The Samsung Saga and Hever Castle

Well, after getting all excited about the idea of having a new phone that would let me take pictures and upload them directly to the web, I was very disappointed to discover that the phone was ‘locked’ when it arrived.  It had been advertised as SIM free and unlocked, but it was definitely a T-Mobile phone.  As I had just purchased an annual Orange contract, we had to send the phone back.  Boooo!

So we ordered the phone from another retailer.  What a waste of time that was.  They promised 2-4 days delivery.  Two weeks later, still no phone.  And their customer service was rubbish.  So we cancelled that.

Finally, after paying quite a bit more than we wanted to, I got my birthday present.  A Samsung Galaxy SII in white.

I LOVE IT.

Yesterday gorgeous bf and I went to Hever Castle as part of the Jubilee weekend.  I took my sparkly new phone with me and began testing out the camera and various photo apps I had downloaded.  I really like the retro look of some of these.  My gorgeous bf was very patient with me while I played around with it.

Retro image of Hever Castle

Hever Castle was the childhood home of Anne Boleyn

It’s a surprisingly small castle.  But worth a visit.  Shame the weather was so grim and cold.  After all the lovely sunshine we had the week before, it reverted to early March weather overnight and has stayed that way.  Boo!

Hever castle

See.  My phone works.  YAY for photo-upload ability! (And funky, random effects that I will probably get bored of soon…)

A bridge on the grounds of Hever Castle

Such a cool phone.  And a great day out.

So it was worth the wait.

Testing

I thought I’d test out the phone anyway using the home wireless and see if I can take a picture of something and upload it, blog about it, and all without leaving the phone.

In this case I’ve just started another cable hat for my Granny. She really liked the red one I did last year, which I gave to my mum. I need to make this one smaller however. She has a very small head.

image

a new beginning.

So I am going to try to reduce the pattern by one set of cables. I’ll let you know if I get the math right  :-)

The pattern can be found on Rheatheylia.com.

Birthday…

Has come and gone. Expect a future post about all the lovely goodies I got this year. But I am currently at war over a ‘locked’ phone, which shouldn’t have been, and hoping to either get it unlocked or replaced.

I will win this war. With the help of my Mummy.

Tea and ripple

I was going to take some more pictures today, but the clouds are grey and the weather dreary and miserable.  I’m staying indoors as much as possible with a hot cup of tea and a blanket.

So I added a new colour to my ripple.  It’s to stretch over the bed and down the sides, so it is a nice, snuggly width.  I am using Stylecraft Special DK and the pattern is from Attic 24.  Isn’t it coming along nicely?  I am about 12 rows in.  And aiming for about 50, so I still have a lonnnnng way to go!

Here’s the next tin due a re-cover.  It’s currently keeping a lovely crysanth. alive, so I won’t touch it until the flower passes away.  Isn’t it a gorgeous colour?!  Meanwhile I can think of some ideas for my second crochet tin.  I am thinking colourful this time.  Something summery to brighten up my mood.  What do you think?  Something multi-coloured with flowers on?  Or something plain with lots of bright buttons?

Maybe I need to eat more tuna…

Doing it backwards

Okay, so I shall start with the most recent stuff.  How I have managed to find the time to photograph all this stuff I don’t know, but I did.

New duvet!  On sale at BHS.  I just couldn’t resist all the scrummy colours.  It brightens up the whole room.

Most recently I have been lusting over my stash of Rowan Handknit Cotton.  I LOVE it!  Some of it was gifted to me by a dear friend.  I have since added quite a lot more to it.  Have a look and drool with me!

See?!  There are more scrummy skeins underneath, but they’re just more of the same colours.  I arranged it so you could only see one of each colour.

So what am I going to do with it?

Well, I am going to eat tuna.

Yes, you heard me!  I took the basic pattern of a tuna-tin cover from Attic24 and put my own spin on it.  Here’s what I came up with.

First I spread a lot of my craft stuff on my bed.  Bits of fabric I hope to use to line the tin (when I get the right glue) and various buttons and beads.  My stash basket and of course, the tin.

I had a picture in my head of what I wanted it to look like.  I spent a long time choosing my colours and putting them together.

I tried crocheting some green seaweed to attach to the cover but it ended up looking too big and tacky.  So I had to resort to embroidery.

I was pretty pleased with the results!  I sewed on a couple of metalic, fish beads and tadah!

I love it!

Right, that’s me for now.  Another cuppa and some housework to do!

Catch up!

Yes, yes, okay.  I have been a rubbish blogger.  RUBBISH!  I know.   I know.

Sorry.

So, grab a cuppa and prepare for the catch up posts.

This could take a while.

Ravelry swap

I’ve been participating in my first Ravelry swap, in the ‘We Love Lucy’ forum dedicated to Attic24.  For those of you not in the know, we had to fill in a form (with lots of likes, dislikes) and we were given a swap partner.  The rules were simple and there was lots of room to manoeuvre.  The parcel we sent had to contain some yarn, a handmade ‘something’ and some goodies.  It was exciting, doing all the shopping and getting to know my swap partner.

Well, my parcel from my swap partner, TeresaKasner (from Oregon, USA), arrived one day and was waiting for me on my doorstep.  I was very excited.  I won’t post any pictures of the goodies I sent to her yet, as my parcel unfortunately hasn’t arrived yet and I don’t want to spoil the surprise.  I’m waiting anxiously to hear she received it.

Anyway, here are some pictures of my goodies :)

Picture of swap parcel, all wrapped!

My swap parcel arrived in a box, all wrapped up in bubble wrap with the colours peaking through!

All wrapped up in colourful tissue paper with ribbons. How pretty!

Tadah! Here it is, all unwrapped and lying on my living room carpet. Great isn't it? Click on the images for larger versions if you can't see them properly.

The handmade bits - a beautiful card which my lovely swap partner painted herself. And a crochet heart which I shall hang somewhere near my computer :)

I am looking forward to trying out the yarn.  I’m not sure what I will do with it yet, but I think the alpaca is crying out for some chocolate brown yarn to go with it.  I am sure I have some somewhere, so I shall raid my stash.

In the meantime, I am trying to come up with a blanket idea for the b/f’s sofa.  He came with me to choose the colours.  Now I have to make it work.  Black, yellow and dark red anyone?

Soup anyway.

Hello all.  Another quick, random post.  I am working on a more meaty post which I will hopefully have up tomorrow.

Recently, I have tried out some squares from the Jan Eaton book, 200 Crochet blocks with some springy colours from my Stylecraft Special DK stash.  The colours go well together but just don’t ‘do it’ for me.  I enjoyed the practice, however, and shall be looking around for some suitable yarn and colour combos for this summer :)

Jan Eaton's fabulous book '200 crochet blocks'.

Jan Eaton's fabulous book '200 crochet blocks'.

My stash of Stylecraft Special DK.

How drool-worthy. Mine, all mine!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doesn’t it look delish?  It’s a double layer too, so more yummy colours await each time I take one out.

Lunch today was lovely and peaceful.  I’m alone in the house, as it is school holidays, so I am making the most of the quiet.

New Covent Garden soups are my favourite if I haven’t made my own.  The next best thing.  Now the supermarkets are getting the idea and some of their own-brand fresh soups are lovely!  I’ve been experimenting with some of them.

Of course, nothing beats homemade.  But now that the weather is beginning to turn, I am less likely to make big pots of soup.   I will have a bowl or two anyway, despite the weather.  I love soup!

Minestrone in the making.

Soup making of winter's past. I love it!

Summer is here.  Salads are the thing.  And BBQs.  In a way it’s a shame, as I love the smell of fresh soup simmering on the hob or the sight of all those lovely fresh vegetables and herbs all chopped up on the counter top ready for the pot!  A lot of work, but worth it.

I was taught to make soup by my Grandmother (a 5ft Glaswegian woman with a heart of gold and very particular and traditionally scottish food tastes).  I branched out a bit while at university and started making soups that my Granny wouldn’t touch with a barge pole.  They didn’t all work.  But the ones that did I will make over, and over again!

Now I am all hungry again.  I’m off to put the dinner on.

Too many babies

…not enough time.

All my friends seem to be having twins right now.  It’s very inconsiderate of them.  Still, it has given me a way to use up some stash yarn and explore lovely new patterns.  I am particularly liking the spiral granny square and I have been experimenting with using several different versions.  It is great fun and particularly rewarding because you don’t have to keep changing your yarn every few rows.  It’s a quick pattern and extremely satisfying.  Take a look at these two (the pink one is a work in progress) baby blankets, made using soft Stylecraft Special DK.  Scrummy aren’t they?  I love squishing them.  They are very squishable!  I may just have to make myself one when I am done.

Spiral baby blanket 01

Spiral Baby Blanket 02

Spiral Baby Blanket 03

And here are some yummy pictures of the garden/early summer sky.  These past few weeks have been lovely.

Oh, and do you smell dinner? Lamb shanks slow cooked in red wine with onions, carrots and fresh herbs.  It was TASTY!

And some late spring/early summer blooming!  It’s sooooo beautiful to see everything coming to life and bursting with colour.

Right!  That’s enough for one post.  Back soon with a little more fashion and some more crochet/yarn.

Raspberry update.

Some progress on the Raspberry Lace shawl.

A summer dress I am looking forward to wearing as the weather gets warmer.  I pulled it out of the ‘summer-wear’ stash last week and it’s been staring at me from the hanger ever since.  It even has pockets.

Of course you can’t use them!  It distorts the dress.

My beautiful Debbie Bliss Andes stash.  About £90 worth.  What to do, what to do, what to do.

Pile it all up and stare at it.

Take photos.

Hug and squish it.  And put it back in its bag until some inspiration strikes…