Wednesday, 29 June 2011

OOH look what I have done.

I'm feeling rather proud of myself this evening- I have managed to complete the back section of Stephanie's cardigan I have been knitting. Take a peek:

I'm incredibly proud of this piece of knitting, it has taken me a lot of thought to follow this pattern, I was a little baffled by the binding off. I always though finishing knitting involved casting off, being the opposite of the casting on I did at the beginning. So a little googling/ you tubing I discovered that binding off and casting off are the same.
So I have now cast on the left front. So hopefully in a few days you will see this garment progressing well. Now though I need some sleep in anticipation of a day on the allotment tomorrow.

Monday, 27 June 2011

the promised post

Yesterday I mentioned that I would be going to the allotment today and that you should expect an allotment related post and here it is!

 I found it under attack from weeds and slugs

I did check the potatoes while I was there. They are almost ready.

The raspberries were falling off the bush.

look how many I picked.

Stephanie couldn't wait to tuck in.

It is so hot today she cooled off in the pool for hours with her mermaids.

I paused for a moment to admire nature at work

I made a quick cheesecake using some of the raspberries to enjoy in the sunshine, oh did you spot the knitting in the picture? I am loving sitting in the garden enjoying the sunshine. I have been out there until it's too dark to see properly to do my knitting.

Some of the raspberries were slightly over ripe so I am now making jam with them.

So there you have it my (mainly) allotment related post.

Sunday, 26 June 2011

phew, found 5 minutes to myself at last!

Wow it has been a hectic few weeks (yeah I hear you, when isn't life hectic when you are a parent?)

I have been finishing off my PGCE teaching practice, I have been finding a job, spending time with the children and spending the weekends visiting my Mum who is poorly and not managing housework. So have been cleaning 2 homes as well.

My teaching practice is now complete am pleased to say I have passed! I have found a job; well 2 kind of- one for supply work over the last few weeks of the Summer term and  a permanent job starting September. So I just have a few days to complete at uni this week and then I am officially a teacher. Scary stuff!

Needless to say things have been pretty hectic here I have managed to do some making/baking but I haven't taken many pics. Here are just a couple to give you an idea of what we have been doing.

feeding my aunt's hand reared kitten

making cake

pirate day at school

Cat sitting, silly thing keeps eating grass then being sick!

Winner of the crazy dance competition

Chilling in the garden

The green knitting is my first attempt at making something complicated* knitting wise, it is going to be a school cardigan for Stephanie.

I am having a day off tomorrow and hoping to spend it down the allotment, so expect an allotment related post tomorrow.
I have big plans for my days off before the children break up from school, although I suspect I won't be any where near as productive as I need to be in order to achieve everything.

* complicated for me as a complete novice, I am sure this pattern is actually very basic.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Kids can cook challenge

I was planning on cooking another random recipe this weekend, but there was a change in plan.
This weekend has been a real treat.
Dylan has cooked dinner everyday.
Saturday was pork curry, very yummy but I forgot to get a picture.

Today he did roast dinner. It tasted so good I may have to encourage him to cook a roast each week!
Then with the left overs from our roast chicken Dylan made a pie for tomorrow's dinner. He made the pastry from the book you can see lurking in the background. It is a book I received as a Christmas present the year I had Dylan, over 12 years ago. I love the book, it is full of normal everyday recipes. I have many recipe books, but few of them are what I call basic how to do anything ones. This old faithful * gets puled out all the time as it really does have everything in it.

So go on, I challenge you. What can your children cook this week?

* if you click the link you will see there is no image available for the book. I have checked the ISBN on back of my copy with that given on the page to ensure it is the same book.

Monday, 6 June 2011

How to make a princess very happy

Today I discovered the way to make my princess happy.

I started work today on this dress Stephanie was that impressed with me completing it today that she TOOK OFF her sleeping beauty dress and put it on as soon as I had cut it free of the sewing machine. She is very pleased with it;

as it passed the swirl test- all dresses need to spin out when she spins. It is the first test applied to any new dress before she even looks in the mirror.
Then comes the cheese shot so that we can actually see the dress. I'm very impressed it looks good and was simple to sew.
Stephanie was also very impressed with the rainbow hat I finished as well, she has decided knitted clothes are as good as sewn ones so to really test me she has now requested
  1. rainbow gloves to go with the scarf and hat
  2. a school cardigan
  3. a dolls cardigan to match the school one
  4. a knitted dress.
Bearing in mind the hat is only the second item I have knitted these projects may take me all summer, wish me luck!

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Yarn along

I found my way to Ginny's yarn along today via jacintas blog and thought I would join in to so here is my pic
The knitting is a hat to match the rainbow scarf I made Stephanie last week. It is only the second item I have ever knitted and so far appears to be going well I am using this pattern. As it says in the title it is basic, maybe my next knitting attempt may be something a little more complicated, perhaps.
The book is Loverws and Players because I like to read easy no thinking required kind of books in bed.

Also today I have finished my dress, and made a couple of alterations so I am now happy with the fit.

admittedly not hte best photo, but perhaps I can get a better one when I wear it.

This is the latest dress I made Stephanie, I made it using butterick b4718, it is a pattern I have used a lot over the past couple of years Stephanie has several dresses from it all in different prints as she likes them so much.
My next dress for her is a little different she chose a new pattern when we were shopping for material on Friday, picture will follow once I have made it.

Random recipe- eton mess

I stumbled across Dom's blog in my wanderings over cyber space this week. It's a fab blog packed with lots of different recipes. He has a little challenge going on over there; basically the idea is you take a dessert cookbook open it at a random page and cook that exact recipe. I don't have a recipe book completely designated to desserts, so I used the book I bought last which is this Jamie Oliver one. The recipe I opened it to was the Eton Mess one. I did have to make some adjustments to the recipe due to Stephanie's allergies and I wanted her to be able to join me in eating the dessert.
Jamie's ingredients:
400g Strawberries
1 heaped table spoon golden caster sugar
1 blood orange
2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract
a splash of Pimms
250g low fat yoghurt or creme fraiche
pack of 8 meringue nests
a couple of sprigs or fresh mint.

I used:
vanilla extract
splash of apple juice
low fat yoghurt
meringue nests.

As Stephanie is allergic to citrus fruits/citrus products I replaced the pims with apple juice and left out the orange. It tasted fab even without these.

So what you do is;
slice the strawberries and put them in a bowl.

sprinkle on a little sugar. Add the vanilla extract. Mash altogether with a fork.
Add a splash of apple juice and mix again.
crumble over some meringue nest, mix again.

At this point I put the desserts in the fridge. Just before serving I crumbled over some more meringue nests.

They were delicious.

Friday, 3 June 2011

this moment

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. This post is inspired by soulemama if you are also inspired leave a link to your moment in the comments of this page, and swing by her blog too.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Allotment update

I have spent a little time at the allotment the past few days, take a look how it is all growing-







and the rash I come back with every time after clearing the weeds, something is not agreeing with me!

I am getting there with the allotment, there is still a lot to do but these few photographs have really highlighted how much I have got going on down there since I started it the other month. I can't til harvest time!