Sunday, 22 November 2015

My Wanderlust Has Gone!

 Not my desire to travel. My Around the World Craft Swap/Wanderlust Crafters swap item has at last found a home!
My first swap partner dropped out the week we were supposed to ship, so I was asked to hold onto my piece to then send on to her partner, who had gone very quite on the Instagram front. The second partner had said that she was going to be late, but had promised to ship by 7th November. (this was a month late)  &th November came and went and after a further 10 days the Swap Momma said enough was enough!  So I was given a third partner, who had sent her package weeks ago!

The gift is now en-route, and should be there by the middle of the week. I do hope she is not disappointed after all this time!

 This was my first Swap and have to say, the experience was not what it could have been, though I did get that fabulous crochet bag

from Elaine in Liverpool and I am using it every day. It stores the wool and the blanket in progress perfectly!

Apparently the experience has not put me off completely, cos I've done it again!!   Another Swap for the New Year!

 I had also started knitting a scarf/shawl in this lovely lace weight yarn, it is so soft and fine it is lovely to work with. But I had done about 6 inches of the knitting and  ---  reality check ---- I will NEVER finish this! So I pulled it all down again and have started another Road Trip Shawl, which works up so quickly and are really useful items. 
its very fine!
 Mr T is a very happy chappie - his new golf clubs (made to measure) have arrived and cost much less than I had anticipated (don't tell him) and apparently - they work!!   He has set himself a challenge to reduce his handicap by 4 points by next summer.

 It looks like I may be seeing less of him from now on....... (more sewing time- Yay!)

We still have to decorate a bedroom after the plaster had to be removed from one complete wall - long story -  but then that is all the major jobs in the house caught up to date. Thank Goodness!
Love a newly plastered wall!
 Yesterday my daughter and SIL came down ( halfway house for a visit south today) and we attended the switching on of the Town Christmas Lights - Known locally as The Christmas Sparkle

 It is a town that we live in, but locals call it "the village" as it is a small town, but has so much history.

There was a French Market in the High Street, and Funfair and Ice Rink on the Market Square, Santa's Grotto in The Chichele College   (this building dates back to the early 1400's)
 And the place was HEAVING!!!!!
 As darkness fell Fireworks were set off and the pretty town lights were lit.
 I think it was a very successful event. I will walk up and get a photo of the Market Square when all the extras have been removed.

Today Mr T will be playing with his new toys, and hopefully doing a bit of painting and I have three Christmas stockings to make for a friend.
Appliqué prepped so sewing will commence.
 Must be finished by Thursday as I have a schedule of finishes to get back too!

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Time is Flying By

 But I still feel in a bit of control!

We spent a reflective morning at our local War Memorial . I live in a small town, more a large village really,  but the turnout for Remembrance Sunday was wonderful

I always make a point to remember a friend of my father - Colin Duffy - who was shot down over Holland and has a grave at a cemetery near Eindhoven. Colin had no family so after my father died, who would be there to remember.

I have cracked on with this months Mini Mania Challenge

This months is a nine block Churn Dash. I had a few ideas, and I may have made more than one piece this month......
It is QUITE small...
Spent a bit of time sewing in the ends of some more green crochet blocks that I delivered to the  Craft Club ready for the 10ft Christmas Tree construction, AND watched the penultimate episode of Unforgotten on TV

Great show - I think I know who might have done it!

Had a lovely walk with Sister2 around Sywell Country Park.
spied a field full of Canada Geese grazing but couldn't get a better shot!
The weather was glorious.

We then headed off for an overnight stay with our lovely daughter to help celebrate her birthday (she was born on a Friday 13th - so that blows the bad luck out as far as we are concerned )  Made her favourite cake from the Roald Dahl Revolting recipes book. Yummy !!

Mr T was being measured up for a new set of golf clubs (as you do) so a visit to Gainsborough  where this pic of the Old Hall was taken though we were not able to visit this time 

And then there was ....

Thursday, 5 November 2015

A Day in York!

 Jumped on a train on Tuesday and headed up to York for a bit of retail therapy with DD and her MIL

It was a bit of a gloomy day, but the city was just as lovely.

 And we spent time just wandering round the shops, having lunch and generally meandering the streets, which was a bit of a luxury as York - lovely as it is - is ALWAYS so busy!

But not this week. I have never seen the streets so quiet.

Birthday presents were purchased (lucky daughter)

Chocolate was drunk

Tea was purchased


Before we wandered back to the station to make our way home

I do love York as a city, and even the station is magnificent

The only down side to the day was a hefty £13 parking fee at Peterborough station!!  £13 !!! they're having a laugh!!

Since I got back I have been knee deep in Admin - but it is done now, so I am going to re-introduce myself to my lovely sewing machine.

Just a quick parade of the October Mini Mania Challenge Pieces.

Octobers Challenge was Appliqué and a touch of Orange (the orange was NOT popular!)  
Dee's Blogged Here

Sew Gentles Pumpkin Patch

Carol's blogged here

Jo's blogged here

Angie's - to celebrate 50 years of bliss

Novembers Challenge is a 9 block Churn Dash Mini.

You will not believe the problems that have cropped up with this simple block - and it's only the 5th of the month!!!

Monday, 2 November 2015

It's Over!!

October that is . Not had a month like it in .... ages!  Something on every day!! I just can't keep up anymore.

But Novembers calender looks much more like normal with a few things booked in and hopefully some spare time to re-introduce myself to my lovely sewing machine.

Last Sunday, the GROUP that I belong to had a trip to the Quilt Show at Malvern.  Not too early a start due to the clocks going back, which was nice.

The Autumn show at Malvern is no where near as big as the Spring show, which I do like attending. But we laughed all day, did a bit of shopping and a bit of viewing so a good trip all in all.
There was a selection of Mini Whole-cloth quilts which were very impressive

And a nice group of Mini quilts that have given me a few ideas for our
Mini Mania Challenge
 And some of the other quilts were quite stunning
simple but so effective

 I love the soft colours in this one

This month is is my pudding making marathon.  It took me three days to get them all steamed, but now they are wrapped and ready to distribute. Phew!
 A couple of weeks ago I read about the CraftClub's latest Yarn Bomb, so on Thursday, off we went to visit

Little Miss thinks they are such fun. Topping old fashioned Pillar Boxes and then auctioned off for charity. 

They are planning to make a 10ft Christmas tree for their next one and have asked if anyone could help by sending a knitted or crocheted  5" - 7" square.
  Needless to say the crochet group ladies jumped in and we delivered 40.
 The end of the month sees the latest reveal in our Mini Mania Challenge.
This month was to be Appliqué, remind us of October and must include Orange (the latter was not popular!)  
10" x 14"
And ready in time for the spooky season!
Saturday brought some soft autumn sunshine and we made a visit to West Lodge Rural Centre. Lots of animals to pet and they had Pumpkin Carving and other crafts to try.

The big girls had a go at making some transport for the evening  magic wands.....

Off to York for the day tomorrow. Might get a head start on the Christmas Shopping!!

Saturday, 24 October 2015

un week-end en France

It was SIL's birthday this week and my lovely daughter wanted to surprise him with a little trip, so last Saturday morning we jumped in the car and headed off to the Chunnel and over (or should that be under?) to France (as you do)

Our destination was to be the D Day beaches - about a 3 hour drive from Calais.

The most impressive bridge that spans the Seine from Picardy into Normandy 

The weather was not its best but we drove past Caen and onto visit Omaha Beach - one of the American landing points.  There is a beautiful memorial sculpture on the beach, and despite the weather there was also a large number of visitors

The view east and west - this beach is some 8 miles long.

Each of the beaches has a large engraved stone memorial

We drove up onto the cliff top where there are still German gun placements

And I wonder what those German soldiers were thinking as they looked out to sea to see hundreds of Allied ships on the horizon

From the cliff top (that had to be scaled under heavy gunfire) you can see the remains of the man made harbour at Gold Beach (one of the British landings)  that was constructed within three days of the landings.

We spent the night at a very pleasant hotel on the outskirts of Caen and after a good meal and early night was called for.

We began our expedition early Sunday morning with a visit to more Gun turrets between Omaha and Gold beaches, these are known locally as
"Le Chaos"

still very much intact

the noise inside these constructions must have been deafening

And so onto Gold beach

This is one of the concrete piers that were towed across the Channel to make the harbour
These things are HUGE and it is hard to believe that they actually floated!!

Once they were in position the lower parts of the constructions were flooded to anchor them to the sea bed.

A naughty visit to a Boulangerie for a bite of breakfast.
A huge Pan au Raisin
And the baguette was purchased for lunch - but didn't last very long!!
some people never change....

The Museum had some brilliant exhibits and a film and slide show showing footage from the time. A lovely French guide talked us through a Diorama  showing how Mulberry Harbour was constructed.
We spent most of the morning at the Museum, a very moving place.  

Photo from d-day
 Records show that 700 lorries were loaded with supplies in ONE HOUR on this harbour!

We also visited Juno Beach (the Canadian landing) and Sword Beach (another British landing)

the Memorial Garden at Sword

 We did not Visit Utah beach, this is much further west and time would not allow on this trip.

As you can see, the weather had improved as the day went on.
We then had the return journey to Calais and the ride home.

I think that the surprise trip went down well with L and we all would like to return - maybe in the spring - for a longer visit to this lovely part of France where there is so much to see, we only just skimmed the surface.

 Thank you to my dear man for driving most of the One thousand miles in two days - as much golf as you like next week.  xxx