Pizza night and a bunny

The school holidays are coming to an end this weekend, come Monday we’ll be back to the school/work routines. It’s lovely to take the time together to make some meals a special celebration of the season, the holiday and just being together.

We love a pizza in this family, and now that autumn is here and the evenings are fine but cool, it’s the perfect time for cozying up in front of the pizza oven.DSC_0247Ready to come out…
DSC_0211Maia set the table for us, including picking a bunch of autumnal leaves and flowers and making little place setting name tags…DSC_0215Of course, the pizza was delicious… there are never any complaints about eating dinner on pizza night!DSC_0234And as you might have noticed in the first photo, dessert was also cooked over the open flame – well the marshmallows were anyway 🙂DSC_0255If you follow me on Facebook you might have seen that I recently taught Maia to knit. She picked it up really quickly – I’ve tried and tried to teach her to crochet but it just hasn’t stuck – but she’s taken to knitting like a duck to water…13010748_1170263153026284_6216425662650888505_nDon’t you love the look of concentration?

I found this really easy pattern to make a knitted bunny, which is basically just  a square which you sew up in a triangle to make the head and then along the seam to make the body… that doesn’t make much sense, but  you can find a much better explanation here!

Stuffing the body…DSC_0204And sewing the final seam:DSC_0208Love that tongue!

Here’s the finished bunny, cute huh…DSC_0279Pretty nifty how two of the corners make the ears! Im thinking it would work just as well with a crochet square, and even better if you had a furry yarn. She was very pleased with herself, and I am very proud of her yarny creating 🙂

For me, Im working on sock two of my second pair of socks, this pair is MUCH easier than the first was!DSC_0293This is taken this morning, while having breakfast. Green smoothie and blueberry and apple pancake squares… the raspberries have finally finished for the season.DSC_0295Don’t you love the colors, these self striping yarns are awesome!

What’s going on at your place, what are you working on?

Have a great week everyone!
Janette df

The weekend

Summer has drifted slowly into autumn, and although the weather is still warm, we’re well into the cooler season mode. I’m certainly struggling with moving far from home, enjoying the quieter change of pace that the change of season brings.

Autumn mornings are the perfect time for raspberry pancake squares (yes we are still picking raspberries – yum!)DSC_0047
So what did I get up to this weekend?

DSC_0107 (1)Can you spot what’s peaking out from under this beautiful orchid?

Yes I’ve started knitting a pair of socks.

It’s many a year since I’ve knitted, but I’ve seen so many gorgeous socks being produced all over the internet, I decided I would give them a go.

After the initial fiddling and fumbling with the tiny circular needle, no less than 5 starts on the rib(!), and more than a few dropped stitches, I pulled myself together and finished a sock. I’m well into the next one and I’m happy to report that it’s growing on the needles much more smoothly (and quickly ). Im following this most excellent beginner sock tutorial on Winwick Mum.

Don’t you love the lovely self striping sock yarn?

DSC_0101I also spent a few hours on Saturday making a whole new wardrobe for Maia’s Barbie family (interestingly, not one of the them is called ‘Barbie’!)…

DSC_0057Certainly not my favorite dolls, but I’m actually quite proud of how modest,  yet stylish, they turned out! Plus its the only time I’ve made 3 skirts, 2 pairs of trousers, 1 dress and 4 tops in one day. Maia: “You should go into business making Barbie clothes, Mum. They are so much better than the ones they come with.” Thanks love, will keen that in mind if I need to find a new job!

As with most weekends, I also spent some time in the garden. The winter vege garden is in, and while the summer flowers are all but done, there are some pockets of color still holding on…DSC_0076This time of the year I adore the hydrangeas…DSC_0075Their mottled colors are  so beautiful as they dry on the bushes…DSC_0072I know they are probably not for everyone, but to me they are more beautiful now than when they are in early bloom.DSC_0069I will cut them off, but not until they are completely dead (sometime in the middle of winter), for now I enjoy their shabby chic beauty…DSC_0066So that’s what the weekend looked like at our place. What did you get up to? Ever knitted socks? Got any tips to share? ~ J xox

December and January

There isn’t any snow falling, nor fires burning or chestnuts roasting… but our festive season has had a lot of sun, sand and smiles 🙂

Just before Christmas we spent a week at Mt Maunganui, which was glorious!Mt MaunganuiPohutukawa Mt MaunganuiPohutukawa M & CWhile we were there, my baby girl turned 9!Maia turns 9Since Christmas we’ve been for lots of hikes, and even managed some mountain biking. Not to mention plenty of time in the pool.Hiking 2016Hiking 2016 2I always love finding a heart shaped rock!Heart shaped rockHiking 2016 3I’ve spent much time tending my garden… which is looking lush and green thanks to a couple of days of rain this week! garden jan 2016It’s very productive too – artichokes, potatoes, peas, beans, cucumbers – I’m impatiently waiting for the tomatoes, they just need to hurry up and ripen! garden jan 2016 2garden jan 2016 3Of course we still have one of these; Christmas tree 2015And there were plenty of presents, and all the usual things you would expect at Christmas – like us all eating more than a reasonable amount of festive-y food!

The summer still has another month or so to go, but work starts again later this week which will be a rude wake up call for those of us that have been lazing around in bed until a very late hour (ie, me!), but I’m sure we will manage to fit in plenty more outdoor activity before the children have to go back to school next month.

maia and janette mtSo my friends, I want to wish you a (little late) but very merry Christmas, and all the very best for a wonderful new year…

What’s happening in your world? What have you been up to?

J xox

Green Doily Ta Da

Crochet doily free pattern I managed to get some shots of my newly completed doily in the  sun this morning…Crochet doily free pattern

I think it turned out well, the pattern is good (a few very minor mistakes, but obvious enough if you have been crocheting a while), I’d definitely still recommend it! It’s a free pattern (my favourite kind) and you can find it here.

Crochet doily free patternI was particularly pleased with how the green contrasts with our rimu table and the lovely Cherise of this orchid which I have managed to coax into a second year of flowering…

Crochet doily free patternI’m now working on some fingerless mitts for a Christmas present. What are you working on? Any nice doily patterns to recommend – I’d like make more 🙂 Jxx

The green hornet

Hello and happy Saturday!Doily crochetSo I found a new project to work on, and since I spent most of the first 15 rounds of it watching the Green Hornet (ludicrous – although in fairness I’m guessing a doily crocheting 40 year old mother of two is hardly the target audience!), I’ve decided that’s a good name for it 🙂

Doily crochet 4It was a bit dull here (late) this afternoon so I wandered around the garden snipping here and there in a bid to brighten my photos up a bit. There were a surprising number of flowers in bloom. Not much I can do about the shadows though.

The doily pattern is called Summer Splendor, its working up easy enough (read not too much concentration required – perfect for trashy tv and and the rugby world cup!). I’m using Milford satin in 2 ply and a 2mm hook. I just hope there is enough cotton left in the ball – I think I’ve got 8 rounds to go. It’s looking like its going to need some serious blocking to get the fans to stand out.Doily crochet 5Thank you to everyone who left such lovely comments about my sketchbook. I find sharing crochet generally very easy (maybe because its the yarn and stitches that are really on show), but sharing what I have drawn is strangely more intimate and I was very nervous about it. I would never show my doodlings to someone who visited me at home for instance. Anyway, thank you for being so sweet – you made me very happy 🙂

J xox

In my sketchbook

Well my navy blue crochet top is officially in the naughty spot. It’s been a bit hit and miss, love the color and the yarn, but the pattern has been a bit less intuitive than I like… earlier in the week while crocheting in front of the TV I messed up and didn’t realise for quite a few rows (read nights) so had a major unravel to get back to where the mistake was. Then last night when I was admiring my handiwork (most of both sides now finished) I realised I’ve used a bigger hook on this section than I began the garment with. Gah.  Unravel? Continue and pretend I didn’t notice? Ignore it for a few days/weeks/months??  I’ll report back soon.

So I thought I’d share something that I do enjoy working on at present, my sketch book…sketchbook36I have always loved to draw… it is when I feel most at peace with myself.

sketchbook38 sketchbook37 Here are some of my favourite pages…sketchbook21 sketchbook23 sketchbook31 sketchbook32sketchbook20sketchbook28sketchbook29sketchbook30sketchbook25sketchbook26sketchbook33sketchbook24I could spend all day, every day drawing. I wish I did! The last one Ill share with you is this one;sketchbook27A very important message dear friends!sketchbook 40And before I go, a few more shots of that beautiful spring blossom 🙂sketchbook34 sketchbook35sketchbook 41You’re welcome! I feel better already. Now I’m off to find a little crochet project I can work on and complete quickly… xxooxx ~ Janette