Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Yarny Days.

 Time is moving swiftly at the moment. Summer is quickly changing to Autumn and my big little Archie grew 1cm in 1 week. How does this happen? The roses are onto their last flush and the apples are plumping up in the orchard. 
This is actually my favourite time of the year, both boys were born in Autumn and the sudden cold mornings and clear skies fill me with such a nostalgia... of course it also means that two birthdays are looming and no presents have been purchased!
My days have been filled with endless crocheting and stitching (more on that another day) so I have been getting up early each morning for a walk. Some mornings the boys come with me - these mornings are the ones where I have to remind myself to walk slowly and enjoy the conversation. Other mornings it's just Bertie (our Border Collie) and myself enjoying/avoiding the fresh dairy farm smells that crop up here and there, barking at pheasants (just Bertie I swear) and trying to get a little bit of a pace up.
My ergonomically adjusted chair.
I've also been having a bit of a book festival. Lovely, easy reads have been making their way to my bedside table. I adored 'Garden Spells' by Sarah Addison Allen which was her first book written in 2007. 'First Frost' is a sequel and has only just been released - I loved it, truly a case of catching up with old friends. 
Susan Wiggs has also kept me very happy with her Bella Vista Chronicles. The first in the series is called 'The Apple Orchard' and the second, 'The Beekeeper's Ball'. Add a little bit of Tess Gerristsen to the mix and you have a nice balance!
And finally, some roses.
Lots and lots of love,
Kate. xxooxx.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Hooked! - a Blog Hop Book Review.

Hurrah for today because I get to review 'Hooked! 40 whimsical crochet motifs from weird to wonderful' by Michelle Cecile and Sylvie Delprat. I am over the moon at being given this opportunity because I have been wanting to appliqué with crochet forever. 
 As you may know, I have a rating system where I count how many patterns I would make from the book. The number required for me to buy the book is variable. If the patterns are amazing then 3 projects would make it worthwhile. I also look at whether it would compliment my collection - this one would as I don't have anything on crochet motifs -the books available on this subject haven't been to my taste...... this one however breaks the drought. The styling alone with baby's breath, washi tape  and roses dotted with crochet, makes it a visual feast. And the projects are truly adorable as you can see from the photos.
I'm mad on the little hedghog. I can't wait to make bunting for Hugo with little hedgehogs along it. 
 And the rabbit patch is perfect for Easter.
 Wahoo - a project that Archie will want to make!

 I couldn't resist crocheting a cupcake. The pattern was simply written and very easy to do - always a good thing.
So here is what I made - perfect for the kitchen!
And now for the score, 30/44 which is fantastic. I am sure that when Archie comes home from school camp the score will go up when he chooses his favourites! 
And here are two more wonderful things.
 1. 'Hooked!' is on a book hop which means you can see other reviews and projects made from the book here.
2. There is a competition going on over at Stitch Craft Create where you can win a copy of the book and a lovely bundle of yarn!
Lots and lots of love,
Kate. xxooxx.

Monday, February 9, 2015

New Adventures.

 I think that I was a bit premature in my last post, announcing that I was back from holidays.... Back in the country yes, but about to head off to the beach for a couple of weeks. I really thought I would be able to fit in some blogging but I do find the whole process to be very difficult on my phone.
During that time I started on a couple of new projects which I will show you more of over the next couple of weeks. Let's just say that my vintage Playmobil collection is finally coming into its own.

The boys are back at school. Would you believe that school camps have also begun. Archie is away for the first couple of nights this week followed by Hugo at the end. It is quite nice to temporarily downsize the family after longish holidays isn't it. Cooking is that weeny bit easier and halving school lunch requirements - bliss.
Goodness me it is so good to be back.
See you tomorrow.
Love Kate. xxooxx.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

A Box of Birds and Home Again!

Oh my goodness it's heaven to be home again. We had a wonderful Christmas and a lovely three weeks spent in Australia with family, but the old saying holds true.... Yes Dorothy, there really is no place like home. I am however, currently coming up with plans to squish Australia and New Zealand together. I just can't quite get the tectonic plates to shift enough without major volcanic activity.
By the way, look what I bought - a box of birds! And they were only $5.50 - bargain!!!!!!!
They've escaped from their box and I keep finding them in the funniest of places. Last night we had friends over for dinner and they (the birds) scattered themselves across our picnic table, only darting for crumbs when we weren't looking.
We're well into summer with hot nights and imploring rain dances. It is such a beautiful summer but we are really needing to hide in the sweltering afternoons. Luckily I have some good books up my sleeve which I will write about soon.
 Nothing like sitting outside in the evening with a cooling breeze and homemade candles.
 And of course, playing our favourite game Quiddler. The whole family is obsessed with it - boys included and we are very fortunate that our neighbours don't mind playing the odd game or five with us too.
Lots and lots and lots of love,
Kate. xxooxx.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Stanley's Going on Holiday - and taking me with him!

Just a little note to say that we are setting off to Australia for three weeks. I will try to do the odd post but will be using my phone so please blur your eyes to pretend the image quality is still there. I will be over here on Instagram and tend to check in most days.
In the meantime, the house is a bit fraught with packing, cleaning, degangreening and getting ready for our house sitters who will be looking after all our pets. It is so lovely to know that they will be holding the fort but such a huge thing making the house 'safe' for them......
AND filling my Kindle up with enough books to keep me happy for the next few weeks. That part is fun and I'll keep you up to date as I go. One of my favourite reads for the past few weeks though is 'Stiltsville' by Susanna Daniel  which is such a lovely read. She also wrote 'Sea Creatures' which I adored. Go and check them out.
I had better get back to the grindstone and make sure that we still have passports. They are quite important I hear.
Lots and lots of love,
Kate. xxooxxxooxxoooo.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Dipped Crochet Christmas Baubles!

 I've been meaning to play around with dipping crochet baubles in paint for a while but this year seems to be rapidly crawling away from me. Luckily this morning I've been working on some crafts to do with Hugo's class tomorrow and had some paint out to play with. I love how they have turned out - the pink one was actually made with spray paint and had some glad wrap masking taped around the top. I just wish that they were dry enough when I took the photo to squeeze them back into shape...

 I will definitely be doing some more of this!
Lots and lots of love,

Monday, December 8, 2014

Rose Petal Jam

As you have probably gathered by now, I am passionate about my roses. I not only love them for their beauty, scent, etc.... but also for the way they connect me with my mum and grandmother. This is Albertine which is one of our shared favourites and is suddenly flourishing this year over the archway leading into our garden.
 Another rose I love in the garden is an unnamed variety (to me anyway) which has large, deeply fragrant, pink flowers. On Saturday it was bowing under the weight of so many roses, many about to drop their perfect petals and so, I set about making rose petal jam from this recipe.
It was magical to have the air fill with rose petal steam.
 And pretty. Pretty beyond belief.
 The best thing is that now I have lots of little jars to give as Christmas presents. Hopefully I might even keep one or two for winter when I start going into rose withdrawal. 
This is the beautiful bright pink rose that gave up its petals for jam (with some Pierre de Ronsard blooms keeping company)....
Lots and lots of love,
Kate. xxooxx.


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