Sunday, April 22, 2012

Appliqué Love

As of 2 weeks ago the only appliqué I had ever done was to appliqué Elsa’s name on her library bag and cushion for school! I was scared of appliquéing stretch fabric and didn’t plan to do it any time soon. Then i was asked to do a custom order for someone for their baby who is due in a couple of months. She wanted some Big Butt Baby Pants, a bib and an appliquéd t-shirt to match. I said yes and then freaked out! What if I couldn’t do it? I had already promised so I planned a couple of practice shirts for a friends little boy and worked up the courage to try.

Here are the results…

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Oh and I love it! It is lots of fun and no where near as hard as I thought. I am slow at it but that is ok, I know I will get faster!

There were for my Wee Threads store and given the positive reactions I have received I am sewing up another 11 shirts for a stocking this week. I plan to have it on Friday night but I will confirm once I have a few more completed.

Kid Clothes Week Challenge

It is back! I am very excited about it this year as I have lots ready to sew already so it will be great motivation to get it all done this week!

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My KCWC plans

  • A couple of pairs of Big Butt Baby Pants
  • 11 Appliqué t-shirts (yes you read that right…ELEVEN!)

I think that will do for now! Who knows, I might fit in something else!

It is not to late to join in so head over to Elise Marley and sign up now!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Zhu Que

I LOVE this pattern! I was a test knitting for this one and I know I will knit it many times over. It is so pretty and just perfect for little ones in the colder weather. They can have their arms free and only need leggings underneath to keep them comfy and warm. My older two have already put in their orders!

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Pattern: Zhu Que

Yarn: Red Riding Hood Yarns – Amethyst

Help children in Uganda directly through Child Sponsorship – Guest Post

This is guest post from Sarah Paige

In early March of this year, the video Invisible Children (also known as Kony 2012) was released by director Jason Russell. Almost overnight, the video was watched by millions of people and its message spread across the world.

It brought to light the immense suffering, danger and trauma faced by children in Rwanda being used as child soldiers by tribal warlords. Millions expressed their outrage at what they saw, and many initiatives sprung up to help the young and vulnerable in this region of Africa.

Prior to Kony 2012, international organisations and action groups had been tackling the problems of Uganda for years. Kony 2012 shone a light on the efforts of these groups, and has given fresh impetus for people to take a stand against the appalling conditions faced by young people in the country.

Do your bit

Now is the ideal time for people to do their bit in bringing help and hope to the children of Uganda. Kony 2012 revealed, very publicly, that the problems of child soldier use, of slavery, of torture and abuse of young people is not exceptional, and its effects are widely felt. Mothers, fathers, brother and sisters are torn apart by the effects of these practices in Uganda, and the problem will not go away unless people take an active stance against it.

The benefits of sponsoring a child in Uganda are many, and they help the plight of ordinary Ugandans in many ways. By sponsoring a child, you are not only helping one boy or girl, but actually your contributions are going a long way toward improving the lot of others. Child sponsorship initiatives are designed not only to help a single child, but also other children alongside them and their families. What you provide to these children is an opportunity to live a better life, and to live in peace and a state of normality.

Children are really the future

Children are the future of any society. They are the promise of hope, of progress and of change. They are what make families whole, and they are society’s most cherished and protected members. Yet in Uganda, the apples of youth are being plundered, corrupted and destroyed by violence and chaos. The time has come to give Ugandan children, the future of the country, the protections of education, safety and security they deserve. Sponsoring a child is a bold and real way of working towards a Uganda free from child-slavery and suffering.

It is a way toward a Uganda where children can live normal, healthy and happy lives.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Hot Cross Buns

Firstly I apologise to those who have been waiting on this post! I could have just posted the link to the original recipe but I really wanted to write about the changes I made and not just post the link.

The recipe is from Donna Hay. The first time I made it exactly to the recipe but at the recommended temperature and time(even at the minimum of the range not the maximum) they were over cooked and a little dry! They were still yummy but not what I wanted.

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So I made them again the next day. This time I made choc chip ones and I made the dough in the bread maker. It worked great apart from the rising bit with the choc chips as the machine heats the dough slightly and this meant melted choc chips! It was ok but a little messy. I didn’t do a second knead as I would have had chocolate everywhere. I just dumped the dough on the the bench and cut it into 12 portions and carefully stretched them into the right shape. This wouldn’t be a problem with the fruit ones and would make them very easy. I do have to say that kneading the dough by hand can be very therapeutic though, especially if you use the throwing method! My girls thought it was great seeing mummy throw the dough on the bench with a bang! Just make sure you remove anything breakable from the bench first! If I used the bread maker for the choc chip ones again I would remove the dough from the machine for the rising so the choc chips don’t melt.

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So here is my recipe for bread machine choc chip hot cross buns based on the Donna Hay recipe.

bread machine choc chip hot cross buns

  • 2 tablespoons dried yeast*
  • 1/2 cup (110g) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1½ cups (375ml) warm milk
  • 4¼ cups (635g) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 2 teaspoons mixed spice 
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder 
  • 50g butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 pack of choc chips (I used Cadbury dark choc chips)

crosses

  • ½ cup (75g) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • ⅓ cup (80ml) water ( you might need extra water to get the paste to the right consistency)
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

glaze

  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon powdered gelatine
  • ¼ cup (60ml) water

 
Place all of the bun ingredients except for the choc chips into the machine and start the machine on the dough setting. Add choc chips in the last 5-10 minutes of mixing(my machine beeps to let me know it is time to add any extras). When the mixing finishes you can remove the dough to rise elsewhere or if you don’t mind a bit of melted chocolate then leave it to rise in the machine.

  Lightly knead the dough again, divide into 12 pieces and roll into balls. Place in a 23cm-square cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Cover with a clean tea towel and set aside in a warm place for 25–30 minutes or until doubled in size.

  Preheat oven to 190ºC. To make the crosses, combine the flour, cocoa powder and water to make a smooth paste. Place in a piping bag and pipe crosses onto the buns. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until well browned and springy to touch.

  To make the glaze, combine the sugar, gelatine and water in a saucepan over medium heat and stir for 2 minutes or until dissolved. Brush warm buns with the glaze and serve with butter. Makes 12.

You might notice that I reduced the temperature and time for the buns when compared to the original recipe. Your oven may be fine at the original but mine definitely needed the decrease!

HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE!

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