Monday, February 28, 2011

Weekend WIP Wind-up

I was aiming to finish off a few of the things on my WIP list over the weekend, and I actually succeeded at it! I am just a little bit chuffed with how speedily things worked up.


First off the ranks was the baby cloche. Actually, I made two. If you missed my previous post, I finished the one I started second, first! Here is the one I started out on.




I love this yarn for the hook. I have to say that I have knitted with it, but using it on the hook is just a rather delicious experience (and it's not even an expensive, fancy yarn!) The yarn is Panda Purla, color 6, which is the softest acrylic I've ever used - mixed with 15% alpaca. It feels lovely, and isn't scratchy or itchy at all. I'd link you straight to the yarn - but the link seems to be broken right now. Pattern and hook size are listed here)

I also finished up the heart garland that I started last weekend, but I will have to wait to take some photos of it so I can show you... tomorrow (hopefully the weather will co-operate for good lighting!). It's amazing what you can accomplish while watching a James Bond flick or two.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Baby Cloche

 I received news yesterday that my friends who are now living in NZ were here in Aus and had just had a little baby girl, so even though I had a different one on the hook, I spent the afternoon (and evening, because I pulled it half undone when it was almost finished as I wasn't happy with it!) making a new one and finishing it. I gifted it to them today along with a bag of my decadent home-made choc-chip cookies (you have to have a little contraband you know!).

We went up to the hospital this afternoon to see them, and she is the most gorgeous baby! Seriously. She is pretty at 2 days of age!!! I'd love to show you pictures, but since I didn't get permission from her Mummy and Daddy, I'd better not :) I put it on Little Clam's teddy instead to give you some idea ;)




Here are the stats...
Yarn - Panda Fancy in cream (52% wool, 48 nylon) 8 ply
Hook - 5mm (actually, I think it was a US I )
Pattern from here - aestheticnest I am LOVING her stuff!!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

My Creative Space - Hook Happiness

I'm a little hooked on yarn right now - which may be a bad thing, considering all the things that I have said that I would sew for family members!


The weekend saw me hooking up a few hearts. These will be for one of my little nieces - not sure which one yet! (I have one that will be one soon, and two more that are still living in a day spa - so to speak) The whole piece isn't finished yet - but I am hoping to rectify that on the weekend.



Monday saw Jellyfish and I making pavlova from scratch - he loved the process, and his daddy LOVED the finished result!!! (Not to mention his other parent... it was Go-oo-od!). He is getting right into the whole baking thing at the moment. I think I am going to have to schedule something each week that he can specifically help make. Mmmm.


I have been loving feed times with Little Clam in the past two days... This is what has been filling up my time while I feed him (Besides chatting with him, that is!) I have a few more to go before I am finished. They will be gifted later this year.

And lastly, I am so in love with this...

Can't wait to have this one finished so I can show you. The yarn feels delicious to work with. It is hooking up quite quickly, so hopefully in the next couple of days I will be able to do the big reveal on it ;) So far I have spent about 3 hours on it (It was at about 1.5 hours when I took the photo).

Still stitching the strawberry for Jess (I wasn't happy with it, so I ripped it out and am starting again), I have another crochet phone sock still going (I'm trying to make a crochet i-cord, but my hook is too small!) and I REALLY need to get back to knitting Jellyfish's beanie!!! Yikes!

This Week's Work in Progress (WIP) Stats


Total WIP: 6
New Projects: 3
Finished Projects: 0

Thanks to Describe Happy for the inspiration to do a Work in Progress Wednesday stat breakdown.
For more creative juice, head over to Koo tomorrow. 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Christchurch - the memories

Today was a shocker. Mr. Kelp came home at lunch and told me about the earthquake. Devastating. Sad. If you have never been there, Christchurch is a beautiful city... or at least it was. It's been 4 1/2 years since we were there (Half the time was for work for him, and all of it was a holiday for me). I have such good memories of my time there. I even considered moving there (and for those of you who know me - YES, even though it is super cold in winter!!!). I have friends that I was at college with who live there. Zara, Kyla & Artie, I hope you guys are all Ok.

Since we are being shown destroyed images of Christchurch, I thought I would share some of my own memories with you - some things to remind you of the beauty of the place, the fun, and resilience.

View from the old office






Lunchtime walk
Yep -that's me looking down the river on the street near where the former office 
was that Mr. Kelp was working in for the week.

Saturday arvo drive - summit rd.




 
Bumble Bee
These guys are so cute - big and bumbly. I love them. They just make me smile.


A walk in the woods

Punting on the Avon for my birthday

 Christchurch Cathedral

Outside window of the cathedral


Inner window

Inside the cathedral

Cool building  (I can't remember the name of it - and don't know where my brochure is)

Lunch time walk

Bridge inscribed with "Ovid non pro patria"
If anyone can translate this Latin quote - I'd love it!!!

Reflections

Can you imagine being picked up for a formal even from here?

A piece of  NY 9/11 a thank you to all the volunteers.
People of Christchurch, my thoughts and prayers are with you. May your resilience show through, your courage abound, and the support of others flow freely.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

My Creative Space - Strawberries

I haven't officially posted about it yet - but I have joined in the sew-a-thon over at Describe Happy. Our first project that we are embarking on is strawberry pincushions. (Recognise my crochet phone sock from here, and here? It's kinda the same as the knit pattern from here and here)

The first one I made I sent to Karen as as a little "I appreciate you" gift. I made some changes to the pattern as I decided to hand stitch the strawberry top instead of machining it, and then I added a little detail down the middle of each leaf section. I'm not sure it I will do the leave detail in the new ones or not.


I am now in the process of making a larger one for Jess, who won my Valentines Giveaway, and a bunch more of them  - because... well... they are just fun. I will find someone to give them all to :D

These creative people might inspire you to make something today too...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day




Well I did say I would share a little of what went on at our house today...


This morning Jellyfish woke up while I was getting organised to make breakfast for everyone, so jumped right in and helped Mummy. We made heart shaped pancakes together. He got ingredients for me as we went, and then helped to set the table and put all the toppings out. We had maple syrup (Queen PURE maple syrup - I can't stand the fake stuff!), whipped cream, raspberries, banana and french blackberry jam to choose from. It was totally delish and J and I had lots of fun getting it ready.


For dinner tonight, we decided to make the place look just a little bit more special with a paper heart and some candles. I wanted to make lots of paper hearts - even got the paper cut, but never got to hole punching them. You can find instructions for them over here. I'd also like to try some smaller ones with semi-sheer plastic at some point. What I did discover was that the thicker your paper/card, the better it sits.
 


After hanging that, we added a table runner and some hear shaped candles. The one in the centre is a vanilla scented one in a tin that my grandparents gave me for my 16th birthday  - till today I'd only sniffed it! The other two were given to me by the sweetest little girl that was in one of my classes a few years ago.


Jellyfish actually took the above photo. He even included one of our dinners. I made rice and cottage cheese rissoles to Mr. Kelp's Nana's recipe. They might not look that appealing - but oh boy, do they taste good!!! (Let me know if you want the recipe...) I am ashamed to say that I haven't made these (that I can remember anyway) since the first year we were married - 9 years ago!

... didn't think of taking a photo till I had taken a couple of bites!
Then it was on to dessert. I made a White Chocolate & Raspberry Cheesecake. Mmmm (if you are into counting calories, stop counting after breakfast. I'm not, so I have no idea exactly how bad we were being. Tee hee hee). Mine is similar to this one (I don't mind sharing my recipe... but this is a long-ish post already!). At this point Mr. Kelp did something that isn't too common. He decided that he needed a hot drink. What he brought back for me was a berry mocha, and a jasmine green pearl tea for himself. I don't know if any of you were familiar with Nescafe's Brief Encounters range, but their Behaving Berry Badly one was rather exquisite smelling. Sigh. I have been hoarding mine since I can no longer get them. I think I have one left.

The second-last of a good thing
What I was trying for was a fun experience for my two boys, and a little bit of treating for the man I love. Really, it can be too easy is it to take them for granted. I am trying to see them for who they are and show them that they are indeed special to me. I want to live the love every day - and not just the romantic kind (although for the man in your life, that is good too!) but the Agape kind. It's a challenge for me. Still needs work :) What love language do you speak?

Hope your day was creative and full of love!
S xxx

Valentines Heart Winner!

This morning I wrote every one's names on paper, guillotined them (with a little help from Jellyfish), folded them in thirds, and placed them in my big red floppy hat (well, it's Valentine's Day - so that hat HAD to be red!). I then got Jellyfish to close his eyes, put his hand in the hat & draw out a winner...
There were 18 entries (including those who follow this blog).


And the winner is....

drum roll please!!!

Congratulations to Jess who said...

"How do I show love to others? I clean up poop. Among other things. :P "


After a comment like that I think you must deserve a little treat! I will check you details with you, and get your little parcel in the post.

Stay tuned for more Valentine's fun later today ;)
 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Knitted Neckie Reveal & Crochet Hearts



I promised to reveal the final product of one of my WIP list a few weeks ago - so here it is! Gifted today (so I can now post about it) to another SIL for her 30th birthday (along with a lemonade tree). We had a beautiful morning in Terrigal at the Crown Plaza in the Lord Ashley room.


The view
The neckie is made from Sullivan's yarn in black (Wouldn't you know it - I have been saving the wrapper for months now, and when I go to find it - it's gone! The yarn has grey, white, and teal mixed through with the black, and has a slubby nature, wrapped in ribbon). Buttons are charcoal grey with silver sparkles from here (the yarn was also purchased here).
I don't know if the pattern I used has a name or not (I'm sure it does), but it is just a variation of moss stitch, that seems to suit this kind of yarn. I just experimented with stitches till it looked right. It is the same pattern I used for the Mulberry Delight neckie, but with different button holes.


 The picture quality is a bit so-so... it was quite a dull morning this morning.


I also wanted to share with you a close up of the Crochet Scandinavian Heart that I have been churning out a few of (and I'm not done yet!). I have one up for grabs in my Valentines Giveaway that ends tonight 12pm DST. If you haven't dropped a comment on that post people, now is the time to do it! ;)
If you would like to make your own, the tutorial and pattern for it is here. I actually found it through Knit Purl Gurl, and liked hers so much that I HAD to make some for myself. I just wish I could have found similar colourways of yarn! Mine is made from Heirloom 4 ply 100% cotton in Red.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Sewing a smidge - Bow Tie (+ a Giveaway)


Before we left to head for QLD on Australia Day, I started sewing a bow tie for Jellyfish that he had requested to wear to my nieces wedding (she is 10 years younger than me). He chose the fabric - I don't know what exactly it was, but it was just a fat quarter of some quilting cotton from Spotlight. I used a hook and eye, so I can alter the size later as I need to.

With my sister and her family here till the Saturday arvo (I wanted to devote the time I had with them to being in the moment with them), and all the cooking, packing, and general faffing around that one does whilst getting ready to leave, the morning for departure arrived... and I still hadn't made the bow tie!!! Since I often find that the things I am making for the boys get shelved for some other emergency to take it's place, I had a moment of indignation and dissappointment with myself, so I got up early, and started cutting! I had already looked at other peoples tutes for it, and adapted them to suit what I thought would work. I got all the interfacing and machine sewing done just in time to get in the car. The rest of the hand-sewing assembly I did at my mums.

He looked quite dapper in it, and got lots of positive remarks from people at the wedding. Of course, the only approval that I really wanted was his, and he thanked me with a hug and a grin, and the repeated comment "Mummy made this for me".

If I were doing it again, I would make the strip around the neck thinner, and the bow not so wide (He will grow into the size one day... if he will still wear it that is!)

P.S. Don't forget to check out the Giveaway on yesterday's blog post.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Heart

I'm back! And it has been ages. I have missed you all. After all my good intentions on doing a few posts for Appreciation Week, I only ended up doing one. My sister, her hubby, and their two girls came to stay mid-week that week, and I was so busy appreciating their visit that I didn't get back to the computer. I get to see my sister for a good visit about every one or two years - which isn't enough! I so need to work out a way that I can see her more often.

They had just come back from a Pathfinder Camporee in Toowoomba where there were 1000's of  10 - 18 year-olds (plus adults) from all over Australia. It had rained and rained while they were there, and some of the tents got a bit flooded, so my sister's group (from Tassie) got put in a large pavilion to sleep for a few nights. The day after they left is the day the inland tsunami went through! It was with Prayer-felt thanks that they got out in time.


My hubby, the two boys and I have just come back from doing a south QLD trip, and I will give you more of in-depth run down in the next few days, but what I did notice was how much heart everyone up there has post-flood. They are so amazing. Resilient. They just keep doing the things that need to be done. And having a bit of fun where they can. The Aussie spirit is indeed alive.

Now, for a little lightheartedness...

A Giveaway!

Valentines day isn't far away, but in honor of love, I put together a little something for those of you who are interested.
NB. Measuring tape & scissors are not part of the giveaway.
The pictured strawberry pincushion is not the one you will receive, I will make another.

You have three options to enter:
1. Leave a comment telling me how you show love to others.
2. Blog about this giveaway, linking back to this post, and leave another comment 
telling me that you have done so.
3. Follow this blog. I add this one with some hesitation.
If you have been reading for a while, or have only just stumbled 
across Seaweedandraine but like what you see and want to 
see more, then feel free to follow along.

I will send it to where ever you live - be in in Aus or internationally.
Entries close Sunday 12pm (Aus DST).
The winner will be announced on February 14.
Please note that the prize will not get to you by Valentines Day (Sorry!) 
I was too late in getting this post up for that to happen!