Saturday 30 November 2013

Village fun.

Our village has it's own Christmas Fair, held in the village hall would you believe, ha ha. An obvious place to have it. The stalls are run by people raising funds for their own group or charity, it's quite a popular event. Refreshments are served so it's nice to have a cuppa and a natter with friends.
On this stall are all home made nicknacks, made by Ali who comes to our Monday Craft Club. She does a lot of knitting and crochet.   
I hid behind the tree on the stage to get this shot. A lot of people turned out to support the event.

Of course we had to have a Santa. He wasn't doing much trade as there wasn't many small children about. I did offer to sit on his knee but he said his old bones wouldn't stand the weight, cheeky beggar.

 Home made key rings and ear rings for sale.

I had a go at the tombola, five tickets for £1, but didn't win anything :o(
 I think this lady was Mother Christmas. She was a jolly soul.

The ladies from the Toddlers Group were doing a roaring trade. Our village caters very well for our young children.

The ever popular W I cake stall. There wasn't much left when I took this photo, the cakes always get snapped up. I treated myself to a scrumptious fruit loaf.

No manic consumerism here, just friendly village folk getting together for the good of the community. I like this sort of fun. Toodle pip.

Friday 29 November 2013

Nellie answers a few questions. Guest post

I feel a Nellie coming on, so I'd better ask her opinion on this topical topic. Come on Nellie, where do you stand on all this. Why were people queuing up at the shops this morning, three hours before they were due to open? Why did they push and shove so hard when the doors opened, which caused people to end up in hospital, one with a broken bone? Why did they turn into crazy vultures and strip the shelves of their electrical gadgets within minutes?  Why did they do this, Nellie?

And while you are at it, please answer me this. Why are people getting into a lather about Christmas?  Why are they filling the car parks at the shopping centre's and charging around the shops like something possessed? Why are they stressing about what gifts to buy? Why are they thrashing their credit cards, which is going to take them the whole year to pay off? Why are people going mad buying new kitchens, new bathrooms, three piece suites, and God knows what else, to be delivered in time for Christmas? Why, Nellie?

Well Meanqueen, it's like this. People are like sheep, they follow each other to the slaughter. Joe Bloggs down the road has a new cinema screen installed in his front lounge, and everybody wants one. In fact they want one even bigger. People are programmed to want more than their neighbours, which brings nothing but heartache when they get a visit from the Bailiffs and have their stuff repossessed because they can't keep up the payments.

You may have noticed that December the 25th is one 24 hour period in 365 days. On this day people are programmed to stuff themselves silly, get boozed up to the eyeballs, collapse in front of the tele, fall asleep, get up, stuff themselves even more, then puke it all up. All good fun, eh! Oh, and that isn't all, they spend the next few months trying to get rid of the weight they put on, because they forgot that their eyes are bigger than their bellies, and their gobs are bigger than their bum holes.

Well that's very good of you to explain all that Nellie. I think I'm going to drop out of this Christmas lark, not going to send any cards, not going to buy any presents, and definitely not going to elbow my way through the crowds at Tesco and queue at the checkouts. Folks must be mad running around like headless chickens, all for one chuffin day.

I quite agree MQ. Why put yourself through all that stress, folks must be bonkers. Me? I'm going to bugger off out the way, got myself booked on a cruise for six weeks, I'll be back when it's all over, ha ha.

Oooh Nellie, you are a one, you crack me up. Good idea though, can you fit me in your suitcase?
Toodle pip.

Thursday 28 November 2013

Nature walk

You can't beat a walk in the park for getting close to nature. It's ages since I last visited Normanby Park, so this morning I put on my boots and went for a stroll amongst the trees. A lot of the leaves have already fallen, but there was still enough left on the branches to add a splash of colour to the Autumn scene. As I walked amongst them the heavy mist gathered into droplets and fell all around me like rainfall.

I came across some marker posts with a notice on saying they are going to lay an all weather track through the woods. This will be good for wheelchair users who will be able to take the same route as I am walking.

The bark of this tree is so tactile, I couldn't resist running my fingers over it. It was massive, I wonder how long it has been there.


This tree was the other side of the fence in the deer park, I could see some stags with magnificent antlers grazing in the distance.

 I came across three other people, I almost had the park to myself.

 I love the mix of colours in this photo.

I waded through piles of multi-coloured leaves of all shapes and sizes. Looking down at the ground is as interesting as looking up.

Back home for lunch, which was a microwaved pot of frozen home made courgette and lentil soup, with half a tin of baked beans added, and a slice of wholemeal bread. A smashing filler after a walk in the park.

I've been busy this afternoon re arranging my furniture. The living room was a bit crowded so I've moved a sideboard, (I have two), upstairs to the spare room. I made a space for it by moving an old dressing table into the garage. I might end up chucking that as it's battered and chipped, and old. It's much better now, I've been able to insert the extending leaf into the dining room table so now I have loads of workspace for my crafty and arty hobbies. Now all I've got to do is to sort out all my stuff in the drawers and cupboards, and have a good old de clutter. I'll keep chipping away at it.
Toodle pip.  

Wednesday 27 November 2013

A visit to the Visual Arts Centre

My day has been very enjoyable. I had a text from my friend Helen, do I want to join her on a dog walk, she has three dogs to take out, and why don't I come along and have a natter. Of course, a nice way to spend a Wednesday morning, it is Wednesday today, isn't it, I can't keep up with the days flying by. We walked along the river bank, luckily the river is a long way out, so the dogs were able to run loose without fear of them getting too close to the water.
Helen has taken up furniture renovation and showed me some dining room chairs she has been working on. She has made a smashing job of them, removed the seat pads and the padded panel on the back, recovered them, and painted and distressed the wood. Is that what you call it when you paint something and leave it looking scruffy. Is it called shabby chic, I believe it's all the rage at the moment. This could be a new career for her. I showed her how to make cushion covers so I think that will be her next project.
This afternoon I went to town and had a browse round the Arts Centre. The exhibition they have on at the moment is called, Burnt Out, by Helen Snell. She uses digital laser and water jet cutting techniques to create her work. Her sculptures are made from steel, acrylic, paper, card, and fabric. These little boats are made from thin card and are the basis of the ornate boats that follow.
Each boat is made from three pieces of card. They look so delicate.


 These hanging sculptures are made from acrylic.

 Some larger installations.


 This looks beautiful against the backdrop of the church.


If you want to read more about Helen Snell's work take a look at this web site.

Afterwards I popped in Aldi for a few bits, more veg needed. I didn't fancy cooking tonight, so I just had scrambled eggs and baked beans on toast for my dinner. I had a long chat on the phone with Auntie tonight. Uncle Stan has an exhibition of his paintings coming up soon and I wanted to know the dates so I can fix up a visit down there. It's at the end of December, so that's something to look forward to. All cats are asleep and I'm going to catch up with Last Tango in Halifax.
Toodle pip.

Tuesday 26 November 2013

That's another one finished

Nearly there, cushion cover number four. The stripey squares are pale blue, the colour hasn't come out very well with the flash.

 Not sure which one is my favourite now. Heidi loves her new bed.
I've had a sort out of my quilting fabrics, got rid of the tiny odd shaped pieces which has left me with this little lot. All sizes of squares and rectangles. I have an idea for a throw for the back of the sofa. I will make a start when I have finished the last cushion cover. The squares are already cut for that.
Who said this was going to be addictive, ha ha.
Toodle pip

Monday 25 November 2013

Repairing the sun lounge

The sun came out today, so I took the opportunity to do a little job. Another one crossed off the list. These wooden shelves came free of charge from the B & Q warehouse where I used to work. Luckily they fitted into my estate car for transportation home. I must have had them for six years, no sign of rot yet, and they make a handy storage area for garden paraphernalia.
I tacked some thick plastic sheeting on the back, and the sides and top are covered with shrink wrap, that's like a giant roll of cling film. I last did it about a year ago, and now it needs replacing, so the old was stripped off, and the new wrapped around it.
 I tilted it forward and laid it front down on the ground, then went round and round it with the wrap, lots of times so it is quite thick. This stuff is tough, and lasts ages. I have three rolls of it, acquired from various places. If you see any at a car boot sale, buy it, it has lots of uses.

The blue basket trays make comfy beds for the cats, lined with an old curtain. This part of the garden gets most sun, and this makes a cosy little hideaway. I put the beds on different shelves because they are not best friends. They tolerate each other, but often eye each other up with suspicion.

 Heidi is watching all this activity from a distance.

Then she decides she likes the look of the upper level.
That's two happy cats now that their sun lounge has been repaired.
Catch you tomorrow. Toodle pip

Sunday 24 November 2013

Slipperboots, prototypes 2 - 8

Hi there, Some more work today on my new invention the slipperboot. There were some great ideas on yesterdays post, thank you for your contributions. Someone suggested buy some insoles from a £1 shop, erm, no, the idea is not to spend any money, but to make something from what I already have. So, more playing today, first change the string for cable ties. Bought these years ago, they are very cheap if you buy a big bag, they come in handy for all kinds of jobs.   
As you can see, they don't do this job very well because they are too short. They don't cover enough of the boot and the carpet sole will soon slip off.

Try again, I found some longer ties and put six on.
 Aahhh, much better this time. I can pull the lace tight around the boot. This might be the answer.

Next was to try something else. Cut the bottoms off a pair of tights somewhere near the knee. They are nice and stretchy and fit perfectly. Wow, yes, good idea but they are quite thin.
Let's try a pair of socks. Nope, not stretchy enough, can't get them over the heel.

Now these have a bit of stretch in them, very tight fitting mind you, a lot of tugging and pulling to get them on. Nice colour though, more fashionable.

What about these. Thick socks, they've got holes in them, but even with the tops cut off they don't have enough stretch to pull up the back of the heel.  
The bits cut off make good wrist warmers though, ha ha.

Finally, a pair of socks that fit. And to give them a slipperish appearance I've added a couple of colourful stuffed bugs. Don't they look cute.

I think I will stick with this idea for the winter, living in a cold house with rationed heating. The slipperboots will keep my feet warm, fingerless gloves and wrist warmers to keep my hands warm. All I've got to do now is invent something to keep my nose warm :o))
Toodle pip