Thursday, 31 December 2020

A brand new year awaits

 There's been a frenzy of cleaning going on here these last two days.   I like all the Christmas decorations down, packed away and back in the loft by New Year's Eve.  As much as I like to see all the Christmas decorations I'm ready to be rid of the clutter by the end of December ready to start the new year.

I'm not going to do a round-up of my crafty year, everything is here on my blog and is there for anyone to look back at, should you even want to :-)

I do however have one more finish for the year and it's one I've been promising myself I would do for a good few years.  I finally finished a pair of socks!


I could have done better with the matching but who's going to see that once they're on?  I'm just glad that 2020 was good for something πŸ˜‚

I didn't struggle too much with the heel and picking up stitches, and I'm happy that I have no hole where the stitches were picked up.

You can see they need blocking, the crease is where I had them folded.

I'll definitely plan on making more in the future :-)

I suppose It's just worth noting that our borough, like many others, has just entered tier 4.  None essential shops will once again be closed.  We can only hope that things will start to improve in the coming year, surely things can only get better?

Thank you to everyone who has read and taken the time to comment on my blog this year and throughout my December blogging too, I still get excited to see a comment pop up and do love to read all of them, so thank you.

So that's it for another year, one we will remember for sure.

Happy New Year to you all, make it a good one πŸ˜€

πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰

-X-

Monday, 28 December 2020

The one before the big one

 Another December birthday yesterday, mine :-)

Yes, next year will be a big one, but for the rest of this year and most of the next I will be enjoying the last year of my fiftiesπŸ˜‚

The children spoilt me yet again, they do put a lot of thought into their gifts and buy things that are perfect for me.


In case you didn't spot it in the photo above, look at one of the things Jenny bought me, The Meadow by Bothy Threads...Eeek! I've looked at this kit for so long.  Sharon at my local needlework shop stitched it a few years ago and has it hanging in the shop and every time I go in I admire it.   I probably won't start it just yet but it will definitely be one to stitch in 2021


Included in the advent swap that I did with my lovely friend Jo were some things for me to open on my birthday.  

Thank you so much Jo, I absolutely love everything πŸ˜€

There is one more family birthday today, my brother's.  He is seven years older than me so you could say that I was his birthday present all those years ago, lol.  We were very close when we were younger, I used to follow him everywhere and he would let me tag along with him and his friends.  We don't see each other very often now but he is still the one I can relate to more than either of my sisters.

When I was younger I used to think it was a bit pants having a birthday so close to Christmas, I tended to get presents that were for Christmas and birthday.  Having two of my daughters born in December I made sure that never happened with them, they always had, (and still have) a proper birthday with birthday presents wrapped in birthday paper, (very important to someone with a birthday close to Christmas).  I don't mind that my birthday is so close to Christmas now, when I was at work it meant that I never had to work on my birthday either, ha ha.

I've been stitching away on my Waxing |Moon Designs January sampler over the last couple of days

Do you think I made this happen πŸ˜„


I know a lot of people hate it, but It just makes me so happy to see snow 😁☃☃☃

I hope you are still enjoying what's left of the festive season, now made even more festive here by the snow :-)

See you soon

-X-

Saturday, 26 December 2020

23rd & 24th December - Technical problems

 I didn't mean to just disappear before the end of Advent, the phone charger lead I use to transfer photos from my phone to my laptop just wouldn't connect, grrrr.  It still won't play nicely so I've had to upload them to google photos instead.

I hope you all managed to have a lovely Christmas day despite it not being the one that most of us had planned.  Our morning started with a trip to both grandchildren's houses to drop of the presents that Santa had left at nanny and grandad's.  We stayed long enough at each of their houses to watch them open presents then it was back home to carry on with the dinner.  We delivered Stevie and Darren's dinner at around 3pm along with their gifts, listening to The Queens speech in the car on the way, (I thought it was quite moving this year).  Stevie and Darren's isolation finished on Christmas day but we still only dropped off at the door, then it was back home to have our dinner.  It's the first time that it's been just me and Mark for Christmas dinner!  I expect that was the case for quite a lot of people this year, it was very very strange, but, it did mean we could just clear the things away and sit down and watch tv for the rest of the afternoon/evening, something I can't ever remember doing on Christmas day.

Here is a catch-up on the advent's I missed posting, day's 23 and 24.

I'm looking forward to starting to add them to my blanket but for now they are all sitting on my coffee table so that I can admire them for a while longer :-)

Jo and I also exchanged a 100g skein on Christmas Day, she also included some other lovely goodies to open too.

Thank you so much Jo, I love everything and really enjoyed our advent swap :-)

I also did a Christmas Day 100g skein with my Instagram advent partner, Lisa.  She gifted me a lovely Nora George yarn.


I feel so spoilt with all these lovely minis and yarns to use next year :-)

I realised that I didn't share Bonnie's and Jacob's Christmas ornaments with you either, this is them all fully finished, just in time.


Today I managed to get out for a walk and up to mums for an hour, the rest of the day has been spent sitting and stitching.  I haven't done any knitting or stitching for over a week because of all the preparations, but I plan on putting my feet up this coming week and giving myself some time off to do a little of what I want to do.

I know some more areas of the UK went into tier 4 recently which means they are in lockdown again, we escaped that this time and remain in tier 3 for the time being.  It looks like New Year is going to be more of the same for all of us, not something we expected after all this time is it, but it is what it is, I think we are all getting used to going nowhere now!

Anyway, I hope you are all staying safe and up-beat and making the most of things.

See you soon

-X-

Tuesday, 22 December 2020

22nd December - 38 years ago today

 Yep, another December Birthday.

Today is my eldest daughter, Jenny's 38th Birthday, and you still get a birthday cake when you're 38, even it its one where the icing has spread a  little too far, lol

It tasted nice anyway


We did the last of the food shopping this morning, Mark came with me as we had to get Stevie's too.  To say it's this near Christmas the shops and the town were fairly quiet, quiet with not much Christmas spirit really, I don't think anyone is feeling it this year.  We were back home just after lunch time and after having something to eat I got the last bits of presents wrapped then it was a quick trip to Jenny's to drop of her cake and present.  Mark cooked tea while I was gone, (the second time this week!) and after that was eaten It was a trip to Morrisons to pick up the Christmas day food Stevie had ordered.  On the way back I dropped the shopping we had done for them earlier in the day.  Safe to say it's been a very busy day and I'm heading up to bed as soon as I hit publish on this post.

Has anyone tried these Winter drinks?


I don't generally drink squash, I'm not a fan of cold drinks.  In the mornings I drink water but it has to be warm, I top cold tap water up with boiled water and drink it warm, even in summer, I know, I'm weird, It's been said before, lol.  Anyway, seeing as it is recommended that these are drunk warm I thought I'd give them a try.

Out of the two I prefer the Vimpto one. The Ribena one is not much different to normal Ribena to be honest, where as the Vimpto has more of a subtle mulled wine taste with a definite hit of cinnamon.  I'll definitely get some more before that one disappears off the shelves.

Two more lovely advent's left to open, hasn't it gone quickly?


After all the running around today I'm planning on a quieter day at home tomorrow.

Take care, see you tomorrow
-X-

Monday, 21 December 2020

21st December - One year ago

 It hardly seems a year since Jacob's traumatic entrance into the world.

2020 hasn't been the best year for anyone and Jacob has missed out on all the baby classes, swimming and socializing with other babies because of all the Covid restrictions, but despite that, he is a very happy contented baby.  Even though he didn't get chance to meet lots of people and other babies he has taken really well to nursery and goes with no fuss or bother.


I know he doesn't know it's his birthday but It's a shame he couldn't have a little party with his cousins and the rest of the family today.

I had to pop into town for cat food today, I was expecting it to be busy but it was fairly quiet considering how close we are to Christmas.  I will do my supermarket shop tomorrow, I don't need much as I've been putting extras into my shopping for weeks and no one will be coming round, I do have to get shopping for Stevie and Darren though as they couldn't get an online slot this late, I'll drop theirs off doing a 'knock door run', lol .  Mum also needs a few extra bits as none of us will be venturing to the shops unless we have to.  

Each year I buy a metal tin and empty my purse every Thursday of whatever money is left from the previous weeks shop, (except for copper now).  

I didn't expect there to be a lot this year because when the plague started I reverted to paying by card for everything but when I opened it this morning as was pleasantly surprised to find that there was £167.53.  Not bad considering.  This will be more than enough to buy some extras this week, anything I have left will go into the new tin for next year, (which I've already bought because they seem to be hard to get hold of come January and I'm trying to be super organized πŸ˜‡).

Can you believe there are only three more days of advents left!

Take care, see you tomorrow

-X-

Sunday, 20 December 2020

20th December - The stocking is done!

 It's a late one posting tonight.  I've just sat down for a cuppa and some well deserved pudding after having a soak in the bath.  

 I was determined that today I would make up Jacob's Christmas stocking, and I did!  It took quite a while and a lot of swear words, but it's done, finally.  It's not perfect but it will pass as long as you don't inspect it too closely.



Ta dah


The back is just plain red upholstery fabric that I also used for Oliver's seven years ago, and I still have loads of it left.


Now all four of my grandchildren have their own Christmas stocking made by me :-)  That'll be a talking point in Christmases to come when they are all grown up.  I do like the thought that they will all have something made by my hand to remember me by.

I will have a little moan though.  These charts and their charms are not cheap and when it comes to making them up Shepherd's Bush does not provide a pattern, I think there are very brief instructions on their website but they are virtually no help.  The first two I made I went to a local sewing shop and the very nice owner talked me through making it up, this one and the one I made for Arty last year I went solo with the help of watching Vonna's tutorial a few times.

If you haven't seen the other stockings and would like to you will find them HERE. (scroll down a bit) HERE and HERE

This morning I come downstairs and there was a card in the kitchen, I thought someone had put a Christmas card through the door but when I opened it....


Oops!  I forgot, again. 😳  
34 Years today.  What year do you get your long service medal πŸ˜ƒ

Not many more lovely advents left to open now, here are today's


Take care, see you tomorrow
-X-

Saturday, 19 December 2020

19th December - Well that's Christmas Day cancelled then

 So Boris has cancelled Christmas this year.  Before his announcement our Christmas day had already been cancelled.  My youngest daughter, Stevie, and her fiance, Darren had invited us to have Christmas dinner with them this year as it was their first Christmas in their new home.  But, Stevie called last night to tell us that Darren had tested positive for Covid.

He isn't too bad with it, thank goodness and Stevie is not showing any symptoms, although she has been for a test today, I doubt the results will be back for a couple of days though, fingers crossed she will be able to avoid getting it too.

So Christmas day will be a little different.  Stevie had already ordered the food and was due to pick it up on Tuesday evening.  We will now pick that order up and cook Christmas dinner and then do a doorstep meal delivery to them.

I daresay the new rules have scuppered a lot of plans for people, there really does seem no end to it, at this rate there will be no jobs, shops or business left, It's all very worrying.  

To think that in the Springtime we all thought this would be over by Christmas! (yeah, they though that about WWII)

I'll be consoling myself with stitching and knitting seeing as we can't meet up, how about you?

Speaking of knitting.  I am still working away on my (not so strictly) socks.  I'm on the foot part on both of them so the end is in sight!


I've decided these will be for Mark as they look a bit manly and I want a pretty pair :-)
He has tried them and they do fit.

So, here are today's beautiful minis, love them all


Tomorrow I plan on making up Jacobs stocking, so, if you hear cussing it will be me 😬

Take care, see you tomorrow

-X-

Friday, 18 December 2020

18th December - 2021 stitching plans

 I will be carrying a couple of stitching projects over to the new year, It would have been nice to enter 2021 without any stitching WIP's, but that was never going to be a reality.  That won't stop me planning what I would like to stitch in the coming year though.

I sorted through my charts and came up with some that I would love to get done in the next twelve months.  

My fingers are itching to get started on Happy Christmas by Prairie Schooler.  I saw this finished on Misty Pursel's floss tube channel a while ago and had to pause the video to go and buy it I loved it so much.  I have the fabric and floss to get started.


Some Bunny Loves You by Cottage Garden Samplings is a chart I've had for a while and it would be nice to get it stitched ready to display in February, not sure if that is doable, we'll see, I have fabric and floss at the ready. 


 I first saw Teresa Kogut's Curious Bunny made up into a pillow on someone's blog, (sorry, can't remember who's), and loved it.  I loved it even more when I found out that you could purchase the chart as a pdf :-)


Stevie bought me this PS chart last year and I kitted it up right away but never got round to stitching any of the Santa's.  I really would like all of these hanging on my tree by next Christmas


And last but not least, a Waxing Moon chart that I've had for so long I can't remember when I got it.  I also have the Autumn and Summer charts in this series, I wonder if I could manage to stitch all three next year πŸ€”  I have the fabric and the threads all ready for this one.


So those are my stitching plans for next year, of course any plans are subject to change should something else take my fancy ;-)

Have you started to make any crafting plans for the new year?
~~~~~~~~~~~~
Here are the lovely advents from today :-)


Take care, see you tomorrow
-X-

Thursday, 17 December 2020

17th December - Christmas chocolates

Buying a tin of chocolates is a must at Christmas, I don't know if this is a tradition particular to the British or not, perhaps someone will tell us in the comments?  But, If you live in the UK you will see tins of chocolates appearing in the supermarkets from August.  


I bought a tin of Quality Street and a tin of Roses quite a few weeks ago now, I bought the Emma Bridgwater limited edition tin of Roses because I liked the tin, no idea what I will use it for later, but I liked it, it's more like they used to be when I was growing up, before they started putting them in plastic tubs,


Something else we only do at Christmas time is buy a TV guide.  
I don't watch TV, I watch only what I want to watch on catch-up, we have Netflix if we want to watch a film or a series but it's nice to see what's on over the holiday.  I'll be having a browse through this at the weekend to see if there is anything I fancy.


Here are today's lovely minis, not many days left now.


Take care, see you tomorrow
-X- 

Wednesday, 16 December 2020

16th December - Plans for my Advent minis

 It's just rained and rained all day today, a perfect day to stay in and get some more things crossed off the list.

I wrapped two more piles of presents, I put my audio book on and they seemed to get done in no time, so another two sacks ready for Santa to deliver :-)

This afternoon I put some Christmas films on and sat down to finish Jacobs stocking, I'm so glad that it's all stitched now just (just!!) the making up to do, I plan on tackling this on Saturday, I have everything except piping cord and bias binding which I'll get tomorrow.

I was sorting through my advent minis this morning and remembered that I hadn't shown you my mitred square blanket in a while.  This is where I will be putting my lovely advent minis in the coming months.


 
I love everything about this blanket, it just makes me smile whenever I look at it :-)

I keep it folded in this basket along with all the minis I have yet to use and it sits in corner of my bedroom.  When I have knitted a square the remainder of that mini then gets put in another basket.  As yet I haven't used any one more than once, but I might if I think it will look ok.


I'm using one of Ellie's designs, (Crafthouse Magic), she has some free printouts on her youtube tutorial for how she does her squares, (although I'm not knitting my squares how she does hers), mine is just the basic mitred square that you can find anywhere on the internet.

I remembered to take my advent photo in the daylight today but I picked up the wrong one and opened another Mr & Mrs Rabbit yarns today instead of one of Ellie's, must have still been half asleep!


Take care and I'll see you tomorrow
-X-

Tuesday, 15 December 2020

15th December - Making a start

I finished the present buying a good few weeks ago but have been putting off the wrapping.
I don't much care for wrestling with paper and sellotape, (does anyone?) but, it has to be done.

I'm on my own when it comes to present buying and wrapping unfortunately, I have a husband who thinks Father Christmas is real because presents magically appear wrapped and in sacks on December 25th  🀢  I honestly think if we didn't mention Christmas and decorate, the season would totally pass him by, lol .  In his defence, he will get stuck in with prepping veg and cooking the dinner on the day :-)

To make present wrapping more manageable I've split them all into piles for each person and will do one pile per day, two if I feel the urge.

How about you?  Have you made a start on wrapping? or are you all done?


Here are today's lovely advents :-)
Sorry, a bit blown out again because I forget to take photos in the daylight!


Short and sweet today, I've leave you with a photo of my Christmas cactus.  I bought this last year so this is the first time I've had flowers, they have been beautiful.


Take care, see you tomorrow
-X-

Monday, 14 December 2020

14th December - A busy Monday

 It was an early start this morning, I was up and dressed by 7am, I like to get a few jobs done before Joanne drops Bonnie off at 7.45.   The weather forecast had said that It was going to be a decent day, for once they got it right.  We went to Brinton's Park today, about 15 minutes drive away, just on the edge of Kidderminster.  This is somewhere else that I haven't visited in a while.  It was a lovely place for a walk, nice big open spaces and wide pathways and the children's play area was well maintained too






Bonnie enjoyed a good half hour playing on the park, she's not a boisterous child and is quite cautious about some of the equipment but once I'd helped her to climb up slope to the slide a few times she was ok.

They don't have a pond at this park and as we had bought our bag of bread we had to stop at the park closer to home on the way back to feed the ducks.

As Bonnie was throwing the bread the ducks and geese of course came swimming over to us, a little boy about the same age as Bonnie came running over shouting that she had stolen his geese, it did make me laugh.

This is the park I would come to after work some day's, there are plenty of ducks and geese to go round :-)


After lunch we baked some shortbread biscuits.




So yes, it's been a busy, but lovely day.

Here are my minis from today's advents, we did have a tealight too but lit that this afternoon


I hope you have had a lovely day too

See you tomorrow
-X-