A is for Apple

img_0783Another terribly hot week has passed, in which I was hardly able to do anything seriously craftsy. I am currently just playing couch potato trying my best to keep my blood pressure from plummeting to the floor and just playing dead there. Such heat has always been a problem for me since I was a teenager and time and age did not help to make it better at all.

I was lucky being invited by a colleague and friend to visit her home in the middle of nowhere in Lower Austria for the public holiday on Wednesday. It seemed that we must have been close to Siberia there as temperature was so much better that I even had chilly times (approximately 20 degrees or so) in the morning. The place was huge – and the best thing was the orchard with tons of ripe apples. So I went home with about 2 kg of apples right from (or rather below) the tree ready to be transformed into something totally delicious.

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I decided that – given the heat in the city I was returning to – I would rather stick to a quick recipe than do anything fancy. Some short pastry apple pockets and some puff pastry apple strudel. I used the ready to use version of both doughs this time as making them at 30 degrees is not a good idea. The butter really has to stay cold for both of them but the apples just couldn’t wait for cooler weather. The recipe for the filling I picked from Martha Steward’s Pies and Tarts book and I have to say: this lady really knows her art. My hubby does not like cinnamon that much and most apple recipes are loaded with it – but in this filling there is only a hint of it and therefore he has not complained a bit! Also the filling is not sweet at all as there is lemon added and as little sugar as possible. Of course such a recipe depends on the apples used but the ones I have picked have been quite sweet by themselves. The result was a nice sweet and tart little apple paradise!

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Foxes finished

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Another hot week has passed here. It’s really getting on my nerves as I really hate hot, humid weather. I feel like a fish on land, flopped on the couch with sticky fingers trying to hold my crochet hook. It just does not work that way. Therefore I rather focused on finishing my diamond painting foxes. Aren’t those furries cute? I am totally in love with them and the way the final piece looks. They are now tug under some heavy books (thanks university for making me study those, so that I now have some to use for my crafts) in order to press the little diamond pieces firmly to the sticky foundation. Then I will pin them on to the door to my crafting room – hopefully without producing a diamond shower soon.

Even though I am not sure if I am able to finish until my vacation, I started the second diamond painting right afterwards. It just is addictive. This time it’s the book owl to pimp up the library door. Can’t wait to see it evolving!

Firespinner and new tools

Another week has passed with about 36 degrees each day. It’s still too hot to seriously crochet, so I decided that beading is just the right craft for this heat wave. I am still in love with Kassie Shaws patterns from “Beading beyond the basics” and have eyed the firewheel spinner pattern for quite some time. I had the dagger beads and the seed beads but not the correct rivoli as a center accent. So I tried out Pontomac Beads Eu that recently opened up and has a huge selection of high quality beads and a real good price. It was amazing how fast they delivered – three days from ordering to delivery! Not even the stores in the UK can beat that. Pontomac definitely has not seen the last of me though I hope that they will stock up to the same size as the US online store. There it’s bead heaven <3. The pattern gave me quite a bunch of gray hair – not because it was written badly but because I was plain too stupid to read the pictogram correctly. I even got my hubby to check, why it does not work, and I have to give him credit that he at least tried to help me figure it out 😂. But as you can see, I was successful in the end and am totally in love with my new pendant.Additionally I got mail delivered last week. I was able to support Etty van Urk, the Cake Dutchess, via Kickstarter to bring her own modelling tools to production. She had a really tough time with them (lots and lots of throwbacks) but now they finally arrived. And I can tell you: they are amazing and are so worth the wait! Not only are they solid stainless steal, they are so well made that you’ll never want to use your cheap plastic tools ever again! The only bad thing is now that the weather is just too hot to try them out. My fingers are itching so much!

Summer in the city

It’s really hot here at the moment. Almost every day it’s 35 degrees which makes crafting really tedious. My crochet hook is sticky in my hands and even cleaning them over and over again does not help much. I know that we were all complaining about the cold in winter and should be happy about warm weather but I really prefer a temperature up to 28 degrees. I was able to finish my summer scarf nevertheless. I am still not happy with the color scheme of this bobbel – don’t know why I actually bought it as it is way out of my confort zone. I love the green and gray but the orange is just so not me. I can’t even blame the heat as it was much cooler when I bought it. I had hoped that it might grow on me during making but even finished just I can’t see myself wearing it. So I need to find someone who would be happy wearing it and gift it to her.

After that I comtinued on my diamond painting picture and might be able to finish soon. As well look forward to some more jewellery next week!

Foxes and Summer Scarves

img_0773Sorry to all readers for not posting anything last week. I was so busy that I just did not find time to write anything to the pictures I had taken and pictures alone are just half the fun. So here are now the pictures together with some ramblings of mine…

I continued my diamond painting picture and the first fox is finally finished. The mirrored second at least got some decent legs but needs some more work still until it also gets a cute little face. It’s quite strange that this work that is quite tedious on my back, can be so much fun. I just can’t seem to quit even tough my back starts to feel quite painful after some time. I will taking a break after that one however before starting another one – I still have two more that are even bigger than the foxes.

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As well my crojo is finally back. But that does not mean that I actually continue working on my WIPs – no way, I just started another one. It all began when I read about the Grinda MAL by LillaBjörn’s Crochet World. I am a huge fan of her designs and of course I fell in love with this one right from the start. However this shawl needs approximately 1200m of yarn and a search through my stash just revealed several bobbels of about 1000m. As well my hubby wanted me to go for the gray-white-black version posted on her blog. So I decided to actually – guess what … yeah, buy some more yarn! But… the Sheepjes Whirlette used for that color combination are not fully available yet and I have to wait and watch everyone else posting beautiful pictures of their project.  However, as I searched my yarn stash I stumbled over this bobbel that I just didn’t quite knew what to do with. I am not sure why I bought it as it is way out of my comfort zone regarding colors. So it was laying next to me begging me to come up with something and so I decided to just whip up a quick summer scarf with it. The pattern I found in a crochet journal and it is just perfect for this yarn. It will look much better in the pictures when it is blocked – can’t wait for it to be finished!

Diamonds are a girls best friend

At the moment I am in a phase where I just cannot make myself work on something really crafty.  I have three crochet projects in progress but every time after work I just am too tired to pick them up. I have at least two beading projects I have bought beads for and I really would love to make but every time I think of starting them, I do not have enough energy to actually do it. Who knows me in person knows that I ALWAYS have something in progress – even when chatting with friends. I cannot hold still and need my hands busy all the time. Now I find myself sitting watching TV and NOT doing anything – and it does not feel good.

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So this Sunday I treated myself to sleeping long hours and to making the best breakfast for me and my hubby.  Waffles made in the oven with Greek yogurt, berries and a drizzle of caramel syrup. The recipe is actually not mine – I grabbed it out of the internet from Zimt und Kuchenliebe and it is the best waffles recipe ever! Really! Easy to make – the dough is whipped up in less than 10 minutes and backed in only 15 more – with not too much sweetness so that you can add whatever you like to suit your sweet tongue.

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In the meantime I also started something new – I just cannot do nothing at all the whole week. I wanted to try diamond painting for quite some time as it is kind of cross stitching with little stones. I was not sure how good the quality of the final picture would be but I just jumped in and ordered some kits. The intention was to put them up on the doors of several rooms in my apartment cause I do not like the plain white doors. The kits finally arrived last week and the first task was to actually check, if all the little stones where delivered. This was tedious work as I picked larger kit sizes (the bigger the pic the better the effect of the pixels) and the little diamonds came in very small packages. Of course I had to try it out – and I just cannot quit any more. It’s addictive to see it grow – even though progress is slow as I just work on it for a short time each day. Quality is pretty good and I love the effect of the diamond pixels coming together – you can really see the little fox by now. Isn’t he cute?

Flower doily and vacation planning

img_0767This week was not very creative: I am currently spending my time finalizing my vacation planning. We will be traveling to New Zealand soon and I am already pretty excited about it. The route is planned fully and now I just need to make sure that we have somewhere to sleep. And of course ask my friend Google where to find good yarn stores on the North island….

In the little time left I started a flowery doily. I have not crocheted with thread for quite some time now and it was weird working with the small crochet hook again. The thread also cuts much more into my finger, the one I use for an even tension. I just finished before it drew blood. Sadly it is still on the blocking board, so please don’t be mad at me for the bad picture. It will be a nice addition to my round dinner table, so as soon as it is try I will shoot a better one.