Wednesday, 30 May 2018


My desk this week, taken on Tuesday evening because today is my birthday and my hubby is taking me out. (65 today… officially an OAP for heaven’s sakes!) I am writing this in the small hours of Wednesday morning.

We were out yesterday too, and I took the album I made about Mum (bottom right) because I wanted to show it to someone. This was a rush job, and the only thing I didn’t have time to complete was a box for each of the two copies – Mum’s friend says she is keeping hers in a biscuit tin for now! I thought I’d make a start on it so that at least I’d have something to protect the album when I was carrying it about yesterday. It is made of pieces of mounting board stuck together with masking tape. I will have to disassemble it again in order to cover it but for now it has served its purpose.

Between the box and the album you can see progress on another heart ornament like the one I made for my hubby’s anniversary card. A friend asked me to make it for her to give to a family member who is getting married – funnily enough the couple’s initials are the same as ours, so I didn’t even have to alter the design!

At the bottom left are some paper table napkins from where we went out today, with a beautiful peacock feather design on them. I just had to rescue them and do something with them – not sure what yet!


Also on the creative front this week, I have decided to tackle some of my UnFinished Objects! Remember the socks I knitted for the homeless last autumn? I completed one pair, and only managed 1 1/2 socks of the second pair before my hubby broke his leg and my life went pear-shaped from then on. I have now turned the heel of the second sock, and once they are finished, I’ll ask the person at church who initiated the sock project if he could make sure they go to a good home – even if 6 months late! If I can get this finished, then I can put my boxes of knitting yarns away again. They are cluttering up the far side of my studio and starting to drive me nuts.

They look a bit knobbly but that will all come right once they are blocked.


A couple of days ago one of our neighbours gave me a present that he’d made to cheer me up after being ill. It was two things to put in the garden – a beautiful little plaque, and some scallop shells strung together which he said would go on the gable of our summer house. He fished these shells out of the Exe estuary where the fishermen had dumped them after scraping the flesh from them. He drilled holes in the tops and tied them together with string.

Here’s the summer house after my hubby put them up. They make nice bunting, don’t they.

The string was a little bit too long, so my hubby cut off the excess and hung it over a branch of the apple tree so that the shells were touching each other – they make a lovely sound when the breeze moves them.

The contraption around the tree is a piece of stiff wire netting edged with pipe insulation (to prevent injury to my hubby while he is gardening). This is part of the kitty defences that he’s devised, to stop them getting out of the garden. If they can climb the apple tree, they would be able to get onto the roof of the garage or the summer house, and thence over the fence and onto the road.

Here is a close-up of the slate plaque.

He told me he’d cut a roof slate into two halves, and chipped away at the edges to give that lovely effect. He painted the design through a stencil with acrylic paint, and sealed it with an acrylic seal to make it weather-proof. He is apparently now selling them on Ebay and they are going like hot cakes!

What a lovely gift!

By the way, you can see more about the narrow-boat painting I did on the flower boxes hanging on the summer house here, if you are interested.


This week we started letting them out into the garden, as they are now officially grown up (a year old). At first they were very wary and tentative, but soon started to grow in confidence. The only problem is, we have an awful job persuading Lily to come in again – we’ve never had such a disobedient kitty – she will only do what you want if it happens also to be her own idea! I suppose all kitties are like this to a certain extent but she has it to an extreme degree! You can see videos of their coming out here and here.

Another rite of passage is the cessation of a midday meal now they are no longer growing so much. At lunch time they sit by their empty bowls and look up accusingly at me as if to say, “Where are our din-dins?” I tell them kitty din-dins are for babies and they are now all grown up and don’t need them! They’ll get used to it. I feel so sad, no longer buying kitten food and deleting it from my Tesco favourites!

Having a nice rest with my hubby. Sleepy Rubes.

Finally, two fun birthday cards! For those not in the know, the “Don’t tell him, Pike” is a quote from the vintage TV comedy “Dad’s Army.”

On the back it said “Am I my brother’s kipper?” Lol!

That’s all for now, folks. It’s been a busy week! Hope you’ve all enjoyed the WOYWW anniversary ATC swap, and I look forward to seeing everyone’s efforts.


  1. Happy Birthday! hope you have a great day. Love the "pike" card... so funny, so clever. the shell bunting on your (nearly said shed) is gorgeous, what a great idea! Helen #1

  2. Happy birthday Shoshi, hope you have a great day. My sister is thinking of kitty proofing her garden as she has three indoor cats, well past kitten stage, who have never been outside. Unfortunately this means lots of fur balls as they are long haired and spend a lot of time grooming themselves. I think she hopes that this will give them something else to do. I laughed out loud at the Pike card! Have a good week. Sarah #8

  3. *Happy Birthday Shoshi* Hope you have a wonderful day!! Oh my lots of lovelies to look at on you work space you album looks like a real treasure. It's good to hear i'm not the only one with lots of UFO's I don't think I will ever get around to finishing off mine as there's always something new to discover of create.
    I so love your summer house so inviting and what an inventive creation around the tree. Your Kitties are the sweetest.
    Thank you for sharing WOYWW and enjoy your special day.
    Tracey #9

  4. Oh, Happy Big Birthday Shoshi! Hope you have a wonderful day celebrating :-D. Love that shell bunting, so pretty and what a lovely idea, a great gift from your friend. The pike card is by the artist Simon Drew, we love his work as the puns are truly terrible - my favourite is a bit from the Bayeaux tapestry showing Harold, the caption is "I spy with my little eye, something beginning with A' which appeals to my warped sense of humour!!
    Hugs LLJ 11 xx

  5. Happy birthday, Shoshi. I hope it's as fun as your post today. The little garden area is gorgeous, and those kitties are so adorable. Yes, cats do as they please and they have to believe it's their idea to act a certain way. They are, for the most part, untrainable. Happy WOYWW from #10.

  6. HI Shoshi, and Happy Birthday! Have a fabulous day, won't you? Love the funny cards, made me laugh. The garden looks lovely, as do the gifts. Have a lovely week, Hugs, Shaz #6 XxX

  7. Wow Shoshi, so much going on here. Your kitties have grown so much and the journal looks lovely. I understood the pike joke as we still watch 'Dad's Army' on UK gold. Have a lovely woyww and happy crafting, Angela x16x

  8. Happy WOYWW and HAPPY BIRTHDAY. Enjoy your day out. I have always wanted to knit socks, but definitely too complicated for my brain right now. I only seem to knit in the winter! Have got a pattern from the Donkey Sanctuary to make some knitted donkeys for their shop, but lost all the inclination to get the needles/yarn out whilst we are having this lovely warm weather. Even in the evening when we are watching tv I am happy to just sit and watch - I have been making more of an effort to do one thing at once and take things slower. We have a cat flap for Milky - but have to keep it on the setting that she can only get out, or she will often bring in a mouse etc. When she wants to come in, she sits in a window and waits (at the moment we often have all the doors open, so she is coming and going - thankfully no mice yet!). Ali x #22

  9. Love the shell bunting and the garden plaque - brilliant presents from your neighbour and they look great on your summer house. Lucky he has good taste, otherwise you may have felt obliged to display something not to your taste, in case he pops over to see it LOL, but these are very much in line with the surroundings!

    Your box looks very sturdy - I've just bought some mount board from Ebay for die-cutting - great stuff! I'm so happy that the Bigz dies can easily handle 1.5 mm thickness, which is great for making journal covers, boxes, ATCs etc - it would be difficult to cut that thickness by hand. If only those dies were cheaper!

    Love that photo of Lily and Ruby sleeping on your hubby - so idyllic! You might find that they need more food now that they're out and about - Oreo doubled his intake when we first let him out, but now he went back to his regular amount: 85g Gourmet pouch during the day, 50g Sheeba before bedtime and a handful of dry food that he nibbles on throughout the day and night - he's not a big eater and I sometimes have to encourage him to eat. Like today, he hasn't even got up yet, so he hasn't eaten all day, even though it's now way past lunch time! When he wants to eat, he just sits by his bowl and stares at me expectantly - he never makes a noise or gets too demanding about food! He gets demanding about other things but not food. He's so undemanding that sometimes we even forget to feed him LOL.

    Happy birthday, Shoshi! Those are some fun cards! Hope you have a nice meal out to celebrate! xx

  10. What a lovely neighbour I like the plaque and can see why they are selling fast. Your kitties are adorable. I could shout mine and no sign but the minute I rattled the treats tin they were there. Have a good week. Ani #2

  11. Hi Shoshi. Happy Birthday. Hope you are having a great day out with Hubby. Love the birthday cards - and the box is going to be brilliant when all covered.
    Take care. God bless.
    Margaret #7

  12. Happy Birthday!!!! What a great post! I love the shell bunting and the plaque - what a great friend! Lily and Ruby's "coming out" was fun to watch - although I think thy will figure out the screen soon enough. Apparently if you place wire around the edge at a 45 degree angle facing into the yard, the cats can't climb over it. I have trained Inky to come when I call by giving her treats at the door as soon as she came in (if she is called). I started with her close to the door, placing the treats on the floor inside the door, and calling her name. I just slowly made the distance farther, and the treats farther. Now I can call her even if she is a few doors away and she will come running, although I don't always give her treats now. the only time she doesn't come is if she is sitting in the chair beside the door. She probably thinks I'm so silly for not seeing her there! Your birthday cards are hilarious! Have a great birthday week! Lindart #25

  13. Happy Birthday Shoshi, hope you have had a wonderful day. The album you made looks beautiful and a real keepsake treasure. I love the seashell garland, it's beautiful, and what a nice neighbour you have. I had a right giggle over the birthday cards, I'm more than old enough to remember the Dad's Army sketch first time round, I'm afraid!
    Have a great week,
    Diana x

  14. Hi Shoshi, happy birthday, I hope you have had a wonderful day. What lovely presents from your neighbour. I'm not surprised the plaque is selling so well. It's beautiful. I love the two cute funny cards! Have a lovely week Heather x #13

  15. Happy Birthday my sweet friend! You've been thru' a lot lately so I hope you get to have the best day ever! And more to come this year! ♥

  16. Many happy returns SHoshi, sorry I’m late with the greeting! Insultingly, the advert at the foot of your blog (and I kid you not) is ‘Make Up tips for old ladies’, how very rude! Such a kind and generous gesture from your neighbour, I hope his eBay sales continue apace, I love the scallop bunting, what a lovely idea. I know what you mean about UFOs just getting in the way, so much easier to just tackle them...a sure sign that your health has improved gal, I’d say!


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