Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Angel wing hugs

My dear friend and next door neighbour is poorly. I don’t think she would mind you knowing that she has been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. She is only 41 and unable to walk far or even open the car door let alone drive. It has been and continues to be a daily battle to stabilise her pain and deal with her 3 (lovely) children, husband and home. I’m not sure I would cope. I just want to do what I can to help and so have been forcing myself on her from time to time for a chat and hopefully to make her laugh. Things are making progress but its too slow for her and this causes frustration. I am only glad that I can’t see the pain in her face like I could in March, that was frightening.


Anyway, what could I do? Be there and offer help. And…………… Crochet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!That was as much to make me feel better as anything else .


So I made this. She is feeling the cold even in the sweltering heat. The pattern was a freebie I found on  ravelry and I like it because of the border included in the pattern. Each row takes longer and longer as you work up from the bottom. I used 183g of stylecraft life 4 ply (2 balls basically) and a 3mm hook. My projects page on ravelry says that it took 15 days to make, odd hours here and there.


It drapes so well and is soft and light. Here is my attempt at blocking. I am not very good but try as it does make a difference.



I made the huge mistake of trying it on. Oh dear I so wanted to keep it!!!!!

 all parcelled up (2)

But no here it is ready to go

all parcelled up

She loved it and it kept her feet warm while we gossiped chatted. I read that it was the nearest thing to a hug without being a hug and stretched they look like angel wings. So an angel hug cant be bad ey?

Monday, 24 May 2010

And they said multitasking was impossible

Or so it was said by an eminent (female) scientist who I almost believed for a short while. But as I stood (sweating) head down in my green house, planting the tomatoes whilst playing ball with a fussy dog, having organised a play/homework schedule for my son and I thought “who was she kidding?”The weekend continued in that vein but isn’t it nice to accomplish so much. Nah it was fun, I love to potter and the sun was out…..bliss.
Saturday we dropped son off AT SCHOOL!!!!! I know what mean parents. He took part in an activity day so DH and I soaked up cafe culture Harrogate style, very grown up. After all that we just chilled and I finished a crochet project Ta dah moment to come mid week.
Here's what I managed on Sunday
IMG_1322  IMG_1320IMG_1321
Corn under planted with leeks
pumpkin and cauli

             sunset IMG_1309
     bubblegum clematis
Homework!!! Notice the training chocolate!!

PS I made the foccacia suggested by Sue at the quince tree and it was delish. Thanks Sue, I had the leftovers today at lunch with pea soup mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Sweaty palms

Sweaty palms is the feeling I have when over excited about a project. That very feeling helped me through a days teaching at a very challenging school in Liverpool as I knew that I would soon be home to the sewing shop in the village (I know paradise why did we ever leave?) where I could get some threads for this tiny little project.


Let me tell you I ate that project alive and its been one of my dear faves ever since. Well I feel like that anew. For some time I have envied the lovely Lucy’s ability to put colour together and make a vibrant project. Most of my projects have been muted or a limited palate.


I also tend to use acrylic yarn (de rigueur it seems) Face bovvered. So I have ordered some of the cotton yarn that Lucy mentions in one of her recent blogs. The shop has been inundated however and it may be some time before I get my new stash.

What to do with it? Well I have been making several shawls recently and been very pleased with the results so I thought that I might have a go and make myself a colourful wrap up for nippy nights when we barbe or watch the sun go down. Plus I am blanket bound here so something new maybe.Now I m very taken with the New granny and her new found cool so I thought that I could have a go.


I am tinkering with a pattern (not tried that before) which of course I will share both here and Ravelry.

Finally look out for me here as I will be team blogging at the end of the week.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Aching not elderly

Well I spent the weekend wrestling with weeds and, although I am proud of my efforts and it will pay dividends going forward, oh my am I stiff today.

weeded bit

Stairs are a no go and bending down to pick things up, ouch. So, today will be spent on light duties. Mainly I will work in the green house because my lovely husband tidied it for me and now its a nice place to spend time.

green house

I need to get hanging baskets done and herbs planted.


I got the seeds from the good food magazine. I cant remember if they were free or just cheap. When grown they will go in the herb garden. Placed conveniently  near the kitchen but nowhere near a door.

herb garden

As for weekend crafts I am making another shawl ( a bottom up thing) which is taking longer and longer to do a row but I am very pleased with the results so far.

fan shawl

I also started to make a few squares when I came across the blog of this lady. Apart from being a highly entertaining blog, she has set up an organisation where if people send her 6 inch squares she will sew them together to make blankies for the elderly. Anyone with that amount of kindness in their heart deserves support. So, I made a square there and then, not sure about the colours, I want an elderly person to think, ahh not urgh .

square for sibol

I thought that I could maybe make 4 before the deadline. The theme is flowers for this month and blue and white next.Well done Mrs Twins!!!

Tuesday, 11 May 2010


I have to say that the inspiration for this blog entry has been shamelessly lifted from another. Namely Lucy. She’s a super young woman with many a talent that I suspect does not stop with her craft abilities.  Her blog this week featured some cracking cross stitch and I thought I might emulate this. Honestly I am so new to this that I really need all the help I can get. I didn’t go to art to art college nor am I a goddess of the vintage (sense my envy much?) They say that copying is the most sincerest form of flattery so I hope no one minds.

IMG_1233IMG_1234 IMG_1235

I did these when we lived in Southport. I went to embroidery classes every week and I was never so happy. Nothing like that here sadly. The cross stitch was done mainly at home. Embroiderers can be a bit sniffy when it comes to cross stitch but I love it. I have to limit myself to small projects mind as I am not a good finisher and have many lovely items in limbo upstairs (there's a blog post if ever I saw one). One of which I started to celebrate the birth of my sons (another story) Thomas is 12 now and the cross stitch? unfinished………


The embroideries were done in the class. I had goooood teachers (all called Jean) hope you like. These are stump work and gold work.

IMG_1236 IMG_1237 IMG_1238

You notice how they are all framed. Well blood sweat and tears went into them. The framing is all wrong, it never seemed to work out right even though they all cost in the region of £60 ( I was working then so thought it ok)


I finished the return to teaching course today and I sometimes think I could even go back to school and do it. Time will tell. No doubt you will know about it.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Sunday, plants and Aston Martins.

I met up with Mum and Dad this morning at a plant Fair at Newby Hall. We’ve been before and it was great. Here are some of my haul.


   A weeping Beech which is pinkie red with a pale pink edge. It sounded intriguing so we both had one.


Next there was a lady selling Heuchera and I love them so I bought 2. They go well at the front of the border.


I also bought some shrubs as I made a new boarder last year and it is a bit bald in the winter months. I joked that I had DH and DS with me to carry the plants, which they did!!! And no moaning was made as there was also a fancy car show on at the same time and an Aston Martin made the day not a total write off for the boys.



Of course Mum never turns up empty handed especially at this time of year

.IMG_1226Here we have leek, tomato and corn. They will stay inside for a wee while longer. (I expect frost tonight) Of course I have to put them all in now along with the other few thousand jobs that need doing.

I have not managed to blog every day. As I took a picture of what I was cooking for tea I asked myself ‘is this the best you can do Lou?’ So I decided to spare you that the high point of my day was sausage and mash. I have to say that I have had more visits this week and I think it must be because of the experiment. My highest hits for the day was yesterday with 57.I don’t think I could do every day but I do try for maybe twice a week. I have learned that I am a scientist and not a literary person and that if I have nothing to say then shut up Louise!!!


Ps if you have visited, Thank you friends. Your kindness touches me daily. I really don’t mind if you don’t feel like commenting as I don’t do much of it myself, sometimes I feel overwhelmed by the hugeness of it all. You visit, I hope you like and if you ever feel brave enough to say hi then so will I. Cheerio chums, enjoy the rest of Sunday.

Friday, 7 May 2010

Diamante shoes

I’ll make this a quickie as I do go on and face it its drivel. Town this morning. yawn yawn onions, bla bla girly stuff from boots. These babies in M and S Mmmmmmmmmmm

.IMG_1220 £45 too much?

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Life in the back lane

Our council is mending the road surface damage that we suffered from the horrendous snow that we had this winter and because of that I was forced to divert my usual route to the supermarket via a back road wide enough for only one vehicle. Boy am I glad I did! It was so peaceful and green and English country lovely.

. IMG_1216Blue bells come around the same time as the English Asparagus. These are by no means the most spectacular that I have seen, woodland can be carpeted in a rich blue. It can fair take your breath away!!!! These did make me stop the car and lean out of the window. (It was raining and I didn’t want to get wet)

I got a lovely parcel today. I am a little bit obsessed with EBay. I buy quite a bit from there as they always seem to have the things I need but can’t get locally. Mainly craft Items and they arrive so quickly. At the beginning of this Year I started a collection of Spode Christmas tree china. I don’t want a lot of it but it has a lovely vintage feel to it and reminds me of some chin my granny had.


Here is the collection so far. All very practical for Christmas entertaining. A cake plate for my Christmas cake. A mince pie plate nibbles and dip bowls, mug for hot chocolates and the gravy boat and stand that arrived this morning. I never spend more than £20 (including postage) Its so lovely and such a shame to think that the wonderful British company that made it no longer trades. I used to visit the factory shop in Stoke when we lived in the midlands. My mum has a fantastic collection of blue Italian. Most of the new stuff being made up until recently had been made abroad and was inferior in quality. Still we here that another British company has taken over and may start up production. Fingers crossed, I need a few more mugs!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Teaching rocks

I had a full day at the chalk face today. Honestly when I left my last job I was at such a low ebb and vowed never to return. Well a little nurturing and some positive feedback and I am feeling like my old teacher self. I taught a lovely bunch of y8 pupils all about rocks and weathering. Yep not so riveting but they seemed to learn something. However there is such a gap between how it was ok to teach in 1992 when I started and now. One thing that I might struggle with is the fact that they want less input from the teacher and make activities more pupil led. So I really need to shut up. Would that I could bloggy chums, would that I could!!!!!!!!!!




I took this on Monday as I sipped fizz in the sun, a little cool but bliss. The weather I mean, Fizz is always cool. Tomorrow returns me to home duties.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Return to teaching

I've been very busy today in a school in Leeds having some IT inset from a super teacher. Its been very inspiring to see such an enthusiastic and talented person be so generous with his skills, advice and help. Teaching is not the profession it was when I started but I am beginning to think that I do still belong and that I can be a useful ,resourceful and effective teacher. Lost confidence is hard to replace and it takes some pretty special people to do It. Luck me to be surrounded by such a bunch of people. No pictures today. That simply will not do. I’ll do better I promise.

Monday, 3 May 2010

The finishing line

Well I’m not sure what's come over me but I have managed to finish AND block 2 projects this weekend. I for one am amazed as I am renowned for startitis. Well not today friends, here are my efforts.


A pink shawl for a pink lady. For those barbe evenings when its too warm for a cardie yet you don’t want to go inside yet because the evening is so lovely. I hope you like it.


Now this one is naughty of me to show just now because I am going to surprise someone. Based on a very odd photo I took at Christmas of the cat on the sofa. Just so I could record the colour scheme of the lounge in question I hope I have it right.IMG_0662 IMG_1210 IMG_1211


Well you know what that means don’t you my friends? I can of course legitimately and justifiably buy new yarn. Yeeeeharrrr.


Onto other things. I thought that I might try and see if I could manage a daily blog this week without sounding like I am spouting drivel. Now don’t get over excited I don’t normally do much AND I have already voted so there's that excitement done with!! However this is the first week of a new regimen and I could use your support. You need say nothing, just be there. I want to loose weight and mean it this time. Sue has inspired me (done a lot of that recently) I am not brave like she is (much vainer though) I will not be telling you my start weight but if any comes off I will say. This is not a diet, we both love to cook and eat so will be making and eating real food, just less of it and moving more. Lets get started. Come on!!!!!

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