Thursday, 28 November 2013

Bee block finishes and a swap.

Since my last post I have been beavering away at my outstanding November  'Bee Block To Do' list.

To recap, I finished Catherine's in the hipBees

I just love this pattern and have another block all cut out ready to sew and turn into a cushion for my Mum's Christmas present.

I managed to catch up and make Reene's October hipBee blocks. They are string blocks using her DS stash. They look so effective and pretty. Reene is going to have a beautiful quilt once the blocks are all pieced together. 

I pieced these blocks at the East Midland Modern Quilt Group meeting last Saturday. I always forget to take a photograph of the meetings but I just caught this sunset as we were just about to leave.
If you live anywhere in the East Midlands and would like to join us, check out the Flickr group and come to the next meeting.

My mystery Brit Bee blocks cannot be fully revealed but there are stars involved… these are bright stars and I enjoyed working on these.

Finally, but not least, I need to make a 16" mega block for Charlotte in the Bee a Brit Stingy group. I am ashamed to say that I haven't completed it and tomorrow is the last day of November. Charlotte, if you are reading this, then the block will be with you early next week. I had a little trouble in the low volume department and Ange has bailed me out so I can get this block completed this weekend.

Again, this is going to be a brilliant block. I love making flying geese so I am eager to finish this block off. It won't be happening tomorrow though, as I am heading off to Manchester to see our Elder Son at University. I have cooked several meals, soup and made an apple crumble to take with me. It is nice to be able to spoil my boy as he is missing home and all men like food!
Di x

Thursday, 21 November 2013

November Bee Blocks are underway

It is the middle of November and I am concentrating on getting bee blocks completed.

In the hipBees, Catherine asked for some great blocks. I am definitely going to make another block and make it up into a cushion for a Christmas present for my Mum. It would look great in Christmas fabric too. I could be tempted to make a candle mat with this block if I have enough time before Christmas.

I had a little trouble with these blocks. Firstly, I was a smidgen short of the black fabric. It isn't very short but it doesn't work if I use the short piece. I also BURNT one of the blocks with my iron. Younger Son has obviously been ironing as my ironing board and iron are a bit of a mess. I was rather sick at the thought of remaking the block but with a little Vanish and oxidiser I think that I have got away with it. (If it doesn't pass muster then I will gladly make another block, Catherine.)

We have a problem Houston!
So this is what I finished up with…

Catherine is going to finish off the incomplete block for me. These are going in the post today and I can give myself a big tick on my 'Bee Block To Do' list!

Di x

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Long time with no blogging...

It has been a whole month since I last blogged. This has partly been because we have been busy in the Willowbeck household but mainly because I have been ill.

In my last blog post I said that I was going away to three different places, one after another. Well I went to Southport and met up with my Mum...

...travelled back to Cumbria with my Mum and met up with my hubby and younger son. I then spent the next three days in bed with a viral infection and developed a horrible productive cough that is still lingering a month later. I got off my sick bed on the fourth day and then we drove down to Manchester where we dropped off Younger Son with Elder Son. We then flew over to Northern Ireland for my husband's 30 year university reunion with the medics of of 1983. 
A rather nice place to stay!
It was a great weekend and my hubby enjoyed seeing all his classmates. I was utterly bemused as I didn't know them 30 years ago and couldn't match up past photos with the people there. I think that the women had changed hair colour and the men had largely lost their hair!!!

Since our return home, I have spent the days napping beside the fire and feeling pretty washed out. This hasn't helped with getting the sewing done so I have very little to show you. For me, the highlight of the Northern Ireland visit was catching up with Sarah and Judith. We spend a lovely afternoon being 'Ladies Who Lunch' followed by a good chinwag. It was so great to see them and despite the miles between us they are very special friends. The photo below is testament to the gale that was blowing that day. 

I wanted to give my friends a little present so before I went, I made these little zipper purses.

I was given one from Nickki and I use it a lot when I don't want to lug around my normal overlarge purse.
My zipper purse from Nikki
Despite feeling ill, our family have had some nice times this past month. Younger Son has been awarded an Arkwright Scholarship so we had a grand day out in London at the Awards Ceremony. We were very proud parents and enjoyed the whole event. We stayed over in London so my men could go to the Gadget Show the following day. 
Younger Son also had his 17th birthday last weekend. He had a bonfire party with lots of warming food, sparklers and fireworks. It was deemed a success by all who attended. 

It felt sad at the end of the evening as it will be the last birthday party that we will host for our boys. We have always had birthday parties at home, despite it being hard work and often frantic. We wanted to give our boys memories of fun times in our home rather than going out to a fast food place or buying in an experience. 

Over the years we have had 12 boys sleeping over when they were 6-9yrs old (they were not enjoyable for us but the boys had a great time). I have done a dinner party for 23 teens for Elder Son's 16th. We have had treasure hunts, traditional parties…. now they are at an end and it feels sad to close that chapter of our lives. It is times like these that the passing years can be tinged with sadness.

This week is the week that I make all my November bee blocks as I am panicking about not making them in time. First up are Catherine's in the hipBees. Catherine has chosen a beautiful block and Catherine is cleverly using the charm squares from a charm swap. My only concern is that two of strips of fabric are an 1/8" too short. I have most of one block marked up for chain sewing and the promise of a flake with my coffee!

Wish me luck… I will report back later this week.

Di x