Sunday, 24 November 2013

A little bit of Christmas on route to Afghanistan

First of all I would like to thank everyone who left comments or emailed me over the last few weeks especially from Kim over at Little White Sewing Shed, Jo over at Through The KeyholeSusanne over at Forget-Me-NotGail over at Amongst the WoolTash over at Vintage Pretty and Lisa over at Jumble and Jelly. to name but a view and I apologise if I have missed anyone out.   I have been amazed by the support and good wishes I have received whilst my son is out on tour.  It has been much appreciated.

This week I have spent pulling together number 2's Christmas presents to get them sent off in plenty of time before the last posting date to the BFPO of the 29th November.  I don't know about anyone else but November just seems to of flown by and I can't believe we are now only about 6 weeks away from the big day again....   I boxed up foodie treats and wrapped his presents yesterday and delivered 5 parcels to the post office by yesterday afternoon to ensure they will get to him in plenty of time.  Number 2 is an ardent Manchester United fan and I have been sending him footie magazines and music magazines but when I saw this little Christmas tree with it's little Manchester United baubles it was a must have. I'm not quite sure what  he will make of it but hopefully it will bring a little bit Christmas sparkle to his and the other lads Christmas. 

 On the progress of the Coming Home From Afghanistan Afghan we are now 41 days in which means that we are  41 days nearer to him coming home.  Again thank you to everyone who has commented about this project.  It means a lot to me and is growing daily.

This week I also had a bit of a disaster when I broke my mobile phone.  Now as far as my children are concerned my mobile was a bit of a dinosaur but it worked, made phone calls and sent text messages which to me was the most important thing.  

I now have a new fangled windows phone.  

So far I have managed to send a text, make a phone call and take a photo.  I'm sure I will get used to it but if anyone phones and I accidentally cut you off please do not take it personally. 

On the reading front I have now completed Philomena by Martin Sixsmith and The Night Rainbow by Claire King and you can find out what I thought of these two over at Tea and Biscuits and a Good Book.  

Well think that's me done for this blog hope you all have a good week.

                                                                            M x

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Gone But Not Forgotten

For The Fallen

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain;
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.


This year above all others will be a more poignant Remembrance Day for me. Whilst so many have been lost,  including  another soldier from Mercian Regiment just this very week leaving a wife and two small boys, my own son aged just 22 remains on active duty in Afghanistan.  Whenever the phone rings unexpectedly my heart leaps with every ring. So far he remains safe and well and I can only hope this will remain for the duration of his tour.  For those who have lost loved ones I would like to say I can appreciate the pain you have suffered but I cannot begin to know how it must feel and I pray to God that I never have to.


Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Charity Fundraiser Poppy Update

Just a quick update on the  Charity Fundraiser Poppy.  All the poppies that myself and my colleague have made over the last 10 days have now sold and we have a raised £75.00 which will be going to our chosen charity  Help The Heroes.  We have been absolutely amazed at the response and the demand for them.  And thank all those who so generously bought them.

One thing we have learnt from this experience is that we need to make an earlier start making then  next year instead of staying up to the wee small hours making them and who knows how much we will raise then.

I have never followed a crochet pattern before, give me anything to knit and I'm your women but I feel very proud of myself in the fact that not only did I follow and understand the pattern but they have turned out so well that people have been prepared to give up their hard earned cash to buy one to help such a worthy cause.

Have any of you made any of these either for your own personal use or to sell for charity I would love to hear your stories.


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

When Son Knows Best

Recently I have been reading Torey Hayden's Beautiful Child I had got to within the last 50 pages and was desperately wanting to finish it.  So on Sunday night I came in from the Den and had a lovely roast dinner that D had cooked (well why keep a dog and bark yourself), after which I decided to have a nice leisurely bath. Off I went cuppa in hand with my book.  Whilst running my bath number 3 appeared at the door and asked what I was doing. 'Running a  bath' I replied. 'Why have you got your book then' he asked. 'Because I'm going to read it whilst I'm in the bath'.  'Oh you can't do that'  he said  'your book will get wet.'  'No' I said 'I will be very careful.'

So off he went and with the finish line insight there I sat reading my book whilst enjoying a nice warm bath.  A while later I heard D ask number 3 to let me know that Countryfile woud be starting shortly.  So out I got dried off and put my PJ's on.  I collected up my things when number 3 appeared at the door to tell me that Countryfile was just starting, just at that moment I had lent over the bath to pull out the plug when my book slipped from my grip and went splash into the water. Quick as flash I retrieve it fortunately it hadn't quite sunk to the bottom and was only a little damp (ish).  You can imagine the look on number 3's face. To say he was not amused would be an under statement. ' See' he said 'I told you your book would get wet'.... 

Off I went into the bedroom and quickly got the hairdryer to work on drying the pages.  All in all it had survived it's ordeal.  I went downstairs book in hand and wet hair.  'Oh' D said 'I thought I heard the hairdryer' at which point little Jiminy Cricket pipped up 'she dropped her book in the bath and I told her not to take her book in there otherwise it would get wet and see I was right.'

Hope you're all having a good week so far....


Saturday, 2 November 2013

Secret Revealed...................................

I hope not too many of you were affected by the storm. Here in Lincolnshire we had been told to expect it to be quite bad. We even had a task force/incident room set up. Fortunately even though we are on the Lincolnshire/Norfolk border we managed to come through without any damage across the county. It seemed to mainly hit the southern part of the UK.

Back on my September blog I was telling you I had a secret that would be revealed in November. Well here we are in November and I can now reveal to you what my secret is.  Whilst reading other bloggers blogs I have sat green with envy at the lovely hideaways that some of you have whether it be a spare bedroom, purpose built extension or a garden room to call your very own crafty hideaway. For sometime now I have been hankering after a craft room a little place to call all my own where when I want a pair of scissors or a needle there they will be exactly where  I expect to find them and not no where to be found because someone has borrowed them and not put them back. But of course it must have been the ghost because no one else has touched them. 

Well at last I have my very own little craft room which has already been nicknamed 

'The Dragon's Den' 

I can't think why.

We came across this little garden room whilst at a local garden centre.  They were selling off some of their ex display rooms this being one of them.  It was ideal for me to have as my craft room and meant that I could spend every spare moment down at the bottom of the garden with the fairies. 

I owe a big thank you to my neighbours who very kindly allowed us to remove a fence panel and let the guys cross their garden as the sections were too big to get through the gate to our garden.  I also owe a big thank you to the guys who installed it for going that extra mile as I believe that each section is incredibly heavy especially at the front with all the glass.  I have spent the last two weekends painting the inside and a very good friend of ours gave up his time to put in the carpet and put up my tables and blinds.  The carpet was an end of roll piece from United Carpets and the Sales Assistant very kindly rolled it and put in the car for me. .  The tables and blinds came from IKEA. The tables  fix to the wall and fold flat as you can see in the photo above giving more floor space when needed.  The Lloyd Loom and Bedding boxes I already had so they have been recycled.  I need to recover them but that is a job for the spring.  So here I am writing my blog nice and snugly warm even on a cold, wet & blustery day like today.  I can sit and knit, crochet  or sew or even get back into researching my family history without interruption. 

On the Crochet front I'd like to thank everyone who has sent me such lovely comments about my 'Coming Home from Afghanistan Afghan'  I have been very touched by the support and good wishes received from blogland  for a safe return of my son. We are now on Day 19 and all is well. Still receiving messages from Number 2 every few days usually containing a shopping list or just to let us know he is ok.  We have sent him out a couple of parcels over the last week and I sent off some footie magazines this morning. It will certainly feel strange not having him at home this Christmas. I think being able to make up and send him out parcels  will give me a purpose whilst the Afghan will help me count down the days till he is safely back on British soil. 

  A colleague of mine has a son in the forces who has just returned from tour.  She does a lot of fundraising for Help The Heroes and has had me crocheting Poppies for an event next weekend.  I myself had a stall at a craft fair this week. My plan was to take the wool and my crochet hook with me to sit and make some more but would you believe no sooner had I completed one people were asking to buy them.  I was absolutely staggered.  I completed six whilst there and all six were sold  raising £15 for Help The Heroes.    That said I will now be spending the rest of this weekend making more for her to take next week.  I am not sure what I will do with my Afghan once completed, number 2 is not the arty crafty one of my sons. He will appreciate all the effort and hard work but it would not have the same meaning to him as it does to me. As far as he is concerned he is just doing his job. One suggestion being with so many of our services personnel having been injured during this conflict to donate it  to a Help The Heroes charity event to be auction off.  I think this would be very fitting as if I complete my Afghan it will mean that I have been one of the lucky ones who have got my son back unscathed when so many do not.

Hope you all have a good week what ever you are getting up to.