Rhyme and No Reason!

Blogger, author and rhymester who likes to find the humour in life.

New Easter Outfits — April 4, 2018

New Easter Outfits

At Easter I don’t usually buy my daughter much chocolate, I usually end up buying her clothes, a new outfit or some pyjamas. Now that he is nearly 15  I tend to give her some money to get something as of course, being a mum I have no idea about fashion and God forbid that I should dare to give her anything handmade!

However, as you know, I love making little outfits for my great nieces and I thought Easter was the perfect time to make some more. As they are so young, they don’t complain that the styles may not be ‘designer’ or the latest trend. I have also found it very therapeutic and it a strange way it helps me to relax (despite all the swearing and tantrum throwing when I have to unpick something I have put together upside down or inside out)!

Having a bit of time on my hands before I start back at Uni, I have knocked up a few little bits for them for summer (assuming we get any).

Easter outfits
Anything but Books Tag — November 28, 2017

Anything but Books Tag

I have been tagged by my lovely blog sister Ritu to take part in the Anything but Books Tag. If you are not familiar already with Ritu’s blog then do check it out, as there is everything on there from recipes and healthy living advice, to anecdotes about family and so much more.

Q1. Name a cartoon that you love. 

I enjoyed lots of cartoons as a child but one of my favourites is Wacky Races. I love Dick Dastardly and his failed attempts at sabotaging the other racers. A colleague recently told me that I laugh like Muttley too, and she is right!

 

 

Q2. What is your favourite song right now 

This is going to be tricky as I do not follow anything that is in the charts at the moment, but one that I listen to a lot that isn’t too ancient is ‘Chandelier.’ Sia has such a powerful voice and puts o much passion into the song. I love it.

 

Q3. What could you do for hours that isn’t reading

I think that would probably be sewing. It can take quite a while just cutting out the patterns before I even get started on putting everything together. It is time that I enjoy and productive too.

 

Q4. What is something that you love to do that your followers would be surprised by

I love to play games like ‘The Sims’ or Farmville but get a little obsessed. I always have to tend my farm, every morning before work or Uni or anything else!

 

Q5. What is your favourite, unnecessarily specific thing to learn about

I have always loved learning new things, and of course being at uni at the moment I am learning in much more detail things that I only had a basic knowledge of before. I am really getting into anatomy and physiology, and the more I learn from it, the more I want to learn.

 

Q6. What is something unusual you know how to do

Bull boots, wire a plug? Are they unusual? I am not sure. I don’t really have any hidden talents.

Q7. Name something that you’ve made in the last year

I have made several things but the most recent is some Christmas pyjamas that I wrote about  here 

Anything but Books Tag

 

 

Q8. What is your most recent personal project

For me, it has to be going back to University to study for my Nursing Degree. I really wanted to gain a qualification as a Registered Nurse rather than the Associate Practitioner (Nursing) that I had before. To get this degree will be an ambition fulfilled.

Q9. Tell us something that you think of often

I am always worrying about losing weight and become healthier. It seems to be a struggle for me at the moment, as the slightest sign of stress sends me into ‘comfort eating’ mode.

 

Q10. Tell us something that’s your favourite, but make it oddly specific

It is my nails which are pretty at the moment. As we have no practical work for a while I can get away with wearing some nail polish and growing my nails a little and. I am making the most of it.

Anything but Books TagI would like to nominate the following to have a go, if they want to, of course.

Tonya

Melinda

Rich

 

A Christmas Project — November 26, 2017

A Christmas Project

I have been pretty busy at the moment with studying and I thought that this weekend I would take a little break from it all and do something that I enjoy, (apart from blogging of course).

As some of you may know, I enjoy sewing and dressmaking, and although I am by no means an expert, I am definitely improving the more I do. I particularly love making clothes for my little great-nieces and have made quite a few outfits, for them, especially in the summer months. Here are some of my projects on Pinterest. 

Last Christmas I  managed to make a skirt and trousers in fun Christmas fabric. You can see little Molly modelling her skirt that I made.

 

I didn’t know what to make this year but I wanted it to be a little bit more adventurous than what I had done before, as well as something practical.

Mr Grump was busy watching the rugby so I cracked on with it. It took a little longer than I expected, but just after midnight I had finished my project and was pleased with the results. They are not perfect, but they do look cosy and warm!

Writer’s Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge – Obsession. — May 18, 2016

Writer’s Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge – Obsession.

I am taking part in Ronovan and Colleen’s Writers Quote Wednesday Challenge, and this week we have been given ‘obsession’ as our prompt word.
I felt that the following quote by sculptor, Henry Moore, pretty much sums up how I feel, and will be the subject of my poem.

“The creative habit is like a drug. The particular obsession changes, but the excitement, the thrill of your creation lasts.”

-Henry Moore

 

I have a bit of a problem

That I really ought to confess

Whenever I find a new hobby

I suddenly start to obsess!

First of all, it was sewing

I spent loads of money on that

But sadly, most of my creations

Were nothing better than tat!

I also get caught up in knitting

Stockpiling mountains of wool

With so many projects unfinished

I really am such a fool!

I had a go at card making

Buying up lots of supplies

I made a card for my daughter

After five or six tries!

And then I discovered blogging

As a way to cope with depression

I have slowly formed an addiction

And have yet another obsession!

TJ’s Household Haiku Challenge – Containers — January 2, 2016

TJ’s Household Haiku Challenge – Containers

I wasn’t sure what I was going to use today for TJ’s Household Challenge as ‘containers’ had so many possibilities.

Anyway, I have been on the lookout for a bag to keep my knitting in as a carrier bag is not the best receptacle! I was looking on Amazon to see how much they are and resented paying thirty quid for the bucket bag that I wanted.

However, I came across Craftsy Website where they had free tutorials on how to make one. Bonus! I had a few scraps of fabric leftover and gave it a whirl. I was really thrilled, as although I am not a great sewist (sewer looks wrong), I managed to make it, and I was more pleased as I have not felt like doing any sewing or anything for ages.

After all that rambling here is my haiku (and my bag)!

 

My new knitting bag –

A few hours,  some old fabric

Was all it took!

 

 

 

 

 

When I am Not Writing…… — September 21, 2015

When I am Not Writing……

I spend far too long on my blog, either writing posts or catching up with reading other bloggers’ but it is something that I do truly enjoy. However, for our Writing 101 post today, I am to tell you about what I like to do when I am not writing to re-charge my batteries!

Well, most of the time, when I am not writing, it is because I am at work. Most of you know what  do at work anyway, and although I do have a rant now and again, there are some wonderful and precious moments at work that I am privileged to be a part of.

I love some of the quips that my elderly patients come out with, such as “I have had a few pricks in my time”. An innocent remark, but not to someone like me who roared their head off! I asked another lady to “just swing your legs round please”, as I was helping her to get out of bed. She informed me that she “doesn’t do a lot of swinging nowadays.”  How can comments like that not brighten up the day!

Also, on the other side, yesterday, in amongst all of the chaos, I noticed a patient in my bay was not going to have long left in this world, and after we informed the doctors, who in turn informed her family,who left straight away to try to get to see her (they lived 90 mins away). Myself and two other staff took turns in staying with her, holding her hand and stroking her hair, as we did not want her to be on her own in her final moments. She actually managed to hang on until the family came, and passed away peacefully in their company.

I am not one for going out too much, being a bit of a hermit, so another thing I like to do, is a bit of home sewing, trying my hand at making various things, that are rather hit and miss in their success. I am also in the middle of 2 knitting projects as well. The one at the bottom will all be sewn together once I have knitted enough squares. I don’t want to give too much away as to what the end result is yet, but I need to get a bloody move on!!!

So that is pretty much it, unless you count the times I do venture out and a bit of Candy Crushing when the mood takes me!

Episode 235: Grumpy Dolly! — March 21, 2015

Episode 235: Grumpy Dolly!

After yesterday’s solar eclipse non-event, (just for the record, this morning at the same time, the sun was out in all its glory) I decided that I would do something constructive with my day off. I haven’t done any sewing for a while, and being still fresh and enthusiastic from watching the ‘Great British Sewing Bee’ plus subscribing to a sewing magazine, I thought it was about time I tried my hand at making something new.

Now, I do not have a fantastic track record with my sewing endeavours,(if i did I would have a sewing blog, showcasing all of my wonderful creations), but I have managed to produce a couple of items that are actually wearable, and anyway practice makes perfect, so I dug around for a suitably ‘easy’ pattern, just to get myself back into the swing of things.

That sorted, I  nagged Mr Grump to come with me to the other side of town to find the new fabric outlet that had recently opened. We eventually found it after trawling around the units on the industrial estate where they were situated (actually the bright pink painted wall outside helped)!

The friendly couple were very chatty and it turned out the lady knew my little sister ‘(the lovely lady with the long, blonde hair and fishtail plait. I get described usually as ‘the stocky one)’ as she used to buy her fabric from the shop my sister worked at some time ago. I bought some fabric and other bits and set off home to start work on it.

This dress is something you are supposed to be able to knock up in an evening, so I thought I would get a head start and cut the pieces out before Miss Hap came in from school. She was going to stay the weekend with my sister who has a caravan on the coast and we were taking her down there in time for dinner.

Anyway, I soon realised that I had miscalculated the amount of fabric needed and was short of about 3/4 of a metre. I was cross so poor old Mr Grump trotted off quickly before they closed (early on a Friday) to get the rest of it so I could get it done last night.

After a lovely visit with my sister and a catch-up we headed home for our dinner then I was going to start my dress. Usually I have my mannequin ‘Dolly’ handy to help me work things out and pin my creations to, but she has been banished to the shed as I have neglected for so long and Mr Grump was sick of her hanging around,

Mr Grump himself, decided to have a few drinks and put a bit of music on (probably to drum out the BBBBBRRRRRRR  of the sewing machine), so he was quite happy, I, however was getting mad. I could not figure out how to put the zip in this dress, and after the fourth failed attempt, and the clock nudging midnight, had decided to take drastic action.

I commandeered Mr Grump to be my Dolly and plonked the dress on him. I just needed to figure out how the zip actually looked when worn, and he was on hand for me to see how to do it. Luckily he had a few drinks under his belt by then, and was suitably anesthetized against any stray pin pricks that my clumsy hands might have inadvertently inflicted on him.

It worked, as I did finally get the zip in, and the dress finished off. It is a bit lumpy and bumpy in places (probably due to me also being lumpy and bumpy in places), but overall I am rather pleased with it! Teamwork eh, isn’t it great?!

Episode 174: Stung By The Sewing Bee! — February 21, 2015

Episode 174: Stung By The Sewing Bee!

The Great British Sewing Bee had started its third series so be warned! I was addicted to the first two, bought both the books, and tried out some of the patterns.

Let’s just say that I am a little ‘inexperienced’ at the moment, and also the patterns do not seem to be designed for my shape at all! (Ok, I’m just rubbish at it)!

Of course now that it is back on again, I have renewed interest in all things home-sewn and once I have bought this new book, I will be desperate to make some of the amazing garments from the show.

There will be no end of swearing,stomping about and unpicking, but maybe, just maybe I will actually produce something that I can wear, or is useful this time!  So beware, I might even post a picture one day if anything turns out right!

Episode 88: Footprints in the Snow….. — January 3, 2015

Episode 88: Footprints in the Snow…..

Well it seems that the holidays are now well and truly over. I have already been back to work a week and my days seem to be a bit topsy-turvy at the moment; some people don’t even start back at work until Monday, and are still wringing out the last drop of holiday cheer (not that I blame them), whereas I am back into the swing of things with gusto!

When I came home from work today, Mr Grump had taken down all of the decorations and they have been put away ready for next year. I have to say that for me, once New Years Day is over then it is time to put everything away (Mr Grump was a bit  tender-headed on New Year’s Day and it didn’t get done). I like the house to be back to normal; although it looks bare without the decorations, cards and lights, it is uncluttered and fresh, ready to face the year ahead

There is something so exciting about the beginning of a new year stretching out in front of you.It ‘s like virgin snow, unblemished, just waiting for you to decide which way you will go. There are many pathways but they are all hidden under the snow, and won’t become visible for some time, so you have to choose wisely. Many people make resolutions so that they can try and improve their journey through life, but as I have mentioned before, this doesn’t work for me.

Yes I definitely want to try new things this year. There is always something new to learn, and I like to challenge myself to gain more skills. Last year it was learning how to sew. Well, actually I mean make things, things I can wear, or things I can use. I did make things. I made myself and Miss Hap matching circle skirts out of a fabric that had different coloured fish on it. I was pleased with them, thought they were nice and summery. Miss Hap was NOT impressed. It is not cool to have a home-made (badly) skirt, and it is doubly uncool for your Mum to have the matching one. She did however like the advent bag, I made her as I didn’t realise how big it was, and I had to buy a chocolate bar rather than a chocolate coin or something so it didn’t look lost in the giant bag!

My rubbish attempt at making a skirt.
My rubbish attempt at making a skirt.

My sewing endeavours will still continue this year, as there are definitely improvements to be made on that front (learning to follow a pattern correctly is always a good place to start)! However there are many other things that are waiting for me to try my hand at this year, and I shall no doubt be lunging at them in my usual gung-ho manner. you never know, I might even find something that I am good at!

Episode 21: All Sewn Up!! — October 19, 2014

Episode 21: All Sewn Up!!

As Christmas will soon be upon us, I decided that I would get out my sewing machine and try to make something festive….

My younger sister is pretty creative; Every Christmas her house is festooned with stockings that she has made for various people, all named,and with other little personal touches to make them extra special. She has festive bunting, also home-made, plus loads of other little Christmas bits and pieces that she has created over the years, .This along with the various tasteful lights she has, always makes her house seem magical .

Christmas dinner around her house is not only a gargantuan feast (she is a fantastic chef),  but everyone has a little personalised place-name, and the table is dressed to perfection, everything matching, and it is obvious that a lot of thought and effort has gone into it.

I am rather envious of how homely and welcoming her house is, and thought that I would have a go at making something Christmassy for my daughter that she can use each year, and maybe even for her own future children; after all Christmas is all about family and tradition….

I had already seen some thing that I wanted to make, It was an Advent bag! My sister had handmade a beautiful Advent Calendar herself with lots of different materials and little pockets for gifts each day, but I thought that might be a little ambitious for me and the Advent Bag  it was going to be.

I had actually bought the materials I needed over the last week, as I had seen this pattern some time ago. Mr Grump had resigned himself to the fact that I was determined to make this bag, and he reluctantly accompanied me into the fabric shop. I got out my little list of things I needed, but I hadn’t really been very specific so I ended up buying far too much stuff! A metre of velcro sounds about right. Oh and I need some fabric glue etc, until I came out of there as light in the purse as Mr Grump was purple in the face!!

I searched the town for other bits I needed, and ended up buying some velcro dots as well (they seemed easier to use), E Bay took care of the other small pieces I needed, and today as I had got all of my equipment together and had a bit of time on my hands (This giving up smoking lark has given me a bit of extra time plus I needed to do something with my hands) I was ready to begin.

Looking at the Tutorial (I had to make sure it was a step-by step one with photos) I reckoned it would only take me about an hour and I was looking forward to seeing the end result,..By the time I had got out my sewing machine, ironing board and other paraphernalia, I had lost a bit of enthusiasm, but as Miss Hap was out playing, and Mr Grump had fallen asleep in his chair, I decided I would get on as I had a bit of peace, with no interference.

I cut out all the bits I needed according to the pattern, and now came the exciting part of putting everything together…

Step 1, prepare pocket….I hadn’t cut out a bit for a pocket, there was nothing on the pattern for a bloody pocket!! Oh, well. I’ll have to wing it, and cut a bit of fabric that looks about the right size. That done I started on the outside…of the bag..After 3 attempts of sewing and unpicking, then re-sewing, that looked ok, so now the inside…great I have to attach the sodding pocket but it doesn’t say how..I did  what I thought looked right and carried on…

The velcro dots I bought were way too big for what I wanted, as were the lovely bright number stickers, but undaunted I made do with what I had, and wrote the numbers on by hand, plus cut strips of velcro from the metre I had bought (I used in total about 20cm)! Great now all I had to do were the finishing touches…

As I turned the bag the right way round I realised that I had put the bottom on the bag the wrong way around! Never mind, I managed to unpick that and put it right, Also the stupid pocket was sewn in down the side instead of across the back! Bugger! Oh well I took the scissors to the bag and cut the offending pocket straight out, no-one would even know that it was supposed to be there anyway!!

At last the finished result!! Mr Grump had somehow managed to sleep throughout most of my swearing, cursing and slamming around, but he wisely said  I had done a good job.  Miss Hap, however, had just come in from playing, and I said to her to stay out of the front  room for a minute as I was making something for her, and I didn’t want her to see it! “Oh no, you’re not making me a Halloween costume are you?” Great! I had spent ages making this damn thing that I hoped she would enjoy come December, but unfortunately Miss Hap has had previous experience of my sewing frenzies in the past (She still has the summer dress I made her out of ‘liquorice all sorts’ material unworn in her wardrobe)!!

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