Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Wrapped up or Christmas Eve!

As you can see from the photo above, we are now in Devon for Christmas. It took 21 hours of travelling, 2 flights, 1 taxi and 1 jaguar driven by a special grandad to get here!

I was preparing myself for freezing cold weather and chilling icy winds but it's not as bad as I thought it would be! It rained a lot yesterday and over night but today it  brightened up which meant we could have a lovey walk to the pub! A Christmas Eve tradition started by hubby's late grandad. 

Tomorrow will be a fairly chilled out day here, just 7 of us for Christmas dinner so relatively small. I hope you all enjoy time with your families over the winter holidays! Welcome to my new followers too! 

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Sweet corn fritters recipe

I got this recipe idea from my mother in law. I thought it would be a great way to sneak some veg in for William. 

They take just a few minutes to prepare. Just chuck all the ingredients in a bowl and mix it up. 

Then heat a little of the oil in a pan and spoon in dollops of the mixture, make sure to space them out a bit so they don't form one massive fritter (although that might be nice!) they should be about 1cm thick. 

Cook them for a few minutes on both sides. I served them with a blob of sweet chilli sauce. 

  • 30g plain flour
  • half tsp baking powder
  • quarter tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 x 200g can sweetcorn, drained (drained weight 170g)
  • 1 large or 2 small spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 tbsp sunflower or canola oil for frying
I added a handful if chopped carrots and peppers too. So feel free to add any veg you may have hiding in the fridge! 

William loved them. Especially when I called them mini pancakes!

Quick snowflake pattern

Time is ticking on... We are preparing for our journey back to the uk for the Christmas holidays and so looking forward to spending time with our families. We haven't seen most of them in about 4 months since we made the move to Dubai. 

As I mentioned in a previous post, I have been doing some Christmas crafts with William to take back to the uk. I made a few of these really quick and easy snowflakes to pop in the bag for a special lady who I know will appreciate them. 

So here is the pattern. I used a 3.5mm hook and double knitting yarn in white. Obviously you can be as adventurous as you like with these or keep them classic. Great little pattern for using up wool stashes and to pop in stockings or use as tags on presents. 

- Chain 4, slip stitch into first chain to make a circle. 
- chain 4, now working into the centre circle, hdc, ch 2 (5 times).  Join to 2nd chain of your first chain 4, creating 6 hdc and spaces. 
- slip stitch into space, chain 3, sl st into same space, chain 5, sl st into same space, chain 3, sl st into se space, chain 1. 
- repeat this in each space left, creating a 6 spoked snowflake design. When you have finished the last space, slip stitch into first sl st of the round. 

I made a few bigger ones by increasing the chains on the spokes to 5, 7, 5. 
it is best if you block these. If you want to hang them on your tree you could try coating them in a fine layer of pva glue to make them stiffer. 

There are loads of snowflake patterns about at the moment. I may make some to turn into bunting at some point. For a summery version I may mix coloured snowflakes with some flower ones! 

So about 10 days to go til Christmas so I hope you are all looking forward to enjoying your time with loved ones! 

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Christmas crafts

Obviously being in Dubai, there is not a massive Christmas vibe here. There is none of he build up that you usually get, no cold weather, no Christmas lights and decorations around, no scarves and wooly hats etc. 

But this week William and I have been tying to gear up for Christmas. We are flying back to the uk to spend two weeks per the holidays with our families. First stop is Christmas at the Inlaws in South Devon. I believe grandma and grandad are getting ready for our arrival with coats and gloves etc on hand! 

Last year while we were still living in the uk, William was spending 3 days a week with his childminder. She was awesome! I don't think I will ever forget her and the affect she had on him. She was so kind and patient and made such a huge effort with all the children she cared for. At chrisymas he came home with a massive bag of goodies. Including homemade cookies and decorations. 

So I have attempted to do the same with him again this year and to make a bag of
Little treasures to take back to the Gilbert family for Christmas. Now William will be two in a few weeks so probably doesn't remember much of Christmas last year. So it will be fun introducing him to the Christmas tree again! Here are a few of the decorations we have made to far. All made using paper, glue and a splash of glitter! 

First up, giant baubles! I cut out large circles out of card and let William decorate them as he wished. This mainly included scribbling and colouring and gluing in glitter! I also helped a bit by adding some designs with a sharpy pen. I also cut up bits of paper that William had already painted and used them to make nice shapes on the baubles. One of the items grana bought him a few weeks ago was some foam shapes so we at together, sticking them on too. He found this very fiddly ad sometimes got frustrated when they kept getting stuck to his fingers but it was a good activity for his fine motor skills. 

Use a hole punch to string ribbon through and voila! We decorated both sides of the card incase it spins around wherever it is hung. 

This next decoration is probably my favourite thig we have made together. As William can't use scissors yet this required quite a lot of help from me. Firstly I gave him some paints to paint some plain paper. He used a sponge for most of it which produced a nice delicate effect. (He then tried using a paint brush and splodged it on in a very boyish manner!) Once it was dry he also used some stamps that he was given by his great Aunty Beverley. It was a set with a snowman, Christmas tree, bauble and star and he absolutely loves using them!

Next step was for me cut circles out of the paper and back them onto some red card. I pouched a hole in the top of each one. William then went mental with a glue stick and we sprinkled glitter on them, I think this is his favourite part! I crocheted a chain of red yarn, 15 chains inbetween each bauble and did a single crochet into each hole of the baubles. I left a tail at either end to hang them up. If you cannot crochet then a piece of ribbon to string them on would do nicely!

Today we tried snow flakes! 

There are loads of patterns on the Internet or on Pinterest at the moment for these. We kinda just did random ones as William wanted to try and help cut. These are great with older kids but William enjoyed decorating the paper with glitter first, watching and waiting to see the final snow flake shape as it is opened up! I even started to get excited to see if our random snipping had made anything nice! 

I have no idea if these will survive the flight back to the uk but it was fun making them! 

We have less than two weeks before we start the horrendous journey back to the uk but am really looking forward to it. We haven't seen most of our family in 4 months so it will be great. I have done grown up crafting to post about soon and probably more of Williams art work too!