Wednesday, 29 April 2009

wielding the paintbrush..................

Having procrastinated for long enough, a particular speciality of mine, I decided to venture into the spider (and probably rat) infested shed and dig out the old paint remnants and tackle a few of the jobs around the house.

Our kitchen table was a £23 ebay bargain. It can be extended using the lovely wind out mechanism and fits in the space brilliantly. The top however was a mess, lots of different colours made worse by my attempts at stripping it back to give it that bleached farmhouse look. That didn't work so the next idea was to paint the top and leave the legs in their natural state. It's taken a bit of getting used to but now I think I like it. I figure if I ever get sick of it I'll just chuck some oilcloth over it.

Next the lampbase I bought in the sale from Homesense. This was a perfectly acceptable cream base but I had visions of a red gloss version, similar to the ones Cath Kidston used to do. Out came the red gloss used for Jack's chair , I added the beautiful shade purchased from Frances at the V&H fair and the transformation was complete.

Finally, my latest treasure, a £1 car boot cabinet, hauled home last Sunday. This was a particularly fetching Germolene pink which didn't really sit well in our bedroom so another paint remnant was unearthed and it became this, a sky blue beauty. This blue is one of my favourite colours, it pops up everywhere in this house, it makes me smile and I find I'm drawn to it whenever I see it. The addition of a little bit of CK wonderfulness and it's a completely new (old)bedside table. Just got to find one for Ian's side now, not sure he'll agree to the floral loveliness though!
Lastly, whilst the creative urge was upon me I raided the box of gorgeous vintage cards I bought last year from the car boot (must show you those at some point) and made a new addition for Kit's wall. She's thrilled to bits with it, in fact she loves all her pictures, zoom in and you should be able to see the latest car boot picture, a Margaret Tarrant print - bottom left. The seller had some lovely large prints but at £10 each, way beyond my car boot budget. He must have taken pity on me because he gave me this damaged one for free, what a result! Don't look too closely at my new creation, as with most things I make it's slightly haphazard and lopsided, I'm far too impatient to get to the finished product. Same with painting, preparation - Pah! Sanding between coats - who are you kidding?! Surround them with enough stuff and nobody notices - I think!
And look there Hen, see who's nestled among the blankets? I saw the one you made for the Munchkin and I couldn't resist having a go myself. I love it, so much so I have thought of adopting it and giving it a new home on our bed but I don't think I'll get away with that one!
Now the sewing machine has been taken out of hibernation there may be a few more creations to show you soon...............

Sunday, 26 April 2009

a perfect weekend....................

How are you all? Hope the sun's been shining down on you too. Despite yet more atrocious weather predictions the sun did indeed shine here, on and off. How fantastic it is to watch this sky at night knowing it probably means a great day in store. This weekend turned out to be the perfect mix of no plans and generally pleasing ourselves, which meant bike rides into town for coffee and cake, trips to the garden centre to stock up on geraniums, a garden clear out and just enjoying the unexpected sunshine.

Lovely enough for a last minute barbeque...............

Saturday afternoon brought a surprise phonecall from my lovely other half to tell me that he'd spotted a pair of boots I'd seen before Christmas but could in no way afford to treat myself to. These boots were now reduced to half price and did I want them? Did I??!! Bless him, just one of the many reasons that make him such a fab man to live with. Doesn't often cook, iron or clean the loo but a more thoughtful man you couldn't meet. Said boots are now residing in their box just waiting for their first outing - if this weather continues (who am I kidding?), they may not be out until Autumn.
This morning brought breakfast in bed for the two of us before the children woke up, one of the benefits of an early alarm call for the cat boot. 7.30ish and the familiar car horn outside means my car booting buddy is here and off we go for 3 hours of rummaging, laughter and bargains. Andrea spends a large amount of time whilst we wander shaking her head in disbelief at my treasures, still, it means there's no arguing over discoveries.
And look at just a couple of the goodies that I rehomed today. My favourite find just has to be this little beauty...............
..................for 50p!! My heart leapt when I spotted it and tried ever so casually to wander (sprint) over and ask "how much?". I'm sure the lady selling was as bewildered as Andrea by my joy at finding such a little piece of deliciousness, but I'm thrilled to bits with it.

This lovely little string box was £1, I'm a bit of a crinoline lady fan so this was a great find.

Finally, for today, these totally gorgeous barkcloth curtains for £1.50. Love 'em, love 'em, love 'em! Washed and out on the line to dry and gladdening my heart with every glimpse. Ian HATES them, but I think they may be destined to become cushions and a bag so he better get used to those gorgeous blooms!

..........want a closer peek?

As you can tell, fickle old me has been drawn back into the land of blog. Is it only me who keeps feeling the need to stop one day, but loving it the next. Bear with me, for now I think I'll be sticking with it.
Have a lovely week all....................xx

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

beautiful derbyshire...............

Squeezing this post in quickly before I tackle the ironing mountain. Time's whizzing by too fast at the moment and like many others I'm having second thoughts about my blog, spring brings with it so many things to do outdoors, and I can't see my screen properly in the sunshine!

Anyhow, how were the Easter hols for you all? We started ours with a little break in the Peak District. Taking a tip from the lovely Lucy we decided to try a Youth Hostel. Ian has stayed in them for his cycling trips but we had never been as a family. It was fantastic! For campers like us it was serious luxury, the sight of the bunk beds sents the children in whooping, jumping paroxyms of delight, us parents less so since we were designated the bottom bunks.

The place itself was amazing, set amongst the hills and with a gorgeous walk down to the river right on our doorstep. We could feel the stresses of daily life falling away as soon as we arrived and the whole three days were fab.

Our days were spent walking, eating and just being together. We found a great 99p walks book in Bakewell and aimed for fairly short and interesting strolls, having a four year old with easily tired legs meant that Ian's shoulders took about a week to recover. She's not the most reliable of walkers but we took it in turns to cart her about when she needed it and bribed her with promises of chocolate and treats when exhaustion kicked in.

Derbyshire is a truly beautiful place, one I'd never visited before. The people are lovely, very welcoming and the scenery is spectacular. We had our usual "let's move here" moments until we realised that Ian would have a 2 hour each way commute each day! We'll definitely be going back as soon as we can.

Signs of Spring were everywhere we looked and despite a dreadful weather forecast of heavy rain the sun shone on us every day.

A hearty YHA breakfast set us up each morning, gazing out at the hills and deciding how to spend the day ahead. We had to tear the children away from the bunkbeds, I seriously think they'd have been happy to perch up there all day. We were all in bed by 9pm, lights off, unheard of for us parents but you don't have much choice when you're all in together. It did mean we were refreshed the next morning and ready for an early(ish) start.

Now the decision is, which hostel do we try next?

See you all soon.................