What has been keeping you busy during the last 10 months?

I am sure everyone has had some time over the last 10 months to cook, do crafting, do art work and capture some wonderful photographs.  We all turn to what we like doing when time allows, so how have you been filling your spare time, as we have had a lot of time to fill?  Which have you been doing – baking, crafting, painting or taking photographs.

My name is Alicia and I am one of the secretaries for the above sections.  I have been very fortunate to work from home.  I found myself finishing work, which was upstairs, coming down from the office, making tea and then keeping myself busy, looking after the home at the beginning of lockdown.  Everything became a routine, which I was happy with in the summer months, but then as the evenings started to fade into autumn, I found myself watching too much television, watching programs I was not interested in and also eating too much!  It did not take long, for me to realise, this was not for me and I needed a project to distract me from over eating and utilise my time more effectively after working hours. This made me think? What was it I enjoyed doing before this lockdown and could I find something to help me escape the routine I now found myself in?

I had always enjoyed knitting, but not large projects like jumpers, I preferred small projects, which were varied and gave me an outcome each evening.  I came up with the idea to knit a nativity scene. This was made easy with the wonders of the internet to find a pattern to bring a nativity story to life, using wool and padding.  There was Mary with baby Jesus, Joseph, Angel, Three Wise Men, Shepherd, Sheep and a Donkey.  Each evening I would pick up my needles and it felt very rewarding to complete a figure and be able to knit the small clothing and head coverings.  Soon I was on a mission, which I think most craft projects turn into, as I did want to finish it for the festive period.  I also decided whilst knitting to donate all the characters to a local church as a display.  Friends even helped me out by donating odd bits of wool as I needed small amounts of wool, but in lots of different colours.  The sheep were the easiest to knit, as they only required white wool, but the wise men needed lots of colour to achieve their glamour and status they represented.

I did feel I was getting through lockdown in the darker months with this project of knitting a nativity scene and watching it all come together.  I even got help from my mother in-law Brenda who is a very experienced knitter and whom was totally bemused at what I was doing.  Brenda was in my bubble and only living next door but one, but was as keen as me every evening.  When all the characters were completed, I looked at them displayed together and realised something was missing, a stable!!!  Well, the nights were still long and dark and the programs on television had not improved so why not make one.  Again, I turned to the internet to get ideas of how to make a stable.  With no woodwork skills I probably was too ambitious, but it came together with the help of my husband and friend Dougie who had woodwork skills and some amazing ideas too.  I added a final touch of lights and it was complete.  Thankfully, it was made in good time for Christmas and displayed at St David’s Church at Holmbridge.  I do hope you like the pictures.

So that is my story on how knitting helped me through lockdown. Now it is your turn?  What have you been creating and keeping yourself busy with?  Alicia and Corol are looking for your stories to share with others on the Cookery, Craft, Art and Photography website page. 

Please let us share your crafts and stories and keep each other going as the lockdown continues.  Send your stories and photos to cookerycraft@emleyshow.co.uk and most importantly, giving your permission to share and we can then post them onto our page.

Alicia’s next knitting project has already started and it is a hat, but this one is being knitted on a circular needle, which is a first for her!   So watch this space!!

We do look forward to reading your stories and seeing your photos.  Thank you once again for your continued loyal support to Emley Show. We look forward to welcoming you and your wonderful entries at the next show.

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