Friday, 16 May 2008

Home alone...Mr Teacakes goes wild

Over the last couple of weeks we have been keeping our freezer stocked with lollies made from fresh orange juice. They are such a healthy treat for the children to eat in the sunshine...and me too. As I sat eating mine the children filled my lap up with flowers that had fallen onto the grass, disturbed from their branches by Mr Teacakes' vigorous lawn-mowing activities. Mr Teacakes has been up to other things too...left to his own devices for an hour, while I popped to the shops, I came home to find that he had cut our buddleia down to a stump...when earlier that day it had been nearly 7ft tall. I was more than a little surprised as it is not his normal way to set himself to work in the garden unprompted. I thought you would like it, he said to my grumpy face. Then I saw that the branches from the buddleia lay in a pile at the bottom of the garden, carefully stripped of their leaves and I knew then that the real reason he had taken the axe to it was that he had been filled with ideas to repurpose it! It is beyond my comprehension how he could do this...but he is forgiven because he has created something even more lovely than the buddleia ever was. At the bottom of the garden, between two trees, he has weaved branches together and bound them with twine to create a den for the children. They have swept its floor and and sit on chairs waiting for animal visitors to arrive, inspired by reading Shirley Hughes' Sally's Secret which we got out from the library on our most recent visit.

Lovely treats have arrived through my door this week. Firstly this wonderful package of fabrics from Helen, who had offered to send me some Minkee so that I might sample its softness. I was surprised and delighted to find that she had kindly filled the envelope with other fabric treats too. I was indescribably excited by the apple and pear print as it is something I have always coveted in other peoples sewing projects...so to have some of my own! It will definitely become part of an applique I think.

The Minkee is just as soft as Helen had said it was and Zebra-girl has quite fallen in love with it...so perhaps it will end up being turned into a polar bear for her to snuggle with.

Another surprise came from my father. Wonderful vintage pinking shears, still in their box.

I have never had a pair, so to have such special ones is quite wonderful. Amazingly, they cut perfectly and are completely free of rust. I love that he goes ferreting out these little treasures for me on his bargain hunting expeditions - they are always things that I really want. It is his 60th birthday today so I have been busy sewing for the last couple of days in preparation...the results of which I'll post up once he's actually unwrapped them.

And finally I thought I'd show you this little ladybird that I made for one of Zebra-girl's friends. I had been going to make her one of Molly Chicken's little Mousey and his Bed lovelies, but I know that this little girl really loves ladybirds, so I thought I'd create my own Ladybird in a Leaf for her.

A couple of days later as she sat on the sofa with Zebra-girl waiting for me to put a video on for them, she told me, completely unprompted, how much she'd liked it and that she'd taken it on a day out with her. I was so pleased and touched that she'd thought to tell me.

Wishing you all a lovely weekend. x

26 comments:

  1. What a clever man you have. A cute little den for the children is such a lovely thing to do. i bet they spend hours in there now.
    Gorgeous fabrics and those pinking spears are great I have my Grannies ones as she never uses them anymore.
    The little miss lady bug in her leaf is so sweet. My Molly would love one like that, she's bug mad lol and we can't go on walks without her stopping to look at every ant, spider and ladybug on the way. Awww our little ones we wouldn't be without them.
    Have a great weekend x
    Hugs.

    Catherine x

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  2. You are like something out of a book. And I think 'bottom of the garden' is one of my favourite expressions. That ladybird is one of the cutest things I have seen in ages - well done. No wonder she commented on it - I know so many little girls who would treasure it!

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  3. the den is fantastic, well done Mr teacakes (and I'm sure the budlea will recover, I'm often brutal with ours..)
    lovely fabric, (I bought a little fq of purple minkee once, and it's never been cut up, Miss K can be found stroking it in bed).
    and great shears - congrats for finding those and happy birthday to your dad!

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  4. lovely stories today Florence and a beautiful den for the little ones xx

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  5. Hi Florence,
    I love the ladybird peering out from her leaf, so does my soon to be 10 year old who is off sick today and reading over my shoulder. We have been watching Chitty Chitty Bang Bang...so not such a bad day and it's almost the weekend. I am not surprised you were a bit miffed about the poor buddleia... i would have been too. But men's minds work in mysteriously different ways to ours at times and will do anything to keep their wee bairns happy. I bet they had heaps of fun.... but where has the sunshine gone?

    Have a lovely weekend.
    ginny x

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  6. In my experience, buddleia has amazing powers of regeneration, so you may well get two wonderful things in your garden this year. The den is crying out to have a couple of morning glories or black eyed susans planted against it. Lucky little teacakes!

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  7. Love the den, love the fabrics, love that litty ladybug.

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  8. I forgot to say Happy Birthday to your lovely Dad.
    Have a fab 60th Mrs Teacakes Daddy x

    Catherine x

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  9. What an adorable lady bird and the little cupcakes must jsut love their new den, wonderful!

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  10. oh wow, you've been so busy...sorry 'bout your tree. but sounds like something nice came out of it!
    One day I was busy doing something inside the house, and my dear loving husband came in all smiles (he was putting bug poison around the outside of the house) and said: "well, it's all done!" I was like, ok, thats good. Come to find out that he had sprayed the chemicals all over my SIX big, juicy, ripe, tomato plants! My face turned as red as my tomatoes and I started to cry. :) You can imagine the rest....... LOL Ruined! Oh well....i have six more big plants bringing on juicy tomatoes as we speak. (that was last year) Such is life. I love the ladybird gift you cleverly made! You are so industrious!
    Have a good weekend,
    Laurie

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  11. Mr Teacakes is such a clever blokey!

    The pear print is gorgeous, I have it and I am still wondering what to do with it!

    Have a good weekend.

    Vanessa x

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  12. Hi! Nice to meet you. I am not a lurker. Just came here for the first time after (oh rats. .. I just forgot the exact name of her blog) the list-maker referred to your blog, specifically to your post about your outing in ... London? Is that where Trafalgar square is? I live in California and have never been across the Atlantic, though I'd love to some time and will. Anyways ... I read that post and enjoyed it so much that I just had to read the others. I even read lots of your comments, and found the comment from the sculptor's wife before I found your post about her contacting you via e mail. I was quite excited to see her comment as well. I believe what I gasped under my breath was: LUCKY. Very cool.
    Well ... I am writing too much, but I wanted you to know that I enjoy your writing style and the way you refer to everyone in the familiy as a teacake (though I don't know if it's just a fun name or your actual name) and I like those little projects. The little flowers and butterflies made out of tissue paper look WAY too tempting NOT to do. I just never let my 4 yr old get his hands dirty in the house ... so I can see that I am missing out on some fun and am going to have to turn that around if I am actually going to have that level of fun ... which I am considering very seriously after seeing your fun posts.
    I doubt that you will find my blog nearly as fun if you have a moment to stop by ... but you are welcome if you wish to come over. I don't do much of a crafty nature, but I love to paint murals in my home. Haven't done any in a bit so no photos posted lately.
    OK. Really long comment. I'll become one of those commenters that you delete because they are 200 words long (but not religious! lol)
    I'll be back.
    Wendy

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  13. I adore your ladybird! What a wonderful idea! And what a delightful stack of fabrics you received in the mail. Lucky you! I know you will put them to good use.
    ~Emily xxx

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  14. That was so thoughtful of you to stop in. Thanks for visiting!

    I'll be back.

    Wendy

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  15. Love the lady bug (oh my goodness, I really just typed that, I meant lady bird!!). Very hard to be cross about the tree when you realise that his intentions were so sweet.

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  16. What a great den - I'm sure the children are thrilled with it. Commiserations about your buddleia - though I hope it will put on plenty of new growth soon.
    What a cute project that ladybird in a leaf is too! You really ought to make them to sell - they would sell like hotcakes/teacakes!

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  17. That friend of Zebra girls is so lucky, you are very clever it is so detailed.

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  18. what a lovey idea of Mr T to make a den for the kids :). Love the fabric, such pretty colours x

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  19. I love the little outdoor den that your hubbie created for the children - it's brilliant! - what a magical place to play in.

    Your gifts are so lovely - the fabrics have such pretty patterns on them, and those vintage pinking shears are so cool!

    Wonderful lady bug! You are so creative!

    Warmly,
    Susan

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  20. what a beautiful ladybird - I think you may have inspired me. Gorgeous pinking shears too - think I am suffering shear envy (mine are modern and fairly sterile). Lucky you!

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  21. Once you have oinking shears its hard not to give everything a lovely crinkly edge! Really good for snipping curved seams aswell.
    love the den!

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  22. I was just thinking that little christmas lights on the children's outside den might look really magical.

    Just a thought :D

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  23. Oh that ladybug must be one of the most precious things I have seen in ages. I would have LOVED this as a child...come to think of it, I'd still love a pet ladybug...Love the den too, even if it did mean sacrificing a plant - actually chopping a plant down to a stump is something my husband would do - he's a demon with a pair of secateurs and must be monitored at all times when gardening!!!

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  24. Lovely fabrics you've got there and as for those pinking shears. Happy belated birthday greetings to your dad. Cute ladybird too
    Lisa x

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  25. What a lovely hideaway. Your husband is very sweet. Those lollies sound good too. Lollies - are those popsicles?

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  26. I love the little den and I bet the little people do too.
    The cake looks very yummy. The bugs are so sweet , i think you should have them on your website. They would make lovely little pressies especially if given as a pressie along with a hungry caterpillar book too!. I used to keep jelly babies in a matchbox , the jellybabies were wrapped in a peice of toilet roll to keep them warm!.
    Happy birthday to you dad , I love the grandad tissue holder and the little ones artwork
    You are so clever Florence
    x Dom

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x