Hola! Normal Service Resumed … Nearly

It’s been the longest time since I sat with my laptop and logged on to WordPress. (Blimey O’Riley …. how spooky, just got a message saying today is my one year anniversary with WordPress…. how strange is that . I chose today of all days to come back)

Funny how life changes so very much in just a few short months isn’t it?

When last you heard from me I was still doing battle with my agoraphobia and my world was pretty small (geographically) but following a fortuitous conversation with the friend of a friend, the next thing I find is myself going for a job interview!! This requires going outside of course and was somewhat of a challenge on the day but I dug in and told myself it was high time I fight back against my madness.

Well I was offered the job on the spot and started the very next day … whirl wind or what? So much else was going on in my family unit at the time, like most families.

Now 4 months on I am finding my new normal and 2 days ago picked up my unfinished crochet project. Like riding a bike, you never forget how, which is rather handy given I have miles of yarn and hundreds on meters of fabric so I’s better not forget how to be a creative! Had a good old rummage today through my patterns and am feeling inspired, I just have to learn how to do the work, home life balance thing. Lordy, all these new skills I am trying to learn :)

Been a big week for me on a family level. Met up with my wonderful cousin at Scotsbridge restaurant last weekend. He is from Vancouver and we met up last summer for the first time in 15 years. We got to repeat the treat this summer and it was a super day. My very small family came together in beautiful weather and enjoyed great food and the very best company.

Scotsbridge is in Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire and sits on the river Chess. The water was running fast, cold and clear, on such a hot day it was too much temptation and toes were dipped ;)

Our eldest JK left from Heathrow on Thursday, bound for Vancouver for 5 weeks, successfully missed her connecting flight in Montreal courtesy of Heathrow keeping her flight back for an additional hour. You can imagine the panic at my end. Mothers like me think we are the only one’s who can fix things so it came as somewhat of a surprise when JK text me to say she had got herself onto the next Air Canada flight and wad only going to be running 2 hours late. REDUNDENT! Booo Hooo :(

No, really am very proud of her coping alone in a strange country, we obviously did get listened to on the odd occasion. I wonder how many other pearls of wisdom our girls have actually taken on board? Time will tell.

Hope to have some pictures of homemade creations for you in the next couple of weeks but today I leave you with some recent pic’s taken on the fantabulous camera that isn’t mine :)

Sew Sweetness, Green Lace, Marilyn and the Perfect Pattern Parcel


Think some of my lovely followers may like this x

Originally posted on Sew Exhausted:

OK peeps … You have only about 4 days and 9 hours left to order this fantastic parcel of patterns so don’t miss out! Just want to get that out there first. :D

Most of you have probably seen posts from fellow sewing bloggers floating around in the last week or so about the new collection of patterns offered for a great cause… and now it is my turn! A few weeks ago I found an email in my inbox from Jill inviting me to be a part of the Perfect Pattern Parcel launch. Because I am not usually an everyday email reader I jumped on board a little late but I jumped on board none the less! I feel honored to be included and despite being pretty busy I did not have any problem whipping up a few things. Like the super cute Sew Sweetness Accordion Bag…Sew Sweetness Accordion Bag

My niece…

View original 794 more words

My Giddy Aunt!

Well Saturday was a corker of a spring day here in Bedfordshire, not that HH and I got a chance to potter in the garden.

That will teach me for doing a google search aye!

Its like this. HH and I have been batting off these pesky little moths in the living room of an evening. You know the wee suicidal sort who flutter around the light then swoop down and DINK bang into the side of your head. We had turned it into quite a sport, HH was winning on the score front, I’m a shocking shot especially giving I was once a demon netball player!

By pure chance on Friday I spotted a hole in one of my soft furnishings. This went with me to bed, in my dreams and almost my first thought as I woke! Hence, the google search. To be exact “fabric eating moths”. BINGO, well bingo in a bad way not the yipee I’ve won bingo way ;) Up popped picture of said critters that HH and I have been practising our swing arms on! DANGIT! How bad was this going to be?

We stood and looked down our lovely garden that we had planned to spend the day in, getting her ready for a fruitful, blooming summer. HH made the sensible suggestion of a reconisence mission in the living room.

Armed with our super, duper Wertheim vacuum HH went in ahead of me (he’s a brave man). Well it’s a jolly good job he did go in first, on moving speakers and stereo I heard the words you don’t want to hear when you have a pure wool carpet.

“Think they’ve been busy darling”. Nooooooooo, ran in to see hundreds of spent larvea shells.


We threw open the patio doors and proceeded to remove the contents of the living room.


My job was to inspect and clean every item before said item would be passported back into living room. HH armed with Wertheim went to work. My giddy aunt, there were hundreds of these shells. Some spent, others live AND OMG a hole in  my carpet. Not a big one and not in a visible place but we know it’s there.

Hours and hours were spent on this mission, end result most satisfying. A fully de-mothed living room. Lavender on it’s way for me to make sachets. Apparently they hate the smell and next is the wardrobes. Keep your fingers crossed for us dear reader that the little blighters didn’t bother going any further given my lush pure wool living room carpet!

Give your drawers (wooden storage type) an inspection, be sure you haven’t had the same uninvited winter visitors. I have my fingers crossed for you :)

I’ve Had An Idea!

You may recall a blog I wrote sometime ago, Poppies.image

Well for reasons way too complicated to go in to, the cushions never did get out to Aruba.

This year is the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, that dreadful war that cost our nation so dearly. It did inspire the wonderful poem Fields of Flanders and of course Armistice Day. The 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour.

I am proud to say that in my lifetime, in fact in recent years the armistice silence is so faithfully observed in the UK. Only a few years ago I stood in Kings Cross, a phenomenally busy train station as the 11th hour was announced. The whole station came to a totally moving silence and stand still. It moved me deeply.

Well now …. My idea.

These here poppy cushions. I would like to somehow promote a raffle to win the set, proceeds of the raffle to go to The British Legion.

So far my idea has got as far as asking a local shop to display initially pictures of the cushions (to avoid fading of the actual cushions) also offering the raffle tickets for sale. Could be good business for them as I think the local press would quite like to do an article.

Spread this out over the year to allow for as much money as possible to be raised for this wonderful charity who do so very much for all military families, to culminate in the winner being selected immediately after the armistice silence.

What do you think?

Additional ideas to promote and raise more greatly welcomed.

Spring Has Sprung…….. Almost

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Following the utter devastation that the South West of our country has suffered at the hands of Mother Nature and copious amounts of rain there are signs of spring trying to break through HOORAH!

Saturday can only be described as delightful. Warm enough to potter in the garden getting a few bits tidied up in short sleeves YEP, short sleeves!

I don’t suppose I am very different to many who live in a temperate climate with clearly defined seasons, the winter just goes on and on. The dark quite frankly starts to get on my nerves, to the point I find it hard to motivate myself to do anything much. Goodness how do our more Northerly cousins cope with 6 months of darkness?

Again today when the heavy mist lifted here in Bedfordshire we were in for a real treat, more sleeveless sunshine and to boot VERY noisy birdies calling for new mates. It was lovely and fingers crossed more of the same tomorrow or at the least the weekend for all those who have been trapped in offices all week.

So here I share a few photos of the joy as evidence that I’m not just making it up :)

Still Alive & Kicking …. just

It seems like forever since I sat with my blog or even looked at reader to be honest.

A super testing month or so that at one point I thought would strip me of my remaining sane brain cell BUT disaster averted and slow but sure on the climb back to the real world again.

My latest life tests have been that of both wife and mother. When we are put into the front battle line in defence or protection of those we love so very deeply it reveals parts of your nature that maybe you didnt know existed. I have felt fear like nothing I have ever felt before, yet ironicly strength too!

Investing so much of myself in these processes has left me, as you can well imagine, exhausted. The first thing to go was my crafts. So intent on fixing everything around me yet in the process of doing that didnt notice I was breaking!

So tonight after walking past my ongoing crochet blanket for the 1000th time, I sat down, picked it up and started to crochet. I spent just 45 minutes on it this time but already feel re engaged with what makes me whole.  Really any kind of ‘art’ takes my mind to a better place.  I dont yet feel inclined to sew, the great love of my life.  That mojo is in a hiding place unknown to me at this moment in time. Nevertheless a good start with the crochet I think.

I dont think I shall make any promises to myself just yet but will keep my crochet bag in full view so I can just pick it up and give it 10 minutes here and there.

Heres a picture of the ever so slowly growing blanket for my 19 year old ;)


Well It’s Like This …….. Don’t Laugh!

Saturday proved a total write off as we here in the UK with our temperate climate that produces some of the world’s most unique weather patterns (and we know this), had a storm. Not a huge one, a bit unexpected -ish lasted all of 10 minutes here in our part of Bedfordshire. Super lashing rain, awesome bright pink fork lightening and some super winds that had trees VERY near by that are hundreds of years old bending near to breaking point. Then it was gone, the sky blue and a hint of sun BUT we lost our electricity for hours!!! Crazy madness given we know this about our beautiful island, we are NEVER ready for our weather, ever. Rain, wind, snow, heat you name it we are not geared up for any of it…… bit embarrassing really. SO, sitting by candle light, no chance of a cup of tea (no gas in our village) I was quite a happy bunny (not). I did do an excellent impression of Vicor Meldrew (character in an old UK sitcom, he was a right old moaner).

By the time we had light again all I could think of was my cup of tea and the one Saturday TV show I watch so all creativity abandoned me.

Sunday dawned, mood a little lighter I had a more detailed look at my new 300 stitch crochet book to discover it’s in English!!!! By that I mean I crochet in American :)  I have no idea why my Mum taught me in American but she did. I am sort of bi-lingual in crochet so spent a bit of time doing a translation for popcorn stitch.  At this point Dear Reader I ask you to remember I am very new to crochet and my hooking extends to basics hence my choice of popcorn as it is described as a basic stitch.

They lied!

My osteoarthritis really doesn’t help but I have always tried to get past my limitations and pretty successfully I think. Not this time. I can safely say my one small test row of popcorn is a right old dogs dinner! It took quite a while and I am sure any one of you pro’s out there would have laughed your tail feathers off at my truly awful attempt. That all said, I did give it a go direct from the book. I will do a YouTube search and see a real crocheter doing it so I can see how badly I fouled up the technique ;)

I submit, for your amusement 2 pictures of my weak effort and beg your indulgence. ximage image

Uh Oh ….. Blame Dellis

If my new-found addiction to crochet wasn’t quite all-consuming it will be now! My darling Dellis sent me a book. 300 Crochet Stitches.

Who knew there were so many?

Well quite obviously with my obsessive tendencies I am going to have to try every single one ….. so here begineth the start of a lifelong journey ;)

Wish me luck…. no strike that WISH YOU luck as you read me LOL! xxx


Hands Up ……

image…. if it’s time for a bit of change.

I finally today completed a task that has weighed me down since my Dad passed. Getting his apartment completely clear and ready to receive tenants. I can hardly believe it is done. Exhausted both physically and emotionally but it seems like a great time to keep the thrust forward with change.

You will know from my previous post that I am on a journey that currently has the wind behind me creating momentum :)

So I thought a little change with my blog theme as well ;)

I think I like it, may take a bit of getting used to but hey ho, out with the old (cranky, mad me) and in with the new (not so cranky and not so mad).

Time will tell :) x

More Than You Can Shake A Stick At !!!!


The sewing has taken a back seat (bad girl) as the crochet bug has bitten BIG STYLIE!

I have a crochet, coffee and chats morning coming up with some lovely ladies who attended my Absolute Beginners sewing workshop last summer, so in the interest of being sure my proposed beginners crochet project is suitable I have trialled many yarns and as a result I have had several projects on the go at once! In fact we have here photographic evidence that I crochet anywhere …. DD2 had a hospital appointment and I expected a bit of a wait so I sat there crocheting. Some of the looks I got did make us chuckle as some of the faces had the look of ‘ oh gosh, it’s witchcraft’ ;) image

imageWell I had better make the most of it as the time is rapidly approaching when I will have to rejoin the workforce and time will not be so readily available to me (Boooooooo!)

I have however after all this trialling settled on a fantastic acrylic yarn by James Brett called Marble Chunky and the great thing is it comes in a 200g ball so this will be sufficient for the task in hand, no yarn changes to break the spirit of my new learners :)

Additionally I have continued with my exposure therapy and have been out LOADS, even on my own. It really is beginning to work as I feel less and less unwell when I am out now. To the point that DD2 and I are gadding off to France on the Eurostar next week for a day trip. We did intend to go to Amsterdam on a budget airline but for some reason the flights are pretty costly at the moment so we’ve decided to drive to Folkestone and do the 35 minutes on the train under the English Channel. Trying not to think on that, a bit scary :(  

Part of my ‘getting my act together’ has been reverting to a good old-fashioned hand written diary  that I am keeping copious notes and lists in. Although I don’t tend to get everything done, I do find I get a lot more done and my head doesn’t seem to have the never ending chatter that just increases my anxiety. All in all going quite well


1 ball of 200g down, 1  more to go

1 ball of 200g down, 1 more to go

almost finished, just one more edge to shell stitch and done. I LOVE the colours in this James Brett

almost finished, just one more edge to shell stitch and done. I LOVE the colours in this James Brett

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