A self-sufficient(ish) life with cats, a dog, chooks, a little boy and a bloke.

Posts tagged ‘Crafts’

Good Morning All!

It’s another wet day but yesterday was nice and dry and we actually did some outdoor work! Amazing!

While Munchkin was sleeping very soundly in his bed for a nap (which are exceedingly rare these days), J and I set to work out the back. He’s already done quite a bit – moving the shed about, making space for Jasper to sleep in the carport rather than out on the street and getting rid of rubbish. His plan was to rainproof the shed. Mine to convert my old allotment wheelbarrow into a small bed for some veggies. I drilled a few holes for drainage and dumped a pile of barely used soil into it, then we jammed it in place just under the bare tree – making sure the chooks won’t find a way of getting in it!
I have my seeds ready to be sowed, very little this year compared to what we’ve grown in the past. All the seeds I’ve collected are in two tins, it was fun yesterday going through them and choosing what to grow. I sadly patted my purple sprouting broccoli and kale seeds. One day I’ll have somewhere to have lots of those lovely veggies growing!
This year though I’m sticking to basil, rocket, cut-&-come again salad, radish, beetroot and a couple of cucumbers in the little greenhouse.
We must have about ten fruit bushes in pots out there, so the plan is to make a nice flat area on top of the shed and put them up there, again out of the way of hens and in full sun. When they start fruiting I’ll net them to stop all the local garden birds from having them.

On the sewing front, I’ve made a fair bit but still need to make a lot more.

I have five of the small coin purses prepared and waiting to be sewn up, two more of the bucket tote bags with the owl, a few more crochet coin purses, a messenger bag with another larger owl and pile of button-y goodness and I want to make some more make-up/toiletry bags.

Now, I need your honest opinions. Do they look too amateur-ish? Which would you leave out? I don’t think I like that crocheted pouch up in the left hand corner (that was actually that blanket I said I started and didn’t know why!!). If it was a different colour it might be ok but those colours just don’t do anything for me…

So what do you think? Should I even bother?!?!

Sara xx

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Please Excuse My Absences!

It has been a mad few weeks! Firstly, Munchkin is now happily in preschool twice a week for 2 hours a time. He’s enjoying it immensely, except for today when Bobby Bear came to read them a story. Munchkin and another little boy burst out crying! He’s ok now, has told me he played with trains and cars.

Secondly, I’m jogging three times a week now. I’m doing the Couch-to-5k training programme and it’s going great so far.
Still on my diet and doing well, I’ve lost 8 and a half pounds to date! Only 12 and a half to go!
The programme finishes on the 25th of March – the day before my 30th birthday(!). At that point I should be able to jog the whole 5k without needing to stop. Knowing this gives me so much motivation, especially as I’ve told myself to hang on for my birthday before deviating from the diet!

Had a lot of visitors to the house lately so I feel like I’m constantly cleaning and tidying. It’s very tiring! ¬†We’ve had Indi’s friends and cousin over and my Dad has been up this weekend. It’s great seeing everyone but I don’t think they know how much work goes into making this house presentable! With this many animals it’s non-stop!

I have been crocheting of course. I tried to make a beret that I saw on Landgirls but my attempt went drastically wrong!

<<< What I wanted to make

What I did make!>>>

 

 

 

 

So not exactly what I wanted, I’ll try again one day. In the meantime, I’ve still got the circles blanket, ripple scarf, shawl on the hook and I started a baby blanket last night. It’s girly so don’t know why I’m making it… perhaps I’ll be able to sell it?!
On that subject, I need to find a way of earning enough dosh to at least cover Munchkin’s preschool fees. I’d like to let him go three times a week but it’s not cheap!
I need to think of something I can sew that will sell well… I’m thinking bags for little girls… Simple to make, cheap to buy so parents are happy, and maybe some bags for grown ups… Basic messenger style bags, bucket bags etc but with some applique to make them a bit more special…?
And then – where to sell them?! There’s a craft market in Abergavenny once a month but that won’t bring in enough… I shall have to have a look about. But first to make the bags!
Have I actually got girly fabric…?!

Sorry I haven’t been doing much commenting on blogs lately, I have been reading you! Will get back into it today, szee you soon! xx

Tut Tut

As I sat watching ‘Larkrise’, with a blanket that was crocheted for Munchkin when he was born, wrapped around my shoulders, I noticed Minnie’s shawl, wrapped around her shoulders, and was struck with inspiration!

So now I have THREE crochet projects currently on hook!
I am a great starter of projects!, can you tell?!
But I need to start finishing them so that is one of my resolutions for 2011.

Here’s a sneak peek…

There are 8 different colours, 4 blues and 4 purples. All acrylic this time!

The sun shines through my bedroom window, making a bright room for photo taking!

Another gorgeous day but absolutely freezing! We’ve already taken Munchkin’s cousin to school, walked Sky and I have experienced the ice and frost first hand… and bottom… and back… and head.
Yep, I slipped and landed flat on my back! Yep, I did hit my head on something hard but I wasn’t knocked out nor concussed thankfully!
And I thought DM’s were perfect footwear for all weather!!

Well, I’m off to do housework-y stuff, entertain Munchkin and maybe fit some crochet in if I can… Bye for now!

 

Foxes and Cherry Blossoms

I got up early this morning, long before it was time to let the chickens out. I stood out by the back door, it was freezing though so not long!
I was looking out into the dark garden when I heard something – a fox cry! It went on for a while and though it was quite far off I could follow the sound travelling down the hill.

Needless to say I didn’t let the girls out until the sun was completely up and the fox had stopped crying!

That just confirms that there are foxes nearby, and while I adore foxes and would love to see one in real life I really do not want to see one in my garden when my girls are in it!

Today has been a sewing day. I have nearly finished the driver’s side seat cover. It’s in situ now, all I need to do is replace some of the padding in the seat, tape it up and secure the bottom panels somehow – I’m thinking gluegun…

The main fabric is upholstery corduroy that I received from a Freecycler.

I used some of the brown cord for the tree branch applique then used this pattern (minus leaves) to crochet the blossoms.

For the back and sides I used a faux suede fabric that was given to me by a friend. When I first made the top of the seat it didn’t quite fit so I cut and seamed a triangle out the back, sewed tiny buttonholes with my machine and used shoelaces for a ‘corset’ effect!
It’s still not a perfect fit but it doesn’t move and looks so much better than it did before (these seats are nearly 40 years old!)

I’m really chuffed with it!!! The crochet blossoms don’t dig in to my back as they’re tiny and fairly flat. There’s still quite a bit to be done cosmetically but just seeing that new seat cover makes me all the more eager to do the rest.

Hurrah!

Sneak Peak…

These two projects are only being worked on when Munchkin is lying fast asleep beside me in bed so progress is slow but steady! Spare time over the next couple of days is all for my car seat cover – I have high hopes about this, really hope it actually fits!

Here’s the scarf.

My sister gave me the yarn for xmas. Isn’t it gorgeous?! See how the colours are almost in ‘blocks’? Mmm, it’s so soft too. See the silvery blue? Oh I cannot wait to see how it will work up!

Next we have the circles.

Now these are made from Sublime Yarns Baby Cashmere Merino Silk DK (mouthful!) My dad gave me four balls of this yarn for xmas and I’ve decided to make a circles blanket with them. I have got a very, very long way to go!

Please excuse the darkness in the photos – the skies are as grey as grey can be!

I must be off now, got so many things to make and I’m eager! Bye for now…

Plans for 2011

I guess I’d better start with HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
Here’s to a great 2011, a healthy, happy, balanced year.

Resolutions? I got a couple, they¬†include the Buy Nothing New For (at least) A Year challenge, and to Balance my health. That word, balance, has been shouting out at me a few times over the past few days and all in the same context – balance your life, your health, your mind. It’s something I need to take control of in my life. I’ve been very lazy the past few months I feel and desperately need to get some zing back, a spring in my step, stop my bones and mind from atrophying. With a toddler it is very difficult to become truly lazy as there’s always plenty to do for and with them but it’s not enough.

Anyway, I’ve got plans too, regular day-to-day stuff but I guess it all comes into the whole balance thing. I’ll probably add to these as time goes on, and here’s the list – feel free to fast-forward through this…

  • Build up the hall wall again – we put it up three years ago, pulled it down and now realised it should have stayed!
  • Build raised veggie bed in garden – make safe from chooks!
  • Get 2-3 more chooks
  • Finish decorating bathroom
  • Get Jasper running properly
  • Finish circles blanket (more on that soon!)
  • Finish scarf (pref. before next Autumn!)
  • Learn how to knit…
  • … and then knit a sweater for Munchkin (again before next Autumn!)
  • Clear out attic for once and for all
  • Make quilt out of Munchkin’s old clothes
  • Make seat covers for Jasper
  • Get Jasper in good condition (more on this below…)

There’s so many things! And I’m sure I’ve forgotten some!

Yesterday we went for a drive in Jasper. He’s pretty much fixed now, J can’t think of any other way to make him run better without having to replace the entire engine.
We drove past a house where there were two Beetle’s and a camper park up. They were all done out beautifully, nice shiny spray jobs, shiny, shiny, shiny.
Jasper was so embarrassed about his rust and frayed and falling off bits I’m sure he went from bright orange to bright red. So now one of my goals is to get him in such good shape that he’ll feel proud when he sees other type 1’s and won’t want to hide under a scrap pile.

Ok, that’s enough for now – I’ve got a pile of different colour cords in front of me waiting to be made in to a funky car seat cover!

Want a giggle? Here’s Loki, one our RSPCA rescued cats. He’s very fat, despite being fed exactly the same as all the others but he is one of the most loveable in the house. He’s a complete flirt, will put a paw on each of your shoulders and lick your nose until you remove him! He is also very placid, as you can see below. Now I’m not one for dressing animals up but if cats wore clothes then Loki would HAVE to wear a vampire cloak ALL THE TIME!


The Inbetween-y Bit

Hello, hello!

I hope your big day went well, ours was lovely and Munchkin had the most wonderful time seeing family, munching on junk food and of course – pressies.

So it’s back to normal now, at least until New Years Eve. The snow, which had either turned grey or to ice has now been rained on and my little car is back on the road (well, he’s drivable!) so we had a quick jolly out this afternoon on a much needed food shopping trip. Later in the week we’ll go for a proper drive out to clear the snow-covered cobwebs.

Two of my presents this year included Sublime yarn from my Dad and a varigated wool mix by King Yarns from my sister. The sublime is being crocheted into a blanket and the varigated into a scarf, I’ll post up a couple of peeks soon – the light here is absolutely awful right now what with the ‘Big Thaw’ and fog we’re having!

Another of my gifts, this time from my little brother, was The Selfsufficientish Bible by Andy & Dave Hamilton – founders of this site and forum . It’s a great book, I haven’t had enough time to really have a good read of it yet but I’m liking what I’m seeing. I’ve been a member of the forum on and off for over two years. They’re a really great bunch of people on there, you couldn’t find a friendlier forum!

Oh! Have you tried Vegetarian Haggis by Halls?! Oh! My sister is living in Ullapool for a while and brought some down for us. How delicious! I was dubious at first but now I want to try more… or even better figure out the recipe! It’s a blend of veggies, lentils, beans and oatmeal, it’s very peppery and full of flavour. If you can get your hands on some I strongly urge you to give it a go!

Well, I need to go and sort a little Munchkin out. He hasn’t had a nap today and is getting a wee bit sleepy!

I wish you a very happy new year and shall hopefully be posting soon after New Years Day…