Am I Crazy? 

Right now I’m sitting here with my crochet and Tilly on my lap and a porta potty that has been delivered sitting on the lounge floor debating my sanity! Why? We have bought a tent and hope to start camping. 

Maybe that doesn’t sound too crazy to you but some of you will know that I have systemic lupus and fibromyalgia among other chronic illnesses,which between them, considerably restrict my mobility. I also have raynauds and poor circulation, so I really feel the cold. Now are you starting see the craziness? 

For the last couple of years we haven’t been able to afford a holiday away and Hubby and Josh have wanted to camp for a while but I’ve always thrown a damper on the idea saying I just couldn’t do it. Finally in February I caved and agreed that if they did all the work, I  had a comfortable bed off the floor, a comfy chair and a heater I’d do it. Well Hubs has gone one better and bought me a camping electric blanket. (We’re not so serious about camping as to not have electricity and besides I need to charge my mobility scooter :D). So, anyway, we took the plunge, borrowed some money and have got a really good tent that we’re hoping will last us through Josh’s ten years

I don’t know what you think when you think of camping negatives but to me, apart from lack of comfort and being cold, it’s scrabbling around crouched over in the tent, all cramped up and on top of one another. With Hubs being over six foot tall and not liking being crowded I really did start to feel slightly (or totally) crazy. 

Oh yes, another problem would be putting it up as Abi being older won’t always be with us and me trying to help with my stick in one hand and rubbish balance would have been, well, let’s say, very amusing for the other campers! 

But… when we started looking, it’s just incredible what you can buy.  So we purchased a nine man inflatable display tent. Inflatable!!! Ok, so I’m wondering how many of you are thinking bouncy castle right now 😉

What it is, instead of having poles you have inflatable tubes, about six inch diameter which blow up rigid like a bike tyre. So to erect the tent you just peg out the base and inflate the six tubes then peg out the guy ropes. The man at the shop said Josh would even be able to do it on his own. (Crack open the wine Howard ;-))

We’ve gone big, BIG. Hubs can stand up in it, it has three bedrooms and an extra pod for a fourth although, where they would put two in a room and three in the main bedroom we would only have one in the smaller rooms as it would be rather like playing sardines otherwise!. (Did you ever play that as kids? We loved it.) 

So after all that waffle, what does it  look like? 

Here it is all set up at Camping Works in Horsham. The first window is the awning section, the second and third the living area and the back section without windows, the bedrooms. 

Front view, it looks as though Hubby may just have to duck his head to get in the doorway. 

And two of the three bedrooms across the back of the tent with storage pockets between the rooms.

And looking back from the bedrooms to the entrance.


Yes, it really is a biggy! In fact it has a 4.4 metre by 8 metre footprint. 

So, have we booked anywhere? Yes, and we’re so looking forward to it. We hope to do a trial run in May to Chichester and then two weeks in August to East Runton in Norfolk. And, what is really fun, Howard put out a message on his family What’s app group asking if anyone fancied joining us camping in August not really expecting anyone to come but they’ve all decided to come for at least a couple of days. One of his sister’s is borrowing her in-laws caravan and coming for the two weeks, his brother, camping for a week (three little kids and no electric, proper camping!) and his other sister for four days and his parents have booked a b and b for two days. We should all be together for those two days except Abi and Paul as they’ll have to be back before the last of them arrive. And get this… We are all within four pitches of each other. I’m thinking there will be a lot of laughter as time with Hubby’ s family is always such fun. 

Now, I was also going to talk about what project I have planned for the May break but I’ve waffled for way too long so I’ll be back soon to chat about that. I’ll just say that it involved lots of dyeing experimentation. 

Have an amazing and creative week friends, 

Sharon xx

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Knitting and news! 

First a quick knitting update. The Karise shawl is coming along slowly but surely. I’ve now got to the lace part so I can only do it when there’s no-one else about to distract me! Even Tilly seems to do her fair share of distracting! I’m using my Valley Hues colourway. 


I also have plans for a find your fade shawl. All the gorgeous colour combos floating about social media have just been too inspiring. So the dye pots have been out and there’s been lots of color play today! 


Thanks to all of you who have been so kindly asking about Abi. She is finally back to her old self after over four months  being ill. She just couldn’t shake her last sore throat. It would get a little better, then she’d have a busy day at work and it would come back with a vengeance. So I decided to get some Manuka honey. I chose an 18+ which was less than half price at £23.99 down from £50 for a 500g jar! But it did the trick, within twelve hours (3 teaspoons a day) it was nearly gone and in another twenty four hours it was completely clear. She left it off after a couple more days but it started to come back so another few days of the honey and it did the trick! 

For those of you that may not be familiar with Manuka honey, it’s honey made from the pollen of the Manuka bush in New Zealand and it has unique healing properties. It’s now used a lot in dressings for infected wounds, leg ulcers etc. I used to use a Manuka honey cream for josh’s eczema and where steroid creams had failed the Manuka cream healed it in days. 

So now for the news, it’s Abi’s news actually. She’s just started a three month trial as the activities coordinator at work. She’s on a three month trial as they still have concerns about her health but if she doesn’t slip back healthwise then the job should be hers. 

She had been doing a few shifts when she was phasing back into work but then the activities girl got the sack, which was tough for her but she did very little with the old folks and she had been warned. So that made an opening for Abi. She’s bursting with ideas and loving every minute of it! 

I’ve finally had the destash I’d been taking about for months and sent her to work with two sacks of fabric and yarn and a bag and box of papercraft and card making bits! 

I’m sorry this is a bit of a photo scarce post but i just keep forgetting to take pics😬. So I’ll leave you with a picture of this great birthday card I had.


Well, I hope you all have a lovely and creative weekend! 

Sharon xx

Another Mile On The Clock!

Well folks, I’m a year older and it was a lovely couple of days transition!
On Saturday Hubby took me out shopping. That may not sound very exciting, but believe me, to get him and Josh anywhere near the shops is an achievement, let alone traipse and after me for three hours!
We went to Lewes which isn’t too far from us but I had never been there before. It was lovely. It’s an old town with a very steep hill (I whizzed around on my scooter) and I could easily spend a day there just absorbing all the history. I found this plaque particularly interesting.

It was on the wall above this plate of glass set in the pavement where the steps lead down to the prison. You would have to lay down to fit through the opening halfway down the steps.


As well as the history there were a couple of street stalls, one selling ethically made clothing which was all on sale so I grabbed a couple of bargains 🙂

Then Hubby actually pointed out a craft shop to me and patiently waited while I browsed! 


It had a little of everything from art supplies to yarn and buttons. And I spent less than ten pounds!! 

Then it was lunch time but the town was heaving and everywhere was packed so we headed off to another town to find a bakery. When we got there the bakers were just closing so we opted for fish and chips. 

It was one of those times when there is a purpose to our plans going wrong. In the chip ago we bumped into’Aunty’ Helen. She isn’t a real Aunty but she was Howard’s neighbor for the first seventeen years of his life. They are the most amazing and kind couple and did so much for Hubby and his sister when their Mum died leaving his Dad with two preschoolers.  They looked after them for hours  at a time and were always there for the family throughout the years.

It was great to see her and she invited us to eat at their house and to visit her husband, Derek, who had fallen and fractured his scull out in Australia over Christmas! He had to spend six weeks in hospital and rehab. At one point they were told that if he didn’t come round in 24 hours, he wouldn’t make it. Thankfully he did and is doing amazingly well, although there are some lasting effects he is struggling with! 


Derek is the sort of person who cannot waste anything and Josh is fascinated with his garden! 


He used to have disabled children come for the afternoon to explore and play in his garden and see the animals but sadly that has had to stop because of health and safety! 

But he still has one sheep left which according to Josh is more like a donkey! 


So that was our adventure at the weekend. 

On Monday, my actual birthday, Abz treated me out to a coffee. We tried out an adorable little cafe in a little old fashioned village store.


I pigged with pancakes, maple syrup and fried banana! 

Then we rounded up  day with Abz cooking me dinner and a lovely creme egg brownie birthday cake! 


It’s so beautiful when everyone makes you feel so special and loved. It is certainly in the little things that love really is! 

Have a great and creative day and weekend friends! 

Sharon xx

A Birthday and my Favorite Tools atm.

Guess what we’ve been eating?….

Hubby had a birthday last week so there have been rather a lot of calories consumed here in Sussex! 

If you’ve followed me for any length of time you’ll probably know what’s coming next. Yep, monkey bread and birthday gateau.



One of my favorite yarns was inspired by this chocolate version of our birthday gateau and if you’re on Instagram you can see it knit up into a sock @grosifrick. She had also bought some of my yarns for a ‘find your fade’ shawl so I’m looking forward to seeing that when it’s all knit up.  I love seeing what people make with my yarns.

You can find the gateau recipe here and the monkey bread recipe is by Barbara bakes which you can find here. I add a twist to the recipe and I also put half a square of dark chocolate in the centre of each ball of dough to make it extra special.

I also treated Hubby to a venison roast on his birthday.

I think all that is going to mean I need to be rather strict with myself this week. And save up the treats for the end of the month when it’s my birthday😂. 

On the creative front, there’s been a tiny bit of ‘me’ creativity. I’ve managed six rows of knitting on my shawl since I last blogged, which I don’t think I even told you about. I started it a few weeks ago.

 I’m using my bfl with nylon yarn in the Valley Hues colourway. Purple Is not a me color but I fell in love with this one so I couldn’t resist using it!  I’m using the Karise pattern from Ravelry and I was inspired by the beautiful shawls that my lovely friend Ericka Eckles has made. And as you can see I’ve finally worked out how to add links on my phone 😀

In shop creativity I’ve been having a big dpn needle holder sew up, So hopefully there should be more of them in my shop soon. 

 

Making these has been made so much easier by a couple of sewing tools I have so I did a short video to show you and share….. Aghh. It’s the first time I’ve done this and I don’t look very smiley but I’m sharing it anyway so have fun watching it, I’ll never be a t.v. Presenter that’s for sure! 😂


Do have any great gadgets or things favorite things to share? I’d love to know. I may even add a ‘what I’m loving this week’ to my posts just for fun. Probs not a video though!! ! 

Have a very happy and creative week friends

Sharon xx

Tempus Fugits! 

Tempus Fugits… Time flies. Being the daughter of a watchmaker this expression was often used in our house and haven’t the last few weeks just flown by? 

My good resolutions to once again try to blog weekly didn’t even get off the ground but instead of keep apologizing, I’m going  ask your opinion.

If you’ve followed me for any length of time then you know that the content of my blog is in the title… Creativity and family, but since my Etsy shop has become busier nearly all of my creative time and energy goes into that and I feel that I’m left with very little personal creativity to share. So the question is, would you be interested in seeing some of the things I’m making for my shop and getting some peeps behind the scenes? 

Here’s a little taster for you.

As a teen, I used to do a lot of calligraphy. As hand lettering is making such a come back I decided to make some canvas signs for the shop.

First I drew the design onto paper, 

Traced it onto a canvas

And then using masking fluid I created a resist.


I then added layers of ink

Before removing the resist to reveal the writing! 


I’ve also been working on a custom order of some bags for a lovely lady who has a shop in Switzerland.

I love the fun colors of this fabric, perfect for spring! 

My sewing space is busy in both senses of the word but I love it that way…most of the time! 

These bags are my own design for a round bottomed Japanese knot bag and they are my favorite bag for taking out and about as they hang on your arm perfectly while you work, although the round bottoms aren’t the easiest to sew.

The long handle tucks into the shorter one to close the bag.


Then there’s the dyeing, I LOVE dyeing. That would sound awful if you didn’t know what I meant! I always say it without thinking and then end up shocking people. I went into the Chemist the other week for some acid, nothing awful, just the same strength as vinegar, but it was behind the counter and the assistant asked me what I wanted it for, I said ‘to dye’… You should have seen her face, I hastily added ‘to dye wool’!! After some laughing she let me have it. Then a friend rang while I was in the middle of dyeing yarn and asked if it was convenient to chat to which I replied ‘well, I’m just dyeing at the moment’. I  think I’ll have to start calling it coloring wool or something.

A dying rack full of brightly colored yarns is becoming a familiar sight in our house especially with all the damp weather and mist we’re having lately, it’s taking its time to dry.


My favorite part is thinking up and experimenting with new colourways.  Here’s a couple of my latest with coordinating mini skeins, 


And a lovely bright rainbow of minis

And my African sunset that may just find its way into my stash instead of the shop.


So, what do you think? Would you like more frequent posts with shop creativity or only the personal content as and when I’ve got things to show and say? 

In family news, first of all, thanks so much for all your kind thoughts, messages and enquiries about Abi. She’s recovering slowly and has started a phased return to work. This week she’s doing three six hour shifts, four the week after and five the week after that. She’s managed so far but only just and comes home exhausted. It takes her the next day to get over it so she’s a bit worried about how she’ll do two in a row. The trouble is, working in a residential home is hard work and even harder when all fifty three of them have dementia! It’s not only extremely busy and physically tiring, it’s also mentally exhausting.  Her tummy pains had gone before she returned to work but they do come back after a shift at work. She did have an appointment with a hospital consultant coming up so we’re hoping they might get to the bottom of it. We’re also really hoping that it isn’t anything that she’ll have to live with but we have to keep trusting God with that one. 


Here she is with a very chilled out Tilly.  Tilly has some news for you, she became a thelady at  beginning of the month!! Thankfully she kept herself very clean.  She keeps us all well amused and on our toes. Below is her new favorite position! 


I think she’s a bit confused between how dogs sit and how humans sit! 

Josh is off ill with a flu like virus that’s going round, we’re just hoping the rest of us don’t go down with it. Here he is with His new blanket.


How have you all been? Have you managed to avoid all the illnesses at this time of year? 

I’ll leave you with a very unusual sunrise we had recently. 


Happy crafting folks!! 

Sharon xx

A Birthday and a catch up! 

Hi folks, I’m afraid this is going ​ to be a rather muddly post as I’m doing it on my phone and I can’t seem to swap the photos about! So here goes… Josh was so thrilled with the drone that the two sets of grandparents and we, gave him that he did the test flight in his dressing gown and my bright pink crocs! ​​

Presents and cards, as always were opened in our bed, with the eager help of Tilly this year.

For his cake Josh chose monkey bread, a family favorite.

Gooey sugar and cinnamon coated balls of dough encasing melted dark chocolate! 

Back to Tilly enjoying the gift wrap! 

And a big tada.  The leg Warmer is finished and somewhere between here and America! 

I’m so pleased with the result and even more pleased with what I learnt along the way, especially the fact that I managed wrestle a porcupine to take the stitches back a few rows to do cable twists that I had missed! 

Here’s poor Abz sleep, she’s had a rough three weeks with really bad stomach pains and a fever. Last week we spent four days at the hospital which is nearly an hour away, for tests, the first day we waited but they couldn’t fit us in for the scan, back next day where she was scanned just before it broke down. Day three back for a different scan but that scanner broke down so back again the fourth day! Finally they more or less ruled out appendicitis and think she has acute mesenteric adenitis which is inflamed glands in the stomach and could take foit to six weeks to get better. It’s knocked her for six and just sitting wrapping a few gifts will wear her out. Thankfully the pain is easing but it’s left her so weak..

Other than that, not a lot has been happening here except for lots of sewing for my shop.

Hoping your all well and enjoying the cosy evening creatively!  Have a wonderful weekend!! 

Sharon xx

Tilly Update

I thought I’d pop by with a little update on how life with a puppy is looking! 


I don’t agree with having a puppy as being  worse than having a baby, it’s a lot more like having a mischievous toddler! 

She’s a lot more settled now and will spend most of the day either sleeping (in the oddest positions) if I’m in one place, or following me about if I’m busy! 


She joins us for an after school snack, while Josh tells me about his day at school.


She loves shoes, I think most puppies do, I wonder why? Any ideas? We’ve finally given her an old shoe of her own and she’s mostly satisfied with that unless she’s in a really naughty mood! ​​If she gets something she shouldn’t have she will run and hide with it. 

Toilet training is going great as long as the weather is dry, unfortunately, Madam doesn’t like getting wet so on wet days I’m extremely thankful for this! 

She’s growing fast too and I won’t be able to carry her in one arm for much longer!


Other training had been going well as she loves learning and loves her treats!  We have a problem if I go with Josh on walks with her though. She will spend the whole time whining and barking to come up on my lap and if I finally give in I get a lot of whimpering as though she’s telling me how awful I am not letting her ride with me. 


We get same if she sees other dogs although that is slowly improving! Here she is after a walk where the grass was wet, I  didn’t let her ride on my scooter and a big dog sniffed her! 


We are just so happy to have added this little bundle of love to our family.

Wishing you all a great and creative week! 

Sharon xx