Bobble hats for April

I’ve started knitting a woolly hat – which I only started because I had no project to work on at Wednesday night’s knitting club. I thought “what a silly idea, knitting a woolly hat in spring – what are the chances of me wearing that?” And yet now, as I gaze out of my window, staring at the torrential rain hitting the window in a horizontal action, it seems only right that I finish it so it’s ready for our typical British summer!
Also as I stare out of the window I see that the neighbours are trying to “dry” out their tent after the most dismal week’s camping holiday ever.
You’ve got to love England, right!

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Highlights and haberdashery

I survived my trip to the big smoke and I think Guy just survived looking after Ethan, although he did look incredibly jaded when I got home.

Morna, delighted with Mr Owl

Highlights of the trip included finally presenting the knitted owl to┬ámy friend Morna, as a gift for her 30th birthday. She has named him…… Mr Owl.

Eating sushi in Harrods was totally amazing and over the top and made us feel very clever and important, but I have to say spending some time in the haberdashery department of John Lewis on Oxford Street made me very happy indeed! I have found my dream sewing machine – although this one is pink, my all time favourite one was purple (although it was much trickier to take a photo of.)

The most amazing mini sewing machine

But the best bit was discovering these giant toadstool pincushions…. how cool are these!

Out with the old – and the still quite new

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I’m on a mission…..

I used to hoard clothes and my wardrobe was full of items still with the labels on, jam packed so Guy only had space for a couple of jumpers. Well a few months ago I took a whole load of stuff to the charity shop – including shiny new garments that physically hurt to give away.

And now I must start on Ethan’s clothes.

Who knew how much stuff an eight-month old baby could accumulate. There are hats, shoes, socks, bibs, trousers, baby-gros -you name it, which he wore for just a few minutes.

I did one “sort out” when he hit three months, as we’d been given teeny tiny things that he grew out of in five minutes. Some bits we’ve put away (because you just never know when you might need them again, apparently!) and others we’ve given away.

With everything sorted into piles I just can’t believe how many clothes there are – and I’ve got to figure out where to hide them, or just give them to the charity shop knowing that someone will get more use out of them.

Maybe I should just hide them all in the wardrobe – Ethan doesn’t seem bothered either way!

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One more reason to be thrifty

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Today I finally handed in a letter that will undoubtedly change the course of my future and will add pressure to the family finances, on top of the added costs of having a baby, and of course this recession business that everyone is harping on about still!
It was a massive deal. I handed in my resignation.
For the past four years I have worked with some wonderful people – you know who you are – and witnessed great talent from my reporter colleagues in my role as news editor with Mid Somerset News and Media.
Having been a writer by trade for eight years and having worked hard to get to where I was, it was not a decision taken lightly, but remember that resolution to spend as much time as possible with Ethan? Well, that’s pretty much the main reason.
So now it’s a case of tightening belts, in the money sense, (although I wish I could tighten my own belt a little more!) cutting back on those little luxuries we can do without and making do where possible.
You thought I’d taken up knitting as a hobby – it’s so I can knit my own socks and make you all knitted gifts rather than buy presents!
It’s not all bad – I’m relishing a change, learning new things and seeing what the future brings. Sometimes I guess you just have to make the leap. Wish me luck, and to those that I have worked with, I’ll miss you.

Resolutions? I’ve got a few

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So here it is, another year and another chance to make 101 resolutions only to undo them all in the space of a week.
I don’t normally make resolutions for that very reason, but this year I have made few.
The first is to stop sitting through tedious repeats of tv shows which make me shout at the telly. Did anyone else notice the poor quality of programmes on over Christmas, and for that matter the entire year? I refuse to watch the likes of X factor and “I’m a celebrity…” on a matter of principle, but
I’m afraid I was sucked into the smiley sparkly monotony of strictly come dancing once again. A lot of precious evenings with Guy over the course of 2011 were spent debating whether or not that particular episode of Grand Designs was a repeat, or “have we seen this location location location?” honestly, the mind-numbing boredom of it all…. I plan to spend more evenings with the tv off, actually talking to my husband.
My next resolution is to learn French. Quite a biggie, I know, but I’ve already enrolled on a course with Strode College which begins next week. It’s something I have always regretted not
continuing beyond GCSE, so now is my chance – and of course it means Guy might actually take me to Paris one day!
The third is to make the most of the garden this year. For those that know me, you will know I dabble with growing my own fruit and vegetables, but rather than just having a bumper crop of carrots and potatoes for a couple of months, I want to try and keep some crops going throughout the year – to save a bit of money if nothing else.
And the final one for now is to spend as much time as possible with Ethan. These past eight months have gone so quickly that it doesn’t seem possible. He’s crawling, and worryingly even trying to stand up and walk already and I feel if I blink I will miss him growing up.
So what about you? Any resolutions?

Crawling, owls, and happy new year

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Well, Christmas at the Briggs family home was fab, with Ethan being spoilt rotten. His favourite present? Well it seemed to be anything with a cardboard box and twinkly paper. The interactive toys which light up and sing, which Guy and I agonised over, make him cry. Ho hum!
It seems to be all about owls this year. I received a yummy chocolate owl, Ethan got a cute cuddly owl, and my friend Claire finished her Barney owl, a gift for a little girl. The pattern is by Amanda Berry, and you can find it on etsy
I have now started my own knitted owl, and I have the recipient in mind, but can’t say who….
Other knitting news is that I have been given a book on a style of knitting called entrelac, which I’d never heard of before but looks amazing, albeit rather advanced for me at the moment! New years resolutions? Too many to list. And as Ethan chose Christmas as the time to really get to grips with crawling, I’m not sure what I’m going to have time for anymore…….. Happy new year to all!

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All in the nick of time

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Phew, I think I’m there. Last night was spent making the all-important uber sherry-filled trifle, with Guy making two lemon tarts, and us both having to dash out to find enough double cream to feed a small country. The sloe gin has been given the festive treatment with bows and pretty labels and we’ve poured cider on the used boozy sloes to create a new drink called slider! And most important of all……. I finished knitting the scarf! All in all, a successful day. So, now time to relax right? Ha, I think not – let the merriment commence. Happy Christmas to you all! X

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