Crafty in the Med

I'm here to enjoy meeting other bloggers and to share my ideas,thoughts and projects. I love to crochet,cross stitch and embroidery but I'm keen to try new crafts too. usic and I love to sing! I belong to a local choir. I am addicted to yarn and buttons. I get lost in book shops and can spend all morning there and I absolutely adore rummaging in flea markets.
I read lots......sci´fi/fantasy,buried treasure, and off world adventures. I have a passion for history! I walk and walk and walk about 10 months per year during the hot months I swim.

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Happy New Year giveaway

Lesson to learn ......listen to ones inner voice .....I suspected many of you bloggers would already have this book but didn't think more about it!  tch!!,therefore I have now added an option! You can choose between the book or the stash of yarn that you can see here with all the extra little bits I am including as well of course. 
Please indicate what you would prefer book or yarn. 


Lets start the new year right....with a little giveaway to celebrate my 100th post and over....
102 with this one :-)

and etc ....+ etc

I'm a little bit early with this as I wanted to get it posted before I go back to work as I'm pretty sure I am going to be innudated with assignments to correct and once I am doing that I'll be totally distracted.
I already have this book but Amazon got things a bit mixed up when I ordered it and sent me two so I kept the spare one back precisely for this occasion, although the 100th post has taken a bit longer arriving than I had thought. I am sure some of you crocheters out there will agree that it is a handy book to have .....there are a great many lovely motifs to choose from,the instructions are very clear and are also accompanied by an easy to follow diagram. If you would like to see them made up pop over to Linda's Crafty Corner blog as she has been going through the book from A to Z.....her real life samples will give you a good idea what each finished item is like.

The above book is part of my 100th post giveaway but I shall be adding a few more bits to it as well such as a.......and another a........ which you'll be able to see on another post...or posts.
 The giveaway is open to everyone on this world and off,
  •  however you should be a follower of my blog , that is having signed on via Google friend connect and also 
  • name one of your New Year resolutions and why.
If you post the above image and link to my blog on your blog then you get a second entry (please post a comment that you have done so).
The giveaway finishes on the 6th January ....the King's Day (The twelfth day of Christmas). The Spanish hand out their second round of gifts or rather the three kings leave the gifts under the tree on the Eve of the King's Day.
The winner will be chosen using the sophisticated Method of all names go into the BOWL!

 this time Sr P will not be asked to choose the winner but my grand-daughter who will be here with us on that night.

There you have it FUNTIME isn't over yet!

Amanda :-)

Monday, 24 December 2012

I have something to tell you Pooh said....

its impossible for me to describe or tell you how much I have enjoyed my first year as a blogger...strange because I am not usually at a loss for words ....or the pleasure I get from the contact I have with my blogfriends so let me just go on to say what Pooh is saying here MERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS  and for those of you who do not hold these same beliefs.... no matter ......because I believe to wish someone Merry Christmas is synonymous of wishing you peace and happiness. 
May this be so dear bloggers ,
PEACE AND HAPPINESS,MERRY CHRISTMAS,Bon Nadal, Feliz Navidad, Vrolijk Kerstfeest en een Gelukkig NieuwjaaR, Joyeux Noël, Froehliche Weihnachten, Shub Naya Baras,  Nollaig Shona Dhuit, Buone Feste Natalizie, Feliz Natal, Noeliniz Ve Yeni Yiliniz Kutlu Olsun and Nadolig Llawen.


Amanda :-)

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Ding Dong Bell

My efforts at making crocheted soft toys have never been very successful at least not according to  my critical eye. However to be quite frank I've made very few using crochet as it is not something that I am drawn to although I still drool over what other crafters so cleverly make . Never the less I was racking my brains as to what I could make for my grand-daughter for Christmas and came up with this .......BELL the multitasking dormouse.
Its a hard life being a dormouse finding food from dawn to dusk but Bell also has another duty assign to her as from Christmas Day 2012 and that is to take care of my grand-daughter's mobile phone while she sleeps.

amandasmith©23rdDec 2012
This is my very own creation and with no pattern,just trial and error. It would be difficult perhaps for me to repeat it but not impossible.
and here you can see that Bell has a purple backpack all ready to carry a mobile phone. Incidentally the purple backpack is my very first sewing machine project.........difficult! very difficult!! Most particularly so when you think I had to change the bobbin for purple cotton.....scary, very scary!
and there you are she's struggling a little with the load but I'm sure she'll get used to it!
Now I have to wrap her up and put her under the tree!

As I mentioned in my last post I have received two swap parcels and here you have the second pile of scrumptious goodies that I have received which is the Christmas cracker swap from Tracy at Mad about Bags.   I won't even bother to compare between this and Gracie's swap goodies because they have both been really generous,considerate and paying a lot of attention to detail. I do so appreciate how Tracy has taken the time to consider my preferences and my likes. This is saying to me I am a person not just a contact and its evident by looking at the goodies that she has sent me that she has taken this into account. I thank you so much for that.
Like other bloggers doing this swap I am amazed at how much is possible to get inside the carton from a kitchen roll and here is the proof of it:

I so enjoyed opening my cracker and seeing all these lovelies spill out:

Glory be!!!   The cracker was wrapped in Winnie the Pooh fabric and tied using a lovely silver ribbon.
 I am going to do something with that I don't know what yet but it will be just for me and only me! I am so lucky ...more Winnie the Pooh....may he live forever!!!!!
A gorgeous lace bag of perfumed beads which I think I shall put in my crochet samples box and everytime I open that box I'll  get a whiff of that delicate perfume...mmmmmm. BUTTONS folks! more button and little charms and chocolate and candystick ornaments for my tree ...and just a minute...what's this?   A teddy bear button and a teapot button...oh! my how thoughtful!
There is also a beautiful padded placemat that Tracy made and the embroidery on it says Tea for One,. I really hope I will be able to make something so lovely as that on my sewing machine one day! In fact I am not going to use it I don't want to stain it with tea I think I am going to put it up on my kitchen wall ....not sure how I'll  do that but I have the beginnings of an idea.
Tracy even sent me a Christmas card and ........yes Tracy I do like everything ...but everything. Thank you once again.
Official announcement: I now have my Christmas tree up and sparkling bright!!!!

Shame the lights haven't shown up in the photo.

 My Christmas fairy ...getting a bit scruffy now!

My ornaments from blog friends from afar, Gracie and Tracy

I feel so much better now my tree is up and sparkling with colour and my home is ready for Christmas :-)

Amanda :-)

Saturday, 22 December 2012

No tree!!! ... but swap goodies yes

That's right no tree!!!  
I must be the only blogger in all of blog land who hasn't got their Christmas tree up least it feels like that )-:
Its going up tomorrow or bust even if I have to stay up all night to get it done!!!!
I am running so late with everything......I've had to help my daughter ( she has a nasty bout of flu) with the last accounts and paperwork at the school before closing for the Christmas holidays....and finally at 11:30pm this evening its sorted...more or less....phew!

Over to nice nice things and to show you what Gracie from One Saylor's log has sent me in her snowflake swap parcel which I received mid week.

She has been so considerate and thoughtful and also very observant too as I have received some goodies which I can definitely relate to and most particularly to this Winnie the Pooh pack.
Going to look forward to opening this..... this weekend
 I've always been fascinated with Winnie the Pooh and loved to read his stories when I was a child. I think I like to cling to this little bit of childhood and dreamland so much so I made sure that Winnie-the-Pooh was very much present in my daughter's childhood and of course in my grand-daughter's too.

I am very much a tactual-visual learner and person, by that I mean I rely on the sense of sight and touch to take in information,understand it and remember it. Therefore that Gracie has sent me this pack of beautiful postcards of her area of Oregon gives me a lot more information than just a pretty picture although pretty is somewhat an understatement as I would say these views are fabulous and I would love to see them in real life.

She has also sent me a beautifully made delicate snowflake which I will put on my Christmas tree and tell everyone that this snowflake has flittered in from overseas. That isn't all and a lovely red friendship bracelet which she made herself and that means everytime I wear it I'll think of Gracie :-)

Everything was accompanied by little holly notelets describing each item very thoughtful. I also received a post card of the Saugerties NY where Gracie used to live with her husband...again its a visual aid which gives me more information and ignites queries and thoughts about that part of the world. I can see Gracie has really thought about me as a person and not just a contact and I appreciate that tremendously and I agree Gracie we do have a lot in common. Thank you so much.

Oh! no I nearly forgot a handmade dishcloth and BUTTONS yes buttons ....a really nice selection of different buttons!

 In my next post I'll be showing and giving you details about my Christmas cracker goodies that I have received from Tracy at Mad about Bags.

I'm off to decorate a tree!!!

Amanda :-)

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

I am shouting




excuse me while I do a jig ........

my Snowflake swap parcel is here all the way from Gracie in Oregon....USA!

photos later  when I get back from work :-)

Saturday, 15 December 2012


Hello and welcome to my new followers Vicki on Vintage Vicki and  Aleksandra G.D. (sorry Aleksandra I can't make out which is your blog link,please send it to me and I will visit).
thank you so much for visiting my blog... the more the merrier I say!

News!!! Have you heard Madelief has a delightful giveaway on the go...... Madelief of the beautiful blog, full of gorgeous photos of beautiful gardens,tea parties,yummy cupcakes and doilies....pop by when you have time you won't be disappointed. :-)

My friend the Yarn fairy has been bopping around energetically in this part of the world again and low and behold I have purchased a little bit more yarn to add to my stash. Curiously I also discovered something about her Ladyship the Yarn Fairy she is also partial to tempting one with sewing supplies too.....
Not quite sure how those spools crept into my purchase when I was buying more buttons and bells!!!

OH! but my hands have been itching to get hold of my bright new sewing machine this week but as always work has got in the way....however I have focused on my first project which is a makeover of this grotty item here :

It has been on my mind for quite sometime now that I needed a new cushion cover for this large cushion which is on my grand-daughter's bed. It looks so drab! As the colour scheme on the walls in the bedroom is light apple green I thought I would look for some nice bright contrasting colours like green and purple and my plan is to make an envelope patchwork cover. I'll repeat that's my plan but we'll see just how it turns out. There is a wealth of information on the internet on how to make patchwork cushion covers and that's how I am going to learn how to do it. I've hand sewn cushion covers in the past but never patchwork. Lets hope I don't botch it up.

Last Monday Gracie from One Saylor's log ,my swap partner in the Snowflake swap hosted by Kate at  Granny taught me to crochet blog received my parcel all the way over there in Oregon.

 I was really pleased with the Christmas tree fabric I bought and I've kept some back for I have a sewing machine he! he!

This means of course I can now show you what I made and what I sent to her:

The  pièce de résistance was this teapot cozy the basic pattern of which comes from Leah on Why didn't anyone tell me blog  beautiful teapot cozies, with a bit of tweaking I added holly to make it a bit more Christmassy.

I was very pleased with how it turned out and have had requests from other members of the family for one. However I have told very sorry its haute couture range, unique piece each time.

Buttons as well ...of course


some snowflakes

except the sweeties because its too risky....I didn't want customs to open the parcel!

one of my wonky Christmas trees and a bell. I used the yellow yarn that Alessandra from homemade @myplace blog sent me in her last giveaway, to make the bell because it was nice and bright and being a firm yarn it kept the shape of the bell.
 Once again I thoroughly enjoyed making and preparing the goodies for that swap parcel and I am so pleased Gracie received it safe and sound.

Thats all for now folks

Enjoy your weekend

Amanda :-)

Heavan is packed tonight with all those angels who have gone there far before their time.
My heartfelt sympathy goes out to the Connecticut families who have lost their loved ones.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

from ME to ME


You probably think me daft .... you know doolally ....or perhaps even losing my grip.....lost a screw..... but I am feeling absurdly content with the early present I have bought for myself from myself for Christmas ..........

....for months now I've been reviewing comments online about this machine ...that machine trying to decide which sewing machine would be the best one for me, considering I am a complete beginner....a total ignoramus where sewing machines are concerned. All this time I've seen some very nice sewing machines,terribly tempting and at really good prices but I have hesitated with the persistent thought that what if I spend all that money and then I muck up the machine because I don't know what I'm doing, it would be such a waste.

About a month ago a friend mentioned that she had a cheap Silvercrest sewing machine which she bought from Lidl and that she was very pleased with it. Since then I've been checking out the reviews online about this brand and found that most of the comments were quite favourable when you take into account that its a very cheap basic machine. I continued to hesitate thinking also the Silvercrest machine could turn out to be a cheap nasty bit of junk too....but as fate would have it....last Wednesday I heard on the Tv that Lidl would have a new model Silvercrest sewing machine for sale as from Friday 7th December for 89€ (that's approx 73 pounds)!!!!.

Now then fate seems to have stepped in again here because I gave my last class at The Red Cross Friday morning and my return journey home goes right past the Lidl supermarket and I tell you I swear it was as if my car had a mind of its own, as before I even knew it I was parking my car in the Lidel parking lot and was queuing at the till with a great big white box in my arms that contained .....yes of course the Silvercrest sewing machine! 
That's not all though I have already threaded it AND fitted the bobbin in AND sewn a bit of fabric together to check it works ok AND now I am looking around my house trying to decide what I am going to make first.....this may seem all very simplistic and dum dum to you expert sewing machinist out there but I feel CHUFFED ( translated as over the moon)that I have got that far.....and now I am going to celebrate with a nice glass of red....Rioja I think!!!

have a great weekend

Amanda :-)

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Thanks is due!

My daughter also says thank you too!

It was a workday yesterday so unfortunately any birthday celebrations were out of the question but its another fiesta day here on Thursday (Constitution Day) so she will have all day to celebrate then.
Cookie my grand-daughter bought her mother a lipstick for her birthday from her pocket money,with a little help from YiYO (grandad) who took her to the shops after school yesterday to get it. Actually she took YiYo (grandad) with her as he has no idea about buying lipsticks or any other type of cosmetic but he won't let her go there alone. Cookie is 12 and it would be nice to let her go to the shops alone but with all that is happening lately where missing children are concerned and practically on our doorstep my daughter won't hear of her going anywhere alone. The last report was a child missing in Torrevieja which is about 30 minutes away by car. I'm inclined to think this is being over protective and the child cannot grow up within a bubble but on the other hand I can understand my daughter too. I shudder in horror to think anything should happen to her.

On a lighter note you saw in my last post I presented a picture of my daughter when she was a baby however I do have photos of her as a woman. Unfortunately I cannot and dare not post here as she is totally against photos of herself being displayed on the www and having her photo taken come to that as that sense she is a very private person.

I do my best to get around it as you can see here ....I mean it is the back of her ......He! He!
Daughter and grand-daughter


Finally......I have my first Christmas swap parcel winging its way to Gracie from One Saylor's log   over there in Oregon umpteen kilometres away....please may it arrive safely!!!!

Amanda :-)

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Sweet 40


40 TODAY !


Amanda :-)

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Crazy Calamondin

A big welcome to all of my new followers,Tracy on Crochet Happy,Thea at Hearts & Bluebells and Elizabeth at Elizy Art. I am so pleased you have popped in to visit and follow my blog. 

I also highly recommend you pop in and participate in Shari's wonderful giveaway at Lauren's Closet she is giving away one of her wonderful crocheted blankets.

Now then, let me introduce you to my Crazy Calamondin miniature orange tree.
A present my husband gave me two years ago in December and it has been doing very well but just lately it has gone crazy!!!!

 It seems to think its spring as it is flowering and sprouting tiny oranges! We had the same the first year I had it but during spring but never now and its in the same place it has always been, out on the balcony, admittedly behind glass and there is a bit of a hot house effect because of the sun on the glass but I still think its been misled...what is it doing flowering and producing fruit in December!!!!!

Please take in to consideration that my balcony windows are dirty no not dirty filthy would be a better description because it is raining and constantly raining so .........  me no clean windows until it stops! 
Now I have been busy as most of you are I am sure!!  
Busy Busy bees making Christmas goodies. 
As I mentioned in my last post I can't show you a lot of my makes as they are to be a surprise as they are going to be part of my swap parcels for the following swaps :
which is hosted by Tracy at Mad about Bags and Tracy herself is my swap partner the other one is hosted by Kate at Granny Taught me to Crochet
 and my swap partner is Gracie at One Saylor's log.

The other makes are part of Christmas presents so I daren't show you them either yet . 
However I have done some more Wonky Christmas trees and as mentioned in a previous post I plan to send the trees as Christmas cards this year to family members. 
The trees are from a pattern found on Annaboo House Blog.
However the Christmas tree bauble is my very own pattern... a simple little thing and its for my Christmas tree.   All for me at last....I am forever doing things for other people and rarely for myself!
Blurry ....ah well!

Amanda :-)