Sunday, 17 December 2017

Maritime Christmas

Now that we are back in the Maritimes, it seems only fitting that we have some nautical themed Christmas ornaments on our tree.

As we didn’t have a Christmas tree last year, I had forgotten exactly what ornaments we owned, so it was exciting unpacking them this year.

It seems that Santa is using any means possible to ensure that he gets here on time.

Saturday, 16 December 2017

Candles In The Window

With extremely cold temperatures these past three days, there is every reason to be at home enjoying the warmth and a little Christmas cheer.  The temperatures have remained well below zero and the wind chills have been -21 C and -22 C.  Today’s wind chill reached a balmy -17 C.  If we had a real fire, I’d be throwing another log on.

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Santa's Christmas Workshop - Part Three

This third bag was more of a challenge than the two smaller ones.
It started with a base, which was knitted flat, before picking up stitches to make the sides.
The knitting continued in the round until the top of the bag was reached, at which point four straps were knitted.

The two longer lengths formed the shoulder strap, which was grafted with Kitchener stitch.

The two shorter form the front of the bag, which were also grafted before washing and felting.
After felting, the shorter of the two straps is cut and pinned into shape.
Invisible thread was used to stitch the shorter pieces together to form the front flap.

 A button was then attached, together with a hand-sewn label, for the finishing touches. 

 I’m very pleased with the results and I hope that my teenage niece likes it. 


Tuesday, 12 December 2017

The Proof of the Pudding...

I normally make our Christmas puddings on Stir-Up Sunday (the last Sunday before Advent), however, as I had to order Atora suet online and wait for it to be delivered from the UK, I was late making them this year.

I always wash and sort my fruit, removing any stalks, before I start mixing the Christmas pudding.
 I bought these pudding basins a few years ago and they always come out for the Christmas puddings.

The print on the bowls says, ‘Is in the eating’. 

Once mixed thoroughly, I packed the mixture into the two pudding basins.  As there are only two of us eating them, I prefer two smaller ones, to one large one, so that I can save one for New Year.

Once covered with baking parchment and wrapped in foil, I cooked them in the slow cooker for two and a half hours.  I much prefer this method to steaming them over a pan, as I don’t have to worry about the pan boiling dry and it doesn’t fill the kitchen with steam.

They are now wrapped in fresh parchment and foil and stored in a cool place until Christmas.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

It's Beginning to look a lot like Christmas

We bought a Christmas tree this year and got it much earlier than planned, as we decided to support a local charity in feeding hungry families at Christmas.  The tree sat there almost a week, undecorated, as I was far too busy finishing my Christmas knitting projects to worry about decorating it.

Finally, on Friday, the decorations came out and I spent the afternoon trimming the tree - after Mr Candytuft had quite literally trimmed the tree (with secateurs) - in an attempt to reduce the bulk and squeeze it into a corner.

The Christmas countdown has begun and it will arrive, ready or not.  (I know, I took the photo on Friday!)

Santa's Christmas Workshop - Part Two

Another bag on the production line is this sweet little pink one.

It is at the same stage as the red one and is for my seven year-old niece 

This is also awaiting a button before I do the final finishing.

Finished at last!

Friday, 8 December 2017

Winter Gardening

A little bit of armchair gardening is called for in these dark days of winter.  The December issue of Gardeners’ World has been a favourite of mine for a few years and I thought that I wouldn’t be able to buy a copy here in PEI, until I discovered that I could buy a single issue online and have it delivered within a week of publication.

My main reason for wanting this issue is the free calendar, which I can enjoy for a whole year.  Those beautiful flower photos inspire me and give me some ideas of plants for my own garden.