Corona Diaries – Days 34 & 35

Thursday 23rd and Friday 24th April 2020

I’ve just spent the last two days working and helping Faye with home school followed by a bit of stitching or crochet in the evening and some reading, which means I don’t have anything much to share with you over here that you haven’t already seen.

I’m going to take a little break from the diaries now and return to blogging when I have something to share. It may be in a few days or weeks!

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This is me

I hope you have enjoyed a little of what I have shared in the last 35 days. Thanks for reading.

Stay safe xx

Corona Diaries – Day 33

Wednesday 22nd April 2020

We had a tough day. Faye got a bit overwhelmed with school work when she discovered she’d missed quite a few things this week and was now behind. I decided in the end to just get her to spend the afternoon on her art project while I went through all her emails to work out what she still needed to get done and where she had gone wrong. She’s missed a few because they were being sent by different teachers to her usual ones and also lots of kids keep ‘replying to all’ on teacher emails so she hadn’t seen the original one with the work on it and thought that the others were from group chats. Some of the departments are giving work for the week on different days to normal and others are doing it daily. Some want the work sending back in. Others want her to mark her own. To be honest, it took me a while to sift through it all myself. It’s such a stressful time for the teachers too and they are just working it out as they go as well, so nobody’s fault – just another pandemic thing, I suppose.

Her art project was to make ‘paints’ using tea and coffee and then draw a still life from the kitchen. Rob helped her mix up various teas in the kitchen and she had a lot of fun doing it.

I joined her at lunch time and was interested to see what would happen on fabric so I found an old scrap of organic cotton and had a little play.

She finished up around 3pm and had visibly calmed down by then. At 5pm it was time for her online trumpet lesson but I couldn’t get the microphone to work on my laptop! I faffed around for half an hour but we gave up and rearranged for tomorrow. I think I have got it working now and I went through every setting on my laptop. Fingers crossed!

Before dinner, I went into the garden to water the seeds, dahlias, potatoes and strawberries. There is so much more I want to plant but I can’t get any compost. Our own compost isn’t quite up to pots. It’s fine for mulching around plants though. I decided to have a go at sieving it and see if I could get anything useable for seeds…

 

At this time of year, the bins always contain more brown than green waste
This is the contents from nearest the hedge and is the most broken down and good for mulching
I sieved the compost into the bucket to remove any big pieces, eg twigs, clumps of hay etc (I put the large pieces back into the second compost bin).
This was the result. I shall try using it and see what happens!

I’m afraid I don’t have any pretty project pictures to share today as there wasn’t time for any and I was just too exhausted this evening to do anything more than one round on my crochet blanket.

Tomorrow is a new day! xx

Corona Diaries – Day 32

Tuesday 21st April 2020

Another beautiful day, although I was working at my computer through most of it. I got up early and did some more on my cross stitch. I’m really enjoying working on it. It’s the project I can’t wait to pick up when I have a spare moment.

I finished reading Wonder tonight and thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m going to start Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams next. I’m still chipping away at Clash of Kings too. I love reading so much!

In other news, the spinach in the polytunnel has started growing…

I’m doing well on my second sock for April but conscious of the fact there are now only nine days left in the month and it seems unlikely I’ll get them finished, but we shall see!

I also wanted to share how much my Faye loves to draw. She spent most of her Easter holidays drawing and now has a huge display of Stranger Things pictures…

I’ve signed up to Bluprint (previously Craftsy) so that we can take some drawing classes together. There are so many good ones, we can’t wait to try them out. There are also classes in loads of other things that I’m interested in, so I hope I’ll find it a really useful and interesting source of information.

Corona Diaries – Day 31

Monday 20th April 2020

Back to reality today; well, our new reality of home work and school. It was a bit of a shock to the system after a week of doing what I want only to find myself in the same space having to do things I don’t want!

I always feel better once I’ve written some plans down on paper and I had a good online catch up with my work friends too.

At lunch time, I baked chocolate brownies. The milkman had brought us eggs this morning so I could finally do some baking. I had a sort of disaster though and this doesn’t make me look very intelligent… but if you understand that I was under a time limit (lunch hour) it might explain why I was such an idiot…

I had the idea to make mini Creme egg brownies as I’d seen on various pictures (most likely on Pinterest or Instagran) but I never took the time to look up how exactly they did this…

So yes, they all sank to the bottom and did not look pretty. Taste-wise, they are delicious and you get these chewy surprise chunks… Okay, not my finest baking moment, but I like to keep things real over here.

I also found out those slate markers I mentioned a while back. I only had four so had to be selective with my labels. I would love to get some more the same once the world is back to normal again.

I did do some more cross stitch this evening whilst we watched our family movie. Tonight, we chose Dumplin’ on Netflix and all really enjoyed it.

Hope you survived another Monday xx

Corona Diaries – Day 30

Sunday 19th April 2020

I spent quite a bit of time gardening today. It’s not particularly photo-worthy as it was mostly weeding but I enjoyed myself. Faye was outside too cleaning out the rabbit hutches and getting distracted by Ginny.

Whilst weeding the strawberry bed, I found the first little strawberry growing!

In the polytunnel, the first few shoots on the rocket are poking through. No sign of spinach or basil yet.

Rob prepared a roast pork dinner while we were out in the garden.

Late in the afternoon, we decided to watch some movies and cuddle up. I did some more cross stitching as well.

Other than that, it wasn’t a particularly exciting day but contented nonetheless.

 

 

Corona Diaries – Day 29

Saturday 18th April 2020

We woke up to rain this morning, so I worked some more on my crochet blanket with my coffee and breakfast and couldn’t decide what I wanted to do with the day.

Eventually, I decided to just spend some time in my craft room looking through things to see if I came up with anything. I sorted through my fabric fat quarters stash…

And leafed through all my old copies of Mollie Makes choosing things I would really like to make one day…

It was a pleasant way to spend a few hours. Almost like window shopping! That’s another positive thing from spending all this time at home. I’m getting the chance to look through what I already have which I never seem to have time for in normal life. There are lots of things I would like to do but either can’t because it would break the guidelines, or I don’t have the supplies. But I have loads of things right here already that I have never gotten around to. I quite like the idea that after all of this, I will have completed lots of projects that I’d either started or forgotten I’d got the supplies for, but I doubt any stretch of time at home would be long enough for that!

Today, I decided to pick up another wip rather than start something new. I don’t feel I have the brain space for scary sewing machine projects at the moment, but I really fancied doing some stitching, so I got out the cross stitch I started on the plane to Florida last year… that is the one and only time I worked on it. I found it difficult to cross stitch on the plane and read a book instead. This is how far I got then…

It’s a design of the Disney castle. I bought the pattern as a pdf on Etsy. I’ll have a look back as to who I bought it from. I didn’t do much; in fact I had a rather lazy afternoon and evening, but that’s nice to do some days, isn’t it?

Rob made a lovely chicken and mushroom pie for dinner, but I was too busy scoffing it to get a photo. Trust me, it was delicious.

 

Corona Diaries – Day 28

Friday 17th April 2020

After yesterday’s sloth-like mood, I’ve been much more productive today! Faye and I gave her trumpet a bath. This has to be done every few months, so we try to reserve it for the school holidays. We have special little cleaning brushes that make it pretty easy and Faye knows how to add the sliding grease and valve oil to put it all back together again. I always have to watch a YouTube tutorial before we take it apart!

We cleaned our bedrooms and I finished Ferdinand Fox (kit by House of Zandra). He doesn’t look quite right due to my error. His hat has to sit over his ears but I still think he looks rather handsome and very much like Sherlock Holmes. It felt good to complete a project, especially one that has been sitting in waiting for a while.

We braved Tesco this afternoon. I sat in the car while Rob went in. Sadly there were no eggs today so I still can’t bake my chocolate brownies. He did manage to get most other things though. We have ordered eggs from the milkman but he didn’t bring any last week. Fingers crossed he’s able to get some this week. We shall see!

In other news, I got my results back for my Microsoft Excel test and I passed. Yay! I got 83.5 out of 88 marks, so I’m really pleased with that. I’m moving onto Microsoft Word next.

I’ve been reading ‘Clash of Kings’ over the last few weeks. I decided as it’s not a portable book to read a chapter with my coffee each morning. I’m about 500 pages in now and I am enjoying it but some of the story drags in parts. I think having watched the series on TV first makes reading it a bit harder as I know what will happen. I know the books are different to the TV series. I really want to persevere because I want to see how different the ending will be when he finally publishes the last book.

I’m doing well on my April socks. I have finished the first sock and cast on for the second. I’m just doing a few rows each day at the moment.

I’m soldiering on with my Elton cardigan. I’ve set myself a target to knit at least one stripe a day (which is 4 rows). I tried it on through one sleeve and was amazed to see how much it had grown, so this has spurred me on a bit. I shall resist a new cast on for now although there is no harm in thinking about it and squishing some yarn!

Hope you have a nice evening. We started watching the ITV show ‘Quiz’ last night about the man who cheated on ‘Who wants to be a millionaire?’. I’m really enjoying it so far and found it fascinating what went on. It made me feel really naive in some ways to think that those syndicates for organised cheating were really going on. I’m looking forward to watching the rest of the episodes. I thought I’d remembered watching it originally but my mum told me it hadn’t actually been shown. I looked it up and it seems only a programme about the scandal had been aired.

Corona Diaries – Day 27

Thursday 16th April 2020

I started the day with some more crochet on my granny square blanket. I’m getting a little bit bored with the endless rows of my Elton cardigan now. I’m tempted to cast on something new to add a bit of excitement into my life!

Rob had a really busy day in the garden painting up some of the garden furniture which was perfect because I just wasn’t feeling it today. I’ve been very sloth-like. I was all set up to bake chocolate brownies until I realised we didn’t have enough eggs. We’re due another food shop… I think we might have to go tomorrow.

The path he jet washed yesterday is looking much better! Just the rest of the patio to go now!

I did manage to get on with Ferdinand Fox some more today. I’m not too far off finishing him – just his cap and waistcoat to go. As I was stitching up the tail, I realised I had made a mistake. I’ve done his face wrong! I thought there was an extra part for a prism shaped tail (I’m sure you can see why from the shapes in the picture below) but that was in fact his face gusset! It’s not the end of the world. His face still looks really foxy, it will just mean that his hat covers his ears.

The rhubarb is growing well in the garden. I should be able to make a crumble soon! Hope you had a good day xx

Corona Diaries – Day 26

Wednesday 15th April 2020

I feel like I’m losing my routine already during this Easter holiday. I’m going to bed after midnight and then not getting up until 8am. I suppose it’s allowed.

I’m still working on my Elton cardigan and have done quite a lot since Saturday. I’m now at 20 stripes on the body, so I have 10 more to go. The yellow stitch marker is where I started on Saturday. I’m pleased with my progress.

 

Faye and I did some more crafts today. She continued with her sequin art for a while and then did some drawing. She loves drawing so much and the pencils we bought her for Easter have barely been put away since Sunday.

 

I started Ferdinand Fox – a kit from House of Zandra that I picked up at the NEC Creative Craft show last year.

 

I’ve also started a new book: ‘Wonder’ by RJ Palacio (also a lovely film).

 

Rob started on the pressure washing today. It’s the first time in years that he has done it and not me. It was fun to see him covered in mud rather than me!

 

 

Tonight we finished watching series 2 of ‘Lost in Space’. We really enjoyed it. It says series 3 will be out in 2021 so we have a long time to wait!

Rob and I also finished watching ‘Liar’ on ITV. There was a good twist at the end!

Corona Diaries – Day 25

Tuesday 14th April 2020

We had a really craft-focused day. Faye and I started by doing some hama beads. We made little hanging Easter eggs for our tree.

 

Faye then started work on her sequin art wolf and I baked scones.

 

Rob suggested we go out for another walk. I was feeling a bit anxious today and didn’t really enjoy it. There seemed to be lots of other people out on a walk at the same time. I think I’m happier in the garden, although I did appreciate the pink blossom.

 

I worked on my granny square crochet blanket today. I was inspired by my Cath Kidston ironing board cover for the colours in this.

 

This evening, we enjoyed a cream tea and continued watching ‘Lost in Space’ and then later ‘Liar’.