Good Deeds and Awesome Old Ladies

So last night, because I am a normal person now who can go and do normal person things in the general Oustside Area, I went and sang in an old folks home.

Now don’t worry, I didn’t just turn up unannounced and start belting out show tunes in the tv lounge or anything like that – because that would be weird right – even by my standards.

No.  I went there all legit to sing with my fabulous community choir.

We do sing a lot of songs in That Foreign and to help the lovely old folk be less bemused by our wailings, our choir leader explained what some of the lyrics meant.

“this song is about how one day we will all meet in heaven” she said

to which one splendid old lady jumped up and shouted

“you do know this is the departure lounge don’t you dear?”

at which point everyone fell about laughing.

It made me think though.
And I thunked this.
I hope one day when I am old(er) and grey(er) and staring my demise in the face, I hope I can do it with as much humour and good grace as that awesome old lady.

(As I didn’t take any photos, here is a picture of an awesome old lady I found in the internet, just in case you wondered what one looked like).
awesome old lady


Love on a Stick

And so for those who have asked, here, FINALLY is a simple tutorial for hearts on sticks.  The very same ones you will find on my Free Heart Friday page.

AND as a thank you to all of the delightful crazies that inhabit my Odd Sox page on Faceschmuck, I will be giving some hearts away at the end of this post.
One unfortunate person will also be picked to re-home a grump, you’d better hope that’s not you!

Here goes then.  Are you ready?

Yes of course you are and as you seem to have made it this far all by your little ownsome, I will not insult your intelligence with a carefully laid out tray of delicately arranged items that you will need such as scissors and thread and what not because I am guessing that a). you already know what those things look like and b). you are not an idiot.
Suffice to say, you will need some stuff to sew with, some felt, some kind of stuffing, some sticks and some glue.

Herein follows the science bit…  hold tight, it’s a white knuckle ride!
(it’s not really, I just like saying that).

Step no. 1
Make yourself a heart template from card absolutely any size and shape you like (as long as it’s vaguely heart shaped, otherwise it won’t really be a heart on a stick will it) and draw around it onto your felt.
Find your sharpest, niffiest little scissors and cut them out thus…

Step no. 2
Pair up your hearts and blanket stitch the edges.
If you are hyperventilating at this point, don’t panic.
So many people say to me “but I can’t sew”  and I say to them, “of course you can you silly arse.”
I was taught to blanket stitch by a six year old child.
If you do not have a six year old child to teach you, may I suggest you proceed to the You Tubular where there is a plethora of tutorials OR if you’re a bit of a slacker, you can just whip stitch the edges.  Your call.

Start sewing on one side of your heart, close to the bottom (see pic below) and continue all the way around and stop at the opposite point on the other side.
You should have left yourself a small gap at the bottom for stuffing purposes.
(You can leave this gap any size you like.  The smaller it is, the trickier to stuff, but the better looking the finished product).Image

Step no.3
Now get stuffed.
I use a pair of hemostats (a girl’s best friend) to stuff my hearts but if you don’t have those, you will surely have a pair of tweezers handy or a knitting needle or just a pencil to poke the stuffing in.
You can buy stuffing in any craft shop or you can raid an old cushion or pillow if you’re into all that recycling malarky.

Step no. 4
Once you have stuffed to your satisfaction, you will need to grab hold of one of your sticks.
I use kebab sticks but you can again use whatever suits you… twigs from the garden, pencils, etc etc.
Dip the end of your stick (ooer missus) into some glue and insert it into the heart being careful at this point not to make a dreadful sticky mess, because nobody wants to see that now do they?
(I am using Hi-Tack Sticky Glue as it dries quickly and doesn’t soak through the felt, but if you don’t have fancy glue like me, you can use any fabric glue or white glue that you’ve got to hand).

Step no.5
I like to put a tiny blob of glue under the pointy flappy bits and glue them to the stick just for added ‘stuckness’ and really that’s about it. (Handy hint – I use a dress pin to do this bit as it’s quite a tiny operation and again, you don’t want to be blobbing too much glue around).
Hurrah you’ve finished.  Now wasn’t that easy!!

So you’ve made your hearts on sticks – what now?
Well what I do is put them in a pretty jar or vase, stand back and smugly admire my handy work and then take lots of photos to amaze and impress my friends.
You can do the same, though your friends will invariably ask you to make some for them.

hearts in jar

And now, as I said WAY back up there somewhere ^ I have three sets of these hearts to give away and in the spirit of Free Heart Friday, there are 5 in a set.  3 for you to keep and 2 to give away.

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment telling me who you’d give yours away to.
(Please leave me an email address or a way to contact you if you win).
At the end of the week (Friday 26th April) somewhere around tea time, I will (with the aid of some kind of random generating device) pick out three names to send some hearty goodness to.
One random person will also receive something very grumpy, for which I can only apologise.

(Please feel free to use this tutorial for personal or business, but if you do it would be jolly sweet of you to link back to here).

***UPDATE – Friday 16th April***

Thank you to each and everyone one of you who took the time to enter and left such heartwarming comments – and a couple that made me actually laugh out loud!  😉
And even though my heart is made of stone, I was quite touched to see what a lovely bunch of peeps you are.
I would love to send you all something, but I’m not THAT nice – so I put everyone into a big hat (not literally obviously, because WHO would have a hat that big?) and had Mr Sox draw out four names at random.  All winners will be emailed in due course for their addresses.

The winners of the hearts are:    Laney, Lucy Turner and Zoe Sadler
and the unfortunate recipient of the grump is Zoe.  (A different Zoe – what are the odds on that I wonder?)

So unless your name was Zoe or began with L, it seems you didn’t stand a chance at all!

Thank you all again – this was fun – let’s do it again soon!

I know, I’ll start a blog….

So you know that thing right, where you think

“I know, I’ll start a blog”

because that’s what everyone else is doing right, and I’m probably only about 10 years behind current trends,

but then you have this sudden realisation that you don’t actually go anywhere or do anything and you’re probably just about the most boring person in the world?

Exactly that.

maybe by having a blog, it’ll force me to do more stuff and be more interesting?
and maybe I’ll spend less time staring out of the window at the pigeons bonking on the common?
and maybe I’ll even pick up a pencil and actually draw something for once?

In reality though, it’s entirely possible that I’ll just carry on being extremely lazy and dull and this blog will sit here and collect dust and cobwebs just like the last time I thought 

“I know, I’ll start a blog.”