Sunday, July 31, 2011

Working up nicely

I've started a new Cowl, this one my own design. It's a funny little stitch that I have been playing with (and I have no idea what it's called) but it works up kind of knotty looking. I took off to the Caravan (in the barn) to do a bit more on it in the peace and quiet while the girls were happy in the house with Dad (I am so ready for the school holidays to be over!!).

I'll share the finished product in the next few days.

I've been doing a bit of preserving over the last week. This time of year is my Marmalade making time. We have a heavily laden Tangelo tree (it's HUGE) so I try to make the most of it. I have made one batch - and I need to make another lot today/tomorrow. I tried something different with the last batch by adding Star Anise and Cinnamon to it - which turned out lovely for a dish that I use the Marmalade in, but it tasted a little odd on toast to I'll stick to old fashioned plain flavour this time! I usually find tried and true the best don't you?

We went for a little family drive on Friday to the Bay of Islands (Northland, NZ),_New_Zealand. It's only about 45 minutes from home - jump on a little ferry across to NZ's first capital and the place of NZ's first permanent European settlement.  We love this place, from the old buildings, to the history on the gravestones at the little church to the yummy lunch we always seem to have at The Duke of Marlborough Hotel. We are so lucky to have this just up the road.

Big girl loving the boat trip
Pretty Russell

NZ's oldest surviving church - complete with bullet holes apparently! Interesting gravestones - so much history.
 While I was having some lovely time out The Chief made some coconut cookies - isn't he a gem!
Right house to tidy, baking to be done and school bag to be packed for tomorrow.

Bye for now xxxx Kylie

Saturday, July 23, 2011


I've just had one kiddie for a couple of days (the other one has been at her grandparents for a mid school holiday break) and wow it's so peaceful with no sibling rivalry.

So I've been making good use of my time...

A little concotion for my littlest ones eczema flare up - Chamomile and Calendula cream. Using Grapeseed oil and beeswax as a base, with glycerine, vitamin C, emulsifying wax and a infusion of organic Calendula and Chamomile Flowers. Chamomile flowers have anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-allergenic properties, Calendula has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties and the oil just helps keep the moisture in the skin. It seemed to soothe her skin well the first night I tried we tried it.

Making Cupcakes, pink by request of course, lovingly topped by my big girl. Hmmmm I think she ate more than she put on the cakes.

It's sitting on a lovely Paragon plate I picked up at the Hospice shop yesterday (as well as a matching saucer - now I just need the cup to make a set). It made me feel a little bit happier after I broke a saucer and a cup of two totally seperate trios yesterday. I can't believe how clumsy I was. Kicking myself now.

 I am so excited.... I have been searching for these jars everywhere, and now I have finally found them. I have no idea what I will keep in them (they are pretty large) but I saw them in a magazine and I just had to have them. I hunted high and low in my city but no luck, but yesterday I headed over to the in-laws little town and I couldn't believe it when I spotted them in a gift shop. Fairly inexpensive as well which is an extra bonus!

The new cat, Tootu, has settled in completely. The Chief isn't so fussed on her but I think she's pretty cute - except for when I spot her trying to catch the goldfish. She will learn when she falls in I guess.

So many spring bulbs out at the moment - and it's only halfway through winter.

It's really mild outside today so I'm sure I will have a garden full of Daffodils soon!

I've got my Tangelos and lemons soaking at the moment so I can make my annual batch of Marmalade tommorrow. We have so many Tangelos this year though that I think I'll have to make a few batches.

Speaking of Tangelo, I have some new (but old) retro Tupperware for the caravan. Isn't it just so kitch but perfect for the 70's style.

My hooks and yarn are calling now. More hats, a cowl or more work on the granny blanket????

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Doesn't it make you feel great!

I've had a few requests lately for hats (specifically little newborn ones) so I've been making a few and they have sold like hot cakes. Such a lovely feeling knowing that people actually *like* what I make.

We've cracked into the first bottle of cider (you may remember the cider making process) and it's actually not bad. Bit sweet yet, but as it ferments more the alcohol with increase and the sugar decrease. Will be lovely come late Spring/early Summer.

I've started a new job 3 days a week. It's a foreign environment for me as it's just about all men working there (and very *blokey* types they are). The only thing I struggle with is the man sized coffee mugs. It takes me about an hour and a half to drink a cup of tea out of one of them. So I've got myself a nice dainty teacup to take along tomorrow. I'm sure it's too pretty to be used by any of the boys.

I have done very little in the way of baking recently, I've had a nasty virus the last few days and have tried to keep my germies to myself, but I did manage to whip up the girls favourite meringues before I went all cough, cough, cough-y.

I'm dreaming of warmer days, poor Towbe is waiting patiently in the barn for us.....

Thursday, July 14, 2011

I have no excuse!

I admit, I've been slack. No excuse for not blogging, just a bit busy the last few weeks. Winter chills, husband back on shift work, a new job and more time with the crochet hook means little time on the laptop.

I've just been having a play with this shot of my youngest girl, I think it's just gorgeous so I thought I'd share it with you all.
I'll be back soon... I promise this time ;)

Friday, July 1, 2011

Special treasure

I've been having a bit of a linen cupboard sort out today, and I came across my Nan's tablecloth. Oh the emotions that washed over me when I re-found this. Every single morning this table cloth was laid on her table and removed for each and every meal. It's only now that I appreciate why she loved it so. Even 17 years after her death I am sure I can still smell the comforting smell that was Nan and Grandads house on it. I just wish I had a table that would fit it - but mine are just too large. One day I'll have a special spot just for it, but until then it'll remain my special treasure.

I made some yummy Rice Bubble Slice the other day. Big girl and the Chief gobbled it up. Little one wasn't so sure about the idea of cereal in her baked goods (what does she think Afghans are made from then I wonder?). I thought it was pretty good, and so so easy!

We got two new chickens to join the flock the other day. We had 5 but only one laying at a time, and I resent paying for eggs, so we got some good egg producers. Brown Shavers - well known for their egg laying prowess (we've had them before but these are the best condition ones I have ever got). This is the best shot (above) of one of them - they were a bit camera shy over the first few days.  The old girls look a bit grumpy about their new pen mates don't you think?

And after a bit of a full on, at a times stressful, week I needed a little luxury... My lovely soap lady -  - dropped off some bars to keep us stocked. Her soaps are amazing! They are all natural - including the amazing fragrances. I have such super sensitive skin on my hands that I can't use anything else. These bars last well longer than the horrible chemical filled commercial ones. Don't you love how they looked all stacked in a pile? My girls certainly love smelling them when they arrive.

I've also found a terrific product for my girls who LOVE sprinkles on anything (well, what child doesn't? ) - natural colour ones! I'm not a huge fan of artificial colours so this really made me happy. Don't you just love them in all their colourful goodness.

I made a crochet pot mat this week, it was just a random design that I experimented with but it sure does the trick. Have been busy though making a whole heap of hats for friends babies now that the winter has hit us.
First little frost for the year - only a light one but it's certainly cooler in the mornings!

 Off to a musical with some friends tonight - can't wait!

Have a lovely weekend  xx Kylie