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Tig, I'm it!

I've been tigged (tagged?!) a couple of times this week so I thought I'd pick 11 out of the 22 questions Rachel and Susan have asked me...

If you could live in any country in the world, which would you choose, and why?

To be perfectly honest I love living in the UK so wouldn't change it!  Of course some things could be improved (no, not the weather, I'm not one to spend time in the sun.  In fact, it frequently gets far too hot for me here on the NE coast, the last thing I would want to do is live somewhere warmer!  I was mainly thinking of fabric and petrol prices!) but I have my family and many of my friends here on Teesside and I love living at the seaside!

What started you sewing?

My mam used to sew when I was little and I used to long to stay when we dropped her off at dressmaking/tailoring classes.  (She made my First Holy Communion dress and I was the only one with a hand made dress.  I was really proud as I thought, and still think(!), it was the nicest dress there - knee length Broderie Anglaise finished off with white ankle socks and sandals, perfect for a six year old!)  I used to enjoy making things out of scraps of fabric and playing in the button tin and I was fascinated by the sewing machine.  Mam taught me to knit (and how to crochet granny squares) and then we both got bitten by the cross stitch bug when I was about 10.  I've also made some of my own clothes and costumes for school productions but didn't enjoy it anywhere near as I enjoy quilting!  My only experience of patchwork was when my mam made EPP hexagon flower pincushions for a school fayre when I was about 7.  She spent hours making them and they were priced at about 5p each - she didn't make any more!!  It wasn't the best introduction but I've always loved hand sewing and when I first got poorly (for those of you who are new to my blog/don't know I have CFS/ME) I decided to give it another go...the rest, as they say, is history!

Which gizmo has made your life truly easier? 

My electric toothbrush!

Which book made you cry the most?

There are a few that have made me cry - My Best Friend's Girl by Dorothy Koomson, The Time Traveller's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs and Message In A Bottle by Nicholas Sparks.  There are bound to be more but these are the books that spring to mind.

Favourite flower?

(I find 'favourite' questions quite hard to answer as I rarely have a favourite anything!!)
Freesias or gerberas. 

What is your favourite cartoon from childhood?

What, just one?!  No way!  I loved City of Gold, Super Ted, Banana Man and Danger mouse as well as Thundercats, He-Man (my brother got Castle Greyskull for Christmas one year!), Paddington and The Raccoons.  And they're not strictly cartoons but I couldn't not mention Fraggle Rock and Morph!   (I've just spent a happy half hour watching clips of all these on You Tube!)

What is your favourite quilt made by someone else?

Oh, that's a tricky one!  I love so many of them and my choice changes by the day but the one that's stuck in my mind for quite a while is this one by Alison@Little Island Quilting.  I love everything about it!  

I need a day on the beach.  Where would you recommend?

I love the beach nearest me - if the breeze is off the sea you wouldn't want to sunbathe on it but if it's off the land then it can be lovely in the summer and it's perfect for building sandcastles, paddling and, if you're brave, swimming! 

I've visited some lovely beaches as a child (my hay fever meant we always had a seaside holiday!) but I don't think you can beat Scarborough (in North Yorkshire) for an old-fashioned family day at the seaside!

If a sewing retreat could be held in a place of your choice and all your friends would be able to attend where would you have it?

Last year I taught at a retreat held in a local hotel and that was lovely (and local so I could travel in every day rather than staying!) but if I was staying then I'd want to bring Archie (how could we all get together and miss out Archie?!!) so if anyone knows of a dog and quilter friendly hotel where we could all have our imaginary get together then speak up!  (Preferably somewhere not too hot and with lovely places for Archie to walk in and near some fabulous quilt shops!)  Actually, given that this is an imaginary get together I could just conjure one up!!  So, it would be on a cliff top with access (via a winding path!) to a lovely quiet beach.  The food would be fabulous, there would be plenty of tea (and coffee!) and biscuits, lots of wonderful bedrooms for all my friends and a series of comfortable rooms where we could stitch and natter and a row of beach huts on the beach for those of us who like to stitch in the great outdoors!  Oh, even better, how about we just move the Cluedo mansion to the seaside?!!  Without the murder, obviously!!

What is the first sign of spring for you?

Lambs!  (Altogether now...awwwww!)

Which sewing task do you dread the most?

Trimming the excess wadding and backing ready for the binding to be stitched on - it could all go horribly wrong!!

Gosh, that took far longer than I anticipated!  (I blame You Tube!)

I'm not going to pass on the tig but if anyone would like to be tigged by me then please consider yourself it and answer these questions. If you let me know you're it then I'll add in a link to your blog!

  1. Which song is currently playing in your head and driving you batty?  (Fraggle Rock anyone?!)
  2. I'm scared (read petrified!) of spiders - could I call you in a spider emergency?  (Which is when my hoover isn't working and I can't suck them up and treat them to a go on the Waltzers!) 
  3. Do you still have any of your toys from childhood?  If so please tell us about one of them (a photo would be great!) and if not then which one do you wish you still had?
  4. (Copied from Susan!) Which sewing task do you dread the most?
  5. What make and colour thread is currently threaded through your needle?
  6. Do you wear a watch every day?  If yes, would you be lost without it?
  7. I'm looking for a film/DVD box set to watch whilst I stitch some hexies, what would you recommend? 
  8. Which book(s) are you currently reading?  (If you're not reading anything at the moment what would you like to read/flip through next?
  9. Do you have a catchphrase or word that you find yourself using all the time?  What is it and do you wish you could stop?! (If not which phrases drive you to distraction?!)
  10. Make up your own question!
  11. See above!

And finally, Alfie would like you to know that it isn't only Archie that can carry a quilt on his back...

What are you laughing at?  It's not as easy as he makes it look,
especially when you've got legs as long as mine!

And he doesn't often lie like this but I love it when Archie shows off the fact that he's got four legs - I call it his 'collecting paws' pose!

Do you mind, I'm trying to sleep!

Right, I'm off, time to get in my 'jamas and make a pot of tea so I'm ready for NCIS!


  1. By the power of Greyskull!! I used to love that programme and pretty much every other one you mentioned ;)

  2. We are obviously around the same age, those cartoons were a large part of my childhood (I also have a He-man mad brother!) One book you missed that made me blub all over the place was the Bridges of Madison County. And I was quite young when I read it so can't blame it on motherhood (which means I cry at everything - the Aviva ad for life insurance had me lump-in-throated this evening!!!) Oooh, and the Horse Whisperer!

  3. I really enjoyed your responses! I'm not going to answer your tag questions because I'm already behind on being tagged, liebster etc but I might steal some of your questions! Let me know when you find the perfect pet friendly quilting retreat. Nice to see Archie's legs!

  4. Well done for catching up with the taggers! I may even answer some of yours too when I get around to my tag replies!

  5. Woman I can not believe you think the North East coast can ever be described as too hot LOL as I type I'm wearing thermal socks and fleecy PJ's and I can see this being my outfit of choice for at least the next 3 month :D
    I do however agree Scarborough is one of the best places to go for a family holiday!

  6. Hey, thanks for answering some of my questions. Love the answers, and I'm coming to your cliff top, cleudo retreat.

  7. enjoyed reading your questions and answers.

  8. Great answers I was also hit by this. It really does take a while to come up with the answers, but is great fun to do! =D

  9. Oh god, I cried my little heart out reading "The Time Traveller's Wife". I finished at 4 a.m. and had to call my husband (5000 miles away) right away to get some comfort. I really needed two weeks to get over it.
    Love your answers and questions, but I've already been tagged and skipped on it.

  10. Wow - I had noooooo idea!! Tickled pink. Thanks!!

  11. Loving your labour-saving approach to this tagging mularky - need to get answering the Qs I've been tagged with x

  12. excellent - loving the responses - and i think i'd like to go to that retreat on the cliff top too - although i'd have to include champers and/or a cheeky chardy for dinner!

  13. Love this post, and the questions you answered.

    Fraggle Rock! Probably my favourite show as a kid. Well, maybe Incredible Hulk. But it'd be a close second ;) Oh, and I loved MacGyver too. And yes I know, those last two aren't cartoons/kids shows.

    I don't do the whole tagging/meme thing, but I'll answer one of your questions: box sets. Well, I'm a fan of these (in no particular order).
    Pride and Predjudice, Wives and Daughters, Bleak House, Firefly, Dexter, Grey's Anatomy (the first 3 seasons), Rome (both seasons), Castle (love all the seasons so far). I could go on :)

  14. Great read Helen. I still have to do my answers but I fear I won't have anyone left to tag!

  15. I want to go to your cliff top retreat too!

  16. Great answers H! If I gave Poppy a quilt she'd think it a great chewy toy - can you imagine the mess!! Jxo

  17. OMG!! I remember almost all of those cartoons... I think my favourite was The Raccoons (especially Bert!) I kind of remember Fraggle Rock. I only watched Tony Hart because of Morph.

  18. I have one set of questions i am just about to do, and then I'll come back and answer your questions! Paddington is still my favourite ... I loved Bod too, escpecially the frog and his orchestra at the end and you had to guess what flavour milkshake he was going to choose! I'm going to stop listing my favourite cartoons there else I won't have any answers to the questions i've been asked! Liked all your answers! :)

  19. Loved your answers Helen :) And I really love that last picture of Archie - just too cute!

  20. All great answers! and such a fun post.
    Now about that retreat... since it's imaginary could it please have anti allergy air conditioning... to remove pet allergens (I'm allergic to dogs even though I love them). Oh yes and without the murder would be good too, rofl!
    We used to go camping at Skpsie(sp) when we were young. It was on the top of a cliff with a beach below. It usually rained, lol.
    Great pictures of Archie and Alfie :) so cute!

  21. It's so fun to read these new things about you. And as usual, Archie is adorable!

    Jennifer :)

  22. Oh, do you remember the theme tune to Cities of gold? I can still hum it! Great answers Helen, lovely to learn a little more about you :) x

  23. Archie is so cute! My dog Lola would adore him. I love Scarborough beach too - we're a little bit south of there in East Yorks and tend to go to skipsea more often for ease, but I agree that you can't beat Scarborough.


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