Monday, 26 March 2012

Lots To Smile About

Things that have made me smile over the last few days, in no particular order: 
(warning: photo overload plus gratuitous liking of ones own work follows!!)                                 

Starting with a new peg for Mabel. It's the first time I've been able to cut into the Puppies and Kittens Ladybird book....our Mabel better appreciate it!
Mother's Day chocolates....
 Granny's steps, adorned with beautiful spring flowers...
Taking photos for Cleggy's latest book...
This one is 'listening to sounds in the garden' and we needed rain. Wall to wall sunshine...all week! What are the flamin' chances? So we poured a jug of water over Mabel's umbrella. She wasn't happy...
Flowers in ice.
The blossom tree in next door's front garden...
 Mabel loving Minnie...

Finding Ned in a baking tray...
 Spending time with Granny and Nelly...last week we managed a lunchtime film (Best Exotic Marigold Hotel - loved it!) where we had our M+S picnic and a glass of wine (yep, that's right!) and this week we went to Willowpool where we had THIS:
worth being fat for!
The lovely Granny!

Annie's giveaway winners - Heather from Pink milk...who chose 'sunshine' on a yellow block...
And Julie from Little cotton rabbits who chose 'knit' on pale blue...
The overall winner (lori) is in the US so hasn't received her block yet - I'll show and tell hers next post!

 Some more blocks for Helen over at Helen Philipps. These ones are reversible - one side is muted nature inspired colours:
and the other side sweetie colours:
They are in the post Helen...hope you like them!
And a special 'green rabbit' block for Vivienne from 
Some new 'home' blocks (available here)...

 Watching John Bishop's 'week from hell' for Sports relief...
nuff respect...brought tears to my eyes and made me reach for the phone.
And lastly, a loooong family walk yesterday in the sunshine. I did a little research, found a 10k walk within half an hour of home - and we set off with a (heavy) picnic.
What I didn't do was read the bit where it said 
'includes a 1300 ft climb'
Ooops...sore legs all round today, and a little sunburn. In MARCH????? 
We're off to Devon on Friday for Easter hols, so wishing everyone a happy Easter break
fee x
 (ps last thing that made me smile was the keyword search on my blog today: 'how many calories in a chipper kebab'!!!)

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

♥ So Much To Show And Tell ♥

One of Annie's giveaway winners!
It's been a very happy week at Clegg Towers. 
Why, 'that's always the case', I hear you say....well, to be fair, it isn't! But I made a decision when I began to keep my blog (mostly) light and chipper. Partly because it's very much linked to my little business, partly because there are some things I wouldn't want to share with some people who read my blog, but largely because I'm not particularly good at sharing anything deep and meaningful with all but a clutch of people. 
 Anyone who knows me well also knows that the last few years have, at times, been incredibly difficult, and I appreciate that my posts only reflect part of my life - the part I'm happy to share with anyone.
Every now and again I feel the need to mention this!

So - here are the highlights from around these parts:
Firstly NED WOKE UP!!!
Well, he was woken up. This was his second 14 week hibernation in the workshop fridge, and although I weighed him regularly and checked for movement, it's always a scary day when we get him back out 
He was eating within an hour and although he's still a little slow, he's off round the kitchen exploring, until it's warm enough to live outside again. It's lovely to have him back.

Mother's day was a glorious day - treats and sunshine! 

Cleggy (the amazing present wrapper!) chose wonderfully well - including some new passion fruit plants. We had the most beautiful climber up the back of the house but it gave up last year during the building work.

Check out the pot wrapping....
A new Pip cup to replace the one I chipped! I will never tire of Pip...EVER.
Some gorgeous looking chocolates (YES!) with interesting flavours
I just tried 'marzipan and rosemary' so I could confirm they are as good as they look...and they are (don't worry Cleggy, I saved you half!)

My favourite (bought) gift was a  Hen's Teeth purse. I am a huge fan of Viv's intricate work - and this one is as special as all her others...
 Cleggy asked Viv to include a big black chicken in homage to Delilah (my favourite posh lady)...the irony being that she was eaten by the pig, not a fox!!!

Thank you Cleggy and Boys, and Thank you Viv!
 We spent the day eating (my favourite) and watching a film together - followed by tea with The Granny. I became (literally) obsessed with sewing straight on to cards and tags - not sure why! the feeling was incredibly familiar - like those old shoe lace sewing cards we had as children. 

We also baked a cake as a family 
(not easy in our little kitchen!)
Highly recommend the recipe...
Earlier in the week Nelly and I had the pleasure of meeting a new friend from Blogland - Emily ( )
(please don't move down South new friend...)
When Emily bought some things from my shop we realised we lived a mere 10 minutes apart - so it was only a matter of time before we found an excuse for a coffee in John Lewis. I can report she is as witty and lovely as her blog suggests! We both confessed to being jealous of Cuckoos 'Swine' club so have decided to start our own!
We had a bit of a swap thing too - I gave Emily my perpetual calender and she sent me the most beautiful wool and buttons to make a collar with. I can't show the wool because in my desperation to get crocheting I pulled it into the most hideous mess and had to spend 2 whole hours last night untangling it. Lesson learnt.
I will show and tell when it's finished!

I also got a lovely little thank you parcel from Jooles this week (I told you it was a good week!) for some blocks I made her! How lovely is that?

Two more things to share - one is a picnik replacement (thanks for sharing Stocki). I use picnik almost every day when photographing products - and was seriously worried what I could use instead when it closes next month. Well here is the answer - it's called Picmonkey and has been set up by ex picnik folk. It's not quite all singing all dancing as yet but promises to be - and faster too. Fingers crossed.
Finally, here are two of my home made mothers day presents to make you smile. The bookmark made at school is from GB
I was particularly pleased with 'mickey taker' and 'money spender'!

And the note left on my pillow from #1:

I translate:

"Just for one last mothers day treat
It can't be felt and it would be hard to eat
It is the love from your family
Cos there's nowhere else I could want to be
I love it when we have a cuddle
You help me when I'm in a muddle
You buy me cards that say willy and bum
we love you mum"

yep, rhymed mum with bum. Lovely!
fee x
(I rarely see cards that are suitable for a 12 year old but this one had Alfie's name all over it!)

Thursday, 15 March 2012


Cleggy has been working away loads recently - and we don't like it one bit!  Neither does he. Anyway, to check that he doesn't have a second family save him some driving, we decided to spend the weekend where he was working - in beautiful Hampshire.           It's a new area to us - and what we saw we liked very much.

So, we rented this house:

Just kidding - we only hired the little castley bit on the left hand side. It was a stunning old listed building - an old mill, steeped in fascinating history. The owners were really friendly - and, thankfully, not precious about their lovely gardens.
                             Inside made for the best games of hide and seek - and I grew more than a little attached to the aga!
I've decided I too need a folly!

We had a great day exploring all the beaches one by one...

At Emsworth I told GB the drop was too steep (it was a much bigger drop than it looks here) - and not to climb over. He did it anyway. I decided to let him hang for a while - you know, teach him a lesson. But was mortified when a stranger RAN over and asked if I needed help pulling him up! (I did...) Cleggy was more perturbed that I'd found time to take a photo...!
The evening light was lovely - it felt like spring had sprung.

The following day reminded us that Spring had NOT in fact sprung - it was bleak. We decided to visit Portsmouth Historical Docks - a great hang out for a wintry day. We particularly loved getting on board the old ships and learning about life on deck. No photos - too grim!
As I had lots of time alone I managed to use the book of crocheted flowers granny got me for Christmas and made my first brooches. I love a blanket but have discovered I don't have the patience - a brooch is right up my street!
The rest of the week has been full of lovely commissions (some need to stay under wraps until the recipient receives) but these I can show and tell:
Blocks for very special Mummys
Some Mr & Mrs Blocks for an old friend Lisa
Possibly my all time favourite thing to make - blocks using vintage ladybird books. I'm still considering the proposal ladybird have asked for (before Christmas - yikes!) with regards a licence - but in the meantime I'm happily making them on request from original books. Yes - they get cut up - but they are then a new mini work of pure joy to look at on a daily basis!!! (it's still hard to take the sccissors to them...)
These ones are for Catherine and are a mixture of School and Party. As always they are such a delight to work with. 
Lastly - I recently made some Vintage Nursery Blocks for Helen, to help display her beautiful creations. This week we decided to do a swap - one of her gorgeous hearts (plus some fab paper and buttons) for 2 bunny blocks. I love a swap.
Here are the blocks 

And here is my heart.
How lovely?

(psst Helen is having a giveaway, Greengate tin, buttons, pin cushion.... here's the link )
 fee x