Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Snow Has Finally Gone!!!

After over a week being cooped up indoors I'm finally free! Phoebe is back in school and Beavers is running again! As beautiful as the snow is in South Wales it comes down heavy so we cant move about.
This is the scene last Wednesday after the last lot of snowfall. You wouldn't think we had cleared the drive and a farmer had ploughed the street the day before, I had managed to get out and top up the fridge and a good thing I had.
We didn't clear the snow off the table on out balcony from the first snowfall to show friends and family in Essex just how much we had, at this point it measures 11inches deep!
We took Phoebe out in the snow and she has decided she does not like it, it took longer to get her ready to go out than we were actually out there! We did build a crude snowman but before we could take a picture some of the teenagers took the head! Never mind.

So to the man of the house spent hours amusing Phoebe with her Fireman Sam set and I  joined 2 new 'swaps' on Facebook page Hook Up With the Crafty Bums. The first one is a pot holder swap, we used the pattern from crochet healing and raymond so everyone at whatever level of crochet can do it. I made mine very quickly using my purple scraps left over from my best mates blanket. Turned out quite nicely
A friend saw this picture on my Facebook wall and asked me to make her a set using green, purple and black. Off I went and it took just over a day to make a set of 5, they have been given to her and she loves them.

The other swap is for this awesome logo
I have started a large purple blanket, just a basic granny square.

I also finished the scrappy ripple I started for my best mates youngest daughter, it has proved a hit.
My cat did enjoy it first.

So that was my snowed in week! Lots of hooky fun, snuggling under blankets, hot water bottles, hot chocolate and a slow cooker being used to extremes! (our oven has broken and the Landlord can't get a new one until Thursday).
Now I had better put down the hooks and do my welsh language homework and do program planning for the beaver scouts. 

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Snow Day!

We awoke yesterday full of excitement but had no idea just how much snow would fall! This is our balcony and just under 1ft of snow! Phoebe was so excited to go out and play.

We all dressed warmly and ventured into -2C. Phoebe loved making footprints in the virgin snow and throwing snowballs, we walked to the shop to get some chocolate. The teenagers were sledging down the slopes next to our house and offered to take Phoebe down, she didn't want to but clapped as they flew past.

After the walk and play that lasted over an hour we were told by Phoebe to go home as she was cold.

Her idea of warming up was not to share hot chocolate with us, but to find my comfy lounging trousers and wear them. She was waddling all over the place! While we watched Big Bang Theory and Phoebe played with Pontypandy......

I added some rows to a ripple blanket using all my scraps for my best mates youngest daughter.

My cat clearly thinks its for him.

I hope everyone is keeping safe and warm in the lovely snowy weather. 

Friday, 11 January 2013

A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! (bit late I know)

So what has been happening since my last post

wow quite a bit! where to start?

How about the bird.

I am a member of a Facebook group called 'Hook Up with the Crafty Bums', one of the lovely ladies organised a Secret Santa where we had make each other something NOT buy. We had a thread for explaining what we liked in terms of colour and style.

At the time I was eagerly awaiting the pattern for the 'Bower Bird' on attic24, however time was running short before I had to post so I made up my own pattern as I went along (I did not write it down and have no idea how I did it), one cold Sunday afternoon while I was unwell and Phoebe was happily playing and watching Fireman Sam (Look out Fireman Sam will appear again later) I made this cute little bird using lovely purples as per my Secret Santa's request.

On Secret Santa opening day the pictures went up with thank yous and oh lovely. My lady loved her birdie and she had it on her Christmas Tree.
I opened mine and someone had made me this......

I couldn't believe how lovely this garland was and it went straight up across my balcony doors. I have since spoken to the lady who made this and she is now making another one in pinks for a little girls bedroom! 
I was so eager to take down the Christmas Decorations on new years day and tidy up but we decided that this cheerful garland should stay up all the time.


On aforesaid Facebook group there was a trend for a while for Harlequin Hoodies and on my last post I showed you the one I made for Phoebe, it has been very well used on the school run now its suddenly getting very cold. The front of the school faces the top end of the valley so the wind rushes down from the hills and mountains to the school with no shelter, so Phoebe was running about waiting to go in all warm in her proper winter coat and woolly hoodie while I stood there shivering. I bought some Wizz Aran from £-Stretcher and made one for myself.
Its so warm and floppy and I did go off on a tangent as I am prone to do and made the hood much wider and the scarf much longer than the pattern stated. The man of the house also bought me a new purple winter coat for Christmas and I got some bright spotty wellies in the sales. The school run is now dry and warm whatever the weather, happy mummy!

I have mentioned before that my best friend wanted a blanket, I have been working on it as much as I can and I had to hide it and the balls of yarn every time she came over so it was a nice surprise for her.
Now I had started it and I didn't the way I was doing the colours so I ended up abandoning it and starting again.
I was on the bus in the pouring rain and wind when the bus went past my friend on her way to pick up her children from school, she looked so cold and miserable. That evening when I went to pick up her children for scouts I gave her this first attempt to use as a scarf. She uses it all the time, at least that bit didn't go to waste.
So I had started the blanket again 30th November and I managed to get a very good flow going and finished it 2nd January! It was washed, blocked and I went over it with tweezers to remove as much cat hair as I could (friend is allergic to cats). Given to her on 4th January. She loved it and was impressed I got it done so fast even with restarting it.
So here its is......................................
Before blocking
just a bit wonky, my tension when a bit tight in a few places.
and here its being blocked on my double bed..........
and close up of the edging

before I did the edging I did some maths, I chained 200, 138 rows equals 27600 stitches in the main body of this blanket. No wonder I had a sore shoulder and wrist but the result was so worth it.
There is a pattern for this is online Here scroll down and it's in English.

My friend didn't only get a blanket. I dyed some fabric a few months ago and mentioned it before, it's been sitting in a box since I dyed it so I went to see another friend for a wonderful Friday evening of sewing cushion covers out of this fabric. I was taught how to make button holes on a sewing machine! I did make 1 huge mistake though, after getting a bit cocky I messed up the button hole and had to unpick it, I lost concentration for a moment and the picker went straight through the fabric!
I was just a bit mortified. So we finished up the 2 cushions and I would have a long think about how to disguise this rip. Here they are while I am thinking.
Then I have a thought, my friend has a blanket with colours that match the colours of these cushions and she is getting a new sofa soon. I can make the blanket and cushions really match each other if I make crochet strips in the same pattern to put across the buttons, this will hide the repair job (rather dodgy work)!
I think it worked well.........

The rest of my time was taken up with school nativities, fairs, family visits, salt dough decorations and Christmas. Lots of fun was had by all... Phoebe got nearly all the Fireman Sam Playsets and a Fireman Sam Onsie (told you he would pop up again), in between visitors being unwell we had a day out to Techniquest in Cardiff Bay, it was so much fun and Phoebe didn't know what to do with herself!

So after a very busy December I was hoping to have a slightly more relaxed pace January but I have enrolled on a Welsh Speaking course and hoping to find some other courses to do to help get back into work.

So I wish you all a prosperous New Year xxxxxxxxx