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Friday, 5 March 2010

Some say it's Spring

But as I desperately scraped the ice from the windscreen, for we were running late for school, I declined to agree. Late winter it is then.

I was in the playground this morning, gathering participants for A Crafty Coffee when the head teacher approached me and asked 'if I had a minute'. Eeek. Anyway, I went off to the head's office and AS called up to me that she'd see me there.

As I walked past the window of Trago Lounge I noticed that some young things had taken 'our' window seats! How rude. I entered and saw a significantly depleted number of crafters around one of the long tables. On I walked up to the bar, ordering myself a decaf latte but immediately changing my mind to fully loaded as I pondered on my meeting with the head. The staff in Trago are coming to know us quite well now so Pip and Vicki were able to joke with me about it being 'one of those days' before we'd even made it to half past nine.

Anyway, I took my place next to AS who is on the home straight with the cupcake jumper. PW was crocheting a blanket and had invited AN to join us for the first time. AN knits, is a parent of a boy in my Kid A's class and was planning on learning to crochet this morning. Slowly more and more people began to join us so although it was a slow start, we ended up with the usual number of around twenty attendees. It was great to welcome more than one new face and although I said hello to everybody who popped it, I am still unfamiliar with everyone by name which is a bit of a challenge.

Conversations this morning centred around a mother's choice to be a full time mum or a paid working mum. This is a subject very close to my heart and it was interesting to note how the perceptions of both the full time mother and the paid working mother have shifted over time. I am sure I have mentioned before that the mix of ages and experiences at A Crafty Coffee is one of the things that makes the group a community. Sharing experiences together and 'comparing notes' for want of a better turn of phrase, enables us to support one another and to learn from one another.
More frivolous conversations were around holidays, destinations and what makes a family holiday fun. SJ, C, AS and myself had a great chat about holidays that has left me yearning to take a spring break in Italy.
It transpires that I have mutual friends outside of A Crafty Coffee with two of our members, this is lovely because it shows me what a lovely community we are becoming and that we talk about the group with friends, peers and colleagues outside of the crafting circles.

Craft wise, we had the usual crochet, knitting, sewing and cross stitch. IW assumed her favourite teaching mode, and it was simply delightful to see a blanket brought in by a lady who was taught by IW to crochet only three weeks ago. Her choice of colours was simply divine, right up my street ... a chocolate brown edge moving into pinks, greens and mulberry. Mmmmmmmm, delicious, and it had a real vintage feel taking me right back to a blanket I had as a child, crocheted for me by my Great Nana.
There was a hint at a huge cross stitch Southampton Football Club badge up the other end of the table and my ears were definitely burning but I didn't get the opportunity to see it. CK was cross stitching up there with DJ, and a couple of new ladies who I don't know.
CC was knitting ANOTHER new item (some of these women are true pros), a garter stitch coat by Debbie Bliss. It is going to be beautiful. In the book it is knitted in a rich, dark grey. But CC has elected to knit hers in a lovely purple colour. I think it is going to be lovely. EN was knitting another sleeve to sleeve jumper. Apparently the first one came out huge and will fit her DD but she was knitting it for the bump so she is experimenting with finer needles and thinner yarn to make a smaller one.
LB was, again, working on her hand stitched tree decorations. Her DS and EN's DD managed to drive the young things off of the window seats with their antics. This amused most of us because, as I have said before, Trago is a child friendly venue. It strikes me that the British attitude to children and families is fairly unique within the context of the rest of Eurpope!

And so to me ... Sadly, Coffee was too ill to be with us this morning. But that was not going to stop me. I have abandoned myself in favour of Coffee's 'try anything' approach and I am learning to hand applique. My mentality has shifted somewhat from 'oh no, I can't possibly do that, I might make a mistake' to 'I've seen it on youtube, therefore I can do it'. A friend compared it to her son who watched the winter olympics on TV and can therefore ski!
So, this hand applique ... Kid B says to me that I need to have a word with 'the shop man' as they don't do mugs with her name on but they do do Mia, Phoebe and Lily (her school buddies). It occurs to me that the cushion cover I have not braved sewing because I am too afraid to cut the back pieces may have remained unfinished for a reason. I look up hand applique on t'internet and decide that I can indeed do it. I set about personalising a cushion for her and will post the photo in the next week or four!

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