Monday, 19 September 2016

Update 19th September 2016

Hi Blogger Friends,

Firstly, a big thank you for the lovely comments on  my last post.

I actually really enjoyed blogging this way and I am trying to be a better commentator on other blogs too. Now that I am on here daily that is much easier to maintain also.

12th September - Monday

So today after quite a slow start as my Husband was working from home and I always seem to be slower getting going when he is at home, I took the dog for her morning walk and it is definitely feeling more autumnal. Really quite a fresh wind today.

 On returning from walking the dog the postman came with my delivery of three Penguin English Library edition books. I have wanted to increase the number of classics that I own for some time. Of these three books I did read Tess back in the early 1980's I had a mass market edition with the film cover (Nastassja Kinski as Tess imdb have this as 1979 but checking release dates it was 1981 in the UK and I bought the book via school, which would have made me 12 years old), I have not read it since. Persuasion is one of two Austens I have not read but have loved both TV adaptations that I have watched and Wives and Daughters is another TV series that I really enjoyed I have read both Cranford and North and South by Gaskell.
I chose these editions as the covers are so pretty but also the print inside the books is not too small which I struggle with a little these days. I intend to read a classic a month once I have cleared my currently reading pile. I had intended to get back to Jane Eyre this month but I have 11 books in my currently reading on Goodreads and I want to reduce those before I start on the classics. In fact I think I will make it a part of my reading challenge for 2017 to read or re-read 12 classics (I have read some before).

So onto some stitching - in the morning I finally dragged out Prairie Schooler Alphabet Letter G and made some progress on this
This is where I left it and below is my progress
I listened to Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince whilst stitching on this so the time whizzed by. I think I made some good progress.

In the afternoon I did a little more on Scheherazade and below is the progress I made
I decided to work down the design and out to the bottom right of the design. I am really enjoying how this is coming along.

After dinner my husband and I settled down to watch Victoria episode 4 on catch-up. I am really enjoying this series, this weeks episode was essentially her and Albert's courtship. There is something to be said for men in uniforms, they looked so smart and my favourite costume of tonight's episode was not a pretty frock but her riding outfit which I thought most striking navy blue with a red collar.

In the evening I didn't feel like stitching on a big project so I got my Medieval Queen bookmark out and I am nearly done with this now just a little more back stitching to do. I am always amazed at how long back stitching takes
I also watched episode 2 of the new series of Cold Feet. I did not think this weeks episode was quite as strong but will continue to watch. Also the news came through this evening that the BBC series The Great British Bake Off is moving to Channel 4 - a victim of its own success. The BBC being what it is can no longer afford it. I am sad as I feel it will become one big advert but I will watch at least the first series that airs on Channel 4 and will see if it can keep its charm. I do hope so.

At bedtime I read from both Dumb Witness - I have got to Poirot visiting the Tripps and Theresa Arundell trying to work out what really happened and before sleep I read more from The Secret Garden and Mary has just found the key. I am enjoying both these books.

13th September - Tuesday 

Well my day started early with the dog waking me up by barking at 4.45 am. I probably would not have minded too much had we not needed to get up at 5.30 am anyway and so I did not really go back to sleep. After dog walking and doing some grocery shopping, I set off to town with my adult children only to discover when we were at the back of our house that my son had left his bedroom wide open so I had to go back and rectify that.  It was a very  hot day even by 10am when I set off for town.  I was very lucky to get home before we had an horrendous thunderstorm and downpour. My door shook with one clap of thunder and my poor dog was beside herself terrified, she absolutely hates thunder.

So today I finally finished my Medieval Queen bookmark
I am really pleased with how this has turned out and the finishing instructions are very clear. Well done Textile Heritage, also a side note there is probably enough floss in the kit to stitch another one which I think is also a very positive thing about this kit.

So pleased was I with this that I started on another bookmark kit in the evening this one is called Flowers of Scotland as I did not feel like working on one of my larger projects. Bookmarks are great for this - when you want to stitch but only something small.
This is where I got too.

In the evening I watched the final episode of the crime story One of Us - I did not guess whodunnit but think it was quite a good conclusion to the story.

No reading was done before bed as I was quite tired.

14th September - Wednesday 

Another early start was had and boy was it a warm day. After dog walking I started on the process of getting my son packed up for Thursday's taking him back to Uni. We spent some time sorting through his clothes, he has put on some weight and so some of his things are no longer fitting, so anything that was good has been put in a bag to go to the charity shop and most of the rest has been binned if not fitting or tatty. Later in the morning I popped to the shop to try and find some soya mince for my daughter (she has gone off Quorn it makes her bloat) and luckily that freezer was probably the only one that was working. All their chillers and most of the freezers were broken and being emptied whilst I was there. I then spent a couple of hours ironing my sons clothes prior to putting them into the suitcase and holdall ready for tomorrow. Whilst doing this tedious task I listened to Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.

There was a mid week challenge with Cross Stitch Friends on Facebook so I continued working on Flowers of Scotland bookmark as I knew I would not get much done today. In the end I managed 2hrs 45 mins on this

In the evening I watched The Great British Bake Off - batter week, to be honest wasn't impressed with tonight's mainly as batter is boring. We then watched the latest DCI Banks story they run 6 episodes each series but it three stories so this is the part one of the second story and I thought it was quite good.

In bed I did read but a book about book recommendations  The Book Lovers' Companion - What to Read Next. It is a good reference book and I may use it for part of my TBR next year as I think I will probably work from a plan to tick a few off that I have wanted to read for sometime but not got around to it. I have it on Kindle.
15th September - Thursday

A very short update. We took our son back to University, which he is very happy about and it was another very warm day. The result of this I was very tired when we returned home late afternoon. In the evening I watched I think the final episode of Million Dollar Princesses this week featuring Barbara Hutton, Kick Kennedy and Clara Ward  - I think this episode was called Beautiful but Doomed. Again very interesting and in the case of Kick Kennedy very sad. I did a minimum amount of stitching on Scheherazade see below, I apologise for the poor photo
I just filled in the bottom right corner motif and started working back along towards the centre.
I went to bed early and did not read, just very tired.

16th September - Friday

We had a disturbed night, my husband is on call and got woken at 2.30 only to find it wasn't for him, I then needed the loo and the dog decided she needed to go out which is fine but then she did not want to come back in. Once back in bed and just returning to sleep my husband had a bout of cramp. So I started Friday already tired. In the morning we went to the garage with the dog so that my husbands car could get a service then walking  the dog back home along the canal so that the morning walk could be done at the same time.

After my husband and daughter left for work I spent the morning doing housework, cleaning and clearing up. I don't much enjoy doing it, but when its done am pleased with the result. I then sat down and finished reading How to Find Love in a Bookshop, I showed the cover in my previous post  - overall I enjoyed it but I could have done with less characters. I then started on a book called The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
I read the first chapter and it seems quite interesting.

I pottered about for the rest of the day, chatted to husband and daughter when they came home. Did no stitching just felt too tired to concentrate on it. At bedtime I started to read a new book that has come in at my e-book library called Among Others
Again I read the first chapter and I will continue with it. I know I have lots of books currently on the go and I do need to prioritise and get some of them finished my current Currently Reading is too big and I do need to focus a little and try and get this down to no more than 5 books it is currently at 10.

17th September - Saturday

I started my day by picking up Viennese Waltz by Heritage Crafts prior to the rest of the house getting up. You may remember I did not get to work on it last Saturday as I had a headache so here is the before photo
and below is where I got to at the end of the day
I am very pleased with the progress I made. As I am away next Saturday I will be working on this project on Friday which is the first Strictly Come Dancing show as they always do two shows the first weekend.

During the day I went to town with my daughter who had managed to break her phone screen so needed to get it fixed. Whilst we were waiting for that to be done we had a drink in the local coffee shop. I also purchased the latest issue of The World of Cross Stitching magazine - there is quite a lot in this issue that I would like to stitch. My first thing will be some of the Christmas ornaments bottom left and I think the designs in the calendar are very lovely.
 A better image of the ornaments
and the calendar
I think all the designs on this are super cute and will probably get to a couple next year.

Whilst stitching in the evening my daughter and I watched a movie on Sky called Every Secret Thing with Diane Lane, Elizabeth Banks and Dakota Fanning - it was quite good if a little twisted but then that is the style of film that it was.

My daughter wanted to watch Casualty which is a long running BBC tv show and I have not watched it in a while so I went upstairs to my bedroom and listened to Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince and stitched on the geometric bookmark that was in the August issue of Cross Stitch Collection magazine. Below is the progress I made. Slowly getting there with this one.
Before sleep I read another chapter of Dumb Witness by Agatha Christie, I am really enjoying this. I was also going to read from The Secret Garden but I was just too tired.

18th September - Sunday 

On getting up I had received an email that had the attachment for a  PDF chart I purchased on Friday but there had been a technical glitch in it appearing on my account page and so they had to send it me via email. The chart is Luna by Shannon Christine Designs and it uses glow in the dark thread
I will probably stitch it on ths Twilight Shadows fabric from The  Crafty Kitten
and if you are curious here is the link to the designers site so you can see a rough idea of what the glow in the dark effect is like I think it will be a really fun stitch and I am going to try and kit it up with a view to starting it on Halloween this year and finishing it by next Halloween ( that's a plan !!)

Designer page showing the Glow in the Dark effect

It is the second picture on the link page that shows the effect.

After walking the dog I did an hours work on my Prairie Schooler Alphabet Letter G, still hoping to get this letter completed before the end of the month.
After lunch we did a bit of gardening, basically getting the lawns  mowed and picking up a sack of apples that have fallen. I then settled down to working on Flowers of Scotland bookmark and watched a couple of old Inspector Morse episodes that I found on catch-up tv. I now only have the back stitching, French knots and the making up to go on this one so hopefully during the next week I will have another finished bookmark.
After dinner I settled down and did a bit of work on Simon, officially Orangutans by Jayne Netley Mayhew,  below is my progress
I watched the episode 5 of Victoria and tonight's episode was Victoria and Albert's wedding and Albert's need for some kind of role - I think it must have been quite difficult for him given the time and the beliefs on how Men and Women should be. As you can see  I am really enjoying this series although the blue contact lenses that Jenna Coleman wears are still off putting.

I wasn't tired going to bed so listened to Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince again and stitched on the geometric bookmark. Below is where I got to
This I am also hoping to finish definitely before the end of the  month.

So that's it for this week and Sunday was a super productive stitchy day.

My next blog post will appear on the 27th September (a day later than usual) as I am going to the Isle of Wight for a few days to see my Mum.

Bye for now
Take Care

Lisa x

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