Where to start ?

I've got so much to tell you !

We've been down in Cornwall for the last 12 days visiting Paul's family. Fortunately, the weather was half decent this time so we managed to be out and about pretty much all of the time. I'll try not to bore you with all of my holiday snaps, but thought you might be interested in a few of the things we got up to ?

Before we went away I googled "Things to do in Cornwall when it rains". Normally when we go to Cornwall it chucks it down the whole time and we can never find stuff to do, so this time I decided to be organised and find lots of things to do before we went. During my internet search I came across this particular site Treasure Trails. What a brilliant find !! Based in Truro, this company has lots of treasure hunts in Cornwall, so we decided to buy the Boscastle and St Ives trails.

Boscastle, apart from becoming well-known from the "Seaside Parish" tv series, unfortunately became far more well known after the devastating floods. However, this wonderful village has picked itself up, dusted itself down and has returned to the beautiful Cornish village it used to be.

We spent a good 2 hours wandering around looking for treasure hunt clues, and enjoying the lovely surroundings. And the good thing about the treasure hunts is that you get to see lots of things and parts of the towns and villages that you wouldn't normally see.

Our 2nd treasure trail was in St Ives. Unfortunately, the weather on this particular day was absolutely awful but we met up with some friends that happened to be on holiday in St Ives and spent another 2 hours wandering around in the pouring rain searching for Murder Mystery clues this time. Again, we saw lots of parts of St Ives that we haven't seen before and we've been to St Ives A LOT !!

We were so impressed with the treasure hunts that I've bought another 2 for Essex and we'll be doing these later in the school hols. Why not take a look and see if there are any trails near you, or for places that you'll be visiting on holiday ?

I had also booked our 2 monkeys on a Baywatch Babes course at Lusty Glaze centre in Newquay.

Don't panic - it's not what it sounds like, and I do think they could rename both the course and the centre - but anyway ... What a fantastic 2 hours they had !! As neither of them are old enough to learn to surf (properly) yet, Lusty Glaze has a course for 4-7 year olds which covers life saving, rock pooling and boogie / body boarding.

The centre provides wet suits so you only need to take a towel to dry the kiddies off when they're done and they have a great cafe / bar where we were able to sit and drink hot chocolate (it wasn't the warmest of days!) and watch the goings on.

There is loads to do at the centre for all ages - including inflatable sumo wrestling .. designed for adults but hysterically funny when two 7 year olds are taking part !! Sadly, Sam wasn't able to overpower our friend's daugther, but like I say - very funny to watch !

Are you still with me ? I hope I'm not boring you too much !

What else ? Ah yes. Trevoole Farm.

I read about this lovely place on someone's blog last month (can't remember whose it was sorry). Opened as part of the National Open Gardens scheme, Trevoole Farm is a really beautiful place. Sadly, we missed the actual open day, but Beth very kindly agreed to let us wander around. What a treat !

It can't begin to tell you how wonderful it was, but please believe me when I say I've never seen anything like it !!

My favourite part had to be the Summer House. What I wouldn't give to have a summer house like this !

Once again we cycled the Camel Trail. This year we did it the other way round - parked at Padstow and cycled to Wadebridge for lunch and then cycled back to Padstow for a bit of retail therapy. Not a spot of rain to be seen and a lovely day out !

A few other days on the beach - Porthminster and Hayle - completed our very lovely Cornwall holiday 2010 !

OK - before we went away this is what the view from our dining room to the kitchen looked like.

When we came back ... it looked like this !!

I can't believe the difference having a wall removed makes (I also can't believe the amount of dust having a wall removed makes !!) We are now steeling ourselves to be without a kitchen for around a week whilst the new one is istalled. Our new AGA will be installed on the 11th August (very exciting !). I have no idea how to cook on an aga so would welcome all of your hints / tips and favourite recipes !!

The day we trotted off to Cornwall my massive felt delivery arrived. I had been waiting for it for what seemed like forever - sometimes I wonder whether the couriers actually use aeroplanes or just donkeys (as seen in Truro last week !!)

In the 6 GIANT boxes was lots of lovely felt as well as supplies for the new Blooming Felt kits which I'll be launching at the Knitting & Show in October - so watch this space ! I've updated the website so the following is now back in stock:
  • Felt string
  • 10 x 10 inch felt squares (4mm thick) - not many P1 sheets as they were missing from the delivery - sorry
  • Grab bags of stars, hearts, pebbles, plain and beaded felt balls
  • Felt shapes
  • Wool roving
  • Gillian Gladrag felting kits
Right - I think I've probably bored you to tears by now so I'll say thank you for sticking with this very long blog post and I'll see you soon (probably covered in dust, and very stressed from not having a kitchen and having to do the washing up in the bath !!)

Sarah x

Just a quickie !!


OK - first, I need to let you know that Blooming Felt will be closed from Tuesday 13th July until Friday 30th July. The website will remain open and accepting orders, but nothing will be processed until Monday 2nd August - many apologies for any inconvenience this might cause.

Now, if you're not signed up to my newsletter (and if not ... why not ?) then you won't know about the new goodies that have been added to the site !

First of all we've got Fimo Dolly Mixture beads, cupcakes, lollies and pendants. I am SO excited about these ! My lovely neighbour has agreed to supply her fimo creations exclusively to Blooming Felt, so expect lots more designs to be added to the website in the future.

Next, 2 new designs of buttons - dalmation spot and chequerboard

We've also got elasticated charm bracelets (to hang those dolly mixtures from)

A few more colours of 1mm thick beading elastic have also been added to the site.

I'm awaiting a VERY LARGE delivery of felt any day now, but sadly won't be able to get it loaded onto the website for a week or so. I'll let you know once everything has been updated though. It will mainly be 10x10 inch 4mm thick felt sheets and felt string, so if you're waiting for these, they are on their way !

That's it for now - see you soon

Sarah xx

Architectural Salvage

I don't know about you but I love looking at reclaimed items that have been revamped or can be given a new lease of life.

Last weekend we trotted along to Knebworth House in Hertfordshire for the annual SALVO fair.
I've never been either to a SALVO fair or to Knebworth House, so it was lovely to be able to have a day out with kids and go to a place that would keep everyone happy.

Fortunately it was an absolutely beautiful day (actually, it was a little too hot, but I'm not complaining ... honest !) When we arrived we were greeted by 3 stone lions in honour of England's poor efforts in the World Cup (although at the time, we hadn't crashed out to Germany !) Sadly I forgot to take a photo of them !!

But the range of exhibitors was just amazing - the first stand that caught my eye was this one: The Home Store.

It was full of fab retro type stuff including these brilliant original Coca-Cola bottles.

They also had the wire baskets that the milkmen used to use and in them, were empty milk bottles that had various advertising slogans on the front - think Kellog's Cornflakes, Kit Kat etc (again, in my excitement I forgot to take a photo - doh !)

Lots of the stands had really quirky stuff on - these Egyption looking stone statues (not the children, obviously !), real canon balls (Sam wanted to know if we could get a canon and fire them down our field !! Actually, he's got a point - it might get rid of the rabbits that are eating all of my flowers .... AGAIN !

Then we came to this stand, which specialised in garden stuff. I just love the Shepherd's Hut - what a fantastic hideaway that would make, or even a Wendy House for the kids and a mobile greenhouse (love it !)

Further down was this fantastic stand which again, specialised in gardening type stuff. I just loved the display of herbs in the brightly painted terracotta pots.

The next stand specialised in beautiful old french textiles

Next was a stand that seemed to sell absolutely everything - Sam & Grace were very interested in the old telephone !

A little further on was this stand - we did spend some money here on fantastic reclaimed fruit boxes which will be used as planters outside our back door. I returned to this stand later in the afternoon and there was complete pandamonium there - people almost fighting over the boxes ! Thank goodness we got ours early on.

Towards the top of the field was a really funky stand selling reclaimed London Underground signs. I just love anything quirky like this - I was keen to find one of the circular signs saying Piccadilly Circus which I was hoping to use as a splash back to our new AGA (yes, I'm getting one !! More about this in a future post though), but sadly he didn't have one. He did have an "Oxford Circus" sign though, but I nearly fell over when he told me the price. Maybe I'll go back to Plan A (again, more later) - sorry, no photo again !

We were sorely tempted to buy one of these tents !!

Richard III Medieval Tent

Now, anyone who knows me will tell you that the words "tent" and "Sarah" NEVER EVER feature in the same sentence ! But, we did seriously consider purchasing one of these particular tents (not to sleep in - urghh, I can't even bear the thought of it !) but to use for the kids when they have parties in the garden, maybe to use for Blooming Felt workshops ... again, in the garden. Or maybe just to hire out should someone fancy it. But, as it wasn't actually on our shopping list, we just settled for taking a brochure with a view to possibly looking at buying one at some time in the future.

However, just because something isn't on your shopping list, doesn't necessarily mean that you won't buy it. We were actually looking for a new front door - a lovely wooden planked one with a diamond glass bit in the middle, that I could paint in a beautiful grey/green Farrow & Ball paint . Did we come home with a door like this ? NO (but if you know where I can get one, please let me know !)

But we did come home with an 1800 cast iron French roll top bath - oops !!! This WAS NOT on our shopping list. We had no intention of replacing our bathroom - we're just about to start ripping our kitchen out, and work on the bathroom was most definitely not on our list. But you know when you see something and just know that you have to have it ?! It was one of those moments I'm afraid. I think the fact that it had been totally refurbished, re-enamelled and the outside was painted in ..... a beautiful grey/green Farrow & Ball paint, meant that I just had to have it !! I tried it out for size - with lots of very strange looks from other people at the fair. Well, you have to know that it's comfy and that you can stretch out in it, don't you ?! Unfortunately, because I was so totally bowled over by this bath and the poor chap who was selling it couldn't actually get a word in edgeways over my excitment, I totally forgot to take a photo ... again ! (I think I'm pretty rubbish at this "taking photos for my blog" lark - sorry). The bath was delivered by 2 strapping men the following day and now resides covered in bubble wrap and clingfilm and minus its feet ... in our garage :o(

As soon as it's installed in its new home, you will see photos of it in all its glory !!

After we'd finished looking at the fair and stuffing our faces with icecream, we decided it was time that the children had a little fun. After entering the gardens of Knebworth House, we came across one of those lovely old-fashioned box hedge mazes and after we made our way to the middle, found this little chap waiting for us.

On the way out of the maze garden we had to go through this beautiful gate. How lovely is this ? I shall hang on tightly to this particular photo because if we ever manage to beat a path through the trees and bushes at the end of our garden into our field, this is exactly the type of gate that I want.

Then, we came across this

How exciting !!

71 dinosaurs - some very lifelike

some not so !!

But the kids had a fantastic time looking at them all.

Then, back towards the house and gardens, past secret doorways - I wonder where it goes to ?

Past beautiful walkways

Glimpsing the stunning house beyond the gardens

Enjoying the flowers

And finishing up with an hour at the adventure playground, scraping knees on very low swing things and getting dirty bottoms after flying off the bottom of the slide !

What a lovely, lovely day



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