Category Archives: Blogging

Where to begin…

Two weeks home from a wonderful week in London and I have not written one word about it.


Was it a failure?

NO WAY was it a failure!

It was so fantastic that I am struggling to come back down to earth once more. The days, the people, the places and the fun & laughter and of course Toyboys… they still swirl around in my head.


With Barbara my niece

With Barbara my niece, photo taken by my grand niece Rebekah

I had/have several crochet projects going on that had time limits, so my fingers were kept busy during the swirling, twirling kaleidoscopic aftermath of my adventures.

There were also other reasons .

  • I am playing my part in the preparations for a family gathering. For me that task is baking.
  • Over the past few months I noticed that I was finding it more difficult to spend time reading or working at my computer. I was blaming my eyes, they would become tired quickly and the screen, the print or photographs seemed dull. An added difficulty was having a ‘Shiny’ screen that acted like a mirror in bright light ( no. I did not appreciate seeing my ould ragged face every time I opened my laptop). Poor Tobias Laptop has been limping for a long time, but on Thursday just as I found some time and inspiration to post on my blog, he gave up the ghost. Died. Dead as a door nail.

I do have so much to share, the holiday and the craft work of the past months. I also have wonderful photos on a USB key, and only managed to add one for the moment.

It might be next week, but I promise details.. some of them anyway… a girl needs her secrets! 😉

An answer for Celi

Celi at The Kitchens Garden, has issued a challenge to her huge following who read, comment or become part of the Farmy Fellowship: The deal is to post an image of where we write their posts, our comments and responses.

In my case it varies like Irish weather, I no longer have a fixed desk. In winter it is normally in my living room where I can see and warm my tootsies by the open fire.

At the other end of the L shaped room is my dining table and if I need to use my printer, that is where I work.

In the preparation for hip replacement back in 2009, I purchased a bed table on castors. It has become the most used piece of furniture in my house. I can move it from room to room as I wish, the castors on the base frame slide in under my bed and allows me to type away to my hearts content without the weight on my legs.

When cooking or baking, I can access my recipe folder on the laptop by wheeling the laptop through to join me. It sits neatly under the counter top until I need to check something.

My corner for several weeks now has been in a comfortable armchair near the window for the light and surrounded by my latest crochet project – More on that another day.


Special words…We all have them, and indeed most cannot be found in a dictionary.

Yesterday I learned a new one from Viv:


It was in connection with quilting and crafting. We are both avid followers of talltalesfromchiconia and were wowed by her latest creation.

In needlework of all kinds I ferniggle, adapt and cheat all the time. We are often reminded that there is more than one way to skin a cat (mind you I like to keep away from cats, so never tested it) I am a great believer in there being more than one way to do anything.

Hush will you, I am not talking about a right way and a wrong way, as if that were the only choice. I mean adapting a different way to make something fit, look, feel etc., I might use a ‘what-ya-ma-call-it’ or ‘a thing-a-ma-gig’ to help me get there.

Daddy had a phrase: Cut your cloth to suit your pattern. He might have meant living within my means, but I ferniggled it to mean fiddling about and adjusting my pattern to suit my cloth, yarn… or indeed my recipe to suit the ingredients in my pantry!

If I like the sound of a recipe that calls for butter, well, I will find a substitute for that ‘butter’ that can never touch my lips. It works for me and so far nobody has refused to eat my home baking.

Mammy was a dab hand at ferniggling a hat. In her book it was a ‘mortlar’ (think mortal sin) to plonk a hat like an upturned flowerpot on any head. She would always perch them at an angle, add a tricky feather or punch a dent in the side of chosen hat for the day. Do you think that is where I got it from?

The last hat/headgear I made was not alone ferniggled but footery into the bargain. It was well worth the effort and a great success!

In the doldrums

Not me.

I have been busy making up for lost time.

My eye surgery was a wonderful success and I have found a new joy in craft work that had been neglected for the past year or so.

There was a t-shirt that Elly threw on my bed one morning, way back last year.

“Could you alter the neckline for me mum, it is far to high and tight? You know me, I hate tight necklines they make me feel like I am choking. I think it needs to be shortened about three inches… and the side seams taken in”.

I love how my non ‘needle’ daughter sees her mother! 😛

The t-shirt is well on the way now and I have a morning’s hand sewing left to finish it off… photos to follow.

I emptied, washed and refilled my heat packs and made a new one to Elly’s specifications. I use a fleece fabric.

I washed and re-corded my kitchen blinds.

Fabric that I bought over a year ago for bathroom curtains, has now reached the top of my sewing bundle. And I still have a fitted sheet to alter.

I completed some crochet items, a star knee blanket, a jacket – which you have seen, two berets and a third is at the final stage.

These tasks all take time. I am slower than I used to be and the late, but welcome Gypsy summer as my friend Celi calls it, gave us extra daylight for the past month. The first of November was a wonderful bright and sun filled day, so totally different and warmer than 1st of June – our high summer.

I am also enjoying driving again. For quite a while it was local and utilitarian. I am venturing further and even had a week in Dublin. Elly suggested their late bank holiday weekend and she stretched it by taking an extra day’s holiday on the Friday. We did Girly things – shopping, eating, visiting friends and an evening at the Movies. George worked in the background and my car was given the works, a complete Valeting – it looked like it was just out of the showroom. Pity the skies cried all the way home to County Antrim!

I do have photos, but need to sort them out.

I am back! And hope to return to regular blog reading and commenting, although I missed it, the weeks away from screens large and small, was good for my soul. I knew you would understand. Good friends do.

For Irmi

Earlier in the week Irmi left a comment on my About page asking if I could explain the ins and outs of ‘Liking’ on blog posts. Irmi hails from Munich in Bavaria, but does not as yet have a blog of her own. Our paths have crossed on blogs we both visit and participate in, on a regular basis.

Can you tell me the way how one can “like” a comment at wordpress?



The Like icon appears at the base of most published blog posts and all you need to do is click on it. Then your avatar will appear with any others already there. I think you might need to be logged into WordPress or have an Avatar in order to use the Like button.

Is there a deeper meaning in ‘Liking’ – besides being nice and friendly?

Likes are a way to show appreciation for a post or a comment. Some people use them to show they have visited without leaving a comment.I notice that some blogs have the facility to like a comment, but I do not use it.

Are there competitions for ‘liking’ a post or does the blog owner for instance get something for being ‘liked’ very often?

Not that I know of. Perhaps it gives them the boost to keep posting on a regular basis.

Thank you for visiting my blog and adding your tuppenceworth at times. We are kindred spirits when it comes to crocheting, I see. The blue scarf you mention stopped me in my tracks.

Did you mean the knitted mauve and white cowl using a random coloured yarn?  ‎ I saw it on Pinterest but did as I often do with 3D objects: work from my head without a pattern. I worked it on a circular needle, decreasing stitches evenly across every eight or ten rows. On most occasions it works out and since I do not sell items, it is not a problem if it is not exactly like the original. As my father was fond of saying: Every fault is a fashion!

I am pleased you enjoyed my trip down memory lane through the wool and craft shops of my (much) younger years.

Enjoy delving into the older posts. If you click on the Categories in the side bar and scroll down to Crafts and click on it, you might find some posts of interest.

Sunday fun.

Ramana was feeling playful the other day and invited his readers to join in this game:

Every answer must start with the first letter of your first name:

First name: Marie
An animal: Mink
A girl’s name: Muriel
A boys name: Michael
A colour: Magenta
A place: Melbourne
A book: Machine Embroidery
A movie: Memento
A drink: Martini
A precious stone: Moldavite
A type of food: Macaroon
An occupation: Metallurgist
An illness: Meningitis
An emotion: Merry – with or without wine! 😛
Something you wear: Mules
A piece of furniture: Mirror
Something in the bathroom: Moisturiser
A reason to be late: Major accident. I did want to say death, but that does not begin with M!
Something you shout out: Magnifique!

I am so fortunate

Yes. I really am.

I may well be a lady-in-waiting, on a long list for eye surgery, but I can still see. This is NOT a ‘pity me’ post, only an explanation. Once I wear my prescription sunglasses, I am legally covered to drive. driving for me is FREEDOM. I can go out, meet people and enjoy the outside world. Heck, I drove a 119 mile round trip to have lunch with Elly & George, last Saturday (their journey was a little longer).

In my Granny’s day she needed to have cataract surgery, but back then, you had to go blind before surgery was attempted. That was when I was a schoolgirl  in the early 1960s. She did not go blind, but could not read beyond the headlines in a newspaper, so reading books or going to the movies (flickering screens) were lost to her. The surgery that I now require would not have been available to her either.

Some days are better than others, the Macular hole in my right eye affects the vision I use when looking directly at something, for example when I’m reading or looking at the laptop screen, thus the lack of posting from me. i have no pain in my eye but the discomfort varies from day to day. There are days when I do not want to read. Anything.

I use WhatsApp for daily contact with Elly, either by way of my mobiile or on the laptop. She tells me that she knows which device I am using, by the number of typos. I realise how frustrating this can be for regular readers, but hopefully the situation will improve post-surgery.

Please have patience with this patient!

I found this fellow when we were out yesterday. I had to wait until I came home to see what the photo detail was like. I have no idea of who the sculptor was, but I liked the piece.

Hello dear!

Hello dear!

A long catch-up updated.

We have talked about it for six months.

Yesterday was the day and we had six years to catch up on.

First time round we were part of a larger group so the chat was general. Six whole years yet it felt like it was only one single day since we met. Just the two of us with no interruptions so the conversation flowed. Easily.

I was meeting fellow blogger Nelly, from Nelly’s Garden.  She suggested we meet at Clotworthy House where we had coffee before wandering the grounds of Antrim Castle Gardens.

I love this place and have visited and blogged about it on several occasions.

We walked and talked we sat to enjoy the scenery and talked until we talked ourselves dry so we needed another coffee before we parted and went our separate ways. I hope it will not take another six years before we meet again.

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Some of the photos were from a visit a few days earlier.

Life is all about Sharing

Sometimes, I might babble on with a lot of old drivel….

 “GM talks drivel 24/7!”

Who said that?

Was it you Darren? Careful now, I might demote you from the Toyboy list! 😛

Sometimes my babble contains snippits of advice or a handy tip, or ‘another’ way to tackle a problem. Apparently a few weeks ago, I did just that: Offer a suggestion to use Sugru®, in a blog comment at THEKITCHENSGARDEN, all the way over in Illinois, USofA. Then the Toyboys distracted me and I forgot all about it.

I forgot all about it until yesterday, when katechiconi in Australia, another regular visitor to The Kitchens Garden, made contact to tell me. She had followed the link to Sugru®, sourced, purchased and used the product. Today she followed up with a blog post on how she used it  for Earbuds – in simple detail!

I last used this wonerful product in december and you can read about it here.

Declaration 1: I have no connection with the Sugru® Empire – well, the company has certainly grown since the first little video I watched from a young lady… I think she was in her father’s workshop or garden shed. I am a great believer in thinking outside the box and that is exactly what this young lady did… and built an empire!