Shenanigans, The Month That...

April: The month that…

And yet another month flies by! April was a fun month, and although there was slow progress on any knitting it was all for good reason. So here we go, April: the month that…

We Had a Party

April was kickstarted with Mr. A’s birthday BBQ on the first bank holiday weekend. Luckily for us the sun shined for most of the day and we celebrated with friends and one or two drinks. We made a summer cocktail in our new drinks dispenser (a Christmas present from Mr. A’s parent’s) which went down very well!

Cocktail on tap

As much as I love a good party I always under estimate the amount of prep work and tidying that has to be done beforehand. As such my crafty ‘workstation’ in the kitchen had to be dismantled and temporarily boxed up to free up the kitchen table. So that meant very little knitting for a whole week! On the upside, the kitchen had never been so clean and sparkly 😉

We Looked at Lady Sheds

I have always dreamed of having my own craft room as knitting in the kitchen isn’t ideal, especially when we need the kitchen table! Add to that I have books and skeins of yarn stashed away all over the place, it would be sooo nice to have somewhere more permanent to set up station! So Mr. A and I got talking as lately he has been thinking about getting into woodwork and learning to use a lathe. Add to that that the garden is in need of a bit of a makeover and I think we may have found a solution….our very own garden log cabin studio / workshop!

This is the kind of thing we are thinking of:

FifthAvenueDuoMaxi_l

It has 2 separate compartments so Mr. A can set up his lathe in the shed end and I could have my very own craft room in the pretty summerhouse end! I’m trying not to get my heart set on anything as we still have to work out the costings and our garden isn’t massive so we need to think about space, but we did go to a local dealer and have a look round some options. They even had a similar model on display so we were able to get a better feel for it.

Cabin

Wouldn’t THAT be amazing! It would be small – but it would be bigger than a kitchen table 😉

I Discovered that Knitting can be Bad for the Diet

Work saw me travel up to Manchester in April and rather than drive I saw 3.5 hours on a train as valuable knitting knitting time. And boy did I knit, I cast on a sock at the beginning of the journey and managed to knit the leg and the heel flap by the time I got to Manchester Piccadilly!

Sock

However I did consume a hot chocolate, a kit kat and a chocolate cookie on my travels – I don’t think that’s any coincidence when the yarn looks good enough to eat, haha! I never saw knitting as bad for the diet before but now I’m starting to wonder…

I pretty much finished this sock on the return journey. It’s a shame the 2nd sock hasn’t been such a quick affair, it’s been over a month in the making and I have only just turned the heel!

We went to the Handel & Hendrix House

Mr. A and I do love a day out in London and as Mr. A is a keen musician and guitarist we decided to check out the Handel & Hendrix house in Mayfair. Handels house, 25 Brook Street, was opened as a museum in 2001 and showcases carefully restored Georgian period rooms on the first and second floors. More recently the space in the adjoining house number 23, has been opened up as a museum to celebrate the time Jimi Hendrix spent there in the 1960’s.

Left: Handels Rehearsal and Performance Room – Almost all his works after 1723, amongst them many of his best-known operas, oratorios and ceremonial music, were composed and partially rehearsed in the house, which contained a variety of keyboard instruments, including harpsichords, a clavichord and a small chamber organ (text taken from Wikipedia)

Right: Handels bedroom (where he is believed to have died).

Up the stairs, Jimi Hendrix’s flat used to be used as admin offices for the Handel’s House until it was opened as a museum earlier this year. The exhibition documents his time spent in London during 1968-69 when he lived there with his girlfriend Kathy Etchingham. Unlike Handel’s House there was only one room recreated to show what it would have looked like when he lived there and that was the bedroom.

Every item in the room had been sourced and curated based on photographs taken at the time of his residence. It was so well done, it almost felt as if he was going to step back into the room at any moment.

And check out this giant knitted dog bear given to him by a fan. How cool is he!

Hendrix Bear

The rest of the flat had been turned into exhibition space, full of photos, records and memorabilia of his time there. On walking out there was just a small framed newspaper cutting announcing his death – it was a very poignant end to the celebration of his short time in London.

We ‘Cooked’ Cocktails in an RV

From Mayfair we hotfooted it over to Shoreditch as we had tickets to a pop up breaking Bad themed bar in Shoreditch! If you have seen the show you may recognise this…

Breaking bad RV

At 6pm the doors opened and about 20 of us piled into the RV to begin a ‘cooking session’. We were seated at our table and instructed to put on our protective clothing…

Cocktail makers

And the cooking began!

IMG_7522

We were given a base cocktail made with our spirit of choice (we went for gin). The first one up was a ‘505’ made with lychee, rose, maple martini and gin – but it was down to us to add the dry ice smoke infusion!

Cooking cocktails

Oh my, it was delicious!

Next up was the ‘Fly’ – gin with cranberry caviar, creme de mure, xanthum gum and a few other things I can’t recall…

breaking bad cocktailAnd this one used a whipper to infuse it with nitrogen cavitation!

breaking bad cocktails

Yum.

Finally we had ‘the cocktail that changes flavour’. We were given a really sharp citrussy cocktail, so sour that it made me wince. We were instructed to take a sip and then pop the pill (the pill being a berry fruit pill that miraculously turns sour things into sweet)

Berry pill cocktail

What a difference, the cocktail tasted amazing from thereon and we could even suck the lemon wedges without pulling funny faces haha!

So that was April, it turned out to be a rather boozy affair – and a lot of fun!

I’ll be back soon with more knitty posts as the needles have been very busy of late 🙂

Have a great week whatever you get up to! x

Shenanigans, The Month That...

January: The month that…

There is a great weekly blog series called ‘Sunday Seven’s’ devised by Threads and Bobbins. The objective is to write a weekly post on things that wouldn’t always warrant a full blog post, such as going for a nice walk, buying something special or spending time with friends and family. The series is a great way to share these little moments by posting 7 pictures of your week and letting people know what you have been up to. I really enjoy reading other blogger’s Sunday Sevens and would very much like to participate but I know what I am like and I’m just not disciplined enough for scheduled blogging. As much as I try!

So I am going to do a monthly round up instead, just of little things that fall outside of my normal knitty posts.

So here we go with January: the month that…

We Went Vinyl

I bought Mr. A a record player for Christmas (secretly it was for me too but don’t tell him that, haha!) I had some old vinyl records stashed in the loft from when I was a teenager so it was great to dust them off re-live my youth by dancing round the living room to The Smiths and Pearl Jam! A few days later on Facebook we spotted a house-clearance ad offering 3 boxes of vinyl for ÂŁ35, but the only record we could make out from the picture was Queen’s Greatest Hits. So we took a gamble…

And it paid off…in amongst the soul and disco compilation albums I found these Abba 7″ singles. And I LOVE Abba 🙂

Abba

And there was even Dancing Queen – my favourite song ever… it never fails to get me up on the dancefloor! I have so many happy memories attached to this record. I felt like I had struck gold!

Dancing Queen

I went Urban Exploring

If you have read this blog before you may remember me saying about a photography course I was due to go on that got cancelled. So I made the most of my free day and headed out to practice using the camera anyway.

There is a house by the side of a road that captures my imagination every time we drive past it. To me it looks like a life size Doll’s House as it’s facade has completely crumbled away.

Urban

I have to admit to being a bit obsessed with abandoned buildings. I love watching youtube videos of urban explorers who explore forgotten sites and buildings and imagining the lives of people who lived or worked there in a time gone by.

One of my absolute favourite urban explorers is the super talented film-maker ThisisDanBell. Dan Bell has a number of series on his channel that are truly captivating such as the Dead Mall Series where he explores the most depressing shopping centres, and the Dead Motel Series which documents abandoned hotels, motels and resorts. But perhaps my favourite are the Forgotten Pocono’s films in which he explores a forgotten holiday resort in the mountains. There is one scene where he enters an old arabian themed nightclub that has remained largely untouched since the day it closed, it’s so rare to see something like that that hasn’t been vandalized. His films are truly fascinating, and I love that amongst all of the decay he will always find something beautiful or interesting to share. He is far, far braver than I will EVER be in my explorations so I am more than content to get my urbex fix by watching his films from the comfort of my armchair….just not this one!

Urban Chair

I Got Organised

For me, there is only one thing better than new yarn, and that’s new stationery 🙂 When I am working from London I love to pop into Paperchase and lust over new notepads and journals…I picked up this gorgeous To Do pad to help keep organised with projects.

To do

And a new project bag too!

Project bag

We Went to Birmingham

Every year Mr. A’s company holds an annual awards night in Birmingham. It’s something we look forward to every year as it always promises to be a great event, and this year was no exception. We travelled up on Friday night after work and met up for a few drinks with some of his colleagues and their other halves at the hotel. This then turned into going for dinner at TGI Friday’s. And the funniest thing happened…one of our party told the waitress it was Mr. A’s birthday. And not just any birthday, that it was his 50th! So the next thing we knew he was being presented with a large slab of cake, a birthday balloon and he was being sung to by the TGI crew! His little 38 year old face was a picture, haha!!

At least he got some cake out of it 😉

Cake

That night ended up being a bit of a late one that saw us crashing into bed at 4am. Oops!

On Saturday Mr. A had an all day meeting so I was left to my own devices and went for a relaxing spa, which was much needed after the previous night’s shenanigans, and I even found time for some tea and knitting in the afternoon.

Hotel knitting

Before I knew it Mr A was out of his meeting, it was time to get dolled up for the main event and head down for the cocktail reception…

Cocktails.JPG

Before taking our seats for dinner

Awards

It was a brilliant night and much fun was had by all. I think it’s such a lovely thing that his company does to hold these events, and as a ‘plus one’ I feel so lucky to be a part of such a great weekend.

Here’s a parting shot of Mr A and I having fun in the photobooth, hehe!

D&J Photobooth

This weekend is going to be a rather sedate affair in comparison, but I’m not complaining as I have lots and lots of lovely knitting to do 🙂

Until next time xx