Monday 6 November 2023

I've been trying to get a few things finished off before the end of the year, there's quite a few UFOs in my basket that have been there for way too long so as DH says I'd better get on with it! The first picture is of the exchange stitching that I've done for my partner for our twice a year exchange. I really enjoyed stitching this.

Prairie Schooler

Next is a stitch that has been on my list to finish for ages, it only needed the backstitching done  and there was quite a bit of it and now it's waiting for DH to frame so it's given us both something to do. We are trying to fill in the days now that we can't get out in the garden at the moment as it is so wet, I'm just hoping that he doesn't decide to start decorating again, I think I've done enough painting for this year.

Fancy teapots from a Readers Digest cross stitch book

The next finish is a freebie from Instagram, a lovely little Christmas stocking that will be ready to hang by the fireplace when Santa comes.

J B W design freebie

I've only bought a couple of presents up to now as the grandchildren tend to change their mind so much so I usually wait until as close to Christmas as I can get before I buy them something.

Some kind soul had decided to spend all my Nectar points that I'd saved on my Sainsbury's shop, thankfully they have been refunded so the Christmas shopping will be a little bit cheaper but how can someone in London use my details when I live in Derbyshire.

Another funeral to attend this week, DHs brother in law this time, I hope this will be the last one that we have to go to this year, it's getting too sad saying goodbye to loved ones.

No recent photos of the garden to show as it's been too wet, but the colours are gorgeous out there so even though it's been too cold it's been nice viewing them through the window in the warm.

These were taken a few weeks ago before all the wet and windy weather blew a lot of the leaves off.

A shopping day today and then back to some stitching or knitting this afternoon, it's so nice to be retired.

Take care all,

Sue xx

Sunday 8 October 2023

A little more sadness

I can't seem to get my act together at the moment as far as crafting goes. We've still been decorating, painting everything that stands still as my Dad used to say.
After losing my brother in November last year and my sister in April, my last remaining sibling, my sister Pat passed away last weekend. Losing three members of my family in 10 months has really hit me hard and I'm going to miss them all, plus it makes you think about your own vulnerability which has really thrown me. There's nothing much can be done about that other than love the life you have and live it as well as you can.

The only stitching I've done is for the Christmas exchange, I don't think many of the ladies have a blog so I'll show what I've done so far.

Hoping to be finished by the beginning of next week so that I can send it off to my partner.

The sunflowers has made a lovely show, the ones I grew finished ages ago but this is one that self seeded and it's grown huge.

A couple of new pots for outside the window, a cheer up for the rainy days.

And finally a photo of the flowers that one of my daughters bought me to cheer me up, such pretty colours.

That's about it for now, I'm going to do some stitching and find something on the TV to listen to while I'm stitching.

I'm still having problems leaving comments, some go through some don't but I have been reading them all.

Hopefully my next post will be a bit brighter so I'll sign off for now.

Take care all,

love Sue xx

Monday 11 September 2023

September sunshine

Well the sun has certainly been shining for the past week which has been a little too hot for me but we've had a quick shower of rain this morning which has cooled things down and made it a bit more pleasant to get outside. The garden has again been taking up a lot of time mainly freezing the wonderful crop of vegetables that we've had this year. We've had so many that even the girls are getting fed up with them. I've made pickles and jam though one batch of jam refused to set even though I boiled it again and added extra pectin but thankfully we'd got so many blackberries that I made more and still had some for the freezer. At least we won't starve this winter.

As well as the garden Tony decided to decorate the kitchen and then when he'd finished that he moved on to the bathroom which he is still finishing so it's been a busy couple of months but it will be worth the effort when it's finished. I don't think he can settle since he's retired he never seems to stop. Sometimes I miss the days when I'd be on my own and read a book or do a bit of stitching or knitting whenever the mood took me but it is nice to have him around more so I'll just have to find him jobs that will keep him in his shed.

We also celebrated our 45th wedding anniversary in August and the girls bought us flowers, chocolates and garden vouchers which were very much appreciated and a lovely flower ornament with a sapphire coloured stone in the centre. I can't believe how quickly those 45 years have gone but we've had three wonderful daughters and five beautiful grandchildren to keep us busy along the way.

I also had to go for an eye test again, I changed opticians this time as I thought my regular one wasn't as good as usual last time I went, just seeming to have a quick look and not listen to what I wanted to ask. The new optician was really lovely, he took time to listen and explained things clearly. My new glasses should be here for the weekend and after my daughters telling me that I never change the style of my glasses I've gone for something a bit different so I hope I still like them when they arrive.

Not a lot of stitching has been happening here in Derbyshire but I have pulled a few projects out so I'm ready for when I feel the urge.

I managed to finish the socks I started last month but that's about all on the craft front but now things have calmed down a bit outside I shall be able to concentrate more on my stitching, I hope so as I have another exchange coming up.

I'll finish with a few pictures of the garden though everything is going over now but there's still plenty of colour to look at each day and now Autumn is on the way it won't be long before the trees will provide the wonderful jewelled colours to keep the garden going.

I've been having problems with blogger again not letting me comment on some blogs and I've had a couple of comments come through to my email but not on my blog. Perhaps I've pressed a wrong button again, I very often do so I'll have to ask my daughter when she next comes or one of the grandchildren who can magically press a key and everything comes right.

Hopefully I'll have more to show you next time but I'm terrible at remembering to take a photo of what I've been doing, Take care all, love Sue x

Wednesday 2 August 2023

August update

The days are flying by again and lots have been happening in the home but probably nothing that would interest anyone other than family. My middle daughter Kim had a birthday on Sunday, she was 42 so it makes me feel old. I can remember going into hospital when she decided to arrive early for my Caesarean in the early hours and everywhere was decorated with bunting and balloons as it was the day after Charles and Diana got married. Sharon my eldest was only two but we had to take her with us and she sat there eating ice cream that the nurses had kindly given her, such lovely memories.

Anyway, here is what I've been doing since I last wrote anything. This is the quilt top all ready to be sandwiched together and quilted. It was a Moda Frivol kit called Windermere, not the easiest to do when you're a novice . There are plenty of mistakes but I'm pleased with how it's turning out. I've just got to pluck up the courage to get it all together now.

I've been doing a little bit of finishing, Hedgehog Row is finally finished off.

I stitched a little Christmas ornament, a Prairie Schooler snowman and finished it off,

and another one that I found that I'd stitched last year.

After looking through my wool last time I decided to go with this one, another Rosie's moments sock yarn that youngest daughter Rachel bought me. It's called Lavender Blue and is such a pretty colour, I wish I could take better photos but I'm really no good at doing anything other than point and click.

We've been getting so much veg from the garden that I've been having to freeze what we haven't given away. The tomatoes are lovely and sweet which makes up for the cucumbers that are growing so fast they are getting too big and don't taste as nice as the small ones. The beetroot, cabbages, carrots and swede are all looking good, that's one thing o thank all the rain for and we've had plenty of it lately.

Tony asked for cake so I made a madeira and a fruit one, that should keep him going for a while. I'm not supposed to eat cake as my cholesterol is high and even after losing a lot of weight it's still not come down and I'm sure one little slice won't make that much difference, someone has to taste it to make sure it's ok.

Well I'd better get on and get something done while the rain has stopped, the lawn wants mowing and the deadheads need coming off and I need a drink. 

Take care all,

Sue xx

Sunday 16 July 2023

Halfway through July

This month is running away with me and I don't seem able to get half the things done that I wanted to partly because I've been feeling so tired and once again I keep getting migraines. I don't know why just one of those things.

I've managed to put a few more stitches in Sunshine Susan and I have stitched a small Christmas ornament that I forgot to take a photo of and I've started another too. I'd love to get some more ornaments done for the tree this Christmas but I'm always running out of time.

My eldest grand daughter Lily has been doing her mock GCSE exams for the past couple of weeks and in between studying she managed to sew this lovely beach hut cross stitch, it's her first attempt at sewing a biggish piece and I think she's made a lovely job of it. Nice to know that my love of cross stitch is being carried on.

I've been sorting through my wool as I fancied doing a bit of knitting in the evenings and narrowed it down to these two skeins. Rachel my youngest daughter buys me a yarn box from Rosie's Moments every year, either for Christmas or my birthday and I usually end up making socks or a shawl/scarf type of thing so I've been trying to think of something else to do with them but not come up with anything yet but I'll keep looking. The problem with that is that you see so many things that you'd like to do and then I still can't decide.

One other thing I've been doing is sorting through my fabric and I found my my lap quilt that I started ages ago so decided to try and do some more to it. The only thing I can say about it is that my appreciation of anyone doing flying geese has gone up in leaps and bounds. The number of times I've stitched a square and then undone it is so frustrating but I'll carry on, it's only for me and it's all good experience.

We've had heavy rain for the past couple of days with wind and hail thrown in for good measure but the garden is still doing well other than a few breakages. These are just a few photos I took last week when it was a bit calmer.

The greenhouse and the veg garden are doing well, an abundance of cucumbers and beans as well as raspberries and strawberries, the apples are getting bigger but the pears are a bit sparse this year

Well that's all to show for now, Tony has asked for cake so I'd better make a move and make one.

Take care all,  love Sue xx

Friday 30 June 2023

A finish, an exchange and a bit of gardening

It's opening day tomorrow for the exchange I took part in but as I wanted to put it on the blog I opened it a day early. The piece I stitched that ended up in the bin was replaced by this one that I'd just finished, I hope she likes it and the extras that I sent.

This is the gift I got from Cathie, it's really pretty and will go on the wall as soon as I can find a nail to hang it on, such a lot of work has gone into it,

and these are the goodies that she sent with it.

I finished Hedge Row by Plum Street samplers, it's not a very good photo, no sunshine today to brighten things up. I just need to finish it now, not sure whether I'll frame it or make it into a cushion as it is on the pattern.

We've been out in the garden again this past week, everything seems to be growing well apart from the parsnips that are still sleeping.

Just a few pictures of the garden, the plants we grew are at last beginning to flower.

This is a new rose we planted this year, it's called Ice Cream and has lovely big flower heads and a really nice perfume

Another rose that has bloomed beautifully this year, so many flowers but also so many thorns.

We had our first lot of beans for dinner in the week, can't wait for some more to grow. 

We spent last weekend walking round Lullington, a village not to far away. We try and go most years when they have their annual open gardens, it makes a nice day out looking at all the different flowers. Tea and cake on the village green and plants for sale too not to mention the ice cream where I usually end up with raspberry sauce on my clothes.

I think that's about it for now, enjoy your weekend everyone,

take care, Sue x

Saturday 17 June 2023

a little bit of stitching

A cooler start to the day, even the birds seem quiet this morning after their antics over the past week or so. We have had so many baby birds this year, the garden has been like a flight path with all the comings and goings of the parents feeding their young.

We thought we'd missed the baby wrens but there they were at the bottom of the garden trying out their wings, it was so lovely to watch them and so comical. Thankfully we've not had a problem with cats this year, I think it must be too hot for them. Our old cat Gizmo just lies and watches everything going on, I don't think he has the energy anymore to chase anything. He's very demanding at the moment, wants his food put under his nose and shouts when he doesn't get his treat at tea time. He is nearly 18 so he should be looked after.

It's been too hot to stitch, I've only managed a little bit on Sunshine Susan but every little helps.

I finished my exchange piece but then Tony accidentally tripped over the rug while he was passing me a cup of tea and most of it ended up in my basket where I keep my stitching. Thankfully most of them were in bags but the exchange piece got soaked. I tried to wash it in cool water but the colours ran so badly that it ended up in the bin as there was no way I could save it. I did manage to send something else.

I was lucky enough to win a chart from Maggie at Black Country Wench a couple of weeks ago, such a lovely Autumn chart.

The garden is growing well, some of the bedding pants I grew are flowering and most of the veg is now appearing despite the two days of dreadful thunderstorms when I thought everything had been flattened but most of it bounced back the next day. The wind pulled the climbing hydrangea off the roof of the outhouse but it was due for a cut this year and it takes a lot to kill it. The roses lost most of their petals but other than that no more harm was done and the garden really needed the rain.

Tony has been busy repairing the shed roof, he frightens the life out of me when he's climbing ladders and walking on the roof, can't tell him that he's getting too old to be doing things like that though, it doesn't work. He never had much time for the garden when he was working but he's always out there since he's retired and it's keeping him busy.

That's all I can think of for now, take care all, Sue x

Saturday 3 June 2023

A finish and a lot more in the garden

I finally have a finish to show, it seemed to take ages doing all the confetti stitches and it does look better in real life, I'm not very good at taking photos so this will have to do.

Summer by Rosewood Manor

A few more stitches have been put into Sunshine Susan by Lesley Teare, I want to get this finished as it's been hanging around for too long but the colours are lovely.

I've been stitching for an exchange and making a few bits and pieces to go with it but I'll show them another time, I don't think my partner reads or even knows that I have a blog but I don't want to spoil the surprise.

We've been out in the garden again while the better weather has been around, shame it seems to have gone into hiding this week. The seeds that I sowed in the garden are coming through, we just need to keep the pigeons away from them or like last year there will be none left for us.

I love roses and this year we are having a lovely show,

as you can see we lost the tree fern even though we wrapped it well in the cold weather.

The baskets outside of my craft room window are beginning to fill out.

And the fish are getting more lively now that it's warming up

and what a better way to start the day than making some homemade bread.

Well that's about it for now, the sun's shining so I'm going to make the most of the rest of the day.

Take care all, Sue x