Friday, 29 July 2011

Go Baby Giveaway ...Go look!


Oooooooooooh LOOK...... over on  

http://littlecottagecomforts.blogspot.com/

There is this great opportunity to enter this fab Giveaway...do go have a look! I will wish you good luck, if you will wish me the same!
Its a great blog too!

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Brain stall but still stitching

Am having a bit of a crisis I think. What do I do next?
Sell up and move house?
Then chuck the job in?
A where can I run to kind of crisis. Silly really, but its been creeping up on me and this week its sort of crystalised.
So I feel as if Im in flux and in need of a 'capacitator' to blow any cobwebs out, so I can think clearly again..well as much as Ive ever been able to anyways.

I have rejazzed this tree from ages ago. It lacked something so I have infilled edges with a toning rippled voile, thats not quite gold and not quite rust........probably hard to see it at all with all the 'autumnal' shades of old head scarf in there...




Then I had a knitting urge so made some Head Huggers and fingerless gloves. I used some of the yarn I bought in spain last year on the black Hugger, just catching it by its edge on a central stitch as I knitted. Pulled out the yarn is very lacey and of course I cant recall its name and will have thrown the yarn label out......
Made afew wristlets and put some pins onto backing papers.

Abit of eco dyeing next. Alum mordanted, old cotton pillow case with delphiniums, morning glory, sprinkled eucalyptus leaves and some mahonia bark offcuts bundled up and steamed.

And at work, stitching finger puppets to accompany the Dear Zoo story book for some early years bairns with limited sight.


And another batch for the same story but adapted with different animals to the original story! Going to have to do a different lion though, he gives me the heebies and the puppy isnt that clever either!


My mind was elsewhere today at work so think at least 3 of these puppets will have to go! Hey ho

Sunday, 24 July 2011

A lovely old table and some nostalgic fabrics

Meant to post these a week or two back, we had a visitor show us her collection of 1930s and 40s fabrics at our embroidery club meet.
And at this moment I cant recall her name which is awful because she was really very nice and I must pop back later and enter her name!
Shes from Sunderland and does talks so might be worth you looking her up.
The pics below are some of what she had with her to show us........memories for many I suspect!

Most of these she found were being turfed out or were 50p or less at various places. They are generally not considered worthy of keeping and  old fashioned of course, but as she said, they had been hand stitched by folks like us, maybe lovingly, maybe begrudgingly - but time, money and energy went into them as in any craft. And these are so of their time, of what was available for us to stitch before tv took over and pcs were in every home.
These pieces below came off a nightdress and most of it was hand made lace, and that old fashioned pink is still a delightful colour I think.


She brought along some sheet music too and I adore these covers and illustrations although I have no idea what the music sounded like!


This next piece is some of my Jude weaving. Done when the mood took me but I had no idea where it was taking me. Im not sure Im satisfied with what I did on the journey but it was quite fun in the doing of it lol




And this is my spontanious buy from a Barnado's, a charity shop close by. It was £75 and I lov its legs, its carved out bits beneath the top and besides, it told me it should live in a1903 house like mine, so now it does...
Apparently it had spent a great deal of time in a garage!
( It didnt tell me that last bit, the delivery man told me.......)
So I have stripped off the original and very worn leatherette seat covers and used some designer offcuts from scrapstore and some fresh padding to give the seats a new twist.
I cant bring myself to tart the table up with paint or special effects though. It will remain an 'old lady of her time' and the only added things are tie on covers to lay over the newly padded seats, because I have 3 cats whose lifes worth, is to sprawl and cover all seats in their hair!



I am reclaiming my dining room back from the cats own use, in honour of this lovely old tabel and her 4 chairs.
I might even cook a sunday lunch or two now!

Sunday, 17 July 2011

On a lighter note.... Karen Slaughter book - 'fallen'

Karen Slaughter's latest book now released in the Uk....
'fallen'.
Fabulous!

Will Trent sounds wonderful, hope they never make a movie of him though. I have my own imaginative picture of him and want him to stay that way.
Have read all her books and apart from 'Martin Misunderstood' fell for the team, Sara Linton, Geoffrey, Faith and Will.


:)

Capitalism - a love story..... the movie and a rant with no apologies for it

I watched the movie 'Capitalism - A love story' last night, by Michael Moore.
Watch it free..
http://www.ovguide.com/movies_tv/capitalism_a_love_story.htm

Its a 2009 film documentary and I had only seen a recomendation for it recently.
Please try and watch it if you havent yet. Then tell me if you trust this world wide banking sytem, or the Us and Uk governments.
Capitalism runs our world not our democratic governments and this recent Murdock fiasco adds to the pyre as far as I can see.

Cant see how I missed this movie back then, but I did become ill and depressed by all the negligence and professional flatulence I was battling against with insurers, so maybe thats why.
Oh yes and I was squeezed up in one bedroom of course with all the furniture I could manhandle, up the stairs last minute... and my adult daughter, 4 cats and 2 dogs.
 

Not that I was EVER flooded mind you, no, just the patio back filled from sewers and my outside drain, to a 6"- 8" depth. 
I had only ONE kitchen floor cupboard with mould 3/4 weeks later, logically cos water had risen up through the exterior drain and permeated through the wall at that point, but ONLY at that point remember.

The insurance company refused to simply log a courtesy, notification only call and insisted on sending out a surveyor, who decided that water had penetrated an airbrick through to the inside plaster behind the floor cupboards and 'capillary-rally' travelled along the 10' plus to that particular cupboard...which was at least 10' away from the only air brick right?
Which itself gave out onto a concrete floor....see the mis-logic here yet?

A kitchen gut out was necessary he said, I would NEVER get rid of those mould spores and told me if I didnt go ahead with it, then the insurance company would wash their hands of me should anything occur as a result of this in the future.

This at a time when thousands of homes had been deluged with foul water and folks were truly and devastatingly homeless, and I had a fully working, comfortable home and had NO flood water in it, none at all.

I kept thinking 'their' common sense would kick in and theyd see it was a waste of resources.
I was not an emergency claim.
I had protested that I didnt want to be a claim at all, just wanted them to log the fact that their had been a patio flood.
I just felt out of fairness, now theres a joke, I should inform them ...you can be too honest..from there on in the insurance industry system manufactured a claim.
Reluctantly I agreed to a kitchen gut and replacement.

The next thing I know is that the handling agents Cunningham, Lindsey, instructed a total ground floor gut out, no one at Saga or their handlers , would answer my calls and emails about why this was now the plan or tell me what I was to do with my ground floor furniture, me , my daughter, 4 cats and 2 dogs..... I tried for 10 days to get an answer..
then the wreckers came to gut out my home.
Panic in me had now set in.

Not only did my larger furniture end up in the garden, no one helped me move it, I had to demolish my original retro suite in doors to get it out.
They took out cooker and fireplaces and left them on the floor whilst they hacked plaster off the walls, so they were choc full of dust, radiators were left outside too.
All large furniture and white goods had to be replaced, yet all of it had been fully working and fine.

Since we'd moved upstairs I threw a fury when they said theyd be taking out the stairs...
They didnt ....
I remained upstairs, finally putting my animals in care 3 weeks later since they still hadnt tcontacted me,
(for 10 months folks, costing over £8000 that time) so photographed all that was found.
NO evidence of water damage to the underfloors from the 'flood'.
No evidence of plaster capillary water damage anywhere, in any room. Concrete floor in kicthen just fine and my 1903 home had sound foundations.
NO evidence of water damage to any plaster, and there was very little plaster, for capillary water travel behind kitchen floor cupboards, funny that.

Then they start to dehumidify....3 months after gut out  mind you...
its winter, its cold, no rads, no heating, microwave to cook in, on the landing.
No hot water either to bathe in.
Then sporadicly  builders come in, house left unoccupied and unlocked on 8 occasions whilst I am at work _ house keys are 'lost', front door handles and locks broken and thats the bits I found out about by coming home unexpectedly - yes I blow another gasket or three and take keys off them, new locks fitted.
I alone now can let them in and monitor how infrequently they do work at my home.

10 months later and damp patches occur on walls in the kitchen and front room, (wrong plaster mix had been used, unquote and water leaks from next door filter through brickwork) and my photos show that sleeper walls below the floor boards had been built solid........former ventilation holes in dividing walls had been filled in.
I hadnt known that was wrong then but Id been given a  Builders Registered Cert afterall, right?
Found that the new fuse box they fitted, had not been correctly earthed yet I had an Electrical certificate, right?
Proved that no official inspections had taken place after I got a mediator chap on the job finally for help.

All floors came up again, sleeper walls rebuilt, plaster off walls, kitchen all gutted out again .....all replacement furniture taken away this time round. I had 2 months in a hotel
Not that great when I wanted to be at home, have my grandchild there and my own life back.
Oh yes, the ground floor toilet?
That had been fitted wrongly...THATS why it flooded from its base so much, odd that.
I go on anti depressants, work was great, my head was fooked you could say... and I was Angry, angry to a point that I could have injured another cowboy builder, impaled him with his trowel.

Was that it? My insurance premiums doubled each year from £330 to £1950 pa........ no other insurer would cover me at all.

The 2nd laminate floor lifted after 2 weeks of being laid, faulty product they told me, but months later I establish from an independant assessment that it was faulty fitting by their workmen - again.

The insurers still will not tell me categorically what the total spend on my home came out to, all the rebuilding,the twice stripping out and replacement furniture, 12 months of animal care and 2 months of hotel accomodation this last time round in 2010...........3 years after the events of the Hull floods.
Aviva folks, avoid them.
They said sorry of course and assure me the additional costs of repairing what their builders did wrong or negligently or fraudulently......isn't lodged on my 'claim'.
But other insurers tell me its above £100, 000 and I have a 3 bed mid terraced house worth £99,950 so thats almost silly right?
Especially when it wasnt flooded?

SO angry as I have been over finding out just how negligent, fraudulent and manipulative the Insurance industry is ... and seeing the devastation wreaked by the (w)bankers and their systems...this movie has just re- ignited my anger!

I loved where Michael walks round one of New Yorks major financial buildings wrapping yellow and  black Crime Scene tape around it then hollars through a megaphone for the guilty culprits to come out, to give themselves up....AND
where he goes to each bank with a big plastic bag asking that they give us the public, the money back, that they manipulated from us to bale them out of their own cock up.
He tells the security staff that he wants to make a citizens arrest and we the public, want our money back and the culprits arrested.

AND where he greets folks as they leave work from these 'upstanding' (sic) insitutions, asking if someone could explain to him what "derivatives " really are.
Could they give him some advice about about them......and one of the suited smart arses shouts back..
"yeah stop making movies...."
Pratt.
None of the blokes he does interview really CAN explain to him exactly what a derivative is..............its gambling basically. With our money. One guy almost chokes trying.


And we are the losers whichever way the dice fall.

I know some of you may work at a bank and you need a job and my argument here is not with you.
Maybe you have little choice where to work.
Its with the honchos up the food chain from you.
Its with the system that supports the wealth held by 1% of the population as Michael Moore illustrates with the leaked memo that Citibank sent round to its chosen few, warning them that the 99% could cause them trouble.
Its with capitalsim and the fact that we allow it run this way.

When I was in the police force, the question
'What do you do for a living?'
.................................. was a conversation killer lol
Same question now?
Ans: ' Im an investment banker'
Same result........this time it would be me who raising an eyebrow walks away, trying hard to hold my tongue, maybe.
Capitalism is fraudulent and the insurance industry is tied in with it.
US that other 99%, have the moral right to stand up against this blatent theft and manipulation.
We should do so, in whatever way we can.
Start by not telling the bloody insurance companies everything!
And please, please watch that movie, then think about what it says about our society ................and us.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Mental Agility Test and a Giveaway !

http://www.bbc.co.uk/tv/features/theyoungones/

Why not try the above link and see how you do on the mental agility tests for a bit of fun ?
My pal Mary sent it through to me........ the things we do rather than housework!
They seem to alter each time you do it, so you can drive yourself mad over and over again.
Some are repeated so you can memorise whats gone before, which helps lol

AND................ I have a package sorted out for a

Giveaway to celebrate my now getting on for, 11000 page views ........... which is about 10950 more than I thought I'd ever have!

BUT........... its going to be a surprise package......

although ....

there will be much coloured foil
and an Aussie Felt magazine
and a fabric and yarns bundle
and a few  little something elses .......

SO ................if you fancy taking part and like surprises.....

please leave a message of some sort, 
( rude entries will be discounted naturally!)
and make sure you are contactable via email or your blog whatever.

If you post about it on your own blog, then you can have a second entry, but that means you have to leave a second, seperate message.

I will pick a number out of the sorting hat on the last day of july, will do it at midnight British Summer time, so there you are.............
you've got to be in it, to win it!
And if you do, I don't think you will be sorry...........:)

Saturday, 9 July 2011

OH gosh! Over 10,000 page views!

Heavens, just looked and I have almost 10, 500 page views!
I may have to do a give away again to celebrate!
Stay tuned... pass the word... I will gather a bundle together over the weekend, of gizzits!
Although I notice that Blogger has kidnapped my Follower piccies........Hope you are all safe and well .........and Im not expected to pay a ransome !!

Scary cloth dolls or what? lol

Amongst the tactile resources for the visually impaired that I inherited at work, when I joined them 10 years back, were two sex education dolls.
I have no idea when they would have been bought or made, but this 'treasure' here, is the girl ....................what do you think then? lol


I updated the clothes but in truth, theres little else I could ever do, to make her more appealing...right?
The lad is exactly the same, as ugly with a similar hairstyle. Twins.
Infact maybe thats part of the education, that they feel so much the same, face and body wise, but for the gender differences ... must ask the teachers about that, its only just occured to me!
They both have all their aportioned hairy bits,(the same texture hair as on their head) and they each have the gental differences.

I repeatedly ask if I could make less scary figures, but they dont seem to want me to make more appealing folks lol
The logic being that a child with no vision cant see how ugly and scary the figures are anyway...which is true of course. But the rest of the class fall about with laughter at the figures...................maybe that helps the teacher discuss an awkward topic who knows!
But they bring a whole new concept to Cloth Dolls dont they!
On a lighter note I went to the Physio yesterday at a centre built alongside the Hessle Road in Hull. This was where once, prior to much redeveleopment, the local fishermens families shopped.
Hull has a rich history of trawling and (yuk) whaling before that and Hessle Road was part of that social tapestry.
Now most of the old Hessle docks, are modern shopping centres, with huge stores selling tools, suites, electricals and push bikes, with little inkling that there was once thriving, busy fish industries there.
One or two buildings remain as a token memory but, as in many places, whole livlihoods were wiped away, folks rehomed elsewhere and in a bid to become more modern, up to date and to improve families lives I suppose too. 
Though I have no doubt many of the back to back Hessle Road houses would have been considered slums and maybe there was WW2 bomb damage too, shifting the community did not go all that well by what I read.

 Hull was the un named East Coast port that was hit more heavily than other ports in WW2, yet not named by our Govt at the time. Apparently so the Germans didnt know for sure, which city they had bombed ..... not  a logic that makes sense to me, but I guess it did at the time!
Anyway there, inside the health centre building surprisingly, was this lovely mosaic!


 Nice to see an element of Hessle Roads past celebrated in this way.
Definately not my size or taste to wear but.......
for £3.99 I could not resist it, tacky fabric though it is lol
See all those nebula and planets!
Gosh, had best haul the weeds up behind it...........
And lastly another piece of stitching to go on a larger cloth at some point
..... though it does look more like an eye or a life cell now I look at it! I dont seem to be able to fade out moons successfully so I gave up and sprayed a darker one with fabric dye!

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