20 May 2015

sew. lavender hanging heart.

 photo LavenderHeart_zpsczto84t5.jpg

This is a lovely wee hand stitching project that can be done very quickly and easily. 

We love all things lavender in our house and use lavender essential oil in quite a few ways. I thought it added an extra touch to the hanging heart but if you don't have any lavender or lavender oil about then you can just leave that aspect out.  It is a perfect addition for a little corner of your home or to give as a gift.

Keep reading to find out how...

 photo IMG_1320_zps6zu3csp3.jpg

You'll need:

// 2 small squares of fabric, thread, needle, stuffing, a ribbon (this is one that I cut from a top after I had bought it...I keep all those wee ribbons for things just like this!!!) and lavender (pieces, oil or both!)

 photo IMG_1301_zpsvgk2pbi0.jpg

// Cut out the shape of a heart...fold a piece of paper in half and cut one half of the heart shape, this means your finished stencil will be completely symmetrical.

 photo IMG_1323_zpsduujwu07.jpg

// Cut around your 2 pieces of fabric.

// Fold the ribbon in half and pin to the right side of one of the hearts with the loop facing down.

 photo IMG_1328_zpsgyhkchbq.jpg

// Place the other heart facing down, so that the 2 pieces are right sides together, and pin.

 photo IMG_1330_zpsmuwf8mwk.jpg

// Starting along one of the long sides, back stitch around the shape of the fabric, leaving about a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Leave a gap of an inch to allow you to turn the heart right side round (as above).

// You'll notice, if you look carefully, that I corrected some of my stitches that I felt weren't in line.  This is completely fine as it is the inner stitching that will give the finished shape. Remember that it's hand stitched so these little quirks will add to the charm!!

// If you run out of thread simply knot and start again.

// Push the fabric through the gap and press.

 photo IMG_1372_zpskjw9dtjj.jpg

// Fill with the stuffing and lavender.  (If you are going to add a few drops of lavender essential oil then drop onto the stuffing. This lets it dry a little before pushing it into the heart and so it doesn't stain the fabric.)

 photo IMG_1334_zpsiffume1h.jpg

// Carefully slip stitch the opening closed.

// Before you knot and cut your ends, check around your seams and if you feel there are any stitches that are gaping or too loose, this is the point to add a little strength by slip stitching these gaps closed.

// When you are happy, knot off your thread, feed your needle back through the heart and snip the thread where it comes out of the fabric. This means you don't have any ends showing and that the stuffing will catch the thread and make the finishing knot a little stronger.

// Now go hang it anywhere you choose!!!

To see who I'm linking up with head here.
To see any other ideas for essential oils head here!

 photo IMG_1357_zpsfzcjktqu.jpg photo IMG_1371_zps599qpe3x.jpg

18 May 2015

diy tea party.

 photo IMG_1237_zpskeizmbqz.jpg

This was one of those times when we said yes. 
I feel often we say no to so many things that when Abi asked for a ladies tea party it was one of those 'yes' moments.

The plan was that we'd keep it simple and she would be as involved in getting it organised as we were.
She wrote her invitations and created a menu.
We did the shopping and helped set up.

A tea set on sale in the charity shop, a lemonade drinks dispenser and a few little bits and bobs scraped together from around the house to make her feel it was fancy.
We set up and then left them to it and we all had a very chilled out morning.

And I realised after that I've no photos of the 'event organiser' but I think she was too busy partying to stop for a snap!

If you're feeling the notion...go do it!!

 photo IMG_1213_zpswfkjm9cp.jpg photo IMG_1200_zpswxtkst6b.jpg photo IMG_1194_zpsabyoxwij.jpg photo teaparty_zpsnoyj6q59.jpg

14 May 2015

10 things I'd like to tell my girls about motherhood.

 photo IMG_9043_zpshj5oux6b.jpg

If you sat down for a cuppa with me today I'd tell you that, probably like you, I have many things fighting for my attention...

...but that motherhood has been weighing heavily on my mind recently.

That there are some things in the midst of my stumbling through motherhood, that I'd like my girls to know what I thought, when they were 9,7 and 4. 

And that I'd start with confession.

That I'm sorry that often I pay attention to the wrong things. I give more thought to the cleaning and household chores than I do to the little dancers performing routines to their audience in our back garden.

That I'm sorry I can't keep my temper when they bicker; the one thing most likely to tip me over the edge.

That I'm striving to listen; really properly listen when they talk. 

That I'm noticing the little moments on the fringes of our discussions and activities and using them to shower affection, cuddles and encouragement.

That motherhood is a constant learning curve for me...that some days I feel like a failure; that I have got it all completely wrong and other days when I feel I've done alright.

That they have made me a better person, that pieces of me have been chipped away for the better. 

That I never realised that I could hold enough love for three little souls...that I would feel like my heart fills and breaks hundreds of times each day.

That I want them to listen to their hearts, trust their instincts and be brave enough to stand out from the crowd. That they are not defined by the people around them.

That I don't want them to grow up too quickly, that despite their feelings of being denied certain things...I want them to have something to look forward to in their next stage. I want them to remain little girls while they still can. That the mirage of the next thing is just that.

Most of all that, despite all the nagging about picking up clothes, practising times tables and cleaning their teeth; that the things I truly value for them are not any of these. 

That the true value is in love, generosity, kindness and courage. 
To be feminine yet strong. 
To be free. 
To have hope.

To my three gorgeous girls...I'll never get it right and you will lament my failures over many a glass of wine I'm sure.  
But I am imperfect, as you are imperfect. 
Know that the only perfect blanket that covers us all is grace.
It is the only true freedom and hope.
And that is the only thing that matters.


13 May 2015

baby gift embroidery hoops.

 photo eb2e2266-ef89-4cd7-b742-a6cf49c36ac4_zpscfbecudy.jpg

A couple of wee hoops I've been working on recently...perfect hanging on a nursery wall! A combination of free stitching and hand embroidery. To check out my love affair with embroidery hoops have a look here!!

 photo 36ac4c4d-3143-456d-bc79-1051683aeb02_zpshbdlq2aj.jpg photo d9a47065-74c8-4888-a6da-2050d7d7856d_zpst3d1qcxo.jpg photo IMG_1126_zpsw4nxmqkw.jpg

11 May 2015

diy. elastic hair ties.

 photo IMG_1157_zpsm6sl1bbo.jpg
There is, what seems at times, like an endless need for hair accessories in our house. I have seen lots of these hair ties using elastic ribbon and loved the idea...so easy kids can do this too.

 photo Elasticribbon_zpsyh9tfnm9.jpg

You will need:

// Elasticated ribbon in the colour of your choice

// Beads...I used these neutral coloured beads stolen from my girls bead box!

// Scissors

 photo basket_zpsd0niwxtx.jpg

I got these ribbons at Shekhinah Palace on Etsy...such a great variety of colours, go check it out!

 photo bead_zpsigtonoes.jpg

// Cut a length of ribbon 9 inches long

// Fold in half and feed the 2 ends through the bead hole ( like above )

 photo elasticband_zpsmzxwmmfc.jpg

// Tie a knot and that's it!

// You can also make these without the bead if you prefer...so easy and look so great.

To see who I'm linking up with head here.


 photo IMG_1131_zpseooxkna4.jpg photo IMG_1154_zpsvnggqssg.jpg

8 May 2015

be inspired.

 photo IMG_0998_zps1hli9zhh.jpg

So, although it's officially spring and we had a hint of warm weather a couple of weeks back, the weather has turned cold and rainy (again) and has had me in the notion for reaching for my stash of cosy blankets.
I have fought the urge and they have remained in their pile.

I like the rhythm of changing some seasonal  things in our home, so that I feel a sense of the newness of what the next season will bring. The blankets will stay where they are and have been replaced by spring flowers and foliage to help me feel the change...despite what the weather brings!

|| When I saw this on Pinterest I thought I could maybe have a couple that doubled as picnic blankets and get another out of them!

|| I love a couple of these hashtags on instagram although have been slow to jump on...I never seem to get a good photo of my flowers!

Lou at Little Greenshed  #natureinthehome
Katy at Apartment Apothecary #StylingTheSeasons

|| I love this lady and her essential oils journey

|| Lastly our eldest is planning her own tea party and we've been enjoying scrolling through the vast number of ideas here!!! Think I feel myself being sucked in by her enthusiasm!

Have a lovely weekend x

7 May 2015

what we say to our children.

 photo MaddieGoKart_zpseia8ekx2.jpg

There are some things in life that are truly mundane...I keep washing down my hob and thinking about how many times I will do this thankless job over the course of my lifetime. Sometimes I find that overwhelmingly depressing and sometimes just simply overwhelming.

The ordinary.
Over and over and over again.

My children, like most others love the repetition of things. New jokes learned told over and over. Raspberries blown on bellies...over and over. Favourite stories and movies...over and over.
Maybe it's ingrained into our core.
Creatures of habit, of routine, of rhythm.

But that's where I have realised I have to be careful. What are the repeats I say or do over and over again to my girls...the words and looks that will sink and settle into their wee souls. 
I want to make them good, and they are not always: we are all human, we speak harsh words, we yell and say things we don't mean to those we hold closest. 
But the mantras...I want to make them encouraging, affirming, empowering.

So I'm re-evaluating my repeat mode, carefully watching my words and actions with each of my girls.

Our littlest's (above) favourite mantra with me at the minute is...say it mummy, say it. Say 'I love you one'.
So we do this little reenactment, often many times a day:

Me:    I love you one.
Her:   I love you two.
Me:    I love you three...
Her    ... I love you ten and a thousand and a million and a star. I love you the most.

It doesn't come more ordinary or more extraordinary than this.
What could be better.

I want my repeat mode to be as good as hers.