Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Tea break

Hello there! Grab a cuppa and join me on my tea break.
I have to admit that today's tea break is a happy affair as I'm drinking from my NEW mug (see my last post for news of my newly discovered pottery love ♥).  What is it about new things? This mug just feels GREAT and drinking tea from it is making me deliriously happy. Weird, huh?

Sorry I'm a bit blurry - Mr C was driving rather too fast!
I'm thinking about my road trip from the weekend and want to show you some shots of the non-beachy/non-pottery (!) scenes in Sussex. It really is a beautiful place.
Steep hills!
We stopped off in the village of Alfriston which is well worth a visit.  It is full of character with cute-sy shops, art galleries, old fashioned pubs and tearooms.  Need I convince you more?

How cute is this post office?
The boys were flagging after being dragged into various gift shops and art galleries and then my friend and I saw them looking out of the window before running out of the art gallery and down the street.
What could they possibly have seen?????

A vintage car show was in full swing on the village green! The boys were like kids in a sweet shop!
Of course, we couldn't leave for the beach without having a cream tea could we?

I could certainly manage a few of those scones right now!
Well, I'd better get back to my crochet.  This blankie has turned out to be a bit of a beast, a HUGE undertaking and it is taking me F O R E V E R.  Maybe I was a little ambitious with making a king-sized bed cover?! A few stripes back I almost considered sticking with a stripy scarf but I mustered up some enthusiasm from somewhere to Keep At It. Has anyone else felt like that at the 1/3 of the way point??? I've signed up to a one-a-day project here to motivate me to complete the striped beast! I'm aiming to do 1 stripe (or at least 1/2 stripe) every day.
Wish me luck!!!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Happiness comes in blue and white ♥

I was in heaven yesterday with a trip to a warehouse filled to the brim with Polish Boleslawiec pottery. I haven't ever wanted to collect something as much as I want to collect this!
♥ Pottery love ♥
It took some convincing to get Mr C to come along to the factory (Partly because it involved pretty pottery and mostly because it would mean forgoing the eagerly anticipated Saturday lie in). With the help of a couple of super friends we managed to strike a deal - the pottery warehouse for the girls followed by beach/beer/cakes for the boys!
See the heart patterns in the middle and on the right? Those are my favourites!
We got up nice and early (quite a feat), picked up our friends and headed towards East Sussex. Whooo we were on our way! Road trips rock.

After some tea drinking and shop browsing I filled up my basket and made some purchases. 
After a few stop offs for lunch/beer/antiques/cream teas in picture perfect villages (another post coming on that!) we headed towards the sea.
The blue and white theme stuck with us!

 Maybe colour themed days are the way to go, along with compromises! What a fab day out we had.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

A bit of elbow grease

This morning started with a delivery of wool.  What a super way to start the day! I'd placed the order after running out of wool half way through my 'burnt orange' stripe only to find out that this colour is now DISCONTINUED. Shock Horror! So I've stocked up on each colour just in case Debbie Bliss gets rid of any other colours. EEk!

If only the rest of the day had been so super.....
Over the last few days I have been on a cleaning frenzy. We've decided to kick ourselves into action, get our house on the market and make our 'good life' dreams come true. If you remember, one of my resolutions this year was to move to a new place before we become lost in the jungle of our belongings! Ahh, I dream of the day that I can open a cupboard without it depositing its contents on me!!

Well, I cleaned everything in sight and scrubbed and polished like I was auditioning for a part in 'Annie'. However, no matter how much I cleaned there was always more to do.
Me: Surface, I've just cleaned you, how do you have dust on again already????
Grrrr. Does anyone else find it so frustrating?

Something that cheered me up was seeing this little visitor outside my back door as I weeded the roses.
After the estate agent had taken his photos of my pristine-for-once-why-can't-it-always-look-like-this home, I decided to go out for a walk in the afternoon sunshine.
The reality of moving has made me appreciate the area that I have been living in.  We have some lovely green spaces which I all too rarely visit. Today I took the time to breathe it all in, every detail and the views from the outskirts of our commuter town were chicken soup for my soul.
In the distance there, if you squint, you can see Canary Wharf on the Old Smoke skyline.
On the way I found some more cherry plums and happily made my way home greedily eating them.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Sew Happy!

Do you remember your first glimpse of my quilt the other day? Well just in case you have forgotten here is another sneak peak.
Ohhh aren't the colours scrummy together?
I loved seeing it go through the sewing machine, hearing the machine whizzing away and feeling the cotton in my hands.  When I looked up I had to smile at the delightful bundle that had been created.
My craft wingman/partner in crime, also known as 'Mum!', came over today for some girlie sewing and chat and what a lovely day we had! Of course, we could not be expected to work without a tea break and so we enjoyed a fine brew accompanied by freshly baked-still hot from the oven-gooey in the middle-biscuits. Delish!
Refreshed from our break we got right back on it, fired up the machine and upped the pace. If you'd have blinked you'd have missed it...well maybe not quite, but close.
So.....would you like to see what it looks like now?

Whoo!! It's not quite finished and ready for its final reveal yet but it's pretty close.
 I just can't believe that  I   M-A-D-E   T-H-I-S! (With some top tips from Mum!). I'm sew happy!

Thursday, 18 August 2011

A, B, Sea

Ah, Whitstable.
Sea air, oysters, vintage shops and salty chips.
Perfect n'est-ce pas?
My workmates and I met in our local coffee shop before setting off to Whitstable for a day out. I haven't mentioned my collegues before but they are lovely and I'm lucky to have made so many firm friends at work.
We started off our day of F-U-N with another cuppa and some oysters, well some of us had them
(the brave ones!)

Whitstable, for those that don't know, is a seaside town in Kent, Southeast England. It's a fantastic place to go if you like quirky and vintage and, in my opinion, shows the British seaside in its best possible light.
The shop keepers have all done a fantastic job on their shop fronts and the town is very picturesque and picture-perfect.

There are vintage clothing shops, art galleries, cupcake shops and tearooms.
 Not to mention street art in the form of knitted bicycles! It was entertaining to watch people go past the bikes and look in wonder as they realised they were knitted!
'Plllllllleeeeeease can I move to Whitstable' my mind was saying after it had dreamed about decorating a cottage like the one in the picture above.
For now I guess I'm going to have to make do with daytrips!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Home Sweet Home

There's something special about walking through your front door after being away on holiday...the familiar, comforting sights and smells after your senses have been bombarded with new, foreign stimuli.  As soon as we touched down at Gatwick it was like I had a whole new appreciation of how beautiful our country is, how green and luscious and mild.

We have spent the last week cocktail drinking, snoozing, reclining, reading, sunset gazing, sight seeing, star gazing, swimming, scuba diving and food munching in sunny Cyprus.  It has been a lovely holiday but so HOT! My word, it has been up to 42 degrees during the day and 25 degrees at night. I've practically thrown myself into the pool/sea at every given opportunity!

Are you sitting comfortably? Good. Well, here are a few of my favourite snapshots of Cyprus.

We had a lovely time but I'm also glad to be home, back to the place where I belong.

Monday, 15 August 2011

L is for...

Lindy Hop!
Ouch! My legs were like jelly.  I booked my Hubbie and I on a 'learn to lindy hop in a day' course a while ago and last Saturday was The Day! I was so excited as it was one of my new year resolutions and  I was amazed that I managed to convince Mr C to come! I love swing music and the whole day was so much fun from start to finish (5 hours of dancing - woah!).

We started the day with 6 beat lindy hop, followed by 8 beat lindy hop and then the Charleston to finish the day.  Both Mr C and I loved dancing the Charleston best, although our attempt to recreate the dance at home in front of family was 'interesting!' and not entirely representative of the fabulous teaching! There was alot of 'your foot should be here' and 'you moved too early' in our front room performance.

I'm definitely going to try to go to more lessons as it's a great style of dance. If you fancy learning then you can find information here. Maybe this workshop should come with a health warning as, a whole week later, my feet are STILL dancing all by themselves; it's seriously addictive.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Blissful moments

Moment 1) Sewing my first quilt, yes, MY Quilt! I haven't quite got the required patience when the sewing machine goes a bit bonkers and starts to chew my work up but luckily my Fab Mum does.  I'm starting to piece it all together and the colours are B-E-A-Utiful together. I can't claim that the whole experience has been blissful but the standing back and seeing something you have created is!

2)  Looking at my sunflowers. Aren't they just so cheerful?
3) De-podding my home grown broad beans.  I love that the pods are all furry and squidgy.
4) BBQs! The smoky smell is divine as it wafts past. Mmmmm.
5) The sight of locally foraged cherry plums. They grow by our train station and the colours are incredible.
So many lovely moments. Summer is wonderful.