About Me

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United Kingdom
Hi there & welcome to Annie's Place. A place inspired by and named after my late Grandmother Annie. Somewhere I can be creative, and share my love for all things hand made. I like nothing better than sitting with hook & yarn, crafting something home spun & completely unique, or rustling up some yummy baked goodies. I live in a town with a beautiful embankment, situated on the River Great Ouse. You may know me as 'Colour-Heaven' on Flickr or 'CosyKitty' on Ravelry. Why not stop a while.....?!!

Saturday, 1 April 2017

WI Fair : Ideal Home Show 2017

Before I jump straight into this update, I just wanted to extend my gratitude to each and every person who thought to leave a message of condolence for me and my family. We said a final goodbye to Mum on March 7th and it was everything and more than we'd hoped for. 

I just about managed to hold it together to read out my own tribute to the congregation. I did it my way, and I know Mum would have been listening and wiping away my tears. It was a celebration; a joyous reunion of family and friends. 

We laughed, we cried, we made a vow to make the best of every day. As hard as it is with a gaping hole that will never be filled. It will never be ok, but I will endeavour to make Mum proud and push through the pain. I miss her.

_ ____________________________________ _

This past Thursday was the hottest day of the year so far in my little corner of the UK. Bonus as I was heading into London to enjoy a day perusing not just one but two fab exhibitions. First stop was the WI (Women's Institute) Fair at Alexandra Palace, followed by The Ideal Home Show at Olympia.

Some people may think I'm mad driving into the City but I prefer to take my trusty little motor as opposed to using public transport. Mind you I did contemplate it for a mere second. However when I realised it would take at the very least an hour and a bit to travel between venues, (via foot, bus and tube) I thought better of it. Add to that the time to travel from my home in Bedford to London by train it would have been a nightmare. 

I was taking a calculated risk, hoping beyond hope that I wouldn't get stuck in traffic. But I thought better to be stuck in my comfy car, than stuck sniffing someones smelly armpit on the tube. Sorry TMI.  So with that being said, I decided to take the risk, I popped some light refreshments for my journey in my little cool bag and got on the road.

Luckily for me the risk paid off and I reached my first destination in good time, no holdups. The sun was shining, the temperature just about right, albeit a little windy. Free parking too which is a rarity anywhere in London. I must admit when I got into the main exhibition hall I thought 'where do I start?'. 

So much to see, so many stands, so many people. Wow, it was a bit of a sensory overload. Everything from craft, travel & lifestyle to live demos. Workshops too. I had a lovely few hours meandering through the stalls. I had a budget to work with so made sure I hung on to my pennies until I'd seen everything on offer. I made a mental note of each place I wanted to return to. 

One thing I did invest in was a subscription to a new (to me) magazine The Simple Things. I took advantage of the offer they had available on a 12 month subscription, as well as picking up 4 hard copies available to take away from the stand. I'm looking forward to losing myself in them over the next few days.

We couldn't resist purchasing an ice-cream from the gorgeous pastel coloured converted London Cab outside the Ally Pally. We sat and enjoyed the sunshine and the view over the city awhile before heading off to Olympia. 

Again, and I have to say miraculously there were no traffic delays traversing the Capital in the car. I made sure to pre-book parking through NCP at Broadwood Terrace so I didn't have to worry. It was only £2 per hour booked in advance versus £7 per hour on the day. I know rip off right!?!  It was a short walk to Olympia so perfectly situated.

Once inside we were greeted with a plethora of eateries upstairs off the main exhibition space. It was accommodating the Eat&Drink Festival. Something for every palate, but tbh I think hugely overpriced. Nevertheless we were there to enjoy ourselves, not to scrutinise the pricing,  so we opted for a couple of Posh Pooches. A hotdog topped with pulled pork, crispy onions, ketchup and mustard to you and me. Tasted better than it looks...

After filling our tummies we headed around the rest of the food stalls, and were instantly drawn to the Flapjack Stall 'Flapjackery'. Now I have a little confession to make. The previous weekend I'd attended the East of England Food Fayre and this company had a stand there. I bought some of these flapjacks and OMG they are THE BEST FLAPJACKS EVER. 

I know it's OTT but my goodness they are YUMMY. Especially the Salted Caramel Fudge. So when I found out they were going to be at the Ideal Home Show I nearly did a cartwheel. My scales on the other hand have been firmly hidden for the next 6 months whilst I try and fathom how I'm going to work off the calories I've consumed since finding these yummy slices of heaven. I suppose walking several miles around Olympia that day was a start. Let me tell you that place is VAST. 

We tried our best to cover the whole event. Walking from one end to the other, making sure we had a good browse. This made the WI Fair look like a village fete in terms of scale. Anything and everything you could possibly want for your home was there. I had my eye on a luxury hot tub, or hydro pool. Well a girl can dream.....

I'm almost as exhausted writing this post as I was walking around there that day. Give yourself a pat on the back if you're still with me! Anyway, that's a little taster of what I've been up to. Hope you enjoyed the tour......

Some yarn related service will be resumed shortly........

Till then...xx

*this is NOT a sponsored post

Thursday, 2 February 2017

My happy place....

I don't have much of a blog voice at the moment. Things continue to be quite fraught surrounding Mum's health and I don't really have the time or energy to dedicate to this space. Mum is my priority and her well-being is of paramount importance. Her happiness is where I focus my efforts now. Any little thing I can do to help her day-to-day be a bit brighter is a blessing to me.  

However, I do love this place and will continue to bob in and out when I can. I don't really want to lose the connection I've built up with all of you, so I do hope you still say hello from time to time??!!

I thought I'd take some snap shots of what keeps me in a happy place when I take 5 minutes out to be kind to myself.  I've learnt this is so essential when dealing with the daily stresses of caring for a loved one who has deteriorating health.  

Home is my happy place and I like to surround myself with what I consider happy things. Colourful accents that punctuate the muted tones in my living space help me feel warm and cosy. Hygge you might say.  Crochet is of course my ultimate escape. When I feel like I need to relax and recharge I just grab my hook and yarn and snuggle up on the sofa.  

I'm hugely addicted to Galaxy Instant Hot Chocolate right now. It's a daily ritual in fact. I love my dose of hot choccy with a frothy head of cream and marshmallows. So yummy. 

Those Raine & Humble Kitchen textiles you see pictured up there were a recent purchase. My parents always find it difficult to buy for me at Christmas time so I usually get some vouchers. That way I can treat myself to things I really want, and I really wanted those gorgeous tea towels and oven gloves. You can't beat a bit of retail therapy......

I joined a choir late last year and have found such joy and comfort from being involved. It's been nice to dust off the old vocal chords, and be embraced by a lovely bunch of like minded souls. 

If any of you lovely readers are in a similar boat caring for someone with chronic health problems, I'd love to know what you do to create your happy place...xxxx

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Crochet Christmas Gifts and Gratitude....

Hello! Long time no see.....x

I have been absent for a while. I did not have the time or inclination to blog as my mother has been very unwell for several months now. She is however at home, stable and in good spirits and we have just had a lovely family Christmas. I remain optimistic despite not knowing what's around the corner. The last six months has definitely taught me that.....

Nonetheless I am all about the positive, so here I am today to give a little wave. I send you all best wishes whether you celebrate Christmas or otherwise. You have all been wonderful to me over the years, and I appreciate it.

As you can see from the pics my Sister's bag finally got finished and she was pleased as punch with it. I also made a little coin purse to boot. My first foray into purse making. I enjoyed it so much I'm thinking of making a few more. I purchased a lovely hat and scarf for her too,  to compliment my own handmade items. 

I'm hoping to have a bit more time to crochet and blog in the new year. Fingers crossed.

I must make special mention to Becky in Wichita Falls Texas. This lovely lady sent me a box choc full of goodies, that landed on my doorstep just when I needed it. Unbeknownst to Becky it was a very dark time with worry over Mum. This gift appeared out of nowhere from a complete stranger thousands of miles away, who had happened upon my blog and enjoyed what she saw.

If you're reading this Becky, you'll never know what that meant. You are one in a million. Thank you.

x x x x x

Friday, 12 August 2016

Snippets of Summer

It has been a really beautiful day here today, and although I feel the pull to be outside I'm currently glued to coverage of the first day of Athletics at the Rio Olympics. It's been a bit chaotic here in my world for the past few months, getting used to a new routine and I'm grateful for the welcome distraction of three weeks of great sport.  I've particularly enjoyed the Swimming, Diving & Gymnastics this week.

Crochetwise I'm in the middle of bag construction. I put this down a while ago, and have only just picked it back up.I'm working with some Katia Planet Acrylic Yarn in a lovely Saffron colourway. It's a colour I'm increasingly drawn too. I love it, don't you?

The Bedford River Festival came and went last month. The weather was superb, and again it was a fantastic weekend of fun on the river. It comes around every other year, and I always look forward to it. I generally park myself by the Jazz Stage; under a tree with some refreshments, and just soak up the atmosphere.

Another spectacle that is currently very much a talking point locally is the Hybrid Air Vehicles Airlander 10. This aircraft has been constructed firmly behind closed doors at the Cardington Hangars just a few miles from my home. It's the biggest aircraft in the world, some have referred to as the Kim Kardashian of Aircrafts ;) It's finally made an appearance and is currently sitting outside the sheds in the adjacent field undergoing final ground tests and will take flight soon. Exciting times...

Along with many others I've been patiently awaiting this moment, and as soon as I got wind that it was in view I popped down to get a few snaps of this iconic piece of engineering.....

Great news, Sally has reached her target of £500 for her charity blanket. Thank you to anyone that donated. I'm sure she's over the moon with the kindness and support for this project. 

Right, I'm off to enjoy some more of the athletics. 
Come on Jess & KJT!!!!

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Donate for your chance to win a Crochet Blanket!

Dearest readers, you may remember back in March I mentioned a lovely lady had messaged me about using my Happy Flower Block in a Charity Blanket Project

Well Sally has finished the project and is now fundraising for her chosen charity 'Friends of the Elderly'

I know you lovely lovely lot will appreciate all the time and effort that has gone into making this happen, so with that in mind I'm here to let you know that you are in with a chance of winning this gorgeous blanket, and a bonus cushion cover to boot with as little as a £2 donation! 

You could be the proud owner of these lovely handmade items with just a small token gesture, which will go a long long way to helping Sally achieve her goal of £500 for a very worthwhile cause. 

Your help in spreading the word about this 
would be very much appreciated. 

You could be the lucky recipient of this wonderful prize!
Thank You & Good Luck

Monday, 13 June 2016

Still here....

With so much fear and suffering in the world today, I like to take a moment to appreciate the simple things in life. I was fortunate enough to spend much of last week relaxing in the beautiful surrounds of the Dorset Coast. The chance to escape, de-stress and completely unwind was much needed.

The weather was thankfully on our side, and we had a blissful few days relaxing, eating, crafting. I made the most of the opportunity to crochet outside. My blanket is still progressing, and I'm happy with it, especially as I've managed to tidy away all the yarn tails thus far. 

There is so much beauty in this world we live in, and it devastates me that there are people who are so disturbed they seek to destroy innocent lives. For what? Most of us just want peace, and the chance to live freely. I have an overwhelming sense of grief for all those that have ever been affected by terrorism, but particularly the LGBT community who are the latest target.

I was so very nearly caught up in the 7/7 atrocities in London 2005. I can remember that day as though it were yesterday. When will this madness ever end......?

I really felt the need to acknowledge what has happened over the weekend in Orlando, and I'm deeply saddened that my first post back after several weeks absence had to include this. I had such a wonderful time away, every moment was well spent and this has sickened me to my core. However, I am not going to let this dampen my spirit. I am more determined to live life to the fullest, and I hope you will too!

The views were spectacular from the accommodation we stayed in. From every room we had an amazing vista. It was pure joy opening the curtains each morning. 

Now I'm back home, I am beavering away on a side project for my sister. A bag similar to this one, in a different colour. It's working up really well, and I hope to share it with her and you soon.

There's so much going on at the moment, what with the Queen's 90th birthday celebrations, the Euro Football Champs, the lawn tennis season is upon us too. Not to mention the Olympics around the corner. So much great sport to get excited about. I love the way it brings nations together. I for one will be cheering on all our home teams in the football, tennis players at Queen's Club and Wimbledon, and the GB athletes on the road to Rio. 

Love to All 
Sharron xx
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