Sunday, April 25, 2010

A quiet weekend

It's been a quiet weekend here at Chez Bebbs - so far

Nigel and Sarah headed off on Rugby Tour yesterday morning. I waved them off a little wistfully, as I would previously have gone too, but this year Nick's diabetes and my parents' advancing years made it impractical and unfair for both of us to go with her. A bit of a bummer as I'd arranged and booked it all for them - but there you go, and to be honest I still feel a bit delicate after Monday's day surgery so it's probably for the best.

I did smile when Nigel phoned last night as I'd booked them all into a Youth Hostel on the Cornish coast and much to the girls' dismay there was virtually no mobile phone signal for any of the networks. Imagine the consternation of 15 teenage girls aged between 14 and 18 - the end of the world as they know it. Nigel had to accompany them (in his role as Responsible Adult?!?!?) quarter of a mile up the hill behind the hostel so they could get their fix before bedtime. For goodness sake!!! There was no way on this earth they would settle down for the night without!

So that was us down to three instead of five

Then three became two yesterday afternoon as Louise had a birthday party and sleepover to go to. The party was very exciting as it was a Murder Mystery Dinner Party and all the girls were to be a character and go in costume as though it was a 1930s house party

Here she is in her costume - and who would believe it her character of Mademoiselle Cherie Boot turned out to be both a man in woman's clothing and the joint murderer

They had a wonderful time and I was very impressed with the theme of the party - that'll be a hard one to follow

So that meant it just left Nick and I at home - this gave Nick the opportunity to spoil me with an early birthday treat - he took me out to dinner - what a sweetheart - we had a lovely time accompanied by my parents - brilliant!

The rest of the weekend, apart from catching up with the chores before returning to work on Tuesday, I've fitted in quite a bit of sewing

I'm on the final strait of the leaves and berries on Caroline's quilt - about 2/3rds of one side left to go

So my mind turned to what to do next..........

I had thought about Delectable Mountains a la Bonnie but felt they might be a little heavy handed

So whilst browsing through various blogs I came upon a great idea on Gwen's blog - Scrappy Angel Quilts

I've included a copy of the picture here just in case the link doesn't work

The cream lines are very reminiscent of the border arrangement I've used many times before on my little heart quilts - a bit of a faff having to start off with a part seam especially as the centre is relatively small - but very doable - and no dratted triangles - hurray!!!

So I thought I'd give it a go

And here are the first three blocks each measuring up at 8" square finished - three done, 41 more to go for this round

Once they're all completed that will bring the quilt to 96" square - I think a 6" or 8" wide plain cream final border to applique a nice floral vine onto should finish the job nicely

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Pottering along................

............... just spending time resting up post-op (all went well, if a little sore - day surgery is such a production line!) and hand stitching to while away the hours
Yet more leaves and berries

And a reasonably simple applique block I fudged together this morning as the ladies at my quilting group want me to teach them 'freezer paper on top' hand applique
Now of course the boring bit - writing out the 'ingredients list' for them for next Monday's meeting

Friday, April 16, 2010

Quilting I promised you.............

................and quilting there will be

Well piecing and applique as a pre-cursor to quilting anyway

Before you read any further can I just tell you that Blogger is playing some very silly games with me at the moment - this post should have 5 photographs in it - if you can't see them all chances are you won't be able to read the whole post either - please refresh and try again......... okay back to business!

Before I show you the progress I've made on Caroline's quilt I thought I'd show you a different view of Sarah from this one you usually see

The girls in the squad for last weekend had to travel and dine the first evening dressed as SuperHeros

Sarah chose a Thundercat

Makes you wonder how she manages to get all this hair into that rugby-playing bun

Enough of rugby speak - especially as we have another weekend of it travelling to Loughborough tonight to watch her play for South-West in the National Student Games

Here is Caroline's Quilt complete with its latest round of Sawtooth Stars

I am extending my Easter break from school by a week for medical reasons - I have to have day surgery on Monday to check out the interior of my bladder - yeuch - but I shall be resting and recuperating at home for the rest of the week.

So I have prepared lots more leaves and berries (lavender instead of red this time) to while away the hours until I go back to work, on my 50th birthday of all days, on Tuesday 27th - nice birthday present eh?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Please indulge me.............

...........this is a totally non quilty post - rugby instead I'm afraid

Last weekend Sarah and I travelled to Lichfield for this year's Regional Festival (the UK girls' national championships)

I've posted about this important date in the rugby calendar both last year and the year before

This year our girls were again knocked out in the semi finals by East, the same team as last year

They were ferocious opponents and went on to draw the competition with a nil-nil score after half time in the final against South (Sorry reading that back it should say 'nil-nil score after extra time')

My girl captained her region - a huge responsibility but a great honour she was delighted to receive

After they were 12 - nil down near the end of the semi final she showed her true colours and scored our only try of the match after a storming run from the halfway line with three opposition players (two of whom are England U20 players) in hot pursuit

Luckily one of the other parents managed to capture it on camera - no mean feat - not the most elegant of poses I have to say, the girl in pink nearly knocked her head off with a high tackle as Sarah went down to place the ball

The girls eventually came fourth overall after the 3rd/4th place play off game had to be stopped for safety with two of our girls heading off for medical treatment in ambulances (fortunately not my daughter) - Yes Jeanne it is a very rough game :o)

We are so proud of her efforts - this is her last major junior RFUW competition before she moves up to the big bad world of university/ladies rugby next season

Thanks for indulging me - back to the quilty stuff next time as the sawtooth star border is on Caroline's quilt - watch this space!

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Bitten by the bug

Louise and I have a lot in common - probably much more than I have with my other two children
As much as I take great delight in watching Sarah and Nick play sport and support their endeavours to the hilt I've never liked participating myself.
I was always the last kid to be picked when the class had to split into two in PE lessons - usually to the cries of 'Oh no Miss! Do we have to have her???????????' Although hurtful this was usually perfectly understandable as I always ended up being a complete liability
Indeed when playing the obligatory hockey at school I was usually put out at Left Wing in a desperate attempt at damage limitation as that was where I would be least likely to scupper the teams chances of success!
Louise is not totally like me in this way as she is reasonably competent at sport and generally comes in around the middle of the field in a race for example. However like me she participates under sufferance as she really doesn't enjoy the experience and if given the choice could always find something better to do with her time
Usually a better option would be something art or craft based and for this she definitely follows me
For her brother, the worst option for homework would be a colouring-in exercise or some drawing - so much so he usually cons his little sister into doing it for him - but Lou will happily create for hours on end, often working on something related to her given task way and beyond the work she has been set.
Of late she's baked chocolate cakes, chelsea buns and a chocolate citrus drizzle cake - unfortunately eaten so no photographic evidence
And she has now turned her hand to gardening
Strawberry plants
Newly planted pots to go near the front door
And the promise of a plentiful supply of salads for the summer
Here she is modelling her creation for her French homework - an outfit for a fashion show to be described in French - emphasis on recycling and animal conservation (hence the tree frog beanie on her shoulder) - the school is obviously adopting an eco-friendly theme

She's always a happy little bunny when being creative - now we just have to train her to clearing up her mess after her and we will have a real result! (If the truth be known she follows me on this trait too)
Unusually for British Springtime the weather is being very kind indeed at present - mild and sunny - we even managed a family trip out on Easter Sunday
A local spinning mill was open and had the boilers and engines in full steam - much to his Lordship's delight
It is set in the small Devon village of Uffculme, about 25 minutes from us and the gardens were a picture with spring flowers in abundance in the sunshine
The cafe had cake on offer in pieces the size of an average family bungalow, and very nice it was too
The gift shop stocked a beautiful array of snuggly soft alpaca mix sock wools in a glorious selection of colours - all spun on the premises
Unfortunately Himself was in charge of the camera so the best I can offer you...........
is the Lancashire Boiler in full puff! Look closely and you can tell the chap in the blue overalls has been scratching his bald pate!

As for me - I've been bitten by the applique bug again - all those berries on 'Berry Baskets' set me off in the right mould
So here we are - a bunch of centres for Sawtooth Stars to start the next round of Caroline's Quilt - guess I'd better do some piecing now to complete them

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Where did March go?

Away with the berry baskets I think...........

But more of that later

March has been a busy month

The long awaited and much dreaded financial inspection at work arrived and was over in a day

Much to my delight (and not really that much of a surprise considering the work I'd put in) we passed on the day with flying colours with one small recommendation to make sure I bank weekly (Well they have to pick up on something to justify their existence I suppose)


Don't have to worry about that again for three years and we have a fancy logo to add to our letterhead - not sure that it's worth all the grief and graft but sometimes you just have to go with the flow

My big girl played another match for England Colleges

I love this shot of all the shirts lining up on the boundary fence before battle commenced

Here's one rather special spectator - Finley - a rugby virgin attending his very first rugby game at only 9 weeks old

Our girls hosted the Welsh Colleges on the main pitch at Bath University - no small honour

Because of travel difficulties we only managed to pull together a bare 15 for the side which meant playing with no subs

It was a tough game against a dirty opposition - two yellow cards to the Welsh was generous - they could easily have been given several reds - repeated dirty tactics and foul play pushed the ref's hand into his pocket for his cards - not a thing that happens often in girls' rugby

The final whistle blew as play stopped for a supposed knock-on on our try line after a good five minutes of our girls desperately picking and driving to level the score to 10 all - had we managed that elusive try under the posts a conversion to give us a two point lead and a well-deserved victory should have been a formality

It wasn't to be - our girls were beaten by 5 points to 10

So near but so far - but no shame in that as in both last year's games the Welsh had a 12 point gap on us and the year before's matches were cricket scores

So who knows - the return fixture across the bridge in early May might just see us beating them for a change.

As for non work and sport related things - March has been the month for Spring like things and Hand Applique

Our bird feeders are very popular, not least amongst the Goldfinch population

They queue up to get onto their favourite feeder

Some of them wait in the tree over our fence

Others line up on my washing line, but I haven't managed to get a shot of the full queue yet

The sunflower hearts are very popular

As for applique.................

I'm ready to start the next round on Caroline's quilt - the corner flowers on this round are finished - not sure what was tickling my quilt holder

But an even better and bigger finish than that.................

'Berry Baskets' is a completed top!!!!


It is too large to manage a complete photo in the conservatory - it had been raining outside and I wasn't chancing getting it muddy - so here we have it in 4 parts:

One of these days I might just count up all those berries :o) I wouldn't mind a pound for each of them

I feel quite sad now it's finished - it's been just the thing to get me back into the swing of things