The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

The Christmas Challenge. My last few weeks.

After seeing what everyone has been making I think I am lagging behind!  Looking back over the past month I can see it has been dominated by renovating the bathroom,  job loss and an upset and being sick!  The good thing is we got through it and everything is looking up!
The other good thing is that in times like these I find crochet or knitting quite soothing and in the evenings I will work on something.  To me, nothing would be worse than to sit and do nothing.  Crochet is calming and I think the same about any craft.  Many of you have said how you head to the craft room, sewing machine or painting in times of stress.
I find cooking the same somehow.  So I will be cooking and crafting as part of making the best of things.

In the last few weeks I made a rug from lovely wool sent to me by Sue.  Such a pretty colour...

Thanks so much Sue! 

Then I made a rug which has gone to a charity. This was all bits and pieces that I had in the cupboard.

Last week I actually bought some yarn as I really have none left.  I am making myself some infinity scarves... these are my colours, smoky jewel tones. (kind of!) 

I am about half way through the first scarf just now.  These are fast compared to making rugs!

It has started to get really cold at night.  Out came the rugs and blankets. I keep a rug on the lounge and put this one on the bed. It is a blanket I made a couple of years ago that is really thick and heavy. It covers a whole Queen sized bad and drapes down the sides. It weighs a ton.

I would love to make another blanket like this but I would need to save up a huge amount of wool!  

Today is gorgeous and sunny. It is Andy's first day at his new job!  And I am off to Aldi to shop. This is a good day! 

What are you working on at the moment?  A project you are enjoying adds a lot to daily happiness I have to say!  A project you are looking forward to is exciting!  Even learning a new stitch is exciting! The rug above is Pineapple stitch that I followed on You Tube. It was so much fun to do. Life became about getting to the end of each row!  

See you on Friday... I already know I have had a much better week and have lots to report! xxx


  1. Annabel I love that pineapple stitch that you use. I have a single bed size blanket I am making out of scraps using that pattern. This is to be my travel rug. I started it last year when Bluey was sick. It was too hot over Christmas to work on this heavy blanket but the weather has cooled right down now.
    That pink rug is the most beautiful shade of pink and the charity rug is divine. I do like the combinations of colours you have bought for your infinity scarves.
    I have had a number of 'needing something' gifts of late. My go to has been my crochet cotton face cloths and lavender dragonfly soaps I made late last year. These soaps have been kept in a jar and have kept their scent. My soap is down to two little bars and I have one face cloth left. I am currently building up this store once again. Bluey is building me a soap mould and once he does this I am going to have a go at making coat hanger swirl soaps. I am hoping they will be the pretties that I can put together with my face cloths for a super quick and just beautiful little gift. I also pop these into a pretty chiffon drawstring bag.
    Off to get some things together on this wet, windy and cold(it is for us. I have a cardi on and am thinking about putting on some shoes)
    Life is good.

    1. Dear Jane, I am the same, over summer I give up wool and use cotton maybe or do some sewing and other things. Wool just seems too hot!
      The charity rug is going to Romania to an orphanage. Mum knows someone who volunteers there in an orphanage. She has made a lot to send. I hope to make more.
      The cotton face cloths and soaps are the perfect combination. Very handy gifts. I don't mind working an edging around a hand towel either as this goes in with the theme. Those muslin fave washers are 43c each too and gorgeous. (hard to beat that price!)
      hahah! It must be cold if you are going for shoes! You would be in ugg boots down here in SA!
      The thing is that as we keep making something it just adds up to so much over the year! Footie season helps me get more crochet done too. And Masterchef! Hope your week is going well! With love

    2. Jane, could you share a picture of your facecloth/soap gift in the chiffon drawstring bag? I'm doing some of these same gifts and am looking for gift packaging ideas. Thanks!

  2. Hello Annabel,
    Your crochet is gorgeous, beautiful and stunning. I sometimes do sewing in times of stress but when it's bad, I take to sleeping. I sleep and sleep and sleep. Just think if I were more like you how much more I'd get done. I loved the post on Monday with all the first aid things to keep. It's quite a stash isn't it, to be covering most eventualities. I did chuckle at the chemist who had a box of 100 masks, they'd disappear in the first heartbeat of a disaster, well done for getting a whole box.
    I hope that Andy has a good day on his first day on the job, and that the staff are welcoming and friendly.
    Must go now, I have just filled up my little tractor with fuel as my son and I are off to chop some wood.
    Hello to everyone.
    Fi xx

    1. Dear Fiona,
      When times are really bad I also take to bed! Sleep is a good thing.
      With the masks I saw they were quite expensive, sold individually. I came home and went online and bought a box of 100... I cant remember the price but not much. I thought the few in the chemist would be sold out in a heartbeat in an event or outbreak. eek. Like supermarkets most of them don't have an "out the back" either.
      Everyone loves the idea of your little tractor! So do I!
      With much love,

  3. Oh I love these so much Annabel, and crochet is something at which I am no longer terribly proficient. It makes my fingers ache, and a large project like this is just beyond me. Well done to those who can manage because it's such a rewarding pastime. Annabel, I was about to give some grey and sparkling white wool to Lifeline, but I will send it to you instead. Don't hold your breath though. You know me and post offices! Stunning work everyone. Love, Mimi xxx

    1. Dear Mimi,
      I am in real trouble if something goes wrong with my hands and I cant crochet. I did have trouble when my arm was sore and have found knitting hard but crochet easier.
      I would absolutely love the grey and sparkly wool! That is my colour way! Yarn is expensive now and I have used up my odds and ends. Thank you so much!
      I am thrilled about your prize win! How perfect to win kitchen appliances... and at the right time too. Best news ever! Enjoy it! With lots of love,

  4. Dear Annabel

    This past week I have been working on a Christmas gift for my DD19 at her request. It is counted cross stitch and it take some time to do however the pattern is easy and so I can do it watching TV at night. It is designed to be framed but that will be expensive so I looked around online and found a cheap source of hangers for cross stitch and so I will make it into a wall hanging at little expense to me. I have bought some flannelette reduced in price and some towelling at Spotlight. I will be using this to make some backed burp cloths to put in the gift cupboard. Since I have been culling clothing any piece that has an appealing fabric I am cutting up and storing the fabric to make other items. These will become pj pants or shorts, pin cushions, ornaments, lavender bags and other nice things. I have some denim as well which I am going to make into heat bags I am just tossing up between rice and wheat bags....I have my thinking cap on.

    Looking for ward to Friday
    God Bless and enjoy this lovely weather

    1. Dear Mel,
      Lovely presents you are working on! The flannelette and towelling will be very useful! Burp cloths are something that are amazingly helpful.
      Mel I have found barley or wheat better than rice.... the rice seems to release a lot of moisture... mine was brown rice but I don't know it that was it. ok but not as good.
      Haha! I am so slow now it is Friday! Have a good day and weekend! With lots of love,

  5. Annabel,

    GORGEOUS handwork fruit! Must be such a pleasure to pull out rugs (afghans) that are not only lovely but serve you, too! Beautiful handmaidens, I'd say!

    What am I working on?

    -- I have taken in 2 inches in at least five skirts so far and one dress. Several dresses and skirts to go.
    -- I finished the ironing board cover potholders last week for the gifts closet.
    -- I have two ottomans waiting for new "dresses" (slipcovers).
    -- I'll make new window treatments in the living room.
    -- I'm reading "Chicken Soup for the Mother's Soul." I found a love note that I had taped inside it from 1998. My now-30-year-old baby wrote it when she was not yet 12. Precious!
    -- Both of my Mother's Day cards have arrived from my girls (early this year).
    -- Both of our mothers' Mother's Day parcels arrived as well, just waiting to open on Mother's Day on the US mainland.


    1. Dear Kelley,
      Thank you!
      You've lost weight! Adjusting clothes is very good and takes time but much better than needing new.
      I love nice ironing board covers. The ones in the shops are UGLY, I know because I tried to get Chloe one and they were dreadful.
      Sewing slip covers is a skill!
      I hope lovely surprises await you for Mothers Day! How lovely to get parcels! Have a wonderful day on Sunday! With love

  6. Dear Annabel,
    Your projects are beautiful!
    I'm glad you're enjoying sunny days. We have had rain the last two evenings and cool enough days not to need the air conditioning. We are really savoring this weather after the hot weather last week, plus knowing the long, hot summer will be coming soon.
    The things I have been adding to my gift cupboard have been mainly things I have found in the stores for a great price. I did whip up a rice bag heat pack for a friend. She called to ask where I had bought the one I gave her a couple of years ago for Christmas. She couldn't find hers and found I so helpful that she wanted to replace it. I was delighted to hear how helpful she had found it. She seemd thrilled when I brought her the new one I made.
    Hope you continue having a good week!
    Love from Arizona,

    1. Dear Elaine,
      That was handy to know exactly what to give your friend! I really love it when I find bargains to add to the gift cupboard... gifts and paper etc. it is all very handy. It all adds towards our supplies and saves money! Much love,

  7. Such beautiful crochet, Annabel. I think crochet is much quicker than knitting. You mentioned a while back that you made infinity scarves out of large scarves. I have some that are really too big so I wonder if you could mention in a post sometime how you do that. I hope you are feeling better and that Andy likes his new job.

    1. Dear Nanna Chel, Thank you! For the fabric scarves I cut them in half length wise, and made two scarves. I hemmed them first to make a circle then hemmed the raw edge. This turns out just the right size for me. I wear them doubled with two twists in the middle... literally a figure eight. For knitted things where it is impossible to cut down the middle I still have halved the length and sewn into a cowl rather than a long dangly scarf. Then I wear them, otherwise I just don't. I will try and post a picture coming up so you can see as well. With love

  8. It's all lovely, Annabel!
    Fiona, I'd love to see your little tractor!

    1. Thank you Rachel! I hope your week has gone well! xxx

  9. Annabel, Your work is beautiful and I love the pineapple stitch. I'm going to have to take some time and get more proficient at that stitch. My next project though is a Ma Ingalls shawl from Little House On the Praire. I'm just in the beginning stages of deciding on the colors and amounts needed. This will be my summer crocheting project.

    1. Dear Patsy, I love sails and wraps! I hope to see the finished project!
      Plus I love Little House on the Prairie!
      The pineapple stitch is beautiful, uses a lot of yard but its thick and warm! With love

  10. I am am so happy to hear that Andy has a new job! It would be hard to leave that beautiful bed in the mornings!

    1. Thanks Lana. It has just started to get really cold. this doenst help us want to get up in the morning that is for sure. Snuggly is good! xxx

  11. Dear Annabel,

    Everything is just beautiful!

    I have several things in the works right now which includes finishing up a quilt for a wedding gift next month, crocheting some baby items for baby shower gifts, continuing to paint containers as packaging for bath salts, fizzies, bath soaks, and soap and baked goods. Blessings, Cookie

    1. Dear Cookie,
      A quilt for a wedding gift is just beautiful! All your projects are just beautiful! I cant wait to see them!
      Very busy week here... mainly due to the bathroom! With love

  12. When life gives you lemons made lemonade. The motto for us all. So glad things have improved. Your blankets are gorgeous.

  13. Annabel,
    I am so happy you have made it through those rough spots, keeping a chin up can be so helpful in getting through these times and you have done amazing things even though you've been sick.
    Your rugs are just lovely! I am so behind in making anything that I doubt I will catch up!
    I hope Andy's new job goes really well for him he seems to have so many talents! And I am still jealous of your clothesline! Haha!!
    I hope everyone has wonderful days ahead!

    1. Dear Vicky,
      You have had bigger fish to fry with major projects! Sometime soon we will be be past renovating! Then I know you have a garden to plant! But it is all good stuff! I love my clothes line too, I use it almost everyday and even love looking out the window at it. It has been a really sunny week so Ive had it covered!
      Knowing where you are up to with your new pantry means I cant wait to see and we can show everyone what you have been working on! with lots of love,

  14. Dear Annabel,
    Your crochet is always so gorgeous and I absolutely love your colors.
    Working on remaking some denim jeans here and getting my dress form redone to size. Since moving my clothes sewing room upstairs and separating it from the craft sewing room, I am getting a lot more done in the line of clothing :).
    Thank you for sharing with us pictures of your beautiful handwork.
    Love and hugs,

    1. Dear Glenda, Shifting things to a better location for you has been a big job but will be so much better. I hope to see your recycled denim projects!
      Thanks so much! With love

  15. I have a silly question - if you call the covers on your bed a "rug" what do you call the floor covers? In the US, we call the floor covers "rugs" and the bed covers "blankets". Inquiring minds want to know! P.S. - I finally figured out what a "slice" is! LOL

    1. Hi Holley, We say mat for on the floor and rug for on the bed or lounge etc. Well, mostly anyhow. We also say blanket.
      mmm I wonder what you call a slice? A slice is like a low cake cut into pieces... or a piece/portion of a pizza, cake or whatever. Now I want to know what you say? Someone will tell me...
      There are so many differences. Some of them are funny! You say Sweater and we say jumper. Or vacation = holiday. Fall = Autumn. There are millions of them. If I went into Australian slang well that would just get more confusing! You will be speaking Australian in no time at this rate! xxx

    2. Annabel, When referring to a "low cake" we call it a "bar" or "bar cookie"! We do eat a "slice" of pizza, cake or pie! I LOVE learning all the fun little language differences!!! Of course, sometimes it takes me quite a while to figure it out, but I'm getting better at it! Hope you have a wonderful, relaxing weekend! xxx, Holley

    3. Oh a bar! I never thought of that. But it makes sense as if it was wrapped in a wrapper we might call it a bar too. Like confectionary is a bar.... of chocolate. xxx

  16. Oh Rachael no photo sorry the little trailer is broken and being held together literally. I have a new top for the trailer but being judicious with my spending, and the fact that wood is being hauled in and out of it, I'm not so keen to replace it yet. It's just a mini version of a big one if that helps.

    I'm the same as you Annabel and Patsi, I adored the little house on the prairie stories as a young child.

  17. Hi Annabel, I was hoping you could help me out by explaining what a "rug" is. Here in the US, it's something you wipe your feet on when you come into the house.....yours are far too pretty for that!!

    That bed cover is simply beautiful. My mom crocheted one for me when I went away to school.

    I'm currently working on:
    *re-making some clothes I no longer wear. I've turned a dress into a skirt and a l/s blouse into short sleeve. I've taken sleeves off another dress and turned it into a summer sleeveless.
    * I'm embroidering flour sack towels for gifts.
    * I'm embroidering squares that will be made into a large quilt for my church group to raffle.
    * I'm learning to piece a quilt with the 50 states embroidered on it. My mom did them.

    1. oops... you reply is one below sorry Debby!

  18. Dear Debby, This is funny! Here a rug goes on the bed. A mat goes on the floor. Now you said it I remember hearing you call floor mats a rug. Here a rug is also a fake hair piece a man wears. haha! This is true. Sometimes we will be watching TV and Andy will say "that bloke is wearing a rug" haha! I think its really interesting converting Australian to American! Sometimes funny conversations take place!
    Well done on your alterations! If you are getting something you can wear from something you didn't it is a free piece of clothing really!
    I LOVE flour sack towels! And the church quilt sounds like a wonderful project! Also I would love to see the 50 states quilt when you are finished! With much love


I really appreciate your comments thank you! The aim of my blog is the be a place of encouragement and happiness. Very rarely is anyone rude. Actually only twice so far! If you post a rude or aggressive comment I will read it but not publish it, thanks for

Spam is never published... if you are advertising a product or selling website your comment wont be published. I am inundated with stuff about drugs, horses and weird things! I am not going to publish this stuff! Thank you.