Thursday 26 August 2010


All the stitching is finished on my Golden Gate Houses I just have the back stitching to do now. I know some stitchers don't like this but when it is just around outlines I think it is easy to do.
I still love this picture and intend  to get it  framed when it is finished completely.
I had a break from it and stitched a bit more of this which is easy and so relaxing.
And now some of my patch work... this  is not easy at all and my unpicker was very busy indeed.
I find every part of this difficult to do, the cutting out of the pieces,( I first had to make the templates in card from the pattern in the magazine) Sewing it to get the points 'pointy' and matched up to other pieces with all seams just 1/4"
It is not going to beat me even though cutting out and sewing each of these blocks took an afternoon each!

I have completed the next and last RR that is Jaclynn's Teddy Bears so I feel I am way ahead. I didn't start the Blackbird Willow House as I thought it would be nice to start with it, new next month.

As well as my cross stitching and sewing  I have managed to write three short stories and complete my Assignment for my Writing Course, this last week, so busy all the time.

The weather has been awful!
Rain, rain and more rain here, we need the sun to ripen about 40 pounds +++ of tomatoes, as this year I have 72 plants! Some in the green house, some in the veg patch and the rest at the allotment. However the rain  is swelling the courgettes and marrows, which we always have a boundiful supply, but my DH has added chopped ones to curry and some to spag. bol so they are going down slowly!

Hope all's well in your worlds.


Monday 23 August 2010

I must be mad!

Last week was the Exhibition of Quilts at the NECand I had a fabbie-fantastic time! The good thing about living here is that the NEC is just 20 mins away. I went with this photo of an Autumn runner with the intention of buying the fabric to make a throw for the little settee in the conservatory in this pattern.
Of course I bought more than I needed, but you know what it's like you see one that's just right and then you see some more.

I love it all and I can't wait to get started. This chart was in a quilting magazine that I bought in America when we were on our honeymoon four years ago
And this is the BOTM I have signed up for which comes all the way from Australia.  I actually saw this this on saturday at the NEC displayed by another Aussie shop!! And they also had another one so beautiful I could have bought it there and then but........
I have four Cross stitch WIPs  and 2 charts kitted up and ready to go so I need the winter time to stitch and sew!! At least the garden won't need much doing to it.
But the most important thing in my life at the moment is that I am no longer leasing out my house.
So we returned to my lovely house in Billericay, we stayed there for five wonderful days.. it's  such a pretty house. The garden is now just trees and shrubs all the flowers appear to have been choked by the weeds of four years. However extra-ordinarily the damson tree was absolutely loaded with fruit. Mike picked 17 pounds and there must be another 17 pounds still there!! I was amazed and delighted as that was a little tree bought one evening on my way home from work from good ol' Woolies! The apple tree hasn't done as well but with some TLC I am sure we can get it fruiting.
This is one side of the garden showing the damson tree. When I bought this house in 2001 there was just some tumpy grass, a shed that was rotten and an old concrete garage. Inside of the house was horrible but when I saw the size of the garden, I could see the potential of the house. It took three years to get it how I wanted and the best thing was my raspberry pink carpet all through the downstair rooms, hall stairs and landing. A very girlie thing!!
Then I had the huge extension built  for my dream kitchen and as it was to be my home for when I retired a
downstairs loo.
We will be travelling back  and fro for a few days each month, so lots of stitching time there although we would like to change the deco it looks clean and tidy, I have a carpet cleaner booked second week of September and the original bathroom fitter that fitted my bathroom suite as well to do some repairs after the last tenants.
So with all this going on I am quilting I must be mad!
But isn't that life and the busier it is the better it gets! I say a prayful thanks each day to God that I can enjoy my life and that it is full of happy days and the love of my DH and family.
Hope this next week is full of happy times for all you bloggers out there!

Thursday 12 August 2010

A good read

One thing I do more than anything else is read. I read all the time. I sometimes don't want to go to bed because the book I am reading isn't as good as I would wish! Perhaps my love of reading stems back from my childhood of the fifties. We didn't have TV and I lived my lonely childhood through books. I didn't have any great preferences then I just worked my way round the shelves in the Children's section of Porthcawl Library , the small seaside Welsh town where I was born and brought up.
Today I like modern novels and greatly admire Anita Shreve and Emily Barr and a host of other female writers.  I want to be able to write like them!
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The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
When this book first came out for some reason I didn’t fancy reading it but, as it was my reading groups choice this last month I read it and loved it and wondered why I hadn’t read it before.
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini explores the nature of friendship, of forgiveness and of redemption, set against the turbulent background of his native Afghanistan.
The son of a rich and popular merchant, Amir leads a privileged life, wanting only to please his beloved but demanding father, Baba, and to play with Hassan, the child of Ali, Baba’s lifelong servant. Both Amir and Hassan are motherless. They spend almost all their time together, playing games and sharing stories in their favourite pomegranate tree. An encounter with Assef, the local bully, in which Hassan springs to Amir’s defence has appalling consequences, destroying their friendship and driving Amir to desperate measures to rid himself of Hassan, measures which result in a puzzling reaction from his father. When Ali and Hassan decide to leave of their own accord, Amir’s relief is short lived; he knows that his cowardice has been detected.
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Threaded through the story is this feeling of guilt by Amir although he was only a boy himself when the dreadful act was commited against Hassan, he still feels that he should have done something. Perhaps he should have told Baba his father, but he as was always trying to receive recognition and praise from him, to allow his father to know he hadn't helped Hassan would have detroyed that.
As the story unfolded I came to like Amir more and more although as a young child he did have a mean streak and teased Hassan to the point of cruelty.
This book is well worth a read and if you don't choke back the odd tear I would be greatly surprised.

Sunday 8 August 2010

WIPs and something to start

The lovely thing about being retired is that I can cross stitch
all day if I want to. I have got on really well with this and am loving it.
My houses are coming along too and I have done some of the back stitches as well as huge chunk of the trees. Still a lot to do but I still love this and am surging ahead to get it finished.
And something new although the colour of the cashel linen is pale yellow instead of what was suggested in the chart. It should be tobacco so I am going to use one of my dyes and darken it a bit. Hope it turns out ok!
And of course I had to buy the WDWs threads.
And they are lovely!
And this is to stitch Blackbirds 'Willow House' which I have loved for a long time so I am proud of myself that I haven't bought all the materials earlier and left my WIPs !

The sun is shining here today and I am home listening to The Archers although I listen to all the episodes each day in the week.,  but I am a 'Archerholic' and have been following the story since 1960!!
I have laughed and cried with this radio programme over the years and even looked up the synopsis to see what was happening when we were in Australia last year.
When Pat and Tony's son John was killed in a tractor accident I was listening as I was driving to see my daughter and had to stop and pull over I was crying so much.
I am still busy writing trying to get one of my stories published and have had my first rejection slip, I wasn't upset just put out that some body thought it wasn't suitable to be published in their magazine. But it has made me more determined and I am actually now plotting a novel which is the next assignmnet for my writing course.
Watch this space one day I will be a famous writer!!  LOL

Sunday 1 August 2010

Wedding Anniversary

It was our forth wedding anniversary on the 29th July,
Mike had this beautiful bouquet delivered to the house and it arrived before I was dressed!

Mike had asked for some summer flowers and they certainly were, with a beautiful delphinium, dahlias, carnations, clarkias, lilies, and chrysanthemums.

And we had a lovely lot of cards, so nice that people remember us.
I spent a long time on thursday morning going though our wedding cards all 82 of them.. as on the day there wasn't that much time although Mike did open every one in the evening in front of our family and friends, as we were back at my house with all our guests with a feast of food all from Waitrose .My best friend Yvonne and her partner organised serving it so that meant I was free to enjoy our guests. We had had a delicious meal at our Wedding Reception at lunch time, so don't know how I ate more but  I did!! It was a perfect day and evening. It was still very warm and we were all out in the garden so a lovely time was had by us all, It was truely lovely looking at all our cards again and brought the memories of the day back to us. We went to America the next day early, (very early 5:00am!!) and toured California and when we got back we only stayed two days in Billericay before we travelled here to Coventry, so no time to look at the cards then.

To celebrate on Thursday evening we went to Bella Italia in town for a super meal, it is so lovely to eat out but now it is lettuce and water for the rest of the week. before weigh in at SW!!
But it was worth it as it was a lovely day.