Three random things on a Tuesday

Random thing #1:
When we moved here about five years ago, Dave was delighted to discover there was a Scottish Bakery down the street where he could get fresh Scotch pies. He’d go a couple times a month and get himself a few pies, and some sausage rolls.
But this summer the lovely couple who ran it decided to retire, and the Scottish Bakery became a British grocery run by a lovely new couple from Manchester, England.  However, while he can still get his sausage rolls, they no longer carry as many pie flavours, and Dave’s favourite – Steak and Kidney – got axed.
So silly me thought… how hard can it be to make them? The answer… not as easy as you’d think. First… kidneys are disgusting… cutting them up is gross (and I’m not normally squeamish about that), and they smell terrible as they cook. The hot water pastry required to make nice stiff pie pots takes a little practice and a few sneaky tricks not listed in the recipes.
But in the end I managed it.IMG_3545.JPGDave got nine little handheld pies and there was enough filling leftover to make my Dad the “English” version with puff pastry on top.
It was a hit with both Dave and Dad… and now Dad is requesting Cornish pasties… what have I gotten myself into?

Random thing #2
Years ago, I rescued a dying spider plant, and for the last little while, it’s been popping out babies left and right. I’d found containers for most of them, but I still had three hanging (and teasing Burton) when I came across the cutest little teacups at the grocery store.IMG_3552They are the perfect size for the spider babies. The white ones are staying with me, which little red fox is going to live with Mom.

Random thing #3
Dave has a Money Tree. It was a gift from a student, and has lived at the school since it was given to him five or six years ago. Dave is now leaving that school so he brought the Money Tree home…37963619_10160643437915243_1907223164576858112_nI’m beginning to understand why our finances are in the state they are! I’m trying to nurse it back to life and see if we can get a little more prosperity.


I was hoping to show you a finished baby cardigan today… but…

IMG_3616.JPGYep… I frogged it. I was almost done too…. halfway through the last sleeve. But the shape of it had been nagging me for a while. I really should have frogged back when I first realized some of the decreases were making it a bit wonky. At first I thought it would block out… but as I knit more and more it became very apparent that wasn’t going to happen.

So it’s back to the drawing board with this one. And I’m taking suggestions on baby cardigan patterns… because I still need one for the fair, which is creeping ever closer.

And since I don’t have a proper knit to show you… here’s a cat.





Squared away

Despite the trouble that the strip blocks gave me… IMG_3534…they went together reasonably well. I quite like the effect of alternating the blocks. And while the original quilt that inspired this is called Summer in the Park… I’m calling this one Autumn in the country.
It still needs borders, but I don’t have much in the stash that will work, so this one is on hold for a bit.IMG_3538

Besides… someone says it’s time to play mouse!


Garden treasures

The surprise sunflower has bloomed.


It’s not very big, but it is pretty.

There was another surprise under the raspberries…


A teeny tiny Black-Eyed Susan

Just how teeny is it?


That’s my thumb beside it.

And speaking of small.. I continue to grow the world’s smallest, saddest strawberries…


That one is about as big as that mini-Susan.

I was looking forward to plucking the first ripe cherry tomato…


But something got to it first. I found it half-eaten and shriveled on the ground beside the pot.
I’m not too upset though… there’s more on the way…IMG_8304

Last year, I started some hollyhocks from seed. They got shaded by the sunflowers and didn’t grow very tall or bloom. This year, they got nice and tall, but they seemed to get some sort of disease, and all the bloomed opened half formed, and brown…. until the other day

IMG_8290They were supposed to be big, frilly double blooms… but hey – at least it bloomed!

And last… my pink Stargazer lilies have bloomed.


I think of all my lilies, these are my favourites.

What’s growing in your garden that you just treasure?




Last payday, Mom and I made a trip to Lens and I got the fabric I needed to finish the borders on Victorian Love Charm.


I am very happy with how this top turned out. My points are pretty good, most of my intersections are perfect or close to perfect and I managed not to sew anything on backwards! I might be getting the hang of this quilting thing.

The finished top is a little over 50 inches square…  the perfect size for a nice lap quilt. It’s now up at Mom’s in her to-quilt pile. But I told her not to rush… this one isn’t needed until Christmas!

Mini Winnie in the Wild

Last week, Mom was lamenting that Winnie kept trying to escape every time she opened the door.
It’s not so much that Winnie wanted to run away… she just wants to run with the big dogs, who are always playing outside.
So, on the weekend, I packed up Burton’s old kitten harness and a leash, and headed up to Mom’s.IMG_8213Like all cats, at first she did a lot of rolling and wiggling to try and get the weird contraption off.IMG_8216Then she decided the leash was a good toy.IMG_8231But once we got her outside, she was far too distracted by all the wonderful new things to worry much around her new outfit. It’s still a touch big for her, but for the way she’s growing, it won’t be long before we have to start lengthening those straps.IMG_8226She seemed to love the feel of grass beneath her feet, and it wasn’t long before she was munching on it.IMG_8224There was so much for one little kitten to see and do… but what she really wanted was…IMG_8257A little play time with her best friend.IMG_8243I’m going to have to get some video for you guys next time I’m up there, because watching Winnie and Jem play is hilarious. Winnie does not seem to realize that Jem is a billion times bigger, and Jem is surprisingly gentle for such a big clumsy Lab.IMG_8272Winnie gets quite rough, but Jem loves every minute of it.IMG_8267Jem is only two and a half, so she’s still got quite a puppy-ish attitude. And poor old Lady just isn’t up to playing like she used to.IMG_8275So these two have become fast friends.