A Nice Little Break - Llandudno Pt 1

This weekend my husband and I enjoyed a nice kiddie free couple of days in Llandudno, North Wales. This happens very rarely and we know that the children are safe, sound and probably being spoilt rotten by both sets of grandparents so we love it when the opportunity arises to get away. We traveled by train and stayed in a lovely Victorian B & B.




I love this porch on the front of one of the houses on the way to our B & B with all the little nik nak's and plants on display 




Our first stop was the pier which is the longest in Wales. I love piers, the ornate ironwork and buildings, the sounds coming from the arcades and smell of foods that I associate with the seaside. Having said that I also have a little niggling fear that they will collapse the moment I step on them ( I'm the same with bridges ) and I found out this afternoon that my mum in law feels the same, must be a pretty common irrational fear then.




Back to the pier and seaside food. I have a couple of things which I only eat when I'm at the seaside even though they are readily available in any supermarket (or fishmongers for one of my seaside favs ) . The first one is cockles and can you believe there was nowhere selling seafood, at this seafront ?. I just think that is really odd. My other seaside food is doughnuts and this is because I think they are tasty hot, still have to knock about a bag of sugar off them as I don't  like sugar but they are still scrummy.





The weather was sweltering in the afternoon and the pier busy which means more food around and more of these things - the flying rats.


They were everywhere, swooping low and snatching peoples food. Actually I don't know if I was more scared of one pinching my hotdog or unloading on me, I wasn't keen on them all the same.



After the pier we headed towards the town centre where I took photos of this column. 




Made from steel, stone and bronze. 



All the designs depict scenes from Llandudno's history.



Then to the beach for a stroll in the sunset.



 Ok maybe in my case it was more like trying to work my way through an obstacle course. Its a pebbly beach so I was giggling away slipping and sliding every time I moved.





The arcades next which meant back to the pier. The only machines we ever go on are the soft toy grabbing ones and we came home with 2 cuddlies .




Next it was fish and chips on the promenade ( keeping one eye on watch for the flying rats because the things never seem to sleep ) where we could see there was still a small group of children paddling, with parents near by I should say as it was 11:30pm by now then we heading to our bed for the night.



Snapping pics like a tourist!

Well I recently received my letter from yale about applying for their photograhy course, which I have to do an interview for first with a portfolio about me in the style of 3 different photographers!
Needless to say my camera is now glued to my hand to make sure I get every good photo opportunity (Although the wasps ruined it for me a bit yesterday!), so I thought I'd show you some of my best pictures so far and you can tell me what you think!
Cock-a-doodle-doo!!

Squeee!! Baby goldfish!!

Dining in style.

Memories of the Moor.

Just a doodle I knocked up.

T.J. is one crazy doggy!

The view from my yard.
Hope you liked them!

Mmm .. Chocolate


My mum has been having a bit of a clear out and asked me if I wanted her old cross stitch books and of course I took them off her hands for her. I haven't done any cross stitch for a couple of years so just picked a small design from one of the books.


My husband says it is very apt for me and asked if I will be waving it at him as a gentle threat whenever he goes to the shop. Anyone would think that I'm a chocoholic ( though I suppose I can go through a far amount of the stuff )

A Gentle Stroll And The Strange Cat


Yesterday afternoon the weather was gorgeous so we all went for a stroll down the canal. Seems quite a few other people had the same idea with the steady stream of traffic on the canal path and lots of barges out. 


I was keeping my eye out for all early blackberries but there weren't enough ready to pick yet.


When we decided to turn to walk back home my husband spied this cat watching us from some trees on the opposite bank. I don't know what type of cat it was but to us it didn't look like a usual domestic cat, it was way too big. By the time I'd fumbled around in my bag to get my camera it had turned to run off so I only got this blurry snap of the back of it. When we got back home I did a search for spotted cats but haven't found anything like it yet.

Quick and easy modelling chocolate.

   A couple of months ago Auntie Shell suggested that I watch a show called Choccywoccydoodah, about chocolatiers in Brighton who specialise in huge and intricate cakes and chocolate sculptures. Already being obsessed with cake shows like Cake Boss, Ace of Cakes, Cake wars and Cupcake wars I was captivated by Choccywoccydoodah and the amazingly talented chocolatiers that work there. I soon began looking for recipes to make my own modelling chocolate and experimented with a few recipes when I stumbled across this one which I found worked brilliantly and tastes fantastic! So great I keep catching my little brother nibbling at it in the fridge like a mouse!
   All you need is:
8oz of Chocolate (Plain, Milk or White, white is best if you want to paint it with food dye.)
3.5oz of Golden Syrup (Corn Syrup for all our American friends.)

How easy is that?!
   First of all measure out your chocolate and melt it. You can do this in a microwave, keep taking it out of the microwave to stir it every 10 seconds too make sure its not burning or sticking to the bowl (Remember! Microwaveable bowl and don't put metal spoons in!)
   If you prefer to use an oven then you will need a pan with an amount of water in the bottom, make sure the water is about an inch away from your bowl when its placed on the pan. Put your ring on a medium heat and wait for the water to boil (Please don't burn yourself!), when the chocolate begins to melt stir it occasionally until its all melted.
I resisted temptation!!
Next measure your Syrup out.
Again I resisted temptation!
   Mix in your Syrup to your Chocolate, and it should being to go thick! Like magic! Keep stirring it 'til when you stir it becomes a ball. Don't worry its normal for it to spread out again.
   Then you'll be left with this tasty little lump!
I didn't resist temptation this time!
   Leave it in the fridge for at least an hour. If your making it for little kids to create things with you'll have to stick something on tv for an hour or so! If its just for a cake I suggest making it the night before and leaving it in the fridge in air tight container so it will be nice and cool and model better when you knead it.
   When you take it out of the fridge knead it about for a while so its warmed up enough to mold. Then you can make cute little creations like this!
It was meant to be a skull... I only left my chocolate for an hour.
   And if you're really adventurous you can do this!
Scream! If you wanna get glittery!

Don't you just Lurrvve glitter hearts?
   And they're all edible!! My brother certainly enjoyed munching away my little scream! Perfect for partys for little kids! They can model away and enjoy eating it, much tastier than Play-Doh!

Allow me too introduce... ME!

   Well, Hello Ladies and Gents! I'm Jays daughter, Chelsea (Shells niece), and as my Mum doesn't have a lot of time to write on the blog because of work I've been asked to make a contribution, which of course I'm happy too, being my ever nerdy and crafty self I'm sure I can find lots of things to show you!
  
    I'm relatively new to blogging, (aside from the one time attempt which went down like a lead ballon!) So I decided my first post would be an introduction too me! Well, I'm not very good at intricate crafty things like my aunty, but I'm told I'm a pretty good cook and I love creating things out of chocolate! I'm hopefully going to be returning to sixth form in September where I'll be studying Art, Drama, Psychology and Photography. I'll be leaving school in 2014 with the ambition of becoming a Tattoo Artist or maybe running my own cake and biscuit company!
Me getting ready to go to prom! My moves went down a storm on the dance floor! ;)
   My hair and my piercing are my biggest on going project with the current total of 5 piercings, and bright blue and brown hair.
  
   Lots of people call me emo or goth but I'm a bit of everything! I went to prom in lots of bright colours because everyone was expecting me to go in black. Haha fooled them!
  Well thats all :) Ciao for now!

Chick Update

The chicks are now six weeks old and we are down to three. We lost one a couple of weeks ago (it never looked as strong as the rest ). They are still growing feathers on their heads so they look a bit tatty at the moment. Now they don't need the heat lamp we were able to move the house coop on to the lawn so they could have a dig around in the grass.


Last night when we cleaned them out they had their first wander a round the garden. They didn't  go far and stuck together in their little gang.


Reading this I realise that the word 'they' is here an awful lot but its because I don't know what sex they are yet and only Little L has named hers. My sister told me to look at the combs ( the bobbly piece of skin above the beak ) and said that cockerels have larger ones then hens. Well I keep looking and they are either all hens or all cockerels, they all look the same to me. I hope they are not cockerels though as I live in a residential area and if they start cockadoodledooing it won't go down too well with the neighbours. My sister has kindly said she would put them in with hers if they are. Fingers crossed they all turn out to be ladies because we have all got a bit attached to the cute, funny little things.

A Break In The Weather

The weather has been awful here for the past few days so while we had a break from the rain this afternoon I went out and took some snaps in the garden.



Then thought I'd try out a new  Banana Muffin recipe that I'd found on the internet. 


This one didn't go down too well. The children say they are too bananay, my husband say they are nice but that doesn't mean much as he'll eat anything as long as it is mushroom free. 
One recipe I tried out a couple of weeks ago was one for Peach Cobbler and this was a great success. My In Laws were round at the time and had some and they thought it was lovely. I'll definitely be making this one again. 


Love Heart Sweets

I made these felt love heart sweets a while ago. I remember eating these when I was little and my love/hate relationship with them. I loved the pastel colours and the wording but hated the taste of the things. I used to munch my way through them quickly just to see what was written on the next one.


MATERIALS
Felt plus matching thread
Red embroidery cotton
Stuffing

1) Cut out two circle pieces of felt
2) Using tracing paper, trace out the heart shape and wording of your own choice and tack the design on to one of the circles of felt


3)Then using the red cotton start to embroider through the tracing paper. I used chain stitch for the heart and straight stitch for the wording.


4) When you have finished the embroidery carefully tear away the tracing paper. It does come away from the stitches quite easily
5) Now using a thread which matches the colour of your felt sew the two circles together. I used blanket stitch for this.
6) When you have almost reached the end of the circle leave a small gap, stuff slightly then sew to the end


Memory Like A Sieve

I'd forget my head these days if it wasn't screwed on. It's taken me a week to get round to buying some batteries for my camera. Maybe its my age or something. Now my cameras sorted, here are some pics of what I've been making this week.


Key rings using Ana Paula Rimoli patterns,


crocheted stash baskets using a free pattern from The Purl Bee. One houses some of Little L's small teddies and the other is used to keep all the boys pencil cases in.


Some earrings and hair clips,


and an embroidered ice cream picture. The pattern is available free here. I don't know what I'm going to make yet with the little embroideries I've been doing. Maybe a cushion or wall hanging for Little L.





Prettifying Pillowcases

We have had lovely weather here again over the last weekend so much of the time was spent outdoors. I managed to get a tan while prettifying some plain pillowcases. They had been washed before I started on them which was a good job as they then shrunk an inch in width.


The embroidery pattern was the February stitchalong pattern on the feeling stitchy blog


and the tutorial I used for the scallop crochet edge can be found here.


I just need to stock up on more pillowcases now so I can make some for my gran and sis.