Flowers, flowers and more flowers…

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Now the evenings are drawing in I’m finding a little more time for knitting and, being at heart a one project person, I’m keen to finish a cardigan I started early in the Summer. But when my friend, Sharm, started making a beautiful flower blanket I really wanted to crochet along so I’ve been making a few blocks. You can find the pattern for these blocks on her blog, Country Fragrance. I think this is a lovely block pattern although I’m not planning another bed-sized crochet blanket for a while so I’m not quite sure how many more I’ll make or what I’ll make them into.

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The real festival of flower here, though, is in the garden and I have pretty much abandoned them, now, to dance into Autumn in their disorderly chaos of colour.

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Our garden is really more than a one person job and it has been a solitary, endless and mostly thankless task this year but the flowers (and vegetables) do make me smile and I secretly feel that, in a way, I have been a victim of my own success! To sound like a real gardener, however, I know the correct phrase is: “We’ve been lucky with the weather this year” ;)

I’m hoping the flowers will keep dancing on for another month or two and that then, towards the end of October, Jack Frost will come one night and clear it all away, leaving me with a clean slate to start again next year. That is what I call being ‘lucky with the weather’ and that is when, if I’m lucky myself, I’ll find more time to crochet again :)

Janine @ Rainbow Hare

 

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On becoming a Diarist…

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Are you a diarist? Or a keeper of a journal, or a note book? Do you record important events and ideas, perhaps doodles and sketches, designs?

Aside from a work diary of appointments, I can’t tell you how much I envy and admire anyone who can keep a coherent record of events or projects for more than two days at a time…

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Graphics Fairy

I have spent a lifetime as a keeper of everything in my head but, recently I’ve been thinking it would be very handy to have a written record of various things. To some extent, my blog serves this purpose but I often find myself wondering (or disputing with Mr RH) about unblogged things like exactly when I planted seeds/harvested cabbages last year and considering whole sequences of events to decide when someone must have visited or when we bought something. And even on my blog I tend to make great proclamations of crafting goals and inspirations and then either forget about them or struggle to find them again.

So I concluded that there was nothing else for it. I would just have to become a diarist. And, after much searching I chose an 18 month 2017/18 Moleskine Alice in Wonderland Diary, which I bought from Wordery.

It was a bit pricy but I am hoping that will be an incentive to actually use it. It is unusual enough not to be just another fallen-by-the-wayside-notebook. And, with the days on the left hand spread and a blank page on the right for overspill, it seems to me a good size and layout to contain useful information without either running out of space or having wasted space. It also has some stickers. I’m not persuaded that the actual stickers add anything to it but they do slide into a backpocket, which might come in useful for something one day.

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Graphics Fairy

Whilst waiting for the diary to arrive, I discovered Bullet Journaling. I watched the video and scanned through the ‘learn more’ sections and I thought ‘this is exactly what I need – a genius, easy to use system to keep properly organised with everything in one place’. It does not require a diary. In fact an ordinary notebook would work better. But I thought, ‘I’ll be able to adapt the general system easily enough’.

Then the diary arrived and I looked back at all the bullet journalling info and I thought, ‘OMG this is so complicated! I can’t even remember all those symbols and instructions from one minute to the next! I’ll never even be able to work out where to begin :(‘

So I began with a pen (a lamy safari), which I only mention because I wanted to give a recommendation to Andy’s Pens for their amazing service. I ordered a pen nib on Friday (3 August 2017) at 13.58 and I was more than surprised to receive an email at 14.01 saying it had been shipped. Three minutes from order to dispatch! Then it arrived the next day :)

And I decided just to start with a couple of the bullet journalling features, putting events under the days and ‘Tasks’ (a sort of weekly ‘to do’ list on the right). And I have to say that so far I am finding some satisfaction in ticking off the tasks and even feeling motivated to do more onerous tasks by the thought of ticking them off. I really should get out more! Then after a week, it seemed to be getting quite full and, at last, I got the point of having an Index so I made one in a section meant for ‘Timetables’. Perhaps as I go on I will incorporate more features and become super-organised…

But even now it is giving me a new perspective on time management. I never seem to stop but then I so often wonder where the time goes. Now I can look at ‘Weeding’ in my Index and I see ‘page 19’ and on page 19 -‘Weeded main veg area – 8+ hours’ and instead of feeling I have again failed to whip up a huge itinerary for my etsy shop, I think, ‘no wonder I don’t get much sewing done these days!’ I was, however, happy to tick that off as a weekly task and I did get the weeds before they seeded so, hopefully, that will make for more sewing time in the future. Perhaps I will even schedule some!

Do you have any tips for a good planning system?

Janine @ Rainbow Rare

I’m linking this post with New To Me 2017 at Celtic Thistle Stitches

Belle Rose Dresden Quilt

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This post is more a photo finish than a sewing finish but, I do feel that every quilt deserves it’s own blog post! A long time ago I had a small amount of Michael Miller Belle Rose from the French Journal Collection – about a fat quarter, I think. I loved that fabric so much I wanted to use every last inch so I made a Dresden Cushion (blogged here and here).

Son # 1 really liked it so I bought some yardage of the fabric and started making a quilt with the intention of gifting it to him and his fiancee the Christmas before last.

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I basically made the quilt and dresdens separately and I then hand sewed the dresdens onto the quilt. It is a kingsize quilt and, with hindsight, that was a ridiculous way of going about it! I abandoned it for nearly a year and eventually got it finished just in time for last Christmas.

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I added some musical fabric as detail (machine sewn) but as this quilt is so very massive and as the weather was so very dark and gloomy and wet I was never able to take any photos and I never got around around to blogging about it.

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And every time Son # 1 and his finacee visited us or we visited them either it was raining or the quilt was forgotten until last week when, to my surprise, the quilt came home for a few days and they even took it into the garden and took these photos for me. I should probably have ironed it…

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…but I’m very happy it has made it onto my blog at last, wrinkles and all :)

Meanwhile, Fiona has adopted a bear…

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…or perhaps the bear has adopted Fiona…

Happy Sewing!

Janine @ Rainbow Hare

I’m linking this post with Quilting is More Fun than Housework for TGIFF