I have been very busy making things for Christmas.
This is a quilted runner for our side board.
This is on our table not the side board because the side board is full of presents waiting to be wrapped!
It's not such an orangy red but you can see the design. A nine square block in the middle and then surrounded by strips. I can't wait now to get the side board 'dressed' with this and all the little Christmassy things we normally put out, included our angel and then in the centre our Christmas cake, which always takes pride of place. Of course it isn't iced yet, a pleasure still to come!
And I have made another After Eight Box. It looks the same colour but it is a totally different colour.
I am half way through a crochet shawl for my daughter in charcoal grey, Yes dark grey, Of all the beautiful variegated yarns she could have chosen, she wanted dark grey. I will have finished it by the end of this week, hopefully!
Happy Christmas to all, there are only 11 days to go!
I knitted this little shawlette from yarn I bought at Yaledale.. its on a hanger not on me as I am having a bad hair day! (I have an appointment tomorrow with my magic girl who makes me look 10 years younger with my hair crafted!!)
Very bright colours and just garter stitch but very effective with the multi colours and the dog tooth edging. Sorry I can't remember where I bought the pattern from
And I have made this After Eight box.. I have the materials to make another one which I will do this week.. just a little present for my friend and a little extra for my daughter.
Christmas is just round the corner and I seem to be on top of everything...... except this morning I have realised that the crochet shawl that I am making for my daughter is on a too small sized hook.. grrrr shall I undo and redo??? Probably because it isn't lacy enough. So I shall be busy over the next week to get it done!
Hope everyone is having a happy pre-Christmas time and is not too rushed to find time and look at the beautifully decorated shop windows and sigh!
Where did they come from, what did I eat that was so bad that it stuck to my tum and bum.. when we were away we ate sensibly and my gain was just 2 and then suddenly it turned to 4.
If you stack packs of butter, 4lbs is 8 packs and looks huge! I want to curl up and drink hot chocolate and I would, but we don't have any. I dared say, because DH is so lovely he would pop out and buy some. So I won't have lost 2st by Christmas, and if I don't get myself under control it won't even be 1 st.. Today I have been for a blood test to check my thyroxin dose, I have been sleeping a lot recently so it could be that... or it could be white bread with butter and cheddar cheese?
So many things happening around the world and all I can think of is how big 8 packs of butter looks.
Before I eat anything I look at it suspiciously and think
We have had a super weekend away in York. We stayed in a super B&B. Our huge room overlooked the garden so we watched some squirrels playing rough and tumble one morning and the birds on the feeders. The B&B, although not in the city centre, it was on one of the many park and ride routes with buses every 10 mins. Breakfast was yummy too!
It is a beautiful city with a myriad of tiny streets so even with a map, and a sat nav app on our ipad we often found ourselves walking in the wrong direction to get back to the bus stop! Lots of different shops and I visited Duttons for Buttons, which my sewing friends have raved about, but I was a bit disappointed! My little shop I go to in my home town in Porthcawl had a better selection of buttons! But we did get quite a few Christmas presents and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
On Sunday we went to Even Song at the Cathedral and it was so lovely, the choir singing, the organ and the atmosphere quite beautiful.
An amazing heavenly end to our weekend .
If you have the chance to visit York, do go, it will be worth it.
On Wednesday we had a delightful day when Dh's grand children visited us for the day.
Little three year old wanted to go to the seaside for a picnic, so we did in the rain!
Yes the huge bum is me bending over helping to make a sand castle in the rain!!
She enjoyed herself so much, that her joy over ran onto us all and although it rained, we had such a happy time.
Can you see behind us the sea creeping closer and closer?
We did leave the beach before it swamped us although we had to tip toe through the waves. Little Miss had on her wellies so she was ok!
Here is Dh et moi under the umbrella
He is wearing one of those ponchos you can buy to keep dry.
We left the beach and ate our picnic in one of the shelters, watching the waves break upon the shore line.
I wish, all the time we lived in Southend and always look up houses for sale there.
We could afford quite a big house there and near the front; but here we have a house that has had everything done to it to make it comfortable for us and it is near the local shops, with regular buses to town, and Brentwood, Chelmsford and Basildon and with a fast train link to London, so it would be unwise to move unless we had the same there. Possibly as we get older we might not be driving so we have to think of that.
But Wednesday was magical, the joy of that little girl spilled over and we had such a happy day.
And here she is eating her ice cream while we drank hot coffee in Rossi's, the Italian café on the front.
We had ice cream too, because we love love love it and that's where we always end up when we visit Southend. Hope all you have had a happy child filled day too during half term!!
Our little crab apple tree is loaded again this year even though I chopped the top off the year before last, as it was hanging over the path.
We have left them to really ripen on the tree this year so they are really red.
So we will have rosy coloured jelly again this year.
It is very tasty with cold meats and a roast lamb dinner.
I have had a busy time last week. Dh has been away all week in Jakarta on a job, so I have had to walk the dog, not something I usually do, but surprisingly I have enjoyed it.
And it is helping with my weight loss, which is going down slowly, oh so slowly!! But each pound adds up and although I don't think I look as though I have lost 16 pounds since last February, my clothes are loser and I can wear skirts and tops which were too tight beginning of this year.
I met DH off the train wearing a straight skirt which was much too tight to wear last spring... yeh!
Only 9 weeks till Christmas so I will be making Christmas cake this week. Don't you love the smell of it cooking in the house.
I have really neglected my cross stitching but I got this out of my basket
the other evening .
It's the design from a magazine and I really like it so I am going to do some more
this evening. It's a rather nice feeling to be planning to stitch, almost like coming home!
The days are definitely cooler although we were hot out today as we were wearing jumpers.
The evenings are drawing in so time to get my cross stitch sorted and finished.
I have no plans to make another quilt just yet, just a table runner for Christmas
( Why are my photos so awful? But photos do show things we don't always see, so it did show a very wobbly cross sewn line on the quilt for my DD so I undid it and re-sewed it.. so it was perfect when I gave it to her.
She ripped off the tissue I had carefully wrapped it in and although she didn't gush, she smiled and said.. she wondered when she would get one, as two of her children have one each for Uni, so I guess she was pleased)
PS If you enlarge the pic of my cross stitch by clicking on it, it is clear.
.... it was amazing! I had booked us B&B right back in June. I was thrilled to get one right in Skipton. So imagine my horror when I was told that Yarndale was outside Skipton and a good 30mins walk! But there was a bus, free and here I am in front of it. I wore my crochet shawl, as you do when you go to a yarn festival! A few women remarked about it and asked about the pattern which was a free one on Ravely. I saw one young man wearing a very colourful shawl/ scarf and asked DH would he like one, but he said it was happy to wear the socks I knit him and that was all! LOL
All the mandalas were displayed. I think it said there were 1040 from all over the world. I couldn't spot mine, but then I couldn't remember which one I sent to Lucy, as I made several and gave them to friends.
Here is the bunting from last year.
Isn't it amazing?
I bought several different yarns and would have liked to have bought a lot more, but I did spend more than I thought I should have!
Some lovely hand painted 100 % wool from Cuddlebums to knit a shawlette.
Some 100% wool to make mittens
And this was for some fingerless gloves
for my GD.
The pattern was free..
and I have knitted them up already.
Some Alpaca yarn in this lovely coral colour for cardi for myself.
But regardless of what I bought I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
The yarn there was beautiful and watching how it was spun and listening to how many of the traders dyed their yarn was fascinating.
It was such a lovely day, although my feet and legs were killing me after being there close on 4 1/2 hours, walking round and round. It was like an Aladin's cave and quite magic!
.... To all you lovely peeps who leave me such wonderful comments..
It boosts me as you all know and today I really need them, because at my weigh in yesterday I had put on a pound!! I was so disappointed because I don't know where that came from. We had followed the food plan and I hadn't had anything extra, so I thought, but I must have because the scales showed I had! I wanted to lose a pound a week up to Christmas, which is only 14 weeks away and that would have been a whole stone.. so this week I am trying especially hard to lose that extra pound and more!! I was doing so well too, now I have to take a pound off my ticker weight measure thingy! Boo hoo!
My daughter has a significant birthday at the end of this month, so I decided to mark the occasion by making her a quilt.. I love the colours.
It's a batik fabric called Shades of Peace.
I bought it from a little shop in Portland, Victoria, Australia, last year.
I have just been waiting for an excuse to use it!
The quilt design is 'Birds in the Air.'
I have loved making this and have sewn most days to get it finished. It's all triangles and to cut them I was working with 7/8th of an inch, not my favourite sizing, but after cutting out 490 triangles I have got the hang of measuring such a weeny part of an inch!!LOL
Hope she likes it. It is the sort of colours she likes and so I hope it will fit in with her colour scheme.
The redder colours are slightly darker than the photos show.
Thank you for all your kind and encouraging comments it is so lovely to be part of this generous blogging world.
We have had a beautiful sunshiny day here today and really warm.
Washing was on our line early, so a true Monday! And we do have lines that straddle the garden between trees, our rotary line broke last year and because we couldn't find time to get out and buy another one, we made do with the plastic coated rope across the garden and it is lovely to see the washing filled with the breezes.
Here are some of my pots still going strong as we do water most evenings. Each time I look at them I do feel proud, as most of my flowers are all grown from seed, so my heart skips a beat just to see their colours in the early mornings.
And I have survived another weekend with out blowing my food plan. We ate following SW recipes and our Sunday dinner was mostly our own grown veg!
We still have cabbages to harvest and the beans are still going strong so a few more dinners from them. But the garden is beginning to look as though it needs a good rain fall.. we don't have enough here in the East.
So it's the end of the summer.
We have had a really good one. With several days out in London, we also saw a play with Maureen Lipman called 'Daytona' and it was excellent. We've had long weekends away and then visitors here. Even some cousins from Australia before they were off to Paris. DH's daughter and hubby of 4 months came for the Bank Holiday, and that was nice. And of course went to our favourite place several times... Southend on Sea.. last week it was to see the Tall Ships sailing down the Thames. And yes we had an Italian Ice cream and because we had to wait a long time for the ships to pass, we went to one of the 'under the arches cafes' and had fish and chips and amazingly I still had weight loss the next day at my slimming group!
And we haven't finished yet as we're off to Skipton for Yarndale at the end of the month.. I am so excited I have had it all booked for months.
We have just had three sunshiny and very happy days in Porthcawl, the town where I was born and lived till I left to become a nurse in 1960.
We stayed with my mother's cousin, so she is my first cousin once removed.
She lives in a small town 4 miles from Porthcawl.
When we were young we saw quite a bit of each other, as like me her mother had died when she was a baby, so she came a lot to our house; my gran was her aunty.
We spent a lot of these last few days remembering of how things were when we were growing up. I can remember when she said she could help me with my knitting and dropped stitches so it went all holey and I went crying to my aunty who said.. don't be such a baby!! And started my knitting all over again!
She couldn't remember that, but it must have been important to me.. she has planned a huge party in October when she will be 80.. so a great big family get together.
Of course we had to have a Sidoli's ice cream and it was lush.
Nell had some too.
Such happy times.. we spent an hour before we started the 223 miles drive home, sitting drinking coffee on the prom and looking at the sea, me dreaming of living back in Wales. But I probably never will, here is home now.