Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Kezzie, Take Note!

On one of our trips out on the motorbike, Bob and I stopped off in the town of Aylsham for a cup of tea. We had a good wander round the town first and went into the Red Lion Music Shop – it has been open exactly one year this week.

shop front

The owner, Alison, was busy crocheting a ‘keyboard scarf’ for next week’s window display– explaining that September has been designated the month of the piano [did you know that, Kezzie? as a music teacher I expect you to be clued up on such events!] IMG_2907

The shop is full of all things musical – instruments, music, gifts and more…and lessons are offered by Alison and her husband [her lovely daughter works in the Waffle Shop across the road]


I was particularly taken with these boxes covered in music themed fabrics – beautifully made, locally – and reasonably priced too

music boxes

They have an informative website- and soon will have an online shop, so keep a lookout for this, as I suspect it will be an excellent source of Christmas gifts for music lovers [Chopin Liszts, Chopin Boards, Thankyou Notes…]

Aylsham_Town_Sign Aylsham itself is a lovely little town, where John of Gaunt was once Lord of the Manor – he features on the town sign. It was the centre of a thriving linen trade 900 years ago – and the fabric was known all over England as Aylsham Webb, or Cloth of Aylsham. But the linen business died out when the wool trade became more important in the 16th century.

All sorts of notable characters fetched up here – Daniel Defore came for a visit, and Horatio Nelson once attended a dance at the inn.

One more thing – Kezzie’s blog frequently features ‘teaser’ photographs. She posted this one a few days ago

kezzie pic

I have no idea what it is! but it has made me think of something we purchased on Monday. So here is my teaser. What is this item? [shown from four different angles]


I will reveal my answer later in the week!!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Error Of Judgement

One of the things we did early last Monday was return the books to Dereham library which we borrowed when we made a flying visit in July. And we took out a dozen or so more. It is a real mistake to grab books when you are in a hurry and rather overtired! I’ve worked through 3 of my lot and feel I did not take enough time choosing them. But here are my brief reviews anyway.

organize home

This one was indeed full of ‘step-by-step projects’ – but sadly there weren’t any which were particularly original. Many involved organising your stuff by storing it in tins or jars [which you had first decorated with bits and pieces from your stash] I priced some of them up.

If you made the storage unit on the cover, the blue Kilner jars are currently £3 in the Range, and the jubilee clips cost around £3 each. You could use other jam jars – but I reckon it would still cost a minimum of £7 – and it doesn’t seem very efficient storage to me. Bob said the items “look like the sort of thing someone might make for Christmas presents for friends, which would appear in Charity Shops in January” **

life's too shortLife’s too short – top tips and insider cheats for the modern woman. My mistake- I am just not a modern woman! Grace gave lots of tips, but for women who are years younger and much wealthier than I am. I should have checked out the chapter headings and not just the blurb on the back. Being a Beautician, Fashionista, Glam Globetrotter, Body Beautiful or Boardroom Star don’t rate high on my aspirations.

Other chapters included how to be a Michelin Starred Chef, Domestic Diva and Love Goddess – tips for these included ‘get Yolam Ottolenghi ready-meals delivered to your door’, ‘invest in a Bugatti Volvo stylish toaster and kettle’ and ‘bin the ready meals, and develop your cooking skills’ [Yes two of those do directly contradict each other!!] **


“Fans of Allison Pearson’s ‘I don’t know how she does it!’ will love this.” Said the blurb. Well I didn’t!! [and I really enjoyed IDKHSDI]

It was funny in places, as the wife struggled with a domestically incapable husband. But [and I know she had two children under the age of 5] there was altogether too much description of poo [and some rather graphic sex] for me. Another bad choice on my part.  *

I am hoping that the remainder of my selection proves to be slightly more satisfying! I freely admit that these were just the wrong choices for me. Other people might enjoy them more. Hoping to post more positive reviews later in the week. 

Monday, 18 August 2014

Cheap Frills


Just in case you had thought I’d forgotten about this challenge, I have polished off three projects in one go this holiday. I wanted to see just how much mileage I could get from my Lisette Market Pattern

lisette pattern Thus far I have turned a CS pinafore dress into a cute mini skirt, my neighbour’s retro prints into a blouse and a tunic, and Kezzie’s sarong into a dress. All of these receive bags of compliments when I wear them. I even had women at the WDP conference in Salzburg taking photos and pattern details because they wanted to go home and make their own. How crazy is that?

My 52 Projects list included the following items

  • make up a tunic - this time with the frills on the sleeves
  • try out the pattern in a stretch fabric
  • re-purpose those two unused tee-shirts which have been in the wardrobe since November 2008

I combined all three projects last week when I had finished my ‘scheduled sewing tasks’. Here are the tee shirts

 IMG_2826 IMG_2827

They came from a PA event I attended in Nottingham with Bob – and were promotional gifts – both large size. I ironed them, and cut off the sleeves and cut up both sides on one, and just one side on the other. I cut the front and back all in one piece, so that I could keep the existing neckline and shoulder seams, then cut sleeves and ruffles from the second tee-shirt [positioning pattern pieces carefully to include the graphics] I was able to use the existing neckline and the existing hems on the bottom of the tee and the sleeve ruffles.

IMG_2828 IMG_2829


I’m not sure. I do like the little ruffles on the sleeves, much more than I thought I would. Making up the pattern in a stretch fabric was fine. Putting the bust darts in definitely made for a better fit. I should have noticed my hair had got ruffled, and brushed it before the photoshoot, and I still need to lose a bit more weight.

Bob says he thinks the top is “very quirky”- but that I should send the pictures to Prismsound! [I suspect he is hoping they will send us some PA gear – but I imagine if I get anything tangible in response it will just be another tee-shirt!]

Anybody else got any good tee-shirt refashion ideas?

Sunday, 17 August 2014

When I Consider The Heavens…

…said the Psalmist – and he didn’t even have the benefit of these glorious wide East Anglian Skies to look up at. I have been looking heavenward a lot this week, and each time, my thoughts have turned to prayers.

Sunday night was a ‘perigee’ or super moon – so amazingly bright! [the picture below, from The Mirror, was taken in Norfolk]


But the moon has no light of its own- it merely reflects the sun.

Father, help me to reflect your glory - may my light shine in such a way that people do not see me, but see Jesus.

Then we had the Perseid Meteor shower. [This shot, from the BBC shows Cley Marshes on the North Norfolk Coast]


A meteor shower is made up of space dust shooting across the sky, burning out, and leaving its shining trail.

Father, make me always willing to go wherever you send me – and let me burn out rather than rust out!

After that, a rainbow over the village – almost a double rainbow


God gave the rainbow to Noah after the Great Flood, as a sign of His promise, and his faithfulness.

Father, help me to remember your promises, and know that you are faithful and you will provide all that I need

Then we had Tornadoes [the planes, not the weather phenomena] overhead. They were flying from RAF Marham which is close by


The planes were taking humanitarian aid to the refugees in Iraq.

Father, may I always be grateful for the many blessings you shower upon me – and ever mindful of those in need. Help me to share what I have with those who have not.

And just in case you think I am on holiday in a beautiful village where nothing is ever out of place, we have all been having trouble because of an infestation of these over the past few weeks


One of the old Jewish names for Satan is Beelzebub- the Lord of the Flies! These irritating insects remind me that we need to be constantly on our guard against him.

Father, lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Yours is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever - Amen

Saturday, 16 August 2014


hidden tip

It’s a family tradition that whenever we see a road sign like this, someone in the car shouts “Taramasalata!” So I was quite amused to pass one of these signs this week and see someone had fixed a hand painted addition underneath, which read

“I think it’s Hummus!”

[Sorry – no photo, I was riding pillion at the time]

Friday, 15 August 2014

Well Done!

So many friends are getting exam results this month, and for lots of them it will determine what happens next. This little Ted, dressed in his surgical scrubs, is for Emma, one of young people from church – going off to Durham to study medicine – a reminder that even though she is far away, she will still be in our thoughts and prayers.
Wanting to heal the sick is a great career choice.

“The people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of illness, and laying his hands on each one, he healed them.”
Luke 4:40

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Simple Pleasures

It doesn’t take much to put a smile on my face…

In the kitchen, a sunny new teatowel – and my retro Tala egg rack [a birthday gift] full of new laid eggs from the farmIMG_2824 IMG_2822

In the spare bedroom, the result of a happy morning spent with the sewing machine [three more Snow White aprons, and a tablecloth – hemmed with cool random-dyed thread]

IMG_2821 IMG_2825


Bob has repainted the garage door, with paint to match the summerhouse. It looks much smarter [no, we never get any post through that letterbox!]

And the prunings from the sage and lavender look very stylish in a wpb in the lounge. This shot could be in Country Living!


IMG_2834We climbed onto the bike on Wednesday and went up to Wells Next The Sea and enjoyed lunch on The Albatross. We had Dutch Pancakes-mine was houmous, red peppers and olives

IMG_2835his was mozzarella and chorizo. Both very tasty!

The boats looked lovely and lots of the children were out crabbing in the sunshine


Holiday Happiness!