Thursday, 15 March 2018

The Secret

For around a month Mr Myasthenia Kid aka Jay and
I have had to keep an enormous secret, I won’t lie
it’s been incredibly difficult. Some of the first people
I wanted to tell were you my blog followers.  We
had been sworn to secrecy and we didn’t want to jeopardise
it, so as best we could we kept the news to a smallish
group of people. However now the secret is out and
I can share it with you.

In the UK there is a channel called the Sewing Quarter,
you can check them out on YouTube as the 4 hour
show is downloaded daily. Jay and I have been watching
it since it started being broadcast by Sky Television in
January this year. The channel sells fabric, sewing
machines, quilting accessories anything really to do
with sewing by machine or hand. It also however has
excellent hints and tips for people of all abilities and
I have learnt loads from watching the show, much more
than I could have done by reading books as you have
things demonstrated in front of you. The main reason
I think a lot of viewers watch though is due to the main
presenters John Scott and Natasha McCarty, both have
very different presentation styles but they are equally
enjoyable to watch. They also have a guests on that
demonstrate the items that the channel is selling that
day. It is after all a channel that exists to sell products,
it has no outside advertising so to exist it must make
money, that is the way of the world.

Back in January Jay and I were decorating the lounge
and whilst we were doing that we had the sewing
channel on as it was their birthday week. They had
lots of special offers, competitions and a sew off
between Natasha and John - hilarious. Well whilst
we were painting Jay must have been listening quite
intently to John, as a few weeks later I was sewing
in the kitchen and jay piped up “ As Rachel is finishing
off her Easter wreath, I will take you through today's bundles”.
I had to stop sewing I was laughing so hard. I mentioned
it on the Sewing Quarter fan page and people started
asking for a video. I posted something along the lines
of if John Scott mentions Jay on the show then he will
do a video. So this happened - sorry for the poor quality
of the sound and shaky camera work, I have recorded
it using my phone straight off the TV.

We were mentioned a few more times during this
week, much to our delight so on the Sunday Jamie
decided he would do his first video.

It went down exceptionally well with the fans of the
show, to be honest it went a bit crazy! Later than
evening whilst I was in bed Jay came rushing in to tell
me the head honcho at the channel Neil Garratt had
sent him a message on Facebook and what should he do?
You see Jay is not brilliantly tech savvy, he can operate
Facebook but he had no idea he would have to accept
a message to be able to respond to it etc. I was in
shock and looked at his phone to see that indeed
Neil had messaged him. I accepted the message
and then handed the phone back to Jay to let him
read it. It said that they wanted Jay on the show to be
alongside John and that we had to keep it quiet as
they wanted it to be a surprise for the fans. Jay had to
email him and one of the members of staff form the
show would be in touch with us.

Within a few days it was all set in motion that Jay and
I would travel to Birmingham and visit Sewing Quarter HQ
and that Jay would be on air on 12th March. It was all very
exciting but oh so difficult to arrange and keep a secret.
Especially when Jay had to organise time off work and
I had to organise a dog sitter for Mollie and Frankie.
Hayley the lovely lady that we were working with offered
us a hotel room for the Sunday night but as we had never
left the dogs overnight before ( and they are old doggies now)
we didn’t feel comfortable doing that. We decided we would
travel up that day and do it all in one as we had when we
went to the Emma Bridgewater Factory in October last year.

When Jay did the first video and I posted it onto the
Sewing Quarter Fans Page on Facebook people had
asked for more. Even people who had never seen the
Sewing Quarter but were friends with us on Social
Media asked for more when I posted the video to my
Facebook timeline and Instagram. So to keep Jay
relevant and the fans happy, we recorded another video,
plus we had been mentioned a few times on the show
by John Scott ( which we always got an enormous kick out of).

The second video went down as well as the first,
which was a huge relief!

My planning and organising went into military operation
mode, my anxiety has been up through the roof since
suffering a series of bereavements at the beginning of the year
/ end of last year. My need to control everything as much as
possible was in overdrive. I am sure Jamie must have got
sick to death of my ever-growing to do list that seemed
to cover every minute aspect of our lives! New shirts for
Jamie had to be bought as John is famous for his flamboyant
shirts, Jay couldn’t appear in his usual conservative style.
Thankfully my best mate from primary school Sharon,
offered to look after the dogs as soon as I told her
what had happened. She like everyone else that
knew what was happening said it was about time that
we had something nice happen after all we had been through.
Ellie offered us a car to use should something happen to
ours, she also said she would be available to assist Sharon
should she need any help. So many people offered us so
much help and support it really was amazing.

The time between knowing that we were travelling to
Birmingham and getting there seemed to at the same
time to pass very slowly but also very quickly. It was
so exciting but the excitement was stopping me from
sleeping. From Monday night onwards this week I have
been out for the count before 7.30pm. I am totally exhausted
and in a lot of pain but it has been worth it.

Jay made a final video before our trip to Birmingham

When this one went up, so many of our friends and people
on the fans site were saying “when will they be on the
show together?” and that kind of thing. I just kept saying
nothing that would give the game away, although it was
getting harder and harder to keep this secret. I will
admit on Friday last week I did message a few people
and let them know that Jay was going to be on the
show. People were beside themselves with excitement
and were so happy for us. It was really lovely to know
that all these people were delighted for us.

There is so much more I could tell you, I will probably expand
more on the experience in next weeks blog post but I am
aware this post is already getting quite wordy and its been
the most I have written in months.

So from the Sewing Quarter Monday 12th March 2018
here are Jays appearances:

This one is my favourite, its Jay closing the show with John

We would both like to say a massive thank you to everyone
at the Sewing Quarter HQ, especially Hayley Marshallsay,
John Scott and Deborah Simms.

The Sewing Quarter is on Channel 678 Sky Tv, 78 Free view, online at between 8am-12pm and YouTube from the afternoon on which the show aired.

Thursday, 8 March 2018


Snow is a big deal in the south-west of England, purely because it happens so rarely.
I have lived in Exmouth 22 years and have only seen it three times. On
those three occasions it was worse than any of the forecasters had predicted.
This time there was a red weather warning over Exeter, which Exmouth is
very close to (for those of you elsewhere in the UK or overseas). Everyone
was pretty blase about the possibility of snow because it is just such a rarity.
However I follow a local weather group South West Storm Chasers and I have
to say their forecasts are very accurate and when they started saying that
“yes Exmouth would get snow” I started to listen.

On the Wednesday of last week we had a few very light snow showers,
whilst other places in Devon got quite a bit more snow. However on
Wednesday night it was clear from all the forecasts it was going to be
Thursday that the weather would be at its worst. Hubby was sceptical,
but when we woke up to snow on Thursday morning and it didn’t stop
snowing, he started to take notice. Hubby was working a middle shift
so I managed to convince him to leave the car at home and just
walk in. At that point around 9am there wasn’t a lot of snow but
within a few hours the situation was completely different.

I was sat at my sewing machine in the kitchen with the local BBC radio
station on listening to the reports on road closures and school closures.
Each hour I was sending hubby photographs of the back garden as it was
getting covered in more and more snow.

I was quite happy though as I just sat at my sewing machine and finished off
the panels of my first quilt as you go quilt. I have just got to now sash the
panels together, which I will do over the next few weeks. I am trying to decide
if I will add both my quilt as you go quilt panels together or have them as
two separate ones.

My second quilt I sewed in one day on the Friday, as once I knew what I
was doing I could whizz through it.

When Hubby got home at around 6pm on Thursday evening it was still
snowing and when we went to bed at around 8pm it was still going.

Overnight we had freezing rain, which is a very weird one. It falls as
normal rain but on contact with any surface it instantly freezes. It leaves
the most bizarre patterns on things.

What it also did was leave a thick crust of ice all over the snow that had
fallen the day before. When walking on it, it was so loud like you were
walking on gravel. The dogs hated it, Mollie couldn’t get back to the house
quickly enough when out for a walk and really missed her daily
jaunts to Woodbury Common.

During Friday we had more snow, so again I sat in the kitchen at the
sewing machine whilst listening to the radio, I couldn’t believe it when
I completed the second quilt as you go (qayg) from start to finish in one day.
This included cutting 44, 2 ⅝ inch squares for the six panels. As this quilt was
the same as the first one I whizzed through it as I knew exactly what I was doing.

The snow was short-lived on Friday night the rain started and that
continues all day Saturday. By 2pm all the snow was gone from our garden
and traffic was moving again.

Saturday I spent making my mums mothers day present. I can publish a
photo of it here as I gave it to her Monday as I was down in Plymouth
for a hospital appointment. I made this one by watching Debbie Shores
YouTube video on Laptop bags. I just made the same bag but down sized it.
It took 4 fat quarters to make, I used fabric from some John Lewis
fat quarters. I absolutely adore this Moroccan style fabric

On Sunday afternoon I decided to make my best mate a ipad bag and
myself a clutch purse ( same bags just different purposes). With these
I made them from fabrics I had bought in the sale at Christmas.
However these both had directional patterns on them so I had to solve
the issue of having the patterns facing the right way on the back and
then on the flap at the front. I solved this by cutting out the back panel,
then cutting it in half, turning one pattern completely around so the
print faced in the opposite direction and then sewed the two pieces back
together again. If I hadn’t done that the zebras and foxes would have been
upside down on the flap. I was so proud of myself for working out how
to solve this problem.

Mine is the red with the zebras and my friends is the one with the foxes.

Next week I will have lots of exciting news for you nut at the moment I am
having to keep an enormous secret. Its killing me keeping it from you all but
you will love it when you hear it. And to put you all out of your misery I am
NOT pregnant!