Thursday, October 19, 2017

Purple Jacket

Company:  Debbie Bliss
Yarn: Maya
Composition: 100% wool
Colour:  Purple (35012)
Pattern: Make-it-up
Size: Maghouin Beg sized
Needles: 5.5mm
Amount used:  
Started:  19th October 2017

I decided it was time to make something for myself, after all of the hats, socks and things. And so proceeded to make another pair of socks, and another one.

This is a 'make it up as you go' along jacket. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Week 42: Photography

Monday: Read Organized Home Challenge #42: Photographs
Tuesday: Gather loose photos and negatives into central location
Wednesday: Sort and organize photos into photo safe containers for proper storage
Thursday: Continue to sort and organize photos
Friday: Declutter digital photos and organize/back up rest
Saturday: Declutter/organize memory cards, flash drives, computer CDs and discs
Sunday: Declutter camera and video equipment

Photography isn't my thing. When I want things photographed I ask The Beloved or the Younger Offspring. A copy if kept on my computer (Desktop>Images) and also on-line. 

The boxes in the dining room are almost guaranteed to contain photographs and negatives. These will be handed over to The Beloved for archive. However, I will be on the look out for interesting images. I'd love to have a photograph gallery of the people I love on the piano. This Christmas, I'm asking people to consider buying me a plain-ish silver coloured photograph frame. This will make a great display.

Week 41: Dining Room and Entertaining

Monday: Read Organized Home Challenge #41: Dining Room & Entertaining
Tuesday: Clear off dining room table
Wednesday: Declutter table linens, napkins and place mats
Thursday: Declutter or properly store china and silver
Friday: Declutter china cabinet, side boards
Saturday: Declutter candles
Sunday: Declutter pool supplies, pool toys, swimsuits, etc.

Argh! This set to tasks were for last week. Many of them were completed the week before in anticipation of the arrival of our guests. The room was decluttered, apart from three boxes. The bureau will be disappearing tomorrow afternoon, and the PA equipment will be moved into its place. Currently the PA stuff is the first thing you see as you enter the room. I'd rather people see musical instruments.

I took the chance to go through our plates, bowls, and mugs. Any that had chips were ditched. The only thing we needed to replace were pasta bowls, and I had been on the look out for a new set since January! 

Candles have been corralled in the laundry room. Over the next month I shall be melting them and making new candles for the sitting room and dining room.

The only pool equipment we have are swimming suits, and we have just the right number. I have one swimming costume.

Clutterbug's Declutterings

The October Challenge continues:

15. closet
16. shoes
17. purses, bags and totes
18. memorabilia
19. children's toys
20. children's clothes 

I'm claiming that all of these are done. The reality is that once I have posted this, I shall be nipping off upstairs to check my wardrobe. I think it's calm and decluttered, but I can't say for absolute definite. However, if it isn't, it will be. 

My shoes and footware is a very minimal area. There's a pair of shoes that's almost ready to be retired, but I am still wearing them. Perhaps by the end of the month they will have left the building for the last time.

I'm not big bag person - maybe four handbag, and a couple of shopping bags. There are a couple of bags in my wardrobe I haven't used in at least a year, but I still like them. My every day hand bag is probably too 'office' for my current life, and I need to switch things around.

Memorabilia is not something I really hang onto. There's a couple of soft toys that belonged to my children, a TARDIS lunch box, and a piece of paper that says 'SOUP' (there's a story behind that). Each of these things makes me smile.

Apart from a couple of soft toys that belonged to the children and a few baby clothes, it's totally up to them whether they keep their old toys and clothes. My rule is that I don't declutter other people's belongings. It's their stuff, they have the right to keep it or let it go.

Tasks I haven't yet done are 'freezer' and 'junk drawer'. These will get done before the end of the month.

Autumn Has Arrived!

Monday's storm (Ophelia) has shaken a huge amount of leaves loose.  I decided to do a little bit of autumnal decorating. My candles had burned down a bit; the wax needed to be trimmed. Perhaps a little bit of zhuzhing was was required? 

Leaves of a suitable size were collected. Masking tape was placed on the work surface, sticky side up, and leaves arranged on top. Where the tape was visible from the top I trimmed it back. I would have preferred to have used fine garden twine, but string was all we had. The string was cut a bit longer than needed, and then split into three. The leaves were held in place, the string tied around and then trimmed.

I rather like it. It's a nice little change from pure white candles.

The Beloved's sister and her husband were over visiting last week. They brought back pine cones from a walk. The Younger Offspring and I added to them, tossed in a few decorative balls, some sticks of cinnamon, and a few chocolate oranges. The arrangement definitely needs more chocolate oranges!

The bowl is from Traidcraft  is made from recycled keys. They come in bronze or silver, and in a range of shapes and sizes.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Gosh, it's windy!

It's blowing a hoolie out there! Hurricane Ophelia has come for a visit, and is getting a tad bolshie with the trees. My Facebook feed keeps bleeping with notifications from the Police with news that a new tree has been blown down, and roads closed. 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

What's under your bed?

Clutterbug's October Decluttering challenge is to declutter under the bed. This is an area I have already done, and maintain.

Under my bed are suitcases and a box of charity knits I have finished, but haven't yet donated. Once a week, when I sweep the bedroom, I shove the brush under and get out as much hair, dust and fluff as I can. Then at the start of each month, everything is moved and the area under the bed given a deep clean. This was delayed by a week this month so it would be done just before our guests arrived.

Due to having guests, there were a few tasks I hadn't completed (freezer, junk drawer and medicines/toiletries). Today, I sorted through the first aid kit and toiletries. That area is looking good. I should say though, that these guests have been fantastic - they fitted into family life so well. It was an absolute pleasure to have them.

13. dresser drawers
14. under bed

My clothes drawers are were done recently, and I've adopted the habit of tidying them as I put clothes away. It's part of the new mentality of  'little and often' and 'make it a bit better than before'. 

Friday, October 13, 2017

May the Farce be with You!

The Beloved's sister and brother-in-law are over visiting. We will be heading out for a celebration meal tonight. There's two birthdays this weekend, and here's the cake. Yoda has conquered the Death Star!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Clutterbug's Challenge

Clutterbug's October Challenge is going as well as can be given we have guests staying just now. So far, the tasks have been:

1. under kitchen sink
2. food containers
3. bakeware and dishes
4. utensil drawers
5. fridge
6. freezer
7. pantry
8. junk drawer
9. linen closet
10 bathroom drawers
11. under bathroom sink
12. medicines/toiletries

I've not been able to do the freezer, the junk drawer or medicines/toiletries. The freezer will be tackled next week, as will the other tasks. We don't have a junk drawer, but we do have a small set of drawers that contain spare light bulbs, batteries, shoe laces, picture hooks and candle making stuff. This needs to be sorted and will be done in lieu of a junk drawer. Medicines/toiletries need to be done too.

Today I tidied the linen cupboard. Nothing was decluttered as this was done not too long ago. We replaced the large bath towels last year, and next year, I think we need to replace the hand towels. Some of the duvet covers are looking rather tired and worn out. These will need to be replaced at some point. But that's for another time. A time in the distant future, possibly around spring.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017


300g gluten-free digestive biscuits
75g butter

Cheesecake filling
500g Philadelphia cheese
3 large egg
150g castor sugar
1.5 tsp vanilla essence
3 tsp lemon juice

300ml soured cream
1/4 tsp vanilla essence
2 Tsp castor sugar

Crush the biscuits and mix with melted butter. Press into a lined rectangular, loose bottomed tin (30.5x20.5cm), on the base and up the sides. Chill for 10 minutes in the freezer.

Pre-heat oven at 180C.

Mix all of the ingredients for the cheesecake filling. Smooth on top of the biscuit base and bake for 30 minutes.

Mix the ingredients and smooth on top of the cheesecake layer. Bake for 7 minutes.


The Beloved has said this is the best cheesecake I have ever made. it scored a 10 out of 10. He's very happy.

Socks for a Youth

Company:  Regia
Yarn: Design Line "Garden Effects" 4ply
Composition: 75% wool, 25% nylon
Colour:  Lupine
Company:  Filcolana
Yarn: Arwetta Classic
Composition: 80% wool, 20% nylon
Colour:  Grape Royal
Pattern: Socks for a Youth
Size: Child
Needles: 2.5mm
Amount used:  34g
Started:  10th October 2017
Finished: 17th October 2017

Cast on 56sts. Join. Work 20 rounds of 2x2 rib (K2, P2, repeat). Then switch to stocking stitch and knit until the sock is 14cm long.

Heel flap: Knit 14sts, turn, and purl back 28sts, slipping the first stitch. Work 26 rows. (The remaining 28sts will be brought back into play when the gusset is knitted.)

Turn heel: 
1. S1, k17,ssk, k1, turn. 
2. S1, p3, p2tog, p1, turn. 
3. S1, k4, ssk, k1, turn. 
4. S1, p5, p2tog, p1, turn.

Continue in the pattern until all of the stitches have been incorporated, and 20sts are left on the needle.

Gusset: Pick up 14sts from the side of the heel flap. Place marker. Knit across the 28sts of the front of the sock. Place marker. Pick up 14sts from the heel flap.

1. Knit to 3sts before the marker, k2tog, k1, move marker from left needle to right. Knit to next marker. k1 ssk, knit.
2. Knit.
Repeat these two rounds until 48sts are on needles.

Knit until the foot measures 16.5cm. The first stitch marker now marks the new beginning of the round.

Toe shaping: 
1. K1, ssk, k to 3sts before marker k2tog, k1, move marker, k1, ssk, k to 2sts before marker, k1, k2tog.
2. Knit
Repeat these two rounds until there are 20sts remaining. Graft the toe closed.