Friday, 3 June 2011

Crochet and Relaxing Times

Hello to you!

I'm making the most of the half term holidays, and this sudden, abundantly glorious sunshine that has appeared over Yorkshire (which up until now has been rather cool, wet and subdued).  There is something rather luxurious about sitting in the early morning sun with a cup of coffee, in jammies, listening to birdsong and the musical sound of the river as it tinkles over the stones...

 (at the bottom of my garden...a magical river can be found)
 ...and knowing it's going to be one of those magical, bright blue sky days...

I've been reaquainting myself with my wool stash, and my crochet books in an effort to relax and switch off from the mayhem that I'd created in my life of late.  I know I'm not the only one who does this, and it's gently reassuring to know I'm not alone in swamping myself with projects, ideas and new ventures; loading up my proverbial little ship with far too much Stuff and then wondering why it starts to leak and sink.  So gentle pursuits were the order of the week, and oh how lovely it has been!

Anyway, some of you may be familiar with this book:

It's called Motif Book 4 - Japanese Crochet Book, and it's wonderful.   I spent a lovely hour or so drinking up the gorgeous patterns in this book, and also the pictures on Attic 24's Blog here.  I then spent an equally lovely hour sorting through my odds and sods basket, and managed to accumulate the above wool to begin my very own flower shawl.  I may have to add to the stash as I'm not sure how far what I've got will go, but it's not going to cost alot (maybe two or three extra balls for what I have in mind).  I kknow I'm probably a bit late in the day joining in with the trend for flowery crocheted shawls and scarves as many of you have already made your own, but once I'm tempted, that's it!

So I got busy.  PJ's on, comfy sofa, surrounded by wool, listening to Spring Watch on the television:  Heaven.

And occasionally, a bit of outdoor Table Hooky Time with a nice cuppa in my seaside cup was called for:

As well as this, I've been getting out and about with my family, enjoying the warm spring rain, cups of tea and large chunks of carrot cake in cosy cafes, wild flowers and wildlife...

...and I've also been spending time in remote, quiet places where all you can hear is the sound of the breeze, and the call of the curlews...

 (beautiful places like this, not twenty minutes from my own front door...)

These simple times and simple pursuits are a tonic for a weary soul ~ what do you do to relax and switch off when life gets Over Full and Overwhelming?  Share your simple pleasures here with me, I'd love to here how you find delight in the ordinary as a way to rebalance and slow down!  I will look forward to hearing from you, and also to sharing pictures of my shawl/wrap with you when it's done.  I hope you all have a super weekend, thank you so much to the dear souls who left such kind comments on my last post - they were all very much appreciated (you are such a delightful bunch). 

Sending you love, thank you so much for stopping by today.
Julia x


  1. It's good to know that you are getting back on an even keel Julia. Taking time to appreciate what goes on around you is one of the best things you can do to relax and unwind. And you do live in a most beautiful county.

  2. A river at the bottom of your garden! :)) Perfect weather today to sit and crochet accompanied by the peaceful trickle of water.xx

  3. Luckily for me, I don't have a life that gets full or one that necessitates finding some way to unwind. But I love to listen to meditative music, I have one of Chesil Beach and love the water over shingle noise. I also love to sit in the summerhouse, listen to the birds in the garden and swifts flying overhead. I have an active mind, and find it hard to stop thinking. So just slowing the breathing, allowing myself to drift off to sleep for twenty minutes is enough of a recharge.

  4. How fabulous to have a river at the bottom of your garden! I love the sound of water trickling or rushing, so I think that anywhere near the sound or sight of water is so relaxing..and joyful. Lovely crocheting by the's going to be a beautiful scarf.

  5. I love the colours you have chosen for your scarf. Funnily enough, I have found that a trip to London is a great recharger - which might seem bizarre, but I have plenty of peace, quiet and beautiful countryside at home - and my work, as I work from home. So getting right away gives me a break - a trip to the V&A yesterday was a real treat, and I always appreciate the beautiful place we live all the more when I come back from the big smoke. And realize that my life is not nearly as stressful as it would be if I live and worked in London ...

    Pomona x

  6. That book is amazing isn't it! I love making the japanese flowers.
    Have a good weekend,

  7. Ahh Julia it sounds lovely. But where is the sound of the children arguing haha. It looks so relaxing. I think I must get that book as I have done the flowers from it. What do you think of the rest of it? I love the colours you have picked for your scarf. Beautiful. x

  8. Bliss! Sounds perfect to me! Cx

  9. How lovely to have a beautiful river like that at the bottom of your garden!
    Your shawl is looking lovely, I agree nothing like working with yarn to relax, that's what I would do too!!

  10. Hello Julia! I'm happy to hear that you are enjoying your lovely crochet outside! That scarf is going to be so beautiful! I tried to began one in spring but it didn't work well...perhaps I follow yours in autumn. You are living in very beautiful place - river and everything looks just fantastic!
    xxx Teje

  11. A lovely relaxing post, Julia. It's so good to stop and enjoy our surroundings rather than always rushing and never taking the time. Your pictures are very soothing, and I love the yarn colours. Have a lovely weekend.
    Helen x

  12. That book is amazing! I love the colours you have chosen for your scarf.

    San Diego Mobile Notary

  13. I enjoy reading your posts about your ways to wind down, they always make me feel calm and relaxed! I like to feel warm when I feel stressed and love to sit in my conservatory early in the morning in PJs with a proper cup of coffee, listening to the radio and doing a spot of crochet.

    I love the colours for your shawl the pink will be beautiful!

    Nicki x

  14. I think a lot of people are like you and swamp themselves with things and then need to chill and earth themselves again. I love photography to chill our and relaxing music, I also love most arty crafty things too - enjoy this time and hold it in your thoughts when life speeds up again. xxx

  15. Crochet and nature, what good food for the soul.
    Carol xx

  16. Your scarf looks lovely! Here's what I like to do to unwind... look at blogs such as yours! "Gentle on the eyes and the soul and a pleasure to visit", that is what you wrote about a village that you visited, but I wrote it down in my inspiration journal because I liked it so much!
    Cheers! Kay

  17. I am so overwhelmed at the moment Julia that I didn't know if I had already commented on this post! I am glad that you are taking time out to relax and unwind. I feel as though I am being spun at the moment so I try to be still and remember to BREATHE!!! x

  18. A lovely post again, the scenery looks just beautiful around you... I grew up on a North Yorkshire moortop and do sometimes miss the solitude and the views for miles around with no one and nothing to spoil it. Hope you are enjoying the rest of your weekend xx
    p.s have started on my crochet journey! Well I have made one wonky square so far but it's definitely a start! ;)

  19. It looks a beautiful place to live and I'm always interested to see what you're making.

  20. If I am already on overload then doing something else - even if I like that thing, just adds to the stress. So what do I do. I do nothing. We are human beings not human doings after all. If it is all too much then just stop - it really is that simple!

  21. I guess what i do to relax a bit is sit quietly and read about how other good people around the world it doesn't seem very relaxed in my little world of late. So thank you for a moment of bliss in Yorkshire... if you'll excuse me now... i must attend to my overloaded, leaking, sinking little ship. :))))

  22. You hit the nail right on the head with this:
    '....loading up my proverbial little ship with far too much Stuff and then wondering why it starts to leak and sink.'
    We all do it though don't we?
    You are right - peaceful stuff is required at such times and you are very lucky to have beautiful places on your doorstep. Thank you for sharing the photos.


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