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Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Teddy Bear Car Seat Cosy

What a miserable day it's been, raining constantly all day. Yesterday was wet too, but at least we had a let up now and then. I suppose it's good for the plants though and perfect weather for staying in catching up with jobs and of course crafting.

This is the  teddy bear car seat cosy I've made for my much anticipated grandson.



I found the pattern on ravelry, one of M J off the hooks designs. I hadn't realised it was crocheted in super chunky so had to treat myself to some new yarn as I didn't have any in my yarn stash.





I used Bernat baby blanket super chunky yarn in sandy and it made up quite quickly with a size 10 hook in an evening. Really soft to the touch so should be nice and snug, just need a baby to pop in it now, only 2 1/2 months to go.

Take care
xxx



Friday, 12 May 2017

Garden Life

I've been spending a lot of time in the garden the last couple of weeks. It's been blissful out there with the birds singing and the pond trickling away. Today has been lovely and sunny, but even on chilly days with the rather horrible north easterly wind we've had battering us over the last couple of weeks, I've still been out there with a blanket round me, reading my book and hugging a hot cup of tea.

As it's been nicer weather today I took the opportunity to take some photos... I'm also hoping you may be able to identify a rather lovely flower for me.

These are so pretty, a lovely delicate pink colour




We've replaced our lavender this year as the old bushes were getting a bit woody.



There are sunflowers against the fence, I'm hoping they'll grow nice and tall.




We bought 2 roses, a climber and a rambler, one pink one peach and both scented.





Lots of Alliums were planted in the autumn, I absolutely adore them






I don't know what this beautiful little flower is. it's growing quite tall and I love it's small compact blooms, I'd love to know what it's called?



Lots of carrots...





Potatoes...


 Brussel sprouts...


Cauliflowers, radishes, shallots and lettuces...



Some more lavender




Nearly time for tea




3 little dogs, exhausted from lying in the sun all afternoon




The forecast isn't sounding to good for the weekend so I don't think I'll be venturing out as much except to feed fish and water plants.

Hope it's warm where you are

Take care
xxx



Monday, 8 May 2017

My favourite Banana Bread

We had some bananas past their best so I thought I'd make some banana bread and this is my favourite recipe, not just because it's so simple, but it's the most delicious banana bread I've tasted.

Simply use, self raising flour, brown sugar, sultanas, a couple of eggs and of course bananas.



I had 4 quite large bananas, chopped them into a bowl and squished them. It's so much easier to mash them when they're past their best and going soft.



To my mashed bananas I added 4oz of sultanas




5oz of soft brown sugar




and 2 beaten eggs.




This was mixed into a nice gloopy banana smelling mixture




to which I added about 8oz of self raising flour.




It couldn't really be any easier so an ideal recipe for children to help with or make. The mixture fits into a greased 2lb loaf tin, I like to use liners too.





I cover it loosely with some foil as it's in the oven for a while I don't want it to go too dark on top. Pop it in the middle of the oven at Gas mark 4, I think that's about 180 in an electric oven (may be worth checking) for just over an hour to an hour and 15 minutes.

Onto a cooling rack, then sliced, butter is optional, a cup of tea a must! It tastes even better the next day as the flavour develops




Hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

Take care
xxx

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

A Catch Up and a Pond

What a week we've had, plenty going on, even during the night. It was 1 in the morning and Imogen knocked on our bedroom door to tell us through a clenched and wonky mouth that she was in quite a lot of pain. I suspected she'd dislocated her jaw when she'd yawned. Off to A & E, hoping it would be relatively quiet as it was a Tuesday night... it wasn't. Andrew went with Imogen and they didn't return until 5am, both exhausted. Imogen had dislocated her jaw when she'd yawned and it hadn't popped back quite into the right place. She now knows how to massage it back if it happens again. It was unpleasant, but not as awful as when her knees dislocate.

April's a busy (and expensive) month for us, both my children were born in April. We celebrated Imogen's 15th birthday last week. She had a wonderful day and felt thoroughly spoilt, just as she should. We had a little family party in the evening, which is what she'd asked for, and then all settled down to watch Mama Mia... and have a good old sing song too!



Imogen isn't a big fan of cake, but does like a chocolate fudge one warmed up and served with some ice cream. I just don't know where the last 15 years have gone, but isn't that just how we all feel, time passes fars too quickly! My son and his girlfriend took Imogen to Meadowhall on Saturday for her birthday present... she shopped till they dropped! It's one of her favourite things about her birthday, getting to spend the day with her big brother.




Things have been busy at home too. I'd been thinking about a pond in the garden for a while, but wasn't really sure if we'd fit one in our small space. Andy planned it all out, did his research and started digging. I wasn't quick enough to get a picture before he put the fleece in, but you can roughly see the size of the pond here.




Onto of the fleece went the pond liner. It was easier to do it this way as he could make it the shape needed for the garden, it also made it a lot cheaper. I think the hardest part has been getting rid of all the mud and stones that were dug up, it meant a few trips to the tip to get it recycled.




Andrew's worked really hard on it and there are still a few small jobs to finish off (a bit more gravelling is one), but it has been very worth it. I absolutely love our little pond with it's plants and yesterday we were able to add some fish too (we had to wait until the water had been in for a fortnight before we could get the fish). I can't tell you how relaxing it is to just sit and watch the fish swimming about with the small trickle of the water to listen to.




We've had toads in the greenhouse most years,so I'm hoping that next year we may even have some toad spawn and other wildlife.




We also need to cover the pond with a grill... here's a photo of Mitzi going for a drink. I took it in the evening, it's not a very good picture.



I'm pleased to report that our other cat, Sassy, is not remotely interested and would rather stay inside sleeping and stretching...




After all the hard work, Andrew was rewarded with a nice hot roast dinner, all trimmings included.





Here's a quick photo of my hexies, I have my box in the conservatory and make up a hexie or 3 when I go in there, definitely going to be a long term project.




Take care
xxx



Saturday, 22 April 2017

Daffodils and The Deep

Thank you for all your lovely messages of support regarding my dad, they're very appreciated. When my son and his girlfriend (Holly) took Imogen to visit their grandparents last weekend, they took Andrew's old telescope with them. Andrew had upgraded to a different telescope and my dad was absolutely thrilled with it. Mum says he has perked up considerably and is enjoying tinkering with it, which is fantastic news as his mood was dipping.

As I've mentioned, Hull is the UK city of culture this year. There seems to be lots going on most of the time, but what caught my eye over Easter was a wonderful display of lego daffodils. These are some of the pictures from the internet (the ones I took were full of people).

Isn't this cute with a little bee settled on it



There were more than 1700 individual flowers there, all made from lego, how brilliant! When the display was over, the flowers were taken down and all of them were given out to people who queued up to have one, what a lovely idea.



Even a watering can to help keep the flowers fresh


Yesterday was the last day of the Easter holidays. We were looking Holly's little girl for the day as both Adam and Holly were working, so thought it would be nice to go out. We went to The Deep, a place that was as much fun for adults, a 14 year and 7 year old alike. There was so much to see as well as things to do, stroke the starfish and touch the sea anemones, follow the turtle trail and lots of interactive things to do.

the view from inside The Deep over the River Humber

some very large starfish


This pool was amazing, there was a member of staff walking through it feeding the fish, it was fantastic to watch





The corals in here were so colourful, so beautiful, I could have quite happily just sat and watched it





Sharks swimming with these fish




I wasn't very successful with this photo, it was a tank with lots of Clown fish (like Nemo) swimming amongst the sea anemone, oh and starfish.




These were strange little critters, water eels popping out of the sand, very odd looking swaying about... I wasn't too keen.



A very big fish


There were quite a few penguins, they were the sweetest things to watch, marching about with their flippers out to balance themselves. In another part you could watch them as they swam about and dived for their food.




More sharks...





Even a shark outside.




We were in there for a good couple of hours and all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. As an added bonus, we can use our entry tickets as often as we want to for a year, I think we shall definitely be going again especially as they have 2 new turtles which we didn't really see much of this visit.

As an extra treat we thought we'd take a drive out the seaside, Hornsea. We had fish and chips for our supper.


Andrew and I ate ours in the car looking out to sea while Imogen and her little charge ate theirs outside before having a good runaround and collecting some pretty stones.





It was a lovely end to the Easter holidays. Imogen is making the most of the weekend before going back to school on Monday.

Take care
xxx