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Caffe Rizzoli-Saturday

Although it is officially summer here in the UK, it rained on Saturday. Well, we Brits have come to expect this, it must be my age but I don’t remember summers being as bad as we’ve experienced the last two or three years. I suppose when you’re young the weather doesn’t have the same impact, you can play whatever its doing outside. Now, as adults, we are concerned with getting the laundry dry, and little feet trailing mud etc on your nice clean floor!!

Well, I digress, it rained so we went shopping when we would normally go walking. Now, we’re fair weather walkers, my husband drags along his tripod and camera and you can’t take photos in the rain, heaven forbid that you expose your camera to the odd rain drop!!

Usually when we go shopping together my husband parks himself at a well known coffee place (can’t bring myself to type the name) gets himself a coffee and plays on his iPad. Now I hate this well known coffee place, I thinks its expensive, the coffee is no better than anywhere else and to top all that, you queue and wait and when you get your drink (eventually) its served in a thick mug that a rugby forward would have trouble picking up!!

I’m getting to the point here. Even my husband was getting exasperated with the indifferent service and expensive coffee of the well known brand that we decided to try another place, hence the title.

We have been twice to Caffe Rizzoli now, and both times its been a pleasure. They serve you, they have proper china crockery, and when I ask for Earl Grey tea I get Twinings, which in my humble opinion is the ONLY Earl Grey tea. Nothing else will do.

My husband had coffee and Pane Tostato with butter and preserves for his breakfast. He had already eaten at home so this was a little snack. I could see others around us tucking into luscious food, well presented and reasonably priced, what more could you ask. The place is comfortable, the staff are pleasant and friendly and they don’t rush you. All in all, a very agreeable hour was spent there on a rainy Saturday morning.photoAndrea x

Spring is here (I hope)

Well, I thought spring had arrived but its freezing today. We did manage a walk yesterday and it was beautiful for most of the way. I think we did 5 miles but by the end my legs were aching. We dropped our rucksacks in the car and walked to the little National Trust coffee shop at Longshaw, it was only the thought of a cup of Earl Grey tea that got me from car park to shop!! Its always the last few yards that finish you off!!

We sat outside to have our refreshing cuppa in the little garden, the sun was shining, the birds were tweeting, it was lovely. Longshaw encourage the birds around this area, there are feeders in trees and even a camera pointing at one of the feeders dangling from a branch. The encouragement certainly works as there are loads of lovely little birds darting about. Now, I have no idea what sort of birds these are, neither has my other half , but we do know they are gorgeous little things. They are probably a common variety so I’ll leave it to someone to enlighten me.

Birds in the Longshaw EstateThis was taken yesterday

Birds on the Longshaw Estate

This photo was taken at Longshaw in March

Higger Tor and Carl Walk from above the Burbage Valley

Yesterday in Derbyshire

Last Saturday we went to Bakewell for breakfast then for a long walk, I think we did over six miles. There was still snow at the side of fields and in hidden hollows although the day was quite warm. To start with. Then it rained. I spotted a hare in a field, other half quickly unattached his camera from his tripod and zoomed in.

Hare near HaddonI know it doesn’t look much but we were at least two fields away. I know hare’s are big but I was surprised at how big.

On a different subject, I sewed four fleece neck warmers for my sister to wear at the stables, well, one for her and the others to give away.

And had the notion to make myself a pair of trousers. I used a pair of jeans and traced a pattern on brown paper. I wanted to make jegging type trousers as I hate wearing tops and T shirts outside trousers only to see lumps and bumps where the zip and waistband are. I thought if I made them with an elastic waist and fitted at the hip then hopefully they would be smooth in order to sit under t shirts. Well, a pair has been made in white cotton denim and I’m very pleased with them. No photo yet, the trousers are drying on the line as I washed them before I stitch the hemline, just in case of shrinkage. I normally wash all my fabric as soon as I bring it home so its probably already been through the laundry. Another wash won’t hurt it.

Have a great week

Andrea x

A bit of sewing

No posts doesn’t mean no sewing. I have been quite busy since June last year but I can’t possibly show everything I’ve made, you would be bored. I’ll just show the latest, fabric baskets. I searched around the net for ideas and saw a fabric basket tutorial by Pink Penguin. Lovely little basket, this lady used patchwork for the upper part of the basket but I wanted to use one piece of fabric and a contrast so, although this tutorial was the inspiration, I went on to fashion a larger basket. There are loads of tutorials out there if you’re willing to take the time and search.

baskets 072I thought this basket would be a lovely present filled with baby things for a new Mum.

baskets 079

I made four baskets, hope I know four new Mums to give them to!

baskets 086A small basket, made four of this size too. I’m keeping these for Christmas gifts.

baskets 091Draw string bag.

Used a pattern purchased on the internet from Jeni Baker Patterns. Its fully lined, the pattern has a number of different size bags for you to choose from.   I made the Everything bag, 10 x 7 x 3.

See you soon!

Andrea x

Easter Baking

Just a few things baked for Easter

baskets 050Yummy chocolate muffins

baskets 051

baskets 053Lemon biscuits

These were a huge success

baskets 054 baskets 055Vanilla sugar biscuits

I do like to bake but we can’t eat it all (we do try) so the majority finds it way to work. The weather seems to be improving, it’s almost spring like today. I know it is spring but you wouldn’t know it outside, the poor spring bulbs are not yet showing themselves.

We went for a walk in Derbyshire yesterday, there is still a load of snow around although the sun was shining.

A little bit of sewing.

Just had a letter changing my appointment to have the cast removed. Another five days with the cast on, I’m gutted. I was so looking forward to getting out in my car next Friday.

Anyway, having the cast on didn’t stop me getting out the sewing machine. Could only manage straight stitching so made a couple of taggy blankets. Photo following but don’t think your eyesight has suddenly deteriorated, it’s fuzzy as the fabric is fleece. Nice and tactile for a baby to hold but the printing is a little out of focus!!

Baby taggy blanket

I love the fabric, I want to make more but I think I will try minky next time.

Andrea x

Monsal Trail

We went out walking on Sunday, the day was fine, I know, it’s unbelievable that we actually had a nice day amongst the dreadful weather we’re having. It’s a good job I love my country, or I would be off somewhere warm!! I lived in Australia a fair number of years ago, before getting married and having my son, it was truly wonderful and I wonder now why I ever left. But, if I’d stayed in Oz I would never have met my husband or been the mother of a grumpy teenager!!

When we got up Sunday morning and talked about going for a walk, the only stipulation was that it had to be flat. My arm is still in plaster making it difficult to wield a walking pole so we decided to walk the Monsal Trail.

The trail is a disused railway line, and last year was the first time the public could use the tunnels following work by the Peak District National Park Authority and the Department of Transport. It cost a fortune but its worth it. The tunnels have been resurfaced, repaired and lit to allow walkers, horse riders and cyclists to go through. Before the tunnels were opened you had to walk round. We didn’t walk the whole trial on Sunday but we’re going back soon to cycle the length of it, me on a three-wheeler as I can’t ride a bike.

We,ve had so much rain recently everything is green and lush

You can see the old station platforms and the old Great Longsone Sation

Me having a rest and gazing into space!!

It looks like I’m looking into trees but there is actually a deep valley in front of me.

The weather is terrible here today, pouring with rain, and today is the longest day and the start of summer!! Despite the cast on my arm I’m getting the sewing machine out!!

Andrea x

Two in one day!!

Two posts in one day, nothing since December then two at once.

I’ll stop when I’ve caught up with projects.

Sweet sixteen bag

This is a lovely project, although you really need to concentrate when you’re stitching as its easy to get confused. I thought I got the pattern from ModaBakeShop but I can’t find it. Will edit later.

Pencil roll

Another pencil roll

I love making pencil rolls, I think every small child I know has had one of these.

Small zip bags

Love the fabric

I used a spotty fabric for the lining. These are nice little projects, great for a present.

That’s all for today I think, more tomorrow

No new sewing projects for me anytime soon, I broke my wrist on Monday and am in plaster up to my elbow. Although, its amazing what you can do with one hand, I managed to iron this morning so I must be able to use the sewing machine!! I’ll let you know.

Enjoy your weekend.

Andrea x