Saturday, 30 April 2011

My shop is now up and running...

... I have been working very hard, so please do come and have a look and spread the word!!!

At the moment I have some of these lovely halter neck pinnies for the ladies...

...some fabulous A-line pinnies for the girls (designed with teenagers/young women in mind)...

... some pinnies for Little Belle when she's in the kitchen with mummy or granny... 

... some fabulous cosmetic bags...

... and for the ultimate in shower cap chic, some of these!!!

My daughter loves my shower cap.  "It's perfect fits all my hair in".  My son uses it as his chefs hat when he is cooking in his play kitchen.  Fab!!!
I hope you like what you see.  If you do, please spread the word... click on the facebook, or twitter button!  I also have much more in the pipeline, so please keep your eyes open.

Friday, 29 April 2011

I spent the day in my pinny today!!

I got dressed up for the wedding today, in one of my lovely pinnies.  I think that today must be the longest time I have spent in a pinny.  I seem to have spent most of the day doing some sort of cooking.  Before the wedding started I had poached a chicken (ready for the visit from my brother and niece and nephew tomorrow) and then the children had helped me make a chocolate sponge ready for the wedding celebrations.  After ironing through the ceremony (I couldn't just sit and watch it!) I prepared food for the BBQ, then it was making soup and making the filling for the leek and chicken pie ready for tomorrow.  Finally I assembled a very messy chocolate cake with a 6 year old and a 2 year old.  You can probably imagine their faces!!!! 

The cake looks messy because it is messy.  Not a cake to be eaten in front of someone you want to impress, but fabulous.  I will post the recipe some time in the near future.

I hadn't planned to do anything different today, but as the week went on the Fairy got more and more excited, said that she want to watch the wedding and have a party.  I am glad that she wanted to, I didn't feel the need to work during the day which is refreshing, and now we have the remainder of a yummy chocolate cake to share with our visitors tomorrow!

N.B  The cake is the same one the girls in my photo shoot assembled in March... I have been dying to make it since!!

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

A proper wedding hat!!!

I mentioned in a previous post that the Fairy entered a non-existent Easter Hat Competition just before they broke up from school!!  I hadn't read the news letter thoroughly enough, and the hat competition was for the Royal Wedding, not Easter!  Tomorrow is the big day, and tonight after school we both got beavering away.  I know we shouldn't have left it so late, it was a little frantic, I had an idea in the back of my head what we could do for weeks, so hadn't really given it much thought!

Never mind.  We conquered!

We used one of her sun hats, we had planned to use the one I had made her for last summer but (surprisingly!) it couldn't be found, and made some roses to stitch on it.

As you can see the Fairy was pretty pleased with the out come.

It was lovely doing some proper grown up stitching with her.  Although I did the machine stitching, she cut out all her pieces, pinned them together and then hand stitched the roses together.

She then embellished the insides of two of the roses before helping me stitch them on with some pretty ribbon.

One of the roses had pretty sequins...

...the other some beads.

My little girl also had some words of wisdom for me.  I was becoming slightly stressed at one point.  I was very conscious we had little time, we also needed to eat, and the little Tinker was making a nuisance of himself.  She said "mummy, it is fine.  Take a deep breath and be calm".  I did as instructed, and things came together beautifully!!!

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Getting ready for Easter!?!

In all honesty I have been pretty rubbish at Easter activities this year.  I has a few things planned, but they have gone by the wayside due to the fabulous weather we have had.  I thought that I had better pull out my finger this afternoon and make the trusty fairy cakes with the Fairy and Tinker.  We had seen some fab bunny cupcakes, but I really didn't I was up for it with the both of them and I wanted it to be fun.  It was lovely seeing them work together.  Each of them had jobs to do... the Tinker claimed the egg cracking job which resulted in egg all over the work top...but there was none of the usual bickering over who was doing what.  After tea the cakes were decorated.  The Fairy did the icing whilst the Tinker put the eggs on.  Naturally we had to make sure the eggs were good enough for the cakes before we put them on!!!
The ones with the three eggs are no longer, and my two have gone to bed in chocolate heaven... waiting for the Easter bunny to come and bring more treats.  Because we are not a big sweet eating family, there is always great excitement at the prospect of having sweets... the Fairy can hardly contain herself!!!

Actually thinking about it, I haven't done too bad.  We have also done these eggs...

...and there was also the Easter hat as blogged about here.

The hat was for an Easter hat competition at school... I don't think I mentioned, but I got it wrong.  There was no Easter hat competition!!!  I had read a news letter from school regarding a hat competition, but hadn't read it properly.  It is a wedding hat competition for the Royal Wedding!!!!!!  Looks like I'll have to get my thinking cap on!!!!!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

An unexpected camping trip

We have just come back from an unplanned camping trip to Silverdale (very near the Lake District).  The weather forecast encouraged us (and my mum and dad) to get our gear together and make the most of it for a couple of days.  I must say that a few days not thinking work, and having a total relax in fantastic weather while the children ran around a campsite was just what I needed.  I didn't realize how stressed I was beginning to feel, and two days of fresh sea air and sun has done the job.

Here's where we set up camp...

...watched the sea come in, and out (at a ridiculous pace, it really is quite frightening!!)...

... and the sun go down.

A lovely few days with my lovely family and granny and grandad.  Times like these are priceless.  There I go getting all sentimental!!!!

Monday, 18 April 2011

New labels

Things are slowly coming together.  They are moving a little more slowly than I wish, and anticipated, but that comes with juggling a new business, two children, a home, and the other work I do!!

I do however have a lovely pile of pinnies...

... another of bags... 

... all labeled up waiting to be listed in my shop, with much more waiting to be finished/constructed!!!

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Spring Cleaning!!!

My workspace has been in some turmoil for quite some time now.  I have been meaning to reorganize my space and have a clear out for over a year now, but have never had the opportunity to do so.  Yesterday I have a spare hour or so during the day (the rascals were out at Granny and Grandad's, having fun on the allotment in the camper van!!!) and ceased the opportunity.  At one point I simply couldn't get out of the room.  Shelving had to be moved to make room to move my desk, filing cabinet etc, and every minute of floor space was covered!!!

By 10pm things were starting to come together.  I am far from finished (I still have piles of fabric needing to be organised, piles of paper to be filed, and unfinished pieces that need to be completed and put away etc.), but my space is less cluttered (I can walk from one end of the room to the other), and this has resulted in a clearer head.  I now also have room to set up my machine on my desk and get myself a small ironing board up here.  Hoorah!!!

I wonder how many others are on a clearing mission this Easter!?!  I have already had phone calls from my dad asking "do you want......?",  so they are obviously on one too!

I am out on a hot date with hubby tonight and I'm then jet setting across the border (to Yorkshire) tomorrow to spend a few days with my sister and her little lovelies.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Never mind Spring, Summer is here!!!

What a glorious day it has been.  This is a picture of the blossom on one of our plum trees.  I am sure we will have lots of plum jam making to do at the end of the summer providing there isn't a serious frost!

I hope that todays weather is a sign of things to come for the next couple of weeks while the children are off school.

Happy weekend everyone.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Making an Easter hat

Tomorrow is the day of the Easter hat competition at the Fairy's school.  She had seen a hat similar to this one and decided that she wanted to make a similar one.

On Wednesday when she was at school I raided my paper stash, I also planned out the crown for her to cut out, made her a few templates... a butterfly, a large flower, a small flower, and got everything out that she would need.  This included:

green card for the crown
yellow card (we used 2 different shades of yellow for the daffodils)
pink card (butterflies)
straws (for the stems)
pencils, pens etc.
 double sided tape 

This is what she did...

... she (we) drew around the flower templates.  She used seven, but the amount needed would depend on the size of the child's head.

She cut everything out...

... and made the flowers, sticking the little flower in the centre of the large flower using a small piece of double sided sticky tape.  She made them 3D by bending the petals of the small flower towards the centre.  They were then stuck onto art straws (drinking straws would work just as well) - don't have the straws too long or they will bend with the weight of the flower heads!!!

I then wrapped the crown around her head and fixed it to the correct circumference before she stuck the flowers in between the blades of 'grass' using sellotape.  She finished it off by making and decorating some butterflies to go around the edge and stuck them down with double sided tape.

Ta daaa.  An Easter crown fit for a little princess!!! 

If you would like to make one, but are a little unsure of my instructions, please feel free to contact me.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Cupcakes v's Macaroons

For a while now I have been seeing glorious coloured Macaroons piled high on pretty plates, and reading little snippets here and there about how Cupcakes are passe, having been displaced by brightly coloured delights!!

I decided that I would put them to the test and make some Macaroons myself.  The perfect opportunity arose when we did the photo shoot a few weeks ago.  I decided I would make some and the girls on the shoot could finish them off.  

I had great fun making them...

...I know that things look pretty orderly here, but what a messy process.  I cannot believe how sticky the mixture is.  I was sooooo pleased that I had decided to wait until both children were in bed before I started.  It is certainly not a baking activity I would embarked upon with children!!!

The girls enjoyed putting them together, covering their clothing, from sticky messiness, in my new design A-line pinnies (available to buy very soon!!!)

So, what was the verdict?  We sampled them (I had sampled them the previous night) and the overall consensus was that they are too sweet (understandably considering the amount of sugar in them), and if given the choice cake would rule!!!  The only conclusion that I can come to is that the cupcakes that are being referred to are those overly decorated examples that make me feel slightly queasy just looking at them, rather than the ones the Fairy puts together...erm there is time for her yet (see here for an example of her handy work)!!!

Give me this fabulous chocolate cake, filled with cream and strawberries and covered with a chocolate sauce sent from heaven any day!!!

What would you choose?