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Wednesday, 28 October 2015

The old Route Master Bus in.....

Dagenham.  My son sent me a photo whilst he was out shopping at Heathway and he could not believe his eyes.  I, as a matter of fact, said they are being used again to remind people of the history and commemorative year of London Transport.  Frank said he does see them all the time in London and even the modern Routemaster Bus which has a jump on and off at the back as well as the sliding doors.  Anyway, here is a photo for any of you who want to know what one looks like.
 The number on the front of the bus is the route the bus takes and there would be a driver and a conductor.  The conductor is the one who takes your money and issues you with a small ticket to say you have paid.  There is a pull chord along the top of the bus on both decks and you would pull that to indicate you wanted to get off at the next stop.  I remember as a child on the few occasions that we got on a bus, we sometimes had to sit upstairs and at the back which was where the smokers sat and it was downright smelly and horrible.  So glad that is not allowed now.

Crafting & Xmas

Xmas is a bad to me at the moment, it is hard to celebrate anything however, I have finished a christmas present of a Spiderman Blanket for baby John.  It fits right across my dinner table and his Great Nan said he will like it.

My boys use to love making tents with their blankets and quilts, especially when it was the school holidays and it must be a boy thing.  I used 2 balls each of red and blue Robin Acrylic and Frank bought me some black yarn with metallic in it out of the pound store.  I think it makes it look like a sparkly web!

I finally finished the shawl I am making for my soon to arrive Grand Daughter,  it has come out quite big after blocking and is lovely and soft.

I used 4x50g balls of Regia Sock yarn in the Garden Effects shade and then used Robin 4ply in cream. I then outlined it with a half treble crochet on the edge.  I am so pleased with it and cannot wait to wrap her up and hold her.

Bits & Bobs

I have started to knit socks again randomly so that at least I have something to give as a Christmas present should the need arise.  I sound like a scrooge but when you think about it, people expect too much from families and friends.  It should not be like that!

Anyway, I am off to get warm cause it is quite cold and miserable today.  Tomorrow is forecast as a wet and miserable day too so I am going to stay indoors and pull my bedroom apart to do a deep clean. Have a good week.

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

The Gatepost moved again

All I can say is, when your employed you should not be told other duties are expected of you so I survived one day at my new job and came home so angry and upset that I have finally made up my mind about my career.  I will not work in the Care Sector, namely Care Homes ever again.  Today I woke up feeling de-moralised, of no value and uncertain about my future.

The only positive I can think of today is my crafts.  I do a lot of thinking whilst crocheting or knitting in my living room or whilst in bed, I sit for hours with no noise at all and just think. I hear the clock ticking on the wall and the noise of people and traffic walking by and sometimes, it is just nice to get that kind of quiet.   How many of you do that ?

I do not know if any of you that read my blog are aware of an online craft store called  You can sell your hand made crafts on there.  I opened a store quite some time ago and have not actually used it very often but am giving it a go with selling my finished projects that are my own design.  If anyone is interested I have placed two of my blankets that I designed and made and will put a link to it below for you to take a look.

The first link is to my Cable Edge Blanket which has a knitted lattice border and a wrapped stitch design for the main body of the blanket.

There is also a small pram blanket for sale which is knitted out of a chunky yarn and is bright and cheerful.  A link for that is below if you want to take a look.

I just do not know why I never thought of using the store to try and sell my finished designs.  A lot of the podcasts that I watch sell their finished items there and I had a light bulb moment a few hours ago to give it a go of linking it to my blog.

Projects On The Go

  I finished crocheting the rectangular shape in Regia Garden Effects Sock Yarn for my soon to arrive Grand Daughter.  It took just over 4 x 50g balls and is crocheted using the Corner to Corner method.  I did start crocheting a white edging to it but I soon unpicked it.  I really did not like it, so I had some cream 4ply and it is looking much better.  I will post a photo of it later for an update once I get enough progress on it.

I am also still working on the Spiderman Blanket for a christmas present and that is going well.  It is a 
slow progress but still enjoyable.  I have started another section of red and will then do another blue and then work on all the black webbing for it.  I have done this blanket before in other colours and it is not hard to do.  

Finished Projects

I have only one completed project to show at the moment, my son Ross asked me to knit him a hat because it is getting rather cold and hates his ears being cold.  So I knitted a Bankhead Hat within two days.  If you look on you will see the hat on there, it is a free pattern and is only knit and purls in the round.

I got Ross to model it for me and as you can see it does cover his ears.  Just wished he had taken the time to have a shave.  Never mind!

Future Happenings

I just do not think too far in front, especially after the kind of year I have had.  So, I am pondering over the thought of knitting some christmas stockings, or christmas bags for filling with goodies.  I am hoping to start one today so that I can have a go at personalising them with a name.  

As for the rest of the day, or week even, I shall be job searching AGAIN!, keeping the house tidy and trying not to comfort eat.  Hope you all have a good week and that it is not too cold where you are.  It is 15 degrees today and I still have not managed to put the central heating on but if it carries on getting colder, I may have to.  

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Knitting & Candy addiction

It is hard to choose which is my favourite!  Knitting or sweets.  Some might say knitting at first but it is not an easy question to answer.  At this very moment I am sitting up in bed at 8pm on what has been a really cold day today.  It has been around 12 degrees, cloudy and breezy and I just cannot get warm.  So I decided to come up to bed, wearing my night dress, knitted opal socks, a cuppa, my knitting and laptop to watch some podcasts.

However, I have found a new sweet that I cannot get enough of and they are called Mr Toms.  Here is a photo of them..

It is a bit like peanut brittle but less harsher for your teeth.  It is packed with peanuts galore and set together with a soft brittle.  I was debating about buying up loads of them to keep in the fridge but that would be a terrible mistake!  They cost 45p in my local shop and is well worth it.  The next time I go shopping to Asda I will have a look to see if they have them.

The Weekend

I was with Frank for about four days and came back home Monday which always makes me low when I have to leave him.  I met Frank at the train station Thursday and Friday evening with Tammie and we just spent the time together relaxing, going out for walks etc.  We did go to Oxleas Wood again because it had been a cool, Autumnal few days and had no rain so the woods would not be too muddy.  

Tammie loves it in there, she chases the squirrels which sometimes is just a leaf falling in the distance and we see a few people walking their dogs.  It is such a nice feeling to say good morning to people instead of just ignoring each other.  We sat on a bench that we always do and it is just so calm and relaxing to hear the rustle of the leaves, watch the leaves falling and hearing the birds above our heads.  Here is a photo that I took when I stood up from the bench...
Words are just beyond me as to how I feel when I am inside a wood.  I said to Frank that if I had my crafts, a picnic, a flask of hot drink and Frank and Tammie beside me then it would be a perfect day.  I did not realise there are so many shades of green and brown that you can see and we even had parrots flying over our head and you got to see their bright green feathers.


What next....I think I will show you the scarf I knitted for Frank.  He bought some Shetland Wool from Hobbycraft in a green colour and a mustard colour and wanted an itchy scarf, so I knitted one.  Here is a photo of it finished after only a few days of work...

Frank said he loves it so thats good enough for me.  He did say he did not want it too long so I made up my own pattern and casted on 300 stitches using a size 3mm circular needle and knitted two rows of green and two rows of mustard.  I ended up doing about 24 rows in total and he likes both sides.  It is long enough to tie up under the chin to keep you warm and is not as itchy as you think.    I only used half a ball of the yellow and green yarn, which is a bonus so I am knitting another one in plain green for Franks brother John. 

When I packed to visit Frank I took some sock yarn to have a go at a design for a shawl and I wanted it to be something unusual and special because I am going to be a Nanna in November. I had two 50g balls of Regia Sock Yarn in the Garden Effects design and thought I would have a go at doing a corner to corner sample with 3mm crochet hook.  Well, as you can see from the photo below, I used both balls of yarn and on average I got 34 rows out of each ball.  Frank has ordered me two more and they should be here soon so that I can carry on with it.  
I am going to make it a rectangular shape and then add a thick white border around it so that Ross and Emma can wrap baby up in nice and snug when she arrives.    

The photo you see below is of Tinkerbell modelling the work so far, she just has to get in on the act!


I have decided to put a link to a podcast each time I update my blog because there is nothing better than to spread the work of crafters.  My favourite one is bakery bears, you can find them below on the link but they are also on and the hosts are bakerybear and obiwanknitter which is Kay and Dan. 

Get a cuppa, knitting and watch.  They are so varied with their content and check out their other episodes too. There is baking, visits to our British Castles and much more.

Bits and Bobs

As I mentioned before, I came home yesterday and spent most of the day keeping busy tidying up and then watched quite a few podcasts.  Oh yeah, by the way did anyone watch the final of Great British Bake Off!  Oh my goodness, it was brilliant. They all deserved to win but Nadyia won and it was wonderful what she made.  Here is a link for you to see  on youtube.

I do hope it works, it is over an hour long so be prepared with a cuppa and your crafts.

What I was going to say before that distraction is I decided yesterday to do lots of gardening today and I did.  In fact I spent two hours in my front garden sweeping, pruning, weeding and clipping back a large shrub.  I also took a photo of the holly bush that is flowering after about ten years.  It really should not be alive to be honest because I had it growing as a small plant in a tub in the front garden, it just was not growing so I threw away the tub and just lazily left the holly bush to rot away.  

After quite a few years of seeing it grow in the place I threw it, it is now about 6 feet tall with lots of the little white flowers at the end like the photo above.  Frank said it will get berries now so I was rather pleased with it.  

That is all I have for now...not much really considering its been over a week since I wrote on here.  I have started knitting a Bankhead hat for Ross because he asked for a hat.  I will be getting on with the shawl and I must pick up my mitred blanket soon because I have not touched that for a few weeks.

Birthday Girl

I will leave you with a photo of my birthday girl who turned the ripe old age of 12 today.  She looks like she owns the joint the way she is sitting on Franks lap.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Oh my goodness..

Those are the words that come to mind when I have just realised how addicted I am to my crafts and my need to create.  Why do I like to spend every spare moment working on my knit or crochet projects?  Well, it relaxes me for starters and helps me to think better plus if I have to sit and watch something on tv (which is not very often), I have to be doing a craft.  I would fall asleep otherwise and then I would not sleep at night properly.  I also love giving gifts and I will only give gifts to those I know who are going to appreciate and look after what I have made.  It sounds a bit selfish really but I just do not understand anyone who would spend a lot of money on something and not look after it.  I know people who have spent hundreds of pounds on a handbag and then chucked it in the bottom of the wardrobe, that is so wasteful of hard earned money.

Anyway, this week I have worked on the Spiderman Blanket which is growing slowly but am still working on it every day.  I have also finished my Tunisian October Scarf which took about two weeks to make and about a week to put the pattern together.  Here is a photo of the completed scarf..

It is a small scarf for a lady that can just be wrapped under a coat, cardigan or just to be worn inside to keep the chill off and to avoid putting the heating on.  

The main part is crocheted using Tunisian crochet method until you have it the length you want and then the edging is crocheted using a normal crochet hook,

The pattern consists of the stitches you need to know, it has lots of photographs for you to see as you do each stage and a few tips to get you along the way.  If your experienced at both Tunisian and normal crochet I would rate it as easy and is a good project for a beginner to practice.

Here is a link attached below just in case you might like to take a look or purchase the pattern.

I purchased the yarn for this scarf from an on-line shop called Kemps Wool Shop and it was on a clearance section.  I dont think they are still selling the yarn but when I bought it, it was only £0.59p a ball so a designed scarf for under a £3 is a bargain.

For the weekend I met Frank at home and we went to Romford for some breakfast at the Carvery and then went clothes shopping and some yarn hunting.   We went to Hobbycraft and they had a sale on of this gorgeous Shetland Wool which Frank liked and he said could I make him a scarf with tight knitted stitches.  The yarn was £3.59 a ball instead of nearly £7 so he purchased two green and two of the mustard colour.  We spent the rest of the day at his Mums place and then I came home Sunday morning because of the Rugby match that was kicking off on Sunday afternoon.  The trains would have been horrendous trying to get home with all the crowds of people so I came home Sunday morning.  I could not stay at Franks on Sunday night either because I had an interview at 8am on Monday so to save the rushing around, I came home early.

So I spent the rest of the day tidying up, cleaning and had a nap in the afternoon and then watched a few podcasts because the tv is so boring.  I then started on Franks scarf and here is a photo of the yarn called The Womens Institute Unique Shetland 50g.  It is a 4ply yarn, has got a good yardage of 215meters.

I didnt have the time to make a cake this weekend but came home to a cake that Ross had made and it was delicious. Plus he made some homemade coleslaw which was rather tasty inside a corned beef sandwich for my Sunday dinner.

I am off to potter around whilst waiting for the rain to stop so I can take Tammie out.  Hope you all have a good week.