Thursday, 23 May 2013


On Sunday my beautiful baby girl turned two!!  She is a little girl now full of smiles and fun, has strong ideas of her own and is most happy in her wellies outside (just like her mummy really).

For her birthday I set to on Saturday and made her a birthday cake.  What to make, well it had to be child friendly so sponge cake and I went for 6-6-6 recipe plus a couple of teaspoons of baking powder and vanilla essence.  Decoration had to be Peppa pig as she loves it.   I used ready to roll fondant icing and after about three attempts I managed to get the icing on.  It is tricky to ice such a large cake but the key is to have a lot of icing then you don't have to roll it too thinly.  The thinner the icing the more likely it is to crack when you pick it up (this happened several times).

I covered the cake in butter cream icing first (you can use boiled apricot jam if you prefer but butter cream will disguise bumps in your cake more) then laid the icing on, smoothed it down and trimmed the excess.  Then for the decoration, using some pictures from the internet for inspiration I just rolled, cut and sticked the shapes on.

It is Peppa jumping in muddy puddles, holding the number 2 and there are pink hearts all around the bottom of the cake.  It's not up to the standards of Little L's christening cake from last year but this was much more rushed.  It tasted really good along with the 3 dozen fairy cakes I made (sorry forgot to photo them, but they had peppa pig toppers on!)

Sunday, 19 May 2013

DIY Sandpit

Little L loves playing in the sand be it at the beach or at one of our playgroups.  So a little while ago I decided I would make her one.  I had about a month until her birthday so I would have plenty of time to do it......... so as usual nearly a whole month passed and then last minute this week during a couple of nap times I set to with saw, drill and wood to make it.
A simple box on legs.  Not too big and all made using thrifted wood picked up from freecycle etc.
Very easy just took a bit of time assembling it.  I pre-drilled holes and screwed it all together.  You probably could of just nailed it but I had to be quiet as little L was asleep!
A couple of coats of stain and a bag of playsand and ta-dah.  So pretty much free except for the playsand and much better than buying one. She was very impressed and it went down a treat on her birthday party which was thankfully dry and sunny!!
The dog did dive in a couple of times (front legs only) for a bit of digging too, can't blame her.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Cabinet finished

Got this a couple of weeks ago from my sister (who was given it) and I was supposed to be renovating it and then selling it but er....I have kept it.
It had been sitting in a damp garage under a leak for some time so was badly stained in places and covered in black mildew spotting.  So a washed it all to start with and then when dry sanded, sanded and sanded it some more. 
The mildew is very difficult to get rid of and some of it just wouldn't budge particularly on the doors. So before photos


I was able to get rid of most of the staining.  The side of the top cabinet was really bad but its hardly noticeable now.
When I was (sick of sanding) happy with the finish I gave it a wipe down and once dry waxed it.  Several coats of clear briwax and lots more elbow grease and its done.  Excuse the not so great photos, these were taken in haste and I haven't finished filling it with stuff yet, so the shelves look a bit bare

This side of the top cabinet was really badly stained but you can hardly tell now.

I've put it in our front room for now and maybe one day I will sell it but for now it can stay.  And added bonus Little L can't get the catch open on the lower cupboar!

Monday, 13 May 2013

Zoom cardigan and bootees

I finished this a few weeks ago but have only just been able to sew the buttons on.  It is the Zoom cardigan from Ravelry
The pattern is really simple.   It is top down and with raglan increase which gives a really neat finish I think. The hardest part was picking up the stitches for the sleeves and then knitting the sleeves on dpn's was really hard going on my hands.

The wool I used is really soft James c brett aran with wool.  I went for a beige colour as I didn't know whether it was for a boy or girl.  Well they have had a beautiful baby boy so I choose some cute baby blue ducks.  Notice I only went for two buttons because I forgot to put the third button hole in??

I also knit these really quick bootee's, again from ravelry.  Very easy pattern I cast on 34 and knit 13 rows then cast off 13 knit to end followed by co 13 knit to end to get a T shape rather than start with the narrow bit and then cast on stitches.  I think this way is much easier.  Wish I had blocked them but I didn't have time.  Who knows how big newborn feet are?? I don't think they will fit but they are cute.
We are heading down to the Peak District tomorrow to meet baby J, can't wait not sure what Little L will make of him though.  Anyway must go and wrap his pressies (newborn clothes are the cutest)
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