Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Emily's Birthday (Part 1)

Today was Emily's 14th birthday. In fact, as I write, she would just have been born (9.30pm). I can't believe my "baby" is 14 already - the years have certainly flown by. 
This morning she came downstairs to presents waiting to be opened.

And the obligatory helium balloon ;o)
 She had breakfast first but was then happy to get stuck in and start with the present opening.
 Her list had consisted of a number of books - Emily would be the first to tell you that she's a total bookworm! - and some DVDs.
 This was what she had really been hoping for and it had been ordered from America
 Her very own Harry Potter wand ;o)  Emily loves Harry Potter, has read the books numerous times and seen all the films.
 It even came with it's very own pouch 
 Manga books are another of Emily's favourites though this year she'd also asked for a number of the "My Story" historical novels (eg. Tudor Stories for Girls, My Royal Story : Victoria; War Stories for Girls, etc.).
By the time she'd finished opening her presents she had quite a pile to take upstairs with her.

Part 2 to follow

Monday, 27 September 2010

Moses Basket Quilt

Today I finally got round to taking photos of the Moses Basket quilt. This was made using scraps of fabric in my stash because I wanted to see how this design turned out. Making the blocks was easy enough but when I came to sew them together I realised most of the fabrics were on the bias which didn't make it quite so easy. The quilt probably turned out a bit smaller than expected as a result because I had to trim off more to try and square the edges. I quilted across the whole quilt using a free hand method.

I had quite a lot of fairy fabric in the stash so that became the back of the quilt. You can also see some of the quilting in this photo.
I'm now back knitting again and will hopefully show a couple of the cardigans soon.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Dad's Birthday Tea

Dad's 81st birthday was on Tuesday but because he was taking Mum to the hospital for a scan that day it was decided that he would have his birthday tea on Saturday. Some of the family were working but those who weren't were there to help celebrate another year.

Dad had some help from Tyler when it came to opening his present, which seemed only fitting as Tyler had chosen it specially for Great Grandpa.  
Tyler knows Dad likes his gardening and decided that he needed a train flower pot and even told his Mum that Grandpa would be able to put plants in it.
Tyler's Mum, Theresa and little sister, Alyssa (hasn't she grown!)  Can't believe she'll be one next month, do you remember those baby photos? Doesn't time fly!
 Tyler was also on hand to help with blowing out the candles - good job Tyler!
When everyone came up to get cake it was a good chance to take a photo of those present.
From Left: Dad, Theresa, Tyler, Alyssa, Iain, Emily, Claire, Jon, Max and Mum.  As I was taking the photo I wasn't in it and Craig arrived a bit later after football but probably didn't mind not being there for photos ;o).
A very enjoyable, relaxed afternoon with lots of chatting and enjoying the younger ones antics. Thanks Mum and Dad xx

Saturday, 25 September 2010


Yesterday saw Claire and me back at the hospital for Claire to get the results from the blood tests taken at her last visit. Everything came back normal and she doesn't have to go back to the hospital until 19/11 - which she hopes won't be necessary, as baby's due date is 15/11. She will see the midwife at our local surgery until then. 
Only three weeks until she goes on Maternity leave by which time I think she'll probably be more than ready to stop.
During the afternoon yesterday, I got the chance to work on the baby quilt. This one is just a little quilt which could be used in the Moses basket or to cover baby in the pram or car seat. One day it may even end up being a doll's quilt ;o)  I'm happier with it now that it's been quilted and will post a photo of the completed quilt once the binding is finished.
Today, when I got back from work, I got a package in the post from Sandi at Living Life One Blessing At A Time. I was the lucky one chosen to receive this book in Pass the Book, which was started by Sian at From High In The Sky. I keep the book for a month (which I'm really looking forward to) and then I'll be ready to pass it on to the next person. Please watch out for a post around the 25 October when I'll be asking you to leave a comment if you'd like a chance to be the next recipient of this book. 
It's such a great idea, so a big Thank You to Sian for starting the Book Pass.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

I've made a start

I took Cathy's class last year and although I wrote out a fair bit of the journalling, I never got round to completing the album. I've decided to start again this year and have made a new tag book to get me going. 
Having seen Cathy's digital book in her video this week, I am seriously thinking of having mine printed in book form too, so I'll be making digital pages. As for who to use to get the book printed, I looked up Blurb and they have a UK website - think I might give them a try. Has anyone else used Blurb before?

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Today I'm enjoying ...

Our Acer changing colour and becoming more autumn-y every day
A clean kitchen
Trying a new Options flavour - Chocolate Cherry
Verdict : it's nice but I still prefer the Turkish Delight one.
Having the washing and ironing up to date :o)
Buying the gifts I need for birthdays and, dare I say, starting some Christmas shopping ;o)
Feeling like I've got more energy - I guess there must be something to that healthy eating!
What are you enjoying today?? xx

Monday, 20 September 2010

32 Weeks

Today being the 20th of the month, it was time to take Claire's baby bump photos. She is 32 weeks today - only 8 weeks to go, can't believe it! xx

Saturday and Sunday

Saturday afternoon.
Played around with Photobox.
Sunday afternoon
Jon's sister and her husband popped round for a visit.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Quick update

The last few days have been fairly busy, but good!
Wednesday was spent doing more housework - I'm working my way through the house slowly but surely. Wednesday saw me helping Claire and Craig sort out their room so that they've got room for the baby's Moses basket and just generally putting away baby things. Thursday morning was my fortnightly "meet up for coffee" morning. We go to Neros, get there between 9 and 9.30am and have been known to still be there around mid day ;o). This week I left closer to 11am as I had things to do still. Always good to catch up with friends though.
I worked a bit more on the baby quilt in the afternoon but I'm not happy with the way it's going at the moment. I'll have a go at fixing it but if I'm still not happy I can see I'll be doing another one!
This morning I met up with another friend and we went to Wych Cross Garden Centre. They do a wide range of plants but roses are their speciality. They still had a lot in bloom and I could happily wander around looking at them and smelling their perfume. The picture above shows the view from the verandah of the coffee shop (with roses in the foreground) Yet more roses, looking in the other direction. As you can see, we were lucky enough to have blue sky and sunshine today - it was so nice to be able to sit outside for our tea and scones (and yes I did count them in my daily points ;o) )
Our tea tray :o)
This afternoon I've been busy uploading photos to Photobox but it's taken me a bit longer than I expected. I'm glad to say they're now all uploaded and I can carry on with what I need to do.
I think we've got a quiet-ish weekend this week but that could change at the drop of a hat. Let's see how it goes!
PS> To all my blog friends, I haven't had a chance to read or comment on blogs for the last couple of days but hopefully that's something I will get to do this weekend :o)

Tuesday, 14 September 2010


Nothing exciting going on here, I've spent the day catching up on the dreaded housework. I'm sure I must have done at least 4 loads of towels - my family have a habit of letting wet towels accumulate in their rooms until there are none in the airing cupboard!
Well, we have towels again now!

Monday, 13 September 2010


We had a pretty laid back weekend this week, I work for a couple of hours on a Saturday and Sunday helping a lady who's had a stroke. I had never done this sort of work before but I quite enjoy it and I know she appreciates me going in to see her. I generally get home again between 10.30am and 11am and carry on with the rest of my day.
This Saturday it included a quick trip into town to get some fruit and veg from the fruit and veg guy who sets up a stall locally on a Thursday and Saturday. The Navel oranges he had this week are wonderful (sweet and juicy) and although the peaches were too, they've gone off quite quickly. I find I'm using more fruit at the moment with trying to eat healthily and sometimes need to stock up again during the week.
My next stop was to see my sister's new flat. Boy did that make me realise how unfit I am!! She has SIX (fairly short) flights of steps to walk up to get to the flat - now you know how I found out how unfit I am ;o). She hasn't moved in yet but is busy painting and moving things in and hopes to be in this weekend. I look forward to seeing it once she's in :o).
In the afternoon Jon and I popped in to see his sister who had an op on her thumb on Friday. She's home and her husband has taken this week off to look after her. Unfortunately, he then goes away on business for a few days and that's when she may need help.
In the evening it was time to have dinner and curl up with Emily to watch X-Factor. I believe the quilt ended up over our knees as it was quite chilly in the evening.
On Sunday the sun was catching the leaves on the Acer out the back. I don't know that this photo does it justice but it looked so pretty with the turning leaves highlighted by the sun. Sunday was more relaxed still and after work Emily and I went to Nero's for a coffee and then did a bit of shopping before coming home to watch Whip It in the afternoon. I really didn't know if I was going to enjoy this movie but it was better than I expected :o) Monday is our (Mum's and my) day for doing the weekly shop at Sainsburys. Fortunately we have a Starbucks in Sainsburys so after we've finished shopping we head for a coffee. Today we bumped into Craig's Nan and Aunt on our way to the check out and we had a coffee together. They're great fun and an hour flies by before we know it. I took this photo of our mugs as my photo for today for my tag book.
Back to the theme of shopping and I know I'm not the only one who feels this but do you? It gets me that you go shopping, have to walk around the shop putting everything you need into the trolley, unpack it at the check out for it to be scanned and paid for, repack it to take it home and once home have to unpack it again to put it away! Maybe one of these days I should go back to doing my shopping online and have it delivered to me so all I have to do is unpack it at home - thing is, I'd miss my weekly coffee at Starbucks ;o)
After lunch today I decided to try out Mel's recipe for Yoghurt Cake. It was simple to make and turned out beautifully. I used Toffee yoghurt as I thought it was the flavour the whole family would probably like. Emily wasn't sure about trying it when she got home from school because she didn't like the idea of yoghurt in a cake. With a bit of persuasion she said she'd try and she really enjoyed it :o). Thanks for the recipe Mel!

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Hanging on

Jon's trying to hang on to Summer for as long as possible. He loves sitting outside but it was pouring down today and even the big garden umbrella wasn't going to keep him out of it, so he sat on the table so he would be under cover ;o) As Autumn and then Winter set in, he'll add more layers of clothing and eventually a hat and scarf but he'll still continue to sit outside!

Friday, 10 September 2010

A couple more layouts

Claire and I spent a very enjoyable morning with our friends Helena and Graden today. We went to a local garden centre for breakfast (I refrained from having a cooked breakfast and had toast instead, so I could still point it) and sat chatting for ages. We also popped in to Hobby Craft, which is in grounds of the garden centre. I hadn't intended buying anything but came home with some wool and a baby pattern ;o).
Graden, Helena and Claire
This afternoon was spent completing a couple more layouts. I used the wonderful template that I won on Amy's blog a little while ago and did hybrid layouts. I love that I can just switch off the writing and borders to print the photos the sizes I need and then turn them on again to print the background page. Thank you Amy, this template has been great!
I used the template to do a layout of Claire's first scan and decided to keep the same layout for the other two scans as well. In the one above (the second scan), the journalling reads :
"Your second scan was on 06 May 2010, which was also the day to go and vote in the general elections. We voted first and then picked Craig up from home (he had a day off work) and headed to the hospital for your appointment. I don't think Craig was quite sure of what to expect but a big smile came over his face when he saw his little baby on the monitor. It's amazing how much the baby has grown since the first scan three weeks ago. It was so exciting to see it's little body and see the heart beating. It certainly makes it all seem more real now. Love that little baby scan!" The journalling on the layout for the third scan reads:
"Your third and final scan was on 02 July 2010 while Aunty Norma was still here from South Africa. We were so excited to see if we could find out what you are having but, at your appointment, they couldn't see because the feet were in the way. You were sent away to have something sweet to eat and told to do a few star jumps before going back again to see if it had made a difference. It had, you're having a little GIRL!!! So exciting. I know this little girl is going to be loved by everyone and now we can start buying pink things :)
Yay, for simple layouts - great fun!

Thursday, 9 September 2010


This morning Claire had a midwife appointment at the local surgery. Their midwife is back from maternity leave and finally, for the last few weeks, Claire will get a chance to build a relationship with her. The first midwife she saw went off sick before her second appointment, she saw a locum for the next two visits and on her last visit she saw someone different again. Hopefully Mandy will see her through to the end of her pregnancy now. As always, the best part of the visit is hearing the baby's heart beat :o)
Outside the surgery. I love the bump shadow on the ground ;o)
I'm trying to get back to eating more healthily and today I made a pasta salad for lunch. Wholemeal pasta, tuna, boiled egg, tomato, cucumber, spring onion and red pepper - it was yummy and filling. After lunch I took Cloud out for a walk. It was sunny today, for what seems like the first time in ages and it was lovely to be outside. Our route tends to take us down a few paths and today I took my camera with me. I love the way some of the trees are starting to change colour and took some photos of them with the sky as a background. The garden of this house has been beautiful all summer. They put a lot of work into it and it's certainly paid off.
Lots of berries on the trees/bushes
It was rubbish day today so the wheelie bins were outside the houses
The rubbish truck
Just to prove Cloud was actually with me ;o)
Heading home
The side of our house
And finally, the last of our sunflowers