Sunday 27 December 2020

It's all over...

Just like that it's all over and we're in that strange twixmas time, where it's not Christmas any more, but it's not new year either.
I had offered to work an early shift on Christmas day so Tony and I exchanged a gift at bed time on Christmas Eve when I got to unwrap this lovely calendar.
The photo fabric printables came the next day. LOL
Then in the morning before heading off to work, I got to open this one.
I had seen this book in the local sewing shop a few weeks ago and asked permission to send a photo of it to Santa. 
The shop assistant laughed and asked if it would be an effective hint. LOL
That's a yes.
After work, which was fun, we got on with unwrapping the rest of our gifts.
Back in October I had photocopied the front cover of the pattern you see here and also the fabric requirements. I left it on Tony's desk with a note asking him to ensure that Santa knew I would like to unwrap a fabric bundle on Christmas day.
The shop he went to for help did pretty good. LOL
He also found me another book.
And it's not Christmas without chocolate.
And look at what my pal Janice made for me.
Not one but two beautifully covered hangers and a pomander.
Funnily enough I almost made the same thing for her! LOL
I changed my mind at the last minute when I came across a great wee cross stitch pattern. More about that another time. 
I also caught up with Claire and we exchanged ornaments.
Love this wire creation with beautiful blue beads.
After all the hustle and bustle and rushing around it was nice to relax yesterday with a day off.
I had planned to sew or stitch, but found myself reading a book instead.
Today has been a little busier as I got some chores done.
I've had a look at the poppy quilt pattern and there are one or two more items I'll need before I can make a start so a trip to the Sewing centre is a must some time soon.
I also had a look at the fairy quilt kit the other day.
Oh Dear! All is not as it seems.
There were some fabric substitutions, which is ok, these things happen.
But many of the fabrics were cut too small, one piece seemed to be missing entirely!
After some mental arithmetic I realised I could fudge it and make it work if I swapped things around a bit, used that there, this here and bought something else for the binding.... You know how it goes?
Then as I read through the pattern, the very back page was a note from the store explaining about all the changes made to the fabrics, what to use where and how to cut it. I'm not convinced. 
Oh and when they printed the foundation papers for the stars.... They didn't check the printer settings/scale.
 They are the wrong size!
Tony assures me he can fix that, with a bit of fiddling on our printer.
Well I have one or two more chores to do, then the rest of the day is mine.
I'm not sure yet what I'll do, but hopefully it will be something relaxing. 
I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and that Santa was good you.


Tuesday 22 December 2020

They have all been delivered....

So I can finally reveal my secret Christmas ornaments.
Each month this year I stitched and beaded one of these lovely ornaments.
At some point I ran out of beads and couldn't get more of the same.
But I think the substitutes are ok.
I didn't want to use a patterned back, but couldn't leave them plain either.
I also changed designs along the way, and preferred the second one, so most of them were made to the second design.
I thoroughly enjoyed making these wee beauties each month and plan to do the same next year.
Some of you have already said that you would join me in stitching something Christmassy each month. Thank you, it will be fun to have your company, even if it is secret sewing and like me you opt not to share.
In other ornament news...
The postman has been busy delivering ornaments to my house.
This beauty came from Janice.
Thank you sew much my friend, it is adorable. 
I have it hanging in my dining room tree. 
And this lovely is from Maria.
And looks right at home also resting on the dining room tree.  
Thank you sew much Maria. 

I have almost finished the stitching on the trio of ornaments I had begun working on over the weekend. They are a little faster to stitch than the monthly beaded ornaments. LOL
I'll try to have them completed and ready to add to the tree when I write my next blog post. 


Sunday 20 December 2020

Shhh, Tony is asleep.

Tony has a night shift tonight, so I must be quiet and let him snooze. A good time to catch up with my blog then sit and stitch methinks.
I have two kitchen makes to show this week. Tony's work are having  staff BBQs  today, they each draw a ticket from the hat to see who brings what. Tony's ticket says dessert, so I made him a lemon cheese cake. 
Tony wisely suggested I leave it in the tin for transportation purposes. 
He promises to not lose the tin and to bring it home again.
The second creation this week is a return to a new favourite.
Smallsort slice.
A yummy no bake slice we discovered while we were visiting with Janice and Mick last year. Quick and easy to make and as the name suggests, stuffed with liquorice allsorts.
Other creations have been a little thin on the ground, we have been busy with the garden, but I can show you a delightful little ornament gifted to me by Debbie.
We exchanged our secret ornaments a few days ago and Debbie had made these cute wee gingerbread houses.
Such a cute wee house.
Look, there is a Christmas tree on the back.
When I first met Debbie she was very unsure about stitching and embroidery, she has come a long way.
Sticking with the Christmas ornament theme, the tiny amount of sewing I have done has been to start another ornament.
I've had this kit for a little while now and finally got around to opening it and making a start the other day.
The designs are not really to my taste, so I'm not sure why I purchased it but it is keeping me occupied. 
I also have two more new ornaments on one of my trees, thank you to Janice and Maria.
Pictures another day, I'm off to stitch for a while.


Saturday 12 December 2020

Today was the day....

That the trees went up.
As you may remember my DS Joe has his birthday on 10th December, so the trees and decorations always wait until on or after that date. 
Today was the day and this year there have been some upgrades.
We purchased this white tree almost a year ago, in the post Christmas sale.
It's perfect for all my blue, silver and white ornaments.
Of course it wouldn't be my tree without a Three legs of Man.
I love NZ, but will forever be a Manx girl.
The blue tree is residing in the entrance hall to our home, where an Angelic Host also welcomes you, with musical accompaniment.
Yes, the polar bear really does play the saxophone!
Belles wee spot also got decorated.
More Angels and Santa.
Even Kaffe got the treatment. 
I did think about swapping him out, but  just couldn't decide what to replace him with, so he stayed.
The sitting room tree is also a newbie and taller than Tony. He had to fetch a stool so he could secure Mums fairy. 
It's rather top heavy and I had to use a piece of tinsel to hold it up!
It's tied to one of the surround sound speakers! LOL
And still manages to look drunk.
And in my dining room, with the exception of four golden bells and that big star, all of the ornaments on this tree are hand made. Some by me, some by you.
Even the cuckoo got into the spirit of things.
There is a lot more, but I won't bore you.
Time now to sit and put the final touches on a not so secret project.
This rather Nordic looking ornament is for my Secret Santa gift at work. 
Merry Christmas Everyone.
I think we deserve a very good one this year, given all that 2020 has thrown at us.
I hope those still enduring lockdowns and distancing measures are able to find new ways to connect with loved ones and make great new memories.


Sunday 6 December 2020

Hot off the production line.

Yesterday, while Tony slept, I spent the day at Claire's place, helping out on an order she had for some ornaments.
While I was at work on Friday, Claire and Debbie were busy making a start, I joined in yesterday. What fun.
We made dozens and dozens of little cars.
My job was to sew the two sides together and add a little stuffing.
They are so cute!
Yes, between us we got the order completed and the buyer was delighted.
I was hoping to spend some time with my sewing machine today, but Tony has volunteered to work an extra night shift, so I must be quiet again. I plan to work on my own final ornament. I did some more work on it last night while watching TV and hope to do the same today. 
But first the chores....


Saturday 5 December 2020

Healthy Baking??

Does this look like it came out of the Healthy Baking book?
I gave the book to Tony to have a look through and make some choices. He requested this one first.
A yummy carrot cake with a lovely mascarpone cheese topping.
Tony has enjoyed taking a huge slice to work for each shift, and he's been enjoying it at home too, there is just enough left for his night shift tonight, then it will be time to bake again.
He even helped with the clean up when I made the topping.
It's on the bake again list.
In other news....
I've done very little. Just a couple of hours on the final Christmas ornament and a tidy up in my room.
I'll make up for it today though, a friend is in a pickle, she offered to make 100 ornaments for a charity sale, and is running out of time, I'll be joining the production line today, to help her out.
Maybe tomorrow I'll make time for some me sewing! I have a couple of things I want to have completed before the year ends. 
Time to go do a few chores before I report to the production line. 


Monday 30 November 2020

Two finishes.

It felt like a very short weekend, but I'm happy to say, it was a good one. I have two finishes to show off today. First up, 
OH My Blue Stars!
As you know, the top really didn't take long to complete and so it continued with the quilting and binding. I stuck with a simple cross hatch quilting. Less is more and all that.
Then I added the binding and Voila! It was completed in an afternoon.
I had to dig about a bit in the stash to find just the right backing. I was sure I had a bit tucked away somewhere.
It's not a wide quilt backing, or even lovely quilting fabric, but a repurposed duvet cover. It was important that I find it though as I first used it as the backing and binding on a quilt I made for DS Joe,
 and it seemed right that I use it as the backing for a quilt for his DS Torstein. 
My other finish for the weekend, was to finally complete the binding on the big Purple Turning Twenty quilt for Charmaine.
Try as I might, I just can't come up with a better name for this one.  It just gets called 'the big purple one' LOL Hopefully Charmaine won't mind.
Just to give you an idea of how big it really is. This is it keeping Ted warm on out queen size bed.
Lot's of love to wrap up a wee girl. Hopefully she will treasure it for many years.
And speaking of those two particular grand children, Tony and I were out looking at the shops on Saturday and I couldn't resist these two lovely ornaments.
I'll deliver them in a few days. DS Joe and his lovely Lee have their birthdays on the 9th and 10th of December, so like me, no trees go up in their home, until after their birthdays.
And there is a little me shopping too. I spied this lovely cross stitch kit on FB recently and treated myself.
I love hares and liked the look of this chap.
This weeks baking?
Is just out of the oven, I put it off for a day as Tony is not back at work until Wednesday, can't have his treat going stale. LOL
I'll post a piccy of that next time. Right now I'm of to make a start on my final, (for this year) Christmas ornament. Yes, I know I'm a day early, but it's calling to me.
I'm going to continue with the monthly Christmas item next year and have been looking about for something to work on. I think it will be ornaments again. I have a few ideas.
So far three people have said they would like to join me.  It will be nice to have company again. I did enjoy Janice sewing along with me this year. 


Saturday 28 November 2020

A completed Top.

Oh my goodness, it's been almost two weeks since my last post!
In my defence, I have been very busy.
All the usual life stuff, some secret stuff, (Of course) and some fun stuff.
Baking is something that occurs every weekend at the moment. Tony and I have decided to move on from this book. We have tried out many of the recipes in it.
Last weeks being this lovely Mincemeat Slice.
A beautiful shortbread base smothered in Fruit mince, (the kind that comes in mince pies at Christmas. I found a jar stashed away at the back of the pantry so used it up.) Then topped with a shortbread crumble.
Tony is very much enjoying my return to baking. LOL
This weeks recipe will come from the next book in the series.
Tony had a look through it the other day and made his request. 
A job for tomorrow.
This morning, I got the slow cooker going with a beef casserole for his lunch boxes next week. and while I was busy in the kitchen I also made some Tattie Scones. They were yummy for breakfast with eggs.
It's not all been about the kitchen though. Last week I put the finishing touches onto the I Stitch project.
I have thoroughly enjoyed sewing along each month on this lovely design by Gail Pan.
Although I have called it I stitch all year, that is the name of the SAL group and the quilt top is actually called Wish You Well. Rather appropriate I feel in this crazy year we're having.
I opted to leave off the rather busy border and added a plain red, I'll use the same fabric to bind it. After I figure out how to quilt it. 
I've put away all the left over fabrics from the project and now have an empty project box! 
What to put in it???
I've also been slowly stitching closed the binding on the big purple turning twenty quilt. I'm not sure why I'm going so slowly on it, I normally enjoy the process and stick at it until it's done.
I should get it completed today though.
I'm not sure what I will do next................
But hopefully it will be something I can blog about and not take two weeks getting around to it.