Thursday, 26 September 2013

1st Birthday

Hello friends

Today is my 1st Birthday, exactly one year ago today I wrote my first blog. I was unsure of what I was doing as this was all new to me and I think I still have a lot to learn about blogging.
Here are a few things I enjoy about blogging in no particular order, just as they come into my head.

I have made new friends here in the UK and around the globe.
I love reading your comments.
I love reading your blogs too, although I should leave comments more.
I have learned so much from you all from crafting to frugaling, gardening and decluttering and much more.
I have leant that I should take my camera out more because there is so much beauty around us.
I've enjoyed going on your outings an seeing places that I may never visit or revisiting places I've  been to in the past.
I want to keep blogging and reading for the time being because I enjoy your company.
I've had fun.


I'm afraid I haven't made a cake but I will be making one for L's birthday celebrations in a couple of weeks and I will share that with you, I'm sure she won't mind.

Enjoy the rest of the week  and the weekend.


Saturday, 21 September 2013

Sweet and Sour plus catch up


Hello friends
Looks like we're having a nice weekend, weather wise. What about yourselves?
I like Autumn with the leaves changing colour. I still love to kick through the crunch leaves but you have to be careful as you could be kicking something unpleasant as well.
This month is going so fast and soon it will be October and L's 14th birthday (more about that another day)
Last week we had one of L's friends over for tea and I only had one chicken breast so I cut it up into fine strips and made the following recipe (from Asda). I also used what veg I had plus extra.  Carrots, courgette, French beans, peppers and fresh pineapple from the freezer. I didn't do enough rice so we had a pudding. Apple and Strawberry (from the freezer) crumble and custard (sorry no picture).
Since getting this recipe Asda have updated it and use sweet chilli sauce instead of the ketchup and orange juice instead of the pineapple juice. Might give this version a try but I'm not too keen on chillies.
My S & S  Chicken

Sweet and sour Chicken 

·2 tbsp. light Soy Sauce

· 2 tbsp. tomato ketchup

· 2 tbsp cider vinegar

· 1 tbsp clear honey

·  75ml pineapple juice

· 4 level tsp of cornflour

· 2 tbsp sunflower oil

·  4 chicken breast fillets, cut into bite-size pieces

· 200g carrots, cut into short sticks

·  1 pepper, quartered, deseeded and cut into strips

·  2 spring onions, trimmed and sliced

· 155g pack mangetout, sliced lengthways

· 300g fresh pineapple (weighed without skin and core), cut into bite-size pieces (or tinned)

· Rice, to serve

1. To make the sweet and sour sauce, mix the soy sauce, tomato ketchup, vinegar, honey, pineapple juice and cornflour until smooth. Add 50ml of water and set aside.

2. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a wok or frying pan and stir-fry the chicken for 4 minutes or until just cooked through. Remove from the pan and set aside.

3. Wipe out the wok with kitchen paper. Add the rest of the oil to the wok and stir-fry the prepared carrots, red pepper, spring onions and mangetout for about 3-4 minutes.

4. Return the chicken to the wok and add the pineapple. Stir-fry until hot.

5. Stir the sweet and sour sauce, add to the wok and cook, stirring, until it boils and thickens. Serve with rice.

 Sorry about the extra text in the recipe but I don't know how to get rid of it.

The answers to the knitted squares, from my last post are.
No1 = Scooby Do (his collar),
No2 = Dennis the Menace (from the Beano),
No3 =  Billy Whizz (again from the Beano) 
No4 = Flash (some superhero).
I have stitch all the squares together and I'm in the process of crocheting around it. When I've finished I will post a picture.

Yesterday morning Dad and I started on a six course about Dementia. It's run by the Community Intervention Team from Lancashire County Council and although yesterday was really a getting to know you and an introduction to dementia session I found it very useful. Dad's no so sure yet but has decided to continue. I feel that the more I know the better I can help dad with the caring of mum so that she can, hopefully, stay at home as long as possible. That's the theory anyway.

Next week I am preparing my baby knitting stall for a craft fair next Saturday. L and her friend also have a stall selling their jewellery.

Hope you are all having a nice weekend doing whatever you are doing.


Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Back to School and Catch up

Hello friends

L went back to school last Friday. She is now in year nine and I haven't had to buy her any new uniform yet. I bought her a new skirt last year (same size as the year before) and they still fit her. I bought her a new jumper last year (same size as the year before) Still fits. I will however buy her a new one at half term as it will be warmer for winter along with a new track suit. Still wearing the same shirts from year seven (not yet gone grey). Had to get new shoes, L is very heavy on her feet which results in new school shoes three or four times a year. L's hair is back to a normal colour but quite dark to cover the pink. It two goes to cover it up and still it has a pink ting to it but it's more acceptable. We did get a colour stripper but can't use it if the colour has henna in it, which the pink did. My suggestion to L is to leave colouring her hair now until she is at collage when she will be allowed to keep her colours.

This lot should keep us going for a year
During August Bank holiday we went to stay with some friends in Alston and whilst there I went wild raspberry picking. They are so delicious and this year there was plenty for me and the birds. Last week I mad Raspberry and Cranberry jelly (jam). The cranberries were out of the freezer, I'd bought them earlier in the year when  they'd been reduced.

Last week my dad said the there were a lot of blackberries near his allotment so one evening L and I went to pick some. We got about half a bucket, I didn't weigh them, and not a bug in sight. I have made some Bramble Jelly.

And Next I have made some low sugar Lemon and Lime Cheese/Curd, very refreshing. I should have made more to fill the bottom jar.

No 1
No 2
No 3
We have been invited to M's nephews 30th birthday party and joining him in the celebrations are his girlfriend, also 30, and his son who will be 11.  The invitation came covered with superheroes as a clue of what to buy. So after racking my brain I came up with the idea of a joint gift. A blanket, but not any old blanket but a comic strip hero blanket. Something that they could snuggle up under whilst watching a film. First I looked in a few comics and trawled the internet for ideas. Then I got a squared lined book to work out my patterns and sizes. I have completed 16 knitted squares with

No 4
 crochet edges. The squares represent a comic strip hero and not a look-a-like so I will include a quiz sheet (without answers) for them to find the heroes. I've put up four pictures for now and see if you can guess who they represent. I will tell you the answer in my next post. I have enjoyed designing and knitting this blanket. I have still to stitch it together and do a few rows of edging and fringing, The fringe is also representative of a comic character, can you guess which one?

I have also been making some gift tags to sell at a craft fair L and I are doing later this month. These will go with the ones I made earlier in the year and we plan to make some more this week end.

I am still decluttering but I will do an update at the end of the year.

Time for a brew no, I feel exhausted after all that, Would you like one?



I've taken some time to think this through and decided to stop blogging. I'm not getting out of it as much as I did when I first sta...