Monday 26 August 2019


Casper and Rufus enjoying some shade on National dog day. But where's Bob? or Digby?  a nice little Westie to complete the dog family....


Sunday 25 August 2019


It's August , it's the bank holiday and its HOT!!! Not a sign of a cloud in the sky to give us a little shade! In truth it's too hot to even sit in any shade!

So too hot for any playing with the dolls, sewing, knitting, decorating or anything really, well part from saying to Paul about all the places we could build some shade for him to reply " For the three days of hot weather we get each summer ! "

"Global warming!" say I to which I receive the look.... you know the one where they are saying don't be adding any more jobs to that long list I'm not even half way through yet look!

We went for dinner at our old friends Gill and Tony's last night and marveled at their beautiful lush courtyard garden. I'd love a courtyard garden and did at one point consider walling off our patio area from the rest of the garden , having a big double set of doors to go into the rest of the garden but then decided I wanted to be able to see all the garden and worried that we could forget to actually go through those doors!
So instead we put up some trellis painting it black to go with the walls.

We started with just one central piece of trellis only for Rufus to be forever jumping onto or on occasion into the pond in order to leap across and into the garden when we'd shut the gates to stop him! So we added trellis either side to stop him.

we also added another piece of trellis to the other side, we need at some stage to add the last piece in the corner to match the two sides up.

There are small gates for when we want to stop the dogs going up onto the grass. Paul had dug up a golden banana plant to take to Gill and Tony's and he'd left it on the patio next to the sofa while I was out working.
Telling me later how good it had looked standing there ( he'd moved it over before I got home ) and how nice it would be to have some bigger plants up on the patio! 
I said maybe we could fill in the pond and he could plant that area up, which would also stop Rufus from dropping his ball and front paws into the pond and then trailing water back into the house! But then now I'm home again I like that we have a pond with fish and the eco system that goes with that !
In the photo above you can see some of the pots that Rufus has destroyed since his arrival ! But he is now much better and if we use bigger pots they may survive his rushing past at full speed chasing his brother !
So will the pond stay or go....

Since my sewing machine was still sitting on kitchen table on Friday I asked Paul if he knew where the two awning sails we'd bought were. We bought one before we bought the gazebo with the idea of using it to shade the sofa. However when we got it home it was not a triangle which meant the third point of the sail was out in the middle of the patio and would have needed a post to hang from. We returned and bought a second with the idea of  jointing the two together to get the triangle needed but then bought the gazebo so they were left in the shed.

So on Friday Paul helped me cut the two to form a triangle and then I sewed the two parts together.

It does give some shade but not unfortunately on the legs in the first half of the day but comes into it's own later in the day.
But at least it's better than no shade!

Well wishing you all a happy healthy week ahead.


Friday 23 August 2019


With the Chat n Snap rapidly approaching someone in the family says he needs a ship! So he's been checking out the parcels that have been arriving this week... yes parcels...

"Wow " mutters Lucas looking at the small galleon that mum's left on the table in the garden " This could be a good pirate ship "

 walking round he decides it may be just a bit small and it doesn't have a skull on the sails.

Later he finds a different ship on the table ! This one's a bit on the smaller side !

But it does have a skull on the sails but also a pirate captain on the deck... waving a sword !

"Step away laddie" growls the pirate waving his sword "I dunna wanna make ye walk the plank!"
" It's alright " says Lucas " your ship's too tiny for me and I'd break your old plank!"
Lucas leaves while the captain calls curses to his retreating back " Come back you cur! I'll stick me sword in ye skinny bum ya ... " best not to listen any more.

Later that afternoon a cry of glee fills the air , Lucas has discovered yet another ship on the garden table.

He climbs aboard looking round, a little small but so much better than those others. " Yes this is the one for me!" smiles Lucas " now I need some crew "

He goes off and soon returns with a couple of companions.

Walter , Eric the viking's bear, who was lured by the thought of a trip on the water.

and Gertie , who appears to be tied to the mast " This is all your fault " she tells her companion, who is tied to the mast with her.

"Well that's not fair !" exclaims Aimee " How was I to know that, do you want to come for a sail on my ship meant we'd be tied up! I thought we were going for a cruise down the river!"
"and who asked ? " grumbled Gertie " Lucas! Lucas! that should have told you !"
Aimee sighs " Do you think he's got any biscuits? I'm starting to feel very hungry it must be tea time soon? "

"Quiet on deck" declares Lucas, to which Gertie blows a very long raspberry! Lucas tries not to giggle Raspberries always make him giggle. " Enough or your'll walk the plank "
" You don't have a plank... " Gertie sneers .. " Oh no my mistake .. there's the one in your head !"
Lucas is about to reply when...

they are joined by the other ships, what an armada of ships getting ready to set sail !Now I just need a pirate outfit and I'll find that treasure at that old Carrot Bean ! Lucas smiles happily .. I wonder if dad will make me a plank so that Gertie can walk it? ...humming happily he surveys his domain...


Armada over doing it? three ships! I know I know but sometimes I should not be let near ebay when a plan comes to mind! I'd bought the little wooden one thinking it would be great for Clara when she's older and I could use it for the CnS . Then I saw the little plastic on for £4.50 ! well she could use it now and so could I ;)
Then there I was on a search of all things wooden resembling ships when I came across the big wooden ship at another knock down price, so that was that ! I'd like to say this is it the Armada,  however there was the wooden ship that needed fixing and started at £2...... yes I cannot tell a lie, it's on it's way.... but think of the fun I'll... I mean Clara and any sibling will have in the future when visiting Grandee  , who has the most amazing things ! just waiting for them to reach the right age to play with......

Sunday 18 August 2019


Already... but we'll say no more on that subject!

Today, Sunday , is going to be a sunshine and showers day, when the sun's out it's quite hot but there is plenty of cloud ,some of it grey, in the sky to bring along a shower or six !

Yesterday afternoon and early evening was a beautiful day, dry but with a breeze , we sat in the garden, Paul and I enjoying a cup of tea and making plans for the garden in late autumn/winter. There is always something that needs doing garden or house wise. Sitting outside looking at the house made us add repainting gutter boarding  to the to do list.
Everyone will know that houses and gardens are a constant source of ongoing work, painting, weeding , planting, cleaning , tidying the list is endless!

So yesterday I waylaid Paul ,from his work on the kitchen , to help me rearrange some of the items on the patio, now the gazebo's, gone the two bay trees which stood beside two of the legs, looked odd ! one just standing on the patio beside nothing and needing to be walked round either side.
Now they are either end of the fish pond, still not a perfect place but better than before. We also moved the new big storage box into the corner now it's no longer protected by the gazebo. Discussions were had and plans made re building a permanent cover over the outside sofa, another job that's already on the list.

Then again this afternoon we spent time sitting on patio chatting although the wind was much fresher due to the amount of cloud that came over, but did get the washing nice and dry!

Before we came back in

We finally managed to sweep the patio , it will need a jet wash when we have some time in a couple of weeks, but at least it's looking tidier.

I have to say that there is one part of the garden that always looks good, The Cloisters , even if it's not had any attention it just carries on looking good. Which is just as well as the rest of the garden is a Jungle!!!

and here's the proof!  Although this area doesn't look too bad probably due to the heavy planting there's not much space for weeds!

So it's been a weekend of gardening and house work ,so yet again no doll play , however I did buy a pirate ship and a couple of other items that I can use at the chat n snap and then save for Clara and any siblings that may arrive in future. Hey that's my excuse and I'm clinging to it! ;)

Have a happy and healthy week ahead, the next weekend is a bank holiday.. however I'll be working the Saturday , it's only the Monday the banks close, so hopefully a little doll play can occur then if not during the coming week.


Friday 16 August 2019


Today I was planning on visiting the Princess that is Clara and her mum Courtney. However I've had a headache on and off for the last few days, but woke up feeling fine and was planning to go, only for the weather forecast to say very heavy rain would be falling when I'd be driving home on the M25 and other motorways, I was debating whether to go but then the headache returned along with a snuffly nose, so the decision was made for me.

So after a mid morning doze and a couple of headache pills, I was feeling somewhat better, so decided I'd make the cushions for the arts and crafts chair. I'd had to stop last weekend when I realised I did not have a cord foot for my sewing machine ! A scan of ebay found me two possible ones that would fit my machine , so I ordered them then had to wait!  They arrived in the week, so now I could begin.

So a couple of hours later I was finished.

Although I have made my own cord to use on furnishing's I had never used this style of cording and I think I'll make my own if I need to use any again. It was a bit of a nightmare to try and turn a nice straight corner and of course not knowing this I'd cut the bottom cushion to go round the front posts to have a nice finish. So had a triple corner in a very small length of fabric, which was a nightmare to manage, but I did if not as smartly as it should have been.

Which you can see in this photo, although I forgot to put it back a little to sit nicely before taking photo !

Although the pattern is quite big I think i suits the chair well.

So since Clara is not here, the teddies decided to try it out for size. First up was Flying Captain Freddie , he found it quite comfortable. Freddie is new to me but a vintage bear of many years

Next was Pebs, which is short for Paul Edward Bear ,who I've owned since Paul gave him to me forty six years ago, he is wearing a rugby style shirt worn by all my girls, making that a good thirty seven years old!

Well the rain started while I was sewing and it's not stopped and won't until early tomorrow morning but I feel I have at least had a productive day .


Tuesday 13 August 2019


Celebrating world elephant day, these lovely animals need to be protected before it's to late.

Sunday 11 August 2019


Well what a day yesterday was! The UK was having windy showery weather, not usual for August but then not unusual for the UK.
I was working and traveled quite easily just getting a little buffeted by the wind and only seeing lots of leaves and bits of twig in some of the roads.

Paul sent me a message ,which of course I didn't read and so when I drove home I was almost within spitting distance when I came across a road closed sign! I could almost see the turning that I'd take past the village hall and home! But no a big tree , well loads of leaves and branches was stretched from one side of the road to the other! So I had to do a small detour down a couple of single track lanes, of which others coming the other way were also using, then crossed in front of the road closed the other end and was home!

To discover that the metal from our metal and canvas gazebo , that covers the outdoor sofa, was stacked in a tidy pile at the side of the drive. Once indoors Paul informed me, that he'd gone to see where they'd shut the road, so he could message me and when he'd returned our next door neighbour asked if we'd like our gazebo back!!!!

 Yes our Gazebo had completely cleared the fence and peak of next doors brick shed and landed a couple of foot from his back door ! So the legs are bent and it's no longer usable !
We had been planning on building a permanent roofed loggia in it's place because it is so windy due to living on a hill and being surrounded by open fields, mind you now it's not there I'm enjoying seeing the open space, so now not sure what we'll do and when.

Today I've been making the cushions for the Arts and Crafts child/teddy chair. I bought this gorgeous piece of Lodden fabric by William Morris  ( surprise ! lol )  a while back to make them from.
Then decided that I wanted to use a cord trim round the edge. So that's delayed me a week while awaiting it's arrival.

I found this cord which may not be quite long enough, for sale at a bargain price and bought it anyway as I could use it with the leftover fabric.

and I also bought this one in red which is a smaller diameter so I'm going with this one due to the size of the chair and length available.

I've been cutting out the fabric and the top cushion is cut and almost ready to sew but I cannot decide which part of the pattern to use for the bottom cushion ! The same as the top  or another section, so that you get to appreciate another part of the pattern ?
Unfortunately I am home alone so have no one to bounce any choices off of! Where's someone you can ignore when you need them!! lol
So I have come over to the computer to finish writing this post before I go back and make a decision ! Who knew it would be so hard to make one's mind up! I'm sure it's an age thing, years ago I'd look decide cut and sew ! none of this... should it be this section or that business ! and I'd be halfway through sewing them together by now, not still marking and cutting out!

This week I have not bought anything doll related but have managed to sell another couple of my non Sasha dolls, which is nice as it's freeing up space and bringing in some funds for other projects.

Although I have been very tempted by various pirate related items ! But so far have also managed not to commit to any of those!

Marks and Spencer , a UK clothes and food retailer have come out with a range called little Shop, it consists of twenty five food items that have been downsized for children to collect. Small packets representing  a food item are given away to customers when they spend £20 or more in the stores.

I shop in M&S quite a bit , because it's close to work, so easy to pop in for those bits and pieces that you run out of or if you want something different for tea or lunch. So this is a great freebie for me

Jennie is showing you the collection box that looks like shelving.

You can see I already have quite a few, as one of the women at work is getting them for me when she goes in M&S too, plus the staff will give you a couple extra if some earlier customers have not wanted theirs.

Jenny shows the box of six eggs.

Whoever thought the idea up was good but whoever decided on sizing was not! Jenny is now holding the bag of popcorn which is a good size for her but most is on the small side! plus they don't have a consistent size in relation to each other !

The popcorn will work well with Sashas.  Also there is a bag of cookies which I think will also work plus a couple of  other items. They also have a shopping trolley, way to small and a shopping basket way to big!
But I'll continue to collect the rest as Granny Fortuna tells me she gets lots of different sized customers in her shop so it will all come in handy ! I don't actually remember saying she could have them.....

On the kitchen front we finally have a door for the cupboard over the mircowave and are just waiting on some specialist hinges for the door for the cupboard over the range oven.
I've not bought the tiles yet as I cannot see the point of them sitting about until Paul' s ready to put them on, but hopefully it may all move forward a bit over the coming bank holiday weekend.

So now I'd best get back to that fabric and finish cutting out the pieces or it will never get finished!

Have a lovely healthy week ahead.


Monday 5 August 2019


yes already !

 Frederick from Gregoropolis , who so likes to be coordinated, that he even manages it with his truck!!
Now that IS dedication !

Here in the Village, Saffron's befriended a hedgehog called Spike and decided she needs to do everything to help them survive in the modern world.

Christian is waiting patiently by the pond because Toby told him fish snore when they sleep !
So he's waiting to hear them as darkness falls...... we need to tell Christian not to believe everything Toby says, in fact best to check most of what he says.

From Linda we have a lovely couple of full shelves of Sashas and Gregors watching the world go by and showing off their lovely summer clothes.

Many thanks to everyone sending in photos. still time to add any more.


Sunday 4 August 2019


Today I am going to tell you a true story.

 Pamela Ann was born in 1950 , the youngest of three sisters. However her sisters were twins and sixteen years older than her.

When she was approaching her fifth birthday , her father passed away, which left her with her mother. The oldest of the twins was already married and had a tiny baby , the other twin had restless bones and was soon off across the other side of the world to New Zealand.
So there was just Pamela  and her mother, not an uncommon set of circumstances you would say apart from the fact the it all depends on who your mother is.
In this case she was the wicked witch of the north, a name given to her by one of her granddaughters several years later.

Pamela  dreamed of being a writer and wanted to go to uni and study English but no, the headmaster and her mother decided that she should study chemistry ! Pamela  was not a stupid girl and was good at many subjects , so she went to uni and dropped out after one year because she didn't want to study that subject so her heart wasn't in it! She did however study English years later at the open university and got her degree.

Every time a young man showed any interest in Pamela , her mother made sure it didn't last. Twice she left home and bought her own place but again and again her mother complained of her loneliness and other things until Pamela  caved in and sold up and returned home. Her oldest sister Gloria had died at forty two, leaving behind five young children, so there was no help there, her middle sister was off in Australia and New Zealand and when she did visit was just a chip off the mothers block, so again no help there.

You would think that her mother would have appreciated her daughter's sacrifice but no she would moan and complain that Pamela was ungrateful and other things. So Pamela  while holding down a good job in the early days then giving up work to look after her  mother as she got older, put her longed for life away.

It was not until her mother passed away in her nineties that Pamela  finally had some freedom, she returned to work and after a few years bought a house near one of her nieces, in a town by the sea. But she was lonely , don't get me wrong she had some friends but she wanted that closeness of having a partner but by now she was in her mid sixties and did not think it would happen.

However yesterday I attended Pamela's wedding to Ian, a lovely man whose life had followed a similar path to hers, Dad dying young, looking after his mother but in later life.
Ian is 71 and Pam 69 , so it's never to late to find that special person to join you on life's adventure.

 Pamela is my aunt , my mother being Gloria, so I have seen her story as it unfolded and it was me that called my Nan the wicked witch of the north, because she truly was not a nice lady especially to two of her daughters, my aunt Pam and my mum, my aunt Rita , so very much like her mother had the sense to put the world between them.

So it was a fantastic day yesterday when we joined Pam and Ian to celebrate their wedding.

and it was celebrated in style ! The reception was at the bluebell railway , we had a round trip on a steam train before a buffet and dance at a suite at the station.

  We could look round the museum of steam trains and wander the platform and delve in all the nooks and crannies. The volunteers that run the stations were really friendly and helpful and we were able to get off at a couple of the stops to take photos and see the different rooms.

Later in the evening we saw a row of Pullman carriages waiting for the diners who had booked  to have a meal while travelling through the countryside.

I asked if we could have a quick look inside and take a photo or two

fine dinning train style..

a couple of interlopers trying their luck !Michelle in the yellow and me in purple. I did have a very steampunk hat complete with special goggles but my daughter Courtney snapped it up when she saw it !
and I was sent some photos of Clara wearing it this morning!

The wedding had a steampunk theme, was a joyous day and we wish the newly weds a long and happy life.

So after an evening of dancing to fantastic sixties music and singing along at the top of our voices, today's been a day of recovering from all the dancing, I thought I'd got away with it, until I decided to climb a stepladder and the legs said ... no not today! So It's been a leisurely morning but a busier afternoon, because I had to achieve something this weekend on the home front.

I've been out cutting back the roses and lots of other plants that have decided to try and overtake the garden. Paul joined me ,after giving a couple of the kitchen doors a top coat of paint and we worked for an hour or so, cutting back, filling our garden trug on wheels  then emptying it into the garden waste bin, which is now full and we still have more to go in there. But there is always our compost bins, although they are almost full, all three of them!
Of course going out into the garden, I then see all the jobs that need doing but it's finding the time! So we'll plod through them when we are able, twenty minutes here, half an hour there, more when time allows.

So a weekend of family and gardening, no doll play or clearing out even but Paul did manage to trace some metal clips which we hope will help fix the dolls strings tightly together when we restring them. so we will be trying that out this week and if it works an afternoon of doll surgery will be happening very soon.

Tomorrow is the fifth , so if you have a photo you would like to share for doll shelf day please send it in.

Have a lovely healthy week ahead.