Friday, 18 April 2014

{Looking Back}

May 2008...

my so called life

my so called life

my so called life

my so called life

Again, marveling at how small they were. Looking back to remind myself of so many things; adventuring with my babes in the sun, squeezing their little bodies in bear hugs that swept them off their feet, how happiness could be found in a net and a lakeside, how handmade clothes were easier (and cheaper!) to make (and how I should make more effort to make them some more). Milk teeth grins, mispronounced words left uncorrected because it was just too cute, the enormity of the privilege to be allowed to be the one they call 'mama'; podgy arms and legs, boundless energy and enthusiasm, sucking thumbs.

Good grief I do miss these times. Even though at the time I was utterly convinced I never could.

Hugs now are boney, sucking thumbs are a long forgotten habit, I can no longer lift my babes off their feet or indeed have them on my lap. I should get the last of those sweet chubby cheek kisses before they grow boney. And hairy.

Enjoy the madness of your family this weekend, and if you have little people under four feet tall, sweep them off their feet, carry them on your back, sit them on your lap and eat them up. For all their littleness, just melt into it and inhale.


Wednesday, 16 April 2014

The Makings of a Quilt (Top)

quilt with orla kiely fabric

1: Interview the fabrics.

quilt with orla kiely fabric

quilt with orla kiely fabric

2: Make a selection.

quilt with orla kiely fabric

quilt with orla kiely fabric

quilt with orla kiely fabric

3: Cut into the finalists.

quilt with orla kiely fabric

4: Decide who goes where.

quilt with orla kiely fabric

5: Add a little bit of this and that.

quilt with orla kiely fabric

quilt with orla kiely fabric

quilt with orla kiely fabric

6: Sit back and enjoy the view.

Now to decide - a quilt, or just a blanket...




Tuesday, 15 April 2014

From the Kitchen

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

TEND issue 1 recipe

It turns out that I love nothing better than pootling in my kitchen when I have a) time and b) space. Not meals, you understand, but all the extras - cookies, bread, granola, snacks, anything that adds a smile to our faces - just because. Meals... well, it's a chore isn't it? Doesn't really give me quite the same kick.

Another thing I am enjoying right now is the first fresh green things in our vegetable boxes and supermarket shelves! Sugar snap peas? Already?? Yes, please! It makes a nice change from, well, root vegetables and soup.

Grabbing more than my fair share of these peas, I knew exactly what the first batch was destined to become - my mouth has been watering for them all year - the 'Pickled-Dilly Snap Peas' refrigerator pickle which appears in issue 1 of TEND. I'm a big pickle fan and the combination of these sugar peas and the pickle spices is simply heaven - heaven, I tell you. I doff my cap to Denise - she has an exquisite palette. Anyone who can get me excited about food has to be a genius, and I am already eying the recipes in the summer issue (mouth-watering, I'm not kidding).

I will never go back to shop bought pickle again; I have been a bit lazy in the past in this regard - but oh, this recipe is so quick and EASY and so so gooooood. The only downside is that you have to wait a few days for the flavours to be ready and they're gone so quickly!

I can see this will be another staple of our spring/summer diet this year, along with the never ending popcorn snacks and hummus. After a long winter it feels good to finally eat fresh and local produce.

Monday, 14 April 2014

Plans Ahead

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Popcorn trees! When midget was really little he called 'blossom' 'snow trees'.... Awww

How can it be April already? How? Just... how??

It's growing season, and I honestly don't know if I have the energy or wherewithal to commit to the allotment this year. I'm sad to say that I think this will be our last year of tending it. If it were just at the end of our garden, or made of soil rather than brick, or if we could leave all our things there safely, then it would be totally doable. Right now it's a drive away with all the equipment in the car with no idea when we'll return. Hardly ideal. And this year, just like last, there has seen a bit of extra workload due to the magazine now.

I don't really like being beaten so there is a good chance I might actually do the diametric opposite of giving up. But after three weeks away from home, and having three years' worth of crud to shift on returning, I am so very weary.

For now I'll enjoy growing season the old fashioned way - by buying flowers, watching blossom pop up on our trees, and enjoying seasonal food from our farmers.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Back

my so called life

my so called life blog

We're back. Back to utter chaos and smell and hassle and a mess SO big, SO wide and SO tall that there is no way to clean it, there is no way at ALL. (Yes, I've just broken out into Seuss verse, because whenever I go look at the mountain - literally MOUNTAIN - of jobs left to tackle it's the only thing that runs through my head. Other than 'I wish I was someone else'.)

Keeping me sane (and I use that term relatively) is a little pile of goodies that awaited my return. Patrick Grant (I wish) and some sewing projects and a wee pile of fabric from Celtic Fusion Fabrics - that foxy fabric just kept calling... "Les Amis" by Patty Sloniger for Michael Miller... until I could stand it no longer. And there it sits waiting for me to "pick up all the things that are down" when I can squirrel maybe an hour just for ME to sit and make something.

I have no idea when that will be. *Flips down visor* smoke me a kipper....


Monday, 7 April 2014

Lost and Found... Again

debbie qalballah


For the third year in a row, around the same time as the others, I have found yet another lost item in the back of that cupboard of mine.

This time? A shawl from years gone by that I thought I had given away. It was such a nice surprise as with all hand knits it's not just the item, but the memories of the time that I knit it in which are woven in with the yarn. I can't quite believe this is four years old... where does that time go?



Friday, 4 April 2014

{This Jumah Moment}

A Friday (Jumah) ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savour and remember.

. . . . . . . . . .


my so called life

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Treasures Found

my so called life blog

my so called life blog

my so called life blog

One thing about being back in the family home is the amount of treasures to rummage through and find. This time around the boys were thrilled to find this old train set. They've hit a Hornby obsession and we have neither the money nor the space to fit a set, so finding this little tiny track and train set hidden away from years gone by was a big hit for all of us.

And it might have just fueled a desire for a real Hornby set all of their own, but for now this is taking the edge off it. Just.


Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Sneaky Peeks

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Something being worked on right now for the magazine. It doesn't feel quite so sneaky now you know about TEND. Maybe I'll rename this series TEND in progress...