Saturday, November 9, 2013

12 Projects Aged 32

I do love a list and in equal measure I love a fun project. 
I have had reasonable success in the past at birthday lists. At ages 27, 28, 29 and 30 I made a list of (the same number of things as my age e.g. 27 things at 27) things to do. Most have been a combination of mostly-fun and some-serious-ness. If you'd like to see what I mean my 29 list was a particular favourite!
Last year (aged 31) I took a break from this. Over the last few weeks leading up to my 32nd birthday I toyed with the idea of a new list for this year. 32 seemed an awfully high number of things to come up with and commit to doing so I made a shorter list. A list of projects and ideas that have recently been rolling around in my head. And that list is here...

12 Projects Aged 32

  1. Celebrate the 22nd of every month with some me time or pampering of some kind
  2. Celebrate G on the 20th of every month
  3. Celebrate Mr Mischief on the 10th of every month
  4. Do a “less 365” (find something to throw or give away for each day of the year – do not necessarily have to this daily but do need to do 365 things over the year)
  5. Take part in a 30 days of Lists project
  6. Have a child-free night with my husband
  7. Document our special Christmas ornaments
  8. Have a family “date” once a month with proper planned out things to do (try to include Rhett sometimes and try to have no technology i.e. phones)
  9. Make our 1 weekday at home each week more sacred – less rushing, more time to enjoy Mr Mischief's company
  10. Give something each month e.g. RAK day, Ninja Bake, Operation Christmas Child
  11. Get Rhett out of the garden (for a walk) more often
  12. Find relaxation methods that work and encourage better sleep 
And here's a little background behind the items on the list...
  • The point of the top 3 is to find a way to celebrate our little family on a small-scale but regular basis. Not just waiting for holiday's and birthday's to acknowledge each other. The reason behind the dates being they are our birthday dates. I have a separate small list of ideas for things to do here - things such as baking for that person, cooking their favourite meal, letting them pick a day trip etc.
  • A Less 365 project has been at the back of my mind for a wee while - we have WAY too much stuff and after 2 moves in 6 months I feel every unused and unwanted object weighing on our house and energy. It's time to do something about that!
  • 30 days of lists looks awesome and good fun!
  • Hubby and I haven't had a child-free night together since Mr Mischief came into our lives. That may not seem like a big deal to some people but with no family close by we don't have anyone to offer him a sleepover. We may have some opportunities come up over the next year and think it will be good for all of us.
  • I love journalling Christmas and through that I have started to document our special ornaments but I'd like to make a mini album to keep with the decorations that tells the story behind all the important ones. I think this will be awesome to pass on through generations with the ornaments so they can read the stories!
  • Family "Date" - another way to celebrate each other and spend quality time. We often go out and do things all together (especially at weekends) but mostly this is on a whim. It will be great to actually plan ahead and come up with ideas of what we can do together to have fun.
  • With my new job I'm working more hours and Mr Mischief and I have 1 day off in the week together - lately that day has ended up being a rush of errands and all the jobs that are being missed the rest of the week. I want to get some jobs and errands done but also spend some relaxed, quality time with Mr Mischief - especially with the holiday season approaching!
  • I've had such fun taking part in Operation Christmas Child and RAK day the last couple of years. And this year for the first time I took part in the Sisterhood Ninja Bake. I'd love to find something similar for each month of the year to participate in!
  • I've put a lot of focus on our wee family in this list and it's so important to include our gorgeous dog in here. He hasn't been getting enough excursions lately and it's time to take him on more adventures. 
  • My sleeping patterns have been really up and down lately. If I get woken in the night (by storms, wobbles or Mr Mischief) I REALLY struggle to get back to sleep so I'd like to develop some techniques to help me relax.
Phew there you have it! Wish me luck!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Gift Idea :: All About My Dad

Back in my blog hibernation we celebrated Father's Day.
I thought I'd share what we made here. While it's a while away until the next Fathers Day (whether you are in NZ, the UK or somewhere else) I think this could be easily adapted for a Christmas or birthday or just because present!

I had seen some great ideas and inspiration for children's questionnaires on Pinterest and as Mr Mischief had recently turned 3 I thought it would be a great time to have a go.
I did a search to see if I could find a template to use but some of the questions weren't quite right for our situation or there was American spelling so in the end I came up with my own version.
I jotted down the questions and one morning over breakfast posed the questions to Mr Mischief. I noted his answers and then created an electronic version in Word.
Once the questions were typed up I added a recent photo of Mr Mischief and his Daddy, had a play with fonts and colours and got it printed in colour. Then we found a frame to fit the trimmed down questionnaire, added some scrapbooking paper for the background and popped it in the frame.
G loved it and it now sits on his desk at work to make him smile.

I've copied below the text so you can see what questions we come up with. This is something I'd like to repeat in the future asking the same questions to see what answers come out differently!

I'm happy to share the Word file if you'd like to adapt it for your own gift. Leave a comment here or email me (the link is in my blogger profile) if you'd like me to email you a copy :-)

All About My Dad
By: Mr Mischief        Age: 3

What is Daddy’s Name? Umm...Gxxxxx
How old is Daddy? Like this much (holding up 2 fingers)
What does Daddy do for a job? Go to the shops, he works hard all day
What is Daddy’s Favourite Colour? Like that (pointing at Rhett who is black)
What is Daddy’s Favourite Food? These (Honey Puffs, which Luke was eating for breakfast)
What Colour are Daddy’s Eyes? Same colour as Me (Grey/Blue)
What Colour is Daddy’s Hair? Like Mummy’s
What does Daddy always say? “I want to go to work”
What is your Favourite Thing about Daddy? Giving Him a Cuddle 
Why do you Love Daddy? Because I love him lots 


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Recipe :: Homemade Basil Pesto

My husband makes an amazing Basil Pesto. He's been making it for years. Our Basil plants don't tend to live through Winter so up until now it's mostly been a Summer treat.
This year has been different...we kept our Basil plant inside in the kitchen near a window and it's thrived. To the point where we decided we had to make pesto to use up some of the leaves!

Luckily I talked hubby into sharing his recipe so you can have a go at making your own :-)

G's Homemade Basil Pesto

30g Basil Leaves
30g Parmesan Cheese
30g Pine Nuts
1 clove Garlic
Pinch Sea Salt
Drizzle of Oil

Stick it all in the food processor and mix. Easy as that! Spoon into a bowl. Find a cracker and get stuck in. 

Delicious spread on crackers, mixed in with pasta or even added to pizza!
Enjoy :-)

Monday, October 14, 2013

A Crocheted Baby Blanket

I have a long time friend that I've known for 20 years (give or take). She used to live a few houses down the road from me and we used to get the bus to and from high school together. 
We've not been fantastic about regularly keeping in touch since leaving school (not to mention me moving to Scotland and then NZ) but a couple of times a year we normally catch up via email and notes in Christmas cards. And everytime I've visited the UK since leaving we have had a catch-up. 
A wee while ago my friend, M, got in touch to say she was pregnant with her first baby. She was fairly far along when I found out and I instantly knew I wanted to try making her a blanket. 

Mr Mischief and I headed to the wool shop and he "helped" me pick out some neutral colours as we didn't know if M was having a boy or girl. 
I got busy with a small ripple blanket and worked on it everyday. 
I worked it up to be a similar size to my rainbow ripple. It's a small blanket designed for tucking around baby in the buggy or car seat. 
The ripple worked up fairly quickly and then I added a simple border all the way round. I did think about trying to fill out the ripple to make the border straight but decided to keep it ripply in the end. 

I was really pleased with how it turned out and it was a bit of a wrench packing it up and sending it off to be honest.
The good news though is the blanket has arrived safe and sound and my friend M and her lovely baby boy are both very taken with it!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

NZ Mug Swap 2013 :: What I Received

Today I want to share the parcel I received in the swap. My parcel came from Becky Boo.
I received a lovely blue mug with it's own accessories!
Becky had made a jumper, a scarf and a hat for my mug...

Aren't they cute!?

Thanks Becky! And Thanks to Alisa for organising the swap.
Here's hoping it will become an annual swap!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

NZ Mug Swap 2013 :: What I Sent (including a crochet cup cosy)

I recently took part in the #NZMugSwap2013 hosted by Alisa. You can read more about the swap on Alisa's blog.

The swap was random rather than being assigned a partner and buying for each other. It was up to the sender if they wanted to remain anonymous or not.

I decided to make myself known when I sent my parcel...partly so I could blog about what I sent here!

My swap person to send to was Sima J and luckily she wrote a blog post especially for me about all the things she likes!

Here's a look at what I popped in her parcel...

I bought her a Tea Infuser mug which is a plain blue mug but it comes with a little "net/basket" inside so you can infuse loose leaf tea in hot water. The mug also comes with a lovely lid for infusing the tea.
I also added in:
  • Organic Peppermint Teabags (I love peppermint tea!)
  • A little purple windmill
  • Horse stickers
  • Handcream
  • Organic Chocolate
  • Some face cleanser sachets  
And I also crocheted a mug cosy. Here's some extra pictures so you can see it close up...

To make the cosy I crocheted 5 little two round granny squares which I joined together as I went along. I then added a scallop border all the way around the edge. At one end I added a chain loop and at the other I sewed a button on so that the mug cosy could be clipped around any mug. I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out :-) 

Come back tomorrow to see what I received in the swap!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Mummy Adventures is on Facebook!

I finally got around to setting up a Facebook page for this blog. You can visit the page here. Don't forget to click like so you can get updates in your Facebook feed :-)

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Tap, Tap...anyone still there? Hello?

Hello! Welcome Back! Thanks for re-visiting after I took such a long break!
It's been a little more than a while hasn't it?
Let's call it Winter fact this pretty much sums it up...

I do tend to bunk down in Winter and stay cosy and warm and I seemed to ease up on internet participation as well this year including blogging.

I haven't been too idle though - here's a look at what I've been up to over the last couple of months...

  • Surviving various shakes and storms that hit the Capital
  • Ensuring our emergency kits were all sorted (including buying a great one from here for the car)
  • Seeing the Hairy Maclary stage show at the Opera House
  • Introducing Mr Mischief to some of our childhood favourites
  • Heading to Palmy for our coffee group's 3rd birthday celebration
  • Hubby and I getting our NZ passports
  • Attending the Petone Winter Carnival
  • Celebrating Mr Mischief turning 3 (and 20 hour free childcare - yay!) with a batch of minion mini cupcakes and a KitKat construction cake  as well as his first trip to the movies to see Despicable Me 2
  • Applying for and interviewing for a new job which I was offered just as...
  • we headed off to the Gold Coast (Australia) to introduce Mr Mischief to my Aunty, Uncle, Cousins and other extended family and for a  family celebration of his birthday
  • Getting a pedicure for the first time in what feels like forever
  • Taking the dog to the vets after he got nipped in a rather unfortunate place while at the kennels when we were in Aussie
  • Handing in my notice at my first Wellington job (sad to say goodbye) and working out my four weeks notice
  • Celebrated Fathers Day and RAK day with a batch of handmade fudge and other goodies for hubby
  • Changed around Mr Mischief's bedroom, had a toy clearout and bought him an Expedit type shelving unit (yay for 40% off coupons!) to display his toys
  • Celebrating 2 Happy Last Days at each of the two locations I worked at
  • Taking part in a Washi Tape Swap
  • Starting my new job this last week and getting settled in (so far, so good but VERY busy!)
  • Crocheting a baby blanket for a long-time friend who just welcomed her first baby into the world
  • Mostly keeping up with Project Life (I have a few weeks to catch up on at the moment and I recently bought a second album)
  • Signing up for Alisa's #NZMugSwap2013 - I will try to blog more about this soon (but in the meantime, if you've been given the task of sending me a parcel - a good place to look to see what sort of stuff I like is here)
Whew! No wonder I feel tired. I promise to come back soon with some photos of the cakes and blanket!
Hope you are all keeping warm, happy, well and safe!

And because I can't possibly post without a few more photos here are some lovely pins I have discovered lately...

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

50 ways to take a break

(pin and I've tried to find the original source but can't)

Apologies for the unexplained absence in this space. It wasn't planned to be honest and I am not sure when I'll be back.
But I found this image this morning and it seems appropriate to I thought I'd share.
Hope to see you soon :-)

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Tiny Origami Stars

I got a bee in my bonnet a week or so ago about Origami Stars. I had spotted them on Pinterest and maybe elsewhere on the interwebs and decided I would learn how to make them!
The first few were pretty amateur and I had a moment where I decided I wasn't reading the instructions right but I plodded on and got there in the end...

Then I remembered I had silver paper somewhere. Somewhere as in last-seen-in-a-box-in-Palmy-almost-a-year-ago...queue lots of box opening, rifling and asking husband to heave some boxes around. Of course we found the paper in the box at the bottom...always the way :-)

But I'm so glad I made the effort as these stars look awesome-sauce made with silver paper!
It's the perfect Winter evening activity to keep your hands busy while you're catching up on some television and I quickly ended up with quite a large pile of them!
I'm currently contemplating stringing them up for a Winter garland and just deciding whether to glue them on to some bakers twine or try to pierce holes through them with a needle. 

But in the meantime I thought I'd share the tutorial I used so you can have a go at your own...

Be sure to click through to read the instructions if you struggle to begin with.
And a quick tip - it pays to have long-ish nails when squeezing the sides in!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Project Life (Weeks 21 and 22)

As Winter takes hold I'm finding it harder to take photos of my Project Life pages - trying to find decent light without any glare is tricky so I apologise if these photos aren't the best.
Today I'm sharing Weeks 21 and 22...

The left side features my title card, some baking, the 12wbt push-up challenge (hubby and Mr Mischief joining in), and a snap of my desk at work (which I instagrammed when I was tagged for "what are you doing right now?"). Across the middle is an instagram of my cousins baby wearing a hat I made for him, a 12wbt update, me ready for a workout and a filler Seafoam card with an Amy Tangerine camera sticker.

I tried to use the same letter stickers across this week and I think it helped join it all together.
On the right we have a snap of my workout (via the 12wbt website on the laptop showing on the tv using a monitor cable!), the boys planting some herbs, some birthday RAKs I put together for a Project Life group I'm involved in and discovering a new park/stopping for an ice-cream. In the middle was me putting my feet up for 5 minutes with a hot chocolate, Mr Mischief at a cafe, Mr Mischief enjoying a read of my scrapbooks and some beautiful birds who were in the bushes in the garden (which you can see on this photo but it's reasonably clear in the actual album).

And here's the full spread.

Week 22 features some photos from walks, playing with some wooden shrimp at the fish n chip shop, a Seafoam 5 senses card, sleepy boy, 12wbt update and me after a haircut.

On the right side we have a chilled out PJ clad boy, seed progress (the mothers day seed in a jar), my stamp carving class at Handmade, a date with my husband and through the middle a screenshot of Kate Bush (I was named after her!) on MTV, some journalling about swimming, our movie tickets from our date and Margarita's with the lovely Handmade ladies.

And here's the full spread.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Pilates Adventures

I'm not sure if I've mentioned it here in this space before but I've been going to Pilates classes.
In fact, I've been going for a while now. Since last October. That's commitment in my books. A weekly class for the last 8 months (we did have about a months break over Christmas and I've missed a couple of classes due to illness and being away but nothing too significant). I even carried on while my Mum visited and while we moved house.
Now I'm no expert but I do want to share my experience here as I think Pilates may have been where it all started. By all I mean my current health and fitness kick.

I got a flyer in my mailbox advertising local classes offering a beginner option with the 1st introductory class being free. It took a lot of courage to make that initial step - I didn't really know what Pilates was about and me + exercise has been known to have disastrous results. We were still fairly new to wellington at that point so I didn't even have a local friend to come along and hold my hand!

The weekly class has become an important part of my routine. Pilates day is my only weekday home with Mr Mischief these days so we tend to have quite a relaxed start but knowing I have to be out the house to get to class within 5 minutes of hubby being home makes the late afternoon something of a military operation around these parts.

I'm really noticing lately a huge improvement in my flexibility. I can bend over and touch my toes without bending my knees and when I did the fitness test for 12wbt I was at advanced or intermediate level for most of the core based exercises. 

Some of the exercises in class may feel easy but I still believe they are doing something. Other exercises are tough... feel-it-in-every-muscle, not-sure-I-can-hold-this-position-any-longer tough and I think these are the ones doing me the most good.

I always come out of the class feeling good for having done it and pretty relaxed too. The breathing component of the exercises helps me concentrate on my body and ignore all the day to day nonsense (what do I need to buy at the supermarket, I must put blah on my to do list etc etc).

I'm really glad I made that initial step of courage. As I have felt my flexibility increase its given me more confidence to increase my fitness in other areas and inspired me to learn more about how I can live in tune with my body. 

I'd definitely recommend giving Pilates a go and if you're in the Wellington area I'd highly recommend Tabitha's Pilates

Note: this isn't a review and I haven't been asked to write this post. I just wanted to get my thoughts down as a reminder to myself of why I've been making the effort!

2nd Note: I didn't even know where to begin taking flattering photos of me doing Pilates so I hope you enjoy these photos of the beautiful South Wellington coast instead :-)

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Handmade NZ :: adventures in hand carving stamps

Over the long weekend I took a class at Handmade NZ. It was taught by Melissa from Tiny Happy and was really interesting and good fun! 
The class was Hand Carved Stamps and Printing. We were asked to bring along a set of lino-cutting tools, some rubber erasers and something to print our stamps on. 

I have tried my hand at carving my own stamps before with some success. Back then I was using a craft knife which was a little too big and rather-too-easily chopped off bits I needed!
I enjoyed the process though so was keen to sign up for this class when I saw it on the schedule.

Melissa started the class showing us examples of her own hand carved stamps and what she had made with them. She had some beautiful simple designs and seeing how some simple stamps could transform brown wrapping paper, fabric and a little zipped purse was super inspiring.

After she explained the basics she gave us free reign to come up with our own designs and get carving.
I went with a simple chevron design. I sketched it out in my notebook, transferred the design to the eraser and got busy carving. I really like this design and it can almost be used one after the other to create a long line of chevrons....

During the class I also carved a small leaf-like design. It started in my head as an oak tree leaf. I'm not convinced I got the shape right but I like how it turned out. You can see it at the top of the piece of paper in the photo below.
My 3rd attempt during the class was some text. This was by far the trickiest as I initially sketched it as a mirror image forgetting my the time it was transferred to my eraser it would be the right way round meaning when it was printed it would be a mirror image! Luckily I realised before I had carved too much and did it the other way round on the other side of the eraser.

We (Mr Mischief and I) had fun playing with the stamps at home after the class and I may have a go at carving some fun shapes just for him to use.
I also got busy and carved 2 more shapes at home over the weekend. I went for a simple circle/ring shape (it's wonky but I find that endearing!) and an ampersand.
I've already stamped some brown paper for wrapping paper and some little journalling cards to use in my Project Life album. And I am thinking about making some little notelets and cards.

I'm really glad I took the class :-)

Other highlights from Handmade NZ were going to The Story of Felt lecture by Lucy who runs Felt, catching up with Cat and taking her to the Chocolate Fish Cafe for a coffee and enjoying yummy margarita's at Flying Burrito Brothers with Cat, Gill from Mudbird Ceramics and Fiona from More Than Fabric.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Project Life (Weeks 19 and 20)

 20 weeks in already - this year seems to have flown by so far!

Week 19 - we changed up the bedtime routine a little (a cup of milk on the sofa in his jammies then tucked into bed), it bucketed down with rain and the playground at work flooded!, I made Peanut Butter Choc Chip cookies, I bought some hycainths to go in my Mothers Day Cornishware bowl, I made some cards to send to Sophie and I included a motivating quote.

Mothers Day goodies from Mr Mischief (a painted card and a little glass jar planted with seeds from daycare), paper fishing with magnets, a visit to a cafe, more Mothers Day goodies (a labelmaker and washi tape from Teapea!), Mr Mischief's update at 2 years and 9 months and a lovely picture of the waterfront.
There's also a folded journalling card where I have written about 12wbt and included my before photos and measurements inside.

And here's the double spread. 

Week 20 and I got my week numbers confused - argh! So I had to cover up my mistake with a sticker on the weekly title card! I got a Mothers Day parcel from my Mum (I was well and truly spoilt this year!), a picture of me "glowing" after my first 12wbt workout, a screenshot of my FitBit weekly report showing I climbed 71 floors that week! A progress card for 12wbt week 1 (showing total minutes of workouts, weigh-in results, favourite meals and thoughts and reflections), a family shot, Mr Mischief gardening and Mr Mischief in the car telling us he was happy (*insert big happy sigh here*)

On the right hand side I have a shot of Houghton Bay as I was driving round the coast, hubby on 3 news! (his company won an award), playing with the Beautiful Mess app, Mr Mischief wearing his superhero mask on a Saturday morning, 10,000+ steps before 11am, we found the Tardis in Wellington, skyping Grandad and the view from a walk with a fellow 12wbt-er - we climbed soooooo many steps!

And here's both pages together.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Crochet Adventures: a Nest of Bunnies

I kid you not...I just googled "what is a group of bunnies called?" for the purposes of being accurate with this blog post title. Unfortunately Google doesn't have an definite answer so I picked nest as I like that one :-)

When I saw Leonie's Show and Tell post last week I realised I never actually blogged about these bunnies I made back at Easter time (nearly 2 months ago - argh!). They did feature in my Project Life pages at the time though. I got the idea from the Queen of Crochet herself (Lucy at Attic 24) and followed the tutorial by Janette at the Green Dragonfly.

The 1st bunny came together pretty quickly (over the course of a day with mother and household duties thrown in the mix) and I think he may actually be my favourite...

Here's his back with his fluffy pom-pom tail!

And peep-o! Here he is.
This little bunny went to live with Maria's son when I stayed with her in Christchurch.

Next up we have corporate bunny.... 
He has more space between his eyes to fit the big brain required to be a corporate bunny. He hopped off to live at hubby's work and was crocheted in the company colours.

And last but not least....

We have Easter Bunny with colours picked out by Mr Mischief himself. He was waiting by Mr Mischief's bedside when he woke up on Easter Sunday and he was happy to see his new hoppy friend!

To be honest, after crocheting 3 bunnies in the space of a few days I was all bunnied out and vowed not to make anymore! Now a few weeks have passed I won't say never but it will probably be a while before I contemplate another bunny!

I'm linking up with Show and Tell this week - why not head over and see what everyone else is making?


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