'If we did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.' Thomas Edison

29 December 2010

Mumford and Sons - Timshel

Just want to share a song from my favourite album of the year. It is played loads in this house, go listen if you get the chance - pure bliss.

And breathe....

Thank you all so much for the comments on my previous post. The 27th was definitely the low point of christmas, but after playing with the kids and sitting on my butt an awful lot the past few days, I feel refreshed, renewed and ready for action! And Big mamma frog - I am definitely the weirdo/nutter in the family whether I handmake things or not ;o), I think the problem for me is that people just don't take a few minutes to think about who they are buying for, or what they are buying, so it just saddens me to think of the waste when just a small thought beforehand would have made such a difference. Don't know whether that makes any sense to anyone else but I hope you understand what I mean :o). Anyway, back to the last few days. Above is a couple more headbands with flowers. Really enjoying crochet at the minute as it's quick and can be put down to do something else without losing where you are.

This is a choker that I started late last night then decided after midnight that I really must go to bed. Will finish it later.

I'd done a few stars before christmas so I sat and made this the other evening too. The string inbetween the stars is too long to I think I'll have to change it.

I quite fancy a go at making a rag rug, or at least using the rag rug technique on something else - got loads of ideas whirling round my head at the minute!! I think I'm also going to make some of the felt moustaches for the shop too - they went down very well in this house, so maybe good for party bags.

My sister buys those stinky candles :0( which left loads of wax in the bottom of the jar, so I've re-melted it all and added some beeswax for her. It's in my new laundry room cooling as I can't stand the smell, just so artificial.

And to try and counter-act the other smell, I've made some beeswax hearts. These smell soooo good. I'm going to try and melt a hole in so I can hang them up with some ribbon.
Thank you again for your lovely thoughts, comments and care. I've just added a beautiful video from my favourite album of the year, so take a look if you can.

27 December 2010


That's what I am, just blooming exhausted. Christmas feels like a million years ago already - it didn't even feel particularly special! We usually get all excited about the possibility of having a white christmas but as we've had snow for the last month that excitement wasn't there. Hubby's shifts meant that he was on a weekend of nights for christmas eve, christmas day and boxing day. They do a draw to see who can have a shift off (they go down to minimum manning) and he managed to get christmas eve and boxing day off but he's then on call to see if he does actually get those shifts off! Waiting 'til 10.30 at night to see if you have to go to work does take the excitement out of it a bit. And my handmade yule list. I'm really pleased with the amount I managed to get done. There were some things I didn't get done, but when I think about the amount of time I didn't spend with the kids, I feel rather sad, and a little bit guilty. I know the older ones arn't that bothered but JJ should have had a little more attention from me. And I apologise if this bit sounds rather ungrateful, but why do people buy crap for gifts. I'd much rather I didn't get anything at all - that the money went to a charity - than some of the gifts I received. That really does sound horrible of me I know, but it's just such a waste of their money, and it's more stuff that will just end up in the charity shop. I'm going to go now before I whinge anymore.

26 December 2010

Handmade Yule List

Some of the pamper hampers with the label I put inside, then bagged ready to go.

The remaining cards I made.

Eight more fabric bags made.

Christmas cake iced and a sprig of holly stuck in the top.

I'd completely forgotton about the crackers until Christmas Eve eve, so I sat up rather late making these to go inside.

And then made these Christmas Eve morning ready to use later (we had our christmas dinner on Christmas Eve).

One lego play mat finished.

Two of these book tidy's for the side of the older boys beds. And I forgot to photograph the last bookmark.

Then yesterday, just because I was still in making mode I think, I made the crocheted headband my sister has ordered. I can take it to her today as we're all going for boxing day tea.
I hope everyone had a lovely day yesterday.

22 December 2010

Pushing my luck, me thinks!

This is the mess that greeted me this morning. Not a very happy mess as you can see. I had a lovely day considering it was the anniversary of my Mum's passing. I was up in time to see a tiny sliver of the lunar eclipse before the haze finally hid it from us. I lit a candle for Mum, placing it on the hob where I could see it (she liked cooking too) then spent most of the morning in the kitchen making more sugar scrubs (decided to do sugar again instead of the salt), making the rosehip vodka, covering the christmas cake with marzipan, and making chocolate covered marzipan sweets. Then hubby took the kids into town after lunch so they could finish their own little bit of shopping, so while they were out I managed to get the lego mat nearly finished (just need the handles adding) and two of the side-of-the-bed-storage-thingys nearly finished. Then after tea I thought I'd do the rocky road. The recipe calls for dark chocolate but I know everyone doesn't like dark chocolate so I used milk chocolate instead. Well, next time I will follow the recipe as I ruined two batches (£16 I certainly can't afford to replace) of chocolate and butter and all the other stuff that goes in as the milk chocolate separated!! Apparently, the dark chocolate should be used as it has a lower fat content - new lessen learned (the hard way) for me eh! I left in sat there otherwise it may have decorated the kitchen for me ;o) and went and wrapped some pressies instead. All-in-all it was a lovely solstice and Mums candle went out of it's own accord while I was disaster-ing in the kitchen.

20 December 2010

Eek...a teenager!

Yes..we have a teenager in the house! Here he is opening some pressies with us this morning already a teenager as he was born at 7.20am. He's currently at the pictures with his friend watching harry potter while I make this cake ready for him coming home. Hubby and I did actually manage to get some housework done before any guests started arriving yesterday. We've had a busy morning with them too, but now it's all quiet. Aaron doesn't really like much fuss so it's been perfect.

I went out to put some scraps in the compost pot outside the back door and look what greeted me. My camera doesn't capture the beauty of it at all but it looked so huge in the growing dusk, and with the hoar frost still on the trees from the day (-9 here). Solstice tomorrow, and 5 years since my wonderful Mum died. 5 years to come to terms with her death. 5 years to appreciate that she lived rather than that she died and left me. 5 years to realise that she is not in the things that were hers but that she lives in me. 5 years is a long time.

Solstice blessings to everyone for tomorrow - and if you're lucky enough to see the lunar eclipse then enjoy :o).

19 December 2010

No housework to be done until next week?

See, those snowflakes up there? I made those....with a pattern....ALL by myself.....I read a crochet pattern!!!!!!!!!!! :o). They're from Attic24, such a wonderful blog, very easy to follow instructions, with pictures too. I'd seen some stars somewhere else so I thought I'd have a go at those too - no pattern, just looking at the pictures. Once all the yule crafting is finished there may be a minor snowflake flurry in the house.

These, along with a crochet snowflake (think I may have mentioned those all ready ;o) ) are my season swap. Don't know if the person I've sent them to reads this blog but I couldn't wait to show you.

On with the yule crafting then. Here we have the finished bath bags. So easy to make as they take minutes to put together. I made lavender ones and chamomile ones, so I just put a handful of oats and a handful of dried flowers into the middle of a square of muslin, then pick it up by the corners so you can make the bunch then fasten with ribbon. Easy peasy. The sugar scrub was even easier. 2 cups of soft brown sugar, 1/2 cup sunflower oil, 1/4 cup of jojoba oil and 1/4 cup of sweet almond oil, then 40 drops of essential oil of your choice. For this one (as my sister loves sweet smelling things) I've used cinnamon. Mix together in a bowl then put into your chosen container. When my shopping arrives I'm going to tie a couple of cinnamon sticks onto the jar as well. This smelt soooo good I nearly licked my fingers once I'd scrapped the last bits off the spoon!!!

On and off throughout the day I managed to make 12 more gift bags. These ones were super easy as I just cut a rectangle out of fabric, folded it over to make the bag the stitched all the way round. These will be fastened with ribbon tied on them or around them depending on what's in them. The two bundles at the front are the cocoa butter hearts wrapped in muslin.
I must tackle some of the washing today as I can't find the corner of my bathroom and the kids keep asking me for clean pants. I probably should clean the bathroom too, and maybe hoover the house at some point, as we also have a birthday in the house on Monday, which means guests will be in and out all day. Erm.....

17 December 2010

Two more done

Our chrismas puds plus a dinky one for my Nan instead of a cake.

The general cards all done - just Hubby and the kids to do now but they shall be made with felty things I think. Not much left, right?!

15 December 2010

I should be in bed but I'm soooo excited

I managed to get some needles for the machine last week but today has been the first time I've managed to use them as I had a couple of felt food bags to make. Anyway, after making a few gifts bags (see below ;o) ), and once the kids were in bed and hubby had gone to work I got his man bag out again. The first seem just didn't want to go, and I managed to break another needle!!! I persevered, slowly, and look!!.........it's finished!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is a pocket on the inside for his phone which I hadn't had chance to measure so I just guessed - well the phone fits perfectly!!!! You'll have to excuse all the exclamation marks but I'm just so happy and relieved that I've got a few more things off the list.
(Note the quality control inspector)

(gift bags which need the ribbon threading in)

This is the pyjama case which I've made for JJ. I have a feeling it's going to be too small, but I'm sure he'll find another use for it if it is :o).

14 December 2010

I'm not panicking....really I'm not!

JJ and I mixing the christmas pud - we now leave it overnight then pack it into basins and steam it tomorrow.

One very rushed, hap-hazard greenery basket.

Another pile of felt food cut ready for sewing later today. Eek, eek and eek again :o).
Hope everyone else is busy/excited/not too stressed today.

13 December 2010

Distracted ;o)

We went to get our small!!! tree yesterday so we all got slightly distracted with the decorating. And as I seem to have my sorting out stuff head on, I bagged up a few of our old christmas decorations ready to take to the charity shop tomorrow.

Not as many piccies to show you because of previously mentioned distraction but heres another new card for the shop and then 2 more tubs made out of the felted blanket that I got on the bootsale. Not sure what the deeper one is for but the other is for our remotes.

The snow has brought an amazing amount of birds to the garden, from the starlings to the wren, but last week we had 12 (yes 12!!) yellow hammers eating the chickens grain in the back garden and then yesterday we had 8 wax wings in our front garden eating some berries. Unfortunately there are no piccies as the yellow hammers were too far away for my old camera to get a descent picture and then I was too busy excitedly squealing and looking through our bird book to get one of the wax wings before they flew off. If I'd have thought about it at the time I should have taken a picture first, and then had a look through the book...nevermind :o).

Look what must have got disturbed while pinching nuts from our nut basket - the faeries left they wares by the door. We now have to make a door mat and a shopping bag for them as they can only carry 2 nuts in their basket ;o).
Just a couple of small things to add to my scarily unfinished list then :o).

12 December 2010

Just a quickie...

....as I'll be back later hopefully. First is a prototype birthday card for my shop - this one is for my nephew. I think I like it - maybe needs some flames. Second picture is our newly decorated pegs on our art/christmas card string in the living room. Glitter glue is great stuff - so easy for a 4 year old (and 36 year old!!!).
I also wanted to thank you for you comments on my last post. I know that we all read things differently but to me it just didn't feel appropriate to single out one particular blog. Anyway, enough said :o). Back later with some more makes.

09 December 2010

My responsibility

(Thought it was about time I showed myself)


When I have my breakfast in a morning I sit at the computer for half and hour, catching up with the green parent forum, checking emails and reading blogs. These blogs are so inspiring for me, the crafty things these ladies make, the things they do with their day, the places they live, the observations they make on life - their life. This morning I was sadden by one, and then a few more who seemed to follow suit, who was obviously having a bad day/week/month/year but seemed to pinpoint one particular blog for making her feel she was not good enough. It's been on my mind all day, firstly because I've never seen this on a blog before and I was quite shocked, and secondly because surely the only person we can be is ourselves. We answer to ourselves and no-one else. If we give ourselves goals to reach, lists to achieve, standards to adhere to, then we are our own judge as to whether we have reached them or not and should not compare ourselves to anyone else. I apologise if I have overstepped the mark but I just needed to get this off my chest as it was bothering me. I know that I have my handmade yule list, but if I don't manage to make everything on it it won't be the end of the world, but it won't be anyone else's fault either.

05 December 2010

How to clear the roads of snow....

The 18 inches of snow had compacted itself down so there's only one way to shift it! Good job we have a good farming community round us.

Geranium rose and plain lavender ready and in the shop :o).

JJ and I sat and made some of the bath bags the other night. And I've finished one of the puppets which will go in the kids stockings. Got half of the next one done as well. I'm still without a needle but I'm trying to concentrate on other things until I can get into town.

Hope everyone else is having a good weekend :o).

02 December 2010


Well, I wanted to show you the man bag I'm making for hubby for yule but since the needle broke on the sewing machine and I haven't got any spare ones, I'll just have to show you my cake I managed to get made yesterday. Apologies for the blurry picture but I was just wrapping it when I realised I needed a piccie.
Grrr again to the bag/needle thing :o(. I was just putting it all together when the needle went. I can't even get to the main town where I can get a new one. The snow is gorgeous but we can't get out of the village in the van because the roads are impassable, which means we have no mail coming in either, no veg box, the shops in the next town are all out of milk, no public transport (buses or trains). This has turned into a huge moan which I didn't intend, and the thing that is pissing me off the most is the bloody needle!!!!