Tuesday morning Pitch and Stitch - 10.00am to 1.00pm

Tuesday morning Pitch and Stitch - 10.00am to 1.00pm
This hanging from Annie Downs' Hatched and Patched book should be in every caravan as a cushion or decoration!

Monday, 7 May 2018

Spring Swelter

Well - who'd have thought that after last week's Blackthorn Winter this weekend we'd be sweltering again!

And who'd have believed that on the hottest day of the year so far East Garston is without water?  We have finally drained every last bit of water in the house so it had better come on soon.  And after weeks of water and mud everywhere Jonathan had to call out a tanker to keep the animal troughs topped up.

It's been too hot to walk the dogs in the daytime, so I've been taking them out early in the morning and early evening.  This evening we went up the hill and poked around Roger's Wood, and it was so beautiful.

Bluebells everywhere

and a few white bells

The first time I saw a blanket of these little white flowers in the wood years ago - I came home and embroidered them onto our pillow cases!

All very lovely and fresh and new.

However, as I said, last week we were in the midst of winter so it was lovely to spend a day making little purses in the workshop.

Our next low key workshop like this is on Wednesday 6th June when we will be making little hanging pillows - great for little gifts which can be personalised any way you want.

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Back into Winter Clothes

So after the mini heat-wave, during which I decided to have a trip up to Liberty in London (I think I was the only person in the whole city in winter clothes - everyone else was wearing shorts and sundresses) we are back to winter.

There's so much to do outside but it's as much as I can do to water the greenhouse, feed the pet lambs and then run back indoors!

I have finally started making some baby things for our first little grandchild who is now well on his, or her, way.

A couple of weeks ago Jackie and I went to a little Toft workshop in Wantage Library.  We were due to go ages ago but it was postponed when we got snowed in.  We had already chosen which animals we wanted to make - I opted for Georgina the Ballerina - and Zoe was there to guide us through the pattern.  Although I have crocheted lots of blankets, I've never crocheted anything 3D, so was really looking forward to it.  Zoe was great at explaining the instructions, and then we were off!

Georgina the Ballerina is great - and if the baby is a boy he will be dressed in the little blue waistcoat I've made, and be simply George the Hippo!

Next I was pushed into making a cot quilt.  I think everyone thought I'd let the side down by not making one already, so, Sandra pointed me in the direction of the Moda Wild and Free range.  It's quite young and fun so I think it may well appeal to Victoria and Ben - anyway, they can use it however they want.

It arrived in yesterday's post and now I have made the front and back.

I quite like the fact that it is pink and blue......

Finally I have made a little purse in preparation for Wednesday's workshop - still spaces available but I'll run it regardless because I love making them!

Friday, 13 April 2018

A Little Farming Drama and the New Schedule

So - finally I have completed the new Schedule.

But, before that, something a little bit exciting that happened this week.

I'm sure everyone remembers my two pet lambs, Lucy and Mabel, who, during a rainstorm when they were still lambs, sheltered in the chicken house

Well, Lucy (on the left) and Mabel are still with us, and have lambed again this spring.  Lucy lambed on Tuesday afternoon - Jonathan helped her deliver her lamb and then came in to get changed.  He and George had to go Morris Dancing in Lambourn.   Just as they were about to leave, they realised Lucy was struggling with a second lamb, so they pulled it out and then off they went.

I love it when the men go out dancing.  I can potter around doing what I want, watching what I want on TV, and generally enjoy an evening of peace and quiet.

I decided to go out and see how Lucy was doing, and was horrified to see a third lamb on it's way, and Lucy was really struggling.  The first lamb was running around the paddock looking for her, the second lamb was flopped out, and worst of all, the three rams in the paddock seemed to be taking an interest.

Being very brave, I ventured out into the paddock and managed to get close enough to Lucy to pull the bag from the lamb's face.  Then I ran out again and rang everyone I knew who I thought might help.  No luck.  Finally I spoke to my brother-in-law but he said he was just sitting down to dinner so gave me a quick tutorial on what to do.  My main problem was the rams but he said they'd ignore me which put my mind at rest.

I pulled on Jonathan's overalls, ran out to the paddock, managed to catch Lucy, tackle her to the ground and pulled out the lamb!

Jeffrey did come round and decided this was a photo op

I was very pleased with myself but Jonathan and George seemed to think it was no big deal.......

Both Mabel and Lucy had triplets, and because they are getting old don't have enough milk for three so I am looking after two of their lambs.

Anyway, enough of that, here's a little preview of what's in the new schedule:

Besides the Lynne Johnson Medallion, Yoko Saito and Scrappy days, we have lots of fun workshops.

Little purses,

A lighthouse doorstop with Textile artist Anne Hellyer

Sweet little Hanging Pillows

A Zipped Bag day

Trip Around The World

and a Portable Patchwork Board

Lots to choose from!
Now, I'd better get out and feed those lambs.......

Saturday, 7 April 2018


So, it's a month since I last posted, and, of  course, now we are in the middle of lambing.  It started last weekend in the worst possible weather - rain, rain, rain.  We were knee deep in mud so it was all pretty miserable, but, then, finally on Thursday the sun shone.

Things started to look, and feel, like spring.

Lambs in the paddock, washing on the line, and the lovely sun.

Lambs are everywhere, but none in the kitchen this year.

Although Easter was awful outside, there were Hot Cross Buns

and Easter Eggs indoors

so we didn't suffer too much!

On the quilting front, at quilt group I was very pleased to see that Gail had finished the Yoko Saito Town Quilt she started here

and Alice brought her latest quilt to the Medallion Class

Really vibrant colours!

Meanwhile, I am drawing up the new schedule of workshops and it should be out shortly - just got to wait for dates to be confirmed.

So, Happy Springtime everyone - soak up those rays!

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Penny Rugs

Today we had the Penny Rug workshop and we really enjoyed ourselves.  They are made from woollen and felt textiles, and I had a great stock of Tweed fabric - some from the Donegal Woollen Mill, and some from the Cotswold Woollen Mill, in Filkins, Lechlade.

Sandra and I visited there on a very wet day in January - and had a great time.  You wander from room to room, upstairs and downstairs, and there is so much to see.  Lots of woollen clothes to buy, and loads of quirky things - but I particularly liked the old mill.   From what we could gather, they don't weave there anymore but the old looms can be seen

and there were huge baskets of old spindles everywhere

and there was a whole history of the Woollen industry in the Cotswolds.  I loved the old Shepherd's smock

and a selection of sheep bells (we have a few of these that have been dug up over the years).

We poked around the place for ages, and kept coming across really lovely stuff like this old platted rug

Anyway, I also came back with a big bag of tweedy off-cuts and decided to make a penny rug with them.

We made a good start today

I have also been working on my Janie Crow crochet - using the random method she recommends, I dig blind into the bag of yarn and work with whatever ball comes out.  I love doing the crochet but my heart would sink every time I pulled out the yellow or peach ball.  I really, really don't like those colours.

 I was talking about this in the workshop and Ros said, "well, don't use them then."  I was shocked - but they were supplied, I'm supposed to use them.  Again, Ros said, "but if you don't like them, don't use them."  So last night I took the yellow and peach balls out - and I feel totally liberated!  The yellow and peach have been banished!!!


Sunday, 4 March 2018

What a Beastly Time....

Well, not really, but it has been a long 5 days.

The Beast from the East blew in on Wednesday afternoon - quite suddenly.  After a very dark day with a bitter wind, the sun suddenly shone brilliantly and we thought the forecasts had got it wrong again.  But then it came.  It went very dark and a bitter wind blew the snow all around the house.

So that was it.  For the next few days there was no going anywhere - the schools closed, the roads were covered in snow drifts.

Nothing for it but to do a bit of sledding

and long walks looking at the impressive snow drifts

Meanwhile, down on the farm, calving has started in earnest.  Walking over to the farm to see the newcomers was slightly harder than usual - the footpath had gone and been replaced by a glacier!

Impossible to walk down - the lane is in a gully which completely filled with snow - if you tried to walk down it you'd just sink in!

Anyway, taking the long route round I managed to see what's been going on:

Lots of very affectionate mothers

and lots of very sleepy calves

until they think something interesting is happening

Back to normal tomorrow - and I'm quite glad.  I should have made more use of the time being stuck at home - but I spent most of it just staring out of the windows!