Sunday, 30 November 2008

Thank God for heated windscreens and Cats Eyes

I can't believe it's a week since I Blogged , never mind.
We did Blackburn on Thursday but it doesn't warrant much of a mention . Except that that we made a little bit of money and it was free so we didn't lose anything.
Now for the heated windscreen and cats eyes . Yesterday we did Grassington Dickensian.and this is what we woke up to . Fog , lots of it and freezing at that . DH got up just after five and was letting me have another half hour , as it's a long journey ,but came straight back up stairs to tell me about the weather . I quickly decided that an earlier start was necessary . This is where the heated windscreen came in handy as it melted the ice in quick time. We set of at six with a very low visibility . The first 40 mins was on the motorway , not much traffic , but I had to keep putting the windscreen heater on as the screen kept icing up and making visibility even worse. Once we had come off the motorway it was unlit country roads for 25 miles . This is where the cats eyes came in . They kept me going in line . the journey took us about 20 minutes longer than usual but I kept my nerve and just took my time . By the time we got to Grassington there was nothing.
This is the stall when I had finished setting up .
Grassington wasn't as busy as it used to be and the takings where way down from last year . I've been doing this venue for over 14 years an have always done well but I think with the present economic climate things have taken a tumble. We did OK and I was grateful that we did. There's two more yet so things may buck up.
I have just come down from my workroom and it is all tidied up , everything is put away and my machines are covered. This is another sign of the times , I have nothing to make . There is enough stock to last what shows we have left . This has never happened before . I'm usually making things right up to the last show . Ah ! well I can get on with my Christmas knitting and get on with my beloved spinning. :0)

Look what the frost did to a spider's web in the garden .
Here's a bit of Ahhh . We did a bit of baby /puppy sitting this week . No3 son left Bramble with us whilst he went to look at some house to rent . As usual Meg was great and they played well . Suddenly play stopped and Meg bent her head down to Bramble . It just looks like Bramble is whispering into " Auntie " Meg's ear . Everybody say Aaaaaaaaaaaaaah!

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Nearly There

It's a horrible cold, wet , windy November day outside ,so I thought i'd show you a bit of colour.I'm nearly there with my preparations for the up coming fairs . I finished the wall of bags this morning . I was going to cut out a set of smaller ones but as it is very cold and my attic workroom is like a fridge I've postponed that till tomorrow. I have got a heater up there but with the fuel prices so high now i'm a bit loathe to put it on. So I just go up there for short spells .These bags will be getting their first airing on Thursday at the Blackburn Christmas Market . That's if we get there. We've been studying the one way system in the town centre and it looks like a Krypton Factor job .
I Love all the new fabrics I've found .

Nice close up of the finishing touch . My friend Carol has made me these glass zip fobs to add a practical and professional look to the bags . I'm really pleased with the end product. Hope you are . If you get to any of my fairs be sure to let me know who you are ,I offer a discount to Ravelry members and Bloggers who read my Blog.
We've had a busy week ,social wise . We've never been in . Monday Lostock Hall Craft Group , Tuesday trip to Cumbria , Thursday Preston S'N'B and topped off yesterday by a visit and lunch with Mogs , Amber and Bob . The boys played chess , in the kitchen and me and Amber knitted and nattered in the living room . Meg curled up on her bed . We had intended a walk on the beach but it was far to cold .

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Day Out :-)

We jumped ship yesterday and had a day out in Cumbria , before the big rush of shows , starting next Thursday . Seems we picked the best day , it was gorgeous and sunny all day.
Our first port of call was Askew Rigg Farm ,where we stayed in the Summer , to see Ruth and Ernest Bird. They were very pleased to see us . We booked our caravan pitch for next year. We are only going up for three weeks instead of our usual six but it will be nice. There are quite a few shows to do during the time we are up there.This is a view of the farm i took during the Summer on one of the rare fine days . The four white blobs in the middle are caravans .
This is Ernest Bird of Askew Rigg sat on his specially adapted quad . We call it his Popemobile . It keeps him dry and enables him to still get up on the fells to tend his herd of Highland Cattle .Even though he's 80 he still puts in a full days work on the farm , helped by his son and grandson .

After having lunch with the Birds we just had to call in at Wool Clip . The car park was unexpectedly full . Perhaps it was the good weather that brought people out.
Look at all this yummy yarn . The little ehem!! pile in the foreground was mine . Well you can't go to Wool Clip and not buy anything , I'm supporting the local economy . That's my story and I'm sticking to it. I got some more lovely Herdwick for bags :-))))
After our visit to Wool Clip we went on to see Cecilia .
This face was at the window when we went into the woolroom. Cecilia is working very hard at the moment sorting out all the applications for Woolfest, single handedly ,so it was nice she could spare some time for us to visit . We had a lovely couple of hours chatting about knitty things and Woolfest. ( Only 31 weeks off ) Goat kept an eye on us the whole time we were there . I came home with 200 grms of Cecilia's home grown Blue Faced Leicester yarn . I am keeping this all for me cos I know exactly where it's come from.
We stayed long enough to see the Sun go down . This is the view Cecilia has from her lovely light workroom , imagine seeing this all the time . Another perfect end to another perfect day .

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Sunny Sunday.

First a little update on the trees on the Railway walk .This is the pic that i took six weeks ago .
This was yesterday . A bit dark but you can see by the skyline that all but a few of the leaves are gone now . The walk is now quite light as the canopy of leaves has fallen leaving a rich carpet of colour on the path.

Meg had her best mate , Maggie , with her as well . DD had come over for a couple of hours . Maggie had a whale of a time trying to catch Meg.
Little and Large in the back of the car after there run round. They'll soon be joined by No. 1 son's pup , Bramble ,now she's had her injections. Christmas Day is going to be fun when they all come home :-)))
Just to show I've not been idle . Four crocheted bags for the stall . When we were up in Cumbria this Summer on one of my numerous trips to the Wool Clip , several hanks of hand dyed Herdwick wool found their way into my stash ( weell they jumped in when I wasn't looking ) It is an excellent yarn for bags , as it's hard wearing and if crocheted in a firm tension it makes a nice thick fabric without having to felt it . The colours are quite muted , giving an earthy , tweedy look to the bags . I've got some lichen greens as well , which i think will make up well .
We are off up to Cumbria on Tuesday to visit Cecilia and the Birds at Askew Rigg Farm , but no doubt the car will get to Caldbeck on auto pilot for some more .

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

What a busy week :-))

I have had rather a busy week . Apart from the little bit I put on here on Sunday i haven't had time to blog. I've finished all the felt Christmas decs for the stall , 300 all together . Just a few bits to do and that's it . if I sell out , I sell out.
I've not just been busy making stuff though . We were out Thursday night at Preston S'N'B . Then we got invited out Friday night , to Ambermoggie's .
Artis-Anne and her other half were up from the wilds of Wales , so the 6 of us had really good evening , chatting and knitting and generally putting the knitting world to rights .
We don't usually go out in the evening and both these events wouldn't have happened if I hadn't joined Ravelry , an online knitting community . We've met so many new people since joining. This is a log basket :-) what do you put in a log basket . Logs ???
Nooo. Knitting . Lots of it .

And if you've got two , you fill the other with rovings for spinning.
The first one was a damn bargain at the local Dunhelmn , £9-99. The other was brought back from Somerset. They're great and keep everything together.
Now for some busy pictures.
This is what I've been making . Handy project bags and needle holders for knitters.
I've got lots of gorgeous fabrics to make some more.
I've knit these. I'm using Blue Faced Leicester DK and it's like knitting butter.
and I've knit these , using Jacob's wool in an Aran weight.
I've also knit two more pairs of socks but forgot to take pics before I took them to the farm shop . Not a bad weeks work . Amber says it's because the moon is waxing that I'm so productive. We'll see what happens next week when it's on the wain.
I've had the results from the Xray, I had two weeks ago , on my poorly shoulder. Everything is fine . There is no Arthritis , thank God , it's just muscular. The doc offered me a Cortisone injection :-(( which i declined . Me and needles don't go together ,unless they have knitting on them :-))) So he suggested Physio , to which i agreed :-). But when I went to the reception to book it , i was told there was a waiting list of about 13 weeks :-( . I said it would probably be better by then . So last night I had a session with the hot wheat bag and DH rubbed it with muscular rub aaand this morning it felt much better :-))) . So as it's nothing to do with my bones ,I'm going to carry on with that .

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Remeberance Day ( doing our bit )

We did our little bit to help The Royal British Legion today . We've never done it before but on Tuesday I got a call from Big Brother , not THEE Big Brother , mine . Michael organises the Poppy Appeal for a large part of North West Lancashire and works tirelessly all year round for the British legion . Anyway he rang me up with his " how's my favourite sister" line , so I knew he was after something . He'd run out of volunteers to man the Poppy Stall at our local Sainsburys and wondered if we could manage two hours this morning . I said yes , of course . So we did our two hours and we were quite amazed at peoples generosity , it was heart warming . Especially the number of young people buying their poppies. We came home with a heavy pot . I think we'll put our names down as volunteers next year it was two hours well spent . Papa Bear behind the stall .
This afternoon is going to be spent watching an old film on the tele and knitting . It's bitter cold and sleeting outside so I think the sofa is the best place :-))))

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Learning to Knit

Today is November the 5th . So what you might think , it's bonfire night . Well bonfire night is special to me , not because of fireworks or anything like that . Bonfire Night is special because one such night 54 years ago I learnt to knit. The weather had been the usual wet, miserable , dark Novemberish stuff we get . It was pouring with rain and Mum said it was to wet for me and my 11 year old sister , Helen ,to set fireworks off . Being just six years old I was a bit miffed , so to placate me she said she would teach me to knit . So i had a rummage in her bag and found some bright red wool to knit a scarf for my Teddy. My Mum casted on twenty stitches and proceeded to teach me to knit , watched and encouraged by Helen . I loved it and soon got to grips with " round ,over , through , off " . The memories are particularly poingnant as eleven days later Helen died as the result of being knocked down by a car ,whilst crossing the road on a Zebra Crossing. So my learning to knit has bitter sweet memories but it will always be my first love as far as crafting is concerned. The scarf was finished , all be it with a few holes in it :-)) Onto present day knitting . I've been knitting socks for the stall and decided to tart them up a bit, with a more professional looking label instead of just a swing tag with the price on. I'm quite pleased with my efforts . Hopefully it may encourage people to buy :-))
I can't finish this blog without mentioning the Craft fair on Sunday or I will get shot . The fair was arranged by John , from Dajon Designs , at the Dalmeny Hotel in St Annes . We had a lovely time and better still we made a profit . It was nice seeing some old crafting friends . An added bonus was that we got to watch the Sun going down over the sea. Quite dramatic . I'm getting quite a collection of sunset pics now . I'll have to Papa Bear painting again .

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Dull November Brings the Blast.

Well November has brought the blast . A very cold blast of air that froze my car last night . I had to scrape the windscreen off before we could go out this morning . It was early though , 8-15 a.m. More of that later . It has been cold all day but definitely not dull . The suns been shining brightly since about 9-00am. I can't believe we are in November already . It doesn't seem like two minutes since we came back from Cumbria .The days are very short now since the clocks went back and will shorten even more till the Solstace in December . It makes me want to hibernate . But I have plenty to do between now and Christmas .
We went on our usual walk . Some people ask do we not get bored going to the same place .Well at the moment with being busy getting ready for the Christmas it's hand and we can let Meg off to stretch her legs and we've been able to watch the seasons changing. This pic shows how the canopy is opening up since the leaves have fallen . By the end of the month the trees will be bare.
This the picture of the field of cows I took about three weeks ago .
This is the same field taken this morning . You can see the leaves have gone and you can see the branches at the top . I do wish someone would take this cows in though , there can't be any goodness left in the grass , they should have been taken in weeks ago .

Now the reason we were up and out so early . It was so Papa Bear could collect sticks ,to lay down for next year, for making shepherds crooks and walking sticks . You have to do it early or people will wonder what you are up to :-))
The other reason was so I could get this lot finished in time for the Craft Fair tomorrow .
This pic isn't so good because of the dark stand . I have made 200 various felt Christmas Decorations over the past four days .My fingers are numb , as they are all made by hand . Lets hope I sell some :-)). Well i'd better go and finish packing the car then I'm going to put my feet up and watch Strictly Come Dancing and knit.