Thursday 30 October 2014

Baby Shower Makings Version 1.0

It seems to be the time in my life when ALL the babies are being born. It is so awesome! I love seeing my friends blossom in their pregnancies and watching their teeny newborns grow!

I have been slowly making things here and there for a few of these babies and after their baby showers I will show you what I have been up to.

This blanket is for a beautiful friend who has a wee girl due in a few weeks. I started it just after Addison was born before I knew the gender. I like the bright sunny colours and once I knew it was a girl I added the scalloped edging and personalised it with Baby Girl's name (blurred out for her privacy).

I bought some cotton yarn and crocheted up these Baby Converse booties for the ultimate in timeless style. I like cotton more for these because it doesn't go as 'fuzzy'.

An essential accessory for a baby girl is a delicate headband with a cute little button flower!

These teeny weeny prem shorts were in need of customization. My friend likes owls and I had some fabric paint lying around so I thought I would try my hand at hand-stamping them. I hunted around for some foam to cut a stamp from but there was none around. In desperation I remembered potato stamping from my childhood and figured why not? After doing a lot of stenciling I would say I have some pretty good craft knife skills and I was able to get a bit of detail into the little stamp. It was heaps of fun and I will definitely be doing it with more items!

Hopefully my gifts were received well - I had lots of fun making them!

Stay tuned for more baby shower makings - I have another good friends one tonight and another in a couple of weeks. Yay babies!

Wednesday 29 October 2014

Framed Christchurch {Review}

I have so many photos lying around or tucked away that deserve a space on the wall. I am especially guilty of having a tonne of pictures on my computer which never see the light of day. So when I was given the opportunity to have an A4 sized photo professionally framed I jumped at the chance.

 Cathy Benden from Framed Christchurch got in touch with me and asked if I would like to do a review on her new, local business. The easy part was saying yes, the hard part was choosing from the many photos that live in the depths of my computer. The number of photos seems to get a bit out of control when you have a baby. Every expression needs to be captured of course!

I finally decided on this photo of Dave and Addison at the Botanic Gardens here in Christchurch, it just makes my heart melt seeing the bond between them and I can just imagine seeing them in a few years time watching the ducks together.

I got the photo printed 20cm x 30cm and gave it to Cathy at Framed. I was asked what look I was going for and if I wanted a wooden, black, white or coloured frame. I decided to leave the whole choice in Cathy's capable hands and let her decide what would look best.

I love what I got back, The colour of the wood paired with the off-white mat board makes the photo really stand out. The mitre joins are neat and tidy, the frame feels solid and it is backed well with gel cushions on the bottom corners to prevent wall damage. The knots on the hanging string are even sealed with wax to stop it from coming undone. It even came packaged simply buy beautifully. I can't find a fault with her service!

After buying cheap frames for years, I can definitely see the difference in quality and I can imagine this would be more obvious the bigger the picture is.

So if you have a special photo lying around that could be on your wall, give Cathy a call or an email and see what she can do for you.

Framed Christchurch
Cathy Benden
Phone: 021 0853 2456
Trade Me Service Listing and Reviews:

Disclosure: The photo was framed for me free of charge in exchange for a review but all opinions expressed are my own.

Monday 6 October 2014

Crochet Circle Blanket

I am in love with the colour combo of this cot blanket. The light pink, bright pink and red mixed with the dark grey just work so well together.

I based my blanket on the pattern over at Three Beans in a Pod but I managed to make an accidental adjustment to the ridge of the circles by hooking through the loop behind the back loop. A bit more work for me but I think it looks great. The border is just a single layer of double crochet in each colour except the red, which is half double crochet. I joined the squares with a slip stitch in the back loops and joined them horizontally first then did the vertical joins. I used Magnum Soft Acrylic yarn from Lincraft and this blanket used 6 balls of yarn all up. 3 x grey, 1 x light pink, 1 x bright pink and 1 x red.

This is the first blanket that I have blocked. By blocking I mean wetting the yarn fibers and letting them settle into the shape you want.
I tried to steam block with my iron but it broke, then I tried using a spray bottle which also broke, so I settled with pinning and stretching out my blanket onto a towel and spraying it with a hose. We had some sunshine so it dried pretty quickly. It definitely made a difference to the way the blanket sits, it hangs nicer and the circles sit flatter.

This project has been a bit of a slow burner. I kept doing a few circles then got over it and left it for a few weeks then powered through a few more and joined it together.

I made this blanket for fun and to try a new technique but I *hopefully* find out today if I am getting a niece or nephew (EXCITING!!!) and if it is a girl then this blanket will be for her. If it's a boy then I get to make another blanket! Then this one might just end up on Addison's bed.

I have done 2 other baby blankets lately but they are filed away in secret waiting for the beautiful ladies to have their baby showers! I started another one the other day too, I am trying to use up my stash of yarn while I wait for Spotlight to have a big sale.

The colours are so bright on a sunny spring evening!

Sunday 5 October 2014

DIY Renovations: Bookshelves

When our house was built back in the 50's they thought it was an awesome idea to make a tiny toilet room and a tiny shower room. Thankfully at some point one of the previous owners decided to knock down the wall between the toilet and shower to make one relatively roomy bathroom. 

Now for some reason once the wall was knocked down they realised they wouldn't need two doorways. Fair enough. So what did they go and do? Chuck a bit of MDF up on the hallway side and leave it at that. Luckily they finished the bathroom side.

This little alcove is pretty useless. It isn't big enough to use as linen storage or even to stow away the vacuum. It is however, perfect for bookshelves.

Thanks to my husbands amazing skills and his latest passion of watching woodworking YouTube videos, he whipped up these shelves for me out of some recycled Rimu from an old manrobe. He made the shelf supports and routed the front edge of each shelf to make it look pretty. 

My part in this project was to prime the back of the alcove before the shelves went in. We are still deciding on our final paint colour for the inside of the house but at least the base coat is sanded and done. Then I loaded the shelves up with all our books, DVDs, Stargate collection and PS3 games. It looks so awesome and is a perfect use of space.  

Optimus Primed

P.s -We aren't mentioning the horrific paint choices already here - I cannot WAIT to see the day when there are only two neutral colours in sight instead of purple, blue, green, white, other green and yellow.

Friday 3 October 2014

Dear Addison - 5 Months

Dear Addison,

Once again another month has flown by and you are in the middle of your 5th month in the big wide world. This month you have been growing up and becoming much more independent. Gone are the sleepy cuddles and quiet moments, you are all about finding out what is going on.

You have amazing hearing and can hear Daddy's voice from the other side of the house. You get frights at loud noises and look at me with big wide eyes and raised eyebrows. Once you see me reassure you then you are all smiles again and back to playing. The couple of times you did cry from fright were from big loud sneezes and once you cried at our friend who has a remarkably hairy face. Fair enough darling, fair enough.

You are getting to know what you want now - grizzles for food, a different grizzle when you are tired or over it. High pitched squeals of excitement when you want to chat or get attention. Usually when you are standing up and want everyone to see how clever you are. You get lots of praise because you are oh-so-cute. Smiles are dolled out to pretty much anyone but boy do we have to work hard to get you to laugh. Most of the time we are met with a blank, unimpressed stare.

Your favourite games are still 'going backwards off my knees', 'throwing' you in the air, being upside down, being swung high by Daddy in the Jolly Jumper harness and being bounced while on the bed. I am starting to see a trend here, you are my brave girl and might end up being a bit of a daredevil.

We still haven't mastered the back-to-tummy roll, you are content just hanging on your back. You have however mastered the other way round and flip over to your back as soon as I put you down on your tummy. So crawling is still a wee way off I think. Gives us more time to baby proof!

You had a bit of a rough time sleeping last month. I say that in very relative terms. You woke up a couple of times each night but just wanted to chat so we put your white noise on and you fell back asleep pretty quickly. Daylight savings didn't seem to bother you, you have settled in to waking up about 7 every morning. The best part is that you almost always wake up with big smiles for us.

Baths are still hit or miss but you like being in the big bath. I am looking forward to summer when we can put you in your togs and play in the paddling pool!

Your bond with Killer the cat is growing more and more. Killer has surprised us with her tolerance and will come up next to you so you can 'pat' her. She puts up with being poked in the eye and flailing limbs until I direct your hands to her neck and back so she can have nice pats. You squeal every time you see her and don't take your eyes off her.

You had your latest Plunket check a couple of weeks ago and you weighed in at 6.5kg. You are tracking beautifully along the 50th percentile for weight, height and head circumference so you are all in proportion and perfectly average for a Kiwi girl :) You also had your last round of immunizations for a while and dealt with them like a champ. A bit of a cry, a quick feed then smiles at the nurses who adore you.

Keep it up girl! You are a wonderful member of our family and you bring joy to everyone around you.

Tune in next month for sitting practice and starting solids.