Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Do you ever try to do too much at once and feel as if your head is in a spin? I don’t know which way is up at the moment. Trying so hard to focus on one thing, then I go off at a complete tangent several times, aagh! How do I stop myself from creative melt down. So many questions too, so I go on-line , and then get side-tracked by You tube.

Can someone please tell me what is Gesso and what is Mod Podge, and when do I use them? I have looked on-line, but everyone and every thing seems to know what is what already, and I don’t.

I have fished out all my craft supplies and fabric and paper, inks, paints, it’s all over the floor and bits of things are drying everywhere. I can’t move.

And it’s June, which means it’s time for Go Wild. ( month in which you try to do something nature related or go outside, for 15 minutes a day). I wrote down everything I thought of doing, going to, making and realised I would still be at it 12 months later.

Trying to slow down, I am commited to nothing, I just want to do everything, now.

I even have nature themed knitting projects to do, but first I really absolutely want to finish this cardigan for Little Miss F. I have even found the perfect dress from M&S to go with it,and Summer is nearly upon us.

Only the front bands to do, sew up the seams, embroider some flowers ,buy and stitch on some buttons. The flowers are at least vaguely nature related, I suppose.

The problem is I have been reminded of my own mortality this year. I’ve just deleted the sentences that followed. Let’s just say we are not out of the woods re Mr E yet, just when we thought we were. Decisions,implications and fears rush round my head chasing the paper and the yarn thoughts.


One thing at a time. Today. Shall I go shopping and buy a christening present and then go a walk, or shall I visit a tiny castle and a nature reserve on my way home?

Tell me does anyone else get in a complete muddle with what they want to do, and how do you calm yourself down?

Tomorrow a nearby village is having Open Studios, and I really want to go there, quite a nice churchyard too, and a cafe.

Sunday, Scampston Hall has a plant sale. Monday is library day. We think we might use out bus passes to go to Whitby next week too..

After all it is the most scenic bus route in Britain. –officially!

Do check out the video in the link above and look out for the Hole of Horcum

and Goathland

and know that I only give you the best of Britain on my blog!

Feeling calmer already just having a natter with you all. Thank you for reading.

Love to know your weekend plans, and how do you stop yourself from getting a r ight old dither?

Be Happy,



Comments on: "Knit and Natter Friday!" (39)

  1. Gesso also comes in black, that I might still have… and admit to using white gesso for more than priming, as it pools so nicely. (Takes an age to dry though!) A second squidgy package arrived Saturday, which is why this is late. You didn’t think I’d look around after seeing them out of what I needed and NOT find anything else, did you? Lolololol! πŸ˜‚

    • How exciting a squidgy package! Thanks for saying gesso could be used for soething other than priming. People seemed to be using it to whiten bright colours, so I couldn’t understand why it said it was for priming. At somepoint I may give it a whirl.

  2. Very best wishes to E and you too of course, from us both.

    I think my way is to focus on one thing, enjoy it, finish it and then choose the next. It’s focused, calm and productive. You see progress faster as you’re not adding to lots of things, and you enjoy it more too.

    • Thank you for the good wishes .

      I have become a little calmer since I wrote that post. Thursday had not been a good day and it shows!

  3. claire93 said:

    along with the others, I send big hugs to you, Mr E and to the rest of the family because they must all be stressing too. I can only repeat what other ladies have said: to sit down with a cup of tea and make your list of things that need to be done and things that will make you happy to do. To alternate the enjoyable with the less enjoyable, and to feel a sense of achievement each day, with what you found time to do (even if it isn’t as much as you had hoped to do).
    Sometimes, just getting up and getting on with the day as if everything were fine, is an achievement in itself.

    My weekend has involved not crafting whatsoever. I’ve been busy dusting, cleaning, vacuuming, mopping and preparing for the visit of our daughter ^^ She’s coming to France for a few days on work-related business, but will be staying 2 nights with us (tonight and Wednesday) so we’re really looking foreward to this unexpected visit.

    • Thank you Claire for your sage advice , and kind thoughts. We are gradually getting our thoughts into some semblance of order.
      I wrote my lists on Friday night, crossed off two things last night and added three more. Because we thought life was getting back to normal, we have quite a lot of things booked in, then we get loads of hospital appointments that have to be accomodated.
      How wonderful to have this unexpected visit from your daughter.Such precious time. Enjoy every second.

  4. I’m sorry to hear about Mr. E. I’m sending wishes for good health in a gust of fairy spangles to you now. Gesso is used to prime canvases for painting, especially acrylics. Mod Podge (which comes in matte or gloss) is a multi-purpose medium that can be used as glue (e.g. for collages), a sealer, finish or a mixing medium – it can do a lot but it’s not waterproof. (I use an acrylic spray sealant to protect watercolours, polymer clay and metalwork with applied patina or guilder’s wax.) Hope this helps. I, too, can easily get pulled off on tangents. Sometimes I get almost paralyzed, not being able to decide what to do next … so I end up doing nothing at all!

    • Thanks you for the fairy spangles which are floating around the room looking magical.
      Thank you also for the very clear explanation of mod podge, with so many uses I am not surprised I became somewhat bamboozeled!
      I ended up unable to move at one stage. Mr E wanted to tell me something and I couldn’t open the door, stuff everywhere. It somewhat resembled my mind!
      I have spent about an hour today putting away things that I really don’t need to be doing something with for the project I really want to do. Then I sorted everything left in some semblance of order. I have written lists and decided priorities. I feel so much calmer tonnight. I am so grateful fro everyone calming me down.
      Thank you.

  5. Oh! Dear! (((HUG))) I’m so sorry to hear this news about Mr E.
    Growing old isn’t for the faint of heart is it?

    I keep seeing “Keep Calm and Carry On” in my head when I’m thrown adrift. Easy when you are younger and more resilient. With age not so easy.

    Everyone has great advice to share with you here. So much love written here :o)

    In my marriage I’m the one with the health stuff- darn it! Mr Tom is incredibly healthy for his age.
    I am a prayer. I tend to pray without ceasing during times of stress/confusion. And I often repeatedly ask God to take satan away. Because I know God does not bring the spirit of fear. When God is on our side whom shall we fear?
    But that’s me, I know its not for everyone.

    As I go through these unexpected, uninvited trials I try to do what I enjoy. I enjoy making my children’s clothing.(even in multiples LOL!) I notice daily everything they wear that I made, and it makes my heart smile!
    When you finish that sweater for Miss F I imagine you will feel the same. I think we get more joy out of it than they do- really- don’t we? Giving them our love from hand made!

    I probably haven’t been much help. But I care very much. And I am praying for you both. You are much loved! (((HUGS))) Keep repeating that to yourself!

    • Elizabeth your wonderful words of kindness and wisdom mean such a lot. I tend to forget to pray, even though I am lucky enough to have faith. Thank you for reminding me.
      I do love it when I am sent photos of grandchildren wearing the things I made them. I know that deep down I am making them because I enjoy making them, and it’s a bonus when the children like my creations too. This cardigan just seems to have taken ages, mostly I think that because I was tired with everything else going on I could only concentrate for short periods of time.
      I now have the buttons, so there may be a finish to celebrate this week!
      I have really felt love flow through my blog this week and I thank everyone so much, it has really helped.
      God Blessxx

  6. Dearest Aunt Cathy (you seem so to me, you are so wise), a cup of tea is definitely in order, and a lovely piece of cake of bowl of fruit, whichever you prefer! That done, know we continue to pray for you and Mr. E and send you hugs and good wishes as well. Now for the dither! When I get upside down and spinning, I divide a piece of paper into quarters and then write anything and everything down that seems to be needing my attention. One section is chores, one is crafts, one is stuff that needs.wants to be done and one was for work, so now I put personal stuff there like taking a walk, etc. I don’t prioritize, I just write until my head stops spinning, then I choose one thing on the list and go do it. Later, I look at the list, and edit it into priorities or delete things that aren’t really that important, etc.
    Usually, that act of writing it down calms me and I refer to my list a few times, but am on my merry way again, and find it a week later and enjoy crossing off all the things that are done! When I was really stressed, I just wrote out a list, and then started at the top and did whatever was first. No priorities, no decisions, just do the next thing. If I think of something new, I just write it at the bottom, and and keep working the list.
    As you can see, I’ve been in a pretty bad way several times, with multiple major responsibilities paralyzing me. Those days don’t happen any more, though I still get rattled occasionally, but one of these two ideas generally got me moving forward and out of spinning/panic/fretting mode. Sending love to both you and Mr. E.

    • Thank you Aunt Kathy, for your very wise words this evening. I usually do make lots of lists but this time I hadn’t. I will. Thank you for your prayers, we need them.

      • Lists calm me, even if I disregard them! We will pray without ceasing for Mr E and for you. Strength, patience, peace, joy and a good dose of humor as well as healing. XXOO

        • Thank you so much. I took your advice last night and wrote those lists. As a result bed linen changed this morning, been meaning to do it all week! And I realised that if I took time to put away some of the stuff I had all over the floor and just did one thing at a time I would be able to concentrate better. So I have started to put some stuff away, and just calm down. Thank you for the excellent advice, and for your prayers. xx

  7. Murtagh's Meadow said:

    Hope things settled with Mr E. It sounds like you are trying to distract yourself by having lots of things on the go, which can be a good and a bad thing. I think Rainbow Junkie’s advice of taking one day at a time is a good one. Take care of yourself.

  8. So sorry to hear that things are not as settled as you thought with Mr E. Just take one day at a time, maybe all your ideas in your head are a way to not to think about it! A walk in the countryside with nothing to do but look at the natural beauty all around might help with calming. It’s what I would do.I looked up about Gesso and it seems places like ‘The Works’ and Hobbycraft’ stock it, (branches of both in York) otherwise an art shop. Sending you all my best wishes for a clearer path ahead and health and strength for Mr E..

    • Thank you RJ and yes I think you may be right, I am trying not to think about things. The decision isn’t mine to make but it does profundly effect me.. Thank goodness it’s June and much more welcoming to be outside
      I went into several shops lloking for gesso,in York yesterday but not The Works or Hobbycraft, thank you for going to somuch trouble for me.

  9. I am sorry things are so stressful right now. Not a lot you can do about a lot of it. But you CAN try to take care of yourself. I would list everything out and pick the small, easy to do ones, so that you feel satisfied that you are still getting things done. Like the cardigan! And mowing the front lawn. Those will make you feel good. But when you can, do take a little adventure, it sounds like your part of the world is simply beautiful.
    And I hope you get only good news about Mr E.

    • Wise words and much appreciated. I mowed the grass this afternnon and have spent the evening on the cardigan. Thank you for your help.

      • And I hope you are feeling better! How is the cardigan looking?

        • The cardigan has front borders now, and I bought the buttons this morning. Should complete it this weekend.I also started to tidy up everything I spread over the floor, I think I have calmed down a bit and I can’t thank everyone enough. Thank you.

  10. Gesso = primer; Mod Podge = like wood glue, white and gluggy, dries clear, can be used as adhesive and sealer. That out of the way, have yourself an enormous hug, and I’m sending you all the courage I can pull together at short notice (I wish it was more, but I need a bit myself right now). ((((Cathy))))

  11. Oh, Cathy–it sounds like you’re having a stressful, scary time and running a thousand different directions, in part to distract yourself from worry. My advice–do things for people you love–finish the sweater for the little girl, do anything you can for Mr. E, and choose other projects that will make people happy, while you get to feel productive and creative. And get outdoors–I think that might soothe you more than anything!

  12. Trying to do too much – It all sounds so familiar. When I get like that (usually on a weekly basis) I try to think who would it really bother if I didn’t do/get on with/finish something. If the answer is ‘only me’ I then prioritise in order of what I actually feel like doing. If I’m not in the mood for crochet, I’ll make something on the sewing machine (substitute other crafts as appropriate) and vice versa.
    As for your deleted lines – no wonder your head is in an extra spin at the moment. As ever, I wish you both the very, very best and the hope that your fears will prove groundless.
    (((((Cathy & Mr. E))))))

    • Thank you Lynne for your kind words. Mr E is in Leeds today, so I have some time alone to get my thoughts in order. Grass cutting has to be done, and I want to finish this cardigan I seem to have been knitting it for ages.
      The problem has really occured because we thought life was going back to bit like normal so we started to arrange things, only to have the rug pullled from under us.
      Life hey!

  13. Hi Cathy…I am still reading your blog πŸ™‚ I feel the same as you at the moment…I have an itch to make a cute dressed bunny with the view of hopefully making some to sell…I have been inspired by others on pinterest…but I cant make up my mind as to whether to crochet or knit it. either way it looks I might be copying others and I could get clobbered with ‘copyright’. The thing is anyone who can crochet or knit will come up with the same look as others as it all starts in the same way (I hope I’m making sense here). I just don’t understand how people can ‘copyright’ a simple pattern that anyone can come up with…grrrr

    anyway….I have dabbled with mixed media…Mod Podge is like a glue and sealer in one..i have used it for decoupage. Gesso is a paint that you use to prime a surface to be painted. I have just seen someone else has advised you this..lol. If you search ‘mixed media art’ on youtube there are loads of artists showing what and how to use. Also there is a really great craft shop in Harrogate called Art of Heart that do classes..with the top mixed media artists…I’ll try to send you some links via email of some blogs too which might help you..be warned..its very addictive…lol..

    Love to you and your family

    Jan (Snainton) πŸ™‚

    • Cathy, the Harrogate craft shop….

    • Thank you Jan. I think I will have a look for those classes. I have seen people put gesso on top of paint and got fearfully confused, when I then looked for it online and saw it was a primer.
      I have made rabbits dressed and just embroidered. The embroidered one was in Stitch magazine years ago, and I think the dressed one was kit, maybe by Tilda.
      Then I have knitted one using Sirdar Snowflake, so soft and gorgeous.

  14. andreaclairekiwi said:

    Much good luck with Mr E’s situation. Not much happening here for the weekend – although it’s a holiday weekend (Queen’s Birthday weekend) I’m waiting to go into hospital for a hip replacement, which puts the kibosh on anything exciting! Just knitting and genealogy online for me!

    • Hope your hip op comes along soon and goes well. I have just bought oldest son an Ancestry DNA kit, so now he wants me to put in all known relatives on Mr E’s side of the family onto the family tree. I forgot I said would do that.
      Good luck with your research, I love it.

  15. So familiar! Yes I do get in such spins and it gives me a sort of fuzzy squeezed feeling in my head. When that feeling comes along I right a list of all the things I want to/should/could do. Then prioritise for a certain amount of time – one hour/ one morning/ one day. If that still doesn’t help – have you ever heard of Morning Pages? They come from the book by Julia Cameron called The Artists Way. I have found them very useful. http://juliacameronlive.com/basic-tools/morning-pages/

    Gesso is a paint primer – I put this onto canvases before I paint with acrylic, it has a matt finish and you can get it in white and grey (maybe other colours too)

    Mod Podge is a glue or a glaze, it seems to be made of watered down PVA glue – there are recipes on You Tube for making your own.

    Hope that helps. Thinking of you and Mr.E and sending love and hugs.
    I hope going wild in Nature will bring some relaxation and joy.

    • Thank you for your kind words. I had a copy of the Artist’s Way for a very long time and did moning pages for a while. I find evening pages help too, to download the brain.
      Yes I should write down and prioritise things I want to do, I do that with things that have to be done. Until someone throws me a googly.
      Spent a sensible morning organising the chritstening present, it is being engraved so I am glad I got on and did it as it will be about a fortnight.
      Have glued some more too.
      Next stop- mow the grass, I have a buttercup field out front!
      Decided I can appreciate bees and birds whilst doing this, and weeding. I see that I did something similiar on the 1 June last year and got stung by a red ant! They are still with us, so I shall take care.
      Thanks for the explanation of gesso and mod podge. I have yet to find gesso in a shop.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: