FO Friday 48

It’s a bit of a different Finished Object from me today, and not one that I ever showed you in progress on a Wednesday, but here it is… a baby blanket with a difference.

The concept for this was borne in a tent in the little town of Uig, on the beautiful Isle of Skye last summer.Β  I taught K and the kids to knit, and everyone contributed at least one “square” to this blanket. Where possible we used recycled materials (although I do confess to buying two balls of yarn for the project).Β  I guess I should have taken more care to ensure similar weights of yarn were used, but I didn’t. I guess I should have ensured that everyone made squares approximately the same size, but I didn’t.

I guess you could call it a sort of sampler blanket – it includes some first ever attempts at knitting (by K and the kids), my first attempts at cables, and bobbles, and all sorts of other stitches. A complete variety of colours, and textures. It may not be perfect, but the result is a blanket where every square has its own story, and the whole family played a part in creating it.

I sewed it together, and backed it with soft blue fleece (leftover from the car back seat cover my friend made for me a couple of years ago).Β  We gave it to baby Peter for his first birthday earlier this week. It was supposed to be a “birth” present, but didn’t quite get finished in time!

Peter's blanketPeter’s Birthday Blanket

Peter's blanket keyPeter’s Birthday Blanket Key

A1 – made by Aidan. The blue stripes were leftover yarn from the pullover his Grandma knitted for him when he was little. The red was an eyelash yarn I had kicking around in my stash. He loved the textures.

A2 – made by me. Basketweave stitch, and knitted in the yarn I used to knit M’s Big Sister dress.

A3 – made by me. My first ever attempt at cables. Yarn was leftover from my Oddments knitting bag project.

A4 – made by me. My Buzzy Bee square.Β Yarn was leftover from my Oddments knitting bag project.

A5 – made by me. Shingle Stitch. Leftover yarn from Aidan’s pullover from Grandma.

B1-6 – made by me. All squares were knitted with yarn left over from my Oddments knitting bag project.

C1 – made by Megan. Her first ever piece of knitting πŸ™‚ . All garter stitch, but white and lilac stripes. The white was from my Georgia sweater, but the lilac came from Blossom, the first ever dress I knitted her.

C2 – made by me. Charcoal yarn from K’s Decoder Hat, and the purple from my Sahara sweater.

C3 – made by Keith. Bored with knitting rectangles the normal way he decided to knit one in the round, making up the pattern as he went along. Charcoal yarn from K’s Decoder Hat, and the purple from my Sahara sweater.

C4 – made by me. Caterpillar Stitch. Red yarn purchased specially for this project.

D1 – made by me. Log Cabin Blanket-style.Β Yarn left over from my Oddments knitting bag project.

D2 – made by me. Simple Grille pattern. The white was from my Georgia sweater, and the pink/purple was from the Flying Geese shawl that I knitted for K’s mum a couple of years ago.

D3Β  – made by Aidan. One of his earliest pieces of stocking stitch – and with four colour changes. Yarn purchased by himself – two colour variations of the same yarn – one purple, one red.

D4 – made by Keith. Experimenting with knits and perls to make patterns – counting 1-15 in binary, and three chevrons. White yarn from my String bag.

D5 – made by Keith. Vertical bar line stitch. Green yarn purchased specially for this project.

E1 – made by me. Little Pyramid Stitch. Yarn from my Wendy Tank Top.

E2 – made by me. Practising making bobbles! Yarn from my stash. I think I knitted a scarf for M from it once upon a long time ago!

E3 – made by Keith. Simple stocking stitch with garter stitch bands; white edge because there wasn’t enough green! White yarn from my String bag and the green yarn was from some little Hand Warmers I knitted some years ago for K’s sister.

E4 – made by me. A Mitred Square. Red yarn purchased specially for this project, grey yarn from my Oddments knitting bag project.

Happy Birthday Peter!

For more of today’s Finished Objects, check out Tami’s Amis


Bargain, working again, inspired.

1) M has just started a new grade in ballet, which requires a complete (expensive) new uniform. I was very pleased to discover that her dance school has a fundraising website, selling used dance stuff. Last night I put in a request for a pair of character shoes in her size and was greatly surprised to discover them already waiting for her when she arrived at class this afternoon.

I was even happier to discover that they were a third of the price of buying them new πŸ™‚ .

2) I spilled a few drops of tea onto the laptop this morning. I dried it off, but a few minutes later, the screen started to flicker in an alarming manner. I shut it down, turned it over, and left it to dry. When K came home, he opened it up, figured out where the tea had spilled, cleaned it, and I now have a working laptop again – thanks my love xx

3) A friend came round this evening and we talked about craft stuff, projects we’re planning, things we’d like to do. It was good, and I’m inspired πŸ™‚ .

Barbeque, youth group, and friends.

From the weekend:

1) A late summer barbeque with friends, at the local country park. The weather held, the food was good, the company was fab, the scenery was lovely and all up it was just a really really nice day.

2) Our youth group went really well on Sunday morning – the kids were open, responsive and interested in what they were learning.

3) A family friend joined us for dinner at my parent’s place on Sunday evening. It was good.

Looking after Daddy, fun, and stretch.

1) K woke up this morning suffering the effects of a nasty cold and fever. He had a shower, and then transferred to the guest room bed, while I got up, stripped our bed and put it in the laundry…Β  Both kids were extremely solicitous of their poor daddy and, at the school gate, M’s parting words to me were to instruct K to have a hot honey and blackcurrant drink – because he’s got a cold, and the drink is warm! πŸ™‚

2) Working my way through my to-do list today, I realised that I had some more interesting items on it than just the usual laundry, cleaning and ironing (although there was plenty of that too!). My favourite item was to take the next major steps towards completing a project the whole family have been involved with (not that I can tell you what it is, as it’s a surprise for someone!). It was fun!

3) My Pilates teacher told me that I was looking quite tense around my shoulders, and had me sit on the floor while she performed a couple of stretches on my back. She must have done something right, because the release was instant πŸ™‚ .

New week, new start.

At least I hope so!

1) The kids were in school, but K had the day off. We took ourselves off to Inchmahome Priory, which is situated on an island in the middle of the Lake of Menteith.Β  A brief boat trip, and then such a lovely quiet spot. We wandered around the island, then had a cup of tea sitting on a bench in the Refectory (which only has two walls remaining, and is open to the air!) as we read about the history of the priory.

2) M and I watch the Dr Who at the Proms this afternoon – although she has never seen Dr Who, she was enthralled by the music πŸ™‚ .

3) A friend arrives bringing freshly picked blackberries – yum!

Summer holiday 2013

We’re back from holiday – actually we arrived back on Saturday, but it’s taken me a few days to get back to normal again).Β  Here are some highlights from our time away:

1) A lovely weekend visiting our friends in the Lake District – as always a time of refreshment, and relaxation πŸ™‚ .

2) We spent Saturday at Woolfest – a little to my surprise, the kids loved it (and behaved beautifully) and were quite content to spend all day there!

3) A lovely trip across country and up to the Northumbrian coast, where we set up our tent and settled in.

4) A couple of days doing not a whole lot, while the kids disappeared off to play around the campsite with their newly-made friends. This set the tune for the rest of the week – any time we were around the campsite, we barely saw the kids πŸ™‚ .

5) It rained for a while on the second day – this didn’t deter the kids, who came back at lunchtime, gathered food onto their plates and took it to eat in the shelter at the top of the climbing frame.

6) We cycled along the coast to Bamburgh, ate delicious icecream, and played on the beach.

7) We drove up to Berwick-upon-Tweed, where we spent a happy half hour in a second-hand bookshop (and had an amazing morning tea in a fab little teashop!).

8) A beautiful cycle across the causeway to Lindisfarne, a wander round the museum and picnic lunch in the old priory. After that, we cycled across to Lindisfarne Castle and spent a happy hour exploring it, before a cross-country cycle around the island. Afternoon tea sustained us and gave us the energy for the cycle back to the mainland, which was much needed as we cycled into a strong headwind the entire three mile trip back! The kids coped amazingly welll, although K had to teach M to slipstream him to try and give her wee legs a bit of a rest!

9) We hired a firepit and bought some logs and had a campfire by the tent. We toasted marshmallows and baked damper – one of the best suppers ever!

10) A cruise around the Farne Islands – a collection of small rocky islands, home to several species of nesting birds – cormorants, kittiwakes, guillemots, shags, and puffins. We scrambled across the rocks at Staple Island, to get within metres of the birds, and we cruised out to see the Atlantic grey seals sunning themselves on the rocks, and playing in the water.

11) We played crazy golf, and A won comprehensively!Β  Clearly his golf lessons with Grandpa are paying off πŸ™‚ .

12) The coastal drive home on a beautiful clear day πŸ™‚ .

Swan, early, and reading.

1) Walking along the canal towpath this morning, I spotted a beautiful swan nesting just a couple of metres away. I look forward to watching progress as the weeks go by…

Nesting swan Nesting swan

2) The parcel arrives a day earlier than scheduled.

3) K comes home promptly from his meeting so that he can read the kids their new Maui story book (it’s a Maori legend). I’m glad he does – my Maori pronunciation isn’t really up to it! πŸ™‚

Weekend fun in the sun

1) We had a lovely weekend at home – time to garden, time to relax, time to cook, time to walk/cycle, and time just to be together.

2) We went out on a couple of walks, both from home.Β  A and M chose to ride their bikes both days – they had lots of fun.

45 min: LauristonOut for a bike ride

3) On Sunday evening, A decided to assist with cooking dinner – he made pork stir-fry. Here he is carefully cooking each piece of meat and putting it on the rack to avoid overcooking. Check out the concentration, and I can assure you it was worth it, as the meal was delicious!

Aidan - cooking pork stir-fryAidan cooking dinner

Paying attention, treacle tart, and out for dinner.

1) a) As I walked this morning I wished that I’d put some music on my phone, something to listen to as I stomped along. Then I started listening to what I could hear – all sorts of bird song. I don’t know much about bird varieties, but I saw magpies darting from tree to tree, pigeons surveying the land, a crow flew imperiously across the road ahead of me, a flock of swifts took to the sky, some tiny great tits played on the fence beside me, and a large bird of prey glided overhead.

b) A herd of horses grazed peacefully in a field of buttercups, and a herd of cows lazily chewed the cud as they watched the world go by. I feel so blessed to have all this right on my doorstep.

2) “You’re making treacle tart!” was the accusation I received when the kids walked into the kitchen. They were somewhat mollified when they realised it was to take with us when we went out for dinner.

3) We were invited out for dinner this evening – it involved a paddling pool, a swing, kids playing and splashing in the sunshine, a barbeque, yummy food, chilled wine, a cute baby, and time to chat.

Improvement, cards, and walk.

1) I go for my final physio session, and she once again examines my shoulder. She’s very pleased at the improvement.Β  So am I!

2) The kids work very hard this afternoon, making beautiful get-well-soon cards for one of their cousins.

3) While the kids were at cycling club, K and I were able to go for a lovely walk just the two of us.