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!

Tuesday 26 August 2014

Such a wonderful August

Well my last Blog update showed me having fun in London - and the fun and joy continued!  Our first grandchild Minnie Hamilton May was born on Wednesday 13th August weighing 9lbs 1oz.
Isn't she gorgeous - I am totally besotted!
Dot and Maarten are just wonderful parents.
I had the most special fun 12 days in London as you can imagine.  And the sightseeing continued:  I visited the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace:  amazing, I felt so proud of our Royal Family:
Standing in the Palace gardens and looking back at the building:  so much history and significant events have taken place inside those walls.
Rod came up from Devon and we walked miles through London - the best way to see our Capital City:
We kept coming across these benches:  aren't they fun!:
We had fun staying at Fran and Angelo's house and looking after MiuMiu:
The Sunday flower market in Columbia Road was great: and this area is full of great places to eat and wonderful interesting unusual shops:
And round the corner I found my favourite London Street name!:
Fran still has the first quilt I ever made, back in 1981!  I made this using Liberty prints - and although it has worn thin and has a few bald patches, I think it still looks pretty good for a first attempt!:
Now I am back in Devon, missing my London life!  But we have just had a lovely relaxing holiday weekend with Robbie and Nisha here.  We had another delicious Sunday lunch at the River Cottage Canteen in Plymouth, and although very wet and damp yesterday we enjoyed curling up by the fire and watching DVD's!  Summer is definitely over down here, but we are hoping for a beautiful September in the Tamar Valley.  I now need to get back into my Studio and find my rotary cutter and get back to being productive.  I have missed my Bernina!  I have quilts to make!
I will leave you with one more picture of Minnie:
Thank you for stopping by and sharing my news.

Saturday 9 August 2014

Fun in London

I am up in London enjoying being a tourist!
Had a great time this morning, London was alive with hundreds if not thousands of people and children all riding bicycles!  As always Borough Market is full of delicious smelling food:

Southwark Cathedral always pulls me for a moment of quiet contemplation :
There is so much history in this part of London :

Then off to see Dot and Maarten and deliver fun quilt for their sofa bed in the baby's room: and see gorgeous new pram:  my first grandchild is due any day now:

Then off for a walk into Greenwich and an ice cream treat!: Dot looks so radiant:  being pregnant suits her!

And now I am house and cat sitting for Fran and Angelo:  the beautiful MiuMiu:
I intend this week to go and see the Folk Art Exhibition at the Tate Gallery and see the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace as well as catching up with friends. 
This is my second trip to London in 2 weeks:  I recently came up to support Fran on a 10K run in Hyde Park for Cancer Research:

Fran raised over £4000 with generous sponsorship from friends and family who know how special this Charity is to us. And then we had a family lunch out at a pub in Islington which serves only organic food:  needless to say it was delicious. 
So all is good:  just excited about the arrival of a new generation into the family. 

I hope everyone is having a good summer, certainly the weather here in the UK has been beautiful. 
Not much time for quilting at the moment whilst in London but will be cross stitching whilst cat sitting!
Thanks for visiting My Quilting Life. I will
Update baby news in due course !! 

Tuesday 15 July 2014

A finish and an eventful fun lunch!

I have so enjoyed making this little quilt designed by Jo Colwill at Cowslip- it came together so well, but can you spot the "deliberate - I think not" mistake??!!
In fact in this photo you can hardly see - but I broke my golden rule - measure twice, cut once.  I cut the middle piece of linen for the applique too small - just by an inch on the width - so, I sewed the piece needed back onto the right hand side, and to cover the seam I inserted some white lace.  So in fact it looks absolutely lovely, but I was very mad with myself until I thought of the solution - a seam would not have looked good.  And here is the quilt now on the chair on the stoop:
The garden at Ward Cottage is looking so lovely in the sunshine:

Today is my friend Lyn's birthday so off we went to Plymouth and I had booked us a table for lunch at my VERY favourite restaurant - the River Cottage Canteen.  There we were sitting in the glorious sunshine eating the most delicious food (the crab main course and then the apricot pannacotta were out of this world!!) when this very smart Bentley parked up outside.
When we were having coffee we asked our waitress if she knew whose car it was:  oh yes, it is for Prince Charles, he is here today at the Royal William Dockyard and will be coming through here soon! Well - how good was that!  And sure enough he walked through the restaurant and then out to where we were sitting:
He turned to Lyn and asked if she was having lunch, and she told him it was a birthday treat - so he shook her hand and wished her a Very Happy Birthday!  She was so thrilled.  We met another lovely Swedish girl and he spoke with her too - and here they are in this picture as HRH passed by.

And then he got into the beautiful Bentley and was gone - but what a surprise and such a treat to see him up so close.  It was all very relaxed, just a few tourists and onlookers but no heavy police presence, it was just great.  I could not have planned it better for the Birthday Girl.

Dot had her Baby Shower last Sunday - Fran (eldest daughter) organised this wonderful tea-party and I want to share the photos with you all:
Here is Dot wearing her beautiful flower garland headdress:
and eating one of the best cakes ever, made by Hemsley & Hemsley: (their new cook book "The Art of Eating Well"  is amazing - take a look!!):

And here is Dot with Maarten looking radiant and happy after her afternoon of fun:
So not long to go now - I will update with news - as and when!
Next week I am driving up to Nottingham for a couple of days with my dear old Mum, before driving down to London for the weekend.  Fran is doing a 10 mile charity run for Cancer Research on the 27th and I shall be there cheering her on.  She has been training so hard - I am so proud of her.  And I shall of course be seeing Dot and Maarten, along with my son Robbie and Nisha. A chance to catch up with my wonderful family, and maybe see some friends too if time allows.  Then back to Devon - until "Little Miss" arrives!!

I am about to start a new quilting project, and am cross-stitching every evening.  But tonight I must go and water the garden - my hanging baskets are looking thirsty.  I do so love these warm light evenings.
I trust all is good with everyone - thank you for popping into My Quilting Life.  Have a good week.