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Scrap Happy Natter.

I am posting this a day early as Friday is the day of our great internet changeover, and I have no idea how long that will take. We are now on Plan C by the way of interim internet provision, Mr E has his uses.

It’s also Scrap Happy Day so I am combining two posts in one, so do please visit Kate’s blog for more scrap happy projects.

I have continued to use up the yarn leftover from the Eastern Jewels blanket- so far there have been two cushion covers and a blanket( this has now gone to a homeless charity), and at last I have used all the yarn that was leftover. I am now onto using scraps of yarn leftover from other projects. Yes there probably is enough to make a good size blanket.

The grey colour is really green, and it’s going to be an enormous granny square.

This week it’s been all about the garden and its winter tidy up. Four man days it took and oh boy there is a difference.

Wisteria off the wall

Up again, can’t wait to show you it in May .

Big mess in vegetable garden.

Big mess moved onto the lawn at the end of day one, and now all gone for recycling and upcycling.

Vegetable garden ready for action.

Pond in need of some TLC

Pond ready for the frogs returning next month.

I feel as if a great weight has been lifted from my shoulders. There were two trailer loads of vegetation now all gone. How long would that have taken me to dispose of via the garden refuse collection which doesn’t  get collected in Winter. I had already filled it to the top. Oh and the compost bins are overflowing too.

Sometimes you just have to concede that Wonderwoman can’t do it all by herself. when Superman has been very ill indeed.

I am now looking forward to warmer days when I can potch around the garden again. I love going out first thing in the morning and enjoying those early moments when day begins.

The birds love the transformation by the way. You should have heard the noise they made on the first day the chaps came.

A quieter weekend is install for us. I am hoping to go to Scarborough on Saturday to choose backing fabric and wadding for my beginners quilt. Friday morning is Family History Group. I have made some good progress with my researches this year and all down to my Dad not chucking things out. If anyone’s interested let me know and I will do a post.

So I hope you all have a good weekend. Any nice plans? Do tell. Have you ever had to give in and get help when things overwhelm you? And please don’t forget to look at others Scrappy Projects.

Be Happy,

Cathyx

 

 

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Knit and Natter Friday

The quilting workshop/course was wonderful, exhausting in the extreme, but jolly good. I spent Sunday afternoon stitching up my nine blocks. I found that tiring too, as one patch was too small so I cut another to replace it. Oh the thinking I had to do..

I’ve been laying it out on my bed. The idea is to not only having a pleasing look to the quilt but to make sure if possible that no two pieces the same touch. Now I used 10 fat quarters not nine, as the little Cath Kidston dogs was too small to be a full fat quarter, so it was slightly easier to do that bit, but then I had an aversion to having the dogs and the teacups the wrong way up.

So that is what I currently have. Our next session is at the beginning of March when we sew this lot together then add wadding and a backing fabric. I think I shall make life easy and go for pale blue. And apparently I have been using rubbish wadding in the past, so I wondered if anyone had any thoughts on wadding, also on colour for backing and also on the current layout. Please…

I was so tired by Tuesday that a not only was a little nap in order, but I also slept eight hours at night.

Other than that this week we have been having a tidy up. Now we agreed to have a big tidying session on Wednesday in the kitchen. Virtually every work surface was covered in something, clean somethings, but cooking was getting impossible. I start to empty a cupboard, clean it, put things back and clear the work surface. Mr E concedes he doesn’t need two coffee machines and we agree to put the one we don’t use in the glory hole under the stairs, which we do. Nice big space on work surface. Mr E, then informs me that everything else is mine and he is done. Well it wasn’t… and he isn’t! I cleaned and tidied and then placed all his stuff in one place, which I can say occupies quite a lot of space. I suppose he might finally clear it…..

They never mention the sharing of space when they talk about life in retirement do they?

Wondering if we dare tackle the dining room next?

Meantime I finished knitting my fingerless mittens. Not certain I get the point of these, so I have used them in conjunction with a pair of black gloves, and the result was quite cosy.

The colours are rubbish really, this is real wool, so the white is cream etc. The wool comes from a Wensleydale sheep, which is good to know. But talk about yarn chicken, there was precisely 8 inches left when I finished.

And meantime I have started more knitting. I found some yarn with a pattern with it in the bedroom. I actually have yarn in quite a few places, but I have decided to start with that which is cluttering up the top of my pine chest. The thing is I have no idea why I bought six balls, I almost wonder if I intended making two things not one. Anyway I have decided that with that quantity I clearly intended to make the jumper for Little Miss F. I worried that the yarn was too babyish but actually I think it is pretty rather than babyish.

Is she going to hate this?

So what are your plans for the weekend. I am making some Celery and Stilton soup, and if the rain isn’t too bad, maybe some time in the garden before the gardeners come next week, did I mention what nice chaps they were? And a walk..

Do please join in the natter/comments, my favourite bit as I never get tired of saying. Our internet is still a big problem, not helped by a certain gentleman dropping the router on the floor and cutting it off completely for an hour whilst I uploaded photos. Anyway today we have internet, still a long way to go before we have new equipment, so if I vanish for a while, you’ll know the reason.

Have a great weekend and

Be Happy,

Cathyx

 

 

February windows

Taking up the window challenge by Wild Daffodil

The village church at Ellerbrun where I shall be walking later this month.

Rather a plain little window, but look at the stone work over the left side.

clearly some reused stone, possibly from a grave

this bit is by the door. The church dates back to Saxon times, this is one very old church.

 

I cannot for the life of me work out why the stone pillars have been built over the window. Any ideas, because it really is a rather nice window.

If you have any nice windows to share do pop over to Wild Daffodil to leave your link.

After the frost, Spring will come.

 

After I took these pictures , we had a little snow. Not much here, my sons down South have had much more than we did.

I love the way frost seems to put everything into suspended animation, life goes on hold in the garden.

People feel the same I think when life gives them frost. I am just awakening from my icy blast. Spring is coming for me.

Am I talking rubbish, or do you know what I feel having had it happen to you?

 

 

Re Quilting Workshop/ class

Quick update after the quilting workshop today. Six hours long. Totally brilliant. Totally know how to use a rotary cutter, finally out of the packet ( former gift from son Mr B , maybe three, four years ago). Almost understand the 6 1/2 inch ruler thingy, also a gift for Mr B three/four years ago. Completely baffled on how to get 5 different size pieces of fabric from a fat quarter, but somehow I did it. Started to join them all back up again in a different order with different pieces.

Totally shattered.

I’ll sort them out and get round to taking a picture to show.

The rest will be a breeze, won’t it?

Thanks everyone for all the excellent advice yesterday.

Knit and Natter Friday

We’re having internet problems. The router is basically kaput. The only way to get a new one is to have a new contract. The only way to get a good deal is to change provider. This involves hassle, about three days of phone calls type of hassle. Anyway we now have a new provider, active from 15 February. Mr E being a technical whizz has a back up plan, so we should be ok internet wise in the meantime, but if I vanish you’ll know the reason why.

I am so excited about what I am doing on Saturday. Barely able to sit still thinking about it. How many workshops have I said I was going to do, and how many got cancelled. A rough estimate would be a dozen. However, all that is changing, the patchwork class is going ahead. Once a month for three months beginning tomorrow. I am all packed up ready to go.

I shall eventually get round to learning how to use the friskars cutter and the weird ruler thingy and some fat quarters. I was told to bring nine so do you think thirteen is enough. I worry about me and the tone thing. I know I need colours that go pop together, not mer.

And I mustn’t forget my cutting mat or my sewing machine, what else should I take? I didn’t wash the fat quarters, but surely I’ll be ok and should I iron them before I go, oh, oh, oh.

Getting a tad too excited.

Two lovely surprises this week. A big thank you to… for the crochet squares. She wants to be anonymous, but you know who you are thank you, they are lovely and perfect for a blanket.

And some flowers.

From a lovely friend. The sitting room smells divine.

We have admitted defeat on the garden. It got out of hand last year with Mr E being out of action. Help is coming to the rescue. We contacted some gardeners and two very nice chaps came round who seem to know what they are about. So the week after next , the very very nice chaps are coming ….

I try my best garden wise,

but sometimes it’s not enough. I may even take some before and after pictures…

And some knitting happened too, not a lot, just a little

That believe it or not is the left hand of a fingerless mitten, please note the cable of the right. Cabling is much easier with real wool, it doesn’t slide off the cable needle at the first opportunity. Hurrah.

Life is on the up.

So what are your plans this weekend. Please do join I the natter. I love the comments, they really are the best bit of this post. I am off to make yet more peanut butter biscuits for Mr E. He has endured a whole month without them.

Be Happy,

Cathyx

January Books, 2019

Hurrah for the escapism provided by books. I needed it this month, and have read a lot, even by my normal reading standard.

Markus Zusak The Book Thief– set in Munich in the second world war Liesel, a daughter of communist parents whose father has been taken away is sent to live with foster parents whom she comes to adore. In time they also take in and hide Max who is the son of a Jewish friend. Liesel is the book thief rescuing and appropriating books she finds. It is a simply magnificent novel, what a read to start the year, certainly setting the bar high for everything else I read in 2019. Straight onto my Top 100 list and a strong contender for one of my top five for 2019.

Adam Kay- This is Going to Hurt-Funny, but not as funny as the hype on the book makes out, nor as funny as the author thinks he is. The reminiscences of a junior doctor specialising in obstetrics and gynaecology, some happy stories, some sad and some frankly hair-raising. I include the ludicrous hours of a hospital doctor and all manner of peculiar things people shove in their various orifices. It made the bead I decided to place up a nostril as a child sound quite tame.I do recall also having to get a jelly bean out of a grandsons nostril too. Why do children do this?

Ruth Hogan- The Keeper of Lost Things-  this is the book I needed to read this month. It has the warm cosy feel good factor by the bucket load, it also made me laugh and cry, it helped. So Anthony lost something so precious to him he collected lost things all his life. Buttons, bits of jigsaw puzzles, bracelets, rings, gloves, everyday things you walk past and the things you hopefully put on walls for people to find. he took them home , carefully labelled them and stored them on shelves and in drawers. And on his death he left a special request to the one person he knew would carry it out. So we have some lovely characters, lots of love stories, a ghost, dogs, and a happy ending, what more could you want. I had to read this fast as my library copy had been requested by someone else. Which meant I had a happiness hit! A jolly good book.

Mary Prince- The History of Mary Prince- a first hand account of life as a slave in the 1800s. It made grim reading, and shows you how so-called civilised people can behave in a totally uncivilised way. Not for the faint hearted, but glad I read it. I have added it to my top 100 books, as it is one I think people should have a go at reading. I am now half way through finding 100 books, only taken 15 years!

Pat Barker- The Ghost Road- I choose this book whilst doing the shelving at the library, it rang a bell as being recommended by someone. It transpired to be the third book in a trilogy and the winner of the 1995 Booker Prize. Fortunately for me it did stand alone without my having read the first two books It tells the story of the final months of the first world war and includes real and fictional characters, who blend together very well indeed. From fiction we have Billy Prior who is returning to the front line with the poet Wilfred Owens having been injured previously. Army psychiatrist William Rivers is the other main character and he is drawn from real life. I don’t think I learned much about the end of the war that I didn’t know before, mainly I suspect because we heard so much in 2018. The book is well written and I can see why it would have won the Booker  in 1995. I did break off from reading it to google Rivers, and that was fascinating. I may even been tempted to read the memories of his sister who seems to have been very close to the creator of Alice in Wonderland-Lewis Carroll. If you don’t know much about end of the war and would like to, this would be a good novel to turn too. I’m not really tempted to read the first two books in the trilogy, unless I happen to be shelving one.

Clare Mackintosh- I Let You Go- big thanks to the person who recommended this to me. It was such a good distraction from life when I needed it this month. It’s a cracking good physiological thriller. I am not saying much more for fear of spoiling it. Just it’s set in Bristol and Wales and has some good twists. If like my you spot the first one don’t be disheartened there are more to come. Enjoy.

What a start to my reading year! Have you read any of these, and what did you think about them? Have you read a good book this month, I would love to hear about them.

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