Photo Scavenger Hunt September


Hello there

As last month click on the pic above to go and see all the pics at Kathy’s blog.

This is a bit last-minute to say the least! I have been so busy this week I nearly didn’t get chance to take the last couple of pics I needed for this but have just made it.


This was taken at our last WI Saturday craft get together – coffee and a bit of knitting! Just what you need after a hard week at work. Check out those super sized needles in the background.

relaxation 1

View from above

My lovely little teapot and cup.

view from above

Road sign

Where I catch my bus to work – next to a lovely ivy hedge.

Road sign

Something taller than you

As he reminds me often, my little baby Jake is taller than me now – he is also taller than the fridge!

taller than me

Back to School

Well college anyway – I don’t have the joy of buying new uniform and pencil cases anymore but here is Jake’s new timetable for his last year before University.

back to school

Football Season

I’m afraid this is as close as I get (inspiration for this taken from someone last month) – the football listing in the TV mag.


What’s in your bag?


inside bag


Every year we pick the blackberries from the lane at the back of our house.


A pile of things

Donated knitted squares at my lovely friend Lydia’s yarn shop Spun.

pile of things


The best bit of my desk at work – thank you cards from past students.


Public phone box

Apologies as it was a bit dark – this is the phone in the lobby at work – love the fact that there are 3 phones in a row here!

public phone


My friend Rebecca from knitting group has this lovely bag made from apple drink pouches.



It has been a very busy week here – term is in full swing and I am having a lovely time with all my new students. I am very lucky to enjoy my job so much, we are having lots of fun and everyone is settling in nicely.

It has been hard work and I have forgotten what a busy time this is – came home on Friday after another 13  hour day aching all over which is why it is very important to have lots of mellowness in the off work times. So I have been settling down to some lovely knitting (bit of stitching as well but only if I am very alert as am working on an impossibly small-scale project at the mo!).

I am making another pair of wristwarmers – this time for me – to take to work as it is still very cold in my office (not helped by the fact that we have had the builders in for the last few weeks so it is cold, dusty, noisy and last Friday I had no lights either). These are from a free pattern from the lovely Julie of Little Cotton Rabbits blog  – if you have never visited do go and drool over the ultimate cuteness of not only the rabbits but foxes, pigs, bears etc that she lovingly creates. The woman is a genius!

These are knitted in my favourite Sublime wool – this time a four ply using one of my fave stitches, moss stitch and are a really simple pattern with no shaping – perfect for when you are really a bit tired and can’t concentrate.

Autumn Wristwarmers

So I have been coming home and lighting the candles to add to the mellow atmosphere and have been trying out taking pics of these as well. I love candlelight it makes me feel very peaceful and I go through loads of them in the winter.

Candles 3

Candles 2

I have been knitting while watching lots of lovely cookery programs (I always cook more in the winter, lots of warming stews and casseroles) including Rick Stein who is one of my favourites.I have just finished watching his latest series on Spain and have got that book on my Amazon Wish list for Xmas (hint, hint kids!).

I had a very lovely weekend – as well as working I went to visit my friends Taru and Bob who have just bought a new house in the lovely village of Marsden, they were having a ‘trash the house’ party as lots of things need removing before they can restore the house. I was only able to go for a couple of hours after work but did a bit of fettling and then went to another freinds’  house for takeaway and wine afterwards – a thoroughly pleasant evening!

I do hope that you have had a lovely week as well.The weather is very nice here at the moment – a real Indian Summer so I may get a bit more gardening done tomorrow – last bit before winter sets in.

Enjoy whatever you have planned for this week, see you soon and thanks for visiting.

The end of a busy week….and then there was embroidery!

Hello everyone , hope you are all well and happy. I am currently feeling tired but happy after a very busy first week of term, I must be getting old as I was very glad to see Friday :-). I have had a lovely time with my new group of students, they are very lively and I’m sure we will have a great year ahead.

I had a nice relaxing weekend planned and I have been enjoying myself – once again surrounded by textiles. My local branch of  the Embroiderers’ Guild were having their biennial exhibition on Saturday so after meeting at Lydia’s lovely yarn shop Spun  for a couple of hours of the WI monthly craft session where I cast on for a new pair of wristwarmers I wended my way to that.( I love that word ‘wended’ don’t you – always sounds like something out of a fairytale!)

I have not been able to attend a meeting this year due to work pressures but it was very lovely to see everyone, eat nice cake and marvel at all the wonderful talent that is in the group. The slideshow below shows just a small selection of the fabulous work there was on display.


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I also bought a couple of books on historical textiles (bargain at £1 each) and added this little piece of needleace to my collection of textile creations.

Textile books


Today we had the first full planning meeting for our new re-enactment group Swords of Mercia held at the Hardwick Inn, this is a lovely old  pub – see pics below, in the grounds of the fantastic Hardwick Hall  – once home to my heroine Bess.

Hardwick 1

Hardwick 2

Apart from a very nice lunch and a catch up we also organised lots of things about how the group will be run , I am to be secretary, booking us into events and also help with costume making and advice. We have until next year probably before we do our first show but I already have some fettling to do to make new hangings for the display tent we will use for talks.

I have finished the stitching on my Autumn exchange pice (no pics allowed as it is not be posted till 1st Nov) so as well as the wristwarmers I have started on another Xmas stitch – this is a Nordic inspired tree design from the Cross Stitcher mag I treated myself to yesterday.No pics yet as not much stitched.

So a busy week but a very nice one, have had great fun once again and am very much looking forward to the year ahead – both personally and professionally.

Hope that you all have a nice week ahead and see you soon. Thanks for visiting.

It’s official

I have tonight lit the candles in the lounge for the first time since about May and started stitching for this year’s Autumn exchange piece so I am now declaring Autumn officially here. Along with the excessive rain that we have had this week (not that in Yorkshire that distinguishes Autumn from Spring, Summer or Winter :-)) Is there an official start to Autumn ?  It seems to have come pretty early this year or maybe I have been too busy waiting for Summer to arrive properly and in my confusion lost track of time.

Not that I mind Autumn at all – it is in fact one of my favourite seasons, I love snuggling up at home after being away lots in Summer, and watching my candles flicker, preparing for Christmas (mind you I have been making ornies all year!) and meeting all my new students for the year (the first lot arrive on Monday!).

But I do like Winter as well (except when the snow is really bad though I am better with my snow paranoia now that I realise that the children are grown up and we can all get supplies in and we are not going to get cut off!) And I love Spring because that is when the teaching winds down and my garden looks lovely and I can start having BBQs again. And I love Summer when we can go camping and do re-enactment events.

I just love all the seasons for different things and am very happy to be able to enjoy so much. I am feeling very, very happy at the moment, not for any particular reason but just very relaxed after a busy year so far, I have been doing lots of work on the house which is nearly at an end, we have been here nearly 6 years now so lots of things needed freshening up. There have been lots of changes at work – higher education is in a bit of an upheaval at the moment to say the least but  we are looking forward to a great year ahead.

I am very lucky, I have a job I really enjoy, two wonderful kids, lots of friends and a really nice life and I am very thankful every day to be here and having such a lovely time – even if I have got quite wet this week!

I have finished two more Xmas ornies this week , one of these has been on the go since my last trip to Spain and the other I completed most of on my train trips down to Worcester and back last week.

The one is another version of the JBW  Christmas Motif Sampler tree  – did not realise I had already stitched this one until I checked my blog posts under the ‘Xmas ornies’ tag to see how many I had done but you can never have too many ornies can you? For this I used some variegated thread that I bought at the Malvern Quilt Show – only one strand was needed as it was quite thick and it stitched up really fast.  I am not certain what the backing fabric is – I have had this in my stash for quite a while.

JBW Xmas tree - Sept

JBW Xmas tree back - Sept

The other pattern is an old one from the Gift of Stitch  magazine called Red Berries by Rosewood Manor , I made this for my Mum some years ago and always wanted one for me. I finished this as a little pillow and I am really pleased with the way the fabric complements the stitching – this is some of the fabric I got at Malvern and I think it looks fab. The fabric is called Joyful 2 by Makower and you can get it online from The Cotton Patch It may be a bit big to hang on the tree but I can find somewhere for it.

Xmas tree ornie - Sept front

Xmas tree ornie - Sept back

I also had my delivery from The Silk Mill – look at all these lovely Xmas colours!

Xmas Silk Mill silks

I love using silk thread for my stitching as it is so nice to work with and has such a beautiful sheen. It does cost about twice as much as stranded cotton but I usually buy the Silk Mill sets which are good value and am building up my stock of colours gradually.

 I do need to get a serious move on with the rest of my Xmas ornie making as the WI are having a stall at a local Xmas craft fair which I have volunteered to do as well as the Oakwell Hall one I had planned and both of those are on the same weekend. I would like to do another local school one but don’t know if I will have enough time to make stock for 3. It’s the little matter of the day job taking up so much time!

Here’s hoping for a little respite in the rain this weekend so that I can do my gardening!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Simple Pleasures

Hello there

Hope that you are all having a nice weekend, I have been very busy with decorating since early this morning so have decided to have a nice sit down and do a post with a cup of tea before I go and cook.

Ellie has gone back to University – we helped her move in to her new house on Thursday and left her to unpack.She has got a bigger room this year which is good as she had a lot of stuff! It is a very nice house with a brand new kitchen (not at all like student digs in my day!) so I’m sure she will be very happy there.  

I had a good journey back just sitting stitching  another JBW Xmas ornie with a cup of tea, looking at the lovely views out of the train window now and again. It was a very lovely couple of hours and I really enjoyed it. I do love using trains, I’m sure that driving is very useful and I can see the advantages sometimes but I was very happy sitting and relaxing with my stitching and reading my book.I felt very peaceful and mellow, it was great!

I have treated myself this week to some new books that have been on my wish list on Amazon for a while so I thought that I would show you them (in the absence of any finished stitching – do have two Xmas ornie WIPs which should be done soon!) I do love reading – again another one of my fave things to do and am very sad that the book below is the last in the series at the moment. I started reading the Elm Creek Quilt series  last year on the recommendation of a friend from knitting and I love them, they are a wonderful mix of quilting patterns, history and the story of the women who make the quilts.

New Quilt book Sept

This book as you have probably guessed is about the American Civil war and picks up the stories of the lives of some of the quilters in earlier books such as The Sugar Camp quilt and The Lost Quilter. I really hope that there are more planned for the future!

My other great pleasure is of course finding out more about the history of needlework and this is a book I have had on my wishlist for a long time, I noticed last week that there was a very cheap second – hand copy for sale so snapped it up. The book is a history of American Needlework written by Rose Wilder Lane, the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder of ‘Little House on the Prairie’ fame. It was Rose who encouraged Laura to write all her books, being a successful author herself and I can’t wait to get some time to study this in more depth.

Needlework Book 1

Here is just a little taste of the lovely stuff inside, some red embroidery, traditional patchwork blocks and an applique quilt from the Brooklyn Museum.

Needlework Book 4

Needlework book 3

Needlework Book 2

I have also treated myself to some new JBW patterns  from Sew and So  – yet more little Xmas ornies! I love these as they are so quick to stitch.

New JBW Sept

My last treat is some new silk thread from The Silk Mill  to stitch all these ornies with – an Xmas colour pack and some extra greens as they are having a 35% off sale until the 5th Sept – to good to miss. That has not arrived yet but will take a pic of it when it does for you so you can admire the silky loveliness!

Well I do hope you all have a lovely week ahead, we are gearing up for the start of a new term with Jake back at college this week, my new students will arrive the week after so it will be all go then, no time for being mellow but I will try to factor in lots and lots of stitching time!

Thanks for visiting.