Friday, 29 January 2016

Seven Quick Takes, ep. 1: The Beginning

Linking up with Kelly for SQT...

seven quick takes friday 2 

1. This weekend, Ze Husband is taking Mx to see their First Ever Pantomime. I think she's old enough to appreciate it this year, and he's never been to one (it's not a Thing in France), so it will be a valuable cultural experience (ahem). Also, him taking her means I don't have to go. WIN. (Lots of people, lots of noise, confined space - NOT my thing at all). I'll let you know how that goes.

2. The sewing machine has gone on strike. I suspect it may have been reading this blog and realised what it was in for over the next few months. Grrrr.

3. Mx and R moved into bunk beds this week - big change! R is enjoying actually being able to GET OUT OF HIS BED far, far too much.

4. We got a bag of brussels sprouts in the veg box a couple of weeks ago, and we're still battling through them - I've been playing hide-the-sprout and sneaking a couple into almost everything we eat. Les gn'enfants haven't noticed yet - ha!

5. As of next week (Monday, with any luck), I'm going to start posting hymn ideas for the following Sunday. I'd love it if other people could share their ideas, too, with the aim of eventually producing a full set of recommendations for the three years of the liturgical cycle. Obviously (d'oh), this will take three years, but I'm up for the challenge!

6. It's 4pm here and it's already nearly dark. At times like this, I really miss living 1000 miles further south.

7. Only 2 more days until the next episode of War and Peace is on! Woohoo!

Happy weekend, internets.

Thursday, 28 January 2016

The Year of Finishing Projects, ep. 1

One of my resolutions for this year is to finish some of the (many) craft projects I have on the go... and hopefully make a bit more space in my craft cupboard. The sewing machine is supposed to live in there, but it has been sat out on top of a bookcase for... (ahem)... a while.

So, I actually finished something yesterday...

A  braided rag rug I've been making for my sister's new house. I've made a few in the past (this is no. 4), but this is the first rectangular one, made by sewing braided strips together. I do them by hand since my sewing machine can't cope with that thickness of fabric, so it's time-consuming, but also fairly mindless - the kind of thing you can do with three small children around (not something you can say about many craft projects!). It was meant to be a Christmas present... well, it's still sort of Christmas until Candlemass, right?

A little closeup: 

 (I tried using this as a blog background, but the file's too big).

One down, lots to go!

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Five Favourites: Children's Books

We LOVE children's books around here... and by "we," I don't just mean the children. Here, in no particular order, are our current top five.


1.I Want My Hat Back, by Jon Klassen.

We met up with a group of friends a couple of weekends ago, and by the time we left, everybody had read this book. I suspect it may have been written with parents in mind, rather than children... in any case, it's absolutely hilarious!

 2. Zog, by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.
There had to be a Donaldson/Scheffler book somewhere in the list, and we actually like this one more than the better-known The Gruffalo. The Whale and the Snail gets an honourable mention, too.

3. The Baby's Catalogue, by Janet and Allen Ahlberg.

This was my favourite as a baby, and we still have an old, heavily-sellotaped copy somewhere high up on a bookshelf. We also have a newer copy, and our children love it - it's especially good when they're just learning to talk and to recognise pictures ("ball!" "boo!" "CAT!" etc).

4. The Very Hungry Caterpillar, by Eric Carle.

How could I leave this one off?

5. The Tiger Who Came to Tea, by Judith Kerr.

Another classic. My mother and I wondered at one point whether the Tiger, in some way, represented Hitler and/or the Nazi party, based on the author's personal experiences as a child. However, in a radio interview fairly recently, Judith Kerr herself denied the theory (so more people than us must have been wondering!). In any case, it's a great book.

I'm sure if you asked me again this time next year, my answers will be completely different - it's really hard to choose!

Linking up with The Big White Farmhouse for Five Favourites - thanks to Ashley for hosting!

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

New Year's Resolutions 2016

...because if I write them down on the internets where everyone can see, then I have to stick to them, right?

I rarely get round to thinking about resolutions in December, so this year, I decided to make resolutions in January instead.


1. Read the books on my bedside table. There are 23 books there at the moment, some of which have been there since (*hides face in shame*) early 2011. We've moved house twice since then, and the books have moved with the bedroom stuff each time.

2. Drink more water. Nothing unusual in that.

3. Finish reading the Bible (this has been on my list since January 2011, and I'm still not there - children kept happening). When I do eventually finish, I intend to start again... we'll see how that goes!

4. Finish some of the many craft projects that have been put in the "naughty corner", i.e. the ones which started to annoy me so got put to one side for a while. This category also includes elements that have been there since 2011. Are we beginning to see a theme developing?

5. Get up before the gn'enfants (children) every day. This one is provisionally on hold until the 3-month-old develops more predictable sleep patterns.

That's it! Anyone got any resolutions they want to share?