Monday, 31 December 2007


A big and heartfelt THANK YOU to all the lovely people who have made this year a better one in blogland with your support and friendship. I wish you all a very happy and healthy 2008.


Thursday, 20 December 2007

Merry Christmas!

As it doesn't look like I will get much blogging done over the festive period (mainly due to having an assignment due on 4th January... oh, and Christmas of course!), I would like to wish you all a wonderful Christmas and New Year and thank you for being such lovely and supportive blogging friends throughout this year. xxx

Saturday, 15 December 2007

Woo Hoo!

The very lovely and talented Graeme (see Grumblog and Charlie Cornelius) has nominated me for a Roar Award. I am extremely honoured, thank you Graeme.

Friday, 14 December 2007

One Is Amused...

Passing through the lovely Miss Diane's blog The Sound of One Hand Knitting, I chanced upon this little jewel of fun... well, naturally one wasn't too surprised to discover one's royal heritage...

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Her Royal Highness Susan the Paragon of Yetts O'Muckhart
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

(Incidentally, Yetts O' Muckhart is a real place, not far from here!)

Wednesday, 28 November 2007

It's Raining

It's raining here - a lot. I've just worked out that I need to do 48 hours work and 1 tutorial assignment to catch up with my studying. Not good.

I knew there was a reason I got organised for Christmas early...

Monday, 12 November 2007

You'd Better Watch Out... Santa's in Town

We saw Santa! Okay, I know it's a bit early, not even December yet and all that, but if Santa's visiting then it would be rude not to say hello, don't you think! On a visit to one of my favourite stores at the weekend we discovered that the man himself had just arrived, so Miss Lucy and Mr Adam joined the queue to see him. Just look at their little faces...

I think Miss Lucy felt a bit self conscious this year, I'm not sure she will want to do it next year. I guess she's growing up (nooooooooo!)

The store has a huge Christmas display and it's just lovely, and they have bags of those cinnamon scented pine cones all around the place - yummmmm I love it!

Friday, 9 November 2007


Hello! I'm still alive. I can't believe it's been so long since I posted, thanks for sticking with me :-) I've been so behind with my studying because of the October holidays, other family stuff and then I had a bit of a health scare where I had to have a mammogram and then wait a week for the results! Thankfully, everything was just fine. So, I have just managed to send off my fist assignment for my course (only a week late) and just need to catch up on my studies and my friends now.

If you can remember back to Halloween, my mum was having a party and we had a great time - dooking for apples, trying to grab doughnuts covered in syrup hanging from a string and bowlfuls of lovely homemade soup and stovies! Brilliant. Here is Miss Lucy in her bat outfit I made - you can just about see her little bat ears on top of her head.

And here she is again being scythed by Mr Adam (aka the Grim Reaper) in his costume - he is in there, honest!

Other momentous occasions lately have included Mr Adam losing his top two front teeth in the same day!

And here is my Christmas cake ready to be popped in the oven!

Other than that I have done absolutely nothing for ages. I'm going to try and catch up with everyone over the weekend and visit all the lovely blogs I've been missing. I've managed to get my connected wirelessly to t'internet now, so I can be really lazy and sit in my cosy bed and surf!!

Thursday, 25 October 2007

Bored, bored, bored, boring.......

Well, what to say? Nothing much has been happening here recently. The kids have been playing too much Playstation Harry Potter games (NOT my doing, I can tell you - and it won't be happening again!!). I'm way behind on my course work but I have managed to clean out a couple of cupboards and made a grim reaper costume for Mr Adam. Just to make a bat costume for Miss Lucy now - for Saturday night! My mum is having a Halloween Party for the family and we are all to dress up for the occasion - kids are sooooo excited but didn't want to wear their usual dress up stuff, so out with the sewing machine. The grim reaper outfit came out okay after I had unpicked one sleeve because I had put it in the wrong way round (it was inevitable - that sort of thing always happens when I'm being extra careful not to make a mistake). He likes it anyway. I've a hospital appointment this afternoon, so Lucy's will have to wait until tomorrow.

We have been on a couple of nice walks, one around Linlithgow Loch which was really nice and we saw loads of wildlife (crested grebes, cormorants, etc etc). The funniest bit was when a very large male swan walked (waddled?) up behind Dave and tapped him on the back with his beak - the look on his face was priceless (Dave, not the swan). But, I must admit that the weather is so much colder it's been keeping me inside a lot more than usual brrrrrr!

The biggest excitement of the week (you can tell I don't get out much)was getting my Student Union card - how cool am I? I feel so young and well, 'studenty' now. If only I could still fit into those faded jeans and hippy top...... Never mind eh, I can get an extra 5% off at Amazon, so it's not all bad!

Friday, 19 October 2007

What Planet Are You From?

That's strange, cos' I thought women were from Venus....

You Are From Neptune

You are dreamy and mystical, with a natural psychic ability.
You love music, poetry, dance, and (most of all) the open sea.
Your soul is filled with possibilities, and your heart overflows with compassion.
You can be in a room full of friendly people and feel all alone.
If you don't get carried away with one idea, your spiritual nature will see you through anything.

Monday, 15 October 2007


Ballcocks, that is. Apparently we need a new one. For the past week my overflow pipe has been regularly running water out - something to do with the cold water tank in the loft (or 'attic' for those with haunted mansions etc). So every so often I have to turn on a tap to stop the water running out and it should get fixed sometime this week (I hope). Not too disastrous then, just really annoying!

On Saturday I had my first Day School for my Creative Writing course with the Open University (I'm sure I've mentioned it once or twice - lol). It was held at Stirling University which has a beautiful campus - trees, little lakes, wildlife - you can imagine how gorgeous it was at this time of year with the leaves all changing colour. This picture gives some idea (I didn't take it, it was from the internet).

Anyway, I was so nervous I can't tell you. I almost didn't go, but then I thought I had better do the Grown Up thing, so I went. I needn't have worried - everyone was really nice, the tutor was lovely and I think we all had a good day. The worst thing was having to write something quickly and then (worst of all) to read it out and hear people's comments!!!! Can you imagine? Thankfully no one said mine was total pants. I was amazed at what people could come up with in 20 minutes or so - they must have great imaginations. The hardest thing was to think of something constructive to say about peoples work other than 'I liked it' - I just don't feel qualified to comment in any intelligent fashion! I expect that is the sort of thing that, like the writing itself, will take some practice. Apart from the day school, the course is going quite well although I need to get the finger out and increase the amount of writing I am doing on a daily basis (well, to actually write on a daily basis would be a start!). The best thing is that I am enjoying it!

Hmmm, what else have I been up to? I have been working on a sewing project but it's a gift and I can't show it on here - it's coming on reasonably well though. Oh, I know - this is going to make some of you groan but I have to confess - I've almost finished my Christmas Shopping! Yes, I know, sickening isn't it - something is bound to go wrong now - like the year we ate chipolata sausages for Christmas dinner because the pork we were having 'for a change' was off! Oh dear..... fingers crossed then.

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

For Any Aspiring Writers Out There - Free Advice!

This post is for any of you budding writers out there, for all of you secretly writing the next bestseller in your bedroom, for anyone with any interest in writing at all. And so......

In view of the fact that all bloggers are writers (but not vice versa!), I think you might be interested in a daily post by my good friend David McMahon, based on tips for writers, called 'Telling Write from Wrong' at Authorblog. He would like this to become a central point for writers of any description, any nationality, any age and any interest, to get honest advice from an experienced writer. You can leave your questions as comments - and he will answer them. Here are some questions that you might want to ask David McMahon, and his anticipated answers.

Is he just trying to publicize his own blog?

No, he’s trying to create a groundswell across the globe to let other writers benefit from his experience in journalism, editing and writing novels. I don't know of any other successful novelist who does this.

What are his technical qualifications?

David has written a bestselling novel. He’s been a writer and editor for 30 years. In 2002 he was one of three finalists in the national Walkley Awards (the Aussie equivalent of a Pulitzer) and in 2005 was shortlisted for a National News Award.

Is he just trying to get us (and others) to link to his blog to improve his Technorati ranking?

No, he’s never tried boosting about his Technorati ranking. And he’s never asked anyone to link to my blog.

Thank you for reading, and good luck on improving your writing skills! I for one need all the help I can get!

Saturday, 6 October 2007

I'm COOL at last!

At last - I am officially COOL! - (well, according to my kids at least). I've been awarded a Rockin' Blogger Award by the very lovely and talented Viki at Pernickety Hat. Viki's writing is brilliant, you should go and have a look at her blog - you won't be sorry. Thanks Viki.

Just to make you all feel like throwing things at me - I am for once organised with my Christmas cards because I wrote them all out this morning! It must be the first time I've been that organised I think, but this year I was determined to stay In Control of Christmas. I'm off to look at my Christmas cookbooks now....

Thursday, 4 October 2007

Long Time No See

My goodness, I feel as if I've been away for years! I hope you are all well and I'm planning on catching up with all my favourite blogs asap. I've been missing you all :-(

What have I been up to? Well, whether you really want to know or not, I will tell you. I've started my OU studies again you see. I promise not to moan about it this time though, or at least not too much. It's Creative Writing and I've had to do daily writing exercises. This has mainly resulted in meaningless drivel, but never fear because they tell me this is good and sooner or later a little gem of literary marvellousness will appear that I can develop into the next Harry Potter type novel and make millions (well, something along those lines anyway). It's all beyond me. I mean, I have the most awful arguments with myself about where apostrophes do or don't go for goodness sake, what chance have I got of writing anything of any worth - LOL . Still, I have to admit, I'm rather enjoying it :-))

Other than the studies and the housework (who knew it took so long if you actually did it properly?), I have managed to make a couple of things. This little orange item made from handmade felt which was stitched randomly and then made into a bag/pouch with a nice greeny lining (note to self, next time use a lining that matches the outside - much neater!).

And this - made from silk fibres, throwsters waste, fme'd, backed with dyed cotton and made into a little notebook cover/holder. I like the twig closure! These are both long overdue gifts for a very nice lady who helped me with my studies last year. I might even get them posted tomorrow - although isn't there a strike..... grrrrrrr.

Not too much else has been happening here apart from Mr Adam having a whole afternoon of Beaver activities at a local outdoor centre last Saturday (he is a recent convert - dib dib dib and all that). He had an absolute whale of a time and so did we as we hung around to watch him. Lucy and I had a roam round the assault course too - until we were spotted and ran away!

And did you know it was National Poetry Day today? See, I get to know stuff like that now that I'm a Literary Type (guffaw).

Friday, 21 September 2007

Quick Photo Post

I'm pretty busy right now and haven't been doing much blogging lately. Here is a quick photo summary of the last week or so.

The QE2 visited us on it's last voyage before it's off to Dubai as a luxury hotel or somesuch nonsense - we nipped down to the shore to have a last look. Excuse the terrible pic.

I received my postcard for the Colour Combinations Swap I'm in with Unlimited Textiles group. I'ts from Sandy and it's really gorgeous.

This is a quiltie made from silk fibres made into a 'paper' with some throwsters waste and silk ribbon snippets added, then FME'd on top with beads added last. It looks nicer in real life but my photographic skills seem to be getting worse instead of better! I must stop photographing things on that background too (it's the plastic stuff I have on top of my dining table to protect it and it's not a good background!).

Postcard (first one I've ever attempted) done in the same way. I've a feeling I might have done it slightly wrongly in that I put wadding in the middle and fabric on the back - shouldn't it be flatter and have card or stiff vilene on the back? Maybe it doesn't really matter - I hope so.

Finally, thanks to everyone who comments on these posts and I just want to apologise if I have missed replying to you, I don't always manage it and so just wanted to say thanks for commenting and I do really appreciate all your input. xxxxx

Monday, 17 September 2007

Nice Surprise & Wet Weekend

I had a lovely surprise from Annica in Sweden this weekend - these beautiful ATCs - aren't they gorgeous? I'm afraid the background colour is not doing anything for them - they are really lovely in the flesh. Thank you so much Annica :)

Sunday must have been the wettest day for ages. We all squelched our way through the 'Naturally Fife' exhibition - a kind of combination horticultural and environmental show. This is only the second year it's been on and it's held in Dunfermline in Pittencrieff Park which is absolutely gorgeous. Everything was on in large marquees and we had a good time although we were really cold and wet by the end of it - the water seeped up through the bottom of my trousers - euch! There was a lot of information about environmental things - being greener in the home, recycling etc etc. There was a woman with a peg loom which was quite interesting - my other half assured me he could make me one (I expect he has forgotten already!) and the RSPB and the Woodland Trust were there too. There were activities for the children to do and mine got into the spirit of things..

Making a home for ladybirds to hibernate in for the winter from hollow sticks tied together (who knew ladybirds hibernated?)

Decorating a wooden necklace..

They also made nice fish from willow which they wove - Adam wanted to make a dragon but the lady said they only did fish! They wanted to make felted flowers too, but there was a bit of a queue for that and so I promised I'd do it with them at home (and you know they won't forget!).

There were some extremely large vegetables to behold! How white are those cauliflowers?! I just wanted to grab them all and make soup. :-)

There was quite a show of flowers too and a huge long table of bonsai trees.

It was a shame the day was so cold and wet because I'm sure it must have affected the attendance numbers. I hope they continue to do it every year. Oh, I nearly forgot - one of the best things was that I got two new plants for my garden - an echinacea and a heuchera - absolutely gorgeous, just have to figure out where to put them now...

Thursday, 13 September 2007

All The Nice Girls Love A Sailor

When my dear Dad was still with us, he had been working on a kit of a model tugboat ( I say working on it - it was a bit sporadic - like the rest of us!). Anyway, my brother recently took up the challenge and began working on the kit. Much painstaking bending of wood, painting of hulls, adjusting of ballast and fiddling with electrical do-dads ensued. Finally it was completed and last night the tug took it's maiden voyage on the local pond in Rosyth. Ta-Dah!

Everything went swimmingly (ahem) and the tug sailed like a dream. I even got a shot of the controls - we had a great time.

Close up.

This is the man himself, my brother John. Notice the apparent ease with which he manfully handles the controls :)

This is the face of a happy boat builder don't you agree? I have to say by the way, that I love my little brother to bits, he is absolutely the best in the world, he is so kind, generous (and quite cuddly too, but don't tell him I said so) and to me he is my absolute hero. I just love him. Of course if he reads this, then I am a dead woman!

Monday, 10 September 2007

Nigella Minxing It Up!

Now, I love Nigella as much as the next woman - but boy was she over the top tonight! I think she must have been on the 'frisky' pills.

I gotta get me some of dem dere pills.

Saucy minx!

Saturday, 8 September 2007

And The Winner Is....

Mary! Well done you. I think there is something a bit spooky about you missus!!! Yes, I have to confess that my middle name is indeed Audrey - ugh, I hate it. I mean c'mon - Susan Audrey? Do I strike you as an Audrey? Shouldn't I be floating around in a kaftan, like Margo Leadbetter in 'The Good Life', drinking aperitifs before dinner and doing Good Works for the church? That's the sort of image it conjures up for me. I think Tallulah suits me much better (grin). No offence to any other Audreys out there - I'm sure your name fits you just right and that you are nothing like Margo :)

Now that I think about it, I kinda liked Margo....oh dear...

Or maybe I'm more like this Audrey from 'Little Shop of Horrors'?

Congratulations to Mary, I will send you a little prize in the post.

A Clue (or Two)

After a few guesses at my middle name - which include; Mildred, Morag, Rumplestiltskin (!), and Tallulah (I wish) - I will give you clues -

1. It starts with an A

2. It's not Scottish

The photo below was the view from my window this morning at 6.30am. Looks like it's going to be a lovely day here.
We are off to Perth later this morning (Scotland, not Australia -lol) and Mum is coming too. We will have a nice mooch around the shops hopefully and then I'd like to visit Caithness Glass where they make gorgeous paperweights (and other things) and you can see them glass blowing. I have some of the paperweights and Adam was asking how they get all the shapes inside, so I'd like to take him and show him!

Better go and make up a picnic I think :)

Thursday, 6 September 2007

100th Post!!

Can you believe it? My 100th post already. Blogging has been quite an adventure and, for the most part, I've really enjoyed it. The best bit by far has to be all the lovely friends I've made over the months - so to all of you kind, thoughtful, wonderful, supportive and inspirational people - a big THANK YOU! from me.

How to celebrate? Well, I was thinking a skinny cappuccino later... Seriously though, doesn't everyone have a little competition on their 100th post? Well, I wouldn't want to be left out - so, the first person who guesses what my middle name is (d'ya hear that Mary? - LOL) and emails me with it, then I will send them a little prize! Incidentally, I feel I should point out that whilst I don't exactly hate my middle name - I wouldn't have chosen it for myself! (it's just not me, y'know? then again, maybe I should just embrace the Anyway, I digress - go on, have a guess!

Just a couple of other things to say on this momentous post. I have finished the ATCs I was working on. Here is a photo below - I did add a few beads to one or two of them after this pic was taken and now most of them have been posted off to new owners. It's been quite a lot of fun working in this size, I've always liked 'miniature' things, even in art class at high school I can remember loving getting into the detail of things.

I've still not been brave enough to try inchies yet though!

I've been browsing through the first issue of the new Fibre & Stitch ezine, thanks to a very generous person who has gifted me a subscription (you know who you are! xx). It has some great ideas and techniques in it and I've only managed to have just a quick look so far. I'm hoping the article on Embellisher Techniques by Purple Missus will finally prompt me to get my machine out of the box in the corner!

Hurrah! for 100 posts and blogging friends!!

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Quiztime & Quilties

Not wanting to be left out, I've taken this popular quiz too. Yes, it just about sums me up perfectly (tongue firmly in cheek).

What color is your soul painted?


Your soul is painted the color grey, which embodies the characteristics of elegance, humility, respect, reverence, stability, subtlety, wisdom, strong emotions, balance, and cancellation. Grey falls under the element of Water, and symbolizes the moon, tide, ebb and flow.

Personality Test Results

Click Here to Take This Quiz

Quizzes and Personality Tests

I've been getting on with a new batch of quilties and I've some more ATC's to finish too. Of course I should be getting on with preparations (the creative kind) for that Special Time in December - oh well, maybe tomorrow... (after I finish the ATC's of course!).

Here are the quilties. I gave up on hand stitching for this batch and used my trusty Husqvarna and I'm still working my way through the pile of hand dyed fabric I have. I only have smallish pieces and I think I'd like to some more dyeing, only with bigger pieces of fabric. Hmmm, just the thing for an Autumn day I think...

Thursday, 30 August 2007

Quiltie Quandary

Some of my first quiltie attempts - all made with hand dyed cotton, some are hand stitched, some machined and some with fme as well. The colours look a bit washed out due to my stunning photographic capabilities (!) but they look okay in the flesh. They are kinda simple in style, but I like them that way:)

Since I had never made any fabric ATCs before, I had a go at some of them too.
One of the quilties and an ATC have been posted off as part of a swap I joined in with (I hope my swapee likes them) and another quiltie/ATC have gone to Mavis - just because she is lovely. It was quite fun to do them but now I will have to think of another 'style' to try out. The 'quandary' part of my title was because it took me ages to decide which ones to send and in the end Miss Lucy decided for me!

Sunday, 26 August 2007

Quiltie Swap

I am involved in a quiltie swap with the Unlimited Textiles group and this is the loveliness I received yesterday from Margaret at Digital Gran a lovely quiltie with an Egyptian theme - pretty impressive huh? Many thanks to Margaret, I love it. I had to borrow this photo from Margaret's blog because all the pics I took were really washed out looking. This is better, it shows the colours well and the work Margaret has put into it is really amazing.

Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Naughty but Nice

I got a lovely parcel today from Mavis at Textile Artist. She has been very naughty sending me something so lovely - but I forgive her!! Just look at this lovely envelope - love the button too!

And inside was this lovely embroidered cloth and special little hand decorated box. Everything smelled lovely too! Thank you so much Mavis, you are very kind.

We finally had a day of Summer weather today - typical! Just when the children have gone back to school. Still, we made the most of it after dinner and went for a short coastal walk which was lovely. I think we are to get good weather for the rest of the week too - fingers crossed.

Sunday, 19 August 2007

Perth, Pizza and Poorly Girl

Being another horribly rainy day yesterday we headed to Perth - yes, I know that doesn't make sense really - I mean, it's not as if Perth is any better in the rain than anywhere else but it was the other half's idea so we went. We treated ourselves to Pizza Hut and it was great fun, I even managed to get into Laura Ashley for a quick look (if only...). Then Miss Lucy started feeling a bit breathless (she has asthma), so she took her inhaler and we headed back to the car. She kept feeling worse in the car and so we just drove her straight to the hospital in Dunfermline - it seemed to take forever because not only was there the heavy rain, there was also fog and we could hardly see the road. The hospital were great and a nice nurse managed to get her to calm her breathing down because she was panicing which was making her worse of course. After the doctor had seen her and done a few tests we finally got home about an hour and a half later. I think her panicing had just exacerbated things and thankfully she didn't have to be admitted. She was taken into the hospital last October and I wouldn't like to go through that again. She is fine this morning, although she has eaten so many pancakes that she might soon have a tummy ache!!

On a lighter note - I think you are starting to convince my sister Judith to start a blog! I think all your lovely comments on her birthday post are persuading her - she even left a comment herself. I shall keep applying the pressure!! Incidentally, she came round the other day to show me her latest purchases from the Bead Shop so I think it's only fair that she makes something with those purchases and shows us it on her soon-to-be blog!! Yes Judith, I mean YOU!

Friday, 17 August 2007

The Carrier Bag Carry Bag

This is what happened to the carrier bags I ironed yesterday - this bag. Not a great photo, but you get the idea. It seems really strong too - it is made of around 4 layers of plastic. I might experiment with perhaps '8 ply' plastic and make a larger bag for Library Book Carrying purposes with longer handles so I can carry it over my shoulder - I think that might work quite well. I kept thinking of loads of things you could use the bags for - and they are waterproof too!!! Well, it beats chucking them into the landfill I guess.

I got a bit carried away and made a little notebook cover as well - cute don't you think?!

I do seem to have a bit of a thing about creating with a 'recycled' theme at the moment (just saying that has probably put the curse on that very theme now and I shall nevermore mention green issues or landfill ever again! as if)

Just one more thing - and this is mainly just because I can't seem to stop talking - it will be my 100th post soon. Can you believe it? I will have to put on my thinking cap and figure out some way to mark the occasion in some way - fancy dress party anyone?

Okay, one more teeny tiny thing, honest. Look at these cuties -

I discovered a link to create them on Annica's blog Fabulous Threads. You can go and make a little friend of your own here at the Chick Machine - irresistible!