Monday, 28 December 2009

A-Z Monday Letter B

B is for Birthday.
My Birthday!
More A-Z fun at Jen's.

Friday, 25 December 2009

Monday, 21 December 2009

A-Z Monday~ Letter C

I am scheduling this post as on Monday I will be Catching the ferry with Arthur!
As you know, I like to include photos in my posts,
so you will have to wait till I get home to see some photos of:-
a Cathedral,
and hear about some Carol Concerts I've been to.
I just hope the photos turn out.

I'm also looking forward to opening some ATC's that have arrived in my absence.
I will enjoy sharing them with you.
I will also enjoy Catching up with you all.
I'm sure lots of you have been busy with Christmas preparations.
Well I had to mention Christmas!

Pop on over to Jen's for more A-Z fun.
See you soon.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

A to Z Monday~ Letter D

It has been
a Dull,
Drippy Day.
But that has only been the weather!
It was cold as well when my sister and I took a trip into the Lake District.
I haven't felt so cold in a long while
and that includes being in Sweden when it can regularly Drop below freezing in the winter.
But this was a Damp cold.
This was the sort of cold that gets through your clothes,
and into your bones,
into your soul.
Making me,
feel very cold.
But not to worry,
it's nice to get out and go for a walk
even though everywhere was grey.
I took some photos to show you.
But I haven't managed to download them yet.
But my Daughter came to the rescue
and emailed me some photos to show you.
Because I needed something for the letter D.
How about a Donkey?

Well it's my grandson in
He was a Donkey in his school play that I went to see.
I think he enjoyed himself.

He is only 4 years old.
It was his first experience of being in a school production.
He likes Dressing up.

His Mum,
clever girl that she is,
made him this costume
so he could go and see the film 'where the wild things are'
Dressed as one of the characters, Max.
People were saying how cute he looked.
The photos I have taken while I've been here in the UK
may have to wait till I get back to Germany
to be downloaded so I can show you.
Something to look forward to.
But for more A-Z fun pop over to Jen's.

Monday, 7 December 2009

A-Z Monday~Letter E

E is for England.

Which is where I should be when this post is published.
Today I will be in Newcastle upon Tyne
in the north east of England.
I will be watching my Grandson in his first school performance
before travelling over to stay with my sister and her family for a while in Cumbria,
in the north west of England.

It is my nephew's 16th birthday.
I will be able to wish him a Happy Birthday in person.
Haven't done that in a while.
I should have some photos up on here soon,
try and make up for the lack of them today.
And be able to catch up with you all of course.

I look forward to that.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Sewing, Flowers and Skeletons

Earlier this month I showed you hints of what I had been sewing
and said that I would show you properly once they had been received by the recipients.
Well they should all have reached their destinations by now.
Throughout the year I have been taking part in an ATC swap.

ATC's are Artists Trading Cards measuring only three and a half by two and a half inches.
So they are quite small.
That in itself makes them challenging.
They can be in any media that you choose.
Initially I struggled for ages trying to make something with paper and card
but all my efforts looked pathetic.
So I resorted to my first love, fabric.
Something that I was comfortable with.
The idea was to send out an ATC to people in the swop when it was their birthday month.
I think the original idea behind ATC's is that the artist would have left over materials that they would make up into one of these cards.
I found that I didn't really have anything suitable so had to make everything from scratch. I found it really tough to get going with them.
I might have an idea but wouldn't have all the materials I needed.
I tend to have plenty of fabrics but not so many of them are plain.
And I think I needed some plain fabrics for most of my ideas.
I really enjoyed making some ATC's out of some felt I had made.
I embroidered some pine trees and flowers onto the felt.
I showed some of them back in March.
I really enjoyed making them but they were time consuming
and I needed a change.
So then I turned to machine applique.
This is where I really struggled to find the right fabrics.
Some plain fabric here would have been useful.
Again I used a flower as inspiration
cutting a bold flower shape and stitching it onto a pieced background
adding a ribbon for some of them.
Again I loved these,
but it was time for a change.
It also coincided with the move to Germany and I got seriously behind with making them.
I struggled and struggled with ideas
with even fewer resources, as I couldn't bring everything with me.
Before leaving Sweden, I called at the sewing machine shop where I bought my Huskvarna sewing machine.
I had been trying out free motion machine sewing
but wasn't sure I was doing it correctly.
I wanted to start using this technique on some quilts I want to finish.
I tried the technique but wasn't happy with it so called at the shop for some advice.
They were very helpful and gave me some tips mostly about tension.
So off I went with a new skill
which once we got to Germany and finally more or less unpacked,
I tried some free machine quilting.
I really liked the effect and so decided to use it for my next batch of ATC's.

Mike thought it made a lovely fabric and thought I should send the cards just quilted.
It was a lovely effect.
But I added some flowers,
notice a theme here?
And so all my ATC's finally got away to their new homes.
I have found it an interesting experience.

Now it is my birthday month,
and ATC's are starting to arrive in the post.
But I will save those for another day.

On a different theme.

I made this skeleton for my grandson. It was for Halloween. I saw a photo on Womans Day Magazine, which you can Google. I couldn't find the photo again. I made my skeleton out of felt, I think they had made their's out of wool.
They had included a heart on their's but I made mine detachable and suggested he gave it to his Mum if he didn't want it. I must find out what he did with it. I know he carried the skeleton around with him all the time, even though it arrived late.

I thought it was so sweet I think I'll have to make another,

just for me!

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Globetrotting Greyhounds

I am scheduling this post for tomorrow, Thursday when I will be flying over to the UK for a visit with family and friends. But I thought you might like to read something that Mike has written about our greyhounds.
I know many of you are animal lovers and appreciate stories of them. So this is one that Mike has written for the rescue centre where we got Jewel, Paddy and Rufus. You will also see another reason for my impending visit!
Just click here to take you to it.

In case the link doesn't work it is

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

A Winter Walk

I have been busy over these last few days.
It's amazing that although I don't go out to work,
time still passes at an alarming rate.
I still don't manage to do everything that I want to.
But I did get out for a long walk the other day with Mike and the Hounds.
The landscape has changed considerably since
I last posted any pictures of it.
We have had wind and rain on and off,
mostly on, for... mmmm
ever it seems.
All the leaves are on the ground.
All the days are grey.
But it is mild.
And that is good.
From our house
we can easily see the River Mosel from windows that face in that direction.
We are about 150 metres from the river.
There is a flood plain,
a road,
a bank,
another road, very quiet one,
and a house,
between us and the river.
In the summer we don't see the river from the house,
(but we sometimes hear a band playing on a boat
as it sails up or down the river).
There are trees in the neighbours garden hiding it from view,
apple and pine.
Trees along the roadside,
a hedge along the other side of the road,
and hedge/trees alongside the river.
It is all very pretty.
But we can't see the river.
Now, in winter,
we can,
and hear the boats themselves.
It is very stark in contrast.
And so it is throughout the landscape.
Quite brown.
But still beautiful.

There are still some splashes of colour.

The Hounds always enjoy a new walk.
As we got to the top of the valley,
they were very alert.

They had been smelling deer as we walked.
There are lots in the woods.
Once back down at the car,
we went into a small chapel.
It commemorates the First World War.
It is very beautiful.
As we opened the doors,
the smell of the burning candles filled the room.
It felt very calm and peaceful.
Paintings were painted directly onto the walls and ceilings,
depicting scenes from the Bible,
but also one scene of a soldier returning from war,
and another,
a woman in tears receiving news that her loved one would not be returning.
Outside again,
there is a cross,
leaning at an angle.
The date reads 1870-1871.
The time of the Unification and the Franco Prussian War.
There are lots of little roads and tracks to explore.
Always something new to see,
or smell for the Hounds.
Who are usually quite tired after their walk.
A warm fuzzy picture of Rufus, I didn't use flash.
While they doze we drink tea with a mincepie.