March has been trying on many levels, but we got through it and thankfully it’s turned out to be quite productive.
Our home is finally getting the face lift it badly needs. We redecorated our front room and as I type away, my hubby is finally making a start on our bedroom, so now I have lots of pretty things to make to give the rooms that homely feel. Is it just me or does every women have a thing about cushions?
It’s been an interesting month in the land of research, I’ve found some jaw droppers, that’s for sure.
Once again I’ve been revisiting ancestors.
The good thing about going back over your research is that new records get released everyday so there is a good chance you can find new interesting information. It’s definitely been a good month for that.
My biggest finds were on the Hatcher and Luke branches of my tree. It’s been absolutely fascinating finding the new juicy details especially on Susan Luke but you will have to wait for next weeks “52 Ancestors in 52 weeks” post to find out more.
While I’ve taken the odd five minutes out to chill, I’ve put random family surnames into the Newspaper Archives to see what I could find. I came across an article that made me really chuckle.
The funny thing is both ladies involved are both my ancestors and are related to each other. I wonder if they knew?
The newspaper archive are a fascinating source, I highly recommended taking out a subscription, be warned though it’s not always good news, after all we all know journalists like to print misery and in true honesty it’s not always the truth. At the end of the day all they want to do is sell papers, line their pockets, while not giving a damn who they hurt in the process. That being said, it’s a great resource for us genealogy fanatics.
I’ve been researching the locations my ancestors have lived. It’s really not always as easy as it would seem, take New Cottages, Dunbridge as an example. I can not find anything on-line that refers to them, the same goes for the local Mills, I gained more information from Romsey Revisited Facebook group, than I managed to find on the internet. I have to say again that, Romsey revisited is an exceptional group to be a member of, everyone is extremely helpful and friendly, an added bonus, through posting a question I have discovered relatives I never knew about and we plan to meet for coffee soon. It’s all very exciting.
While I was researching locations of family graves, I downloaded an app called BillionGraves.
You literally type in the name of the cemetery you are interested in and it will show you a map with little markers, each maker is a photo of a headstone.
Warning it is a time waster, I seriously have spent hours looking at the headstones, wondering what the lost souls stories are.
I’m itching to go to all our local cemeteries to take photos of each grave and upload it with the gps details. Maybe it will help someone find an Ancestors grave they have been looking for.
I’ve fallen in love with this app. It really is awesome. If you are into genealogy it’s a good resource to have and the more people who start to use it the better it will become.
DNA has played a rather large part in this months research. Firstly I got my results back which you can read all about here.
I’ve sent a few messages, one I’m rather excited about as I haven’t been in contact with a member of the Rudgely family for a very long time, hopefully I will get a reply.
I’ve also received a few emails from people, we got chatting and worked out the connections which has given me a little more faith that DNA tests might actually be a good thing after a few stressful nights sleep over a connection.
I have to say the best thing about my month in the world of genealogy is, it’s brought me closer to my first cousin Lisa Atkins Nee Newell.
We got chatting after I wrote about our great, great-grandmother Estella Rudgely and she has been an absolute diamond ever since.
She even lent me a little suitcase of treasures which belonged to our grandparents Donald George Newell and Mollie Joan Newell Nee Carr.
The little suitcase is heaven, I’m totally blown away by its contents and I’m so very grateful to Lisa for sharing it with me.
Better still I got to spend the afternoon with Lisa and my mum, talking about all our memories and looking through old photos. Hearing the words “Uncle Chris” was music to my ears, it been way to long since I heard them. It was a wonderful day which I will always treasure. We really should do it more often.
I’m sure dad was looking down on us, smiling like a Cheshire cat.
Housework and research isn’t leaving much time to crochet and boy don’t I know it, my hands are extremely painful and stiff, I think that means I should scrap the housework and make pretty things, do you agree?
My pattern crush has to be “The Amanzi Block Throw” by Jen Tyler, it’s absolutely gorgeous as are all her patterns.
I especially love Barbara Carlettini’s version, it’s breathtaking. You can find all the information here. Barbara has very kindly allowed me to share her photos with you, I’m sure you will be as flabbergasted as I was when I first saw them. All photo credits go to Barbara and you can see more here.
So what have I been up to?
I finished my Illusions Mandala which I had to modify to make it large enough for the 18” cushion pad I had already ordered.
I used Stylecraft Special Double-knit, from Wool warehouse, in colours, White, Claret, Camel and Midnight.
Stylecraft special Dk was always my go to yarn, it’s reasonably priced and good quality, unfortunately I’ve got used to using my favourite yarn which is of a higher quality and price, now everything I make with different yarn, just doesn’t seem to cut the grade. Don’t get me wrong I love Special DK, but it’s just not the same as using my favourite Scheepjes Stonewashed.
I’m still pleased with how it turned out but I think I will have to make another in Stonewashed. 😁
I decided to use my all time favourite pattern by Tatsiana for the back of the cushion. Using the same yarn as my Illusion Mandala. I replaced the white with Duck Egg and added an extra colour called Lobelia. Once again I had to modify the last few rows for size but I’m chuffed to nuts with it.
Mandala with flower, by Tatsiana Kupryianchyk.
I’ve also continued to make a few more squares for my mums DNA Afghan.
I’m using, yes you guessed it, “Scheepjes Stonewashed” in colours, Moon Stone, Garnet, Corundum Ruby, Rose Quartz, Malachite, Enstatite and Citrine.
Scheepjes Stonewashed is 78% cotton, 22% acrylic and an absolute dream to work with, truly it is but I’m sure you’ve worked that out already. 😂
Lucy by Polly Plum
I really enjoyed making Lucy, but not so much my colour placement. I think I will remake it.
Shattered by Margaret Macinnis.
Shattered has to be my favourite make this month.
Florentine by Margaret Macinnis.
Saffron by Polly Plum.
And for my “Moonstone Afghan” I’ve made
*Duckbill Dalliance 12” Afghan Block by Margaret MacInnis.
Saffron by Polly Plum.
Flower Patch Cushion, from the gorgeous book, “Round And Round The Crochet Hook” by Emily at The Loopy Stitch. I had to change the last round to get a stitch count of 40 stitches on each side, I then added an extra round of Half Double Crochet’s to get a stitch count of 44 on each side, ready for joining the squares at a later date.
I also finally made the a mandala to use as the back of a cushion, which I am making for my mum.
The cushion uses two of Tatsiana Kupryianchyk patterns.
For the front I have used
And for the back I’ve use Mint coffee Mandala. I adore this pattern, it is definitely up there in my top 10 patterns.
I have had to extend the Mint Coffee Mandala to make the size and stitch count the same as the Spanish Mandala, if you are interested more information can be found on my Ravelry project page.
I’ve now have to make 3 more of each to complete the cushion set, wish me luck.
I finished my secret project for a rather special someone for her birthday. I’m pretty chuffed with how it turned out as I wasn’t sure at the beginning. I’m secretly hoping she doesn’t like it so I can keep it all for myself.😁 My youngest son Callie has already tried to claim it, so it looks like I will be starting him one in April.
I think that is about it for my March makes. I definitely need some more crochet time, as my list of thing I want to make seems to grow by the day.
As for the song of the month, that’s an easy one. I dedicated this song to my mum a good few years ago. “Thank you Mom” by Good Charlotte.
My Mum is truly the best mum anyone could ask for, she is pretty amazing, her courage, strength and determination puts mine to shame. She is always there to lift me up when I’m having a bad day, she listens when I have a good old moan, she’s there when I need a hug. She’s just fabulishous and I love her to the moon and back and then some more. Thank you mum for everything you do for us, I truly would be lost without you. ❤️
Hopefully April will be a little more productive, fingers crossed.
Until next time, take some you time, do what you love to do, after all “Life is for living, live it well.”