Monday, August 5, 2013

My day looks like this.....


I started this blog back in January with so much to say and I know I've gone quieter and quieter over the last few weeks! It's not that I've lost my mojo for blogging, I have lots of ideas wandering around in my head for photos and blog posts to write but our move is finally about to happen and I've been distracted by all the things that need to be done to get us, our effects and of course Molly herself back across the Atlantic!

So today my house looks like this,

Big squishy bags full of cushions, bedding and winter woollies!

And this; the dining room table covered with books, ornaments and photos and albums. Yes, I realised afterwards I should have lifted the rug before dumping so much stuff on the table!

The closet - empty hangers, nothing like a really good clear out!

Look at this! Easily the tidiest the closet shelves have been since about a week after we moved in!

So that's where we are at.  Tomorrow the shipping company is here, packing and boxing everything up. The next time we see all our things will be back in the UK. It's a very strange feeling seeing everything you own on a truck, but we've done this before and before it's always gone smoothly. So fingers crossed this time will be no different!

I hope your Summer is going well, and hopefully I'll be back blogging again in just a few weeks!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

I stitched this!


One of my favourite blogs is Mollie Johanson's Wild Olive.  Mollie designs the sweetest embroidery patterns and is very generous in putting some of her designs on her blog free, for personal use.  She also designs desktops in her signature style. I have her July book design on my lap top and my iPod, being a big book reader her simple but eye catching composition makes me smile every time I see it!

Mollie recently shared a lovely embroidery design that I couldn't resist having a go at, a pattern of hexagons filled with a selection of her sweet motifs, simply stitched in a running back stitch and french knots.

The original designs; I simply used a fine propelling pencil to transfer the line drawing onto my cotton fabric.

Choosing the colours of the embroidery floss. I wasn't working to a particular colour palette but I wanted the colours within each hexagon to work as a whole and be balanced.

Once I was happy with the stitching, I ironed the back of the cotton and trimmed to one inch bigger than the hoop I was using to mount it in.

In the frame, lightly ironed again to fold the excess fabric neatly into the ring. I also used a a white piece of felt to keep hide some of my messier bits! I really didn't need to add a backing piece of fabric as well but I did!

I used some pretty cream cotton fabric to keep the back extra neat. Also as it's all stitched together I can re use the embroidery hoop in the future if I decide to swap  it out.

All stitched - finished neat and tidy!

All done and I am pretty pleased with it! I've done lots of cross stitching before but I can't remember the last time I did an embroidery. I need to keep practicing! The hardest thing I found was keep my stitches an even length, it's harder than it looks when you haven't got ready made 'holes' to work too!

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, July 15, 2013

We went to the zoo.....


Well July is flying by as fast as June did! Life seems very busy at the moment as we are in the middle of planning our move from Colorado back to the UK.  We will be home by the middle of September, hopefully with all our effects and one small brown Burmese cat.....!

We moved internationally several times and once you get into the swing of things it usually goes pretty smoothly. We are waiting to hear about shipping dates and how much cubic feet of shipping we will have, insurance and general form filling comes next before things really start to happen and we can start packing up!

Last week we decided to take a day out and visit the zoo, I think we both needed a day to do something completely different and not related to moving in anyway!

Ever since we came to live in Colorado I have had a hankering to see a moose, the chances of me hiking into the back country and stumbling upon one mooching about doing his own thing was definitely less than zero. I don't think I could carry that much trail mix for a really big hike - have you seen just how huge those Rocky Mountains are?! So the zoo was by far the best option!

We went to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo which as it's name suggests is on a mountain! Handy tip: when it's hot take lots of water with you and keep in the shade as you toil around the animal exhibits! I saw my moose!

What can I say? He was very shy, hence not the best picture I could get! But I can go home and say I saw a moose!!

But the real star of the show for us was a big shaggy Grizzly Bear, who ambled down from his sunbathing spot to take a dip in the pool right in front of where we were standing.

From way up at the top of his enclosure he slowly ambled down through the rocks.

With that gorgeous coat I think I would be heading straight to a cool pool of water too on such a hot day too!

This is how close he got to us, literally all that was between us was the safety glass, eyeball to eyeball!

We couldn't believe our luck, he was so unfazed by the gaggle of snap happy humans trying to get a good shot while he was just trying to cool off!

He was just magnificent, such a glorious giant of an animal. We were so thrilled to have seen him in such safe circumstances!

What do you like to do to change gears and refresh your batteries when life is hectic? Before we came here a day at the beach usually did the trick (even a walk on the shoreline of  a summers evening would do at a pinch) but Colorado is somewhat short on beaches!

Happy Monday!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Road trip to Marble.....


What happened to June? One minute it was here, and the next we had visitors...and after that the month just whizzed by! My sister and brother-in-law came out for ten days; their second visit. They first came out just a few months after we arrived when it was all as new to us as it was to them! Now we are seasoned 'Coloradoans', well maybe not that seasoned, but we do know more of the beautiful state we have called home for the last 4 3/4 years!

We decided to take a trip up into the Rockies and found a lovely log cabin to rent just outside of the town of Marble. Marble is well named, marble from the surrounding mountains has been used to create the Lincoln memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery, as well as many other state and federal buildings and landmarks across the United States.

Just out side of the town limits, a short drive up this dirt track.....

The cabin we rented for a few days. Beautifully appointed, and set in a gorgeous location.

Set up on a hillside, over looking some meadows and to the right of us the Beaver Lake.

Honestly just the most beautiful location, the six hour drive to get here was more than worth it!

The Crystal River, we had planned to hike along the river but changed our minds once we got there. The track along the river was busy with 4 wheel drives and ATV's so we changed our plans and had a wander around the town instead.

Marble was once a booming little town, several of the old buildings are still standing, including this one which is a now a great barbecue restaurant.

One of the houses that is still on Main Street, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was fascinating wandering around the little town, the old school house is now a museum and we spent an hour or so listening to the museum curator telling us all about how the marble is mined and where  in the country it is used. The marble extracted from the mountain is so fine and so white 80% of it is now exported to Italy!

We just loved this sweet little house! Seeing old houses like this one always makes me wonder, who built, how long did they live there and why did they abandon it. I hope someone rescues it and fixes it up before too long.

We were very tempted by the cocktail list at the Groovin' BBQ restaurant, especially the last one on the we didn't go there! It was a hot day and all we wanted was a sweet iced tea!

We really enjoyed exploring Marble - the locals could not have been friendlier and the barbecue food was delicious, even though we were planning to do our own barbecue for dinner again that evening!

As it July 1st I've changed my desktop for July calendar  from  Mollie at Wild Olive. Mollie is planning a book themed month of posts, which I for one am really looking forward to reading.

Do you have plans for a short break this Summer? I hope you do!
Happy Monday!

Saturday, June 8, 2013



2013 is shaping to pretty awesome so far for us personally. But I know that's not so true for everyone. I've come across two inspirational phrases  recently that really resonate with me.

Powerful and empowering don't you agree?
Happy weekend!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

My Vintage Find.....


So wandering around the antiques mall this is the conversation between me and lovely husband:

Hubby: Are you looking for anything in particular?

Me: No, not really....but I would love to come across a vintage copy of Heidi.

Hubby: What, you mean like this one?!

Honestly, that was exactly how the conversation went, he reached into a lovely vintage bookcase and pulled out just what I was looking for! How amazing is that?! In the middle of Colorado he finds me a gorgeous copy of one of my favourite childhood stories!

What a sweet cover illustration!

Yes my lovely find is an old library book! Thank goodness it's been signed off, I hate to think what the overdue fine would be....

It has some gorgeous colour plates in it.

I think this has to be my favourite illustration, it just looks so perfectly Alpine! I wonder how many little hands this copy has passed through in it's time on the library shelves. I hope the little ones who read it or had it read to them enjoyed the story of Heidi, her Grandfather, Peter and Clara as much as I did when I first read the story.
Happy (busy reading!) Thursday!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Conservatory, Castle Rock.


I took more photos when we were wandering around Castle Rock looking at antiques than I realised! But I think these (the last of them I promise!) are my favourites.  Between the Emporium and the Barn was a green house/conservatory full of old garden implements, china, glass,  french linens and fabrics and best of all beautiful big plants!

Lots of galvanized watering cans, perfect for watering the lovely fern beside it.

I loved these frames all piled up together.

A gorgeous foxglove and wonderful white rose.

A tumbling ivy and a huge rosemary herb bush.

The kitchen corner.

Loved the souvenir glass from the Peaks Peak Cog Railway. 

A cabinet of blue and white china.

A huge white geranium, looking wonderful in a galvanized bucket on top of a small plinth. Love the little tomato plants in their little green pails too.

Wow! If I could get a hanging basket to look like this one!

Yes, we did have a discussion about whether it was feasible to get this wonderful eagle statue in our packing to take back to the UK... only if we left a LOT of other things out was the conclusion! Oh well, at least we know where we can get a giant eagle catching a fish on top of a globe - if we ever need one!
Happy Tuesday!