Monday, 19 December 2016

Things to Cherish and Value

I know I have been sounding rather upset and sad in my previous posts. But I know that you all understand and share the same feelings as I. However, after discussing the same with D several times over the last weekend, I had to go on and carry on to take of my little boy, because he is the one who needs our care and love right here right now, and thank god we are able to give these and more to him.
I kept myself busy last weekend completing the old projects and making new ones. Here is a glimpse of our New Year tree in all its spontaneity and  variety of ornaments and decor.
This little Gnome is sitting joyfully on the branches - a gift from my parents.

You must have seen these all over the internet. I fell in love with the idea of making my own gnome or a nisse. This was a half an hour project - made of a sock, felt and yarn. I want to make one for my parents as well.
I have at last finished this felt Russian doll (Matryoshka). She is not perfect but I am glad I attempted this  felt ornament.
It is time to display my latest cross stitch - a Santa carrying a little new year tree. Perhaps, I will leave it in this loop only, not framing this time. The cross stitch required a black outlining -  I don't have time to do this and, to tell the truth, I like it the way it is.

Stars, stars everywhere! By the way, I used little A's play dough cutters to make these cookies (after thorough washing of course) :)) since I am yet to buy steel cookie cutters. The recipe I used is this Shortbread Cookies with addition of some milk and ginger to the dough. They came out very tasty and crispy.

So that's all about how I am trying to get into a better mood. I wish that all of you dear friends had peaceful, joyful, cozy holidays and spent all the great moments with your loved ones. Cherish each and every such moment!

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Things to Love

Hello my dear friends! I have read your blogs recently and found out that I am not alone in my tiredness and constant want to simply do nothing for a while. I don't really address it to being lazy, and not that there is any health issue as such (touch wood), but rather a mental exhaustion, probably it is the end of year which is usually more hectic. I officially declare that I need a break with change in my surroundings.
Getting in the mood for Christmas and New year in India is a little difficult due to the +25 outside, no snow, no major city decorations. The affect of all the sad recent news leaves me guilty of thinking about happy holidays and all when so many suffer and cannot even dream of sleeping in cozy beds...
However my holiday spirit prevails indoors, a quiet one. I have put up a tree together with little A last weekend, he enjoyed, oh so much, bringing me those little ornaments and is so excited about the lights! I am so glad that we were able to ignite that holiday cheer in him. His school also installed a tall Christmas tree in the lobby and decorated beautifully the premises.
My crochet mood in its turn has been rather high. I confessed to my D that I was bitten by a "crochet bug", he understood what I meant. Whenever I am crocheting in front of him, he then asks me : "Why do you make such a serious (= concentrated?) face ?" :P
The first thing to show is an up-cycled purse. Everything is hand stitched. The handle is crocheted with a t-shirt yarn.
It closes with a help of two buttons and loops made of crocheted cotton threads. (Thank you Preeti for the buttons!:))
I was in need of a new cap for little A he can wear daily on the way to school. My A looks adorable in it! I cannot find the pattern I used for this cap (not in my Pinterest), but it's a basic cap pattern, and semi-circles attached for bear ears effect :)
I have been keeping in my mind that I need to make another, a more beautiful and better fitting sweater for A. So I found this really simple and easy to make Toddler Striped Sweater. As usual it asked for yarn weight I don't have, so I started crocheting with two strands of sport weight yarn, hoping it would help but needed to buy two more colors. Last weekend me and D went to our (note, OUR) favourite yarn market, expecting to buy two skeins and go. When I saw the yarn stalls after a long time .. I got dizzy! The first thing my eyes fell on were various, multicolored skeins of a BULKY weight yarn!!! I have been searching such among Indian brands but never found in the Internet ...and here they are, waiting for me. LOL. D could not help but say ok, buy it if you need... Think if you really need it... I said I needed it very much and can now work so many projects!:)))
 Here is a sweater cum jacket in progress. I want to finish it as soon as possible so Little A has opportunity to wear it THIS winter (not the next one :~)). I plan to make it a little longer like a cardi. The yarn is acrylic, very soft and not prickly at all, works up very smoothly, no knots, and color is just great for this type of garment.
AND... I got this one , a sock weight yarn to try! It seems to be very good too. Overall I was really impressed by the range of yarn  Indian manufacturers offer now. There were many  other ones which I would like to try to work with, but maybe next time.
So that's all for now friends. Wishing you a happy week whenever you are! Happy coming up holidays!

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Winter Mood

Hello my dears... The past week was rather tiring for me on the job side - more translation work started coming in which resulted in me being completely drained by the end of the day. As soon as I work half day from home, it might seem like an easy task, but it isn't. In fact, my day is endless. Some days I simply feel like curling up on a bed and doing nothing at all. It doesn't happen, almost never. My sleep timings also depend on little A's preference, however one good thing is that he finally started sleeping through the night. Before that I couldn't get a proper night's rest for more than 2 years :O Hence I am very happy for both of us.
Thank you everyone for your wishes for my mom's recovery. She is already at home and doing well, though would need to be more careful from now on and still requires to support her arm. Life seems to be getting on its' usual track.
That winter mood always visits me as Christmas and New year approach. It's time for cozy evenings and hot chai, for warm socks and crocheting. As our house gets colder, I feel the need to keep warm whenever and however possible.
Yesterday I had a crocheting "onset" and accomplished a sweater for little A. I still need to work on to weaving the ends and probably blocking it. The pattern is "from my head". The yarn I used is like 15 years old! I got it from home last year. First, I had doubts about the colour, but then, why boys should wear only all dark and blue and green?  I am planning on adding some applique to it.
Updated - sweater pictures! :) Its a little bulky and tacky, but Ok to wear at home. I have a pattern for another crochet sweater, so hopefully the second attempt will be better. My model though refused me taking his pictures in a new attire :)
 Recently I tried making something new - baked samosas. They are a totally healthy vegan version of a popular Indian snack. I am going to make more... when I feel like :P
Have a happy day my friends whenever you are! Blessed be!

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

An Owl Pouch for Toffies

My son has a great attachment to his grandparents, which is so natural. While me and D are "bad bad always prohibiting everything and stopping him from doing anything he wants parents"! I believe though that grandparents contributed to my little A's  sweet tooth development. But if I think more, it couldn't have been any other way when his dad can never resist a bite of chocolate or some Indian sweets whenever offered (or not offered, and he grabs them himself :))
A's recent obsession - toffees of different kinds (in wraps). He might not eat them but will be carrying around the house everywhere, eventually losing them and asking me where have they all gone. What's more, yesterday he didn't want to fall asleep until I put two little toffees in his hand! Hence, to ensure he always has his favourites in one place and won't be dropping them here and there, I crocheted this super easy owl pouch, and EVEN inserted a lining made of an old T-shirt.
It seems to be very handy, and little A loves wearing bags too (often wears a similar cross shoulder pouch of mine which is too long for him). The days have become colder in Chandigarh, we wear sweaters and socks at home and sleep under thick quilts at night. This might have promoted my wish to crochet cozy little things. My A enjoys wrapping up himself in various blankets and not resisting to wear sweaters and socks anymore.
One more owl to our collection, this time, a useful one. I can improve the pattern and make it in bigger sizes with a zipper or any other type of lock. Attaching the lining was not that difficult and scary (lol) but rather interesting.
Here are our owl-y wishes of a warm and welcoming home for you to have and to live in! Blessed be!

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Life's Challenges and Gifts

I am not in a position to critisize and judge, but you would agree that events which happen all around the world sooner or later echo in other parts. I am not feeling any change since the US election result came up, but I know that it would reflect in some of the areas of our lives at some point of time.
Indian government has also surprised us with a sudden scrapping of 500 and 1000 banknotes in order to extract black money from turnover. It created a real panic and hurdle among people as not everyone had proper information what it was all about and why. Right now things are better and getting calm and in order slowly.
Politics, economics and world problems aside we continue our lives because this is what we have to do for our families, we have to move on and continue dreaming, hoping and believing.
And honestly speaking, I don't care as of now about these big things, because our family has got a real challenge to deal with. On Tuesday I received a bad news from my dad that my mom broke her shoulder joint bone. She is going to be operated today, and the surgery is not the easy one. I cannot tell how much scared and worried for her I am because she is not young of course (not old either) and the fraction itself is dangerous but surgery I dread more actually... I pray she stands the operation well and gets fine very soon! She promised she would be fine my summer for sure. My little mom... I miss you so much, and I am sorry I can't be with you right now when you and dad need me so much... I rely on our good friends and family whoever are left in the city to take care of this situation. My papa is a great help to her these days! And I know he always tries to cheer her and me up. He made smile many times yesterday when I was talking to him on the phone.
November is my and my dad's birthday month, and our dates are just back to back. :) How cool is this? :) Next month, December, is also wonderful and magical, and I have started preparing some handmade New year decorations which I will showcase a little later.
Recently I have started following some of the wonderful upcycle ideas by Jill of Creating my Way to Success, and here is what I came up with: my first sock puppy. Hmm, looks slightly creepy but kind of naive too, maybe because of the colour. I have some more bright and cheerful socks to upcycle, so more sock animals to come.
In addition, I am in the process of making an up-cycled clothes purse/clutch/wallet. I absolutely had no plan of HOW to stitch this purse, how to cut pieces properly, so it is rather tacky and totally handmade looking. I am also not sure how to close it and what kind of handles to attach, but I am in love with the idea of re-purposing old clothes. I have also started making T-shirt yarn and probably will make a storage bag - they are really useful around the house.
 To sum up my today's blog post on a positive note, here is a little gift my D got from his colleagues from Russia yesterday. Can you say how happy I am? I have two Russian dolls now! One is a nesting doll with two more inside her, and this one contained a VERY Russian surprise - a small bottle of vodka :P
 So, cheers to life, to our families, to their and our health!
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