Thursday, 18 September 2014


I do think that Flo looks a little bit guilty in this photo, don't you? Mr JK caught her - red-pawed, so to speak - when he came in from work the other day! She has plenty of places to sleep, but decided, in true contrary cat fashion, to plonk herself just where she shouldn't be!! On the 64 Crayons blankie!

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Mr JK has come up with a cunning plan - since Flo studiously avoids sleeping on the sheepskin that we brought back from Skye especially for her, guess what's now taking pride of place in the middle of the blankie?!! I fully expect to find her curled up at one end or the other looking most disgruntled! xxx

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Sunday, 14 September 2014

Keep on running.....

.......and that's exactly what Mr JK did today, taking part in the East Anglian Air Ambulance 10K Runway Run. Everyone was running to raise funds for the Air Ambulance. It's hard to believe that such an essential service depends solely on donations. It caused quite a stir when the Air Ambulance landed before the race. I had hoped that Prince William might be piloting the helicopter, but I don't think he has started his training yet!

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Mr JK ran a personal best so he was pleased. I cheered him on from various points around the course. And while he was running, I also did my bit to support the air ambulance - I bought (and ate!) a rather yummy cupcake from one of the fund raising stalls!!

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Mr JK is in training for the Norwich Half Marathon in November, so the 10K is a mere warm up for him!!

going for gold!

I have been knitting a fair bit this week, but still all on secret projects, so Mum's the word for now. But I can share with you a rather lovely knitting needle case that I received this week. Although I knit on interchangeable needles for many of many of my projects, I still like to use my 'traditional' long needles. They were in a bit of a mess, stored in several places, so I asked Michele over at ThreeBagsFull if she would be able to make me a case for long needles. I spent a fun hour yesterday afternoon digging out all my needles and arranging them in their new home! It's so nice to have them all in one place! xxx

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Sunday, 7 September 2014

Hunt the cat........

Have you spotted her?!

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No?!  Is she on her fleece? Nope. Curled up on the sofa? Nope! Look harder!!

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Ah, there you are Flo!! Why on earth didn't I think of looking there first?! Where else would you possibly choose to go to sleep than the jigsaw mat! Duh!! Silly me! xxx

Monday, 1 September 2014

Just chilling......

.......yes, that's exactly what Mr JK and I have spent the last week doing. It has been total a total chill out in Ireland. We stayed  in Kenmare, County Kerry again. The south west coast of Ireland is particularly lovely and we were keen to revisit some of our favourite places. Despite the somewhat unseasonal weather, we went out and about every day. We spent one day in the Killarney National Park, stopping en route to enjoy the vista at Ladies View, so called because of the pleasure the sights gave to Queen Victoria's ladies in waiting.

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As well as going on a tour of Muckross House, we also went on the farm trail, looking at what it was like to live and work on a farm in the 1930's. A simple, but hard life is the conclusion we came to.

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One afternoon we went on a Seafari down the bay at Kenmare, in search of seals and sea eagles. The eagles were not playing ball that afternoon, and the seals were also quite shy - apparently a motor boat had been racing down the bay earlier and scared them off the rocks. It was a lovely way to spend the afternoon however, and I think you will agree that the views were amazing! (You will have to indulge me with my photos - my new camera has a 'panorama' setting, and I had fun playing around with it!)

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Our favourite day was spent firstly on Garinish Island; this was our third visit to the island and it definitely won't be our last! The gardens there are just beautiful, and even though you cross from the mainland with other visitors, the chances are that as you are walking around, you won't bump into anyone else at all! It really is one of the most peaceful places to go to. The Italian garden is stunning.

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Plenty to feast your eyes on around every twist and turn of the path. The walled garden is currently being renovated, it will be interesting to see it again in a couple of years.

Garinish Island

We saw seals again as we were crossing over to the island - these were braver and didn't bother to go into the water as we approached. They must be used to the little boats going back and forth each day.

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Afterwards, we drove around the Mizen Head peninsula, stopping off at Crookhaven for a lunch and a walk on the beach .......

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We then went to Barley Cove, a truly stunning beach that you reach via a floating walkway. 

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It was pretty windy, and despite the lifeguard's red flag, someone was crazy enough to be trying to swim. These photos show the beach from different views......

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We drove on to the Mizen Head lighthouse. Last time we came, it was closed because the bridge was being rebuilt. It was pretty rickety, so we were very pleased to see something far more substantial, especially given how windy it was while we were there. Seeing the waves pounding against the rocks, you get some idea just how powerful the sea is and how treacherous it can be. The number of ships that have been wrecked in this area bears testament to that.

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On our last day, we drove part of the way around the Ring of Kerry, as far as Derrynane House, the ancestral home of one of Ireland's heroes, Daniel O'Connell. He apparently loved to come down here to escape the bustle of both London and Dublin. No mean feat when you consider what the roads must have been like back then. But the tranquillity of his surroundings must surely have been so soothing. We walked down to Derrynane beach, and although the weather was rather dull, it was still wonderful.

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There was plenty of knitting, which I will share with you in another post.

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There was also a LOT of cake munching!! I could indeed make a whole cake mosaic for you, but since I don't want to show what little piggies Mr JK and I were, I will just share my favourite cake of the week!! A slice of coffee cake, enjoyed with a cup of tea at the Mizen Head. And now I shall love and leave you. I need to get my head around the fact that it's school tomorrow! Where did the holidays go?! See you soon. xxx

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Friday, 22 August 2014

Late summer holiday......

........ to Ireland! We both love the Emerald Isle and are revisiting the west coast of County Cork. In the meantime, we're leaving this little person in charge chez josiekitten!! See you in a week or so, to be sure! xxx


Monday, 18 August 2014

Sew much fun!

I have been busy sewing as well as knitting and crocheting this holiday; I am not an experienced sewer (why does that word look sooooooo wrong?!) so I was delighted to discover that there is somewhere right on my doorstep that runs a wide variety of sewing classes. The Makeplace in Norwich is terrific - a wonderful, light and airy space in which to learn, with a 'bulging at the seams' fabric shop a couple of doors down the road. I've taken classes there before to learn needle felting and free motion machine stitching, and decided to take a couple of different classes over the summer holidays.

The first class was making a zipped bag. You all know just how much I like bags for keeping my projects in! Now a chance to make my own!! The first bag I made was the little one with the fun bird print fabric. I decided to use some ric-rac on one side (if I'd put it on the back as well, I'd have had to be super-careful about matching seams and patterns!) I actually made this bag when I took the class last year, but I left it so long before trying to make another bag, that I couldn't remember what to do!! So when I spotted that the class was running again, I jumped at the chance to book a place! This time I made the pink and green bird bag - I love this bold print, don't you? When I got home, I thought that it would be a good idea to make another bag straight away so that I'd remember what to do for future bags. After a few technical hitches, such as discovering that my sewing machine didn't have a zipper foot, and then not being able to fix it on without Mr JK's assistance, I sailed through the third bag, using a batik fabric. I've made this bag for my friend Diane to keep her crochet projects in.

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Here's a closer look at each of the bags .......

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My head is already buzzing with possible fabric combinations for future bags after rummaging around in my small (but growing) stash of fabrics! Which of these do you like the best?!

Bag possibilities!

The other class that I took was a crazy patchwork class, designed to use up all kinds of oddments of fabric. After selecting a variety of fabric scraps, we set about fixing them to a backing panel, one piece at a time. It's a very clever way of doing patchwork, using a sewing machine. I used an overlocker to neaten the edges and will eventually turn my panel into the front of a cushion cover (I'll probably need to do another class for that!!)

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I love how some of the different prints look together.......

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There just aren't enough hours in the day to do all the crafty things I'd like. Roll on retirement!!! xxx