Friday, 10 April 2015

Springing into action

This past week has been so lovely with longer sunny days and suddenly winter is over. At last.
I've been trying to put my sewing studio back in order - not easy! But the makeover is worth all the effort as you can see. 

Still lots of fabric sorting to be done but slowly it's coming together. I am so thrilled. 
I was up in Surrey just before Easter and delivered the birthday surprise quilt to my friend Helen. She was so delighted and the bright colours went well in her bedroom. Big Hit!
I went to London and saw Dot and Minnie. My little granddaughter is growing fast and is totally gorgeous.
We met up with my cousin Margi whom I haven't seen for a couple of years so lots to catch up on. 

Minnie has discovered the mirror and is so funny when sat in front of it!
All too soon time to go:
Robbie's been down for Easter which was great. He visited friends who have just had a little girl and delivered another quilt which was a success.

and this weekend my sister and brother in law are here so I'm having a mad clean up!  Too many cobwebs!
Then back to work on a fun dinasaurs quilt for a little boy in Australia who is mad about them 
I'm really enjoying sewing this knowing what a success it will be!
My cross stitch has taken a back seat recently as my hand is still sore from the accident. I can only sew for about an hour before it begins to ache. So annoying. 
One last picture of Minnie:

And now I'm off to do some baking ready for the weekend. 
I hope everyone is keeping well and enjoying the spring sunshine. Thanks for popping by!

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Back into Blogging Mode

Since October last year I have had little time to sew and/or blog - life became rather stressful to say the least.  But now Spring is just around the corner and I am hoping to get myself back sewing lots and blogging once again.
I think it is easier to work backwards in this catch up Blog.

I sewed this quilt using Liberty prints and old shirts:

it was a 65th birthday gift to one of my old schoolfriends.  It is so lovely that we are still in touch after all the years and I wanted to mark the occasion with something special - she was thrilled:

 And I have managed to sew some baby quilts which seem to have hit the mark:
This quilt went to Singapore for Christian, born on Boxing Day:
He seems to like it:

And this quilt went to Australia for Talo who was born in January.

This quilt is for my friend Helen's 60th birthday next month:  bright:modern:fun was the aim, so I think it has hit the mark.

It is currently being long-arm quilted so I will show you again when it is back with me and I have sewn on the binding.
And this is another baby quilt awaiting quilting, ready for an arrival next month:

So I guess I have managed a reasonable amount of patchwork, just not as much I would normally have done.  I did also cross stitch Christmas stockings for Minnie, and several other 2014 arrivals!:

Dot and Minnie in Christmas mode!:

I was up and down to Nottingham/Mansfield a lot before Christmas visiting my dear old Mum:  after her fall back at the end of September last year and nearly 6 weeks in hospital it became obvious to both my sister Helena and I that she definitely could no longer live alone.  So she is now residing in a lovely Care Home about a mile from where Helena lives in Mansfield.  The Home is taking good care of her.  She is so very frail and spends most of her days asleep.  It is very sad.  Helena and I have emptied her flat so it can be sold, and many of her precious possessions are now down here in Devon with me, as she had instructed.  I will cherish them.  The flat sale should be completed next week.  Mum seems totally unaware of all of this although we have told her.  That is probably for the best.  She was 95 last month.  The pressure for me to keep going up North is far less and I do not worry about her falling and being alone now, although of course I love seeing her, even if she sleeps throughout my entire time with her! Dot came up to the Home before Christmas with darling Minnie: so we were able to get the 4 generation photograph which was fantastic.  Mum was in good form that day:
Here is the family photograph to cherish:  Myself and Helena along with Mum and Dot and Minnie:
It was a very special occasion:  the day before and the day after Mum never got out of bed, so she made a tremendous effort which was wonderful.
Christmas came, Santa visited us as normal:  here he is with Robbie!:
And then Fran and Angelo came down to Ward Cottage for New Year, along with MiuMiu (Max) the cat and several friends:  much food wine and laughter:
Fran and Max with Rod:
10 of us round the table for New Year's Eve Dinner:

Fran testing the wine - just a small bottle!:
And looking gorgeous wearing Prada with her friend Ben:

Dot came down to Devon with Minnie for a few days in January which was fantastic:  the weather was kind and we had some lovely walks along the River Tamar:
Here they are with the Calstock Viaduct behind them.
Breakfast was such fun:
It was just a lovely few days, quality time together:

Last month I very unfortunately had a nasty car crash, less than a mile up the lane from our home. I was on my way to Truro to meet with Nicola (Scarlet Letter Years) for lunch - a beautiful sunny morning, blue skies - and I was so looking forward to my day out - when a man in a van came round a corner and although I stopped he hit me head on.  My lovely Volvo was a right-off - a total loss.  It takes a vehicle travelling too fast to wipe out a Volvo.  Both airbags were activated - it was very frightening. Luckily I have no major injuries - bad whiplash of course and extensive bruising - and worst of all a broken bone in my right hand - not good for sewing!  It has been, and still is, extremely painful and has left me with no strength in my right hand.  I cannot even lift a kettle.  Not good.  Hopefully in time it will improve.  I need to get going with the rotary cutter again!
The insurance company were fantastic and it was possible for us to go and buy another Volvo within a week.  I am somewhat nervous driving up the lane at the moment but my confidence will return.

Last week I went up to London - I stayed at Fran and Angelo's house and looked after Max whilst they were away:  he is such a gorgeous cat:  he loved getting into the fridge to see if there was anything tasty to eat!:

It was also fantastic spending time with Dot and Minnie:  she is almost crawling, and is very animated:
Here we are in Greenwich outside the Royal Observatory on the Meridian Line:

I also went to Portobello Road in Notting Hill, and found this amazing shop which used old sewing machines to enhance their walls:  quite mind blowing, and so effective:
There were "hundreds" of sewing machines - what a great idea!
Spending time with Minnie is so rewarding, she is just gorgeous!

We are at the moment renovating my Sewing Studio:  over the past couple of years the roof of the Conservatory has leaked more and more when the rain is heavy. Buckets everywhere!  Not good. So we are having a "proper" tiled roof put on:  this should make an enormous difference for me as it will no longer be freezing cold in there in winter and boiling hot in summer - no more faded fabric either! -  I am so excited.  The old glass roof came off, and tiles went on last week whilst I was in London, and the men will finish off inside this week with more insulation and plastering.  Then Rod will wallpaper it for me (it took some persuasion!) and put up lots of shelving before the new carpet goes down. Then the enormous task of putting the room back as I want it - that will be fun! Photos will follow.

I am sorry it has been such a long time since I blogged, but now I hope I am back on track!  I hope all my Followers are keeping well and busy and all is good.  Thank you reading this catch up, see you all again soon!

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Busy times

I can hardly believe how quickly the last 6 weeks have passed.  The days have been full - some good, some not so good.  But mainly filled with family joy with some stress thrown in for good measure. The same for most of us I am sure.  And somewhere in-between I have managed a bit of sewing!
This is my latest quilt:  Liberty fabrics and shirts!:
This will either be a wedding gift, or a 65th birthday gift:  not sure yet!
I had a fun-filled few days in the middle of September helping Jo from Cowslip at the Kirstie Allsopp Homemade Show:

Jo had a stand in the marquee - the weather was glorious (it reached over 90 degrees one afternoon!) - and the weekend was a huge success.  We were tired but Jo was so pleased with how well Cowslip was received.
I also managed some time in London visiting my grand-daughter Minnie:

So all was good - and then things changed:  our beautiful 12 year old Golden retriever Ben had been going "down hill" for a few weeks, and then suddenly the cancer was really bad:  the Vet was called and sadly he is now buried under the fir tree - along with our last cat Bosun whom we lost at the end of August. To loose two much loved pets in a month has been heartbreaking and it is just under a year since we lost Reg our other adored cat.  The house feels very empty without any pets.

This was where Reg and Bosum loved to be - in my warm sewing studio helping me - bless them. I miss them so much.
Then my dear old Mum had a really bad fall - and she has now been in hospital for over 3 weeks.
She was very badly shaken and her faced so so bruised - she slipped on her front doorstep whilst reaching down for the milk bottle early one morning, and fell head first onto concrete.  Not good at any age, but a disaster at 94.
We are not sure what will happen next, but it is looking unlikely that she can ever go home.  She hasn't walked since the fall and is constantly dizzy and very frail.  It is so very very sad.  So I have been up and down to Nottingham twice in 3 weeks too.  Off again at the end of this week.
This photo was taken back in the early summer - she was doing so well.
I have been staying in Mansfield with my sister Helena and b-in-law Dennis whilst visiting Mum in hospital:  they have 2 dogs: here is Helena plus dogs having a Sunday afternoon snooze (on a patchwork quilt of course!)!:
I will finish off now with some more pictures of Minnie, with Dot too - and shall update with the latest pictures in my next post.

I am sorry it has been so long since I updated, but as you can probably tell life has been rather full on.
I hope all of you are keeping well, and have enjoyed the glorious Autumn weather we have had over the past 6 weeks.  Looks like change is on the way - but always a good excuse to light a log fire and sew - and sew some more!