Saturday, 18 July 2015

Holiday is making me fat

Our staycation is drawing to a close: DH is back at work on Monday and I have to go on Wednesday. Our fairly steady diet of cream teas and cake while we're out, and 'treat' food while we're home, had resulted in a 3.5 pound weight gain when I weighed myself last weekend and I'm not expecting any improvement at tomorrow's weigh in.

We've had another nice week. Some of the things we've been up to:

  • a visit to Sywell airport's snazzy 1930's Aviator hotel and cafe (tea and cake), watching planes taking off and landing from the balcony and visiting the wartime museum there.
  • a one-night break in King's Lynn, which is full of great period buildings but unfortunately it rained all day.  We stopped on the way at PMJ Miniatures just outside Wisbech, which was a good size and had a useful assortment of DIY dollshouse stuff.  I bought another resin 'bored husband' figure for my quilting and knitting shop.

  • On the second day we visited a branch of Norfolk Lavender, which had some wonderful displays of flowering plants.  We bought four very small lavenders from the plant shop for our garden and I've planted them on either side of one of the arches.

  • We stopped into Downham Market and Wisbech on the way home, both very picturesque Norfolk towns. Wisbech had this wonderful run of Georgian frontages along the river.

  • I started work on  my dollshouse room: hoovering up the cobwebs, filling holes, priming the woodwork and doing two coats of white gloss on the windows, and then cutting in with blue paint all along the walls that will be the backdrop to the dollshouses. DH then painted in two coats of blue. Once the cupboards are fitted I may add some clouds, trees etc. onto the wall although I'm no artist.



  • Took my main sewing machine in for a service - am I the only one that feels somewhat bereft when without a machine?  I've got two substitute machines but neither are as good. I hope I get the Janome 6500 back soon.
  • Spent the morning in Kettering visiting the museum, the vintage tea shop (tea and cake, he he he) and I was going to go to the dollshouse shop but it was shut.
  • Yesterday we drove back up to the Hemswell Antiques Centre in Lincolnshire, a fabulous bonanza across multiple buildings on a former RAF airfield.  We spent about five hours there including lunch on site, and had a marvelous time searching through all the tat and treasures.  I had a short shopping list suited to our budget, and I found some things from it.  We wanted a nightstand for DH and found this great piece which is actually a coal scuttle: the bottom 'door' hinges forwards and there was a metal liner and coal scoop inside.

I already had a nightstand but I spotted this French table and absolutely fell in love with it, and it looks great with my bed.

We also picked up a fairly utilitarian side table for the study, an additional platter for my good china set, and a lovely rusted old Victorian watering can with a gorgeous patina (DS: "Mum, why did you buy a rusty old watering can???")  A very nice day out, although we could have easily spent every penny we own many times over.


Today I spent part of the day sewing, something I haven't done much of the last few weeks. Although first I had to dig out my Singer Featherweight and oil it all over.  Then I pieced block three of the Cozy Afternoon free BOM. It went fairly well apart from a failure to read the instructions properly which led to me having to cut more fabric to re-do the corner blocks.

Then I put away the Singer and dug out my monster, the giant Pfaff I use on the quilting frame, so that I could do some stippling on the sides of the Knitting Bag that I'm making. I've never used the Pfaff on the table and it took me about ten minutes to work out where the presser foot and power cord were stashed.  This is the machine that punched right through my finger a few years ago and it's very noisy, so a bit nervewracking to use. I haven't done any machine quilting for a couple of years so the resulting stippling isn't very good, but it will give the bag some stiffness.

Knitting in the car has been mainly daisies for the Pointless Handbag, I've knit 19 of 22, plus I did several rows on the Que Sera cardigan.

The main TV knitting has been the Toy Rabbit from Little Cotton Rabbits. This is an excellent and detailed pattern, right down to telling you how best to sew it up. I'm quite enjoying it and may make another one after this.

I'm still working on my Torchon bobbin lace mat, I've completed two quarters and have turned the corner to start the third quarter. I've made some mistakes but nothing affecting the structural integrity.

This isn't exactly craft, but it's a neat idea that I adapted from something I saw online. We had a mess of router and telephone wires on the bookcase, so I bought a pretty box with a fastening lid from Homesense. I cut out the back panel, and cut an air slot in the top, and it hides all the router mess quite neatly. The online idea was to buy old books, cannabalise them for their covers, glue the covers to an inner box so that it looked like a stack of books. I think my adaptation is a lot easier and possibly even cheaper.


The mystery plant from last week's post is apparently a fuschia.  Sarah Nopp says it may be a Phygelius, and we saw a similar plant called a Thalia fuschia in a garden centre. Thanks for the input, I didn't even think of fuschias because I'm only familiar with the bell-shaped flower type.

I went out to take a few pictures of the garden and saw yet more things peeping up which may be flowers or weeds, it's all kind of growing together now like a cottage garden - DH would prefer something more regimented and neater but I rather like the effect.  There are still one or two of the bigger plants that haven't recovered from being moved - I've sunk pipes outside four of them to get water down to the roots while they are re-establishing. The previous owner had planted clematis which are growing up through the larger shrubs, very pretty.


Mad about Craft said...

Sounds like you have had a very busy staycation!

Daisy said...

I need to know your secret - I'm 18 weeks pregnant and still only managed to put on 2lb in total!!

Your garden is looking lovely, you've made huge amounts of progress in such a short time living there.

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