Sunday, 26 August 2012

Sewing finally!!

After a recent trip out with my huge handbag (fits every one stuff in, but you can't find anything you need, I'm sure you know what I mean!!) I thought it was time for a new small bag.

I follow a blog called 'Flying Blind On A Rocket Cycle' and she recently made a bag from a free pattern. The pattern can be found at 'Made By Rae' and is called the Buttercup Bag.

So whilst out school uniform shopping we happened to call at our local quilting shop. After a chat and some debate the fabric was selected. Now the sewing can begin.

The pattern suggested using a magnetic fastener, which I spent ages searching the house for - without success. Also I made the strap a little wider. The pattern was easy to follow and quick to complete.
The light was pretty bad so the photo's are not great. I will now be looking for some more fabric in different colours. Maybe a blue outer bag with fish fabric lining. (I have loads left over from the fish tank project!!!)

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Little Fish

Just recently I saw a small fish on a friends blog. It was a crochet fish in orange. Then on a trip to my local fabric shop I saw some fish fabric. The rusty cogs in my sewing brain began to move (very slowly). Sadly orange isn't a colour I have used much, but red is (you can get red fish, I'm sure).
After a quick look through some patterns on ravelry I picked up my needles.

Then Sunday afternoon, when most of my jobs where done, out came the sewing machine. I had a little company for some of the time. (encroaching on my limited space!!!)

Just a few finishing touches to go, like how to suspend your fish and does a fish get lonely, will he need a friend, etc, then it will be finished. Do you want a look anyway?

He does look happy, but already I'm thinking, with smaller needles and finer wool he could have a friend. There's room in that tank for two fish don't you think!!!

Thursday, 16 August 2012


Sorry no sewing again today (although I did buy some fabric yesterday)

Today we took a trip to the Butterfly House in Lancaster. The day started out wet but this would not matter as we would be indoors.

The top photo shows Ashton Memorial which has fantastic views over Morecambe bay and the City of Lancaster. Around the side/back is the butterfly house and cafe. The children ran ahead leaving me and my Mum behind.

Once inside the butterfly house it takes a while to acclimatise, even in the summer months it feels so hot and humid. The first lot of photos didn't look so great as the camera had steam on the lens!!!

All the butterflies are free flying and land where ever and on whoever they want, which the children loved. (not so sure myself, I had a tendency to jump and squeal a little - quite embarrassing)

There is also a bug house (too dark for photos) which my little boy loved, snakes, finches, rabbit and guinea pigs. After a couple of trips around all the creatures we went back out into the park.

The weather had improved, so we went onto the park before the trip home.

Monday, 13 August 2012

I will sew again ! (but not today)

One day soon I will sew again, but as many parents out there will understand in the summer holidays it can be difficult to fit it all in.

Back to our fifty things. On Sunday we collected our nets and buckets ready to fish. Our chosen location was a quiet section on the Lancaster canal. A quick phone call and the children had 'persuaded' there Auntie and Uncle to bring the canoe.

I've never canoed but my Sister and family have an inflatable canoe and life jackets.
We had a bit of rain, but the sun eventually shone. No one fell in (bonus) and a total of 18 fish where caught (the dead one I caught didn't count)

Number 8 - Catch a fish with a net.
Number 50 - Canoe down a river (too dangerous, the canal is better)

Thanks again to my Sister and family for the canoe and being 'the expert advice and supervision'.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Camping, sorry thats 'Wild Camping'

So looking at the list of '50 things to do before your 11.3/4' we spotted number 3 Camp out in the wild. This would be easily achievable. My family had booked to go to the Lake District camping, so we tagged along.

Our destination was Hawkshead. After setting up camp we all went for a walk through the village.

The second day we visited the lovely town of Ambleside, the weather didn't start out great but brightened up later on. Sadly my camera ran out of batteries so no photos (why didn't you charge it before you set off? yes I asked myself that question).

On the third day we had a 'little' walk to Tarn Hows. The route said it was 5 miles but seamed a lot longer, luckily the weather was sunny with only a few showers. (all my photos are taken with my phone and my little boy has the compass out, but we did follow a map)

On the last day we decided to take the ferry across Lake Windermere. My little boy was so excited, its only a short ferry crossing but you would have thought he was going on a world cruise!!

Once we had crossed Windermere on the ferry we had a walk around Bowness. Although the town has some lovely buildings, gardens, little churches etc. it is FULL of people, which makes taking photos with a phone pretty difficult!!

So the following day we packed up our car and headed home. When you are away from home with no distractions (TV, internet, computer games, etc.) you realise how easily entertained the children are. A small stream, permission to get wet & muddy and they couldn't have been happier. Even on our long walk they ran ahead with sticks playing Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings.

My suggestion for a successful 'wild camping' trip would definitely be to take some extras, family or friends the more the merrier.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

A project from the past!!

Some children have a cherished toy. A toy that goes every where, days out, visits to see family, to the shops and obviously too bed. My Daughter had 'Funny Ted' for many years. After one too many near misses (occasions where they are lost for several panicky hours) 'Funny Ted' was placed on house arrest - no more days out (too dangerous).

Then we got 'Cutie' the dog. She was new, not yet so cherished and allowed out. But cutie had no where to sleep when home alone (she wasn't allowed to go to school).

So, I love to sew and sewing for a practical purpose is easily justified, if by chance tea is late or a mess is produced. Cuties kennel was born.

A kennel needs to be easily moved with its very own bone handle. Opening and closing front door, in pink - of course and finally the roof must open to allow blankets & bowls to be arranged.

Cuties house has been well used, allowing dog friends to visit and Cutie to travel around in style. She soon became a cherished little dog and remains in the best place on my Daughters bed.

This project was a joy to make. Using cheap wadding inside the walls and roof gave it just enough strength to allow for the occasional 'squashing'. The roof fabric was an old school skirt with scallop stitching to represent roof tiles, the weight of the wadding keeps the door closed. The front door was double thickness felt (not fancy expensive felt) sewn into position with buttons as decoration. A small piece of Velcro holds the door closed. I'm sure the kennel idea could be adapted to make other pet carriers. Just pick your pet !!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

A sunny day at the sea side (well a bit sunny)

This post and maybe a few to come is all thanks to this little (free) book below. I've followed a lovely blog for some time now called  'The Vintage Magpie' and a few days ago she blogged about a booklet called   '50 things to do before your 11 3/4'.

I search for my nearest National Trust property, rang to check they had the booklet, then coincided a trip out in the appropriate direction.

Today the forecast was for sun, so off we went to the beach. The children discussed all the things on the list that could be done at the beach - bury someone in the sand, catch a crab, go wild swimming etc.

The weather looks a bit chilly in the photos but it was quite warm. Sadly not warm enough for wild swimming. (I was happy for them to try it, I even brought spare clothes, but no it was too cold). In the lower photo, that's surfing on drift wood!!!
The sand wasn't sandy enough to bury anyone and there was not a crab in sight. So what else was on the list ? Flying a kite!!

There was very little wind but plenty for a couple of pocket kites. The kites had to be pulled in as the rain began to fall. So back to the car, complete with sandy shoes, wet trousers and pockets full of rocks.

Just to add, the rain was very heavy at home so Miss decided to 'Run around in the rain', another one off the list. (I could watch from inside the house)

Maybe tomorrow we can 'Climb a tree' or 'Make a mud pie'