Friday, 28 September 2012

Autumn Twist Hat

Want to see my newest knit? I saw this King Cole Twist yarn in Bracken and wanted to knit up something autumnal with it.  I was going to try a leaf hat again but decided to do a plainer pattern so the colours take centre stage.

The pattern I sort of worked from is this one in that I only decreased every other row.  I started with 72 stitches and it has come out as about 9 months plus size.  

It is on Ravelry here and up for sale in my shop here.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Blue Earflaps Batman!

Finished a custom order early this morning for a little baby boy.  I attempted a brand new pattern, a lot of frogging occurred but the end results are well worth the effort, I hope the little man and his Mummy like it too!

If you are also in the UK you will know why these photos are sooo dark... we have had 2 days of torrential rain and floods.  Apparently it is supposed to stop at lunchtime, I think I may wait until this afternoon before I take these to the Post Office!

Monday, 24 September 2012

Butternut Squash Soup

Well my photo prop met its match yesterday!  It had been hiding out in amongst my potatoes for long enough.  I love butternut squash and could eat it everyday but the children seem less keen but a few months ago I found a recipe that we all like.  It's the soup from My Daddy Cooks.  I love the website, and the video is funny if you get a moment to watch it.  I just use whatever onions I have in, and I found that my children will only eat it with finely grated ginger as the zingy lumps put Miss E right off.

 I didn't take a photo of the soup as it disappeared too quickly, but here is the before shot...

Little boy blue hat

This lovely hat has just come off my lovely Mum's needles!  How funny that we were both working with the same yarn without realising it.

And here are my newest creations....see?!

It has been featured in this lovely Treasury along with some lovely starry goodies!

Saturday, 22 September 2012

The Tooth Fairy Was Here!

Mr T's first tooth fell out the other day!  It had been wobbly for quite a while and the adult one was already almost half through by the time the baby one finally fell out.  There was much excitement, although Mr T was disappointed the fairy brought £1 instead of the £130 he "needs" for a lego train!!

After the event I realised that fairies find teeth stored by the bed much easier to pick up than teeth under the pillow so in readiness for the next one falling out (its partner is already wobbly!) I bought this beautiful felted pot.

I have tried to photo it but the light is funny here today, and the lovely lady at Aisling Designs who made it has done a much better job with her camera!

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

A day out

My parents took both children out for the day yesterday so Mr Man and I escaped for a day out on our own!  It is such a rarity we spent ages trying to decide what to do.  We eventually decided to go to Dunham Massey.  It was a day best described as showery but was perfect with an umbrella as we managed to shelter from all the rain and still enjoy all the bits of sunshine in between.

We hadn't been there for probably 4 or 5 years and never on a week day when you aren't tripping over hundreds of other people.  It was pretty quite and we saw loads of deer and stags, some really close up.  We even saw a fox trotting along the path.

If you have never been I definiety recommend a visit.  We didn't go into the house or garden as it was pretty expensive and we wanted to make the most of the sun, but the cafe was nice ;)

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Falling Leaf Hat

Here is my newest creation and I have to say am really pleased with it.  I followed this Green leaf baby hat pattern to start off with but used DK so I cast on 72 stitches for the newborn size on 4.5mm needles.  I was tired when I was finishing it and misread the decreases part of the pattern and missed out the plain knit rounds.  It meant this one had a founded instead of the more pointed top but I think I actually prefer it.  Its up for sale in my Etsy shop and I'm already thinking about some other colourways!

I think it looks sort of elf-like, don't you think? I really want to try it in some variegated autumny yarn!

Roald Dahl Day

On Thursday it was Roald Dahl day so at our Home Ed group the children did Dahl themed activities.  They invented new creatures with a "Creature Creater", decorated cakes to look like Mrs Twit's glass eye (and ate them of course) and made their own Roly Poly birds.  Some friends brought in a Mugglewump sock monkey they had made and both Miss E and Mr T loved it so we took a copy of the instructions.  Now we just need to find some socks and get sewing.  Mr T suggested using some of his Dads old socks but as Mr Man wears them until they fall apart (plus smelly man feet...bleugh!) I said we would buy some new ones especially!

Friday, 14 September 2012

The Bat Walk

Getting ready to stroke the bat

The bat detector  

This little pipistrelle was too feisty for stroking!

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Milo Armadillo

One my post the other day about Miss E's love of pink you may have spotted this little guy.

His name is Milo Armadillo and I knitted him as a gift last Christmas for Miss E after she (and I) fell in love with this book.

 The pattern for him is actually inside the book.  I used self striping yarn for his shell as I couldn't face the hundreds of ends individual stripes would create, and I left out the embroidery as I had left him a bit late to make.

The book is lovely, all about a little girl who wants a pink fluffy rabbit for her birthday.  No one can find her one so her Gran decides to knit one but he doesn't turn out quite as planned. The illustrations are a mix of drawing and collage with knitting featuring a lot!!

Its a really lovely story and Miss E loves it as much as I do!

 Here is my Milo on Ravelry

The pattern is available for free on the Walker Books website.

Monday, 10 September 2012

Baked Apples and Custard

Baked apples are a staple autumn/winter pudding in this house.  Both children love them, especially with lots of custard (and shop custard is even more of a treat apparently!).  Usually I manage to explode them so I tend to cook them with the lid on to save cleaning apple fluff from the inside of my oven but for some reason this time they didn't explode.  Mr Man even asked if that was why I was photographing them, because the children had never seen them cooked in one piece before!

I don't really use a recipe as such but I tend to grab enough bramley apples for everyone to have half an apple each (or a whole apple if cooking for adults or feeling generous!), take the core out and cut a slit all the way around the skin.  This apparently stops them bursting but it hasn't stopped mine in the past!

I then add a sprinkle of cinnamon down each hole, and sometimes a sprinkle of clove powder as well.

Next fill the holes with dried fruit.  Usually just sultanas in our house but dried cranberries and sultanas mixed are good, as are glace cherries and sultanas.  Nuts would be nice but Mr T isn't keen, and mincemeat left over from Mince Pies at Christmas is delicious, esp with a bit of brandy, although not for the little peeps.

I then drizzle over a small amount (less than a teaspoon) of honey.  If you don't have honey golden syrup or brown sugar would be good.  About a tablespoon of water in the bottom of the bowl and a small knob of butter on each apple finishes them off.

Then just bung them in the oven at Gas Mark 4 and cook for about 45 mins to an hour and serve with custard (or ice cream, cream or yoghurt)

Sunday, 9 September 2012


Up until about two and a half years ago I don't think I owned anything pink.  Today its a different story.  From very un-pink genes Mr Man and I seem to have created a totally pink obsessed little girl.  I find it strange how much of an influence media and retail etc have on such small children.  We don't shop a lot, or watch much television but even still my almost three year old is pink crazy.  Given her own way she would only wear pink clothes, only read pink books and only eat pink food..  I think she thinks it is what makes her a girl, and that if she chose blue, or green or purple, or any other lovely colour she would somehow no longer be a girl.

I am assuming this is a phase but I guess we'll see.  In the meantime she has what we affectionately call "The Pink Palace" as her bedroom (palace being a bit generous as the room is literally the size of a single bed plus enough space to just about turn round in).  She is yet to sleep in it as she spends her nights in a little bed in our room but that means that any guests visiting on their own get to spend a night as a princess!!

Baking Day

Other than a few chores we had no plans for today so we made Ovaltine Loaves.  This is a recipe I remember from my childhood and is so simple to make.  I think it comes out quite sweet so tend to be a bit mean with the golden syrup.  It can be eaten on its own but is even nicer with a bit of butter and a cup of tea!

Ovaltine Loaves

(Makes 2 using a 1lb loaf tin)

12oz SR Flour
4 Level tblsp Ovaltine
2 oz Caster sugar
6 oz Dried fruit
4 Level tblsp golden syrup
1/2 pint milk

Preheat oven to 180C GM 4

Grease loaf tins well

Put all dry ingredients in a bowl

Add syrup and milk

Mix well

Pour into tins and bake for approx 45 mins to an hour

Turn out and cool

I don't have any 1lb loaf tins so I do mine in bigger ones so end up with a flat looking loaf but it tastes as good!

And here is the finished article, cunningly angled so it doesn't look as flat as it is...and to hide the end that has been eaten already (although the crumbs do give it away!!)

Saturday, 8 September 2012

A Lovely Surprise

Now I never win things, ever.  Well almost ever, I can count on one hand the things I have won...a lovely crocheted shawl at a knitters swish party, some trays of seedlings at an allotment talk and I think thats it.  Anyway, last week I saw a giveaway on Facebook and decided to try my luck as the prize was the most gorgeous hand sewn fabric heart decoration.  I added my "like" and a few days later had a message from Betty Chicken saying I had won!!!!

And here it is

She also makes lovely cards using textiles and felt, pop over to her Facebook page and take a look!  The heart is destined for my bedroom but there will be no pictures of it in situ as the room needs a serious sorting out/redecorating before it is made public!

Friday, 7 September 2012

Girly Mittens

A few days ago I had the idea of embellishing mittens for older children and found some lovely wooden buttons and ordered them online.  Unfortunately when they arrived, as lovely as they were they are just too thin to use on a pair of mittens as with a bit of rough and tumble they would soon break.  After some thought and a bit of Ravelry-ing I decided to attempt some crochet hearts and flowers.  I had originally wanted to do a daisy but preferred the pomegranate pink with the red so this is what I came up with.

They are up for sale on Etsy although Miss E spent a long time trying to convince me that she needed them for her!!

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Hama Beads

I think I have a love hate relationship with these little beads.  The children love them and will spend ages quietly sat making creations but the little beads get everywhere and I seem to be forever sweeping a stray one up, or treading on them.  Mr T is making Christmas decorations at the moment for his Nanny and Miss E makes pink things.

Mr T with his special camera face!

Miss E concentrating very hard, and surprisingly for what I think is the first time ever, making something that isn't just totally pink.


I had noticed I have been knitting a lot of pink at the moment so I asked for Mr Ts help to choose a yarn he thought he would like to wear.  Of course as we are in the middle of a very strong colour stereotype phase in this house (thanks mainly to Miss E and her pink obsession) he chose blue.  It is a very nice blue combo though so after the pink hat I have started some blue mittens.  I have a little meeting coming up with a lady at a local shop so I am trying to knit a few items to take along to show her.  After a busy day yesterday and a quiet evening while Mr Man and Mr T were out at a bat walk look how many I have managed to rustle up

The boys loved the bat walk, although the tiredness in Mr T is making today a bit stressful already and its only just past breakfast!  The bat walk was organised by a parent from our Home Ed group and it seems that everyone loved it.  I will nag Mr Man for the pictures he took to post on here as they even spotted a toad.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Flower Hat

I still had some of Jenny Cooks gorgeous hand dyed yarn left and found a lovely hat design on Ravelry.  I contacted Jolene about making a hat from this design and she sent back a lovely reply so I got knitting.  Here is the lovely pattern .  The hat knitted up really well but I found the flower really fiddly and ended up frogging it and following a different pattern from Knit With KT.  I like the big flower on weeny hat look but I think next time I make one I will do a slightly more in scale flower as I figure some people might think its a bit big.