Friday 27 January 2012

Goodness me .......................

Goodness me, can it already nearly be the end of January?  It seems that in a blink of an eye we have shot past from Christmas and a whole month has nearly past by :-(  I have also realised that it is 2 years since I started blogging!   oohh I do love this blog world, full of inspirational people - thanks for being here and reading my little blog , it really does warm my heart when I read your comments.   Hhmmm I think I will have to have a little giveaway soon to celebrate :-)

So what have I been up to the last few weeks?  Well ages ago, October in fact, I bought some tulle to make little Sweetpea a tutu for her birthday.  October came and went and on Christmas Eve I decided to create her tutu for her.  It turned out really well and she loves it as you can see :-)

Little Sweetpea mid-jump :-)

I created it with white tulle, sparkly glitter tulle and bright pink tulle.  I then added some apple green ribbon and a bright pink ribbon bow at the back.

She loved modelling this on my bed, leaping all over the place and dropping sparkles everywhere.  I went to work the next day covered in glitter, no one was really surprised though as they are used to me now :-)  She is such a girlie girl which is rather lovely after having an older son and daughter who only wears trousers.  If you want to make one I used this tutorial and bought the tulle from here.

For the Making Winter project this month I thought I would share something I made a little while ago to use up my glut of tomatoes. The recipe came from the River Cottage Handbook no 2 of Preserves - I love this book :-)  I made my tomatoes into roasted tomato passata.   

Basically I roasted the tomatoes with garlic, shallots (so many that I wore goggles when cutting them all up :-)), rosemary, salt, pepper, sugar and oil and then took the skins off the tomatoes (they just peeled off when they were cooked).  I then popped it all in the blender to puree it and jarred it up in sterile jars.

It made the most lovely pasta sauce and was also fantastic as a pizza topper.  I will definitely be making this again next year ! 

Talking of tomatoes, I miss my little veggie patch and can't wait to get out there in the Spring.  I have been letting the chickens roam free in the winter sunshine.  They love pottering around the garden (I just hope my hellebores aren't to their taste !) and I do love going outside and them walking around with me :-)

A week or so ago we had gales here and my garden looked a little worse for wear!  Luckily the fences just missed our little stand alone chicken run - the other chickens were also safe and sound in their shed.

I have also been busy in my little facebook shop.  I now have over 1000 likers which I am really chuffed about - I can't believe so many people like my little creations :-)  The above creation is a hairclip holder custom made for a customer - it is nice when people push you to create new things, it pushes you out of your comfort zone a bit :-)  Do pop over and say hi here, would love to see you there if you are on facebook.

By the way, talking about the joy of blogging, if you used to follow my sons blog, just to let you know, it is no more :-( Blogger took his blog off him as apparently he is too young!?  It was wondeful for him as it was a way of him creating a little diary and helped his literacy and IT skills but for some reason you are not allowed one until the age of 13 - not sure why.  He was so upset poor dot.  Thanks to everyone who took the time to visit him and comment though. xxx

Tuesday 10 January 2012

More Christmas Creations .......

Apologies if all this belated Christmas blogging bores you but I want to document it for the children when they grow up :-)  I had wanted to blog sooner but as all of you lovely bloggers keep adding wonderful new blog posts I get carried away reading and then run out of time to write one myself.

The Christmas trees went up in our house a little sooner than I wanted this Christmas as the girls really wanted to put them up (eldest Sweetpea wasn't really interested this year :-().  I usually put off putting up the trees for some reason but then hate taking them down - I miss all those twinkly fairy lights :-(.  I put the lights on and then let the girls freestyle it :-)

They really enjoyed themselves ...... of course there was a breakage or two but that is all part of it isn't it :-)

They did a really good job and I did my best not to re-arrange anything.

Mr Sweetpea had a real urge to buy a real tree that he can plant out in the garden and then bring in again each year so we also had this tree:

Now I must confess to finding it hard not to re-arrange this one but I kept my hands to myself :-)

We lent our coloured lights to the cubs tree in the Church's festival of light this year so these came back to us after the trees were put up.  Middle Sweetpea asked if we could have them over the fireplace and they looked lovely, in fact so lovely I have only just taken them down.

One thing I haven't taken down is the pom pom garland I made, ooohh I love it :-)

On the run up to Christmas I did quite a few creative things with the children to keep them entertained.  Last year I bought a gingerbread house kit for us all to make.  Before the children devoured the gingerbread I drew around the shapes so we could make a gingerbread house this year from scratch.  I found a wonderful recipe here and it worked really well. 


We added a stained glass window by cutting a hole in the gingerbread and putting a boiled sweet in it.  I also had to add a little birdie sitting on the roof :-)

Carrying on our creative week we made my Grandad Pete (the sweetpeas Great Grandad) some gnomes out of Fimo.  Grandad loves gnomes and still has some of my old fimo creations from when I was a child so I thought he may like some of the children's fimo creations :-)

Here they are:

these two are middle Sweetpeas creations - love the one holding the flowers.  Eldest Sweetpea made the toadstool and axe and wood block to go with his gnome below:

Eldest Sweetpeas in on the left and little Sweetpeas on the right (loving the extra long arms, she went a bit white spot crazy too, oh and that pink on the front is his beard :-)).

Of course then I had to make one too :-)

Here they are in their new home.  I popped them into one of my trustee coffee jars and needle felted them some grass to sit on.  Little Sweetpeas had to sit on top as the gnomes long arms would't fit into the jar :-)

For the great Nannies little Sweetpea got to work and planted some hyacinths for them.  We are very very lucky that the Sweetpeas have 4 great grandparents living locally.  It is always hard to know what to buy them but I know the Nans all love flowers - here is my lovely Nan gardening with the Sweetpeas earlier in the year (I hope you don't mind me popping this on here Nan but I did love this photo of you gardening with the Sweetpeas xxx - Nan is high tech you know and reads by blog and e-mails me :-)).

Here is little Sweetpea hard at work, she loved planting these up :-) 

Whilst creating and looking for gifts I got a little side-tracked and bought myself something.  I just had to share these with you as they are so gorgeous!   I had been wanting some of these little birdies for ages and talked myself out of them until I could resist no longer. They came beautifully packaged in a little box.

Just look what was hiding in the green tissue paper......

Such cute birdies which I can hang around the house ....

With gorgeous ribbon tails .....

They came from the lovely Linen Cat, do pop over and see her shop - she makes the most amazing things, not only birds but other wonderful things like a Fox in a Dandy Green Suit - just stunning.  See that extra little pink bird, that little birdie was a lovely surprise which now lives with my Mum.  I showed my Mum these lovely birds when they arrived and she ooohhed and aahhhed over them as much as I did so I gave her one to have in her home as she loved it so much.

Sorry for such a long post, I have got a bit carried away as I had to stop and start it a few times today and then added more.  I will show you what happened to those pieces of linen hidden in my bedside drawer a few posts back in my next blog post :-)

Tuesday 3 January 2012

Wow we are in 2012!

I can't believe another year has gone past, time really does seem to be speeding up and I can't find the pause button!

We had a lovely Christmas full of love, laughter and creating things.  I must confess to not being a lover of Christmas, I usually find the run up to it rather stressful and I get annoyed about the commercialism of it all.  I am not particularly religious but I really do think that Christmas should be about the meaning of Christmas and not about buying huge mounds of food, buying hundreds of pounds of stuff that people may not want and buying a new sofa (what is it with all those sofa adverts?)  :-)  There is so much pressure when you turn the radio on, the tv on or even via schools to spend spend spend - why?

With this in mind I tried to avoid the shops at all costs this year.  This meant making more items or buying from artists who put love into creating what they sell.  I didn't get away with buying all presents this way however :-(   Eldest Sweetpea wanted a TV which we all clubbed together to buy him (although he doesn't watch it as much as I thought as he says he gets lonely otherwise - that solved my worry about him hiding away in his room :-)), middle Sweetpea wanted a Hamster (she cried when she realised what was hidden under a blanket as I had insisted no more animals in the house) and Little Sweetpea wanted a scooter (so now I only see her in a blur scooting past me most of the day).  Also for my music loving Dad my sister and I got him a deck which you transfer your vinyls onto your pc - I am sure he will have hours of fun with that (he has hundreds of vinyls).  Unfortunately all of these items are beyond my creative skills :-(

I did however manage to make a few things shown below:

From this felted wool jumper ...

I created a purse/make up bag for my Sis, she loves anything with a tash on so I added that on it for her :-)

This was quite hard to create being my first attempt at making anything with a zip and also the wool for very thick so I couldn't manage to line it.  I filled it with some orange hairclips that she 'liked' on my facebook page and a pair of turquoise earrings made by Red Bird Jewellery.

For my Mum I made a linen lavender pillow for her bed:

It obviously had to have the 'I love you this much' tag added to it as that saying comes from her :-)

I backed it with Amy Butler fabric.  I also had some earings made especially for her by Red Bird Jewellery following a conversation I had with Mum re some earings she saw that she liked last year - she couldn't find those particular earings again so I had them made for her instead :-)  ohh and I found her some wine glass holders that you can pop into the grass so your glass doesn't get knocked over - perfect for our Friday afternoon wines with the children running around us :-)

I will share our (I got the children involved too) other creations with you in my next post as the children are now calling me :-)  I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and I would like to wish you all a very happy, healthy 2012. 

Take care