Wednesday, January 21, 2015

January update

Here we are nearly at the end of January and I haven't posted! Being back at work is great but it is a real drain on your time. So, as it is my day off today, I thought I would give you a quick update on my crafty makes this month. 

Most of my spare time has been beavering away on this blanket, trying desperately to get it finished for my sister's birthday. I feel pretty safe posting on here. I am almost 99.9 % sure she doesn't read my blog. I finally finished it the other night and I guess it was the quickest blanket I have made to date. I think I made it in less than four weeks! I did 71 of the 84 stated rows as I felt it was quite long enough and plenty big enough to sit on at picnics and wotnot. 

I followed Lucy's pattern and colour placement as I did for the Cosy blanket and it worked out fine. For some reason, I thought the colours would be a bit more subtler than they have turned out to be. I thought it would be a bit more pastelly but no matter, it is still very very nice and snuggly. 

Cottage Ripple blanket by Lucy of Attic 24
Wool - Stylecraft Special DK

And on the stitchy front, I did manage to get some GAST Piney Woods from the lovely Ann at Beadlework blog. Thanks so much for sending me some thread Ann. So I finally managed my first finish of 2015! The Stars are Shining Brightly by Heartstring Samplery.

I was so excited by my finish that I just snapped it without ironing it first! I will get a better picture soon. I loved working on this. 

My next project is one I started a couple of years ago and never got around to getting it done so I am trying to complete Lizzie Kate ABC of Christmas as my next Christmas design. It is kind of quirky and cute and not really my style but it is nice to be able to do one of the letters and feel a sense of accomplishment. The threads are Crescent Colours (are they called something else now?) and a re soft and pretty to work with. 

Two more charts were added to my stash as well - both Christmas ones. I couldn't resist the Season's Greetings one by LHN so I bought the threads to go with that one. The other is my autoship from The Patchwork Rabbit. It is the next in the series of Classic Ornaments by CCN. I must say, I am a little disappointed at these charts. I thought they would be more, well, "classic" but they seem a little twee in my opinion. I do really like the sampler ornies that are coming out by LHN and I should have waited and opted for these designs instead. Ahhh well, maybe I will get them after this autoship finishes. I will still stitch it up though and add it to my collection. I also spotted two small charts by New York Dreamer ( I think it was Carol's blog Stitching Dreams where I saw it first) which I have on hold for my also by the lovely Karla of Patchwork Rabbit.  

Finally, I thought I would end with a very cheeky picture of April. Look what she dragged home! A magpie! She has caught them in the past and we thought it was dead but when she dropped it it flew away! It's the look of innocence in her eyes that gets me. 

And on a different note, my DH and I have decided to go walking this year and so to encourage us, I have set up a separate blog of pictures of our walks here in the UK. We have been on two already. If you would like to take a look then please do but please don't feel like you have to comment as it is really just something for me and DH to do together. It is still in its infancy stage so there is a lack of words and bumfff on there but pictures are up and you can see how much snow we have been getting. Please go to Between Heaven and Earth to see. 

Thanks for reading and big welcome ad hello to all my new followers. Please leave a comment with a link back to your blog so I can visit you back.

Have a great week everyone. 

Saturday, January 03, 2015

New Year, New Beginnings.

Well Happy New Year folks! I can't believe we are three days into the new year already. Did you do anything nice for New Year's Eve or anything different or did you just go down the "quiet one" route? We ended up taking a drive to our nearest city which is Manchester and stopped just outside it to watch the fireworks going off. It was a bit different for us as we usually stay home but it was nice. We drove back through the city centre which was stupidly busy and it took us ages to get home so we were pretty exhausted by the time we got back.

New Year's Day came and I really wanted to carry on our tradition of a walk or visit of some description. I really don't like going to busy shops and sales. I much prefer to get out into the quiet.  We decided to head out to Yorkshire, in particular, Hawarth where the Brontes lived and died. It was wonderful and somehow we managed to get into the museum which is the house they grew up in.

It rained then it poured but it didn't dampen my spirit as it was a wonderful, old village with quaint little shops and surrounded by beautiful hills.

The Bronte parsonage where they grew up:

The church their father pastored:

The school Charlotte taught at:

More shops:

Some of the little shops were open and we had to have a few sweets from the old fashioned sweet shop. I love those sort of shops. We ended up buying some of this:

That was New Year's Day. How was yours?

Stitch wise I am a little frustrated. I have almost completed Star Shining Brightly by Heartstrings Samplery but I have ran out of GAST on the last round of the border. Grrrrr... So I am awaiting a reply from Patchwork Rabbit to replenish it so I can get this little baby finished off. 

Sorry about the picture. I took it whilst it was lay on my knee! I am so lazy sometimes.

I have decided on my stitching goals for this year as well. I have decided that I am going to have a Christmas Stitching year! I have three designs started that I need to finish and I have a whole stash of Christmas charts that I would love to do. So here are my goals:

1. Finish "A Star Shining Brightly" - Heartstring Samplery
2. Finish Lizzie Kate's, "ABC of Christmas"
3. Finish "A Quaker Christmas" - Bygone Stitches.
4. Complete the CCN Classic ornaments as they come through.
5. Kit up and stitch "Christmas Carols" - CCN

I have several other Christmas charts to kit up and stitch but I don't want to set to high goals so I will post as I start and stitch them. These include charts from Heartstrings Samplery, BBD, CHS and LHN!

I have also made a good start on my sister's blanket. I am on row 38 of 84 and have 4 weeks to finish it. I may do it slightly shorter than the given 84 rows depending on how much time I get. I am loving the colours and you can find them all on Attic24's blog. I am afraid I cannot take credit for colour placement as I am copying Lucy's. 

Well that is me for the time being. I have loved being off work and being able to get back to blogland once again. It has been mostly fun with the exception of the very sad and sudden death of Vanessa Cabban - from Do You Mind if I Knit blog. Very very sad and it does make one think. 

So I am back to work on Monday. Blogtime may be reduced :(

God Bless 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

A Quick Question to all my Stitching Friends....

Just a quick question to all my lovely stitching readers. As you know, I live in the UK and I used to order some of my stitching stash from a couple of places in the US which have now stopped business. I am looking for some online shops in the US that are good to deal with, have a good range of charts, fabric and threads and have a good shipping rate to the UK. Some people are lucky enough to have good, local shops but unfortunately, I am not one of them. If anyone can recommend one please let me know.

Thank you!

P.S. I have been out of the Stash loop for a while, hence why I am asking ;)

Thursday, December 25, 2014

To Jesus

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: (‭Romans‬ ‭3‬:‭23-24‬ KJV)

Jesus gives us the gift of Justification through grace and grace alone. This is why I celebrate Christmas. 

Thank you Lord for your precious gift that brings freedom and forgiveness from sin which gives me peace in my heart and a strength that never fails to get me through the hardest of times. Thank you Lord that no matter what I have done I can come before the throne of grace and find help from Father. Thank you Lord that you came from glory to this rotten world to save me from all my flaws and wretchedness; to bring healing both physical and emotional; to make provision for me financially and in every other need I have. Thank you Lord that you love me and care about every single detail of my life and that there is nothing too small for you to care about. Thank you Lord for your promise to never leave me or forsake me and thank you that you have showed yourself to me as a real friend and not a myth or a story. Thank you for the gift of faith that you put in my heart many years ago. 

Merry Christmas everyone. I pray you find true peace this Christmastime. 


Comments are closed. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas crafts with kids and looking forward to 2015

The Christmas season is well under way at our house. We broke up a week earlier than most schools in the area and I really needed that break. To be honest, I have been very ill this last term on and off and even now, after having a full week off, I am still full of a head cold and sinus trouble. My face is in a lot of pain. So I haven't actually wanted to do very much other than stay in and hunker down in my own home.

A few days ago, knowing the kiddos were getting a little bit stir crazy, I set them off doing some Christmas crafts using this book that I had purchased a year or two ago.

We made paper chains...

And snowflakes....
these were a bit trickier..

And I was very proud of my wee man who spent hours on making stuff. 

I still need to write cards and do a bit of baking but truth be told I'm really not in the mood this year. I'm just plain old worn out! 

So I thought I'd start looking ahead to next year and begin to make some goals. I failed miserably the last few years at making and sticking to my goals so thought I'd try a different approach. I have seen a lot of people doing the stitch from stash thing which looks good but I think I need to be even more stricter than that with my finances. So I'm not sure. I had thought about having a kind of finishing pot so that every time it finished something I would pay myself a certain amount and put it in the pot so to speak. Then after I have a few finishes under my belt I can treat myself to something new. 

I have a few charts already kitted up in my stash that are waiting to be started. One of which I have just started as a bit of a Christmas treat. It is Heartstring's Samplery The Stars are Brightly Shining. 

I have done quite a bit on it already and looking forward to squeezing in another finish before the end of the year. 

I am loving working on this which uses GAST threads and is stitched on 32 count desert sand. 

I have also recently finished CCN ornie number 3 and now awaiting for the next one. It seems to be taking forever for these designs to get over here. 

I have decided to stitch them all up first and then "finish" them off into ornies. I hate the finishing bit. 

The other project I have started is another ripple blanket which is a gift for my sister for her birthday but I literally only have about 6 weeks to do it in so I need to get this done quickly. The colours are turning out quite pretty although I wasn't so sure at first. 

I hope she likes it. She might not, truth be told, but at least I can say I have tried to make my peace.

So stitching plans for 2015?

I desperately need to finish Elisabeth Lillie.
I must finish Lizzie Kate ABC Christmas
I must make some considerable progress on A Quaker Christmas
It would be nice to get at least 2 or 3 blocks done on Shores of Hawk Run Hollow
I should really get going on A Most Noble Pursuit
Helen Bell's multiplication sampler has been sitting far too long 
and these are just WIPs

I won't mention the Just Nan, the HEADS and the Yiota design. 

I would like to start more - like I said I do have some ready kitted up to start but I do need to get some of these BAPs finished first. I think looking at how much I have to do on them, I should start with Elisabeth Lillie and get her finished up. Also the Lizzie Kate one won't take long, I'm sure. 

This is going to be my year of finishes! 
Watch this space. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Week before Christmas post.

I want to thank you all so much for your heartfelt condolences on the loss of my beautiful girl. I miss her so much. 

Today I have some finishes to show you. I have finally crocheted the last rounds on the edge of the Cosy blanket. I have much enjoyed working away on this - one reason being that the pattern was all laid out for me and I didn't have to think about it very much. When it came to the last round of colours, I was indeed worried that I might not have enough yarn to do the edging so I left off the stripes of gold, claret, copper and meadow and also left the petrol till the last row. I still did not have quite enough of the copper or the gold but fortunately I did have some in my stash of wool upstairs so I could finish it off. It is very big and very long and I love it and I can't believe I am giving it away!!! My husband says it is the nicest one I have done to date. Cheeky beep. I think all my blankets have been lovely in their own way. 

Some other changes I made were to the corners. Instead of the stated 2trb - ch2 - 2trb I did 3 2 3. I am always so worried that my edges will curl so wanted to do as much as I could to prevent this. 

Here it is!!

This last one showing the corners. 

My mum had asked me to make her some potholders a while ago. She showed me a magazine with a pattern in it but I forgot to take the pattern with me! I decided to search for some on Pinterest and found this blog which links to some great ones. I made 3 and they were all pretty easy to make. I have wrapped these up now and she will get them for Christmas. I hope she likes them. I still don't really get what they are to be used for?? Anyone any ideas? 

My lovely friends, Tina, Lesley and Tracy came round last weekend for a little stitchy retreat at my house and Tina and I did an ornament exchange. Here is the one she stitched for me:

I love it! Thank you Tina.

Now, I completely forgot to take a picture of the one I made for her so Tina has kindly sent me a picture but it is a little blurred but you will know it as soon as you see it. It is from one of the JCS ornie mags and I think it is CCN or LHN. 

I also stitched one for Tracy too. Here it is. 

It is by Niky's creations I think from this years JCS ornie magazine. I changed the colours to suit.

Tracy has stitched me something too but she said it isn't an ornament so I am waiting until Christmas day to open it. 

I also received this lovely stitched card from Kim from the RAK group. Thank you sweet Kim it is lovely. 

I thought I would also show you some little snippets of Christmas around our home. I think it looks really lovely this year as I have gone for the traditional red theme. 

One of the things I also bought this year was some wintry themed bedding. It is this set...

... and no that is not my bedroom - wish it was!!!!!!

I have decided that I am going to try and make a snowflake runner to go at the bottom of it. I found this design (you can also find a video tutorial on You Tube) and bought some aran weight wool in sparkly white (Caron party) and red Stylecraft also in aran. Here is my attempt! They are quite a decent size too. I really think they will look lovely but whether I will actually get it done in time for this year is another matter. 

So that's all from me for today. I think that's enough. I am exhausted!