I’m Back and Needing to Pick your Brains! 

I feel as though I’ve really neglected this little space lately, I have good intentions of weekly posts but they just don’t happen. ☹️ I love the friendliness here and I always feel bad when I neglect you all. So here I am. 

Last time I spoke about my next knitting project which I plan to take on holiday in the summer. I know it’s ages away but I’m kind of excited now we have our tent 😀.  I had a request for some sets of seven coordinating skeins for ‘find your fade’ shawls so while I was experimenting I chose a set to keep for myself. What do you think? 


These are the other colourways I created. This one…

And then this one with skeins that are more shaded than variegated. 


Then another variegated set in earth tones 


And finally a rainbow set but I only have a photo of this dying atm! 


These sets were such fun to create! 

I hope you’re all enjoying some beautiful spring/autumn weather. We’ve had some gorgeous days here recently, just like a cool summer day! 


Thanks for all your encouragement for Abi in her new role at work. This is where I need to pick your brains! She’s hoping to hold a garden party in the summer and she was wondering if you had any ideas of things she could do? She’s needing ideas of things she can make with the residents (all with some form of dementia so they can’t be complicated ideas) and then she hopes to sell these at the garden party. She’s also looking for ideas of what else to have at the party, again things with minimal outlay. Any funds raised she then gets to use in the future to fund activities with the residents. 

Abi’s loving her new role by the way. She gets the best of both worlds, caring and using her creativity! Both of the owners have separately complimented her when they’ve been in and apparently they never complimen , so that’s been a huge encouragement to her. She’s done all sorts of crafts, baking, gardening, music etc. She’s also hoping to get volunteers in the local community to come in and do things with the residents such as playing instruments, the local school children to visit etc. Again, any ideas most welcome😀

I hope that all of you in England have a wonderful bank holiday weekend and I wish everyone else a beautiful weekend too. Happy crafting! 

Sharon xx

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Creative Drought!!

My creature time seems to have disappeared! I do spend half a day a week or so creating for my shop but last year I spent hours and hours creating!  Last week there was a custom order for some of my Scripture Yarn for a community project which was great fun!  Excuse the dodgy pics, Abi has the camera atm.

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Would you be more likely to buy the yarn before re-skeining (top) or after (bottom) ? 
Abi doing shift work has probably made the biggest difference to my creative time as she often has a couple of days off during the week but it’s a good exchange, it’s so special being able to spend so much time with her even though she’s in full time work and has a boyfriend! 

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A pic she sent through when they arrived! 

They’ve gone down to Cornwall for a couple of weeks so I planned a lot of creativity for this week but Josh decided it was his turn for some Mum time and is off school with earache and dizzyness! 

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So the creativity has been more a case of bringing the outdoors inside!  He’s created a live small animal basket trap out of sticks! I’m not too sure what he hopes to catch but we’ll see, it kept him occupied for a while anyway! 
And this is what happens when he flies hus drone too close to me!!

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I did manage a couple of rows on my ‘ waiting room ‘ socks but they just don’t keep me waiting long enough to get much done!

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My shawls hang over the side of my knitting /crocheting chair and are in and my shoulders day after day.  They’re so easy just to sling over my shoulders when I feel chilly:D.

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It’s Abi’s birthday on Wednesday so we had a birthday gateau on Friday evening before she went away. I didn’t even get to make her a gift this year but I did find time to draw her a card, I’ll try to get a photo for next time!

I’ve started reading more again too although a lot of the ebooks have an audio option now so I’ve tended to listen while I get my jobs done! 

Before I go take a look at this,  Father-in-law saw it in a museum recently,  can you read it?

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H4V3 4 CR3471V3 W33K!!

SH4R0N!! xx

Shawl Reveal and Wips

Hi again.  Life seems so busy these days and I feel as though I’ve neglected this little space recently.  I’ve spent the last few weeks with at least one coffee date a week trying to catch up with all my friends.  Also Abi has had a lot of 12 hour shifts lately which means that she only works three days in the week.  It’s meant a lot more time together and I’ve been making the most of it!

A couple of weeks ago on the way to an appointment we called in at Ashburham Place for a photoshoot of my Shawl.  Yes they’re both finished and I’ve worn one or other of them nearly every day since.  Although we live fairly near to Ashburnham Place I had never there before and we’re definitely hoping to go back for a longer visit.  This time we just admired the house from the front and used the beautiful gardens for the photos.

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It’s crocheted in 4ply yarn in 2 or 3 colours.  The purple one is made  using yarn that I’ve dyed myself and the Blue version is using the yarn I received in the Knitting Expat yarn swap.

The pattern is being tested at the moment and I’m to release it soon.

I have finally finished the socks I started for Abi in January!  She likes them scrunched down!  The previous two pairs were a mock fairisle pattern, these were just plain stripes in a self striping yarn and I’m not so keen on how much the jogs show in them.

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These were my appointment waiting time knitting but all appointments were on time so it was slow going at first,  but then…WARNING, don’t wish for more time to knit when waiting for appointments. I waited 3 hours at the hospital to see my Lupus consultant in London on Friday then another 2 hours waiting for blood tests and an xray!  I signed in fine and had the initial tests done by the nurse and then I waited and waited and waited.  They were warning that they were running very behind but after 3 hours I decided that I had been patient enough and went to ask how much longer I would be waiting.  I had got lost on the computer, somewhere between seeing the nurse and my appointment!!  Still, it gave me plenty of knitting/crochet/reading time and Abi had a lovely wander around London where she was asked for money, saw various sights, came across of a massive queue and realised that she was outside the immigration centre and took some beautiful photos!

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Other bits I’ve been working on are Josh’s blanket,

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slow progress there, I haven’t stuck to the 1 row a day rule I set myself.

I’ve also now started a bag with the yarn that Abi’s boyfriend gave me for Christmas having ripped out the shawl I had started (and finished)!

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And  I have some new socks started but this time they are crochet.

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I have just started on the rib and I love how the rib is working out.  I’m using Drops Delight.  I bought several balls of it recently but being a singles it’s not very forgiving of mistakes.  Frogging is not easy at all, in fact, I started the rib and made a mistake and ended up having to throw away what I had done as it was determined NOT to be undone!!

I’ve also made several new bits for my shop

including stitch markers and basket bags.

basket bag animals, letters

I’ve also been working on a new design for something for my shop, I’ll hopefully be able to show you that soon  🙂

So here I am with several wips once again but that’s the way I like it, lots of variety :-).

I hope that you’re all having a lovely and creative week!!

Sharon xx

Do You Remember?

It seems a long time ago now that I first seriously thought about knitting socks and set a challenge!  Eventually I started and I wrote this rather excited post last Autumn when I had completed my first pair.

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The challenge was one I agreed with Jane from Rainbow Junkie, she had mentioned that she had never crocheted a pair of sock and I had never knitted a pair so I said that if she crocheted a pair I would knit some and we did.  She made hers in the summer and waited for me to complete mine. I finished and blogged about mine in the Autumn, letting Jane know so that we could link but due an email getting lost Jane has only just posted about hers. They are lovely, you can read all about hers here!

I think now that my next pair of sock may just have to be crocheted!!

I hope your week is going well as we head to the weekend.

Happy Crafting!

Sharon xx

I love to hear from you, so please feel free to like or leave a comment.  I will try to reply as soon as possible. x

Monthly Challenge. Old Goals – New Goals!

Well, it’s been a slow start to the year really with a little creativity in between a lot of tidying, finding homes for gifts, moving things around and into the new dresser Hubby is making and generally getting things in order but I have finally made time for my last monthly challenge reveal of 2015!

So, about my makes for the December challenge, I did it, just!!!  (Well sort of, more about that in a minute).  Doesn’t December already seem ages ago and I can’t believe that it was a year ago that Jennifer asked if anyone wanted to join her with a monthly make challenge!  As most of you will know I challenged myself to one make for Abi and Josh each month and also a ‘Me’/home make each month in 2015.

For my December makes I crocheted a lace shawl for Abi.  I used a different pattern to the other lace shawls. I had made six using the ‘feeling dotty‘ pattern and because I had made one of those for myself and one for my Mum, Abi wanted hers to be different!  To be honest, after making 6 dotty shawls it was a nice change to use a different pattern.  She chose the Elise Shawl from Ravelry. This was similar to the feeling dotty shawl but with only a two row repeat rather than three. It was quick and easy to make and the diagram was really helpful.  I added extra picots on the edge and she loves it.  (Her boyfriend calls it her spiders web, I take that as a complement to the delicate crochet!!) Here she is with it on Christmas morning!

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Then I knit my second pair of socks, this time for Josh. I had wanted to do a patterned  sock this time, I wanted something ‘manyly’ and midnight knitter suggested the Basic Ribbed sock pattern which I loved but then I realised that I would have to do a lot of resizing so I went with the Petty Harbour pattern.  I enjoyed working the pattern but with such a patterned yarn I think I would have been better with a plain sock or else plain yarn and patterned sock.

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They weren’t quite ready for Christmas but I just got them finished them on New Year’s eve….only to find that I hadn’t made the foot long enough grrr.  Ripping back was easier than I thought and I was so glad that I had worked top down!

So Josh finally got his socks New Years day and he loves them, in fact he put them on before I could get a photo and wore them for two days and two nights before I insisted they must be washed and managed to get a photo and here they are.

Finally for myself I made some stitch markers, I used lobster clasps so that I can use them for crochet as well as knitting.  At the moment they are on a ring in my project bag I made last month.

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You can read my other Monthly Challenge posts throughout 2015 here.

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November.

It’s great to look back but also to look forward and ponder new goals for 2016.

I have been thinking that this year there needs to be a lot of stash busting.  There are no shopping bans planned but I do hope to keep buying to a minimum.

I would love to do quite a bit of up-cycling too.  During last year when we sorted out clothes I kept a lot of t-shirts for tarn and other clothes to be re-purposed. Hmm, not a lot of room in our loft right now but hopefully that will change as I always enjoy taking something unwanted and making it into something new and I’m looking forward to doing quite a bit of re-purposing.

So, what about a new Monthly Challenge?

I will not be doing the stocking present challenge again although I do hope to still make bits throughout the year for the children for next Christmas.  Abi was rather disappointed when I told her but I find it a real struggle to find ideas to make for Josh.

I have been thinking a lot about a challenge for 2016 and I have decided that I would love to create a pattern of my own each month, they will most likely be crochet patterns, in fact I am working on one now but more about that soon.  I know that some of you create patterns, where do you put them?  Do you just blog them or do you use Ravelry or something else?  I would love to use Ravelry more but I haven’t really got my head around how it works other than to get patterns from it!  Also ‘creativity and family is too long for Ravelry so I need to think of another name. I would have preferred to use the same name in each place.  I am also considering using Instagram. Do you use it and if you do, how do get on with it?

I would also like to make some more project bags and of course continue in my goal to be more creative.

I have some dyed fabric to use, I have lots of tarn and t-shirts to turn into tarn for some chair pads or maybe even a rug!

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Then there is the crocheted patchwork blanket

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and Josh’s blanket to get on with

and lots of scraps waiting to become hexies and eventually patchwork blankets!  Not to mention my rather large stash of both fabric and yarn. (it is stacked two deep!)

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I also received a yarn dyeing kit for Christmas from Hubby’s parents and I have just started exploring that!  I am having such fun and will be sharing more soon.

Well, I won’t have any excuse for being bored in 2016, that’s for sure!  How about you, do you have things that you would like to finish or start in 2016?  Also any pattern publishing ideas would be great.

Happy Crafting!

Sharon xx

I love to hear from you, so please feel free to like or leave a comment.  I will try to reply as soon as possible. x

Winter Wips Progress!

I’m linking up with Jennifer’s Winter Wips Party again today to look at my progress since my winter projects and wips post a month ago.

Well, October was a strange month as I said in my last post but in spite of all the hindrances I did make some progress.

I now have most of the bits I need for my scrabble gifts and I hope to get on to them soon.

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I haven’t touched my blankets but that was expected and they are on the back burner until after the Christmas rush!

Oh yes!!  I can’t believe I had forgotten to show you these after being so long in the making!  The pj cases are finally finished and I just need to do a special tada post for you!

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Here’s a little mouse waiting for his nose 🙂

The gift that was going to be something ‘vw’ turned into a scarf when I saw the most gorgeous yarn over at Yarn, books and roses or midnight knitter. If you read this post you will see how excited shoppers were getting over this yarn and it really is gorgeous, it’s different and lovely to work with.  It is by Universal Yarn and is called Bamboo Bloom Handpaints in the cherry blossom colourway.  It’s 48% bamboo, 44% wool and 8% acrylic and is lovely and soft and squishy.

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I started off by knitting a cowl in a circle as Midnight knitter had but I managed to get a twist in it.  I’m not a huge fan of cowls anyway so I ripped it back (a lot easier than I had expected looking at the yarn) and knit a scarf instead on 10mm circular needles, not to knit in the round but just because I love to knit with circulars.  I did, pearl a row, knit a row but when I got to the fat bits I used the opposite stitch to make that part of the yarn stand out better as Midnight knitter had said she did.

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I really love the open effect the large needles give on the thinner yarn and after a good firm block it is just beautiful.

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I just hope the recipient loves it as much as I do! (I did order another skein so I may make one for myself sometime after Christmas!)

We are having such grey weather here at the moment in the UK that photos are proving a little difficult.  You can tell in this photo that I was also battling with the wind.

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Ooh, yes, I have made two Amish puzzle balls.  I love these too.  They are just perfect for little hands to grip.  I had planned on crocheting them but then decided that sewing would be quicker.  I machined the pieces to form the segments,

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but then these have to be joined by hand and I really enjoyed sitting quietly, sewing them together in the evenings. This was the best tutorial I could find.  There are several out there but a lot of them are just joined together and don’t have the puzzle element.  These instructions also allow for you to make any size ball.

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Sorry, it’s just too dark now to take a photo of the other one .

I have finished the second lace weight shawl (three to go!)  and it is blocking right now.

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Oh and something really exciting, (or it’s exciting to me anyhow and it doesn’t take much if it’s yarn or fabric related) Hubby made me something to make winding the skeins easier, I’ll show you soon!

I made all five turbie towels but I’ve just bought the fabric to make a couple more.

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I made Josh and Abi’s stocking gifts for October, I am just still waiting for the pompom for Abi’s hat. I have already finished Abi’s stocking gift for November too.

And my socks, did you see?  I was just so pleased to have finally knit a pair of socks!! I am hoping to make a pair for Josh next.

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The beret is also finished and being put to good use already.

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And that’s about it.  I need to really get cracking with the other three shawls now as my neck will still only allow a little crochet at a time.  How are you getting on with your Christmas makes list?  As I keep reminding myself, just remember to enjoy each minute of making those lovely gifts.

Happy Crafting!!

Sharon xx

October Challenge – A strange Month Really!

I can’t believe another month is nearly gone and only two more until Christmas!

I had October all planned out, I got my head around my Winter wips in this post here and was planning on using every spare minute to squeeze in some extra gift making time.  As is so often the case things just didn’t go to plan.

Firstly my neck played up putting a hold on crochet for a few days and then again a week later because I did too much too soon but it’s much better now thankfully.

Then Josh was quite poorly and had a high temperature for a week followed by Hubby who was ill for a few days so there was rather a lot of looking after to be done, day and night, steaming Josh when he got croupy and cooling him down when he was delirious etc. I obviously would rather they weren’t ill but I loved having the extra opportunity to do things for them.  Josh is quickly becoming more independent, usually walking to and from school now and spending every minute he can playing outside.  So in a strange way it was actually nice to have him relying on me a bit more, cuddling up in bed and reading stories.  Thankfully he still loves a cuddle and the darker evenings should mean a bit more time indoors. Remind me of this if I complain in the winter wishing he could get outside to play :o)

We snatched a few busy days away at the in-laws at the end of half term, had a lovely time and came home just in time for me to try to restore some order to the house ready for me to have a little op on Tuesday.  I didn’t have to have a general anesthetic but my my blood pressure dropped really low afterwards and yesterday I just didn’t have any strength at all.  Still, I did manage just a little crochet which is great because at least I feel I’m getting somewhere and today I managed to get the lunch boxes done before I had to crash out again.
Mum has been brilliant as usual and gave me a hand yesterday she also did a couple of really kind extras and used up some windfall apples I had been given to make us a crumble and cleaned my fridge out!

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Josh kindly decided that he would cook dinner.  (He gave Hubby and Abi the job of washing up!) Mum had put jacket potatoes in the oven and there was cold meat in the fridge but Josh wanted to make something else.  This is what he brought up to me!

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He had added baked beans and tomatoes to the jackets and meat and then to go with it there was toast with a chocolate sauce he had made!!  He gave it to me and said that the sauce should help me because it was really sweet as it had sugar and syrup in it.  His comment didn’t have any significance until bedtime when he asked me what it meant if my blood sugar had been low?  He had overheard Hubby talking about my blood pressure being low and thought he had said blood sugars, hence the extremely sweet chocolate sauce with my dinner. It was rather special to know that he had made the sauce especially to help me.

Josh was also very good at occupying himself yesterday, he started off outside but then it rained heavily so he told me he would be painting a canvas he had for Hubby and me for Christmas.  When he came upstairs later on he had a rather colourful top, he assured me that it was only an old t-shirt anyway (the usual excuse if he gets his clothes dirty) so I sent him down to soak it in soapy water.

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This was the colour of the water this morning, at first I thought it was paint but then I realised that he had used rather a lot of washing up liquid. The painting bits will have to be put away tonight,

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I did rescue one of Abi’s best paintbrushes!

Anyhow, after all that rambling I shall show you what I made for my challenge this month.
For Josh’s stocking make it was a simple mobile phone case for when out cycling, running etc. Yes, it doesn’t seem possible but Josh is nearly the age (11th birthday) when he will be allowed a mobile phone ready for when he moves up to secondary school.

I took a stretchy sock, and stitched a seam to get rid of the heel,

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trimmed the heel away,

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cut off the toe and zig zagged the raw edge,

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folded the sock back on itself wrong sides together and machined the two edges together at the back half of the top,

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I then stitched a seam from top to bottom on the left and right of this seam, this left me with a tube with a pocket.  You put this on your upper arm and slip your phone into the pocket.

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.Abi kindly modelled it for me.

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For myself I made a little solution to a problem some of us with too many wips have. The problem I have is when I pinch the crochet hook from one project to use in another or the hook gets separated from my project.  When I next go back to it I then have to try to remember/work out what size hook I was using and it is so frustrating if I get wrong!  I could write it on a piece of paper but I have tried that and they seem to grow legs so I wanted to devise something that could be attached to the project or bag.

So I bought a packet of numbered beads to make some markers.

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I didn’t have enough fives so I used a # instead, eg 3.5 is 3#.  Also the 6 and 9 are the reverse of each other so I used the heart bead from the pack before the nine to show which way up it was.

I also decided to use some of these vintage beads that a 91 year old lady gave me recently

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I took a length of wire and bent the end with round nosed pliers,

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threaded on the beads

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and bent the other end of the wire round

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added a jump ring

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and added a lobster claw clip

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now I just need to make a case to keep them in. (oops, and add a lobster to claw to the number2!!)

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My make for Abi is a crocheted beanie hat, I am just waiting for the pompom to arrive in the post and then I will show you that properly!

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In the background you can just see an old quilt, I want to show you more of this sometime.  I was given it by a lady in her eighties about 20 years ago, it was an English paper pieced patchwork quilt top that her Great Aunt had been in the process of making when she turned blind, it was over a hundred years old when it was given to me.  I didn’t really know anything about quilting then so I just added a border, batting and backing and to quilt it I stitched ribbon flowers into each centre hexagon.  It is on our bed at the moment but sometime I would like to take it apart and hand quilt it properly.  It was made from scraps and I love the muted colours and the delicate patterns.

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So although I didn’t achieve a great deal this month at least I (almost) finished my October Monthly Challenge!

I am trying not to get stressed about my gift making but just go with the flow, hopefully it will all come together in the end.  I just want to enjoy what I make, I want love and care to be in each stitch and for them not to be rushed or as Jenny over at Elefantz is running,

homemade – stitched with heartstrings, so here’s to a productive November!

Happy Crafting!!

Sharon xx