Friday, 28 December 2012

Christmas and Everything After

Wow.  That was a long and unplanned absence.  As in most houses with small children (and most probably most houses without) things have been busy busy busy.  I have been super busy knitting, baking, planning, shopping, wrapping and generally "keeping going" as I find winter really hard work.  I have come to the conclusion that I most probably suffer from SAD, and really feel the need to hide and hibernate through the winter months.  Obviously this would never be possible, especially with my little Etsy shop as the run up to Christmas has meant a lot of knitting.

Anyway, I did "keep going" and got all my orders sent out, all my gifts bought and wrapped and all the Christmassy food cooked, served and eaten.  My head is now busy planning and gathering ideas and inspirations as to what to knit for spring and summer.  I want to focus on children's things, along with a few adult items thrown in, but I am also thinking about creating things for the home...any ideas?  I have a few but they are still only in the whizzing around head stage at the moment!

I'll leave you with some photos, here are just a few of my knitty bits from the last few weeks...

And here are some pictures of the some of the other bits and pieces we have been doing...

Snowy villages with plenty of glitter of course!

A very proud Mr T with a decoration he sewed all by himself.

A lego version of Mr Man and I having a brew in our own camper van.

The tree with a very crooked angel

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas, what are your plans for the new year? :)

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

How to knit thumbless mittens - Tommy No-Thumb

I have been quiet on here, things have been really hectic in real life with a big list of custom orders, the usual Christmas preparations and DIY and house sorting projects (my oven has broken, my kitchen is half way through being decorated, my loft is half way through being sorted etc etc!!).

Anyway in my absence I have designed a baby mitten pattern.  Its a basic scratch style mitten, ie one with no thumb.  I have named it Tommy No-Thumb after the nursery rhyme song Tommy Thumb.  It is far from being rocket science but it is my first go at sharing my own pattern so be gentle!

You will need

DK wool (not much, newborn hands are tiny).  I used my old favourite Adriafil knitcol

3.25mm double pointed needles

An hour or so, they are quick knits

For 0-3 month size (mitten length not inc cuff 3 inches or 8 cm, with cuff its 4.75 " or 12cm)

Cast on 30 stitches and join in the round being careful not to twist.
Knit 12 rows of k1p1 ribbing
Knit 20 rows of plain knitting

Start decreasing for the top

Row 33 (Knit 2, knit 2 tog) repeat all the way round.
Row 34 Knit all stitches
Row 35 (Knit 1, knit 2 tog) repeat all the way round
Row 36 Knit all stitches
Row 37 (Knit 2 tog) repeat all the way round.  This should leave you with 8 stitches.

Cut yarn leaving longish tail, thread needle through all the stitches and take of the needle, secure and weave in ends.

Make a second one!

You could then icord a cord to join the pair together so your baby doesn't loose them, (or crochet or plait a cord) but please be careful as cords can be a hazard to babies.

Feel free to use my pattern for your own use or to sell for charity.  If you want to knit them to sell for personal gain please contact me first, thank you.  I would love to see any mittens you knit from it, feel free to post up your links!

Here is the link to the Ravelry project page.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012


I have decided to try and do a bit more art, and specifically a bit more painting with the children now that Miss E is a bit more patient and a bit less likely to paint the house.

I borrowed this book from the library so we shared it together and then had a go at this activity together.

They both loved mixing the paints and the end results look fab.  I think we will have a go at a few more Monet inspired pieces before moving to another artist.

The book.

Before we took off the masking tape...

Finished pictures, Miss E's then Mr T's.


With both my little ones I loved putting them in babylegs.  They were perfect for keeping legs warm when they were in the sling.  Now on Facebook and Etsy I have had a couple of custom orders for knitted legwarmers.  One for a little girl and one for a boy.

The girly ones are Adriafil Knitcol and the green ones, which were really tricky to photograph are hand dyed superwash pure wool I bought for Miss E whan she was born and never got round to knitting up!

First Haircut

After almost two years of gentle persuasion Miss E finally decided she would let the hairdresser trim her hair.  Ever since watching Disney Tangled she has told everyone she wants to be Rapunzel when she is a "grown up lady" so getting her to have a even the smallest trim has taken a lot of work.

She sat really still and didn't fuss at all, I think she actually enjoyed it!

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

More Germs

Miss E was really poorly last week and needed an emergency Dr visit and an inhaler and steroids.  She is a lot better now but obviously still not fully recovered as she has a cough to rival a heavy smoker and to say she is slightly more stroppy than usual would be an understatement.  Now Mr T has it and as is usual with him it has caused him to have a bad stomach and throw up, a lot.  So not much to blog about really, mostly knitting, dealing with poorly smalls and trying to keep people amused inside.

Here is what I have made with Miss E this morning.  Paper dolls.  I am no artist as you can see but she wanted me to colour them to match family members...

Exciting post!

I have my business cards!!!!

Thanks to a lovely friend with the help of Vistaprint!  I am much more excited than I probably should be about 500 small bits of card but there you go!

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

No soggy bottoms here

As usual I have been pretty much glued to The Great British Bake Off again this year, and Mr Man has watched it as well.  After a busy few weeks I had zero energy on Sunday so instead of me making lunch and attempting a pumpkin pie Mr Man stepped up to the plate and cooked up a storm in the kitchen.  It was his first attempt at pastry and it was nicer than mine, and no soggy bottom in sight.

I'd never had pumpkin pie before so don't know whether it tastes authentic or anything but it was strangely nice with a drizzle of cream.

After the pumpkin pie we had a bit of apple bobbing which both children loved, although I'm not sure catching apples by biting the stalk is really allowed!!

Monday, 29 October 2012

One down, one to go

Look at this yarn!!  It is the loveliest softest hand dyed merino ever.  I bought it just under 3 years ago when Miss E was born to knit her a pair of longies.  Needless to say it never made it onto my needles then due to the demands of a newborn.  Over the weekend I was contacted by a talented crafty lady to knit her little man a pair of legwarmers and after a rummage in my stash I re-found my skeins of this lovely yarn.  It is hand dyed by another lovely crafty lady, Jenny Cook, who lives a few miles away from my Mum and Dad.  Anyway, I spent a restful morning yesterday on the sofa watching An Ideal Husband with Miss E (she loved it, think it was the dresses!!) and managed to get a good start on the first one.  I finished it off this morning so am now casting on leg number two!

Friday, 26 October 2012

Baby its cold outside!!

Today is the first "proper" cold day here.  I hung the washing out and my fingers were almost numb by the time I had finished.  We had a trip out this morning (which I will talk more about another day when I have more voice and less headache!) so it was hats, gloves and neckwarmers all round then off to the supermarket to get Mr T some snowboots as he gets cold toes in shoes in the winter, even with his Nanny's hand knitted woolie socks.

Here is my latest creation, perfect for the cold weather, a chunky cable knit neckwarmer/cowl.  It was hard to persuade Miss E that it wasn't actually fro her after I had bribed her to model it for me.  It is knitted in lovely soft wool mix yarn and feels like candyfloss.

I have a lovely bluey green now to knit up another and maybe I will get some more of that pink and make Miss E one for Christmas!

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Internet Problems

For the last three and a bit weeks we have been without internet and phone connection, hopefully it'll be fixed on Thursday.  I have been able to pop on occasionally thanks to my lovely neighbours sharing their wifi but that is why I have been a bit quiet.  Here are a few pics of the knitting I have managed to get on with though with less time to Facebook/pinterest/Ravelry etc!

Carrot soup

The kids favourite soup is this one from a very old and tatty Cranks book.

As you can see it has been very well used, especially the soup section as its a sure fire way to get my two to eat lots of veg.  Their favourite at the moment is Carrot Pottage, I reckon I could make it every day and it would still be gobbled up by both of them.

Mr T loved carrot soup so much when he was a toddler my mum bought him this lovely book.

It is a simple story about rabbit planting and growing his carrots and waiting patiently until they are ready to make carrot soup.  Its nice and short (so great for bedtime stories on tired evenings!) and I love the illustrations.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Another earflap hat

With our dodgy internet getting online is proving quite a tricky procedure but has given me more knitting time!  Here is my new off-the-needles hat

The pattern is an adaption of this hat knitted up in King Cole Twist Aran.  I followed the 6-9 months instructions but did the body a little longer and a larger garter stitch rim.  I have put it for sale as unisex although it does have some cerise pink in it, the colours are really autumnal!

Friday, 12 October 2012

When your fridge gives you wrinkly lemons..

make lemon cakes!!!!!

Here is our family recipe, kindly given to my Mum by a lady who lives in her village.

Lemon Loaf Cake  Makes 2 large loaves

10oz sr flour
8oz soft butter
8oz sugar
4 eggs
2 tablespoons lemon curd

Preheat oven to 160 degrees (about 2.5 Gas)

Mix all ingredients with electric mixer

Put into 2 large loaf tins (greased and lined or whatever you need to do for your tins)

Cook for about an hour until done, my oven is slow so it may be done quicker in yours

Make topping by putting juice and rind from one lemon and some sugar into a bowl and microwave to warm and melt sugar (or do it in a pan, anything to melt the sugar)

When cakes are done leave in the tins and prick the tops then pour the drizzle over.  Leave to cool as long as you can/want in the tin to allow the topping to soak in

I usually leave one for immediate eating and the other I put in the freezer!

I didn't manage to take a photo straight away and this was all that was left when I finally got round to it!

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Papercraft Cats and Cities

Both littlies still snotty so I decided some indoor crafts were in order.  After a bit of online searching I found this amazing blog Made By Joel.  Miss E wanted to make the Dressy Cats and Mr T the Paper City.  The whole website is amazing and really useful if you have children as there are loads of things to print out and make to keep people busy on rainy days.

Here are the littlies at work, and play...