Friday, 10 June 2016

sunbathing, tea and crochet

Wow where has the time gone, where have the months gone? June already - really going quick this year! Does time travel faster when you are getting older? I haven't reached my milestone birthday, the big 50 just yet (that's next year!) But as I'm in my last year of my 40s I intend to enjoy it to the fullest, meeting up with friends old and new, trying new things, including new crafts perhaps. The possibilities are endless if you put your mind to it. I fancy knitting socks, sign of getting old, nah everyone is knitting socks these days. I did make an attempt one evening this week but to be honest it was 10:30pm when  I started and it was way too late to be attempting casting on 60 stitches and placing them on DPs at that time of night. I did managed to knit in the round but I gave up and have since found a new pattern.

sunshine holiday blanket

With projects piling up around me I am trying to be good and finish my WIPs first. Talking of WIPs here is one I'm working on this week, have to say I love Stylecraft Special DK for its price, colour range and it crochets so well. After this blanket I need to finish my duck egg blue then my new Cath Kidston inspired colour pallette in my all time favourite Debbie Bliss Rialto DK. I did finish my first Hitchhiker and cast on my second and I've worn it a few times, so soft and colourful.

crochet in my lunch break

In between crochet I have been doing a little pottering in my garden. Not had much in the way of my veggie patch but I did manage to plant a couple of courgette and cucumber plants last Sunday. Really do need to plant the beans but as my anti-Moss cage failed there really didn't seem much point when my crafty spaniel will just trample them or pull them up for me thinking he's being my under-gardener. Maybe I should just use canes like last year as it did the trick but didn't look that great. I think this weekend I will rig-up another make-do-and-mend kind of veggie cage to keep him out and my beans in!

Enjoy your garden, crochet, knitting, weekend and I will be back soon.


sunbathing and crochet

granny blanket drying in the sunshine

tea and crochet

hitchhiker shawl finished

Friday, 15 April 2016

another granny square blanket

Whilst I wait for seedlings to emerge (4 varieties of tomato plants sown last weekend) I am still busy making granny squares for my own blanket. I actually like the fact the weather has changed and is back to April showers so that I can sit in front of the tv and add more squares. Last night I managed to add a few more and I've now joined 82, not many more to go but still some to crochet, sew in the ends before joining. I guess I will have it finished this month. Another WIP complete, great stuff. Did you know you can also follow me on Pinterest and Instagram

Almond blossom in my garden

Last Friday we had a trip to London (Covent Garden) and then onto the O2 to see Rick Astley, hightlight of our year as it was the third concert. Loved his new song Keep on Singing and he played some new tracks from his album 50 released in June and some of his classic 80s. Danced and danced and sang out of tune, had the best fun ever!

love these tiles in the tube station

I still have a baby cardigan to sew up, two trendychales to finish, another granny stripe blanket and last years summer sleeveless jumper. I might just get on and finished the cotton jumper first, I did cast on for the front over the weekend and I have to admit I hate the yarn (Sirdar Cotton DK) but I'll continue then try to find another pattern or change my needle size, my tension looks wrong but would look ok using normal DK yarn. Does anyone else suffer with this problem knitting with cotton?

Anyway the weekend is almost here and my task will be to sew the baby cardigan, block and add a button and crochet some more squares. But I do plan to see the bluebells at Cobham Woods on Sunday morning, love that smell. I'll leave you now with some pictures of my granny square blanket.

granny blanket in progress
each time you see different colours
glorious granny squares
more granny squares

Friday, 1 April 2016

Granny Blanket tadah

I can now show you the gifted blanket. I have to say I am very happy with how it turned out. I have hundreds of photos of my progress over the last 7 weeks. I've enjoyed every single moment making it, even sewing in the ends!

Here are some of the photos, not too many crochet porn!

The sun is shining here in Kent and gardening planned for Sunday, lots of new plants to plant out thanks to my sister dropping off lots of plants she has grown for me. I'll post some pictures over the weekend.

two blankets on the go

quiet crochet time and a cuppa

lots of circles to start of my granny squares

round 3

tadah and its finished with a picot edge

I taught myself crochet pom poms at lunchtime today

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Spring is here - lots of gardening (and some crochet)

I've been pretty busy lately trying to fit everything in. Three blankets in progress, a lot of training for my Swimathon which took place on 29 March which this year is for Sport Relief (I raised £500!) and a new gardening competition for the village I live in. Wow I have been busy! Oh and my dads starts his next round of chemo and radiotherapy combined today for 5 weeks (that's the horrible bit of this post so we will quickly move on).

Can you grow the tallest sunflower competition
So the gardening competition for the village is in full swing and getting quite competitive amongst residents and roads! The children started off their sunflower seeds in pots at the last farmers market and that was great fun. I was lucky to get in touch with Thompson and Morgan and they kindly donated all the seeds plus extra which we are using as a community seed plant out day in the summer/ The children really enjoyed putting the seeds into the soil and I pre-prepared seed labels so it looked so cute, all written in silver permanent marker which went down well. I've been receiving photos of the progress and its so lovely to get involved and meet new people.  With the village growing so rapidly (it's not really a village anymore but we like to keep the community going and close) Some of the families took seeds home to plant directly in their gardens in a sunny site. Actually my husband directly sowed ours yesterday in a sunny spot next to our veggie patch, not that we are joining in but it will be good fun, we haven't grown large sunflowers since Jack was little and he's 24 this August.

another pot of potential
a residents sun flower seed

I've been super busy with blanket projects, one will be finished tonight but I can't post my tadah moment yet as it hasn't been gifted but I am so pleased with it. It you follow me on Instagram there are many many pictures of it there, and I hope you like it too. I am next going to finish the duck egg blue blanket which may or may not be a wedding anniversary present to my parents who celebrate 50 years this year, I think that might be a nice gift.

So I am slowing getting back to Blogging, although Instagram has taken over, as its so quick for me to post photos from my phone. I've yet to get Blogger to work properly from my iPhone, I think its the app that isn't very good.

I did lots of gardening over the Easter weekend, got my gardening mojo back after my neighbour moved out (yeah!!) We now have lovely neighbours and we plan to use our garden all the time now, weather permitting. So the weekend saw new life going into the garden including a new variety of Photina called Pink Marble from Morrison's for a bargain price of £7, which will be a lovely addition to go with the Red Robin shrubs or trees!

A few weeks ago we took Moss for a long walk (about 5.2 miles) along the Saxon Shoreway, its was cold but a lovely bright sunny walk followed by a cream tea at home. Here are a collection of pictures from our walk, I do like using Layout and Phonto on my phone!

Anyway that's it from me for now. I'll try not to leave it so long for the next post and to find some time to read all of yours.

Amanda x



Monday, 25 January 2016

Sunday morning Blueberry jam

Sunday morning blueberry jam, so quick, so easy, so delish! Goes so well with un cut white bread and a cup of tea.

blueberry jam

Here is the recipe.


  • 375 grams blueberries

  • 200 grams caster sugar

  • 50 ml water

Put the blueberries in a pan with 50ml water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes, until the berries burst, soften and release their juice.

  1. Add the sugar, stir until dissolved, then boil for 10 minutes.

  2. Pour into 1 large or 2 small sterilised jars, leave to cool, then cover and chill.

Progress on my second granny square blanket, colours are so lovely and its so relaxing putting them together.

glorious grannies

my husband made a bird table to go in the community orchard at the end of our road, lovely to give something back and its been quite a talking point over the past day on our local Face Book page! I'm going to add the hanging feeder with my off cuts of yarn from both my granny blankets and my last one. Not quite yarn bombing but in with my yarn theme.

Sunday afternoon installing the new bird table

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Brr it's cold

It's definitely getting colder and I have a family birthday next week, my sister in law Ellen. So I thought I'd knit her a slouchy hat to keep her warm, it's the first hand made item to gift this year. I started out with the Blackberry Beanie pattern but changed it slightly and I'm using seed stitch. It knits up quickly because the set up row is all knit, the right side is K1, P1 all the way across. I'm going to rename it Ellen! I gave her a sneak preview last night and it's going to be finished this week. She loved the colour too!

slouchy hat

seed stitch

I'm using Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in silver but in daylight it's very much like duck egg. I do love this yarn. so soft and snuggly and great stitch definition.

I've already bought more yarn for my next project! I'm back to Louisa Harding Akiko for some more luxury, I love knitting with this one too.A new hat for me to go with my padded grey winter coat. My dad chose the colour when I visited on Sunday along with my granny square blanket project no. 2 for some therapy time! My dad loves to watch me crochet these cute little granny squares, helping me chose colour combinations.

next hat project yarn

granny square production line
glorious grannies

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

my first trendychale

So Christmas is a distant memory but despite all that was going on with my dads hospital visits he is ok and we had a great Christmas. Lots of nice memories and food! We popped to London on the 30 December to see War Horse, brilliant night we all loved it.

my first trendychale
I've seen so many trendychales on Instagram that I had to join in and knit one during my time off, 11 days, lovely break. Here is mine finished, knitted in Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK in discontinued Tomato. It came in handy this week on my first day back to work, heating not on over the Christmas break so the office was so cold.

second trendychale
I'm now knitting my second one, in Grey, same yarn, so soft and warm but not itchy. I think I will knit one for a gift for my sister but need to find the right colour, maybe duck egg blue?

a night out in London