Sunday, March 30, 2014

Dad's handiwork

My dad, now 77, cannot stand to be idle.
  Whilst not academic in any way he can turn his hand to many a practical task. Instructions may confuse him but give him a picture or example to study and he's off. 

 He spent his younger days working the land, before degenerative spine disease forced him to give up the farming he loved. He's a determined old B, there's no doubt about it, when I was a child he was told by the doctors that he'd be in a wheelchair soon, but he wasn't having any of that and now over 40 years later he still isn't. He rides his bike, though admittedly you sometimes need to watch carefully to check he's actually moving (beats me how he stays upright at his snails speed) and he still works two plots at the allotments!  But come the winter evenings he wants to sit but he wants to do something too. My parents don't have a TV so that's not an option, he reads a lot but felt like a change.  He's made rugs in the past but they are now so expensive and no one wants the finished article, and he can't be bothered with all the counting for cross stitch. Though he can knit (it was actually him who taught me) he doesn't really enjoy it (yes, I know) and then one day he was talking about how is mum was always making things including English pieced patchwork and he thought he might give it a try 

Not bad eh? It's 'bagged' rather than quilted and mum is going to tie it but I'm quite impressed.
I spent quite a while reminiscing, spotting bits of my skirts, Nan's blouse, the dress Auntie Lynda made and cut out two left fronts and so on. 
Now that the lighter evening are approaching he won't be doing much more for a bit but he's already planning some cushion covers for next winter. And it all goes to show that you are never too old to start a new craft. 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

The perfect spot

Last autumn it was my 50th and my parents wanted to give me a present that 'would keep'.  So did they choose jewellery? Or an ornament? A picture perhaps? 

Nope - a garden bench! 
But do you now what? We put it just outside the front door (don't worry, we live down a drive and the front of the house is very private and can't be seen from the road) in a south facing corner, the house and the brick drive absorb and hold the heat from the sun, so even this time of year when the sun is shining it can be quite warm out there - and the perfect spot for morning coffee, a quick cuppa in the afternoon or maybe

A little bit of crochet.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Time flies

I really can't believe it's 2 months since I posted, perhaps the time got washed away in all the awful floods.  Thankfully we've been fine, had a few interesting drives to work, and some impromptu garden ponds but nothing worse.

I've been busy crafting and visited Unravel in February where it was lovely to meet some of my online friends from the CTnY forum.
 DD has turned 21! And changed her job from Manager of Blacks (the outdoor store) to Nanny to a 4 yr old and an 18 month old and I haven't seen her as happy in ages. The way they treated her at Blacks, expecting the impossible and more, which to be fair she often delivered but at the expense of her health and happiness, means that they have lost a jolly good worker and two little people have gained a wonderful carer instead. 

Anyway, bless her, on her birthday she gave me a beautiful bunch of lilies to say thank you for being her mum, as if that wasn't reward enough in itself 

Just lately I've had a rather unpleasant middle ear infection, resulting in me being signed off work. I knew there must be something wrong with me as I didn't feel like starting anything new, and in fact got out some old things to work on! Including my Babette crochet blanket and the mitred square knit blanket. 
I finally finished my crochet Squares Bag
All in DK cotton and making use of the squares from an abandoned project, and no, I can't remember what pattern they were from. Thank you to ToadRockStreet for the inspiration to use the squares in this way,  I can't claim any credit for coming up with the idea, she was way ahead of me with a lovely bag she made for a mutual friend. 
Talking of bags, I put the final stitches in my Japanese Knot Bag
Which now houses yarn and my lovely new Karbonz dpns ready to cast on the Rye socks from Tincanknits once I've finished the current SIPs (socks in progress) which I'm making as part of Socks With Sarah, (where we work a little on our socks every day for a year - more info is on her blog) 
Oh and I may just have another pair of socks otn because being so adept at dropping dpns I really didn't want to take the Karbonz, or these lovely KnitPro needles on public transport, so in the Ramona Rose sock sack I also made a few weeks back, I have TAAT two up socks on two circs which are perfect travel knitting
Well I think that's enough to be going on with, besides there's some embroidery calling me upstairs.  It will be the centre panel of a quilt one day, I started it on the day DD got her A level results, so it's about time I finished it - I will show it off when I get there.