Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Quilts for Linus

Two more quilts finished for Project Linus.  I managed to get them washed and on the line during some of the sunny weather we had last week.  I'm really pleased with how they both turned out.

Until next time...

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Earth Hour 2010

Last night we participated in Earth Hour and turned off all our lights from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m.  By candle light we played cards and chatted.  I also played with my camera and 50mm lens taking low-light pictures!  The only light in these pictures is from the candles.

While I was at it, I took this picture.  The current Photograph This! challenge on flickr is "eyes"..and this is my submission.  I love how the catch-lights in my DD1's eyes are from the candles on the table.  I thought it turned out to be a pretty cool shot.

Until next time...

Saturday, March 27, 2010

A bit of wonky sewing?

Before you start to think there is no sewing going on...I can assure you there is.  I started this zig-zag quilt for Project Linus.  I'm so glad I took a picture before I started to sew it together as I'm half way sewing the diagonal rows and I have lost my way!  Luckily the picture should help get me back on track!  I'm using Crazy Mom's tutorial, which you can find HERE.

Until next time...

Friday, March 26, 2010

Green Day - a variation on the 3 R's

Last week my eldest daughter's school had a "green" day to promote recycling and more eco-friendly ideas.  They traded the traditional 3 R's for the day to focus on the 3 R's of Reduce, Reuse and Recycling.  They had to dress in an outfit that they could link to this theme and as my DD1 is quite interested in this subject she went all out.  She started with some jeans that were hand-me-downs and a t-shirt that said something about going organic.

Then she made herself a choker necklace by knitting tape off an old cassette tape.  And in case you are wondering, Britney Spears is all over this one!  DD1 admitted that although this looked good, it did get a bit scratchy after awhile.

The jewellery theme continued with this bracelet made from pop can tabs.  The tutorial to make a belt this way can be found here.

She went on with the re-use theme but using newspaper to decorate her nails.  I must admit, I found this one a bit strange, but it was creative!!

Until next time...

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A visit to Nana's and Grandad's

Last weekend we went to Stoke-on-Trent to visit my in-laws. It was a very busy weekend and there were plenty of opportunities for pictures!  I like those kinds of weekends!  On the Saturday the weather wasn't very nice, so our activities kept us inside.  My MIL had a little mending to do.. so her sewing machine, which was manufactured in 1953, was dusted off for the task at hand. 

Our conversation led us to the topic of her old treadle machine (which when I looked up the serial number was made in May 1930).  I have always wanted to have a go and she cleared it off and set it up for an impromptu lesson.  At first I had a go with the tension off the fly-wheel and when she was confident I got the hang of it, we threaded it up and I sewed a few seams.  It was amazing! 

On Sunday morning the sun came out and the raindrops from the day before were glistening on the flowers.  Although the day started out misty you could tell the sun was going to win out and give us a proper first day of spring.

We took the children to the park where this duo sat by the water's edge.  It wasn't until I looked at the picture that I realized they both had their heads to one side...just what are they looking at?

And this duck waddled over to flirt with the camera!  Isn't he gorgeous?  (I'm assuming it is a male due to the curly feather on his tail)

(Now for the technical bit)  All these pictures were taken with my 1.8 50mm lens on manual focus.  I'm so thrilled I'm getting the hand of it!  I just can't get over how sharp the focus is on this lens...just fabulous!

Until next time...

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Easter Reveal

There were some egg-cellent guesses, but Karol-Ann got the closes with her guess of a henhouse.  My DD2 was determined to make a chicken coop with all the trimmings.  It took her the better part of a week working on it every day after school.  Here a some pictures of the finished product.

Until next time...

Friday, March 19, 2010

Busy, busy creating with paint...

Every Easter my daughter's school invite the children to make something for their Easter display.  They can make anything they like as long as it can link into Easter.  The first year we made a bonnet, last year we made a basket...and this year... well you might have to wait a few days to see what it will be, but here is a sneak peek...

Any Guesses?

Until next time...

Friday, March 12, 2010

Pioneering Kind of Day

Last week I placed an order on Amazon for some books for my DD2 and while I was at it I treated myself to the new Pioneer Woman Cookbook.  Not only is this book a feast for the eyes with its amazing photography, but the recipes look so delicious!  On Saturday my DD1 had a friend over for a sleep-over I thought the "morning after" would be the perfect occasion to try PW's recipe for French Breakfast Puffs!  I must admit I was feeling a little dubious of her quantities, but I forged on and like magic all the batter did indeed fit into a 12 cup muffin tin.  Once the muffins are baked and still warm you roll them in melted butter and then coat them in a dusting of sugar and cinnamon.  They are completely sinful, but they are GOOOD!  If you have teeth that scream high notes from sugar then a possible alternative would be to only coat the tops and use less butter/sugar-cinnamon mix.  Also I think I'd be tempted to use fine caster sugar...if you happen to have it.

These were a hit with the girls...and I think I've managed to hold onto my good reputation of being a good cook amongst my DD1's friends :o)

Keeping the Pioneer Woman theme for the day, we tried her Sherried Tomato Soup.  Once again we were not disappointed.  Now as a rule, I'm not a fan of tomato soup..but this soup was on a different level!  There is a cup of sherry in the mix and that turns it into proper grown-up soup!  And, as we found out, has the same effect as a Christmas dinner...About an hour after lunch I thought the house sounded quiet...2 out of 4 members of the household were curled up on the sofa napping away!!  I really recommend this soup..especially on a cold and snowy Sunday when you have no place to go.

P.S. Click on the links for the recipes...they are both on her website so you could make them this weekend!
Until next time...

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Working Wednesday

Just keep quilting...Just keep quilting... (a bit like Dory in finding Nemo)

Until next time...

Monday, March 08, 2010

Toft Alpaca Wool Shop

Just outside Rugby, just beyond Dunchurch there is a little hamlet called Toft.  The word Toft apparently comes from the Old Norse word "topt" meaning 'site of a house'. 
And at this house, in this little hamlet live over 200 Alpacas.  And at this house, in this little hamlet is a very pretty wool shop
I happened to pop over there last Saturday and here below are the pictures I snapped to share with you.

(Disclaimer...I have no affiliation with the Toft Farm...I just thought they had a beautiful shop and wanted to share it with you.)

Until next time...

Friday, March 05, 2010

Sorry for the unexpected break...

Hello? Anyone still out there?  I'm not sure why it's taken me over a week to post again...I guess my mind is busy thinking about other things!  Everything seems to have slowed down...not a lot of photography or sewing going on...but today I made a point of doing both.  I got 2 quilts for Linus basted...granted one of them is a small quilt..and the other is a lap quilt so they didn't take too long to do.

This is the lap quilt and I'm thrilled at how well it came together AND the dent it made in my scrap baskets.  I matched 3.5" squares with 2" strips and then trimmed them into rectangle units and then sewed those rectangles in to rows.  It is lovely and colourful!

I suspect part of my unplanned break might be due to the Olympics and the fact that I was glued to the screen watching those amazing Canadians!!  Go Canada Go!  Both the women's and men's hockey was fantastic and that last game was a perfect finish!  It has been a long time since I've been able to watch hockey on TV, but thankfully the BBC showed the entire game and I was able to watch it live!  Like many I had a little hand work on the go...though I must admit I tended to sew during "commercials"...you know the bits where they take a break and chit chat about the game..which is why I only have a little Dear Jane block to show for it! LOL  It is hand pieced and I'm thrilled with the results...just don't look at the back!  It isn't quite as amazing as this lady's piecing skills ;o)

Lastly, but not least, I found this pic on the camera that I must have taken last week sometime.  Drool...I just love making this bread!

Hope you have a great weekend!

Until next time...