Monday, 31 December 2012


New year glitter comments, animated newyear gif scraps, happy new year wishes

Wishing you all your dreams come true in the New Year!!

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Storms and Snowballs.

Well, we had a wonderful Christmas. It was a beautiful day and we walked to the far beach. It was so warm I took off my jacket and opened my jumper, but now we are back to torrential rain and high winds. It is supposed to be a stormy weekend again, so what's new?

As you probably have read on the Net, the PTA of Sandy Horne School have decided to welcome the students to the new school by decorating it with snowflakes. They have asked people to make snowflakes, and details can be seen here There are loads of free snowflake designs to download, but they have to arrive at the school before 12th January. Go and make some! Here is a picture of some of the snowflakes I made to send -

In the last few posts I haven't been showing a lot of the things I have been making, so I will have to get my finger out.
Perhaps next time,

Monday, 24 December 2012

Merry Christmas!!

Christmas Myspace Animated Gifs

Wishing you all, wherever you may be, seasons greetings and much love.
tich xxx

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Storms and Floods

Last Friday the winds got up and we had a lot of rain. If it is a high tide and the wind is in the right direction, we get the spray from the waves flying over the road into one of our fields. My husband had moved the ram into new pasture, so all that could get wet were the geese. They enjoyed the flood that ensued and went swimming quite happily in their newly acquired pond. This happens every year and it subsides just as quickly as it arrives, so we don't worry.

On the Saturday the wind direction changed and the waves were now hitting the road past the bridge and round the corner from us. The wind did not seem particularly high, but the waves were spectacular. We had to go out at night and the road was completely blocked to a depth of two feet with stone and seaweed, so we about turned and got out the other way. Sometimes the road gets stone and seaweed on it after a storm, but I have never seen it as bad as this. I went along on the Sunday morning to take a few pictures. 
The council worker had been at it for hours, and he said the road had been blocked for 70 yards. It was the worst damage he had seen for years. The fencing on the opposite side of the road was broken, and one of the houses nearer the road has a curved dry stane dyke through the force of the stones hitting it. The storm had hit down the east coast of Scotland, so we were not the only ones to suffer. We have high winds and rain this weekend again. Never mind. The shortest day is passed and we are now heading to Spring!! I will leave you with a short clip of the stones being cleared (the council worker stopped as he was wondering if I wanted through) and some other pictures. Some can be enlarged.

Till next time.

Monday, 3 December 2012


I started writing this weeks ago and it suddenly disappeared! I was looking at Blogger today, thinking it was about time I got organised and started to blog seriously again, when I saw this lurking in Drafts. It wasn't there before, but perhaps it was fed up hiding! So I will continue from where I left off. At this rate the New Year will be half done, before I catch up!

  My blog sebatical was due to a little illness, a bit of procrastination, a lot of visitors and finally a computer that died of old age. I didn't enjoy the illness, loved the visitors, but my computer!!!!! It was like a death in the family!! I had religiously made back ups, but when it came down to it, I still lost a lot of files! A friend helped me a lot over the Internet and eventually my cousin, who lives in the south of England, sorted it out, and my baby is back up working! I did go onto a PC when my Mac was away and I still don't like them! I think eventually I will revert to a PC, as I have so much software I cannot use on the Mac, but that does not mean to say I will enjoy it as much.

The embroidery above was done for one of my visitors. Let me state now I do not like canvas work all that much and I usually do not use kits, but this was an exception. I have known this person for over fifteen years and even though we moved away, he has kept in touch and is a lovely person. He had just moved into his first home of his own, so when he asked me to make a cushion for his sofa, I could not say 'No'. He is an avid gardener, so I thought I would bring a little colour into his house, during the dark, dreich days of winter. When he came with his uncle for a visit, he was delighted with his present, so I did not feel so bad.

We have been seeing some terrible pictures of freak weather conditions on Mainland Scotland and England, with enormous floods, torrential rain and rivers bursting their banks. We have been so lucky. We have had a little rain, but in the main the weather has been good. I leave you with a little clip of our bay, taken last week. I thank God every day for this beautiful view. We are so lucky to live here!  

Till next time.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

We Will Remember


The service at the War Memorial was lovely, but it was so cold!! A new name was added to the list on the Memorial. A Rear Gunner from Sanday was killed during the war.The aeroplane crashed in a mountainside near a remote French village in the winter.The villagers had to wait until the spring to retrieve the bodies.The parents would not believe their son had been killed, so would not allow his name to go on the Memorial. It was very sad. Recently his relatives asked if his name could be added, so today we learned of his story, saw his picture and at last his name was there for all to see.

Till next time.

Monday, 15 October 2012


Alex Salmond

I'm back!
Today is the most important day in Scotland for over three hundred years. Today the terms for the Scottish Referendum for Independence was signed by Alex Salmond and David Cameron.

How will you vote???
Till next time

Sunday, 25 March 2012


When people ask me what my hobbies are, I immediately say patchwork, then beading and finally spinning/dyeing. Recently my granddaughter asked me for some pictures of our sheep for a school project, and I realised just how involved I am with them.
This is the first lamb born last year. The ewe had twins, but she rejected the second lamb, which was very weak, so my husband bottle-fed it.
Our ram was also hand-reared by my husband. The sheep are really friendly, and always come over to see what you are doing.
 I got given this fleece by one of the islanders. It is a Jacob/Suffolk cross. In the picture above part of the fleece has been washed and then it is carded on a drum 
The carded wool feels so soft, after it is taken off the drum carder. It can be spun on the spinning wheel. or felted.
 This is actually a felted bag shape (below), but I did not like it, so I cut a bit off, so that I can make a clutch bag out of it. I intend to embroider the flap.

 I also made some felted balls. One of them is embroidered and another has various types of material and thread embedded in it. I want to experiment more with these. 
 Remember last year I experimented a lot with Kool Aid and a crock pot and got some interesting results.?
 My granddaughters using a diz, so that it is nice and easy to spin.
 A variety of colours for selling.
 This year I have started experimenting with natural dyes, and I have organised a dyeing workshop to take place in June, with the tutor coming from another island. It should be great fun. 
I am amazed just how involved I have become with wool. Now I will just have to learn how to feed the sheep and it will be a full circle (and also please my husband no end!)
Till next time.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Last Update

This is the last update from last year (thank goodness I hear!)

My husband and I go to a Lunch Club for over fifties once a fortnight in the Community School. Once a month we get a speaker after the lunch, and at Christmas we have a slap up Christmas meal and a party. For the last couple of years I have written a sketch and my friends Irene and Jim help my husband and I 'perform' (if you can call it that!) This year Irene was given two saris from a lady, who was seriously ill. We based the skit on the poem 'The Green Eye of the Yellow God' and generally had a right carry on. We did not get pictures on the day, but dressed up again, so that we could send the pictures to the lady who was ill. You can see my daft husband dressed up as the Major. Unfortunately the 'Colonel' could not come.

I told you in this post about my adventures at the Burns night on the island, at the end of January. I got my picture taken and here it is in the paper -

Well, I think I have blethered long enough. The wind has risen again, but the dog needs a walk before I go to bed. Think I will have a read, before I tackle the elements.
Till next time.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Harrington and Hannah

You can tell I was really taken with the Raspbery Rabbit BOM that I talked about in my last post. I got all the pieces cut out of the lovely wool my nice friend sent from Canada. I do not usually follow a pattern exactly, and this project was no exception. I buttonhole stitched the pieces down, using my Bernina, embroidered a whipped backstitch for the arms and made sure I stitched crookedly on his nose - whoever heard of a snowman with a straight carrot nose? I added red beads to the French knots for the Holly,  more red beads on top of the snowman's heart and bright blue french knots for my rabbits. I really enjoyed this block.

We have had a couple of really nice days, quite cool, but the sun is shining!! I went for a walk yesterday along the track to another beach. Here is what I saw, when I got to the top of the dunes -

Usually this beach does not have any seaweed on it (or people). There must have been a storm out at sea.
Till next time.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Lookie, Lookie!!

I have often said how wonderful the worldwide blogging community is. I have made such wonderful friends, loving supportive and funny. Look what I got from two such lovely friends, one in Canada and the other in America -

These are pieces of wool to help me make the first block of the BOM from the Raspberry Rabbits It is a really cute block and I can't wait to get going.

My next parcel contained this little beauty with a card about friendship (it is up on my mantelpiece, so no picture!)
Isn't this absolutely gorgeous!! The crochet is so neat, and the colour is just right for my lounge. It is too nice to be hidden under a mug, so it is on proud display, where everyone will see it, along with another one I received a wee while ago. I am really blessed to have two such nice friends. They are always there.

We had torrential rain,yesterday, but I mustn't complain, because the rest of Britain is under inches of snow. The sun is actually shining, between the showers. The picture below was taken two days ago. I rushed out to get it, as we seem to have had rain for months, with the island having flooding in places never flooded before.
Sunrise on the Peedie Sea - tide out.

I am away to cut out a block .
Till next time.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Catching Up and Burns

I still have a bit of catching up to do from my blog break. 

In December we always have a Christmas Sale here on the island. It is supposed to be for things that are made in Sanday, so we have handmade chocolates, knitted items, baking, freshly butchered meat and lots and lots of crafts. I decided I was going to take part for the first time since we moved here. I have always taken part in Craft shows, wherever I have lived, so I knew what it entailed. I wanted to make a lot of shopping bags and back packs with a fancy embroidery sign on it and the name of our island and some other miscellaneous crafts.

 These are my two tables, before I started setting up in the Community Hall. There were a lot of stall holders.

I did not get a chance to take a photo of the stall, before the sale started, because people started asking to buy things, as I was getting them on the stall. All  these photos have been taken about half way through the sale, when the initial rush had died down. You can see my husband having a rest. He always helps me out with my sales. He is great!!
 I not only made lots of bags, but I dyed silk scarves, knitted beadie bags, made wire jewellery, loads of earrings, aromatherapy material crackers, dyed wool packs, embroidered coasters (thanks!) and Christmas tree ornaments.
I sold a lot of things and had great fun. 

I was very quiet last week. I was asked to address the haggis at the Burns Supper. We usually have a meal and a dance, but this year we had a funeral on the day of the dance, so the supper was put forward a week, with no dance afterwards. I thought I would read the poem, but my husband persuaded me to learn it off by heart! I have real problems learning anything by rote, so I downloaded the free software, Audacity, to help me. You can record things easily using this software. I used to record the course material for the different exam subjects and export them as mp3s, when I was still working. The pupils could then revise their subjects using their Ipods. Much cooler than studying from a book! I used this software to record the individual verses of the poem, and gradually learned all eight verses. I practised in front of the mirror, and my husband kept on thinking we had unexpected guests, when he heard me talking to myself! I was really nervous on the night, but when I got to my feet, and saw the lovely haggis 'fillin' the groanin' trencher', I just let rip and had a good time. I have a West Coast accent, and as Burns was born on the West Coast, I had no problems with the pronunciation. I love Burns. He was such a perceptive poet, and had a naughty sense of humour! No wonder the lassies loved him!

On the tables, someone had thoughtfully provided a napkin with a translation of good old Scots words. They are not so old, as I was brought up with these words! Perhaps they were provided because there were so many English in the hall !
Here they are, with pronunciation in the brackets-
stotter (stoat-er) - excellent example
numpty (num-p-tee) - idiot, intellectually challenged
braw (br-AWW) - beautiful
skiver (sky-ver) - lazy person, shirker
cludgie (clud-gee) - toilet
wabbit (wah-bit) - exhausted, under the weather
crabbit (cra-bit) - bad tempered, out of humour
laldie (lall-dy) - to do vigorously, get stuck in
besom (biz-um) -hussy, female upstart
blether (ble-ther) - gossip, incessant chatter
clype (klipe) - informer, tell-tale
drouth (dro-oth) post dram thirst
wheesht (whee-sht) - quiet
eejit (ee-jit) -idiot, not the full shilling
clarty (cla-rty) - mucky, boggin'
scunner (scun-ner) - feeling of disgust or loathing
canny (can-y) -thrifty, wise
drookit (droo-kit) - drenched, soaked through
glaikit (glai-kit) - foolish, not very bright
fouter (foo-tir) - dither, to not get on with
mauchit (maw-kit) - dirty, filthy
haiver (hay-ver) - to talk rubbish
dreich (dreech) - dull, bleak, miserable
gallus (ga-luss) - bold, cocky, cheeky

Anyway, I think I have haivered enough! It is a right dreich night, enough to make you scunnered. I have got a drouth, so I will go and make a cup of tea and stop bletherin', in case I make you crabbit!
Till next time.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Procrastination and a Recipe


My New Year resolution of trying to blog more often has not been too successful. Trouble is I am a born procrastinator, so I have decided to take Marianna's (of Craftluver Marianna) pledge. Now it took me ages to make up my mind to pledge, and even longer to blog about it, but I am getting there . So far I have-
  • cut out material for a Dear Jane block, 
  • made templates for another one, 
  • made two cushions, 
  • have two more cut out
  • experimented with baking with quail's eggs
  • soaked postage stamps from paper and dried them for my husband's stamp collection. 

I now have to think of -
  • unpacking some more boxes from the shed,
  • finishing the cushions
  • blogging more regularly
  • paperwork
  • learning a poem!
  • sewing a cushion for a friend!
  • dyeing wool with natural dyes.
This list could go on and on, but I don't want to put myself completely off. If I could get two off the list I would be happy.

I love baking, but never usually find time to make a Christmas cake. This year I found a really quick recipe. I used some of the mix to make individual little cakes. I cut out the marzipan and the royal icing and put them on with apricot jam, but stepped them, so that you could see both. 
The individual cakes were finished off with a cherry, and they looked really cute and tasted great. I used the rest of the mix in two x 2lb loaf tins, to make two rectangular cakes, which were decorated with marzipan and royal icing and then sliced. The recipe is below. I did not use currants, but divided the fruit between raisins and sultanas and used ground almonds instead of whole ones. Next time, I would add cherries as well, but it is yummy as it is. This recipe is from the UKTV site.
Quick Christmas Cake


  • 225 g lightlight muscovado sugar
  • 225 g butter, or margarine
  • 225 g plain flour
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • large pinches salt
  • eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp black treacle
  • apple
  • orange, grated rind
  • 275 g raisins
  • 275 g currants
  • 275 g sultanas
  • 65 g almonds
  • 5 tbsp brandy
  • Method
  • 1. Turn the oven onto 140C/gas mark 1 and put a shelf onto the centre runner. 

    2. Grease 10 x 10cm tins using a little of the butter and line with baking parchment. 

    3. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, sieve in the flour with the spices, bicarbonate of soda and salt and add the beaten eggs, treacle, apple and orange rind. 

    4. Add the fruit and almonds to the bowl, mix together. 

    5. Finally add in the brandy and mix together thoroughly. 

    6. Spoon the mixture evenly between the tins and press down gently with the back of a spoon to even it out. 

    7. Bake for around 1 hour or until cooked. Check if it's cooked by inserting a skewer into the centre - if the skewer comes out gooey then leave the cake in the oven for another 10 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean. 

    This cake can be enjoyed anytime, not just at Christmas!
    Till next time.

Friday, 6 January 2012

Hello Again!!

Now I know I have taken a very long, extended break, but I am back!! There were a lot of reasons I have not been blogging, but hopefully they are long gone, and I can get back into the habit of sharing some of my thoughts and things I make with you.

We have had lousy weather for ages. We had the first gales in October, which was very early for us and since then we have had high winds on and off, and loads of rain. On the night of December 8th we had terrible gales, with winds gusting to over 136mph and no power. One of the larger fishing boats, tied up at the harbour, was swamped by a 20ft wave, and sank! This is a picture of the boat a few days later.
 The boat had been pumped out and dragged further into the harbour.
 It looks as if there is not a lot wrong with it. The insurers, however, say it is a write off. The people who own the boat are heart-broken, as it has been in the family for three generations.
The harbour looks very calm, but when I was taking these pictures I was being buffeted by a high wind, and had to be careful I didn't end up in the harbour too! It was very difficult to take pictures without them being affected by the wind - see picture below -

Usually I just stay indoors, when the weather is bad, but I am getting quite fed up of wind and rain. We have had a few good days -
- but they have been few and far between. This is a picture of our bay at sunrise, with the tide out. The following was taken at the same time, turning the camera to the right, towards our neighbours. Although it does not look it, they are about four or five fields away,past the bridge -

When the wind is in a certain direction, and over 70mph, it lifts the water off the top of the sea, forming a mist called spindrift. I tried to get photos of it, but, what with the wind buffeting me and trying to get a steady photo, I did not succeed very well. The pictures look unclear, but that is the spindrift on our bay -

Now the waves don't look too bad in these pictures, but I was nearly blown off the path, taking these! Just after I went back in, the wind got worse!!

It sounds all doom and gloom, but we are just having an exceptional winter this year. The previous winters were fine, so we just have to think that we are now in the new year, and Spring is on its way!!

I know it is a bit late, but one of my friends sent me this, so enjoy the beautiful scenery! Double click it to get the benefit of the complete screen and turn your sound on!

Happy New Year!
Till next time,