Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Minutes of Today's AGM

(Alternative Genteel Meeting)
Welcome Ladies, and Gentlemen if there are any. No apologies accepted.

1. Happy Birthday to Jane, and Many Happy Returns of the Day.

2. Delighted Kat is recovering from surgery and is back online.

3. Thank you for all your recent nice comments; we’ll ignore the not-nice ones because there weren’t any.

4.The Piano Tuner has been. Result:
One piano tuned
One piano key repaired with cereal packet
Several woodworms squashed and their nefarious business exposed
One Tuner begging to discover a decent piano in residence here by next year.

4. BBug has registered a complaint with Management: her Mother is mean because she insists that BBug gets dressed. Complaint under investigation.

5. Snow melted, more falling.

6. Sos is working in the Florist this week- much gratitude as she’ll have enough money to last until term starts.

7. Article to read- justifying the beneficial aspects of being a Crafty Mother. Correction CraftING Mother. VERY encouraging.

8. Today’s Music listening- Brahms Symphony No.1, Shostakovitch Jazz Suite, Sain Saens Organ Concerto. Reviews requested by 6pm.

9. Aim for the next 30 days: list one item on Etsy each day for optimum exposure in the Listings. (note to self: if you keep that one it’ll be a miracle!)

10. Prizes under construction, envelopes labelled ready to be filled.

AOB (All Other Batty-ness)

BBug thinks Biology is Gross,
Exams are an infringement of her Human Rights,
and there’s no such word as Lazy.

The Hub will be available for furniture moving on Good Friday if anyone requires his assistance,
Church at 8pm every evening this week.

Thank you for your attendance. Tea will be served at your convenience. (ie please get it yourself!)

Tuesday, 30 March 2010


Well today isn't going to plan already! I got up at 5.20am when the Hub left for work as I couldn't sleep because of the wind howling, and its blinking SNOWING!
Mind you, it was stormy and sleet/snow all yesterday, coming from due North, to the extent that the weather is forcing itself through the panels of the front door.
Puddles inside on the hall tiles.

And the second 'not according to plan' but a FAAAAR nicer surprise was to discover that I'd won a prize over at Everyday Bliss! Howzat for GOBSMACKED?? (Yeh, yeh, not a very polite word but VERY evocative and I can't think of a better one just now!!)
Listen to this:
'Grand Prize Winner of $50.00 to spend in the BLISS SHOP(s) of her choice is the lovely Heckety all the way from Ireland and the beautiful blog At Home with Heckety.'
(Not only do I win a prize but she thinks I'm lovely- so put that in your pipe and smoke it Daughters! (who have been complaining I'm a disgrace and an embarassment all weekend...))
(No, its just tea in the mug-honest).

What I was intending this morning was a nice genteel post about another wonderful Etsy Shop I found- in Helsinki, no less, and some photos of the parcel which arrived yesterday. Now she's going to think I'm a mad bogger (or blogger?) from the West and be terrified to open her emails any more...OH DEAR...
(Yes, the credit card ban is still in place- I 'borrowed' it when he wasn't looking...ok, technically, I nicked it...)

The Shop is Maili Supplies and she sells fabric, modern and vintage, mostly Finnish design, Marimekko...and very reasonable prices I thought.
And Ulla look! Maija-Liisa even included a Marimekko fridge magnet!!! The bold green and white I am going to use with the lovely Marimekko fabrics Ulla sent me back awhiles- and that quilt is going to be for ME, not the shop!
Aren't they lovely? And Tricia look! Finnish stamps!!
This is the most amazing fabric- the Shop photo didn't really do it justice! I don't know whether I'll ever be able to cut it up? I'm wondering about using it for whopping big cushions? Wouldn't you just smile every time you saw this??
Even the tape on the outside was fun!
So do head over and have a gawkeen? There's loads to see- I left you some...
And before I forget, Tricia has a Challenge going on if you fancy entering! Something different!

And the second thing I intended to say today is to apologise for not visiting any of you much the last fortnight, my head being full of the Shop and Logistics for the weekend. Now I'll get back on track, starting with a week of The Cabbage Soup Diet, I think, after the amount of junk and lack of whole meals ingested over the weekend...before I become like Winnie-the-Pooh and get stuck in doorways:
So Happy Tuesday y'all!!

Monday, 29 March 2010

Hecklers Ahoy!

Ok I know you've seen this photo I took at Rosses Point beach before but...Tricia gave me some ideas for the Shop at the weekend, sooo, I've used this photo to make a new banner and rewritten my little intro thing. If you have a moment PLEASE visit the Shop and then tell me what you think? I'd really appreciate it.

And now for the results of the Inspiring Music Challenge! Tan-ta-ra-ta-ra!!
Here's the links you all suggested if you're interested?





Diana- Birdsong and silence


And an extra from Dilly, just for fun… (but don't tell Kat, she might freak out?)

We are all so different! That in itself is an inspiration, I think.

I thoroughly enjoyed your favourites, thank you, and have listened to all of them! Since there were just five I'm going to post you each an envelope for fun! I think Candi and Diana's are the only addresses I am missing? So if you email me, or message me in 'facebook' with your address I'll post them near the end of the week that's in it!

I'm glad the weekend is over although it was enjoyable. I got up in the night to tidy up as I was too tired to sleep, and it was lovely getting up to a clean kitchen! I hoovered after everyone was awake this morning now we are back to normal, even though I ache all over and the eczema on my hands is ferocious.
BBug is 15 in April, and Dilly 21 in May...poor planning on some one's part to have all the birthdays together, I've always thought- and NO! your comments are NOT INVITED on that subject...mumble mumble mumble...besides, sometimes the Hub reads this!

Sunday, 28 March 2010

The End of a Perfect Day!

This is what the Cathedral looked like this morning- and its much like how I FELT!
BBug and friends condescended to be collected from their function at 3am (courtesy of the Hub's endurance) and Sos' lot arrived by taxi soon after 6am...BBug's friends had sore feet from all the dancing and decided to soak them...
When I returned from Church (Palm Sunday folks!) I served late breakfast, which ran into lunch, which ran into tea! I think there were 14 young people in total, but its hard to count when they mill around and swarm! They all went and climbed the nearest hill during the afternoon to work up an appetite (I hadn't noticed it waning to be honest...), and just talked for Ireland. For me it was completely painless and very entertaining to hear all the chit-chat!

...birthday cake didn't turn out as planned, but BBug found these great candles so it didn't matter- and its all gone now, guess the Grandparents won't be getting a slice this year!

And so we reach the end of another Birthday for Sos-they are always the it safe to sleep now?

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Saturday Tea OR Feeding Time at the Zoo?

And then they all dolled up and went out for the night!Curfew for BBugs lot is 1am...Sos' lot intend to multiply and return by taxi-train 'whenever'!

The clocks go forward an hour tonight- I'm playing for Morning Service at 10.30am...and...

Lunch party tomorrow...

Friday, 26 March 2010

Flip! It's Friday!

I considered just posting my 'to do' list for today, but I was afraid you'd be so disgusted by what that would demonstrate about my housekeeping that you'd all disappear into the ether for good!
So neither will I post any photos!
Suffice to say that with five of BBug's friends spending the day here tomorrow and then returning late for a sleepover, and about ten of Sos's friends sleeping over Saturday night and spending Sunday, a good CLEANING is in order...including floorspace for bodies.

When I go to do the shopping I forgot I've to borrow pans and casserole dishes from Mom as it seems there could be upwards of twenty to Sunday lunch, and you know how much food gets put away at a gathering!! It'll be Sos's 19th birthday on Sunday and you'll never guess the cake design she wants...A PINK HANDBAG!!

And on that note, I'd better get going!

Don't forget to enter the Inspiring Music Challenge- I am so enjoying listening to your choices, thank you so much!

Oh and if you're a facebook person will you consider joining my Group please? Or become a friend...or both! I'm at

PS. If there is an unearthly silence from this blog for several days, just open your windows and listen to know all's well...the racket from Sos' parties tends to be stratospheric....

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Thankful Thursday

Thursday doesn't just creep around; it leaps out at me, waving its hands and yelling 'I'm here! I'm here!' Does anyone else find this?
And that's a statement of fact, not a Thankful, just so's you know...

1. Thankful that Spring is slowly arriving. There are a few brave blossoms on the trees and some hardy daffs out, as well as the pussy willow I found at the Port.
2. Thankful for SURPRISES! Yesterday I got home late afternoon to find a parcel from Kat!
A novel set in Scotland, some note papers (one post-its and the other with a magnet back so it doesn't get lost!) and the kindest note! Amid all her health problems and she has time to be thinking of me? You are SOME FRIEND Kat!! And please could yez all pray for her today although her surgery should be done by now?
3. Thankful that my clivea is flowering:
Each year when the clivea flowers I get so excited, don't know why! Such beautiful flowers, they were rare enough in East Africa, even rarer here, so I guess its just the miracle of it!

4. Thankful for my crazy children...this is what BBug and I found on the breakfast table yesterday....
...a Theater prop, but a truly disgusting artifact for the breakfast table...Sos had got up early to finish it before having her shower...(she's living here this week as she's been ill again).
5. Thankful for a long phone chat with Dilly last night- they are rare enough. She had been working as Technical Assistant on the lights in the Theater all day as there were five short plays being performed for end of term assignments. She'd enjoyed herself but said that the nerves of student Directors and actors were very frayed. At one point whilst setting up the third (I think) piece, things got so fraught that she simply yelled 'BLACKOUT!' and flicked off the main lighting switch! Can you imagine?! She said that 10 seconds in the pitch dark restored every one's humour!!
6. Thankful for my car- its small, old, temperamental, breaks down from time to time, gets used like a pack-horse, has the mentality of an Army Bedford truck, and gives me a measure of independence.
And that's about it for this week!
Check out the Inspiring Music Challenge if you feel so inspired! (at end of post)
Have a good day folks!

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Boring Bag is Rejuvenated!

Ladies and Gentlemen, Umbrellas and Walking Sticks...etc. etc....the Boring Bag is boring no longer! It is after having been uplifted and rejuvenated ha! ha!
What d'you think? There's more photos here too.

I missed posting this yesterday: Ulla wrote it in honour of her Jelly Babies-

Thank you, Heather, for the mail I got,
jelly babies taste nice, I ate a lot.
The brooch you made is very pretty,
I wear it on my collar just to look witty.
Writing this I wonder if I still should do it:
Could I some day become a doggerel poet?

So do we think Mr Kotkarankki can retire permanently to his fishing and leave Ulla to make their fortune as a poet?? .......Hmmmmmmm.......
(Check out her today's post too as she's been Culture Vultur-ing in Helsinki!)

And don't forget to leave a musical comment on yesterday's post if you'd like to be in the draw for a spot prize?

Monday, 22 March 2010

Challenge Check #9 and New Challenge from heckety!

First of all thank you to EVERYONE who helped me with the Boring Bag! ( Hey! that would have been a really good title for my blog, wouldn't it?! 'Adventures of the Boring Bag' or maybe 'Heyday of the Horrid Hag' or maybe...get on with it heckety...) I am working on it and will show you a photo in due course...

So this week I have something to show for both Challenges, and am adding a Challenge of my own too down below! With spot prizes no less!!

Dottie Angel's Challenge of the Utmost Kind (click on logo in side bar to read her):

I was rummaging through the press on Saturday and found some old curtain fabric so put together a few more light coloured fabrics, all recycled or scraps from Mom's dressmaking, to begin making this table runner.
Then I found some lovely turquoisy/green which looks very much like the fabric of my favourite dress when I was about 10, and am adding some appliqué flowers. If it turns out well I'll put it in the shop.
Its lovely working with 'spring coloured' fabrics, really brighteningly uppish!
For the CED 'Art Story' Challenge I'm showing you some very battered dolls which sit on a little chair in the sitting room:
Meet Katie Emma and Jemima!

When the girls were little we had no access (or money) for buying toys so when people gave me fabric scraps I sewed things for them.
These two dolls are from an old 'Prima' magazine pattern (people gave me magazines as well, and my Granny in South Africa posted me 'Your Family' magazine for years and years- from which were made every one's clothes, and all the baking!). Katie Emma came first, and then, because we lived in East Africa and it seemed weird to me for the girls not to have a coloured doll, Jemima was made.

I sewed them when Sos was a baby(nearly 19 years ago...oh my giddy aunt!), to prevent Dilly from treating the baby like a stuffed toy! They are stuffed with old socks and also kapok from the tree in my FIL's garden at the time. They have had a lot of loving, battering, washing, you see, when I make dolls to sell and I tell folks they will withstand wear, I know exactly what I'm talking about!

And now for the Challenge I'm giving you!

What Music inspires you?

For me one of the most empowering songs I know is Whitney Houston's 'One Moment in Time':
I listen to it and I'm able for anything- the higher the volume, of course, the more able!

If you have time to add a YouTube link to your comment, even better, then we can all listen and opinionate! If there's more than 4 songs I'll draw four names for spot prizes! Howzat?? And you have until next Monday morning-ish (GMT!) or hIT! (heckety's Irish Time, of COURSE!!!) to enter!
I love hearing new Artists and Music so BLOW ME AWAY!

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Minimalist? or Boring?

D'you know what? With all the lovely comments yous have been leaving me this week especially, I'm becoming the most inflated head this side of the Irish Sea! Its very kind of you all and I really appreciate it!

I especially love when a sort of repartee arises in the Comments of a post- it amuses me, and also it somehow draws the big wide world in a little. Is that selfish? For instance yesterday I discovered that Jane gets her buttons from Ruth whom I just discovered, and she's here in Limerick! How 'small world' is that? (sing together now- 'It's a small world after all, Its a small world after all...small,small,world!')

And another thing...
(whilst I'm on the subject of Connections)
(yeh, yeh, there always is 'another thing')
...if Amanda thinks I'm a bad influence, Jingle is WORSE!
There's me all chuffed with myself for starting a facebook site, and then I visit Jingle and she had a 'fan page widget' so, not to be outdone, I trundle off to get me one of them yokes too! Which is all very well, but somehow, on the information section I managed to get NIGERIA into my location???? Hours later (and much blue air) I still hadn't got rid of it, so when BBug returned from town she finally managed to ditch it!
Ok, so I'm not saying Jingle is responsible for my stupidity, buuuuut, if she hadn't had such a cool fan widget....
And do join if you feel so inclined!

Now, here's what I wanted to ask yez-

These are three of the photos I retook for my Etsy shop:
...A Red Wall-hanging or Table-topper...
...A 'junk collection' Handbag...
...and another Wall-hanging or Table-topper.
But what about this Handbag- is it too boring? Should I decorate it somehow? And if so, with what? Beads? Buttons? Ruffles or cotton lace?? I really need to know- the fabric isn't corduroy but its quite heavy so its a fairly solid piece.
This is the other side.
So do I stay with minimalist or do I add something? Opinions please??

Friday, 19 March 2010

PIP Friday!

PIP? Projects In Progress!

I remembered this 'Jungly' quilt top and am going to batt, back, quilt and bind it!
Sleeveless pullover for me; I've been wearing the same one all winter and its getting a bit thin.
More Brooch Pins for the Etsy Shop- I uploaded two collections of them yesterday. Its such fun playing with-oops! CHOOSING buttons for the middles!

Also, FYI (!!) I got these buttons and the metal brooch clasps from NiceDaySupplies on Etsy, and the speed with which Ruth packed and posted my order was amazing to behold!
The Hub forgot his workplace Swipe card this morning so there was a mournful phone call at 8am asking me to deliver it after taking BBug to school. It was a glorious morning so, stuck in traffic on the Bridge I was looking to see what small boats were in the estuary and noticed there was a ship in the Port. After giving the Hub his card I went down to have a look:
I think they were loading metal re-cycling:
There are a few pussy willows out down at the sea, warmest place in the county I should think!
Since returning home I've been retaking Etsy photos and dealing with the workmen who are connecting us to the water supply...I'm not complaining- three and a half years of temporary piping off S's cattle trough?
When they were done I turned on the tap and was knocked across the kitchen by the water pressure! Whoossssshhh splaaat!
The workmen went off laughing...

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Thankful Thursday

Yesterday was a holiday here, being St Patrick's Day, and 'here' being the home of the Saint!

1. Thankful for the Holiday- I love a good holiday!

2. Thankful that St. Patrick heeded the call of God and returned to Ireland to convert the heathen and tell out God's Holy Word. Where would we be if he hadn't?

3. Thankful that aspects of our national character (hospitality, generosity to strangers, welcome) still owes a lot to the centuries of Christianity which was the result of Patrick's Missionary zeal. We're still enough of a rebellious, bigoted, murdering nation as it is, so I guess God's intervention through His Saint was timely!

4. Thankful that the Cathedral Organ behaved yesterday for the Service- as several of you said it likely would! We belted out the hymns in rare style...sure weren't we competing against the Pipe Bands gathering for the Parade?

5. This is utterly different: Thankful for the courage to go the next step and start a 'facebook' site for my Shop. Dilly and Sos have leapt at the chance to add to and play with it and its turning into a fun thing already...once I had reassured them that it was ONLY for my shop, and not to spy on them all...

And there you have it!

Tuesday, 16 March 2010


My girls use 'FYI' whenever they think I haven't moved with the times sufficiently, but I'm using it as 'For Your Interest'!

I wanted to share with you some of my recent favourite places, (all the links go to the blogspot, not any specific page) (at least, I HOPE they do...!):

The Background Fairy and Shabby Blogs are both good for free blog stuff, and also tutorials and information on how to use it, as well as becoming more proficient. Also I really like their artwork!

Babes from the Woods is an amazing doll maker, carving her own dolls in the style of the Early English Queen Anne. I tell you, I'm starting to save for one now! What's more, she is very generous about answering emails and questions which I find fascinating.

Raven Moon Magic is an Artist, and her work is gobsmackingly wonderful! Check out her little girl, 'Moon', paintings, and also her lit up birdcages- bet you've never seen anything like it!

Field Trips in Fiber produces a collection of hand-dyed fabric to dye for-ha! ha! This is her blog site, but her Etsy Shop is a credit card disaster zone: I haven't yet found anything of hers that I DON'T want to buy!! Just warning you, that's all!

365 Days of Free Motion Quilting is a really inspiring site if your machine quilting needs a bit of a 'giddy-up', or, as in my case, you want to learn. Leah posts little videos as tutorials too so although the 'doing' might take practise, the seeing how its done is dead easy. I've been frequenting her place a lot recently!

And last but not least, Crafting a Green World is a useful site for information on how to prevent one's crafting from 'costing the earth'. They find products and post information which is relevant to crafters, rather than being the source of items themselves. It makes one think, and perhaps more able to make informed decisions.

I could go on and on and on, but I won't!!!

Monday, 15 March 2010

Iffy Monday...

Regardez vous les page links at the top of the page! Who's a clever girl then??? And if you follow this link you too can impress your readers!!!

Now its much easier (I hope?) to check the status of the Barter/Swap, by going to the page title above, then choosing the link you want. Obviously you're all too busy to read at the moment though!

I'm skipping the Challenge Check today as I've nothing to report- wicked lazy, yeah! yeah!

For your amusement, here's the Hub impersonating Rhydian for the Charity Concert on Saturday:
And BBug impersonating Idina Menzel!
They both sang well and had great fun. The Hub had dyed his hair 'blond' (actually red!) and had to try to dye it back to its normal colour before Church- he wasn't very successful so you can imagine the ribbing he got!

And talking of Church, yesterday we had a group of visitors from TEXAS, no less!

Unfortunately the Organ was on a roll, playing by itself every opportunity it got...I was a wreck by the end of the Service, the Church wardens were mortified, and the congregation dispersed with their fingers in their ears. Something is seriously wrong with it. I offered to go up the Loft and kick some pipes but my fellow Organist suggested I take a hatchet to the 8' D Swell 'Open Diasporan' pipe and fix it permanently...
We've a Service on Wednesday as it's St Patrick's Day so I've left the Loft heater on. It'll be a real shame if I can't open all the stops Wednesday as it's the one day in the Church calendar when we can unashamedly roar all our favourite Irish Hymns and no one complains about us being Nationalist!

Nearly finished the quilt from the 'Trunk That Time Forgot' and hallelujah to THAT! One flower to quilt and the binding to attach.
Since there is hazy sunshine out and the ground is dry I intend to re-take several of my Etsy photographs as I feel they could be better. Also I discovered several items I'd forgotten to post so need to put them in the shop. Organised, amn't I?

I'm presently listening to the real Rhydian's CD and enjoying it after a week of impersonations...a powerful pair of lungs has the Hub, but he's not always in tune...ditto BBug, but she is in tune more often, and can also sing quietly! The Hub has no volume control!

Look what I found in a box last week- a SILK quilt top!
It was made from a bundle of old silk shirts I was given many years ago, but what I was thinking I have no idea, and its not backed or anything. I must have been desperate to sew and used every scrap as there are even button holes and shirt pocket flaps included!
I'm reading a fascinating book at present- 'Hospitality in Medieval Ireland 900-1500' by Catherine Marie O'Sullivan. The more I read about Medieval times here the more it seems to me that many of our social and national characteristics have their roots from then. Only the surface has changed. Perhaps its partly due to living on the west coast where things change notoriously slowly.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Mothers' Day

Happy Mothers' Day to everyone!
This is what BBug got me! (the hen, not the eggs, the eggs are just posing!)

This morning's Talk was given by the Youth Worker for the children, and looked at Jesus' relationship with His Mother and what we can learn from Him.

Firstly, Jesus as a baby was special (Luke 2 v24,25), although just how special Mary had yet to learn. Secondly, Jesus as a boy was building His relationship with His Heavenly Father- 'Did you not know I would be in my Father's House?' , and this relationship would define His Ministry, something with which Mary must have had to come to terms. Thirdly, Mary's acceptance of His purpose is proved by her words to the servants during the Wedding at Cana, when Jesus was a young man. She told them to 'Do whatever He tells you.'
But lastly, and most tellingly, are Jesus' words from the Cross in John 19 v25-27 which demonstrate the awareness of the pain and distress He was causing his Mother, and his provision for her future well-being.

Mothers endure much, and give more, but are they in turn cared for?

Friday, 12 March 2010

ooooops! and aaah!

Be sure you check out the Barter/Swap, as its a Giveaway as well this month...spring cleaning, you understand!

Its been an odd two days. Sos had a fall and cut her head Thursday and seems to be suffering from shock and mild concussion. The school and college nurses have been monitoring her but she insisted on getting on with things. This afternoon I got her, brought her home and plonked her in bed. She should have been working in the florist the last two evenings, and is convinced she will be there tomorrow. I don't know, its a bit worrying.

There have been a few addled moments recently...I tried to plug my mobile phone charger into my tea cup this morning and spilled tea down the back of the freezer as well as on the charger. Both appear to be still working.

Yesterday I put a load of dirty laundry in the oven, though B Bug discovered them before I turned on the stove, and then I accidentally re-washed a clean load of laundry instead of hanging it up to dry.

I really think that if the family took over the household chores and I was left to just get on and make all the ideas and quilts flowing through my mind then accidents of this nature would become a thing of the past...

Oh and I forgot to use a pan for the fried eggs yesterday and broke the eggs straight onto the stove top- but its a plate so although messy, not a disaster!

On Tuesday, for the first time in 20 something years I managed to get the feed dogs or whatever you call'ems to retract on my sewing machine so have been slowly working on machine quilting the border of the TTTF quilt. It's great fun, and reasonably successful:
...but look at this if you please? Why have I got loops coming through? This is the back so I chose red thread for the top to match, and white for the under. Is there a problem with my tension? Or should i do roundy ends and not pointy? Any ideas gratefully received!
Have you visited Paulette recently? She's been giving us a viewing of friends' WIP and honestly its so inspiring and helpful. Yesterday's post was particularly interesting- check out both the lamp and the book?
And also, this catalogue arrived last week- have you seen Nomad's clothes? My girls want everything, of course! But their stuff is lovely, and, speaking from experience, although the fabric is beautifully soft and fine, it is wearing well on the clothes we have.

Tonight the Hub and B Bug are singing for a Charity 'Do' to raise money for a local MS Therapy Center. The Hub is going as Rhydian and BBug as Idina Menzel. The Hub is trying to go blond but so far he is a virulent shade of ginger!


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