Promise of what’s to come.

September 7, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  6 Comments

I always look upon a rosebud as a promise of what’s to come – I think I probably enjoy the rosebud more than the full blown rose and I often find life’s like that.  We look forward to something to such a degree that when it eventually happens it doesn’t live up to our expectation.     I don’t mean that in a sad way, I just think it’s often the case.

Finch Song is moving along okay, I’m very aware that I’m stitching to a time scale.  You’ll see by the words already stitched that I’ve changed the verse.  I took the verse from another SB kit that I have (The Journey) – I feel it’s more suited to the recipient of the finished piece.

Matthew’s scarf is also moving along nicely – not as quickly as he wants it to be but if truth be told, he would have me knitting non stop.

The domino knitting trial didn’t work out – I know why though – it’s because I cast on too tightly.  I suppose that’s what trial swatches are all about – at least I won’t make that mistake again.

I’ve bought some new knitting stash and some stitching stash, I’ll take a photo for my next post.

I took some photos of a bee visiting a lavender bush that  I bought last week.

It’s fascinating to watch a bee closely as it goes round collecting pollen. If you click on the photos you can see the bee in much more detail.

Till next time, take care and thanks for popping in today.

Poem of the week.

August 31, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  4 Comments

I haven’t shared a poem with you for a while so I chose one today that really appealed to me. I like most types of birds and I think the colour of kingfishers is stunning.


When Noah left the Ark, the animals
Capered and gambolled on the squadgy soil,
Enjoying their new found freedom; and the birds
Soared upwards, twittering to the open skies,
But one soared higher than the rest, in utter ecstasy,
Till all his back and wings were drenched

With the vivid blue of heaven itself, and his breast scorched
With the upward-slanting rays of the setting sun.
When he came back to earth, he had lost the Ark;
His friends were all dispersed. So now he soars no more;
A lonely bird, he darts and dives for fish,
By streams and pools – places where water is-
Still searching, but in vain, for the vanished Ark
And rain-washed terraces of Ararat.
by John Heath Stubbs

I have no stitching progress to show today as I have been going backwards.  I had stitched a verse on Finch Song – over one – and I wasn’t happy about it so I unpicked the lot.  Now I know why I hate stitching over one – it’s impossible to unpick!  I’m going to stitch the verse in back stitch instead.

On the knitting front, it’s not much better.  The domino pattern I was working on got set aside as the hand dyed wool wasn’t working out so I’ve started the same piece using a ball of Rowan wool/cotton.  I’ll post a photo of the finished result next week (hopefully).

Going for a paddle.

For those of you who wondered how the bread maker worked out, I’m glad to say that initial results have been good.

My first attempt at treacle bread was much better than I expected it to be – in fact, it was very similar to the loaf we buy.   Yesterday I made a gingerbread using it and it came out nicely too.  I think I expected my first attempts to be inedible so I’ve been pleasantly surprised.

I bought this orchid last week in Marks and Spencer when I was choosing one for a friend.  I couldn’t resist buying this one for myself as the flowers on it are probably the biggest I’ve ever seen.  It currently has five blooms open and it looks very pretty.

Thanks for visiting today and for the lovely comments you leave.  Each and every one is appreciated.  Take care till next time.

Busy baking.

August 24, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  9 Comments

I took the above photo on Saturday whilst in Edinburgh. The city is alive with the International Festival at the moment and it’s good to visit.

Stitching and knitting progress have been slow this week as I was stitching a mini gift which needed to be done quickly.
So quickly in fact, that I forgot to take a photo of it and the gift has been given. The chart was very kindly loaned to me by Beth over at Garden Grumbles and was a little BOAF from the AS… range.

I started to knit a little pot holder using the domino knitting method – I’ve never used it before and would like to teach myself the various aspects of it.

Finally the title of my post is a result of baking this afternoon and baking to come from the new bread maker that I’ve bought but haven’t used yet.

I’ve thought about having one for a while but decided to take the plunge. What inspired me is the desire to bake a bread called Treacle Bread.

When we visit the Lake District we always go to a baker shop which sells a lovely treacle bread that we love. It eats just like normal sandwich bread and I can’t find it anywhere up our way at all.
I’ve found an online recipe for it so will give it a try when I’ve made a few trial loaves.
If anyone has any tips that a beginner like me might find helpful then I’d be glad to hear them.

I was going to post a photo of a chart I had ordered which arrived today but I’ll save it for another day. I may just give in and start on it – it’s the new Rosewood Manor “Bargello Sampler”. There is something about it that just calls for me to stitch it.

Thanks for popping in today. Take care till next time.

New stitch.

August 17, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  9 Comments

Pretty in pink.

I took the above photo a few weeks ago as I loved the colour of pink, it’s so strong.

I managed to get started on a new piece. I wanted to move onto a Plum Street Samplers design but instead chose another SB piece which I would like to stitch for an upcoming 50th birthday gift.

The design is Finch Song which I’m going to modify slightly to suit the recipient. It’s a relaxing stitch so far which is good but I still have the hankering to get going on something different. Until I make some serious progress, I’ll have to resist the urge.

The Dr Who scarf is also coming along – not quickly enough for Matthew but I think it’s doing okay given that I’m working more hours these days.

I’d like to share a little quote from a postcard titled “Homestead” which I received from a lovely friend who lives in Montana.
The card she sent me is hand drawn and has the following quotation printed on it. I feel it’s very apt.

“As early day pioneers we looked to the Future for a better life……..
In the twenty first century, perhaps we should look back for the same

Take care.

Visit to St Andrews.

August 12, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  10 Comments

Well it’s the end of our week’s holiday and the weather has been awful. We had one day of sunshine so we headed off to St Andrews. It’s just over an hour in the car and it’s a pleasant town to visit.
It was extremely busy the day we went, there was a fair in town and it was full of tourists.
I took quite a few photos of the gulls and my favourite was the one above. It was really hard trying to get the birds in flight and out of more than a dozen, I only got one that was worthwhile.

The Brave or the Foolish?

Dipping one's toe in the water!

Finding food.

Tourists on the putting green.

This afternoon we drove to Falkirk ( a town less than twenty miles from us) to collect my finished SB piece. I’m pleased with the end result and hope the recipients will be too.

Finally to answer a question – yes Melissa the rose is real. Your question made me smile as the bud it opened from was not pretty at all and was a dark, dark shade of red. It’s in our front garden and now has no flowers left.
Thanks for popping in today, take care and have a good weekend.

End of the week.

August 5, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  11 Comments

It’s the end of the week and I can smile as I am on annual leave next week. We’re going to go out for day trips so hopefully I may have some photos to share.

The photos below come from a book that I bought many years ago titled “The Hare and the Tortoise” – I was inspired to go and look for it by a blog post on a lovely knitting blog called “Flutterby Patch”.

The Hare .............

And the ………….


The illustrations were by Brian Wildsmith and I loved them when I bought the book and I still enjoy them.

This week I’ve managed to finish the combination SB piece so I’ll be taking it tomorrow to have it framed.
It’s going to be part of a wedding gift for later this year – I thought the heart theme was very appropriate. I’m fairly pleased with the end result but I do find it difficult when I change things around – it always takes me much longer.
I’m not sure what to work on next – it’s fun deciding.

Thanks again for stopping by and for your comments, I enjoy them immensely. Take care till next time.
PS Yes Irene, I do remember that particular poem!

Let’s hear it for the birds.

July 27, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  8 Comments

When we were on holiday recently there were lots of birds to be seen just around the converted barn we were staying in.
Some I managed to take photos of but there were some that I couldn’t as they flew off as soon as we got near.

The most beautiful ones that we saw were game birds. There was a partridge with her young and some others that I couldn’t identify. ( I didn’t get any photos at all of the game birds.)
As soon as we approached the little flock below they would hurry off.

They always looked as if they were chatting to each other as they hurried to make their escape.

Just for fun I thought I’d share a poem about a duck today.

“Ducks” by F W Harvey

From troubles of the world
I turn to ducks,
Beautiful, comical things
Sleeping or curled
Their heads beneath white wings
By water cool
Or finding curious things
To eat in various mucks
Beneath the pool.
Tails uppermost, or waddling
Sailor-like on the shores
Of ponds, or paddling
– Left, Right! – with fanlike feet
Which are for steady oars
When they (white galleys) float
Each bird a boat
Rippling at will the sweet
Wide waterway …….

When God had finished the stars and whirl of coloured suns
He turned His mind from big things to fashion little ones;
Beautiful tiny things He made, and then
He made the comical ones in case the minds of men
Should stiffen and become
Dull, humourless and glum
And so forgetful of their Maker be
As to take even themselves – quite seriously.

Caterpillars and cats are lively and excellent puns,
All Gods jokes are good – even the practical ones!
And as for the DUCK, I think God must have smiled a bit
Seeing those bright eyes blink on the day He fashioned it,
And He’s probably laughing still at the sound that came out
of it’s bill!

This little fellow was in a service station car park, of all places. This particular service station is set by the side of a little lake and so the birds wander up to the car park area to find leftover food.
I’ve had a busy week with work and appointments so progress has been slow on both the knitting and the stitching.

Boris is currently on hold whilst I do a little more on the SB combination piece. I had set it aside but I’ve decided to go back to it.

I did the Ukranian work at the bottom the other night and enjoyed it.
Matthew’s Doctor Who scarf has gone backwards this week as I dropped a stitch and had to take back numerous rows to fix it.
I’m not one of those clever people who can fix a dropped stitch without ripping
back so it takes time and patience.

We’ve had beautiful sunny weather since last weekend and I’m on a day off today so I’m making the most of the sunshine.
I hope the sun is shining with you wherever you are. Thanks for dropping by.

Where does time go?

July 20, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  8 Comments

As you can see from the photo above, it’s wet with us this morning.
My work schedule is back to front today as I’m working this afternoon instead of this morning.
I was going to post more holiday photos last week but things got in the way and I just couldn’t find time.
I’ll share a few today along with some progress on crafting.

Boris is coming along nicely but not as fast as I’d hoped!

As well as knitting Matthew’s Doctor Who scarf, I’m also trying a new technique for me called “double knitting”. I’m knitting a pot-holder which I want to embroider to finish but most knitted pieces are too floppy so I decided to give this technique a go. I love the way it works. It’s so simple but you end up with knit stitch on the back and the front of the piece and the knitted piece is doubled in thickness. (Does that make sense?)

When we were away in Yorkshire, the converted barn we stayed in was very remote so there was a lot of open countryside around us.

English countryside.

I loved this tree.

Being watched.

There are lots of dry stone walls in the countryside and they are home to many insects etc – I managed to catch a couple of butterflies that had landed on one.

I was so looking forward to shopping in the oldest sweet shop in England but ended up being disappointed as it was closed the day we were there.
As consolation we managed to visit Bettys Tearoom which is famous in this country. I bought some lovely cakes and teabreads.

There are so many beautiful places to visit in England and Yorkshire is one of them. One of my other favourites is the Lake District and I’m hoping to have a day down there early next month.

Thanks for stopping by today and for the recent comments (thanks Karoline!!)
Till next time.

Back from the south.

July 11, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  5 Comments

Well it’s back to work today after a lovely week’s holiday. We were in Yorkshire for a few days and it was good to get away.

The Road South

I took these from the car as we drove south.

Heading south.

The day we drove south was lovely and sunny and most of the time we were there it was warm.

The photo above shows Matthew trying to speak to one of the “locals” – he was a very friendly, large ginger cat.
I took it as we approached Ripon Cathedral which you can see below.

The next couple of photos were taken just around the corner from the cathedral and show a total contrast between the history of the town and life today. Not something you expect to see whilst driving through a historic town in England.

I’ve been working on Matthew’s scarf and I’ve started on Boris and Olga which I’m thinking of stitching together as a gift. (I’ve photographed the whole frame to show Rowyn how I use the siesta bars when I’m stitching a long thin design).

I’ve got quite a few photos to share from our trip which I’ll get round to posting this week, hopefully.
Thanks for dropping in today and thanks for your recent comments too.

Happy Day.

July 1, 2011  |  Featured Posts  |  5 Comments

Today I can smile for several reasons.
The main reason is that Rowyn has at last received the exchange I mailed out to her early last month.

Scissors Fob

I made her a scissors fob and a knitted notions pouch. I knitted it with Koigu yarn from Canada. I love to knit with this yarn and in fact I started another pouch yesterday as I thought that Rowyn’s had gone missing.

The other reason I’m happy today is that I’m now on holiday from work for a week! Take care and thanks for stopping by.