Thursday, 30 September 2010

Happy Birthday to ME

Yes it's my Birthday today and it has been an interesting one. Firstly I hardly got any sleep as my darling little daughter decided to come into my bed at around 2am and then for the rest of the night ground her teeth, even managing to argue the odds with me when I asked her to stop it for the umpteenth time.

When we got up all she said was 'morning Mummy' and then tried to go back to sleep. Five minutes later I heard a gasp and 'Happy Birthday Mummy, I've got something for you' and then ran downstairs and back up with a card and out popped a £5 note (Mum had sent it up for her to put in my card as they hadn't had time in the holidays to buy me a present). Mum phoned to wish me a happy birthday and then we were heading out to school armed with her goodies for the Harvest Show.

These are her cakes. The only thing I did to help her was to put them in and take them out the oven and she did everything else herself. We'd bought a cheat kit for her to make cakes for my birthday and she took the decorations from that to put on her cakes for the show. Unfortunately she didn't get anything for them or any of the other items she put in and she's said that from now on she's going to stick to the horticultural shows where she's got more chance of winning a prize for her efforts.

I bought the flowers for myself as a treat.

On Facebook I joined a Birthday Skein Swap and one of the cards that I opened had this frog on it. Let's hope it's the only frog that appears in this stitching household!!!

These are all the wonderful skeins that I received and not one of them is a duplicate :)

I also received the most wonderful gift from Sally, but I didn't get a great picture of it, so I will blog tomorrow about it (and rightfully it deserves its own entry because it is stunning).

Unfortunately my darling little girl is poorly with a full blown cold :( I hope she gets over it quickly, it's never nice to have a cold, but for a child it is even worse.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Good News, Bad News

I've been having a few problems with my boiler in that the stupid thing doesn't want to work all the time and it's something I can ill afford with the winter weather that will soon be upon us, so I called British Gas and took out their boiler service insurance. At just a little extra charge I also included the cover of the fire service and they included the radiators, electricity, sinks, drains and outside drains.

The boiler, which has given me many a headache, passed without a problem and the fire passed too. Great I'm covered and if anything goes wrong or I have to hit that reset button, I can call them anytime to come and fix it. They've introduced a new thing that comes in effect on Friday that if you call by 1pm they will come out the same the day - great news for the elderly.

Then came the bad news, there's a gas leak in the meter cupboard outside, so the gas has been switched off and I'm patiently waiting for Transco to come and fix it. They have to be here within 4 hours and it's already been 2, I'm just hoping that if they're still here at 3pm that I don't have to stick around as I have to collect Marion from school.

Still it could have cost me money and apart from the monthly direct debits, I've not had to fork out for anything, except I just need to purchase a Carbon Monoxide Detector for peace of mind.

I haven't got anywhere stitching wise, not even a little piece that is no bigger than 45 X 45 stitches. Maybe I should start next year's Halloween stuff now and I may be part way there when it comes round again!!!

Last night Marion told me that she's not got me anything for my Birthday, unlike last year, so I should just take all her pocket money so I can have something. I told her not to be daft and that she can buy me a present when we're on holiday, I can wait that long, it's just over 3 weeks to go now. Silly thing, most of my birthdays nowadays are spent racing around doing things for her. Next year better all be about me though, that's the big 4-0. I'm not bothered about a party or anything like that, just maybe a nice meal somewhere and that will satisfy me.

Off to pick up a needle and thread and do a little stitching while I wait for Transco to turn up.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

My Autumn Wall

I haven't any WIP's or finishes to show so I thought, with Autumn officially starting tomorrow, I would put up my Autumnal and halloweeny stitching. There are a couple missing, but I think they might be in the loft with the halloween stuff.

We won't be around for halloween this year, so no decorating like we normally do, but I do still have to carve a pumpkin for the School Autumn Show next Thursday (which happens to be my birthday). Unfortunately I haven't seen any pumpkins in the shops this year and normally you're falling over the big displays of them by now. Fingers crossed we have one in time for the show. If not, it will be a butternut squash instead.

It was swimming again today, which went better than last week, but the TA for the other group still had no clue. The driver told her Council regulations mean that kids can't sit next to the emergency exit door, she hadn't a clue where it was and caused chaos apparently (it's at the back of the bus on the right hand side as you face the front. All she needed to do was put an adult by that door and everything would have been sorted, but no it wasn't that simple) and of course because I'm obviously the sensible one who knows what they're doing he moaned at me.

A couple of weeks ago in Lincoln a packed bus/coach full of teenage kids ended up in a serious accident with 2 of them still in critical condition in hospital. One of those teenage kids had grabbed the emergency exit handle and the door opened taking that teenager and another out onto the motorway and causing the bus/coach to crash. That bus driver has now had his licence revoked and is being prosecuted for something that wasn't even his fault.

Wednesday is always a hectic day. It's Brownies tonight and it's my turn to take and collect the girls, not that it bothers me. So as it's one of those out, in, out, in 4 times days I think I will be doing a small autumn piece and hopefully I will get it completed before I go to bed.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Lookie, Lookie

I came home to this wonderful little parcel on my doormat and inside JCS Ornament Preview issue and the JCS Ornament Issue. There are a few in the preview issue that I definitely want to stitch, especially the Brittercup design. I've not really looked at the ornament issue yet, but there were a couple I fancied and hope that I get to stitch this year.

I also ordered 3 GAST in avocado, pumpkin pie and tomato, which are for a Just Nan humbug.

I've been at my word processing course this morning, I did the mock test and did well enough to do the actual test, but something happened at the end where they give you an exam number and so I couldn't do it today. Never mind, I can do it another day.

Marion has been to her first football practise after school and the team already have 3 matches booked with more pending. So if a wife/girlfriend is a football widow, what do you call the Mum?

No big plans for the weekend, just tidying up the mess the child created, washing and ironing and then hopefully lots of stitching.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Congratulations Marion

I've just had a phone call from Mum telling me that Dartford Library called this afternoon to congratulate Marion on achieving level 3 in the Space Hop Summer reading programme, she was one of just handful to have read all 6 books and she's won a £5 book token.

Very proud of her :)

I've not been stitching much, not at all in fact, but Becky is an extremely talented lady and she is organising The Great Pumpkin Challenge. Sally has just mentioned in her blog that she has joined it too. I read it on Becky's blog yesterday when I was admiring all her wonderful stitching and I thought about taking part too, it might get me motivated and get my act together to actually produce some stitching.

I did dig out an Autumnal chart last night which has a pumpkin on it that I had kitted up 2 years ago, so I might just get started on it tonight while I'm waiting on some beads turning up to finish off the winter humbug.

It's getting cold here now, blustery and wintery and I've just heard that we're possibly to expect frost over the next few days. So it looks like I'll be out there taking the apples off the trees, picking any veg that's still out there and bringing in the gerbera plants into the kitchen until Mum brings up the fleece to wrap around them over the winter. Hope it's not too wet to do that tomorrow.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010


Can anyone tell me how I add a couple of tabs at the top of my blog please? Also how I get myself another separate blog - it won't seem to work whatever I'm doing.

Thank you to Sally for helping. Unfortunately it will only let me have 1 tab, which is the existing page, so I've deleted it as I wanted a couple of them.

It doesn't seem to want to let me do another blog either, so I've given up on that idea.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Pear and Blackberry Pie

I saw this recipe in the Saturday paper the other day, so decided to write it up on my blog. I have a few more to write up, so you can enjoy some British recipes :)

8 firm, ripe pears
Juice of 1 lemon
100g (3 1/2 oz) caster sugar (very fine sugar, but not the powdered kind for those of you abroad) plus 1 tbsp
2 tsp ground cinnamon
200g (7 oz) blackberries
375g readymade shortcrust pasty
1 egg white

Preheat the oven to 90 C/170C fan/gas 5. Peel, core and quarter the pears. Place them in a bowl and toss in the lemon juice to prevent the fruit from browning. Sprinkle the caster sugar and the ground cinnamon on top.

Pile the pears with the blackberries into a large 1.5 ltr (2 3/4 pint) pie dish and pour over any lemon juice left in the bowl.

Roll out the pastry on a floured work surface until large enough to drape over the pie dish. Trim a 1cm (1/2 inch) strip of pastry and press onto the rim of the dish. Brush with water and then drape the pastry over the top. Crimp the edge of the pastry and cut a cross in the top. Beat the egg white with a fork and brush over the top. Sprinkle the top with the last 1tbsp. Bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes until golden brown.

Cooking apples such as Bramley's make a great alternative to pears.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Good Luck Wishes Needed Please

Please wish Marion good luck for today. She's got to go into hospital and have a couple of teeth extracted under general anaesthetic and she's a little bit scared and nervous.

I can honestly say that I'm a little scared and nervous too.

We will let you know how things go when we get back.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Winter Humbug

I haven't actually done must stitching since I started this piece, but this is how far I've got. Now I have the 2 pinks I needed, I can make a start to the over 1 hearts. I may even finish it soon.

Next week I intend on getting back into my blackwork Japanese Lady, Lisa stitches on her blackwork on a Monday, so I intend on doing mine as a stitch-along with her. Remember I had to order a new kit so I could carry on because I'd lost my chart and threads? Well I found it on Friday, on my desk (which is where I had thought it was, but couldn't find it) when I was clearing away some papers. So strange that it appeared, but never mind, I won't run out of thread!!