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22 May 2017

CROCHET: Rainbow Rectangle Granny Blanket

I’ve finished my rainbow throw-size crochet blanket and it’s love, true true love. My kids have snuggled under it the last couple of evenings, though it still needs blocking to stop the edges from curling up so much.




I thought I’d share a little about the scallop edge I used to finish off this blanket. Now I’m no expert when it comes to crochet, but I thought I’d share what I did with this quite thick yarn using my yarn rainbow sprinkles yarn cake.

When I was happy with the size of my rectangle granny blanket, I did a single crochet stitch all the way around the edge. I love how the yarn colour changed at just the right time.

To create the scallops, I crocheted a *SC, then 3 DC in the next chain space, followed by a SC in the next chain space*.




I usually crochet 5 DC’s for a scallop edge, but after a little bit of trial and error, I found that 3 DC’s were the perfect number for this thick yarn.

My plan is to block this blanket over the next few days and then I can do a full reveal. At the moment, it’s a little bit wiley, wobbly, and wonky and no-body had time for these W’s!




I need to build up my skills when it comes to crochet.


What’s your favourite way to crochet your edges?


19 May 2017

Teacher Appreciation Pillow (FREE PATTERN)

Over the past years, we’ve made it a habit to create handmade gifts for the kids school teachers. They receive a lot of generic chocolates, candles, mugs or bottles of wine, so I think that giving them something a little different, is special.


Apologies for the night-time photo.
This was gifted the next day, so I never got a good quality photograph of this pillow.

Last year, my daughter had a male teacher… the same teacher which my son had a couple of years earlier. When it came to the end of the school year, my husband and son worked together to make him a pen. My son chose the acrylic blank and they turned it together on the lathe. It was a lovely gift, unique and one which the teacher loved and appreciated.

When it was time to think of a gift for this same teacher, I decided to make him a custom pillow, in “man” colours and prints. It’s a 14” finished pillow, but can be made to any size to suit any pillow form.

If you’d like to make your own Teacher Appreciation Pillow, you can download and print up the pattern right here.

The “Teacher” is raw edge appliqu├ęd using heat n bond to hold the letters in place. I used my machine to applique the letters with matching cotton thread. I sewed as close to the edge of the letters, without sewing over onto the background fabric.

The stitched section was embroidered with a simple back stitch and 3 strands of cotton floss. If you're unsure of how to work the backstitch, here's a great video tutorial by Mary Corbet of the blog, Needle n Thread - a truly wonderful resource for everything related to embroidery. 

I made my Teacher pillow for a man, but there’s no reason you couldn’t make this for a female teacher using lovely girlie fabrics from your stash. Imagine it in pretty pastels or florals. Hmm… might be an idea to make another one for one of my kids teachers this year, right?




18 May 2017

RECIPE: Lemon Yoghurt Cake

Do you love cake? 

What is your favourite cake?



I love cake.
Cake is the answer, no matter the question.
All you need is cake.
A balanced diet is having a cupcake in each hand.
It’s cake-o’clock!


There’s a recipe in the basic thermo cook book which I’ve been wanting to try for a while, but never seemed to have the right ingredients in my fridge or pantry. It’s a simple yoghurt cake. I finally got my act together and made it. 

Gosh it's yum! Here's my slightly tweaked, lemony delicious yoghurt cake variation.



Ingredients:

80g vegetable oil (or any light oil eg Canola)
1 lemon - zest plus 2-3 tbsp juice
150g caster sugar
3 eggs
250g SR flour
180g natural yoghurt (I use Greek style yoghurt)
1 pinch salt
icing sugar for dusting


Method:

Preheat oven to 180C and grease a cake tin. If you have a bundt cake tin, go with that option for the prettiness factor.

Use an electric mixer and mix the eggs, sugar and lemon zest until combined.

Add the flour, oil, yoghurt, salt and lemon juice and mix well (approximately 2-3 minutes).

Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and back for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.

Allow too cool in the tin for a few minutes before transferring it to a cake rack. When ready to serve, move it to the serving plate and dust with icing sugar.

This cake lasts well in an air-tight container for a few days (though it doesn’t normally last very long at home).

If you don’t have lemons, try replacing the lemon zest and juice with another citrus fruit. I’ll bet orange would taste ahhhhmazing!





13 May 2017

QUILTING: Scandi Blooms Quilt


I’d love to introduce you to my newest quilt called Scandi Blooms which was published in the latest issue of Quilters Companion Magazine.

This was such a fun project to create and is perfectly suited to an assortment of Fat Quarters. If you have FQ’s in your stash, that you’ve been saving, but not sure when to use them, how about getting your copy of Quilters Companion magazine and making your very own Scandi Blooms Quilt.

Overseas friends can purchase this magazine digitally through Zinio.


12 May 2017

FOOD: Sweet Potato & Zucchini Slice (AKA Family Fritter)

Sometimes, a new recipe is a win.
And sometimes, it’s not.

I’ve been going through a new cookbook, “WHOLEFOOD THERMO COOKED” by Tracey Pattison.


The recipes are suited to all thermo appliances. Whether you have a Thermomix, Tefal Cuisine Companion, Bellini or another brand of thermo machine, this book uses general terminology which can interpreted and used with all types of thermo machines.


I have enjoyed going through the recipes as they’re not overly complicated, use simple ingredients and best of all, the recipes have wonderful colour photographs. In my opinion, a cookbook with colour photographs is a winner!

Yesterday, after a long walk, I decided to make something healthy for lunch. The 'Family Fritter' is a recipe in this cookbook and I though that the kids might like a piece after they got home from school.



The verdict: One said “YUM!" and the other said “It tastes too healthy…”

If you’d like to try it, here are the basic ingredients. Then you just chop and mix everything and place it in a baking tray and cook for around 40 minutes at 200C.

Personally, I quite liked it. It’s a much lighter version of a standard zucchini slice and the wheat grains make it taste “healthy” as my daughter suggested.

Family Fritter Recipe

Ingredients

1/4 cup whole wheat grains (milled)
2 spring onions
1 handful of parsley
400g orange sweet potato
4 zucchini
2 eggs
sea salt and pepper to taste

Wholefood Thermo Cooked by Tracey Pattison
Published by Murdoch Books
ISBN: 9781743368657
Date: May 2017

The next recipe I’m going to try is for Cornbread Biscuits. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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