Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Our Holiday - Day 1

For our holiday this year, we went to Amble in Northumberland, staying in a rented house with my parents. We travelled up independently and we stopped off in Knaresborough to give Mark a break from driving and to give us all the chance to stretch our legs. We decided to pass the time at Mother Shipton's Cave. I don't know if anyone else has been there - I certainly hadn't - I was pleasantly surprised. We had a lovely walk down to the cave and well, by the river side and then through the woods - the sun was shining, it was lovely.

The cave itself is famous for petrifying objects, some of which date back to the 1500s. Edward particularly liked the cricket bat though!

We got back on the road after a couple of hours, feeling much better for our break. We arrived in Amble around 3.30 to find Mum and Dad had already arrived. The house was lovely (photos of house next week - on Mum's camera!) and we were looking forward to having a good look around. But first things first - kettle on!
M x

Monday, 30 August 2010

Back from holiday

Just got back from our holiday in Northumberland, which was great by the way. More of that later - with lots and lots of photos! Also got lots of crafty things to share - later.

We had some sad news while we were away - our beloved Sophie died the day we went. We left really early in the morning and she died that evening. We understand that she just laid down and died. Our friends who were looking after her phoned us with the news the next day. I felt so sorry for them having to tell us but I would rather know than come home to it like we did the previous year with our other cat Molly.

Sophie was such a special cat, so affectionate and she had a great personality. We got her when she was an eight week old kitten and we had her for 17 and a half years. She was well known and well loved by all the neighbours - she had a particular fondness for a newly clean, warm, car bonnet!

We miss her terribly - the house just doesn't seem right without her.

M x

Thursday, 19 August 2010


Here's a little sneaky peak of my newly finished project.

And here it is in all it's splendid glory (ignore the guitar and amp in the background - it was the least messy angle to photograph from!!).

Aren't the colours divine?! I am so in love with it - it's so soft and snuggly - I just want to curl up underneath it.

I used Rowan Cash Soft in 4 ply. I don't know how many balls of wool I used which is just as well, because at £4.75 a ball, this little blanket has turned into a very expensive project (but so worth it!!).
The colours are as follows:
  • Cream 433
  • Navy 440
  • Bluebottle 449
  • Fiesta 455
  • Amethyst 444
  • Forest 442
  • Poppy 438
  • Fennel 436
  • Pomegranate 447

The blanket is made up of 96 squares - 12 of each colour, each edged with one round of cream, then a final border of three rows of cream.

It''s such a lovely feeling to have finished it, however the same cannot be said for my hexagonal blanket which is sorely in need of a bit of TLC. That is definitely a winter project as it is so hot and heavy to have over my lap.

I'm off in search of something else to make now. TTFN.

M x

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Cards and cupcake (cards!)

Some of my recent cards. The first one is my standard design for significant birthdays. I was a bit naughty because I left it until the last minute, but at least its a design I can depend on. The papers are the Tiffany range from We R Memory Keepers (with added glitter glue!).

The following cards are from a cupcake kit that I bought a while ago from QVC. I bought it mainly for the sheet of stamps that came with it (that I haven't used yet!). The cards are not really my style as everything is done for you and all you need to do is assemble them - I prefer to do a bit more work on the cards I make. However I love the cupcake images and they will be a great addition to my box of emergency birthday cards.

That's all for now. I'm hoping for the grand unveiling of my blanket tomorrow - time permitting. Then - what to crochet next??!!

Have a good day.
M x

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Crochet Update

Ooh I'm so excited! This morning I joined the last 16 squares to my blanket and this afternoon I worked the first row of the border . . .it's nearly finished!!

M x

Monday, 16 August 2010

Wuthering Heights

Last week I decided to undertake one of my holiday tasks and read Wuthering Heights. Not without trepidation I might add - suppose I didn't like it, or found it too hard going. I hate giving up on books and I was imagining it taking me weeks to plough through it. Also, I didn't have a crisp new Penguin Classic, no not me.

This is my copy of the book. It's so old that the cover has come away from the rest of the book, and the pages are so brittle that they kept cracking. The type is really small and it made it very hard to read. I don't even know where I got this book from, all I know is that I have had it for years and never read it.
Until now that is . . . and I must say, I couldn't put it down. Why haven't I read it before? I can't really explain why I like it - the characters aren't even very nice. I didn't have much sympathy for Cathy and Heathcliffe, and even Catherine and Linton came across as quite bratty - but there is something about that book that is quite compulsive. I know what I will read it again at some point (although I might invest in a crisp, shiny new book!).

The rest of the holiday tasks are coming a long quite nicely. Edward's room is done and I'm very happy about how that went. Just need to get his desk sorted after we come back from our holiday. I've had a bit of a card making session last week, but am hoping to get some more done this week. My blanket is looking great. I'm just finishing up the last few squares and then I've got the edging to do. The only thing I haven't done is the Menu Planner, and quite frankly that's the hardest job of all. My children are really fussy and generally I can plan a meal for three of us and there is always one person who won't eat it - usually Edward. Heigh ho!

Have a good day.

M x

Thursday, 12 August 2010

A Jolly Time in London

On Monday I went to London with two of my friends, Tracy and Katie, as a 40th birthday treat for Katie. Our first activity was to go on a Duck Tour (which is an amphibious vehicle used during World War II for the D-Day landings). Our starting point was near the London Eye and we went for a 45 minute drive around London, including Parliament Square, Pall Mall, Whitehall, Trafalgar Square, Hyde Park Corner, Victoria, and then on to Vauxhall, where we then went onto the river for half an hour before driving back to the London Eye. It was great fun and we had a brilliant guide, who when not making us groan with his bad jokes, told us some very interesting facts about London.

Katie by our Duck (Desdemona)

Another Duck on the river

Me on our Duck
After our tour we had a quick, but lovely lunch in a restaurant called the Arch Duke opposite the Festival Hall. Then onwards to Victoria and Buckingham Palace for an exhibition in the Queen's Gallery. The exhibition was called Victoria and Albert, Love and Art, which was about their life together and all the beautiful pieces they commissioned during their marriage - some really wonderful pieces of art, furniture and some absolutely gorgeous jewellery.
Katie went home after this and Tracy and I went on to Sloane Square to find a ribbon shop called VV Rouleaux - what a treasure trove! I did buy some ribbon, but had to seriously restrain myself - ribbon for every occasion!
After that, we walked down the Kings Road to the Saatchi Gallery, spotting the newsreader Kate Silverton having a cup of tea in the cafe there. The Saatchi Gallery doesn't do it for me I'm afraid - not really convinced by a lot of modern art - long pieces of polythene splattered in paint and draped across the floor - what is that all about??!! (apologies if that is your thing).

After a drink and rather yummy cake, I decided it was home time - it was about 6.30 by this point. I had a really lovely time, and it made me realise that I don't come up to London nearly often enough - so much to see and do.
On Tuesday a friend and her 15 year old son came to visit - we only get to see each other once a year, usually in the summer holidays, but we are always able to chat like we've seen each other recently.
Yesterday was a quiet day - thank goodness. I had a morning catching up on TV - an adaptation of Wuthering Heights that I had recorded from the previous evening and I thought it was time for another viewing of Twilight! I did spend the afternoon making cards, and have managed to make about 10 from a cupcake kit that I've had for a while (hopefully I'll get to post them soon).
In the evening, the four of us went to see Toy Story 3 in 3D - absolutely fantastic! It was rather poignant for me, having just blitzed Edward's room and got rid of half his toys - it made me quite tearful! I recommend it, and 3D is good fun, even allowing for the silly glasses!!
Time to sign of for now, card making calling. Enjoy your day.
M x

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Mother-in-Law's Birthday

This is the card I made for my mother-in-law who will be celebrating her 80th birthday tomorrow. I have to confess that I left it til the last minute because I find her very difficult to make cards for. I hope she likes it.

She's also very difficult to buy for, and as she gets older, it gets more difficult. At her request, we've bought her some new gardening shears - not very exciting - but they're what she wants. We've arranged for some flowers to be delivered and we'll get her some chocolates too, but I decided to make her a little mini book or brag book from the children of recent photos of them.

I spent all of Sunday making it, as well as some time on Monday and Tuesday. I'm very proud of it and hope she likes it (I almost wanted to keep it for me!!). There are twenty photos - Emily doesn't like all of them but I deliberately chose some quirky, funny ones as well as the posed for ones.

I used paper from a couple of massive paper stacks that I bought from QVC ages ago - can't remember the company, but they were perfect for this project, as no two pages are the same. Used my trusty Bind-it-All to put it together.
This week has been a bit dull and stressy. I've spent too much time in Edward's room sorting it out and it still looks a mess. At the moment my bed is covered with all the toys he wants to get rid of. The problem is - what to do with them in the meantime. I just keep shifting them from one place to another. The intention is to take them to a car boot sale, but I am worried that we are running out of weekends - this coming weekend we must move the furniture around in Edward's room - it's the only weekend possible before we go on holiday. We went to Ikea yesterday to get some shelves for the living room and priced up a desk for him - just hope it will fit once we move everything around.
I wish I had done this job sooner and not let it get so bad, but it is only now with Edward about to start secondary school, that he accepts that he has to have a big clear out. He has been very good and I am so proud of him.
That's all for now folks!! Cheerio!
M x

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Good Morning!

How are you doing? I've been really busy recently - but in a good way!

On Saturday we went to Corby to visit some friends - it was just Mark, Edward and myself. Emily didn't want to come, so she went to the cinema with a friend to see Toy Story 3. We had a good time as we haven't seen these friends for a while.

On Sunday I started to make a mini book of photos of the children from my mother-in-law who will be celebrating her 80th birthday on Thursday. I made all the pages and mounted all the photos but stopped at that point because I had been at it all day.

Yesterday I put the book together - just got to stick the letters and flowers on today and will hopefully get to show you tomorrow. I spent a lot of yesterday blitzing Edward's room but even though we filled two bin bags, we have barely scratched the surface.

Today's tasks are to finish the book, make an 80th birthday card and to spend some more time in Edward's room.

I'm signing off for now - having lots of problems with my computer this morning, think it wants a nap!

Have a good day and catch you later.

M x