Thursday, 29 April 2010

Patio Under Pressure

Apologies for the lack of posts, again. We've been doing lots of housey things this week (as well as being at work); getting it ready to put on the market - hopefully within a couple of weeks. Very exciting!

I've packed another million boxes in my attempt to clear my workroom. I'm truly amazed at how much stuff came out of there; honestly, the Tardis is nothing compared to my old workroom! I say 'old workroom' because it's now been turned back into a little bedroom, freshly decorated and ready for some furniture after the new carpet comes next week. After years of watching Ann Maurice on House Doctor we decided a while back to decorate and declutter, and make sure the house was spic and span and 'ready to move into'. Hopefully our house viewers will be impressed.

The garden has also seen some improvements, though I still need to give the bark path a good weed. Last weekend we had fun with Mam's pressure washer. I knew the patio needed a good clean (I scrubbed it on hands and knees last year but it didn't make a huge amount of difference) so I was amazed at how much muck a bit of water under pressure could clear away.

Hubby was very methodical in his technique: one square at a time, nice neat lines, pristine result...

Whereas I was slightly more creative! Hmmm, can you tell what it says? (Answer at the bottom of this post!)

Anyway, the results are fantastic don't you think? And now that the patio furniture is out too (though it could do with a lick of wood stain), the garden is looking the perfect spot for some lovely alfresco dining. All we need is some sunshine...

Answer: 'Bliss Knits' of course! (Sad of me, I know!) Must practice my joined-up-writing-with-a-pressure-washer-lance for next time...

Hope you all have a lovely week!

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Monday, 19 April 2010

Socialising, sight-seeing, and lots of scran

I had a busy week again last week - with food playing a major part. I ate out so much that I think I've probably gained two stone in weight. I guess I'll be having salads all this week then!

Saturday - Hubby and I tucked into a Chinese takeaway after our monthly stint at the Grainger Market Art & Craft Fair. The fair was much busier this month. Hurrah!

Sunday - Hubby and I took my Mam out for Sunday lunch for her birthday and then we had a nice walk (and an icecream!) round the Saltwell Park spring flower show.

Monday - Met my big sis and Mam for a quick meal in Newcastle during my lunch break.

Tuesday - Not much to report: boring sarnie at work and homemade tea.

Wednesday - Morning at work and then a lovely drive down to Whitby for a last minute break with hubby (see photos). Checked into our stylish B&B, and then had gorgeous chips for a late lunch whilst people-watching. Had a good walk around the shops on the west side, and a very windy walk along the pier (VERY stormy sea). Eventually found somewhere to eat on the night after wandering around the streets for an hour (places either shut completely or with 'no food today' signs. Bizarre.) Another Chinese meal - restaurant this time.

Thursday - Huge breakfast in B&B - yummy fruit and yoghurt, and then a Full English! Walked it off with a trip up the 199 steps to Whitby Abbey. Had a good look round the church and abbey but it was blowing a gale and icy cold so not as nice as it could have been. Wandered around the pretty streets and shops on the east side, and then a tasty lunch and milkshake at cafe overlooking the harbour. Visited the very interesting Whitby Museum (loved the fossils and miniature ships) and art gallery in the newly-renovated Pannet Park. Posh fish and chips in stylish restaurant for tea.

Friday - another B&B big breakfast before checking out. Had a couple of hours in Whitby again as the weather was so good and we wanted to see some of the sunshine before it disappeared again. The tide was out so we had a good potter about the beach and the jetties before heading home. Gorgeous pub meal on night with pregnant friend. I haven't seen her for a few weeks so it was good to catch up. She looked really well and I got to feel the baby kick a couple of times! Very special.

Saturday - Lovely pub meal with Mam, youngest niece and 3-year-old great niece. The sun was shining again so we walked there and back (with a stop to stroke the horses) so at least some of the calories were burned off!

And so that was my week. LOTS of yummy food - but also quite a bit of walking too (so I can still fit into my skinny jeans!) I had a lovely week of socialising and sight-seeing and chilling - I hope you had a nice week too.

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Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Colourful critters

I've been enjoying making lots of colourful items this past week or so. I think the brighter, sunnier days of spring are influencing my choice of yarns!

I made this sweet little dog sweater as a commission from a customer at the Grainger Market Arts & Craft Fair - a gift for her mum who adores her tiny Yorkshire Terrier. It was quite hard to make this with just a few measurements; I would have liked the dog to have tried it on part-way through, but as she lives in Taiwan that just wasn't possible! My customer has assured me that she'll take a photo of the dog in her funky bright sweater when she visits home next month - I can't wait, I think she'll look fab - I just hope it fits...!

I've also been making lots more spring chicks like this one. I think they're really cute and look great hung from drawer knobs and cupboard doors; they really brighten a room and add a sense of spring cheer. Lots more colours are available in my Folksy shop (or contact me if you'd prefer another combination).

Last week I bought a fab book on amigurumi. The idea for these cute knitted/crocheted soft toys comes from Japan but it's now a worldwide craze - aren't they just gorgeous?! I've been learning the basics this week, and now I'm starting to play around with my own designs. I love these brightly coloured yarns too - another cheery way to brighten your day!

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Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Flowers, packing, opera

Did you all have a nice relaxing Easter weekend?

I've been VERY busy, but I've really enjoyed it and now have that great feeling of satisfaction after a really productive few days. Shame I had to go back to work today though!

Regular readers will know that we're intending to move this year, so we've spent the Bank Holiday weekend looking at houses and decluttering our own. The garage is looking a lot tidier now that I've boxed up all of my plastic pots and gardening paraphernalia and taken it to my Mam's house; the patio has been cleared of my little nursery plants (cuttings and divisions taken last year with a view to a possible move to a new garden!) and they're now in foster care in Mam's garden; and you can actually see the floor in my workroom now that I've packed away lots of my crafting bits and bobs - now in storage in Mam's garage - can you see a theme here?!!!

I also took the time to have a potter in the garden; it's looking really pretty at the minute now that the lovely delicate spring flowers are in full bloom (and of course I had to take a few photos for you!)

We also managed to find the time to fit in a trip to The Sage. It's right on our doorstep and we do go quite often, but hubby is far more appreciative of classical music than I am - I just like a good tune! We saw the Orchestra of Opera North and the Huddersfield Choral Society, and their version of 'Carmina Burana' was absolutely fantastic! The 'O Fortuna' movement was amazing! Here's a version that I found on YouTube.

How did you spend your Easter?

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