Thursday, 28 April 2011

Childhood Memories - Updated.

Up-dated on 1st May 2011


As promised I found the other Whimsies that I had collected, although some of them did belong to my sister.
I do remember that the puppy belonged to my sister.

I often see the lkitten one at car boot sales. It was the first one that I bought and is one of Sophie's favourites.

The frog at the fornt has come out a bit blurred. They are all in very good condition considering the number of times they were dropped and house moves over the years. They are certainly made of tough stuff!
Now, back to the present day........................


Who remembers Whimsies made by Wade? I collected them, along with my sister, when we were small. We used to save up our pocket money and then go the the local tobacconist and chose another for our collections.
I gave Sophie my collection, it was one of those silly things that you kept and could not bear to throw out. Whilst in Ely and visiting Riverside Antiques Sophie said that if she could she would like to add to her collection. The above pictures shows which ones she bought. We thought that the bottom one was a squirrel (they were in a class cupboard and we were not allowed to touch them!! Not even me so we could not see them easily. Honestly you would have thought that they were the crown jewels!) but now we are not sure if it is. Any ideas? Plus a monkey, a fawn and a bushbaby(?).
Sophie used some Easter money that my parents gave her. She is delighted with them and is thinking of adding to them. You do not get so many car boots now but they were once the places to find Whimsies. However, with the summer around the corner these may increase.
I shall take pictures of the ones I gave Sophie for you to see.
What did you collect as a child?
xx

Monday, 25 April 2011

Easter Cupcakes

I do not really need much of a reason for making cupcakes, but the Easter Holidays is a good one.

I used the recipe that you can find in the margin to make the cakes themselves and added a little vanilla flavouring.
I found the largest nozzle for the icing on the top. I confess to using pre-made butter icing as I do not like the taste of adding icing sugar to butter, never have done.

I like to use Betty Crocker butter icing which you can find in any large supermarket or baking shop.

The larger nozzle gives a much fuller swirl on top of the cupcake. I really enjoyed doing this bit and was sorry when I ran out of cakes!!

The eggs came with an Easter egg that Sophie was given. Solid chocolate.
I always associate Easter with Spring and in turn with flowers, so the cupcakes needed some flowers.

Whilst at Hobbycraft I found some pastel icing in the speciality cake section, and using one of my cutters that is the size of a 1 pence piece, made some flowers.

Sophie and I hunted around and found several more flower cutters ( is this the start of an obsession?) and used different ones and added them in threes on the cupcakes. In the centre we put a little bit of glittery tube decoration used to decorate biscuits and there you have it. Easter baking.

We took them over to Grandma and Grandad.

Hope you all have had a good Easter, the weather here has been unbelievable, bright blue skies, very warm, sunny. Oh if only it was like this more often. But to have two weeks of this lovely weather is brilliant.

Back to work tomorrow! Three day week though.

Take care all

xx

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Happy Easter

Happy Easter!

xx

Saturday, 23 April 2011

29 degrees!!

29 degrees!! That was the temperature in Ely on Friday. Very hot indeed. The above picture is of Ely Cathedral from the park to the side of it. The sky was in fact much bluer than this picture suggests and the shade of the big tree I was standing under was lovely.
We went into a antique place called Riverside Antiques and I found what looked to be a wool winder. I saw another item which was labeled as a spinning wheel, and it was not, ho hum, never mind.
Remember Whimises that you could collect back in the 1970/80's? Well i gave my collection to Sophie and we found several here. Sophie bought some but I have not yet taken pictures yet.
I did not find anything at all, there were some very nice amethyst necklaces but rather pricey at the same time.
Outside was this rather unusual ice cream van and we all had a creamy "99" which was great in the heat of the day.

This is a lovely old house down near the river and is covered in a lovely wisteria. Gorgeous colour.


The river area was very busy both on and off the water. A bit home from home really.


The river and the surrounding fields were full of farm animals and wild life. Did not quite get the zoom right but those are cows in the background.


Willow trees are lovely and graceful and there are several along the river in Ely. We showed the barges to Sophie and explained that years ago hubby and I had gone with friends on a barge holiday near Evesham and manged to complete the Avon ring in a week. That was one of the best holidays ever.


We then had a walk around Ely and for the first time we took Sophie to have a look in the Cathedral. She was very impressed with the stained glass windows and she found a spot where the sun had shone in and was making multi-coloured light on to some of the stone. She loved that. The highly painted ceiling was given a "wow Mummy" when I asked her to look up.


She asked some very deep questions about churches and God and seemed happy with my answers and looked at everything.


The section that really made an impression was the memorial for fallen soldiers of World War one and Two. They were listed for the local villages and towns. They were on two walls and she had a bit of a job taking this in. Sophie looked at everything, did not run around and be naughty and knew that she had to behave properly (she brought this up, not me) unlike one or two other children.


It was then off to my parents for dinner.


We drove home today via Hobbycraft and a couple of purchases were made.


Easter tomorrow, so off to family for dinner. Hopefully this good weather will stay for a while yet.


xx

Friday, 22 April 2011

Sunny Days in Ely.

My new current read which I have brought with me. I really enjoy this series of books.


We are on our last full day away in Ely, Cambridgeshire visiting family and friends.

After a bit of breakfast we are off to look around Ely, there is a very good antiques building which takes several hours to look around, I might find something to add to my compact collection. It is right by the river so swans and ducks aplenty for Sophie to see.


It is very sunny and hot here and hopefully I shall be able to take some pictures today as well.


Any more ideas for the butterfly?

xx

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Hello little butterfly......

On Monday Sophie and I spent most of the day outside enjoying the lovely warm weather. Makes marking much more enjoyable too. All of a sudden Sophie said "Look Mummy!"

The tiniest little blue butterfly had landed on the grass and then quite happily walked onto Sophie's fingers. It has stripy legs and little dots on its wings. I have not seen this little butterfly before and it was in no hurry to leave.
When I was at primary school we did a lot on butterflies and I did use to know lots of their names etc. I had a good book too, which I could not find quickly enough.
Grandad has been given the task of finding out what it is as we are away at the moment and I am typing this from a Little Chief in Ely Cambridgeshire.
It is excellent weather and I shall try and blog whilst I am here. We hope to get a WIFI signal in the car park!

Can anyone suggest what this little butterfly might be, we are in Cornwall, UK.
xx

Sunday, 17 April 2011

All wrapped up in Flowers.

You may remember last month that I made a smaller mouse mat for my new little netbook shown above. Despite the cost of some of these little laptops they do not come with any kind of bag or cover! However, this is a good excuse to make something too. This is about the fourth one I have made (one was a commission) and I find them really fun to do. May be not the most difficult of item to make but finding the right fabric is fun in itself.


There are some really lovely wide bindings around at the moment too such as this pink gingham one, which I did buy in France but I have seen them in fabric shops in the UK as well. 100% cotton.
I decided to take the pink bit5s of the main fabric and follow it through with the binding and the gingham lining. Fastening added too.

This is a much smaller version than I have made in the past. I have made two that were for carrying work dairies and all associated paper work too. I have one for my day job and it is amazing how much you can stuff in there during the day and look at it when you need to. Keeps it all in one place and it looks nice too.
Added one on my labels. I do not have many of these left. When they are used up then I think that it will be time to try something new.
I finished it last Wednesday but I have had trouble getting Blogger not to change the angle of my pictures! So it has been constant use since.

If you would like one of these then get in touch as it can be done via email. I send a choice of fabric pictures, you choose one, give me the measurements and off we go.
I can use a range of fastenings, button and loop, big poppers, velcro. I have added this to my Etsy shop for a while as I am going to revamp it but you can order here instead and i can send you an invoice via payapal or a cheque for UK residents.

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It is a lovely day here so some washing and gardening is in order!

Take care

xx

Friday, 15 April 2011

Cards - The Final Installment.

One last installment of our epic card making session.

You may have seen the above before. It is very similar to one that I made for a vintage card swap back in February. I liked them so much, I thought that I would make some more. The rest still need positioning and sticking down. I continued with more cards for the lads with a set of boat cards. I really like these ones. I added some cross grain ribbon and textured card.
I layered this one up, but not too much as it can cause a problems if you want to post it.
Back to my favourite square cards and this time I left the text off it so that it could be used for any occasion such as Father's day or as a thank you card.
I have 6 more ready to put together on different themes, but Sophie did exhaust me over this. She can be very determined when she is interested in something. I do hope it lasts as she gets older.
This is the state of the sewing room on Wednesday! There is more that you can not see on the floor!! Toffy was even brave enough to join us for the day and managed NOT to get stuck on a card. Our attic conversion has been so useful and the sewing table has been used for everything from card making to marking to Ofsted preparations. Not as much sewing as I had intended. Hopefully the rest of April will alter that.

I did manage a finish on Wednesday evening which I shall share tomorrow. I am supposed to be attending an Embroiderers Guild workshop tomorrow and due to the day job workload I have not been able to get all of the materials. Could be a bit of a challenge. I will let you now how I get on.

Take care

xx

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Made by Sophie, aged 8

Following on from the cards I showed yesterday are Sophie's collection of cards. I donated some of the card blanks but everything else she placed and stuck down herself! She is only 8 but she concentrated and stuck at this activity for hours, with a break for lunch! She used a brad in the centre of the above flowers, I made the hole with a needle for her as I did not fancy a visit to A&E! These are little square cards which I intended to make a batch for work. Only got a few left as Sophie found this size easy to manage. I thought this grouped really well. I am trying to show her the odd number rule and positioning. She is a fast learner and can 'see' if it does not look quite right. She made the final choice as to where they were finally stuck. This cupcake is embossed and was created with a treat that we purchased at the beginning of the week, back to that later. The wording is from some found at the Range. Marvellous shop! Again, some of this has been made with some toppers that Sophie found at The Range. She backed it with a square of tissue paper. The flower is a little glittery too.
This one Sophie tried stacking up the images to create a 3D effect, her words not mine. Worked well although a tad of a squeeze getting it in the envelope. Looks good in the flesh too.
Sophie often disappears to her room and can be found cutting, sticking, and making cards but this was a deliberate sit down session all day and she was so pleased with what she made. They are both neat and well thought out.

Today our activity is to be SEWING. This will be cut short as we are off to see an amateur production of Alice in Wonderland, our friends are in it and we are going to see them for the afternoon before the performance. But we have all day tomorrow as well to look forward to.

I love school holidays, they are so much needed in this hectic world that we live in to actually slow down and catch up with what is really important, and for me it is spending time with Sophie.

What have you been making this week?

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Leave a comment and a link if you like, so that we can all pop over and take a look. You do not have to have a blog to comment just click anonymous to post.

xx

Click on comment to start.

Spring card making

Cascade of Flowers.

Today I asked Sophie what would she like to do. The answer was to make lots of cards Mummy.

So that is just what we did. Did I feel guilty? NO! It was throwing it down with rain outside, what better excuse did I need.

The above one is the first of my spring cards. All of these will go into work. There has been a re-newed interest in my cards. I may even add some to my Folksy shop at some point.

I love these handbag cards! I have sold quite a few of these over time. However I am on a spring flower roll here and a brad in the middle gives a little extra to it. This one is a pale pink and I added some stitching lines to make it different to the white bag. I think that I will need to add something else to the white bag, even if it is some colour on the clasp section.
Now, I do not tend to make many cards for the lads because most of my customers are chaps buying for wives, girldfriends mum's etc. I think I need to sort this out and see what the interest is. Even I quite like this one.
Sorry but I think a group picture was needed.
Tomorrow I will feature some of Sophie's cards but she is asleep at the moment and I want to check which ones that she wants featured here.

A day spent mucking around with paper, double sided and card..............Bliss.

With my little girl going" oohhh Mummy can I have some of that lovely card?" Stocks are now low but she had lots of fun and a little bag of cards which her friends will love. In fact I think she has birthdays covered for the next two years!!

xx

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Wedding Anniversary - Lace

Yesterday, 11th April, was our 13th Wedding Anniversary. We decided to go out for the day, but more on that tomorrow, and on our way back we had a phone call from hubby's Mum and Dad saying that they had something for us. We did not realise that it was our Lace Anniversary at all. My Mum used to have a tea towel with all of them all, but living 6 hours away I could not consult it. Can you still get them? I use to have a diary years and years ago which also had them all in, but my current one does not.
This is a sponge cake with real cream which has been whipped. Yum Yum!!

The bit I really like is the real lace 'stencil' with icing sugar sprinkled over it. Works much better than using dollies. Very effective.

Guess what we are having later with a pot of tea.

We ate out yesterday evening, but Sophie has a friend over today so I am sure that we shall have some help eating this!

xx

Monday, 11 April 2011

April in Bloom - Sunday

The Easter Holidays have now started and the weather has so far been very good to us. I have been sitting in the garden finishing off some work for the day job. Whilst pausing I noticed just how much the garden has changed over the past two weeks, Hubby asked next door if we could have a good prune at the hedge, it is getting out of control and our veggie patch is not getting any light. It is their boundary and you have to be so careful what you do. They said yes, so on Sunday he was up a ladder pruning a good couple of feet off the top of it and we now have much more light on that section of the garden. He took down a bit of the fir trees while he was at it. There are loads of Camellia bushes which have now developed into a rather attractive hedge and Sophie and I salvaged some for the vase. I bought this Rhododendron about 12 years ago and it bloomed once and that was it. I decided that this year was make or break, threatened to bin it and look!!! Lovely blooms everywhere. It now needs a much bigger pot, so I am now on the look out for one.
It has bloomed even more since these pictures were taken.
A very delicate pink. Huge flower heads. There were loads of these in the grounds of the hotel we got married in which is one of the reasons why we bought it on the first place. A memory of the day.
The Azalea is not being outdone, also quite an old plant and a bit of an odd shape, but looking great none the less.
The Japonica, of which I have three and these need little attention apart from a prune, have also been doing really well. There seems to be a bit of a pink theme going on, not deliberate but lovely all the same.

What is blooming in your garden?


I began this post but got side tracked so it is a few days late.

Many thanks for the recipe suggestions and hopefully this week I shall be able to look at these further. I simple must make my batch of marmalade which has been on the cards for months!!

xx
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