Poppy Patchwork

My little bit of this big World

Saturday 31 March 2018

March roundup

I spent more than I intended, 
I had no plans to purchase yarn or fabrics,
 and again gardening was higher.

Hubby was sent a discount for an online order from Sainsbugs, we decided to use it, we did not require a huge shop and knew it would not come to the required £80, but we checked their red wine prices and found a liked brand on special offer, plus if you purchased 6 bottles they gave you 25% off. So our £85.10 was reduced by £8.63 and another £12, giving us savings of over £20. Loads of the other items were also on offer. We are stocked up on red wine for the next few months.
We have done loads of shopping this week, I was in Asda with our daughter and got a huge piece of beef on special, hubby cut the joint in 2 and froze both bits. We also popped to the local Aldi, a new store which opened really close to our house, we went for a leg of lamb for Sunday lunch, but also got pork and gammon, both a great prices. Our freezer in the garage is now full of meat, we won't require a shop for weeks. We also got a great step for the camper van on special at £9.99, it will help me this summer as the step to the van is high and it can be used as a small table.
My steps are lower than I hoped at 6236 average per day this month, but with bugs at the start and last week, plus the terrible weather, it's not a bad figure, could have been much lower. I am feeling much better, and I've started on my smaller portions, hoping to keep the weight lost from the tummy bug.
I had two comments on my post to pass the book Jo sent me on, both names were put in the hat, and Linda from Linda's Looking in New Direction was picked, perfect timing as Linda has just finished her job. Linda can you please email me your address, early next week I will pop it into the post to you.

Friday 30 March 2018

Knitting and Planning

The lower design is done on my jumper
 I now have to knit up to my underarms
I love this shade of brown
 I am using my knitting bag, which I made here
I have to pack my knitting away, I don't trust my cat's.
I have fallen in love with this design 
  This is turning into my year of knitting. 
 I ordered enough wool for two different jumpers in different colours for Will
These are packed away for now as I want to finish my jumper first.
I think I will have some wool left over, as I don't intend to make the hat, the red in both jumpers is the same shade, so I hoping to make him a third scrap jumper. 
The lighter evenings make it perfect for knitting, I can knit whilst hubby reads a book, we do not watch too much TV, we feel there is so much rubbish on.
I have also found a simple cross stitch design, this is the longest break I have taken from my hobby, I did think about finishing one of my projects, but it might work better for me to do a new one. Over the past couple of years I have started a couple big projects not to finish them, one was suddenly no longer wanted, and I was making one for hubby with his Welsh Guards badge on, but he was not sure, so another project abandoned.
Tuesday we had our last normal sign language lesson, our tutor is on holiday for 4 weeks, we have two weeks off, the following two weeks we are meeting at another house, but I don't expect to learn much. But the month without lessons will help me to catch up.
Wednesday I spent the day with mummy and Will, we popped to town for lunch and a wander around some of the shops. A huge B&M has opened in Fareham, so we had a good look around, I did not purchase anything, but I did see a simple arch, bigger than the one in our garden and much nicer looking, next time hubby and I are in town we will look again to see if it would suit our gardens.
Thursday due to the rain hubby and I stayed inside most of the day, which meant knitting time.
Today, I will clean downstairs, it's not really dirty, but I will dust and steam clean the floors. My brother is due for the weekend, so we are planning loads of family time and a huge family Sunday lunch.
Please check out my previous post, I have a really good book to give away, I will sort on Sunday/Monday.

Wednesday 28 March 2018

Pass it on

Jo at Through the keyhole did a great review on this book, 
click the link to read it, and then offered to pass it along.
I was lucky to receive it and now have finished reading.
So after reading my review below, if you would like the chance to read this book, 
please leave a comment,
whoever I pull out of the hat, I will post the book to you. 

I'm not sure I can add to Jo's review of this book, I have never read Amanda Prowse before, and the subject matter anorexia, is new to me, so honestly I was not sure what I would think. 

The story follows a perfect family setting, mum, dad and two teenage daughters, and whilst the story is about the illness suffered by Lexi, their youngest daughter, the story is told by the mum, Freya, and how she struggles, copes with every changing aspect of their lives and how it effects each member of the family. The story took you through loads of strong emotions, with each family member. I found it a very believable story line and often understood Freya's feelings, nothing was sugar coated, it felt very real.

I could not put this book down, I needed to know what would happen to them all, it was very honest and emotional in a way I never expected, it could have been a true story, and sadly probably is for someone. 

I will search this author again, I loved her style of writing

Please put a comment on this post if you would like a chance of reading this book

I will leave this open until the weekend, when all names go into a hat. 

Thank you Jo for a great read. 

Tuesday 27 March 2018

Good, bad and Ugly

Spring is trying hard to arrive
 First of our bluebells, and loads of buds on the peony after I moved it last year.
I am really upset for our Magnolia tree, the second set of buds were burnt by the last lot of snow, this time last year this tree had loads of blooms. 
 Not so good
Above is one of many holes dug from the house next door (mad cat woman), we have seen rats running in our back section around the greenhouse. We stopped feeding wild bird seed in the bird feeders last year, so there is very little food on the ground, but there is a group of them coming into our garden. Our neighbour is totally unapproachable, so I called in Environmental Health, who agreed us trying to stop the rats on our own would be a losing battle, so letters will be sent to all homes in the area, asking for access to set rat traps. 
I was hoping to spend some time in the garden, but Monday was busy in other ways, I do plan one afternoon in the greenhouse, rain is due, but the temperature is not due to fall too much, so I can sort seedlings and sow more seeds. 
On my walk around I can see loads of new life, loads of buds on my plants, I love the promise which spring brings. 

Monday 26 March 2018

All done

The bathroom is finished
 We are both pleased with it
 The shelf and window sill was always cluttered
 Plenty of storage
We are both delighted with the work hubby has done, he is a perfectionist, and it always shows in his finished work.
I love the sink unit, the large sink looks good and is not to big, the storage below has plenty of room, I purchased a tray for underneath, which holds our cleaning items. The plan is to keep is clutter free, but have spares of items we need close by.
I love my bathroom white, with just a hint of colour, with white towels, everywhere looks so clean, I'm the same with sheets and quilt covers for our bed, they are all pure white.
I read some brilliant post on cleaning from Mum's Simple Living Blog, my cleaning routine has slipped since I retired, I have plenty of time to clean, but I'm not cleaning as much as I did. In truth, I cleaned to a routine when I worked to ensure the house stayed tidy, All my life I have cleaned a clean house, and when I retired I thought I would cut back. But I need the structure again, I don't want cleaning days, where I blitz the house, I prefer routine like Mum's (sorry I don't know your name), so this morning I did our bedroom and bathroom and stairs.
I have done nothing since Friday morning, I have picked up Will's tummy bug, and have been off my feet for three days, spending all of Saturday in bed, I am on the mend, but I have no energy to do anything, including craft and knitting. I am beginning to think I was healthier when I was working, then I did not have time to be ill.

Friday 23 March 2018

New start

It's a start
 Knitting on the round, the markers are my starting point, I knit loose, so after doing my test piece, I am again using needles one size small than stated. I always knit to the back of the stitch, which creates a small twist, which looks nice and holds the stitch a bit tighter. This is Alpaca wool, it's soft and glides on my circular needles. I can't wear sheep's wool I have an allergy on Lanion, even soft lambs wool and baby wool irritates my skin. I dislike sewing my knitting together, so this design is perfect for me.
My week has changed from the plans I made. Tuesday, I did not go to sign class, with the tummy bug Will had infecting both his mummy and daddy, I decided to stay at home just in case I had the bugs. Wednesday, both daughter and SIL were both ill, so Will came to me for the day, we had wonderful cuddles and some play time. Thursday I went for my filling, I think the dentist thought I was nervous as he numbed the whole side of my face, which took most of the day to wear off. Hubby was working in the bathroom and did not require my help. The sink and pedestal was removed, listed on Facebook, and picked up by a local young couple. The gloss painting has been done, ready for the new sink to be installed today. Mummy and Will came over for the afternoon, both looking much better. 

A handy tip

We live in a hard water area, we have limescale on everything, it builds quickly, I have battled with it for years. Hubby saw this and thought he would give it a go, it works brilliant, I have used it on all our taps and fittings. I have checked and you can get it at Lakeland and on Amazon, it's not expensive, this is not a sponsor post, just my opinion, we will always keep a pot of this in our cupboard.

Tuesday 20 March 2018

Knit or sew

I just love these designs, 
I will make a Christmas shopping bag. 
 Adding colour
no plans for these as yet. 
 This will be made into a gift, 
I already know what it is going to be. 
The delivery was quick, I purchased this on Friday afternoon, the quality is better than I thought, the dogs printed on linen is a good weight. I will probably shop from Oh sew crafty again,  one point, I always check the size of the fabric before purchase, most designs on the site are sold as fat quarters, but it not strongly shown on the site, in their comments loads of people thought they were misleading. To think you are purchasing a meter of fabric for the price shown I think is folly, if something is too cheap, there is always a reason. On the plus side, the choice is huge. 

 These shades look perfect, I have itchy knitting fingers, again purchased from Wool Warehouse, I love using this site as delivery is so very quick. The pattern uses two strands to knit, I am going to hunt my circular needles out and make a start, I'm thinking I have a couple of weeks to get on with this before the greenhouse steals my attention. 
The snow has almost all gone, but it's still so very cold here, the temperature is fore caste to rise this week and stay dry. I am watch all my daffodils, hoping they stand up again, I did go into the garden yesterday and knocked all the snow off my plants, we were promised it would freeze again last night, which it did and I did not want all the weight of the frozen snow to damage anything.   

Monday 19 March 2018

So what's new

This corner looks as if everything is new
we have saved loads of money, it was hard work, but worth the effort. 
Half price in Co-op, £2 per bunch, so I got 2 lots
Our upstairs bathroom is back tidy, hubby is a perfectionist, so things take longer, but the finished job is always great, it's hard to tell what is new and what we refurbished. Hubby is driving for three days this week, so on Thursday we (he) will sort the sink area, we plan to remove the sink, so he can paint the skirting boards, once dry he will install the new sink and cabinate. He will paint the bathroom door and our bedroom door, we are doing our bedroom next, again we are using the left over paint, no colour change.
Last night we had a restful evening, watching some TV. We also had another flutter of snow, our local roads look clear, but we have lying snow on our garden, not as pretty as Sunday morning.
Will and mummy popped in yesterday, just in time for hot drinking chocolate, Will was not too happy, not his normal self. In the evening he was sick alot, so mummy and daddy took him to A&E on the advise of the doctor they spoke to, now we all hear of the long waits, but when you take a child in, they have their own area and a nurse accesses them as soon as they arrive. They finally got him to sleep about 1 this morning, they think he picked up a tummy bug, so no Will today, Nanna will miss him.
Today is a home day, no plans, nothing requires my attention, can't get out in the greenhouse. What bliss a free day. Still watching for the postman to bring parcels.

Sunday 18 March 2018

Planning, spending, waiting

My title says it all....
Mr postman come as soon as you can, I have purchased 

Fabrics, all 100% cotton from So crafty Ltd, none of them expensive, 5 different designs. I am not expecting the quality to be high, adding to my stash, it will be interesting to see what I get.

Yarn, Drops Alpaca, in 3 shades of brown and off white for a jumper, I really fancy making some fairisle, which I have not knitted for years. I wanted a design which I can knit on circular needles, with a yoke top.  I did look at shades of blue, but decided to stick with the browns.

Our shower looks new, just the new screen and doors to go back on, hubby has worked so very hard, he replaced all the stained grout and silicone from the tiles, it was hard work removing all the old grout, he has painted the ceiling and the walls. This work has saved us loads, we thought we would have to replace all the tiles. We repainted the same colour, the room is small and we have loads of paint from the original work we did. All the chrome has been cleaned and polished, this towel rail is a pig to clean, but there is nothing wrong with it, so it won't be replaced.  Just the skirting boards, door frame and door to gloss, that will be done next week. Then we can replace the old sink with our new modern sink with cupboard below. 
We had another pie and mash night in last night, the pies we purchased from Cook are brilliant, we have used all of our recent purchases, and will pop and get some more, I was very happy with the flavours I had, I think hubby will change one of his. I used a £1 stew pack and made soup, enough for lunch for us both yesterday and today, with a fresh baked roll. 
Yesterday was cold, we had snow falling for hours, but none of it settled. This morning......

Saturday 17 March 2018


Our Magnolia tree buds were hit by the recent cold weather
there are more buds forming, Spring is really here when the blooms are out. 
My Acer is budding, this is in a sheltered spot from the wind
 Love these Helleborus, pink one from last year
The creamy white, my reduced plant doing well.
 Seedling in the greenhouse
They are doing well undercover, I don't have any heat here.
I have loads of seeds ready to be started
 Some of my nasties, I'm loving the clay pots, not all of them gardening pots.
In the bottom right hand corner is a old cats water bowl, 
Balls of sunshine, good mixture in the garden
and a bunch inside.
My toes are tapping, and I have a huge itch, I so need to garden, it's always the same at this time of year. Each day I walk around my garden, checking for weather damage, watching wildlife and making notes on what needs doing. For the first time I am a bit ahead, normally I'm out at the weekend, weather permitting on catch up.
We are now watching the weather keeping everything crossed for the snow to pass us by. Our poor garden does not need any more snow, our spring flowers are looking brilliant.
I loved your comments on my green gardening post, we are all so very aware of the issues with plastic, we can't change the past, but we can rethink how and what we use when it comes to new purchases.
We started the shower cubical, and have made good inroads into the prep and the tiled walls look like new, saving us loads as we didn't need to replace. Hubby is doing most of the work, but I do jobs when required, and keep the tea flowing. We hope to have most of it done by Sunday evening, anything outstanding after that will be sorted the following Thursday.

Thursday 15 March 2018

Peter Rabbit...add to stash

The Art of not Breathing, started slowly but finished as a good read.
It was the 1st from my new reading club.
I will now start The Food of Love, passed to me from Jo
 Fat quarters from Dunelm, £7.00 for five
 All Peter Rabbit themed
I was going to make loads of little bags, my daughter Su suggested her friends would love them, especially as Peter Rabbit is opening in the cinema's. But I think I would prefer to do some patchwork, 8 of the 10 fat quarters are proper Peter Rabbit fabrics, the other 2 match in well. As yet it's all in my head, I won't be doing much sewing as we are working on our shower room for the next 4 days.
It's been a busy week, on Monday daughter Su with Will took me out for the day, we had a lovely long walk, a great lunch together, and then back to her house for play time. I enjoyed not going to town, like us, she has a local small high street, her's has different shops. I do like to support local shops, if we don't use them they will go.
Tuesday was sign language classes, firstly my new bag was great, everything together, I have great comments regarding the colour scheme, and also the fact I made it. We stayed longer this week almost 3 hours, after our class we chat and have lunch together, it was my turn so I made another quiche. In our class for the first time we are building sentences, we each are given a card with a word on, and we have to put together a sentence and sign to the group.
Yesterday, I had an early dentist check up, I have to go back as a filling has cracked, it was not a surprise. After I walked to a local swim center where Will has his swimming class, just 30 minutes, I was pleased to see how much more he is doing, I last saw him in the water last September. The tutor is working to have them happy when under water, they were walking off large floats into the water, Will loved it. Later I walked to our local market, I did not require anything, but it was nice to be outside.
Most days I am in my greenhouse, I have loads of tiny seedlings, each tray has it's own clear cover, this keeps the soil warm, I spray them each morning, I don't water later as I worry the night temperature will make the trays too cool. Nothing is required in the garden, which is pleasing, our garden looks good, which does not cure to itch inside me to do things. Oh well it will soon be warmer and then I will be full on with bedding plants.
The beast from the East is due again, just as we get used to the warm days, we have a yellow warning for snow on Sunday, as I have said before March is a bitch of a month.

Monday 12 March 2018

Little treasures

Every little boy should have a bag for his small toys
These are just 17cm high, perfect for little hands.
One for Will to take home and one left here in our toy bag.
 Very simple easy design, these are reversible, 
so you can have the bunnies or the carrots on the outside.
 Cut out the size of your bag, I cut into two pieces, 
to ensure the design was not upside down on the back.
In each of the bottom corners cut out a square.
The square will decide the bottom width of your bag.
 Sew both sides and the bottom
Just the cut out un-stitched
 Fold together making a straight seam, and stitch
The side and bottom seams should be together in the middle.
 Main stitching finished, put one inside the other, wrong sides together
fold the top in, add the handles and sew neatly together.
 This bag is made the same way, but because the pattern works on both sides the bottom is not cut and stitched together. The squares are cut in the middle. I used a zip for the top.
 Perfect with my teabags for my sign language class bag. 
When cutting the bags ensure the side and tops are straight, the cutting is important, if you cut wonky your bag won't have square corners, match the bottom cut outs so they are both the same. If your fabric has a design check to ensure everything is lined up, the look would be spoilt if I had cut the bunnies head off at the top. I try to ensure the center line looks good and the handles are both in the same place. Small details keep the bag finish neat.
I always make an inner for the bags I make, two reasons, firstly, to strengthen the bag, I want it to last, secondly, it looks much better no seams on show.
The teatowels cost me £4 for three, I used just two, so the fabric cost me £2.66, again I had the threads in my stash.
For the teabag bag, I spent £1.09 on the zip, the fabric was leftover from the file bag I made.
I spent a happy Saturday afternoon at my sewing machine, making these bags for Will was perfect use of the fabric. With Easter coming and Will loving Peter Rabbit, it was a perfect match, I can make larger shopping bags out of any design material.
I am very happy with the items made so far this year, I love my craft, but I am not happy just making stuff, I prefer to make something for a purpose. My craft area is full of lovely coloured bags for wool, patchwork, sewing, and my sign class bag.
These bags are very simple to make, if you look on Pintrest you will see loads of designs, do have a go at making them, Will's bag took just a couple of hours. I can't wait to see what he thinks of them, I put his two Thomas trains in the bag staying here.


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