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Tuesday, 23 April 2013

The ironing and washing up can wait

Bump portrait - 30 weeks
Today was the littlest girl's first day at pre school. 

If not taking a second look back at me, hearing the sound of her laughter as I walked out the door, and beaming and talking non stop about her morning upon her return home are signs of a happy little girl who was ready for a bit of independence, then that's my girl. Oh, and she fell asleep as I was on the phone to my mum... Smug? Yes. (Well, I will be if she still sleeps properly tonight.)

Does my bump look big in this?
What did I do with my time? Not the ironing. Or the washing up. Oops. (Must try and get the latter done before too long before Lazy Housewife status is confirmed once and for all...)

This morning, I met a friend in town for a cuppa, I didn't share the yummy pastry I had with anyone, and then, I casually browsed in a few shops. Alone. And, having pinned down the only shop in town to sell maternity clothes, I tried on (yes!) a top with butterflies on and bought it.

Whilst there, I also tried on and nearly bought a stripy jersey dress. What stopped me? The horrendous mismatched seams at the back. Even at the bargain price of £14.99, and with a fairly flattering fit, I could not bring myself to buy it. I blame growing up with a seamstress mum, and also, the recent influence of the Great British Sewing Bee, and Stuart's lantern dress. It has planted the idea of possibly making something similar myself, as I think the construction was pretty straightforward (it was basically a long t shirt) and the garment would come together very quickly on my overlocker. Watch this space to see if my "I could make that!" moment comes to anything.

Sanderson fabric ready for my Roman blinds
So, what did I do with my bonus time this afternoon? I got off the phone to mum, and scuttled off upstairs for my fabric. There are two challenging makes I am going to try and manage in the mornings the littlest is at pre school over the next few weeks - those being my silk polka dot dress and two Roman blinds for our bedroom in the new house.

Having been talking to mum about the dress, I was a good girl and washed the lining first. I have decided to go with a very light weight floaty Egyptian cotton muslin, as the only other things on offer in Singers were made of polyester, and, well, I just didn't like the feel of them and thought they would just make me feel even more hot as they stuck to my skin on a summer's day.

The lining for the dress is drying outside in the picture below - right in front of the pile of shirts not getting ironed.

The next hour and a half or so was spent ironing and measuring, and then very, very tentatively cutting out the first of the two Roman blinds for our new bedroom.

Some may well look at this fabric and see Julie Andrews and the curtains in The Sound of Music. I love it. No, I absolutely love it. It has my favourite shades of green all over it, and, seeing it spread out across the table just makes me feel uplifted. That and the beautiful sunshine coming in from outside.

I hope the finished blinds please me as much when they are up and I am looking at them (as I sit and drink that relaxing cup of tea in bed as the sun streams through the windows...!).

In my mind, I can picture how I'd like these blinds to look, and how I'd like the rest of the room to look, too. Simple. White walls, an old wardrobe and a bed (of course there'll be a bed). Maybe even an old chair that I have lovingly restored and reupholstered with some more gorgeous (perhaps red?) printed Sanderson fabric. Not that I have any of the skills needed to carry out that last project, but the optimist in me thinks I could have a go and make a decent attempt. Ha, ha. It might be fun trying.

Anyhow, back to the blinds. No sewing got done. And I am not even confident that I have made an accurate enough job of cutting out blind number one. The kitchen table was just a bit too small. The lesson of today has been that this project is going to take longer than I had anticipated.

Not far from my feet as I worked were more green things - my mobile nursery!

The runner beans are growing quickly. A bit too quickly, as, now the move has been put back a couple more weeks (sigh), I am wondering whether they will be okay for a bit longer in their temporary homes.

I have been a neglectful gardener on the cucumber front. The ones I planted are dead, due to leaving them outside over night when there was a frost. Oops. And worse, the girls are well aware of this reason, and keep giving me gentle reminders and helpful hints about doing a better job of looking after the rest of the green things.

All is not lost though - as well as runner beans (which no one really likes), we still stand a chance of eating home grown peppers (which the biggest girl loves), and, maybe one cob of sweetcorn (they all love this, and so fights will no doubt happen if we get just one cob) before the summer is out.

On the flower front, Borage has made an appearance. Quite exciting. I have mentally named it `Boris' after the Mayor of London. I wonder if the plant will suit the new name I have given it. And, the sweet peas and sunflowers are still alive, too. Plus I have planted more sunflowers, and may even plant more tomorrow just to finish off the pack and increase my chances of a front garden full of them. I do love sunflowers.

And, to round off a nice day, I have just been to a brilliant workshop, learning to crochet basic granny squares at Fancy. Here I am wearing the crocheted scarf my friend Iciar made me for my birthday a couple of years ago, by way of inspiring me and getting me in the mood for some crocheting of my own. More about that another time. Bed beckons!

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