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….. We make
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Three children *** One big, grey dog *** Two parents *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That’s us!

We’ve been blogging since January 2010, about everyday happenings that bring us joy.

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“A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe.”


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Happy St David’s Day 2018

Celebrating welsh roots today. Dug out past years’ crafts, as no time to add to them this year. Welsh peg dolls, felt leek brooches and my needlefelted red dragon are in the middle of the table today.  Also a plate piled high with homebaked welsh cakes was conquored.

The expressions on the little welsh ladies always make me smile. Can’t help adding a caption.

“Nerys had to smile. Blodwen was still under the impression that it was Norbert the dragon who had eaten the last of her welsh cakes, and left her none, but Nerys knew different. Blodwen and Norbert were no longer talking. Nor was Blodwen pacified by the suggestion that leeks would make a good alternative for tea.”

(Nerys might not be the only one to hide a few cakes for later. Hee hee!)

Dydd Gwyl Dewi Hapus!

Anyone else celebrating? Or just fancy a welsh cake anyway?

(How to make: welsh peg dolls, felt leeks, welsh cakes.)


(snowdrops from above)

It’s been a week of added extras. Little extras. Nothing major. Nothing bad. All planned ahead. Some we’ve chosen and some imposed by others, but never the less, embraced. When something breaks you out of your routine, it can go one of two ways.  You can either welcome it with a smile or dig your heels in deep. I try the former.

To start with, youngest was offered a day away from school, attending a course at one of our local universities. Only one of his classmates was going. No teachers. He was excited, but also apprehensive of something new. Butterflies the night before, but he hopped off happily when the time came. Probably the best part was having this new experience more than the course itself. Opening his 10 year old eyes to the possibility of going to university.

We also had a next steps meeting for Eldest at school. I’m pretty sure that most of this could have been accomplished by a questionnaire, but a few interesting points came out of it, so maybe it was worth missing an hour at work. Continue reading

Almost World Book Day – Planning

World Book Day is next Thursday. Hurray!  Are you excited? I know not everyone likes it, but I love making costumes.

We’ve had the notice for a while, but I always leave the costume for the last week. Apart from the fact I work better under pressure, it allows time for them to change their minds. I’ve learnt. One year, I had a definite a Golden Compass Lyra who proceeded to change her mind a day before, and was transformed into an Arietty from The Borrowers. It’s OK. I’m good at short notice.

(Can’t find a  photo of Arrietty, but this is Hobbit’s Kili from two years ago)

This year is our last year.

(silent sob)

Youngest will be at Secondary school next time, where it is major uncool to dress up. (Probably not cool to say “uncool” either, but I’m old school) This is our grand finale. Time to go out with a bang.

(Klaus-Baudelaire from A Series of Unfortunate Events – last year)

Given the choice*, we always make the costumes. It’s half the fun. Trying to use what we already have in the house. It’s always their choice when it comes to World Book Day. I have a capsule costume wardrobe (tips and tricks here) that pretty much covers it, with a few accessories thrown in. Other costumes are even simpler and just use their normal clothes with props.

(Astrid and dragon from How to Train a Dragon – two years ago)

Except…not this time.

He has decided to go as Gandalf. He loves the Hobbit, so I’m happy with his choice. My challenge is that it’s all grey apart from the beard. I’m not big on grey and my craft stash echoes this sentiment. Give me bright colours any day.

I’m excited about making the hat. A pointed, slightly crumpled, wide brimmed, wizard’s hat is required. I’ve been longing for an excuse to make a felted hat. It may end up being more cream coloured than grey, due to the fleece I have at hand, but maybe I can slightly spray it afterwards to give it a travelled look.

I have a choice with the beard and hair. Either white fluffy fabric or untwisting lengths of a ball of icelandic wool that I’ve had for eons and not used. Maybe a mixture of the two.

I found an old grey storage blanket. The sort house movers use to protect goods in transit in their vans. No idea why we have this as we’ve always moved house by ourselves. Anyway, it has a couple or so holes but I reckon I can make it into a cloak. I’ve made a few cloaks (instructions here if you’re interested) in the past, so no problem. It is a quick project.

The only parts I’ve not solved yet are the footwear and the grey gown underneath. I could adapt the cloak, so no gown is needed, if all else fails.

That’s my weekend sorted. I’m looking forward to it. Might even start tomorrow if I can wrangle it. I’ll share photos of the resulting costume once I’m done.

How about you? Are you making a costume this year? If you need a costume, do you usually make or buy? Do you love the call for a costume or do you dread the request?

Our last year. Can I come round and make costumes for anyone else next year?

(costume from 3 years ago)

*We love making our costumes for dressing up days and plays. Not always possible. One year, we were sent a link to the desired costume to buy for a play. I could have bucked the trend and made my own, but then he wouldn’t have matched the rest of the class in the line up, so I reluctantly bought instead. Not a happy costume maker.

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