Thursday, 17 July 2014

The Art Of Distraction .....

that's what I've been trying to perfect this week
putting Scary Worrying things aside
(or trying my best to)
and searching out love and beauty

 With everything going right now
I have dramatically pared down my shops
just ready made items or quick to make things in~store for a while
I will have to close them for a few weeks soon
I'll let you know when.

This has given me time to cut endless  B E A U T I F U L  fabric squares
from my 'Treasure' stash
slowly slowly
I'm making a quilt just for me
using my most adored fabrics
some of them just enough for one square
Vintage Laura Ashley
a beautiful but damaged vintage table cloth 
and even a few of my mother~in~laws pretty hankies
something special to remember her by

I do a bit here and there when I'm feeling up to it
its soothing for my soul
especially when accompanied by Mary Berry baking something delish

I've also indulged in a little, pretty retail therapy

I have been a huge fan of Viv's work for many years
who wouldn't be?
It's insanely gorgeous
I had some birthday money left so treated myself to this delight
she is such a lovely lovely lady too
this will be highly treasured ..... always

I also added a  V E R Y  pretty new baby mug to my collection

It's called 'Carnation' but to me it is a pink

it looks very at home

This Zinnia made me happy too
look at the  G O R G E O U S  colour

June's cross stitch
~ A firefly in a jam jar ~

I've not started July yet
got a feeling I may get rather behind on this
You can read more about my Cross Stitch Challenge here

Before I go I have been meaning to show you something .....
Have you heard of Sugru?

It's jolly clever stuff
a self~setting rubber
I had an email from a kind lady from the company
she offered to send me some to try out
it arrived in the nick of time
my mac cable was hanging on by a thread
(a new cable is £70!)
so I used some to mend it
such a genius idea

It can be used in  L O A D S  of crafty ways too
just take a looky at their website
So thank you very much to Clare and Sugru
I shall be up for a play when I'm feeling better

Thanks for popping by
It's lovely to know you're there
and I can just ramble away to you
and I adore to read your lovely comments

BIG love
x Jooles x

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

I'm still here .....

Hello my lovely friends
Sorry I've not been around for a while
I've been feeling rather under the weather of late
but your kind wishes have cheered me up no end

Thank you for so many wonderful comments on my kitchen tour post
I'm really REALLY so happy that you like it too
It's funny ..... sometimes when I've been out and then come back through my door
I'm quite thrilled at the beautiful kitchen sights that greet me
I almost forget that we have such a new PRETTY kitchen
 it's like seeing it again for the first time
I'm totally smitten with it.

My hospital appointment went fine thank you x
I've had some more tests
I'm waiting for my consultant to get get in touch
hopefully tomorrow
to see what happens next

The day of my first hospital appointment
was the beginning of a few days holiday for Mr Sweet and I
Dodgy timing ..... but I didn't want to turn down the appointment.

Our holiday was a bit of a non~holiday in the end
with appointments and pain
we did manage to make it to one of my favourite places

Ahhhhhh I love it there!

It's heaven having my Sweet Bee home
Oh how I love that busy girl
she has turned into a whizz in the kitchen since living away from home
She made a gorgeous bean chilli for tea last night
(it's so lovely to get a night off cooking)
and last weekend she made lychee and passion fruit panna cotta

I think it has to be my favourite dessert of ALL time
so divinely delicious.

She's been out and about .....
she managed to fight off millions of other graduates
(ok ..... quite a lot)
and got herself an internship over the summer
with the Hampshire Wildlife Trust
Guess what she's doing?

A BEE study!

It's so funny

She goes to a farm
where the farmer has treated strips of land next to his fields in different ways
in some the grass is left uncut
some have been sown with a pollen and nectar flower mixture
some with a wild bird seed mixture
there are more but I can't quite remember them all
you get the gist though .....

Sweet B and her fellow bee watcher
have to collect data to determine which strip encourages the most bees
they record the number of bumble bees on each strip
the species
and the flower they were feeding from.
All very interesting and worthwhile stuff
they walk for miles
she really loves it
and it couldn't be more perfect for her.

Well I shall be off for now
wishing you a lovely rest of the week

BIG love
x Jooles x

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

At Last ..... A Kitchen Tour

I'm sorry it has taken me so long to make this post happen
I have been patiently(ish) longing for it to be finished
so I could do my BIG reveal
it's still not quite
well, the kitcheny bit is ..... has been for a while
it's just the painting of doors and skirtings Oh and new pantry doors to be hung
I just couldn't wait any longer to show you properly

excuse the masking tape around the skirting

I feel SO lucky
I had a vision in my head
 of my 
and this is it
I can hardly believe it
I feel SO lucky
in fact it's even better than my dream
I do spend a LOT of time in here
I always did
 but more so now that it's SO pretty
goodness knows how may cakes have been baked
my waistline is telling me a LOT!

My gorgeous (and well used) Kitchenaid that Mr Sweet bought me last year looks so at home

During the planning I had major stresses about the worktop
I always dreamed of having wood but the more I read the more I worried
it sounded like they needed so much love and attention
my family were against wood
they worried that I may turn into a worktop physco
(nice hey? I didn't BTW)

I changed my mind a thousand times
Quartz Wood Quartz Wood Quartz Wood Quartz Wood Quartz Wood 
I never fell in love with quartz or any of the hard stone ones
believe me I tried HARD to love them
It looks gorgeous in some kitchens but it just didn't work here
the poor kitcheneers must have despaired of me
in the end wood won

I'm so SO pleased that I came to my senses and followed my heart
I think the wood makes the kitchen cosy and inviting
and most of all suits the style
and it's so easy to care for ..... not demanding at all
just a little oil every few months
and it's happy
Easy Peasy

We chose to have cupboards almost to ceiling height for extra storage
it's really handy to store those odd things that don't get used very often 
I seem to have a slight over~flow of those

We went for big drawers rather than cupboards
I wasn't totally sure how I would get on with them to be honest
but ..... they're great
 and they save my back from having to hunt around in the dark back of a cupboard

that's the pantry at the back there with only one door knob ..... soon that will be prettied up

We Love the velux windows they let in SO much light
they've made such a difference to the whole energy of the kitchen
and at the moment I can see a rambling rose through one of them
nice bonus

The company who designed it are wonderful
I can't say enough kind things about them

Ben ~ the owner is just Utterly and Truly Lovely
kind, thoughtful, professional, understanding, artistic
nothing was too much trouble
 he REALLY listened too and My he is very Tall indeed

Michelle ~ she did all the techy drawings, such a clever lady
 she's sooo patient and sweet
she soothed my worktop woes
and even when, at the last minute I had a panic fit over the sink
 she sorted it out so kindly and made sure that I had exactly what I'd dreamed of
she is a gem ..... I love her dearly

James ~ kitchen fitter extraordinaire
Imagine inspector gadget and action man all rolled into one
that's James
give him any problem ..... he Can & Will solve it
admittedly I found him a teeny bit scary in the beginning
but he's quite the softie once you get to know him
 in my opinion no better kitchen fitter exists

Matt ~ he's very lovely indeed, Mr organised 
It was he who did all the ordering of parts ..... thats a lot of parts
What a job.
he patiently helped us choose taps and interior cupboard colours too
so many things I never even considered in the beginning.
He visited on site a few times too to make sure everything was going to plan

I miss them all already ..... they really are a wonderful team

A few of my very VERY favourite things 

Number One :: My mug shelf 

I dreamed this shelf up one day
I wanted someway of prettily displaying my mug collection
I explained what I had in mind to Michelle
 who, as if by magic made it reality.

I collect Emma Bridgewater baby mugs
(much to Mr Sweet's dismay ..... 'haven't we got enough mugs?')
well, I say 'collect' but I don't have that many really
maybe twenty or so
I just love them
for me they are the perfect coffee size
I only have a couple of cups a day
I do LOVE a good coffee
as you can see ..... I've had my first cup of the day!
I like the sponge decorated ones the best
you see the one on the second row up on the left ..... the rose one?
that's my all~time favourite ..... and was given to me on my 18th birthday
I am now 43

Number Two :: My sink

Gorgeous Gorgeous Gorgeous

Oh how I LOVE the sink
When I wash up and it's full of hot soapy water
the heat penetrates through and is like a hot water bottle
I like that
It will be even nicer in mid~winter
rather than mid~summer!

Number Three :: boiling and filtered water taps

Not so pretty but SO brilliant
I would really recommend this to anyone
no more water filters or kettles needed ever again
hot drinks straight from the tap
so quick to fill a pan for pasta too
Just LOVE that
and the filter only needs changing every six months or so.

Number Four :: Cupboard Bin
(Yes I know it's a bit weird to get excited over a bin)

excuse my rubbish

but let me just say that
 it's so nice not to keep stubbing my toe on the free standing one we used to have
it's a double one too
one for general waste and one for recycling

Number Five :: Tiles

I fell in love with these Susie Watson tiles very early on
they are just CUTE

My teeny tiny teacup collection of succulents
Heavily inspired by my lovely bloggy friend 

We inherited the old kitchen when we moved here four and a half years ago
it was pretty much falling apart
there were a couple of drawers which you dare not open
the taps were beyond repair and leaked badly
the worktop around the sink had warped from the annoying leaking tap
the list went on .....

We kept our cooker
 the other appliances were pretty old so they were replaced

If you like you can read more about the kitchen story 
(there are probably more posts too but my eyes are just about to explode if I don't get off here soon)

Here are a few Before & Afters
you'll notice that basic lay~out stayed more~or~less the same

I wonder if you're still with me?
I didn't realise this was going to be such an epic post
my eyes are now on sticks

Well there we go ..... at last ..... my new kitchen!

I'll show you the laundry room soon
promise it won't be so looong.

It has been mighty busy here lately
lots and lots of orders have kept me in my sewing room  :o)

I've also been busy writing my very first PDF pattern

(apologies for drawing your attention to the C word in mid~summer)

and I've been busy worrying about a hospital appointment which is tomorrow (!!!)
I've been in pain recently so I need to deal with it
I will dig my 'Brave' hat out

Before I go

for all of your congratulatory wishes
for Sweet B's degree success
WoW ..... we are still all on cloud 9 with her
she LOVED your messages

Back soon

BIG love 
x Jooles x