Saturday, 30 March 2013

Wave Blanket - completed!

Before I let you see any pictures of my Wave, I must give credit to Lanas de Ana for her pattern, see here. Look around the rest of her blog while you are there, she has some lovely patterns and projects.

So, are you ready?

Do you want to see my Wave?

Oh, go on then!

Here it is, and I love it! I think I said previously it is done in Stylecraft Special Aran. Yes it is acrylic, but it is so soft, warm and snuggly so I don't care.

Lovely coastal colours, Parchment, Cream, Lemon, Aspen, Meadow, Aster and Denim.

A little border action!

I was going to do a wavy border but then thought it would be too much so I just did a plain one with rows of dc and treble.

Oh it's just delicious!

Overload of photos maybe? Nah, I don't think so!

Do you want to know the best bit of all? I sent the first pic to older son and he said,

'Looks quite good actually!! Good pattern'

I almost fainted! Did you read that Ana 'Good pattern' that is praise indeed from older son!

Phew three posts in one day, there's value for you. I have more in the pipeline too, so watch this space! :-)

Happy Easter!

I know this is a day late but I hope you are all having a lovely weekend!
We had sunshine and snow this morning, an unusual combination! Now though it is sunny and wind free, warm enough to have my french windows open and let a bit of air in.

Mustn't moan but too much sun to get a decent picture of my chicks, but I do like the little chicky shadows!

It was a chore to eat the chocolate eggs that came in this purple box so I could use it for these pretty egg candles (no I won't be lighting them), but somehow the kids and I managed it :-).

I haven't been down into town yet but I bet it is super busy with holiday makers enjoying the Easter sunshine. I'm glad that the wind dropped and the council and volunteers managed to clear all of the sand, see my previous post.

Well done to them!

Sand Update

Well they say it gets worse before it gets better, more sand pictures and a clean up operation.

A lovely grassy area for picnics!

Or maybe you would prefer drinks overlooking the sea!

Bring on the men with shovels!

Or when that won't do, bring on the diggers!

Tuesday, 26 March 2013


These are some of the views of the seafront after the dreadful winds at the weekend.

The sea was looking very wintery and uninviting.

The view wasn't much better from the sand dunes.

The main promenade was turning into a sand dune!

Not a lot of room to sit outside the chalets!

Or to stroll along the promenade!

Would you like to follow the coastal path?

With it being Easter weekend soon, there is a lot of work to be done shovelling all this away before the holiday visitors arrive. Hopefully the wind will have died down by then!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Crochet Projects

Helloooo, how are you today?
I thought I would show you a few of the the previous projects I have finished or started! As I have said before I usually have a few things on the go, this is;

a) to prevent me from getting bored
b) because I can't resist trying new ideas
c) ditto new yarns
d) ditto new patterns

To be honest I don't get that much crochet time, I fit it in between children, work,  dogs and home/housework, as a lot of us do. Notice housework comes last on the list! It's a bit like this poem.

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
For children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.

From Song for a Fifth Child by Ruth Hulbert Hamilton 

Scroll down a bit to see the full poem. 

For me it would be;

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
For it will still be there as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I’m crocheting my blanket the ironing can keep.

Anyway I'm rambling, back to the crochet projects, which is after all the title of this post!

The first pic is one of the dog blankets that got me crocheting again! Read my Why Crochet? post for more details.
This is James C. Brett Marble Chunky and just a basic huge granny square.

It may be basic but the dogs like them :-)

This pic is of a Lark's Foot Afghan that I did earlier this year. I got the stitch from a tutorial on YouTube search Larks foot stitch, I used the one by Crochet Geek. My LYS only stocks James C. Brett so I am a bit limited unless I use the Internet. But this yarn was their Rustic with Wool Aran 400g balls. It is lovely and warm but it did get quite heavy towards the end when I was working it.

Close up of the stitch, a bit difficult to see because of the muted colours.

Next is my Garden Gate throw from the Crochet Crowd, they have lots of video tutorials which are very good. I use this site quite a lot for tutorials and patterns. This is done in James C. Brett Marble DK and their white top value DK.
I love the way this is turning out, but it has been put on one side for now! The yarn transitions into different tones very slowly so the round on one side of the blanket may appear a different colour to the opposite side.

I also want to do a hexagon blanket like the centre of this, without the box and block outer rounds.

I recently discovered Attic24, Lucy' blog is amazing and I'm sure I'm late to the party on this one but if you don't know it go and take a look. You won't be disappointed! This bag is a pattern of hers and I made this one in scraps of yarn, I got carried away and it is bigger than hers but I am making another in RICO Cotton which will be the same.

Next a little mat from the Crochet Crowd again, this was a really quick project I made sat in bed one night. I had been browsing the website when I saw the pattern, so I went and grabbed the yarn and did it there and then!

Last but not least for now is this Wave blanket which I have loved doing and which I know I'm going to love using next winter (or maybe this Easter, as it is almost, almost finished!) One of the dogs seems to like it too! this is in Stylecraft Special Aran, which is acrylic but so soft. I love their 'Special' range as it is yarn I can afford which works up beautifully. You can find this pattern here at Lanas de Ana.

Just a few ends to darn in, and a border to add and yipeee a blanket!

Older son is very practical, not at all dreamy and certainly doesn't understand how close you get to a blanket when you are working on it! I quote
 "Yes it's nice mum, but what are you going to do with another blanket? Why do you keep making them, do you need another one?"
Hmmmm, shall I tell him or will you!

Saturday Treat

On the spur of the moment I decided to have lunch out with younger son yesterday. My daughter was out with her bf so it was just the two of us. Not very riveting conversation with a fifteen year old who spends his time glued to his phone, but food was on offer so he didn't refuse! We went to a favourite Italian coffee shop, run by a 'real'  Italian, and had Bologna Panini. I had a Mocha Coffee and D had hot chocolate. It was all delicious and I think D secretly liked the idea that he had been out for lunch with me and C had missed out! Unfortunately sibling rivalry is rife at the moment!

I am trying to be braver about taking photographs in public, if Sue at Sweetpea Family can do it in John Lewis, go look at her stuning pictures! I'm sure I can do it too.

 D was trying very hard to look as though he wasn't with me and hissed 'What are you doing, why are you taking pictures?' then raised his eyebrows quite theatrically.

But do you know what?
The world didn't come to an end!
I didn't get thrown out of the cafe! The owner did give me a glance and probably muttered something in Italian under his breath about mad English women taking pictures of a Panini!
D didn't die of embarrassment!
So all was good and so was the Panini, in fact it was very good!

PS They also do the most amazing Italian ice-cream but as it was about 50 below outside (maybe a slight exaggeration but the wind was so cold it was skinning your cheeks!) we decided to leave it for another time, and another photo oppurtunity :-).

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Spring is Springing

I walked round the park a few days ago with the dogs and noticed lots of pretty white blackthorn blossom.

I brought a few branches home along with some pussy willow, some sweet little wiggly beach catkins, hawthorn that is just coming into leaf and bud and a couple of other sprigs I'm not sure of. Popped them all in a tall Kilner jar with a few daffodils (I really must buy a jug) and it looked like instant Spring!

 The daffodils were bought as the ones in my garden are only about 10cm tall at the moment. The extremely cold weather and recent snow have slowed down their growth. Other years I have been able to pick them by Mother's Day!

Look at the beech catkins now, only a couple of days later!

When I set off on my walk it was bright and sunny but as I walked I could see the fog coming down and it got quite chilly. I need to perfect the skill of walking dogs and taking pictures at the same time! Recent attempts have been pretty disastrous. My pictures tend to end up blurry as the dogs pick the moment I click to pull on their leads after a bird or an enticing new smell.

I love snowdrops and always look out for their first appearance as then it really feels like Spring is here. Years ago, too many to say, when I was making the daily bus trip to and from college I would look out for the little patches of white in the hedgerows and gardens. They always made me smile, those fragile little blooms nodding in cold February winds and appearing where you would never expect them to survive. I can remember my mum and I trying on numerous occasions to get them to grow in our garden. We bought bulbs that never grew. Then someone told us you must move them in the green and kindly gave us some of their well established patch. But to no avail, we planted them in our garden and never saw them again!
 The day before yesterday I was down the bottom of my garden, or mud patch now the dogs have raced around it all winter! I was just having an idle look at what was happening down there, when over by the fence I saw a patch of white! It wasn't just a patch of leftover snow either. Little white nodding heads, I had snowdrops in my garden! I never planted them! Where have they come from! I started to grin, I told the dogs ' look snowdrops'. They didn't seem impressed, but that little patch of white made me so happy. I smiled, I laughed, I shook my head!
Snowdrops! Snowdrops in my garden. It felt like a small miracle!
Hopefully they will spread now that they are here.

Today I braved the mud patch again and took these;

The blackcurrant, that some birds kindly planted by my shed door a few years ago, has started to wake up in the Spring sunshine. I do love my very weathered shed door! I have to say it is very past it's best and needs replacing but a new one wouldn't look half as good in this picture. 

My  Pieris 'Forest Flame'  loaded with buds, with the promise of rich red new leaves to follow.

My Spirea japonica 'Candlelight' that has gorgeous lime green leaves to begin with that get touches of russet around the edges as spring moves into summer. This picture (and the others I took did not turn out that well, the wind was blowing the branches about so I got lots of blurry shots! The light is a bit odd in this but if you follow the link you will see how it looks later in the season, when photographed properly.

At the moment I am taking pictures with my iPhone. I am quite impressed with the camera but I'm still saving for a 'proper one'.

I hope that now we have seen a few sunny days that the cold weather doesn't return. When I woke up this morning there was quite a frost but soon the sun came out and chased Mr Frost away. it's been a lovely sunny day, too bad I have been at work for most of it!