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Angels We Have Herded On High

Today I did four things and I am feeling quite tired. #1 was taking Harki to the Vet for, as it turned out, the first of a series of four injections for her arthritis, and some tablets and some multimillion dollar joint powder. Peri was locked inside and when we came home she needed a lot of consoling and patting. #2 was our Sick People's Christmas lunch. It was delicious and we played games and I won two: the How many singular words, words that no-one lese thought of, starting with the letters of the word CHRISTMAS can you find? (23) and How many words can you make from MISTLETOE? (43) But I only took one prize in the spirit of the season. #3 was Knitting Coven Christmas, where there were more lovely gifts. I made the last half hour but we stretched it out for another hour so that was good. #4 was checking on The Kittens and feeding them as MrsDrWho will be at school tonight till goodness knows when.

Here is a video with The Labradors, and beware, apparently I hum to myself as I walk along. MrsDrWho says this is because I am more than a little demented, but I (like to) think I am singing along to the radio that I listen to as I walk. You be the judge!!!! Also note Peri's obedience and see what a good girl Harki is.


Last night it was our Sewing Group Christmas and we went to a lovely cafe and chatted and ate and exchanged lovely gifts. I have made quite a lot of angels, in fact a whole choir!!  Angel choir 

I herded them together for a photo before they were gifted away. They were inspired by the country angels from Handmade's Quick Christmas, but I have streamlined and simplified the process. I also made two heights: alto and descant!!! Here is a collage of pictures showing what I did and I will write the instructions for each step, left to right, starting at the top left.

ANGELS

To make seven or eight angels ( and let's face it, why wouldn't you want seven or eight??) you need:

  • 6cm x 112cm calico or cream fabric for the heads
  • 15cm x 112cm appropriately angelic fabric for the alto bodies, 20cm for the descants
  • 3cm x 160cm extra calico (or 6cm x 80cm halved!!) for the arms
  • about 1 metre of lacy trim
  • 20cm x 90cm white or cream felt
  • 8 buttons
  • wool for the hair
  • a brown fabric pen, mine is a Millennium Zig
  • matching embroidery thread/cotton
  • some 'stuffing' of your choice!!!

Choiry Angels

  1. This is what you're aiming to make, these are the short altos, but just cut the body fabric to 20cm for the tall descants.
  2. Sew the calico to the body fabric and then press the seam towards the body.
  3. Fold in half and then trace the actual sewing line for seven or eight bodies, leaving a centimetre or so between them, lining up the head/body seam line on pattern and on the fabric. The pattern is about 15cm tall, 6cm wide at the base and 4cm wide at the head/body seam line. The 'head' is 3.5cm tall. I just drew my own.
  4. Now sew on the line you drew. My machine does a special start that doesn't unravel, but do a reverse/forward a few times at the start and end of each body and then just sew across in between them. Don't stop till you get to the end.
  5. Trim each body, not too close to the seam, I left about 4mm. Turn them inside out and stuff them quite firmly. This picture looked a bit rude, so we'll skip it and go straight on to six.
  6. To make the base, bring the two side seams together and sew them securely.
  7. Then fold the side in once, then again like wrapping the end of a parcel, so it reaches the seams at the centre. Catch the fabric.
  8. Do the same to the other side and sew across to the other end and finish off. This makes a good base and with a bit of adjusting, the angel will stand up.
  9. Now cut three, or as many as you like, 5cm pieces of wool and sew them to the head for hair and draw on a suitable angelic face.
  10. Wrap about 12cm of the lace top cover the head/body seam line and sew together at the back.
  11. Add a button to the front.
  12. This much calico makes one set of arms/hands, but I just sewed across the whole piece and cut it up later on.
  13. Now make the arms and hands by pressing the 3cm wide calico in half, and then each edge into the centre again and then fold the whole thing in half and press. I hope you can see this on the photo, but you're enclosing all the raw edges.
  14. Sew the long open edges together, cut 20cm lengths,  and then fold a simple knot at the half way point for the hands. Sew the two ends to the centre back on top of the lace.
  15. Cut one or two sets of wings from the felt. The wings are about 15cm wide and 7.5cm high and then you just draw in some wingy curves. Sew around with the embroidery thread 6mm from the edges, starting at the centre top or bottom
  16. Then sew to the centre back, straight edge at the top, covering the lace and hands. If you use two thicknesses, you just sew them together, but one did work well for me. Et Voila, it is finished. I added my two little paws that I always do under the wings, and I think they all have very old fashioned names like Celeste or Ermentrude!!

If there are any glaring omissions or you have a question, please email me!! OK, so far so good with the posting every day!! That's two down, fifteen to go. Back tomorrow with a recipe I think.

Now here's The Laminaria, blocking, I will take a better picture in the light tomorrow.

Slightly wonky Laminaria shawlette 

Did you see the reindeer I made MrsDrWho a few years ago in my album at the side?? The kittens have been wrestling it. I think they are preparing to bring Santa's reindeer down and get all the presents for themselves!!!


And a Pair in a Partridge Tree

I must say that soon after my blog's conniption, Ginevra from The Typepad left a kind comment and asked if I needed any help. Thank you Typepad for your very considerate offer,  but I think I am beyond help!! We'll see how I go this time. I am endeavouring to post every day until Christmas. Wow!! That will probably be more times than I have posted this year!!

It was The Northern Ravellers Christmas on Saturday and I made some socks and mini Christmas muffins and a zippy bag for Amandaj, and there was chocolate too!!!

A Pair in a Partridge Tree 

I was the recipient of a lovely gift from Kate, who'd ratherbeknitting (Ravelry link) There are ballet slippers in which I shall be prancing about in the hall, Christmas Tea and there were some tiny chocolates too. I am wearing my slippers right now!!

Thank you KWRBK 

Now, I have been memed and I am meming right now:

Seven Things:

  1. Though right handed, I use my left hand for the mouse
  2. I don't technically have a Christmas Tree but I do leave decorations up and about all year
  3. Amazingly, when I needed two extra metres to finish casting off The Laminaria, I was able to find some matching green in my stash. Who would have thought?
  4. Sometimes I like what I am wearing so much that I wash it and dry it and wear it the next day, sometimes I do this three or four days in a row.
  5. I am an obsessive circler of the programmes I want to watch or record on TV. It is like a military operation at our house.
  6. Sometimes in Summer I have a nap in the afternoon and when I wake up, I am not quite sure if it is 8 o'clock in the night, or I have slept right through and it is 8 o'clock in the morning.
  7. Though I could match my clothes to the pegs on the line, I don't do that, that would just be weird!!! I alternate the colour of the pegs in a strict way: two light green, two dark green and then I hope there's not anything that needs a single peg that will mess up my pattern.

Harki and Peri are enjoying the Sun, they are sunbaking without their bikinis!!! Harki feels a little better today as the weather is stable, but she is off to The Vet tomorrow, and she may have another injection. Peri is having a lovely time 'helping' me with my craft, but I can't be cross with her, look at how sweet she is.

Cheesecake 

Tomorrow I shall have The Laminaria, all complete, and some Christmas Angels that are easy to make. And I think there shall be a Labrador video!!!

Mini Christmas Fruit Mince Muffins

  • 150g butter (3/5 of a cup!)
  • 125ml milk (1/2 cup)
  • 150g caster sugar (2/3 cup)
  • 1 egg
  • 300g self raising flour (2 cups)[Though I used 2 cups less 4 teaspoons of plain flour and added 4 teaspoons of baking powder]
  • 1 400g jar of fruit mince, or your own homemade!!
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • icing sugar
  • water
  • tiny Christmas decorationsI Heart Fruit Mince Mini muffins
  • patty pans

Preheat the oven to 200*C and line a small muffin tray with patty pan papers. (Oh how I wish for an old fashioned patty pan cake tray, I had to use my muffin tray and it has a capacity that's just a tad too large)

Melt the butter then add the milk, sugar and egg and whisk. Mix in the fruit mince. Fold in the flour and cinnamon gently and make sure it's still a bit 'uncombined'. Fill the patty pans about 2/3 full and then bake for about 15 minutes, it may take a bit longer so check that they are lightly brown on top and have come away from the edge. They should be springy to the touch.

Cool and then decorate. Mix the icing sugar and some water to an icing consistency and spread onto the muffins. I usually smooth them with a flat bladed knife dipped into some extremely hot water. Then add the decorations. I had red and green sugar trees and I just sprinkled them around the edges to make a wreath. 


Hansel and Grit-el

 

I made this with MrsDrWho's class, hence the instruction style!!!

The Ungingerbread House.

Un gingerbread house

You will need:

2 100s and 1000s biscuits

3 Tina wafers, any colours

2 Iced Vovo biscuits

2 Mint Leaves

2 Liquorice Allsorts

Icing sugar

A little water

12cm piece of card covered in Christmas paper and clearly named on the base

Place the 100s and 1000s biscuits pink side down and ice along their short edges. Attach 2 wafers to one biscuit and then press the other biscuit onto the wafers to make the four walls.

Wait till it is set.

Ice along the bottom edges of the walls and press onto the cardboard base.

Cut the last wafer in half, making two triangles, ice the long edge and press onto the top of the back and front walls.

Wait till it is set.

Place the Iced Vovo biscuits pink side down and ice along the short edges. Press iced sides onto the triangle wafers and make the roof.

Wait till it is set.

Cut one Liquorice Allsort in half diagonally and use icing to glue it to the roof for a chimney.

Peel off a slice of the other Liquorice Allsort and use icing to glue it on as a front door.

Cut the bottom off each Mint Leaf, so it looks like a Christmas tree, ice the sliced end and then plant the trees in the front of the house.

Carefully cover your tree. Attach a name label.


Oh We All Walk The Wibbly-Wallaby Walk

Wallabies are everywhere. The sudden huge downpours, storms and sunny breaks have flushed them out. Small wallabies, large wallabies, wallabies that have had the willies scared out of them and wallabies that want to stare you down.

Wobbly

The little lizards have foolishly come out as well. They are all trying out for the Cross Breakfast Bowl Channel Swim. Luckily neither Harki nor Peri were interested in some almost Lizard Sushi.

Harki and the little lizard


Peri and the liittle lizard






Poor Harki is still limpy. The extreme weather ups and downs are still playing havoc with her hips and knee. The tablets have helped, but she may need some more injections. She is still her usual happy self and wants to play with her toys and go for a walk. They love walking in the rain: and it shows!!

Rainy days are happy for us

I have renovated Mrs Merryand's dad's waistcoat. Of course it was impossible to match the fabric as we only have The BlackSpot of Doomlight (TM)

Before  After

I'm also doing some Christmas sewing planning. Yes, almost everything is photographed on my favourite lime green poplin.

Planning a Christmas thing

Including the Laminaria which is finished but unblocked. I ran out of woool at the very end of the casting off. I needed just two coffee tables' worth. Luckily, but not surprisingly, I had some almost matching greem. Who would have guessed?

Unblocked Laminaria

I have been tagged twice, I think, to tell 7 weird, strange and unnatural things about myself. I a going to attempt this next time, because have to show the funniest  edible gift. It is an Ungingerbread House, the one I mentioned last time. The one in the photo is my first attempt, I made it this afternoon as a demostration, for MrsDrWho's class, along with Peppermint Fondants (Yum, they are so yummy, and green) My door is in need of a bit of DIY attention and the constrution is a bit wobbly, but I didn't do any of the 'waiting till it set'  part as per the instructions I wrote. it was also impossible to buy any spearmint leaves :-(  But nevertheless, here, for your viewing and eating pleasure and complete with Christmas activity instructions is:

The Ungingerbread House

And because I have been trying to publish since 8-30pm tonight, I gave up Eli Stone for this, the Ungingerbread House recipe etc follows in a new post.  It's either this, or I have to cry. (11-28pm)

 

 

 

Place the 100s and 1000s biscuits pink side down and ice along their short edges. Attach 2 wafers to one biscuit and then press the other biscuit onto the wafers to make the four walls.

Wait till it is set.

Ice along the bottom edges of the walls and press onto the cardboard base.

Cut the last wafer in half, making two triangles, ice the long edge and press onto the top of the back and front walls.

Wait till it is set.

Place the Iced Vovo biscuits pink side down and ice along the short edges. Press iced sides onto the triangle wafers and make the roof.

Wait till it is set.

Cut one Liquorice Allsort in half diagonally and use icing to glue it to the roof for a chimney.

Peel off a slice of the other Liquorice Allsort and use icing to glue it on as a front door.

Cut the bottom off each Mint Leaf, so it looks like a Christmas tree, ice the sliced end and then plant the trees in the front of the house.