Friday, 19 December 2014

Blackbirds and a magpie

Every Autumn I wait for the blackbirds to reappear. They stop singing in August and then disappear for a few months. Last year it was quite late on in December before they returned but this year they were a bit earlier.
Mr Blackbird is very fond of mealworms. He does not seem to mind the dried variety.

But Mrs Blackbird found these red berries and had a great feast. The only reason there are some left is because she was too heavy for the smaller branches. I was so pleased to see her eating because I had planted berry bearing plants especially for the birds.
Mr Magpie  is not too fussed what he eats.
Mr B is also partial to some suet pellets. We have also been visited by a robin, greedy starlings, blue tits and some goldfinches. No sign of the wren so far this year.

Friday, 12 December 2014

Decorations

We have a new tree this year. It was an impulse by back in October when we went to buy paint at B&Q! The previous tree had served us well since Christmas 1997 and over the years it had been easy to decorate because although it never looked exactly the same I knew  how it should look. This one is taller and slimmer and so it has taken me a while to put it together.
I am pleased with it even though it has no star at the top yet.

Mother Nature Winter is in her corner
and the snowmen are watching from across the room.
I made these hearts last year
and the stars are new. We still have to put the big X stitch picture above the fire place and hang the dangles. But we are nearly ready for santa. There was even a few flakes of snow today. Tia of course is not happy because she has been banned from the front room unless under supervision.

Friday, 5 December 2014

Swap

For the last couple of years Terri and I have done a Christmas Ornament swap. This year I was extremely organised and sorted it all out very early and posted it off.  It arrived at  the end of November and here it is.

I was pleased with the result. I don't do very much x stitch now a days.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Stash and stuff

Last Thursday  John and I visisted the Knitting  and Stitching Show in Harrogate. We made the decision to go on one of the weekdays after the crush on the Saturday last year. It made such a difference and although some of the popular stalls still had a bit of a crowd it was so much better. I am afraid I was far too sensible this year and was not tempted by too many of the lovely things I saw.

So here is what I bought. It still came to a reasonable amount of cash though. I made the decision to buy a dangerous fabric cutting implement that really I  should not be allowed anywhere near and a 24 inch rule. These two items should not count really as I had intended to buy them online a couple of months ago and then never did. I was tempted by the book Here comes Winter as it as so many lovely thoings to make and plenty of snowman related projects. As you can see I have started using some of the yarn already as Biddle wants a new jumper to wear at Christmas. I thoroughly enjoyed the day and was excited to see my name on the list of people who contributed to last year's appeal for people to knit woolly jumpers for the Le Tour
As it was an alphabetical list by first name I was on the last page. Many of the jumpers have been collected back in and washed and are being made into blankets.  However the visit could have been so different! We were waiting at the crossings outside the Harrogate International Centre, as we crossed the road on a greenman  as car drove straight in front of us. John grabbed me back in time. The driver was did not blink and drove on.

I have been busy knitting and have made two pairs of fingerless gloves from my stash from Yarndale.
Both patterns were easy but I  made hardwork of the pair  on the left because I kept misreading the pattern! I am a bit cross about the hat kit I  bought at Yarndale. I was all set to start that at the weekend. I cast on the stitches on the circular needle went to start the first round and realised that the stitches did not reach to the ends of the needles. The kit included 80cm length ones which are too long for the 114 stitches needed for the hat. So now I have to purchase shorter ones. I have seen some 60cm ones on line so will get those but it is a purchase I should not have to have made. I am not used to circular needles and my practise with DPNs did not go well. We shall see. If necessary I will knit it on normal needles and put up with a seam.

Various  bits of Christmas stitching are happening at the moment including finishing my snowman wall hanging. The new Christmas tree will go up next week.