Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Spring makeovers and a spot of crochet

Spring is on its way and so everything around here is getting a bit of a makeover.  I've started going to the gym, had my hair done and have booked in for a mani/pedi ready for my forthcoming holiday.   I'm gathering stuff to sell on eBay so that I can treat myself [guilt-free] to a load of pastel-coloured clothes.  I will pick out a new perfume and every inch of my body will be scrubbed, buffed and moisturised so that I'm ready to bare my lily-whites when the sun comes.

Let's not talk about the fact that I've been to the gym eight times over the last fortnight and have still not lost any weight.  I come home with a bright red face, dripping hair (I'm not kidding) and halfway through the class I feel as though I'm going to throw up.  The fact that I haven't lost any weight is like a great big poke in the eye.

I've been to zumba and body combat classes.  They are killers!  Although I have picked up a little tip for reducing aches the next day:  have a glass of milk after you exercise.  Don't know if it's coincidental [probably] but it has totally worked for me. 

Notice anything else around here that's had a bit of a makeover?

Yep, I decided to pimp up my blog so I approached Sarah of essbeevee.  I really like Sarah's blog - she's witty, stylish and verrry cool.  I love her illustrations and did not hesitate to commission her to prettify my blog when I saw that she takes this kind of work on.

What do you think?  Obviously the little illustrated icons in my sidebar will link to proper pages with actual words and photos when I get a chance to update them but so far I am thrilled.  Skippy-happy!  

I ought to just acknowledge Sarah for doing all the technical stuff for me too.  She made sense of the html codes [etc] for me and was very patient with my blonde moments.  


Did someone mention blonde moments?

I've been crocheting egg cosies this week.  I thought I'd followed the pattern to the letter but it finished up just a tiny bit too small.  Ha!  I'm proud of the pom pom though - aren't they fun to make!  You can expect to see more pom poms around here, oh yes you can.

I've had a go at crocheting flowers too.  They were a little bit more successful than my attempts at egg cosies, probably due to the plentiful advice from CupcakeJoJo.  Thanks lovely!  *blows kiss*

Aw.  It's a pretty little thing that's now attached to a crocheted tin cover.

I've started a new book - A Room Swept White by Sophie Hannah - so I'm off to read that shortly.  Before I sign off I thought I'd share a photo of the adorable little Easter pegs I've bought recently.  They will be perfect for my Easter tree. 

Husband:  "What Easter tree?"

Me:  *rolls eyes and saunters off importantly*

I collected loads of twigs from the fields when we were walking the dog over the winter.   They are drying nicely in the barn and then I'm going to spray them with matte white paint.  Stuck in a steel pot weighed down with pebbles they will form our Easter tree.  We haven't had one before but I think they're kind of cute and I like an excuse to decorate.

See those little envelopes in the picture?   I made them at the weekend.  Here's a close-up:

I bought a tiny little wooden template and the paper was free with a craft magazine at Christmas.  They are such a lovely little size and are perfect for the purpose I have in mind.  Which I will tell you about next time.

Oooh, what a cliffhanger.  :-)

Hope you're all having a great week.  Nearly the weekend!



PS Thanks so much for all of the cheery comments that you've been leaving.  I love reading them (although I received my first spam comment the other day which I promptly deleted!) and  I do like to respond to everyone.  Thing is, I work full-time and the evenings seem to fly by.  Some of you are no-reply bloggers - if you pop your email address on your profile page it will let your blog friends respond via your comments.  This is much quicker for me, certainly, and means that I can catch up from my phone when I'm waiting in the post office queue (or whatever).  Hope I'm not being bossy... 

Instructions on how to do this are here kindly provide by the Scrap Shoppe.  Cuckoo shared them a while ago.


  1. Oooo, missus. What a lovely new look to your blog- such cute illustrations!

    Tee hee- your little egg cosy is sweet (was that my pattern?- if so, I'm sorry it didn't work for you. Maybe make another increase on row 7 to take you up to 30 stitches??!)

    Enjoy the rest of your week!

  2. Love your teeny,tiny egg cosy,I've a thing for pom poms

  3. Your new blog looks great - really fresh and new like spring!! I love making pom poms and have a couple of little gizmos for it so you don't have to fiddle making concentric circles. Hope I don't get spam; I took the verification thing off my blog because it was driving me mad! Have a lovely week.

  4. Love the crochet prettyness! xx

  5. Sounds like you've been very busy! I go to body combat and it does kill- I never want to go but then I come out & feel great. Also there is truth in the milk theory I watched something on TV recently- they tested it out on a rugby team and it really does help muscles recover! x

  6. Woooo - what a little feast of loveliness your blog is - I have icon envy, big time!
    There's only one thing for it - give up going to the gym if it's not working and instead spend all that newly-freed-up time crocheting (that must burn calories, surely? Poss not as many as an hour's spinning class, but so much less sweaty).

  7. PS - I think the thing with the milk is to do with a build-up of lactic acid in your muscles after exercise and milk having lactose in it, which gets rid of the lactic acid? And that's as much of A level biology as I can remember!

  8. Love your makeover.I think it suits you.
    The egg cosy is adorable with it's pompom it!
    Oh yes..spam.Doesn't make any sense at all..a load of double dutch.Where does it all come from,that's what I want to know? :)

  9. Love the new look blog. Fab illustrations. Your pegs are really sweet. An Easter tree is a must x

  10. Wow I love the new look blog - its gorgeous!!

    Don't forget that you are probably gaining muscle with all the exercise and that weighs more than fat.

    I've been dieting since new year and have only lost 7lb, so I feel your pain!!


    S x

  11. It must be Project Blog Makeover time, as i just had a makeover too!!!
    Love yours, so bright and clan and happy looking!!!

  12. Ooohhh, where do I start !!! I absoloutely love the new blog makeover, it looks so professional, your little egg "hat" is adorable, i love how you've drawn him a face, so funny. I love the crochet flower and the button tin !!!!
    I can't wait to see your Easter tree, the bird peg is lovely. The envelopes are very pretty and I look forward to seeing what you are going to do with them.
    I use to love Zumba but can't do it at the moment, I've hurt my shoulder. Dn't forget muscle weighs heavier than fat :-) xxxx

  13. I looooove your new look! When I saw it, I was just so entranced. It is beautiful, so cute and sweet and so like you, in an illustration kind of way. It looks amazing.
    Do you need to lose weight? You look ace to me. I could do with some exercise. I am a chnky monkey at the mo!
    Egg cosy and flowers are ridiculously cute. I always love it when I see y new blog post by you. Lovely!

  14. Your blog is looking gorgeous sweetie :) you have to have an Easter tree, I have one every year and they are so cute! i just adore your little easter peg, where did you get if from? Keep up the good work at the gym even if it seems like no weight loss you are getting fitter to live longer! ;)

    Bee happy x
    Have a delicious day!

  15. Your new blog look is lovely! Your crochet flower is so the colours :)
    Looking forward to seeing your Easter tree and what you end up doing with the pretty envelopes.

  16. Love the new look of your blog!

    The pastel coloured clothes you mentioned sound lovely : )

    Gemma x

  17. Your new blog look is gorgeous. I love it!
    I like your egg hat too :-)
    Now, I hate to tell you this, but the role exercise plays in weight loss is vastly overstated. For most of us between 70% and 90% of weight loss will be down to diet and NOT exercise. I'm not saying that the exercise won't change your body shape, but it will not necessarily make you lose weight. I'm not saying you shouldn't exercise... think of all the other benefits! I do loads of exercise, but whenever I want to lose weight I cut down on carbs, trying to have at least one carb free meal a day and no processed sugar at all. It's tough, but it works!

  18. I'm Squeeeeeaaaaling! Oh Oh Oh!! That's just how I imagine you but in drawing form. Oh how gorgeous your blog is. I don't like mine any more now. I want yours!!!!!!

    That cosy is just too funny! It's an egg hat.

    A wooden template? I need to see it, I think it's what I have been looking for.

    Mr C has a protein shake after working out to ease the aches. Victoria is right though, it's limited calories that shift the weight. Saw it on Horizon or some other program like that last week.

    x x x

  19. aw, the egg cosy is too cute!

  20. Oh my God your blog looks amazing! Bet your so pleased with it, I definitely would be!
    The egg cozy and Easter peggs are so cute :)
    & hope the gym starts working out for you soon, if it makes you feel better, when I used to go to the gym I put on almost half a stone ha! Oops..

  21. Oh wow wow wow Wowww! Lovvving the new blog layout, it's gorgeous! Just like you!
    I'm feeling the need for a make-over at the moment. I need to lose the half stone I've put on over the last couple of months.. say's me who just finished off a bowl of apple crumble and custard! (oops!)
    Don't worry about not losing any weight yet.. it takes a while for your body to respond to increased exercise and if you suddenly start doing loadsss of extra exercise, you can retain quite a bit of water. Where are going on hols?!
    Haha love the tea cosy, maybe your like me and crochet your stitches really tightly as well...?

    Ashley xxx

  22. Oooooh Nicki!!! How flip, flapping exciting! Your makeover is simply divine darh-ling, mwah, mwah! I love it. It's so beautiful :) I'm with Emily....kick the gym & fit in more crochet time! Am looking forward to seeing your Easter tree...I did one for the first time last year and loved it. It helps to really make more of the seasons, notice them all and acknowledge them. And as for loosing weight....flip, flap me Nicki!! You're gorgeous as you are....wish I had your figure!! Lovely, lovely, lovely!!!

    Hugs, Jo x x x

  23. hi, love the new blog look brilliant ,kind of reminds me of the bewitched opening titles you know the one with the twitchy nose , gotta love zumba its great and the milk thing yes saw that on tv cherry healy did a documentry about everyday foods .

  24. Gorgeous cute illustrations and I love your Tilda nests, can't wait to see the tree.
    Have a sweet day!

  25. I love the new look and also the picture of the egg with the 'hat'!

  26. The art work on your blog is bloomin lovely!!

    Your crochet glower looks great, I like the addition if the leaves :)

  27. I love your new blog! Very fresh and pretty for spring! I wish I had your energy to get to the gym on top of everything else!

    I completely understand your busyness as I work all week too and barely find time to write blogs let alone read them!

    I love the crocheted flower! It looks perfect for a first attempt! Oooo I really want to know what the envelopes are for! xxx

  28. Ha ha, I'm going to add to your misery of having 28 comments to reply to by adding my own! (Seriously, please don't worry about replying as I am crap at it and expect the same from others)

    But! i love the new layout, sooo pretty. We all want to know where you're going on hols (sorry if you already said and I missed it).

    I too, want to know how to make those envelopes. Got tonnes of craft papers which would be perfect for that and may motivate me to write some old fashioned letters like I used to.

    Like the Easter Tree conversation :) Looking forward to seeing that.

  29. Hello there

    Loving the new blog format, have complete blog envy. Feels just lovely to read
    Nelly xxx

  30. As my lovely sister-in-law pointed out one day, our conversation went - oh you weigh less than me, really??? mind you I go to the gym and muscle is heavier than fat!!! - B.I.T.C.H is all I can say, so anyway what I'm trying to say 'nicely' is that you are toning those gorgeous muscles. Well done you.

    Loving your new looking blog, very jealous, lotsa love x x x

  31. The blog makeover looks great!

    Well done for your gym visits... I dug out the trainers yesterday and I'm planning a run tomorrow evening!

    Victoria x

  32. I haven't been in to look at your blog recently, blooming computer broke and I was offline for 5 weeks.... So i've only just seen your "new look". I love it, i thought it was lovely before but now it's super lovely, beautiful drawings. Beautiful envelopes... much to pretty to give away that's for sure. Love Katie xx

  33. I love the thought of an easter tree! How did it turn out in the end? Keep up with the gorgous blog! :-)