Saturday, October 11, 2014

Getting things finished. . . .

It's amazing how craft goes out the window for me when life gets busy. It's always the first ball I drop, which is a shame, because it's certainly good stress relief! (something to work on). And although this year has been a genuinely GREAT one, it has been a busy and stressful one, full of uncertainty. There's been little craft.

BUT there are three projects I am determined to finish by Christmas. Achievable projects. I'm going to finish the 'Tis The Season' wall hanging I've been working on all year. I'm going to finish last years' annual Christmas ornament, which has also been in progress all year. And I'm going to start and finish this years' Christmas ornament. Three projects, three months. Here's hoping. . . 

First on the list is wall hanging. I'm getting there folks! Stitcheries are finished, blocks are sewn. Time for laying out and putting it all together.

(I love these blocks. And yes, the directional red print is not directional. Do I care? Not one bit.)


Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Cookbook Challenge: Bake

The Cookbook Challenge continues! Bake, by Allyson Gofton is my go-to baking book. It is full of basics, and kiwi classics, with contemporary spins. It's presented beautifully and contains recipes I go back to again again and again, like my favourite recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies.

For the Cookbook Challenge, I tried out the basic Flapjack recipe. Actually, I tried out the basic flapjack recipe because I felt like baking the day before grocery day and its one of those recipes that can be made just with pantry staples (though I threw in some sultanas just to spice it up a bit)

I'm declaring this one a definite success. It involved less than 10 minutes prep time, and turned out gloriously. Tasty, without having that overly greasy, buttery feel that flapjack sometimes can. And the husband ate three pieces in less than 10 minutes when it came out of the oven. I'll be doing this recipe again, and trying some of the suggested variations on it too.

For those who want to try this themselves, many of the recipes from Allyson Gofton's older cookbooks are available from her website, including this one! (though it doesn't have the variations on it included in the cookbook)

Until next time,


Monday, September 8, 2014

Currently Monday #11

The view out over Loch Ness. . . no monster to be seen though

I haven't disappeared again! I've just been enjoying some time off from life in general while my parents were in the country. For the last 10 days we've been eating to much, drinking to much and seeing as much of Scotland as possible. They've now headed off for the next stage of their trip (to the States to visit other relatives) and I'm being faced with the new reality of for the first time in my life not knowing when I'm going to see my family again. The pitfalls of being a Kiwi girl in the UK. . .

Time and Place // 9.37pm, tucked up in bed!
Eating and Drinking //
A mug of tea, just because.

Reading //
Just started Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey, by the Countess of Carnavon. Just finished The Girl that Saved the King of Sweden, by Jonas Jonasson

Watching // I'm planning on using this week (I'm home alone) to catch up on Emma Approved, which I never got back to after the last hiatus

Listening // After overhearing one of their songs in a shop last week, I've spent the last few evenings listening to Lady Antebellum. Love!

Making //
So, remember how I said that I loved doing my last project and would do the same pattern again? I'm putting my money where my mouth is, because the original GOT LOST IN THE POST. The Royal Mail has never failed me before, what a time to start!

Hating // Having to plow through the emails that had built up in my work inbox over the last week!

Loving // Having a cat to keep me company when I'm 'home alone'

Anticipating // The dear husband returning from a business trip on Thursday. I get him home for one night before he's off again!



Monday, August 25, 2014

Currently Monday #10

Evidence that crafty-ness has been happening!

Time and Place // 5.02pm
Eating and Drinking // Tea, and Lemsip

Reading //
Just finished Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine who Launched Modern China, by Jung Chang

Watching // The Great British Bake Off! Who isn't?!

Listening // The Piano Guys, AKA one of the best cold cures known (there's something about their music I just find soothing when I'm sick)

Making // I
actually picked up the long standing quilt-in-progress this week and made a few steps forward. 

Hating // Having an awful cold when I really don't want one :-(

Loving // Having a clean and tidy house with a ball of kitten curled up on my lap

Anticipating // My mum and dad arriving this week!!


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

A real actual finish

For the first time in what feels like a very long time I have a proper finish to share. Recently some friends of ours announced their engagement. They're a couple that work really well together, so we're really excited for them. The perfect excuse for a stitched engagement card! (plus I love doing special occasion stitches in general!).

The design is from Joan Elliott's 'Cross Stitch Greeting Cards' book and is called 'Celtic Wedding.' I thought this was particularly appropriate as the happy couple got engaged on holiday in Scotland!

It's stitched on 28 count linen (I forget the colour, it was just a small scrap from my stash) with the recommended DMC threads and Mill Hill beads. It's such a pretty design (I'm not sure these photos do it justice) and worked up so quickly - I feel like I'll be keeping it in mind for use again!! 

It feels so nice to have actually started and finished a crafty project for the first time in months. Hopefully it will give me inspiration to pick up my other works in progress again. . .