Sunday 31 January 2010


hope you all had a lovely weekend, our plans changed, our friends cancelled due to illness, leaving us with a tidy house (yes I did it in the end) delicious baking, and no-one to share it....

we woke up Saturday morning to more snow - didn't expect that, so we went for a fantastic walk, crisp snow underfoot, brilliant blue skies, such a joy after the grey of last week, and sunshine. oh it was heavenly. we went out of the house, across the golf course, no golfers to glare at us... down a lane we didn't know existed, round the back of the town, into town, and oh look a tea shop was calling our names, so we stopped in, had some light refreshments, bought Miss K some new wellies - with marshmallows on - how cute is that! and then back up the hill home.

Saturday night we invited some neighbours in for a drink, and to help us eat the cake - well someone had to see the house whilst it was tidy!

Sunday morning we did the RSPB world's biggest birdwatch survey, such a hardship; make a coffee, grab a florentine, and a quilt, sit by the window with a couple of willing helpers, two pairs of binoculars and a helpful leaflet. an hour later we'd identified blue tits, coal tits, long tailed tits, goldfinches, a woodpecker and more....

Sunday afternoon with no guests to entertain I found myself free to go to an event organized by daisygreen, swishing - not to be confused with any kind of relationship swapping, it's all about the clothes! - you have a clear out, choosing things you don't wear anymore, and would be happy to donate to charity (which is what happens to the leftovers) then the rules are you take upto 15 items, and you can leave with the same number. after a brief browse everyone stands back and there's a countdown before a mad rush for the best items....... I went with some friends who've been before, they knew the best technique, identify what you want to go for first, and be quick.

It was madness, but I got the most gorgeous black Coast dress as my first pick. and then a few other things, some of which on bringing them home don't fit,

including the most gorgeous outfit with an embroidered bodice, oh well it wasn't meant to be, and it can go to the charity shop where it will make someone else very happy.

and I'll finish with my January mosiac.

my favourite shots of my 365 so far. not always the best photos but they sum up my month. ice, snow, hopes and dreams, loves, and quilts. not a bad month xox

Friday 29 January 2010

non productive fridays - a new trend?

we've got friends coming to stay tomorrow so I should be frantically cleaning and baking.
no, really I should, my friend lives in the cleanest tidiest house in the world, and is a domestic goddess like no other. in fact I am panicking about the visit. a lot.
which is why instead of cleaning/polishing/baking etc all day I've been procrastinating.

reading a magazine, and drooling over this jewellery
and then getting really excited because if you go here you can enter a giveaway.

tidying up seed catalogues and then getting distracted and going online and adding an apple tree and a plum tree and a crab apple tree to a wish list, and then pondering how many raspberry canes I need. so how many do you think? and that's before I start looking at strawberry plants, and don't even get me started on roses.

oh and there's a part-time admin job at one of the local schools and the closing date is Monday morning, so I've spent all day failing to fill in the application form because I can't work out how to make my skills - "blogging and baking" fit into the boxes............

and all this made me thirsty so I just had to have a cup of tea, and then read a few blogs, and now I need to cook dinner, and.............. oh well, they're coming to visit right, not inspect, and I'll do the form later - I'm sure a glass of wine will help with the "creative writing"

hope you all have a lovely weekend, back soon with the finished quilt to show you, and some decisions about what to start next - there have been just a couple of requests for a blue quilt to make things equal...............

Wednesday 27 January 2010


14 years today.
I love you J xxx

Monday 25 January 2010

lost in threads

thank you for all the lovely quilt comments, so fantastic to read them all. And what do I do to repay you? nothing, no sight of me for a whole week.
A week, where did it go? what's been going on?

well a lot.

for a start there's my new foot, the one I chose for J to buy me for Christmas. love it, love it, love it. ok I'll admit I didn't at first, there was a few hours of "I spent how much on this? and it's useless, my old one was better" but after a spot of forum searching and the helpful janome website I came upon the instructions - which aren't in the packet! and adjusted it. SO much better!

I couldn't decide how to quilt it, just knew I wanted to try something other than stippling, several more hours wasted (spent valuably researching) on the internet, and I decided to do a whole mix of things....
so I present; daisies, roses, hearts and a dragonfly

some mussel shells, arches, and paisley

some free form feathers trying to do a spiral

oh and another daisy. the light is terrible at the moment, the colours look so much less bright than they are.............

is that all, you say, no, in truth there's also been a nice man with a large ladder mending the gutters which didn't like the recent foot of snow and all the ice on the roof and decided they wanted to fall off........... also the ballcock valve in the water tank in the attic decided it had perished, and chose to snap 10 minutes after J had left to drive to his parents house. At 11pm......... - why are things always so much worse late at night when you are tired? water gushing out of the overflow, and dripping ever so faintly, but dripping never the less down the dining room and lounge walls.......... oh joy. we did water at the old house..... been there, done that.......... 10 minutes later I found the water stop tap - AND managed to turn it, although the person before clearly had superhuman strength and didn't intend for it to move ever again...... I might have said a rude word. or two. all mended now, hurray, and a coat of paint or two will sort out the walls - well they needed doing anyway, I suppose this will just hurry us along a bit............. oh and Miss K burnt her hand in science, and has rather nice blisters.
so you see, it's been a bit manic round here, all the more reason to hide away and do a few more quilty stitches! nearly finished, only the binding to sew on now. thanks for visiting, I'll try not to leave it a week till next time. xoxo

Monday 18 January 2010

in search of colour

I think the wardrobe crisis stemmed from a need for colour to contrast with the white snow which turned to grey slush, and now to mud..........

so fabric stash to the rescue, a few hours of happy cutting out whilst watching tv, and first we have this lovely pile

a bit more sewing and cutting, and a few hours later it looks a bit more like this

and ta-da, a lovely very bright quilt top, all ready to be quilted, and then it can be snuggled under for instant colour

and due to the extreme colour choice there are 2 less people in the family who will fight over who gets to use it, which gives me a whole lot better chance of having a turn!

Friday 15 January 2010

changing room update

thank you for all your kind comments on my changing room post/outfit. that red cardigan is a real winner.
and the meeting was good thanks. Ok so the inclusion manager lived a little up to her scary title, but on the whole it was helpful. hopefully she will implement some things that will help Miss K's confidence at school, thus limiting the number of "headaches" because there's a presentation/test/anything at all.... the next day............ baby steps, that's what we need to take. but boy is it hard to know where to be on the line between "I know it's scary, and it's ok you don't have to do it" and "look it's fine, just do it, and then next time it will be easier" ...........

so back to the changing room challenge. disaster. hopeless. awful. I put on three different outfits this morning, and I really don't have time in the mornings for stuff like that. and looked awful in all of them. one jumper, which, when I think back I'm sure I have photos of me wearing when pregnant with Miss K, looked so awful I was truly shocked. like did I never look in the mirror when wearing it before. It might even be decreed to awful for gardening. which is a shame because it's comfy. but. pretty soon my children will be at the age they will be embarrassed by my fashion style - or lack of! need to improve before it's too late.

so what happens - I take a long hard look at everything hanging in the cupboard, and what do I see - horrible dirgy, depressing colours, with one nice red jumper.

no wonder I think I look awful, the colours are enough to depress anyone........

I need some nice colours. urgently. like right now.
which means I have to go shopping. I'm hopeless at clothes shopping

HELP - where do I go?

Wednesday 13 January 2010

joining the changing room

I decided to join the challenge set by Coffee Lady to pay more attention to what I wear, and not (in my case) throw on what's clean/nearest the bed/fits over my pj's/keeps out the arctic chill......

day 1.
M&S cashmere cardigan rejected by my sister. chosen because we had a meeting this morning with the "inclusion manager" at Miss K's school. meeting someone with an intimidating title requires clothes which shout "I am confident", even when I'm not........
Black olsen jeans - rejected my a friend as they were too short. I wear them a lot but actually don't like them that much. go figure...........
black socks - which in combination with black trousers makes me look like a penguin. I usually wear slippers in the house as I get chronically cold feet, but I threw them away due to the excess number of holes, and now can't find any I like.......
white t -shirt - tescos I think, and guess what I actually bought this myself....
also wearing thermal trousers, thermal vest - don't even think of leaving the house without them....

things I have learnt today;
taking a photo of myself is really hard
a) the mirror in my room isn't long enough to see my feet - I never realised this before today
b)this is in Miss K's room - keeping the mess out of the photo was challenging...
c) it's VERY dark today, but flash makes the photo unviewable.
d) trying to hold the camera with only one hand so you can actually see my clothes makes the camera shake too much, photo becomes blurry, can't see my clothes..........
e) this outfit whilst suitable for a meeting is nowhere near warm enough

off to pile on some more layers.....................

Thursday 7 January 2010

guess what

did you guess, yes that's right, more snowy photos!

this is the golf course near the house, which we were recommended as THE place to go.
good decision.
unfortunately from a photography perspective the children move far too fast, and standing half way down the hill trying to get an action shot, is, as I discovered, rather a dangerous pastime........

the back garden, more of a snow drift than a garden

and the bird table which is very popular, except with me, you see when I went to fill it up

the snow was over the top of my wellies................

Wednesday 6 January 2010


well the children have been back at school for 2 days and I'm settled back into a routine of creative time

mmm scratch that, in reality there's been no school due to - guess what - yep - snow..........

so no creative time, instead; lots of shovelling snow, two extensions to the igloo, and quite a lot of extreme sledging!

with a house full of children (having aquired two more for most of yesterday and today) the most I've been able to do is grab my camera, and take a few shots for a 365 photo challenge, to post a photo a day using my flickr account .

can you see a theme developing; snow, ice, wet mittens, and few minutes snatched at the laptop before providing more rounds of hot chocolate..........

Saturday 2 January 2010

winter wonderland

we drove home yesterday from visiting relatives for New Year.
we survived blizzard conditions, drifting snow, and risk of road closures.
all was well in fact until we were within a mile from home.
which is up a VERY steep hill.
which had a lot of snow on it...............
the back end of the car slid out,
the front wheels of the car spun round and round
we swapped drivers and J pushed
more wheel spinning
we went backwards and tried again and got stuck in a different place
we left the car and carried our bags up the hill
J managed to get the car to a safer place later, out of the way of anyone coming down out of control...........

when we made it to the top it was clear from the road that no-one else had been up or down all day.........

and the arrival of the snow plough this afternoon created much excitement

but nothing could distract from the serious task of igloo building.
it's very cosy in there, if a little cramped due to the lamp post in the middle!

Friday 1 January 2010

happy new year

light a lantern and watch it float up in to the sky
make a wish....
what are your wishes for 2010?
I wish you all a very happy new year xxxx