Photo Scavenger Hunt – May

I am posting this a little early this month as I am off to Spain tomorrow, lucky me! I have been working very hard in the garden today in all our lovely sunny weather, my little plea in the last post worked as it has been wonderfully hot here for the last week, there have been BBQs eaten and sandals worn!


As always click on the pic to go to Kathy’s blog to see the other participants in the Scavenger Hunt. This month my pics come mainly from my travels for work locally in Leeds and Bradford here in Yorkshire.

Good Things

Good things

Double good things – chocolate which is always good and this is very delicious and Fair Trade which is even better.

Small packages

small packages

I always love the small packages that contain my stitching exchanges – this was the latest one.



A display of lovely smellies from one of my favourite shops – The Body Shop.



Leeds railway station during one of my visits this week.



I have kept these from my visit to Nepal – currency from Dohar which is the prettiest I have ever seen!



I hoped to take a pic of one of the neighbourhood cats as I think cats have the cutest noses but did not catch any when I had my camera with me. So this is the nose of  very cute Tatty Teddy snapped in Leeds, his nose is blue as he has been left out in the cold!



My favourite takeaway drink.



Pieces of cake for my students as it was their last session – not baked by me due to lack of time – courtesy of Mr Sainsbury!

Do you see what I see?

Do you see what I see

Are they walking on water? In the centre of Bradford, the pond and fountains.



A pillar on a building I walked past in Bradford. This building is in an area called Little Germany which has lots of beautifully decorated Victorian buildings.



A beautiful Spring dress in a shop in Leeds.

Front page

Front page

An advert featuring our lovely Princess Kate in Leeds – I know that isn’t her real title but she is every inch a princess!

Spring – wherefore art thou?

Well I hope you have been having better weather than we have – it is apparently only 2 weeks until the official start of Summer but we have seen very little of any nice sun. I am itching to wear something other than a thick coat and gloves and hide from the rain.

However I am very lucky as I am off to Spain in 8 days so I will get some sun there.

Spring things have been happening though – I have been clearing out my garage as part of a bit of a Spring clean and there has been Spring stitching.

As I mentioned last week not much has been going on craft wise due to general busyness but I have done a bit of knitting this week and have done the latest piece for my exchange through the Seasonal Exchange blog . My Spring Exchange piece for the exchange has just arrived with Lei in the USA so I can reveal it.

Spring Exchange for Lei

It is another design from The Workbasket  site called Quaker Tree and I have stitched it with Silk Mill threads as usual.

The fabric is some that I have had in my stash for a while, I think it might be Tanya Whelan but I bought it from my friend Lydia’s shop Spun a while ago. I thought it was lovely and bright and I decided to do a new type of finish for me with a little pillow. Lei likes it which is very good.

I have also just got this wonderful pillow from Lisa in the USA as my Spring Exchange ornie,  she must know my tastes very well as she has stitched me a lovely design from The Workbasket site, I love their pieces and this is fantastic. It is called ‘April Quaker’ it looks so lovely with my other ornies in the conservatory.

Spring Exchange from Lisa


Spring Exchange back

By the way The Silk Mill is having a sale at the moment  to celebrate their 10th anniversary with at least 10% off depending on how much you order. I am planning to go and add to my stash as I can’t resist a bargain.

Well I hope that you have a great week and see you all again soon, thanks for visiting.


Italian Textiles

There were some really beautiful things on our recent trip to Italy so I thought I would do a post just about all the pretty textiles.

First of all some lace and stitched household items in a little shop in the very pretty village of Bellagio.Some of this lace comes from Venice,  from the island of Burano.

Italy - lace shop 1

Italy - lace shop 2

Then we went to the town of Como which had a wonderful market and there was this stall with so many beautiful Swiss textiles, the Italian Lakes are very near the Swiss border and there was all sorts of beautiful table linen and little curtains for hanging at your chalet window.

Italy textiles 2

Italy textiles 3

I spent ages trying to decide what to buy (Jake got very bored at this point!) but ended up getting this beautiful table runner which I will use at Xmas.

Italy textiles 9

Italy textiles 8

I have a number of stitched red and white Xmas ornies with similar themes such as this one below so I thought the runner would look good on the lounge coffee table.


We visited  a few (!) churches during the week and since it was Easter there were some icons on display including this one from a church in Mennagio with some gorgeous goldwork.

Italy textiles 5

Italy textiles 6

We also bought some lovely pasta, polenta and spices from a little deli in the same village – on the walls there were these large-scale kitchen cross stitch motifs which were beautifully framed.

Italy textiles 7

Apologies that the picture is not very good, the light and the glare made it difficult to take nice pics but there were about 10 of these collections in the shop which must have taken such a long time.

On our day trip to Milan I came across a fab shop full of cross stitch and embroidery supplies and bought 3 sets of embroidery transfers, there are lots of different designs here including about 20 alphabets and very good value at only 3 euros per pack.

Italy textiles 1

And from a little gift shop in Como not textiles but this cute display of table napkins which are another little addiction of mine, I was very good and didn’t buy any (have a few in stock already) but aren’t they so cute!

Italy textiles 4

I do hope you are having a lovely weekend. I was supposed to be at a re-enactment event this weekend but have got a poorly back again so instead I am having a very nice relaxing weekend stitching and knitting and watching DVDs. Very blissful and the weather is sunny which is so nice to see after all our torrential rain.

I am currently working on the large cross stitch of the Chinese Emperor but am going to start another Spring ornie for me in the meantime as that is a long haul project and I want a quick finish inbetween.

Thanks for visiting and do have a very good week ahead.

A very special castle

As you know I love castles and post lots of pics of them. But this is a very special one as this is where my wonderful, talented and very clever daughter Ellie will be living for the next year.

Powis Castle

As regular readers know she is due to finish her degree in Archaeology, Heritage and History soon and she has just got a fantastic first job. She will be doing a one year internship as a Conservation Assistant at Powis Castle  in Wales , which is owned by the National Trust.Ironically it is one of the few castles in Wales that we haven’t visited but I am really looking forward to visiting her there.

It is an amazing opportunity as she will have training in all aspects of conserving the collections and I am so proud of her. She has been working part -time as a Conservation Assistant at a Tudor house in Worcester while at Uni and has also been volunteering at that property and at the local medical museum where she has been helping with archiving material.So all that extra work plus her academic work has really paid off.

So she is busy finishing off her last two assignments at the moment. She has already handed in her dissertation and she and her friends celebrated this week. Here they are in their hand – made celebration t-shirts and below that they all are outside the hall of residence where they lived in the first year.

Ellie - Dissertation celebration 1

Ellie - Dissertation celebration

Only seems two minutes since we dropped her off .The pic below shows on her very first day there.

Very well done sweetie – ‘may the sun always shine on you’.


Photo Scavenger Hunt – April


Hasn’t the time flown? Nearly forgot to do this as the end of the month seems to have come so quickly.Click on the pic above to go to Kathy’s blog where you can see all the other lovely pics as well.

Most of these were taken on our recent trip to Lake Como in Italy.



We went on a boat trip across the lake from where we were to a little town called Varenna. We were just wandering up the hill on a little path and came across this villa which is now a museum and this was the view from the terrace – wow!

Can’t live without

Can't live without

I hadn’t got the list for this month’s hunt before I went so used the computer in the hotel to check. As soon as my Mum and the kids heard this category they said ‘red wine’ – so here is a pic of the wine we had every evening – even Jake got into drinking it. Though I think I could live without it …. but do love it!



The ferry-boat going in the direction of Bellagio across the lake from our hotel on a very misty first morning.


In and out

This had to be one of my (many) door pics – this one from the Duomo Cathedral in Milan – what a door!



While in Milan we visited the Milanese version of Harrods and this was in the Food Hall , designer water .  I don’t know if you can see the price tag but it says 59 euros – the phrase ‘more money than sense’ comes to mind!

Multi – coloured


From the same store these lovely Pantone mugs – have just bought Jake a couple of the cheap version of these from our local store for his ‘bottom drawer’ for going to University in Sept.

On the move

On the move

Our amazing train journey over the Alps – the Bernina Express train.



The first morning was very dull and misty but that meant there were amazing clouds clinging to the rocks in the village behind the hotel.



Ellie has just bought me this book from my wish list as a pressie for help with her dissertation -she is such a lovely daughter and it did make me smile lots and lots! I love Rick Stein, the series was brilliant and he has a lovely smile as well!



Beautiful wisteria in bloom all along Lake Como.



They would be if you tried to wear them! Miniature chocolate shoes from the Milan store food hall – yours for 35 euros.



The clematis and honeysuckle over my garden arch – just waiting for it all to bloom now.