Friday, 31 August 2012

Crafternoon and Cooking

We've had mixed weather this week, the worst of it was during the weekend as it rained quite heavily throughout and continued to do so on the Monday.  Needless to say, both Benedict and Pip were fed up with being cooped up indoors, so a Bank Holiday Monday Crafternoon was the order of the day. 


Meet Freddie the Flying Fish!
Whilst Pip was with Abi for the morning, Benedict worked on the first of his Tuesday morning lunch preparation classes.  The task was for him to choose a dish, prepare it, cook it, serve it and eat it!!  It also included all kitchen tidying and  washing and drying of dishes.  The chosen dish was tomato and rice soup with red pepper pesto croutons:
Being brave and finely chopping the onions, thankfully no tears!
Voila!  Yummy, scrummy soup.
I think stuffed baked potatoes and salad are on the menu for next week.



Sunday, 26 August 2012


The last two Fridays we have met with friends and done something completely different. 

Last week we went bowling with our friends from Kendal, it was the first time Pip had ever been to the superbowl and she did very well waiting her turn.  I was however glad to get away from all the noise, I don't envy anyone working in that environment, ear defenders should be a standard part of the uniform!!

This Friday we spent the afternoon at the beach with Debs and her boys.  This was our second visit during the entire summer break ... yep, the weather has been awful!

Organised excavating.
Pip fell over in the mud, thankfully we had spare clothing for her but none for Benedict, who ended up equally as muddy!!  Thankgoodness there was this place at the end of the beach:
No longer muddy but now very wet!
A trip to the cafe bar just opposite from here provided everyone with a summery treat:

A soaking wet J and a very dry Pip eating Lakes Ice Cream she was eating Wild Strawberry and he had Rich Chocolate.
It was fun and games trying to get them in the car.  Benedict was wearing a dry muddy sweatshirt and my cardigan as a skirt to protect his modesty and L her second youngest was wearing nothing but Debs' raincoat!!  By now the two of us were a heap of giggles.  I think I can safely say that, it was our best day out in along time.  THANKS DEBS!
Thanks to Sara both Benedict and Pip have also had big sister outings this week.  On Tuesday they visited the soft play area here and bounced around whilst I sorted some home school prep.  On Thursday she took them here for a play and some lunch, followed by a walk around Morecambe town and a bus ride home, Pip slept until 8am the following morning!  I could do with a pair of these for Pip, I'm pretty sure they would tire her out!!
Dave and I are flying solo this week as our biggest little girl is at Kew Gardens working on a week long volunteering project.  She is hoping to complete an internship with Kew at the end of next year when she finishes her placement at Myerscough.  The internship progamme is highly sought after with very few places, but she has had a glowing report from one of her tutors, who lectured at Kew for fifteen years, so she's in with a good chance of gaining a place.
Well I'd best sign off as our littlest girl is currently causing mayhem in the house!

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

A Handspun Yarn Along

A package arrived this afternoon containing the following:

78 yards of handspun Shetland & Llanwenog fleece with dyed rovings, plyed with Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK to add strength ~ lovingly crafted by my very talented blogging friend Lorna.  I will have to find a special pattern worthy of such a gift, thankgoodness for Ravelry.  Her two equally talented kiddos sent a picture each for Benedict and Pip aswell as a letter for Benedict from the oldest:

Picassa is playing silly beggars tonight and will not accept my rotating the picture*. The ship is from Tallest and the butterfly is from Smallest, two very cute crafting and gardening gals... they take after their mum!  Thanks Lorna x

*DH has since seen the fault and fixed it :-)

These parcels were most welcome since we should've been at this place for a long awaited appointment for Benedict with the paediatric diabetelogist, Dr Fiona Campbell.  She is well known in her field and is particularly helpful in troubleshooting unstable diabetes.  Sadly it was not meant to be and Benedict was too sick to attend the clinic, in fact it was a case of you know something is wrong when:

he was even too sick to play with the Lego!

My current knitting project is of the small kind:

Good old baby socks, therapeutic knitting of the sweetest kind.  I'm still working on the Liesel and hopefully there'll be a finished garment by next week.  As for reading I have all sorts of books dotted around the house that I'm dipping into as the mood takes, but by far my biggest focus right now is the start of this next homeschool year!  After a lot of thought I've decided to use a Waldorf Grade Three curriculum as our base and will build on from there, hence the front page of the guide in the picture.  Thanks to one of the Waldorf Yahoo Groups I was able to access this detailed outline for free.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012


We have actually had some sunshine in these parts, whoopee!!! and this also coincided with a spate of visiting friends and family.

To kick start the proceedings on Wednesday we had a visit from Aunty Maureen and Uncle Bryan.  Sara and Pip made some delicious cupcakes for afternoon tea:

For tea we had Aunty Maureen's leek and potato soup as requested by Benedict, followed by baked potatoes, cheese and mixed salad, with apple crumble and custard for dessert.  This was followed by the annual ritual of red currant picking:

Pip did a great job reaching into the undergrowth.

Berries for you Daddy!

On Friday we visited our home schooling friends in the north and S made a beautiful buffet lunch which was totally gluten free.  It was so lovely to know that I and the kids could eat everything on display.

Benedict helping himself.

Deep fried cheddar cheese balls, onion bhajis, rice and dill salad, mixed green salad all from the garden and coleslaw.

The kids played together really well and it was lovely to hear the little ones playing camp  upstairs in A's bedroom, she was also very tolerant when Pip insisted on wearing her Thomas pyjamas!  How on earth that girl of mine did not wilt in the heat I'll never know!

PJ's, wellies and a dress underneath in 23C heat!

On Sunday we visited our long standing friends in Crewe.  We've known these guys for over twenty years and our older girls grew up with their three boys.

You'll always find Ju and I chatting in the kitchen!

Using this book Ju made lemon and herb chicken, served with baked potatoes, green beans, carrots and a wine and onion gravy.  For dessert we had Eton Mess which is essentially crushed meringue, a selection of summer fruits served with creme fraiche and ice cream.  The kids had two treat trips that day, before lunch they visited Funsters...

... and after lunch they dragged Ju and Dave's youngest lad to the steam railway:

The two dads also had a great time talking all things steam!

On Monday we visited  our parents in Cumbria.  We had lunch with my mum and dad and the kids as always gravitated towards the Lego.  Grandad is normally on helping duty but on that afternoon he was playing in a bowls match at one of the local public houses:

We thought it hilarious that he was wearing a sponsered by T-shirt.  The Latin translation is: He conquers who conquers himself.

Our next stop was to visit Dave's mum and dad.  Pip is most definitely grandad's shadow, whereas when she's with my parents it's my mum she follows.

Just like the others, she had to have a sit on grandad's motorbike, complete with the obligatory wearing of the biking helmet:

and of course grandad had no option but to ride pillion:

"Come on grandad we're going for a ride!"

We've had a quiet at home day today, good job too as I was completely shattered from sharing the driving.  In between enjoying the warming rays of the sun I managed to make some meals for the freezer in addition to our planned meals for today.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Yarn Along

I'm joining Johnny this week for the yarn along thing and his post totally cracked me up!!

My perseverance has paid off and following on from my last post recounting the trials with the Liesl, I have finished the body part and have begun working on the sleeves.  As I suspected I love the pattern and it will be good to see it blocked and ready to wear just in time for the cooler weather.

Seaside knitting last week when the weather was definitely not summer.

Clicking Away.

Finished body piece.

Lovely wave design that will open up nicely when blocked.

St. Benedict's Toolbox: The Nuts and Bolts of Everyday Benedictine Living

I'm currently reading the book pictured above.  I was too lazy to retake my knitting picture to incorporate the reading material so "borrowed" this copy from Amazon.  I've read this book before and have found it useful in my walk with God.  I love St Benedict's rule as it is so practical and this book incorporates the main tenets of the rule and offers suggestions in applying them to everyday life outside of a community setting.