Saturday, 17 March 2012

Flowers and stars

Well, spring has well and truly been springing all over the place round these parts, as you can see from the lovely little daffodils tenaciously clinging to life in my front garden (as previously mentioned, this is just about the only place in the vicinity of my house that is safe from uber-violent footballing activity, although I have noticed recently that the two hooligans have taken to playing the odd game/wrestling match on the front grass - an unwelcome and soon-to-be-quelled occurrence).  I have especially noticed the recent springy-activity on the 'A' road back from my local John Lewis - this is a well-trodden route for me and is therefore a barometer of the changing seasons - if it all looks a bit misty green, as it does at the moment, it's definitely spring (if it's white, it's probably winter and if it's wet and grey it's almost any time of the year.)
In a pleasing coincidence of life imitating art (or, in this case, nature) the floral theme has been continued on the domestic-front too - my 'baby' has had a birthday party, though not an actual birthday, confusingly.  Unbelievably, she will be two in a couple of weeks, but as we'll be in Turkey (our first, ever foreign holiday as a family - all five of us are counting down the sleeps til we'll be on a plane) on her actual birthday, and as my mum is visiting us for a few days, we thought we'd have a little tea party for her royal highness this week.  I was lax and forgot to take a pictures of the cake,which was pink with Smarties on - I surprised myself with how girly I made it, but she loved it.  I did, however, take some photos of more cake-related goings-on that took place recently:
A large bowl of icing and a very muddy elbow - it would appear that some things are worth coming in from playing football for.
 Looking at this photo I notice two things: 1) I'm a stingy sprinkler - this is something I will be rectifying asap; 2) just look at the size of the blob of icing middle has put on his cupcake (top right of the picture)...
I may have neglected to take any cakey photos, but I have taken some of her big present from me and Mr N, which I secretly feel I may have bought as much for me as for her:
It's floral.  It's got stripes.  It's got gingham.  It's a wigwam.  I think I might move into it.
And can you see the little porcelain tea sets set up inside?  One of them is a Cath K one that my mum got her for her bday, and the other is mine from when I was a similar age to my baby girl.  I even have the original box still (deep down I know that very soon I am going to be heart broken when one of my oafish boys breaks the box/smashes a cup.  Maybe I should hide it away again for another thirty-five years, just to be on the safe side.)  I can't explain the thrill of excitement I got, laying all this out with my girl because I know how much fun I had doing this and I can't believe I get to do it all again with her.  (Let's face it, I still do it for real - a stripy tablecloth, a nice bit of cake and my Pip crockery - nothing's changed!)
This is my set - it's vintage dahling.
 And this is me taking a photo at the exact moment middle decided it would be a good idea to jump on my back and cling to me, koala-style.
 And this is the Cath K set.  Just look at teddy bear in the background - he must be a boy - look at the way he's sitting...
And finally, after getting as far as I can for the moment with my granny ripple blanket:
here is my latest wip:
It's my all star blanket, which I have just started making for middle after a tough process of negotiation over the Rico Creative Cotton colour chart - him: 'I want that one (orange), that one (red), that one (black), that one (grey) and that one (green)'.  Me: 'hmmmmm.....' x

Monday, 5 March 2012

Snapshots of a week

High tea with friends on Sunday.  I thoroughly enjoyed this and have plans to make this a regular feature of life in our house.  Cake, cheesy nibbles and wine.  Dreamy, dreamy!
Look - a bowl of tomatoes - just to prove it wasn't all high-sugar, high-calorie fare. Tokenism, that's what it is.
Some of my beautiful new Pip collection.  It gives me a little thrill every time I catch sight of the dresser.  Once upon a time it used to be Hobbs shoes, now it's plates....
A lovely, sunny day at home with my two smallest babes.  All the more lovely because my middlest child was supposed to be at school, so it felt a bit naughty.  (If you happen to be a teacher and reading this - he did have a temperature the night before, honest.)  We pottered and potted:
My first session on my new and lovely allotment (more, oh so much more, on this to come):
Do you know what Mr N said when he saw this photo?  'Bloody hell, look at my hairline.'  You'd need a magnifying glass to even see his head, but like a laser, his eyes were drawn to it.  Pa-ra-noid.
Still working away on my granny ripple blanket and really, really loving it:
I'm in ripple heaven, me. x

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Giveaway winner and other smiley things

Happy, happy, happy little crocuses - little purple beauties, all the more lovely because they're a great early source of nectar for our poor, struggling bees.  I fear I have confirmed my neighbours' suspicions that I have completely taken leave of my senses by plodding outside in my slippers today to take a quick photo of them looking all beautiful and luminous in the afternoon sun.  Having said that, Mr N was somewhat surprised to meet our neighbours outside in their pyjamas one particularly windy night when I sent him outside to investigate an ominously loud crashing sound - it was our recycling bin hitting the deck and distributing its contents all over the driveway.  I believe he said something like 'evening' to our neighbours, as they picked the contents of their paper bin from their front garden, and proceeded to act like it was, in fact, quite normal to be outside with no underwear on in the middle of the night in a gale.
Another little bit of happy for me today was a luxurious, child-free lunch spent sitting in my dining room messing about on the Internet, eating my new favourite thing:
Toasted ciabatta with cherry tomatoes, red pepper, mozarella and basil.  (ooops, I just dribbled on the keyboard).
And another happy thing is this:
While I was enjoying said yummy ciabatta, I wrote down the names of all you lovely people who entered my giveaway and put them in one of my lovely new Pip bowls.  I shut my eyes tight and pulled out:
Congratulations Cupcakejojo - I know you've been having a bit of a rum old time of things lately, so I hope that this little parcel with bring a smile to your face.  Please just email me your address and I'll get it in the post to you pronto.  Thank you so much to everyone who entered and I'm sorry you couldn't all win something!  It is my mission now to have a good old look at 'new-to-me' blogs - I'm so looking forward to meeting some lovely, new people!
The final thing that's been making me smile, and I'll say this very quietly for fear of jinxing it me, or is spring in the air? x