Wednesday, 31 October 2007


There's an old prayer that goes:

From ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggity beasties,
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!

Well, tonight I'm not so worried about long-leggity beasties (though some of those 16 year olds in Scream masks are pretty alarming - wonder what they'll make of Smartie boxes), it's the prospect of a visit from the latest sick bug doing the rounds at school that's terrifying me ... Maybe our pumpkin can keep it at bay!

Monday, 29 October 2007

Aardman, here we come

Do you think Nick Park would like these for the new Wallace & Gromit?

Thursday, 25 October 2007

Practice, practice, practice

I've been experimenting on the children again. One of the teachers at their nursery is an accomplished face painter and since I used to do a bit of decorative painting I thought I'd have a bash.

Let's just say that while I'm fairly happy with the pumpkin, roses are far easier to do when your surface doesn't keep jumping up and down!!

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

The time of my life ...

The rescreening of Dirty Dancing the other day (which I missed, boo) reminded my sister of a video she saw on YouTube - a couple had put in a lot of effort rehearsing their first wedding dance.

I know you can embed videos but I haven't figured it out yet, so for those who are interested, here's the link:

Dirty Dancing wedding video

It's a bit different from the shuffle we did to Ella Fitzgerald!

Sunday, 21 October 2007

I am a laydee!

Amazing what you can do with a Cinderella dress and Mummy's old straw hat ...

(yes, I've cleaned the windows since I took the photo)

Saturday, 20 October 2007

Monday, 15 October 2007

When I was three I thought the world revolved around me

(Points for anyone who knows where that's from)

Anyway, the world *did* revolve around the little miss this weekend. Yesterday we had her party, and thank heavens the Splat glitter arrived in time because it adorned everything in sight.

Actually, I think I almost like the white stars more now.

And where there are little girls there has to be glitter, and fairies, so we got them all to paint these plaster casts, casting aside all cares for the carpet:

I went a bit mad - struck down by some sort of crafting disease - and decided on Saturday to raid my fabric stash and make the party bags instead of buying plastic ones. Well, they can all use reusable shopping bags like their mums now - and I felt better about not filling them with plastic stuff too!

We all had such fun that no-one noticed the time till 40 minutes after the official party finish!

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Blast from the past

It was our wedding anniversary yesterday (busy week this week) so we went out for dinner, and when we came back, we found More4 playing a very old episode of The Tube. Well, who could resist Big Country (even dodgier clothes than I remember), a very young Jools Holland, and joy of joys, U2! Live! (well, live 25 years ago). I was mildly disappointed that Bono didn't climb up a speaker stack, but he was just as embarrassingly over the top and earnest as you could have hoped for.

And now I feel oh, so old. It went on till 1am, you see ...

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Still quite Tiny Small

Today our younger daughter turned 3. When she arrived she looked like her big sister did as a baby, so it seemed natural to change Elsie's nickname from Small to Small Small, while Millie became Tiny Small. She wasn't really very tiny then, and now she tells me she is a Big Girl! I don't know how we're going to keep her entertained for another two years before she starts scholl - she already comes regularly into the classroom with me to help out and is completely unfazed by any of it ...

We have had a lovely day today, from breakfast with presents - despite the post strike delaying everything from our families:

through dancing in sparkly shoes:

to a specially requested train birthday cake:

Not my usual style (bought swiss rolls!) but what the little one wanted, she got today. Including rolling me up in a blanket and patting me to sleep like one of her baby dollies, telling me I was a Knitting Animal in the zoo.

Happy Birthday, little one - you'll always be Tiny Small to me!

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Star folding

I'm sure there must be a branch of physics called star folding, and if there's not, there should be.

Anyway, OK, OK, I hear you! How to fold stars - I should say that I didn't make these up, but I have made hundreds and hundreds of them. There was a time that I used to carry paper in my bag and leave a couple on the saucer with the tip every time we had a meal out. Now I just stash them in jars (sometimes I add a bit of scented oil for cheap pot pourri) and send them in parcels, and if I can find some Christmassy quilling paper they'll be all over the place then too.

First find your paper:

This has been pretty good stuff, possibly a little bit long. It wants to be about 1cm wide and at least about 25cm long. I started off by cutting my own off pieces of A4 sugar paper which works beautifully.

Carefully tie a knot close to one end, pull it tight and then flatten it to form a pentagon. This is the most important step - if you don't form a good shape here your star will be wonky.

Fold the short end on top of the pentagon - you can tuck it into the knot, but it's going to get wrapped anyway so generally I don't. Note that here I have left an exaggeratedly long end - usually I try to get within a cm or so of the end of the strip. After this picture I tore the end off - naughty!

Now start to wrap - just fold the long end of the paper strip where it emerges from the pentagon, and allow the long end to follow along the edge of your shape. It is easier to see than to describe.

Keep doing this till you get close to the end of the strip. Tuck in the loose end under a handy fold. You may need to fold the end over or trim it first to get it neatly tucked.

You should now have a neat little pentagon:

(who has been drawing on my windowsill?!)

Now, using your thumbnail press hard into each of the edges and voila! Your little star will magically appear.

Denise asked if you could make big versions - I bet you could, but you might need a very long strip of paper (and maybe some glue at the end).

Let me know if you can't follow these instructions. I should warn you that not only are these addictive, you end up with "star folders thumbnail" if you do too many in a session - which is more painful than it sounds!

Have fun!


Well, you've stunned me. I expected about ten comments on the last post - blimey! I've tried to email everyone or visit your blogs (and you're in my bloglines now so I shall be back, bwahahaha) but if I didn't, I am sorry - I either couldn't find an email address - the curse of blogger - or I got confused with all the overlapping threads in gmail!

My smallest helper and I have this morning written your names on pieces of paper and folded them up into stars:

And the winner is:

That's Ragged Roses, in case you can't read my appalling scrawl. Well done Kim!

Since there were so many kind comments I decided to have 3 runners up, and the tiny hand picked out: Kari from Crafty Ginger, Lora from Wenches and Tracy from Cupcakes at Home. You will each receive something related to either sewing or knitting - let me know your preference!

If you can email your postal details to dottycookie at gmail dot com, I'll get the parcels off as soon as the post strike sorts itself out.

Sorry you couldn't all win but I think 34 pincushions would kill me!

Added later: I will take some pictures of how to make the stars and post either later today or tomorrow. Thanks for the interest!

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Bit of a milestone

Lots of people have had their 100th post recently, and now it's my turn - well, it's actually my 101st but I wanted to get the little hats posted in time. Thanks for all the hat love and I'm heartened to hear people will be having a go! Rather more bobble angst than I was anticipating though - if I can get my act together I'll do some photos of how I do mine.

Anyway, for a celebration you have to have cakes, so ...

Yes, that is glitter - edible, not toddler - and I just couldn't help myself.

So, to the traditional giveaway. I have made a couple of things - a pincushion from Last Minute Patchwork Gifts, and a little pouch featuring my favourite colours:

The pouch has an embroidered motif on the outside that also appears on the lining fabric. I've put a packet of tissues in mine, but it's big enough to carry a few bits & pieces - maybe a tiny sewing kit?

The package will also contain other treats - some edible glitter (but not baby pink since Splat have sold out - bother), certainly chocolate, maybe wool, maybe fabric - we'll see what I can fit in.

Anyway, if you would like a parcel of pretty things, leave a comment and I'll draw a name from a hat this Sunday (7th) .

Monday, 1 October 2007

More thank yous - and a plea

Simmy went off on a big US jaunt recently, and while she was there she very kindly picked up some rather delicious linen for me (I have plans for this, wait and see) and - joy of joys - Martha's Good Things for Kids - the party edition!! Millie laid claim to this immediately, and started making plans for her birthday party which is imminent. Interestingly I think someone from Waitrose has been reading it too as they have just started selling lolly flower fairy cakes that look remarkably like some featured herein:

The parcels were gorgeously wrapped and it was such a thoughtful gift - thank you Simmy!

And now for the plea bit - it's actually mainly for UK knitters - have you seen the campaign Innocent are running for little hats to go on their Smoothies? For every hat sent in (and put on a smoothie bottle that is then sold) they will donate 50p to Age Concern. They're aiming for 400,000 hats, which is a lot, but they are really quick to knit (the bobble takes longer than the knitting!) I did convert their pattern to knit in the round as I detest joining seams, but it's a bit fiddly with so few stitches. It's hardly rocket science but I can post it if anyone wants it. The hat deadline is October 22nd ...