Sunday, 13 December 2015

Seven down - one to go

I've been stitching stockings almost in my sleep this week but I'm please to say I only have Max's to finish binding.  I went to bed last night at eleven (late for me!) leaving a neat little stack on the ironing board, knowing that I had only a few more things to complete on the stockings:
All the embroidery was finished and the decorative buttons sewn on.  By tea time today they looked like this:
After tea I sewed on the hanging loops made from some lovely ribbon I got at High Street Quilting.
So sorry about the naff quality of the pictures - the light has been so bad this weekend (apart from first thing this morning when I was driving to the shops when the sun was shining directly in my eyes).  So now all I have to do is the binding on Max's stocking which I haven't cut yet.  It can wait now though - I still have a few days to finish that.

I decided to give up on the Attic 24 Crochet-Along.  When I was buying the yarn at Ring-a-Rosie, Barbara said she thought she wouldn't make this one because she didn't like the way the colours joined together unevenly.  I tried my best but she was right. It was ugly.
So I have started on something else:

Same colours but a ripple pattern.The first row is always a bit of an unknown but once I had the second row under my belt the pattern was easy to follow.  I've never done one like this before so I'm enjoying the gentle rhythm. This will be a lap blanket or possibly longer if I have enough yarn.

We've had a strange eating pattern this weekend so the beef that I roasted this afternoon is going to be for tea tomorrow.  This is probably due to the fact that I didn't have any food in the house except pasta and tuna because the weather stopped me going out shopping yesterday. Will scoffed the remainder this afternoon - plus some of the mince pies which were destined for a meeting tomorrow at work. Shhh! - they'll never know! The snow arrived but is almost melted away now and I can hear the  pitter pat of rain against the window now.

I baked some little Santa Hat cupcakes for class on Thursday which were quite cute although they would have looked better with the more triangular English strawberries - but summer and winter seasons preclude that, sadly.

Can you tell they are red velvet cakes?
Sorry Karen - hope you are feeling better......

When we were making our Durham Quilts, Elizabeth - who is the only quilter I know that works in metric -  decided to do a miniature version 

Those little squares are about an inch across and the snowball blocks are three inches. It looks beautiful.

Sooooo -  only one more week at work and then I'm off for two weeks. My colleague is coming back after nearly seven months of illness and treatment (she was hoping to be back after six weeks but things were worse than thought). I'm so glad she is on the mend now though and will be handing back her work on a phased return over the following six weeks.

Under my bright work light tonight I will be continuing to crochet the ripple blanket - next line will be lime green - the colours more than make up for the dreary light conditions we are having. But just now I am going to put an ice-pack on my poor overworked hand.

Have a good week everyone.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Progress on the stocking order - oh and Freddy Kruger Snowcakes

After a day with the baby boys yesterday (Steph in York Christmas shopping and John patching rugby players up, Will out somewhere - he doesn't share the details like the others) I was looking forward to a day with my stocking order.  I finished the embroidery on Max's stocking yesterday evening:
Steph asked for one which has a Christmas pudding on it.  This design is from one of my favourite books - the Night Before Christmas from Nancy Halvorsen. The background fabric is a bit busier than my normal choice but I absolutely love the little designs on it. I have it in green and pink. Gorjuss!!

This morning I had a little trip out to get some cellophane for a hamper I'm making to raffle at work for the PTA. Yeah, okay I bought a bit more than cellophane but hey ho. I visited a cake supplies shop for food dye and holly leaf cutters and a little place that does laser cutting just to see if I can get some bulk strawberry labels. Yes I can.  So, in between chores and - "can you give me a hand cleaning out the cupboard under the stairs" (yes if it means I don't have to put my hand in to steady the contents before I open the door), I fused the shapes on to the stocking fronts:

So now they are ready to be transformed with some buttonhole stitches and names before making them up.  I've layered them on to the wadding so they're ready for stitching when I get home from work. I hate starting from scratch when I get home so it makes sense to prepare everything so that I can just pick it up and start - without having to get loads of things out (and put them away!)

Two more weeks at work and I'll be off for a fortnight - yippee!! My colleague who has been off work since May will be coming back after Christmas which is great for two reasons - she is getting better and I'll be able to concentrate on my own work. I feel like I've been herding cats for the past six months.

It was great to get back to the quilt class at High Street Quilting last Thursday - I've missed two weeks due to work commitments and we had a nice quiet evening all sitting round the same table, sharing problems and solutions, laughing at silly things and putting the world to rights. There is something so comforting about sharing our lives and creating things that you don't get anywhere else. There is a such a feeling of trust that you can bare your heart and know that the others will understand, help or just listen. Better than any psychotherapy. (is that the right spelling?)

So where does Freddy Kruger come into this I hear you ask?  Well, I found some chocolate carrot decorations in the supermarket and decided to make some Snowmen Cupcakes. I thought they would look nice with a smiley face but whoooaa - even Will jumped back and said - leave the smiles out, it'll traumatise the ladies - I took his advice:
Will very kindly stepped in to eat the offending cakes - so considerate my boys are.