32. How to Make a Trinket Dish

Make a trinket dish with air-drying clay and decorate it with old buttons.

This episode is subtitled: ‘A little kindness goes a long way…’

A few kind words is what I should have had for Caitlin last week. I felt guilty for not having the patience to have a proper conversation with that defiant six-year-old, so since then I’ve been consciously trying to do kind things every day.

I started at an easy place – my next-door neighbour, Lily. Whenever I can, I pick her up for the Companions session at Teacups so she can have a cup of tea and a piece of cake with other people who are looking for a bit of company. But I don’t spend enough time with her myself; so I made a point of popping round on Monday evening and taking her some flowers from Tulips that didn’t have a long enough shelf life for me to sell. She was delighted.

Read more32. How to Make a Trinket Dish

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29. Make a Cupcake Pin Cushion

Take a new scourer and an old plastic dessert tub and make a cupcake pin cushion

This episode is subtitled: ‘My sister, the domestic queen’

I’d decided to take Laura out for lunch on Monday. It was a rare treat for her to be off work while the children were at school but, if I hadn’t insisted, she would have spent the day at home cooking, cleaning and generally keeping the household wheels turning, without setting aside any time for her.

Lunch with my sister is a treat for me too. The sun was shining and I’d got my legs out for the first time this year. Do you remember me telling you that I’d bought the ‘dark sun-kissed look’ moisturiser instead of the ‘light’ variety by mistake in the spring (episode 14)? Monday was the triumph/tragedy test for that particular mistake and the winner was very definitely……tragedy. After applying it to one leg I decided I’d be better off leaving the other one white and then promptly forgot to change into trousers.

Read more29. Make a Cupcake Pin Cushion

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21. How to Create a Game from Plastic Milk Bottle Lids

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This episode is subtitled: ‘How’s your memory…?’

I was telling the girls in the flower shop about the children’s game I’d been making for this week’s project. It’s a memory game like the one where you lay lots of cards out face down and take it in turns to flip two over, hoping to pick out a pair. The only difference with this game is that it’s made from old plastic milk bottle lids and you have to find pairs of matching fabric instead of two identical pictures.

Anyway, that got us talking about how your short-term memory is supposed to be less reliable as you get older, especially if you don’t exercise it.

Have you ever run upstairs for something and completely forgotten what you’ve gone for? It happens quite a lot with me now and I’m hoping a few of you are nodding your heads too. I can put some of my lapses down to inefficiencies in multi-tasking – trying to do too many things at once, such as going to get the clean sheets for the bed then seeing a cardigan that needs to be hung up then spotting some fluff in the wardrobe so getting the vacuum cleaner out then when Blue and I are ready to turn in for the night, finding the bed isn’t made up.

Read more21. How to Create a Game from Plastic Milk Bottle Lids

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18. How to Make Button Earrings

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This episode is subtitled: ‘Let’s get organised…’

My button tin is a lovely tin. It originally contained orange biscuits from Italy, a gift from an old neighbour for looking after their goldfish while they were on holiday. But it’s not very practical. Every time I need a button I have to tip them all out and sort through. I know what you’re thinking – a button tin is full of memories and there’s something very comforting about sifting through them on the table, remembering what they were once attached to (some of mine even came from my summer dresses when I was a girl). But I’m a busy woman now and realise that the most sensible thing is to split them up so I can find what I need quickly. That goes for my fabric stash, my scissors and my cotton reels too. I definitely need to be more organised. If Kim had a pile of old buttons (which I’m quite sure she hasn’t) I know they’d be split up, boxed up, labelled up and stored in a place where the level of accessibility corresponds to the number of times she’s likely to need to access it. Awesome. Or frightening?

Read more18. How to Make Button Earrings

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8. Make a Needle Felted Pin Cushion

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This episode is subtitled: ‘The wrinkles are here…’

Yes, the wrinkles have very definitely arrived. They must have been coming for ages but I’ve been meaning to replace the dead bulb above the bathroom mirror for a while (probably about two years if I’m being totally honest about how lax I’ve been) and when I did put a new bulb in this week it turns out I’ve been living in blissful ignorance.

Read more8. Make a Needle Felted Pin Cushion

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