Sunday, 31 March 2013

The Bowser Suit

It was my daughter's 5th birthday last week and she requested a Super Mario party. She wanted to dress up as Mario, which was simple, and we bought an outfit for her. She wanted daddy to dress up as Bowser for the party. Not so simple. Daddy agreed, and spent the best part of 6 weeks making his outfit from scratch. When he got to the body, hands and feet, my skills as seamstress were put to the test as I not only made all the patterns for the pieces, I also taught daddy how to help with the sewing. After 3 weeks of doing a bit at a time, and with a couple of hours to spare before the party started we finished it. Here is the result.

Sorry the picture is taken in the middle of a messy room, so the costume does not stand out so much, but all the pictures at the party had other people's children in them and I didn't want to post them on here without consent.

Monday, 18 March 2013

Blackberry pudding

I made a pie for dinner yesterday, but after egg washing the crust, I couldn't throw the rest of the beaten egg away. I decided to try the traditional sponge recipe of weighing the egg and adding equal weights of SR flour, caster sugar and margarine. The small amount of mixture was just enough to spread over the base of my 2lb loaf tin to make a small rectangular cake.
I had some blackberries on hand, which I heated up in a pan with a few spoonfuls of sugar.
Once the blackberries were sticky and the sugar had all melted I poured them (and the syrup that was formed) into the oiled loaf tin and put the cake mix on top.
I baked it for about 20 minutes at 180c and then tipped it out while it was still hot on to a plate to cool a little.
It was delicious with vanilla ice cream.

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Story dice

I have been busy with work, I forgot how draining it is to be in that routine. When you add to that the emotional drain of working with young children all day, I have been pretty tired! I am loving it, though, and the children are giving me even more ideas of things to make - I just need some time to actually do it.

I love the idea of story dice. In fact, I bought some of Rory's Story Cubes in Waterstones a few weeks ago, but soon realised that my children needed slightly different pictures to get their minds working. How hard could it be to make my own? Not hard at all, as it turned out. The tricky part is working out the 54 images you want on the dice. Luckily, I had two willing assistants shouting random words at me until I had enough to work with.

I bought some blank dice online, with indented faces, so the pictures were protected. I googled various images with the phrase "free ............. vector art" which generally brings up silhouette images which are perfect for this. I saved the free images and in photoshop I made each one just over 1cm square to fit on a die face, then printed them, cut them out and stuck them on the blank dice. I guess I could have drawn each image and stuck it on, which would have been more personal, but as the title of my blog shows, I do "cheat" occasionally!