Tuesday, 16 January 2018

New Year, Looking Forward and Back in Time

Halfway through January already and New Year's Day seems a long time ago!  We went to the cinema on 1st January to see The Last Jedi as we are Star Wars fans and enjoyed the continuation of the story very much.
The Christmas cake has been demolished!  As much as I love it, I am glad that it is all eaten up ... not good for my waistline! :)
I'm not one for the January sales, but I did rescue this Venus Fly Trap for 18p at the garden centre.
It is on our living-room window sill along with my previously rescued orchids that are once again in bloom.

We had a few dull days at the beginning of January, when it was all about being cosy indoors.

I have been working on my 'Twas the Night Before Christmas Socks, a pattern by my lovely friend Dani of Little Bobbins Knits.  The gorgeous yarn is Underneath the Mistletoe by Molly of A Homespun House.  I'm hoping to finish these this month and to begin to get my many WIPs under control! :)
A few years ago I started researching my family tree and knowing that I was interested in family history, my husband gifted an Ancestry DNA kit to me for Christmas.  This past week I have been working on my family tree again.  So far online, I have found back to my 5 x great grandfather on one side of my family and hope to find out more soon.
The sun returned and we took advantage with an afternoon walk around the village.
Our aim was to see if the snowdrops were in bloom yet
and they have just started to appear.
There is so much to see, even in the middle of winter.

I'm hoping to photograph this oak tree each month to see how it changes throughout the year.

We headed home as the sun set.

For me January is the time to start planning the gardening year.  I will sow these sweet peas indoors this month
and chit these potatoes in our garage.
At the weekend I visited a quilters' fair at Farnham Maltings.
Quilting is something that I would like to do more of.  There was a lot of inspiration from various local quilting groups and these are just a few of my favourite quilts that were on display.

Janet Clare had a stand at the fair.  I hope to attend one of her workshops when I have got on top of my many projects.
There were also a couple of ladies demonstrating exquisite, Japanese embroidery with silks and seed beads.

This weekend we also made the decision to book a holiday in Edinburgh, so that I can attend Edinburgh Yarn Festival.  I'm so excited as it is my first visit to the festival and I'm looking forward to meeting up with friends who are going too.

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

December in Review - Out & About

My final post about 2017.  I was quite busy during the lead up to Christmas, but we still managed to fit a few day trips in; regular Christmas time visits to places we love.
Little Grey Sheep
The first trip out was to Well Manor Farm, the home of Little Grey Sheep.  We followed the signs down country lanes
until we arrived at the farm.

These ladies were greeting visitors outside the barn.

Going inside
to peruse the yarn and other goodies.

We met some friends and had tea and cake.  Some yarn was purchased! ;)
To my amazement a lady was selling this secondhand drum carder for £25!
My husband cleaned it up and it's as good as new!
We headed back to Winchester for our annual visit to the Christmas market held beside the cathedral.  It is only a small market, but is our favourite one.

A huge cauldron of mulled wine!  It smelt delicious,
but I was heading towards the mulled Highland mead!
M tried the hot, buttered beverage, but wasn't too that keen on it unfortunately.

J had the same drink as I did.

S was driving, so opted for the roast chestnuts, a favourite treat of his.

Afterwards we wandered around the shops.

Winchester looks especially pretty as dusk falls and all the lights are twinkling.

It has become a tradition of ours to celebrate the winter solstice at Stonehenge.  It rained on the way down, but cleared as we reached the car park.

We knew that it would be cloudy and that we were unlikely to see the sun,

but Stonehenge is a marvellous place to visit whatever the weather and to soak up the atmosphere.

Everyone is enjoying themselves, singing, dancing and making music.  There were people in costume and others doing yoga.

Of course the stones themselves are magical.

I've put together a short video of the choir, drumming and dancers here.


Afterwards we walked across the fields towards the barrows.

Just us and the crows.

RHS Wisley
Another annual December trip is to the gardens at RHS Wisley to experience the Glow illuminations.

And that is me all up-to-date with my blog!  It has taken a while, but I plan to post more regularly now.  Sounds like a new year's resolution!
Happy New Year.