm off to have a nice long soak in the bath and start a new book, oh before I forget, I have just finished See You in September, by Charity Norman, I bought the book at a book sale and I will put it in the charity bag to pass on, unless someone would like it?  I really enjoyed it so if you think it's one you would enjoy please leave a comment saying so and I will send it to you.  
(If you look on Amazon or Goodreads you can see if it's something that appeals to you)

If more than one person wants it I will put the names in a 'hat' next Sunday.

Right, i'm really going now, lol

See you soon

-X-

Monday, 12 August 2019

Look whos two

Two years ago today this beautiful little girl came into our lives, she is such a happy smiley little bean, she makes us all laugh with her funny little ways.

HAPPY 2ND BIRTHDAY BONNIE MAY

I hope you are always as happy and smiley as you are today beautiful girl 💖


Mummy and Daddy made her cake, didn't they do well, and by the look of that smile Bonnie approved too :-)


 See you soon
-X-

Sunday, 4 August 2019

A wonderful day out

We gave the Mums and Dad's a day off yesterday and took all three grandchildren to the zoo for the day.   There is only nine months between Bonnie and Arthur so the practicalities of pushchairs and car seats and all the paraphernalia that small humans have means that I have never had both of them together.  My car isn't big enough to hold three car seats and two pushchairs so for our trip yesterday we did a car swap with Joanne as she has a seven-seater.

The weather was kind to us, it was warm but not too hot to walk round and the kids were really well behaved, we encountered no tantrums.  But it did take both me and Mark to look after the two little ones, they had reins on when they wanted to walk about,  but goodness they might be small but they are fast!!

The zoo is very close to us so they have all three been many times, Joanne has a yearly pass so they are pretty frequent visitors but they still enjoy seeing all the animals and we had a great time.

Bonnie letting Arty have a go at blowing her bubbles



Big brother giving telling him how it should be done :-)



Dudley zoo no longer has elephants just this statue which stands just opposite to where they used to live.


We saw the parakeets up close



And the Ring Tailed Lemurs - This one was quite happy to pose for several families to take photos before he thought he's done his bit :-) 




We saw the new cute baby camel


With his not so cute raggy mum!


We saw the chimps, which I still find very weird


 But Arty was particularly fascinated with


He was also in awe of the lovely gently giraffes 


But Bonnie wasn't so sure of the Sea lion - he was big, not sure you can see in this photo just how big he is.  He does look very much like a lion don't you think?  he even has the mane.
Isn't nature strange.


We had a picnic, which involved more running round after Arty than sitting down, lol


We took silly photos





And enjoyed ice creams



But I only managed to get one photo with all three of them together, just as we were leaving.

They each chose a stuffed animal from the shop on the way out, because you can't go out for the day without coming home with a treat, can you :-)


I thoroughly enjoyed our day with these three little people, they really are a joy, I love them so much, my whole world is in that photo above 💕💕💕 

I think the mums and dads had a good day too,  it's not often they get to have a whole day child free so they really appreciated it, although both of them said they didn't know what to do with themselves at first, lol

See you soon
-X-