Saturday, 23 February 2013

TADAAAA!

Over the past few weeks have been talking about a pinwheel sweater I have been making for myself.

Attempt 1 

I ran out of this colour and £stretcher has not restocked it yet. However I have decided I don't like it so it will be frogged and rewound to make a smaller pinwheel sweater for Phoebe.


This is lovely so I begin again.


So far so good and the pink I found in my Christmas stash really makes it pop!


Round and round I go. You can see the balls of wool were actually green and blue.


Its finished! Here is a close up of the arm. After the pink I increased every round so it flares.


The front! So pretty!


And the Back in all its glory! 


Spread out!
I must add a word of warning to this pattern, the weight of the wool I used (super chunky) pulled the armholes apart far too much so it just kept slipping off. The way its made it will slip off anyway but it does help if it fits across the shoulders. So what looks like cables in this picture are my attempt to pull the shoulders in. I used a needle and started at the edge of a 'slice' counted 2 stitches in and looped the thread around then counted 4 and looped around the 4th stitch, kept going and when I gently pulled the thread through came out with this cabled effect and pulled the shoulders in.


I quite like how it looks. 

So there you are, 1 pinwheel sweater all finished. The pattern I used is from The Laughing Willow but there are some others on Ravelry. Its a very simple pattern and once you get in rhythm it works up very quickly. 

Now I am off to find my new project, my red Ikea arm chair in the corner is screaming for a make over.














Sunday, 10 February 2013

Baking and Daffodils

Today has been an awful grey and rainy day, I asked Phoebe this morning what we could do and she wanted to bake. We have made cakes and gingerbread men before so I thought we could make flapjacks! 
Flapjacks were the first things I was allowed to make by myself when I was about 7! Yes 7! and I must say I was always very good at them. I have tried many different recipes and I can't find one I like more than the one in mums very old copy of Be-Ro Recipe Book. Isn't it completely retro! From 1961!
 
Now I must be honest and admit that this image came from a google image search as my mum wont give me the book! I have a different copy from 1991 but the flapjack recipe isn't in there! There is a nice history to these books and you can find out more HERE 

But I think I have digressed into a strange, childlike, retro world when mum would don her blue pinny and we would bake together for hours and hours with the oven going full pelt and making the kitchen very hot, and dad would always be a good sport and eat anything I made 'specially' for him now matter how dubious it looked, he would grin and rub his belly and say it was the best thing he had ever tasted and take a drink when I left the room (he only admitted that when I was 15 and tried to act all childish when he would not eat a very raw roast dinner I attempted 'specially' for him)

So back to reality and I want to share this yummy recipe with you. They are called Nutty Flapjacks BUT contain NO NUTS. I have never worked that one out but lets just go with it. As the book is so old the weights are in ounces (oz) but I have a very new set of scales and ounces are on there so I think most should be ok.

So here goes:

4.oz Margarine/Butter
1tbs Golden Syrup
4.oz Sugar
2.oz Oats
2.oz Self Raising Flour
3.oz Crushed Corn Flakes

1. Melt the margarine/butter and syrup together gently
2. Mix dry ingredients, pour on hot mixture and mix well
3. Spread evenly in a well greased tin and press down firmly
4. Bake in oven at 190c Gas Mark for 20 mins
5. Cut into fingers while still warm

I do have my own adjustments to this recipe, I like my flapjack very sticky so instead of the 1tbs of syrup I have a very naughty habit of just pouring the syrup straight from the jar into the pan until I think 'yeah that will do'. The result is very different to shop bought ones, its not crumbly in any way and very very sweet (really not good when we have the dentist on Thursday!). When you put the mixture in the oven I would advise having a large tray beneath the shelf to catch any overflow, as we used self raising flour it does rise! Its easier to clear up a tray than clean the oven! 

I feel the need to say 'other supermarket brands are available' 
Lovely sticky mix and time for a cheeky taste!
As you can see the tray beneath the shelf is very much needed.
3 trays later. There has been lots of nibbling from the man who would 'pop down' for one reason or another to grab a hot slice and Phoebe got bored after the first tray so has gone to watch her new fireman sam dvd.

As I am about to tidy up I realise I have pastry that needs using up and Phoebe has gone off apples so there are 6 in the fruit bowl looking a bit peeky. I quickly roll out the pastry grate the apples find my brown sugar and 'pie it up' in the lid of a casserole dish just like mum used to do. 
So 2 hours of baking and clearing (flour on a black worktop is hard work to clear off) I feel a little tired but I look to my window sill with my grandmothers blackbird pie funnel and empty vase I remember I had some daffodils left over from some experiments I did with the beaver scouts. The problem is they have been in my case in the boot of the car since Wednesday and now it's Sunday.... I got them out and they were surprisingly OK and after putting them in lemonade they perked up.
There Lovely! Since moving to Wales I have become very fond of daffodils on my window sill.

I have thought of mum a lot today and been very nostalgic about my childhood and the different things we would do together. I have been on the phone chatting to her for ages this evening. 

I will be back soon with information on a project I am working on for me! 
Have a lovely half term!