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Sunday, 31 May 2015

Un Mot, des Titres - Session 32: Peau d'Âne

Ce mois-ci Calypso nous avait donné le mot "Peau" pour le challenge de lecture. J'ai donc voulu essayer de changer mon opinion (désastreuse) de Maupassant en re-essayant de lire "Peau de Chagrin". J'ai lamentablement échoué et ai de nouveau abandonné ce livre avant la fin du premier chapître. Je n'y arrive décidement pas.

Mais du coup il me restait très peu de temps (24h) pour trouver et lire un autre livre. L'inspiration m'est venue grâce à mes petits loups qui lisent "Le Petit Chaperon Rouge" en ce moment. J'ai donc pensé à relire un conte de Perrault:

Peau d'Âne
 J'ai reçu ce livre il y a fort longtemps, c'est un coffret de 4 gros livres de contes et poésie. J'aime les lire et les relire.
Les illustrations sont superbes, ce sont des gravures de Doré, Staal et Bertolli. Tout le monde (ou presque) connait l'histoire de cette magnifique princesse dont la mère meurt en faisant promettre à son mari de ne se remarier qu'avec une femme de beauté supérieure à la sienne. Le roi finit par décider que seule sa fille est digne de se marier avec lui. La princesse est horrifiée à cette idée et demande de l'aide à sa marraine la bonne fée. Après plusieurs tentatives pour faire échouer le plan du roi, finalement la princesse en vient à s'enfuir déguisée sous une peau d'âne. Elle devient très sale et pauvre, mais parvient à se faire embaucher dans une ferme pour aider à toutes les besognes ingrates.
Finalement un prince va la remarquer, tomber amoureux d'elle, et après quelques petites péripéties, vous vous en doutez, nous avons une "happy end". Elle se marie avec le prince et revoit même son père. Par contre l'histoire ne nous dit pas si le roi va finir par se trouver une autre femme.
J'aime beaucoup les contes de Perrault ainsi que les suivants dans ce livre (ceux de Mme de Beaumont par exemple), les versions originales sont un peu plus "crues" que les versions édulcorées que l'on trouve dans les livres pour enfants, mais je les trouve aussi plus simples et allant droit au but.

Et puis mon partage aujourd'hui c'était surtout pour les gravures que je trouve simplement superbes.

Bon mois de juin à tous et rdv dans un mois et demi avec le mot "nous"!

Saturday, 30 May 2015

The SC & more n°276: It's tea time!

This week Isabelle gave us the theme "goûter", this french four o'clock meal that even adult cannot do without ;)

Today I went to a market in town, the Stoffmarkt Holland. A market where fabrics and sewing material are sold. It comes twice a year to Dresden and it is crazy. Last time I went with husband, children and parents-in-law. It was stressful. So this time I went by myself. In the meantime A. made a cake with the children:
 A sort of sweet pizza dough topped with apple pieces and dough crumbs. It looks and smells delicious!

My part of the challenge was in crochet:
 N. and T. are really happy to get new biscuits for their play-kitchen. It was fun to invent them and work without pattern. I really starting to get the hang of some techniques (such as when and why use a BL Only stitch). That's makes it really interesting to crochet.
A picture for the museum

Bon appétit to all: old & young human-beings and dolls ;)

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Mealtimes and organisation

Been busy last night and today. My children are 2,5 and almost 4yo and they are starting to dislike wearing bibs at meal times. Even the ones my mother made that look more like napkings with an elastic band do not satisfy them entirely.
We also don't have that many "grown-up" napkins, so I decided to make a few. I have enough fabric for that!
I decided to make them a little over-sized to be able to bind them around the children's necks: 50 x 50 cm.
I now have SIX more napkins.
Four with Winnie the Pooh
Two with garden themed motives
 Now sewing new napkins is fine, but there is one thing that is currently driving me mad and it was high time I did something about it: the bibs lying around on the ground because somehow they can never be put properly on the chair or the table.

So in addition to the napkins, I made little pouches:
I will make two more but without Winnie the Pooh since they will be for my husband and I  ;)

Material used: denim fabric, cotton fabric, machine thread and KAM press-studs. It would have gone quite quickly without my little ones running around, switching off my machine every now and then, fighting, asking for things etc... but on the whole I'd say it was still a good work for the day. I will try to finish my task tomorrow. If they are worth it, I'll even show them to you!

Have a lovely evening!

Monday, 25 May 2015

The SC & more n°275: Le Jeu

This week's theme for the crochet challenge is: playing and Vivyane is our host. It took me only a little while to decide on what to make, but the actually making took a little longer. N. has been ill last week, this weekend is a long weekend in Germany, I've been doing some tidying and sorting out stuff ... plus I decided to take my time and not rush.

I decided to go for the famous "Tic, tac, toe" game. It will be a challenge to teach it to T.(2,5yo) and N. (almost 4yo), but I'll try. My idea was also to add a new game to our range of traveling toys.

I began with a small pouch/bag:
 Then I made the tokens. Five of two different sorts. I was going to make a set of 5 flowers and a set of 5 cabbages (from L'Empreinte de l'Ange's tutorial), but T. asked for rabbits instead. Since I had half of the flowers ready, I did not make rabbits+cabbages, but flowers+rabbits. I'll find another occasion to make cabbages ;)
 On the pictures above you can see the tokens before and after steam-blocking. I did not make the flowers too flat as I wanted them to keep a little bit of their curled aspect.

And finally I made the "board" with a small piece of cotton fabric, marking the lines with a simple red seam.
 Now I "just" need to teach my children to play it and we will take it with us on our next trip to France to show it off and play with the cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents ;)

My favourite part of that toy is the bag. The top ruffle took ages to make but I love it!! I am quite proud that it turned out as I wanted it to!

Oh and I almost forgot to mention that I did not follow a pattern for anything. The rabbits are inspired from a tutorial posted online, but I could not find it again and I made some modifications anyway.

Now you can go to the Museum to see the others' creations

PS: Mon Tricotier has also made a tic-tac-toe game, I love the colours she used!

Friday, 22 May 2015

Garden in town

At the moment we still live in town, in a flat, but one day we will have our dream home. The question is just when ;)

In the meantime we are actually lucky enough to have two balconies. We've been three and a half years in that flat, and every year I have been gardening a little more. I used to believe that I could not take care of plants. My inside plants seem happy enough and they are surviving, my outside plants also give me great joy.

In our Advent Calendar we had gotten flower bulbs. I did plant them in the big balcony planter that my father-in-law made for us a good five years ago. It is sturdy and practical. Anyway, the whole 24 bulbs did grow and bloom. It was a lovely sight on the balcony!
And this year I made a pallet vertical garden (inspiration on Pinterest of course!) - I was just really hoping it wouldn't end up being a "Pinterest Fail" ;)
First step: we acquired a pallet.

Then we shopped for: soil, plants and a special gardening fabric (we got on that is used for play sand-boxes). And we got on with our work. My oldest is in the Kindergarten, but I still have T. to help me :)
 Afterwards we started filling it. I had bought two bags of 40L of soil, but that wasn't enough! We did need another 40L bag. I did leave the pallet lying for a couple of days to give the plants some time to "settle" down, but it was highly unpractical as I use this balcony for my laundry and had too little space left, so I did bring it up with my husband's help.
 On the same day, T. and I did fill a few pots and seeded some radish, carrots and flowers.
 And now the following pictures are what our little balcony garden looks like:
Basil, potato plants and a little rose plant (this one survived both winter AND a bad insect infestation)
Our carrots and flowers growing slowly. I need to space the carrots now.
My mother-in-law brought us a tomato plant
Forest strawberries
We had our first harvest of radishes yesterday. There are many more to come.

The pallet garden now has a few more flowers and I got moss from my mother-in-law's garden to prevent the soil from falling out too easily.

So even in the middle of town, we can enjoy a little bit of gardening, self-grown veg and pretty flowers. My son, T., is particularly happy. He loves being outdoor and taking care of plants!

 Edit at 18h: here are our newest additions!

Rainpipes flowerpots with strawberry plants ^^

Thursday, 21 May 2015

One of my Xmas presents...

I am extremely good at one thing: leave things for later that would just require a few minutes of my time!
This is a perfect exemple. For Christmas, my mother-in-law made me a decoration wreath for my DIY-Sewing corner:
 I love it, she did use a lot of old sewing stuff from her box, some of the stuff she actually got from her own mother. On some labels you can see cheap prices still in Deutsche Mark!
MY job was just to hammer a nail into the wall and to hang it. Watch in hand, it took me one minute and 30 seconds: 30 seconds to get the hammer and nail, 5 seconds to decide where the nail would go, 20 seconds to hammer, 5 seconds to put the wreath up, 30 seconds to put the hammer and nail box away again.
So I asked myself again, why did I need to wait so long?
Ah well, at least it is done now, and who knows? Maybe I will finally learn to do things as they come.
Look at those lovely wooden buttons!
Wishing you a good day :)