Friday, 24 September 2010

Phew!

I'm hoping things will slow down a little over the weekend. Life and work, as they do for all of us from time to time , are still getting in the way. I've had very few late shifts at work plus more than my fair share of extras! All I have the energy for when I get home is to cook the dinner, then sit and knit a few rows. So I thought I would take advantage of a rare morning off to pop in with a progress report. 'Flight of the Bumblebee' has it's binding all closed up and is awaiting a label. That's it, that's the only quilty part of this report! I've made a start and a mistake on a little Aran sweater for our pregnant friends. NO prizes for spotting the mistake! I noticed it on the next right side row, but decided to leave it. This is the back of the sweater, so less visible than the front. Even though I'm struggling a little to get the pattern rows and repeats to settle in my mind, I am enjoying this little project. In between doing bits of housework and one row each morning while I have my cuppa before work I've been plodding away on the blanket too.
It's growing slowly. I also do a few rows if there is something I want to watch on TV. It's a wonderfully easy pattern. Now that the weather is cooling it's nice to snuggle under this piece and it's good to know that as the weather continues to cool, this will continue to grow.
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What else can I tell you? I just purchased my fabric choices for my SSCS project, so I should have that tomorrow. I love how some Internet shops are so very fast! I've also bought more yarn for another little baby knit.
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The countdown to my Hunneys final exam is gaining momentum, he's feeling the pressure, but is still managing to spend more time with me, which is both lovely and worrying. He really needs to be revising. I half heartedly remind him of that each evening. He has a night out with his colleagues tonight and has promised that we will spend the whole weekend together.
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Work? Hmm, well there has been very little of note on the job front, certainly nothing worth applying for. We were visited by my bosses boss yesterday. She was very complimentary of my work and acknowledged my skills, then dangled what amounts to an empty stick. If they really want me to stay, they have to try harder than that! It's supposed to be my long weekend off, four whole days off! Supposed to be. It's been shortened to three, and will I be on standby for another, oh and could you just do.......? NO! I have three days off, two with my Hunney and one for me, I intend to make the most of them.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Almost done

I think I'll call it 'Flight of the Bumblebee'. As I meandered all over the floral patches I was mindful of a bees meandering flight through a garden.
I'm not overjoyed with the quilting and haven't even touched the borders. I used a brown thread for a big wide meander on the pieced areas and I plan to look for a bumblebee patch or some fabric with a bee on, I'll applique that on somewhere. I've pieced the binding, and I have assorted 1 - 2 inch pieces left of most of the strips, and just 3 pieces at about 5inches. Not bad huh? Maybe I'll use the tiny amount left in a label for the back.
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That's it for today, I'm off to forage for lunch then go to work.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Even better that I hoped.

Well, I did it, I got to sew. I took the advice that was offered and dusted a little and sewed a lot. I was so busy I forgot to eat! But look, the top is done and it has borders.
I had thought about adding a deeper all round coloured border, but decided to stop here.
Question? Will it 'do' for a boy or a girl? There are pinks and blues in there, some reds and browns too. All the fabrics are florals. What do you think? Will it work for either?
I have plenty of the strips left to make a scrappy binding.
I have another late shift this week and I'm hoping to get this quilted then, who knows, maybe I'll do a little quilting on something else too! And I need to make some labels.
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Hey ho, off to work.....

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Have you got an hour?

Please loan it to me, I need it. I think life is conspiring against me at the moment! All I want to do is sew, but work and life keep getting in the way. I have so much to do, I shouldn't be sitting here right now blogging, I just don't have time!

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I'm into my second year of the SSCS as organised by Chookyblue. (Sorry, swap closed now) I have my swap details, I've managed to go and lurk a couple of times, I know her favorite colour. I also know that I'll need to go shopping. Beyond that, I don't have a clue. If you are my secret Santa, could you send me some time please, a great big box of it! LOL Seriously? I love blue!

Let me see, what else needs my attention? The latest work in progress is still spread over the dining room floor awaiting my attention. I sew a few patches together each day, but it really is a very sloooooooooow way of doing things, I find it frustrating. You can see it a few posts back!

The 'Gettin' Shirty' top has changed names so often I've forgotten what to call it! I have batting for it now, and the back is ready...........

'Kays Roses', got much further than this image shows, it is all layered up and I even started quilting it but it is stalled at not even half way. My muse is keen to get on with it, she keeps sending me dreams of the quilt completed, I awake with the urge to get on and do something to it, then chicken out cause I think it's too complex, or just plain don't have time.

It's a morning off work today, I don't start until 3pm. I plan to work on the pieces I have laid out on the dining room floor, but I also need to do some housework! I'll be working on a rewards system, dust a little, sew a little, dust a little, press a little. Hopefully by the time I have to go to work I'll have a tidier home, all these pieces will be put together and ready for a border.
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On the job front, no joy. I turned down the opportunity for a second interview at the place I mentioned in my last post. It really didn't feel right. I'll plod on where I'm at, I can afford to take my time and make sure I get the right position.

Friday, 10 September 2010

New uses for picnic benches!

It must have been a very long summer holiday. It their boredom toward the end of the break the local hooligans threw all of the picnic benches at a local beauty spot into the river. Last night, with the water levels raised by the rain and an ebb tide, look where this one ended up! This is Dads boat, The 'Master Frank'. Fortunately she is not damaged. Not the greatest of pictures I know, but that is a picnic bench forced under her by the tide.
Master Frank is a piece of local heritage, she was built here in Ramsey at the end of the 1800s. (That's my old house!)
She was originally built as a working fishing boat and named Frank for the owners son.
When Dad inherited her, she looked worse than this and was almost 100 years old.
It took Dad several years to rebuild her, he replaced about 75% of the timbers and gave her a new mast. That wheelhouse was an addition which was removed. Dad restored to to her original state. She is Gaff rigged a Traditional Half Deck Longliner.
Now she is purely a pleasure vessel. Dad spends most of each year sailing the Irish sea and often crosses the channel to visit France and the low countries.
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No sewing for me today after getting my hopes up! I spent the morning on the quayside while Dad inspected the boat and waited for the tide to come in again and ensured there were no leaks. Then Tony and I went off to do the grocery shopping and mail his project report for his course. One down, one to go! Only a few more weeks of revision and an exam left.
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My job interview yesterday went very well, but that was only round one, there is to be a second round of interviews. To be honest, now that I get a look at the place, I'm not sure I want to work there after all! As I have a job, I can afford to be choosy, and I will be!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Planned Patches

I seem to be on another go slow after the sudden rush to cut the pieces for this one. I have put one row together and made in roads on to the next row. I seem to be in the midst of a long stretch at work with no days off and no late shifts. Never mind, I can see the end of that, Friday is my next day off and I'm hoping to sew up a storm. I mentioned the other day that I had seen something similar at Quilters Cache, but I couldn't provide a link as for some reason they were having problems???? Have a look here to see what inspired me.
I did cut more patches for this little quilt and have extended it a little. As it is it will finish at 30 inches square, I'd like it bigger than that. There are some of the fabric slices left and I could introduce a couple more if need be. I still like the idea of a plain border before a round of crosses, if I can continue the fabrics across the border that would be cool.
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Work, although it is getting in the way of my life at the moment has been really good the last couple of days. I've had some amazing feed back from my managers which has really boosted my self confidence and my ego. (A bit of ego stroking is always good.) A reshuffle of responsibilities has also given me a new focus and given some others food for thought. That aside, I've applied for a couple more posts and I have an interview on Thursday. :-)
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Keeping things on the lighter side of life, my Hunney Tony is counting down the days until his Degree is finished. One of this years two courses will be completed later this week. He's almost doing that happy dance. Just a few short weeks until his final exam and it's all over and we can have our lives back.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Best laid plans........

Did I say in my last post that I was going to whip up a quick doll quilt for someone?
That was the plan, but look what happened.
I started chopping up a fabric roll and remembered seeing something like this at Quilters Cache and voila, look what happened! I've started putting all the pieces together into 9 patch units. I think I want to make it a little bigger, maybe add a plain border, then have a round of more crosses. This is fun.
Sorry Emma Lee, no doll quilt just yet.
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As you know, we have family in NZ. I'm happy to say that every one is OK. I looked in on all of my NZ bloggy friends too and all is well there. I do hope that everyone remains safe and well and that things get back to normal asap. In the meantime I'll be thinking of all those who had to leave their homes due to damage. Take care all.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Catching up.

You'd better grab a cuppa! I've got lots of pictures to show you, and some chit chat too!
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You know how I went to the Birmingham festival with mum? She asked me to make her an elephant quilt to go in her spare room. I agreed of course, so she started buying animal prints and panels! I haven't taken the time to spread these out and show them at their best,
I just spread them out and snapped them quickly.
There are lots of them!
Mum and I have had a long chat about colour values,
and what does and doesn't work in her choices.
I'll have to add a few bits and pieces,
to make these work the way I think they should but,I think I have the makings of more than 3 quilts here. Mum would like them by Christmas! Hmm.....
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As payment and Thank you for all my efforts, she treated me to this Santa panel. He is lovely isn't he?
She would have treated me to a lot more had I allowed her, Santa panels were in danger of becoming like African animal panels! I don't know if I'll have time to do anything with him this year.
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So as well as allowing Mother to plan all of my free time between here and Christmas, what else have I been up to? More knitting. As I suggested I put away the rippling blanket for a while, it will come out to play some more as the weather cools. In the meantime I produced a second pair of boots and mittens for our pregnant friends.
I should have popped these next to a ruler or onto my cutting board, this picture really doesn't show how tiny they are. I have more yarn to knit up an Aran cardigan.
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I've also been shopping. Treated myself to a couple of books. Yes I know I usually just get on and make bags without patterns, but these books look fab and will offer lots of inspiration.
I've also ordered some batting and fabrics, I'm still waiting on them, they weren't even dispatched yet. Why is it some Internet companies can get stuff to me in less than 24 hours, but others take 5 days before they even mail the package? Oh! And they have higher postage rates!
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We seem to be having a second dash at summer here, the weather has become very warm again. I've been out and about walking a bit. I've taken you into our park before, but each year the flower beds are planted up with different annual plants. This one was too good to pass by.
I climbed up the hill at the back of the park and looked down into the sensory garden.
It was wonderfully cool under the trees after being out in the sun.
I love the shadows the trees create on the foot path.
What else has been happening? This week three likely looking jobs have popped up, so I'll be spending most of my morning off filling in forms and tweaking my CV.
Tony is getting closer to finishing his degree. (Distance learning) By this time next week he will have only one course left to work on. In a months time it will all be over. Six years of hard work and study will be finished. I'll have to share the TV remote again! We can have a joint social life again. I have to say though, that this year has been pretty easy, he's been able to take more time off to be with me. :-)
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Right I'm off to fill in forms, then hopefully I'll have time to whip up a quick doll quilt for a colleagues grand daughter before I have to go to work.