Saturday, 29 December 2018

Caking and Baking

Another bargain I picked up, in November I think, was an Ankarsrum Assistent.  I bought it to make bread, especially sourdough.  We've usd it several times, but not enough yet for it for m to use it without thinking.  If it stays,  it may replace Boris (my Bosch stand mixer).  I haven't tried it as a mixer yet,  it's on my ever increasing list of things that need to be done.

December also meant Christmas cakes and cards.

I made the poinsettia. It's free standing lace embroidery,  3 parts.  Emma, my embroidery machine, behaved impeccably. I was very grateful as  I hadn't planned on making the cake topper and it was a bit last minute.   I'd bought a resin Father Christmas from John Lewis,  but when I unwrapped it to use it, I found it was covered in glitter. No good on a cake.

I didn't take a pic of the Creole cake. I wish I had.  Small Person has an allergy to walnuts and pecans,  which meant I had to rethink how I did the glazed nut topping.  I was quite pleased with the results. 

I also didn't take a pic of my wreath until just now. One of my boars has disappeared!  It's a bit of a shame as I have had them since the first year I made my own wreath and they've been on every one. In fact, the wreath looks quite bare in a whole section, so I wonder if other things have been removed as well.?  Oh well.

One fail this year: I made Nigella's Puddini. I made some a few years ago and thought they were delicious.   I wasn't so keen this year, which is a shame as I made extra puddings to have the basic ingredient. I also have quite a lot of Pedro Jimenez sherry, the second main ingredient,  which is painfully sweet.  It's a bit too sweet for me.

I'm sure there were lots of other things, but I just can't think of them.


I've been creating a birthday card for Small Person. 

I like to put lots of photos inside, of the things she's done with us during the year.   I thought it would be a good memory jogger for her in years to come.   It was an enjoyable romp for me too, although I was a little sad that there were lots of things that didn't have photos.

One of my favourite photos is a still from one of the (many) videos I took when I was helping her learn to cartwheel. 

She's wearing one of the collection of Cora Cullotes that I made for her, and they are great for this sort of thing.


I've been busy making stuff.

I managed to create a mock wrap top, for me.   It took a lot of tweaking to get a really good fit. Now I've made a pattern, it should be relatively easy to make up. I really like it, and I plan to make more from a variety of fabrics.

I also made a fab jumper to wear to my MIL's funeral, finishing it the morning we left.  It was made with black fabric that had silver stars on, and as soon as I saw the fabric I knew that it would be perfect: her name is Stella.  It's lovely. Not my best make, but it's wearable.. and every time I wear it, I will think of her.   

I picked up a bargain of a child sized mannequin,  and we've set it it up to Small Person's measurements.  It's been really helpful, as I can test things as I sew.

I made a sweatshirt for small person, which was a much easier sew than I expected. I'm going to try it with a hood next time.
I also made her some leggings, but the fabric was less stretchy than usual and so they didn't fit.   I also made leggings for me, and kept making them until I got a pattern that fits reasonably well.  I need to make some more to wear to Pilates, they are on my list of things to do.

I've now moved on to making small person a raglan sleeved top.  It was again easier than I expected, and I can see why it's a favourite design from a lot of indy pattern makers. I love it! I hope she does.  I can't finish it until I see her because I need to get the arm length sorted.

And then I'm planning on making her a dress for her birthday, but I need to psyche myself up for that one.

Friday, 7 December 2018

Goodbye my dear

It was the funeral of my beloved Mother in Law (BMIL) yesterday.

As one might expect, my heart and my eyes cried a lot, and I tried to do it quietly.  BMIL was a private person, and would have been embarrassed by unrestrained blubbing.    After the service, we stood by the coffin in silence, each saying our own personal goodbye.

 I stood there, with my hand gently on the coffin (telepathically explaining to my BMIL that I was only touching it gently because I know she didn't like to be hugged).  I had already thought about what I wanted to say to her,  and I said my speech to her (again, by telepathy).  The internally spoken words, and the feelings they represented, intensified my need to sob.  I wanted to finish my conversation, and I wanted to leave before I couldn't keep the sobs under control.

Ironically, my attempts at suppressing the sobs took up all the oxygen in my lungs, and I needed to breathe.  The suppressing of the blubs backfired, almost literally. 

Inadvertenly, and most embarrassingly,  an attempted gasp for breath resulted in a howl.

I was mortified.

Naturally, people assumed I was wailing in grief. 

I was very upset and I was indeed very emotional, but I wasn't howling.    Having people try to comfort me, at my apparent enormous emotional distress, was awful.     I felt like I'd made a scene, people would look at me and think I was a drama queen.    I felt a fraud.    

I tried to explain, to those attempting to comfort me, that I wasn't howling in grief, it had been an involuntary sound when I was gasping for breath... but as I was trying to explain,  I realised that the explanation was almost worse than the howling.

I miss her.

I've missed her for a long time.  Alzheimers is such a cruel disease.