Wednesday, 20 June 2018


Contrary to my expectations, I managed to do a bit at my desk this week. This coming Saturday we are going to a party to celebrate the 100th birthday of a delightful Jewish lady who regularly attends our Christian Friends of Israel meetings. She is truly amazing for her age and you’d never guess she’d reached 100! I didn’t have much time but decided I must make her a card and a present.

On my main desk is her card so far.

The papers I am using were given to me for my birthday by a friend, and she’s delighted that I am putting them to immediate use. I have used the Die’sire butterfly card dies I bought at the craft show in February – at last I am starting to use some of the stuff I got then! I have cut the mat layers from some of the decorative papers I had for my birthday and the base layer is a thicker gold embossed card with the words “Congratulations” all over it. I will cut a “100” from gold card on the cutting machine and will use one or both of the ribbons you can see on the left.

I have also managed to clear a space on my office desk, which is now marginally tidier than it was before – ready to start last month’s accounts once I get time.

I’ve still got a lot of sorting to do as I’ve got far too much junk in there that should be shredded.

I decided to make a little embroidered frame for the 100-year-old’s birthday present.

You can see the original one on the right, which is normally hanging in the bedroom. I started the other one at the weekend and finished the cross stitch last night – been working flat out! – all that remains is to outline it all in black back-stitch and to tidy up the back. I am sure I shall get both this and the card finished in time for Saturday.

The design in an original one that I did several years ago – the Hebrew word “Shalom” in English and Hebrew, the central letter of the Hebrew becoming the “L” in the English, worked in rainbow colours, mixing the threads on the needle to get the graduation of colour. I designed it using a programme called EasyCross, which I have not used for years, and which I have subsequently discovered does not work on Windows 10, and which has been discontinued, and the company has gone out of business. I have purchased another cross-stitch design programme which I have yet to get to grips with. I managed to open the original “Shalom” design and do a screen grab and print it but it was covered with dotted lines and the colours weren’t right – I’ve had to edit it quite a bit with coloured pencils and notes. Eventually I shall redo this design, and my other EasyCross designs, into the new programme.

Ongoing Computer Stuff

The sorting out of my various hard drives and back-ups has had to take a back seat until after the weekend as I’ve got to get this birthday stuff finished first. There are still hard drives and cables all over the sitting room floor! At least I’ve managed to sort out the recovered back-up that I did last week.


On Friday I went to an Erev Shabbat (Sabbath Eve) meal at a friend’s. We had a wonderful evening and I made some new friends. He had done the table most beautifully.

I offered to make the challah (two plaited loaves of enriched egg bread) as he would not have been able to get any locally.

Somewhat lumpy at the ends! Next time I must remember to taper the ends of the long sausages of dough before plaiting them!

This is the challah cover that I made many years ago.

The Hebrew words are the blessing before bread: “Blessed are You, O Lord our God, King of the Universe, who brings forth bread from the earth.”

This week I also made my first attempt at making sourdough bread. This is the starter I made, from organic rye flour and kefir whey (I had made some kefir cheese by straining the kefir and reserving the liquid whey which is full of goodness).

The starter takes several days to develop, during which time you feed it daily with more flour and water (or whey).

Here is the resulting sourdough bread that I made yesterday evening – I started it on Monday evening, leaving it to prove overnight, and knocking it back yesterday morning, and leaving it for its second prove all day in the fridge until we got back from our day out – sourdough takes longer to rise than normal bread, and long slow proving improves both the flavour and texture of the bread.

It was so successful that by the time we’d finished our supper, there were only two slices left!!!

This is definitely something I shall be doing regularly. It’s not much trouble to make, but you just have to think ahead a bit and allow extra time for all the proving. You can keep the starter going more or less indefinitely, like kefir.

New Stash

Today, the friend who gave me the lovely papers for my birthday, turned up with a carrier bag absolutely full of craft goodies that she’d bought for me at a coffee morning – it was like Aladdin’s Cave opening it all up!

Lots more papers, cards, stamps, embossing stuff…

Also in the bag was this gorgeous Docrafts folder, absolutely stuffed with clear stamps.

I am overwhelmed – so much stuff to play with, and also with her kindness, thinking of me and buying me such a fabulous present! She said she got it all for an absolute song. What a treat, and what a lovely surprise.


Can’t leave you without a kitty picture. Here are Lily and Ruby watching me intently from outside the kitchen window.

Ruby in particular likes to jump up there, in the hope that I will let her in through the window – which I don’t want to encourage!

They are both still really enjoying being in the garden all day, and doing quite well with the cat flap, but Ruby keeps forgetting how to use it! They are better at going out than coming in, probably because they have more incentive to go out, as they are both little garden addicts these days.

So you can see I’ve been very busy this past week, and this will continue for a while until I can get on top of things again. At least I’m being creative again!

Have a great week, everyone.


  1. What a fabulous post! I don't know where to begin! LOL Love the kitties! Adorable! Great stash, always fun. Bread: I am a failure at breadmaking! Our daughter makes it most every day in a bread maker. Some days it might be special bread to bake in the oven for buns, or cinnamon rolls, or other goodies. Her family likes it so well, that her 21 year old going out on his own, bought himself a bread maker! Unbelievable!
    Me, I sold my bread maker at a garage sale, because it always failed! And my hubby didn't like it either. Oh, well. Yours looks delish. And, yes, lots of my favorite programs on the computer are gone and no longer available. Kudos to you for even designing your own cross stitch patterns! So impressed with all your talents. Happy WOYWW! #31

  2. They're so sweet looking through the window! Oreo would probably like a cat flap but we can't have him coming and going as he likes at night. Just the other night, we saw this huge fox casually walking across our lawn - Oreo wouldn't stand a chance if he came face to face with him - luckily he was inside the house at the time, otherwise I would have been so worried! He spends most of the day outside though. I love sour dough bread, but I've never tried making my own. Yours looks delectable - as does the challah. What a generous gift from your friend! I'd like to visit that place where these things are given away for a song LOL! That's pretty impressive speed on the cross stitch - I'm sure the lady will love it - happy 100th birthday to her - most of us won't live to that age! Enjoy your week, Shoshi! xx

  3. Shoshi, so pleased to see you are keeping so busy and to see all of the projects you are working on.
    I must admit after all our visits to San Francisco I’m still not keen on sourdough bread, your bread plaits look delicious.
    Jan #31

  4. wow, what a busy time you have had - so much going on. 100... what a remarkable achievement. Hope her day goes well! Helen #3

  5. What wonderful crafting and bread - and what an exciting celebration of a lady who is 100 years young. Thanks for sharing today - Hazel, WOYWW 472 #17 xx

  6. Hi Shoshi. You have indeed been very busy this week! Goodness - what a lot you have achieved. I like the cross stitch picture you have been doing - well done on almost having it finished already! The Friday supper table did indeed look fantastic - beautifully set out. And what a find! Well done to your friend for spotting it all. You are going to have FUN!
    Take care. God bless.
    Margaret #2

  7. Wow Shoshi that is one busy post. the table looked lovely and I'm sure your friend will love the card. Have a great woyww and happy crafty week, Angela x22x

  8. Shalom Shoshi, I love the cross stitch plaque that you designed and I'm sure your friend will love it too. Your sour dough bread looks delicious, I'm not surprised that you only had two slices left. Meow to Ruby and Lily, have a great week. Saarh #19

  9. Shoshi your stitching is beautiful, what a wonderful gift for a magnificent age.
    It's so sad when our old programs do not work with new upgrades, they really are out to get more money from us!! I'm trying to keep away from my windows 10 grumbles today as i've had my fill over the past week.
    The table looks so elegant and your breads delicious. Your friends visit was a double treat with her bringing you all those crafty goodies, you will have many many hours playing and creating with it all. Happy Crafting and Thank you for sharing WOYWW.
    Wishing you a wonderful week. Tracey #4

  10. My sincere apologies for the late visit. I had an internet meltdown that required a reboot from my carrier and a service repair person who came out and performed his magic.

    I got all wrapped up in reading your post. Lots going on from crafting to baking to organizing to kitties.

    What a great looking card already. Wonderful to be able to celebrate 100 years!

    That is a beautiful table and very well decorated, too. I've never had homemade sourdough bread, but it looks marvelous.

    LOVED seeing the kitties through the window and into the garden. Great shot. Happy belated WOYWW from #1.

  11. Wow Shoshi! 100 years old is an amazing achievement and the start of the card and the cross stitch look beautiful so i am sure she will love them both. The bread and table laying look so beautiful - it reminds me of celebrating passover with some messianic jews a number of years back. Wonderful and thanks so much for sharing. Caro x #24

  12. I’m late. Bet your centenarian’s gifts are all ready by now, she will be thrilled, I don’t doubt. Love your design for the Shalom, it speaks to me on all sorts of levels. You seem a bit of a master embroiderer too, no end to your skills huh! I’m a huge fan of sourdough, it makes me weak at the knees, so I can fully understand why a homemade loaf would go at one meal!


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