Monday, 28 December 2015

Sugar overload

You know you are approaching maximum holiday sugar capacity when even 21-year-old DS is whimpering that he just wants real food and can't face any more sweets. DH reckons he's put on 7.5 pounds the past week and I no longer feel comfortable wearing anything except stretchy leggings or track bottoms. Sigh, time for a New Year's diet again.

I hope you all had a pleasant Christmas. We had a relaxing day just the three of us, starting out with stockings (full of sweets) and culminating in a Christmas turkey feast which we are still ploughing through some days later. On Boxing Day we had a 2.5 hour drive to spend the day with the in-laws and overnight in a hotel before rejoining them for breakfast.  The obligatory present swap of course included huge amounts of sweets as did the catering.  It's a very Christmas-sy thing to do, visiting with relatives, but at the same time it can be somewhat trying and we were all glad to head for home again.  We stopped at the Outlet Mall in Swindon to pick up a similar casserole pan to the one my sister-i-l had used for cooking dinner which I think will be really useful, and also found a Sheridan outlet where we picked up some 70% off duvet covers which are quite welcome. Unfortunately we got stuck in traffic jams around the M40 and coming home took half again as long.

Although I refrained from wearing my "I get to knit, you get to live" button, my sock knitting did protect my sanity during the visit. I've started the Basket Check Socks from The Little Box of Socks by Charlene Schurch and Beth Parrott, using the other colourway of Arne and Carlos sock yarn that I bought in Oxford. I really like how the texture of garter stitches and slipped stitches is popping the colours and breaking up the stripes.

In the car I was knitting on my third pair of Arne and Carlos felted slippers, having finished and felted the second pair on Christmas Day. They are equally snuggly and I'm wearing them right now.  Here are pics before and after felting in the washing machine.

On Christmas Eve, I finished the rejuvenation of my 1/12th scale laundry roombox and hung it on the wall of our real laundry room. I never had a good place to hang this in our old house so it used to be in the kitchen, hanging under the upper cabinets. It had a terrible yellow paint job, and over the years had become splashed with all sorts of stuff as well as getting knocked around.

I gave it a really good degrease and clean up with my new favourite cleaner: sugar soap wipes, and tackled the plexiglas front with both sugar soap wipes and glass cleaner until it was finally spot free.  I repainted the box in blue using a Dulux tester pot (mixed to my choice of colour for just £3). I tidied up the inside, removed several items that were out of scale, and added an ironing board from my stash.  The shelves are still somewhat bare but I will look out at dollshouse shows for more things to add to the basement-type clutter.  I've hung a vintage embroidered mat from the towel rail and I'm quite pleased with how much better it looks now.

Also on Christmas Eve (which was my day off) I cut out all the pieces for 12 star blocks finishing at 6" each, for my Let it Snow quilt. Today I've pieced some of them, they will go in two rows of six above and below the central panel.

I found it quite handy to cut the flying geese for the star points using my Fons & Porter flying geese ruler, since they are scrappy and each star is of different fabric. The ruler makes it quite easy because you don't need to measure apart from cutting the right size strip to start with.

We've been watching a lot of Christmas television the last few days, films like Brave and The Croods, and shorts like Stickman, the new Shaun the Sheep with Llamas, Agatha Christie's And then there were None, etc.  As well as doing a lot of knitting, I finally finished hand-quilting my hand quilted cushion cover and today I made it up into a zipped cushion with piping, using some synthetic burgundy suede/velvet type fabric from my stash. It looks quite effective on the windowseat, and I like how the fabrucs I chose work with my design and with the window seat colours. It was nice to hand quilt something again although I am chagrined at how unskillful I have become.

In terms of crafty christmas pressies, I received an Optivisor magnification lens to go with the Optivisor headset that I've ordered so I can see what I am doing for miniatures; a Noro knitting magazine full of colourful patterns; some pretty ceramic handmade buttons, some gorgeous miniatures from a fellow dollshouse collector (thanks Anita!) and two lace bobbins from two lace friends, It's so nice to get crafty gifts from people who understand or share your hobbies.  Non craft gifts included a vintage style clear cake stand/dome, socks, a bottle of champagne, The Hobbit trilogy DVDs and of course lots and lots of sweets.

 And that's about it. I'm back at work for the next two days then get another long weekend thanks to the bank holiday. Happy new year!!

1 comment:

Anita Mills said...

Love the laundry room and the cushion cover.

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