Well hello , how are we all ?
I am just about surviving the summer school holidays !
But the advantage of spending many many hours at this time of year in our house is that I can tackle some of the jobs that have been niggling me in the busier months .
Last night I finished a job I started a few weeks ago on the 23 rd July and if any of you pop by my facebook page for Handmade Over yonder, you may recall me posting about stripping my hall and stairs carpet. Some of you on facebook noted an interest in seeing it when it was done .
I remember it was on an unbelievably hot day and my husband kept texting me , checking I wasn't over doing it in the very hot temperature as I'd been unwell previously to that . But he knows when I get an idea in my head there is no stopping me . Well what was the idea that had made me start ripping carpets up?? The fact that they were done in and I was fed up of looking at our tired old ( slightly bald in areas ) carpet was the reason . Particularly as this was the first thing you saw as you entered the house and I do like to have a nice home for us to live in and as handmade and done by us as possible .We had no money for new carpets so I had the idea of painting the hall floor and stairs , I thought the idea was both practical (no need to use the carpet cleaner every time the kids trample muck into the carpet or spill something ) and it may also be financially do able . I did also have a secret motive as well , in that if it worked and it looked nice I wanted to do the same with our living room floor . The hall way and stairs was the first part of my strategy to get |Mr P. to agree to the idea and once he saw how nice it looked in the hall and on the stairs surely my plan would be achievable .So I did a bit of research on the Internet for nice floor paints suitable for wooden floors . I settled on a Farrow and Ball floor paint and I have used their paints in the past very successfully, the next job was to decide on a colour as they have 132 colours to choose from ( www.farrow-ball.com ). It didn't take me long and I decided on a colour called 'Dimity' which I would describe as warm creamy off white . So I've spent many evening preparing the wooden floor and stairs and skirting boards and filling oh so many gaps , then I primed the areas with the Farrow & ball floor primer ( 2 coats) and then applied 2 coats of Dimity We are soooooo very pleased with the result . I also had plenty of the wall paint left so they got a fresh coat too . So for those who wanted to have a peek I've taken a few shots .
First coat of primer going on .
Mr P . is so pleased with the hall and stairs that he is eager to start our living room , we think we have enough of both paints left to do this and even though the paint is quite expensive ( Mr P. nearly fainted when he was at the till ! ) it is well worth the money and as they say " you get what you pay for ! " . It has definitely worked out drastically cheaper than carpet and on the plus side I don't have to drag a hoover up n down the stairs , I just sweep it which in turn means I'm cutting down on my use of electricity . In fact now all of the down stairs of the house is swept rather than hoovered that will make a small saving on our electricity bill . Additionally if there are any accidents and spillages which result in a damaged surface we just repaint the area .
I am quite conscious that we do need a little protection for the floor as well as comfort and warmth under our feet in strategic places , so for this reason I am going to put some rugs about the place. Some we already have and some I am going to make as we don't want to or have the means to go out splashing cash on new rugs . With painting the floor it has reignited my enthusiasm for a project I started some time ago , a crochet rag rug. Now I have somewhere for it to live I'm going to finish it . But in my head I am also planning one for the living room too !
It's nice when you have an idea that works and I am finding that I am loving areas of our home I'd fallen out of love with , as they were looking very tiered .
There is one room I never fail to be happy in and that is the Kitchen , today has been no exception . I was in charge of two extra children today for a dear friend and I know both her girls love to do baking so I hatched a plan for today ( I seem to be hatching a lot of plans at the moment ! ) . I fancied doing a no bake cake/ bars that would be an enjoyable experience and tick the box as baking for the kids but with as little mess for me to wash and clear away . So I had a wander on the Internet and saw a white chocolate toottie fruity rocky road recipe on pintrest that inspired me . So I adapted the recipe I found to our families own palate and changed a lot of the ingredients for U.K alternatives as the recipe that inspired me was from America .
So here is my own version of a toottie fruity white chocolate rocky road bar .
Ingredients you will need :
4 x 150 g bars of good quality white chocolate .
1 x 42 g bag of Jelly Tots ( cut each Jelly in half )
2 1/2 cups of small marshmallows ( I used the little ones usually used for on the top of hot chocolate drinks )
85 g Orange & Lemon Jelly slices ( I used a mixed tube bought from Morrisons on their baking isle )
100 g Natural glace cherries ( Rinsed and dried then cut into quarters )
30 g packet of Cranberries
70 g Hazelnuts roughly chopped ( you could substitute this for a nut your family like or leave out if allergies are an issue )
Prepare a tray that measures 10 " x 7 1/2 " by lining it with grease proof paper , make sure you have a good amount over lapping the edges of the tray as you will need it to help you lift the mixture once it has set in the fridge .
First start by preparing & chopping the glace cherries , jelly slices , jelly tots, cranberries and nuts and place them in a large mixing bowl with the marshmallows and give them a good mix.
Next beak each bar of chocolate into pieces in a heat proof bowl and place over a slightly simmering pan of water .
Once the chocolate has melted pour over your fruit, nut, marshmallow & jelly mixture in the mixing bowl and mix thoroughly and quickly . Then pour this mixture into your prepared tray and spread evenly .
Put this in the fridge for about 1 hour 20 mins .
Once the mixture has hardened remove from the fridge and lift the mixture out by lifting the excess paper .
Now you can divide into appropriately sized bars . I have done mine into dinky 1 inch square sized bars .
Then enjoy , nom nom !!
This would be an ideal recipe for edible presents or as a party/ celebration treat as it isn't cheap to make .
But its been great popping by and sharing and thank you for popping by .
So ta ta for now . Tracy xx