Thursday, November 20, 2014

Easy Christmas Ornaments

R and I were at the shops the other day and he was admiring some clear baubles with tinsel inside. They looked so incredibly simple that I thought we'd have a go at making some of our own. 

All you need are some clear baubles (I got mine from Spotlight) and your imagination. This is a great craft for doing with children and R, who is usually not in the least bit interested in anything crafty, had a great time choosing what to put in each one.

Here are some ideas for what to fill them with:
- beads
- ribbon
- buttons
- yarn
- tinsel
- fabric scraps
- Epsom salts
- glitter
- sequins
- dried lavendar
- fresh herbs, flowers, leaves - obviously any fresh vegetation will wilt and not look so pretty after a while but it's easy enough to replace what's inside. 
- pantry goods - cinnamon sticks, star anise, cloves, etc.

Use your imagination and most importantly have fun.

Happy Making xx

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Month By Month: 10/12

Simple and achievable.

Posing for Mummy in your new Rowan Tee.

You were so excited to get a toy from KIWIreviews and spent most of the day playing with it - needless to say I gave it a glowing review.

It was a beautiful day for a walk down to the river and you had fun playing at the little park down there.

Cuddling with Daddy.
Looking cute in a raglan tee that Mummy made - I love your cheeky grin.
It was a very hot day and you had to stop in every patch of shade that you came across so you could cool down.
This guy also had his 7th birthday at the end of October - time sure flies!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Minecraft Bedroom

R had his 7th birthday this past weekend and we could finally put together his minecraft room that I've been working on for ages.

Photo overload:

I'm so happy with how it turned out and R loves it - 'it's ultimate' - his words and high praise indeed. Definitely a win.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Minecraft Cushions

Not long to go now until R's birthday and his Minecraft bedroom reveal - 3 days!

I've finally finished all the necessary sewing which gives me time to take care of other birthday related stuff - cleaning, cooking, wrapping presents - you know how it goes.

Here's a quick look at the two cushions that I made (excuse the bad phone photo):

Stay tuned for the full bedroom reveal sometime next week!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Rowan Tee #2

Round 2 of pattern testing for the Rowan Tee has now finished (you can read more about the pattern here). After round 1, Laura came back with some additional features for us to test:

- long or short sleeve cuffs
- shoulder only stripe or full length stripe
- cuffed hem
- kangaroo pocket
- patch pocket

I opted for short sleeve cuffs, shoulder only stripe, cuffed hem and kangaroo pocket. We had the choice of regular neckline or hooded so I decided to keep it basic and went for the regular neckline again.

I love how it turned out. It's so easy to sew and looks great - perfect for this warm weather we've been having lately. R's favourite feature is the kangaroo pocket, he can't keep his hands out of it.

The Rowan Tee is now available here - $8.50 for a limited time only!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Minecraft Mini Quilt

The birthday countdown has started (17 days) and I am slowly getting there with the accessories for R's bedroom makeover.

I have finally finished the mini quilt that I shared here and I'm happy with how it turned out considering all the problems that I had with it - there were some serious tear your hair out moments and a lot of unpicking.

I didn't keep it a secret from R and he's had regular input throughout the making process so I could get it just right (I don't know much about minecraft). He loves it and if anything it's just heightened my anticipation of the big bedroom reveal which he doesn't have a clue about.

Still on my to do list is: a couple of cushions and a tissue box cover plus anything extra I can think of if I have time.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Month By Month: 9/12

Simple and achievable.

First ice-block of the season - it was freakishly hot that day.

You and your Dad had a fun time at the driving range on Father's Day.

Enjoying looking at a Minecraft book together.

It was a freezing cold day and we had to drag out all the winter woollies again.

A bit of morning maths in bed - I love the school holidays.

Getting some fresh air and enjoying the late afternoon sunshine.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Pattern Testing: The Rowan Tee

Recently I was lucky enough to do some pattern testing for Titchy Thread Patterns.

Laura's new pattern is the Rowan Tee which is a great unisex pattern and comes with several different options - short sleeve, long sleeve, hooded and even a funky striped version.

She hasn't set a release date for this pattern yet so make sure to keep an eye on her blog Craftstorming for more info.

I opted to make the basic short sleeved version in size 6. I'm not very confident when it comes to sewing with knits so I was pleasantly surprised by how easily this tee came together and how good it looks. It was definitely made easier by the use of my overlocker/serger (optional) and the fact that I used a fairly sturdy knit.

The pop of purple around the neckline makes it a little bit funky and I also hemmed it using matching purple thread (R loves purple).

I love the way this tee looks and fits and I'll definitely be making a few more for summer. The shorts in the photos are also handmade but more about that in another post.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Month By Month: 8/12

Simple and achievable.

We've had some gorgeous Spring days lately and you love being able to go outside and bounce on your trampoline after school.

Some things just taste better through a straw.

You love telling jokes even if you don't quite get them.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

WIP Wednesday: A Minecraft Mini Quilt

This year for R's birthday, rather than cluttering up the house with more toys, I've decided to give his bedroom a bit of a makeover. He is Minecraft mad at the moment so it was easy deciding on a theme.

I'll be making a lot of decorations myself starting with this Minecraft mini quilt to hang on the wall (excuse the bad photo, the lighting wasn't very good in my room).

It was really simple to put together and I love how it's turned out so far. I'm hoping the quilting and binding goes just as smoothly.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Month By Month: 7/12

Simple and achievable.

You love hanging out with your Uncle Ben.

Relaxing on the couch - my sweet brown eyed boy.

Looking at a book with Daddy while you finish your dinner.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Crochet: Crossed Stitch Beanie Pattern

Today I'm sharing the pattern for my latest beanie. I've called it the Crossed Stitch Beanie because the majority of the hat is crocheted using the double crochet crossed stitch. I love the way it turned out and the crossed stitch gives the hat a wonderful texture and makes it a bit fancier than you're regular basic beanie without any extra effort.

Now I'm not very good when it comes to getting the gauge right when following patterns - you need to take into account factors such as tension, hook size, yarn - and some patterns are just too much for me to get my head around if I need to change them in anyway.

I'll include instructions for when to stop or keep going to make sure you get the right size. I made this hat for me but it would be really easy to make it smaller for a child and you can embellish it in any way you like - buttons, pom-pom, crochet flower, etc.

Hook: 4.50 mm
Yarn: Panda Magnum Soft

Ch - chain
Sl st - slip stitch
DC - double crochet
SC - single crochet


R1: Magic circle. Ch 2 (counts as first DC, now and throughout). DC 11 times into the circle. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R2: Ch 2, 2 DC in each stitch around. Join with sl st to top of ch-2.

R3: Ch 2, *2 DC in next st, 1 DC in next stitch* Repeat around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R4: Ch 2, 1 DC  in next stitch, *2 dc in next stitch, 1 DC into next 2 stitches* Repeat from * around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R5: Ch 2, 1 DC in next 2 stitches, *2 DC in next stitch, 1 DC in next 3 stitches* Repeat from * around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R6: Ch 2, 1 DC in next 3 stitches, * 2 DC in next stitch, 1 DC in next 4 stitches* Repeat from * around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R7: Ch 2, 1 DC in next 4 stitches, * 2 DC in next stitch, 1 DC in next 5 stitches* Repeat from * around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R8: Ch 2, 1 DC in next 5 stitches, * 2 DC in next stitch, 1 DC in next 6 stitches* Repeat from * around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R9: Ch 2, 1 DC in next 6 stitches, * 2 DC in next stitch, 1 DC in next 7 stitches* Repeat from * around. Join with sl st to top of ch 2.

YOUR FLAT CIRCLE SHOULD MEASURE 6.5" ACROSS (if it's too small, keep increasing until you get the right measurement).

R10: Ch 2, *skip 1st stitch, DC in next stitch, cross over and DC in skipped stitch* Repeat from * around. 1DC in last stitch, join with sl st to top of ch 2.

R11: Ch 1, SC (BACK LOOPS ONLY) in each stitch around. Join with sl st to top of ch 1.

R12 - 25: Repeat rows 10 and 11.

R26 - 31: Ch 1, SC (BACK LOOPS ONLY) in each stitch around. Join with sl st to top of ch 1.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

Tip: Try the hat on as you go and adjust the length as necessary - make sure to leave enough room for the SC band which measures roughly 1".

If you make a Crossed Stitch Beanie using this pattern, I'd love for you to share some photos in the Monkey Makes Three Flickr group or leave a link in the comments.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Month By Month: 6/12

Simple and achievable.

We did a day trip up to Palmy - you love throwing stones into the river.

Cousins - you two are so sweet together now that J is old enough to play your games.

Stilton often sneaks in with Mummy to check on you while you're sleeping.

Watching a movie with Mummy - must be riveting judging by the expression on your face.

Still smiling even when you're sick.

Stilton had his operation and we needed to keep him inside so Dad slept in your room with him (to keep him out of mischief) and you ended up in our bed. You didn't even wake when I moved you but you did notice sometime in the night because you woke up and yelled "Ah, what am I doing here?" It would have been funny if I hadn't been so tired - I didn't sleep a wink.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Recipe: Peanut Butter and Honey Granola

This year I've been trying to be a bit more health conscious. One thing I really struggle with is eating breakfast. I'm not a morning person and by the time I've gotten R dressed and out the door to school, the last thing I feel like doing when I get back is eating. So I've been making a real effort to eat breakfast every single day and I'm not just talking a couple of slices of toast here (though I do have the occasional day where that's all I can manage but at least I'm still eating something).

I'm all about quick and healthy options so today I'm sharing my latest granola recipe which you can make ahead of time and is perfect for a quick and tasty breakfast.

Feel free to play around with the ingredients and use whatever nuts and seeds that you prefer. You can also add dried fruit once the granola has been cooked.

3 cups whole grain oats
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup cashew nuts, roughly chopped
1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/4 cup smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup honey

Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl.

In a small saucepan, gently melt together the honey and peanut butter.

Pour the honey and peanut butter mixture over the dry ingredients and stir until thoroughly combined.

Spread the mixture out on a baking tray and bake at 120 degrees, stirring every 10 minutes until the granola is golden brown (approx 20-30 mins).

Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

Find more recipes here.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Month By Month: 5/12

So I'm a little late posting last months photos (like almost a month too late) but better late than never right. I'm also ashamed to say that I've been using instagram on my phone more than my actual camera - it just makes it so easy to capture everyday moments.

Simple and achievable.

R and Stilton - best buds. Stilton starts purring like a machine as soon as he gets up on your bed.

Such a grown up boy! You requested spikes at the hairdressers.

You look so sweet and peaceful when you're sleeping.

Giggling and monkeying around with Daddy.

Reluctantly modelling the new poncho that Mummy made you to replace your old one which the cat now sleeps on.

All three of my boys - such a sweet moment - you love spending time with your Daddy.