Delilah’s First Trip to the Theatre: Spots Birthday Party

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These are the only pictures I managed to get of my biggest babies first outing to the theatre (she’s not loving the camera in her face this week, fair enough I’m not sure I’d want to be chased round by a giant taking pictures of my every move either)

Anyway, this was a special little trip organised by Delilah’s playgroup and as Spot was one of my favourite books growing up (child of the 80’s!) I was a little bit excited! Delilah on the other hand was mainly oblivious right up until he came on stage.

We made a special day of it by my Mum coming to watch Olive for a couple hours whilst I got to spend some quality time on my own with my lilttle Delilah. And it was lovely. (except for the bit on the bus home where she refused to put her shoes on and kicked a passer by-lets pretend that didn’t happen) The show was great. Delilah was completely enthralled, so much so that she didn’t even notice I had forgotten to take snacks! I’ll definitely be looking at what else is on to maybe make a more regular thing of it, although it’s not cheap I think it was really worth it, say every few months or so.

And I’ll definitely be planning on more ‘just lilah and mummy’ time too.

 

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DIY: Baby Bunny

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This is the Baby bunny to go in yesterday’s Mummy Bunny pocket pouch.

The instructions are pretty much the same except I’ve sewn the facial features straight on to the body so you won’t need felt.

You will need:

Fabric scrap approx 6inch by 14inch (depends on size you want your baby bunny.

Embroidery thread and needle

Paper for template

Fabric marker (the dissolving kind)

Sewing Machine

Polyester stuffing (or use insides of an old cushion/pillow)

1. Draw your bunny shape on to paper and cut out

2. Pin on to folded fabric (right sides together) and cut around. You will have 2 bunny pieces.

3. Draw your facial features on to the right side of one of your pieces using the fabric marker.

4. Embroider over the top of your pen marks.

5. Pin your 2 body pieces together, right sides facing.

6. Sew all around the edges leaving a 1inch gap at the bottom for turning.

7. Turn inside out (use a knitting needle for ears) and fill with your polyester stuffing.

8. Sew gap closed using slipstitch (tutorial in yesterdays DIY)

Put your baby in Mummy’s pocket!

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DIY: Mummy Bunny

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I had no real plans for celebrating Easter in a big way but seen as the weather is still so rubbish I’ve decided to use it as an excuse to do lots of crafting, with and for the girls. I thought I’d turn some of the things we’re doing in to tutorials in case anyone else out there is in need of similar disctraction from being housebound.

This first tutorial is for a Mummy Bunny, her baby tutorial is coming tomorrow. Delilah has already claimed her, luckily I took these photo’s before she got dragged through a puddle on the way to the post office earlier. I’ve got high hopes of making Olive a Big Bird cushion too which i’ll share later in the week, just in time for last minute Easter gift giving (if that’s your thing!)

You will need:

Roughly 1/2 yard fabric (depends on how big you want your rabbit, mine is 15 inch tall- 13inch finished)

Contrasting scrap fabric for front pocket

Embroidery thread

Felt

Sewing Machine

Pins

Old paper/newspaper

Old cushion (for stuffing)

Fabric marker pen (the kind that dissolves)

1. Draw rabbit shape on to piece of paper. Remember it will be stuffed so make it much bigger than you want the finished bunny (my template is15inch/38cm high and 13inch finished)

2. Draw an oval shape that is a bit smaller than the bunny’s head. Draw on rabbit features.

3. Fold fabric in half, right sides facing. Pin rabbit template on top and cut around, leaving you 2 body shapes.

4. Place oval face shape on to felt and cut around. Transfer the eyes, nose and mouth on to the felt using your fabric pen.

5. Embroider facial features in place using backstitch (link at bottom on how to do)

6. Sew face to the right side of one of your body pieces.

7. Now make the pocket pouch. Cut out piece of fabric to fit the belly part of your bunny ( I didn’t make a template) Fold over top edge by 0.5cm and the same again. Topstitch in place. I the other edges raw as I prefer the look.

8. Sew pocket on to the rabbit body, the same piece that has the face on.

9. Pin both bunny body pieces together, right sides facing.

10. Sew all around the edge, leaving a 1inch gap at the bottom for turning.

11. Cut notches all around curved bits (link at bottom)

12. Turn the bunny right side out, using a knitting needle to get right to the end of the ears.

13. Stuff with old cushion filling or polyester stuffing.

14. Slipstich gap closed. (link at bottom)

How to do backstitch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GFFTgKay8g

How to do notches: http://sewmamasew.com/blog2/2011/10/the-hows-and-whys-of-clips-and-notches-sarai-mitnick-colette-patterns/

How to slipstitch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkUipLCfJPk

I used liberty print fabric from the new bloomsbury range as I thought it was nice and Springy, but this would also be great to use old vintage sheets or old favourite clothes that no longer fit.

 

 

 

 

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Weekending

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We made Art for daddy coming home

We rode the bus, tram and sledge

It snowed some more

We watched lots of Charlie and Lola (thank you you tube)

I bought 2 new dresses in the sale, neither of which are breastfeeding friendly, both of which are 2 pregnancies in 3 years showing too much bum short. Clearly way too long since I last went shopping!

We read lots

We ate lots

We laughed

We cried

And now we’re ready for some sunshine but failing that we’ve gots lots of Easter activities planned to keep us sane inside this week.

 

 

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Plotting and Planning: An introduction to Barney and campervanning with children

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We’re house bound. Tom’s away (working in London). It’s snowing, a lot.  We briefly ventured out this morning and got as far as the bottom of the hill before both girls started crying with cold (despite wearing ski gear from Norway!) and had to head back home. And so what better way to spend the rest of the day than plan our trip in Barney next month.

Owning a VW camper van had always been an individual dream of mine and when I first met Tom (4 years ago) was one of the first things we talked about. It turned out that it was one of his too. Just a couple of months later I got a phone call ( I was visiting family in Sheffield as we were both living in London at the time) from Tom saying he had bought a Camper Van, I was so excited! It was pretty obvious right from the start that we were meant to be but this was the icing on the cake during those very exciting first few months together (superficial I know!)

One of the things that appealed to us I guess was having the freedom to just set off on an adventure whenever the need or whim arises however with 2 small children in tow that’s not always easy, still possible though!

I thought I’d share a few tips of things we have found helpful:

ALWAYS BE PREPARED FOR A BREAKDOWN!

Take plenty of food and water for everyone on board ( I made the mistake of not taking food and water on a trip just 10 miles away as I thought there was no point and we broke down, on a Sunday with no bus route or shops near by with a 2 week old…she was fine as I was breastfeeding but I was exhausted and hungry! The AA got a puncture on route to us and it took them 6 hours to recover the van) Lesson learned.

Take plenty of warm blankets and waterproofs (even in Summer!) We broke down on the M6 late a night and had to huddle at the side of the motorway in the rain with a 2 year old, they slept through the entire thing as they were nice and snug.

Travel during nap times or late at night. 

Try to avoid rush hour traffic as much as possible.  

Take it slow, plan a stop en route.

Plan your route then multiply the time it should take by 3! (We went to the lakes last year and it took my parents 2 hours to get there, it took us 6 hours)

If you plan to wild camp (tolerated but not strictly legal) make sure you have a rough idea of where you’ll stop as there is nothing fun about driving around late at night tired in an area you’re not familiar with 2 equally tired children. 

If you like the idea of wild camping but still want the facilities there are lots of great basic camp sites out there if you do a google search. Also the camping and caravanning club offer you 3 hours use of their facilities for just £7 at some of their sites.

Pack light.

If it’s completely last minute and all the camp sites you try are fully booked try laterooms.com (or similar) We have paid less for a room in a hotel than the cost of staying at a camp site. And you don’t have to cook your own breakfast!

Some useful links:

http://www.ukcampsite.co.uk/

http://www.campingandcaravanningclub.co.uk/

http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Camper-Van-Coast-Cooking/dp/1444703943/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1364045274&sr=8-1

http://www.wildcamping.co.uk/

http://www.thehappycampers.co.uk/campsites/wildcamping/

Take some good music and enjoy!

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DIY: Fabric Scrap Brooches

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I’ve been doing a lot of sewing recently so am getting quite a pile of little scrap pieces, here’s another tutorial to help use them up.

You will need:

Fabric/Felt Scraps

Safety Pin or brooch back

Needle and thread

Paper & Pen

Scissors

Button

1. Draw a flower shape on to piece of paper and cut out.

2. Place on top of piece of fabric and cut around. Repeat 3-5 times making each flower slightly smaller.

3. Place all layers together, starting with biggest at bottom and smallest on top.

4. Sew button on top, sewing through all layers.

5. Sew safety pin or brooch back on to the back.

I also made some little heart shaped ones out of felt but Delilah quickly claimed them and the photo’s I got of her were a blurry mess!  These make beautiful gifts and you can use different types of fabric, or change the size and shape to suit the person you’re giving them too. They also take 10-15 minutes to make, always a bonus!

 

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Weekending

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This weekend started with my first hair cut in 18 months! I can’t actually believe it’s been that long but looking at myself in the mirror last week confirmed it definately had been. My previous budget for trying new hair styles and colours has been replaced with second hand furniture shopping and household repairs. Not that I mind for the most part but it does feel good to have a mop to be proud of. 

The rest of the weekend wasn’t quite as exciting. We mainly spent it tackling the girls room. Tom’s been building the girls shelves and drawers for their in-built cupboard and what started as neat little piles of clothes to grow in to and clothes grown out of 4 weeks ago now looks like this

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I made carrot cake to help make it slightly less painful!

Delilah helping measure the shelves. 

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Under those tights are 2 pairs of inside out pants and a pair of leggings, I love seeing what she puts together in the morning! Anything goes, if only we all felt so free!

Hope you had a great weekend too.

Jenna

 

 

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My little tiger feet

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I can’t even tell you how much I love this Ed Emberley fabric! I know it’s probably not meant for girls but I don’t care, i’m not really in to the whole blue is for boys, pink is for girls thing. I originally bought this for Delilah last year as it really suits her personality and completely out of the blue she has decided this week she is a lion! (and Olive is a koala bear?) Anyway, I’ve made these shoes for Olive and now i have to decide what to make my little lion. Any ideas?

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Tutorial Tuesday: Fabric Scrap Coasters

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This project came about one night when I was busy preparing for the Craft Fair. I got a little distracted and bored of what I was doing and decided to make something just for fun rather than anything I needed to do! I had a little look around and I was surrounded by tiny little scraps that otherwise might have ended up in the bin!

Here’s what I came up with….

You will need:

Scissors

Fabric scraps

Square of fabric for backing (size of required coaster)

Sewing Machine

Some sort of interfacing/padding/lining to make a more sturdy coaster (I used an old bed sheet)

1. Sew together several scraps of fabric so that you have strip. Do this by placing one scrap piece on top of the other, right sides facing. Repeat until you have enough strips to make a square.

2. Press all seams open.

3. Sew the strips together. Do this by placing one strip on top of the other, right sides facing.

4.When you have sewn all strips together press open the seams.

5. Place right side up. Now put the plain square of fabric you have for the back on top, right side down. Put your lining/interfacing on top of this.

6. Sew all around edge using a 0.5 seam allowance and leave a 1 inch gap for turning. Snip corners.

7. Turn the coaster right side out and turn gap under.

8. Sew all around the edge to finish.

9. Repeat for as many coasters as you need.

Voila! Fabric scrap coasters! The perfect little project to use up those annoying tiny pieces.

(Please bear in mind this is my first attempt at writing a tutorial so if you have any questions just let me know! Thanks)

 

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Weekending…

We had another lovely family spent weekend…Tom took Olive swimming for the first time Saturday and she loved it. Another water babe! Me and Delilah watched from the gallery whilst eating cake. Sunday was my first Mothers Day with little Olive in tow (3 altogether!). I feel so lucky to have 2 such different, beautiful little people in my life (that’s when i’m not mopping wee up or wiping crayon off the walls!). Sunday, I took my mum and nan to Bakewell where we did a little charity shopping and then had coffee before heading back to be taken out for lunch, then a trip to park.

Here’s some beautiful vintage fabric that my Mum bought be on Sunday. The plan is to turn it in to a teepee for the girls…hopefully in time for Summer!

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