Saturday, 8 December 2012

The Day to Day

I have just finished reading The Happiness Project . It is a brilliant book about how to make your life happier without changing your life. It focuses each month on making resolutions to do with one area of life such as Work or Family. It is a really personal account from one women who is definitively not perfect and lives her real life as she goes through the book. It is really inspiring as she is not unhappy and is just working towards making herself happier on a daily basis. My desktop background is a quote from her "What you do EVERY DAY matters more than what you do ONCE IN A WHILE'. This really appeals to me as I feel what makes me happy and makes a big improvement of my quality of life is what I do everyday, the small things like the food I eat and the people I talk to regularly. It isn't the big things like holidays or moving house. It is the small things like stroking the cat or having a great cup of coffee. 

I would really recommend the book to anyone. She is an intelligent, well read, fun woman talking simply about her life. I am just starting on her next book about being happy at home. We will see if it is as good. 

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Baby Blanket Number 2

So this is the blanket I made for a very special Canadian/Libyan/Welsh/Mancunian baby who was born this summer. It is the 2nd ripple blanket I have made and it was much better than my first one. Sorry Baby number 1!

This is it while making. I absolutely loved the process of making this blanket. It took about 30 mins a row and I made it bigger than the 1st too after seeing how quickly babies really grow. I can't give specifics I am afraid as this actually got goven away in the middle of the summer when the baby was born. Sorry!

It is made with Special DK again and has very similar colours that Lucy at Attic24 and Heather at Little Tin Bird use. I am massively inspired by these 2 women who use colour beautifully and create lovely, snuggly things. Looking at it now it could really have done with some kind of border. I learn every time I make something. 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012


I have been away...for longer than I wanted. I have a new job which has been taking some serious training, pushing me in all my "stretch" areas. I haven't had any time or motivation to make anything above dinner. It doesn't make me happy.

What does make me happy:

  1. Receiving a cushion I won from Alice at JustAThought. It is brilliant and looks great in my craft room. My plan for today is to tidy that room so I can take some photos for her.
  2. Making more delicious veggie recipes from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi. Last night was a pilaf made with slow cooked onions, sweet spices and loads of herbs. Every recipe from this book has been a great success. 
  3. Discovering a new beauty blog. Beauty's Bad Habit is brilliant. She has loads of great looks and as she is student they are all doen with bargain products. She is local to me too!
  4. Finding a great food shop just down the road from my new job in Liverpool. Mattas is full of bargain spices, interesting chocolates and unusual veg. 
That actually makes me feel a lot more positive about what is going on at the moment. It has felt like the job is taking over everything. I am enjoying it but it is a lot of hard work!

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Frivolous fun

So I saw this trim about 6 months ago on Lucy's brilliant Attic 24 blog. I genuinely thought "I'll never be able to make that. It looks so complicated and there are so many different stitches". 

After finishing a baby blanket (yet another ripple, more on that in the next post) I wanted something quick and easy that I could finish in an evening after a stressful day at work.  I remembered the lovely little trim for going round a jar. So I started and it was great! It was hard enough to be able to concentrate all the way through but not too hard to make me feel like I couldn't do it.
So ta da....

I am completely in love with it. I have had it burning with a little, green, fresh smelling tea light. I can see this being Christmas presents for people this year. Just need to start collecting more salsa jars. 

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Rocket Garden

So I got a Rocket Garden for Christmas from The Boy's mum. Basically it is a box full of baby plants all ready to go into your garden/pots/planters. It arrived on Thursday and today has been the first chance I have had to get them in. Coincidentally it has also been the first nice day we have had in ages here in rainy Manchester. There were so many plants I have had to put some int random plastic pots from the shed. I have:

  • Mizuna, 3 types of lettuce, rocket, spinach and chard in planters.
  • Strawberries in hanging baskets.
  • Peas, runner beans, french beans and courgettes in the raised bed at the end of my garden.
It doesn't look much typed like that but it has taken me about 3 hours to do it all. I am going to take loads of photos tomorrow when my camera is charged. My back is killing me but I have definitely earned the beer I am now having. 

The gym has been going brilliantly. I have been 3 times and it has gone really well. It has been hard but I come out feeling strong and like I have worked. Plan is to go for a swim tomorrow as I don't think my back is going to let me go to the gym!

Baby blanket number 2 is going great. A ripple bunch of rainbow goodness. 

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

New year fun and games

So it is now a new year, well for me at least. I turned 29 on the 2nd of May and was spoilt rotten. I got an amazing new food processor and a 4 day trip to London full of musicals, family, amazing hotel views, friends and HARRY POTTER! We went to the new studio tour which was amazing and a complete surprise. I may have been a little emotional at various times. I am such a cry baby when I am happy!

The yarn arrived for the first of the baby blankets which is looking beautiful. The ripples are going well and the edges are almost even! A little wonk is part of the homemade charm I think.

Day off tomorrow with a gym induction. We shall see how my very unfit body copes!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Keep on going

This time of year has so much going on.

Busy at work and only getting busier. Babies on the way and all that goes with that. The Boy's birthday done and mine coming soon.

I have ordered some serious yarn to make a baby blanket inspired (well will be directly copied from to be honest) by this amazing blanket. I am still going with a Granny Squares blanket for our living room but it is taking forever. I have worked out I would like to end up with a blanket of about 100 squares. That is a lot of end to sew in. 

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

This can't be March?

This is amazing. The weather is so warm and beautiful. Me and mum have been in the garden all morning is t-shirts. The sun has been warming and life affirming. We have put in a hedge (well it will be when it grows a bit), moved a big plant out of the raised bed into the back of the lawn and moved the chives and parsley back into pots. Mum had planted the herbs out but I have decided to put them back into pots so I can move them to the back door if I need them.

When we were working on the garden last year we dug a lot of water retention compost into the beds. It has made such a difference to the soil. There are so many worms and the soil is super rich. Hopefully it all makes for brilliant vegetables when the Rocket Garden goes in later this month!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Family time

At the moment I have my mum to stay. We haven't lived together so about 10 years. As you can imagine there have been moments of immense stress and annoyance on both our parts but the majority of it has been a complete joy.

She has cooked, gardened, created and cleaned her little heart out. I have had homemade swiss roll, île flottante, thai green curry, meatballs...the list goes on. We have had the garden tidied and she has added edges to our very undefined borders which has made a massive difference. It is starting to look like a real garden!

She has been creating and making her own pillowcases which are the basis of her new business (more on that later!). They are things of beauty with intricate whitework and crochet edges. Puts my counted cross stitch to shame. Saying that she always comments on how she could never do the things I do, she has no patience.

Also I haven't touched the washing up since she came!

So here's to mums and all they do.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Baby Blanket Completed

I have finished the baby blanket for the baby girl of 2 dear friends of mine. We went to their wedding in Belfast on New Year's Eve 2010. It was an amazing time and The Boy has known them for about 10 years, he was an usher. So I wanted to make them something special and my new love of crochet came out to play.

So this is it! In their homeland's colours. I got so sick of these about halfway through but looking at it

now I love it and am a little bit proud of myself. It is a ripple pattern from Attic24, which is where I got the original inspiration from. And then I have just edged it with 3 rows of treble crochet in the green and white (preferable in my mind to the orange).

The vital statistics:
Size: 72cm x 48cm
Weight: no idea, completely forgot to weigh it before I packed it up.
Time: It took me about 2 months but could have been done a lot quicker if I cracked to it! I wanted to get it done for when she was born. Now going to be a 2 month old present.
Wool: 5 balls (ish) of Patons' Fairytale Dreamtime DK Pure Wool. £3.49/ball of 50g.
Cost: £17.45

Now I am moving on to Valentine's day cross stitch.