First blog post

My Life.

When I told my daughter I was going to start a blog about things I remembered and things I had done she said “Oh good!!  You will be able to go back and read all about it when you go senile.”  KIDS!!!

So here is my life in short bursts of whatever comes to mind at the time.  Hope you enjoy.

Love Gill. xx



Bitter, Sweet.

Well holiday season 2020 has begun and here is the beginning of my 2020 blanket.


I really enjoyed my grandd’s visit at half term, we did some shopping, mouching about and some visiting.  She also had some homework to do and part of this was an assignment on “Black and White” for photography.  We had fun finding as many different things as we could.  One of these things was to photograph people dancing so I took her to my Thursday sequence dance and she had a great time taking lots of pictures.  I found out the other day that she got 9 out of 10 for her efforts but her teacher wanted to know what she was doing in a ballroom!!

Soon I have a holiday coming up and there are six of us going.  I am really looking forward to it.  The bitter part of this is one of my very best friends in all the world died last week which makes me very, very sad.  We will have to see now if I get to go on holiday and say goodbye to her or not.  I will definitely be saying goodbye whatever.  I shall miss her lots, I have known her since I was 15.

The good news is spring is here and the flowers are beautiful.  I just hope the gales and rain will let us enjoy them a bit longer.

See you next month.


Love Gill xx

All Things Bright and Beautiful

I always find January, and particularly, February very dissatisfying months.  All the hype and noise of Christmas and New Year are gone and so far this year no snow to speak of.  Yes we did have a few snowflakes on my daughter’s birthday but it was too wet to settle.  For the most part it has been grey and wet and windy so to buck myself up my mind and hands go to something bright and colourful to occupy myself.

My soft toy dinosaur was the first thing I dug out – I did promise to begin it in the New Year.  I bought a couple of safety eyes and made a start on sewing it together.  Then the curse of February hit and my machine went from clackety clack to wer…wer…stop.  I think the motor has given up the ghost and I can’t get it to a mender until Easter.  I got this far.


Fortunately I still have my mother’s old machine which is much fancier than mine, it does embroidery too.  It stands in a cupboard and has drawers to keep stuff in.  It took me a few days to clear things off it, find the feet, bobbin holder, needles etc. and, of course, the instruction book.  I am at the stage now of testing the basics out – fancy stitching will have to wait until much, much latter.


In the meantime I have completed one knee blanket for the nursing home and started the squares for another.

Also I am trying to finish knitting one for the children at Linus but I just can’t seem to stick to it, I don’t know why!!


I am getting excited now as my eldest gd is coming from London for half term while her Mum and sister go to Plymouth to dive.

Love to all, Gill.


Christmas and New Year

The week after my last blog my boiler decided to leak and I managed to get a plumber to come and do a quick fix as I was going to London the next day to see my eldest granddaughter in her school play.  They were doing Henry V and she was playing young Henry.  I enjoyed it very much, the cast was excellent and the back stage boys and girls did a wonderful job.   Gd 1 wants to be an actress but she has the sense to work at her sciences too.


I stayed in London for a week and went to watch gd 2 doing her diving training.  She has learned 2 new dives since Christmas, a 1.5 inward somersault and a 2.5 forward somersault, it is quite scary to watch!  At the beginning of half term her group is going to the Armada contest in Plymouth so I am keeping my fingers crossed for her.  This means I shall get gd 1 for the half term holiday so we will see what fun we can get up to.  Sorry the photos are out of focus it is not easy to get a still picture but you get the gist.

We all came back to Yorkshire for the holidays to bright sunshine – where was the snow??  When I turned the boiler back on the leak started again and the plumber was away and couldn’t come until after New Year so we were mopping up twice a day all over the holiday.  It is now mended thank goodness, such a kind man, he worked very hard in an awkward place, see the bit he replaced – uggh!


We did lots of eating, drinking, playing games, watching TV and shopping – the only exercise we did.  We traveled to Newark to meet my son and his family for a meal.  Newark is half way between us.  Now they have all gone home and it is really quiet.  I have caught up on all the washing but not the ironing, I hate ironing.  I am finding it difficult to get back into the swing of things but my friend and I did a  flashmob line dance at the White Rose Shopping Centre last Saturday and quite a few of our class came to join in.  We really enjoyed it and we collected £370 for Children in Need.


Wishing everyone a very happy New Year

Lots of love, Gill xx

Cards, cards and more cards

Hi everybody,

Here are the the cards I made with my granddaughters at half term.

We had great fun punching out circles and squares, sticking them to cards and embellishing them.  I think we may have 5 or 6 years left to enjoy doing this together before they are off to Uni.

I also made my tree decorations and my yearly cross stitch ovals, hope you like them.

I finished the crochet knee blanket I was making at my knit and natter group using lots of small balls of wool and bringing the squares together with a single unifying colour.  I think it turned out quite well.  This is the second one I have done in this way and a third is being begun as I write.  Everyone is now bringing me all their odd bits of wool as they like to see what I come up with!

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My dinosaur soft toy has, at last, been cut out but will have to go on my New Year’s list to do.  Pictures as I go.


To end this year with a bit of fun.  I was looking through my photos and came across this picture of my cat, Dinah. See earlier post.  I always wondered why this particular plant never grew very well – one day I found out!!!  Couldn’t stop laughing for ages.

This post is just a little early as I have family coming.  I wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.  See you in 2020.

All my love, Gill. xxxxx

Christmas Outfits for Teddies – Pattern


I made these outfits for Teddies for tombola prizes, they don’t take long and are ideal for stocking fillers for children.

Waist Coat/Body Warmer.   To fit 18″ Teddy

Double knitting wool and/or equivalent fluffy wool – 50g.                                                            3.5mm crochet hook                                                                                                                                         3.25mm knitting needles

Cast on 78 stitches, work 7 rows K1 P1 rib, and 20 rows stocking stitch   (approx 10cm),      K17 sts, cast off 5 sts, K34 sts, cast off 5 sts, K17 sts.                                                                        Fronts x 2. (reverse workings for side 2)                                                                                                        Side 1 K18 rows in stocking stitch on these 17 sts, cast off 5 sts at neck edge (the long edge), K 4 rows st. st., cast off.                                                                                                                        Back.   K 17 rows ending with a purl row, K 12 sts, cast off 10 sts, K 12 sts                       Work 5 rows on these 12 sts, cast off.                                                                                                      Join wool to other 12 sts, rows, cast off.                                                                                                Work second front.

Sew shoulder edges together and with crochet hook work 2 to 3 rows of double crochet round fronts and neck edges making button holes in required side, then work 1 row double crochet round armhole edges.

Teddy Trews.

Double knitting wool – 100g.                                                                                                                                  3.25 and 4mm knitting needles

Cast on 37 sts using 3.25 needles, K 1 row, (this is the wrong side of the work)                                         Change to 4mm needles and 30 rows,                                                                                                cast off 1 st at beginning of  next 2 rows (35sts), 20 rows.                                                                      Continuing in work 15 sts, turn, Slip 1 st and work to end, turn, work 8 sts, turn, slip 1 work to end.  These 4 rows are the shaping for the waist.                                                            Change back to 3.25mm needles, work 4 rows K1 P1 rib, cast off in rib.                                    Work second leg but reverse shaping by working an extra row before starting to shape.

Fold leg in half right sides facing and sew up seam to cast off stitch.  Repeat with second leg.                                                                                                                                                                                                     Turn 1 leg right side out and push down into other leg, right sides facing and rib band to top.  Sew up seam from one rib band to the other matching crotch seam in centre.

I hope you can all understand these patterns and I haven’t made too many errors – it is my first time attempting to do this!!!  Hope you have a go and enjoy.  Send me an email of what you do or if you have any queries at all to

It is that time again when my K&N group make goodie bags for the school choir who come to sing carols at our party.  Here is what I made.


Last, but not least, I finished my holiday blanket 2019 to go to Project Linus UK. Hurrah!


See you all just before Christmas.                                                                                                                               Lots of love


















Finishing off things and getting ready for half term!

This year I have started several projects, some finished and some not.  I can’t share my 12″ hoops yet as I think they may be published in the Crazy Quilt Quarterly magazine courtesy of Pamela Kellogg.

I have made two twiddle muffs which are going to my knit and natter group this week and the knee blanket squares are now joined in fours and I will begin to crochet them together this week also.

I knitted a little over body bag to carry my middle granddaughter’s phone when she is out and about. I hope she likes it, it is made of a wonderfully soft wool called Eider and she loves all things soft and cuddly.


Three blocks of my keepsake crazy quilt have been completed but I can’t show you them with keepsakes until finished as I want to be able to move them around and add to them over time.  Here are the basic blocks so far.


My holiday blanket still needs another thirteen squares but you can now see what it will look like.  Some progress is still progress!!


At the beginning of this year I acquired some paper patterns to make dinosaur soft toys from about the 1960s.  I thought they may do as raffle toys.  I haven’t made soft toys since my children were little so I was quite looking forward to the challenge but other things got in the way.  Well, last week I came across them whilst looking for something else as you do.  I have just begun to cut out a T Rex so updates on this project next month.  Any advice on toy making will be welcome.

This year I get 2 grandchildren for half term – my daughter’s two.  They get two weeks for their holiday but my daughter only gets one week.  For the last couple of years I have only had the eldest but now the younger one has started secondary school I get both – aren’t I lucky??  YES I am!  Number 1 and I have stared a tradition that one day of the holiday is a craft day where we make our Christmas cards for family and school friends.  So last week I have sorted out the card stock, inks, stamps, punches, paper and embellishments.  I trawled through the internet for inspiration and found a few simple cards (because we only have the one day to do them) and I don’t want them too complicated.  I also found a halloween card that I just had to have a go at and that led me to try out some birthday cards while I still remembered the idea.  It is fatal to put off doing things that I think of as I never can recall what they were.  What do you think of them?

Christmas card efforts next month.

That’s all for now folks, it is getting dark so that means it must be time for food.

Bye for now, love Gill.

Seaman’s Mission

My knit and natter group (or as my daughter calls it, stitch and bitch) – they all thought this was hilarious when I told them – have been asked to make some warm accessories for the seamen of Hull.  Our group leader has a friend who works there helping out those who are down on their luck.  She is obsessed with knitting socks and that is all she makes so she went with making them.P1030826.JPG

Other ladies decided to knit beenie hats, gloves and mittens and I volunteered for scarf duty along with two more friends.  Here are the ones I made.

Three of the group made the trip to Hull during the summer holidays to deliver a batch of goodies in time for the cold weather.  They took 40 pairs of socks, 30 hats, 30 pairs of gloves and mittens and 20 scarves.  Can’t wait to hear how they were received.

We have found a new nursing home who have asked for blankets and some twiddle muffs – can’t wait to start on the muffs, I love making them.  At the moment we are all trying to finish our blankets before the Christmas bags take over.  Is anyone else making unusual things for charity?  Please leave a comment I would love to hear from you.

At home I have finished my 12″ hoops and am trying to make up my mind where I want to hang them.  I have also just started my crazy quilt blocks, I will share these next month.

See you all then, much love and hugs,

Gill xx

Summer 2019

Britain is enjoying some wonderful summer weather after the rain and wind earlier this month, temperatures up into the late 20sC.  I have just returned home after an extended holiday with my daughter and family.

I went to London at the end of July and spent a week with them. mostly watching my middle granddaughter doing her diving training, 4 hours a day, I don’t know how she does it.      iz diving  After that we all went to Dorset and had three lovely days with family going beachcombing and Broadchurch worshiping – following in the footsteps of David Tennant – ahh.

Then to the ferry across to the Isle of Wight where we had hired a chalet at Sandown.  The weather was a bit changeable but even the wind stayed warm.  We did lots of walking and visiting the sights.

The Needles was a must and, if you can ignore the tat at the top, quite a force of nature.  We took the chair lift to the bottom of the cliffs – if you don’t like heights don’t do it!  The view was magnificent and the coloured cliffs outstanding.  Who would have thought such a small section of land could contain so many different colours of sandstone.  We, in a fit of mad gung-honess, decided to take a ride on the fast boat to get up close to the rocks and lighthouse.  Baring in mind that despite the sunshine it was blowing a gale this day, the ride was one of the most exciting things I have ever done.  We all got thoroughly soaked but soon dried out sitting on the  in the lea of the cliffs.  They stopped the boat ride after us as they said the sea was too rough and dangerous.  How lucky were we?

Osborne House was next on our list.  This was the summer house of Queen Victoria and her family.  The house is beautiful, so much wonderful art and furniture, I would not like to have to keep it clean and dusted!  She has her own private beach about a mile from the house where she regularly went to bathe.  We saw her bathing hut, sat on her beach and had our picknick and paddle in the water, number 2 actually went swimming.  A second visit was needed for us to see the Swiss cottage where the children played and built gardens.  Then we strolled through the grounds which were blooming well.

We also went to a garlic farm, a Roman villa and a windmill and lifeboat station which were both closed.

bainbridge life boat station

Our return journey on the ferry on 10th August (my birthday) was the day they cancelled the start of Cowes week yacht racing because of the gale.  We made it – no problem!!

I spent another two weeks in London watching both girls dive, seeing friends, a couple of meals out and city sightseeing.

So, I went to London on the hottest day of the year by train, lots of trains were cancelled, travelled on the ferry in the strongest gale this summer and came home on Bank Holiday Friday, nearly as hot as going to London, and survived Yeah!!

Bye for now

Love Gill xx



Hi everyone,

I have just returned from a lovely mid-week break to Gunton Hall in Suffolk, UK.  I went with friends by coach and I am so glad we didn’t have to drive ourselves.  The coach is owned by the driver, Kevin Mannion and his wife Janine.  They are really nice people and we have been all over the country with them in the past including the Isle of Wight and the Isle of Man.  The next trip is to Ireland but I can’t go this time as I am visiting my family on and off during the Summer holidays.

We set off at 8.30am, had a couple of motorway stops, and arrived at 4.30pm – now you see why I am pleased we has someone else to drive.  We have been to Cornwall quicker than that!!  Having arrived we checked in and made our way to the chalets.  On first site it did not look very promising but once inside everything was modern and sparkling clean and comfortable.  I washed, changed and met up with everyone for dinner (excellent food), a drink, a dance (I love dancing) and met the entertainments team.

Part of the holiday included two day trips, Tuesday and Thursday.  Tuesday’s outing was to Horning in Norfolk where we had a quick walk by the river, a lunchtime snack and a 90 minute sail on the Southern Comfort, a Mississippi Paddle Boat, with some stunning views to photograph.

Wednesday we took advantage of the facilities at the Hall.  We tried our hand at archery, skittles, curling and a line dance class.

Thursday was another excursion going to Bressingham Gardens and Steam Heritage Museum near Diss in Norfolk.  This was the nicest, sunniest day of the holiday, the others being a bit cloudy but still warm.  Quite a few of us rode the horses on the carousel and everyone went on both the steam trains.  One train went out through the countryside the other did a circuit around the gardens.  Lunch and then a very pleasant walk through the gardens and back for dinner and a show.

Friday morning it poured with rain but by the time we’d had our breakfast the sun was shining again but we had to go home.  It was another long journey home again, the roads though East Anglia seem to consist of only two way traffic and roundabouts!

Home again, washing done, ironing to do – hate it – and get ready to visit grandchildren in the school holidays.

Could well be a bit late with next month’s blog depending on where I am.

Till then love to everyone

Gill xxx


245    P1030646

About six months ago, while trawling through Pinterest, I came across these little pieces of ‘oh so pretty’ things called Inchies.  In essence they are 1 inch square and can be made of anything you can cut.  I have seen them made of metal, ceramics, clay, soap, paper, card and felt, but the ones I wanted to make were inspired by Ivory Blush Roses.  They were a pale blue and white crazy quilt block cut and edged in blanket stitch and embellished and looked absolutely beautiful.

However I had to finish several ongoing projects before I could begin.  I had not done anything so small before and as I am quite new to crazy quilting I was very nervous about attempting it.  It has taken me all these months to finish my other projects which included knitting, crochet and cross stitch, but during this time I was collecting various bits and pieces which I thought I might be able to use on my inchies.

So the time arrived, just after Easter, and I began to piece my cazy quilt block.  I used pink, blue, green and purple, sewing my scraps onto a backing square roughly 8″ x 8″.  Then I embroidered the seams and added some motifs to the empty pieces.  Measuring and cutting are NOT my best skills but I persevered and ended up with 42 not so square, not so 1″ inchies.  I had decided that I wanted to use these to decorate my birthday cards for the ladies in my life and took a handful and finished embellishing them, stuck them to a 1″ backing card and added them to the front of my cards.  I only did two and was not impressed.

Then I went for a finish I had seen which was to edge and embellish them, fix them to a sheet of card in sets of nine and frame them in a square frame.  I liked this much better.

This project was a very seep learning curve for me and it will probably the first and last time I try it, although I might give some felt inchies a try some time in the future.  I did learn a lot and here is my list to myself of what to do and what not to do if I ever do it again.

  1.   Use more robust backing material, not fine cotton.
  2.   Use small scraps of material
  3.   Use tightly woven fabric
  4.   Use simple, flat seam treatments
  5.   DO NOT EMBELLISH before cutting
  6.   Measure much more carefully
  7.   Use a much sharper cutter – I think my pizza cutter is sharper than my material cutter!!

Till next month                                                                                                                                        All my love

Gill xxx