Wednesday, 27 February 2008
smallfry2 is down with chickenpox
smallfry1 will surely fall soon...
the sum total of the mite's dietary requirements of the past three days...
...toast in the shape of Nice Things
bonne maman strawberry jam
(I prefer the blackcurrant myself, but there is no accounting for taste, especially when pox ridden I suppose)
...and strawberry jelly
One of the reasons I quite like to make jelly is these beautiful vintage moulds - one of Ms Reva's best birthday gifts of last year, from Maaya, doyenne of the car boot sale....we have one really large rabbit mould too, makes enough jelly for at least 6 ravenous jelly-fiends
I took the opportunity while having an unexpected couple of days home from the office on pox-watch to photograph some china bowls I scored down in the oxfam shop recently, pretty huh?
and to play with the focus/depth of field (is that what you call it?) stuff on my camera...I'd quite like to paint this...
Sunday, 24 February 2008
an award, for me, from imagingermonkey...what a treat. To be thought creative and inspiring...what a truly nice thing. Works both ways as I love the things imagingermonkey makes (and she has promised to make one for smallfry2's third birthday in April - way hay!!!)
The Award originally came from
Arte Y Pico's Blog
The Award rules are:
* Post the award on your own blog.(Post who gave it to you)
*Indicate its original link and link to that site. (Arte Y Pico from Uruguay)
*Give the award to 5 other blogs that you enjoy, find creative and inspire you.
so, 5 that I find creative and inspiring...hmm, make that 5 thousand and I might be able to choose. I am amazed on a daily basis by the creativity out there in the blog'o'craft'o'sphere...I suppose if I have to limit it to 5 I will choose...
All the MN crafters (slight cheat but I'm pretty sure no one is looking...)
but really, it's for everyone, every blog I read and every crafter I communicate with - I find you all inspiring!
The DustMotes Mobile for Elsie Marley's mobile swap is finally finished and posted off to my swap partner in the US - check out the flickr group to see some wonderful creations
meanwhile, in another (yet another, yes I know, I am a lucky lucky gal) good mail day these three photos arrived from the aforementioned Kleas as part of the scentofwater photoswap I mentioned a couple of posts ago. Kristin put them on cards so I could send them to people but I can tell you now no-one is getting their mitts on these, I love 'em way too much. They'll be up on the wall of my new "artroom" (as Smallfry1 calls it - love that!) as soon as I get them framed...there is a flickr group for this swap too - great images there
I just love that image - the colours, the composition, the empty space on the wall...it's perfect
Thursday, 21 February 2008
a lovely gift from jackie in conneticut, a very talented quiltmaker (the quilt on the front of the card is one of hers - don't need to say more do I?)
and a little bit of recycling crafting to meet Meridian's challenge
I've always wanted a needle book, and making one out of some old felted sweaters felt much better than spending a tenner on a Cath Kidston dainty. This is an ongoing challenge that I'll be returning to again and again I suspect, why not join us?
I love the little bow at the back - I was aiming for a kind of vintage lingerie look and by jove I think I've got it!
Other than that, life had been busy. Smallfry 1 is on half term so has been putting me through my paces. We visited Vauxhall City Farm today and stroked some rabbits, oinked at some pigs, listened to hiphop with a couple of ferrets and chased a cow and a bull around a field. Things I don't normally do every day, believe it or not.
I've also started up a little art club for local kids - it's something I've been mulling over for a long time now, children in the UK don't get much opportunity to be artistically creative at school so I'm hoping to plug that gap in my own slight way. Had my first half day session with 4 kids last week and we had a lot of fun. Next one is tomorrow...wish me luck...
Friday, 15 February 2008
isn't it lovely? And so beautifully made that the little heart I sent Jo suddenly looked very paltry in comparision. It is just so perfectly finished, I couldn't hope for that level of skill in a million years (well, maybe if I try REALLY hard I'll get somewhere close before I die). It is also the perfect size to function as a knitting project bag so I am doubly chuffed. THANKS JO! This was a lovely swap as I got to "meet" someone from the other side of the world, Tasmania, to be precise. Jo is really lovely and we plan to stay in touch, and maybe some day egg each other on to attempt a Dear Jane quilt - Jo obviously has the sewing skills and I have the enthusiasm at least. Now that's a little project that should see me safely through to my dotage...
I got pretty stash enhancers too as you can see. Something you can't see in the photo because they are now living in secret homes somewhere in my house (being fed by my children) are the tiny echildna and tasmanian devil* that Jo somehow managed to smuggle past customs and over here to delight the smallfry. They love them and promise to look after them well...
Meanwhile, these arrived in the mail a little after my birthday but delighted me completely nonetheless (secretly ordered by Mr G - no idea where he got the notion, ahem ahem) ...my long desired Harmony Options interchangeable needle set...these are just gorgeous to knit with (although they come in a very unpleasant plastic pouch - I feel a sewing project coming on...) I paraded them about the town today as I was off work, showing off in the local yarn store until Smallfry 2 (who'd arisen for some reason at 4am today - I knew the potion I mentioned in the last post would come in handy sooner than expected) almost keeled over...I've already cast on another Le Slouch (like I didn't have enough fun with the last one, y'know)
and here is smallfry 2 enjoying the lollypop that getknitted sent in the pack - sugar wouldn't melt in that child's mouth you know...
* before the RSPCA or Customs (or both) get onto me - only joking , they are toy versions of course
Thursday, 14 February 2008
It was my birthday last weekend, I went out with a group of friends for dinner in Soho and had the loveliest evening. I managed to wear the dress, shoes and delightful gewgaws of a couple of posts ago and felt all grown up and glamourous, but that wasn't what made the evening so special. Some old friends flew over from Ireland to celebrate with me, we've all been through our ups and downs together over the years and it meant so much to me to see them gathered there together. Newer friends I have made over the past 12 years in London were there too and as I looked around the room I reflected on how lucky I am. I basked in the smiles, banter and laughter of 20 people who mean so much to me in such different ways and I felt inordinately happy and incredibly lucky. If I could bottle the feeling I had that night (and over the entire weekend in fact) I would keep it on my dressing table and dab it on whenever life feels too grim, whenever I have to get up at 5.30am in winter too many days in a row, whenever the house is a mess and the laundry is not done and the children are cranky, just whenever...and I would soak in that feeling of love and happiness and I would relax and remember what is truly important.
Enough of all that (I seem to be developing a very sentimental streak as I enter my 4th decade) here are some hearts, Happy Valentine's Day!
(I'll be back soon to show off some of the crafting goodies I was lucky enough to receive for my birthday, and my gorgeous valentine swap from Jo in Tas)
Thursday, 7 February 2008
I made this for a little challenge going on at the parenting site that has kept me halfway sane over the past 5 years (should I just abbreviate that to PSTHKMHSOTPFY from now on I wonder?) on the topic blue
it allowed me to indulge my twin passions: my new pinking shears and the sewing of fabric to non-fabric (luckily I seem to have kicked the recent sewing to milk cartons compulsion and have weaned myself onto card stock - much softer stuff). The fabric is from some Primark cotton pyjamas I bought in the biggest size they had in order to get max fabric out of them. They have some cute fabrics in their pyjamas sometimes...Primark, top tip...
handy to have around and say everything I want them to...
Tuesday, 5 February 2008
UFO (crafting parlance) :: an unfinished object
I've been busy UFO'ing for the Elsie Marley Mobile Swap. My pieces are nearly ready to fly, now I just have to work out how to let them...then I can pop it in the FO category (in both senses of the word) and be done
I wanted to make something really light and kind of drifty as it is destined to live outdoors (in a warm and rainlight place thankfully - wish I could go too!) and I like the idea that it will waft and wave as the breeze dictates
I think I have managed that light'n'driftiness through my rather, ahem, random choice of materials... featuring old sweaters and goats milk cartons...what can I say? it came to me in a dream ...well if I am honest I was stressing so much about it that I couldn't get to sleep when my poor deprived old brain fastened on old milk cartons as the obvious solution to everything that worried me and once I had chanced upon this perfect solution I drifted off like the proverbial baby - the really peculiar thing is that I then fastened on this and went ahead with it in the cold light of day. Hmm, weird...
The overiding question now assailing my brain is how to get that weight (or rather, lack of) balanced...?
I'll welcome any hints or tips on how to move this little lovely from UFO to FO so if you've sucessfully finished a mobile let me know what you did with that scary top bit, please....
Other news, following on from Jodie at RicRacs brave announcement (great news!) I will also "say it out loud" - I have set up an etsy shop and am working on some little bits and pieces to put in there. Watch this space...
Friday, 1 February 2008
finally, I've decided on the photo for the scentofwater photoswap. I've kept these flowers since the birth of smallfry#2, they came in a bouquet I received back then. I dried them and they live on a dresser in my bedroom in front of an old mirror we rescued from a skip. I see them every day but rarely see them. I hope my swap partner likes this picture as much as I do...