pottering

goodness me!  Sometimes these days just hurry by, don’t they.  Here we are and it’s Tuesday night already.

Mum has been and gone – she’s in Brisbane now, visiting with old Nanny and Grandad who are relishing every moment of having their eldest child at their beck and call :-)

Lucy is having her holiday here with us … well, a combination of holiday and convalescing – she had a paralysis tick a couple of weeks ago and being an old lady, she really suffered and is still getting her strength back – it was very touch and go for a while there, nerve wracking stuff.

Abby is off to Year 10 camp tomorrow – with a streaming cold.  After a day of resting under the quilts on the sofa with plenty of vitamin c, hot lemon and honey tea, hot water bottles, chicken soup, and paracetamol she’s still sounding/looking/feeling awful.  Oh dear.

Mother’s Day came and went – lovely stuff.  Croissants with jam (so decadent!) and cheese for breakfast.  Woodwork in the shed with Abby and Jules.  Shoppings with Mum.  Cosy hours of knitting with the Nan, the Mum and the girlie, whilst Julian prepared a marvellous Mother’s Day Feast.   Oh yes :-)

And me … well pottering around as usual.

knitting

We visited Wondoflex on Friday – ostensibly to choose wool for baby knitting – my cousin Clara is expecting her first babe in August.  Oh!  So many lovely things to knit for little ones born into cold climates – wee dresses, cardies, snuggly stockings, tiny booties.  And yet somehow, along with the baby wool, 20 balls of heavily discounted 12 ply tumbled into my basket and somehow they wound up on my needles where they are miraculously turning into this.  Such a sweet and easy pattern – knits up wonderfully quick and has nifty little inset pockets for keeping hands cosy.  I have one and a half sleeves left to go – and a bit of finishing on the pockets.  Yum!  But where’s the baby knitting?  you ask.  Oh she’s not coming ’til August … heaps of time ;-)

knitting booi

Found this treasure trove of a book at our local post office.  Yep, the post office.  You know the deal … standing in a long queue waiting to collect a parcel, surrounded by shelves spruiking all manner of goods that a post office has no right to sell :-) But dang!  I’m glad they had this one … it is sooooooooo good!  A real how-to bible of knitting, full of so many wonderful techniques I don’t know where to start.  Makes my heart beat faster just looking at it.

scraps quilted chess board

Dusted the old chess board that came with these dear little hand painted sweeties and had a flash of brilliance.  It would look so much better quilted!  And I’ve always wanted to make a quilted chess board.  So I made the wee quilt this morning, and after being interrupted by the girl child and her sneezing, came to the perfect realisation of how to finish it off.  There’s nothing quite as good as a forced break.  I do find it allows me to ponder where I’m heading and how best to get there.  Wait til you see.  Oh yes!  It’s going to be so cool.  Hopefully tomorrow.

little sickie lucy

I know she’s sick and all and feeling crummy, but oh, how I love it when my girlie is home with me and I can fuss over her.  The house is so much lovelier when she is in the next room.  And sweet little Lucy – she loves it too.  A snoozing teenager provides the perfect cosy spot to warm her old bones, specially since the vet had to shave all her fur (her winter coat!) so as to find that wretched tick.

ultimate toy lottie man trees wooden toys

The current favourite toy in Bootville – the scroll saw.  It is the BEST fun.  It’s almost like free motion quilting – but easier!  On Saturday, Abby and I made some trees and birds (still to be painted).   And on Sunday, I made a funny little replica of Green Cape Lighthouse (bit obsessed really) for old Grandad to remind him of his wonderful adventure last summer, and Lottie and her Gentleman for old Nanny.  Every time I see these two quirky folk, I expect to be able to pick them up and shake out the salt and pepper!  Such fun.

Days filled with family and love and handmade.  My favourite things.  And yours too, I bet :-) 

warming the bones

baskets abby

Oh the sun.  So nourishing.  And I so needed it today.  Monday, when popping on my spectacles, I realised that the right side of my nose was very sore.  The kind of sore your nose feels after meeting a cricket ball.  Not something I’ve experienced lately … cricket balls that is.  There was no redness, no swelling, no sneezing, no snot, no pain anywhere else – so sinusitis didn’t seem the obvious culprit.  And yet, just lightly touching the side of my nose hurt.  I expected it would pass.

Tuesday … ouch!  The pain had spread up the right side of my nose.  Still, I thought it would pass.  Wednesday … ouch! ouch!  My nose was no excruciatingly sensitive that talking and smiling made it throb.  And now – it was the left side too.

fu rosebush

This morning, for the umpteenth time, my Mum reminded me of a lovely student we knew who had developed such a bad sinus infection, it travelled to her brain and she suffered profound brain damage.  I know this sounds a wee bit melodramatic but seriously, this was a vibrant, energetic girl who one month was racing around school with the world at her feet, and several months later we were organising classmates to visit her everyday in hospital as she made a painfully slow and limited recovery.  So, on our way home from the shops, Abby and I called into the doctors to make an appointment for tomorrow.

Instead, after describing the strange pain to the nurse, she popped me straight in to see the next doctor with a gap in their schedule – such an unusual experience I didn’t know whether to feel alarmed or blessed!  The doctor was very attentive but could only find slight swelling with slight redness on the inside of my nose.  Like mum, she too was a bit concerned about the pain, so gave me a strong antibiotic to hopefully knock whatever is in there on the head before it grows any braver.  And if there’s no improvement in the pain by lunchtime tomorrow, I have to go back.  I’m disappointed to report, that so far, two capsules down, I’ve not yet had any relief.  But I’m hopeful :-)

stitching

a visitor

In the meantime, I know of a very comforting home medicine … sitting on the sunny front porch with my dear girl, our funny dog, some lovely embroidery … and our neighbour’s dog who thought it all looked too lovely to not join in.

blue sky

button close up

Such bliss … I almost considered keeping Abby home from school tomorrow so we could notch up a few more hours …oh yes,  the weather man has just said it will be sunny … hmmmm ….  And whilst stitching, my overactive, nursing-student brain visualised all those wee bacteria in my poor sore nose producing offspring without cell walls.  Bit macabre but I can just picture the little bacteria babes realising there’s nothing holding them together and bam! exploding into tiny pieces of uselessness!  Go keflex!

~ loveliness found ~ 16/52

 if you would like to share your ~loveliness found~ moments from this week
please leave them in the comments or share a link to your place!

basket of knitting

~ a basket filled with beautiful but under-appreciated yarn, bought many years ago,
now being knitted into something warming & special
for someone very loved ~

extra warmth

~ dragged in from the sofa to my cold & lonely, late autumn bed,
so scrumptiously cosy ~

easter decorations

~ a little girl oohs and ahhs over the easter goodies still waiting to be put away
& then sighs that she feels sad for her mum,
she has to work so hard and never has time to make nice things
– a good reminder of how grateful I am for the blessings I have ~

butterfly pillowcase
new pillowcases

~ oh how I do love making pillowcases …
one for the little girlie & a pair for me,
such simple pleasure ~

new colour~ the end of the bleached look, thank goodness!
& with no papa to help, it’s up to mama to make it work –
I had performance anxiety ~

oast pancakes

~ Heather’s fabulous oaty pancakes, we love them so!
find the recipe here ~

freshly washed

~ the dust became more than I could bear …
time to wash the back door china ~

moomin quilt

~ tying the Moomin quilt – we’re working on the jigsaw principle …
leave it on the table with scissors, thread and needle at hand,
& it will get done in little bits of time ~

sheets~ finding the sun … & something to hang them on
I do declare I MISS the hills hoist ~

pretzel

dough

We cracked open our copy of Good to the Grain this morning.  Such a treasure trove of yumminess.  This morning, the pretzels were calling.  I feel a bit like Maria in Sound of Music when it comes to baked pretzels.  You know that bit where she sings … “somewhere in my youth or childhood, I must have done something good.”  Well, I think I must have eaten a pretzel somewhere in my youth or childhood and it must have been exceptionally good, because now, I only have to see a baked pretzel and I’m hungry.  Chewy, dense, salty.  Yum!

We used a different mix of flours to those recommended by Ms. Boyce – working on Hugh’s 500 grams of flour for bread dough, we used 250 of wholemeal spelt, and 250 of rye.  Without any white breadmaking flour the proving was slow, but a couple of hours on the floor of the sunny front porch saw the dough double in size.

shaped

Rolling the dough out and folding the ends in to form the pretty little shapes was such fun.  Then it was back to the front porch whilst the baking soda bath came to the boil.  Have you ever added baking soda to boiling water – it was awesome!  Made us feel as if we were gathered around a cauldron rather than a pot.

boiling them

Abby took charge of bathtime.  She was meticulous with the timing – into the pot, 30 seconds, turn them over, 30 seconds, back to the tray.  It was amazing how much that quick bath plumped up the little pretzels.  Abby was suitably impressed – after being rather scathing – that they didn’t simply fall apart when dropped in.  I had faith :-)

done

The picture in the cookbook showed pretzels artfully sprinkled with flakes of salt.  As we sprinkled the salt, each flake hit a pretzel and fell off.  Hmmm …. so we used the regular salt grinder for flavour and then, not to be defeated, patiently stuck a few salt flakes on for effect.

As with anything home baked, the minute we sat down to enjoy the warm, fragrant and very tasty pretzels with butter, Fu stood imploringly, front paws on my lap, waiting for her own pretzel.  Funny pup.  And we – being silly owners – gave her one.  Off she trotted to the back garden, pretzel in mouth.  As soon as she saw me, watching from the back doorway, she stopped dead in her tracks.

i said its not mine

“What are you looking at!”

not my pretzel

“Nope.  This is not my pretzel. “

i have no idea how it got there

“And I certainly have no intention of eating it.”

I walked away – but not too far :-)  and as soon as I sneaked a look, there she was, stretched out, pretzel between her paws, licking and pulling and chewing …

now i can eat it mmmm chewy

… until it was all gone.

Being just Abby and I home, we still have plate full.  Perhaps most for the freezer and a couple for dinner with scrambled eggs.  Yes that sounds good.  And pretzel making?  Highly recommended!