Tuesday 30 November 2010

a bit of vintage goes a long way

The threat of snow didn’t put me off from motoring down to Chipping Sodbury to attend the Vintage and Homemade Fair. My first visit. It was wonderful. I met up with Mr and Mrs Bun from Abuncandance, and another lovely friend from Bristol. The Town Hall was warm, bright and packed to the rafters with beautiful things and talented people. It was a splendid day. I especially loved meeting fellow bloggers face-to-face which also felt somehow strange. I feel I already know them from their posts and then there they are standing before me and I am only just discovering their names. I didn’t take any photos because I was too busy buying! But there are photos from Mrs Treasure and more about the Fair over at Textile Treasure Seeker, (I love the jug I bought at her stall).
Mr Bun guarded the cakes and tea at the Fair for us (a most lovely and useful man)!

We went back for lunch to our friend, Mrs C’s home and what had been passed off as a bit of bread and soup was in fact the most delicious feast!

Thursday 25 November 2010

bird protection police notified

Darcy - the face of a (near) killer

Todays garden adventure turned into a thriller because I stalked and caught a birdie. It was for Mrs H so I took it straight to her with a gurgling growl. She totally over-reacted, wrenched apart my jaws (I was giving the birdie to her anyway so no need for that!), and then grabbed me back by the tail rather roughly as the birdie shot up and away .. I could have got it again if she hadn't done that! I was then brought inside when I wanted to be OUTSIDE. I have shouted my head off and stalked every window since to get my message across.

[Comment from Mrs H: the birdie was a beautiful Goldfinch. I think it was un-injured but I hope it survived the shock that is Darcy]

.. and where was the brother during this commotion? Where do you think?
(its cold out there after all!)

Monday 22 November 2010

sewing for dummies

For some time now I have had a longing to sew; to create crafts a bit like some of the beautiful ones I see in the lovely vintage and craft blogs I visit and so admire. My friend Denise is an inspiration and gosh how she can sew - I particularly loved the cats she made! If I compare myself to her talent I will never sew, so instead I am going to just give it a go and learn in my own little way. With her help over the telephone, I made a wall hanging.
Following and understanding written instructions not that easy for a novice.

... but I loved back-stitching the writing with embroidery thread...

.. this sewing  machine belonged to Mum, but she said I could have it. The stitches looped in a funny way on the back of the fabric when I used it first but Denise put me right by suggesting I adjust the tension dial (I just don't know these things)

This is what I made. The birdie is fraying a little because I didn't realise that you need to iron on interfacing at the back before you cut it out and sew it on. I'll do that next time. You cannot see them well here, but I sewed on tiny little beads to the wing area. I think I need to use more contrasting thread another time for the writing.

Lid - warmed by Darcy
I learnt how to cover a box with fabric too, again with tuition from Denise...
(such a valuable friend)
Note: If you live with a cat(s) remember to factor in their curiosity levels
(most unhelpful in my case)

I give you my box!
I am already planning my next project.

Thursday 18 November 2010

Thursday in the garden ~ green gym

Sometimes I overhear Mrs H talking about my weight. She of all people should know that it is in fact FLUFF all FLUFF! It is certainly no hinder to my daily activities. I can do anything.
This is me, showing off my standing LEAP, for example. Hind quarters to die for, eh?!
And then here I am in a tree (I jumped up here myself) checking the last of our birdie nesting material before the Autumn leaf fall sets in (mainly MY fluff in here - share and care my motto) before Mrs H brings inside what is left to store for the Winter.
My flexibility deserves wide acclaim.
Fat? How dare she.

Wednesday 17 November 2010

pipe dreams

Darcy and Bingley
Longest continuous 'pipe watch' recorded so far = 1 hour 50 mins (weird but true)
balls, sticks, feathers, laser beams, string
...who cares for toys when you can sit together staring at the boiler pipes! 

 A second visit in the evening - sleepier but still in for the long haul

Tuesday 16 November 2010

Country Living Fair

new hat for a colourful friend
I love the Country Living magazine. It is always so positive and uplifting. This year I went to the Fair in London with my friend, for the first time. We took supplies of food and drinks and wore flat shoes and layers (but actually I wasn't a success in the Girl Guides). Anyway, we had a wonderful time.

One day soon I will make my own wall hanging, while I read up on how (seriously), I bought one with birds on it as a Christmas hanging from Susie Watson!

But here is my favourite find of the whole Fair. Linda Miller Embroideries. I adored all of her work, and this one especially. I bought a postcard and can only dream of owning an actual embroidery. So jolly and sweet.
I loved the Poppy Treffry stand too and Kate bought me her book 'free and easy stitch style' for Christmas.
Then I really pushed the boat out with the purchase of this shawl from Pingush. I couldn't resist the softness of alpaca wool.
Non bobbling. Something to last a lifetime.
(well actually I have decided it could be a gift to moi from my husband for Christmas, I have yet to tell him).

The Fair was lovely and I will definitely go again in the Spring. Just wish they had seating because we shopped till we dropped but dropping meant to a corner on the floor somewhere out of the way when we would have preferred a seat.

Friday 12 November 2010

Return of the female

Dangerous, I know, but I have been thinking. But bright thoughts so it is OK.
I have decided to widen this blog to encompass me again.
After time blogging away, I now wish to return to the fold.
Bingley and Darcy will still be 'leading mancats' and feature A LOT (of course!), but I will be here a little too and the Happiness Kindled blog will say a fond farewell.
I hope you will still continue to visit us and enjoy the addition.

Thank you to everyone for their comments, I really appreciate the support for my change in direction - 'less is more' as they say!

Tuesday 9 November 2010

Mini adventure

We went on a 'mini' adventure in Mr H's daughter's new car. It was great fun!
When Mrs H got out she turned and saw this beautiful little thing staring right back...
After a stroke... it squeezed between the bins and eye-balled another...
... a black cat who was tolerant but didn't want to play. Poor little ginger, so full of fun with no one to be fun with

Thursday 4 November 2010

Thursday in the garden ~ "how the leaves came down"

"Gathering Leaves"  - by Robert Frost

Spades take up leaves
No better than spoons,
And bags full of leaves
Are light as balloons.

I make a great noise
Of rustling all day
Like rabbit and deer
Running away.
But the mountains I raise

Elude my embrace,
Flowing over my arms
And into my face.
I may load and unload

Again and again
Till I fill the whole shed,
And what have I then?
Next to nothing for weight,
And since they grew duller
From contact with earth,
Next to nothing for color.
Next to nothing for use.
But a crop is a crop,
And who's to say where
The harvest shall stop?


Darcy - nothing but a tail

Tuesday 2 November 2010

A gift for.....

We have just dug out from our bookcase our special little book - "Three stories to read to your cat". Well, to be fair it is not actually ours to keep forever. It is a gift to be shared. See what happened in our Crochet bed post when the parcel arrived from our friends over in Cat with a Garden.

We loved reading this book but it is well overdue for sharing
(the idea is that it is passed around to be enjoyed by other cats). It has been posted amongst cats all over the world so far. There is a list of those who have received and read it inside the front cover. 

So, we have thought long and hard about who should have it next and have decided that it just HAS to be Mr Puddy! So Dear Mr Puddy, please can you send us a message with your email so we can arrange to post it to you (sometimes we find the private message sending doesn't work in Blogger, so if you are comfortable leaving your email in a comment for us we will just note it down and not publish it). We hope to link with you.
Love Darcy and Bingley