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There’s always a silver lining……

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

This week has been a bit grim. I’ve basically been in bed feeling lousy and battling bronchitis – that was a new one on me and it rather knocked me for six. To those of you who suffer regularly, or even occasionally with bronchitis, my condolences – it’s really not a nice experience. Anyway this week was one of this weeks where there was nothing for it but to take to my bed and stay there and let myself be driven to the doctor’s by my husband (who must have been concerned to have taken the morning off work), sleep, drink tea, try hard to breathe….

It was also the perfect time to prop myself up and watch small doses of the boxed sets that I never had time to watch before. So this week was ‘The Killing’ in Danish (please don’t tell me who did it, I still have a good long way to go!) accompanied by a little sporadic sock knitting, but of a very plain vanilla nature because I had to be able to knit without looking so I could read the sub-titles (my Danish not being up to much – although I can pick out the odd word or phrase that is closely related to German). That was the nicest part of being sick and just being quiet and cosy at home with Pablo the cat curled up at the bottom of the bed.

I had rather forgotten how nice just being at home is. Since I went back to work my life has been at fever pitch and my days off are generally pretty planned out with appointments, jobs and seeing friends, so doing nothing has been very nice indeed. It would have been nicer if I hadn’t felt lousy of course, but then you never get everything in life, do you?

I had also been meaning to show you this for a while…… (apologies for the darkness of the photo – we have descended into the foggy November gloom where sunshine and good daylight are hard to find)….

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This is my the finished quilt from my first ever bee – Stitch Tease. I put the final stitches into the binding at the weekend. It’s taken years to finish. I really don’t know why – dithering over a border is up there, but finished it now is and I’m really happy with it. It’s so full of memories and friendships. Stitch Tease is a wonderful bee – still going, but sadly without me – and I made some lovely friendships and have met almost everybody who was involved in it from the start – Di and Di and Annabella and Susan and Katy and Hadley. I never did meet Danny, but maybe one day our paths will cross!

So that’s it then, back to the socks…or perhaps I’ll just have a little nap.

Life is good between the coughing!

Helen

 

 

 

 

Spinning Card Trick Star (batik haters close your eyes)

Saturday, November 1st, 2014


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My trip To Morzine at the beginning of the month really got me back on track – in lots of ways – sewing, sorting out some health issues, putting my head back in the right place…in short, I think my priorities have been shaken out and are much more where they should be again. Life is good. There are never enough hours in the day, but those that there are are good hours and I’m on the right path again.

Last weekend I finished up the Spinning Card Trick Star runner that I started in France. Not a big project – infact much smaller than I usually make – but it was fun to get it done and put to use. This was a tricky project in some ways. Elita started us off making the stars with Y seams to insert the hexagons. Either I’m just rubbish at them or there was too little flexibility in the batiks I was using to turn the corner on those little horrors and I couldn’t get them to work and sit properly. I rebelled and changed the construction method so that I could avoid the Y seams altogether and made strips that I could then sew together in straight lines (Sorry Elita).

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I’m very happy with the end effect (and that it’s FINISHED!)

Next I’m tackling the other 4 unfinished quilts that have been sitting by my desk since forever. I put a border on my first Stitch Tease top yesterday and hope to get that basted today if the gods are with me (and the family leave me alone to get on with it). Maybe by tomorrow I’ll have something to show.

Aaaaah. Feels good….

Helen

Perfect Peaks

Sunday, October 12th, 2014

How about spending the weekend looking at this view…

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or this one…

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Even better, how about spending a weekend looking at those views, with a group of wonderful ladies, quilting, eating fabulous food, sitting in a hot tub and getting probably the best massage ever….

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The classes offered were great – thank you Elita, Gina and Karen. Quite often at retreats I end up a little disappointed with the classes – but not this time – they were interesting, quirky and challenging enough but not too much (we won’t talk about the ‘y’ seams!).

There was also time to work on some of my old projects at my own pace and just to chat and relax and get away from oh too hectic normal life.

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Sounds like heaven? Well it certainly got pretty close.

Peaks 6 in the French ski resort of Morzine run by the lovely Elita from Geneva (aka busy needle.ch).

It’s only now I’m home again that I realize how much I needed that weekend. It gave me my sewing mojo back and I haven’t blogged all week because I’ve been busy sewing in the evenings!

Thank you ladies!

You did me the world of good and I’ll certainly be back in the spring!

Helen

 

Sewing

Sunday, September 21st, 2014

Sewing has been done. It is heavenly.

So here’s a little Liberty bliss.

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I’m really starting to feel like the old me again…

I might even get to blog a bit more often!

Helen

 

Over the hump

Sunday, September 14th, 2014

I *think* I’m over the hump.

This month has involved multiple 18th birthday parties and my daughter splitting up with her long-time boyfriend and moving to England to art school, all of which was fairly stressful for all parties concerned. It is hard to get things organized when the person leaving has retreated to her cave and spends days crying, but we did it.

The trip to England was a 6 hour whiz in and whiz out for me, made considerably more frantic as we had to wait 1.5 hours for the rental car and I only caught the return flight by a nanosecond – but the school seems to have started well, so that’s positive.

Work is still insane, but I’m getting better at drawing lines – and I got to go to Rome for two days last week (and ate the worst meal I’ve had win a good long while, which was a bit of a surprise. I also stayed in the most hideous hotel I’ve ever seen  - think black vinyl floor, one black wall, lime green shag pile carpet….really nasty). I also absconded for a couple of hours for a manicure and pedicure in exchange for some of the overtime I’ve worked recently. I shall do that again. It was utterly delicious!

So now I’m officially declaring a lowering of stress levels – helped by my doctor who has given me beta blockers to deal with migraines, which have also had the effect of lowering my blood pressure. The headaches are better too…

The most stress I had today was realizing almost at the end of a delectable yellow sock that the remaining ball of wool was going to be way too small to produce a second sock of the same dimensions. Aargh. Nothing for it but to pull right back and shorten the leg. I could have kept going and prayed, but you know it just wasn’t worth it. I’m nearly back to where I was a couple of days ago – but that’s ok. Go with the flow and don’t sweat the small socky stuff.

Tomorrow is a half day in the city of Zürich – for boys shooting day. I could spend the free afternoon working, but you know, I rather think I’ll come home and hang out. I may even do a little sewing.

Now that would be something, wouldn’t it?

Helen