C2C complete!

At last….. My least favourite project is done. I have to be honest, I really haven’t enjoyed most of this blanket. It wasn’t for me but for my step-daughter, she chose the yarn. I really struggled with what to do with it. I started off last summer intending to make a load of granny squares with it. Only to get completely bored and uninspired after a short while. I hate waste so rather than undo my hard work, I turned it into this….img_5708which will now be donated to our local community shop as a dolls blanket. I’m sure that some little girl will love it to keep her baby warm.

I had so much yarn left, that I had to do something with it. I’d seen and heard that the corner to corner (C2C) stitch was easy and fast to work up. I decided to give it a go.

Do you remember where I started it here?

And I last posted about it here?

Well the next step was to change colour from the purple to the pink. I must admit, as simple as this blanket actually is, I took me a little while to adjust to the decreasing side of it.

Once I’d got my head round it I got quite excited knowing that with each row it would become that bit shorter and that much closer to finishing. After a few rows, the excitement wore off and I just wanted this done, finished and gone. It seemed to take forever.

I have to say, it’d got to the size where it was keeping me quite warm and toastie on the chilliest of evenings.

I was adamant it WOULD be finished this week.

I even managed some nightime, fireside, alfresco hooky time. I rather enjoyed that!

I sat outside in the sunshine on bank holiday Monday with no plans other than to be done with this project. It was close to the finish and I thought I’d run out of yarn!!
Luckily, I found some scraps in my stash left over from the first attempt. I got cracking with the last few rows. I decided not to bother with a border on this as I don’t think it really needs it.

And done!! I literally felt a huge weight lifting from my shoulders. It was such a relief.

I hate to be negative or say this but I’m being truly honest. Quite a lot of loathing and not a lot of love went into this blanket. I enjoyed the therapeutic, repetitiveness of it, the actual act of crocheting, but that’s it. I didn’t love the yarn, the colours, the design. But it wasn’t for me and it wasn’t my choice. It’s done now and as soon as the photo shoot had taken place, it was rapidly passed to its new owner. Like a heavy load removed from my never ending list of to-do’s.

Here is the best it’ll ever look…

I do think it looks very neat up close and I may well use the C2C stitch again. If I’ve learnt anything from this, it’s that I should only create things I love and am passionate about. It’s a far more enjoyable experience!

Now, onto woolly pastures new…..

Vicki xxx

P.S. Just a little note while we’re talking crochet. A few weeks ago I decided to call it a day for my little crochet group. The numbers were up and down, mainly down and there seemed very little point in keeping it going for just me and one or two others. One week I ended up sitting there all on my own crocheting in the corner of a busy pub feeling rather silly. If the interest is there then I’m happy to start it up again.  It’s a shame especially as we were lucky to have a very experienced member to call upon for any advice. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.

Chicken Life

I’ve noticed I don’t really mention our chickens a great deal in my blog, yet they’re a big part of our little life, so I thought I’d dedicate a whole post purely to them.

We currently have 9 lovely ladies in our coop. We sadly lost one of our good egg layers, Natasha, just a couple of weeks ago.

She’d been perfectly healthy up until then, it looked as though she’d gone up to chicken heaven in her sleep, like it was just her time. Poor girl. I shall miss her pecking at my toes and causing mischief. RIP Natasha. Xx

Anyway, back to the rest of the brood. I shall introduce them all, one by one. Just incase you haven’t met them before.

In no particular order…..

Rolo. She’s a chocolate frizzle, isn’t she gorgeous? She’s a little bit nervous, one of the quieter girls of the group.

Angel. A white silkie. We’ve had her a couple of years now. She very much keeps herself to herself. Likes the occasional cuddle.

Matilda. A speckeldy Sussex bantam. Again, very much hangs in the background. She gives us no troubles.

This is Georgia. Named so because she’s a Light Sussex breed, and me and the hubby got married in East Sussex at The George Hotel. A little tenuous I know! I like to be romantic where possible! She’s quite a big bird and gives us some lovely eggs.

Bluebell. She’s a blue Pekin (yes she’s actually grey) but her nature is very quiet and unassuming so I thought Bluebell would suit her.

Honey, a Brahama. We’ve had her since she was a tiny little chick. How she’s grown! She’s now our biggest girl. We thought we were going to lose her last year as she was poorly, but with a lot of nursing back to health, she pulled through and is now better than ever.

Afro Barbara ( don’t ask!) our lavender silkie. She’s very affectionate, she always likes being picked up and cuddled. When chickens want attention, they kind of raise their shoulders / wings and arch their backs to let us know. It’s very cute indeed.

This is Queenie, a Rhode Island Red hen, the kind you’re probably used to seeing. We got her at the same time as Natasha, they were quite a double act. The pair of them kept escaping for the first couple of weeks, they were a right funny handful.

And last, but certainly not least, Beyoncé.  The only remaining girl of our first ever group of chickens, so she’s been with us for over four years. She’s a Pekin Bantam and lives up to her name completely. She’s a real diva and with that gorgeous display of tail feathers, she’s very bootilicious!

When I cleaned them out last week, Beyoncé gave me the run around and escaped. After a while of chasing her round the garden, in and out of the borders, I managed to catch her.

Gotcha! She’s quite happy to be held Once you’ve got hold of her.

They can be quite noisy at times, luckily our neighbours don’t tend to mind.

We often hear passers-by, startled by the sounds of our chickens. It’s quite funny.

They absolutely love the sunshine, here’s Georgia and Queenie catching some rays.

Wings stretched right out, she looks so happy which makes me one happy chicken mumma.

These four were having a Mother Hen meeting on the roof of the coop, so comical.

Chickens make such good pets, Jude loves being in there with them.  They all have their own personalities, just like us. They’re easy to look after, fairly cheap to keep, and give you the most delicious eggs ever. 

I’d certainly recommend chicken keeping to anyone who may be considering it. I can’t imagine being without them now.

A West Kirby walk

The weather was unexpectedly bootiful this morning, so quick on my feet, I decided a visit to the coast was in order. Just me and my little man. I got sorted, did the school run, and headed towards the sea. The drive was enjoyable too, through some lush countryside, with the sun shining, birds singing, windows down and a nice breeze keeping us cool. It seemed like everyone was out and about walking their dogs or going for a jog.

I got to West Kirby and parked up right by the marina. As soon as I stepped out of the car and looked across the lake, I was just amazed. The water looked like a pane of glass. It was so still.

The pictures don’t really do it justice, it was very sunny and warm.

West Kirby marine lake is the perfect length for a walk. It takes around 40 minutes to get round it at a slowish pace. Just enough exercise before you get too tired!

There’s a really nice atmosphere here, whenever you go. Everyone smiles and says hello.

Can you see the hills in the background in the picture above? That’s Wales. It looks close enough to walk to but I bet it’s a lot further than you think.

Last time me and my hubby came here together, I sneaked through the chains to get a close up photo of this…

I’m a sucker for anything that says the word ‘love’. Such a bizarre place to see it though, I’d love to know the story behind it.

I get such a feel-good feeling from being by the sea. I think it’s all that fresh, sea air. I love it in any weather but summertime is the best.

We saw this lonely seagull paddling along all by himself.

Almost round to the beginning.

These jetties look so inviting. It’d be heaven on a hot day like today to sit on the very end and dangle your feet in the cool water.

We finished our little jolly with a sit down in the park just opposite the lake. We had a drink and a snack with the whole park to ourselves, and Jude picked me these pretty daisies. Bless him.

I should start the day this way more often, it puts a real spring in my step.

Half way

Morning lovelies, are you having a good weekend? It’s half way through and the weather has been strange. We were expecting a heatwave, hotter than Ibiza, apparently. Well that never happened but  let’s see what today brings. Yesterday morning, Jude was so keen to get into the garden, it was wellies and pj’s and straight out there. With his furry friends too.

We managed our first breakfast in the garden the other day too, it was just lovely. 

It always feels a bit like being on holiday when we eat outdoors. I’m looking forward to doing it lots this summer. And lots of garden hooky is in order too.

I’m about halfway through my two blankets for the kids. I’m alternating between the two to stop the boredom setting in. Here’s the c2c (corner to corner) for my step daughter. I had it with me the other day when I was in the bluebell woods incase I got the opportunity to do a spot of hooky. Sadly I didn’t but I did decide to give it a little photo shoot while I was there. I felt a bit silly, kept looking around to make sure no one was coming! It’s not as easy as you’d think actually. I was looking for the perfectly placed branch to drape it over but could I find any? Nope. So this was the best I could do.

It’s a perfect triangle at the moment, and I’ve now finished the purple side so will start on the pink and it will decrease down the other side.

This is the other blanket, the cosy Kermit stripe for my son.

It’s just over half way done. It’s very nice to come back to working on this one after the purple. You can really tell the difference in the yarn. The purple has a glitter running through it which makes it a bit rougher but this one is made with stylecraft special dk which is so much nicer. Super soft in comparison.

While we’re talking crochet, I did a couple more of the egg cosies I started a few months ago. It’s one of those where I need complete concentration so I can count out loud. Hopefully this week I’ll finish them off and show you the finished product.

Our very own cherry blossom has finally come into its own this week. It’s never been so beautiful, it must be very happy. I wanted to enjoy it indoors too so cut a few sprigs to pop in a vase. It’s looking so pretty in our pantry.

Well, that’s it from me for now. Have a great Sunday, see you all soon xxx

The beauty of bluebells 

The humble bluebell.  A beautiful and delicate plant in its own right. But when you find them en masse in the bluebell woods, they’re truly breathtaking. I’ve been longing to visit them for ages now but I wanted to wait till they were properly out and for the wet weather to come to an end. I had a couple of hours to kill yesterday and the sun was shining so I took my chance and went to our closest national trust place, Speke Hall.

Now as usual, I did get a bit carried away with photo taking. I just couldn’t help myself though. When you’re there, in amongst them all, you just want to capture every moment because it’s all so beautiful. The photos really don’t do them justice but it’s the next best thing to actually being there in person. Pictures certainly can’t convey the aroma in the air and the sound of birdsong. Anyway, I honestly did restrain myself when selecting which photos to use here. You may not think so but I promise I did! If you’re not a lover of bluebells then look away now…

There, all done. If you’ve got this far then I thank you for sticking with it! Aren’t they beautiful? It’s just like a violet haze covering the ground. The woods are a very special place to be at this time of year.

Blossom time

Hello! Happy May Day to you. I’d love to be able to say that it’s a beautiful sunny day here but unfortunately it’s cold, wet and dreary. So I have the heating on, a mug of hot tea and am curled up on the sofa writing this post and filling it with pretty Spring pictures.

I have a real love of blossoms of all types. There so incredibly pretty, from a distance they almost look like twigs topped with candy floss or marshmallows. 

Here’s some beautiful blossom I pictured the other day when the sun was shining in our very own Oxton Village.

Yesterday we popped to Chester zoo for a couple of hours. We were very lucky with the weather and I snapped these..

Stunning against that blue sky aren’t they?

A couple of weeks ago I took our eldest and our youngest over to Sefton Park to see the blossoms and to fulfill a dream of the eldest. 

She too loves blossoms, and would love to live in Japan where they are famous. At this time of year they celebrate the beauty of spring flowers by picnicking under the blossom trees. So that’s what we did, we had our own little Haname under the blossoms, by the lake in the middle of Sefton park. It was really lovely. We sat opposite this pretty bandstand.

And this was above our blanket..

Gorgeous hey? It’s a shame they don’t last longer. After our picnic, we explored the rest of the park.

There was still an abundance of daffs on display. I love how the cloud is kind of heart shaped and just resting on the top of the hill.

Further round, we came to the fairy glen where there’s these stepping stones across the water. It felt like we were in a faraway place, somewhere completely magical. We made a little friend, he took a monkey nut right from my hand.

He was so tame and let us get really close.

The magnolias were in full bloom, so beautiful.

On our way back to the car, we stopped off in the palm house. It’s amazing in there, so tropical. You can even get married in here.

The colours were so vibrant. This one looks like a bottle brush. Right in the centre of the house is this spiral staircase. I just wanted to climb it, of course I couldn’t.

Well that’s all for today from me, I’m off to do a bit of housework, a little bit of hooky and prepare a fabulous roast for my lot. Happy bank holiday weekend xx