Saturday, November 29, 2008

Amy's getting thinner!

Amy in her "Guess the Weight of the Dog" outfit.
Christmas is coming ... and the goose might be getting fat ... but Amy's latest diet is working!! Instead of her usual regime of food combining - that's any food she can rootle out, combined with any other food she happens to be able to obtain from one gullible Russian human in particular - she's been restricted to plain dog biscuits and limited portion of meat in the evenings.

My friend Elona is the worst culprit for feeding Amy, but she has been visiting her family in Russia, and while she was away Amy lost 8 cm (about 3 inches) off her rather substantial waistline. She now measures a (mere!) 104 cm (41 inches) around her middle! And I think this time Amy will have the last laugh as Elona is expecting a baby in the spring. Elona's convinced that she will never be as fat as Amy, but we're keeping a record and Elona has already reached 99 cm!!!

Meanwhile we're surrounding ourselves with all sorts of baby catalogues and planning to make lots of baby goodies in the new year to compliment our existing babychange bag. Watch this space! Meanwhile Elona is proudly wearing her DevonBears T-shirt...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Daughter's visit brings chaos!

"Let's have a photoshoot!" said Rosie.... none of my friends at Uni will believe how big the newfies are." So we did.

She invited Ben onto the sofa - this is normally TOTALLY forbidden. He became a little over-excited ....
and tried to sit on Rosie....
had to be restrained ....

..... then became totally hysterical.
Meanwhile Amy sulked as she adores having her photo taken and hates not to be the centre of attention. When sulking turned to petulant barking the photoshoot was cancelled and all canine participants removed for a cooling-off period.

Rosie also wreaked havoc with my little knitted mice! Now I'm not the fastest knitter, but had managed to complete 3 mice ready for the Yuletide Fair at Saltram House next weekend. I'd hoped to take at least half a dozen with me. But Rosie fell in love with them. Above you see Ralph, Alice and Fred. Rosie has now rehomed Ralph into her bag to take back to Bristol, together with a personalised hot water bottle cover, lavender heart, spiral bound DevonBears notebook and assorted sundries.

At least she didn't help herself to a needlebook - my answer to using up all the vintage blanket scraps ...

But she has thought of lots of things she'd like me to make her for Christmas!

Only a month to go!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Christmas is coming!

Wow, I hadn't realised how long it was since I last blogged - time has simply flown past! Here at DevonBear Designs we've been lucky enough to have some of our products featured in various magazines - which has led to a significant rise in orders. Christmas paper bunting has proved to be particularly popular -

- I guess it's a bit different to more traditional Christmas decorations - it was certainly great fun to design.

As well as Christmas orders, I've also been busy getting ready for the Yuletide Craft and Food Fair at Saltram House next weekend and have added little knitted mice to the cupcakes I'm offering in support of the Gables Animal Rescue.

And yes .. that is Craft and FOOD Fair. Can't wait! All profits may well be spent before I leave the event!!

Meanwhile, Rosie's home for the weekend ... she's brought some work with her - but may well find herself packaging Christmas bunting if this rush continues. It's great to have her here to spoil, and husband's off to Twickenham for the England - South Africa match so we can have a really girly time together. Chocolate may feature prominently on our menu, whilst Bridget Jones is sure to find her way into the DVD player!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sunday afternoon ...

Oh, what a wild, blustery, sodden afternoon we had yesterday. Outside the skies were an unremitting leaden grey as the rain hurled itself against the windowpanes and rushed down through the drainpipes to the well below the cellar. It was dark by four o'clock and I was glad to pull the shutters closed against the stormy weather. It was an afternoon to forget all outdoor pursuits - I had planned to get out into the garden ... being a subscriber to Vita Sackville-West's philosophy that:

"If it is true that one of the greatest pleasures of gardening lies in looking forward, then the planning of next year's beds and borders must be one of the most agreeable occupations in the gardener's calendar. This should make October and November particularly pleasant months, for then we may begin to clear our borders, to cut down those sodden and untidy stalks, to dig up and increase our plants, and to move them to other positions where they will show up to greater effect. People who are not gardeners always say that the bare beds of winter are uninteresting; gardeners know better, and take even a certain pleasure in the neatness of the newly dug, bare, brown earth."

But it was not to be. So I closed the shutters and we all settled into a long, peaceful Sunday evening in front of the fire....
Amy chose to stay with us in the living room, but Ben became far too warm and retired to snooze on the chilly flagstones in the hallway. Husband was busy with the papers, so I picked up my latest project...

The knitting!
I have been inspired by a great blog I found called "Little Cotton Rabbits". I purchased one of Julie's patterns for her knitted cupcakes

and am knitting my own to sell at the Yuletide Fair at Saltram House in aid of our local animal rescue centre, Gables Farm, which helps unwanted and abandoned animals find new homes. Up until Ben arrived I'd always had rescue dogs - you can read Susie's story here from my blog entry of March this year. Her tale was so sad, and now I have a house full of newfies I can't possibly adopt any more - but maybe this way I can help give other animals a second chance.


The cupcakes are turning out rather well, and if you'd like to purchase one, then you can do so on the DevonBear website. Profits are going to the Gables Farm Animal Rescue Centre - I'm not making them on a commercial basis. To make the little cakes extra special I've put a sachet of organic lavender into each one, so they smell as good as they look, and will keep those pesky moths away!

And finally, from my trusty Book of Days ... on 10 November 1960 D H Lawrence's novel Lady Chatterley's Lover was first published in its entirety, and the first run of 200,000 copies had sold out by the end of the day. So there!

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