Posts tagged hobbies

Postaday2011: A marathon holiday

It has been such a great holiday, with four bank holidays in two weeks, many peple strategically booked their three days off smack in the middle and got eleven days off losing only those three statutory days. The bank / public holidays were Good Friday, Easter Monday, The Royal Wedding and May day s0 taking in the weekends that is a really good holiday. My own has been busy, busy, busy. I have had visitors and Harry at home.

We are continuing our decluttering, which, even though no one would notice, seems to make the house just feel better. Still a long way to go but we are on a roll here. This weekend we took huge bags to the charity shop and are still fighting how to get all the recycle stuff into the bins so they will be taken without question… still working on that one. I think I might just have to catch the refuse collectors and talk nicely to them..

A little while ago H thought he might like to take up wood turning as a hobby once he retires in a couple of years or so, he went out and bought a lathe and chisels and several other bits, he was also given some wood and books, and subscribed to a magazine. Needless to say he discovered it wasn’t for him and so all the equipment was going to the charity shop when we learned that my uncle was restocking his workshop with the same… It was such a pleasure to give the stuff away to someone who really apreciated it. On top of that I got to spend a few hours with my aunt who, as 15 months older than me, I had grown up with. How nice it was to look at old photo’s that reminded me of my younger years and remember my grandmother too.

We naturally took some photos and here is a picture of myself, with my aunt, Uncle, my daughter Tabby and her daughter Millie.

It was such a wonderful conclusion to a great holiday, well not so much for me because I am at home all the time anyway, but for Harry, to have such a long break was really nice. There is something special about the times he is at home. We do more together and because he doesnt have to get up at 4.30am, we can lie in and enjoy a restful day doing just what we want. I don’t reckon he bargained for 15 minutes of physical exercise every morning before breakfast though..

On the topic of hobbies, I have plenty and am actually very busy but H has none, he has thought of photography and bought a bigger camera for that very purpose but most interestingly he and his former lodger, and now my daughter’s husband, have got together, following one of my previous entries, and have decided to get a boat between them to sail on the local pond. Warship? Torpedo boat? who kows but the last I heard a fishing boat was favourite…. watch this space!

Before I conclude this post I have to add the most wonderful picture of our little Millie that Harry took so maybe photography will be a good hobby for hm too. See what you think.

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Postaday2011:rebuilding, decluttering and sailing.

Whew! What a hectic few days, our guests have all gone following a Friday night of entertainment. Well not really entertainment, the father of my grand daughter’s friend was staying in Portsmouth and it seemed silly that he had to travel all round the Peninsula to be here for 2.30. We decided it would be much better to stay the night here. So we all had a meal together, I made a packed ‘breakfast’ and we got up to see them all off at 3am.

The house seems awfully quiet but it is nice to have my studio back. Harry and I have decided that we need to de clutter so as we were rebuilding upstairs that’s what we started to do. I have to explain that to accommodate the girls we had to move the furniture around, like the freezer that is normally in my studio, all my art stuff including canvasses, easels, paints, stacking drawers, which all had to be removed. Then there was rearranging the furniture in the studio to accommodate two camp beds and so on.. So rebuilding was quite an event.

The de-cluttering was just something that happened when we realised we would have so much more space if we got rid of al the ‘stuff’ we had accumulated over the years and had never used. Like sticky labels that were no longer sticky, printed paper that was now faded, note pads, yellow with age, an excess of pens and pencils and so on. It went on to old magazines, folders, things we were keeping for no apparent reason… What a wonderful feeling. My stuff is all together and easily accessible, all the ‘office stuff’ has been sorted and again, we know where it is, I have space in my room to move. It seems like the house has taken a huge sigh as it released its clutter and relaxed into a tidy space.

Three parts through the decluttering, my daughter Suzi rang and asked if we would like to go to a ‘boat launching’. LOL I must explain, her husband, who was once Harry’s lodger, is an expert model craftsman and had built another boat that he wanted to go on a trial run with at the local boating pond. Actually, they don’t have a car and Oscar likes to be out and about, so to get anywhere they have to walk or take a bus. Having walked miles in the morning, Suzi was exhausted, she is over 6  months pregnant, so if we were to go along, we would pick them up and drive them to the town park.

It was a really wonderful couple of hours! I got to spend time with my daughter and grand daughter unexpectedly and Harry and Oscar got to play boats. 

Oscar set up the boat, built from balsa wood and various other bits that he salvaged from anything he could lay his hands on, and gave it the first trial run. None of us knew whether it would sail or sink, after all, as Suzi said, he hadn’t even tried it in the bath  as he usually does.

Well the little boat sailed, and boy did it sail well. The pond was covered in a kind of sludgy weed that drifted in the wind so the boat had to be steered around it so as not to be snagged. But the boat proved to be an excellent vessel. The proof was positive. As we arrived there were a family of four that were sailing a hovercraft on the pond. We soon realised that they weren’t sailing at all and were rather stuck. The pond weed had firm hold on it and it was stuck out into the middle of the pond.

You can see the weed as Oscars little balsa wood boat set off on its rescue mission. Avoiding it, and the possible consequences of also being trapped in the gungy mess, the powerful motor sailed through the clearer waters till it reached the hovercraft. Oscar is a brilliant model maker and the rudder and powerful engine assured great manoeuverability. It changed direction in an instant should it encounter any obstacle and soon reached the stranded hovercraft. A simple push and it was soon guided to the shore much to the delight of the little girl who was steering it. And her Daddy of course.

A quick check of the engine and rudder to make sure all was ok and not clogged with weed, the hero of the day took her out again. She sailed out to each of the buoys dotted around the pond and moved easily and quickly steering perfectly past weed and round the buoys. After a quick run, Oscar handed the controls to Harry. He wore his old sailor hat for the occasion and we brought drinks to wish Bon Voyage to her maiden cruise, well, J20 for us ladies, Ribena for Maica and Red Bull for the men, yuk!  We wished her a good trip and Harry took control. His years in the Navy weren’t wasted, he took her out and round the pond, avoiding the weed, sailing gloriously around the buoys and bringing her safely ‘alongside’ as he might have done had it been a real boat  when he was a submariner.

Again, the weed lurked in the water blown by the breeze, but Harry was not to be daunted, the little grey boat sailed round the vast pond, between drifts of weed, round buoys and drew up alongside with no effort at all. It was with no doubt that us ladies, Marie, Maica and Suzi, realised that we had the most wonderful and clever men in our lives. I mean to do all that and 1) not know it if would sail or sink, 2) be unsure how well the rudder would steer her, and 3) most important of all, be the rescue boat within a few minutes of her maiden voyage. Wow!

If only they had any idea of how time flies when you are having fun! We sat and watched, Maica played and gave us kittens every time she went near the water, we sang little songs and played games, we watched some more, held our breath as weed threatened to clog her rudder, and …. wondered if we would ever get home to cook dinner before six o’clock…

Seriously, it was a wonderful break from our rebuilding and decluttering and the fresh breeze and warm air did us the world of good. Oscar could see where he needed to modify his boat and so I am sure that once he has played with it a bit and rebuilt it further, we will be sailing again soon.

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Postaday2011: A day to ourselves.

We hadn’t planned a day to ourselves because each time we do something always changes and we end up so busy. There was a list of things to achieve and we did some of them and added an impromptu visit to a friend as well. I put dinner in the oven, well a joint of beef anyway, and we went out knowing we had two hours before the meat would be cooked. We visited an Art and Craft fair in a nearby village. The sun was shining and it was the first time I had really been out this year apart from a bit of shopping, which I consider a necessity.

The art was fantastic, such a huge selection of pictures using so many different mediums. The quality of each picture was amazing and I could have wandered around all day just admiring them. The craft was also brilliant, there were so many beautiful crafts there from spinning, lace making, mosaic work, weaving, wood-turning, wood carving, cards, jewellery, stitch crafts and painted ceramics, so, so many clever people. It was a joy to see their work and to get ideas for both painting and craft stuff, it certainly inspired both Harry and myself.

A friend of mine was supposed to have been on the door and we assumed we had missed her. Which is the reason we popped by her home to say a very quick hi, not forgetting our time limit and the fact we also wanted to go into a store for a picture frame on the way home and before our Sunday joint was burned to a frazzle. I hadn’t seen her and her husband for months and we were persuaded to have a cuppa with them. As she is also an artist and a writer, there was so much to talk about and I just love their huge country garden with all the birds and wildlife. Somewhere I could spend forever in.

My friend’s husband was a horticulturist and I remembered as we were leaving to ask about the caterpillars and bugs. He tells me they might not be caterpillars as such rather saw fly larvae instead. My poor daughter will be disappointed. I spoke to her but a lot of them have escaped so maybe it will be ok. Anyway, I digress, I was given the name of a good product that would help to remove them from my garden. Tomorrow I will attack .  I shall be relentless as tonight another bunch of flowers from my primulas were eradicated..

My poor little violas are looking sadder and sadder but I did see a lot of ants nipping around. I bleached the patio area and sprayed for weeds and I suspect they moved house under cover of darkness, maybe to beneath the violas.. another path for attack! I do hate doing this but I feel I have no choice. Everything is being eaten and destroyed apart from the weeds, it is heartbreaking for me, especially when I try so hard.

One good thing though. I grew sweet peas and morning-glory at the side where usually little grows and I left the plants in to seed, along with the frame to support them. Since the sunny weather the bed is full of morning-glory seedlings, so many that I have to thin them out and in between them are little sweet pea plants popping out of the ground too. I will make sure there are enough supporting canes and twine and let nature take over that piece of garden. I feel sure she does a better job than I do.

We left the store visit to after lunch but I didn’t get my photo frame because they were out of stock, apart from that I achieved everything I wanted to. Moving the furniture in my studio can wait and as we had the day to ourselves we just relaxed. I read some of my book and did what was necessary for the morning then chilled, very lazily, in front of the tv this evening. Perfect! What a lovely day!

Oh, and despite being home half an hour later than I had planned, our Sunday joint was cooked perfectly. A little over medium roast. It should have been 77c and was 78, how good was that?

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Postaday2011: A short blog on oil painting.

I have managed to start the oil painting that I promised to do and it has been so long since I used oils that I had forgotten how messy it can be. Especially if you are me. My space is limited, light -dreadful and the picture I am working from doesn’t have enough detail to get it accurate but that doesn’t matter. As long as I have a basic idea I can work with it and make it look the way I want it to.

I chose a beach scene which I believed was taken on Ferring Beach in West Sussex, UK. If not I will find out and correct that statement. Here is the picture.

There is little detail showing so I shall have to practice a bit of artistic licence. This gives me an idea and it can be used to verify depth and distance as I go along. The very first thing I do is to prime my canvas if it isn’t already primed. For this I use a cheap white, matt emulsion. This helps the oil paint to bond to the canvas, often the primer on ready canvasses seem to have some repellant properties so it really does help.

I have to say at this point that I am not an expert artist, I am completely self taught using books and naked eye. There is probably a decent vocabulary to go along with what I am trying to describe but plain English will have to do.

This isn’t easy to see but the very first thing I do once the canvas is ready, is to sketch out lightly the picture I want to paint just to give me an idea of where I want to put the paint. Some people paint straight away but I prefer to have something to follow. No it isn’t paint by numbers.. hahaha.

Once the sketch is on I can start to paint. Once again, I do this the way I learned and no doubt if you went to art college they would tell you something completely different. I then paint the entire picture with a base coat. The colours aren’t important at this stage it just gives a rough guide to the shape of things to come.

As you can see once again, I have a good idea of where I want to go with this picture. I shall inevitably put in a lot more detail than the photograph contains but already it is possible to see a picture.

Oils take a long time to dry, I can’t remember how long exactly, so I shan’t do any more to this until I can paint on top of it without moving or blending the colours underneath about, this could be a couple of days or so. Therefore I shall continue my paint encounter once it is dried and give any would be artist out there a brush by brush account so that you can follow and have a go at painting yourself.

Acrylic is easier in one way because it dries in minutes but that is not always an advantage when, like me, perfection as near as possible is desired. If this is successful I will follow through an acrylic picture as well, mind you I might get tired of waiting for the oils to dry so could well start an acrylic one at the same time. Water colour, once again is totally different. Like I said, I am no expert, I just love to  draw and paint. I keep hoping I shall make some money from them one day… You never know…

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postaday2011: 2 of 3 achieved – YES!!!

Hehehe, ok, what’s she on about now? You have to admit that I am, if nothing else, queen of the random blogs. No theme, no style, just a rambler on of words.

So what have I achieved? A little while ago, someone on FB posted a challenge that involved a crafty idea. Once I had posted that I was involved I would have to send something I have made to so many people who responded. Well I have managed two so far. The third one is a bit tricky and I am not sure what to make so I have to think a little longer.I know she won’t appreciate anything useless or tacky, and so far I don’t think either have been, so I shall have to make some sneaky enquiries or seriously have a good think about it.

The annoying thing is that I can’t put a picture up until the people I made these things for have seen them, maybe I shouldn’t post this yet, but I shall forget if I don’t. I only sent one at the weekend and this one will be tomorrow now so as soon as I have had acknowledgements I shall post them on my blog.

I just love being busy, I might be great at procrastinating but I am always doing something. I have a huge range of hobbies and can put my hand to almost any craft you can think of, if I watch TV, I knit or sew, I love to cook but I can’t stand for too long so have to adapt that one and don’t cook as much as I would like to. I love to read and write but my writing has taken a back seat for my painting which is really developing well and I am so delighted.

I am about to start playing with my oil paints. I have chosen my picture and plan to start it tomorrow. I know some people are interested in a step by step account, I think that will be a great challenge for me because it will make me think about what I am doing.This is the picture I have picked because it is so quiet and serene, and of course it is the sea again. It will be different because I am working in oils and it takes a day or two to dry before I can continue building the picture… so here goes.

A short blog tonight, but I will post pictures of the craft items I have made as part of the challenge as soon as I can.

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Postaday2011: Don’t you just love lazy Sundays

We lay in bed this morning with the sunlight shining through the window. What a luxury. Eight thirty and I decided to get up, we had nothing planned for today so we didn’t hurry to sort ourselves out.It wasn’t until we wondered why the time suddenly jumped to 9.30 on the downstairs clock that we realised. It hadn’t taken that long to get up, had it? Yes, we forgot the clocks were going forward so we had already lost an hour of our lazy day. I am so glad we have radio controlled clocks or we might not have known till much later.

Harry had planned to give the car a seriously needed clean, especially since it had just had the service and MOT and several little problems had been cleared up. Oh, and he wouldn’t forgive me if I forgot to mention that he bought new wheel trims for her yesterday. He vacuumed the inside and washed all the bits the car wash wouldn’t get to, like inside the door frames and the like and went off to the car wash. He was so proud of it when he came back and I was marched down to take a look at it. It’s a car, ok the thick dirt of winter was missing and she did look a few shades lighter but, well cars, aren’t really my thing. I did make the right noises though despite finding a part of the car the wash had missed.

For my lazy day I chose to potter in the garden. I had treated myself to some plants, Viola and Primula, to try and brighten the garden up. My trouble is, that as soon as I turn the soil over, the neighbouring cats decide it makes a good litter tray. It makes me cross. I sat on my chair and carefully weeded and planted one row of primula. It looked lovely. I then placed upturned pots in all the spaces and plastic bottles of water where there was still any bare soil. Apparently the cats don’t like the reflection and they stay off the garden. It does seem to work. May not look great but at least they won’t dig up my new plants.

I planted some oregano that I had from last year which was just coming up in a pot, and a sage plant that I had also bought. At least once that grows it will make a reasonable size bush and protect the garden too. I sprayed weed killer on all the paths and patio area, swept up all the dead leaves and bagged up all the debris. I was so proud of myself. It is always hard though, I know what ever I do takes three times as long as it used to, I have to everything sitting down and I shall have trouble walking tomorrow but it was worth every second. I am just glad I have raised beds. At least by doing this we won’t have to get someone in to do it for me.

We had a fantastic lunch of some gorgeous Irish steak, sirloin it was, a huge thank you to Harry’s niece. We have been thoroughly spoiled, and then decided to just chill with a DVD in the afternoon. The film was rubbish but was an 80’s film and I did finish a sewing project I have been working on. It was a challenge on Facebook to make something for  people who replied to a craft challenge. I have the rest of the year to make these things and send them. Great fun. I still have 2 more to do, got to get my thinking cap on. I can’t say what it is until the person has received it otherwise it won’t be such a surprise. But I will post about it after then.

And that was our lazy Sunday. Pretty boring really but I did enjoy getting out into the garden for the first time properly and tomorrow I am babysitting Millie for a little while, so I shan’t get too much done then. I have also replenished my stock of water-colour paper – I was really shocked to see how much it has gone up in price! Unbelievable! Still with the new brushes I also bought, and white spirit, I am ready for my oil painting now.

I did one more thing today that I shall have to finish off tomorrow, and I will definitely post about in a day or so when I have finished it. A year or two ago my youngest son was travelling to India and Switzerland and was spending a lot of time on trains and the like so I lent him our book on origami. He took it along with lots of paper and spent the boring times making all kinds of creatures. He came back with a dragon, an octopus, a crab, a plane, a frog and a ball etc. I had preciously hung them up as a mobile in the corner of the dining room. The other day I looked at the dust on them and took them down to clean them off. That was when I had this wonderful idea to spray them gold. Which is what I did, and they look brilliant! So as soon as I get time I am going to rehang them again and give them pride of place in the window. I am sure it will definitely be worth showing them off. A great talking point from some paper and a boring train journey.

Sunday nearly over, all the clocks telling the right time and now for some well earned sleep. Coughing and spluttering permitting of course.

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Postaday2011: favourite activities outside blogging.

Where do I begin on this one? I am using this prompt which was for Reading week, merely because it relates to me more than the blogaday one.  It is a hard thing to write about because I just have so many activities and hobbies. As much as I love reading other blogs and writing my own, my day is full with so many other things. I used to sit on Facebook and chat to friends but it got to the point that it became trivial, if there was no one on there I was playing games and was slipping on the other things I liked to do. I’d check for messages, maybe reply to a few but I soon realised that actually nobody missed me if I wasn’t on there. Where is the connection with blogging? I can hear you ask. Well, it’s simple, none! There is little connection between Facebook and blogging apart from me learning to balance out my time.

I love writing, always have, I even have poems I wrote as a child, and at school I remember helping out other members of our English class when homework involved poetry, so writing has always been there in my life. I also love blogging. I have mentioned before  about just how dreadful I am at keeping a diary. My entries might last for a few weeks and then I would start slipping and miss some so I always ended up with a few entries in the front and one apologetic one at the end of the year. Silly thing is I would love to go back and see what I was thinking and feeling when I wrote them. I still do but it doesn’t help me become any good at journal keeping, so blogging and particularly ‘Blogaday’ has really encouraged me. Having other writers out there encouraging me has been brilliant and reading other blogs and admiring the tremendous talent out there is really fantastic. I could spend all day on here but I have to limit my time because I like to join my family in various activities too. So for me, although participating as much as I can, blogging isn’t a priority to me. As I have arthritis, everything I do takes a lot more time than it used to, so even sitting at my computer takes its toll on me.

My other activities include, painting, writing, housework, knitting, gardening, reading, music, crochet, all sewing and dressmaking, cooking, entertaining, did I mention housework? haahha I have so many hobbies and loads that I have trouble doing. Nature and nature walks used to be a big thing in my life so did my dog, but life moves on and now I stick to those I can do easily. Having such a large family, I am always busy. So I guess my other favourite activities and blog writing have to fight for time. I do my best always and keeping up with a blog every day has become so motivating for me so I guess my answer would be, I don’t have a favourite activity I just like being busy.

Here are a few pictures from today when I had Maica to entertain me while her Mummy did a photoshoot.

Having finished baking some delicious chocolate chip cookies, Maica insisted on washing up. I reckon she did a great job.

I think she liked the cookies so much she preferred them to her lunch..

Teddy had to watch while she did her painting too.

I only spent around 6 hours with her but I look back and wonder how I managed with eight children!! I am exhausted, but we had a really wonderful day. Maybe I am getting old and maybe I should be sticking to reading and writing on WordPress.

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bobbins and lace

Well not really bobbins and lace, just the bits and pieces I was talking about yesterday. I thought I would take the opportunity in between jobs to take some pictures and get them put onto my blog before the day gets over run with other things that seem to take priority. Proofreading work finished until the final draft, phone calls made, letters written, housework well maybe some ironing later the rest can wait till tomorrow, some art work to complete today… only the ironing and the art work still to do and it is still only 10.30 ish, doing well so far.

The bobbins I have here are a mixture of wooden ones at the top and some plastic  ‘kit bobbins’ which aren’t the best but still do thejob. Here you can see the results of my efforts and try to imagine the fun I had making up the completed bobbins.

spangled bobbins

 The bobbins at the top are largely wooden and you can see immediately the difference in quality. These are threaded ready for use. It is just so relaxing roganising and threading glass beads into sets, pair by pair and so satisfying to see the end product, almost as satisfying as doing the lacemaking by itself.

This next picture shows bobbins secured by ribbon on the beginning of a piece of work.

 If it works out it will hopefully be a bookmark. You can see the blue pattern, each dot pricked out ready to work as I wrote about yesterday. There is something soothing about sitting doing mindless, no not mindless, well things that need no thought, then I suppose there are many things like that. Most hobbies in fact take little need for serious thought, Painting, gardening, knitting, crochet, cross stitch. It is nice to do such things to relax, let your mind wander aimlessly in total relaxation. Which is why I guess we have hobbies.  Speaking of cross stitch the next picture is of the little pin cushion I made in cross stitch years ago. Victorian pin cushion in cross stitch Just another of my many hobbies.

 It is rather nice when I can produce something that is useful. This one has been shut away gathering dust until now.

The final picture is one of my little workbox, my beginners kit, and sort of demonstrates my need for tidness and order in my life. I was chatting to a friend yesterday and she made me realise where it all came from. My childhood home was sadly lacking in cleanliness, tidiness or any home comforts really so as an adult it has become important to me. Like my box, I like my home to have everything in its place, now I know this might sound sad but I get a lot of pleasure from organising my little box, here I have the control, whereas in our home the space is shared with my family who are not always as tidy as I am.

my beginners workbox

It sounds awful but I can reassure you that my house is always clean but less often tidy. I love when I am on my own and everyone is at work, then I can busy myself and return our little home to its tidy and neat state again, I get such a buzz when it is all done. Tidy house, tidy mind. I so agree with that. Well it works for a while until everyone comes home again. I guess I am blessed with Harry, as an ex submariner, he is no stranger to tidiness. My kids laugh at me and call me a neat freak as they mess it all up but I smile and know that as soon as they have gone to their own untidy places I shall tidy mine up all over again. You don’t think I aught to get out more, do you?

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Back to childhood.

I wrote before about going to learn to make lace again and I had forgotten how , I wouldn’t say simple, but easy it was to pick up again. I have had two lessons so far and am embarking on a bookmark at the moment. Sitting for too long is a trial for me  but I can do this in short bursts and still have a great deal of satisfaction in what I have done. I don’t want to talk about lace making though, lovely as it is, more about all the bits you need to go with it.

I have a lovely set of wooden bobbins turned by a gentleman who did woodturning as a hobby. He was the caretaker of the school we lived and worked at and unfortunately is long gone to his maker. The bobbins are beautiful to work with, smooth, heavy and I think there is always something wonderful about wood, especially when turned in such wonderful wood as ebony, tigerwood or cherry. They are more wonderful knowing they were turned especially for me. When making lace the bobbins need to stay in the correct place and not roll around so that is where the spangling comes in. Sounds wonderful doesn’t it? All it means is that a little circle of beads are connected to the bottom of the bobbin to stop them rolling around during lacemaking.

My bobbins needed a small hole drilled in the bobbly bit at the end and I had no way of doing it nor knew anyone who could do it so bless Harry he went out and bought a miniature drill kit, just make these holes.  What should have been a simple little job cost a hundred pounds worth of equipment because the manufacturers seem to be able to make sure the exact piece you need just happens to need a connector not included in the kit. Anyway Harry drilled these tiny holes for me and all I had to do was thread them with beads.

 I had long lost all my beads so what better an excuse to buy some more? I ordered some pretty glass beads one late afternoon which amazed me by arriving early the following morning. I spent the next few evenings making the spangles and wiring them onto the bobbins. It was so satisfying watching the little pieces of wood transform into beautiful workable tools. It reminded me of the little beads, or precious stones as we called them, of my childhood. I think there is a collector in all of us but I seem to be more of a squirrel than anyone I know. Having also bought all the little pliers and so forth to make them I decided to respangle every one, I think it was about fifty or so… I must post some pictures, sticky note to remind me for tomorrow…

So now having collected all the bits and pieces my collecting turned to the prickings or patterns. I brought a book from the library and set about making my own. Thin card, sticky back plastic and many hours pricking hundreds of holes in little lengths of plastic coated card. A trip to Hobbycraft was such a good idea… I managed to get the special pins and some thread too, oh and a box to keep it all in. I already had ribbon and the lady teaching me has lent me a pillow. But that is my next task. I am going to try and make myself a lace pillow by squashing an old feather pillow into a tight sausage and fastening and covering it.  There is of course many other little things to be collected that make this hobby more interesting, bobbin winders, patterns, new bobbins… they can be a collectors item too and there are bobbins from all overe the world as well as antique ones to collect. Hmmm now there’s a thing.

Collecting all these bits and sorting them into little boxes takes me right back to my childhood and I hope if my granddaughter comes to stay, she might like to learn lacemaking too, or maybe patchwork or cross stitch. If not she is also an artist and we shall paint together which is really nice.

Even though I have many craft type hobbies I am also a neat freak and sorting beads and gathering bits into boxes fitted my desire to keep things in neat and tidy boxes. A bit like my mind I guess. Sewing things in the sewing box, lovingly made for my mother in law by my father in law out of an old oak radiogramme manyyears ago, knitting needles, crochet hooks in little cases, wool and knitting projects in the basket my only untidy place is my corner of the study. I suppose I do have rather a lot of stuff, my writing stuff and well I have favourite pens and pencils and my brushes must be kept in the right pots , art bits in their box, paints, canvases, easels where does it end? OK a job for when I can find a moment will be to reorder it all so I can at least fnd it.

I think my habit of collecting does come from my childhood, not because I was the same then but rather because I had a lack of things to collect. Being the eldest in a large poor family, personal possessions weren’t high on the priority of things so now as an adult I am able to indulge. It is really nice to produce hand crafted gifts for special people too. Whether they are appreciated or not, the love that goes into making and giving them satisfies something in me and I shall carry on unless I am told to stop. Who knows they might be heirlooms one day.  My plan for tomorrow then is to schedule the task of re-organising my workspace so that I can find things easily…. after I have made my lace pillow of course. I might even get round to doing some lacemaking.

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