15. Crochet Vampire

Crochet entry tonight!


Remember me mentioning the lovely little book my BFF got me? I finally got round to making something from
it ♥

So firstly, the book is called “Creepy Cute Crochet” by Christen Haden:

(Also available from sites other than Amazon!)

It’s a beautifully presented book with some really lovely photos. Worth owning even if you don’t know how to crochet!


I chose to make the Queen Vampire because she was just so cute. The pattern was pretty easy to follow although I found the hem of the skirt a little confusing. Still turned out good though (if I do say so myself!).

vamp6 vamp4 vamp3 20131107_232447_zps31a494be

Can’t wait to get working on some of the other patterns! Reckon I’ll go for the little devil next J.









6. Heart healthy soup and crochet stress ball…

I’ve not written a blog for a good few days. The reason? My poor old Dad had a stroke last Sunday 🙁 Well, I say old, he’s only 55. I think that too much stress has finally caught up with him – so let that be a lesson to those of you who put their work before their own health!!!

Anyway, he lost the use of his right-hand side but fortunately he is beginning to regain control of it. He’s very weak though. I wanted to make him a little stress ball so he could use it to build up the strength in his hand. Unfortunately the result of my hard and love-led labour was even more special than my owl phone cover! Haha, aw well, can’t blame a Daddy’s girl for trying……

I basically followed this pattern: although I made a few simple changes to the way the colours worked. The pattern instructs you to make two halves of a ball which you sew together, then you add stuffing before you finish the last few stitches. I figured that stuffing alone wasn’t going to be squidgy enough for a stress ball, so I also added a balloon which I filled with flour via the use of a funnel.

stress ball

Unfortunately I think my bad sewing let me down. I’ve never been any good at sewing! Hopefully Dad will see the funny side and appreciate my good intentions!

I’ve also made him some soup because as you can imagine, the hospital food isn’t exactly the tastiest cuisine on the planet. I made up the recipe as I went a long and stupidly didn’t write the quantities down, which was a shame as its rather good, even if I do say so myself!

It contains:

  • Carrot (for their vitamins, anti-oxidants and blood pressure controlling properties);
  • Onion (for taste, anti-viral and cholesterol lowering properties);
  • Potatoes (scrubbed but not peeled for vitamins, anti-oxidants, and dietary fibre);
  • Chickpeas (for their iron and essential amino-acids)
  • Brown rice (Good for the heart, lowering cholesterol, for fibre, essential amino acids, magnesium and selenium)
  • Vegetable stock cubes.
  • Black pepper and smoked paprika for taste.
  • Soya milk (to thin down).

I basically grated the carrot and plonked it in a pan with just enough stock to cover, then simmered for a bit. Then I added finely diced onion and simmered until the onion started to go translucent. Then I added the chickpeas and rice along with a jug-full of water. Once the soup started to simmer again, I added diced spuds and simmered away until everything was soft.

Then I added black pepper and smoked paprika, allowed the soup to cool then whizzed the f*ck out of it! (Didn’t want any lumpy bits for my Daddy to choke on!).

Whizzing made the soup a little thick, so I mixed in some soya milk until it was a nice consistency, then warmed it up again to boiling point.

The best thing about this soup was it tastes quite nice once cooled down to a luke-warm temperature. Which means if I take a flask into the hospital, it won’t matter if I can’t blag access to a microwave 🙂

Please everyone send healing thoughts to my Dad!







5. Rat show, owl phone cover and vegan pizza

Busy busy day today!
Today was the day of the NERS 1* Cup show in Preston. I can’t pretend I’m not rat-broody after all the gorgeous babies I got to play with today.

was supposed to be taking my Harvey Wallbanger and Terry Triviani but sod’s law struck again, and Harvey started making a chesty-crackling sound pretty much as we were about to leave the house. Sigh! And of course, since coming home we haven’t heard another peep out of him…. Still, I think I shall be taking Bailey back to the vets next week (not convinced his antibiotics are having an effect) so I’ll get him looked over.

So, cut a long story short, I attended rat-less. I did however buy a lovely fabric shelf for the cage (courtesy of Here is a photo of Terry modelling how comfy it is!:

terry hammock


 And my lovely friend very kindly treated me to some crocodile chews and gave me her winning raffle ticket (I got a hanging-toy thingy) so my boys are very happy tonight ♥

When I got home, my hubby was in the middle of watching some boring programme he has series linked, which gave me time to finish my owl phone cover that I have been meaning to work on for MONTHS. I got the pattern from here:

Unfortunately I’m not too great at crochet and I’m a bugger for mixing up my American and British stitching, so my owl looks a little….special? I still think he’s quite cute though, even if his feet are too small for his big fat body!:


Wonky owl phone cover

So after a hard day’s crocheting and playing with rats, I still had enough energy to make a tasty vegan pizza for tea. I couldn’t be bothered with faux cheese so I just made it cheese-less but used extra tomato sauce to stop it drying out.

Ingredients (made two pizzas, serves 4 in total)


        • 700 g wholemeal bread flour
        • 1.5 tablespoons fast active yeast
        • 2 teaspoons salt
        • 1 teaspoon sugar
        • 1.5 tablespoon olive oil
        • Small handful chopped chives
        • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
        • Enough warm water
        • Black pepper to taste.


Tomato sauce:

  • 4 tablespoons tomato puree (the stuff in a jar)
  • mixed with 0.5 teaspoons of chipotle chilli tobasco (addicted to this stuff at the moment! – any other hot sauce would do)



Whatever you fancy!
I used pineapple chunks, fresh tomato slices, red onion and a chopped up Vegusto mushroom burger (which tasted a bit like sausage meat once cooked on the pizza!).



  • Throw the yeast into a cup full of “hand-hot” water, then stir in the salt and sugar and leave to one side.
  • With a food processor (use the kneading attachment) to mix up the flour, chives, paprika and pepper. Whilst being whizzed,  slowly add oil, followed by the yeasty mixture, and then warm water until a dough-ball started to form.
  • Leave the machine kneading whilst the oven pre-heats to 180oC  and prepare the the tasty toppings.
  • Once done, roll out the dough out onto two slightly greased baking trays and cook for 10 mins.
  • After 10 mins, splodge on the tomato sauce and toppings before cooking again for a further 20 mins (or until the crust is nice and brown and the onions beginning to crisp).

I originally intended us having one pizza each, but as you can tell from the photo below, we were only able to scoff half each. Ah well, won’t need to cook tomorrow now 😉


Bon appetit!