Wednesday 31 January 2018

Lots of nothing very much.

Cold. Dry. Windy. That's all there is to say about today.
The hospital trip went very well, positive news for W, it could be just a few weeks before he loses the cast.
I am keeping my metaphorical finger crossed. I can not cross the real ones as I need them for my knitting.
I had planned on getting some sewing done this afternoon but it was gone 3:00 before we got home. I had time to have a cuppa and a cwtch with Ben before getting ready for the afternoon walk. It was not a long one, just as we left there was a flurry of icy rain that was cheek stinging.

Dinner tonight is a pizza between us with corn on the cob and some of the coleslaw. It feels more like stew and dumpling weather but never mind.

There will be pudding, with custard.

I am going to find something from the freezer for dinner tomorrow, my shopping list is a very short one this week, milk, eggs, fruit and veg. Lovely

I stopped on the way home so W could go to Home Bargains and found some bits and bobs to "bling" up Francesca,s room for her next 2 visits. I also stocked up with lentils and pearl barley as they are the lowest price that I have seen.
I could have kicked my self when I unpacked it all, I was next door to Poundstretcher and their  chopped tomatoes are 25P per tin and  very good quality. I only have 2 tins in the pantry so must restock next time I am close.

Knit and Natter went well yesterday, lots of chat and plenty of knitting and some crochet. One of our group is knitting up little bits of yarn into a "paper chain" It is delightful and something that appeals to me, one for the future.

Tomorrow is (so far) a free day and weather permitting I will get some garden jobs done, even if it is just getting pots and seed trays ready.

I think that I have reached the end of the news so will go and get the kettle on.

                          TTFN                                           Pam

Tuesday 30 January 2018

Went the day well?

Not many Benny, it went very well indeed. 
1. The house had a good go from top to bottom.
2. Dinner was changed slightly, the chickpeas were replaced with yellow lentils and the curry went straight into the slow cooker. It was delicious, Many thanks to Utterly Scrummy Food for families.
3. Much tea was consumed.
4. The yarn stash was sorted and peace reigns were once was chaos.
5. I cast on a new Miette. For me.

I found that I have enough sock yarn to keep a pair on the needles for the best part of a year. Bliss.

I have all the yarn that I need for garment kitting for myself for the year. and beyond shhhh.

The only yarn that I need to purchase is for a garment for Francesca.

All in all I am in a good place for a year of low spending and high crafting.
There is also enough left over small balls of yarn to keep my crochet hook busy for most of the year.

There is one looong languishing WIP that I need to get to grips with. I started it at least 18 months ago, possibly longer. It is a loose sweater in chunky yarn and I wanted that so badly that it haunted me from the moment I saw the yarn and pattern. I knitted like a mad woman, the body in the round to armhole and then divide for front and back. Halfway up the top back I ran out of steam. I have picked it up full of determination a few times, knitted a couple of rows and abandoned it again.

It will NOT be my Nemesis, I WILL finish it.   One day, quite soon. It HAS to be the wild card on my Make Nine. Then I will donate it.

There it is in black and white, now I am committed. 

I plan on putting a few days work on it after every project had been completed. I can knit a Miette in a fairly short time so should get the back finished in February. Then I will aim to finish the front in March and so on, if it please the gods I will get it off the needles before the summer starts.

I have an early start this morning, W has to be at the surgery before 9 so Ben will have an earlier walk. Then Rufus will go out once we return and the rest of the morning will be my own.

I am determined to make it to Knit and Natter today, the weather is dry at the moment and there is nothing else clamouring for my time.

Dinner tonight is a broccoli quiche, possibly with coleslaw and salad. I miss the cool crunchyness of salads in the long runs of cold grey days.This may just be the day to indulge.

I plan on having slow cooker meals on Wednesday and Thursday, and then Friday is not quite decided upon but Stuffed Portobello mushrooms is a possibility.

It is 7:15 and I need to get the kettle on, I could not spit a sixpence if my life depended upon it. I have to winkle Ben out of his bed as well. Not an easy task.

                          TTFN                                          Pam

Monday 29 January 2018

Half a loaf....

is better than no loaf at all.
I have no idea of the origins of that old saying.My Granny used it whenever we whinged about not having everything that we wanted, or thought that we wanted.
Yesterday was a two half loaf day, I got half of the sewing done that was planned and I got halfway on a pair of socks.
I do try to plan my sewing time to coincide with a busy time for the SO. This weekend though he was on super fast time and had finished all his (self imposed) tasks by mid day yesterday.
In the interests of domestic harmony I turned off the machine and lights and shut the door on my sewing. We played a little music, watched a little telly and chatted away. We spent some time in the kitchen, I made cake and the mincemeat slice and the SO cleared up around and behind me. It is utter bliss to bake and not have to wash up.

I decided to get some cake into the freezer and we plumped for coffee and walnut tray bake (courtesy of Mary Berry although I have the recipe imprinted upon my brain). I do not bake it as one large cake though, it suits me to use 2 sandwich tins. It is slightly faster and cuts into nice wedges before freezing.
I walked the dogs before starting and had a light bulb moment, there was a bar of Colombian coffee bitter chocolate in the Christmas goody stash. There was about half a pot of cream in the fridge. Coffee and walnut cake with a warm coffee and chocolate ganache for pudding. Dinner was a very healthy Cottage Pie, 80% vegetable base with  a sweet potato top, so an indulgent pudding was justifiable. In my mind at least.

Oh My Word, it was every bit as good in the mouth as it was in my mind. Very very rich so we tried not to go overboard. There is now cake and ganache in the freezer for future pleasure.

The mincemeat slice came out looking as crumbly as it should have, I added a handful of oats to the shortbread topping. We will probably try that tonight, unless the SO gets a fit of the munchies earlier.
Tonight,s dinner will be a cauliflower, sweet potato and chick pea curry. I want to save the aquafaba and make meringue with it, the last time I planned that I ended up using it in another dish. Francesca will be here next month and the meringues will keep in an airtight tin and become something lush for a pudding.

Any how, back to sewing. I took some photos of the method that I use,when I line a bodice with no zip, to share.
I did not show sewing the neck as that is easy to explain. You cut out the lining and the bodice exactly the same, then sew any darts on all pieces before sewing the shoulder seams and finishing them, I use the overlocker. Then I press the bodice seam, to the back and the lining seam to the front. That way you can nest the seams together and not have a thick bump of 6 layers of fabric to sew over. Then lay the lining down right side up and place the bodice right side down matching any notches and the seams, pin, sew and finish the seam. I then press the seam to the lining and understitch. If anyone would like photos I am happy to do that.

Here I have laid out the bodice with the right side up, with armholes directly in front of you and just spread it as far as possible.

Then you work from the furthest armhole edge and start rolling it towards you as tightly as you can.

Keep going until the neckline is covered.

Then pull the top layer over the top of the roll away from you.

and carefully pull the lining underneath away from you again and smooth it all down.

Matching seams and edges pin well, don't skimp on this as you don't want any movement of the layers as you sew. You will be able to nest those seams together and only have 3 layers to stitch through.

Once stitched finish that edge, you will never see it again but it needs finishing, that reduces bulk and prevents fraying that would ruin your garment.

Open out one end and reach into find the shoulder strap and pull through, a bit like turning a bag.

Keep pulling till it is all free, press and then do the same with the other armhole.

There are loads of photos as I wanted to make it as clear as possible. I realise now that I ought to have done this with a brighter fabric. I will be using this method many more times in the near future so, again, if anyone needs more just let me know.

It is far too wet here for a long dog walk so it was a quickie this morning, if the weather forecast (that I saw) is correct I may be able to get them out for longer this afternoon.

No sewing yet, today is catch up on housework and have a look, and tidy, through the yarn stash.

See you on the other side.

                        TTFN                                         Pam

Sunday 28 January 2018

One down, One to go

Rainy weekend days that is. Yesterday was almost a complete washout. I did manage to get Ben out in the morning before it came down too hard and then once it faded away to a misty haze I got Rufus out for a decent walk. I wanted to make sure that he had some exercise just in case it pours down again today. At the moment the air is heavy and sullen, full of the threat of a downpour.

My days  sewing went well, one more of my make nine done and stashed away in the wardrobe.

I ought to have put a belt on but was too lazy to go up and get one. It hangs just under the knee like this and just at mid knee with a belt. I am pleased with the result and this pattern will be repeated many times. From what I have seen the main difference between it and the Sew Over It Ultimate Shift Dress is the lack of bust darts.
This also seems to have a bit more flare at the hem, which suits me as I tend to stride out and do not wish to faff about putting splits in the side seams.
The teardrop pockets went in the side seams with no trouble, I just measured 2" down from the waistline on the pattern.

The polka dot dress will be started on after breakfast and dog walking (rain permitting). I have no outstanding housework to do. Bed is changed and laundry in the machine. Sofa throws changed and waiting for their turn, once sewing stops today I will vacuum all the threads and snippets up.

The SO is happy to pick up any slack while I beaver away in the sewing room. There is another pair of socks on the go after all.

Dinner will be a one pot wonder of cottage pie, I cooked a big batch of minced beef and vegetables ( a whole heap of veg went under the SO,s knife) late afternoon yesterday and then divided it into 3 portions. 1 had red beans and chilli sauce added, 1 is in the freezer and will become a cobbler at some point and the last is under a topping of sweet potato and will slide into the combi oven later. I will serve it with some broccoli, more for the appearance than the need for any more vegetables.
I was intending to copy Joy at The Frugal Factor and turn some Elderflower Syrup into a jelly but completely forgot that I had used the last of my leaf gelatine so it will wait until after my next shop.

I may treat the SO to a mincemeat slice, it is one of his favourite sweet treats, there is cream in the fridge. 

I got the body of my Christmas Eve Cardigan blocked as well yesterday so this evening I will stitch that together ready to knit the front and neck band during the week ahead.
I have socks on the needles ready for hospital knitting and the yarn to be caked up for another cardigan for Francesca, the SO will perform that task. I find it unbearably tedious whereas he finds satisfaction in seeing the, fairly unruly, skeins submit to the process
and become neat little cakes.

I still have to sort out a make nine knitting list, I have tried but there are so many variables. I do tend to get distracted by all the pretty skeins when I look through them  for the next project. Then there will always be a pair of socks happening so they will have to be one of the list.
I know that there will be at least 4 designs by Andi Satterlund, 2 for Francesca and 2 for me. Then I would love to knit a Marius Sweater or one of the patterns from my Arne & Carlos book. I also intend to have a bash at some Selbu mittens. There is 6 of my 9 straight off, then I have a colourwork pattern that I want to use for a scarf and the SO would like a hat. That brings me up to 8 and I would like to leave a wild card for the pattern that will undoubtedly jump out at me at some point.

I will go through the stash and get a post up matching yarn to pattern during the week, fingers crossed.

Apart from that it is business as usual here in the valley, life ticks along steadily. Nothing much happens to disrupt our daily doings, the dog walkers meet and greet, the shoppers chatter and neighbours exchange the time of day. I love that phrase, it says nothing and it says it all.

My life revolves around the weekly hospital visit, the dogs and keeping us all warm, healthy and well fed whilst keeping an eagle eye on the budget.
I like every penny to reach its full potential and hate to see any being frittered away on something that has no real value. I know that comes from my upbringing when the "real" pennies were counted out carefully.
 I had 5 of them every Saturday, 2 were for church collection, 1 was to save and 2 could be spent on sweets or a comic. When your best friend hardly ever had any pocket money those 2 pennies had to go a long way. Mostly they bought 8 fruit salad chews and 8 black jacks.
If we both had money it would be a bag of rainbow sherbet and a wagon wheel or a sugar barley stick.

On that sweet note I will leave you, the washing machine needs to be emptied and refilled and Ben needs his walk.

                        TTFN                                      Pam

Saturday 27 January 2018

It,s raining, it,s pouring.....

But no one is snoring, well maybe Ben is just a little, I saw the weather forecast and made my plans yesterday.
Laundry done and out on the line in the sunshine, shopping done and stacked away. There was not very much only fresh stuff and a jar of Marmite, love it on toast and I often add a heaped teaspoon full into a veggy stew or soup.

I pulled a long abandoned project out of a box and finished cutting it out.
It is another hack of the McCalls M6711 dress, I rounded the neckline and cut the skirt to use the pocket from the Hollyburn skirt.

It is a soft cream with a small black polka dot, another bargain buy from the Fabric Guild. I believe that I bought 10 metres of this and have used it for quilt binding and sashing as well as garments.

Then I pulled a smaller piece, also from the F.G. I made a skirt last year and was determined to get a dress out of the remaining fabric.

After playing "pattern tetris" with 3 patterns I finally got one to fit.

I have had to hack it to include a back seam as there was no way to cut both on the fold. I did try folding both selvedge edges to the middle, had I been a skinny minnie it would have worked. (and possibly if I did not want a loose flowing dress) BUT I did manage to get inseam pockets as well, I love a dress with pockets.
I have found some white cotton lawn for the lining and will be cutting this out soon.

The weather should be awful all weekend so I hope to get both finished. That will give me the third of my make nine plus a "Brucie Bonus" and more out of stash, Win Win.

I am not really pushing myself to get all nine made in as short a time as possible. Part of my goal is to get my summer wardrobe fuller and to include garments that can be layered to cover a much longer period of time. Most of my planned makes will be worn with thick tights and a long sleeved top under and possibly a cardigan over. I fully line everything so there is an extra layer of warmth there.

I have picked these dress patterns out and will be trying to match them to some of my fabrics next week. As I showed in my planning post I have several that I would like to get sewn up soon. I have a little idea of hacking one of them to use 2 coordinating fabrics to look like separates. This may or may not happen, I may use my tried and trusted M6711 hack as I love it.

Dinner last night was Greek style baked vegetables with fish, I had it for the first time, many years ago, in Corfu. I had to use dried Dill and could not get the Fennel that I wanted but it was still delicious. 
Tonight we will be having a meze of little taster dishes, some will be leftovers and some will be recipe tryouts on a small scale.
I will be making one of my favourite cauliflower dishes, I barely cook the florets and then toss them in a French Dressing and serve while still hot. I love it and the smell is as good as the taste.

I think that it is time to get the kettle on for a cuppa and then it will be sewing time. Lovely.

I hope that you all have a good weekend and for those of you who have to work I hope that all goes  smoothly and hassle free.

                        TTFN                                          Pam

Friday 26 January 2018

oops, nearly forgot the title

I did walk the dogs yesterday but it did not go as I had hoped.
 Ben,s walk was fine we were out and back in the dry although it was cold, windy and grey.
Then it was time for Rufus, we set off with the sky showing little wisps of watery blue. That soon reverted to 50 shades of grey with a fine drizzle, just as we reached the halfway mark the sky blackened and it lashed down. Luckily I was wearing my ankle length Drizabone and Rufus had a waterproof coat on as well.
We turned for home and by the time we arrived it was "drowned rat" state for both.

Of course by the time I had hung my coat up, put boots to dry and got the kettle on it had stopped and the sun made a fleeting appearance.

I had my cuppa and went into the sewing room to make a start on the mock wrap dress.

The fabric behaved and my machine just whizzed along with a triple stretch stitch. 
The pattern was simple enough,although the construction method was quite convoluted.
The finished garment fits fairly well, I did add 2" to the skirt and if I make it again I will add 1" to the bodice length.
I am hoping that it will "grow on me" as I am not in love with it.
That is partially due to it being a totally different style and shape to the rest of my wardrobe. It also bugs me that the seams are not finished in any way.
I followed the pattern to the 'nth degree and just pressed the seams to the back. Then after trying it on before adding the sleeves I pressed the side seams open for a smoother look.

The belt is supposed to be tied on the left side in a bow with long tails, it did not look right so I wrapped it right round and just tied at the front. The neckline is low and I will add a hidden fastening to prevent any inadvertent flashing when I lean forward.

I have about a dress length  left, I did not measure it but I will later.
I did say that I would make a top but am not sure now. I have never been a fan of clothes that hug and of course stretch fabrics do that, it is their nature.
I am glad that I made it but do not see any more stretchy fabric in my near future. I do, however, want to try some knit fabric. I would like a couple of lightweight knitted tops and have seen some lovely things on you tube vlogs. Once the make 9 is done I will be exploring in that direction (maybe even sooner).

Enough of sewing, lets talk food.

Last nights dinner was a chestnut and mushroom tart, loaded with veg and Utterly Delicious.
As well it should have been because the recipe came from the Utterly Scrummy Food for Families blog. 

Here it is straight out of the oven.

I urge you all to go and have a look, there is a raft of seriously good recipes all made on a tight budget. I have been cooking from this site for ages and it has never crossed my mind to share before.
I am not sure whether the chestnuts were part of the recipe or if I just added them in, I did not check as I made it from my "sure thing" folder.
This should have served 4 at least but we had roughly a third each!!
I served it with a small jacket potato, and it was so filling that next time I will just steam some broccoli.

I like to make something a little on the special side for Friday nights dinner but am at a loss on what would beat that tart. The veg are "bound" together with a mixture of low fat creme fraiche and pesto, a true love match that adds a new dimension of taste.

Now I am off to get the kettle on for a second cuppa before I jump in the shower.

                           TTFN                                          Pam

Thursday 25 January 2018

10 minutes and look what happened

Yesterday morning I had a little time spare, the hospital trip was later than usual.
I have been thinking about making some thin bags to store bread in, I tried waxed paper  as I do not like to just put in the wood bread bin. But it is an ongoing expense that I want to remove. I do slice and freeze my bread but keep part of the loaf in the bin for toast and the odd sandwich.
 For a while I used plastic bags but we have been reducing the amount of plastic that we use in the home, it is expensive, takes valuable storage space and much of it can not be recycled as yet.

I had a decent bit of the cotton that I used to line my dress, so I got to work. I cut some pieces 14" by 18" and just paired them up and whizzed round 3 sides with the overlocker, then went round the opening. I could have put a casing in for a drawstring but it was not necessary.

They are very simple but will do the job, I used one straight away to carry a loaf round to W.

I was only gone for 10 minutes and when I came back this is what greeted me.

The holes in the wall are where there was a shelf, then we brought a book case in and the shelf had to be moved slightly. This was just before Francesca arrived for the holiday so the extra holes were never fixed, they were hidden so it was no big deal.

That shelf became a dumping ground, it was not really necessary and I needed a shelf in the hall.

As the SO was at home for the morning he decided to get the job done. All is now put to rights, the wall is repaired and painted. The clutter has gone and the shelf has been hung in the hall. That has given me storage for hats, scarves, gloves and shoes, all off the floor. There are now 2 shelves side by side with storage boxes, bought in the sale at Wilkinsons, holding everything tidily above the mirror.

We finally had the chilli tonight, it was very tasty, I fished a couple of naan bread from the freezer to mop up the sauce. There was some left and that has gone to join the little bit of lentil soup.

The SO has been complaining that for some jobs he needs long socks as his lower legs get cold. I made a pair of Frankensocks with a thicker yarn for the legs using his favourite Waffle pattern and the heel that he says is the most comfortable.

I am happy to say that he is delighted with them. Now of course he will need a few more pairs, it's a good job that I like to have a pair on the needles most of the time.

Fingers crossed I hope that today will stay a free day, I hope to get the lilac cotton jersey cut out. I haven't looked at the pattern pieces yet, or the layout but it is the next on my list. After the Hollyburn skirt, which is a tried and trusted make, and the simple lined shift I am ready for something of a challenge.

Breakfast first then I will get the pattern out and checked before doing the dog walks. 

After yesterdays rain I am hoping for a dry walk, it is still raining in fits and starts but it is early yet and anything could happen.

Dinner tonight is undecided, it might just be a beany burger and sweet potato chips made in the air fryer. I do make a meal plan but it is just a list of recipes and is not set in stone. I have a well stocked larder and sometimes we just like to go into the kitchen and make something up.

It will be meat free, it may turn out to be vegan, it just depends on what comes to mind.
A little idea has just popped into my head, I have a lovely firm cauliflower in the fridge. I could make "cauliflower steaks" and whizz the left overs of chilli and the lentil soup into a sauce for them. I can griddle some big tomatoes and some mushrooms to go with them. Mmmm, sound like a plan, I will see if it still seems good in a couple of hours.
I could still make a few chips, we love sweet potato cooked any way you can think of.

I do want to get a pot of soup on, there is none in the freezer and I have a container of veg stock to use.

That tells me that I need to get a wiggle on, look out kitchen I am on my way to make breakfast.

                    TTFN                                        Pam

Wednesday 24 January 2018

2 out of 9 aint bad

The dress is finished, it was a very quick and easy make. I know that it goes against my "Explore" word for the year BUT, this is the simplest sewing project that I have done for many years.  Sometimes it is good to go back to basics, it is the first shift dress that I have lined. the others have all had the bodice and skirt lined separately and then joined together. In the 60's when shift dresses were the in thing it was all about facings, no lining at all.

It does look a bit sack like on the hangar but is fine on. It is loose as I want to wear it as a pinafore over a long sleeved top on cooler days and on hot days I can not do with clingy clothes. I may wear it with a belt  at times to give it a little shape.
I will be making this up again and I am seriously thinking of buying the Sew Over It Ultimate shift dress pattern for a slightly different shape and construction method.

I made a quick tomato and lentil soup for lunch yesterday, I read a blog post from Joy at The Frugal Factor and that set me off.

I sent a text off to W, saying that there would be a spicy soup on offer for lunch. He responded with glee and within 45 minutes we were eating this glorious soup, I had baked a loaf of seeded bread so he had some of that as well. 
We just had soup and boy it was good, I didn't follow a recipe I used a tin of tomatoes about a cup of red lentils, an onion, 2 sticks of celery, 2 carrots a 2" bit of fresh ginger and 3 cloves of garlic. Spices were 1 tsp each cumin, coriander, turmeric and the last shake from a jar of cajun seasoning. Homemade veg stock and just let it simmer away till the lentils were soft and there was just a little crunch in the carrots and celery. I was a tad generous with the spices so added a little coconut cream to calm it down slightly.

It was so good that I had made a start before I thought to take a photo, there was just a little left in the pot which I will use in something. 
We didn't have the chilli after all that spice, I did jacket potatoes with grated cheese and home made coleslaw, lush.

We did have a pudding of sorts, I have recently found the Green Gourmet Giraffe blog and made her Banana and Coconut cake. It is a vegan recipe and is utterly delicious but next time I will add more coconut. We had a slice each of that while slightly warm, it was moist but not too gooey and very light. I made 2 and cooked the potatoes on the top shelf, they needed another 15 minutes with the heat cranked up to make them wonderfully crisp.

Now I have made myself hungry, the toaster calls.

                  TTFN                                          Pam

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Rain means sewing.

Our day of bright dry weather yesterday has turned overnight into a wet dull start to today. Not to worry, I have sewing on the table and the machine is all set up with new needle and full bobbin.

I made a little progress on the dress and the lining is cut out, centre front and back seams sewn  and darts made. I will repeat with the dress fabric and then start the construction. Because this has no zip the method will be slightly different to my usual one. I will sew the shoulder seams on dress and lining then join at the neck. Then I will use the "sausage roll" method to join at the armholes before sewing side seams  and hemming. It is ages since I did this but it is a reasonably easy method and quite fast.

I have the beginnings of a cold, W was saying yesterday that he had one coming on so I think that we may have picked it up at the hospital last week. Rats, it is difficult to sew or knit when you are constantly mopping your nose. I have increased my vitamin C consumption as that usually helps in the fight.

I made bread yesterday, my go to wholemeal seeded loaf and will make another tomorrow for W. He had one last week and went through it in 2 days, we are not at the hospital till midday so I have plenty of time to get it made before we go.

Tonight,s dinner is the chilli that I made yesterday, tomorrow I am thinking of making a mushroom and chestnut tart the lazy way.
 I have puff pastry in the freezer so I will defrost it and roll out to fit a baking sheet, then score 1" in from the edge with a knife. Brush with egg wash and pile the filling inside the score line, 20 minutes in the oven will be plenty and I can steam some broccoli and roast a few halved tomatoes at the same time.

There will be enough for dinner and lunch the next day. Lovely.

It is almost time to collect Rufus and for the first time I am not keen. I feel stuffed up and achy but hopefully an hour walking in the fresh air will buck me up. Ben has been out but did not want a long walk this morning and we were back almost before we left.
He is now full of breakfast and curled up, snoring, beside me.

Now I must heave myself off the sofa and get ready for this walk, Rufus will be sitting at the door huffing, puffing and sighing deeply if I am all of 1 minute late.

                    TTFN                                                Pam

Monday 22 January 2018

10 p NO, Oh yes 10p each item.

By chance I stumbled upon the bargain that could not be refused.

I had to go into Neath this morning, my nearest building society branch is there, and the SO had a small list of bits and bobs that are readily and cheaply available in Wilkinsons.

Whilst he was searching them out I had a little wander round, I picked up some basil and flat parsley seeds, and then......and then I was bedazzled.

I had walked right up to a massive display of Christmas goodies Everything 10p. 

I had planned on making a gold bauble wreath for next Christmas so I was delighted to snap these up.

There are 50 baubles in here, they were originally priced  at £6, I picked up 3 boxes.

This little box of small baubles is for a project that I have in mind. At 10p it was a sure thing but I did only get the one.

Reduced from £6 I gathered up 3 of these, all will need new batteries but that is no big deal. One will go to Francesca and  another will also be a gift.

Then I could not miss these out, 1 each for the grands, they all love the Minions and they can be refilled each year.

This is for the sewing room, it is made of slate and is quite heavy, I did pick another up for W and one with Cat rather than dog as he has cats as well as Rufus. 

That left me a very happy shopper, I could have got carried away and bought 10 times as much. I only picked what I knew that I would use or become gifts. 

Dinner tonight will be a combination of the roasted veg soup and the remains of the Barlotto, mixed together and thinned with a little veg stock it will make a tasty meal. I have the end of a loaf of bread that can be toasted to mop up the last little drops if we want it.

I will be making a veggy chilli ready for tomorrow, like a curry it will be all the better for cooling down and mellowing for a day.

I am keeping my fingers crossed that tomorrow will be a free day, it is ages since I went to knit and Natter and I am getting withdrawal pangs. I also need to get to The Flying Geese shop for some fabric for my 4 patch quilt. I have nothing in stash that works for the sashing and first border.

I am looking forward to some sewing time now although I still have to iron my dress lining fabric and get it cut out.

                        TTFN                                               Pam

Sunday 21 January 2018

Sew far Sew good Sunday

It has been a wet and miserable day so far, on the outside at least. Indoors it has been warm, bright and busy, I did lie in till 7:30 and had a leisurely start to my day. Tea and a little podcast paddling, I didn't watch a complete one just dabbled around in a few. Then more tea and a shower, Ben decided that a walk was so far out of the question that we couldn't remember the question.

Rufus was in total agreement so no exercise for me.....Then I decided to have a laundry binge. Bed stripped, towels changed every scrap of laundry collected and washing machine and tumble drier on overtime. That meant lots of running up and down stairs as my drier is in the bathroom, it was the only place it would fit. The utility room has my chest freezer in and there is no way I was putting that in the bathroom.

All the curtains are made and hung, here is the fabric. It isn't really kitchen styled but it is pretty enough and it is out of deep stash.

Whilst I had the camera out I thought that you might like to see my "peg" board.

There needs to be another 2 or 3 hooks but they need picking up from Wilkinsons the next time I am near one. I need to have a tidy up with the threads as the reels are all over the show, I usually keep them in colour groups. You can see the scissor keeper that the lovely Chrissie made for me, it will be moving to the board once I get my hooks.

One last Christmas gift, Francesca found this and it was in my stocking. It is perfect and the SO had it on the door in no time.

The rest of my day will include some ironing, all that laundry!, and a selective tidy round the sewing room. I have the lining for my dress to iron as well, then there will be pattern pinning and cutting out. I do not expect to do any sewing on it today, but tomorrow afternoon is looking good.

Dinner tonight is the Barlotto, all the veg has been prepped (the SO has excellent knife skills)  the barley is weighed out and veg stock is ready to go. I have defrosted some Edamame beans for extra protein but there is a small piece of St Agur cheese in the fridge that may just go in to bolster the creaminess. Oh and a little Stilton may well get crumbled onto the top.

On that note, with a little background noise of rumblies in the tumblies I am off to crack on with that ironing.

                            TTFN                                             Pam

Saturday 20 January 2018

A new win win.

Not the dress, that is still on the benches.

I have been whinging about changing the kitchen for absolutely ages. I wanted open shelving at the top and dresser style cupboards at the base.

Rather than have all that work done and then possibly realise that it didn't work or look right we had a think. Image result for think think think winnie the pooh

The outcome was that the SO has taken the doors and fixings off the top cupboards. I will live with them for at least 3 months to decide whether or not that IS what I really want. I did do some shuffling round and removed some clutter that had built up on one shelf.
The first win, a free trial of a kitchen style, that I may or may not want to keep.

Then he has removed the base doors and I have hung curtains over the doorways. I had a good rummage around and found a whole bolt of medium weight curtain fabric. There is the second win, more out of the stash.

I enjoyed that frenzy of sewing and even better was the using of some long hoarded fabric.There is still enough left on the bolt to make another set, making laundering an easy option with no pressure to get them dried and hung back in one day.

Time to get dinner on the plates now, we have postponed the barlotto till tomorrow. I had broccoli to use and some grated cheese and cream that were on the last day. Broccoli quiche with root potato chips and some homemade coleslaw. Oh Yum.

                TTFN                                              Pam.

Friday 19 January 2018

The best laid plans.....

Today has not gone as planned, I did get the dogs walked as usual but after that it started to fall apart.

I suddenly realised that W has a new prescription and that it needed taking to be filled. 
DUH to both of us who were adamant on the way home yesterday that we did not have to stop in Pontardawe  for anything, in fact that can be a double DUH.

As I hate to make a car trip for one thing I scrabbled my shopping list together and with the SO (for bag carrying) set off.

After standing for almost 30 minutes in the pharmacy they informed me that both items needed to be ordered in. Then they went off to do that and find out the delivery time. A little ray of light, they will be there tomorrow morning.

Then off to the shops, we managed to get most things on the list but couldn't find brackets anywhere. Hanging baskets of every shape and material that you could think of but no brackets (?). 

The SO is going to put an outdoor shelf up for the small recycling boxes, save me from bending so much and keeping them off the ground. We get cats who love to raid anything easily accessible.

Anyway there is also something good afoot. I watch the Gabberdashery podcast and on the last one was a bright yellow pegboard hung with scissors, rotary cutters, tape measures and so on.  Ooooooh, I want one. So off to the Amazon I went and found some in glorious colours and at Very Glorious Prices.

I was bemoaning this yesterday to the SO and today this is happening.

As much as I would like it painted it will be hanging next to my thread holder, which is natural wood. I could have it bigger but I would only buy find more things to hang on it.

Dinner tonight will be a very tasty and thrifty meal of jacket potatoes and left overs. Tomorrow I am planning on a barlotto, that is my version of risotto made with pearl barley. Sunday is undecided, I need to work on a meal plan of sorts, but will probably be another veggy meal, we have been eating all the small packs of meat from the freezer this week and I am meated out.

I can not get in to sew until the board is hung so my dress has been put back a day.

Much drilling is happening so it won't be long before I will be invited to "come and get your stuff hung up then".

I have a sew sweet violet podcast to watch so there will be a knitting break next.

                             TTFN                                     Pam