This is an occasional blog – I try not to swamp it with too much about any one of my interests – so I’m not a daily blogger by any means. But if you’ve found me because I’ve commented on your blog … you are especially welcome!

The only other blog that I try to keep up to date is The Hen Garden – if chickens are your interest, do go and take a look.

Older posts now in this blog have been imported from other blogs I’ve kept over the years … I hope the links and images are still functioning, my apologies if that’s not the case.

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Remember this?

I had some yarn left over from Autumn Leaves, so decided to do a scrap blanket, using the square pattern from this blanket by The Patchwork Heart.

I needed 96 squares (8×12) … when I’d done enough, I invited DD2 to help me arrange them – she has a far better sense of colour than I do. Only rather than arrange them, she divided them into two piles … the blues and greens in one, and the yellows, reds and oranges in the other, announcing in no uncertain terms that she didn’t like the two mixed together.

So I had to make another 96 squares for the sake of finishing two blankets … only once I’d finished the reds and yellows and had hooked them together, I decided a) that I preferred the green/blue colour combination and b) that I wanted it larger.

I also learned that I really do need to sew ends in as I go, as it makes for a much neater join, and, when you’ve finished you’ve finished! (So the yellow/red blanket is  languishing in a project box with some ends still waiting to be sewn in *blush*)

In the meanwhile, Cherry Heart published her ‘Forget me not dots’ blanket pattern, and I decided it was the perfect edging for my scrap blanket. Having settled on my size (10 x 15), I continued making squares (in between other projects) …

I have loved making this blanket, and I love the final result 🙂

From this …

to this …

to this 🙂

DD2 chose the colours – she said they made her happy. So here is her Happy Blanket 🙂

Granny blocks with a moss stitch border (note to self, use a smaller hook for the border next time) in Stylecraft Special DK; Emperor, Bottle, Lobelia, Empire, Aspen, Lipstick, Sunshine and Bright Pink (not easy to tell Lipstick and Bright Pink apart in the image), with White.

244 stitches wide (81 blocks) and 112 rows long (not counting the alternate white rows).

Now it’s finished, it makes me happy too! 😀

A Happy Blanket – a granny stripes blanket for DD2, in colours chosen by her that simply made her laugh aloud with joy as she chose them! 😀

Sorry it’s not too sharp a photo – on my phone and in poor light – hope it gives you the idea nevertheless.

And do you remember this?

DD2 has an amazing sense of colour – much more bold than mine. I had 96 squares ready to go into a single blanket (8 x 12 squares) so I asked her to help me arrange them. I ended up with two piles at her insistence … one all the bright reds and yellows, and the other all the more muted blues and greens. So now I have to make another 96 squares and will end up with two blankets … watch this space !!

DD1 has left home … started a new job, renting a flat. I decided to make her a blanket to remind her of home … Ocean Waves, Attic 24’s ‘Woodland Ripple’ in my own choice of colours. Just to emphasise the colours of the sea, I added a few fish here and there, too!

Of course, I can’t send it just yet – I was keeping a cardboard box ready to hand when DH decided to tidy up his study 😮

 

I have been encouraging a Christian friend to pay more attention to the Bible … she is from Asia, so reads the Bible in her second language (English), while trying to grasp a third culture (God’s kingdom – that is, the church as God intended it to be, not necessarily as it is in practice in the UK!). Not easy for her.

I decided to look for a book I might give her to help … so for the past few months (I carried on long after I chose a book for her!) I have been reading various Christian books aimed at young people or new believers, simple explanations of the Bible and how to live as a disciple.

DD2 gave me some excellent suggestions … she often picks up a whole reading list from her summer camp each year, and has a good grasp of which ones are worth reading and then passing on.

I started with Dig Deeper, by Andrew Sach and Nigel Beynon.

The book is to be understood as a kind of toolkit with each chapter adding another tool to the set. Each chapter has many examples and illustrations from the Bible, with accompanying exercises to deploy these new helps. Dig Deeper offers sixteen “tools” readers can use to get to the bottom of any Bible passage and discover its intended meaning. (review on Eden.co.uk)

It is excellent … starting with the basics (looking at genre, word studies, context etc) it equips the reader with a series of simple tools to study the Bible for themselves. There are surrently another two books in the series, which set out to demonstrate the use of the tools in the context of reading a complete Bible book – Exodus (Dig Even Deeper) and Mark (Dig Deeper into the Gospels), both of which I read for my own edification and pleasure … I particularly enjoyed/valued the one on Mark’s gospel – a refreshing read of a familiar story.

However, I don’t believe Dig Deeper is suitable for a reader for whom English is a second (or third) language.

I read several other books, some of which I may review another time, but the book I eventually chose is by Vaughan Roberts, God’s Big Picture …

In this excellent overview, Vaughan Roberts paints the big picture, showing how the different parts of the Bible fit together under the theme of the kingdom of God. He offers us tools to read it with confidence, enthusiasm and understanding. Vaughan points us to the Bible’s supreme subject, Jesus Christ, and the salvation God offers through him. (review on Eden.co.uk)

The author gives a simple, clear overview of how the Bible is one story, looking along the way at each section and how each fits the meta-narrative of God’s purpose in salvation. Well written and clearly explained, it helps you find a place for any Bible reading within the whole story/history of the story.

My friend really enjoyed reading this book, grasping for the first time  that the Bible is one book, one story, learning how to find her way around it, and even how to benefit from reading parts that seem obscure and difficult.

And I have benefitted from setting time aside simply to read, reminding myself of the basics of faith and discipleship. I have several books left in the pile by my bed, so it’s a habit I hope to continue to cultivate in 2018.

PS – I intended to include another book in this post, but neither DH nor I can either find the book or remember the title/author, although I can remember in detail where I read it and what the typeface was like! When it turns up, perhaps I’ll write another post as I can remember it was a good read – more complex than God’s Big Picture while covering much the same ground. 

Things to pray for our church …

That our relationships with our families, our friends and our neighbours would point to the reality of the living Lord Jesus.
That we would be welcoming and accepting of all who come through our doors, yet show them the transforming work of the Holy Spirit.
That our church would have unity amid diversity – loving those with whom we have nothing in common but the gospel.
That the preaching, and the teaching in small groups and in Junior Church, would be faithful to the Bible and full of the Holy Spirit.
That every church member would pray for and support the work among children and young people

I found this as a draft post, written sometime in October 2017 … I think perhaps I was going to expand on it, but have no idea what I was intending to write, so I post it now as it is. I do remember it came out of a PCC meeting where we were asked to set some prayer priorities for our church … so perhaps it’s a timely reminder this New Year to do so!

 

I’m not much good at making, let alone keeping, New Year resolutions. However, I’ve been conscious for some time that I’m not much good at keeping records of the various projects I make, and sometimes even finish.

So I’ve set up a new page … I could keep notes on a public site such as Ravelry but I know I’d never keep up, so I’ve added a page to this blog, Project Gallery. That way I can update it as and when I have a mind to. Do take a look … though it’s really only for my own benefit 🙂

See my new page Project Gallery for my one 2018 New Year resolution!

Remember this?

I started this blanket mid September … and finished it end October (in between one or two other projects – see scarf pattern in previous post!). The waffle stitch comes up just as wide as any other stitch (I use around 200 stitches for a single blanket size), but much shorter, as the post stitches pull each row down to create the texture. So instead of the usual 15 balls SSDK per blanket, I used rather more. But the drape and weight is fantastic!

This one’s a keeper! It’s in my blanket box, just waiting for those cold evenings/nights … which are due any day now 🙂

I want to do a CAL (crochet along) but I’d rather wait until I have the complete pattern rather than downloading a section a week (actually, I have two in mind and one is in monthly parts … toooo long to wait to do each section), so in the meanwhile, I’ve begun another project on my To Do list …

Lost in Time has a beautiful texture – see the link for some lovely colourways, too. But I’ve long wanted to try out Scheepjes Whirl yarn, 4 ply, available in the UK in 200g (1000m) cakes. Designed to pull from the middle, they are a slow colour-change yarn (which in the US you can order in many different combinations), in a cotton/acrylic mix. I’ve only just begun, and my immediate impression is that it’s much lighter than working in 100% cotton … so I’m not sure how the final garment will drape. Nor am I certain how large a shawl one cake will make, but at £20 each, one will have to do! And I’m enjoying the pattern, though the end of each row is a little confusing, working in such a dark colour, at least for now.

Other projects on the go (or WIPS, works in progress!) are:

  • a scrap blanket made from left overs of my Autumn Leaves blanket (see this post for details – obviously I’m using different colours. It’s the second time I’ve made this with leftovers as it’s a useful pattern for scraps)
  • Mandala Madness in crochet cotton, hook sized 1.5mm
  • Nuts About Squares I’m making one or two of each square, and I’ll decide on my own arrangement when I have sufficient … I try to make one a week – it’s going to take ages!
  • and I’m undoing a Log Cabin that I really don’t like – I’ll find another use for the variegated yarn I’ve been using.

So you’re up to date … but before I go, I’ll hit you with another blast of colour … this is definitely my favourite blanket to date, and I have plans to make another, smaller, version before long!

From: The Hen Garden

It’s been a while …

… since I last posted; there’s been a lot going on. But while I’ve not had time to blog about the hens, they’ve not been neglected! Now that the building work is finished, we are able to let the hens out to free range … it took a while for the Three Amigos to find […]

Who’s the King of the Castle?

We had a bit of a move round to give us access the one last raised bed I still need to empty. The girls are now in a much more open space on some fresh grass – but I’m still reseeding much of that side of the garden after moving the other beds, so we will continue […]

Integration

That was easy! As the new girls began to show signs of laying – their comb getting brighter, and crouching – we began to take the back off the Eglu Go, so they had to go and share the nest box in the Cube when they wanted to lay … there were a few spats, […]

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