I recall, when I was still working, it seemed every summer weekend would bring the rain. The weather we're getting today seems more normal than the heat. It is Friday morning as I start writing up this post and I'm looking out a rain streaked window. It's quite cool, just 12C (54F), so it's a good day to be indoors while the much needed moisture falls.
Since the house has cooled off, I've been baking this morning, using up some frozen fruit from the freezer, with a blueberry crumble and some banana bread. The latter was almost a failure, as I realized once I had the batter in the tins and licked the spoon that I'd forgotten to add the sugar! I put the batter back in the bowl, added the sugar, and re-filled the tins. Not sure what I was thinking. I also made up a small jar of refrigerator pickles, with cucumber, red pepper, and red onion. I had thought I'd use Jackie's recipe, but realized I didn't have the necessary spices. Allrecipes.com is a handy site because the search function provides for both inclusions and exclusions.
I've been doing a bit of decluttering around the house this week, and took two bags of clothing and two boxes of kitchen and other items to Value Village on Tuesday. The store provides a coupon for 20% off purchases for donating, but it was also senior's day, and there was another sale - if you purchased a certain dollar amount there was a 30%. The discounts couldn't be combined. I found some real deals: for less than $15, I purchased a long-sleeved blouse, a t-shirt, and a hoodie jacket. In addition, I found two pieces of material, one I plan to use for the backing for pillows, and another is enough to make another top for me. I did find a pattern - unfortunately the pieces I needed were missing. I also found several picture frames in various sizes, plus a large ball of yarn, and I paid less than $30 total for everything I bought (including the clothing).
But I can't say I did as well with grocery shopping. Everything has gone up in price, especially meat. I bought a large package of ground beef to make up a meat loaf and some type of casserole, at $5.49 a pound. Shredded cheese was on sale, buy two packages, get one free so I took advantage of that offer. I use the shredded cheese on pizzas, omelettes, chili bowls, and soup so it never goes to waste.
After my visit to VV, I made a quick stop at a couple of dollar stores to pick up some seasonal items. I've been spending some time every evening in my craft room. The items I make are simple and don't a lot of time (or creativity - thank you to FB videos) but I enjoy making them.This little gnome is one of the items. It is made from a small wooden block, a pair of children's Halloween socks, a piece of black fabric, black yarn, and a small bead for the nose.
The creator in the video had used fun fur, but I had none and really didn't think I'd want more than one gnome. So I used up some old yarn from a UFO. I'd started to crochet a reindeer a few years ago, but when I went to finish it this year I discovered I'd lost the pattern. The black yarn was used for the reindeer's hoof - I simply unravelled it, cut the strands and glued them to the black fabric for the beard. I think it worked well, and I love the curls.The second piece is a small 10 inch wreath form, a few flowers leftover from my cart project, some fabric leaves, a roll of wired ribbon in green for the wreath, and another piece of wired ribbon for hanging it. I'll hang it on the back of the front door - the wreath I made last year from items purchased at Michael's is on the front. Quite a difference in price, it was nearly $40 for the Michael's materials and only $5 or $6 for the dollar store version.
I often listen to podcasts while I putter in the craft room. I've just finished the series, "Finding Cleo", the story of a young First Nations girl who was taken from her mother, along with her siblings, in the Sixties Scoop. The practice of taking children from their parent or parents and placing them up for adoption happened until the early 1980's here in Saskatchewan. My daughter's friend and her brother are two of those children. In Cleo's case, she was taken from a reserve near North Battleford, and adopted in the United States. The reporter who wrote about and told Cleo's story, is also First Nations and she provides a lot of history and background information. The series is a number of episodes, and I found it hard not to go onto the next episode as one ended. If you have any interest in hearing the stories of our First Nations people, this is a good series to listen to.
Earlier this week I finished my latest knitting project. I used up four small balls (50 g) of cotton yarn to make it up. The way I have it pictured, it doesn't show there are actually two handles, so it's much like the plastic grocery bags we get at the store. The pattern was a simple four row repeat so I found it easy to knit while I watched football or other television programs.
I've pulled some more yarn, this time for a crocheting project. I've found a pattern for granny squares that I want to try. I started on this project on Friday evening, and it is one I can work on while I watch television. Good thing, as there are two football games, including our Riders, to be played today. (It's now Saturday).
The sun has come out today and it has warmed up to a respectable 19C (66F). My neighbours to the back are having a birthday party for their two year old in their yard. I'm sure they are happy to have the nicer weather as there are a number of folks visiting. I did go out to check on the tomatoes and peppers but didn't stay out as I'm sure they'll appreciate their privacy.
We've got more rain in the forecast for next week. It is sorely needed so I won't complain. I'm sure I'll find something to keep me occupied. :) On that note, it's time for me to finish this for the week and get a bit of housework done before the first football game starts. Have a great week ahead everyone!