Thursday, 24 April 2008

No Sewing Machine for Miss L

Well, no luck with a sewing machine for Miss Lucy. I think she will just have to use mine, supervised, until she is a little older and can get one of her own. She is pretty philosophical about it all though and not too dissapointed.

Some excellent news for her though - she passed her Grade 2 Ballet Exam with a Distinction! She was so pleased because she thought she had made some mistakes. Yes, I'm a proud mummy :-)

Not long now until the end of my course (thank goodness). I'm at the stage where I just want to be finished so I can relax a bit and get all those jobs done around the house - and have a holiday! We plan to rent a cottage for a week in the Oban area sometime in June, so fingers crossed for some good weather.

Monday, 14 April 2008

New Sewing Machine

Excitement! Miss Lucy has her own sewing machine! I took her to the shop on Saturday on the pretense of 'having a look' at machines. I had already done a bit of research and planned to get her one if she liked it. Anyway, she did, and we got this dinky little model by Janome. It's quite basic, (not suitable for heavyweight materials), has three straight and three zig zag stitches and sews a treat! It only weighs 5lbs and the speed is quite slow compared to a full size machine, so it is ideal for a child to use - much less scary. Miss L was absolutely thrilled and said 'thank you' 100 times (precisely!).

Unfortunately when we got home and tried it out, something was wrong with it and it kept jamming. Poor Lucy, she was all ready to get sewing. I took it back to the shop this morning and got a brand new replacement. I made the man try it out in the shop, just to make sure it was working okay (it was some distance away and I wasn't planning another visit!). Everything was fine this time, and now it's sitting waiting for Miss L to come home from school and use it.
** Have just had to edit this post to say that the flippin' new machine isn't working either now.. grrrrr! It just keeps jamming and all the thread is getting trapped down in the bobbin area. I've tried all the usual stuff re adjusting tension, re-threading etc, but it's still doing it (and it looks like the plastic bobbin casing is moving around too much). I will have to take it back again and look for something else for Miss L :-(

Not one to be put off by the lack of a functioning machine, Miss L whipped up a lovely needlecase for me by hand.

Cute, isn't it? I was also rather pleased to note that she seems to be following the same traits as her mother - namely, take up all available space with fabric, thread, scissors etc and work in a tiny square in the midst of it all! Must be in the genes...

Saturday, 12 April 2008

spontaneous crafting

Yay! We made some stuff! Yesterday Miss L and Mr A decided it was time to make felt balls. As this involved clearing the dining room table, I was less than eager. However, the little darlings did the job themselves (and admirably, too) so I had to join in, didn't I? I admit it was good fun, despite the fact it has been so long since I did any hand felting myself, that I kept forgetting what I was supposed to be doing. I got there in the end and made a long narrowish piece of green felt that I'm planning to use for a bag of some kind, some time in the future (most likely decorated with felt flowers, I think). Miss L and Mr A made copious amounts of felt balls and Miss L made a really big one which was quite impressive. I didn't take any photos unfortunately, but if anything happens to the green felt, I will.

I hope you are all enjoying this spring(ish) weather. So far today we have had several types of weather including hail stones! Surely it will improve soon, won't it?...

Monday, 7 April 2008

Busy Bees

The children are off school at the moment (this is the second week of the holidays) and we've been out and about a bit. Last week the weather was rather nice and even quite warm on a couple of days, so we took full advantage. Just as well, as today is bloomin' miserable - cold and wet, and it looks set to continue that way for most of the week.

So, we went for walks along the coastal path...

Visited Dunkeld (again)...

The River Tay was really fast and high. I was terrified someone was going to run too fast and fall in it!

The tall trees were as gorgeous as ever.

The wee hooses were as cute as ever.

We also visited the Loch of the Lowes to see the Ospreys (they had just arrived a couple of days before our visit) - fantastic! It was really sunny and pretty warm - see Pup's shadow? - so we had a picnic lunch outside.

There is a woodpecker in this picture, honest, but my new camera (which I HATE) doesn't take a good pic I'm afraid.

And a red squirrel here... (taken from behind glass)

Watching the Ospreys on their nest.

Miss Lucy tucking a leaf into Mr Adam's glasses. He is a bit of a Johnny Kingdom fan and wants a hat with feathers on it, but a leaf was the next best thing. We had a great time at the wildlife reserve and these two just love it!

If you are interested, you can watch the Ospreys live at I could watch them for hours. It's a great way to avoid studying ;-)

That trip to see the Ospreys had started out rather badly. That morning we discovered Miss Lucy's backpack was missing - in it was her inhaler and my camera. We had been bowling the day before and were pretty certain it had been left there. We phoned them and they didn't have it but I though we'd go and leave our details with the manager etc in case it turned up. Well, I did all that and then we headed North. About 10 miles up the road, the manager of the Bowlplex phoned - they had the bag after all - it had been locked away but no one had written it down as being found! So, back we went and got the bag - I was SO relieved to get the camera back (with all the children's pictures on it), that I promptly hugged the manager and burst into tears! Talk about embarrassed. (Incidentally, the manager was gorgeous, and he smelled nice, and he called me darling....sigh...) I'm not going to be able to set foot in that place undisguised for quite a while.
We were back at the wildlife reserve on Saturday with mum. She was pleased to get out into the wilds after her hip op 8 weeks ago - she was getting stir crazy for a while! We also went to Pitlochry (there was some nice bunting in a shop there Sarah - not as nice as yours, though) and Aberfeldy - nice day again, but very very cold.

Oh, yes - I've dug some trenches for my potatoes. Hurrah! But I haven't put them in yet (because Miss Lucy fell into a trench, then Mr Adam fell in smelly compost water, and I had to throw them into the bath, and then - it snowed).

I'm still plodding away on the OU course, least said about that the better I think. It's so hard to get things done when the children are off school and it's just so nice to spend time with them. Next week I had better get Really Busy. As for anything creative, I've done nothing at all for months and months. Maybe in the Summer hols, eh? ;-)