Friday, 26 August 2016

Surprise ^-^

Today's mail brought a big (well small in size but big in impact) surprise envelope.   At lunchtime when I phoned the HD3QBEM she told me there was an envelope from Japan with a sticker on it.
When I got home I found that the sticker was a sender's address label in Japanese; even fully sighted the HD3QBEM couldn't read that !!
Inside was this ....
And a note from my friend telling me that she had found this letter writing notepaper which was "exactly right for Ma-" as she affectionately calls me.   Top marks and a gold star to Sawada san.
Can you see clearly in this shot why she thought so?  
It was around 36 years ago we first met and Sawada san was a university student then. Since then our paths have diverged but her occasional surprise packages warm my heart.   Thank you very much Sawada san ^-^

Thursday, 25 August 2016


Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of Father's death and Little Sister sent these lovely flowers to the HD3QBEM.  Carnations, lilies, chrysanthemums, freesias, erlicheer, an iris or two and fragrant stocks.
Aren't they beautiful?    And the smell from the stocks is divine.
Thank you very much Little Sister.

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Spring is in the air

Today was glorious and golden all day thus difficult to believe the weather forecast for rain tomorrow.
However, just in case I picked another bunch of freesias to keep the HD3QBEM happy while I go to work.  Aren't they beautiful?   Can you smell them?

This afternoon I went browsing at the Vintage Textile Fair.   How come textiles from my childhood are vintage?   I'm not that old!!
There were acres of vintage sewing patterns (not tempting),several tables with fabrics (tempting but resisted), a stall of hats (I tried on one or two), lovely linens (imagine the laundry), clothes from several decades (including some in that dreadful crimplene fabric - remember that?) and furs!  One beautiful rich brown fox fur shoulder stole.   I could see that attached to the hood of a thick woollen winter jacket.  I checked the length, the look and the price.   But good sense prevailed.   Can you imagine the cold frowns and dark looks from the animal protectionist lobby?   I would be too afraid to venture out:-(

Friday, 19 August 2016

While the boss is away.....

For the next two weeks my boss is on leave and today she came down to my desk, sat down and said,
"will you have plenty to do while I am away?"
Now, what sort of a question is that?   I meekly answered that I had enough work, all the while wondering what else she wanted done.
In point of fact I was in the middle of tidying my drawers and cleaning the top of my desk, so while I looked busy it wasn't exactly productive.
She grinned and said, "you might do mine while I'm gone or have you run out of tins?"
This photo shows the reason for that comment.   Score one point to the boss!

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Progress report

After a busy and long day at work it has been relaxing to stitch mindlessly on this colourful piece.
The end is in sight and I am now wondering how I will construct the bag I want to make.   A tote bag with a colourful outside pocket on each side, using up some heavy black woollen fabric left over from my winter skirt.  Stash contains some buckram stiffening too and the necessary cotton for the lining.  Over the weekend I will study my existing but precariously worn out tote and make some notes on the construction, although there will not be time to sew.

I have other commitments this weekend! It is the Embroiderers' Guild monthly meeting; I have promised Little Sister to Skype her so that the HD3QBEM can share in the antics of Great-granddaughter; the Vintage textile fair is on at the nearby racecourse and I intend to visit, and then I need to fit in the usual chores and a visit to the Library.  

I need to note that my new position at work is immensely satisfying and interesting.   Now the days are getting longer I arrive home in bright day light (even though I leave before the sun is up) which means I have time for some outdoor activity and a longer evening to enjoy both the company of the HD3QBEM and my stitching.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

I needed this

In a couple of weeks I am taking the HD3QBEM away for a long weekend.   She already has her knitting project selected and bagged up ready to take.   So of course I followed her example.
I had kitted up the Mary Beale Christmas Wreath project but decided that starting to count fine linen under hotel room lights was not a guarantee of success.   So I started it at home last night and couldn't stop.
But now I am going to put it away - right away -  and get back to my Florentine Pocket which needs to be completed.

The side street where I usually park my car while at work is being dug up by slow moving men in hi-vis jackets.  They have carefully placed bright orange traffic cones and no parking signs and told me that it will be two months before they are finished.   So I am leaving home half and hour earlier in order to ensure I get a carpark on another side street.  Parking is very difficult in the area where the office is located.  Of course I have the intention of finishing work earlier to compensate....but that doesn't really eventuate.  So next week I plan on taking an afternoon off in lieu of the extra hours.   But today was a beautiful Spring day - well, Spring-like and traffic was light so I was home by 4:40pm.   Just as well.  The HD3QBEM is not well and was very happy to see me.

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Progress on the Florentine Pocket

I have the whole dark grey/black skeleton stitched now and the colours selected.   These look random enough to me so far and certainly very colourful.   Hopefully in a week or so I will be able to make up the bag.
Today I passed by my LNS and called in to pick up one DMC floss.   Look what jumped into my hand as well :-)   Who knew that Highland Mist was such a beautiful colour.  
This will become a hardanger piece (once I look in my stash for suitable fabric) but may have to be put out of temptations way until I finish the current WIP's.  On the other hand, in a couple of weeks the HD3QBEM and I are going away for a long weekend break and I will need a small project to stitch then so....we shall see.
Meanwhile I have a date with a good book, a hot water bottle and a warm bed.