Saturday, 3 December 2016

My Advent Calendar ♥ 3rd December

Hello Lovelies,
I'm loving this virtual advent calendar, It's a great excuse to do a simple and quick blog post. And to look back through my posts to see what Christmassy things I can find.
Today I thought I would share a crochet decoration I made four years ago. 
If you have been reading my blog for a while you might recall the story behind this, but here it is again anyway :0)

About ...oooh, six years ago now, my brother and sister in law offered to host Christmas at their house..... "just for one year".
 I crocheted them a decoration for their tree as a thank you. The one year turned into two, then three. Each year I made another decoration. Usually using patterns found online, but one year I made up my own...that's how the first ever Easy Crochet Owl was born. My most popular pattern by miles and miles :0)

The popularity of this pattern really took me by surprise and It's so lovely that people are still making them and letting me know how much they love them. Blogland  (and Instagram) is a wonderful thing isn't it.

As my brother and sister in law are once again hosting Christmas this year I think I should start looking for a decoration to make this year. Any suggestions?
Happy advent lovelies.
Jacquie x

This post is part of the blog link up hosted by Julie HERE

Friday, 2 December 2016

My advent Calendar ♥ 2nd December

Hello Lovelies,
for the second day of my virtual Advent calendar I thought I would share my actual advent calendar, but I thought you might like to know about why and where I bought it first. 

When mum and I visited Yorkshire back in September we stopped off in the place I grew up, Haworth.  I had a little wander up that steeply cobbled main street. Throughout my early years at school this was the way I walked home everyday.

The shop  I remember as the Newsagents (owned by a Mr Mitchell,  who was very patient with us children, when we spent an age carefully selecting one or two 1/2 penny and penny sweets) is now a rather lovely gift shop. It had the most wonderful floor made out of an old school gym floor, but all jumbled up so the coloured lines were completely random. You can see the inside of the shop HERE.

It my nostalgic haze I wondered it if had come from my old school...which is now luxury apartments. I had to ask...and no it wasn't from there :0)

Anyway, there were many tempting objevts in that shop, but the thing that really caught my eye were Angela Harding's Advent calendars.

They were just so perfect for me. A beautiful countryside scene filled with the things I love about winter......

The other thing I loved about them was that as you open the windows the surprises add to the overall design rather than spoiling it. Brilliant.

I'm so looking forward to the simple pleasure of opening a window every morning throughout advent.
And it's lovely to have a memento of our trip. I do hope I havn't bored you with my sentimental ramblings.
Happy Advent Lovelies.
Jacquie x

This post is part of the blog link up hosted by Julie HERE

Thursday, 1 December 2016

My Advent Calendar ♥ 1st December

Hello Lovelies,
just this morning I was reading Kezzies blog and  came across an Advent Calendar link up hosted my Julie.

Oooh, what a lovely idea and a great excuse to do a short ( and hopefully sweet) daily post .

So here is what's inside my window for the first of December. Like Kezzie I have a love of Holly and after our visit to Calke Abbey on Monday I felt inspired to do this little watercolour sketch.

I hope it makes you smile 

Happy Advent Lovelies
Jacquie x

P.S. I'm sure it's not too late to join in if you fancy being part of the fun. Just let Julie know HERE

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

My Walk 1000 miles in 2016 Challenge

 Hello Lovelies,
as I mentioned in my previous post, at the start of this week I was nearing the completion of my 1000 mile challenge. That's walking 1000  outdoor miles in 2016. A few of you may recall I also did this last year, and just made it on New Year's Eve.
THIS  post has a lot of detail about what I did last year and I started again with the same rules and the same goal at the start of 2016.

This year I have reached that goal already. Yay. Yesterday I wasn't starting work until lunchtime, and Eldest was home again, so we both headed out to do the final few miles on local footpaths.

It was such a beautiful, frosty morning. With icy puddles to crack.....

And rock hard ground under your feet.

The fields had a pink tinge I loved.

And the grass was nearly white.

Such long shadows.

Hello :0)

It was quite magical.

The familiar made special.

And when we got to my favourite church Eldest did a great job recording this 1000 mile moment for me.

Then we carried on.

Eldest is always happy to be outdoors. Here he's telling me how he could mend the rotting  footpath sign...bless him.

At sixteen he's still quiet the chatterbox. I hope it never changes.

I loved the stunning Ivy berries ......

And the misty view of distant hills.

and the free apples kindly put out by a neighbour.

This year I may not have gone anywhere exciting to complete my challenge, but I had lovely company and perfect weather. I feel so lucky.

I must thank all of you lovely people for the many congratulations, both here and on Instagram. You all all so kind.
I especially love to hear that I have inspired some of you to join the challenge too, or simply to get outdoors and walk a little more. It's so good for both body and soul.

Of course I will continue to record my mileage and see how many miles I manage by the end of the year.
Then next year I will start all over again...who will join me?
Jacquie x

Monday, 28 November 2016

A Walk at Calke



Today Eldest and I went for a walk in the late Autumn sunshine. What a gift such a day seems, especially when I would normally be at work and he would be home alone ( no college on Mondays for him)
It was chilly, especially at the waters edge, but the reflections there were gorgeous. There's something special about the light when the sun is so low in the sky in the middle of the day. How I loved the stillness and spotting many of my favourite birds. I was especially happy to get a photo for a Wren (even if it was only a rear view) 
We had a simple picnic of homemade cake (tea loaf) and shared some hot chocolate from a flask. I'm all about hot food and hot drinks at this time of year. they really do keep me warm. I loved sitting under the branches of an old oak tree to enjoy our snack, their colour is at it's best right now I think...and the leaves must surely fall very soon.
This is our third visit to the National trust's Calke Abbey...and they have all been in the closed season (no access to the house or gardens) . I must try to remedy that one day. Though to be honest, I'm happiest walking the grounds, and the nearby Staunton Harold reservoir .
The stable block is open year round...and it has excellent toilets, with pretty flowers (or greenery) picked from the gardens. What more could you ask :0)
Jacquie x

P.S. this 3.5 mile walk takes my total for the year so far to close to my 1000 miles goal ( and it's still November....go me :0)