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31 May 2011

Staycation

Did you have a busy holiday weekend?  We certainly did.  Our to-do list now has more crossing out than jobs to do, which is very pleasing.

As the title of this post suggests we are having a week at home, hence the busy weekend to get everything out of the way; we decided that we really should do something enjoyable with a precious weeks' holiday.  Today we have visited the market town of Saffron Walden, had a wander around the shops and market, enjoyed a coffee and huge scone.  Poked around the antique book and charity shops - didn't find anything of interest.  Following that whilst in the area, we went over to Solopark - this is a period reclaimation yard - again nothing of particular interest and also very expensive. On the way home we stopped in at Scotsdales Garden Centre - now this is where the day got expensive. 16 plants, 2 watering can roses, 2 wooden barrel taps, plant food and a new pair of border shears later we left!!  Well you can't go to a garden centre and not spend any money can you?

Plans for the rest of the week?  Tomorrow we thought we would go to Bury St Edmunds, another local market town - they have a yarn shop which requires a visit - I have been very good this month, only 300 grams in (which came from the charity shop and only cost me £2) and 1200 grams out, still working on the Ten Stitch in Blue.  A holiday treat is in order don't you think? 

Not sure on plans for Thursday yet, but at some point I need to get my plants in, I've already tried out the new border shears - lovely and sharp.  Friday, the Jones' are coming to stay.  Mr Jones is helping fit the wood burner and Rufus is going with Pops for his first haircut, I'll let you know how that goes!  Sunday, Peter and Rachel are doing the Norwich 100 cycle ride, so I will go with them and pay a long overdue visit on my parents.

27 May 2011

Lets do lunch

Rufus came today, his mum went to meet friends for lunch in Grantchester and Rufus and I spent some time together.


Read a new book


Discussed the route to France and looked through the guide book


Played with my toys



Pops came home and I had a shoulder ride

Mum came back.............. get off

25 May 2011

WIP Wednesday #2

My WIP is still the Ten Stitch in Blue, its coming along slowly.  There seems to be so many other things to get done, but I am managing to still knit most evenings, even if its just for an hour.


Those of you that read my blog on a regular basis know that I have a long To Do List, and this afternoon I managed to cross off something - I filled my hanging baskets and pots.  I've not done so many this year as, frankly its a pain to keep them watered and we have had so little rain that the barrels are empty. 




Once they have established themselves I will post some pictures.  I always think they look a bit sad until the baskets fill out. Right off to water the greenhouse and veg plot...... then maybe just sit down with my knitting as husband is out giving a platelet donation

Sweet Treat


My neighbour popped round last night with a jar of the first of this years honey. He said it was a thank you for alerting them to the swarm of bees that they recently collected from our garden.  No, believe me we were happy to have rid of them!!

23 May 2011

Project Spectrum - Red around the house

As I'm knitting in blue, I decided to have a look round the house and garden to see what I could come up with on a red theme.  I was actually surprised at how much I found

Weekend News

So what have I been up to this past 4 days?

Thursday afternoon I went along with the Medway Craft Group ladies to Lucy Boston’s house and gardens in Hemingford Grey, what a pleasant way to spend a sunny afternoon. The gardens were really lovely with a beautiful display of iris and roses; the scent was heavenly. The tour of the house was very informative and the quilts beautiful. I was very surprised that this treasure was on my door step, just shows you don’t always know what’s round the corner. Just a shame they don’t do teas.

Friday, I spent the day with my youngest. We went shopping for an outfit for a wedding that she will be attending soon. We were successful, which was a relief, nothing worse than going shopping and coming back empty handed. Friday evening we were down in London for an Eric Clapton concert at the Royal Albert Hall. He was his usual brilliant self and the evening would have been perfect had it not been for a raging sore throat, which left me feeling rubbish.


Saturday and Sunday I spent the day painting inside the garden room, nearly done, just need to finish staining the skirting. Not much fun with a cold I can tell you.

Did you get the strong winds? Our garden is full of bits from the willow tree, what a lovely mess for me to clear up later. Still nothing much in the way of rain, just the odd bit but with these strong winds it dries off really quickly. Our shrubs are beginning to look like its August rather than May! Never satisfied are we, but then us Brits love to moan about the weather. You watch we have the week off next week and I bet it rains all week!!

19 May 2011

Project Spectrum

Again Ravelry is guiding me towards new projects, today I have decided to take apart in project spectrum - this is the brief

Crafting the colors of the rainbow! It is really about expressing yourself creatively - making something beautiful, and creating something unique with your hands. It is also about thinking outside of the box - perhaps taking up a new hobby, or a long neglected one, or finally dabbling in design.
Projects can be big or small - whether you plan to lay tile in your kitchen or photograph a tree in your backyard - it is not a race, it is just about sharing your creative work to inspire others.

These are the month by month colours
May – Red 
June – Green
July – Blue
August – Pink
September – Yellow
October – Cyan/Aqua
November – Black/White/Grey

My contribution so far this month will be my new kitchen tiles and a beautiful rose from my garden.



I'm sure I can find some more reds and oranges before the month is out............



Something I knitted last year

Nature in the raw

Picture the scene -

Sun lifting in the bright blue early morning sky, swans drifting on the lake, herons in search of fish, cows chewing the cud, rabbits hopping back and forth in the roadway in front of us.  Then suddenly from the undergrowth a black dart, and the air is filled with the sound of screaming from a baby rabbit.  A black ferret or polecat is rolling around with its catch.  I don't think I have heard anything like it, Rachel had her fingers in her ears, luckily the ferret dragged the stricken bunny into the undergrowth but we could still hear its cries as we rounded the corner.  I know its only nature doing what nature does, but not a good start to the day.  I hope Mr Ferret enjoyed his breakfast

18 May 2011

Work in Progress (WIP) Wednesday

I decided that I would join the ladies on Ravelry with their WIP Wednesday postings.  This is where we show what we are currently working on. 

As previously mentioned I am working on my third Ten Stitch Blanket, this project is mildly addictive.  I love the way in which it grows and grows without too much effort, TV watching knitting.  You can turn this pattern into anything, bath mat, cushion cover, bedspread, bag, it use is endless.  If you'd like to see more from the designer Frankie Brown then check out her designs here I plan to create more of her designs, in particular the circular Ten Stitch


My blanket has grown somewhat from this photo, it currently weighs in at around 650 grams.  I am working through the blues to get to greys and this will end up as a throw or double bed size depending on how the yarn pans out.  So watch this space for further updates............

Updated photo - 1:30pm

Wednesday's Factoid

1980 - Mount St Helens erupted in Washington, USA, killing 57 people

Experience is a comb which nature gives us when we are bald - not actually sure what that means

Also in the news today -
Rufus is 11 months old
Painting continues in the Garden Room. Completion date now expected to be around 6th June................

15 May 2011

Garden Room - steps

Another productive weekend and one where we managed to tick a few things off the list.

Peter and Stuart built the steps leading out of the garden room.  Well Peter says Stuart built them he just assisted.  So thank you Stuart, your help is very much appreciated and we are very pleased with them.  We need to decide whether to fill the fronts of the steps in or whether to leave them open.  If open then we need to fill the underneath with pea gravel to prevent weeds etc; though I have been thinking that if left open then there is the potential for lost toys and lots of tears!  We also need to decide whether to stain them or not. Peter is of the leave them to 'weather' opinion but I think they look too 'in your face' at the moment. What do you think?


I spent the day gardening yesterday, I had help from Rachel and Reece - Rachel is currently house and teenager x 2 sitting, bit of an eye opener for her!!  They repainted a couple of decked seating areas whilst I put in my vegetable plants and carried on top dressing the borders.

Today I have continued with painting the walls in the garden room.  I have now been all the way round, cutting in the beams takes such a long time, in total its taken me 20 hours for just the first coat, the second coat will be quicker. Peter is continuing with the ceiling, the beams mean that both jobs can be done at the same time with no fear of either paint overlapping.

The wood burner will go in sometime in the next couple of weeks and we are nearly there.  I need to sort out the garden around the new steps and then we would like to sit back and relax!!

I hope you had a relaxing and enjoyable weekend.  Off for a soak in the bath now.

13 May 2011

Our little man is poorly

I went to visit Rufus and Beck today, they both have colds.  Poor Rufus was very poorly, snotty nose and and a high temperature this afternoon.  My top is sporting several 'snail trails' and I also got pee'd on!!  I did get a few smiles and lots of cuddles.  We went for a nice long walk while Beck went grocery shopping but he was so quiet and just sat holding his rabbit.  I hate to see babies looking so listless, and he really hates having his nose wiped. Hopefully he will feel better tomorrow



At least Blogger appears to be up and running again, got the shock of my life yesterday when it said I didn't have a blog on my account.  Was somewhat relieved when I saw all the messages on the forum help line and everyone was asking where their blogs were!!

11 May 2011

On my needles.....

Knitting - I am managing to get a bit of knitting done in between the painting and the gardening.  I have completed the Cute Cardigan from recent Simply Knitting supplement.  I knitted it up in King Cole Splash, its an acrylic yarn, very soft.  Not too happy with the button holes, the one on the neck band is slightly out of line.  This will be going to the Baby Pack Project.  I plan to make up another package but it will be a while before it gets sent off.


I have embarked on another Ten Stitch Blanket, this is number three, and will be a blue/grey combo. I managed to find plenty of yarn in my stash.  At this rate I will be able to go shopping again as my stash is coming down nicely.


I picked up a good assortment of buttons in the charity shop yesterday, around 30 buttons of £2.25, can't remember the last time I paid full price for buttons.  I love a button box. I inherited a button tin from my grandmother in law, and this was a source of amusement for the girls for years.  They would tip it out and sort through just to see what there was.  I am now a bit more organised and actually have my buttons colour coordinated in boxes, sad I know but quicker to find what I'm looking for.  Still have the old tin though


The painting of the garden room is coming along slowly, its takes such along time to cut in around the beams, still its keeping me out of mischief and Peter has cooked dinner every evening this week!!  Bless him, well its that or starve

10 May 2011

Tuesday's Factoid & Quote

1977 - The death of American film actress, Joan Crawford

Two monologues do not make a dialogue

I'll be doing more painting today - now that's a fact!

8 May 2011

Nothing off the list but lots done!

My tools for a trip to the recycling centre

 28 bags of soil improver - it stinks!!

the garden likes it though

third coat on the ceiling, looks happy doesn't he!!




Some pretties from the garden

We borrowed a truck from Peter's work and went and got all the wood we need to build the steps next weekend.  3 coats of paint on a third of the ceiling, its been too nice to stay indoors so I have been top dressing the borders with the soil improver.  I plan to tackle the walls in the barn this week when I get home from work. I must stop procrastinating and just get on with it. 

We've had a bit of rain, though you would never know it, the wind has dried it off very quickly; though at least the barrels are topped up.  We are reluctant to put out the tender plants still, as last weeks frosts have really knocked some of the new growth on the plants growing outside and the forecast is saying the possiblity of more to come.  The greenhouse is fit to bursting so something will have to give soon.

Hope you have had a productive weekend, I'm going back to work for a rest!!

6 May 2011

Honey its swarm outside......


Peter found a swarm of bees in the garden today whilst cutting the lawns.  Our neighbours - thats them in the weird suits - keep bees and had a empty hive, so they came and took them away.  We anticipate plenty of honey this summer

Mummy went to work

I teased Penny or Aggy as I call her

Read a couple of books

Played in my tent

Played hide and seek and put lots of finger marks on Mummy's windows

Did a bit of carpentry

Found the hose and played with my squeeky chicks

5 May 2011

Thursday's Factoid & Quote

1891 - New York's Carnegie Hall (then the Music Hall) had its grand opening

It's not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.

4 May 2011

So the new tiles


What do you think then? I know the yellow walls look truly awful against the tiles, but we need to redecorate. The kitchen seems so much lighter and brighter. Also in this collage is the newly washed down beams and the hearth for the wood burner.  So as you can see we have lots still to do, so I should get off of here and get on with something!!

A big thank you to Steve and Aaron Jolley for the brilliant work; if you need a plasterer or tiler in the Cambridgeshire area then Steve is your man, just look him up, based at Bar Hill.  The cat is pleased you have finished though, no more running the gauntlet with Milo

May the 4th be with you

1979 - Margaret Thatcher became the UK's first woman Prime Minister

Forgiveness is a funny thing. Its warms the heart and cools the sting.

3 May 2011

A bit of everything

This post is as the title suggests:-

April's Stashbust - its been a bit quiet on the knitting front, though I managed to complete two outstanding WIPs, made two egg cosy's for Easter presents, started another Ten Stitch in blue/grey combination for Rachel and have nearly finished a cardigan for the Baby Pack Project.  I actually knitted up 710grams of yarn and added nothing. So the stash is going in the right direction.

Garden Room - plastering is finished. We spent bank holiday Monday washing down all the beams, goodness knows how many years of dust and dirt there was but my plasterer (he is re-tiling my kitchen today, more on that later) thought we had coated them in some expensive product - no just hot water, cloths and elbow grease.  Peter started painting the ceiling late yesterday afternoon, its going to take some time.

Tuesday's Factoid & Quote -
1494 - Christopher Columbus discovered Jamaica
Instinct is the nose of the mind

1 May 2011

Sleeping over

Yesterday Rufus came for a sleepover with Granny and Pops.  His Mummy and Daddy went to a wedding and he stayed for the first time without them.  We had a great time, visitors, visiting, park, walking, we packed lots in.  His Mummy picked him up this afternoon and things seemed very quiet and flat after they had gone.

 


We are looking forward to a good nights sleep, not that he woke too early, but I think we slept on a knife edge and woke at the slightest noise.