My Mother’s Day

This morning I was greeted with a my 5 year old daughter wishing me Happy Mother’s Day and a huge box she had decorated herself.  It was full of pictures and cards she had made, along with some handmade chocolate hearts (made at school) and a paper basket of decorated chocolates (made at Rainbows).

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A handmade Mother’s Day.  Lovely!

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Happy crafting
x

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Cake trial

I’ve been a bit cake mad recently and I fancied having a go at something a bit different this time.  I have been thinking about some rocky road bars, but didn’t really want to fill my fridge with cooling cake, so I thought ‘how about some rocky road inspired buns?’

It’s a good opportunity to use up small amounts of dried fruit and we have loads of mini marshmallows in the cupboard (after school hot chocolate milk with marshmallows is a favourite drink in our house).

Being a lazy baker I used the all-in-one method for a chocolate sponge mix and then added currants, raisins, sultanas and marshmallows.  It didn’t take very long at all and making these whilst little one is at school means I get to scrape the bowl out!!

Rocky Road Buns

They took about 15 minutes in the oven and the marshmallows melted beautifully. When they came out of the oven they were lovely and gooey!

Needless to say they lasted less than a day. Just the right sort of chocolate treat for a miserable weather day.

Now what should I make next?

Happy baking
x

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Mother’s Day

With Mother’s Day just over a week away and the sun having come out I have been in the mood to put the needles and hooks down for a bit and get out the papercrafting materials.

I had a real root through my stash and brought out some Papermania capsule collection papers and flowers.  I wanted to do something a little bit different to those cards I have made before, and I found a collection of coloured skeleton leaves to use.  Out came the button box as well.

Yellow Leaves Mother's Day

Yellow Leaves Mother’s Day

I love the black and white collection of big flowers, and the yellow leaves look so fresh.

I also used some of the pink collection too.

Pink Flower Mother's Day

Pink Flower Mother’s Day

I thought that I’d put the cards with my rose knitted brooches.  I think they go together very well and would make a lovely little gift for any Mum.  I know what my Mum is getting from me this year!

Knitted rose brooches

Happy Mother’s Day crafting
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Pom Pomalicious!

A few weeks ago I bought my first pom pom maker.  I saw them being used on Kirstie Allsopp’s tv show before Christmas and was completely sold on the idea of making pom poms in all sizes, quickly and without the need to have a regular supply of cardboard circles!

Pom pom makers

My first attempts are adorning my phone case and I love them, so I am now trying to find uses for them every time I make anything!!

My phone case

I love the thickness of the pom poms and how uniform they are. So having bought the small ones I had to invest further in a larger set. I am thinking about adding some to my current work-in-progress, a crochet blanket. Then I could add them to the end of some new scarves. I am also thinking about using the smaller ones to make little flowers, but that is going to take some thought and practice.

In the meantime I have been adding the smaller pom poms to my little Easter bunnies for tails.

I have now just taken delivery of a pom pom heart maker! I have no idea how this will work but I think it will be fun. It will make a change from circular ones for the Christmas tree!

pom pom heart maker

I shall post pictures when I have made some.

Happy crafting
x

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After School Treats

I’m always struggling with my little one asking for a snack after school. I seem to have got into a routine with a couple of other parents to bring something to school at pick up time for the kids, and it’s usually chocolate or sweets. But I’m starting to experiment with other ideas.

Over the half term we made some little sponge buns using up leftover blueberries and banana, so I thought I’d have another go. This time I made larger buns, but I didn’t mix the banana slices and blueberries into the mix. I put a teaspoon of mix in each case, then added 3 slices of banana and 5 blueberries to each one, and topped it with another teaspoon of cake mix. That way each cake had the same amount of fresh fruit added.

Blueberry and Banana Buns

They went down very well with the kids (and the Mums). I shall have to try some other fruit combinations. I wonder what we’ll get in our veg box this week?

I’ve also tried some vanilla and raisin buns. This time mixing the raisins into the cake mix.

Vanilla dnd Raisin Cakes

These are delicious and I thank Delia for her all-in-one sponge recipe.

I think it’s a change from the packet crisps, sweets and chocolate. And it must be better for them, having some fruit in there. Plus is definitely more satisfying knowing what they’ve had, making it yourself and costing less.

Happy baking
x

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Easter Bunnies

I felt like a change from knitting ducklings and decided that little bunnies would make a welcome addition to my knitted range.  They are so cute and work so well for Easter as well as for new babies or small children.  My daughter loves them and wants a whole family full!

Bunny in progess

They knit up quite quickly as they are plain stocking stitch with a little shaping and the added twisted cord bow hides the gathering for the neck. It’s quite simple to do the cord, but it does look funny when I have a piece of yarn tied around a knitting needle held under my foot and am twisting it round using my finger! It works though. Instead of adding a knitted tail I’ve added a tiny pom pom, which looks so cute at the back.

Easter bunnies

As the bunny is stuffed with tested stuffing it can be washed (gently) and there are no parts to injure little mouths or fingers. The face is hand stitched in place so each one is different, and the bow cord is stitched in place too so no chance of a little mouth swallowing it. An ideal little gift for a first Easter.

I’m working on a pale blue one next and then I think I might add a bow to the end beneath the ear. Any colour suggestions?

Happy crafting
x

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Charity Knit

Last year I had some shocking news about a friend and former work colleague. She is just a few weeks younger than me and has had a terrible illness which has left her unable to speak or move. So, one of her very close friends has organised a party night to help pay for extra physio sessions. She has been overwhelmed with the donations to her raffle and I wanted to do something too.

I thought having a go at an owl would be a good idea.

Owl in progress

It’s a pattern I found in an old Woman’s Weekly knitting special. I decided to use some aran yarn for the body and wings and I used double knit for the beak and feet. I had no idea how big he would actually be though!

The original pattern used felt for the eyes, but I wanted to do something a bit different and thought it was a good opportunity to practice some crochet! So I think I’ve done 2 circles of double crochet! Whatever stitch I did I think it looks quite effective. I added a couple of chain stitches for each pupil in the body colour yarn.

Knitted Owl

He stands approximately 25cm tall and with a weight inside would make a pretty good doorstop! But as he is he’s very cuddly and is currently looking handsome sat on my sideboard in the living room.

Knitted Owl

I hope everyone likes him and that he helps to raise some much needed money for the physio sessions. I’m hoping to have a go at a pussy-cat to go with him, so watch this space.

Happy charity crafting
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Crochet practice

Over the last year I have continued to practice my crochet in the form of treble crochet granny squares.  It’s been fun using different yarns and sizes of hooks.

I’ve made some little granny square bags and have a lovely stack of squares sat in a bag.  So I’ve decided to embark on my first blanket!  I’ve made 30 squares in 3 different colours, white, pale pink and a dusky pink.  I think they look really good together, but my problem now is how to join them together so they lie flat?

Crochet squares

I’ve seen blankets where the squares are joined directly together, I presume they have been sewn together somehow. I’ve also seen them with a crochet border between them. I like the thought of having a border in white but I’m not sure how to go about it. Any help would be gratefully received.

I think I’ll be hunting round Youtube for some ideas and tutorials!!

In the meantime I’ve embarked on another blanket (or is it an afghan?) as I discovered a lovely ball of cream double knit yarn in a drawer in the spare room. I don’t know what I had been saving it for but it’s now on it’s way to being a blanket!

I’ll keep you posted on how I get on.

Happy crafting
x

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