Sunday, 28 February 2010

sunshine award

this is the sunshine award, which I have been given by both sprinks and joolskay, thank you both, I am now supposed to pass it on to 12 other bloggers whose blogs I find inspiring and positive, but I dont, for some reason, seem able to do the cut and paste required to do this, as soon as I can work out how to do it then I shall, but in the mean time thank you both again.

Saturday, 27 February 2010

thinking long and hard

we moved away from surrey 18 months ago, for a change of lifestyle, and to slow down a bit. however, since we have settled in devizes I seem to be busier than ever and quite exhausted, which was not the object of the exercise. so over the past few days I have been thinking long and hard about the things that are most important to me. top of the list has to be gardening, and in particular growing organic vegetables, so that is going to be my main focus, especially now that spring is just around the corner, rog and I spent a very productive couple of hours outside in our little patch yesterday and made a good start on adding some organic matter to our rather heavy soil.
secondly comes the cards, I am still as passionate about the phoenix trading range of greetings cards and stationery as I was when I started almost 4 years ago, so now that the weather is starting to warm up and its not too unpleasant to go out I shall make more effort to deliver brochures and meet old and new customers any way I can.
thirdly I just love knitting and crocheting as a hobby. I had toyed with the idea of attempting to make it profitable, I have sold a few items on ebay over the years, but only just about covered material costs, I have opened a couple of shops on MISI and one on etsy, but I haven't sold anything, and there are lots of other professional knitters out there in what is certainly not a huge market, so I have decided to slowly withdraw from attempting to sell, and concentrate instead on designing and making one-offs as gifts for family and friends. that should leave me free to concentrate on the important things and bring back my enjoyment in the creating process. my MISI and etsy shops will stay open for a couple more months and will then be closed so if you want to take a look then now is the time to do it.
I have resolved NOT to take on anything new, I shall continue to house sit for rosemundy cottage as thats only three of four times a year, I am NOT going to do craft fairs or school fetes, as they are a lot of hard work for little return, I AM going to enjoy my time whether it be in the garden, baking bread or cooking, or knitting in front of the television, and I am NOT going to allow myself to be under pressure for anything. I am so looking forward to when rog is able to retire and we can just do things together, he is such good company and we just love being together. there is so much of this lovely county to explore, all we need is for it to rain slightly less than it has been doing since we arrived here.

Friday, 26 February 2010


yesterday I introduced you to hennie, one of my fellow misians, who is also a knitter and sewer (of the crafting kind - not waste disposal!!)
please take a look at her shop and her blog where you will find some lovely items.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

back home

This is the lovely HENNIE, the first of the personalized slim-me dolls that I am making for the participants of the MISI slimathon
newly listed in my MISI shop is this lovely stole, in shades of deep pink, it would be great for spring evenings or for the school prom.

another listing is this bright red and extremely cheerful choker

and last, but not least, a set of four hand crocheted circular coasters

I have been away for what seems like ages, and its great to be back home and crafting again. I had a lovely few days in Surrey with my two older sons and their partners, but sadly missed out on seeing the grandchildren as they were both poorly, and I didn't want to risk catching a tummy bug. My second trip was a quick flying overnight stay in Devon with my Mum to attend my elderly aunt's funeral. Sad as the occasion was it was lovely to meet up with cousins, we are all spread around the country and dont see one another very often.
if you have reached this far in my blog, please pop into the comments section and just say hello, as I would really love to know how many of you actually read this. thanks.

Monday, 15 February 2010

I have been watching these cygnets on the crammer, our pond on the green, for several months now, and yesterday morning, at midday, they were all three of them asleep on the pavement, right next to the main road, hardly noticing the sunday lunchtime traffic.

this is the newest listing in my malebox shop, a black and white mens tie

I bought these labels last week, to sew into my knitteds. they are exactly the same as the name tags my mum used to sew into my school uniform back in the 50s!

not much else to blog about this week, the car sold on thursday to a lovely couple, so pleased to know my beloved hermione has gone to a nice home (yes, stupid, I know, but I do name and get attached to my cars).
the coming week is going to be busy, I travel to surrey to visit the elder two sons, partners and grandsons on wednesday, back on friday for the slimathon weigh-in on saturday and then off to devon sunday afternoon for a funeral monday and back home tuesday. several hundred miles will pass under the wheels ere I blog again.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

the ups and downs of everyday life

part 2, the ups
1) I have my very own phoenix website, where you can view the fabulous range of phoenix cards, giftwrap and other lovely stationery items. currently in its infancy, I have yet to write "about me" and have the payment option installed, but this will be available by the end of the month. please take a look through the link at the top of my list on the left.
2) card sales are going really well this month, and I think I have a new trader about to join my team. if you would like to hold a fund-raising party or coffee morning please contact me to find out how I can help.
3) my new hand-held food mixer is really great for kneading dough, the current lot of bread is the best I've ever made.
4) wow, look at that lovely new fence - and right at the far end you can just see a part of the outbuilding which will, later this year, be converted into an office for he and a studio-cum-workshop for me.
5) the wall outside the back door, shortened and capped, still a bit of an eyesore, but much better than before, and once its pebbledashed it will look lovely.

Monday, 8 February 2010

the ups and downs of everyday life

part 1, the downs
first down the horrible fence we inherited when we came here.

second down the awful wall outside the back door. the top is coming off to make it lower, then its being capped and pebbledashed to make it a bit less of an eyesore, part of it is down already.

third down was the wretched people who wasted 4 hours of our life yesterday - they came to view the car we have for sale. said they would arrive at midday and finally turned up at 2pm, 2 hours wasted waiting. then they took 2 hours of picking the car over with a fine toothcomb, took it out for a half hour test drive!!!
and after all that said they would get back to us, which of course they didn't, another 2 hours wasted. some people really need to get a life rather than waste other peoples.
cross, cross, cross.
please come back tomorrow for the ups

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

who am I?

when I was born I was named joyce may davidson, and thats who I was all through my childhood and teens, except to family and friends who called me joy, and when I was naughty I was JOYCE!!
in 1968 I got married for the first time and I became joyce may poole, but was still called joy by family and friends, and my offical title was the mrs half of mr. and mrs. s.w. poole.
in 1988 I got married for the second time and I became joyce may shallcross, by this time my official title was also mrs joyce m. shallcross, but my dear, since departed, mother-in-law used to send any mail to me addressed to mrs roger shallcross - to which I strongly objected (but not to her face, of course). the only other names I had were mum from the kids, nanny joy from the grandkids, and sausage from the other half (he insists its a term of endearment!).
now in 2010 I am joyknitt on here, I am shallxjoy and joyknitt on ebay, joy shallcross and joyknitt on facebook, joyknitt and malebox on MISI, treetoppers on a couple of other websites and phoenix trader 21910 in my day job. I hope to be sticking around for a few more years yet, so goodness knows how many more names I shall have by the time I finally kick the bucket.
so if you happen to be around at the time to read my gravestone, it will probably say "here lies a very confused lady"

Monday, 1 February 2010

on the go

having decided what I am going to create next, I just thought it might be a good idea to finish off some of the things I'm currently working on, so I assembled them all together in one place and here they are.
there is a ladies scarf made from individual knitted flowers, which I am painstakingly stitching together, and also a men's stripey scarf, which just needs ends tidying up, then I'll put them both away for listing on "joyknitt" and "malebox" next autumn.
at the top we have one of the slim-me dolls that I am knitting for the participants of the MISI slimathon, I've done 10, with another 7 to go, and then have to personalize them with faces and hair, stuff and sew together and make clothing to choice. hope to have them all done by the end of march.
in the centre is a black and white mens tie, which should be finished today or at latest tomorrow for listing on "malebox".
and last, but by no means least, at the bottom is one of the crochet squares to make up into a blanket for a friend's christmas present, that will probably be finished around june or july, as I only work on that a little bit at a time.
I would be most interested to hear how many projects others work on at any one time, or do you just start one and finish it before starting another?
right, I'm off to make some bread now.