Friday, 2 January 2015

Presents and Cookies

Hello there!
I hope you all had a lovely Christmas & New Year? Did you make a whole bunch of resolutions for 2015? I'm not really into that (I think they tend to become broken very quickly & then become a stick to beat yourself with!) but I do have a few goals I would like to pursue over the coming year. I have a bunch of UFO projects I would dearly love to finish off this year... I would like to be a little more organised about upcoming celebrations, from birthdays to Christmas I think a little more forward planning & some realism about what is achievable would result in less stress!... and I would like to get back to blogging more regularly (which will pretty much depend on how well my head behaves over the coming months, overall it has been a lot better since our trip so fingers crossed).
Instead of bringing you the next installment of our trip today I want to share some of the projects I have been working on since we returned in mid-November. For the main part I have been choosing to work on small projects easily completed in a day or two as life has felt rather hectic & the days have been flying by bringing Christmas ever closer! The first is a hat I knitted for my mum, the pattern is from issue 38 of Knit Now magazine...
It was knitted in the round on double pointed needles using Sirdar Supersoft Aran (I love how soft this 100% acrylic yarn is!) & I added a handmade tag with the washing instructions from the ball band before wrapping it up. I try to remember to do this to all the knitted/ crocheted items I give away so their new owner has the best chance of keeping the item looking good! 
Next I made a Christmas present for my grandson Little H. In the Fall he moved into a long planned Spiderman themed bedroom so when I saw this fleecy fabric in the States I knew who it was destined for! 
I bought a red zip & made it into a big, soft, squishy cushion cover that could easily be removed for washing. For the innards I used some calico to make a pillow form & emptied two pillows into it & sealed it so none of it can escape no matter how much it is jumped on! Here's the finished cushion...

For a dear friend who likes Star Trek & dragonflies I found a couple of washcloth/ dishcloth patterns on Ravelry that seemed a perfect fit. You can find the Star Trek pattern here & the dragonfly here

I used Lily Sugar n Cream yarn in red for the top one & Peaches & Creme Sweet Pea Stripes for the bottom one, both of which are a 100% cotton worsted weight (aran) yarn (yes, more of my yarny aquisitions from across the pond ;-) ). They were a satisfying knit, simple enough to work on in front of the TV over a few evenings & could easily prove addictive - there are a HUGE range of patterns out there although my brain is already whirring at how easy it would be to create just about any design given a pencil & some graph paper!!
Lastly I want to share with you some baking which my daughter & I did together on Christmas Eve. Now anyone who knows me knows I'm more of a "I only have a kitchen cos it came with the house" type person so you know this is a truly simple project! I might admire lots of clever foody things on Pinterest but I know my limitations so rarely do I attempt any of them! However when I came across a set of cookie cutters in our Lakeland store I was tempted to give this a go & it really was pretty simple & effective I think. First off you make up any cookie dough you want to roll out & cut out two of every cutter in the set (there are 10 sizes of stars in my set). When they are cool you ice them...
...and decorate any way you like... 
We used ready made holly leaves & berries from the store & sprinkles for the two smallest stars. We left them to dry for the rest of the evening but they were not totally dry when we wanted to go to bed so we stacked them up any way. They made a nice center piece when my sister-in-law came over with her family, and an even better desert for us all!  
We will definitely be making one of these again next Christmas!
Well I hope you all had a lovely time however you have spent it, thank you for visiting here today, I hope to be back soon!

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