Poppy Patchwork

My little bit of this big World

Monday 31 January 2022

January roundup

I got some thread and felt this month locally, but I had to place an online order to get good quality felt and tiny buttons, I am ready to make more animals and clothes, the clothes fabrics are coming from my fat quarter stash. I could not find 1 set of knitting needles, so I purchased another set of the size I required, and just 2 packs of summer flowers for the garden. 

I have purchase a pair of slippers and a couple bra's, my slippers were very tatty and needed replacing, I am also replacing bras with non-wired designs, which are far more comfortable. I got a new winter coat in the M&S sale, expensive start to the year, but all things I needed. My craft trolley is not shown, I used some Christmas gift money. 

Food shopping has been really low, we were stocked up, and had Christmas treats left over, we always planed to stay at home throughout January, sitting out the virus again, we both have had our boosters, but staying safe. 

We spent our saving allowance plus a bit more, we had to get a new mattress which was twice the cost we thought we would pay, ours is on its last legs,  and a second hand outside table and chairs, which was a bargain we did not want to miss, we will sell our table and 2 chairs, keeping the bench. Not the financial start we wanted, we are focusing on saving each month of the rest of the year. 

I'm happy with my weight on Jan 1st, I record my weight the 1st day of every year, I am about the same as I was back in 2014, in between my weight has yoyoed, 2020 was my heaviest recorded weight. We are walking and have cut back on portion sizes, we still have loads of Christmas food here, I always put on a couple of pounds in January.

Sunday 30 January 2022

Last Sunday in January

On our visit to Ikea in the week, we both loved this bedding range, it's 100% cotton, which I need because of my allergies, and really beautiful, so we got 2 king size covers with pillow cases. this will set the design for our bedroom. The wall behind our bed is painted a deep dark purple, which picks out the middle of the pink flowers. We have had white covers for the past 12 years, so it will be nice to see some colour. 
 Our bargain garden furniture arrived as well, hubby will take each item and sand down and stain, all are hardwood, a few of the chair legs are soft at the bottom, we have someone coming to take a look, if too expensive hubby can sort them. We had factored in extra cost for repairs to legs, we will sell our old table and chairs to use towards the repair cost. 
The table folds as you can see, which will give us more room on the decking, each chair reclines, not fully, but enough to make sitting relaxing. Once finished they will match our existing bench, which we are keeping. Our outside cushions fit on the chairs perfectly, so no extra cost. 
How quickly has January passed us by, the days seemed long and slow, but the month has flown by, we have not made plans for February, will see what happens as it arrives. 

Friday was loads of laughter with both George and Molly, George is very much a nana's boy, so hubby gets cuddles from Molly, both enjoy playing on the floor, we don't take them out much as they need to be wrapped up warm and both in pushchair, so not much fun. 

Saturday was wet, it rained overnight, not expected, but good for the garden after a few dry weeks, we had another lazy day at home, after a quick tidy and vacuum, and a walk to the village, I sat and started knitting the pink socks. Later we popped to daughters for a Chinese takeaway, helping with bedtime for the children, lovely to spend time together. 

Today I hope to be outside in the garden, not much to do, I am itching for the gardening season to start, but the ground does still look wet. Looking out on the lovely blue skies, give a false impression, its really cold, we are still have air frost a couple nights each week, I can't plant anything, and for me it's still to early really to start much in the greenhouse. I am not raising seeds this year, I will purchase plug plants and grow them on to decent pants, I don't need too many and growing seeds always leave me giving away loads. We have not had any of the weekend storms, the weather gods are being kind to us. 

Friday 28 January 2022

Blooms, parcels and a finish.

I have the last bloom on my Amaryllis, I only had 5 blooms this year, 3 buds did not open, again this was an expensive bulb purchased from a garden centre, maybe later this year I will just get cheaper supermarket ones. 
I do have loads of blooms around the sitting room and kitchen, these are all fake silk flowers, they look good, the Orchid and the green stems in the blue jug are years old, they all brighten up the house. The bowl of citrus fruits are plastic, our dining room table is in a dark section of the room, these 'fruits' always look bright, very few things look good on my table. Using fake flowers has saved me loads of money, I do love to see blooms at home, last year I did not purchase any fresh flowers, and hubby only got me a few bunches. 

I have finished these socks and gave them to the haberdashery owners husband, he loves them, I think to balance out the fairness I should make her a pair, maybe in pink. I enjoyed knitting these, it's such a simple easy pattern to use. Home knitted socks last so well, so I have loads of pairs as does hubby,   
Typical, when I was out Hermes delivered the original parcel from Hobbycraft, hubby did not realise it was from them quick enough to refuse the delivery, I am waiting for them to arrange collection. My other lost parcel arrived as well, sent at the same time as this one, so Hermes had been over whelmed and unable to keep up with deliveries, can't blame the courier, they can only deliver what arrives in their depot. 

It's been a busy week, sign class was fun, we are learning to song 'Bring me Sunshine', which is a great tune, I have the words on my desk, so each time I sit at my computer I can practice, which is normally once a day. I know the words which helps but was unaware I sing the lines in the wrong order. 

Wednesday we had Molly for a while in the morning, daughter stayed and chatted, later we walked to the village to hand over the finished socks. Thursday we were out all day popping to Ikea in Southampton and then back to daughters to see Will after school. 

We have George and Molly at ours soon, daughter had a hair appointment, we will go out for a walk later, I still have done nothing in the garden, I have not read much and done nothing towards to making of Luna and friends. 

Sadly after saying how pleased we were with the ground feeder for the birds in my last post, we have spotted a huge rat eating there, hubby was so disappointed, he loves watching the birds in the garden. So rather than take away a food source, we have put the feeder on the garage roof, the birds have already found it, but sadly it's not where hubby can see the birds. 

Tuesday 25 January 2022

Quiet weekend

1st sock is finished, I love making these colourway, having a plain top, heels and toes to pick out one shade in the main sock. I have some ends to sew in, I finished it last night I hope to start the 2nd this afternoon, I love simple knitting, I only check the pattern at the point where you shape the heel.
 I really enjoyed this book, which is strange as the story is of parts of their journey from Syria to UK, it is a gentle story of a couple's loss of their lives, and how little is thought of migrants fleeing from devastation and war. This is book 8 read this year. 
I have noticed loads of things to tidy outside in the garden, so I'm planning some time outside this week, I won't be cutting back too much, as its still to early. Loads of plants and the Magnolia tree are full of buds, far too early. Bulb shoots are popping up around the garden and in pots. New growth outside always fills my heart with joy, I always love this view of the garden, no matter what season it is. 
This ground bird feeder was a Christmas gift from me to hubby, he loves feeding and watching the birds in the garden, our local blackbirds love the food in here, which is mixed seeds, we pop sunflower hearts in the hanging feeders. I often see a small mouse feed from here, I am sure they are coming from under my shed, I have complained about rats in the bottom of the garden, but I don't mind mice. The squirrels eat from here as well, they throw the seeds everywhere, all the huge wood pigeons and collared doves can't take any food. This back area is really tidy, the black bin is full of leaves in hope to make mulch. 

Another weekend with just hubby and myself, youngest daughter was unwell, so we did not get to see her family, just a tummy upset, both George and Molly have colds. I have a sore throat and my tummy has been a bit off, nothing too bad. I took another Covid test this morning, again negative. 

My steps averaged just under 6,000 last week, I am doing more steps each week, I aim to get to between 7 and 10k daily, our portion sizes have shrunk back to where they should be, we still have treats but not so many, I hope to be back to Chocolate only 1 day at the weekends. 

Today is sign class, it is more social then sign, we have been shown most of the signs we would use, and are now repeating things we have already done, half the group struggle to remember signs, and the rest of us like the repetition as it helps us improve on our skills. 

Saturday 22 January 2022

Slowly does it

 One of my parcels have arrived, this was the 2nd replacement parcel, from Hobbycraft, who handled the courier delay in my 1st parcel so very well. It is a bit bigger than I expected, but it's perfect for my project trolley, it sits in the corner of my craft room and can be wheeled out when I am crafting. 
At the moment I am using it for rabbits and other handmade toys, the bottom tray has fabrics, a couple old pieces of clothes I want to use, middle tray is my tools plus, buttons, braids and other bits. The top tray is for patterns and the cut out bits. You can see my fibre, which I am still working on. 

Another smaller parcel arrived, this was expected a purchase I asked for, made by a lovely lady from Bits and Bowes, I have used her a few times for embroidery, I would love a big machine, but the cost for the model I want, is very high and I would not use it that much. These will become footpads for each animal. 
I have not given up on my cat idea, I have changed the colour of the felt, this is a rust colour not shown well in this photo, but seen better in the photo above and purchased a thinner felt, which when adding the fibre it's not too thick, this is now working. I have 2 more pieces to work on then I can cut out the cat. Molly won't be able to play with it, but I am enjoying the challenge of making it. 
A happy cast on, men's socks shoe size 7, so not too big, I was chatting to the owner and her husband of our local haberdashery shop, she does not knit and he has never had home knitted socks. I asked him to choose his yarn, he agreed with having the plain blue top, toes and heel, I'm enjoying knitting. 

If the 1st parcel sent from Hobbycraft arrives, I will refuse delivery, so it should get back to them. The last parcel, which I am wanting is now almost 3 weeks late, the company has responded very slow to my ticket I placed asking for them to trace the parcel, today they asked for a review of my purchase, so I have stated I have not received my parcel or any help, not the way I would like to behave, but they have almost £50 of my money, and I would like the goods or a refund.

I have not started any sewing, but I have most of what I need to start, it's just a case of getting going. We have been out most days this week, hubby has is doing everything he can to help me feel good, January is always a hard month for me, feeling so sad and blue, even the lovely sunny days have not helped. 

Wednesday 19 January 2022

What is normal.

My Amaryllis is very pretty this year, it grew nice and tall, the shades of pink in each flower is brilliant, these lovely blooms always bring colour to a dull January. My 2 bulbs from previous years have not produced any flowers. 
Sadly the blooms are not doing that great, the 1st bloom to open has not lasted long and the 2 others did not open fully. The 2nd stalk is not doing much better, I have 2 blooms and another 2 buds which are not forming at all. They are in the same place as I always pop them, I did not plant the bulb so deep as I had seen they should sit proud of the compost, I have no idea why they are going over so quickly. 
I got this trio of books from The Works before Christmas, a very interesting tale of England in 2050's,  life after riots in the late 2020's, a modern tale of the under dogs. I enjoyed these books, each could be read on it's own, but much better as trio. Books 5,6 and 7 read this year. 

I have 2 deliveries stuck in a Hermes delivery warehouse, it's 3 parcels as one company sent out a replacement and that's stuck as well, I will be asking for a refund, which is a shame as I really wanted 1 item,  one parcel has been holding up my crafting, I will have to sort another way if I can. 

We popped into town on Tuesday, I came home early from sign class, so many shops have shut, it's hardly worth going back, I did get 2 packs of summer flowers. I had Molly on Monday morning, she was coming here this morning, but mummy is not well so they are staying at home, things are all dropping back into a routine. I'm not doing much outside, my greenhouse is full with tender plants, it's far to early to start much, but I can dream and plan.

That's what January is all about, planning, nothing big to do outside, my plans are for our bedroom, we have a new mattress coming, I've been looking at curtains, I have 3 pieces of cross stitch I want to make into cushions, our room will look very different without too much work. 

Monday 17 January 2022

Something new

 After making 2 rabbits for Molly for Christmas, I have fallen in love with these animals, and being me I always like to do something different. I have had felting bits for ages, and have been itching to have a go, so rather than make a plain cat.

 I wanted to add colour over the plain beige felt, so with the felting fibre I already had, I used my good felt (darker shade) and some cheap felt, I quickly discarded the cheap felt, they did not bond well. 

The colours on my finished scrap looks good, but I used the wool to thickly, I will need to try again thinning out the fibres, but basically it's the look I'm after. The light was not so good so my photo's are poor quality. I love it when something is going right, I have been watching Youtube for hints and tips. 
I remembered I had these 2 brushes, which are very like the brushes used for carding (the separating of the fibres using brushes), these are for brushing pets and are much cheaper. They worked very well, the size only allowed me to do small bits, but I can live with that. 
The same scrap piece of felt, the sample at the bottom is after carding the fibres and looks much better, I am not using so much fibre and it does blend into the felt better. The quality of these photos are terrible, it's so dark here and even with the lights on, it makes no difference, if I use the flash the shades are lost. 
If you work with felt, I do know I have done things wrong, I don't have all the basic stuff to make felting fun, when I got supplies it was for me to make little figures, totally different to what I am experimenting with here. BUT it was another wet day outside, so I am playing, and enjoying myself, I am ready to make enough coloured felt to make the cat, all I need to do now is check if I need to make a huge block and then cut it out, or cut out each pattern bit and then add the fibre. A lot of the cat will be covered by clothes, but I do want to make the whole orange parts of the body in mixed shades, I am aware if this works it might not be suitable for Molly to play with. 

Friday 14 January 2022

What are you doing

 Another book finished, I was not sure about this storyline, I was given this book, but I loved it, good storyline, it kept me hooked, I have not read this author before, but would read another of his books, 4th book read this year.

After my post with my purchases for making another Luna rabbit and friends, I received an email from Susan, she does not have a blog, but she loves reading blogs, she very kindly offered to send me the kit to make the knitted ballet cardigan, I offered to pay postage, which she declined. 

So many extra items, as Susan was having a clear out, thank you so much, I am once again I am blown away by the kindness of this lady. Everything is so useful, I'm already knitting. 

I decided to start knitting, I'm using a sock yarn from my stash, it's the perfect weight for this mini cardigan pattern. My other mini start was unpicked it was too big, so I plan to start again with smaller needles and maybe a different colour yarn. 

The garden is full of shoots and buds, so much hope and new blooms, looks like spring, but here along the south coast our snowy months can be in February, March and even April, so Spring is still a way off. 

I have not done much at all, the house is cleanish, tidy, the garden is only every a quick walk through, or watch through our windows, crafting is a non starter, I have been hiding in books, as you can see I have already read 4 books, 2 of them with 500+ pages.

January is never a good month, often just grey and damp, this year it's been warmer, so each day I have no idea what to wear and often remove layers, only to pop them back on later. I have no reason to moan, I am healthy, our home is warm, most of the time, we have food and can still afford the soring prices of everything. 

I should be planning projects for the year, I have a huge cross stitch WIP I should get out and look at, it's finish is long overdue.  It's also a month of memories, which are very mixed, and as you know I over think so much, and of course there is Covid, everyone is free from it, but it's all around us, Will's teacher now has it, as does some of his class, daughter has been told, Will should be Ok after having it in late December. 

The kindness of Susan, friends checking up on me, a couple of sunny days are helping, hubby is great, I am so happy to be in a loving relationship, once these grey days are past, I will bounce back. I have to just stop thinking and do something, anything. 

Today we are going out, I am looking for a new knee length winter coat, a duffle coat, I've seen some online, but I need to try them on. Later I'm babysitting Will, George and Molly, so mummy and daddy can have a night with friends. 

Tuesday 11 January 2022

Blooming lovely.

Finally I have my 1st bloom, I love an Amaryllis in January, very colourful on a grey day. 
Only 3 buds on the 1st stem, the 2nd stem is looking promising, should flower for a couple weeks. Still only leaves on my other 2 bulbs, I think these are the only flowers I'm going to see. 
Just under half our Christmas cake left, it's lovely with our afternoon coffee, I will be sorry once it's all gone. Lovely and moist, I made it deeper this year and it has worked well, we still have Christmas treats, but I have packed them out of sight. 
Book 3 read this year, I was very unsure as I started this book, the writing style not to my taste, but I kept going, loved the plot, its nice to read something a bit different. 

I/we have done very little in the past few days, we managed to walk everyday except Saturday, it rained all day, too wet to go out. I did an average of just under 5,000 steps each day, this week I hope to do more, the forecast is dry, so should be able to get out every day.

I have done very little crafting, I am playing without getting the results I hoped for, but I'm not ready to give up yet, I hope to cut out some clothes and start making things. I had Molly on Monday morning, Will was at school, George at nursery, it was fun playing with a baby, she is 6 months and now getting interesting. 

Today is sign class, i've had a negative test, but I'm not feeling great after a terrible night, so I'm giving it a miss, hubby was going to go with me, but we can start back next week.

No plans to go anywhere, we do walk to village for what bit of shopping we need, mainly milk, veg and fruit. 

Saturday 8 January 2022


I purchased this 3rd book, I did want to make the cat, I have everything here accept the pattern, I did consider playing around with the patterns I have, to bodge a cat, but hubby said 'get the book', I don't need to be told twice. I am going to try something completely different on the cat body, bit of fun. 
These items are from the Luna Lupin website, I got the felt colour I wanted, some tiny button and as a treat for myself the felt and fur for Hamish the Highlander, sadly I did not read it correct, I have the materials but not the pattern. I can either wait until the book is released next year or make the fox and keep the fur, oh well lesson learnt, so I have plenty to keep me busy. 
I have also purchased these tiny shoes, I have knitted and sewn shoes before, they are fiddly and never look great, so these will finish each outfit. A shiny pair, pair of daps and 2 pretty pairs of shoes. 

I have spend a bit online, but only what I could not get from our local shop, their felt was thin, I went to the proper website as these will be toys which will be played with, so it's vital they are strong. I have also sorted loads of bits from my stash, which goes with my use what I have theme for this year. You can never makes anything completely with what you have, there is always something missing from your stash. I did try and ensure I got what I needed, because most online shops charge you postage, so a second order is not really a good thing. 

I have also ordered a component for each one I make, I am hoping they won't take long to arrive, but they are going to be worth waiting for, I am planning to make some clothes whilst waiting for the delivery.  

Now I have plenty to make, which is great as I have loads of time at home, I hope to make loads of clothes, they are all the same size, so clothes can be worn by any of them. I had though last year I would buy a plastic baby doll and make clothes for her, as I did for my own daughters, but making animals from scratch is way more fun, and probably no more expensive than the doll. I am hoping Molly will love them now and later as she is older and able to change the outfits. 

Rachel stop laughing at this post, I can hear your 'I told you so' comments, I hope you are feeling a bit better today. 


Friday 7 January 2022

Back to normal

My 2nd read of the year, this is their 2nd book, just about family life and working at the Chateau, it's a very comfortable read, we know them both from their TV shows. Both hubby and I enjoy watching/reading how Dick works things out make-do-and-mend, I'm not a fan of vintage, it's not a style I use in our home, but I do love the beauty of some vintage items. 
I have started knitting this jacket, I am using Drops Safron 4ply, it's a mauve/grey colour, I have always knitted loose and I am thinking I might need to start again on one size smaller needles. I have given up on the knitted french nickers, I think I might get some cheap girls pants to cut up, the stretchy fabric would work well. 
I still only have buds on this 1 bulb, they are quite high and starting to open, I do love these big blooms, January is always Amaryllis time. 

I have been in a tidy frame of mind, sorting through things, I have very little to get rid of, as most of what I own is what I can use, but the need to be tidy is always higher at this time of year. I am lucky as hubby is also tidy, so my continuing sorting is not getting on his nerves. I have too much spare time, I have ordered supplies to make more Luna Lupin animal friends, once everything comes I can start sewing again. Part of the reason for sorting is to find a contrast fabric for the inner ears and bottom of the feet. 

There is nothing to do in the garden or greenhouse, it has turned cold, so nothing much is growing, too early to start anything, so it reading and crafting time. We are walking most days, not long walks, I'm having a few problems with my right hip, 🤞🤞it's nothing too bad. The past few morning we have had a good frost, it is much cooler, which I prefer and dry, winter is here, there are loads of plants in the garden with buds, but it should not harm the plants, the buds should fall off and regrow at the correct time of year. 

With Will at school and George at nursery twice a week, mummy is busy, plus daddy is still on holiday until Monday, from next week we are having Molly for a couple of hours on Monday and Wednesday mornings, so mummy can get back to the gym. Things will start to fall back into place, sign class is again on a Tuesday morning. 

1st week is almost done, just a normal time here, well the normal which is our lives now. I'm not feeling too anxious, hopefully that won't change. It's raining again so I'm going to try some wet felting. 

Tuesday 4 January 2022


My 1st book finished, it was a true story of life in the child care system in 60's and 70's, at times it was so sad, but an interesting read. I read only 44 books last year, I hope to read more, but I also want to keep active and get out more. 
These plants are still looking good inside, I have packed away the basket, so now they each have their own space. The Amaryllis is really tall and I'm hopeful to see these pink blooms soon, the other 2 bulbs are giving me only leaves. The other 4 plants will at some point go into the garden.  

I have limited colour outside, along with the first crocus coming into bloom, I have cyclamen still doing well, and still some summer flowers, it's far to mild for January, again my garden is confused. 
Both my outside Hellebores are growing, the dark flower, which is in a huge tub and blooming and the white flower which is under the Magnolia tree and springing into life. 
I have done very little crafting, I need a few supplies and our local shop was closed until today, I will walk down later to get what I need. I did try some knitting from the book in my last post, but I had problems from the start, I spoke to my friend who has used the same book, who confirmed some patterns had issues, including the one I had started, again it was confirmed by a comment on my Instagram page. I will check on other patterns, I would like some knitted clothes for my rabbits. 

The house is tidy, all beds have been changed, I do like to keep our spare bed clean and ready for visitors. It does not feel so dull and grey this year, we are still having rain most days, but not heavy storms. The forecast is for it to get colder, temperatures should drop to their normal levels for early January. 

We have started walking each day, not long walks, but getting out each day, I'm not hitting 7,000 steps each day yet, but it won't take long to get there and then on to my target if 10,000 each day. 

Sunday 2 January 2022

A new year, same old me

 I've started my 3rd Luna rabbit, I had a bright idea to felt the inner ear, the pink felt is not as natural as the brown felt, it did not work, but worth a try. It's my first time at trying needle felting. 
I have joined the Luna Lupin little world Facebook page (thanks to Rachel and have already ordered some tiny shoes), I have also found another book I own can be used for clothes, the designs are knitted, so more fun. These animals are very addictive, but I'm sure Molly will love playing with them. 
I have this lovely 100grms of 4ply, from last Christmas, and I can't decide what to use it for, socks comes to mind, but I have loads of handknitted pairs. This is so soft, and I would like to use it, any idea's. It's shades of brown and red, Robin inspired and far too nice to be left in my stash. 
I have found out all my needle felting stuff, I purchased a couple years ago, I am ready to try and make animals, the colour balls of wool I got from Hobbycraft a while ago in their sale, and the bigger hank is from a hand dyer who I often buy yarn from. I have a couple simple kits to try, so plenty to practice with.

The tree and all decorations were packed away last Thursday, Friday I was able to give the house a good clean, not that it was dirty. We stayed up much later than expected on Friday night, the local fireworks were very loud, our cats were not happy, I sat with them until it became quiet outside and they could settle. Saturday we had a big family roast, with George sat at the table with us and Molly in the high chair, not that Molly is eating our food yet. 

I managed to purchase all the Christmas cards for next Christmas, I got them at our local independent shop at half price, I will take that as a double win. The only other bargain was 2 Christmas puddings at half price, one ate on new years day and the other one stored for later in the year, we realised on boxing day we had not purchased a pudding. Clever hubby got a part for my floor steamer and now it's working perfectly again, just a few pounds and it's sorted, hopefully to last a few more years. 

Normally I would be thinking about changes we are making this year, but there is very little to change, we are happy with our lifestyle, little waste, low spend, comfortable life. I now have my government pension, and we are going to build our savings, a few expensive items need replacing this year, we can do that through out the year. Only focus is weight, yes it's the same every year, smaller portions, walk more, so I don't need to record details here. 


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