Poppy Patchwork

My little bit of this big World

Saturday 30 November 2019


 Cardiff castle

 City skyline

 Bute Park

We spent 3 days in the Welsh city of Cardiff, hubby and I, we last visited back in the 90's, and spent most of our time shopping, how times have changed. This visit we were tourist, we visited the castle, took the tour bus around the city, we ate out each evening, had a Wonderful welsh afternoon tea, which was scone cream and jam, a slice of Bara Brith, a Welsh rich fruit cake made with tea, in a tea room overlooking the park, which could have been straight out of a historic novel. We stayed in The Angel Hotel, which is opposite the castle, and we walked everywhere, it rained on Wednesday morning, the rest of the time was sunny and cold. Our stay was timed to perfection, the hotel was gearing up for a huge busy weekend as a rugby match was happening in the stadium, close to the hotel, just as we were booking out, we do like quiet brakes.
Back home we have already had a cuddle with George, Will and mummy, George has put on weight, so everyone is happy.
This afternoon our sign class is performing in the Library in Fareham, we have a poem, a book, and 2 songs to sign, mummy is hoping to bring Will and George to watch. Hubby is staying home to sort the leaves in the garden, it's the last big pick up as our tree is almost bare.

Wednesday 27 November 2019

Welcome to George

George Thomas, our newest grandson, our 7th little boy.
Brothers together 1st meeting.
A perfect early Christmas gift.
Born on Friday 22nd November, 11 days early, smallest of all our boys birth weight 5 pounds 9 ounces, a lovely brother for Will. He stayed in hospital for a few extra days, he was not feeding well, but he has now caught up and is home completing a wonderful family of 4.
George is our 7th and last grandson, no grand daughters which does not matter, we are OK with cars, footballs and boys toys. We do not expect to see any more grand children, all our families are complete. Like many other grandparents we enjoy watching each and every one growing up, our eldest Josh is 14 years old, It's amazing how much love we have in our hearts.
We are away for a few days, a much needed rest, again so much has happened this year, not everything bad, but enough to warrant a small break. Mummy will send loads of photo's videos and we will face time Will, so still be able to keep in touch.

Monday 25 November 2019

More glass

Having fun with seed beads, 
thought these might look good as flowers.
The lighter colours dissapeared, and the stems are a bit thick, but I do like the idea, because of the size limatations in using my microwave kiln, I do need to think smaller. But seed beads are a good way to add colour, and I have loads of them. 
I saw this design on Pintrest, and thought it was worth a try, the white is a bit to thick, the glass rods were all the same size, so I need to be aware of using the solid colours with the opaque. The design was made to look like holly.
I have not done much else with the glass, I want to get more of my gifts finished, before playing. I will try using bigger glass designs, I can't go huge, but I think the bits I am using does not suit the tiny things I am making. I do love the seedbeads and the thin glass rods, but they look big on my finished items.
Time is short with the arrival of baby George, who is beautiful, but tiny and not feeding the best, so visits with mum is planned. Will went home with daddy last night, he was missing both parents. Hopefully mummy and George will be allowed home today, so they can start this new part of their journey. Grandma arrive tomorrow, so more family together, there is nothing better than a tiny new life in your family.

Friday 22 November 2019

Changes here

These socks are finished, they are the last pair I needed to make for gifts, again it's for a large men's shoe size. I will knit another pair of socks, but these  are not for a Christmas present.
 Two Christmas cakes, the one in the front has just had another drink of brandy, the one at the back is covered in marzipan, this cake had less brandy, so Will can eat it. I will marzipan mine in early December. 
 Just to show the shades, they are so pretty, I have done more to this. 
 Hubby went out and won a couple of raffle prize's, the tree I will keep for our downstairs bathroom, I will give Will the Santa. 
My brother drove home to Somerset on Friday, it was a long slow and very wet journey, but he now has a couple of days at home before he is back to his part time work on Monday.  I did the cakes on Friday afternoon, it was just too dull and wet to go anywhere, I finished the socks in the evening, I unpicked back until I reached the dropped stitch and then worked carefully until the end, I had very little yarn left over, so I was pleased with them.
Will came over at tea time for a sleepover, mummy went into natural labour in the afternoon and baby George is born, no photos as yet, but we are very happy at the arrival of our 7th grandson.
This morning is an early start, Will is always awake at 6am, not a time I am normally awake. Mummy and George will be home today, we have offered to keep Will for another night if they want time together, but I can't wait for a cuddle.

Thursday 21 November 2019

Finished and ongoing.

This blanket for baby George is finished, it will live in mummy's car to keep him warm through the cold months. I really enjoy making ripple blankets of all sizes, but these little ones are so quick to make. 
 I used Patons Baby smiles 4ply with a 3.5 hook.
 I am using some yarn purchased from Hobbycraft, I got 3 balls of 150 grms in a buy 2 get 1 free offer, I am using a smaller hook size of 2.5, the yarn is 4ply, so it's a tight woven design. I have no reason to make this, except I am enjoying the process. 
 The photo's here do not show the true beauty of the shades, it's really dark here today. I should be doing other things, but I am loving this blanket
I have been watching a video for a different design, I love this star design, it's Bella Coco on you tube, I used her video for the ripple blanket, I find her videos to be well lit and easy to follow. BUT, I will not start this until the new year. 
Nothing much happening here, my brother is here for a few days, and he has not wanted to do much, so lazy days in together, watching a few films in the evening, it's fun to catch up with him.
I have had time to do crochet, but not much else, I did not want to be busy doing things when he is here. On the downside, it means my sew machine has not been used, I have a few things to make, which now won't be looked at until in December, which is later than I wanted.
I still have one pair of socks to finish, just the foot to knit, which won't take long.
Tomorrow I hope to marzipan one Christmas cake, for our daughter, I am still feeding our cake brandy, I have stopped feeding her cake as Will loves cake and I don't want it to boozy for him.
Nothing much to do in the garden, just pick up leaves, it's now so cold and gloomy, not to good to be outside. I did take a couple of cuttings off my outside geranium, it's in a raised bed and should survive the winter, it was left out last year, so it's just in case, it's such a pretty plant.

Monday 18 November 2019

Full of colour

I loved this book, a mixture of traditional and modern Japan, two stories running together, clever use of words, I was hooked on the 1st page and could not put it down until the finish. This is my 54th book read this year. 
 Working on 2 blankets can be fun, but neither is finished quickly, I still have 16 rows to do on the ripple, I miss counted before and have one complete section of colours to do. It is not a big blanket. 
I have brought this Amaryllis back inside, it spent the summer in my greenhouse, last year it had stunning pink flowers, I am hoping I can get another bud this year, so far I have not had much luck getting Amaryllis to bloom a 2nd year. I have not planted my birthday bulb yet, I will pot it up in December. 
 The flowers are beautiful, 
the sunlight catches them in the morning, 
they look like summer in a pot.

Saturday was as always great fun with Will, we walked to the village, did our shopping and then went to Darcy's for a drink and tea cake, he was so cute, so many people spoke to him and he loved it. Back home he helped in the garden, hubby cut back a few branches in our tree, Will loves picking up leaves, I pottered in my greenhouse, and had to name plants for Will, he loves the what's that game, and then got his little motorbike out to scoot around the dry areas. Mummy collected him after lunch after having a long lie in and a lazy breakfast, it was good to see her so relaxed. Later we both sat with books reading, it's a lovely way to spend an afternoon. We spent the evening with friends and neighbours, sharing Prosecco and Chinese meal, loads of chatter, it was fun and not to much of a late night, we watched Strickly when we got home.
Sunday we had a late start, after a bit of a tidy around inside, we had another lazy day, waiting for my brother to arrive, he had spent Saturday night with his daughter, who lives local to us. We had a lovely afternoon and  evening catching up with family news and an early night.
Again its Monday and Will is due, no plans, if its dry we will be outside.

Saturday 16 November 2019

Simple times.

Totally beautiful, with so many more buds to open. 
 I purchases these from B&Q reduced section, 50p each, 3 plants, nothing wrong with them, just no flowers, when I got to the till, they were having a 15% off day, so I paid £1.26. I can't separate the 2 pots, so I planted them, the extra rim looks good. 
Tiny seeds have been appearing on my desk, for 2 days I have brushed them into the bin, but where are they coming from? The only plant nearby is my pineapple, do they throw out seeds, I don't know, I did look on goggle, which said they do make seeds. So for an adventure, I got out a small pot with compost and sprinkled them on to see if anything grows, they look too small for pineapple seeds, so what am I trying to grow. 
 I purchased a yarn advent calender for myself and wanted to ensure hubby was not left out, we normally do not bother with them. I did not see any ready made ones he would love, so I looked at purchasing an empty one, but they are expensive. I purchase small white bags, marked the numbers and used a Christmas sticker to close them, I already had the big bag, really pleased with this, full of treats he loves. 
I noticed back in October one of my Orchids had a new stem growing, I have watched it reach about 7", so I thought I would ease it upright and attach to a stick for the blooms to be higher, and I have snapped it off, I am so angry with myself. I have one Orchid in full bloom, it has flowered for weeks, and my hope was this new blooms would be ready just as these faded, I do love to have flowers in my sitting room, Oh well.
I spent Thursday in Southampton with youngest daughter, she had the last of her Christmas shopping to do, I was not happy for her to go alone, she has less than 3 weeks to her due date, so we had a girly day. Daughter got all she needed and I got a couple of treats and a small gift for hubby's stocking. We were both tired once we got home, we had a long lunch together and loads of fun, plus it was dry all day. 
When I got home I found hubby had cleaned our cooker, every year he gives it a good clean, so it looks like new (not bad as it's 15 years old), it's never too dirty, but it's nice to see it so shiny. 
I have been busy crafting, and hope the ripple blanket will be done by the end of the weekend. I have been looking online at how you make a star shaped blanket, it's looks simple enough, I have yarn, but I won't start until I have finished the pair of socks required for a gift. 
Will slept over last night, we decided mum and dad should have a last lazy morning together, soon they will be waking up at all times through the night, he is happily playing with hubby, chatting about his baby brother, things they will do, it's lovely to listen to him. 
Later he will be back home with mummy and daddy and we are going to friends for supper, a takeaway plus a glass of wine and loads of chatter, the bonus they live just across the road, no long journey home. It's an early start with Will 6.30am, so might need a rest this afternoon. 

Wednesday 13 November 2019

Finishes and starts.

All finished and ready to be given to my friend I used Drops Nord mix, 4ply, which has Alpaca yarn in, it is beautiful to knit with. 
The knitting is done on my shawl, it's a bit smaller than others, but will fit under my jacket. I am going to add some crochet flowers using the pale colours, just to finish it off. The colours are muted, it was dark when I took this photo. I will in the new year be shopping with Burrow and Soar again.
I have started the ripple blanket for baby George to use in the car, it will be the same size as Will's, but I have changed a few colours. I am using Patons Baby Smiles 4ply again, I do love this yarn. 
 I got this basket for the garden, but it has never left the house, it's perfect for holding my yarn, and makes using it so simple. 
 I have also started another granny square, I got 3 balls of this yarn from Hobbycraft, I thought it might be good for my loom, but it does not have the strength, so I'm having a bit of fun. It has a silver thread running through it. 
Another good finish, (1st part), I have baked both Christmas cakes, the house smelt of spices for 2 days, it was lovely. I will decorate both cakes this year, daughter will be busy with a new baby. 
It's been a good crafting time, I still have a pair of socks to finish, and maybe another pair to make, I have the gift for my brother to make, and some sewing for a friend to do, and my bag to finish.
Christmas cards design is forming in my head, I won't make them all the same this year, it will be an afternoon's task, probably next week.
I do have a French cross stitch Christmas tree I started way back in May 2016, I got it out last year but did nothing, I hope to find some time to try and finish it this year, it's far too beautiful to be left unfinished.
I feel as if everything is under control, we have done loads of Christmas shopping, all very early, but we are away the last week in November and baby George is due the following week, so I need to have time to support my daughter and her loving family.
We have already decided not to drive to Somerset this year, I am hoping my sister will visit here next week and my brother is having Christmas with us. We will get to see our Taunton grandsons in the new year, neither hubby or I want to make the long drive.
So whilst it pours with rain, I craft, hubby reads, we stay warm and dry, again we are so sorry to see all the flooding in the north of UK, the flooding seams to happen every year, just the location in UK changes. I thank goodness everyday, we are safe and dry.
This morning is sunny, cold and dry, we are not expecting it to stay this way all day, but it's a nice change, I shall walk to the post office soon, and have a look around our market, I have nothing I need.

Sunday 10 November 2019


 Hubby purchased these for my birthday gift, he asked me if there was anything I would like, I had been looking at these long thin rods for a while, I love the shades on the blues and translucent, and another pack with mixed colours in. They are small and should soften in the kiln, the blue circle's should be a great base for these. 
I have been playing, I do like using the circle cut glass as a base, this is sunset over poppy fields. I class this as a success, only point, a couple of the rods slipped and came over the edge of the shape, they are very hard to file back, I still have a bit more to do. This was made with a clear top and white base circle, and cooked for 10 mins, plus 2 mins. 
This should be holly and made to look like a bauble, it does look better from a distance, I hope to make another, but will try red glass seed beads for the berries. This was made just using the base with the decoration on top, cooked for 8 mins plus 2 mins. I now know how to bend these rods to look more natural. 
This was also a birthday gift from hubby, he knows I love these, I won't plant for a couple of weeks, I love to see these bloom after Christmas, when every where feels much duller. 
I did ask for no birthday gifts this year, there is so little I want, I knew hubby would ignore me, but was very pleased when he asked me what he should get, the glass bits are just perfect for me to play and create pretty glass. I have had fun this week, and have a few more ideas in my head, I do love the sea and I'm hoping to create a few scenes. The bulb was his surprise to me.
Saturday we popped to see Will, mummy and daddy at home, we took happy cake, which Will loved, which is birthday cake to the rest of us, I had not planned for a cake, but Will kept asking.
I also soaked the fruit of the 1st Christmas cake, using the zest and juice of 2 large oranges and 1 lemon, I have used this recipe for years, so the house smells of citrus.
Last night we went out for a meal, it was a gift from youngest daughter, for both our birthdays (hubbys in September), we don't often go out in the evenings, but it was fun. We ate early and was home by 9pm, and watched Strickly.
Today we have nothing planned, I have a book I've started reading and a few craft things to finish, plus I need to sort more yarn, I am happily ticking things off my 'to make list', I do need a couple days of my sewing machine out.
The Christmas cake is going in the oven today and I will soak the fruit for the 2nd cake, which will be cooked tomorrow.
The pressing thing I need to make is my Christmas cards, I have everything I need, so it's just a case of designing and putting them together, luckly we don't send so many, and I don't have a huge pile to make.

Friday 8 November 2019


I started this blog in February 2009, just a few words, not sure if it was for me, but I loved it, I read some beautiful blogs with different lifestyles, same hobbies, similar ages and younger. Each morning I sit at my computer with a mug of coffee, reading and commenting. It's a joyful way to start my day. 
Blogger has made changes again, this time I think for the better, for a few years they only showed your last 1000 comments, I lost the viewing of any comments before this number, now they have gone back to displaying all comments on my blog, and perfect timing, this week I had my 8000th comment, and so I'm sending a parcel to the following blogger.
 Maggie can you please send your name and address, my email address is marlenejjones@gmail.com,
I will over the weekend pop something into the post. 
 Yesterday (another Beatles song), I had the words of the song below running through my mind, yes I arrived at my 64th birthday, I got stuck on the line, many years from now, how quickly the years have passed. I would not change much in my life. I had a great day out with hubby and youngest daughter, Will was at nursery, he popped in on Wednesday with my card. We had a quiet evening in, sharing a bottle of wine, on Saturday night we will go out for a meal together, simple pleasures. 
 I will leave you with another photo of this plant as the buds get bigger they become brighter pink.


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