Saturday, 30 August 2014

Summer Nearly Gone

Hello Folks.

Well it's nearly the end of August and I haven't blogged as much as I hoped.   As it's turned a bit rainy I've also not got the front door painted, I'm hoping for a dry, windless day.

The first thing I must tell you is that Miss Clicky got the grades she needed for University and she'll be starting at the University of Gloucestershire in Cheltenham (half an hour drive down the road.)  She's studying English Language and has decided to stay at home.

Me and Mr Clicky had another week in France.   This time we left both the kids behind and stayed for a night in Arras, Northern France to visit some WW1 memorials, more about that in another post I think.  The next day we travelled down to our house, and for the first time in roughly twenty years it had occupants.  That was a great experience, camping ~ only cold water, boil the kettle to wash ~ but we had crammed our £5.00 bed bought from Ebay into the car.  We took some old bedside lights and put some fleece blankets on the boards almost glamping!   We put up more plasterboard ceilings, fitted an new window pane and even went out one evening! 
We went to a night market at a local town called Cluny with our English neighbour.  We had a very pleasant wander around the stalls and then sat down at the tables, where families sat and chatted and enjoyed food and wine from local producers.
We had a freshly cooked crepes.  Yum.
Cluny has an impressive Benedictine Monastery
 which we sat opposite to enjoy a beer.  It was great to have a few hours off from plasterboard!
The weather was a bit changeable but one night we enjoyed sausages cooked on the front wall and admired the views too.
Of course, I got a bit of knitting in whilst not driving.  Another one of my Fabulous Stripey Socks finished.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
There are 8 so far, here they are living in the display unit in the kitchen!
My Green Behind-the-Sofa cardi is finished and blocking so pictures of that next time.  I have turned my attentions back to Mon Petit Gilet Raye, which has been scrunched up in it's bag for a while.  It seems my English arms and shoulders are larger than petit French ones so I have frogged it back to the yolk.  Yes, you're right, I should have worked this out before I knitted the whole of the front but there we are.
I've not made my bunting yet, but my sewing machine has been in demand as Miss Clicky has been handing me various items of clothing which need altering in some way.

One last thing to tell you about, I've been going to a dance fitness class ~ aerobics with ballroom steps ~ since Christmas.  We were talking at the class yesterday about our weight,  and I was paid the ultimate compliment "You're less wobbly than you used to be."  I spent the rest of the day with a smile on my face. :-)

Back to work Monday after the holidays, with a new gang to work with.  I'm doing Maths support all morning,  with both KS2 classes so a bit different for me too.

So there we are, I'll see you soon.

As always have fun........Clicky Needles.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Sewing For Pleasure

 Hello there!

We're into the third week of the holidays already!  Mr Clicky, me and Master Clicky went to France with our friends to do some more work on the house.  Master Clicky was taken because as he's nearing 6 foot tall and with good muscly shoulders, is excellent at lifting plasterboard.  We even let him have a go with the angle grinder and bought him a bow saw and set him loose on the 'garden.'  You can read about our exploits here.

Back home and the sun was still shining, good for the mountains of washing that seemed to appear.

I've had it in my mind to get my sewing machine out.  It lives under the stairs, a bit unloved, making me feel guilty.
Mr Clicky had been on at me for ages to take up a pair of trousers he had, and Miss Clicky had a pair of jeans to do too.  When I asked her to try them on, she denied knowing she had them, they'd been in the basket that long.  I duly did both pairs of trousers ~ no pictures of that, too boring ~ and then decided to embark on some Sewing For Pleasure, but what to make?  
I went for a new cover for the poor, neglected machine. It's a Toyota and I've had it for at least 20 years.  Not that fancy, but does what I need.
The old cover is so disgusting I hardly want to show it to you. Yuk! 
I popped into Stroud to find some suitable fabric and came out with some fairly thick Duck Egg-ish ~ maybe Eau De Nil ~ spot cotton.
I used the old cover as a pattern, and winged it a bit too.
I pressed all the seams open and zigzagged as I don't own pinking shears.  I was pleased with how the corners came out, more luck than judgement I think.
And here we are Ta-Dah!  I made buttonholes around the bobbin holders??? ~ not sure if that is what they're called ~ and had read the instructions on how to do them, I'd clean forgot! 
 With hindsight ~ a wonderful thing ~ I should have made it a bit longer, but as I said I followed the old cover.  I added a bit of spotty ribbon along the bottom in pale blue just because....  So there we are Sewing For Pleasure, I quite enjoyed it.
 And now I have found some b e a u t i f u l birdie fabric on Ebay.  It's a heavy cotton and I have 2 metres of it.  I was thinking about large cushions for the garden, but now I'm thinking a simple shoulder bag, maybe both?  I'm not sure I want to cut into it, too nice!
I also got a remanent bundle on Ebay, as I am possibly the only person not to have made (or own)  bunting yet.  I know I am very late to this party, but better late than never.
Of course I am still knitting ~ I was very glad that I had my emergency knitting in the car the other day when we got stuck behind an accident in Worcestershire ~ and I'm attempting a turned hem on the bottom on my Green Cardi.

There's also a ton of jobs to do around the house and because I've bought some paint for the front door (undercoated at the start of last summer holidays) its now turned rainy.  Hey ho.

Me and Mr Clicky are off to France again this weekend for 4 days so I'll see you all after.

Have fun and I hope the sun shines on you.
Bye for now.....Clicky Needles.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Phew!

Hi There!

Just a quick post today.

School has finished, always a sad occasion with the 10 year olds leaving and this year, two of our teachers as well.   I've worked with both of them in different classes.  They were both Newly Qualified Teachers when we (school) got them and with a few years of patience and the help of the other teaching assistants we got them whipped into shape.  We had a farewell meal last night which was a very raucous affair.
In September we have two new NQTs and the process starts again!

We had a fabulous sports day with a picnic lunch and the trips have all proved to be enjoyable.
I've also been making more clock cosies!  The teacher leaving from reception asked for a clock cosy for her new classroom so I was only too happy to oblige.  I popped it on the clock in the classroom and the reception children said they liked it better than the old one and too be fair the colours were much more vibrant.  So, I had to make another cosy!
Here they are.

Master Clicky has been doing experience all week at a local company engineering company and enjoying it immensely.  He's been machining metal into different shaped pieces of metal, checking out the 3D printers (they're amazing Mum!) looking at the lasers and drinking lots of coffee.  

We are off to France tomorrow at 2.30am to carry out some more of a long list of work on our little house.  I really should be packing now, so I'll say bye for now and see you soon.  Fingers crossed we don't get another thunder storm like last night's when were driving!

Clicky Needles.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Days Out

Hi There.

The weather of late has been pleasantly warm, a few days of thunderstorms but on the whole great.

I took to my favourite place in the garden on Saturday ~ my steamer chair ~ and took out lots of things to keep me busy.
My current book ~ 1000 Years of Annoying the French ~ a highly amusing look at Anglo-French relations and August's copy of Style at Home Magazine which had come through the letter box that morning.
As I was flipping through I saw a crochet cushion which looked a bit familiar on further inspection it turned out to be our very own blogger Gillian from Tales from a Happy House.
I was so giddy for her that I didn't do much knitting.

I've resurrected this top down cardi from behind the sofa.  I'd left it in summer 2012 having frogged one of the sleeves because it was too baggy. I didn't realise it has been there 2 years!  The decreases now have fewer rows in between.  So far so good.
I was also sipping a Gordon's with elderflower ~ my first try of this ~ and I found it most refreshing.
I've been on 2 school trips this week, one to a local farm for the children to build dens, toast marshmallows and scone twists over the camp fire and generally have a lovely time outdoors.  The sun shone, and whilst the children had fun I made a cosy for our new Garmin SatNav which didn't come with any sort of cover.
 At least it can be put in the glove box when not in use and not get scratched. 
 Today's trip with the Reception children was to the Bristol Aquarium.  I've not been before so was looking forward to it.

The jelly fish had red and blue lights to make them glow.
The four round bits are their tummies.

Fish, I have discovered are difficult to photograph!
There were some real monsters!
The seahorses were my favourite.
 A Leopard Shark sitting above us in the tunnel. 
 A member of staff dip-diving to clean the tank.
 When we walked through Millennium Square back to the bus, people were watching Andy Murray (lose) his match at Wimbledon. 
 I am tired after my two days of trips and have already had a quick snooze on the sofa this evening.  Next trip next week!

Lastly my new stripy (but muted) door mat.  I like it very much and it picks up the colour of the tiles well.
That's me for now.....see you soon.

Clicky Needles. x

Friday, 20 June 2014

Hello

Hello All!

I seem to have been busy over the last few weeks but I'm not sure what doing. 
 I received a Whatsapp message from my mum this morning saying "Are you quite alright? No blog post lately."  Yes, it's OK, I am quite alright.  We have had problems with our router at home and Mr Clicky has been rebuilding a PC for our neighbours, a which takes up the place in study where I want to sat be typing this.
  
School has gone a bit manic, the children are getting more and more excited and more and more tired as the end of term looms.  I'm going on 3 trips soon and the end of year production of 'Hoodwinked' (Robin Hood) is in full rehearsal.  We rotate the productions though the years and, as it happens, both Miss and Master Clicky have been in it in the past so I'm well practised in the songs.

A few of our evenings have been taken up by watching Master Clicky playing cricket.  He had a break last year as the club got into disarray but thankfully it's back on course and he enjoys it very much.  He is collecting lots of 'trophy injuries', taping fingers together ~ "it's broken Mum," taking off layers of skin on his legs through his whites, and the best yet, a bruise on his knee in the perfect pattern of the stitching on the cricket ball.   
The flowers in the jungle garden are looking great although it seems to grow faster than I can get to it and chop it down.
Anyhoo, this double clematis is climbing up through a tree and we have a lovely view of it from our bedroom.
The Philadelphus (Mock Orange) is stunning at the moment and the smell is wafting into our living room.
Not quite as fragrant but spectacular none the less, is the Stinky Plant as it is know to us.  It's a Dragon Arum, the one that is pollinated by flies.  It smells of rotting fish, only flowers for a few days and then disappears until next year. 
This Peony, not from my garden but in the reduced bucket at the supermarket, makes we want one.  It screams summer at me.
I have been knitting a little, but not much to be honest, my mojo seems to have lost me a bit.  I cast on a new stripy sock mainly to do when there is a football match on ~ seems to be a lot at the moment, anything happening???  It's nice and bright, so should keep me interested.
Right, that's me for now.   Looks like the weather for the weekend will continue to be hot, I'll try to do some gardening. where are those secateurs?

See you soon, have fun...................Clicky Needles.

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Celebrations

Hello Folks!
Nice to see you again.

I totally to forgot to tell you last time that it was Miss and Master Clicky's birthdays.  Miss Clicky was 19 and a day later Master Clicky 15.  Miss Clicky went out with her friends and Master C had a quiet day at home.  A week later it was our wedding anniversary, we have been married 20 years. 
My Mum sent us a beautiful hand tied bouquet with roses, carnations, lilies and freesias.  The freesias are a bit of a family tradition, they were in the wedding bouquet of my grandmother, mum and then me.   
A few days later and the lilies opened.  Thanks Mum!  They are giving me lots of pleasure and are the poshest I've ever had!
 As I said in my last post, I've been over to France with our friends to work our house a bit more.  
My sock knitting whilst in the car was coming along well, until I noticed a dropped stitch.  Can you see it?  Purple in the green row.  Hurmph!
 Nothing for it but to rip it out and start again.
 As the miles went by on the roads my sock got bigger and now it's nearly finished.
We had a real mixed bag of weather in France, one day sunburnt, the next soaked to the skin.  The house is looking much better and when we left the plumber was putting in water and waste pipes. 
I bought back the obligatory bottles of wine ~ commented on by a Dutch lady in the supermarket who asked us if we were starting a export business ~ and some yummy locally made Bourgogne cheese.
It's grey and rainy here now, I'm hoping for better weather for the last few days of half term.

See you soon.............Clicky Needles.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Sunshine

Hi There!

Sunshine made the promised appearance last weekend. 

I started the weekend with a bowl of porridge in the garden.  It was lovely and peaceful, just being surrounded with birdsong.  
You remember that Miss Clicky passed her driving test?  She's been hunting for a car and found one in the next county down, Wiltshire.   Our journey took us past Cotswold Airport which had some commercial and RAF planes waiting to be broken up and scrapped.  Cotswold Airport is used because it had a long enough runway for a Jumbo Jet to land.  In years gone by The Red Arrows were stationed here. 
You come around a corner and you are confronted by the bizarre sight of two Jumbos, with various parts missing.  It's kinda sad to see them like this being stripped, but I suppose everything gets reused one way or another. 
Anyhow, a little later, we arrived back home with Miss Clicky's new car.  She loves it very much and is getting used to driving it.
The rest of the weekend I pottered around the garden, pulled a few weeds ~ but if I'm honest not very many, and took the camera out.  Aquilegia, double
and single.
The alliums are stunning.
Perennial Wallflower.
May Blossom on the hawthorn which hangs over our wall.

 Clematis Montana.  Ubiquitous, but lovely all the same.
Two final things, a yummy plate of fresh local asparagus 
 and cherries.
I'll see you next week, I'm popping over to our house in France, with our friends for a long weekend.  As alway there is work to be done, but I'm sure it'll be fun all the same.   I'm not driving, so lots of stripey sock knitting!

See you soon.........Clicky Needles