Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Things That I've Learned From My Kids

The other morning when the kids and I were staying in my mothers house, my son and Mum were sitting in the kitchen while I was watching some kids telly in the next room....  It just happened to be on. Honest!  They could hear me laughing uncontrollably at the program that was on.  My mother, giggling, said, "I really don't know who is the biggest kid in this family?  Your mother is just a great big baby".  My son looked at her smiling and said, "but Nanny that's what I love most about her.  She is just like us".
This absolutely melted my heart when my Mum told me later and it got me thinking a lot about how my kids have changed my life completely. " Well doh obviously!", I hear you say.  Well no not really.
My own childhood was marred by bullying at a young age and this left it very difficult for me to form friendships or even talk to people at times.  But when I had my own kids it felt like I had a chance to relive my childhood.  Not through them but with them as my best friends.  Like the ones that I always wished I had growing up.
My kids have taught me how to laugh and by that I mean real laughing.  The type that comes from right down in the pit of your stomach and leaves you breathless and with a pain in your side.
They have shown how to be fearless.  They don't worry about what other people think of them.  They just enjoy being who they are and living in the moment.  I realise now that I've wasted far too much of my life caring about others opinion of me.  So now I've been known to skip happily down the main street in town or sing (very badly I must admit) at the top of my voice while pushing the trolly around the supermarket.  Singing songs that we have changed the words of so that they make us laugh.  Even though Patrick’s favourite songs all involve poo and bottoms!
I found that the kids really bring out my creative side. I love sitting on the floor with them building things out of Lego or play dough.  And it is amazing how many really great things that can be made from these if you take the time to do it.  The kids may say to me that maybe I should try making a certain design out of material and they may even tweak it just a little so that I can see what they mean.  For me hearing “Mammy will you knit me this” or “Mammy will you sew that for me”.  Is music to my ears because they often come up with ideas that I've never even thought of.  I may love to feed their imagination but they also feed mine.
Patrick and Lucy have shown me how kind and understanding people can be.  Through my worst days they make me laugh or just make a bed out of blankets for me on the sofa.
I love to sit and watch cartoons with them when I can or go for an adventure in the forest with them.  Their words paint images to help me to see the world through their eyes.  And I love it!  My Mum might think I’m a big baby but I’m one happy big baby.

Sorry about the soppy post today but this has been on my mind the last few days.  AND tomorrow I'm off to Germany for a week.  So I know I'm going to miss them lots.  
Hopefully I'll get some nice piccies for you at the Christmas markets in Salzburg and Munich.

Rosie xx
PS I hope that this makes a bit of sense and not like some mad ramblings.  What have your kids taught you?

Monday, 26 November 2012

Going Vintage

Chaos has reigned once more on this little house of mine.  After labouring to clean all of the linen in our hotpress, or airing cupboard to everybody else, after the builders left the house caked in cement dust, my heart sank this weekend to discover that the pipes in the house next door had burst and the water had seeped into our hotpress and destroyed all of the contents once more!  Much screaming and pulling of already thinning hair ensued!
So to cheer myself up a little, I headed off to the local antique fair.  And with my beady little eye I found a beautiful set of dessert plates just begging me to bring them home.  They may not be perfect with their little chips and cracked glaze but I love them more for their little imperfections.  I shows that they were well loved and used plenty.  And they are certainly going to be well used here too.

This is the cake plate.  It may be a little cracked and warn but just look at the beautiful detailing on it.  Who couldn't just fall in love with it!

There are five cake plates in total and the design on each is completely different.

I was also going through some of my material stash because I've started my chrimbo present sewing and I found an old tablecloth that my mother used to use in her house a lot when we were growing up.  Because some naughty little mouse had a nibble one or two corners of it, it was put aside to be made into a bag of some description.  But when I saw it, it brought back a lot of memories and I no longer have the heart to take the scissors to it.  I love it just the way it is.  Perfect!
Well obviously it could do with a bit of an ironing!  But I never did say that I was the queen of the rubber glove and feather duster brigade and I am severely allergic to the iron.  Well that is what I tell the Hubbie anyway!

I also finally managed to finish my purple waistcoat from the pattern by Kyoko Nakayosho.  I really struggled to find a button that I really liked for it.  The only problem that I had with the pattern was that the number of stitches for the arm ribbing was very small and I had to rip them back and pick up extra ones.  Other than that it was a great challenge and now I am quite happy with the final result.
The light wasn't great today so sorry that the pic isn't that good.

Oh and one more thing I forgot to show you the finished mittens.  I really love them.  I knitted them in fine merino and they are so snug and warm.  I'm wearing them all the time.  I decided to cast off the top and thumb a little snug on them so that they don't get all baggy and loose because that is one thing that really drives me batty.  So far it has worked!

Well that was my weekend.  Eventful as ever.  Hope that you had a good weekend too.
Rosie xx

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Out Of The Mouth Of Babes

This was the conversation between my daughter Lucy and myself at bedtime last night;

Lucy: Mammy how did you catch that thing that you have?
Me: What thing Lucy?
Lucy: That fibrobibo thing that you have?  Who did you get it from?
Me: Well it's not like a cold.  You don't just catch it.
Lucy: How did you get it then?
Me: The doctors don't know.  sometimes something goes wrong in the body and it doesn't work properly.
Lucy:  So why are you in pain all the time.  What's broken?
Me:  When you get a cut on your finger, there is a little signal sent to the brain saying that you are in pain.  But with me it's like a a cd with a scratch in it.  The same message is being sent over and over again.
Lucy: So you're not really in pain.  So if we just distracted you all the time and made you think of other things, then the messages wouldn't get through.
Me: Giggle.  Yea Lucy maybe we could try that!
Lucy:  Well what are the doctors going to do to fix it?
Me:  The doctors don't know how to fix it.
Lucy:  Well then I've got a good plan Mammy.  When I say my prayers tonight, I'm going to ask God what can be done to fix you.  During the night God will tell me and then I'll tell you and then you can tell the doctors and then you can be fixed.  Hey Presto!

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Some Silly Ramblings

Things have not been too easy the last few days.  I had to go to the clinic and get some steroid injections into my hips!  I know, yuk or what?  If I'm really honest it is quite embarrassing  getting this done.  After my appointment with the doc, I then have to move into the nurses office while she gets the injections ready for the doctor.  While waiting I need to pull down my trousers and lie on the bed with my knicker clad bum sticking out over the side like an avalanche on pause.  This time I decided to wear a giant pair of  pink hippo undies that say "does my bum look big in this?"  Well it definitely eased the tension in the room! But the down side of getting these done is that is that it limits my agility for a couple of days.
Last night I just spent a relaxing evening cutting pieces of fabric squares with the kids to make a patchwork table runner for Chrimbo.  We agreed that they are going to decide the lay-out while I do the stitching on the machine.  Wish us luck.  It'll be my first attempt at patchwork.
I had a fantastic thrift shop find the other day.  When I walked into the shop this little beauty was sitting on the counter and I knew it just had to be mine.  It's a lovely 70's Roly light with all of the original fittings intact.  And all for only a fiver!  The Hubbie put it up last night and it looks better than I would have expected.
And last but not least, I finally got a photo of the Molly dog in the car.  I  really do think that she's under the impression that she's a meerkat.  She comes in the car everywhere with me, even on the two minute journey to the kids school. From 2:30 each day she sits at the front door waiting to go and pick up the kids.  How do they do that?

Sorry for all the mad ramblings today. Must be all the pain killers!  Have you got a funny doctor story?  Or a dog that can tell the time?

Chat you all soon,

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Lucy's Beanie

Poor little Lucy has been home from school this week with a very bad throat infection.  She is rarely sick but when she is it hits her hard.  I feel so sorry for her as she hasn't been able to eat for the last few days.  So to cheer her up and keep her warm in this horrible damp weather, I knit her a little beanie.
It is in a Mirasol wool and silk blend yarn and if I'm honest it wasn't much of a pleasure to knit.  Seed stitch is pretty when finished but tedious to do.  I know that I wouldn't ever do a jumper in it.  I'd loose my mind!  But I also found the yarn very hard on my hands.  It brought me out in a horrible rash on my hands and especially between my fingers.  I certainly wasn't sorry to come to the end of the beanie.
After giving a good wash in some soft wool soap, Lucy tried it on.  It fits her perfectly but I think that she'll only get this winter out of it. 
Best of all though is that she loves it.  So that makes it all worth while.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Ta Dah!

I've been determined to knit a pair of fingerless mittens for myself before I go to Germany.  I've made plenty in the past but always the simple ones that have no thumb gusset.  I was totally terrified starting this one if I'm totally honest.  Thumb gussets are one of those things that I've forever been afraid of, like fair isle knitting, aran jumpers (and people wearing them!), the size of a crocheted bedspread, the boogy man under my bed and a running gingerbread man!
But I decided that I was going to face at least one of these fears and I signed up for the 'Gloves and Mittens Galore' course on I love craftsy courses. They really help when there are no classes available to you.  And living in the Irish midlands believe me when I say that there are absolutely NO classes being run in the area.  But with craftsy they are alwaya there whenever I have time to spare.
I was much more hopeful after watching the class and so I picked up my dpns and started a pattern that I got from ravelry by designer Susie Rogers.  Here's how the first mitten turned out:
Very blurry picture.  Sorry about that but I was trying one-handed photography.
I'm really proud of the thumb gusset.  It's not totally perfect but not bad for a first attempt.  There'll be no stopping me now.
What are you scared of?  Is there an obstacle that you've overcome lately?
Chat you soon,
Rosie xx

Thursday, 8 November 2012

The Best Ever

I'm just after having an absolutely brilliant night. Today after school I dropped the kids and the dog down to my mothers house and myself and the Hubbie headed off on the two hour journey up to the O2 in Dublin to see the Liverpudlian comedian John Bishop. It's not often enough the we get to spend some quality grown up time together, so we stopped off on the way for a gorgeous dinner before tackling the horrendous traffic into the city. But the frustration and if I'm honest a little bit of road rage while sitting in traffic for over a hour, was all worth it. I laughed so much at the show that by the end my face and stomach hurt. And as they say laughter is the best medicine so I was determined to squeeze every drop out. Afterwards the Hubbie, who slept all the way through the second half even with a hyena like me laughing wildly beside him, was too tired to drive home. And even though I was nervous about driving two hours in the dark, I'm proud to say I managed it with no problems. Two years ago I thought that I wouldn't be able to do something like that again because of the effect of my meds on my eyes. I'm clapping myself loudly on my back just as I type!
When we parked outside my mums at 1:30am Molly, the dog, was sitting at the kitchen window watching and waiting for us. She cried and squirmed and jumped like a mad thing when I walked in as if she hadn't seen me in weeks. She didn't settle down until I let her give me a lick on the ear ( her form of a kiss). I know you're probably thinking 'how gross is that?' But she's my little buddy and never leaves my side, even though she's really my daughters dog.
So Rosie actually has a full weekend planned. For a change! I'm going to see the gorgeous Jack L, the Irish singer with a voice like honey, on Friday night with my sister-in-law. And on Saturday night I'll be going to dinner with a good friend that I only see about twice a year. So there'll be lots of gossiping and nattering going on. I'll probably be hoarse after it all but I can't wait! Roll on the weekend. Do you have anything nice planned for this weekend? I hope so!
Lots of love and giggles,
Rosie xx

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

So Much To Do......

If I'm honest I don't really know what I'm at these days.  Christmas is coming and there is a lot of crafting to be done.  I'm full of ideas for presents and decorations for the house and I still haven't got my mincemeat made for my mince pies.  My problem is that I just don't know where to start!  And another of my big problems is that I've got a habit of starting a tonne of projects all at the same time and never seem to get anything finished.  I get too bored doing one project at a time and it's only been a few times that I've managed it.  And there are so many beautiful patterns out there to inspire me and tempt me to cast on a fresh set of stitches.
I do love that great feeling of achievement I get when I see a project finished.  It's something that I don't get from anything else.  I like to sit down to a nice meal that I've cooked or a scrumptious cake but I never feel like jumping around and shouting out the window, "look what I've made".  I can clean the house and do all my chores until the house gleams but I don't ever want to walk proudly into my knitting group wearing a nice Mr. Muscle shiny bathtub now do I?
Tomorrow I'm going to be brave and sit down with my dear little notepad and make my Christmas list (not for Santa...that one will come later on St. Nicholas' Day.  Hopefully he'll listen this year.)
The most important jobs first.  Sewing during the day because I can knit at night and when the kids are doing their homework.  I'm heading to Germany at the end of this month with my mother to visit the big bro.  We are going for a week so that is going to take more time off me.  And then when we get back, advent will have started.  And advent is such a big thing here in this house for us.  The stairs have to be decorated and small sweet bags hung out for Santa's elves to fill for the kids if they have been good that day.
Ahhhh I think I'm going to go mad.  But if I'm really honest with myself, I'm looking forward to Chrimbo this year for the first time in a long long time.  I'm more relaxed in myself.  More secure and I've finally accepted my condition.  As somebody once told me "it is possible to find happiness in acceptance".
Another promise I'm making to myself is that I want to take care of my blog properly and update it more often.  Every time I sit down on the sofa and take my laptop out, my dog Molly, jumps up beside me and lies right across the keyboard, nudging me and giving me those endearing eyes that say "please tickle my belly".  And if that wasn't bad enough, one of my cats, Nina, has a habit of sitting on the back of the couch behind me rubbing my head with her paw!
I often sign on to blogger land intending to write a post but I get so distracted by everybody elses beautiful pages that I spend all my time reading them and before I know it, it's already bed time.
So I'm hoping that with all the crafting I'll be doing over the next two months, I'll definitely be posting more news.  And hopefully there'll be some fab pictures from Munich and Salzburg.

Thanks for listening to my mindless rambling,
Rosie xx

PS  Can anybody out there help me please?  Whenever I have found new blogs that I would like to follow, I would click on the Google Follow This Blog button and that blog would automatically pop up on my reading list.  But the last few times that I did that, I had to copy and paste the address into my reading list.  Does anybody know what I'm doing wrong here?

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Insomnia and Revamping An Old Knit

With all the disruption over the last couple of weeks I've really struggled with sleeping.  Walking around the house at four in the morning looking for something to do is no fun at all!  One night my daughter put her big teddy, whom we call Abominable, into my bed so that a cuddle from him would help me sleep like it helps her.  Well I'm not joking you when I say that I squeezed that poor teddy senseless that night.  And you'll never guess what... I slept the whole night!  Needless to say I've brought him to bed every night since and I've always slept like a baby...literally.  Maybe Lucy discovered a cure for insomnia.
One of the nights I was up and looking for something to do I decided to revamp one of my handknits.  I made a short little cardi a couple of years ago from some lovely wine Rowan Cashmere chunky.  Sadly I've put on some weight since and so I haven't worn it much lately.  I crocheted on a trim and some button loops in a dark green merino and found a nice set of buttons in the jar.  

Sorry for the poor piccies. I think that its turned out okay.  What do you think?

Chat you soon,
Rosie xx

All A Little Topsy Turvy

The last two weeks has seen our house turned upside down.  We had to have the chimney rebuilt before the really bad weather set in.  They told us that it would only take two or three days but when they started they discovered that is was going to be a much bigger job than expected.  So I had to evacuate the kids and myself down to my mothers house.  I was lost without my laptop and internet connection.  I couldn't keep up with all of the bloggers.
Then days after the work started I could start cleaning the house.  When i walked in I felt like crying my eyes out.  The dust covered every surface and got into every press and wardrobe.  Four days of cleaning and laundry and finally I think that I'm finished.  The kids moved back home yesterday and they were delighted to get settled back in their beds with their teddies.

But we did manage to have some fun at halloween.  We all dressed up and went trick or treating (I dressed up as a cat and Lucy drew whiskers on my face.  What a wally I looked!)  The hubbie did a fantastic firework display which we watched while a bonfire kept us warm on a very frosty night. There was of course the usual pumpkins at the door which the kids cut out themselves.
 And of course the face painting ....
And essential party party games like the flour dunking game where you have to make a pyramid of flour and put a raisin on the top.  They each have a turn in cutting away a slice of the pyramid and the one who makes the raisin fall has to dunk their face into the flour.....