Thursday, 31 May 2018

Costco fun day

Here we are the last day of May, the time seems to be flying by.

This is half term week for my granddaughters and we were lucky enough to have them here for two days. Having taken them to Costco on a previous visit I asked if they would like to go again. They were so excited you would have thought I had given them a sweet shop!

Ipads were used to "shop" while we waited until it was time to leave, what fun choosing everything from a shed (£4500) for Grandad and a ring (£29000) for me. Then they added a sauna, Jacuzzi, 4.5kg of jellybeans ( dentist need afterwards) TV for about £2000, climbing frame, etc etc...

Eleanor decided she would just cross off the things on her list if she found them, thank goodness they would not fit in the trolley!

trying out the rocking, swivelling garden furniture
We decided to shop, I really did not need many things as I had been with a friend recently, and then eat at the cafe. The demonstrators were doing a roaring trade and Abigail and Chris tried everything, while Eleanor and I just went for a few tasters...

Eventually it was time to check out and go to the cafe, where we purchased four extremely large jacket potatoes, with cheese, chili and baked bean fillings and four drinks all for the pricely sum of £8.50.

Yummy lunch
Thank you Costco for all the fun we had, plus the bargains of course.

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Green Lane trip starting in Helmdon

Yesterday was the only day this week we had time to go out and enjoy the Green Lanes [Byways], so we set off around 9am to travel to Helmdon in Northamptonshire.
The weather was perfect, dry and bright and not too hot.
Chris had chosen a route using Tulip maps, which I love to use. The version we use are B in the information below.

The name of this type of navigation comes from the Tulip Rally, which first used it in the 1950s.
Tulip, or ball and arrow instructions, are simple diagrams of the route junctions with the ball indicating where you come from and the arrow indicating where you are going to. Normally they are given in order.
Tulips may be orientated as on the map, or turned around so that the ball is always at the bottom, or most of the balls and arrows may be left off deliberately. 

The gap looks too small to get through, so Chris goes off to investigate

Hardly wide enough for a path, but we get through with a few more flakes of paint being rubbed off the Land Rover!
The other side of this was a small hump back bridge and a VERY muddy patch to be navigated through.

A really old Ramblers sign in the middle of nowhere!

Gates, gates and more gates on this route!

Everywhere looks so lush, I wonder how many shades of green there are?

Toilets are always a problem, but Canons Ashby owned by the National Trust comes to the rescue.
Only about 1/2 mile off our route we make a detour to use the facilities and have a drink sitting outside in the sunshine.

The gardens are looking magnificent at this time of year.

Back on the route we stop for our picnic lunch and I spot a row of these pretty flowers.
No idea what they are, the leaves look like clover.

2pm the final gate before heading for home.

Sewing with friends

Such has happened in the past few days, not that I am complaining, it is wonderful to have such a  full diary.
Saturday 19th was the Royal wedding of Harry and Megan, now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the sun shone and I am sure no one who saw the event did not have a smile on their face, it was just perfect and I watched every minute of it on TV. Even managed to do a little knitting.

Sunday Chris was a volunteer for the Race for Life at Corby, starting at 5.30am he helped setting up and rescuing anyone that needed it. A count of his steps pointed out he had walked further than the 10km racers! I had a lazy morning and church in the afternoon.

Tuesday four of us got together for a sewing day in the Happy Room, we all worked on different projects and I managed to complete a child's Peter Rabbit quilt that will be donated to a charity.
I also managed to make a cover for my new sewing machine from two UFO machine quilted blocks.
It was a very relaxed day spent with friends.
Love this EM design

Reverse of the sewing machine cover

A simple 6 fat quarter cut into 5inch squares child's quilt

Love the fabric

The same day Church were holding an evening auction to raise money for the youth camping trips. Items were donated and pledges of services offered. I donated a quilt and a day quilting in my Happy Room. Much to my amazement the quilt fetched 25 pounds and the day 50 pounds.
As I write the total money raised is over One Thousand pounds.

The ribbon quilt designed by my friend Christa, in the process of being made by me.
This was auctioned and raised 25 pounds

Yesterday was a Green Lane day... more on another post.

Thursday, 17 May 2018

A few days in Norfolk

We decided to take a few days away in Norfolk and booked a chalet on the Sundowner Park.
The chalet is pretty basic but has all mod cons.
However the wind has been gale force, so outside pursuits have been rather limited.
We took a trip to the Blickling Estate, now owned by the National Trust to admire the grounds which are in full bloom at this time of year.
Shelter walking through the tree lined avenues was most welcome.
The view of the lake and house through this bluebell lined avenue was breathtaking.

Rhododendrons of every colour were in full bloom

The scent from this Rhododendron was amazing

Such beautiful colours

Colours clashing but melding together for this beautiful display

This view made me want to take up painting!

Chris and another beautiful rhododendron

Blickling House in all its splendour 

Another avenue of bluebells and rhododendrons 

Lunch at The Ship, Mundesley on our way back completed a really nice day out.

Guess I should mention while here in Norfolk I visited The Lost Sheep wool shop in Rollesby twice! Such a nice shop with friendly owner and great selection of yarn. Also visited a wool shop in Kings Street Gt Yarmouth again twice! Better on the inside than it looks from the road.

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Pink Socks

Another pair of socks, this time in Pink, completed.
I used Knit Pro 2.5mm DPNs [double pointed needles] and Stylecraft 'Head Over Hills' 75% superwash wool 25% nylon. The colour is Olympus.
I try to match my socks and they started off pretty even in colour but for some reason the toes are different !
I have a number of new projects I want to work on so watch this space.

What a night!

Last night as we were watching reruns of Blue Bloods, one of our favourite TV series, there was an almighty bang, sounding as if someone had thrown a brick at the window!

Chris went out to investigate as we could see nothing thorough the window and there was a man on next doors roof  who preceded to jump down into their garden.
999 was called and soon three police cars arrived while Chris continued to talk to the dispatcher. Another neighbour had seen a man fall into our garden and jump on our Land Rover to reach the neighbours roof! That was the bang we heard.
Eventually six police and a dog handler surrounding the property and apprehending the man who turned our to be the nephew of the neighbour blind drunk!

Blue Bloods the police TV series seemed a bit tame after all this excitement and I’m glad there was no nurse here to take my blood pressure!

Friday, 11 May 2018

The new sewing machine

Having been on a workshop recently I decided I really needed a new lighter sewing machine to take to workshops. My choice must have needle up/down, a needle threader and a small range of different stitches. I decided on a Janome CXL 301, it looked like it had everything I needed and was within my price range of a maximum £350.

Now to find someone selling it on offer, or with extras [ maybe free delivery]... everywhere it seemed to be £319. While looking for something else on a local Market Place facebook group I came across the same machine I was looking for. The write up said it had only been taken out of the box once and was not used again, being a sceptic about such an advert I asked to go and see it. It was exactly as described without a mark on it. The person selling it did machine embroidery for a living and already had other machines so was not using it.

£220 and I have a new toy, and I love it.
Need to make a pretty cover for it

The seller threw in a walking foot and a load of other feet.
I will have great fun exploring what all the feet do.
ps. Anyone any ideas what I should spend the £100 I saved on? I'm thinking wool and fabric!!

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Travelling the Byways

We set off early [8.30am] this morning to travel some of the Byways of Northamptonshire.
What a glorious day, nice bright sunshine but not too hot. Starting with the Byway that runs along side Overstone Park we travelled through Holcot to the Byway near Walgrave. Onward through Old to the byway running past Faxton where the sheep and lambs seem to want to escape when you open the gates. Our route then took us through countryside around Maidwell, where we came to a dead stop as the gate had not been unlocked after the Winter closure. A zig-zag of Byways from Thornby to Cold Ashby and Elkington to our final Byway which is a flowing river near Dodford.
Luckily as I opened the gate the cows, and bull were far across the other side of the field!

On gate duty again

The dreaded Rape seed which has Chris coughing and sneezing.

A tight entrance made to stop people flytipping

Taking it slow

Almost through the twists and turns

All stop for the Cow crossing

Lots of new lambs in the fields

Entering the water at Dodford.
Should have been a video but my camera did not cooperate and I could not get Chris to back up so I could have another go!
Home at 3.30pm in need of a cuppa and a car wash.

Monday, 7 May 2018

A visit to my garden

I would like to invite you to visit my garden via Blogland.

Last years compost bin has been planted with a courgette plant
I have done this in previous years and had a bumper crop before reusing the compost in the garden.

Decided a lavender tree and petunias would look nice next to my new Arbour.

Love how the Rhododendron starts with a pink bud that turns into a pretty white flower
Thanks Uncle Charlie for this plant that was dug up from his garden after he died.

Camellia 'Deborah' always a very showy plant full of flowers
Given to me by French visitors who did not know my sisters name is Deborah.

Spending a lot of time here in the summer house, with it's new carpet and quilts on the walls.

I'm hiding!

Don't look at me!

Here's my rear view!
I seem to have a number of newts in my pond this year I could watch them all day.

16 new fish joined the pond today,
 it has been fun watching the original fish make friends with them.
We lost a lot to a heron the end of last year, so I'm hoping he has moved and leaves my pond alone.

Sunday, 6 May 2018

BBQ with the family

Lovely sunny day so after church the family arrived for a BBQ and a game of lawn darts.
Large cream cakes from Costco went down a treat.
Abigail Eleanor and Richard
Sitting in the summer house with its new carpet and quilts on the walls.

One down, One to go

Chris has turned into a lumberjack!

Some time ago we decided to get rid of two trees in the front garden and leave only the one.
The tops were removed and then holidays and very wet weather slowed down the action.
Today with a large axe the roots were cut through and then the Land Rover winch was used to fell the tree.
My guess is next move will be to use his new chain saw to cut it into pieces.
Roots attacked with an axe


Biopsy, bruises and a block finish

Thursday I went into hospital at 10.30 for my lung biopsy, the staff could not have been nicer and put me at ease. The procedure meant lying...