Friday, 31 July 2009

Its that time of year

This is a blog and run, but I felt I had to let you know that I have just seen the first Christmas decorations in a shop this afternoon!

Now I know I am getting ready as many other crafters are, but I am not that ready! I have only just planned my fabric purchasing, yet to plan when said purchasing is going to happen and most definately don't have stock ready yet! Tell a lie - I actually made a couple of stockings the other day!

I probably should be a little more ahead than that but that's the way it goes, and I'm not!

Thanks for the lovely comments about the Hitchin Market, the farmers and craft market is held on the last Saturday of each month so it will vary depending on whether it is a 4 or 5 week month.

I have some bath bags to sew now and I haven't even thought about dinner and now I am hungry! Off to find food!
Take care all
Sarah x

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

And back - again!

I'm so sorry, I have been neglecting you again. What sort of a blogger am I? So easily distracted!

So where have I been? Well it was Hitchin Market on Saturday last, or as we are now know 'The Riverside Craft and Farmers Market'

It was a lovely day (talking about the weather again!) especially considering this is what was outside the window on the Friday afternoon.

Not forgetting that this is the middle of our summer of which we have been promised a great one this year!

Although this weather is rather unseasonal (or not depending upon which year you are comparing it to) and rather frustrating when you want it to be nice on market days at least, it is however, providing some very dramatic sky pictures!

As it happens, this weekend just gone, the Saturday of Hitchin Market was the best day in ages!

As the name suggests, we are on the river banks with St Mary's Church as a backdrop.

Fortunately they put my stall with its back to the wall so that I didn't have to worry about taking one too many steps back and ending up in the river!

For those of you that know Hitchin, the Farmers and Craft market extends around to Churchgate to the open green area behind the Portmill Lane carpark too which will lead you back to the shops by Simmonds the bakers. I have been told that I will possibly be down that way next time.

I didn't get to go and take lots of photos of other stalls as I was there by myself and seemed to see so many people I knew I was kept rather busy!

I am off to deliver some cookies now, then to plan how to make sure I keep enough hours in the day to do everything! I think the first step will be to take the Time Management for Dummies book back to the library, as eversince I have had it in my possession, time seems to have gone even quicker! It is clearly linked to time itself!

Take care all

Sarah xx

Friday, 24 July 2009

Is it April?

So, being British, I have to talk about the weather on a regular basis and I feel I have neglected to do so for a little while.
Just want to check that this is July?

Note - the two chickens making a run for shelter!

Only this seems to be the weather I was expecting in April, that we didn't have.

Please don't think I am complaining, on the contrary, my water butts are filling up lovely and I was a little concerned that if this magnificent summer came which we have been promised, teamed with the lack of rain in April then we were going to be running short for plant watering very quickly.

George is wondering would it be ok to have a fire on, even if it is summer?

Off to make stuff, Hitchin Market tomorrow, please lets have real July weather for that!
Take care all, til tomorrow
Sarah x

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Who is managing the time?

Oh dear, has it really go to half past seven in the evening and I haven't even sat and written a blog today?

In actual fact, I have not even read anyone elses yet!

So much for me reading Time Management for Dummies! I clearly really am quite a Dummie as nothing seems to have improved other than I have a little less time in the evenings as I am reading how to save time!!

I am in no doubt that once I have finished the book and got myself sorted with a routine and implemented some of the ideas I will be amazed at how much more time I seem to have, it is just that it is taking time to learn what to do, when and how! Meanwhile paperwork mountain is still unsurmounted (is that the right word? I haven't got time to check in the dictionary!).

Haven't even taken the camera out today so no up to date pics either! Off to go and make dinner now whilst it is still light!

Take care all, til tomorrow xx

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Raindrops on Patios

I've decided I need to make a pond in our garden.

Not that it is entirely necessary on a morning like today where there has been enough rain to cover the patio!

I found myself daydreaming out of the window over breakfast watching the raindrops make their perfect circles in the water, it was totally absorbing and had it not been for Geroge's wet nose reminder that there were things to do I would still be there!

I am still in the process of scaling mount paperwork today, how long can it take you ask? Well I think I am all sorted on where I am going to and when, just need to tackle the rest of the household organisation now!

Just to let you know that Garden Divas summer sale is now on with lots of lovely gardening goodies on offer. Be sure to check out the bespoke handmade lavender parcels made here in Land Cuckoo!

Take care all, stay dry
Sarah x

Monday, 20 July 2009

Jane de Lacey Munday Jewellery

Sometime last week when I did actually blog, I said I was going to tell you more about some of the people I met at the County Show. Well now that I seem to have found the time again to sit at the 'puter I shall do that!

Jane de Lacey Munday has been making jewellery with Precious Metal Silver Clay (PMC) for the past 7 years although she has been 'dabbling', as she puts it, with jewellery for 20 years. Initially self taught, she has attended and now runs workshops to learn new skills which she incorporates into her own jewellery.
PMC contains fine silver particles bound together with an organic binder and a little water which burns away during the firing process to leave you with pure silver to polish and finish.

Jane uses dichroic glass, porcelain, cubic zircona and precious gemstones within her jewellery to create beautiful designs which are entirely original.

Even when a mould is used (Jane makes these herself too) she notes how many times she has used it and will destroy it after so many uses to ensure that repeated pieces are kept to a minimum.

Jane offers jewellery parties with fabulous offers and discounts for the hostess, how lovely to have the luxury of shopping in your own home! Brilliant too if you want to find a piece of jewellery to wear with a particular outfit, you could try your whole wardrobe on if you liked!

And as if jewellery and parties wasn't enough, you can also learn how to make your own pieces by attending one of Jane's workshops. Classes are held in Bedford and you can learn the basics with the introductory course, progressing onto further techniques including working with dichoric glass.

Do have a look at her website, all the information you could need is there, and if you get the chance have a look at her work in person, it is so very tactile, and pictures, no matter how good don't give you the full impact of her work.

I am off to tackle paperwork mountain today, got the crampons on and have plenty of rope for the ascent, have even packed a flag for the arrival at the summit!

Take care all, til tomorrow (and I really do intend to be back tomorrow this time!)

Sarah x

Thursday, 16 July 2009

The simple life

From getting back after walking George I thought I would just wizz through a few bits and pieces before popping out to the bank. No, not going to happen that way.
Firstly I filled the washing machine and found theres not quite enough for a full load in darks or lights, will have to wait until later in the day as I am bound to find a few stray items along the way!
Then let the chickens out into the garden, that I did without any problem but noticed one of our roof tiles was at a funny angle so off to the shed to get the ladder.
Whilst up the ladder, after sorting out the wonky tile (not at full house height, this is on the extension bit!) I found a multitude of moss in the gutter so cleaned that out.

Put the ladder back and decided that I would sweep up after doing the washing up.

So then I watered tomato plants but then decided they had to be moved to get even more sun as the little green tomatoes are appearing now, somehow this involved me emptying and sorting out the bins at the same time.

Did then get onto the washing up and managed to tip a container full of water down me - twice.

Dropped the grill pan, very very loud noise.

Walked into chair - hurt elbow lots.

Finished emptying the dishwasher and filled it up again, didn't think I had much to wash up this morning, it certainly didn't look that much!

Stopped and had a look at my lovely flowers I have been given this week by my Auntie who visited on Tuesday - which is why I ran out of time to get to the computer to blog in between the most delicious lunch out and baking for Farmers Market.

And the jolly sunflowers that Hubby bought. Both have worked their magic and I feel much more cheered now, elbow still hurts and am rather damp from washing up but cheered all the same!

You can even see George rolling his eyes at me! "Just going to keep my head down Mum whilst you rattle and clatter about the house, I'll come and give you wet nose hug as soon as you sit down" And right on cue, George has just wandered in and put his head on my lap for a fuss before lying down beside me - such a great companion.

At least now I have a full load for the washing machine as I can add what I am currently wearing plus the tea towels that were grabbed to mop up the flood in the kitchen!

Off to see if I can 'just do' any other little jobs!

Take care all, til tomorrow

Sarah x

Monday, 13 July 2009

After the show

Just getting things back to normal and away in their rightful places after the Bedfordshire County Show at the weekend.

I took this on the Sunday as I was driving up to the showground, there is something quite exciting and magical about so many people with their tents and caravans, horses, dogs and show stopping acts, shops and stalls which offer a huge range of interesting goodies all making a temporary home in a field for a few days only to disappear within 24 hours back to their corner of the county, and I feel very privelidged to be a part of it.

This was our home for the weekend in the Bedfordshire Area Crafts market place. There were 16 of us who all come from the Bedfordshire area and handmake our own crafts, more about some of those later on in the week.

The Show took place at Shuttleworth Park with it's beautiful house and acres of parkland.

Not forgetting the Shuttleworth Collection of vintage aeroplanes of which we got to watch a number of them taking off and landing over the weekend. OK so you have to look really closely to actually see the aeroplane but they did come nearer, just didn't get a good picture!

I didn't manage to get out and about to take many pictures as it was fairly vast and I was there by myself but there seemed to be a lot of stalls and there was certainly a lot going on the the main arena which we were lucky enough to be able to see from our stall!

First thing on the Saturday, the rain came! It absolutely fell down but did manage to result in a few sales for folk as the people who dived into our marquee for shelter found that they actually could do with a few things!

These magnificent shire horses got caught in the rain on the Saturday but they carried on with their routine. So graceful and beautiful and yet it wasn't until you were up close that you realised just how big they really are. They were absolutely gleaming and the riders too were brilliantly turned out in their dress uniforms, this was their afternoon outfits having got a thorough soaking in the morning!

The Morris dancers came round busking on Sunday, this is a mixed group with men and women and they all had their faces painted in the green and purple colours too.

These guys were fun, one of them was giving the commentry from his frontline position on his bike! They jumped over trucks and cars and even a steam engine, finishing off with an almighty explosion! Didn't get any pictures of the big bang as I was too busy chatting with customers, but believe me it was so big it set all the car alarms off and we could even feel the warmth of the fire as it went off from where we were!

I hope you all had lovely weekends too, I am off to bake now for the Farmers Market on Wednesday.

Take care, til tomorrow

Sarah x

Friday, 10 July 2009

Buddy's Friday - Bank Holiday Beaches

This post was inspired by reading the August edition of Coast with my Coco Pops this morning! On a thrifty note - I have a few copies of Coast at an incredibly good price as an introductory promotion - so saved money there also!

So Coast are campaigning to bring back the day trip to the seaside on August Bank Holiday. We are to shun the decorating and the urge to go and shop with hundreds of other hot people in steamy car parks, sorry retail parks, and board a train to the beach.

They are asking people to take their cameras out on the Bank Holiday and take pictures, if you have any pictures, sketches or notes then send them to Coast ( titled AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY and they will be publishing the best in their November issue.

Seaside Pleasures:

Eating candy floss, ice cream and fish and chips all on the same day!

Shoe-horning yourself into a swimming cozzie behind a windbreak.

Playing crazy golf on the promenade, OK so this isn't crazy golf but it was great fun, and free!

Playing Frisbee on the beach.

Paddling with your trousers rolled up.

Playing in rock pools.

Just walking.

Watching the boats.

Around the country this year are so many free events at the seaside it should be possible to have some very good days out with only travel and essential food costs (fish and chips being an essential of course!). Just a few that I have read about are:

Dorset Seafood Festival, Weymouth - 11th and 12th July
Tate, Liverpool - open all year

The Oyster Festival, Whitstable - 18th to 26th July

The Donkey Sanctuary, Sidmouth - All year

Family Fun Festival, Bournemouth - August

O2 Scrum on the Beach, Newquay, Bournemouth and Tynemouth - various dates.

Acknowledgements to Coast magazine for providing some of the information for this post, my photos though!

Take care all and have a lovely weekend, hope the weather is lovely where you are.

Sarah x

Thursday, 9 July 2009

More for the show

Few more bits for the County Show this weekend (and they're on my website).

These smell so lovely, they have a blend of oakmoss, rose petals and spices inside which is a very grown up 'proper' scent. I can't think of any other way to describe it! Clearly that is not what will be written on the label but I'm sure I shall be struck by inspiration later!

I call them Cupboard Love Hearts because if you put them in a cupboard they will reward you with the most wonderful scent everytime you open it up.
I did originally make some just in little bags which didn't look so glam but I have them posted inbetween my pillow cases in the airing cupboard so that the pillow smell great when they are on the bed, lasts a lot longer than the fabric conditioner smell does!
So dog walked, kitchen cleared up now on to making more for the show. Did I mention I have a show this weekend? Argh! Must go make stuff!
Take care all, til tomorrow
Sarah x

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

All ears

For the first time in I can't remember how long we got rained on this morning! Well I know it has been raining on and off, well quite a lot on at times, but today was the first time George and I were out in it. Quite refreshing really with a cool breeze too.
The ears of corn in the corn fields are just starting to turn colour from their green to golden glow.

I guess if the good weather comes back it wont be long before the combines are out in force.
Been gathering twigs to see if I can actually display some of my products how I have in my mind to do! Will let you know if I pull it off!

Made a few of these yesterday - fabric pompoms!

A good old patriotic coloured one
And a pretty pastel pinks and greens one.

They aren't scented, just a nice little dangly to hang up somewhere!
Righto now I have to go and do more! It is stil the county show this weekend and I am still needing more stock (as usual!)
Take care all, til tomorrow
Sarah x

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

This is very very cute!

I was sent these photos yesterday and like the hot koalas a few months ago I thought you would like to see them.

I can't follow that!

So I wont! Take care all, til tomorrow

Sarah x