Saturday, 28 December 2013

Advent Nativity

What a whirlwind of a few weeks!

What with having to work a bit more than usual (but what a lovely time of year to be able to do that and enjoy all the excitement that children share).....

....there were also the inevitable Nativity plays, crib service, dressing up and of, course our weekend at my In-Laws over the weekend of 13-15 December for which I made and shared creations with you here.

And then with the children we look after, ensuring they made cards for family, decorations, gifts, watching them in Nativities and hearing about their Christmas meals and parties and finally ensuring completion of their parts of a group display.

It was a group Advent in so far as they each complete their part for an Advent chocolate.  Each week a number of them completed their parts and it is so delightful I wanted to share it with you!

This is week 1......

....Week 2 ......

....Week 3 ........

.... Week 4 ....

In detail we have..... 3 Wise Men and 4 camels (one to carry the gifts!) and the gifts....

The stable with the Innkeeper just outside the door and chickens on the roof (one with a nest and eggs!!)

The Shepherds and sheep on the hillside.......

4 Angles on one side..............

...and 3 Angels on the other with the Star in the middle!

And all of this made by children aged 4 to 11 (most are under 8).

We also like to create a homely atmosphere at the club, so our chill zone (sofa and TV area used for watching films and playing Wii) has been turned into a lounge...........

A pretend fireplace which the children absolutely love!  And a wonderful tree decorated by them and covered in baubles that they have decorated (cheap baubles from Poundland and a couple of sheets of festive stickers!  Also a great fundraiser at Christmas Fairs!!)

Isn't it wonderful?  Doesn't the sight of children's creativeness fill your heart with joy?

My daughter Tiddly Toes (aged 4) was so taken with the fact that Christmas Day was Jesus' birthday, that before she would go to sleep we had to sing him 'Happy Birthday'!  Joy!  Such innocence and love.

I hope the festive season has been peaceful and joyful for you.

Lots of love

Friday, 27 December 2013

An explanation...

for my absence.

I have been thinking about you all, really.  But I haven't even had time to hop on to the computer to check out your posts, let alone comment or write a post myself.

It is due, in part, to the untimely passing of a gentle, kind lady at the age of 52.  She was the Mum of a young man who works for us.  But she was more than that as, through him, I feel I can count her amongst my friends and I was very fond of her.

She passed away on the 10th December and since then I have been helping to work his shifts to allow him some time to begin to get his head round this and make the inevitable arrangements.

Today I went with him to see her, resplendent in her wicker basket.  We celebrate her life on Monday with a send off true to her, featuring, not flowers, but balloons.... and the dress code?  PINK!

And so to her I dedicate this post and this picture....

....with love, Angela.


Monday, 9 December 2013

Ready for our first Christmas

I've not forgotten you, I'm still here, but life is bedlam.
I just thought I'd rush into your space and share these before I wrapped them up.
If we aren't spending Christmas with The Hubs parents, we always arrange a meal with them a couple of weeks before Christmas.
We basically do Christmas Day with a turkey dinner cooked by Dad and The Hubs (and this year probably joined by our 17 year old Chef Son), crackers, Christmas Pudding (gifted by my Aunt who makes a thoroughly fabulous pudding!) and presents during the afternoon.
It has also become a bit of a tradition for our children to decorate their Christmas Tree...lovely!
Each year I always like to make them little, useful (I hope!) things.
This year, as they entertain quite a bit, I thought I'd buy them some wine glass decorations and found these whilst out and about at a local table top sale......
They clip around the stem so that you can tell whose glass is whose!
Dad is also partial to a nice cafetiere coffee, but as he drinks alone, a whole pot goes cold too quickly for him, so I thought a nice little cozy using the odd bits of fabric left from last years gift (which I forgot to show you and will rectify!) would be ideal.....
I couldn't find a tutorial that I liked and I had to start with certain measurements, so I made it up as I went along and quilted in the style of Svetlana......what do you think?

And being modelled by our cafetiere......

Mum is only 4 ft 10 inches, so her seatbelt often rubs on her neck.  There was a nice little idea on Pinterest that I couldn't find, so I basically made this one up as I went along AND remembered to photograph it so that I could share a tutorial with you (soon!).  The idea for the quilting came from the wonderful and talented Svetlana over at S.O.T.A.K. Handmade. Anyway....... it resulted in this little seatbelt cozy.......
And finally Mum has an ancient needle-case which has had needles taken in and out so often that it has broken down the fibres and is starting to fall into pieces!
So I though a nice new one in the same fabrics as her knitting needle case last year would be perfect!
And by providence a wonderful little tutorial came up (via Svetlana) for a tutorial on NanaCompany.  Although I didn't go for the patchwork effect as I knew the fabric I would use, I followed the rest of the instructions and came up with this.....
I used an offcut off ribbon from a parcel from Clothkits to embellish the centre page and provide a small measure!

I shall certainly use that tutorial again as I have ALOT of very tiny scraps and they would be ideal for another needle-case and also her latest offering....take a look at this totally adorable little chap!!!.....
I'll be back shortly with another stack of makes and my birthday pressies!
See you soon.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Christmas Countdown

Yes, I have added a countdown to my blog to shock myself into getting a wriggle on!!!

Can you believe we are now into the teens and counting!!!

I am doing quite well, but I need to make more cards and I have several pressies to finish start before they can be posted abroad!!!

Time is slipping away, hence I have been beavering and not blogging BUT....this means a have a photographic feast coming for you soon!

Until then, keep calm, craft on and don't get your tinsel in a tangle!