Friday, 8 November 2019

Friday Chat Day

Hello friends

It's Friday Chat (waffle waffle) Day! 

Lots of thanks for the comments last week
and for your understanding when it comes to the 
oddities of social media.
Jackie - hugely impressed that you've been running your 
craft club for 17 years! 

In answer to the questions regarding my crochet/knitting
projects I've decided to add a new tab at the top of my blog 
headed rather unimaginatively ...
I'm going to add my projects there with links to the patterns where possible, 
what yarn I used, easy/difficult etc.
I've uploaded the Big and Mustard Throw project
but keep an eye as adding more.
Hope that helps and it should prove useful for me too.

And talking of projects - she's not too happy!

My first two attempts at crocheting a dog jumper both turned out
too small, this is version two, part way through and still a snug fit.
Back to the drawing board on this one, I think Bella's face says
"Don't bother Mum!"

But what do we have here?
A much happier Bella, well maybe a surprised Bella.
I rustled up a little cowl for her which is a tiny version of 
The Infinity Scarf - a YouTube video by Bella Coco Crochet.
Not a lot of measuring for this so achieved in an hour.

I hope to get back to human projects over the weekend.

Last weekend a trip to theatreland to see Mary Poppins.
My humble review: very good, well worth a visit but ...
 a couple of scenes deviated from the 
original film and they were honestly very weird.
A toy box that came to life and a huge Punch and Judy,
I was more scared than the eight year old in front of me! 
It was still foot tapping and who can resist singing along to
Step in Time and Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious?

This week's purchases.
Apologies in advance, I have entered Christmas mode!
For the first time in years I've decided on a change of colour theme 
for my decorations this year.
Much to the boys' disgust I'm going for rose gold/blush pink/
bronze/pale silver.  Our cat Lilly isn't wholly convinced either.

This was a little haul from a trip to Home Bargains, Asda 
and Amazon.  Very reasonable prices too - approx £2.50 a box.
I then realised that I will need to make a new garland.
You may remember that I have a red garland that started out as a piece
 of corded rope/string and I add items to it each year.
Well, a new crafty project is soon to be underway, I'll be sure to keep
you posted.

This week's viewing - I started His Dark Materials on BBC1.

Very excited about this as enjoyed the film many years ago.
If you've read the books and/or seen the film you'll know about the Dæmons.
(If not....they are the external physical manifestation of a person's 
'inner-self' that takes the form of an animal).
I cannot be the only person contemplating what my Dæmon would be?
How disappointing if I ended up with a hamster when others are 
waltzing around with impressive wild cats/eagles! 
It stars James McAvoy and Ruth Wilson who were both suitably moody and marvellous in the first episode.

Well I think that wraps up my week.
I've got a quiet weekend ahead so that will give me a chance to 
add more details to that Yarn! tab.

As per usual please look out for the website offers,
the stock is depleting nicely. 
I've received some amazing cards with kind words from customers,
you are all such lovely people - thank you.

Have a super weekend or should that be... 
It's an ear worm! 

Take care friends, same place for a chat next week.

Friday, 1 November 2019

Friday Chat Day

Hello friends

Happy Friday to you and did you get through Halloween unscathed?
I'm not a fan of Halloween although I do think it is very cute
to see the little ones dressed up and the amazing creativity with pumpkins.

It's November! 
I feel we are officially allowed to think about Christmas,
it is only 7 more Friday Chat Days until the big day.
Time to dig out those hats and mittens too.

I am a big fan of Autumn and the changing colours and this week
I met my sister and her rescue dog Bear at the park,
Bella came too! 

It was a beautiful day, bit muddy but that didn't matter.
We stopped for a little sit down on a bench and the dogs
seemed happy for the rest too.

And this is Bella on her journey home in her new car seat.
I have been looking for a seat where she is able to 
look out the car window.  This one from Amazon is elevated and 
secures with lots of straps 
around the headrest and seat, also clips into the seat belt.
A choice of fixing it to front or back seat 
(she's obviously riding up front with me so she can hear me sing!)
Bella is also harnessed in so all in all she's very safe.
I'm voting this as a success.

Okay that is quite enough of that pooch!

I have finally finished another big and mustard throw and instantly 
ordered some grey yarn to make another one - I'm addicted! 

Also in the making is a Bella jumper but that is being undone as
turned out too small and considered it too cruel to put her on a diet.  
I did also crochet a cowl this week,
they are nice speedy projects (not the dog jumper, that's taking too long!)

I've become slightly obsessed with Etsy.
I blame my commute to work as often I get stuck on a coach for hours
and start browsing.
This week's purchase is a handmade project bag 
from the lovely Gilly Makes. 
Perfect for transporting WIPs or even as a lunch bag.
I asked her if she had any fabric with hares and she instantly obliged.  
You can find her Etsy page here.


So what else has been happening?
Still winding up the website, every week there's an offer so please
look out on Facebook for that or subscribe to the newsletter.
Also lots of pre-loved still being added. 

And now for something else.
Ummed and ahhed about talking about this but decided yes, here goes.

I haven't been on Facebook very much recently as I've been somewhat 
bombarded with messages demanding to know what I'm doing.
Yes demanding. 

It is a funny business nowadays with this social media malarkey
and especially in the craft industry.
I guess once you've put yourself in the public eye, share certain areas of your life
people feel they have rights to know what you are doing.  
Anyone else had this experience?

I'm just little ol' me with zero claim to fame and yet it has felt 
very intense over the last month or so.  I feel very sorry for famous people.

Just some of the comments/messages I've received - they state I need to be 'transparent',
I 'owe it to them' and top message this week was from someone saying that 
by my not responding, I am impacting upon their mental health!! 
(Yes, deserves two exclamation marks).

I cannot help but think these people are on a fishing expedition,
they will run back and post details on various Facebook pages and/or
forums because they thrive on gossip. I cannot believe I'm actually 
gossip worthy! 

What I am certain of is that 'these people' expect instant responses so they 
probably won't be reading this.  They will have had to make the effort
of getting through the Bella news and crochet! 

But for you, my friends who take the time to visit and read all my waffle,
I'm happy to tell you the following - I'm up to very little and loving it! 
I'm still working at my city job 2 days a week.
Hope and Chances is closing at the end of the year
(and not reopening as another business - I've been accused of that). 
I am still with Spellbinders, I am not moving to another craft company,
(someone has actually messaged me with details of a company I am moving to!
Total fantasy. 

I'm taking time out, I am enjoying activities with my 
family, seeing friends, trying out new hobbies, 
getting round to all those jobs that have been on hold for years.
And writing this weekly blog post which is a bit of fun,
a diary for me and hopefully a nice chat.

So there you go, it has all been a bit of a kerfuffle
and hoping it will go quiet soon.

This weekend - I'm heading up to London to see
the theatre production of Mary Poppins - very excited about that.
I'll share a review next week.  As for TV - finished Outlander on Prime. 
I was thinking it was the last season only to discover there's another 
one next year.
A bit more 'wee' and 'sasannach' - I think I'll cope! 

Take care friends and hope you can stop by next week.
Have a super weekend.

Friday, 25 October 2019

Friday Chat Day

Hello friends

The weeks are flying by - Friday already and this time next week 
it will be November! 
I hope you are all well.  From reading your comments last week
we all enjoy a bit of TV and I would like to reassure you I'm holding
up my end by testing out more dramas to bring you some reviews,
stay tuned!

So what has been happening?
Firstly a purchase to share with you.
I have a real penchant for hares and was thrilled to
find this gorgeous 2020 diary from English Graphics.
Love the little bit of sparkle on his ears and eco-glitter too.
It is an independent website selling unique cards, diaries,
bags, mugs and more.
Each year I do splash out on a nice diary as I figure it is something
I use every day so well worth the pennies

And talking of lovely independent websites, if you are on the lookout for
books, gifts, stationery, jigsaws - have you visited 
I admit to being a little biased here as my cousin Andy co-owns 
the business with Annabel and they both work their socks off.
There is also Peanut - the office dog and he is celebrating his first birthday 
soon with a special competition on Facebook - all the detail are here.
Pop along to be in with a chance of winning a gift voucher.

So the nights are drawing in and with the clocks changing this weekend 
it will definitely feel like Autumn.
I recommend warding off the cold and any winter lurgies with 
something to 'warm the cockles' as they used to say!
How about a tot of coconut and vanilla rum liqueur?

I confess when offered this I wasn't sure, I'm not a fan of coconut based drinks,
never a Malibu girl! is actually very nice and only £7.99 at Aldi.
I'm also rather impressed by the label - The Infusionist - very clever.
(I should point out I did not drink half the bottle).

Knitting progress:
Last weekend I visited my writer friend Carole Matthews up in 
Milton Keynes (she's the one that drank half the bottle of rum - hehe!) 
I took my big and mustard throw project with me and made good progress.
Here it is photographed against her gorgeous red tree,
that's my layman terms!
I should definitely be finishing this project over the weekend and 
thinking I would quite like one for me in pale pink or grey.

I did manage to get out in the garden on Tuesday, the only day it did not rain.
It was time to say goodbye to my wicker chair that has had clematis growing 
over it for many years.  Too many winters have taken their toll and the poor
chair is beyond repair.  Bella looks concerned too!

This was it in its heyday.

So instead of buying a new wicker chair I opted for a metal bench,
Amazon bargain on a daily Prime deal.
Mitchell kindly put it together and the clematis received a severe pruning.

Fingers crossed it flourishes next year and starts to cover the bench.
Elliott asked, 'it's not for sitting on then?'
Absolutely not! 
Although I did suggest he could jet wash the paving...

So that's another week of randomness done and dusted.
I have a weekend of lovely nothingness ahead of me and looking forward to
pottering and perhaps having a lie-in, although try telling 
three cats and a dog that it is OK to sleep beyond 7am! 

Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for stopping by,
more waffle next Friday if you're brave enough!

Friday, 18 October 2019

Friday Chat Day

Hello friends

It is time for another Friday Chat Day, let's see what random
ramblings I can bring you this week! 

It has been a very quiet week in the Emberson household,
possibly the change in the weather but I haven't felt like venturing too far.
I relented and put the heating on and that definitely felt cosy.

This week the focus has been on yarn, getting organised and 
making headway with some of my WIPs.

Another mustard throw is near to finishing.
I made one a couple of months ago, (my very first commission)
and it seemed popular so I've decided to make another. 
It's a knitting project as opposed to crochet and I'm using 
ginormous needles on a loop which was tricky initially, 
nearly poking various eyes out, but fine now.
I will be placing this throw up for sale once finished, hopefully this year!

Mustard is definitely the 'in' colour, I'm seeing it everywhere.
Pixel cat is not convinced by this season's colour though! 


So... I found out that you don't need to buy yarn, you just place bags of it 
together and it breeds all by itself!
Within a very short period I realised I needed to get the yarn stash
under control.  I have a Dad-made unit at the top of my landing, 
(it used to house a great deal of craft items when I crafted at home).
I thought it could be re-purposed and went online to look for baskets that would fit snugly.
Two days later I emerged (slight exaggeration) and was 
delighted to find these rattan ones from a company called Wovenhill.
They do the job perfectly and now I can see at a glance
how much yarn I need to use up! 


And here's a little gem that is crochet and nothing to do 
with attempting to deplete my yarn stash.
My Dad was out cycling and found this keepsake.  How sweet.
I've been reading a lot about these RAKs (random acts of kindness) 
and I knew that people were painting pebbles etc, but had yet to see one,
it certainly warms the heart.

This week's viewing whilst knitting/crocheting...
Outlander - available on Amazon Prime.

OK, so I gave this series a shot last year and lost interest but I 
decided to try it again and I'm now nearing the end.
My humble review:  I do love a bit of time travel but it does get a 
little farcical at times.  The heroine, Clare at one point, is supposed 
to age 20 years, the only indication is a few grey hairs that disappear by
the end of the episode.  I shouted at the screen "give that girl some wrinkles".
Bella agreed.
That said, it is entertaining with a rather handsome Scotsman 
and my English/Scottish history has certainly improved.

I definitely need viewing recommendations, I'm enjoying 
World on Fire on BBC1 - that is definitely gritty and realistic! 

As some of you may know I live in a tiny Victorian Terrace (the VT)
so my garden is pocket sized. 
It is rare to see wildlife unless you count the numerous cats (3 are mine),
so I was both shocked and excited to discover a squirrel sitting boldly 
on my fence this week.
I grabbed my phone and attempted a little video.

It hasn't been back although the following morning I espied a robin.
At this rate I'll be locking my cats in and ringing David Attenborough! 

I must mention Mum - thank you for the comments asking after her.
Glad to report she is doing much better.  
She still has a few obstacles to overcome 
but the hospital appointments are not quite so frequent.
As you can imagine, she's keen to 
get back to normal with her housework and gardening.

I think that wraps up this week's natterings.
Time is ticking by so fast and the website is in its final months
so definitely keep a lookout for the continuing bargains.

Take care friends - wishing you all a lovely weekend
and feel free to stop by next Friday.

Friday, 11 October 2019

Friday Chat Day

Hello friends

Happy Friday to you and how has your week been? 
It has been full on hobby haven/cabin clearing/sorting this week
and I'm delighted with the progress.

I do love a basket as this picture definitely shows and
glad to say that some of these are actually empty.
Not sure for how long...I may use them for yarn!
(Note I'm not showing you the stock room area, that's
not picture worthy just yet!)

This area is for card, I've still kept a good supply of coloured card
and pretty paper.

And this is the area I am most pleased with.  A new desk and writing area.
My plan is to spend some time here doing some writing as a hobby, 
more details coming soon.

I purchased one of the Hobbycraft trolleys because I kept seeing them on
sale and couldn't resist.  Who doesn't love a bargain?
It remains empty because I just don't know what to put in it!  

Other news:  it was World Cardmaking Day last week and 
Scrapbook Adhesives featured a card that I made, the details are here.

I was really happy to be featured because this card marks my 
final project for Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L. 
I've chosen to step down from their design team after being with them 
since 2011.  I thought about it long and hard and decided I 
really wanted to make changes and dedicate my time differently.
I will miss them, they are the best team out there with the 
most lovely supportive friends.

Crochet progress - 
the poncho, right now looks more like a scarf!

I didn't get to do a great deal again this week as each evening
I've been heading off to bed earlier than normal.
I'm attributing it to vigorous cabin clearing and the colder nights. 

And talking of getting colder, this week's purchase that highly amused
the boys - furry clogs/crocs from Aldi! 
Do you have a pair of shoes permanently at the back door?
I do and for years they've been these plastic crocs/clogs and now 
I've found them fur lined for Winter, I'm thrilled! 
I can now nip out in the garden without my feet feeling frozen - 
it's the little things and for only £4.99 too
(available in other colours).

Bella time and this week sharing her makeover.
Before she looks like a Star Wars Wookie and after, a startled Meerkat!

  And my final nattering this week is dedicated to food.
Along with many changes happening right now,
I've chosen to stop eating meat.  Various reasons -
health, environment and because there are just some things
you cannot 'unsee'.  
I have to say I've found it far much easier than I thought. 
Nowadays there's a wealth of alternatives and this week when I 
went out for breakfast I was introduced to Linda McCartney's 
Vegetarian Sausages and you know what?  They are really good! 

Also very tasty are the Linda McCartney burgers with mozzarella.
I would like to tell you that I've lost tons of weight by cutting out meat
but that's just not true, oh well you can't have everything! 

Well my friends that wraps up my week.
I do hope you are all well and have a nice weekend planned.
Please join me next Friday for my chatter,
no idea what will be going on but it's bound to be random! 

Take care friends.

Friday, 4 October 2019

Friday Chat Day

Hello friends

Happy Friday and welcome to my natterings.
Hope you are all having a good week so far,
we have lurched into Autumn head first, I swear the trees 
just look at the calendar and instantly shake all their leaves off!
Overnight I'm walking through masses of them with the temptation to 
kick them in the air (still a kid at heart) and I love the gorgeous colours.'s a little of what has been happening in my world.

Firstly my cabin is undergoing some changes.
I've decided it is going to be my 'Hobby Haven', I quite like the sound of that.  
To that end, I kidnapped the boys and asked for their help in setting up little areas
for different hobbies.  My hope is to have a place for writing, sewing and papercraft.
Crochet is a home hobby in front of Netflix, just in case you were wondering :)  

So far, I've got a new desk, computer and chair - it's all rather white!

This is Elliott making sure all things techy are working.
(Note: he did not touch that duster to his left!)

And Mitchell putting together a more comfortable chair for me.
I've sat on that wicker one with cushions for years!

Also turns out I've had the same laptop for 8 years and
in computer terms that is apparently very OLD and the boys are horrified! 
My opinion was that it still works but I have to admit this new setup
feels very swish so I am happy.

I cannot quite convert the cabin to Hobby Haven completely 
as I need to sell off all the stock from the website.
I am doing that with lots of offers so please stay tuned, it all has to go!
I tend to release a new offer every Friday with occasional small offers in the week.
Right now I have overstocked on Grand Cabinet so that die is available 
for just £12 at the moment.  Becca also uses this die as a box, very pretty.

This week's new discoveries:

I stumbled across a lovely Instagram account called 
Made by Leah, this is her website here.
There is something so very charming about her designs and 
I especially like the Pink Gin drawing.
I've decided to have this framed and placed above my desk.
(For the times when it isn't suitable to drink Gin I can just imagine!)
I also thought the robin enamel mug was very cute.

Crochet update:

Slow progress on my poncho this week so I will cheat and 
show you what I am hoping it will look like.
This is the pattern - Uptown Poncho.
I've gone for a silver grey but you never know if it is a success,
I may choose to make another one in Aran and can wear it in approx. 2025! 

And because like all crafters we think ahead to our next project whilst
we still have half a dozen on the go - I've decided to make a crochet
and I'm thinking a nice red/Merlot colour would suit her for Christmas.

And talking of the lady she is looking very forlorn.

Unfortunately she got stung by a wasp this week.
It was a mad dash to the vets where she was checked out and 
I was told by the very lovely vet that rather than a costly injection,
 Piriton would work perfectly.
And it has, although we've only given her one as it definitely made 
her very sleepy.  But...what I didn't know is ...if you tell the Pharmacist 
it is for your dog they cannot sell it to you!  I even had a note from the vet
but he was adamant.  So I'm afraid I lied when I visited the next chemist.
(I do not condone lying unless your dog is at risk and then it is allowable!) 

This weekend, 100% cabin sorting.
I did shoot a little video to share but realised I had said the words 
'sorting/sorted/to be sorted' eight times in the first 30 seconds! 
I will perhaps have another go or failing that, a silent video.

I am finding it very cathartic sorting (see, I've said it again!)
the cabin and I came across this quote which I love and 
I will leave it with you all.

Have a wonderful weekend and hope you can join me again next Friday.

Take care friends.

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