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Time to get out there and sew...

Less than two weeks till midsummer, so it struck me that there was no point waiting for hot weather and every point in putting my nice warm cardigan on, putting my crazy lap quilt over my legs while I embroidered the seams through its fleece backing and heading outside on a sunny day where the temperature is, according to the nearby thermometer, 17 degrees centigrade (62.6 Fahrenheit for those who use that measurement.)

Yes, it’s windy enough to ruffle a cat’s fur but it’s surprisingly pleasant to sit with the fountain burbling gently when the sun’s out, the potentilla bush and the Sweet Williams flowering and the lavender beside me to scent the air. What’s more, it’s only sensible because I want to do better than Amy and have this ready by August all ready to publicise her next adventure. It’s called Crazy for Death, which is special to me because I took the cover picture for the first time ever.

Amy and I got interested in crazy quilts when I stumbled across a website that had some amazing examples of historic ones (insert link.) I rapidly decided that I’m too much of a control freak to be able to make a traditional one and probably too practical as well because my first thoughts were ‘how on earth do you wash something with that many fabrics in it’ and how heavy it must be.

Then I came across Creative Grids’s Crazy 8 and Crazy 6 templates and suddenly I could make an organised crazy quilt. That seemed to have me written all over it and I had a thirty year old pack of brushed cotton six inch Christmas squares that I’d been planning to do something with for… oh, thirty years, and isn’t that a coincidence? So I sewed some of them together on the machine so that I could cut bigger pieces and got down to work, and loved piecing it last Christmas. I was planning to quilt it ready for this Christmas, but the weather’s been so cool, and I make more tops than I usually manage to quilt so I decided that I’d start quilting now and switch to embroidery when or maybe if the hot weather comes in.

So here it is, and here I am, sitting in the sunshine and thinking whatever thoughts drift across my mind. Two cats are close at hand, the sun is going in and out, the smell of sun dried washing adds its own perfume to the air as it blows in the breeze and the insects and butterflies flit round happily I’ve lost count of what number simple pleasure this is, but it’s definitely up there with the best of them…

Here’s another one. I wrote that on Wednesday and it’s now Friday and my birthday. Which, since it is a significant one with a zero on the end and because I no longer have to worry about surprise parties because of my wonky immune system meant I got to choose what I wanted to do. So my daughter has taken me out for coffee and cake, bought from a gorgeous converted horse box which donates part of its profits to the Fishermen’s Mission and I’ve been sitting with my embroidery on a sun warmed iron framed wooden bench by the Fisherman’s Haven at the far end of Poole Quay. My half shot latte (yes I am a lightweight wuss. No I don’t care,) tastes amazing. We’re taking the cake home so my husband and son can help us eat it because it’s incredibly rich rocky road and hey have rotten hay fever so a walk alongside grass and wildflowers and through a little wood would count as a breach of their human rights.


People come wandering by and this is Poole, so they stop to see what I’m doing and we have a chat about either the embroidery they do or the people they remember who used to sew. You couldn’t get a better view in the poshest restaurant in the South of France and hardly anyone seems to know it’s there. In a little while, I shall paddle my toes in the water and watch the baby fishes and crabs and then walk home along the edge of the Harbour while I watch all the little boats heading out to play. My daughter cooked my breakfast and will cook my lunch and tomorrow I shall have home made scones, clotted cream and jam while I sit in the garden.

And here's what I was embroidering and the view...

Happy birthday to me and happy week to all of you.


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