Suzy Cat

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Looking Forward!


As the year draws to a close and we look forward to welcome the new one in - here I am - pondering in my little corner.

Oh, we had a lovely Christmas!  Spending time with family, chilling out and exchanging presents.  I’ve eaten Turkish Delight, drank Baileys and watched too much telly.  We welcomed a new puppy into the family – my daughter and her fiancé got the most adorable chocolate brown Labrador! He is 10 weeks old and a little bundle of fun.

Before the decorations come down I’d just like to show you a picture of our dresser at Christmas – 

A Lot Going On!
This is the only time of year I can get away with having so much clutter!!

So, another Christmas is over and I don’t care what anyone says – we all feel a little down in the dumps at some point afterwards.  Not necessarily because the Christmas festivities are over but because January & February can be cold, dark depressing days. 

That’s why I like to have indoor bulbs.  Watching the shoots grow and the burst of colour as they emerge gives us hope.  Take a look at one of my hyacinths –

Signs Of Spring!
A little reminder that dark days don’t last for ever and spring is not far away.

I have lots to look forward to this coming year!

A grandchild (our first) 
and ....
youngest daughter’s wedding!

Eeeeehhhhhh!!!!! How exciting is that??!!

Instead of making New Year resolutions for 2013 I have started to make a ‘to do’ list instead - 

My 2013 To Do List
  • Emulsion spare bedroom (tin of emulsion  has been sitting in the porch since May) 
  • Wallpaper and emulsion our bedroom (pulling one strip of paper off last summer does not count)
  • Re-paint Lloyd Loom chair & bedside cabinet (As they are taking up space in garage)
  • Knit/crochet for new grandchild (a must)
  • Finish cushions for youngest daughters beauty salon (started many months ago)
  • Work out how to sell on Ebay (got a lot of clutter to go)
  • Do exercises EVERY DAY for sciatica (so that I can look my physio in the eye)
  • Read Keith Richards autobiography (been sitting on shelf for year)
  • Tidy garage (so we can get car in)
  • De-clutter house (on-going)
  • Finish granny square blanket (sew ends in)
  • Weed front garden (so that neighbours will stop talking about me)
  • Be nice to people (because ‘it’s nice to be nice?)!

Wishing You All a Happy and Healthy New Year
Love C x

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Christmas Memories!

His nibbs bought a 5 foot vase from our local auctioneer many years ago.
It stands in the corner of the living room and over the years I’ve experimented with filling it with lots of things.  Acorns, pot-pourri, bullion hair, seashells, coloured stones, tinsel..........but I think this is by far the best idea...
A vase of Baubles!
It just screams, 'CHRISTMAS TIME!'
And the best bit is - I've bought many of these baubles at car boot sales and charity shops over the year for pennies!! Their junk - my treasures! 

House is all decorated for Christmas.  We don't like to do it too early - much more festive when it's done nearer to Christmas Eve.  
Cards are up.  How do you display yours?  I’ve bought many things over the years but have never been happy with any card displays.  About 6 years ago I made these –
Card Holders
Simple really! Long length of ribbon, a curtain hook and a bauble!!  I cut random lengths because I don't like things to look too uniformed!
Stick Blu-tack onto card – stick onto ribbon – hey presto!!
Cards on Ribbon
I love cards!  I saw these in our local market town and just had to buy them!
Vintage Cards
Home made cards are never thrown out in our house! They are brought out year after year.  Here's a selection on our dresser.....
I treasure these cards.  Especially the ones my mam made because since her eyesight deteriorated she doesn't make cards as often as she did.  I think you can spot the ones my children made many years ago!! The pink glittery reindeer one is a favourite from Gemma, my youngest daughter's school friend. (who is now in her late 20's!). The last one that stands alone was made by Aunty Margaret the year before she died so that one is rather special. 

Ah, 'tis good good to bring out favourites from years gone by - Let me share some of my other Christmas treasures with you -
Made by my children over 20 years ago and brought out every year!
This angel (?!) was made by my great nephew two years ago and has joined the collection!

Oooh isn't it lovely to remember those infant school days with our children?  I can still remember the look of excitement on their little faces as they ran out of the school gates clutching their latest creations.

I've tried over the years to have a themed Christmas Tree - but sentiments get in the way! 
Like when I decided on a red & gold them - my mother-in-law gave me this purple & silver bauble which belonged to my late father-in-law.  It was one of the first baubles he ever owned and he treasured it for many years. When I think about that young boy spending his hard earned money on this bauble and how much it meant to him - I can't bear not to put it on our tree!   
A Very Old Bauble!
There's the Little Drummer Boy! One of the Christmas decorations we bought in our first year together   - just because 'we liked it'.
The Drummer Boy
This acorn (one of many) made by my mam -  
 These two tree ornaments made by my uncle.  The one on the right is an egg shell!  I did have another one with Christmas mice inside but one year I dropped it and it broke - I was devastated!
Oh, and here's another tree ornament that tells a story!! 
Glass Angel
I'm afraid she doesn't photograph very well but believe me - she is beautiful! 
Must have been about ten years ago - I was in a shop choosing a pair of William Morris design curtains but couldn't choose between two choices.  A man in the shop went on to tell me the whole history of William Morris and the story behind every design!! I left the shop thinking he was slightly cracked - even though he had helped me make a decision! As I was leaving the shop he gave me this glass angel for a Christmas present. Now I treasure that angel -
and remember those words ........ 'Eehh! Isn't it nice to be nice?'         

Ah, so many memories at Christmastime - so personal to us.
Like this little log that was my grans -
It didn't look like this when I got it! I've titivated it up a bit with a new robin and new decorations but the memory of seeing it in her house every Christmas is still there.  

This table runner which belonged to my husbands great aunt - 
We put it on the sideboard every year! I love the angels! Unfortunately I've spilled candle wax on it and it has a few greasy spots.  But, our possessions are there to be used not hidden in cupboards and a bit of Christmas holly hides the marks.

I've made a few things myself which I'm hoping will be family heirlooms - 
Cross stitch
Christmas shopping in York this year I treat myself to these Christmas goodies! -
Oh, I just love Christmas!
Spending time with family, indulging, being creative -
Christmas Silhouettes
 snuggling up, keeping cosy and warm and having fun, fun, fun!!
Wishing you a merry little Christmas and a healthy New Year

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

My Beloved .....

Hot water bottle!
Knitted Hot Water Bottle Cover
Ever since I can remember I’ve always had a hot water bottle....

Pink ones, blue ones, red ones, green ones – but mostly pink ones.

A few years ago I saw a hot water bottle knitted cover which was embroidered with ‘Home Sweet Home’ across the front.  
I fell in love with it and for a few months I searched for the pattern without success.

If I’d known then what I know now about knitting and cross stitch I would have just adapted a pattern but, you know how it is when you are a still a beginner – you have to do everything ‘just so’ 

It was a project hovering in the back of mind for a few years and one day when searching the internet I found this rib hot water bottle cover pattern. 

It was really easy to make and only took me a couple of nights.  It is made in one piece, and doubled over. 
However when I attempted the cross stitch it did not work because some of the letters were hidden in the rib!! 

I did some frogging (a new word for me!!!)  - it means pulling out stitches (the sound of  pulling out stitches – ‘rip it, rip it, rip it = frogging!!). 

Out came the embroidery – leaving red dye stains from the embroidery thread.  Boo Hoo!!

I didn’t want to pull out all my hard work so I added buttons.  
They had to be in this flower shape to hide the stain from the dye!

I added a bit of ribbon and I think it looks rather lovely!

The buttons will have to come off.  Buttons are no good if you like to cuddle your hottie! 
Maybe add a bit of appliqué?

At this time of year it's nice to have a little indulgence to take away some of the stress from our lives! I'm just loving these right now - take a look - 
Frankincense Bathsalts
They smell lush and the smell lingers around the house for ages after!  Frankincense is now my favourite Christmas smell.  It used to be pine but now it's Frankincense! Candles, oils, burners - very festive!
And, after a nice long soak....
Hottie & Hot Chocolate
Book & Biscuits
Lots of lovely things to make in Molly Makes! 

Pj's, Bedsocks & Teddy
Little Threadbare Ted!  As old as me - another vintage!
....... All go well together don’t you think?!!

Sweet dreams
Night night
Love Cx

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Knitted Nativity Set

Hello! Come on in –

I’ve made mulled wine!!
Mulled wine
I'm just waiting for a few friends to arrive for a bit of girly natter!!

Mince pies & stollen cake
I’m just sampling the wine – tastes good!

Take a closer look at this tea light holder – It's my favourite at this time of year. 

Christmas tea light holder
See all the Christmassy things inside the glass?  
I bought it many years ago at White Rose Candles in Wensley.  (They sell lots of lovely things and you can watch them make candles!)

We’ve got the Christmas CD’s out!
Christmas music!
The Partridge Family (remember them?!) - an old favourite of mine – who can resist 'Rocking Around The Christmas Tree' with David Cassidy?!  

Along with Slade & Wizzard you can’t go wrong with a Christmas Collection CD!  – My favourite on this one is David Essex singing ‘A Winter’s Tale’

But my absolutely favourite Christmas CD is this one –
Just looking at the cover makes me feel all nostalgic!

How many of these songs do you recognise?


Oh, just before you go – just take a look –
I’ve finished knitting the Nativity Set!!
Nativity Set

Mary & Joseph
Baby in Manger

Three Kings
My little trademark!!
I did sew some jewels on the Kings gifts! As you can see I also added a bit of straw to make it look like a real manger!!

Last night we watched this DVD
Christmas Film!
We really enjoyed it and I cried when the baby was born!! – I love a birth!!!

Well, I really must go now!

Ta ta, take care - and remember – 'IT'S NICE TO BE NICE!!'
Love Cx

Monday, 10 December 2012

Oh, What Fun We Had!

I adore my great nephew and great niece and try to see them as often as I can.  

They are crafty little people too and last year we enjoyed making some Christingles.

When I heard they were free on Sunday to meet up and make some more I was sooo excited!!

We got together with all our bits and pieces - 
Foil, cocktail sticks, foil, juicy oranges, cranberries, apricots, sultanas and sweeties
Great uncle cut the middle from the oranges and we stuck tape around the middle.

We set about making the Christingles.  I reminded them of the story about the Christingle (see end of post).
This is the part the little ones liked best - filling the cocktail sticks with fruit and sweeties!

And, things didn't always go according to plan -
Sticky bits stuck on elbows!  Cocktail sticks snapped in half! Juice squirted everywhere!

But the little ones got on with the task in hand and worked very hard sticking the filled sticks into the oranges. 

These Christingles weren't just put together any old way - oh no, great nephew was very particular about his colour co-ordination and proudly matched these sweeties up with his top! ..... 

A bit more effort was needed to push the candles and foil into the oranges ...

There was much hilarity when they tried to pick the tray up and the oranges fell over!!

After much laughter and fun the Christingles were lined up for their final photo! 

Errmm...not many sweeties left though!

A long time ago the children were asked to take a gift to put beside the crib in Church. One family were very poor and had no money for gifts.   The children looked around the house to see what they could take.  They found an orange which was going mouldy at the top. They scooped out the bad bits and put a candle in the top.  It looked like a lantern!  One of the girls took a red ribbon from her hair and tied it around the middle. The ribbon kept slipping off so they stuck some sticks in to keep it in place.  They found some raisons in the cupboard and stuck these on the end.  When they took their lantern to church they were afraid that the other children would laugh at it.  However the priest told everyone how special the lantern was because:
  • The orange is round like the world.
  • The candle stands tall and straight and gives light in the dark
  • The red ribbon goes all around the 'world' 
  • The four sticks point in all directions and symbolise North, South, East and West - they also represent the four seasons.
  • The fruit (or sometimes sweets!) represent the fruits of the earth, nurtured by the sunshine and the rain.
I think this is a lovely story.  
And, a Christingle orange is always a delightful present to give.

I do hope you are having some fun time with your Christmas preparations too.