Sunday, 20 December 2009

Eek! It's nearly Christmas - how did that happen!

Well, it's been a while.  I apologise for disappearing for a little while but you know when you read a book that you just can't put down.....well, that happened (as you could probably tell from my last brief post).  Problem was, it was one of a series of four! For 2 weeks all I did was read and I swear I felt like I was on another planet, I was so lost in these books!  They were not the most literary read I have ever read, but they were the most addictive and I just fell in love with the story and had to keep reading to find out what happened.  You might have heard of them, they are called the Twilight series and the first 2 books were made into films, with the 2nd film New Moon just out in November.  Enough! I am having a Twilight break for a bit!!!

Last week we had D's playschool Christmas play. They have been rehearsing for weeks and she was so excited. The play was a nativity called Shine Star Shine, all about a big star who lost her shine, but needed to show everyone where the stable was!  Bless, it was so lovely especially at the end when she found her shine and her costume lit up! D had tried so hard to keep her costume a secret from us, she played the big star and I didn't realise how much she would have to do till we saw it.
Gulp, don't kids amaze you? She will be 4 on the 7th January, but she could have been a 10 year old she was so brave up there.  She was concentrating so hard and did every action and word perfectly.
Her part needed her to be in the middle of the stage the whole time on her own, I was fighting back the tears as I filmed it and took pictures.   It was even more amazing because she hadn't been feeling well and had been sick a couple of days before.  She still got up and did it and has been poorly all weekend.
We are so proud of her!

She also got to meet this special man afterwards!

The week before had been F's school Christmas fair which was fun!  The kids got to ride in this horse and cart which they thought was very exciting! (although hard to photograph as Rodney the horse moved so fast, I cut his head off!).
I can't quite believe Christmas is only a few days away.  I still have a few handmade pressies to make but at least we won't be rushing to and from school this week and can take things a bit easy.
I guess I had better go and get on with all that present wrapping.............

Thursday, 10 December 2009

It's been a little while....

.......but I have been busy, very busy reading.
Yes, I have been Twilighted!
I have nearly finished Eclipse, I'll be back when I've finished Breaking Dawn..............

Thursday, 3 December 2009

A few new makes...

I took part in a craft fair at a local school last Friday.  I did ok in the end, although not so much with the things that I had there of course! I had one christmas stocking from last year and hadn't bothered to make more, but then got 5 orders for them!  So I have been busy making them this week.

I never seem to sell the things that I think I will go!  I made loads of these red and white fabric and button hearts, which I was selling cheaply - and only sold one (thanks Vicki and Josh for liking the furry one!).
I was thinking of adding them to my folksy shop, but I have only sold one thing on there so far and until I get a bit of a customer base going, I figured 3 weeks till christmas was a bit late for me to start adding christmassy bits and pieces!

I also made this bunting, which didn't go either!

I have decided to go with a red and white theme for the christmas decorations this year in our house!!

Now please excuse the shameless self-promotion but I have added something new to my folksy shop.  A post of so ago I gave a little teaser about what I was making, well they were these......

A sweet little tooth fairy fabric envelope!  A lovely keepsake for any little ones with wobbly teeth! They are only £4.50, if I have lots of viewings on Folksy, I will add some different fabric ones (you can see some of the others in the top picture. Fingers crossed these will sell well!

I love the 'dear tooth fairy' on the front that F wrote for me, I then scanned it, reversed it, printed it on transfer paper, ironed onto cream fabric, cut it out and sewed it on the front!  It is brilliant stuff, I just got mine at the supermarket and have used it for loads of things!

I am going to make something similar as little presents for the kids school teachers and neighbours, and fill them with sweets or chocolate!

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

November rain

I know we are lucky where we are compared to some parts of the UK, but I am so sick of the rain!  I am sick of getting soaked everytime I have to go and do the school and playschool run! Less of the above picture and more of the one below please Mother nature...

I am longing for wrapping up in scarves, hats and gloves and crisp winter days instead of the wet, soggy days we are currently getting.

On a good note, the horrible weather has made me do a bit of sewing!  I am taking part in a local school craft fair on Friday after another one I was due got cancelled and changed to another date.  They did one a while ago which I took part in and I did well and got an order for a boy doll, which I will be taking along with me - that will pay for the stall at least!
I have also made lots of christmas heart decorations, all in festive colours with vintage buttons (no pics yet, will take some of stall if I remember!) and some quick and easy christmas bunting. I have also made some of these.....

I haven't finished them yet, so you will have to wait and see what they are...a little clue they are very useful for wobbly teeth!

I was very pleased to hear that Charlotte from Cottontails baby has received the mermaid doll she won in my first ever giveaway.  I am so pleased my kids picked her out as she was having a terrible day on the day she found out she had won. She is currently residing and Charlotte's beautiful house, do take a look at her lovely  and also to enter Charlottes giveaway for a mouse in need of a little TLC!

Saturday, 14 November 2009

And the winner is.........

Thanks so much to Pomona, Jennyflower, Meplusmolly, Pants and Paper, Blondedesign and Charlotte Cottontails for entering my little giveaway. 
I loved all of the names you choose and couldn't decide a winner by the names alone, so decided the best way was to draw the winning name out of a stripy mug!

My little helpers enjoyed doing this!
And the winnner they picked was................

Charlotte from Cottontails, so well done Charlotte, a mermaid and some fabric will be making their way over to you next week. If you could email me with your mailing address and 'Penelope' will be meeting you soon! I have to say, I do like the name you picked and think it really does suit her! I hope you enjoy her.
Thanks everyone who took part for all your comments and for joining in.

I had a lovely birthday last Friday which involved a lovely thai meal with my husband and another meal the next night with all the family. I got some lovely presents including the new Cath Kidston book 'Sew', which is fab and has lots of projects to add to my 'Would like to make' list! Most impressive about it though was that my husband actually found out about it and pre-ordered without me having to ask so it was a lovely suprise!

I also got a bit of cash and have been out today and treated myself to a few bits! Well, we need something to cheer us up in the hideous weather we have had the last few days!  On the school run on Friday I was drenched! My big padded coat was so wet that it leaked  as did my sheepskin lined boots.  I actually was soaked to the skin (yep, even my underwear!). I hope you haven't got caught out in the rain!

Friday, 6 November 2009

Giveaway time !!!!

I am all excited today. I can't quite believe it but this is my 50th post!
As I mentioned on my last post (thanks for the kind comments left by the way!) I have a few things to celebrate, so what better way to than with a giveaway!
I decided to give one of my mermaids away and this is the chosen lady, posing on the beach ...

(and yes I think I probably did get quite a few strange looks from all the dog walkers as I photographed mermaids on the beach this morning as I have added more mermaids to my Folksy shop !)

She comes with her own bag with some shells collected from the beach and a naming certifcate. I don't really recommend for under 3 year olds, unless the doll is only being used for display and they are not really for rough play. She would make a lovely Christmas present for a little one!

I have also decided to put a few bits of fabric from my fabric collection - some Kaffe Fassett pieces and a couple of other bits. They are all off-cuts so no specific size.

All you need to do to win the doll and fabric is to leave me a comment and tell me what you think she should be called as a the moment she is nameless - I will then add her chosen name to the naming certificate for the winner!! It is open to everyone - in the UK or abroad and lurkers too! Go on, you can leave a comment as well even if you don't have a blog!

I am going to leave the giveaway open for a week, so it will close next Friday 13th November at 6pm UK time.  I am happy to post abroad and lurkers too! So if you don't have a blog you can still leave a comment. Thank you!

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Nearly 50...

No, not my age!  I am nearly at 50 posts! I thought I would add a quick one in before Friday so that my giveaway can be for my 50th post as well as my one year blogiversary, to celebrate opening my brand spanking new Folksy shop (there is not much on there yet hopefully more soon), and also my thirtyblahblah birthday!
Talking of Folksy, have a look at this lovely Folksy shop where I found these fab ceramic cupcake tealight holders, I am going to have to get some of these for christmas presents!

Oh and please excuse the shameless plug, but I got a little mention  in this fab and free local magazine The Whitstable Imp. The Editor Chrissie is a multi-talented lady who not only created The Imp, but also has her own cake making business and is a singer too!

(click on the picture to view bigger and please excuse the awful picture, I had to do it very quickly when there was nobody but me and Little lady in the house so it invovled balancing the camera on a tower of things, clicking self-timer and running round to the chair! hence not very glam!)

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Half-term fun

It's been a lovely half-term this week. My little man is back to school tomorrow but my little lady has an extra week off from her playschool as they have a two week half-term!
We have had lazy days, adventure days, spooky days and visiting friends and family days!

Yesterday the kids had a nice seaside walk with their dad whilst the tide was out, they thought they would go for an adventure! Whilst at the beach, they came across someone from the Whitstable Oyster Company experimenting with these baby oysters!

They were trying to see which bed the oysters will grow best on/under (not sure which, I am not an oyster expert!). How exciting, wish I had seen!  I will have to make sure I go with them next time and we can watch their progress! The light looked beautiful.

We took the kids trick or treating on Saturday. Luckily this spooky mist had disappeared by the time that we went out though. It appeared from nowhere and settled on the green by our house at about 5pm and was gone in 10 minutes or so,  very strange!

The kids got an amazing haul trick or treating! We ended up being out for about an hour as they and their friends were having so much fun!  The have enough sweets to last about a year!

I am still planning on doing a little giveaway for my blog first birthday but I haven't as yet as my mermaids look like this at the moment....

Lots of WIPs! I am making lots as I have sold quite a few at Taking the Plunge in Whitstable and at a couple of craft fairs, plus more I have planned so I have been making in bulk! It is my birthday next Friday, so I am planning on doing a birthday and blog birthday rolled into one!  So look out on Friday 6th November for a little giveaway!

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Mermaids and birthdays

I was just having a look and a catch up through some lovely blogs when a thought suddenly stuck me.........didn't I write my very first blog post around Halloween last year? So I just looked back and realised I've missed it!!! Oh dear, it was on the 23rd October, so I am only a couple of days out!
Whenever I thought about my first 'blogiversary' I always planned on doing a giveaway - but as I am unorganised with this now, it will be a belated giveaway!! I shall have a think about what to send.....maybe a mermaid doll  a bit like this one...

(but not this one as it was a little girl called Flo's birthday present!) and a few bits of fabric from my stash?
I will sort this out in the next couple of days! I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Time to snuggle up with a good book!

I love reading and it is that time of year again when the heating goes back on and all I want to do is cuddle up on the sofa with a really good book (in between watching X-Factor - god, I hate to say it but I am totally hooked this year!). 

I have just finished this fantastic book.

I loved it, although it did take me a few chapters to get used to it being narrated by Death - but what an amazing read and as with all good books it made me laugh and cry. It is a teenage book and what a brilliant read for teenagers to read and learn about WWII, from a young German girls point of view.

In another life before kids I worked in Children's Publishing and was amazed at the fantastic and totally brilliant teenage/young adult novels that are out there, that I had the pleasure of reading as part of my job - so many adults miss out on reading them! Many adults have probably read Harry Potter and Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials Trilogy but there are so many more of these fantastic books out there - my list could be endless but authors such as Robert Cormier (very dark novels), Philip Reeve (Mortal Engines - wow!) and Eoin Colfer to name just a few of the fantastic authors whose books I have read and loved (and was lucky enough to have met).

If only I could get to my box of books which are tucked away in the shed, waiting for some shelves to made in the living room. They have been there since we started building our kitchen extension about 2 years ago and I am itching to get them out and just be able to look at them!

After singing the praises of young adult novels I will have to say that another book that I read recently and is currently up there as one of the best books I have ever read is this amazing one, which is not a YA one!
But you must read it, if you haven't yet read it, please you must. I promise you will not regret it!

Saturday, 3 October 2009

Woman's Weekly Knitting & Crochet special

I apologise for not posting for a long time, been lots of upheavel in our house at the mo - but glass half full, everything happens for a reason etc I will spare you the details!

Please, please excuse me for the proud parent bit, but I am very, very proud!
In shops at the moment in the uk you will find Woman's Weekly Knitting & Crochet Special.

Look, there in the top left  - you see that gorgeous blonde girl and boy....they are ours!!!

My mum used to work for Woman's Weekly until she was made redundant in January. During the many years she worked there we have all appeared in there at some point!!   This was F's third modelling session for them, which have all taken place at beautiful houses in Whitsable, on the beach.

The jumpers were lovely and the, they were brilliant and so amazingly behaved! The shoot organiser said D should be called Grace as she was so calm and graceful..........What!!! Not the words we normally use to describe the D we know and love!!!

Here are a few behind the scenes shots I took during the photo shoot!

And F even appears in the Knitting & Crochet special twice as he is in it again from a photo shoot he did a couple of years ago!

Ok, proud parent bit over with now!

Monday, 14 September 2009

Red sky at night

I love a good sunset and we do seem to get such gorgeous really red ones in Whitstable. I don't know if it is just being by the sea and having a horizon, but I have never seen more beautiful sunsets anywhere else that I have lived!

This is one that I saw the other night, just as the kids were about to go to bed I had to run out with my camera and try and capture it!  Not the best picture, but I love the colour of the sky.
The best ever sunset I have ever seen in Whitstable happened about 3 years ago on Guy Fawkes/ Firework night (I don't have a picture of it to hand as it was taken pre-digital camera! I will find it and scan it in!) . Canterbury Council put on an amazing, free firework display on the beach! It has never been repeated, but was truly spectacular and something I hope they will do again. Mother nature had the last laugh though, as everybody was waiting  for dusk and the fireworks to begin, the sky turned the most amazing, beautiful and stunning red colour I have ever seen!   If you have ever been to Whitstable, imagine hundreds of people on the beach by the Old Neptune watching an amazing red sky as the sunset slowly into the sea. Stunning.

Oh and I should quickly add that I am still not sure what on earth to do about Crafty at the Coast....I am going to look at somewhere tomorrow, but if this venue is not suitable then I am going to leave the fairs for this year and see how I feel about organising some next year.................will keep you posted.

Tuesday, 8 September 2009


Excuse the picture it doesn't go with the post (it was taken at the Whitstable Craft Fair back in May), but I needed a nice smiley picture today as I am totally devasted as I have had to cancel the Christmas Crafty at the Coast.

I am so angry beyond belief as it is the hall where I hold them who have cancelled the event today.

To cut a very long story short they have basically double booked the hall with the Farmer's Market whilst the man who I normally book the hall with is off with a long term sickness. The Farmer's Market hold events at the hall every other saturday and I believe they must have changed their dates at some point in the year as I provisionally booked the hall for the 12th December back in January and all of their dates were already in the diary and the 12th was free!

My deposit had not been paid as during the time the man I deal with has been off sick it was sent back from the May fair and not carried over.  I still believed my booking would be safe as I had not had a phone call from anyone saying other wise, until I went to pay the deposit and found out that as my deposit cheque had not been paid in I have lost the hall, and don't appear to have a leg to stand on.

I am so fuming, upset, hurt and angry as I put so much of my heart, soul and time into organising the fairs, but most of all I am upset for those who were due to take part and had probably started working hard on items to sell and for the goodie bags. It just feels like a slap in the face. I confess I was not at my calmest when the man from the hall rang to tell me that I basically do not have a booking and I more or less told him I thought they were incapable and that I would not hold any other events there again.

I have organised five craft fairs now, the Christmas Crafty at the Coast would have been my 6th fair since 2007 and I have met such a great and talented group through them over the last couple of years, I am very sad.  I do feel they have taken so much time over the last few years even though I loved every minute, I don't think I will organise any others for a while! I might change my mind in a few months if I find another venue.

If anyone is organising a crafty type fair in the kent area, do let me know as I would still love to take part!

Saturday, 5 September 2009


Germany. Well it was all about family, sunshine, the zoo, picnics, markets, fribard, trains, buses and sleeping in till 8am every day! heaven!
And getting back, well, you would have thought we had been away for a month and not five days as getting back has been all about the washing and ironing and getting ready for school! Mine were back on Thursday to school and playschool.
I felt a mixture of emotions! So sad as we had a brilliant summer but there is a little tiny bit of relief to having just a little bit of time to myself once again!

Tuesday, 25 August 2009


I have had my Janome sewing machine for close to two years now and yesterday decided it was about time I attempted to do a buttonhole! I have never, ever done one!
My sewing machine comes with an automatic buttonhole foot, where you put the button in one end and the buttonhole is sewn the perfect size!  Easy I thought, erm..... it should have been but I managed to make hard work of it!
I have to say, deciding to do this at 11.15pm was probably not the best idea!
Finally at about 12.15am after quite a lot of swearing..

lots of studying the instruction manual..........

lots of failed attempts...

I finally managed to do it!

And what is it? Well, it is just a little travel document holder as we are off to visit some relatives in Germany on Friday and I wanted something to hold all the flight details, passports and travel insurance info!
I can see 'things' with buttonholes are going to be my new thing!