Saturday, 30 January 2010

Fishy Wishies

I had my first ever visit to the London Aquarium last week and it was lovely. So calming just watching the fishes swim around and do their thing. The sharks were a little on the scary side but I am pleased to say that I managed the Shark Walk, where you walk over one of the shark tanks on thick, reinforced glass. Initially I was worried that all my sweetie eating would be my undoing and I'd crash through the glass into some sharks waiting mouth but this didn't happen :) Phew! Although they're not exactly pleasing on the eye there is something oddly fascinating about them. Luckily there were no enormous sharks like those you see on telly but they were still sharky enough for me :)
I'm also having a bit of any experiment at the moment with some tartan fabric I picked up ages from the YMCA Charity shop. I only paid £2 and there was masses of it so I'm having a go at making some trousers out of it. I'm using an old pair of combats to make a pattern from and so far so good. I don't know how they're going to turn out but its a bit of fun and I quite like bigger projects. When I was younger I never had the patience to sew something bigger like clothing. I always used to get over excited and rush it so they didn't come out particularly well or very wearable. I'm quite happy now though to take it gently and I know that if I take my time the stitching will be stronger and look much better. I'll post a piccie if they turn out okay. I might even be brave and post one if they don't :)
I've also had my first go at Blanket Stitch. I found a tutorial in a sewing magazine I got ages ago and I tried it on a lion pin cushion I'm making for a swap. I quite like how its come out and might try using this again. At the moment I'm sewing on the lion's mane and thats proving to be a task and a half. I also keep finding little bits of yellow wool stuck to everything :)
I'm currently reading a couple of books at the moment - one on my DS at night - Under the Greenwood Tree by Thomas Hardy and during the day I'm reading How To Be Idle by Tom Hodgekinson. Both quite readable although I haven't got into the first one properly yet. How to Idle is perfect train reading on my way to and from work and I'm pretty impressed how much I've got through already.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Horray for my new furry bag :)

I've been a busy bee the last couple of days and found up a bag I was making ages ago but hadn't finished. I just needed to sew the strap on it, the buckle on the front and the flap and some pockets inside. I've done almost all of that now (just the pockets inside to do) and I'm so chuffed with it :) It will hopefully become my new work bag if it all turns out well.
I've also made myself a pair of fingerless gloves from an old pair of socks. I made these using a tutorial on CO&K. These are excellent. Just the thing to wear while spodding to stop yourself getting cold fingers.
I have also been baking tonight after quite a break and have made some cheese scones. They are cooling at the moment but I'm hoping they will be pretty yummy. They're from an old recipe I had which I modified. The recipe was for fruit scones so I just kicked out the sugar and fruit and added grated cheese.
I'm finished making up one of my swaps but unfortunately I'm going to have to wait till payday before sending out as it needs to go to the US. The swap is a sweet swap so I've bought about a fivers worth of sweeties which you can get in the UK. I hope she likes them. I'm looking forward to seeing what she sends me :P.
I've stalled a little on the favourite animal swap but I think I can get that done for payday too. I just need to get my crafty arse in gear.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

This is beautiful

I was going through Craftzine's blog and saw this which I had to share with all you nice folks who follow me here. Its absolutely stunning!

Watch and enjoy. :)

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Om nom nom

Cooking dinner at the mo - yummy tomato & onion pasta sauce to go with Spaghetti. Its so simple but one of the tastiest pasta sauces I've made.

What you need
tin of tomatoes
1 onion, finely chopped
fresh oregano (or dried)
fresh basil (or dried)
pinch of sugar
garlic puree/ 1 clove of garlic chopped
1 tbsp sundried tomato purée
Olive oil

What you do
Fry a finely chopped onion and garlic in a little olive oil until soft
Add chopped herbs and sundried tomato puree and cook for a couple of minutes
Add tomatoes and sugar and cook on medium heat for about 20 - 30 minutes (till most of the liquid has evapourated and you get a kind of rich, tomato mush).
Pour over cooked pasta (I live spaghetti)
Top with grated cheese to make it extra yummy

Craftwise I am also signed up for another 2 swaps. One is a candy/lolly swap where we send sweeties from our country to our swap partner :) This couldn't get much better as far as I'm concerned. I absolutely adore sweets \o/ The other is one that I'm running which is a t-shirt refashion swap.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Living inside a Snowglobe

Yesterday evening and all of today has been very snowy with lots of people getting snowdays. Unfortunately I have a day off anyway and you can't claim back snowdays :( It would be cool if you could.
Been spending today having a little move around of our living room. Even though it was workable before it was never quite the way we wanted it and the sofa was barely being used. In fact the room wasn't getting much use generally. I use if for crafting in, massaging and doing yoga but the kitchen and bedroom have taken over in terms of sitting spaces so we wanted to reclaim the living room again for that. Especially as all our music and our best seating is in that room.
I've been checking storage spaces and trying to make better use of them. The biggest problem seems to be my craft stuff and our camping gear. I've managed to find new homes for our tent, ground sheets and sleeping mats and sleeping bags but there is still a whole load of assorted stuff about that is hard to define or rehouse. I'll have a look on the unclutterer website later for some ideas. It wasn't playing ball earlier and kept crashing but I think that might have been my computer.

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Hello 2010 :)

Been enjoying one of my favourite pass times this bank holiday weekend - napping. Hugely underrated. Reasons they are great:
1. They are free of charge
2. Require very little planning
3. Can last as long as you like
4. They don't use any power so are very energy efficient :)
5. They don't contain any chemicals or additives
6. You feel better for having them
I've also found my arty mojo over the last week and have created an account with I've been sketching and painting. I've also been having a play around on which is basically an online collection of pictures that you can play around with an create sets or montage like pictures. I've made a few including the self portrait I've posted here. Its great fun and completely mess free.
I've also been enjoying my Christmas presents. I have barely taken my slippers off, the money got spent in yesterdays sales and the butterfly book is amazing. It mostly enormous pictures of butterflies from all over the world and it is just beautiful to look through.
I also finished White Fang last night and, after taking forever to get into, I think I'm actually going to miss White Fang. It had a lovely ending and I'm now reading another by Jack London, Call of the Wild.
I've also signed up for another 6 months of Wardrobe Refashioning. You will be pleased to learn though that I didn't fall off the wagon with the sales. I only bought undies which is okay.