Saturday, 31 December 2011

Looking forward.......

What a whirl of a week hey?!

We had a wonderful Christmas........... lots of pressies, food, friends, laughing, glitter, .........and here we are at the end of 2011............. wondering what 2012 holds..........

There are fairly big changes likely for us in 2012, which may well mean we won't spend another Christmas in our farm house by the sea, so I was very quietened while taking the decorations down today.  I am not one for keeping the decorations up into the New Year, preferring to clear the decks and start anew.  I feel full of hope and anticipation for the new, but also truly blessed for all that my family  have had in the 2011.

At supper time, we discussed things we would like to achieve in 2012 and I think we all chipped in some good ideas.  I have a list of personal things, but most boil down to being a little more confident and a little less 'scaredy'!  

I want to start painting again (crochet has totally taken over my life!).
I would like to get some of my paintings, (or maybe even just one) into a gallery.
I want to say 'yes' more often when I know I can do something, but am just too scared.
I want to spend more time playing my instruments and stretching myself technically.
I would like to do more walking as a family.

There are of course a few more here and there, but I think in saying those few aloud, I may be more determined to stick to them!  Please feel free to ask in a month or so how I am progressing!!

Today our house guests left and we pushed furniture back into its familiar places (I cannot wait to sleep in my own bed tonight!!) We had lunch and then went out to blow away some Christmas cobwebs and stretch our legs.

It was certainly a good stretch, as following hubby's lead, we went way off track and ended up trudging around for ages with me saying 'I reckon we should turn around and go back' on loop.............of course, eventually it was decided that we may not be headed in the right direction and we should turn around and go back......(HOOORRRAAAAYYY!).......muddy, wet and exhausted

I think I shall find it very difficult to stay awake to see in 2012, as the bad sleeping, late nights, long walk and fresh air have all added up .......I give myself a further hour before I am sparko!

In the past couple of weeks a  few of my wonderful fellow bloggers have given me the Liebster award, which I hope to blog about in the next week.......I am ever grateful to the inspirational people I have added to my friends since beginning blogging, you have all made 2011 an even cheerier and more wonderful year.

On that note, I would like to wish you all a Happy New Year and hope that for each of you, 2012 will be the year when some of the seemingly impossible things you dare to hope for, actually come true.


Friday, 23 December 2011

That was the week when I.......

Well..........its official..........


This week I have mainly been.........

Wrapping, writing, baking, singing, crocheting, sewing, yawning........

Want to see in pictures?

Nearly a scarf.......but then became a cushion...(time management!)

His and hers hotties

Sparkly armwarmers for my nieces

Twin snakes for twin nephews

Mince pies (traditional and yummy coconut topped ones thanks to Ruth)

Marzipanned cake

Kids craft for mini gifts

So after all that..........I think I may well take a couple of days off.......what's that you say?'s Christmas eve tomorrow?........ah, well.........maybe I'll have a nap next week.

Just want to wish you all a peaceful/exciting (delete as applicable) magical, sparkly, tasty, smile-filled Happy Christmas!

Sending you all warm wishes for a lovely Christmas.


Thursday, 15 December 2011

Reasons to be Cheerful!

Well, being a Thursday (gosh these weeks whip around quickly!) I am going to link up with Planet Penny and my

Reasons to be Cheerful!

Well we are back from our hollies and I feel...........rested and rejuvenated (?) ......we had a brilliant time, but it was all over too quickly and we packed so much in I was falling asleep by 9pm!

Its exciting to be back into the thick of it for Christmas though and now the panic can really set in!

There was snow on our hols (and by some freak of nature it had only snowed in some places)

There were reindeer (Marigold this one is for you!)

The boys painted some ceramics (I was itching to have a go myself)

And when I got home I had this lovely parcel from the lovely Victoria at yarnroundhook seven beautifully delicate snowflakes, a handmade felt heart and a candy cane and Christmas chocolates to boot, all carefully wrapped........what a lovely gift to come home to! 

Another thing I am incredibly happy about is that this afternoon we moved all our cows and calves over the fields and roads and into the shed for winter.......for me, this time is always slightly fraught with tempers rising and plenty that could go wrong!  But they are all in, munching on their silage and feeling a little more comfortable on their straw beds.  I did take a photo of them all chilling out, but it was too dark to come out, so instead I will leave you with a picture of one of our lovely ladies and a calf just minutes old, born in the spring when the weather was a little friendlier!

So there we have reasons for being cheerful right now, if you would like to see other people's reasons for being cheerful, please go on over to Planet Penny's blog and maybe join in too?

Thank you so much for all your lovely comments and thoughts.........I always appreciate them so much and yet again feel overwhelmed by my lovely bloggy friends.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Reasons to be cheerful!

Are you bobbing along or trying to keep up?

Somewhere between the beginning of the week and now, things have changed up a gear, I'm trying not to panic, but I must admit I feeling a little pressured! 

This morning a funny thing happened and made me feel a little reflective (in a thoughtful, non-shiny way!)

A friend requested that I make her some Christmas decorations and I was pleased to be asked so hooked a couple of cotton snowflakes and a couple of golden stars, I blocked them carefully (more so than if they had been for me!) and put them in an envelope for when I next saw her.  Well, unfortunately, after hoping to see her at my local toddler group this morning and her not making it, I put them under my chair to take home again.  While we were singing on the mats right at the end, I saw someone doing a really odd stretch (the type a young man does on a date to the cinema with his new girl!) and the next thing, my envelope was being folded up and put up a sleeve of a lady I don't know.  It is very possible that her name might have been the same as the name written on the envelope, but somehow I think that is irrelevant.  I came home feeling a little odd about the whole thing, but giving her the benefit of the doubt I rang the group leader to see if said lady had a sudden realisation of what she had done and handed it in.......but no..........I am not confrontational and I hope she will at least put the decorations on her tree.......I hope the stars sparkle and catch her eye and the snowflakes look crisp and white ..........

Anyway.....I digress.....its Thursday and I am going to join in with Penny from Planet Penny with my

Reasons to be Cheerful!

I have been trying to think of reasons apart from the obvious one to think of.........ummmmm.....  but no.......much as I try I can't get away from the fact.......


We are off to centerparcs tomorrow along with my brother, his wife and their three boys and we are going to have a wonderful time!

There are reindeer, snow, a brilliant swimming pool, great cycle paths, lots of activities....phew, I am sooooo excited!

This week, I made myself a woolly hat to keep me toasty in all the (fake) snow that will be on our hols!

Littlest modelling!

I won some beautiful crocheted snowflakes from the lovely Victoria on yarnroundhook.  I am so looking forward to adding them to our family's lucky am I!!

Christmas festivities with the children.

This is our towns traditional lantern parade, where the children make their lanterns and the council provide a little torch light to go inside, then there is a procession through the town finished off with Father Christmas turning on the lights.  Here you see my boys all full of mischief  (the photos that followed got decidedly more ridiculous!)

There you have it.....oh, by the way, did I mention I was going on holiday?!

Hope you all have lots of reasons for being cheerful too, why not go and check out the other ones on Planet Penny's blog and maybe join in too!

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Year of projects (wk16)

Well what a week this has been.  Both big and medium boy have been sent home sick from school, I've dashed here and there, cleared up sick.......... and to boot.........they were generous enough to share it with me!

I've also done more than my fair share of crochet with a sprint to the finish on my flower scarf which has already been given and has winged its way to sunny S.Africa.

For all you super-clever folks out there who guessed Springbok last week, I take my hat off in awe, I've got to say my dreadful crochet definitely didn't make it an easy guess!

I re-attempted the springbok for my FIL, and I'm not sure telling you that this photo is a bad one is convincing enough!!  I couldn't really say where it all went wrong, but it looked quite good and then I decided to make a badge so it would hide all the ends sewn in and tied off in such a small piece, and to be honest the more I worked the worse it got!  I ended up quickly taking a picture and packaging it up before I did any more damage! I'm sure it will have high amusement value!!

I was very inspired recently  by Sarah from Crafts from the Cwtch lovely knitted armwarmers and thought they would be a great gift for my two nieces, so I found this crochet pattern and gave them a go, with I think quite good results.

Both dreadful pictures......and how bad that I got biggest boy to model some girly gloves for me!  I made them longer than the pattern suggests and will definitely make another pair for my second niece.

In other news I am doing the sums and looking at the list and things are starting to look very busy!  I have another blanket on the starting blocks, two snakes, another pair of armwarmers, my mum's present.........

So same time next week then? 

If you would like to see others Year of Project work then check out here. 

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Reasons to be cheerful!

It's Thursday so I am linking up with Planet Penny with my

Reasons to be Cheerful!

My reasons for being cheerful ( among other things) this week are all Christmassy...........for me, I love to begin decorating the house on the first of December, as the time from now until the big day is like the blink of an eye.

So first things first..................

Our tree is up.........
(it will take a week or so to get other bits and bobs up, but we've started!)

My biggest boy has written his letter to Father Christmas.....unprompted.....but remembering to say thank you first for last year's presents.

My in-laws got on their plane today and they had their pressies with them.........I was so relieved to finish this scarf (yes its just pretending to be an lampshade cover!) .

So short, sweet and Christmassy.  My house is making me very cheerful with all the lovely sparkly things..........what is making you cheerful?  Why not pop over to Planet Penny's blog and join in too?

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

One-a-day (29th November)

Crochet is definitely not for the faint my house it is fast-paced and at the moment a little stressful!

So as you may recall, my temporary one-a-day, is a flower scarf for my mother-in-law who is about to hop on a plane and will be away for Christmas.  So I have today to finish and then it will be wrapped to give to her tomorrow! 

I'm out tonight.......... and although I am good at multi-tasking........ playing the whistle and crocheting at the same time is not I would say........ my strong point.  In my favour, the boys' schools are striking tomorrow, so I could work until late tonight as I don't have an early start tomorrow.

This week I have done 16 flowers.

It's not so much the flower making that takes the time, but all the crocheting together and sewing ends.  I have made good progress and at this stage have to say a massive thank you again, to Marie, Underground Crafter who suggested how to join. I feel it is working out well.

As is often my moan, the light is dreadful here today making the colours seem a lot brighter than the more muted colours I have actually used.

Those who chipped in their recommendations with the shape I should go for, will realise that the vast majority said triangular shaped shawl, so I duly went with the long scarf!  I did start with a triangle, but decided that a long scarf may get more use, even if placed over the end of a bed etc...

I only have three small flowers to do, and then it is the boring rewarding task of sewing and seeing the scarf come together.  When it is finished (early hours of tomorrow morning?) I will try and lay it out flat, so you can see how I've placed the motifs.

Anyhoo........thank you for the continuing support and lovely comments....even if I do blatantly ignore all your helpful advice!  Looking forward to seeing how you are all getting along too.  If you would like to see more One-a-day work, do check out gingerbreadgirl's blog.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Year of projects (wk15)

Well this week hasn't exactly been productive on the crochet front........

I did make a number of stars and snowflakes for the school fayre, of which a few were sold for their funds.  This pattern for a star came out of a book I recently purchased and was a very interesting motif to build.

Apart from that, most projects have fallen by the wayside as Christmas presents become more pressing.

My in-laws are off on the annual 'get away for the winter' jaunt to S.Africa this week and I am struggling to finish their Christmas presents.  My FIL has a favorite jumper which has a small hole in the front.  Lots of joking has been made about making him a flower to cover the hole. So this weekend I have been amusing myself (and it turns out, my husband)..............

.....................prepare yourself for some appalling crochet!

Now you do need to use some lots of imagination, because as this stands it does look rather like a dodgy donkey with deformed legs.....but then again this is a first attempt...........cut me some slack..........

How many attempts do I get?  And have you guessed what it is yet?

This one  (according to my  hubby stifling the laughter) has a Jay-Lo bum so definitely isn't quite right.

Maybe I should check out what a Protea flower looks like...............

Well, that just about sums up this week's poor efforts!

Before I go, I did want to tell you about our walk yesterday with the boys.  We had planned to walk around the local reservoir which provides the county's water.  When we got there, it was rainy and windy and not at all suitable for a walk, but we did drive the boys around to see how the dam worked.

The realisation that this was the water that came out of our taps was revelationary for the boys.....then followed lots of  "eeeeuuuugghhh"s!

There we have it! I'm going to go and perfect my......ahem......motif and catch up with you lovely fellow bloggers.  Hope you all have a great week!

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Reasons to be cheerful

You know............. it occurs to me today......... that if dust looked like glitter we'd all find less need to clean.......

Today I am again linking up with planet penny with my

Reasons to be Cheerful

This week saw the culmination of some family Christmas crafting for middle boy's school fayre.

Two hours in a hot and busy school hall and all my fears were proven incorrect and we 'sold, sold, sold'

I am totally inspired by new skills I learnt and when I finish all my other jobs (kidding myself?) I will make some reindeers for our house.

Christmas hot pads scenting my house with cloves and cinnamon.
( a quick make for the boys' old school Christmas fayre)


As much as I've enjoyed my stint of crafting with the boys for the school fayre, I'm so glad it's done, glittered and sold....I am shattered and so looking forward to guilt free lounging on the sofa this weekend!

We're going to head outdoors this afternoon to appreciate our wonderful surroundings.......... breathing it all..........storing up lots of happy memories that we will dine out on for years to come!

What are your reasons to be cheerful?

Do go see other people's reasons for being cheerful and maybe join in yourself?

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

One-a-day Tuesday (22nd Nov)

This is a flying visit.....because as ever, I have a million things to do and about quarter of an hour to do them!

I have fitted in my 14 flowers this week which was my aim to make two a day and I think the pressure may be off a little next week, so hopefully I may even stretch to doing three a day.

There are three new pattern flowers in there (the purple ones with the circle around), which have really caused me to smile.  One has six petals, the other two have seven......but the best bit is, that the one in the book I am working from has eight.........not sure how I manage it!!  Maybe by next week I will have mastered it..........either that or I will just say its part of the bespoke design?

These are them all, not a great accuracy for colour, but hopefully giving you an idea of what I am aiming at.

Now question I make a long scarf when I join, or more of a triangular shaped shawl?

Come on help my christmas-induced-fuzzy brain make a decision!

Well, only have 999,999 other things to do......ooops and about three minutes left!

To see other inspirational one-a-day projects, check out gingerbreadgirl's blog.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Year of projects (wk14)

Christmas is drawing in and on Thursday next week we have middle boy's Christmas fayre which we have been crafting's not like me, but I've found this really stressful.  Both my older boys transferred schools in September and I feel like we've all been on a bit of a campaign to get every one's approval (probably also because it caused quite a stir when we left the little village school.)

Anyway, next week I will hopefully be revealing a small offering of glittery Christmas makes from the fair hands of all three of my boys (and even my husband too on occasion, this goes to show the level of dedication in this house!)

So crochet? There's been a good bit of that too...........
Went off track a little this week after some friends had their first baby.

I made this with stylecraft, however the stitch and colour I think make it look like it was made with expensive yarn.  I worked two colours at once with a size nine hook. Just plain old single crochet, with I think, nice results.

I've also been making a hat for my father-in-law as they are away for Christmas so presents are being done and wrapped now........not entirely sure what he will do with a snuggly woolly hat in S.Africa though!

This is a Robin wool mix and it's gorgeous, so soft and warm. I can't say I am otherwise taken with Robin as I find it to be a little squeaky?

I've been hooking various portable projects too, on the school run etc.... So I've kept myself busy!

Yesterday we all went out for a walk around the local lily ponds. After walking through wooded paths there is a wonderful beach........I'm afraid I don't believe that anyone else lives in a prettier place than I do.......can't be possible!

The boys walked their legs off and I must say last night I was finding it difficult to crochet with heavy eyes!

Do you know.....I feel quite overwhelmed by all of my bloggy friends.....who knew when I started all this, I would feel like I do now! I sooo appreciate the compliments, the inspiration, the giggles.......thank you so much to all you lovely fellow crafters and make this Little Welsh girl very happy indeedy!

To check out other lovely Year of Projects work.....see ravelry here.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Reasons to be cheerful!

It's Thursday, and I'm linking up with Planet Penny with my ..............

Reasons to be Cheerful!

I am in my element at the moment with my crochet projects, more WIPs than you could shake a stick at! Friends of ours had a baby a couple of days ago and I am busy making a blanket (my favorite past time!), the promise of another baby due in a month so an instant excuse to make another blanket! Christmas presents, snowflakes..........endless crochet...............

Anyway, avoiding all the crochet excitement, here are three reasons that I am cheerful.

Beautiful flowers from my Mum

My oldest son's class assembly this morning, he makes me soooo proud!

Learning new skills.....this one is almost ready for paint and glitter!

So there you have it........hope you have lots of Reasons to be Cheerful too...... if you do, why not join in with yours on Planet Penny's blog.....or if you need some more cheer in your life, go read others reasons for being cheerful, I'm sure it will put a smile on your face!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

One-a-day Tuesday

So I find myself in limbo..........

My first one-a-day project is finished and I'm actually a little disappointed as it was a nice simple square that fitted well in to my day.........

So I've been pondering my next project and had a bit of a 'my list is how long?' moment!

I have numerous Christmas projects, a 'just because' blanket, two baby blankets. none of these things lends them self to one a day, as they need doing yesterday........

Top of the list for Christmas?.............The flower scarf for my Mother-in-law, needs to be done by the end of November as they are spending Christmas in S.Africa, so need to take their presents with them. 

So it is by this process of thought, that this will become my temporary one-a-day.

I have 19 flowers made.

I'm not sure how many more I need to make, but needless to say its lots more.  I have (quick tot up) 14 days to make quite a few more, which will then need placing and joining. 

So here is the plan.......(am I making this sound like I know what I'm doing) ..... I will aim to make two a day  and then in the last two days I will make 20 in a complete insane crochet meltdown..............

Are you with me???

To see other more relaxed and planned one-a-day projects, see gingerbreadgirl's blog.