Monday, 31 January 2011

Knit Envy

My sister is an amazing knitter. Here is the jumper she gave Bambino for Christmas. Her other creations include gloves. You need three needles to do those. Three needles - two hands?! Impressive. She often displays her creations in her blog, Happy Little Birdie.

I on the other hand have not knitted more than the compulsory 11 year old's scarf. But I am thinking now that I would quite like to learn to crochet...

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Recently Tested Recipes

I love trawling the Internet for new recipes. Here are some I've recently tried and saved in my recipe book.

This week we will be having a few staple favourites; Chicken Cassserole, Fritata, Nassi Goreng as well as one of my firm favourites

and a new recipe

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Oh Baby!

This weekend just gone I held a baby shower for one of my best friends, Kate, who is expecting a baby at the end of March. I wanted it to be a lovely shower but I am still on maternity leave so it was a shower on a budget. I also wanted to have some fun games, but without embarrassing everyone, as not everyone knew each other very well.


A lot of the 'shower websites' advocate using baby clothes strung on a washing line as decor but that isn't actually that cheap if you want to buy nice clothes and pass them onto the mum as she goes home. The most helpful thing I read was to use everyday items as decor. Luckily my friend is having a baby girl so I was able to use my daughter's toys.

I also made a banner for the mantle piece. I made the template in Word. I am really pleased because I didn't think I'd be able to cut the serif font out of material but I first cut the letters out of paper and then pritsticked them to the fabric as an outline to cut round. I fabric glued the letters to the flags, ironed them and went round the outlines with fray check. I am hoping I might be able to use the banner for another friend one day! On the mantle I had three straight vases with pink flowers in them and pink net tied around the vases. It kept the decor fresh, sweet but not too childish.

I had some single use baby bottles which were no long sterile. I filled them with pink bubble bath and tied pink net round the neck of these too. I put them on the window sill, interspersed with my daughters rubber ducks. They were decor and also prizes for the ladies who won the games.


I took the lead from Kate, who organised my baby shower with my sister. They asked the guests to bring cakes so that they simply had to make the savouries. We had a delicious selection of cakes (on both occasions). I made sandwiches; cucumber, cream cheese & chive, ham & mustard, turkey & coriander, tomato & pesto and beetroot, especially for Kate, her favourite!

I think baby showers are no alcohol occasions on the whole, esp as a) mum to be is often abstaining, b) there may be children present, c) it's usually during the day and I might fall asleep. So I made Baby Berry Cocktails from cranberry and pomegranate juice and lemonade. There was of course tea and coffee too and excitingly I was able to get my best cups and saucers out! (I am easily pleased!)


As I say, I felt games were important to make sure everyone was involved but I didn't want anyone feeling uneasy or embarrassed. I had two games. The first was running when the guest arrived. I found pictures of celebrities when they were babies online and with current day pictures created a random slide show for the guests to try and match up. The second game was a simple memory game. I put out 16 baby related items (nappy, vest, bottle etc) on the table and gave the guests just a few minutes (without paper) to memorise the items and then after clearing the items away gave them a few minutes to try to write them all down. I couldn't really afford to buy lots of prizes so I had baby related tie-breakers, which I needed. One was...

Q: "What percentage of babies arrive on their due date?"
A: "3-4%"

The closest person won the baby bottle of bubble bath. I also organised the regular guess the date weight sweepstakes.


Lots of people bought presents for Kate rather that presents for the baby. I did want to give her something pretty, but practical so I made her a matching changing bag set...

Changing Mat from this book, which my mum bought me.
  • A nappy bag, nappy sack bag and wet bag (for a change of clothes/dirties
  • Soft rings toy from somewhere online that I now can't find - sorry!
  • A hand sanitiser holder from this blog (made one for myself while I was at it!)
It was a lovely day.