Friday, 3 April 2015

Hello out there! Well today's post is going to be a mixed bag, bit like the weather. Beautiful yesterday, and today we are in a foggy, grey, wet one.  Ahh well. Variety is good they say.
Things are still buzzing along at a fast pace, maybe now the kids are on spring break we can have a couple of slow days. I hope you don't mind the randomness of my pics, but I take them and think that they will work for a post and then I post about something else and forget about the pictures.  Hmmm. 
So my first few pics are from the end of March, when we had the eclipse. Yes I know it was about 3 weeks ago now, but they aren't too bad, for an eclipse that happened on a cloudy morning. 

 The eclipse, was not totally clear, but I liked the moodiness of the pictures.
Next up is some Easter decorations, its those chicks, rainbow ones this year too. But the ones with the hats, said they wanted a day out, they didn't come back for while, those crazy gals.

 Sheep too.
They all made it onto a wreath. But not the chicks with hats, they keep sneakin' out!  Sorry the picture is not very good, not sure why I didn't take the whole thing, but if I stop to go and re-take it this post will not happen. You know how it goes. Plus our internet keeps randomly going off. Just a wee bit annoying.

 So before the internet goes for longer than a few minutes, I will just show you one more thing.
I finished Gabi's hat, its in the blackberry beanie pattern. I first saw the pattern on Jo's blog, as some of you will know. I used King cole's superwash merino, used the same for Mikayla's and it works great. By mistake I grabbed DK instead of aran weight.  It worked out fine, the blackberries are a little smaller.Its in pink, of course, so it looks like a little pink raspberry, so I added a stem and leaf.

 She is super happy with it, and hasn't taken it off! 
So that is it, hope you liked them.  And I hope you all have a lovely happy Easter weekend! 

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

My older daughter will be graduating in May, so there is alot going on with for that, the other week all of the Seniors had a day trip to York.  Myself and a friend, who's daughters (twins) are seniors too, got to go on the trip. 
I love going to York.  One of the stops was the Minster I hadn't been in a few years. The details inside and out is amazing.  Want to take a look?

 Reminds me of the top of a fair isle hat.

 There is some work going on in there, for the massive back glass window, that tells of the Apocalypse. There is 108 panels so its not a small job.  There was a huge plastic copy of the window hanging in its place.   I can imagine a lot of patience is needed for that job. You can read about it here if you want to. 

 Just to the side, you can see some of the scaffolding that's being used, that is a long way up! 

 Some more scaffolding just under the archway.

 Well, now I need to go and catch up on some blogs. I have nearly got some little bunnies finished, they are a tad tedious, and at the minute I've not knitted their ears so they look like strange little bald things.  I need to take some pictures of some knitting that I have done so I can show you all. 
I have yet to cast on the 180 stitches needed to start a fairisle project that is patiently waiting. I think the thought of a 180 stitch cast on is a bit mind numbing, but I have heard of more. How many times am I going to have to re-count that?  On the go too, is another blackberry stitch hat, by mistake I grabbed DK instead of aran weight but it seems to be going ok, and its for a smaller head.

 I think I could do with cloning myself, and one of them gets to just knit, go to nice places, get lost in wool shops, and not have to pay attention to the time.  But then I bet a scrap would break out amongst the clones. Cleaning clone and a few others would not be happy. But that is not going to happen, so I will just squeeze it in where I can, knitting that is, not scrapping with clones. ;)

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Well here we are I think spring has maybe arrived?  Although its grey at the moment we have had some amazingly sunny days here in Yorkshire.  Ones that put a spring in your step.  
On Sunday, we took a walk up through the fields to Birchfield farm to see some baby lambs. 

 They are just so sweet.
On the opposite side to some very new borns, was the expectant Mums pen...
Packed in together and just waiting...

And waiting...
 Looks like this one forgot to use a mirror when she penciled on her eyebrows for the day. ;) She was the only one with those markings.  
On the way out we saw some pigs, but no piglets yet. This one was having a big scratch against the fencing. 
And we saw a Shetland pony and guess who it kinda looks like....
Farley!  I think its that mop of hair. 
And this week I am knitting something just for fun. 
Wee rabbits, I have knit 6 little bodies and now, I am working on arms and legs, they are just simple i-cords. I found the pattern here, go to the free pattern link on her side bar. There is a dress pattern that I am going to use too.  She also has  lovely patterns to buy. 
Hope your all having a good week! :)


Friday, 6 March 2015

Hello! Today I am taking part in Amy's five on friday. The link is over on my side bar if you fancy it yourself.

First off, I washed and dried my fairisle sampler, but the ends! Oh those ends! You think crochet is bad!

At first I thought, I am going to be here forever! But after watching Maryjane Mucklestone on craftsy, I am going to tie them.  Apparently it was thought of as a "sin" to tie your ends, so weaving them in amongst the back was how some did it, and some do.  But she discovered on closer inspection of an old fair isle jumper that they were tied.  Its funny the little sayings that people started or believed when doing something.  Tying knots is still a bit tedious but I am getting there. I think I might go with a small bolster, for what to do with it.  Just need a back now.
For #2 I have no picture.  But last night I went to a friends house and helped her learn to cast on, and she did it!  And 2 of her girls wanted to learn to crochet, and they did it!  They each made a small granny square before I left.  It feels good when you can pass that on to someone. And people look really happy with themselves when they can suddenly do it!
#3 Blue skies and sun today,  need I say more...

#4 Ok this was a lovely treat to me, from me. I had some Christmas money burning a hole in my pocket. So what do you think I bought? And it arrived in the post... 

Wool, lovely wool.  I picked out some shades to use in fairisle. To try some different combinations. I really like the knit pick wools.  The colors are really lovely. For the sampler I did, I used stuff from my stash. 
And # 5  I will give to Farley. Hope you are all not tired of hearing about him. At the end of his walk today he got to go in the river. Only for a short time, up to the ankles, no swimming and he was on the lead.  I know he would probably not come back if we really let him go, but all the same he liked it. Maisie was not interested. Its still a bit to chilly for a skinny dip. 


Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Anyone feel like they need a makeover. I do.  I think its this end of winter feeling. The sun is shining right now, I like that.  But it is cold in this little cottage by the sheep.  The wind is howling through the chimney, and the dogs are snoring. In between going outside in the mud of course. I think they have 4 sponges for paws.  Oh, well all will be ok.  These months seem to be going by quickly.  And March is starting out like the rhyme, in like a lion... hopefully it will be out like a lamb.

Here we are thinking healthy thoughts. Helps look forward to summer.  It is the season of Lent, which always brings positive changes to our house.  Although I will admit it takes us a couple of weeks to get into the swing of it.  We are trying to have a wireless night, meaning, no computers, ipads, phones, ds' etc... so far its happening for a couple of hours here and there. So thats ok, its hard now a days to have an evening completely free like that, homework is done on the computer now, and not for just research, some is just emailed to the teacher directly.  But a little bit here and there is a good try.  
Healthy eating always comes into play during Lent.  We have meatless meals a couple times of the week.  To be honest we do that all year round anyway.  So to encourage healthy eating, and have a little something different, I bought one of these.

Smoothie on the move

 How often do you just forget those vouchers they give you at the checkout? I'm always forgetting to use them, so this time I made use of it on this. It comes with a cup that you fill with your smoothie ingredients, you screw on the lid, that has the blades, turn it upside down and put it in the base.  It makes enough for one. You can then take off the blade top, and it comes with another top, for you to then take it away with you, or pop in the fridge for later. My only niggle is that there is not an on/off button, so it comes on the minute you plug it in, so leave the switch off at the plug till you  ready to blend. 
I used frozen fruit ( cranberries, raspberries, strawberries) granola, plain low-fat yogurt and honey.  You only need a little bit of everything too.  

Another one we made had blueberries instead of cranberries.
A booklet comes with it with 3 recipies to try.  I am thinking of just looking at the innocent smoothies for ideas, I'm sure they don't mind sharing. Hope your all having a good week.

Friday, 27 February 2015

A pinched nerve in my hip thinks it is wanted this week.  Its not.  It makes sitting awkward, and standing can be fidgety.  So I have not had much time to sit here and visit blogs, or pay much mind to mine.  But hopefully it will ease off soon.... 

I have finished the crocheted item that I mentioned to you a few weeks ago.  My hubby asked me to make it for him. He is the Scout Master here, and they are having their Freezerie this weekend.  Camping in the cold, for those of you wondering what that is. 
 There will be animal skinning, arrow shooting, star gazing, No Bathing and dubious cooking. Sound fun? Their theme, is Middle Earth.   If we ever have a long trek across uncharted territory, I know I can count on my scouts to get us fed and sheltered.  Hmm...  Maybe.  
So in a dark and dimly lit pub, sitting in a corner sipping his stout... O.k. our dining room, sorta dimly lit, with an empty tankard...sat Mike. He was just about to leave, but only too happy to try on the beard again.  I think he is liking it. But I have said "no!" to any idea of his about walking around with that on all the time.  I think he would.

I just remembered. When I nearly finished the beard, he tried it on, and was excited, so he put on the rest of his costume and I had taken a picture! Wanna see it?  Sure you do! 

 It only took me about 5 hours to complete.  The crochet is mainly the base onto which you tie all of the wool to make the beard.  In the pattern, it says to attached it with buttons to the hat. Instead of buttons, I used a doubled up piece of wool, looped through the 2 button holes, and tied them together so, he can just slide it slightly over his head and under his hat. It does stay pretty good.  The biggest time taker with this, is measuring all of the lengths of wool, for the beard.  But he was VERY HAPPY with it.  The pattern is a free download from ravelry. There is a card I have seen in shops of a toddler in knitted clothes saying 'I wish my Mum would stop knitting' I've just noticed, how much he's wearing in this picture, gloves hat and now a beard. 

Earlier in the week I made Mikayla another hat.  She is off to London, with her Art class for a few days, and just needed a new hat for the occasion. Jo from Through the Keyhole passed on the pattern.  Thanks Jo!  Its such an easy knit, on straight needles, using the blackberry stitch.

I used king cole's superwash merino aran wool, the color is damson.  I had it in my stash, so its great that it has been used. It comes in 50g balls.  Gabi wants one of these hats too, in of course pink.  See anyone in the backround???  Lying in the dirt...
He's there, soaking up what ever will attach itself to him before he comes inside.  I am happy, in 2 weeks, hes going for a bath and a shave!! Right now he is like a walking rug.
Heres a close look at the culprit of muddy paw prints, slobber, hair, and barking. He's liking that rugged, rough look.

He is also getting some more white in his coat. Notice his little white mustache? Made us all laugh. 
Well in case your wondering its taken me 2 days to write this post, because of sitting issues, I am using a different chair, as the computer one seems to make the nerve hurt more.  It comes and goes. Very thankfully it has eased off a bit today! Yeah! Hope you have a great weekend!

Monday, 16 February 2015

Hope you all had a lovely Valentines weekend.  Its grey outside, and drizzly.  So yes more paw wiping going on here.  I have tried the Farley first idea, you would think that we would of tried that one already. But Maisie is always so eager to just get inside. Well, it worked the first time. Brought him in closed us together in the little room, that is filled with shoes, wood and a bag of coal.  Just right for drying off a 160lb dog. And try to wash his feet.  Well it was an interesting experience.  He realized what I was up to, as soon as I closed the door to outside, but it was too late he was trapped.  You would think he would just give in, but no. He is a pain to dry or any sort of grooming.  He sits with his back feet firmly tucked under a big hairy bottom. So you have to pry the paw out and quickly stick it in a bucket that is nearly on its side. So the tips of his toes get washed.  While you are trying to do this, he wants to kiss you.  
So between me yelling "sit" "stay!"  and "give me your foot" and "don't kiss me" anyone near the house or door would wonder what in the hell was going on in here.  Maisie, mean time just sat obediently outside the door, listening to her son being told off, glad she wasn't having to clean him, and waiting for her turn to come in.  She's such a sweetie.

After all of that we all needed something happy and calming. 
Marmalade.  Yes that on toast sounds nice.  
So last weekend, I made some.
I have made it before. And for any of you that have, you know it takes alot of time, and its alot of work.  And just like with any jam or marmalade you can't let the fruit just wait.
So I cheated.
But its a good cheat.
 Its from Lakeland and its Oh So Easy!!  And it does exactly what it says on the tin.  All you need is sugar, a bit of water and jars.  Oh, and make sure your cooker is on, mine was turned off at the wall, so when I turned on the ring and nothing was happening after a few minutes that was why. 

 All that is in the tin is pure seville oranges, nothing else. You can buy medium or thick cut, I chose medium cut. There's even lemon, that they say is nice too. I know some may like the prep of making marmalade, but it is time consuming, here you get the homemade results without ALL of the work. And its a wee bit cheaper as the 1 tin makes up to 6lbs of marmalade and only costs £2.49.

 Lovely, yummy golden sunshine in a jar. 

 And it's amazing on toast. :)