Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Happy Room UFO's Part #2

A black wolf machine embroidery

Two more "why did I sew them " blocks

The first ME on my Brother Innovis
4000, still the same after 2 yrs!

Enough stars for a cushion?

2 large Christmas blocks

Eight 12+1/2" Christmas blocks

Winnie the Pooh blocks for ??

Enough  swirls for a cushion or bag

A block to match the cushions on my furniture

More Christmas blocks unused

12 Winter blocks from a swap in 2013
Why when its Christmas I feel like making Christmas blocks then time gets away from me and they never get made into anything! 
Today Chris and I are going Green Lane-ing for the first time this season, so no sewing will get done.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

The Saga of the Happy Room Part #1

Today I decided I really must sort out my Happy Room.
It has got to the situation where I can hardly find room to use my cutting mat and every surface [ including the floor] is swamped with "stuff". BUT I have empty containers and one empty drawer in my filing cabinet from a previous de-clutter.
Wow! did I find a lot of things I hardly remember making, some brought a smile to my face and some made me wonder "what was I thinking!"
I needed a plan, so decided to photograph every thing I found that needed work doing to it, hence this is Part #1 as I found 44 . Some are small and need little work but some need a lot of work. Some I have no idea what to do with them, so any helpful ideas would be most appreciated...
Here's the first 11 UFO's
Lap quilt only needs a few more leaves quilting on it

A series of small hand sewn sea creatures??

A few more Colonial knots
and another cushion front made

This heart wreath is almost completed

Christmas purse in need of its frame and beads

Two sewing sets almost complete
made for gifts

Cushion front needs a new backing

A pile of blocks for???

A lap quilt cowboy
needs quite a lot of work

2 B&W ladies Bag / cushion ???

Two ME panels for ???

Monday, 28 April 2014

Back at the gym

On Friday I saw the Consultant about my knee and he discharged me from further visits or the need for more Physiotherapy.

I belong to Curves gym but have been absent for 4+1/2 months due to my knee replacement.
Curves Circuit with Zumba Fitness    Curves Complete  so today I went back for the first time. I was very nervous about going and if I would be able to managed the equipment, I need not have worried, the trainer and other members of the gym were most helpful and encouraging. I managed 1+1/2 circuits [ we normally do 2+1/2 circuits].
I felt pretty shattered by the time I got home, but a cup of hot chocolate revived me.

My plan is to start going three times a week and just gradually build up my strength again.

The Raspberry Frame

Last year my raspberry canes, which are suppose to be self supporting, grew so tall they flopped over the path. I cut them down to about 4 inches from the ground in February and look how tall they are already!
Chris offered [ well I had to ask! ] to build me a retaining frame to keep them in check this year.
I am impressed with the sturdy frame he has built and look forward to picking another large crop of raspberries late August / September.
The Raspberry Frame

Saturday, 26 April 2014

BOM #7

BOM #7
Another block completed for my BOM project with BSK at Bedford.

I have chosen the colours of my lounge curtains for the threads but I am still not sure if I will make cushions and  a lap quilt or what I will do with the twelve blocks when they are completed.

Hooping up ready for the Embroidery Machine:

20" square of white fabric, cushion soft [ thin wadding] and tear away.

Fold the white fabric in half and half again [usually iron these marks in].
Using a 12 1/2" square ruler I line up the ruler to the centre folded mark [ 6 1/4" in any direction] and using a Frixon pen [ which easily irons off ] mark the outside edge and central cross.

Block # 7 only required this amount of marking, other blocks have required a further 1/2" mark inside the outside 12 1/2" mark.

Placing the tear away, cushion soft and white fabric carefully lined up central to the markings on the hoop I start with the top of the frame and work my way down the sides until finally screwing up the bottom nut as tight as possible [ I use a coin! ]. It is easy then to place in the EM and line up to the centre point [ most designs seem to have this marked] OR if needed by line up to a side marking.
Press the button and away you go. This will complete half the pattern, it is simply then a matter of moving the fabric around 90 degrees and rehooping to complete the design. Practise and good prep are the key.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Gardening and Sewing day

Yesterday although still coughing I felt much better and wanted to "get going".
I started in my garden which has been badly neglected lately due to my knee replacement.

I weeded borders [ where do they come from?] moved pots, pruned shrubs and bushes and planted a row of dwarf beans. I know it is really too early to sew bean seeds but I thought I would give just one row a go. I also planted a row of parsley. We have a real cat problem so I cover the empty garden areas with twigs in the hopes it deters them from using my garden as a toilet!

My Acers around the pond are looking wonderful at the moment, especially when we get a few rays of sun on them. The large red Rhododendron is just coming into flower, there are lots of buds so it should be a good show this year.

Two apple trees bought very cheaply at Aldi and quickly stuck into a couple of empty pots have burst into leaf, not sure I'll be picking apples off them any time soon, but hey one day!

I needed a break after all this gardening, so came and sewed out one of the BOM blocks I missed from class last week as we were on holiday.
Acers near my pond

Row of dwarf beans "cat proofed"

Two cheapo Apple Trees

Block 6 of BOM series

Monday, 21 April 2014

12 - 19 April Scotland Holiday

There was very little Internet reception while on holiday so I could not blog.. here is a glimpse of our trip.

We set off at 6am on Saturday 12th April in the old Land Rover for the 400+ mile journey to Tighnabruaich, Argyll, Scotland. We arrived at the Lodge eleven hours later, it had been a fun journey with Richard Jacq and the girls leaving home at 8.30am [ in a faster car!] playing catch up with us. Having just bought a new phone I managed to text Abigail back and forth all the while on the trip, it was great fun and passed the journey quickly.

Our destination was Carry Farm where we had booked two four berth lodges next to each other. The girls spent the week flitting from one to the other, especially Eleanor!

This was the sight we saw on our first evening...
The end of the rainbow over our lodges
A double rainbow

It was a very restful holiday with walks along the shore, Chris and Richard taking some major long hikes, and lots of evening game playing. I found a jigsaw in the cupboard and could not resist it, I cannot remember the last time I did a jigsaw.
playing board games

Working on a jigsaw

Our lodges

Patting Barney the Donkey

Lambs born on Carry Farm the first night we were there

The views everywhere were just spectacular. Our site overlooked the Isle of Bute and many yachts and other sea craft sailed up and down between the island and mainland.
Threatening skies

Blue sky

Some yachts enjoying the sea

The last day was Good Friday so the girls had an Easter Egg hunt with lots of eggs being hidden in both lodges and some outside, I hid 46 in our lodge so Jacq probably hid even more in their lodge. The girls loved it and when they thought they had found them all [ at this point Jacq and I could not remember where we had put them all!] they divided them up.
Abigail trying the water temperature

Father and son 

Dividing up the Easter eggs

Hunting for missing eggs

Five lambs were born while we were there
An early start on Saturday saw us travelling home again, we had driven 922 miles in total, using 170 litres of fuel costing £235. The Lodge cost us just over £400 for the week.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Where did the week go?

It has been a hectic week with the girls here Monday to Thursday, all the while living with a terrible cough and cold!
Monday was craft day and the start of the clocks.
Tuesday we visited Miss Tiggywinkle at Haddenham near Aylesbury. They take in damaged animals and birds and give them a new chance at life. The girls loved seeing the creatures on the mend. There was also an interesting Hedgehog museum. We stopped at a garden centre for lunch on the way home.
Wednesday it was off the Emmaus a rehousing the homeless place that has a lot of different little shops of second hand goods. Not sure this was a good idea ;-) we took a couple of bags of goods for recycling and came home with stiletto shoes for Abigail and a tiara for Eleanor. They also bought a noisy piano and guitar!
Grandma [me] thought it a good idea to set up the new rock band in the summer house!
Thursday Grandad took the girls to the park to play on the bouncy castle and feed the ducks. Dare devil Eleanor age 6 climbed the 9ft high tower and swung around! Back home they collected tadpoles from my pond to take home to their own pond. They left at dinner time and peace reigned again.
Today I went to the hairdressers always an exciting time as Anton my hairdresser is from Estonia and all the staff speak Russian to each other, it's like being on holiday. Talking of holidays I then went shopping for food at Aldi to take with us as we travel to Scotland for a weeks holiday tomorrow. Richard Jacq and the girls are also on holiday with us.
Grandad and girls at Miss Tiggywinkles

The Rock Band

Clocks finished and looking really great

Shoes for a 10 yr old, Tiara for a 6yr old

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

School holidays

The granddaughters broke up from school on Friday for the Easter holiday. Easter being so late this year they get the two weeks break before Easter instead of after it which seems a bit strange.
They are staying with us Monday to Thursday of this week and then we all go off to Scotland for a week.

Needless to say I have planned things for us all to do, and we started after their arrival with playing in my Happy Room, and the project for this visit is to make clocks.

They started by drawing  the outline shape and then took it in turns to Machine Embroider the numbers 12, 3, 6 and 9 in coloured threads they had choosen. Next they chose flower shape buttons and sewed them by hand for the missing numbers.

We are now awaiting the delivery [ due today] of the frames for the clocks and will then be able to complete the clocks.
Abigail 10 and Eleanor 6 working on their clocks.

The Rocket and the Cancer Sampler

A friend from Church sent me a message that a Lego Rocket Technic was for sale on Market Place and he thought Chris should have it. The guy ...