Favourite Quotes

" When I can no longer create anything, I'll be done for"
Coco Chanel

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Hello folks, another long gap, sorry! Life got very hectic last month with the lady I looked after being hospitalised and eventually taken home to the UK. Since then I have had a stall at a Christmas Fair for two days and then been suffering from a nasty cold I picked up there!

But cards continued to be made for Craft Club

and in the evenings I have making these cute little decorations for my grandson

I was given a new smart phone so of course I had to make a nice cover for it...

and I dragged out a project I started last Christmas, a lovely tablecloth that has four corners to cross stitch.  I have been feeling so rough, some gentle stitching was all I could manage. I have finished the first poinsettia....

and started the bells.....

so relaxing, the minutes just melt away when I'm engrossed in this! The whole thing will not ready to use for this Christmas, but it's not a problem, it's the process that is so enjoyable, more than the finished result for me.
Like many other families this year, we are all short of money so we are giving very small token gifts. I have raided my stash and been making a scarf for my eldest son, something mindless to knit while watching the TV. About 300 stitches on a large circular needle all in garter stitch. It helps with the tension when watching Stictly! I wonder who will go out tonight?

The garden is very bereft at this time of year, but there is a little colour, my crysanthamums from last year flowered again..

and my faithful old Iceberg rose just flowers and flowers....

We had a really cold snap at the beginning of December and Bobo started off hogging my lap blanket...

then progressed to the large furry blanket AND the lap blanket...

Cat's aren't stupid are they? Yes I did take one away from him, my legs get so cold in this old draughty house!
Sophie is content if she has a real bone from a serrano ham joint and often uses my feet as a 'bone platform'!

I am off to the UK on Thursday for a whirlwind of visits to family and friends, cooking Christmas dinner at my sons' house and collapsing back home on New Years day. It will be so good to be with my family this year. It will be worth the musical beds and layers of clothes! The cake and pudding are already wrapped and in the suitcase, the Sainsbury's order done, cards written, nearly all the gifts wrapped so it's roll on Christmas!
I leave you with the sentiment of my favourite card of the season and wish you a wonderful Christmas and a very happy and healthy New Year!


and suddenly its Autumn or is it Winter?

Yep the tempertures have dropped dramatically as they usually do here, one minute we are sweating in 30C and the next morning it's 10C! The jeans have been out for a couple of weeks and the gas fire on in the evenings but today I have to drag my winter woolies out.
On the cooler days I have been busy making samples and planning for the Craft club projects.

Two decoupage cards made from Debbi Moore CD's, the first is Garden Fairies and the second Art Deco Rome. Lots of glitter and glitz in these but it doesn't show in the pics. I rummaged in my bits and pieces drawer and found some lovely feathers to adorn the Art Deco lady, really finishes off the look! The white lacy matting is cut from Spellbinders grand ovals dies.
We revisited poppies too, always a favourite

The first card is made with Clarity stamp poppies and the second from Sheena Douglas's poppy stamp and a new music die from Marianne.
Of course we have had to start our Christmas cards, this week it was Snow Globes from Flower Soft's CD.

It's difficult to see in this pic, but there is fake snow in the globe to make it a shaker card, great fun!
I've been playing with Poinsettia stamps at home for a future club project too....

and this is made with die cuts with very delicate shading with distress inks on Kraft card.

I've been trying to get this photo to load the right way round but it just won't! Hope you get the general idea
Very pretty stamps from Chloe's Stamps.
Scrapbooking has taken a back seat for weeks, but I've been working on one today, with the heating on!
I loathe the Autumn, (well not quite), I never understand why people wax lyrical about it, it's the season of dying and decay, less sun and more cold and the prospect of a long Winter! (OK, the Autumn colours are spectacular, but I don't get those here in Spain)
But there are some little pleasures that make it more bearable....juicy sweet pomegranates...

And the gorgeous warm and aroma of this cooking.....

Dreaming of eating this with my family at Christmas this year, the first in the UK for a long time.
Yes, I DID have a wonderful time there in September catching up with family in Norfolk and London and going to Ally Pally for the stamping show, (saw lots of my heros there). Here is me and my little pickle in his newly knitted denim jacket, so cuddly I could squeeze him to bits!

That's all for now, keep warm and keep CRAFTING!

Ups and downs

Well, August has turned out to be a month of highs and lows in every area of life. My health has been bad and the heat has been unbearable, but the flip side of that is I have been indoors in the aircon amusing myself with lots of lovely craft.
Apart from crafting, I also do my Family Tree in spurts and while I was browsing through some old photos to catalogue I came across some gorgeous pics my father had taken at the seaside when I was little. So I was inspired to get out my seaside stamps and do a scrapbook style card for my brothers birthday (exactly a week after mine) It is winging its way to the UK right now..

On the scrapbooking front, I have been very busy with more pages for Noah's book as I can deliver them in person in a couple of weeks!

I have also done a couple of pages for my daughters Family Tree scrapbook, but no pics yet I'm afraid.
I've been busy on the card front too, trying to find new things to teach at Craft Club when we start again in September. I LOVE stamping, but not everyone in the club does, so I have to push myself to think of other techniques to do. Here are two sample cards using peel off flower stickers  (from Dawn Bibby) cut out of pretty papers I had in my stash.

 The top one is done using white stickers and a mauve theme and the one on the right is more blue in tone and done with sliver stickers, not easy to see on these scans, but they do look pretty in the flesh. I hope the girls enjoy doing these!

A blog that I look at frequently is written by a lovely American lady called Sue Wilson, who demonstrates how to use Spellbinders dies on Create and Craft regularly. Today she has posted a gorgeous card and the instructions on how to make the flowers here

Aren't they gorgeous? So realistic looking too. Soooooo..... I'm going to try them out this week. Will let you see the results next time.
On the garden front, a little miracle, remember I posted back in the Spring about an hibiscus that was almost dead, but showing one little green shoot? Well finally, months later, here is the flower!

And the fig tree is producing hundreds of these beauties........yummy!

I've cooked some in Amaretto and frozen them for the winter as there are so many.
On the down side I have no knitting or crochet to show you this time, its just been too hot to hold any yarn in my hands, but I have been browsing patterns and planning my winter knitting, nice!
Because I was feeling so rough on my Birthday last week I didn't go to the beach for the day as is my habit, but I did get treated to a lovely fillet steak in the evening at one of the best restaurants in the area
The best present I had though was the news that I am to be a grandma again! Whoop, whoop, now all the baby patterns will be out again, so excited. Don't know the sex yet but I plan to make a neutral coloured sleeping bag (or bunting as the Americans call it) first.
So......I think the highs outweighed the lows after all.
Until next time, take care.

and the heat is on....

Yep Summer has arrived with a capital S! Too hot to do anything in the afternoons and I need a fan on in the evening to be able to knit. Thank goodness for air-con or sleep would be impossible In June we had July weather early, wished we could have done a swap with the UK, I would have loved some rain and cold winds (then and now!) and they would love some sun! Oh well, there are some benefits, freshly made lemonade from home grown lemons, swimming in the pool, eating every meal outside, gorgeous produce in the market.... no I won't make my UK friends any more jealous...but I think you have had some Summer now?
Did you see all the fuss about a lady knitting at Andy Murray's tennis match at Wimbledon? I was totally with her, I was knitting furiously all through it to help the nerves! Such a shame her lost the final, but this afternoon he has just got a gold medal to make up for it.

On to the flowers around the house right now, hibiscus

Gorgeous rose called ' Parade'

 Pink verbena I think and white petunia

Yep, lots of pink, but there are other colours coming along too.
I started this entry in June would you believe, life has just been too busy and I haven't been able to gather my thoughts into any sort of order for weeks! The heat has been really knocking me out, I had a tummy bug two weeks ago and I have now developed shingles, so I'm hiding in the aircon and being very lazy until the pain and itching subsides.
I haven't been totally idle though, here are some of the projects I've completed recently
Crocodile stitch bag

close up
I am absolutely delighted  at how this has turned out, it was from a free pattern from the Bernat website called Mermaid tears purse. I used 4ply 100% wool from Kauni in rainbow colourway and used a 3mm hook, so the bag is smaller than the original pattern, but the colours are gorgeous! I wasn't sure about the flower, but it has grown on me!
Next up cards..

A wedding card using Chloe's heart stamp on vellum and glittered and embellished with pearls. 

another from Chloe's stamps, the dandylion stamp, again on vellum, its very glittery but you can't see that in this pic

Playing with my peg stamps from Cardi-o this time and a Clarity stamp greeting, love doing these, will be doing more samples for Craft club ideas for next term,

Pretty poppy stamp from Hobby Art this time, coloured with Promarkers, lovely to do.

and finally my little pickle was 2 in July so this was what I did for him. He loves London buses so it was a very patriotic theme this time!

I finally finished my rug hooked cushion, the delay was finding the right backing fabric and i hate doing piping, but I got down to it eventually.

On the knitting front I have been making a denim jacket for Noah and a matching outfit for his teddy Barney

Cute eh? Just love doing tiny things, such fun and he really loves his teddy so its not a waste of time and effort. There are more scapbooking pages on the way, but will not be revealed until I've taken them over in September.
I'll leave you a picture of my Datura in full bloom, spectacular, I promise I won't leave it so long next time!

PS, here is one of my WIP's a scarf from the lovely alapaca yarn my daughter brought me all the way from Peru....