Tuesday, 20 December 2011

The Big C!

I finish work around lunchtime tomorrow and then start the first of 2 and a half weeks off!!  Our preparations are almost complete and there's lots to look forward to.  Carol Services are over, cards have been written and the decorations are up.  OH took responsibilty for the decorations this year and as a result things are quite different. The porch is more like a grotto this year and I love what he did with the bunches of baubles hanging from the wall lights.

 I might have mentioned in previous years, that despite OH being a forester, we have an artificial tree! We've had real trees in the past but it inevitably means moving a chair out of the room, and I think we have more use for all the chairs we can get at this time of year than we do a real tree!

 We are going with DD on Thursday to do a little more shopping, along with gettting the final Christmas food.  There are a few more presents to wrap then we'll be ready.  We'll be having our Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve (OH, me, DD and boyf, DS and girlf) as we've done the last few years. Then the next day, after we've opened presents and enjoyed a nice breakfast, they'll be free to accept other invitations to dinner without clashing, .

These 4 chaps have made themselves more comfortable since I took their picture earlier.

Stitching progress since last time:

It's hardly worth mentioning but, I've finished the crocheted mitts. 
Not another stitch has been produced by me and I've even sat in front of the TV on a couple of evenings with nothing at all in my hands to do, which is almost unheard of.  And funnily enough, I didn't feel compelled to do any or guilty because I didn't do any.  I hope I'm not losing my 'mojo' which I've read about on other blogs.  No, I'm pretty sure I'm not.  It's just something to do with the fast approaching Big C!!

It just remains for me to wish all my readers, followers and commenters a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy 2012!

See you next year
Bye for now
Teresa x

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

That Festive Feeling!

That festive feeling is beginning to build for me now.  I don't know about you, but I've not been feeling it much yet and have found it difficult to get enthusiastic about the planning. However, a few Christmassy events have helped to get me going.

First was the December meeting of my quilting club, Ladybugs, where we enjoyed a bit of sewing (I managed to quilt another block), a Show and Tell, Christmas card exchange and a Hope Lunch (where everyone brings something, nothing is planned but, somehow, no dish is duplicated!). One member's clever daughter made this lovely ladybird cake which was cut up and shared during afternoon tea.  Sorry about the messy table; I didn't get the picture until after the table was raided - and the ladybird had lost it's antennae!
A church in Usk converted into an art gallery
I wasn't planning on going out on Sunday but J (daughter) rang and we decided to meet in the afternoon at Usk Winter Festival.  (Bathroom cleaning had to wait until another day) It was a clear, fine day and not too cold so we had a leisurely browse of the stalls, drank mulled wine and listened to carol singers. 

Usk clock tower in the middle of the square where the event was held.

The clear sky meant that as soon as the light faded it got quite cold.  As J couldn't feel her toes anymore we decided not to wait to see Father Christmas pulled through the main street by reindeer and left just as the crowds gathered and it started to rain, but just before the road was closed.

K (son) mentioned he might pop to the Festival after work.  We didn't see him there (nor my parents who were apparently also there) even though it wasn't that big, but I assume he went, and picked up this little chap.  I found him on the kitchen window-sil when I pulled the curtains the next day. In case you're wondering.... there's a teensy weensy cactus under the disguise!

I'm ready for IT now (not in the preparation but in the mental sense)!  Choir practice continues tonight with Christmas anthems for the carol services and we've got a shopping day planned for Saturday when I'm sure all the shops will be decked out and filled with festive music. Onwards and upwards!!
I hope all your preparations are progressing well!!!

Stitchy progress since last time:

Quilt as you go Quilt - one more block quilted
Crocheted Mitts - Knitted second incarnation (then undid it), knitted half of another one.
Ummm........uummmm...........no, that's it, can't think of any more.

Bye for now
Teresa x

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain!

Apparently it's called a 'mnemonic'; a phrase where initials of words to be learned, are made into a phrase that's easier to remember. It's how we were taught in school to remember the colours of a rainbow; Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Indigo, Violet. 

I took this photo a month or so ago from my office.  However lovely they are, I don't normally go around taking photos of every rainbow I see.  This one, though, was AMAZING!!  Not only did I take a photo, I also went round the office telling everyone to look at it  (most of them sit facing away from the window or on the opposite side of the block, so hadn't seen it).  Without exception, they all said, 'WOW' when they turned around.  I'm not very good at taking photos so I hope this shows a glimpse of how utterly fabulous the colours were.

It was so bright and clear, especially near the ground.  The second (double) rainbow was fairly clear too which is unusual but means we can check out the fascinating fact I read on Wikipedia about Rainbows; you might have know this already but it's news to me that the colours on the second rainbow are opposite to the main one!!  

Were you taught mnemonics to remember lessons?  Some that come to mind are the ones associated with learning the music notes on Treble and Bass Clefs; Every Good Boy Deserves Fruit; All Cows Eat Grass, FACE (not a mnemonic, but didn't need to be!).  I can't remember the one for GBDFA.

The Sudoku panel made into a cushion
As for crafting (Do you get the sense that I'm trying to avoid the subject?), there HAS been a little going on this week.  I've had orders to take the Sudoku cushion to my quilting club on Saturday.  It's 'Show and Tell' day and they want to hear all about it. I must remember to shout this time; last time we did 'SaT' I was asked to speak up!!! We meet in a huge echoey room that's not conducive to public speaking and I must take into account the elderly-ness (and consequent hearing loss) of some of the ladies without deafening those right next to me.

Now that colder weather has set in, I'm finding it difficult to keep my hands warm (as usual) so it was very timely of Judith from Rags to Bags to post about these snuggly fingerless mitts.  She very kindly emailed the pattern to me and I got started straight away.  The yarn I picked out of my basket was 4 ply so I crocheted it double.  Not sure if it's clear in the pic but it's a mustardy colour.  DD said the mitt was ok apart from the colour :-(   I have actually only crocheted one so far and I'm not totally happy with the cuff so I'm making it shorter so it doesn't need to be folded over. 

Other craftyness has also occurred so here's the run-down:

Sudoku cushion - finished
Crocheted mits - prototype made, another started.
HST quilt - Quilting finished, hoorah hoorah, only binding left to do.
Knitted cardigan - pressed ready for putting together (and possibly completely ruined - we'll see)

Bye for now
Teresa x