Made it Monday #9

Wow. Two posts in as many weeks. This scheduling lark might actually be working (now I’ve said that, I’m bound to mess it up aren’t I?)

Last week was my lovely mum’s birthday. Little lady had announced about 2 months ago that she and I would make a cake. So my mum started looking around for cake ideas! About 3 weeks ago she showed me a magazine with the cake she wanted. I was oblivious to the fact that little lady had volunteered us to make a cake so was a little surprised by being handed a picture and being told “that’s the cake I want for my birthday” :/

To be fair, this cake wasn’t hard to do but looks quite impressive. I made 4 sponge cakes and cut holes in 3 of them.

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I filled the hole with sweets – haribo and Aero bubbles at mam’s request! The 4th cake then acted like a lid.

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I am rubbish at icing a cake so I looked up tutorials on YouTube. They really helped! I did a crumb coat which I never do and really took my time kneading and rolling the icing.

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I have to be honest, I was pretty impressed by this attempt. It was my best attempt ever. Okay there were a few issues on the side where I hadn’t rolled the icing equal enough so had to add an extra bit to cover the gap 😕. Little lady then stuck little cupcake shaped chocolates around the edge

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With this cake, it’s the cutting that makes it special.

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This was the bit I was most disappointed with. The magazine picture showed the sweets tumbling out of the cake once cut, but in reality I found that they stuck to the inside of the cake and needed a bit of coaxing out. Hubby claims that the magazine probably added extra sweets for the photoshoot to give the “tumbling out” effect but I suppose we’ll never know.

Have you ever made a cake similar? Did your sweets stick or tumble out artistically? I’d love to know the secret

Made it Monday #8

It’s half way through August and we are only at number 8! Wow! That’s seriously lacking on my behalf isn’t it? To be honest I tend to forget it’s Monday until it’s too late. I think the best way to keep on top of these is to write them and then schedule them to publish on a Monday. That way I don’t have to rely on me remembering what day it is! 😕

Anyway this week I have made 2 lampshades. First off, I made this one for D’s bedroom, with fabric he chose himself

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Then after seeing the finished lampshade, Little Lady decided she wanted me to make her one too. So she chose her fabric and I made her this one

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I love them both and after posting them on my facebook craft page I’ve had quite a few enquiries about making more. How exciting! 😀

What have you made this week?

Zero Waste Week

Zero waste week is fast approaching. Now in it’s 7th year it is running from 1-7th September. In previous years, the concept of going completely zero waste was insurmountable for me. With 2 small children and a full time job, I just couldn’t see how I would do it. This year’s theme, however, is “One More Thing” so one more thing you can save from landfill. That is something I can do. By cutting down on one thing I can make a difference. And it’s not just me. If all of us stop one thing from going to landfill then we can make a huge collective difference.

When I signed up for zero waste week I was asked to make a pledge and submit a selfie. Haha! You won’t believe how many pictures I made hubby take of me and I’m still not happy with the photo!! I am on my way to run club and standing by the kitchen door! I wonder if there are any tips online on how not to look like an idiot in a selfie?? Anyway…..here’s my pledge

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I think I look a lot like my dad in this photo!

To my shame we have always used disposable nappies with both little lady and D. It’s the main reason zero waste has been such a foreign concept to me. We probably put out a green (waste) bin that is only half to 3/4 full every fortnight so I don’t think we do too badly. But nappies are our downfall.

D is 2yrs 9months old now so is plenty old enough for potty training. Maybe a bit too old, I’m not sure. Little lady was definitely potty trained by this age but we have been concentrating so much on his speech problems that to be honest, I hadn’t realised that we should start potty training 😕

So, pants and floor cloths at the ready. We start potty training now.

Please check out the Zero Waste website for more details on zero waste week. What would your pledge be?

Making, Making Do and Mending August

This month I’m joining in with Jen’s monthly linky. What have I been doing this last month?

Making

    • I made D a lampshade to go in his bedroom

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  • Family photo collages ready to go up in the dining room

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Making Do With

  • I have been making do with a half finished kitchen and dining room as documented in this post

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Mending

    • I seem to be constantly mending jeans at the moment.

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I saw this fantastic picture on Pinterest I think that explains why I spend so much time mending the inside leg of jeans ;)
?

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Contact me for credit

Have you done any mending, making or making do recently? Why not join in the August linky

Charity Shopping

I do like a good rummage in a charity shop I have to admit. If I’m in town I tend to pop in at least 2 of the many charity shops there. Yesterday while in town with hubby, who is currently off work with a torn bicep (ouch), we wandered into my favourite shop for bric a brac.

We were actually looking for a board game. While visiting the in-laws, little Lady was really taken by their version of Connect 4, so I thought I’d keep my eye out for a second hand one for her. They didn’t have the board game but I did find 2 side plates that match 2 dinner plates I already have.

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I love my dinner plates and was so chuffed when I saw these at 30p each.

I also treated myself to this rather lovely tea cup and saucer for the grand sum of £1

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Isn’t it pretty? The bottom says Harpers of Staffordshire which seem to be a china wholesalers. But I love it anyway.

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Have you bought anything lovely from a charity shop lately?

WIP

Over the last few months, hubby and I have been using the time that D is in nursery to try and get a few jobs done around the house. Unfortunately these jobs are taking much longer than originally planned. So while I dream of showing you before and after pics of my lovely new dining room, it’s actually still waiting for a last coat of paint :/

So instead I thought I’d round up all my Works In Progress and put them all in one post!

Let’s start with the kitchen. Our new sink is in and the cupboards have been re arranged to give us a better working kitchen. The cupboard doors need going back on, the radiator needs removing and a small bit of work top installed.

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The playroom upstairs has been tidied and treated to some new storage.

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Let’s not forget the dining room.

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Almost there but still not quite.

We are getting there slowly. We are decluttering as we go and have already donated a lot to charity shops and passed on to friends. We are being very careful so that unnecessary items do not go to landfill. There is still a lot of work to be done before this house is completely finished but it’s starting to take shape now and I am feeling good about the progress we are making.

I am hoping that it won’t be long before the WIP you see above will be finished and have it’s own post dedicated to it. Until then….

Passing it on

When I was pregnant with both little lady and D I couldn’t help spending time thinking about the things they would get from me. Would they have my dark hair or be lighter like their dad? Would they have my dark brown eyes?

Little lady has her dad’s light brown hair and green/brown eyes. She tans easily like her father and has his laid back nature. She has inherited his love for books and reading. She has many of his characteristics and yet looks (as I’m told often) exactly like me. D on the other hand, has much darker hair and eyes. He has pale skin and loves routine, just like me.

I still spend time wondering which parts of their developing personality will come from me and which parts will come from their dad. It’s so interesting to see two children so alike but again, so different. Both made by the same parents, sharing the same genes but both their own unique person.

But what about the things we don’t want to pass on? Do I really want to wish my nose (that I got from my dad) on my children? What about my chunky thighs (my nan’s side of the family)? What about my deafness??

D will be 3 years old in 3 months time and his speech is very poor. At first it is easy to pass off with the age old “all children develop at different rates” or the other one “boys are much lazier than girls”. But at what point do you start to worry? When you notice he’s not mixing with other children because he can’t communicate with them? When you realise that he will start school in January and start worrying that if he can’t speak English properly, how will he cope in a welsh language school? When the speech therapist suggests to you that you should get his hearing tested?

Of all the things I could give my son, I may have given him my deafness. I know I may be worrying prematurely, but just thinking of all the times I’ve struggled to keep up with a conversation, making excuses not to go out with friends as I know conversations will be difficult to follow when there is a group of people. Annoying other people with the subtitles on the TV, having to choose whether to crochet/knitn or watch a DVD (okay, so that might not be a big worry to him) as it’s hard to read the subtitles and look at my crochet/knitting at the same time.

I’ve had my hearing aids over 20 years now and they are part of me. Even little lady knows that I can’t hear her without them in. I am finally comfortable to admit to people that I “don’t hear very well” but it’s taken me 20 years to get here. I don’t want to pass that on to my beautiful boy. I’d rather he had my nose.