Friday, 21 April 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #245 The Packing Mountain

Taking more than just 1 bag! (which isn't mine...)
When staying with my friend in Devon I can pack pretty fast as I know what to take. In theory Norfolk should be similar, with more clothes etc. In practice I'm taking a bit more, including my laptop, so have to factor in where to put everything in my car. Bear in mind I sleep like Princess and the Pea (several duvets to make any bed soft), so that's most of the back seat taken. . Going away for a week is somehow different to 5 days! I'm loading what I can today, and the rest tomorrow. Getting there slowly.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #244 Final preparations!

I've been doing some online blog work today in order to catch up before I go on holiday this Saturday. I'm really excited about seeing my friend in Norfolk - because I'll be away a week I am taking my laptop with me so I can do a bit of blog work - that way you can hear all about my adventures as they happen! My Etsy store is now closed until I'm back. I will be taking craft with me though!

An unusual housegift...
Nearly time to get a few groceries - nothing for me exactly. My friend is a laundry queen, she adores doing laundry, has enough for well over 200 washes, has 3 different conditioners on the go at the same time... you get the picture. My present for her is going to be...some laundry conditioner! Her love of laundry is a long standing joke between us, so she'll fully appreciate it. 

After groceries that's mostly me done for the day, bar the usual gaming and anime. Tomorrow I'll be packing (although quite a lot can't be packed until the last minute), and resting up for the big drive on Saturday! Just 2 more sleeps to go...



Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #243 I'm here!

Super cute owls! Think they are little owls (a type of owl which is super tiny)
Sorry if I forgot to mention last time that I was having my mega strong meds this weekend (the one just gone) - felt rough for a day longer than expected, but today I'm slowly feeling better and doing more than gaming! Which has been fun. I've got through about 20 games (I wish I was joking), and found 3 (though mostly 2) that I'm sticking with which don't have evil glitches or require you to be a paying player just to get through the levels. That and some had terrible game play. 

So no craft yet, but I'm planning what I'm taking for my holiday in Norfolk (starts on Saturday!), and hope to do a bit later on while listening to an audiobook. 

For those of you in the UK and any other country that has just had a national holiday I hope you had a lovely break, that if you did work it was a bit enjoyable, and it's just 3.5 days until the weekend-woohoo! 

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #242 Monday's craft session!

The start of a blanket
Happy Wednesday! Yesterday I was a bit more tired than I'd expected from being with my friend on Monday, so the promised post is just 1 day later than planned. As ever it was wonderful catching up with my friend, which included a random and amusing incident when she met someone famous in a local shop. Not saying who or where for privacy reasons, but trust me it was quite funny and sweet. As you can see from the top picture I got a bit of crochet done! Originally I was going to do just 1 row of the purple colour, but I hadn't realised that it had such large areas of white, so with my friend's advice decided on 2 rows which looks heaps better. 

I have a special craft ruler to do these measurements!
I spent most of the morning drawing 1/4 inch sewing lines on these yet to be handsewn bookmarks: I love this part of the bookmark process, and it made sense to draw the lines while I was at a table and needed something simple (otherwise I muck up whatever I'm working on because we chat while we craft). 
Bookmarks already finished compared with unfinshed one.
Hopefully I'll be getting on with these very soon, & some will appear on my Etsy shop soon too!

Today is involving a bit of blog work, then some writing and lots of reading! Tomorrow I hope to craft in the morning ^o^ 
I love ginger and white cats! These may be kittens...

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Nayu's Crafts Time #241 Back from my travels

A sign of summer for some, or an all year round treat if you're like me. My ice cream looked a bit like this, sadly without a waffle cone & with an extra scoop on top!
Hi all! I'm back from my semi-unplanned trip to Devon. I had fun catching up with my friend, watching dvds, doing an insane amount of gaming, and very little craft, just a bit of crochet which I haven't taken a photo of yet. I was on holiday!

There are English versions of these incredible Disney life simulation games!

 I took advantage of the free time to play the Disney series Disney Magic Castle: My Happy Life 1 & 2 (The English version has a different title, I think, than the Japanese one). I'll be chatting more about them on my other blog, Nayu's Reading Corner soon. The week away was filled with sunshine after a bit of torrential rain on the drive down. I took a trip to the chocolate shop which I'd visited last time, and in that area was able to have bubblegum ice cream along with blackcurrant and clotted cream ice cream. There was only just enough of the bubblegum for a scoop, but I had it! 


I'm still recovering from the trip, as I wasn't able to rest all day on Friday: I'd (probably stupidly) agreed earlier in the week to have my 24 hour heart monitor fitted Friday morning, Discovered the tiny monitor is worth £2500 - will be glad when it's returned! Thankfully as my family work in the same hospital building they are returning it for me (the clinic isn't open on a Saturday when it should be returned but there's a special drop off box to put it in) so I didn't have to go there yesterday, but I did have to get groceries. Spent the rest of the day gaming and watching dvds while I rested. Managing a bit of blogging and other online stuff today, but as I'm out all day tomorrow with a friend, so will rest the remainder of today plus on Tuesday. 

My family saw lot of her back while I was away!
Predictably my cat was extremely grumpy most of the time I was away, not understand why I was away so soon after the previous trip or for a bit longer. Hopefully it will make the week long Norfolk trip at the end of this month easier for her. I do come back to her, just not for a several days. Family are with her, so she's not on her own, but she does like me a lot and hates her routine mucked up.

I made these! Bottom one not yet finished...
Craft news: I hope to start posting some of my new items on my Etsy shop soon! They include some bookmarks that I've started making (all hand stitched, nothing done on the machine). 

Anyway, I need to head offline shortly so as not to overdo things. Will post again hopefully on Tuesday with an update of what craft I do tomorrow. Or should that be did tomorrow? 

Friday, 31 March 2017

See you soon!

Random yet cute alpacas! I have used alpaca yarn and it's lovely ^o^
Totally ran out of energy to do a post each day so this will do until I'm back! Have a great weekend and take care!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Over On Nayu's Reading Corner #4

Off I go again! (not my suitcase, sadly)
For my most recent update including where and why I'm going away for a few days this weekend please head on over to my other blog, Nayu's Reading Corner! If you've never been it's full of book reviews, some gaming & anime posts too. It seemed pointless creating 2 identical posts and I really wanted a load of anime pictures so that's why the update post isn't here - I use less anime pictures and more real life pictures here, if that makes sense.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #340 Cushion sewing!

Finally finished my latest sewing experiment!
So, I'd hoped to post sooner but due to needing my mega meds last week I've been out of action. I had fun doing some cross stitch which I didn't take a photo of while over at my crafty friend's house last Monday (a week and a bit ago). Using my mega meds was a last minute thing so I hadn't planned any posts prior to taking it, which I do generally try to do so you have some content up. 
I used a single bit of fabric for the cushion backing.
Anyway, while going through various stages of weird I did some craft. I wasn't up for following a pattern which ruled my counted cross stitch out. I definitely wasn't up for machine sewing, so I hand sewed a few squares together then added a backing. If you follow me on Twitter I think I posted a few pictures as the sewing progressed.
Close up of the cushion seams - nice and neat!
I wasn't entirely sure what it was going to turn into. I tried doing patchwork, but while my hand sewing is okay, my quilting stitches have a lot to be desired so I ditched that idea and turned it into a cushion. I used toy stuffing to make it puffy. 
There's no getting around that up close the final seam isn't the best, but that's because I haven't practiced neater closing stitches for edges.
I need to work on my seams for hand stitching as the final edge isn't brilliant, but I'm happy with how this first one has turned out! Definitely going to be making more soon. I'd love to know what you think of my small cushion, and if you've ever made one!
Belle has looked cute on my bed all day! Normally she goes elsewhere until the evening.




Friday, 17 March 2017

Interlude

Your 'awww' moment of the day! This baby elephant is having fun splashing around!
Ended up needing my mega strong meds on Wednesday, so no blog post for a few days as it makes me go through all kinds of weirdness! Taking it easy being horizontal & not moving unless I have to.

Monday, 13 March 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #239 Crafting tomorrow!!!!


Feels like it's been a bit of a crazy weekend. Saturday there was no craft because I went grocery shopping so rested after. I ended up with less than 3 hours sleep Saturday night so Sunday was a gaming day as I was tired. Within the games I played I got some cute outfits including Disney's Stitch onesie on Disney Magic Castle #1. 

I've yet to have the items required to make the head. I slept great last night, but am hungover from being so tired yesterday so apart from a few blog posts I need to preschedule on Nayu's Reading Corner I'm having another quiet day gaming & watching stuff. Craft probably won't happen as I don't have the energy for it.

My sewing box - it now has sewing in it, rather than the crochet but this was the only picture I had on file. I love my koala ballerina which my family gave me when they visited Australia a few years ago. The sewing basket was from John Lewis and I got it from some friends as a joint present.
However, as the title of this post declares I'm doing craft tomorrow! I'm seeing the friend I craft with once a month, although due to various things on both of our sides we didn't meet in February. We're both really looking forward to catching up, and doing some craft. I'm not sure what I'll be taking, possibly some sewing of a new project because it's straight forward so I don't have to do much multi-tasking during talking. Hope to update you on Wednesday about that! 

Belle sleeping on my lap with her back to me
In other news I've a slightly grumpy cat because some unexpected home renovations cropped up at the weekend. My family are staying put, but I'm staying with a neighbour until Wednesday. I'm home all day, just go there at night, but my cat hates me not being there at night (she usually sleeps on me until I go to bed then relocates herself to me again). She sat with her back to my family on the sofa last night, on the blanket I use. Usually she faces the other way round! 

It's entertaining and she does forgive me for going away, it's just my family who have to deal with the fallout. Grumpy animals are hilarious!!!! I do feel sorry for her because she doesn't understand what's going on, but she bounces back fairly quickly so it doesn't negatively affect her in the long term. Have a great day!
Very true for me!

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Nayu's Craft TIme #238 Patchwork fun!

Tick-tock with this cute bag (random online picture)
Mega brief post as I'm almost out of time online (had limited time today which is why this is such an early post - my body is so not awake right now, but it was either now or this afternoon. From lunch onwards I get more & more tired, so it made sense to make my online time today brief but vaguely making sense (hopefully!).

Having fairly quiet days as the general weather isn't agreeing with me yet - hurry up Spring! I'm working on an experimental patchwork project which is fun - it won't look anything like this super lovely patchwork quilt, but it's fun to make and will look pretty in it's own way! 

Monday, 6 March 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #237 Fantastic time in Devon!

All unpacked! (mine aren't this pretty)
Sorry I'm later than expected in posting - it's taken longer than expected to recover from my busy but fun Devon trip. Still not quite back to what counts as normality for me, but getting there slowly. Managing a small bit of blogging and checking emails today, hoping to do a bit more tomorrow. Today's the first day of doing online stuff and I didn't want to leave in you in limbo any longer. 

Entire phrase should read 'Thank you for looking after the cat" It uses the same chocolate mould I've used for a cat in the past!
I had a brilliant trip, it was so fun seeing my friend again. I made it to a chocolate shop, full of chocolate & they made chocolate on site (none being made when I went). I got this chocolate for my family - I live with them, but our cat is rather attached to me and becomes an Extremely Grumpy Madam whenever I'm away. I saw a rose garden (minus roses as they weren't blooming yet), had a yummy ice cream (blue bubblegum and blackcurrent with clotted cream), found an elusive M&S cafe (the store is huge!), watched lots of dvds and chatted lots too. 

I'm hoping to start craft again today, not been up for it, but it depends how I am once I've done today's chores (sorting laundry is a large effort activity for me and I usually do it over 2 days (sort 1 day, put away the next)
Hope you have a good one!

Monday, 27 February 2017

I'll be back online in 2 days!

I'm still in Devon but thanks to the power of technology I pre-scheduled this post for you. Here's the cute picture to make you smile! Plus a few suggestions for a happy life ^o^ Enjoy! I'll be back online in 2-3 days.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #236 Holiday time!

It's that time again! (Sadly not my suitcase...)
Today I'm leaving to stay with my friend in Devon for a few days! We are planning on watching a lot of DVDs so I'll be finishing this cute sewing while I'm over at hers, 
Not much left to do...
and working on some other sewing which I'll show you when I get back. I'll put a cute picture up while I'm away for you to see (not the one below) ^o^ 
The buttons add a craft theme to Pooh Bear!

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Nayu's Receipes #13 Gluten free and vegan cupcakes!


I hope you're all well as we reach the middle of the week. As promised in an earlier post I'm here to show you both the gluten free and the vegan cupcakes which I baked recently! They turned out really well, even if I did put the vegan chocolate frosting on the gluten free cupcakes - thankfully it was a gluten free frosting. I simply made up a lemon frosting as I had no more vegan chocolate. You don't have to miss out on these classic treats just because you have particular dietry needs. They can also be used to bake a whole cake, the cooking time would be longer but that's all. 
Especially when it's for other people!
I decided to use 2 different cupcakes rather than make a gluten free vegan recipe because gluten free flour would be an extra element that could go a bit wild since I'm used to baking cupcakes with eggs and butter. I can link you to the vegan recipe, which isn't my own but can be found on Minimalist Baker's One Bowl Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes. I simply omitted the funfetti as I didn't have any. 

I made the gluten free cupcakes first using my own unique recipe & the advice about gluten free flour from a friend. 

Gluten free cupcakes
 
Here they are with frosting on! Super yummy
Ingredients
Weigh however many eggs you want to use in their shell. 

Using the same weight for butter (or margerine/vegan equivalent), self-raising flour (can be gluten free), and sugar of your choice. 

I did use plain flour on this occasion, adding 3 teaspoons of baking flour. Don't use that amount!!! I'll try 2 or even 1 next time (if I don't use self-raising flour which is so much simpler). The cupcakes rose and spread like crazy!!! I had to bail out the mix part way through into extra cupcake cases, as they were too big.  

Method
Mix butter and sugar together until they are combined. 

Crack eggs into the mix (pick out any shell that gets in), add the flour and mix until combined.  

Pour in cupcake cases which are on a tray. This doesn't have to be a special cupcake tray, mine wasn't. 

Cook at 180C/356F in an oven. Cook for at least 10 minutes, until a knife goes through the middle and comes away clean. Times vary depending on both ovens and how much you fill the cupcakes. 

Vegan cupcake yumminess!
I'd learned my lesson when the next day I baked the One Bowl Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes (minus the funfetti), read the recipe and at first only filled the cases 1/4 full. When double checking the recipe I saw I'd read the amount wrong, it should be 3/4. I sort of stuck to a frazzle over half as I wasn't sure the science of eggless cupcakes worked. The only 'special' ingredient you need is apple cider vinegar, which can be exchanged for lemon juice. These baked beautifully, although did take a bit longer than expected to bake. Both the mix and the finished cupcakes tasted similar to cupcakes (if you're used to food tasting different to what a 'normal' version is). 

I was very pleased with the outcome and the frostings. My ingredients weren't measured at all. 

Vegan chocolate frosting (can also be used for a dairy version)
Yummy!
Melt a few small packets of vegan chocolate buttons 
Add a bit of non-dairy milk and non-dairy butter  
Mix well before slowly adding icing sugar until you reach the consistency you like. 
Note: Make sure you put them on the correct type of cupcakes! 

Lemon frosting (naturally vegan) 
More yummy frosting!
Squeeze some lemon juice in a bowl (I used 3/4 of a lemon)
Add icing sugar and extra non-dairy milk/normal milk/water until you get the consistancy you like. 

My vegan chocolate frosting was enough for half a batch of cupcakes, and the lemon frosting made enough for a whole batch of cupcakes. Because I was giving them to 2 friends I only used half of each batch, freezing the rest for another day. I froze the leftover lemon frosting too! There was no chocolate frosting left. 

I hope you enjoyed my vegan and gluten free cupcake baking adventure - please let me know if you decide to bake these!  I'm now going to spend the rest of my day reading and gaming! Today was a blogging day (mostly on my other blog) and now I'm resting up in preparation for my trip to Devon on Saturday!

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #235 Fleeting snow flurry

Sadly I lack Elsa's power to create snow. (Frozen)
Last week we had what could have been a snow flurry, but turned into definite rain by the end of the day. I guess the possibility for snow this season is reducing fast. Never mind! I dreamt that it snowed the other night is good enough for me. 

It's been a fairly quiet week, mostly gaming as my body didn't like the weather, but I did some craft too and I baked cupcakes! 1 lot of gluten free and another batch were vegan. Both turned out ok, I'm frosting them this afternoon so will take photos then and share in my next post. It's lunch time so I need to make this a short post (sorry) but wanted to wish you a...

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Nayu's Craft Time #234 Hospital visit

Most of these are happy!
I love how today's post is in numerical order ^o^ It's the small things that make me/us smile!

Anyway...thank you for being patient in waiting for a new post. Over the weekend & really until Thursday I was recovering from my mega meds which send me to Lala Land & then some, and Thursday was another annual trip to the hospital. 
I go here! Not for homeopathic treatment, the rooms get rented out to other hospital clinics (I think)
It wasn't until the afternoon, but I like being there in plenty of time, and my family like to go shopping (I like company for travelling as I can get a little confused when tired). My original plan was to wait in the cafe for a few hours then head up to where I needed to be and start waiting for my 3.30pm appointment. However the cafe chairs were rock hard, discouraging any prolonged stay (I need quite soft chairs). So I got busy with an audiobook and did all this while I waited for lunch time! 
It's a cute cross stitch kit, nice and colourful with, as you can see, lots of pink. Sewing is calming - I find these days I can never settle with a book while waiting for medical appointments. Gaming happened later. 


Anyway, so I went up 1.15. Got called in at 2pm which was super early (yay!)...but wasn't able to think about going home from London until 4pm. I was in with the doctor for about an hour, going through various stuff. I don't see the same doctor every time, but I don't mind because in the more specialised clinics I know for certain the doctors all speak to each other, so I feel safe and confident whoever I am with. 

 There's almost always someone else sitting in on the appointment - I do always get asked permission and I never mind. UCL is a teaching hospital, and my specialist clinic is one of a kind, the more people can learn the better. Thursday's extra body was the specialist physiotherapist. We did boring neurological tests (once you do them once you know what's coming at every appointment. Then my balance got tested. 
I couldn't stand on point in ballet - standing on 1 leg is tricky let alone on the tips of my toes!

I'm not that coordinated, and my balance is a bit to be desired (it's not like I need to be able to walk in a straight line heel to toe in my everyday life...) so the physio asked if I'd like a few exercises to help with that. I said yes, so after I finished with the consultant I went with the physio. She gave me the exercises which are fun on the early level, and a bit tricky on the harder level. Yes I'm not being sarcastic when I use the word fun - they are fun! Again, it's the small things that amuse me. 

I only had a few pieces of paper to fill in, thankfully!
After the physio, I was with a researcher who wanted to do a few tests too. These were predominantly mental rather than physical. It was late afternoon, I was tired, but I still believe in helping out where I can so I said yes to them. I aced the word test of saying 2 long lists of words out loud within 2 minutes! Not sure about all the rest, but it's not a pass/fail test, more a benchmark of where my abilities are. 

After that I had to go to a different hospital for the blood test (my clinic uses the Homeopathic Hospital as their base for appointments). My family thought I'd fainted because I took so long for it to be done: I'm not an easy person to get blood from, and the first person couldn't do it so handed over to a more senior colleague. They advised eating & drinking before I have blood taken - I hadn't known beforehand that I was going to have any taken, so maybe next time I'll remember. Once that was done I was free! However...
None of this!!!!

...Costa annoying sold out of ice at Waterloo station. That made me grumpy as I rely on their chocolate milkshake to keep me going on the train home, but I had a brainwave and managed to get chocolate milk from M&S. Then home & lots of rest until today. 

It's still really cold so I've slow body, taking it easy where I can. I did a bit of crochet which I don't have a picture of, ditto a pic of a present I'm getting closer to finishing! The recipients know which is why I can show you in another post - I couldn't finish in time for the deadline. No more London appointments until May which makes me happy as 2 in under 2 weeks isn't fun, as it takes several days to recover from them. But it's over, I did it & that's it until next year (when they will probably be close together again).
I genuinely somehow thought it was Monday, so this is for tomorrow!