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Monday, 18 September 2017

Marmalade out. Jess Jelly in.

Jess and Ivy came for a little visit yesterday afternoon, it was a wonderful tonic.
Jess brought a jar of Blackberry and Hawthorn jelly that she had made that day. I was on my best behaviour so I waited until she left before ripping the lid off to have a sniff. Oh My Word, sweet, smokey and deeply fruity. Autumn in a jar. I did have a tiny taste and the SO had a larger one. It now has a label on reading HIS.
Tomorrow I will be picking Hawthorn Hips and probably begging apples from Jess to make a batch.

I also received a thank you card, for Ivy's birthday gifts, that is on proud display while it waits for a frame. It is a montage of photo's of Ivy having fun and I love it.

The bright jumper and hat fitted and I have a green one that needs finishing in the same size. The next ones will need to be a little bigger. There is a special joy to be found in knitting little garments, nothing to do with a quick finish at all, even more so than with a pair of socks.

Here is the top of my Dresser, I am so pleased with it, I have not put all the china out, just most of the Old country Roses. The Silver Maple had to stay in the kitchen cupboards. The flowered stuff does look better against the dark wood though.




All my curtains are now hung, I am just waiting for a rug to arrive. 

Ben doesn't know whether he is coming or going, he spends a while in one room on the sofa and then moves into the other for a snooze. Rufus just took it in his stride.

I slipped over to Llandeilo this afternoon, I took a stack of books for one of the Cafe's which is raising money for a charity. Deb's hubby is having a turn out as well and will transport them all together.

She has some lovely new Alpaca blend yarn in but I was not to be tempted, however 2 balls of Acrylic and cotton blend did slip into my bag, just enough for a small person cardigan.

I have a list of jobs to do in the garden over the course of the week, fingers crossed the weather will co-operate. 

I don't think there is anything else for today, I hope intend to get Ivy's green sweater finished tonight and possibly cast on the cardigan. I do have socks on the needles, of course I do, but want to save them for my hospital waiting time. Rufus,s owner is still in plaster and consequently we are trailing back and forth.

On that note I am off to get dinner ready to put in the oven, I want the timing set so dinner is ready when I get back from walking the dogs later.

                             TTFN                                        Pam







Sunday, 17 September 2017

Resting up.

After the past 2 weeks of moving things around, and generally being in a perpetual whirl, I have thrown the towel in.
Knitting is is it's bag and the door to the craft room is firmly shut.

I had another disturbed night, that's 3 in a row, and woke up feeling completely out of sorts.

The dogs had their walks and I settled into the corner of the sofa with Copper on the box.

2 cups of mint tea have refreshed me but the thought of food brings on nausea ( I hate being sick so food is off the menu).

I think that a day or maybe 2 with clear liquids only will perk me up.

I have bought myself a Welsh Dresser, a lovely old piece that has been polished by generations of women. The owner passed and her daughter has not got room and the granddaughters were not interested.

It is not only lovely but now houses my pretty china that has been languishing in the cupboards for far too long.

I have a photo but the camera is in the craft room so it will wait for another day.

The sun is shining from an azure sky but the garden is a bog after so much rain. Perhaps tomorrow.

Now I am going to put episode 3 on and sink back into my cushions.


                       TTFN                                       Pam

PS. Copper looks very realistic, I am so glad that smelly vision has not been invented.

Friday, 15 September 2017

New look Craft Room

A few days have slipped by since I was here last, they have not been frittered away. I have been working away at my Crumb Blocks.





This is part of a long strip that will be the side borders,






this is the other end. I am not sure about that dark stripe, I may cut it out. This will be cut in half lengthways and there is plenty for both sides. The cut aways will be built up to make top and bottom borders.


Here is a section of the Crumb Quilt, I cut the sashing too wide and that is why I am making the colourful borders. I will bind it in either the sashing green or a darker shade.

The move from back to front of the house is complete and I am reasonably happy with the layout, there will be some tweaking I have no doubt.


Most of my small cuts of fabric and notions are here right behind the sewing cabinet.


This is my knitting corner, right next to the sofa all my pattern books are on the bottom shelf, nice and handy. All I need to do is clear a space for my cuppa.


The rest of the yarn storage further along the wall, just like the fabric there is still quite a bit in large storage boxes. I will get to them after some serious crafting.




A close look at the bottom shelves in the knitting corner, I have plenty to keep me busy through the darker months.



A long shot of that wall, the overlocker and a small sewing machine are in the middle, the printer is ready for any pattern that takes my fancy. You can just see a corner of the ironing board, it is far too big and I intend to make a pressing pad to have beside the Janome for when I am making blocks.

I will get photos of the other room asap,but finishing the Crumb Quilt is my number 1 priority. I have another top ready to baste and want to get them done in tandem. hauling my roll of batting around is hot work and the fewer times I do it the better.

Now it is time for me to get off my btm and get dinner on the table.


                   TTFN                                                Pam

Saturday, 9 September 2017

A little chink of light.

Shining through the gloom of moving stuff from here to there (and back again a few times!) there is a tiny light. The Grace frame has gone to her new home and is set up ready to serve. 

That space gained is wonderful but much better is the knowledge that she will be working again, not gathering dust.

I admit that I had reservations about parting with her but knowing that she was going to such a good home soon sent those off.

I now have to hold my hands up and confess to blanking out all the jobs on my list and having some quality sewing time. Several more crumb blocks have been pressed and attached to the sashing strips.
Even better 2 rows are assembled and the 3rd is on it's way.
Right now I am considering a 4" -6" crumb border and then a solid binding. 

Once I have cleared enough space to photograph my makes I will have a  photo heavy post.

I also have to knuckle down and reply to comments AND get some blog reading done. The past week has raced by and when my bottom has hit a chair my brain has turned itself off.

Thanks to the tireless grafting of the SO ( and a big thank you to the rain that has kept him indoors ) the work is all but finished.

We have eaten out of the freezer and a fresh meal from scratch will be cooked today ( roasted veg and cauliflower cheese) and tomorrow (probably a roast). Then it will be back to the freezer on Monday, I have a loooooong list of jobs, including more marmalade as the SO has taken a shine to it, so cooking time has to be sacrificed. I also want to clear the freezer of made up meals before they become ancient.

I want to thank everybody who has stuck with me and my hasty scribbling, and a big thanks for all the positive comments. It is lovely to read them all and each one gives me a little boost.

My storage, that looked so right in the big room, is so topsy turvy and higgledy piggeldy in the smaller room that I see some shopping on the horizon. It may well be in the form of wood for some custom built shelving ( is it too naughty and selfish to hope for more rain).

All these decisions and plans have kept my mind whirring most of the night. A good long walk with Rufus will blow the cobwebs away and clear my mind, I hope.

I almost forgot to tell you that at one point I could not get to the breadmaker (or the making for a loaf) so I bought one. Sunflower and Pumpkin seed, it tasted pretty good but my word it was doughy. I made a copy yesterday and will be trying it for breakfast, if looks and smell are anything to go by it will be fantastic.

I hear Ben stirring so better get the door open for him. Back soon.



                             TTFN                                           Pam








Thursday, 7 September 2017

A Pale shade of Green

Not nausea, not envy.

Simply experimenting.

Over the past few months I have done a fair bit of reading, all relating to Ben's skin issues, both in book form and on the internet.

Several things have rung bells and blown whistles.

The first was laundry, the detergents and fabric conditioners etc.

I am now using soap nuts in the machine and white vinegar in the dispenser drawer.

My first reaction was to the smell, or rather the lack of it. My laundry smells clean and fresh with no hint of perfume at all.
The second was to discover how much better the towels dry without the residue from conditioner.

This has encouraged me to look at making "greener" choices in all areas.

Another change has been in Ben's diet, over the years I have tried many food varieties, including making it myself. All have had a modicum of success, but none have stood the test of time. He is now on a tailor made dry food from Tails.com. Not only is he loving it I can see an improvement in his skin and coat condition. Time will tell, of course, but he has never eaten his meals so eagerly, you would think it was best steak in his dish.

I have been playing with vegan food and although I can not envisage it becoming an exclusive choice, meat has become a much rarer part of our diet.

I have been buying the same shower/bath/hair products for ages, I hope that this will soon change. This is my next area for research and change.

Now for the fun (hard work I mean) part.

The change round of my rooms is well under way, painting is almost complete, there is just a windowsill to finish. Carpet has been fitted, 4 days earlier than planned.

I do need to find another sofa, my large leather storage one will  not turn in the space we have. The cushions were removed, feet unscrewed and the doors came off and still it would not go. It is a big beast and is very heavy, it was delivered by 3 gorillas and they left sweating buckets. 

It does mean that space is tighter than I had planned for but I am not repining. It will all come good in the fullness of time.

There are still heaps of bags, boxes and loose items waiting to be rehoused. The pile for the charity shop grows by the second. Fran's bedroom is still heaped up but the end is in sight.

I took a few crafty books to knit and natter on Tuesday and will be taking some cookery books next week.
There will soon be another box of goodies winging it,s way to my sister in Norfolk.
The crumb quilt blocks are being sashed, I should say were as all sewing has been put on ice till the chaos has subsided.
Knitting, however, is a different kettle of fish, I have kept 2 project bags to hand. One has a pair of socks, 2 at a time cuff down, the heels have been turned and I am on the way along the feet. The second has a jumper for Ivy in it, I have about 10 rows left before the front neck shaping and then just has to sew it together.

I am going to restrict myself to 2 knitting projects in the sitting room. It had got out of hand with bags of yarn scattered all through the house.

The kitchen is next on the list and then our attention will fall upon the stairs and landing, I may be ripping the carpet up this week as it is really beyond the pale. It has been shampooed twice since we moved here but it is definitely past it's sell by.
Then of course we need new windows.........does the list ever end?

I am quite sleepy now so I better toddle off to bed, it is gone 1:30 after all.

                           TTFN                                      Pam


















Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Bidding a fond farewell.


This Grace Frame has done me proud, here it is with all the sections joined. It is classed as Queen size. I did have it set up smaller to begin with and then after some practise had the extra part assembled and joined in.
The hardest part was getting the leader cloths fed into the rails, much sweat and naughty words were the order of the day.




Now she is off to pastures new, I am not sad. I can no longer use her and she is going to an excellent home. 
I am not stopping my quilting by any means, I will be using a flat surface and sitting down.
I will be looking at spinning in the new year, the excitement of moving to a new space is enough for now. It will take me at least a couple of months to get it set out as I need it.
The bookshelves are in their new room and have been filled, I do expect to be shuffling things about though.

It was knit and natter today, there was cake, we had a very chatty session although the rain/hail/snow combination shocked us to almost silence. Lumpy Rain in September, No No No, far too early.

Deb's has a window full of special priced yarn, all discontinued colours. It is not as full now as it was when I arrived.

I will try to get photo's loaded for tomorrow, I am too tired today. All this rearranging and running up and down stairs is enervating.

I plan a lazy(ish) day tomorrow, a trip to the charity shop with a heap of things that I no longer need or have no further use for. Some cooking and possibly a little gardening, the weather forecast is reasonable and the sun is shining right now.

That is my cue to get Ben out for a walk before the wet stuff returns.

                     TTFN                                           Pam










Monday, 4 September 2017

Spiders and Cobwebs and Dust, Oh My!

It is all stations action here, furniture is being moved, wall hangings taken down and everything easily portable is being rehomed. Most of it has been shunted into Fran,s room where the bed has all but disappeared under a sea of fabric and yarn (all in containers).

The quilting frame is leaving for pastures new, either this Friday or next week. I have already told you that works will be started, almost 3 years after they should have been completed.

Well there has been a slight change of plan, the works will still be going ahead but the rooms are being changed around. 
The largest room will become the sitting/dining room and the smaller room will become my crafting room. I still knit and crochet in the sitting room and it tends to take over the whole room. The simple way of dealing with that issue is to change the dynamics of our living space. I will just have to exercise some control as to how many WIP,s I have in there.

There will be much painting taking place, curtains being made and carpet being purchased. There may be a new sofa and possibly a new dining table ( a dual purpose long rectangle for cutting out as well). Although I do have 3 folding tables for that job.

I have emptied, and moved and refilled, the book shelves. The amount of detritus behind them was absolutely horrifying, it is only a few months since they were out for cleaning. Thankfully the spiders were dead, but the webs were thick with dust and left me sneezing my head off.

The pile for the Charity shop run has grown dramatically and I have some books to take to knit and natter.

The garden is in line for some major works also, the front has become something of a jungle. I totally underestimated the growth rate of some of the plants and some  serious pruning and digging out has to take place.

Fingers crossed that we get some reasonable weather, I can garden in the rain but prefer not to.

The crumb quilt is slowly coming together, as is Ivy,s heart jumper, they are the only projects remaining in situ. 

On the subject of quilting, I was very happy to see Eleanor Burns on You Tube this morning. It had never occurred to me to even look
before. I watched her on the TV, many years ago, for some time before her program was withdrawn for some legal issue. Needless to say I will be watching some of the golden oldies as well as the more recent. I am proud to have a few of her books and quilting rulers in my possession.

Even better than that, the sun has shown it's face and the murky gloom has all but gone from the valley.

I am off to move more "stuff" from the downstairs to the upstairs. I have a dead line to get it done by.

Strictly starts this weekend and I want to sit and soak it up with no guilty thoughts to plague me.

It also means that I have until the following episode to get everything to rights. It is a good combination of "stick and carrot" without the stick. 


                                TTFN                                    Pam