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Thursday, 27 December 2007

~*~ Eating and Stitching ~*~

Hope everyone had a happy and holy Christmas with family and friends.

The children go to their father's at lunchtime on Christmas Day, so we have our Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve- turkey, ham,and ALL the trimmings. I like to attend the nine lessons and carols at Hexham Abbey in the early evening but this year because Alex had been at work all day, we ate in the evening.I listened to R4 from King's College Cambridge but ,although beautiful, it wasn't quite the same.

Now the kids are teenagers, Christmas starts more gently than years gone by, 8am instead of 5am !!
I love watching them open their stockings and presents and everyone was delighted with their gifts.
After the children had been collected by their Dad and set off for another meal (kid this year !!!) and present giving, I got my gladrags on and went to a hotel in Bellingham for dinner with a group of friends. This is the first time I have done this and it was great fun and soo relaxing but with no guilt cos I had already cooked the traditional lunch and the kids were having fun with their Dad.
Home by 6pm, after 4 courses,wine,port, coffee, christmas cake and chocs. (have not eaten much since ) and an invite for a 4 day wine tasting holiday in Tuscany from a local Romeo !!
Overdosed on Eastenders and Strictly and a good day had been had by all..........

To go back a day or so....I dropped off Julie's prezzies last Sunday and admired her tree, on the dresser she had hung a gorgeous little stitcery. I needed that pattern and pleaded with her to lend me it and completed 2 in three days !

Have included a couple of fave photos of mine.

Sunday, 23 December 2007

~*~ England calling Switzerland....over ~*~


Thank you so much for the gorgeous chocolates for the sewing group, we all tucked in on Friday afternoon at the FQ's.

My snowman is really cute, it was really kind of you to think of me and it was so funny to see Margaret trying to finish her's in time for Christmas. She couldn't get the legs the same size and thickness and he looked like he'd had some dodgy orthopoedic surgery!

When are you coming over for a visit, I would love to meet you and your family
Have a great Christmas and a Happy & Healthy New Year.

Saturday, 22 December 2007

~*~ FQ's Friday Girls Christmas Lunch ~*~

The lunch, with a visit from Santa, had been arranged for weeks but at the last minute, I thought I was going to miss the fun.

I had to get a plumber in 'cos the downstairs loo was blocked and leaking all over the bathroom floor - nice!! The only time he could come was between 10 and 12 yesterday. Anyway, he arrived on time and fixed the problem, and after driving like a mad thing I made it to the lunch and sewing afterwards.

The others had big meals but there was just enough time for me to have a scone and mince pie.

L to R Janet, Margaret, Dawn, Pauline, Julie and Kim

The secret Santa was great fun and I did really well- a Betty's bag, a gorgeous cupcake deckie and some beautiful Caroline Zoob notelets.

Dawn also gave me a cute little box which contained some tiny, handknitted mittens to go on the tree.

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

~*~Happy 15th Birthday Verity ~*~

Monday was Verity's birthday.She had a lovely weekend, a small party, visiting her dad, going to a Maximo Park concert and a pile of lovely prezzies from family and friends.

The Christmas tree was put together over the weekend and is not yet leaning at a precarious angle.The mantlepiece has still to be decorated.

I have spent the morning wrapping presents and finishing off a few projects.

Sunday, 16 December 2007

~*~ Walking in a Winter Wonderland ~*~

It has been really chilly up here for the last few days, about minus 3 at night.Yesterday, Verity took Wendy for a long walk through our field and the nearby bridal way,to collect some holly for decorating.

Sunday, 9 December 2007

~*~ Mmmm......~*~

And then there were three..........

~*~ BRrrrrrrrr.............~*~

It's snowing up here in rural Northumberland!! Ok not quite as much as in the photo but still heavily, unfortunately,turning straight to slush.

I love the run up to Christmas, making gifts, decorations, wrapping, cooking and shopping but this year I cannot get into the groove, possibly because I cannot shake off this B..... cold.I have been coughing etc, etc for almost 2 weeks now and am really fed up.There is so much to do and I can't be bothered and then it will be all a rush and no fun at all.

It is Verity's 15th birthday next weekend and we like to have the decorations and tree up just before.

I have been making a few bits and pieces for presents and have some gloves to finish.

Julie has bought me some mince pies from "Betty's" and is bringing them up this afternoon.Should I freeze them or just eat them now !!!!!

Monday, 3 December 2007

~*~ Cupcake Pincushion ~*~

Calum, Verity and I are all poorly with the lurgy.Sneezing, snotting and coughing all over the place.The kids have been snuggling up in front of the TV and playing cards and I have been making this dinky pincushion.

The base is quite fiddly to insert,using ladder stitch

I filled the "cup" with lentils to give it some weight.

And then added the icing.........and a "cherry" on top.

The other one I made over the weekend but spot the deliberate mistake !!!!!

Friday, 30 November 2007

~*~ Christmas Wreath ~*~

On Wednesday evening I made this Christmas wreath. The class was held in a beautiful old farmhouse in Hexhamshire.
The circular oasis was covered, first of all, with evergeens and then holly and ivy were added. Finally once all the oasis was covered, I added all the lovely dried bits and pieces.
I used rosemary, purple sage, dried poppies, marjoram, honesty, hawthorn berries and teasels.
The wreath was then soaked for 12hrs and should last until after Christmas.

Saturday, 24 November 2007

~*~ Technical Problem please do not adjust your set ~*~

My computer had to be returned to the mother-ship last weekend for urgent maintenence work but we're back and raring to go again.

Set off on a cold Friday morning, far to early on a non work day, to the Knitting and Stitching show at Harrogate. I was pleasantly surprised ; the show was good !!!!
3 large exhibition halls of every knitting,embroidary, felting, beading and crafting supplies that you could possibly need and there were also a couple of patchwork and quilting stands.

Fortified with tea and a bacon buttie after our 2 hour journey, we met up with Kim and Genevieve on the Fat Quarters stand. Kim had borrowed a few of my bits and bobs which are lurking in the background on the stand.

In the afternoon, Margaret, Janet and I went for a mooch around Harrogate. It was bright and sunny and there are some great shops.The afternoon finished with tea in "Betty's" and the summoning of the cake trolley !!!!
This is Margaret perusing the menu !!
Dawn, we all missed you and hope you are on the mend.

I was very restrained and just had a little "fancy"

Back on the bus at 5pm, the journey home took a lot longer as there had been 2 nasty accidents on the A1.
We arrived back at 8.30ish to a bitterly cold, frosty Newcastle.I think the others will agree that a really good day was had by all.I felt that I had laughed and chatted the whole day!!!

Today I have been catching up with housey chores but took time out to finish a little project:
I made a bee skep scissor keeper for my giveaway and collected a few bee and honey orientated goodies to go with it, when I was in Liberty's last week. I saw this cute needlepoint pincushion kit and must still be in the bumble bee mindset. Throughout the years I have dabbled in most crafts and needlepoint is no exception but I havent done any for about 7 years since a Kaffe Fassett cushion nearly finished me off. I took this to work with me last week and picked it up in my lunch break and really, really enjoyed doing it.

I have made it up into the pincushion which is slightly rhombus rather than rectangle shape but as usual I was a bit impatient to complete it.

Incidently I have had an offer accepted on a great house, so the next few months will be pretty busy.

Friday, 16 November 2007

~*~ London Trip Day 2..........~*~

After a full English breakfast at the hotel, we caught the 73 bus direct to the Country Living Fair in Islington.

Whilst standing in the Q to get in, I realised we were standing in front of Victoria Wood and she looked fabulous.

The Fair was really good, made even better by the fact that it was reasonably quiet for the first hour and you could get a good look at everything without all the josling about.

I have bought some lovely bits and pieces, mostly Christmas prezzies which I can't reveal on the blog.
Emma Bridgewater's husband, the gorgeous Mathew Rice, was there and personalised my advent calender envelope with a pretty watercolour of Wendy.

After about 3 hours, we called it a day because it was just too busy. After a nice lunch, we dropped in on the newly renovated St.Pancras station. The renovated ironwork is beautiful and the bronze sculpture of the couple in the entrance is magnificent.

Caught the 3pm train North, picked up at the station by Julie's husband and home by 6:15pm.

A really hectic but fun couple of days, think I'll do it again in March !!!!

Thursday, 15 November 2007

~*~ London Trip ------ Day 1 ~*~

Got back last night after a brilliant 2 day break in London.Caught the train early Tuesday morning from Newcastle.I took some knitting with me and the journey just flew over. Arrived at King's Cross station about lunchtime and set about some retail therapy.

Marylebone High St with Cath Kidston and Emma Bridgewater were the first stop,followed by a long mooch around Liberty's.The Rowan wool dept. is fantastic and a whole floor is dedicated to Christmas deckies. This looks like a frame from Autumnwatch

We had a meal in Carluccio's and then set off to find the hotel, a quick freshen up then off to Mary Poppins at the Prince Edward theatre.
The musical was brilliant,all the fave songs, great acting, fantasic moving scenery and Mary Poppins flying over our heads on wires!!!!

Day 2 tomorrow..........

Monday, 12 November 2007

~*~ I've calmed down ~*~

It worked, a combination of sewing, watching "Strictly", a good red wine and a few good meals has got me back on an even keel again.

This is a peculiar little quilt from "Celebrate with Little Quilts", I love their work and can always find inspiration within the pages.I didn't have a red that was "orangey" enough but am quite happy with the result.The blue lines are,of course, water eraseable marker pen lines for quilting; 3/4 of an inch apart, diagonally across the top.The top, including borders is 10in by 14in.

I will be quiet for a day or two, I'm off to London, to the Country Living Christmas Fair, to see Mary Poppins and some retail therapy for Christmas.

Saturday, 10 November 2007

~*~ Pinwheels ~*~

Been really busy the last couple of days but managed to finish off another "dolly" quilt.Am having a real craze on little projects.

Fat Quarters yesterday afternoon as usual.Pauline arrived and then left straight away because she didn't feel well,hope she is not going down with one of the dreadful lurgies that is going around.

Have been planning on moving house since January of this year,have viewed scores of houses but have lost out on the couple that have been suitable. Looked at another this morning that ticked most of the boxes ie location, garden, no of bedrooms, potential sewing room etc,etc.....but the vendor has refused my first and the revised offer and I can't afford any more so am a bit p..... off.

Am going to calm myself down by some gentle hoovering, start piecing a new "Little Quilt", watch Strictly and have some nice goodies to eat.

Thursday, 8 November 2007

~*~ And the WINNER is.............................~*~

Verity picked the name out of the hat this morning

Congratulations Sharon !!!
Email me, phone, both are on the Moo card, if you still have it or leave a comment and you bag of goodies will on their way to you.Incidently Sharon, just as well you didn't have a BEE related stamp at Brockbushes, last Sunday, or you would have won one of you own stamps back !!!

Verity and I met Sharon of "Willow Designs" last Sunday at Brockbushes' Christmas Fayre.She designs and sells great stamps and scrapbooking stuff.We got talking (as you do)and it turns out that she is also a keen blogger.We exchanged cards and Sharon was as good as her word and left a comment.

The sets of ribbons are just gorgeous,I settled for the scrummy chocolate and the zingy lime green.
Sharon's blog is www.fairydustbag.blogspot.com

To finish on a very sad note however:

I know you shouldn't have favourites but my favourite cockeral died in his sleep last night.We called him "the big fella" and he had so much personality.He was an old boy and had lived a full and happy life but I will miss him looking for sunflower seeds at the back door.

Sunday, 4 November 2007

~*~ It's a Giveaway !!!!!!!! ~*~

To celebrate 4 months of the blog, I have put together a little prezzie.
A scissor keeper/charm made by my own fair hands and some BEE related stuff.
Just leave a comment between now and Wednesday and your name will be put in the hat.

Friday, 2 November 2007

~*~ Strawberry Emery ~*~

Kim, finished at 7.50pm tonight. Not bad eh???

~*~ Kim returns from Houston ~*~

Friday afternoon sewing at the FQ's. Kim returned safely from Quilt Market with bags of samples of patterns, books and kits that she has ordered for the shop.Dawn is very excited because there is a lot of "bunny" inspired projects on their way.

Kim was wearing a purple glittery, feather boa that she got at an Eleanor Burns class but we all put that down to jetlag !!!

Pauline has almost finished her seahorse applique quilt and I finished piecing the pinwheel doll's quilt.

Ann sat all afternoon and drank tea !!!!

Wednesday, 31 October 2007

~*~ Oh so cute ~*~

Julie had a day-trip to Edinburgh yesterday and sought out this very cute candle at the Emma Bridgewater shop.

Wednesday tends to be a food shopping, ironing, housework, chores, etc, etc.so I'd better get on with it!!!

Monday, 29 October 2007

~*~ Back By Popular Demand ~*~

OK, OK, OK, I give in...........

So who are these babies?????........

Sunday, 28 October 2007

~*~ Pinwheels and Teacups ~*~

Had a really great Friday;

Met up with the Friday afternoon FQ's crew for lunch.The idea was to get the chatting out of the way and maybe some constructive sewing would get done.Did it work? No, we just chatted for longer!!!

Started this 40's Pinwheel quilt from the Kathleen Tracy book. This is the 3rd project in a row from this book, a real gem!!

Verity had her Halloween party on Friday night and it was great fun. Verity organised it all herself, planned the food and drink, decorated, carved pumpkins, sent out the invitations,fancy dress costumes, music, transport etc, etc........and tidied up afterwards!!!!!!!

In Nigella's recent cookery book, she served dessert in old-fashioned teacups and saucers and it looked so brilliant. Julie had a night away in the lakes and brought this lovely cup and saucer as a prezzie. I am going to look out for a few more to put puds in.