Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Christmas Cracker Swap!

I have joined another swap!

I love swaps!

I have big dreams of organizing my own swaps one day (when my follower count reaches triple figures!)

This fabulous swap is being organized by Tracy at Mad About Bags (but it's not just bags she's mad about, she's mad on lot's of crafty things really!)

The idea of the swap is this.... 

  • You tell her you want to be in the swap
  • She pairs you up with a lovely swap partner
  • You take a kitchen roll tube and fill it with lovely things (crafty bits, pampering things, small handmade item, your favourite Christmas joke/recipe)
  • You then wrap the tube in a piece of fabric and tie at the ends with ribbon
  • Post the cracker to your partner
  • And then await your own crackers arrival! You'll have a tube filled with goodies and a lovely little bit of fabric and ribbon to add to your craft stash!!
  • That and you'll have made a new friend in your swap partner!

Simply wonderful!

Anyone can join the swap! Just pop over to Mad About Bags before 31st October!

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Project Linus

Hello Everyone!

I'm excited to say that I have recently taken on an exciting new voluntary role.
I am now the Cambridgeshire coordinator for Project Linus UK.

 Project Linus UK (named after the Peanuts character who always had his blanket with him!) is a volunteer organisation that aims to provide a sense of security and comfort to sick and traumatised babies, children and teenagers by providing new home made patchwork quilts and knitted/crocheted blankets.
Project Linus began in America in 1995 when Karen Loucks saw a newspaper article showing how much a comfort blanket had helped a child cancer victim and decided to organise blankets for her local children’s cancer unit and started spreading the word. Since that time over 4 million blankets and quilts have been delivered worldwide. 
The organisation began in the UK in March 2000 as a result of a quilter’s desire to help children in need. To date the UK organisation has delivered over 228,000 quilts and blankets, over 11,000 of them this year so far!

As the area coordinator I'm responsible for finding the 'makers' of the quilts and delivering them to babies and children locally in need of 'a hug they can keep'. Premature baby quilts start at about 18" and the most popular quilt size is about 36" as this works well for comforters and lap quilts suitable for wheelchair users. The blankets can also be knitted/crocheted however tighter patterns are preferred as little fingers and medical equipment can get caught in lacy designs. Most hospitals however prefer quilted blankets as these are easier to machine wash.
Personally I think Project Linus is such a worthwhile cause, I am looking forward to improving my patchwork and quilting skills while safe in the knowledge that babies and children in need are benefiting from my ever improving crafty makes!

So far I only have contributed one quilt, which I sent to Project Linus before I became a coordinator, this quilt was a joint effort with an elderly lady I visit, between us we came up with a hexie quilt design, she has a wealth of sewing skills and knowledge and I have the sharp eyesight to put it to good use!

I am sure I'll have quite a few quilts to show you all before long, I have two on the go at the moment, I have been experimenting with big hexies and I've also just had a go at machine patchwork for the first time!


Bea x

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Our 28 Random Acts Of Kindness

So I'm blogging again, with a new look to my little blog and a very good reason to post..

After seeing some amazing stories of 'Random Acts of Kindness' online, especially on a lovely blog by Jessica Gorman called Thumba Lea. Jessica did 28 Random Acts of Kindness on her 28th Birthday, after showing her blog post to my husband he decided that with his birthday coming up (also 28th) he wanted to do the same sort of thing.

So we set about making our list of acts of kindness and places local to us that were in need of some.
We printed off some of Jessica's beautiful Random Acts Cards which she kindly shared on her blog

We were a little worried after planning and doing the list that there just wouldn't be enough hours in the day to do them all, but we woke up early, started the day with a lovely Birthday breakfast and opening of presents and spent the rest of the day ticking off all our random acts, and had a great time in doing so...

1. Plant a Tree
We planted a Wisteria tree in a small memorial garden near our local church.

2. Wash Someone's Car
We washed the car of our wonderful Vicar Gill.

3. Feed a Stray Cat
We took 'Church Kitty' the little cat who lives off tickles from people coming and going at Church a bowl of cat food.

4. Take a Bunch of Flowers To a Nursing Home
We took a large bunch of flowers to a local old peoples home to brighten up the lounge.

5. Give Chocolates to Emergency Services
 We took large tins of chocolates to our local fire, ambulance and police stations

6. Donate Magazines
We took a big bag of magazines to a Doctor's waiting room for waiting patients to read

7. Pay For Someones Drive-Through Meal
We paid for the person behind us in the McDonalds drive through (which was nice as they drove past us as we were waiting at the petrol station nearby and signed Thank you to us!)

8. Put Petrol in Someones Tank
 We sat at the petrol station waiting for a motorbike or a scooter (as we knew they wouldn't be putting in £70!) We actually saw a lady filling up to £20, so Mike rushed into the shop while she put the petrol cap back on and paid for her petrol and gave the Random Acts card to the cashier to give her, as we were driving out we saw her walking out of the shop, and it looked as if she had actually got overcome with emotion and teared up at such a kind deed.

9. Take a Box of Muffins into an Office
 We took a box of Fabulous Baking Boys muffins into a boring looking office building to cheer up the workers.

 10. Feed the Wild Bunnies and Critters
We sprinkled handfuls of rabbit food around a small piece of woodland with rabbit warrens in it.

11. Feed the Wild Birds
We hung coconut bird feeders in the trees for the birds.

12. Donate Food and Goods to a Homeless Shelter
We took a box of pasta, soup, teabags, coffee and toiletries to a day centre for homeless people.

13. Give Blood
We both donated blood at a blood donation centre, Mike also helped one of the nurses pick things up when she knocked a box of envelopes onto the floor, but I had to tell him we already had 28 things so his good deed couldn't make the list, he wasn't too happy! :)

14. Leave Money on a Vending Machine.
We left little bags of change on a few vending machines in a shopping centre.

15. Pay for Someones Parking
We left a bag of change on the parking machine in the shopping centre

16. Leave £1 coins in The Pound Shop
We left a few £1 coins in the shop where everything costs £1, we placed them near toys and sweets low down for little fingers to find.

17. Leave a Pound Coin in a Shopping Trolley
We put a £1 coin in one of the trolleys in Waitrose for someone to find and clipped the Random Acts card to the shopping list holder.

18. Leave Vouchers in Shops 
We left gift vouchers in shops they could be spent in near items they could pay for

19. Give Someone an Umbrella in the Rain
We bought an umbrella, attached the card to the tag and waited at the exit of the shopping centre while it was raining, I handed it to a lady who obviously didn't have one and it was so sweet to see her walk out and meet up with her husband and share it with him as they walked off together in the rain.

20. Buy a Big Issue and Give a Big Tip
We bought a Big Issue magazine from the Big Issue seller and told him to keep the change, we also gave his dog some dog treats.

21. Donate a Handmade Quilt to Charity
I had spent weeks making a quilted patchwork blanket with a lady I visit, she told me about The Linus Project a charity that gives donated handmade blankets to ill babies and children in hospitals and hospices, we decided to donate my first ever bit of quilting to them, so we posted it to the Linus coordinator.

22. Fill a Bag with Rubbish
We tidied up an area of footpath and filled a bag with all the rubbish we picked up.

23. Buy Lunch for a Homeless Person
We bought a hot baguette, a cookie and a cup of tea and gave it to a homeless man, we also gave his dog some treats to eat, they were both so happy and thankful!

 24. Give Someone a Free Phone Call
We left enough change for a 30 min phone call and a Random Acts card on a pay phone.

 25. Give Someone a Voucher for a Free Cup of Coffee
 We gave someone working outside in the city centre a card for a free coffee at the McDonalds they were near.

26. Give a Treat to a Street Cleaner
We gave a Galaxy Chocolate Muffin (with a card taped to it) to a street cleaner

27. Donate Food to an Animal Shelter
We found an animal shelter that someone had set up in their own home and garden, where they rescue rabbits, guinea pigs and cats, we took them two big bags of pet food (rabbit & guinea) a box of cat food and a big bunch of carrots (and a chocolate muffin for the lady who looks after all the animals!)

28. Be a Good Driver
Mike was very good all day not only by doing all the driving (we did a lot!) He was also very considerate and let everyone he could out or in and didn't get mad at anyone no matter how creative their driving was!

So that was 28!  We had great fun doing this and would recommend it to anyone, we certainly hope that some of the cards and kindness we gave out will have been passed on!

Much love and kind wishes

Bea x