Sunday, 22 January 2012

Poorly Peepers, Crochet and Faffing with China

My eye has finally healed and I'm back to normal.  I have my life back! 

It has been a busy weekend.  I've been making up for lost time dashing here, there and everywhere.  Meeting up with family, shopping, eating out and generally having fun.  I feel free!  

I'd started to feel a bit low - not quite myself.  Usually I'm quite chatty and cheerful but I lost interest in everything and just wanted to sleep.  Not anymore!  

I am pleased to report that I am once again belting out songs from my favourite musicals (Julie Andrews style, of course), faffing around with china and chattering with anyone who will listen.  On Friday I was only working from home but, for the first time this year, I put on a full face of make-up, blow-dryed my hair properly and wore a nice little tunic dress with tights.  I even wore a stack of gorgeous bangles and bracelets (which really irritate me when I'm working because they bash on my laptop but, hey, I was BACK!)

I've had a sudden surge of motivation to finish the blanket I started on holiday last year.  It's just a giant granny square and although I'm in my fifth month of working on it, it hasn't actually taken me that long.  It has been languishing in my crochet bag and I'd just do  a few stitches here and there when I felt like it. I got a bit too caught up in Christmas and redecorating the dining room towards the back end of last year.  

I'm just doing the edging now... 

Can you see, there's a row of not-very-impressive-but-extremely-complicated flat-X-stitch in red.  It is preceded by a couple of rows of double crochet.  (Mental note to self to use a larger hook for a double-crocheted edging in future - because the stitch is a little tighter than the trebles the blanket doesn't quite lie flat when outstretched.  The red edging is also frilling a little (too many stitches/too large stitches?  who knows) - it's completely accidental but I rather like it.)  I'll do a proper 'reveal' (!) when it's all done but I am so pleased with the colours - I think they all work really well together. 


We went to my MIL's for lunch today.  She is a keen gardener (her gardens are beautiful) and we got talking about my plans for our little garden this year.  I want to have a go at growing my own flowers, specifically because I'd like to be able to cut flowers for the house.   Andrew gave me this lovely trio of books for Christmas:  

The Ten Minute Gardener collection.  There's one for flowers, one for fruit and one for vegetables (I don't think there are more but I could be wrong).  They are such good books for an absolute novice like me, advising what I should be doing each month in really straight-forward language.  We have the tiniest patch of grass but I'm going to reduce it further and chop another border into it, specifically for my cut flower patch.  It will be a tiny space but one that I can experiment with.  I'm so excited to get started.

I've been fiddling about with little bits and bobs in the house today.

The utility china on the dresser in the dining room had been bothering me for a while.  I still absolutely love it but the dresser just looked messy to me, and not in a good way.  The china didn't seem to fit with the room.

So I've had a move around.  My utility china collection is now stacked tidily (and prettily) in the sideboards and a few favourite jugs are displayed neatly in the living room:

I've moved my chunky neutral 'every day' china onto the dresser and I'm pleased with the overall effect.

Creams and earthy tones with the odd piece of glassware feel calming and restful.

Nothing fights for your attention in the room any more, it all just blends together harmoniously.  I'm glad I did it and had a lovely time fiddling about.

This is the quiet before the storm.  It's my niece's birthday party next weekend and the cake making begins this week.  Andrew has already joked that he won't expect any sleep on Friday evening (as I've said before, it's usual for me to stay up until the early hours at the last minute making final tweaks!).  I'm making a jungle-themed two-tiered cake with 20 matching cupcakes.  My niece is only three but her party is set to be the social event of the century! I can't believe the parties that children have these days - I used to be happy with a few friends to tea and a game of musical bumps!  I think there is a bit of pressure on my sister for Izzie's party to match up to everyone else's.  (Also, she loves planning parties so she is in her element!)

I've decided to make a simple cake for my Grandma's birthday at the end of the month and have some gorgeous cake bunting that I bought from Sew Sweet Violet last year.  It will be perfect atop a simple frosted cake with a few sugar roses.

Have a happy week, everyone, and thank you for continuing to pop by this little web space of mine.

Speak soon!




  1. So glad you're feeling better. Loving that blanket. I find it amazing how much crocheting can help me with stress levels.
    Good luck with all that baking!! I'm sure it will be greatly appreciated

  2. Glad you are feeling better,
    that blanket looks amazing!

  3. I have those glass bon bon jars too. (I don't know if they are called that!)

    Love the big coffee cups, Dibor by any chance?

    Oh I hope my big granny rectangle looks as jolly as yours.


    ps I do a corking impression of Leisel singing "To write onnnnnnnn!"

  4. so glad you are feeling better...nothing worse than that feeling of wanting to sleep all the time :( ...your granny square is gorg, the colors really work together.

  5. Beautiful blog Nicki :) Well done your were picked from the hat to win the fabulous LG smart phone. If you could email me ( email is on my profile page ) with address, shall contact tesco who shall send it on to you :) Well done!! xx

  6. Your china arrangements look fantastic - really pretty. I love the blanket too. Glad you are feeling better and more motivated XX

  7. I really like your crochet blanket, sure wish I knew how to crochet, I really must learn. I like the colours you have chosen.
    You have a lovely collection of china!
    I hope your cut flowers patch will do well..I grow some of my own cut flowers by seeds, most of them are quite easy to grow and very worth while. Usually the first ones to get started are the sweet pea's :)

  8. what a lovely uplifting post!
    I am so glad that your eye is all better and you are back to your old self again x
    your blanket is gorgeous, such pretty colours.
    sounds like you are heading for a bit of a bake-a-thon....good luck with them all and can't wait to see.
    thank you so much for the sweet mention x.

    love jooles x

    P.S i have a little giveaway going on at mine if you fancy a peek x

  9. Glad to hear you are feeling better, brighter and much uplifted ;-) This is a horrible month for feeling low. Your blanket is going to be lovely gorgeous colours you have been using. Thats the joy of something like this you can just stop and start with it when the mood takes. Have a lovely week, dee x

  10. Nikki I am so envious of your gorgeous blanket, I so want to crochet and so far it's beating me, I'm not giving up though!!! I love your posts and your home just looks so lovely x x x

  11. Your blog is so lovely...this post made me smile lots. And I am totally covetting your Union Jack radio. Gorgeous!


  12. Glad you're eye is better - sounded very grim.

    Thoroughly enjoyed the mooch through your lovely home. I do love a rearrange - it gives you a real lift doesn't it? Love, love your crochet blanket - the colours are perfect and the edging looks fab. I like the fact it makes it a little frilly.

    Now, get yourself over to to give your photos the rounded corners - there is a heap of free stuff, that included. They have just announced that they are closing in April though - boo!

    Hope the party and baking went well.


    PS. The move from lilac to blue wasn't subconscious - it was downright manipulation! Nasty mummy.