Off the Hook

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My neighbour’s husband was convinced that Wellington would not commit such a terrible crime and decided that he had merely chased off another predator such as a mink or fox. I was sceptical. However, the ghillie reported a large, renegade black Labradorthat was on the loose at the time of the rabbit murder so it looks like Welly may just be in the clear. Nevertheless, I got out my school teacher whistle, kept him on the lead for a few days and he has been as good as gold, almost – he is trying to behave at least!

For a week that started off as not especially busy, I fitted quite a lot in…

Textile artist, Annabel Pattullo, was visiting family in Scotland for a few weeks so she did 2 workshops on photo to fabric transfer in my studio. I busily made cups of tea and listened in a bit. She gave so much great information and the students all seemed to enjoy trying out all of the techniques. Annabel is living in central Istanbul with her German husband at present, where it is very busy and noisy so to come here on a glorious spring day was quite a contrast. Several people asked if I would run more workshops as they were impressed by the surroundings so that is really encouraging for getting the new studio built. I hope we are close to getting the final warrants.

I had a one hour conference call to APQS one evening to hear about what is involved as an APQS sales rep. There is not a great financial reward for this but I think it will be a good thing to add to the list of workshops available here in due course.

I have got the Hungarian Broken Dishes onto the frame so there is no excuse now but to get started. I have even managed to collect some great vintage doilies to add in amongst the quilting so it looks like there are plates on it.

I must be taking my quilting more seriously because I even made 2 mock-up blocks for the Buddha courthouse steps before deciding on the final placement instead of just throwing the first thing together. I have almost cut out all of the strips and centres for that too.

The mailing instructions arrived for the Open European Quilt Championships in The Netherlands so I sewed a label onto Bewitched and just have to pack it all up for the post.

The editor of “Popular Patchwork” magazine, Jane Rae, asked if I would like to do a project for the edition that comes out to coincide with FOQ! Definitely… amazingly I had kept all of the rough scribbles so I decided that it was bound to be easy to transfer all of this to EQ6. I even read the manual. The program will not do what I want it to and the toolbars are not the same as in the manual. I may need to phone for help!

The children surprised me by eating and enjoying their unusual supper of Pigeon Pittas with Pea Pesto. The pigeon breasts were pan fried and were such rich meat that they almost tasted like liver. I thought it would be fun to invite friends to a meal which started off with Pumpkin Potage and follow it with Pecan Pie – Perfect!

I helped Mel to round up her free-range hens so that they could have their wings clipped as they have been running wild in Durris village. They have been digging for worms in neighbouring gardens and even visited the school. They took a bit of chasing and Mel was not altogether confident about grabbing and holding tightly onto the chooks. In the end I had the chooks while she did the trimming with kitchen scissors. We just trimmed back the flight feathers so they could not flap their way over the fence. I showed her that the skin and bone was quite a long way back and the hens would not get hurt.

I went to pick out my own new hens later from Michelle, the Mad Chicken Woman. She started off with a clutch of second-hand chickens and now runs a successful breeding programme of rare breed hens. They will be quarantined for 2 weeks so by the end of April I hope to be getting my own fresh eggs again.

The weekend whizzed past with a trip to Glasgow IKEA which took up a whole day and as usual, I did not think of what I could have bought until I got home. I spent Sunday tidying the summerhouse, sewing room, yurt and had my first attempts with EQ6. It is the school Easter holidays this week so I must try not to get too frustrated that I won’t get as much work done but if I can at least make good progress with the Hungarian quilt I will be pleased.

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