Friday, 31 August 2012

Comfort food

There was a thread on a forum I post on asking people to recommend their families favourite autumn meals.  Our favourite meal of the moment is cauliflower cheese, which is great as cauliflowers are selling for not much more than £1 for two in the market at the moment.  Mr Man and I like lots of tomatoes in ours but the smallies don't seem to like grilled tomatoes so serving up involves a bit of tomato swapping but it works great for the adults!!

I wish I could take better photos of food, my pictures always look like some awful 70's cookbook shot.  Don't think it helps that my kitchen is like a cave with next to no natural light and I can't face trying to photo food on the table with the starving hoards present.  Oh well, you'll just have to beleive me whan I say it tastes much better than it look ;)

Knitted pumpkins great and small

I happened to walk past Miss E when she was playing in her toy kitchen and spotted a tiny little pumpkin I had knitted a few years back when I was having a phase of knitting play food.  I managed to "borrow" it from here when she had whirled off into another game.  Don't you think it makes the perfect companion to my baby hat?

The pattern is from here I think, although there are loads of free pumpkin toy patterns about online.  I haven't a clue what yarn I used, I have a feeling the orange is pure wool and the green cashmerino but it was knitted when Mr T was a baby so who knows!!

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Autumn Bounty

 Our garden is super small, very boggy and doesn't get huge amounts of sun but since we had to give up our allotment we have tried to grow a few fruits to eat.  We have a couple of pots of blueberries which seem to be surprisingly easy to grow.

We have one blackberry plant, its a prickle-free plant and takes up what seems like no space as it just twirls around the other plants (and weeds!)

The Blackberries aren't as sweet and tasty as wild ones but they are still pretty good.

A few years ago we were given  mini plum and apple trees as a gift.  The plum tree has never so mauch as produced a blossom but the apple tree has a few fruits on again this year.  They are both in huge pots and are tiny trees but the apples are full sized and lovely.

I'm not quite sure how you know when they are ready to pick, will have to find out as I don't want to loose them to drop and become a wildlife feast!

Tuesday, 28 August 2012


The sun actually shone today.  Sunny days seemed to be in short supply this summer, we have had sooo much rain here that the lawn is still muddy.  I made the most of it though, not by sunbathing or going to the beach like normal people, no, I grabbed all the things I've knitted and got busy taking photos.

The hats look so much better in good light.  Miss E was playing with a toy pumpkin I knitted a few years ago.  I had totally forgotten about it, I whisked it away when she wasn't looking, it makes an ideal prop don't you think?

Girly and unisex baby mittens on the line, the difference a bit of sun makes is amazing.

All the mittens together.  The ones on the bottom right are the finished Badger Mitts.  I have enough yarn left to do another pair in reverse colours I think, watch this space.

Monday, 27 August 2012

Yarn stash

Here are my recent yarn additions, 2 balls of Noro and 4 balls of Debbie Bliss Glen, all of which came to less than £20!!

The badger mitts are nearly finished so I am planning what to knit or crochet next.  I've found some lovely wooden apple buttons so am contemplating what to use them for, maybe some big girl mittens or a hat?!

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Badger Mitts

When I was rummaging in my wool stash I found the yarn I used to knit the Bats and decided it would be perfect for some "back to school" mitts.  I have always hated all the Back To School adverts, especially as they seem to come out within hours of children breaking up for the summer holiday.  I can remember when I was little that feeling of sadness as the school holidays ended and the nervous anticipation of a new teacher and everything that came with a new year at school.  Anyways, the mittens, the stripes remind me of a badger don't you think.  They are knitted in the last of my Knitpicks Wool of the Andes in Mist (dark grey) and Dove Heather (lighter).

Of course I haven't woven in the ends yet...I so hate that job!!!

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Rainy day sewing

Well yesterday was rainy again.  After lunch I took the small people on an adventure to the craft barn.  We eventually found it and after one dramatic toddler fall in the carpark and a fair bit of toddler yelling in the shop (she wanted to be able to sew herself a cross stitch toy and felt the shop should sell what she would need to do it!!!) I managed to come away with a lovely selection of yarns and a starter cross stitch kit for a very chuffed little man.

When we got home everyone was keen to get sewing...

These photos are actually from the second sewing session of the afternoon as the camera was out on a trip when we got back (hence the pyjamas!!).  They both really surprised me with how well they could do it and I didn't have to rethread that many needles or untangle that much thread.

The space ship kit was a bargain, although I am going to contact Anchor as they don't seem to have supplied anywhere near enough thread with it.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Batty Bats

An old photo today I'm afraid but thought I'd post about bats as we have a nightly batty visitor flying around our house when the children are in bed.  I love bats, as does Mr T so Halloween last year I knitted up a  bat for playing and general Halloweeny decoration.  The children decided there was no way it was just going to hang around looking good so it became a permanent toy .  Of course with two children one bat isn't enough so one became two, and then I knitted one for a lovely friend as well.  I can't say it was my fave project to knit as it was a bit fiddly and required a fair bit of sewing up but the end results are definitely worth it.

As you can perhaps tell from this picture they have tubey feet that you can use to hang them from and their wings close up with a little button for when they have had enough of flying about and want to roost.  The pattern is here .  I had planned on knitting a whole rainbow of bats but after I had done the grey ones I had moved on to Christmas knitting.

The batty yarn came from Great British Yarns, Knitpicks Wool of the Andes.

Market Day

Today we went to the market to stock up on fruit and veg.  On days like today I am glad Miss E is still small enough for a buggy as there is no way I could have carried all our supplies without it.  Here is a selection of what we bought including Victoria plums!!!  Victorias have to be the nicest plums ever but you hardly ever find them in supermarkets.  My parents usually grow loads but their poor plum trees have got some nasty disease or pest that means there will be no fruit from them this year :(

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Hand Dyed Wool

Today was one of those days.  I wish I hadn't got out of bed, or at least got out of the bed the other side.  The children were "tricky" to put it mildly, I felt pretty rubbish still having no voice and a weird cough.  In the afternoon I managed to boil over the tea inside the oven so I had a pool of food in the bottom of my oven and all over the floor.  Then to top it all off 5 minutes before I was about to serve tea so that Mr T could get to swimming a gust of wind blew my vase of birthday roses onto the wooden floor.  A thorough clean up followed, with me trying to keep the children out of the way while I mopped and tried to avoid stabbing myself on glass and thorns.

I did get to spend the evening knitting some lovely hand dyed yarn on the sofa with Mr Man though, and here are the results, another pair of mittens that just need sewing up!

I bought the yarn soon after Miss E was born at Wool and Willow.  It is absolutely gorgeous soft wool dyed by Jenny Cook.  I am hiding these mittens because, due to a small someone's obsession with pink, it will only  be a matter of time before they are squirrelled away in a toy bag  and stowed somewhere obscure in the house!!!

Wednesday, 22 August 2012


Both children did their Decopatch today.  I bought these starter kits earlier in the year but Miss E had found it a bit too tricky so I had put them away for a bit.  Todays showery weather and my loss of voice seemed good enough reasons to get the kits back out.  Miss E was fine with it this time, although I did have to ration the glue!

While they were glueing I managed to finish the Sherbet mittens and upload them onto Etsy.  I also bought some labels and mail bags so I am all ready to go when someone orders.

 I am almost out of this colourway and Miss E has been eyeing them up so I am hoping to persuade the children that we need to make a trip to here and replenish my supplies!  I've not been to the barn but have heard its huuuuge and full of yarn, sounds a perfect way to spend a wet morning, although yarn and keen toddlers don't usually make a good combination.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

A lovely giveaway!

A talented friend is holding a giveaway on her blog here.  She makes some lovely things from gorgeous fabric so go and check her out!

Damson Crumble

Here it is, went down very well with a swirl of cream.  I had altered the recipe and cut down on the sugar but after Mr T told me it was blowing his head off we sprinkled on a bit extra.  I used Delia's recipe which added a bit of cinnamon, and because I had two wrinkly looking Bramley apples they went in as well.

While we were out shopping I remembered some maths lessons I had in primary school where the teacher taught all sorts of maths using chocolate.  The fact that I can still remember them to this day probably says a lot so I got a few packets of Smarties and we did a bit of Smartie maths in the afternoon.  It proved very popular, especially when everyone could eat a few!

I'm still knitting like a mad woman, have almost completed yet another pumpkin hat and have started a pair of baby fingerless mittens from this pattern.  I'm using Adriafil Knitcol but I'm not sure of the colourway.  Any ideas of a title for the colourway?  Its reminding me of sweets but I'm not sure which, maybe Dolly Mixtures??!!

Monday, 20 August 2012

Beginning to look a bit like Autumn

Its raining again here.  I have heard that everywhere else in the UK are having a heatwave, well it seems to have missed us and instead the garden is under water again.  Some lovely friends brought us a playhouse for the garden and both children have been an almost permanent fixture in it since its arrival although Miss E is a bit worried because its now wet!!!

At a quick visit to the market I bought home these

Damsons!!!!!  They are sitting there looking at me and reminding me that autumn is definitely not far away.  Hopefully by the end of today they will become a Damson Crumble.  If I am feeling brave I may even allow Miss E and Mr T to make it.

Whilst my sister was here I managed to complete another hat, this time I used purple for the berry section.  I ordered the wool online and when it arrived it was much more Cadburys purple than I had expected.  I'm pleased with how its turned out although I'm not quite sure what to call it, blueberry, blackberry, blackcurrant??!!  I cast on 80 stitches and it has come out almost big enough for Miss E so probably a 1-2 year size (she insisted on squeezing her head into it as she is sure one of these hats should be for her even though most days she refuses to wear anything that is not at least partially pink!).

(Sorry the photo is soooo dark but so is the house today the weather is so awful)

My Little Sister

My lovely sister came up for the weekend which was fab as we haven't seen her for a while.  The children fought over her, she was so popular, but we did manage to escape for a few hours of R and R at a local-ish hotel with a spa!

Trying to take a photo of Little Sis plus both children was problematic and that picture was swiftly followed by this one as they all collapsed on the floor!!

Friday, 17 August 2012

Sucky thumb mitts and another pumpkin

Still knitting like a mad woman here even though it was my birthday yesterday.  Have knitted a pair of fingerless toddler mitts from this pattern designed by a lovely lady.  Using self patterning yarn.  I knit a load of these last winter as both kid hate cold hands but aren't keen on not being able to do stuff with their hands.

I used some leftover adriafil knitcol. It's the Klimt colourway I think, although the ball band is long gone so I'm not certain!  I plan on knitting some more pairs in different sizes to sell on Etsy and at Make Believe but will do them in different yarn.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Another pumpkin

My first pumpkin is on the way to its new owner and I have knitted a couple more.  Another one from the same pattern but this time in the baby size and a second one in newborn size from this lovely pattern.  I'm not sure which I prefer although the berry one is much quicker and easier to knit as its all done in one piece.  I've been back online and ordered some more yarn so I am planning on producing a field full of these in time for autumn!

Mr T has been busy with his Hama beads and has made these for a custom order, they just need threading up and they will be ready to hang on the Christmas tree in a few months time.

Monday, 13 August 2012

I can smell autumn!!

Its almost my birthday and although it is still summer there is a definite hint of autumn on its way.  I have got back into my knitting and have made a very autumnal hat.  I used this pattern and made the toddler size with Stylecraft bought from this super fast online shop.  I managed to get Miss E to model it for me even though its not pink, it is a bit small for her but she does have quite a big head so I'm hoping it will fit its recipient ok.  I have decided to make a few more to sell so if anyone fancies one message me, the pattern even goes up to adult size ;-)

The pattern called for two leaves but I quite fancied a tendril instead!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Long time no see

Things have been a bit all over the place here so I had to vanish for what seems like ages.  Fingers crossed, touch wood etc I should be back to crafting now and hopefully posting again!  Ihave got to that awful part of making my flower cushion that is "the ends".  There are what seems like hundreds of them to sew in and I keep on putting it off.  I've started a new knitting project, a pumpkin hat, which I am hoping to finish in the next few weeks.  For Ravelry peeps I am using this pattern for the hat, but am doing the leaves and stem both in green.