Welcome to my blog.
I live in England and my name is Diana, I have been married 41 yrs with one son and two granddaughters age 10 & 6, all of whom I adore.
I love many different crafts and have a wonderful Happy Room to use for my craft work. Please come in and take a look around.
I've made it easier to leave me a comment as I love to hear from you.

Sunday, 21 December 2014

4 Sleeps to Christmas

Oh dear something is missing!!!
Yes you guessed, my embroidery machine went "clunk" in the middle of sewing out a very large railway carriage. It is now in the "sewing machine hospital" in the hopes Mike at BSK has time to fix it on Monday. I plan to leave the sewing in the hoop in the hopes I can re-aline it when I get my machine back and complete the piece.

To add to our unexpected expenses the light fitting over the dining room table went bang and now has to be replaced, it matches the one in the lounge so that is two new light fittings required asap after Christmas.
Table set by Christmas tree and candle light

Friends came for dinner and to play cards last night, luckily we had enough light from the part of the ceiling light that was still working. It was a great evening playing three of our favourite card games.
I experimented with part of the meal and it was a complete failure, so a quick change of plans and I think it all went OK.

A simple fabric panel with the true meaning of Christmas hangs in my kitchen on the pantry door.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

5 Sleeps to Christmas


These Yo Ho Ho table mats made using heat resistant wadding are a firm favorite this time of year.

Friday, 19 December 2014

6 Sleeps to Christmas

This candle mat was made using different green fabrics heat-n-bonded together, I then cur out the holly shapes and just sewed a few stitches down the middle to attach them to the cream background, really quick and easy but very effective and look great with a candle in the centre.

Thursday, 18 December 2014

7 Sleeps to Christmas

Today was my visit to BSK Bedford for a Machine Embroidery day. I love going with Penny my friend, we have a good chat in the car and always enjoy the day. Today we made a train and one carriage, they can be joined together with more carriages to make a table runner, but I think I am going to make mine into a set of fun cushions!



My Christmas sewing at home is made from three circles interlinked and when pulled up make spaces for bread rolls [ hope this makes sense!]

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

8 Sleeps to Christmas

The Hamtune Quilters Party last night was great fun. The fun started with three quilt related quizzes, Penny and I won a prize for completing the most. The table was groaning with food so next came a food break, which was most enjoyable.
Everyone was then arranged into a circle and given three raffle tickets each, ten prizes were placed in the middle of the circle and the other half of the raffle tickets were placed in a bowl. As a number was called the person with that number collected a prize from the middle of the room until all the prizes were gone. The numbers were continued to be called and this meant stealing a prize from a person who already had it, this caused much laughter as everyone wanted the "cuddly toy" to start with. When all the numbers had gone if you still had a prize you kept it, needless to say I didn't win anything. [ all my prizes were stolen!]
Next we were all told to stand and play the right / left game with the little gifts we had brought along. How come people that make wonderful quilts and do amazing craft work do not know their right and left!!
Finally time to go home and it was pouring with rain and for some reason I missed the drive and landed up driving across part of the garden and lawn... what a mess! And NO I had not been drinking!


Place mats for the Christmas table

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

9 Sleeps to Christmas

What a chilly morning today, everywhere was white with frost when I ventured out to the garage in the dark at 6.30am to collect a loaf from my freezer... burrrr.

Fairly easy day planned today, I am trying to finish my crochet throw before Christmas, only another 32 rows to go! At least it keeps me warm while I work on it.

Tonight is the Christmas party at Hamtune Quilters.. more about this tomorrow.

I bought this little cross stitch kit, think it was Mill Hill beads? a long time ago. It comes out every Christmas, and I remember the fun I had making it.


Monday, 15 December 2014

10 Sleeps to Christmas

Yo Ho Ho with the reindeer


Sunday, 14 December 2014

11 Sleeps to Christmas

A really nice service at Church today, with great speakers and inspiring words.

One of my favourite "sewn items" is this quilt that is now a few years old and only comes out at Christmas. My Daughter in law would like it and maybe one day I'll get around to making her one. Somehow when Christmas has passed I loose the interest in making Christmas items. The holly leaves and berries etc, were heat-n-bonded on and then machined with a zig-zag stitch.

This horrible cold weather we are having means its nice to snuggle up in, in the evenings.

Saturday, 13 December 2014

12 Sleeps to Christmas

Christmas Tree Festival at St Peter and St Paul's Church Weedon.
This morning Chris and I made a visit to the tree festival, where 30 different groups or individuals had sponsored and decorated a Christmas tree. It was a wonderful sight and amazing all the different ideas everyone had for their tree, from playgroup to the old peoples home.
If your in the area it is well worth a visit next Saturday 20th 11am to 4pm.



Moravian stars made of paper decorate my fabric cupboards in my Happy Room


Friday, 12 December 2014

13 Sleeps to Christmas

I love this little Nativity set, made entirely on my Embroidery Machine. Each figure has a small light inside and they look pretty at night.

Today was Christmas Tree Day and we bought a Fraser Fir from Homebase, which is suppose to be the least likely to drop its needles [ we'll wait and see about that!] but it has the most wonderful smell, almost like Balsam. Chris cut off the 5cm recommended from the base and it is sitting in a water container, he was also in charge of the lights. I started decorating with things I have made and home made items I have been given, these are always my favourite as they bring back so many memories. I then added the glass baubles that are now very old and fragile. Final addition was the tree skirt made with applique trees and reindeer.
All the decorations are up and now with the tree ready and the food on order I think I am about ready to start enjoying Christmas.

Opps I've cut the fairies head off in the photo!


Thursday, 11 December 2014

14 Sleeps to Christmas

Today was  Poppy Patch Sit-n-Sew day. I took along the makings for the twisted thread catchers and five of the group had a go at making them.
To make the day, our last meeting of the year, more special one member brought along a lovely tray of sandwiches, there was also cake and mincepies.

Hanging on my bathroom door this Christmas decoration [again made some years ago!]
looks very festive.



Wednesday, 10 December 2014

15 Sleeps to Christmas

Today I'm thinking about what I will cook, what I need to order and buy for Christmas Day when the family will be with us. So I thought this little Christmas over glove was appropriate for my 15 days to Christmas sewing item. The trouble is hes too cute to use!
Christmas oven mitt

Last night Chris and I went to the Evergreen's Christmas party at Church. The organisation is incredible as Sister Mace is in charge of producing a wonderful traditional Christmas meal for about two dozen people on a [could be better ] stove. The youth were all dressed neatly in white tops and black skirts or trousers and waited on the tables before singing carols. Brother Mike Wade had organised some games and told the sort of jokes you find in crackers, in fact I think most of them came out of crackers!  It was a splendid evening and an ideal way to get into the Christmas Spirit.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

16 Sleeps to Christmas

Lots of jobs planned for today.
Its a very cold morning and the white frost makes it look Christmassy, but it sure is cold!
A visit to a friend with some gifts, then onto see my 90yr old Aunt with cards and some photos.
Bought some nice thick tights in M & S before braving Sainsbury's for some gammon and beef joints [ £6 off £30 shop voucher meant I got a bargain as they had reduced their joints to half price.]
Back home for some warming soup and a rest for the remaining afternoon before out to Church for a Christmas meal with the Evergreens [over 60 group].

Heat n Bonded Santas

Monday, 8 December 2014

17 Sleeps to Christmas

I thought I would have a go at making a chocolate sleigh. There seem to be lots of versions of this on YouTube and Pinterest. To start with I do not have a glue gun [ I have the glue sticks but the gun must have died some years ago!] Chris came to the rescue with All Purpose Silicone Sealant that I used to attach the candy canes to the Kit Kat and the Santa chocolate to the front. I then opened a packet of six orange chocolate bars, used four ate the other two! piled on a few gold and silver chocolate coins and tied a ribbon around the whole thing. They do not look too bad but I think I will try and work on the design before using some as table decoration on the 25th.


I love stained glass and making this banner on my Embroidery Machine was a pleasure last year.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

18 Sleeps to Christmas

Burton Latimer saw the meeting of 14 relatives for a very interesting day yesterday. My cousin Helen had arranged for us to meet at The Heritage Centre, where they had a most interesting display of WW1 items.
Helen had organised for there to be commemorative stones made for her parents [ my Mum's brother and his wife] and our Uncle Charles [ another of Mum's brothers]. In typical Helen's style she had brought along her fathers old wind up record player complete with 78 record. Chris wound it up and the Church yard echoed to a record of bell ringing!
Pam, Robin, John & Mick Pridmore, Margaret
It was a nice meeting as now all five siblings  have commemorative stones in the same Church yard.
Mick Pridmore, my Chris, Jesse and Helen Wood

John Percival Ashby 1910 - 1981 [m. Loakes]
Helen Elizabeth Ashby 1912 - 1995 [m. Pridmore, Petty]
Catherine Mary Ashby 1914 - 2012 [m. Simons]
William George Ashby 1916 - 1990  [m. Wilkinson]
Charles Henry Ashby 1919 - 1986 [un married]

Our next stop was a meal at Vivo Restaurant, where the chatting and laughter never stopped.

Left : Chris, Chris. Jesse, Helen, Mike, Margaret, John
Right: Dave, Kim, Me, Chris and Pam [Robin behind the camera!]

My Christmas sewing for today is
This table will have the Christmas Tree on it a little nearer to THE DAY.



Saturday, 6 December 2014

19 Sleeps to Christmas

Today is a busy day with the extended family. We are meeting at Burton Latimer Heritage Centre to look at photos etc of our ancestors. Next it is off to pay our respects at the cemetery then for lunch at an Italian Restaurant. More about all this tomorrow!

Today's look around my Christmas sewing was made on a Jenny Almond workshop many years ago.
Eventually, when the granddaughters arrive, there will be a Nativity in front of the fire.
Setting up the Nativity became a  tradition started some years ago and is a reminder of the real meaning of Christmas.

Friday, 5 December 2014

20 Sleeps to Christmas

5th December already! How did that happen?

Yesterday was our IAM Christmas party, one member was missing as she was in the air flying back from Australia [missed you Ann].
We started the morning either working on our own projects or making twisted thread bags. I actually manged to make two.

The group take it in turns to bring dessert, and this year it was Shirley's turn and she brought two delicious Roulades plus some nibble goodies. Shirley also decided to take over sorting and doling out the gifts much to every ones amusement.

There are eight of us in the group and we all buy 7 £2 gifts, which is always fun and somehow over the years the gifts are rarely repeated. We certainly had some lovely things this year.

Also we buy a Fat Quarter and play a Right / Left game. I try to read the story as quickly as possible to make it more fun.

Next we all bring a £5 to play another game, this year we had a dice game which went quite well, as Ann had left her presents with me before she flew out to Aussie, we designated an angel ornament as Ann to make sure she had a turn and won a prize. [ With a combined age of over 550 we know how to have fun and laughter]



Shirley, Clare, Maureen, Penny, me, Jenny standing, Dorn behind the camera.

 Today's look around my Christmas sewing a table runner, that I loved making a couple of years ago.





Thursday, 4 December 2014

21 Sleeps to Christmas

What a great evening spent at Church last night. It was the Relief Society Christmas Party and the tables were laden down with food including very nice hot turkey rolls. I think there were about 40 ladies there to enjoy each others company.
After the food I had prepared a Left Right game [goggle it to find lots of different versions of this game] the room was split into three tables and each table was given a number of little wrapped gifts made by me and my friend Penny, who had joined in the fun. I read the Right Left game and there was much laughter as most people do not seem to know which is their left hand or right hand!

After the game we sang carols and had a short message from the Presidency.

Todays look around my Christmas sewing
I think this cushion was a Carol Doak pattern, wish I'd made four!

When I arrived home about 9.30 the house looked magical with all the Christmas lights.



Wednesday, 3 December 2014

22 Sleeps to Christmas

Sometimes everything goes "haywire".  Last week Waitrose made a mistake on my shopping receipt and although a "boss" man in a suit told me how to correct it when I got home, he was wrong ! This morning I again visited the store and although my credit card would give me a zapper [ I like to zap as I go around seeing exactly how much I spend] it did not work and it took two people to sort it out and give me another. Due to be told the wrong things about last weeks bill they gave me a £5 voucher, which was probably twice what I would have saved, so I felt quite happy. Did my shopping and the self check out machine *** lets just say played up so much I had to have the girl three times to sort it out*** I think the moral of this story is it would have been quicker to just shop as normal and pay in cash, what a waste of time.

This afternoon we have someone coming to write new wills for us, it has been 15 years since the last time we made a will, and two granddaughters have arrived since then. I hope it goes smoothly.

Here's todays Christmas decoration
Santa making himself comfy

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

23 sleeps to Christmas

Set off early this morning to visit Abigail's school where she was to be awarded a certificate. Richard and Jacq were unable to go so I was more than pleased to be asked to attend. Abigail knew nothing about the award ceremony and was thrilled with her certificate.


Well Done Award
Always joining in and trying her best. Excellent writing results using her targets.
Looking smart in her school uniform.

Proud Grandma shook the camera so it is a bit blurred!
















My Christmas decoration to show you today is a table runner [in three phtos of the twelve days of Christmas]


Monday, 1 December 2014

24 Sleeps to Christmas

Christmas is fast approaching and the house is decorated on the outside and I have made a start on the inside. Mostly my inside decorations are things I have made over the years so I thought I would try and blog a different item each day.
Today is the count-down calender showing there are 24 days left before the big day. It was great fun to make and the pile of numbers mean I can change it each day until the 25th.

This morning I visited some ladies from church to spread a little cheer and a message from the gospel that I would like to share with you all..

The Reality of Christmas, By Bishop Gary E Stevenson 
This Christmas, as the spirit of the season permeates our hearts, let us do something that expresses our feelings in an outward way, showing that we understand that the babe born in Bethlehem is the real Redeemer. President Howard W. Hunter (1907–95) gave some practical advice that helps us do that:
“This Christmas, mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust. Write a letter. Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in word and deed. Keep a promise. Forgo a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Apologise. Try to understand. Examine your demands on others. Think first of someone else. Be kind. Be gentle. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude. Welcome a stranger. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth. Speak your love and then speak it again.”


Friday, 28 November 2014

Guess it's that time of year

I have been busy sewing up a storm on my embroidery machine making little angels. They will be scattered on the tables at the Relief Society evening next week. I did the same thing last year and they were a big success so thought I'd make some more, but why do I leave it until the last minute?  I just need to cut off the mesh fabric I used to sew them onto and probably make some more.

At the last BSK meeting I embroidered a pile of Christmas bags in the hoop, just need to get them serged to finish them off.
Now if anyone finds the secret of an extra 24 hours from somewhere please tell me.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

A beautiful gift

Chris gave me a beautiful bouquet of flowers for my birthday on the 20th.

On the the 21st they were wrapped and transported to the lodge we had hired, where the only container was a plastic jug that had to be balanced in a waste paper basket to stop it falling over.

The 24th saw them again being bundled into the car to bring home.

26th today and they still look as good as the day he gave them to me, thank you for the wonderful gift Chris.

Monday, 24 November 2014

Bainland Lodge Lincolnshire

Friday saw us travelling to Woodhall Spa to a rented lodge for the weekend. The family arrived early evening in time for dinner and celebrating Richard and Jacqueline's 16th Anniversary and my 70th birthday.
The lodge was well kitted out with two bedrooms at one end with a shared bathroom, and another bedroom en-suite at the other end of the building. it overlooked a nine hole golf course and there were many activities available on site.

Chris trying out the furniture
En suite bedroom
Double and twin bedrooms at the opposite end of the lodge.
The girls could not wait to try out the hot-tub even though it was raining and very dark! I guess if your getting wet it does not matter.
family fun in the hot tub


After a large cooked breakfast the chosen activity was water waltzer [ think that is what it was called.] Eleanor was not sure she wanted to have a go until she saw Abigail zipped into a gigantic ball trying her best to stay upright on the water, then she could not wait for her turn. Both girls worked out how to stand upright and run up and down the swimming pool.
Abigail being blown into a ball while Eleanor is not too sure about it!

Abigail walking on water

Eleanor managing to run 


A wander to the Adventure playground was great fun balancing on the zip wire [photos did not turn out as they moved too quickly once on the wire!], climbing on giant tyres while Jacq and I looked on.
fun on the tyres

Play time

preparing to use the zip wire

Jacq and I watching the fun

All very tired the men fetched fish and chips for a lazy evening in.

Sunday we repeated the large cooked breakfast and the younger members went off to the swimming pool and for hot chocolate in the Bistro. We drove into Woodhall Spa for lunch at The Mall a very nice but very busy restaurant bar. A lazy afternoon followed [ other than dips in the Hot Tub] and everyone seemed to be hooked on the game Amazon and Frozen on their iPads.
Clearing up the breakfast
What would we all do without our "gadgets"?


Richard, Jacq and the girls had to leave Sunday evening for work and school today, but Chris and I stayed on until this [Monday] morning. It was very quiet!




Monday morning preparing to leave