Monday, 29 June 2009

Little Boxes On The Hillside

Look who's got a pretty bed!!! This gorgeous setting is where Daughter No. 1 resides. She's often found luxuriating across her bed, book in hand. She's a big book worm and munches through several novels a week. Sometimes per night, if they are short. Harry Potter is the latest collection she is working through.

Did you spot the pretty pillow amongst it all? Yes, I've finally completed it! It was so much fun. Your wonderful comments spurred me on. I ended up using the pillow case I had, as I knew it would be ages before I found the perfect fabric. I cut it with the grain, unlike the makers of the pillow case!

Daughter No. 1 got involved and chose all the embellishments for it. She did a great job I think. I decided that the blue was so perfect for her bed that I gave it to her. There were hugs, thanks, dancing, whooping and a few other excitable reactions. I think she was pleased! And yes, they do all want one. I think Nana does too.

I'm working on a quicker way to get the same result. I've been buying some goodies this morning, so this afternoon I will be cutting a new neighbourhood out.

The back of the cushion has a zipper opening. Nice and easy when you put it in just up from the edge. Nice and neat too when you can't see the zip from the front. You can't even tell it's white can you?!! Hey, I wanted to get it finished!

Now look what I had to take out this morning! Our two year old decided that her pj's were too smart to take off. They are actually. They are quite new to her and she loves them. Look, she's clapping her hands and 'yaying' as she does. She's a very enthusiastic child, No. 4 is.

Yes of course I will take your photo as well No. 3! Yes I will blog about it too! Yes, you do look lovely in your new coat, very smart indeed.

Friday, 26 June 2009

I've Poked Pins Into Granny!

Wow, thank you everyone sooo much for all your very encouraging and also very lovely comments! It's always so lovely to hear from you and to know that you are sharing in my delight too as I figure out this exciting new craft - well it's new for me anyway.

So, as you can see, I managed to figure out the blocking stage last night. Loads of pins were used, as it's always better to go overboard when you haven't a clue what you are doing, I think. A good spraying of warm water and a lovely rest overnight, in front of the dehumidifier, did the trick.

I have to say it was a rather apprehensive moment when I walked into the lounge this morning and over to the crochet. Well I really wasn't sure if the pins would rust or not. Luckily they didn't! Imagine all that time wasted if they had. Well that would have been it, as far as crochet was concerned, if it had been ruined.

OK, so I did my best to square it all up, it's not perfect, but it's OK! And the little one loves it and proudly told her sisters that it was for HER bed.

Look how nicely it drapes now. It's so much different now that it has been stretched and relaxed. Suddenly it has that familiar look that crochet blankets have.

Look, it really does look like a cushion now! It's just the right size too by the looks of things. I'm pleased that the colours alternate and I didn't manage to stuff that up!! I've also changed my mind about adding the crocheted flowers to each square. I think it looks fine just as it is.

It's been rather a busy morning here today. Starting with the weekly shop and then an impromptu meeting with a couple of friends around here. Nice and busy. But now I have to go out and buy a birthday present for an eight year old. Bangles I think. So anyway, must dash so I can be home for school home time.
Have a good weekend all!!

Thursday, 25 June 2009

25 Grannies Meeting

I have done it!!! Look, I've joined all 25 little grannies together. Finally, you say. It was so much fun and not too bad either. I noticed a couple of little errors in my grannies, but nothing I couldn't handle. No one will notice either, I'm sure.

This photo shows just the cross ways stitching, or crocheting really, it's actually starting to look completed already at this point.

And now I have joined the squares in both directions, just need to finish those ends off.

Ta da!! The finished product, well this stage anyway. I think my intersections aren't too bad either. OK, to be quite honest, there was quite a bit of self-praising last night. You know the sort, "Man, I am sooo clever!" My darling husband had a few nice words, but I could see he wasn't quite as excited as me.

Well, I guess the next step, is learning how to make a pretty edge around it. I want a lovely rounded lace look in the dark pink. I'm sure I will find someone to show me on line. It's just so much easier having these things at my finger tips, instead of having to go searching through old library books.

Speaking of books. I bought a few books online yesterday. It's all rather exciting as I hardly ever buy books. Well what did I order? Material Obsession, Jelly Roll Quilts and Sew and Stow. The last one was so cheap and the cover looked so have to haveish. You know the sort!

I'm off to finish the vacuuming of our bedroom. I can hear my husband's delight already! Then the big girls are off to have haircuts. The eldest one is starting to loose her face under her thick dark hair. I've been pushed into doing something about it as she is singing on stage next week with the school choir. She must look presentable!

Well I hope you have a good evening/day where ever you are. Hope you have time for something nice, that you enjoy.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Washing Day

I have quite a few works in progress at the moment. I seem to be handling it OK though so I can't have too many, I guess. I really hate that feeling you get, when you are swamped with projects, which are fun to do, but you know you want to finish them.

This row of houses is something I've been wanting to work out for a while now. I really love all the different sorts of quilted houses I have seen lately. I have no idea what the easiest way to do this is, so I'm sort of working it out as I go along. When I saw this washing line fabric in my cupboard, I knew I wanted to use it between the houses. Just like people overseas do who haven't got a back yard. That reminds me, I have a load of washing in the machine needing to be hung up. Mustn't forget!

I love the aqua colour for the background, but this is a badly out of shape pillowcase and I would like to make it a cushion out of a firmer fabric.

Weeell, who's finally got the crochet bag out again? Yes, aren't I good! It's been gathering dust lately as I have been in the sewing mood of late. But now that the fabric has run dry, I thought, time for the crochet.

I have been a bit nervous about the joining stage. Not really sure why because after reading Lucy's Attic24 blog on joining squares, it all seemed rather simple. Of course it is, you are saying! Well no one told me did they?

So off I went last night and see how lovely it looks on the back. I was very surprised and delighted with my progress. I only got the first row completed as I had forgotten that I still had the wool ends to weave away. Never mind, I'm all set to finish this stage today - hopefully.

Goodness, I'm not sure what happened with this photo! The colours are soooo bright they hurt my eyes. Anyway they are supposed to be deep red and dark brown. Not really sure if I like them together anymore. What do you think? It's only going to be a scarf, so no major panic needed or anything. It sure eats up the wool though! Might not even have enough wool to complete one of suitable length.

I've had a bit of a reorganization of my fabrics in the weekend. They look much better now and easier to find what I need. Unfortunately I don't actually need any of them. I need ones I haven't got! Think I need a trip to the fabric shops soon. I don't have much in plain colours, which works better for the house idea. Might need to check out a real patchwork shop.

I'm a bit concerned about the quilt I am making too. I have decided to go with the white borders around each square, that's fine. And I have made more than enough. The problem is, how am I actually going to quilt it? Will my machine be able to fit it all in, in the gap. It's just a single sized quilt, so only half the quilt will be squeezed in at one time. Does anyone know if it will work? Just straight line sewing for this project.

OK, I'm off to do a spot of crochet before the girls come home from school. Should do that washing too I suppose. Hope you are having a good day!

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

From France, With Love xxx

Well, did I have a great weekend or what?!! It began on Friday afternoon really, with my friend M's birthday. The four girls and I popped in for afternoon tea and the giving over of a 'secret project' from last week. This red and gingham apron, for when she is doing her much loved baking, or cooking when required.

It is actually reversible, depending on the colour of outfit she is wearing at the time. I'm thoughtful like that, quite the thinker sometimes. No, not often, I know.

I made the beanbags last week with the leftover pieces. I love how the hens are waltzing, I sure M and her husband quite often dance while they cook. Very romantic!

Now the highlight of my weekend, of course, was Floss's Garden Party. My goodness, quite a time was had by a good many of us. Some of us are still recovering actually! Lucky me, I still have a week's rest in the South of France while the others had to return home to their regular chores. Oh dear, poor them.

I had to purchase a laptop to be able to communicate back home and to send my blogging news. I would hate for you to miss out on any exciting happenings in my life. The thought of it!

Anyway, back home, I see someone has thoughtfully completed all 84 nine squares ready to be stitched together. I think Cindy's mice have been very hard at work this weekend.

I see some of Liz's fabrics have been stitched in to the quilt too. And don't they look nice? Golly what a big pile of squares, a lovely sight indeed.

Oh, and someone has been out and bought a frame for Daughter No. 1's gorgeous painting too. That's just what I would have chosen!

Now my poor husband has missed me dreadfully!! I am such good company that my absence has left a gaping hole in his life. Poor man. Look what he did to fill in that space. He has spring cleaned the whole kitchen!!! And it's winter. He even cleaned the plugs, believe it or not.

Who would have guessed that we had a runway of a bench under all that clutter? The canisters are gleaming so much I was grateful that I was on the beach wearing my sunnies. Oh it's so fabulous to have a cord free computer to work on.

I even heard that the messy child's room was cleaned by father as well. Goodness it must have really been getting to him. May all this cleaning continue. I will be very pleased to return to a clean and tidy house.

Oh my goodness, we have clean windows!! That's such a treat. Usually I have to be careful when taking my blog photos not to include the edges as they are so embarrassingly filthy. I really am a slack housewife. I kind of get too busy to bother about excess cleaning. A quick flick here and there and I'm done.

Well, I should probably get back to the sun, the sand and the sea. Off for pizza and olive oil soon. Au revoir!

Oh, the photo of the carousel reminded me of the one Floss had at her party. It was just beside the beach down here. Oh so lovely!

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Happy Birthday Floss!

How excited was I, when dear Floss invited me to her French Garden Party, to celebrate her 40th birthday. Very, I can tell you! Of course it meant that I had to do much organising at home before I could even think about accepting her invite. Well I do have four children and a husband to think of. Lucky for me my parents live close by to help out when needed.
My husband insisted that I go of course, such a fabulous occasion and all. Of course he could cope with the girls. Please go he said, make the most of it and go for two weeks. Well if you insist!

So I left the girls with different time zone clocks, so they would know what time it was for Mummy. Probably should have labeled them really.
Oh my goodness, packing really is a pain isn't it? What to take? Well I am going for a whole two weeks so I should take quite a few changes of clothing. And I need to take a spare bag for the presents I will bring home for the family.

And then I read the fine print on the plane ticket. Only 25kgs!!! You have got to be kidding! Oh well, I might as well buy some new bags in that case.

Oh golly, the time has come to leave my family. After many kisses, cuddles and tears, I leave them behind. Lucky I brought plenty of tissues.
Oooh I hate the take offs!

Oh wow, that's Heathrow down there!!
I decided to catch up with a couple of friends in England. Ah, shopping in Oxford Street, just fabulous!

I had decided to find my outfit for the party in England. So much better choice there. Starting with the under ware to show off my fabulous figure. A corset to pump up those boobs, gosh they really do look so much bigger than usual! Very nice.

What dress to wear? Oh yes, I do like this one and very fitting in a floral too don't you think?

And a hat is most essential. The sun hasn't seen my face for a couple of months now. Would hate to get burnt in France. Simple, but elegant.
I love these shoes!! Simple again, but my tastes are really. No they aren't diamantes, only the real thing for Floss's party!!

Now my hair really does need a serious cut. How about something pretty for a change. Yes this will do nicely. I'll take this picture to France with me so I get just what I want. The flowers are a nice touch.

Well, after yet another plane ride to France, I check into a fabulous little guest house. Isn't the room just perfect? I love the chair, sorry about my night attire draping on it. I'm not too good at tidying away my clothing I'm afraid.

After four days of travel the party day has finally arrived. Just look what dear Floss arranged for me to travel to her house in!! She really is so thoughtful.

Oh, I just about forgot the present...

and the flowers.

Well I had no idea how much trouble Floss and her husband were going to! Just look at the pretty marques.

The garden was just perfect, everything in bloom. The tables are delightfully decorated of course. See how all those thrifty purchases over the years, have paid off for Floss.

Now Floss really is the perfect host. She even had plenty of dairy and gluten free food for those guests who usually struggle to find things to eat at such occasions. Thank you soooo much Floss.
Corn chips are a lovely starter and one of my favourite things at the moment.
Lovely fresh watermelon too.

Look at these lovely home grown vegetables too. Isn't she just the cleverest?

Now what a surprise for the guests. Hot air balloon rides for everyone. Bit scary to start off, but oh so lovely when you get going.
There was a bit of a commotion at the beginning when Liz called to clear the garden for a three o'clock helicopter landing!! All the balloons had to be deflated while she arrived. I must say she is one fancy woman that Liz though. Imagine arriving in that much style!
You should have seen the cake! It really was quite a work of art.

Gosh I'm so glad the caterers were in charge of the clean up. Just look at all the dainty tea cups though. All different but all so special. I see the children had a good time with the lollies!

Nearly forgot to show you the carousel. I have no idea how she must have got it to her garden. Must have been trucked in I guess. Floss has such a huge garden, it really didn't take up much room at all.

Well, I have to say, that was the most spectacular party I have ever been to!!! I have taken plenty of photos to take back home and loads of lovely memories too. Thank you so much Floss for your wonderful hospitality.
It was also so lovely to meet so many other bloggers there too. That Liz nearly had me in stitches with her stories.
Gosh, now I have to spend another week lying on the beaches of the South of France, shopping, eating and generally having a lazy time. I shall go back home a very relaxed mother and wife. Bliss!