Scotland midweek.

January 25, 2012  |  Featured Posts  |  9 Comments

(These berries are an amazing colour – I couldn’t resist this shrub which I think is called Callicarpa.)

I didn’t post Scotland on a Saturday as I decided to wait till today so that I could share a Scottish poem with you to celebrate Burns night which is today.

Many of the poems by Robert Burns can be hard to follow because of the language used so I chose one that I thought was a bit more reader friendly.

“Up In The Morning Early”

Up in the morning’s no’ for me,

Up in the morning early;

When a’ the hills are covered wi’ snaw,

I’m sure it’s winter fairly.

Cauld blaws the wind frae east to west,

The drift is driving sairly;

Sae loud and shrill’s I hear the blast,

I’m sure it’s winter fairly.

The birds sit chittering in the thorn,

A’ day they fare but sparely;

And lang’s the night frae e’en to morn,

I’m sure it’s winter fairly.

by Robert Burns (January 25th 1759 – July 21st 1796

I’m not going to a Burn’s Supper this year.  As you probably all know the main food served is haggis and along with it “bashit neeps” and “champit tatties”.

Which translated means mashed turnip and potatoes.  I quite enjoy turnip mashed with butter and black pepper but I tend not to eat haggis these days.  I don’t dislike it, it’s more of the case that it doesn’t agree with me.

All this talk of Scotland has got me thinking of what is in the news at the moment about a vote to decide whether we split from the United Kingdom.

I don’t usually mention anything political on this blog but it’s so topical just now that I thought I would touch on it in the passing.  Although I’m Scottish in that I was born in Scotland, I am first and foremost a UK citizen and don’t want this to change.  I like being part of Great Britain as a whole and feel that the union of the four countries is important to all of us living here.

I’ve made some progress on the stitching and knitting front.  The camel is coming along fine, it’s fun to watch it take shape.  I’ve started a new stitch on 35 count lambswool – it’s a needlebook which should be stitched over one on 28 count but I’m just not comfortable with over one so hopefully it will still look okay.

The shaker box in the next photo was the other craft gift that I received at Christmas.  It’s made by a gentleman in France and is a really neat design with a lift out tray for your tools etc.

I’ll leave you today with a couple of sunset photos that I took a few days ago.  We’ve had some lovely skies this month which is unusual for this time of year.

Thanks for popping in today, I hope you enjoyed a little flavour of Scotland.

PS Karoline – I’ve visited many bakeries in England and I’ve never encountered fruit slice – I think it is a Scottish recipe.  It’s very easy to make though,if you would like the recipe.

Scotland on a Saturday

January 14, 2012  |  Featured Posts  |  10 Comments

I’ve not featured Scotland on a Saturday for a long time so thought I’d try to get back to it.  There’s not much to take at this time of year as the weather has been pretty dull so far.

We were at Falkirk and Stirling this morning and I bought a couple of plants to add a sprinkling of colour.

I also had to collect my framed finish.  I’m pretty pleased with how it looks framed and now I have to package it to mail it to the extreme south of England.

I thought it might be nice to share some Scottish words and quotes with you when I do a Scotland on a Saturday post.  There are so many words that are specific to certain parts of Scotland and many of the words are no longer used by the younger generations.

I remember most of them well as my mum and my granny used to sprinkle their sentences with them regularly. Hopefully, some of them will make you smile.

Fruit Slice or as the Scots would say - Fly Cemetery

This week’s word is “bahookie” – it’s a light hearted word for your “derriere”.  For example if you were complaining about something you might just say it was a “right pain in the bahookie”.

This week’s quote was by Dorothy Wordsworth …………..

“Scotland is the country above all others that I have seen, in which a man of imagination may carve out his own pleasures;  there are so many inhabited solitudes.”

Finally for today as a follow on from Poppy’s last photo:-

What big teeth you have ……………………….

................... all the better to chew you with.

Thanks for stopping in today and also for your comments, they often make me smile.

Gifts and knits.

January 11, 2012  |  Featured Posts  |  8 Comments

Help Is Always At Hand

As you can see, I’m never short of  help these days.  I’m still knitting the scarf even though I’m not convinced.

I’m knitting it for my mum but feel that it isn’t what I wanted so yesterday I ordered a scarf from a company that I’ve bought from before.

Cobweb Lace from the Shetland Isles.

It is a cobweb lace scarf from the Shetland Isles – I thought it was more suited to my mum and what she wears.  It’s very fine and very pretty.

The basket with the knitting in it was one of my Christmas gifts.  It’s a Nantucket basket with a lovely embroidered lining.  It’s great to use as a knitting basket.

Talking of knitting, I’m just starting a camel with the wool you can see in the next photo.  The wool that came with the kit was too crisp for me so I changed to what suited me and had to adapt the colours to the closest match I could find.  I always find this very difficult to do.

A Camel In The Making.

I’d like to share a few words with you that were written by William Blake –

“He who binds to himself a Joy

Does the wing-ed life destroy

But he who kisses the Joy as it flies

Lives in eternity’s sunrise.”

Thanks for stopping by today, I’ll leave you with a photo of Poppy that I took a few minutes ago.  She is the cheekiest little kitten who seems to have a way of endearing herself to everyone she meets.

What big eyes you have ..................

……………………………………….All the better to see you with !!

New Year Wishes

January 1, 2012  |  Featured Posts  |  11 Comments

Happy New Year from Poppy

and from

Brandy

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and that this coming year is a happy one.

I’ve managed to spend some time stitching and knitting at last.  Kitty is still inquisitive but can be distracted by her toys fairly readily.

The SB piece which was supposed to be ready in November is almost finished and will be heading to be framed shortly.

I started this scarf last night but I’m not sure if I’ll continue with it or not.  It’s knitted with the Rowan variegated Kidsilk Haze which is lovely but I think it would be a bit ticklish to wear.  I’ll maybe knit a bit more and then make a final decision.

I got some lovely craft gifts for Christmas which I’ll show over the next few posts.  I also received a couple of orchids – one was a really large one and the deeper pink was a miniature one.  Both are very pretty.

I know it’s the time of year everyone makes new resolutions and I enjoy reading what people are hoping to achieve over the coming year – however, I find that I prefer to set more immediate goals throughout the year – I find this easier to achieve than looking a year ahead.

My goal for January is to be more productive with my time and to stop frittering time away each day.  I’m going to try to set a goal for each month and then at the end of the month take stock and be honest with myself about whether I’ve achieved it or not.

Thanks for stopping by today and thanks for all the visits and comments over the last year too.  Take care wherever you are.

Early Christmas Wishes

December 18, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  8 Comments

I did try to add a Christmas bow to Poppy to make her look a bit more festive but she turned into the Tasmanian Devil!!

Mind you, this seems to be a daily happening as I’ve lost count of how many things she’s broken since she joined our family.  She reminds me of a previous cat we had who did much the same thing.

Poppy on her Dad's lap.

She loves to sit on Alan’s lap, he is the favoured one at the moment.

The tea cosy girl.

Poppy's favourite pastime.

We have never had a kitten or cat who will eat just about anything.  She will open packets herself and eats more food than any cat we’ve had.

I probably won’t have time to post before Christmas so I’d like to stop by to wish everyone a very Happy Holiday Season wherever you are in the world.

I’ve had little time for anything recently as my mum is currently in hospital and Christmas is racing towards us at a frightening pace, but I’m off over Christmas for a week or so and I’m hoping to sit down and stitch as I’m really missing it.

Thanks for dropping by and take care.

Baking – or not !

December 2, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  9 Comments

Poppy certainly puts a different slant on baking (and everything else too).

Baking Day with a Difference.


Life has been hectic since this little one joined our family. She is so much fun but is totally wild too.
Brandy, our poodle, doesn’t quite know what to make of her – at first we were concerned about her but now we’re more concerned about him.
She sees him as a playmate and he doesn’t quite agree.

As you can imagine with this little whirlwind, stitching is still at a minimum and so is knitting.
I gave up on any gifts I was trying to finish as I feel that putting in lots of time and love when you have a kitten or a puppy is worth it.

Perhaps by my next post I will actually be able to show something creative for a change.
Thanks for visiting today and for your lovely comments about Poppy.
PS Sorry about the poor light in the photo.

Meet Poppy!

November 16, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  13 Comments

Poppy's first appearance.

This little one is the main reason I’ve not been blogging recently.

Full of nonsense.

We debated long and hard whether to have another cat or not.  We’ve had cats at home for over thirty years and if I’m being honest, the house seemed empty without one.

How naughty can I be?

Mind you to go from an elderly cat to a kitten is a bit of a shock to the system as you forget how naughty they are.

We only collected her on Sunday and I’ve already had to buy a wireless keyboard for my Mac as she chewed through the cable yesterday.

How much chaos can I cause?

She’s a Lilac Burmese and she’s around fourteen weeks old.  We went all the way to Nottingham for her and she traveled all the way back (five hours in the car) without a peep.

As you can imagine, I’ve not managed a single stitch either in needlework or knitting.

The only time I get a minute is when she is asleep.  It’s taking time to integrate her with Brandy our poodle.  Even though he is used to living with cats, a kitten is a completely different “kettle of fish”.

We chose the name Poppy since we collected her on Remembrance Sunday.

She’s not at all camera shy (Duski used to run as soon as she heard the camera being switched on) so hopefully you’ll see a bit more of her over the next few weeks.

Till next time – take care and thanks for popping in.

Flowers.

November 2, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  6 Comments

I find flowers very therapeutic so this last week I’ve over indulged in all things flowery.

We were at my nephew’s wedding on Saturday and of course there were lots of lovely flowers to be seen.  The wedding was in Northampton in England so we had to drive six hours to get there but it was worth it as the ceremony was beautiful and so too was the bride.

Matthew, my son, was an usher – he’s the one to the far right of the photo wearing glasses and a black suit.

Although the best man was English, he too wore a kilt which I thought was very such a nice thing for him to do.

I bought lots of flowers and plants last week and a friend at work gave me a beautiful arrangement of roses, thistles and orchids.

A Princettia

My latest orchid.

I’ve managed to make a little progress on Finch Song and also on Matthew’s Doctor Who scarf.

At this point I had hoped to have this piece finished and be making some small Christmas gifts but as they say …… “the best laid plans of mice and men”.

I’d like to share a quote I read this week, quite by chance, and it seemed so apt to the way I’ve felt this last week or so.

“Softly may Peace replace heartache,    And may warmest memories remain.”

I’ll finish with that thought and once again thanks for dropping by and for your kind comments, they are always appreciated.

Snow on the mountains.

October 25, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  10 Comments

Last week when Alan was at the west coast he took this photo which shows the first snow on the mountains.
Since then it’s gone mild again and hopefully it will stay that way for a while.

I’ve been MIA for the last few weeks for two reasons and for both these reasons I have no craft progress to show at all.
Firstly I had my surgery and ended up taking a couple of weeks to recover instead of a couple of days.

On holiday in Yorkshire this year.

The second reason was that we had to say goodbye to our beautiful little puss Duski.
She was the sweetest little cat anyone could hope for and I still can’t believe she’s gone. It’s the first time in over thirty years that we haven’t had a cat at home and we miss her so much.

So as you can imagine, my heart hasn’t been in crafting or anything else if I’m being honest.
Finch Song hasn’t been touched for weeks and of course it needs to be finished for mid November so I’m getting a bit concerned about the time left to meet this deadline.

I’ll finish on a happier note with a photo of a Giveaway that I won a few weeks ago on Margaret’s Blog. Margaret from New Zealand very kindly included some extra goodies with the Twelve Days of Christmas charts.
I love sheep so was delighted with the lovely project bag that was in the package – it arrived when I was feeling unwell so it was good timing to cheer me up a bit.

Thanks for your recent comments and for dropping by. Hopefully next time I’ll have some stitching progress to show. Take care.

Smile – it’s Friday.

September 30, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  11 Comments

FROM THIS -

TO THIS.

— in the space of one day this week.  Our weather has been totally upside down and this little rose started to open one day and by the next had all but gone.

These last few days have been amazingly warm for this time of year – temps in the twenties which is unheard of at this time of year.

Progress?

I’ve not been posting these last two weeks or so as I’ve been pre-occupied with a little puss who hasn’t been herself.

My favourite girl.

She’s currently at the vet’s surgery having an IV flush to see if it helps her to pick up a bit. She’s sixteen years old so every time she takes a downturn I worry about her.

I’ve still been trying to stitch and knit and made some more progress on Finch Song.  It’s a lovely piece to work on and I’m enjoying it.

I also bought some magazines and European cross stitch books recently which I still have to find time to sit down and enjoy.  I think I’ll take the magazines with me next week when I have to go into hospital for minor surgery.  I should be in and home the same day but was told to bring reading material with me as my theatre time slot wasn’t confirmed.

READING AND RELAXATION

Thanks for the recent comments and for popping in.  Have a good weekend and take care wherever you are.