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Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Under the weather.

I woke to grey mist both inside and out, the valley is once more wreathed in gossamer and I feel decidedly below par.

Nothing major, just a feeling of being out of step with myself. A bad hair day, all over my body just about sums it up.

The SO has taken the reins and I have done some gentle knitting and read a little I had a snooze early this afternoon and am feeling a bit more like myself now.
It is not lack of sleep, now that the temperature has dropped I am sleeping like a bump on a log.

The only fly in the ointment is persuading my photos to load and then crop and rotate them. Someday,s it works like a dream others it is a nightmare.

I have lots of projects whirling round in my head and Wool Warehouse has a drops yarn sale on..............Nooo, there is no room for more yarn...Step away from the 'puter... do not select yarn..do not hit the buy now button...

Whew!  I made it safely to the other side.

Window shopping may be a nice pastime, but real shopping is better.
I am sticking to working through the stash. So far so good.

I have watched the rest of season 1 of Forgotten. really enjoyed it, even the bits that were obvious.
Season 2 has to be paid for. Hmmm I don't think so. I can wait.
Season 3 is being made now. If it comes on the TV I will record it and save it till we have seen the second.

We are watching Sanctuary and Warehouse 13 again, they were good the first time round and this time I am noticing details that i missed. So a win win.

That,s all for now, I hope to be firing on all cylinders tomorrow.

                           TTFN                              Pam.










Monday, 18 June 2018

In the weather.

The air is damp and warm, we are living in a cloud in the valley.
The house fronts over the road can just be seen but after that it is like an old photo that has faded away to almost nothing.

Occasionally the mist slithers back up the valley sides, just to descend again minutes later.

The dogs have been walked and they and I have returned covered in tiny droplets of moisture. It is like living in a sauna with the heat turned right down, goodness knows what it is like for those living higher.

My changing rounditis has gone, I am very pleased with the extra space that we have gained. I do have a heap of things to donate and will have to get that done in the next few days.

The garden has been left to fend for its self, but as long as it does not rain hard tomorrow we plan on getting stuck in.
I have a heap of well rotted compost to be forked in, plants to go in and bark to mulch them with.
The wheel barrow is ready and the plants are waiting, I just have to mix the growing medium. The plants are all Alpines so I will be mixing John Innes no 2 with sharp sand and vermiculite. The SO would like a feature plant in there as well, it will be in a pot and he plans to change it according to the season through the year.

There is a tentative list which includes a Cordyline Pink Passion (if we can find one) and a Pieris Forest Flame. Possibly a Winter flowering Jasmine and a Fuchsia Pink Elephant.

Nothing much else to tell you, it has been quiet here. We just plod along enjoying what we do, even the dust bunny eviction had an element of fun.
 If anybody visits me and faints, at least when they come to they will see that the carpets are bunny free.

I did a little baking yesterday, 2 batches of my 10 minute cookies and 2 chocolate and coconut cakes. We had Spicy Chicken with Sweet Potato jacket, peas and sweetcorn for dinner. 
Tonight it is Barbecue baked beans, they are simmering away as I write. They are glorious, I should make them more often, and we will have them on toast. 
A lazy dinner followed by banana cake and some fruit, if we want a pudding.

I have done all the usual Monday jobs, I even put the bed linen onto wash, it will probably go in the drier later as tomorrow should be wet.

The latest pair of socks is all ready for me to start the Fleegle Heel and I will be knitting after dinner.

Yesterday we found a series on Netflix, Unforgotten, and found it interesting  enough to watch 3 episodes back to back. We also watched the follow on film The Day of the Triffids. It was okay, not as good as the first and with some glaring holes in the story line. The ending was woolly and some obvious questions were never answered.
Francesca bought the black Panther film on Prime last week and we did watch that. I did not think that it would be my sort of film but I enjoyed the pure escapism. The "baddy" got his comeuppance which is always a plus.

I think that is it for now, I hope that you all enjoyed your weekend.

                       TTFN                                    Pam.

Catriona, will you email me please with directions to your facebook page. I have managed to empty my email address book and my snail mail one to boot. Me and technology is not a match made in heaven, or anywhere else for that matter. More like oil and water than salt and vinegar.












Saturday, 16 June 2018

Rain stopped play

But started some long overdue work.

We woke to a grey misty morning and it was an instant joint decision to get stuck into the kitchen and the sewing room.

Things are being moved around a bit. Deep cleaning in dim, distant corners and some heavy duty dusting is occurring.
 No dust bunnies will be harmed, they are being relocated.

I have found a quilting ruler that I was convinced had been evaporated, or eaten by Herbie. 
My sock yarn oddments are now all in one place.

My fabric scraps have been breeding, either that or some nuclear fission has taken place.

If anyone would like to start a scrappy project I will be happy to send off a starter kit of decent sized bits, either random or if possible colour coordinated. 
Just drop a comment, and I will contact you.

At one point, with my head in a tight corner and my rear in the air, I almost expected to meet David Bellamy "rummaging through the undergrowth".

It is invigorating to see more floor space and gaps on shelves, it won't last though. 
I put an order in to the Fabric Guild on Thursday, I have run out of backing fabrics and have some quilt tops to get made up.

I think that this year will be my last for big quilts, there are so many other things that I want to try and only so much time.
I had vowed to try some cross stitch, I even bought a little kit. I found it this morning, still in it,s slightly flattened box.

While I think of it I have finally finished with the rag rug making from ages ago. The rug has gone to pastures new and I will not be making another.
If anyone would like to have a bash I have a book, latch hook, cutting guide and some hessian. Once again drop a comment and I will contact you.

Oops, the time is flying and I still have quite a bit to do.  Better get a wriggle on.

                          TTFN                           Pam



Friday, 15 June 2018

Busy doing nothing...

Well, I have been busy but you can not see where. Mainly because I have been flitting from one little  job to another.

The front garden took a fair bit of time, some shrubs that did not survive the second onslaught of snow and ice have been removed. They were under planted with bluebells, hence the wait, I wanted to leave the bulbs in till the flower stems had died back. The bulbs have now been moved to another spot.

The compost bins will be emptied and the contents forked into the bed to replace nutrients that were washed away during last years non stop rain.
I have some small shrubs in containers that will be going into the ground over the weekend. Then I will be putting down a generous mulch. I will be trying very hard to leave space for my wheelbarrow.

I am off out today to pickup the mulch and hopefully some plants. I would like to fill the wheelbarrow with some colour.
I had to cut my Snow on the Mountain back quite hard again.It was rampaging over the border and drowning my roses. I did the same last year and it grew back bigger, next year it may take over the street.

We have a chance of rain tomorrow so the more we get done today the better. I will water everything in but rain does a much better job.

Herbie seems to be more energetic as the days go by, I took him out for a long walk yesterday and the minute his lead was off he picked a toy up ready for a game. Ben just lets it all slip past him, if Herbie tries to bully him into play he lets him know, in no uncertain terms, to back off. Or face the consequences.

He backs off every time.
He still tries it on now and then  though.

The sun is shining and I have washing ready to peg out.
I may put the kettle on first.
I forgot to make my overnight oats so it will be toast for breakfast.
Possibly with a poached egg.

                          TTFN                                      Pam

PS. The "casual" log cabin quilt will be ready for photo,s soon.
I love it. (most of the time)

PPS. I seem to have refilled the scrap bin with the remains of all the odd bits from the quilt.


Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Sunshine all the way.

The Amman Valley is basking in wall to wall sunshine, it is glorious. It does mean that I have to work in the front garden in the morning and the back garden in the late afternoon. By lunchtime both garden are in full sun and I become a sticky, glowing mess.

That is fine, it means that I can either prepare food, read or do some crafting. 
Who mentioned chores?
Yes I do a bit of that as well, just enough to be decent.
Laundry is a doddle.
Wash, peg out, get in, iron and put away. All in a couple of hours or so.

I was just pounced on by this creature,


He has one of his new toys, a small water bottle (empty) inside a sock. It makes all the crunching, crackling noises that a little dog could wish for and can be shaken and thrown about without harming anything or anybody.


Butter wouldn't melt in my mouth, look at my big eyes.


Ben has retreated to one of the beds and is keeping his head down. The wisdom of age.

We have been for our walk and breakfast has been served and eaten.

Back to the post.

The fruit trees are looking good, we have had strawberries a couple of times and will soon be using gooseberries.

There is a decent crop of apples and the Jostaberry is laden.



Howgate Wonder.


Jostaberry.


Bramley.
Safe behind a Herbie proof fence.



The step over apple tree, an unknown variety.



A forest of mint.
I use some almost every day.


Rhubarb with some Strawberry escapees.





A bit of colour.


My potted Holly, it will be going into the ground at some point.

The wheelbarrow is coming along and will be ready to plant up in a couple of days. I have decided against bulbs and will be having a look in the garden centre for ideas, maybe today.


Before. After photos to follow.


Now it is time for a cuppa before I get the washing pegged out, there may be rain later depending on which weather forecast you watch.

                                TTFN                                      Pam


Monday, 11 June 2018

A whole Month...Really.

I heard a report on BBC Breakfast that says Tea Towels are responsible for many incidents of food poisoning. The presenter went on to say that several towels had been tested for bacteria after being in constant use for a month. 
I would have thought that they were walking by then.
I only use mine once, after a baking session I can get through 4 in the clean up.

My mind was well and truly boggled.

Oh, wasn't it hot last night, I went off to bed but it was like an oven upstairs. I came down and both the dogs were huffing and puffing, we stayed down with the back door open for some cool air.
I may have dozed a bit but managed to read a whole book on the tablet.

The garden is looking much better, we have a couple of car loads to take to the recycling site today. The SO dug out the old holey wheelbarrow, it has had a hole mended and will get a coat or two of metal paint on its bottom today. later it will be planted up with some late bedding. Later on in the year I will put spring flowering bulbs in and then follow with Fuchsias and Geraniums. 

The courgettes are looking good, as are the sugar snap peas. The heat sent the spinach into bolting mode but I have some more coming on.

The Strawberries are full  of fruit, the gooseberries and blackcurrants are full of promise and my Jostaberry is laden with fruit.

Time to get Ben and Herbie walked and fed, I am getting those looks.

                                 TTFN                            Pam

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Breaking out of the box.

The self imposed quilting box that is.

I read a post from Jo of Three Stories High, and the pairing post from Christina of A Colourful Life.

They have each made a log cabin quilt, a classic design that I have made once or three times. Both took a different approach, Christina went down the control path. That is the one that I tread,careful cutting, each strip the same width and squaring up after every addition. Each block finishing within a hairs breadth of the next.

Jo's path was more relaxed, so much as to be almost horizontal. 

BUT.

It piqued my interest and I read the post through a second time.
I have a box of small strips and squares, along with some odd shaped scraps.

I have another of strips, mostly WoF, random fat quarters and larger scraps. When I tipped this out I found some 1/2 metre cuts that I bought a few years ago. I must have had a "put it away, anywhere" moment.

Some of this collection was won in giveaways, some I bought and much was given to me.

There are quilters out there whose idea of sheer hell is a scrap bin! So strange.

Any way, I pressed, selected and rejected, cut and pressed again and started to sew.
I used small squares and some smaller strips for the middle of the blocks.


I used the same dark red flower print in each of the blocks. I had 20 squares so made 20 blocks. 
The red Flurry strip is one of my go to patterns and I think that over the years I have bought it in every colourway. The green print is a left over from the Quilt that I made for Jess last year.



A few time I started to run out of strip so added a bit on.


Almost there, 2 or 3 strips to go, the lilac print is a scrap from a dress that I made. I never throw fabric out, it all finds a home in the fullness of time. Some of the fabric that I have used is at least 15 years old.


The most recent socks, I knit them toe up, two at a time and put the Fleegle heel in. There are 4 too many stitches in the cuff soit looks a bit "frilly" here. There is another pair on the go and after the heel I decreased 4 extra stitches, they look much better so far. I did use a stretchy bind off, I may not bother on this current pair.

Yesterday was a full on garden day, it is much hotter today so we will not venture out till after 2:00.

Now I am off to my log cabin blocks, they have a strong siren call. None of the blocks are the same, I just piled the strips up and grabbed them randomly. I owe a debt of gratitude to Jo, this is so fast, the only trimming that I have done is on the edge that I am attaching the next strip to. 
Having said that Christina's "ordered and maths related style" is dear to my heart as well. I will spend some time in the box for various projects.

I am aiming at a finished size around 84" by 100", it is for a double bed and I like them to hang over the edge a fair bit.

I hope that you are all enjoying the weekend, the weather is lovely just a bit on the hot side for me.

                         TTFN                                            Pam