Thursday, 5 August 2010

Frances' chair

This week I have managed to finish a sewing project which I have had on the go for a few months - a chair for Frances.



It's made from leftovers (thanks Quinn for the denim), including the pillow forms and about half of the stuffing. Frances helped with the final stuffing of the pillow forms and knew that it was for her and exactly what to do with it once it was assembled. 11 months old yesterday - she's getting closer and closer to being a little girl.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Sun hat

I think one of the things that bores me about this blog is the knitting - I like knitting, but I get frustrated, especially at the moment, with how little knitting - or crafting in general I am getting done. I think the blog just emphasises for me how unproductive craft-wise I am being. I'm being productive in other ways.



I have knit Frances a sun hat - sometimes she will wear it, but a lot of the time it's immediately snatched from her head (if it even gets that far!)

27/07/10 ETA link to ravelry so that Kristin can see which yarn I used!

Friday, 16 July 2010

Baby saag

Apart from being busy looking after Frances, working, meeting up with people, visiting places, trying to do a bit of gardening, a bit of crafting and generally living life, I think one of the reasons the blogging stopped is because this blog bores me.

I'm not sure what to do about it - do I abandon the blog? Or take it in a different direction - not sure which direction that would be? Or something else as yet un-thought of? Who knows?

While I figure that out I thought I'd post about baby food. If you've read David's blog (also stalled) you'll know that we do a bit of cooking, so it will come as no surprise that we've primarily been cooking our own baby food for Frances.


There are times when jars are great - especially when travelling - but I do wonder what's in the food to allow them to have an unrefrigerated jarred shelf life. I also think, of the ones I've tasted, that the savoury offerings are very bland, and the sweet offerings very sweet.


So, back to cooking baby food - we have one baby cook book. "New Complete Baby and Toddler Meal Planner" by Annabel Karmel. I've found this a very good guide through the weaning pro
cess - there's contradictory advice out there about what to give babies at certain ages, particularly concerning eggs and dairy, but I've been quite happy to follow her advice. Frances hasn't had any allergies (so far!) so I'm quite happy to continue following it.



The one recipe that I feel is missing is a baby curry. So this afternoon I've been rectifying that. I adapted a recipe out of another cook book that we have (and we have plenty!) called "Curries without worries" by Sudha Koul.



So, what I did:

1. Defrosted about 300g of frozen spinach

2. Chopped an onion, couple of cloves of garlic and a couple of cm's of garlic in the food mixer. Then added about 5 cloves that I'd pounded in the pestle and mortar.

3. Fried onion mix, then a chicken breast that I chopped finely in the food mixer.

4. Once everything was looking well on the way to being browned I added two chopped tomatoes, 1/2 teaspoon each of turmeric, cumin, cinnamon and cardamom (all pounded in the pestle and mortar if they were whole), and about 100g creme fraiche.

5. Added the spinach, reduced the heat, covered and let cook for a bit until it looked right.


This made about 5 jars of the 8 month old size when I filled the jars about half and half, rice and curry.


I was going to take a photo of it, but Frances ate it so quickly that I didn't manage!

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Sweet socks

After posting a picture with my kitkat machine on it last time, in case you feared that my other sweet foodie passion - Lyle's Golden Syrup - had been forgotten - fear not...

Another finished knitting project:

The Golden Syrup inspired stripey socks are finished.


I really like them and can see the possibility of knitting some more stripey socks using leftovers in the future. But, I think the next socks I knit will be pirate themed.

And in case you're wondering - the Golden Syrup cans behind the socks have been made into a standard lamp.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Hat

My blog's been quiet again for a little while. It's not as if there haven't been things going on - with a nearly 7 month old baby how could this be possible? I just haven't felt like writing about anything.

So, to break the silence and hopefully get back into the swing of blogging, here is a hat I knit for David while we were on holiday for a week in Spain visiting David's parents.



A little while ago my Mum knit David a scarf and there was enough yarn left over that she knit him a hat as well - the scarf has found great favour, but the hat was a bit floppy and baggy because of the soft, fine quality of the yarn (Tynn alpakka) and so didn't really get warn. This seemed a shame, so just before we went away I found the leftover yarn and frogged the hat and started again, this time with the yarn held double to hopefully give a denser fabric.

And we seem to have success. The pattern I used was Turn a Square by booklyntweed, although using a similar stitch to the original scarf (of course we didn't think to take the scarf with us to Spain - so it's similar, but not the same) rather than the stockinette stitch of the original pattern.

I think David had just started to suck a sweet when I announced I was going to take his photo, which is why he has a slightly funny look on his face.

While I'm here - here's a photo of Frances playing with her Dad.


Monday, 1 March 2010

Fidgit knickers

A little while ago I did a post about nappies and how I was getting on with them. I mentioned that I was amazed at how well the wool outers were working. I acquired some small ones from a friend in the beginning, and my Mum has knit a few pairs. Now, I have finally got around to knitting a pair for Frances. These have taken me far longer to make than they should have done (like most things at the moment). I knit them using the Curly Purly Soaker Pattern and roving that we bought at the eco shop here in Turku produced by Jutta. They produce the roving in lots of fun colours. They wouldn't have taken me quite so long if I'd actually managed to read the pattern and not joined the crotch seam before I'd knit the full length of the front, and also if I hadn't originally cast off the legs too tightly. They're quite big on her at the moment, although look pretty neat and slim under clothes. If she needs any more I'll most likely use this pattern again as it doesn't require any seaming.
In other knitting news, I've finished the 1st module of the City and Guilds course, it has been assessed and is currently in the post on its way back here. I've had some positive feedback and only have some minor bits to look at and add to or change. In the package that should arrive any day now are also the instructions for Module 2. I've read that this second module is all about colour, which should be interesting.

I've also been knitting socks again. I've been wanting to knit some stripey socks with each colour being a single row wide for quite some time now - I think since I read about helical stripes on this blog. I had an odd ball of dark green and of white sock weight yarn and decided to add a couple of other colours and knit a stripey sock inspired by the colours of a golden syrup tin. As always with socks I'm finding them very satisfying to knit.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Seascape

There has been knitting going on here between nappy changes, feeding, washing and general mischief and merriment.



This is seascape stole from knitty summer 2008 I started it back in July 2008 but it came a cropper to knitting things that didn't take as much concentration... I never managed to memorize the chart..., hibernating, and general life. It's not as airy as the version in the pattern, but I like it, and it makes for a bit of a different type of scarf for me.

The other knitting project that I've been working on is my city and guilds - that, like seascape, stalled last year but I've been making some good headway and am hoping to have the first module done by the time my parents come in a couple of weeks time. I'm excited about keeping going with it and getting some momentum going.

Friday, 15 January 2010

monochromatic

The weather here recently has been very stable - cold and dry. We haven't really had any serious snow for a few weeks now, but because of the temperatures it's stuck around. We've also had a lot of hoar frost.

I was thinking the other day when I was walking around how monochromatic everything was looking, I'm seeing the outside world in greyscale. I thought I'd take a few photos, these are all taken in our neighbourhood.



It really accentuates the shapes of all the trees. It's very pretty although I think I'm ready now for a bit of colour - I can't wait to see the first shoots of green on the trees. (the person in blue is David pushing Frances by the way).