Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Ijeoma Is Finished

Knitted Ruana "Ijeoma" by Mrs U Makes

On Saturday I had the pleasure of finishing the Ijeoma Ruana, it was blocked last night and is now ready to hit the streets. I've been so eager to get this finished and have been slowed down by circumstances outside of my control.

Now that she is finished I can begin preparing for my next design, which will be a crocheted ensemble.

Before publishing the pattern for Ijeoma I'm going to have it tested, I want to make sure everything makes sense, particularly the cable sections. Until then you can all admire the pictures.

Knitted ruana "Ijeoma" by Mrs U MakesKnitted ruana "Ijeoma" by Mrs U Makes

Monday, 1 December 2014

Ijeoma Ruana Update

It's been a long time, but finally I'm trying to get back into the swing of things. The cold weather (as well as other things) has really affected me energy wise, so I haven't done any baking and have just recently started working on Ijeoma again.

I've only got the front left panel to do, so this will be my main project until its finished.

Ijeoma Ruana by Mrs U Makes

Whilst I have been in hibernation I have made some earrings, one of which I sold to my good friend Susan, of Susan's Nouns, yesterday along with a Swarovski pearl ring. She interviewed me for an amazing project she has started which showcases inspirational people and places. She herself is also a talented singer so check out and follow her Facebook Page and look out for the Mrs U Makes interview which should be up in a few weeks.



Monday, 13 October 2014

I'm Still Here

Things are very busy in the U household at the moment, so I haven't done much baking or crafting. Even with the tripolatas in school there always seems to be so much stuff to do. Most probably I'm not adjusting to the change in weather, being cold makes me feel tired, which can sometimes put me into a 'Do Nothing' mode.

I am trying to kick myself into gear by thinking of new recipes for baked treats, so hopefully they will be developed soon.

Saturday, 27 September 2014

French Toast Roll Ups

Yesterday I Stumbled Upon a great breakfast treat, these French Toast Roll Ups, over at It's Peachy Keen.

She spread jam and cream cheese onto a flattened slice of bread, rolled it up, dipped it in egg and milk and then fried it in a little butter. They looked so good that I had to make some myself this morning, but with my own choice of fillings.

Instead of jam and cheese, I used chocolate and pistachio fudge sauce (the same type that  used in my Chocolate and Pistachio Fudge Tarts) and cheese and ham (technically it was cheese and wafer thin chicken, but cheese and ham sounds, and would probably taste, better).

These tasted like pancakes, particularly the cheese ones, which reminded me of the savoury pancakes they have at My Old Dutch.

They're not the most healthiest breakfast, but they are delicious, which in my books is all that matters.

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Ijeoma Ruana Update

I'm now onto the first front panel of the ruana. So far there haven't been any major hick ups and I'm looking forward to seeing the piece develope.

You may have noticed a plastic cord sticking out, that's the cord from the cable needle. Either one of the tripolatas or Mr. U broke it over the weekend,  I won't be able to get another one until next week. I've decided to get an interchangeable cable needle set.

In the meantime, I'm working on one of my many WIPs, I'm also planning my next projects, two crocheted garments. I'll go into more detail on those in a later post.

Friday, 19 September 2014

Cheesy Courgette Soup

Cheesy Courgette Soup by Mrs U Makes

It's autumn and although the weather is still warm I felt like making some soup to have as a tummy warmer in the evening.

This recipe was given to me by a guest minister who visited a church we were attending when the tripolatas were born. The type of cheese used may be a surprise to you as it was to me, but don't turn your nose up at it.

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Chocolate Dipped Sticks

Chocolate Dipped Sticks by Mrs U Makes

A few days ago, whilst in the biscuit isle of the supermarket, I stood in front of a box of Mikado and wondered when I'd last had this tasty chocolate stick. I really love these and was seconds away from picking up a box when a little voice said "You do know that you can make these yourself" "Yes, I can make these myself", I thought, so I gathered together all the things that I would need.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Ijeoma Ruana Update: Back almost complete

I'm really proud of myself, I've almost finished the back of the ruana. It's looking great and I can't wait to start the front, which shouldn't take too long, so my aim is to get it finished or almost finished by the end of the month.

Once it's finished I'll try and get it tested through a pattern testing group on Ravelry. After the problems I had when writing up the pattern for Elise, I'm making sure that I write the pattern as I go along. Here's hoping there aren't any errors.

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Pizza Wraps

Yesterday was the tripolatas' first day of school so I wanted to give them a treat for when they got home. They all love pizza but pick out most of the toppings, which they hand over to me. To get them to actually eat the whole thing I came up with these.

Pizza Wraps by Mrs U Makes

Thursday, 4 September 2014

New Look Blue Peter Brownies

Blue Peter Brownies by Mrs U Makes

As long as I can remember I've always loved baking, though I really caught the bug when I was in 6th form (sort of similar to the senior year of high school in the US). My friend and I helped our tutor make a cake for a school event,  after that we were always called upin as helpers to make treats.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Peach Frangipane Pillows

Peach Frangipane Pillows by Mrs U Makes

On Thursday I decided that I wanted to make use of the filo pastry sheets that had been sitting in my freezer since we had the tripolatas birthday picnic in Southend. I'd only ever used filo pastry to make baklava and I didn't have all the ingredients needed for that.

After mentally shifting through the various treats I'd seen on the Internet, TV, Pinterest and in recipe books, I went for an adaptation of something I'd seen on an episode of Dinner Date where the guy wrapped pieces of chocolate in filo and deep fried them.

I didn't have chocolate but I did have a couple of peaches and almonds and so this recipe was born.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Ijeoma Update: Coming Along

Ruana progress by Mrs U Makes

In my last Ijeoma update, I mentioned that I had 14-32 rows left in order to reach the middle of the motif. Fourteen plus rows later I am now at that point, and I'm extremely happy. At the moment it looks like the finished piece will be longer than I thought, but that's not a problem. I'm more than halfway through the third ball of yarn and on track with the total amount of yarn that I calculated I would need.

Once the back is done I'll have to decided what I want the front to look like. I have a couple of ideas but won't commit to anything until I get to that point.

Over the last few days I've also worked on the chart for the the back, using Excel. I looked into charting software and online apps but the software was too expensive and the apps didn't provide me with what I needed. Excel is a little fiddly to start with but once you get into a groove it's quiet easy.

My target for the rest of the week is to finish the motif, this will be the last week before the trips start school so they'll be a lot of back to school errands to run.

I really can't wait until this is finished, I'm even considering making another one to sell as a finished piece. Lets see how things go.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Chocolate and Pistachio Fudge Tarts

Chocolate and Pistachio Fudge Tarts by Mrs U Makes

Before I begin I have to be honest with you. I had intended on posting a recipe for 'Chocolate and Pistachio Fudge Flapjacks', however it didn't quite go to plan. The flapjack base was great, however, the fudge did not set, even though it spent the night in the freezer.

The recipe I was working on used coconut milk instead of condensed milk, you have to get the proportions right for it to work. Most likely I needed more chocolate, I will work on this again but will use double cream instead of coconut milk. The last time I used cream, the fudge came out perfectly.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Ijeoma Update

Knitted Ruana by Mrs U Makes

About a week ago, I switched my knitting attention to Ijeoma, the ruana pattern that I'm working on. If you don't know what a ruana is you can find some examples on my 'Project Inspiration' Pinterest board.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Fruit Crumble Cakes

Fruit Crumble Cakes by Mrs U Makes

When preparing for the tripolatas birthday picnic I bought a brownie baking tray. I had initially planned to make Rice Krispie cakes but ditched them because I had so much to do.

I have since been thinking of what to do with it, other than make brownies. The trips have been on a real fruit kick lately, on Tuesday we went to the park and they wolfed down handful after handful of grapes. Tripolata #3 then stood with me at the bench and finished a punnet of blueberries and then finished off the pear he had abandoned in order to eat the grapes.

Monday, 18 August 2014

How To Survive Being Surrounded By Children

As stated in my blog's description, I am a triplet mummy. My boys have just turned four and will be starting school full time in September (Hallelujah).

This summer holiday has been very busy and there are still another three weeks until the school term starts and four weeks until they, God willing, start full time.

I had planned to take them out to various places, however, things haven't gone to plan. Two weeks ago I had been looking after my two year old nephew and I wasn't about to go out and about with three 3 year olds (as they were at the time) and a 2 year old who thinks he's a little B'boy, bopping around the flat. We managed to go to the park a few times, but travelling anywhere requiring a bus was a no no.

This week I'm looking after the tripolatas' friend, who turns five in three months. Being surrounded by all these children for weeks on end (not counting the four years since the trips were born) is enough to send anyone doolally. To keep my sanity I have devised a few things to help me get through the day. Before you read on, this is not a list of cute craft ideas to keep the children entertained or child friendly backyard activities (we don't have a garden). You may not agree with all of them, but this is what works for me.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

How I Made A Train Cake

Train Cake by Mrs U Makes

It was the tripolatas birthday last Wednesday and I decided to make a cake rather than buy one. I spent a lot of time searching for ideas, mostly on Pinterest.

I saw lots of great cakes, especial superhero cakes, but most of these were covered in frosting or fondant, two things I didn't was to use. I also saw a lot of trains cakes, some looked a little complicated, but a few were very simple and I knew that I would be able to pull it off.

I've made this post not as a full on tutorial, but a basic guide on how I made my tripolatas train cake.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Birthday Picnic by the Sea

It was the tripolatas' 4th birthday on Wednesday and to celebrate we're taking them to Southend On Sea. Family and friends will be joining us and bringing treats for the picnic. I've made a few things from my Pinterest finds, plus a train cake. I was up to the early hours of the morning making the cake and clearing up. I hope to do a post, soon, showing how I made the cake plus a review of the other things I made.

What ever you're doing today I hope you have a great day.

Monday, 4 August 2014

The WIPs

Like most, if not all, knitters/crocheters I have more than one project on the go. I also have a small hoard of projects stashed away in a cupboard, which I'm in no rush to finish. Among these are two baby blankets, each named after one of the tripolatas, a lap blanket, a crochet hook case, Ugg boot styled booties, slippers, a baby hat, cardigan, and a crafting accessories case.

Monday, 28 July 2014

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

Caramel Apple Cupcakes by Mrs U Makes

It's Friday evening and the tripolatas are watching Topsy and Tim, a children's programme about a brother and sister who are twins (played by actors who aren't related). On his particular episode it was their parents anniversary and the 'twins' were making them a cake.

When the programme ended and the trips had finished singing along to the theme tune, tripolata #1 jumps on my lap and asks if we can make a cake. This was the first time that they'd shown any interest in baking (apart from eating the finished goods), so how could I say no.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Moto Moto Sauce

I had originally planned to post the recipe for my Coconut and Jam Roly Poly Biscuits. I made them for the tripolatas class party (it was their last day today) along with my Cinnamon Crunch Cookies. I'm still not 100% happy with the texture, I'll try them again using a lower oven temp and see if that does the trick.

Moto Moto (Hot Hot) sauce by Mrs U Makes

Instead I am posting this recipe for Moto Moto Sauce, moto moto means 'Hot Hot' and this sauce is definitely HOT. I got the recipe from my mum via Mr. U, who like myself prefers food that has a real kick. There have been many occasions, were upon being presented with a meal, the cook has cautioned me to be careful as ''s quiet spicy'; I take a bite expecting to be blown away and get nothing.

Spicy to me means 6-7 birds eye chillies or 2-3 scotch bonnet, hot on the other hand means...well you'll see as you read on.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Morgan, Backless Jacket Pattern

Finally the Backless Jacket pattern (which has since been christened 'Morgan') has been published, I would have done this a couple of weeks ago but was looking for a decent model. I eventually got hold of one and her name is Valerie, say "Hello" to Valerie


Valerie has really made a difference when taking pictures, my pieces look a lot more professional. I've retaken the pictures for Elise and Romani and will update the main pattern pictures when I get a chance.
I hope this little investment is going to boost sales. I've got one more pattern to write up, (The Pocket Poncho) and I'll need to continue with Ijeoma.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Chicken Nuggets

Chicken nuggets recipe. Made with real chicken, so simple.

Though I do like a sweet treat, my absolute favourite type of snack is something savoury, especially if I can just pop it in my mouth. Bite sized snacks are also great for little mouths too, the tripolatas love sitting with a bowl of something they can eat whilst watching their favourite programmes.

They've only ever had chicken nuggets a couple of times, mainly because I've been dubious about what was actually inside them. It never occurred to me that I could make my own until I watched a programme which looked into the contents of nuggets (I was right to have reservations).

Monday, 23 June 2014

Backless Jacket

                   Knitted backless jacket by Mrs U Makes Back view of the knitted backless jacket.

Yesterday afternoon I finished the Backless Shrug/Jacket that I've been working on for what seems like an eternity. When I started it I didn't really know exactly how I wanted it to turn out, it was just something to use up the yarn that I had bought from the knitting and stitching show. It's from a discontinued line from Rowan so was on sale,  at the time I bought it I had no intention of branching into selling written patterns so didn't mind that it was being discontinued.

Now that I am producing a pattern for this piece I am thinking that it would be easier if the yarn was still available, though the pattern is very simple and it would be easy to substitute another type of yarn.

I've written a rough draft of the pattern and just need to take a good picture. This seems to be the main problem I encounter whenever I make something. There's no one available to model the garments nor is there anyone who can take a decent picture of me wearing them.

My best option is to get a dressmakers dummy, and hope that I can find somewhere to store it so that Mr U won't complain about the lack of space and the tripolatas won't think they have a new toy. There are quite a few selling on EBay, if I can get one it would really make a difference.

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Apple Cinnamon Swirls

Apple Cinnamon Swirls by Mrs U Makes

Friday morning was a busy one. After dropping the tripolatas off at nursery I had to rush back home to attend an open day at the school they will be going to in September.

It was very nice and I'm sure the trips will love it there, my only reservation was the fact that they only have two reception classes, which means that there's a chance that one of the tripolatas will be in a class on his own.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Crocheted Earrings

crocheted earring samples by Mrs U Makes
Crocheted Earring Samples

The last items of jewellery I made were part of the Story Time Collection, which was over a year ago, as tripolata #2 would say, 'Wowzers'.

That's way too long, and with the summer finally making an appearance I feel I need to make a collection that says 'Hello Mr. Sunshine, it's good to see you again'.

Crocheted earrings are a great way to achieve this, I won't have beads, wires and other jewellery making equipment out, which the tripolatas would see as new toys. Plus there wouldn't be a load of mess from the said jewellery equipment, this for Mr. U would be a big plus.

I've made eight samples so far using 4ply yarn. The finished pieces will be made using crochet thread and would of course be in bright colours.

So what do you think?





Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Almond Craisin Raisin Fruit Drops

This weekend was very busy, with our senior Pastor visiting from Nigeria. We had a late meeting at the U house on Friday night, and our Pastor and senior Pastor stayed over.

So my Saturday morning was spent making a hearty fry up for the tripolatas,  Mr U and the Pastors (plus myself of course). Whilst the sausages were frying I decided that with Mr U at home, it was the perfect opportunity to whip something up without being distracted by the trips.

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Crocheted Bolero

The easter holidays were a few weeks ago and I'm still not back on my regular crafting, blogging, media sharing schedule. For some reason I've not been able to get back into a groove.

I've decided to give up on the Ladies Shrug for now, there were too many issues with the pattern and I fell out of like with it.

To get back on track I decicded to look for something else that would be quick to make up and could use up the 10 balls of Rowan Belle Organic dk yarn that I've had in my cupboard for over two years.

Baggy Bolero
Baggy Bolero by Pickles
After much trawling across Pinterest and Ravelry, I came across this Bolero that I'd saved in my Ravelry queue. It's made by Pickles and is very simple to make. The original pattern is knitted, but I'm crocheting mine to save time.

Crocheted version of Pickles' Baggy Bolero
One half of the Baggy Bolero
It's made in two parts, I started the first part on Thursday and finished on Saturday. I'll start the second half on Thursday and if the weather behaves itself I won't have to wait until summer to wear it.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Two Weeks

It's the Easter holidays and that means 24 hrs of tripolata fun for the next two weeks and two days. It also means that I won't be able to do much by way of blogging or any other form of social media. By the grace of God I'll survive the two weeks with my sanity intact.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

I've Been Featured


For the past week and a half I have participated in linky parties all over blog land in an attempt to get more people reading my blog and hopefully build up my followers.

It's a lot of hard work, remembering to actually add a link and then checking other links that have been posted. Things have been made a little easier by Alice of Mum's Make Lists. She has a great calender on her blog that lists a vast array of linky parties plus their general start times. I've selected a few each day and linked these to my Google calendar.

I think that all the linky parties I've participated in so far are based in the States, so for the first couple of days I was up late linking away not wanting to be number 183 on the linky list. I soon realised that I couldn't carry on that way and now focus on parties that launch between 7am and 11pm GMT.

As I have anticipated more traffic, I decided to vamp up the blog. So if you are a returning reader you'll now be able to see what I look like (well from the side any way). I'm also taking my time when taking pictures and have used various editing apps to give them a professional feel.

All this partying seems to have paid off as I've been featured in not one but two linky parties.

             Tropical Fruit Drops @MrsUMakesCinnamon Crunch Cookies @MrsUMakes

The first is over at Go Crochet Crazy and was for my Tropical Fruit Drops. The second was at The Weekend Wind Down for my Cinnamon Crunch Cookies.

If you're also a blogger and you haven't taken part in blog parties, I suggest you start now. I've put together a list of the parties that I take part in under the linkup parties tab.

Let you hair down and PARTAY.

Friday, 28 March 2014

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Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Almond Loaf Cake

This is the cake that I forgot to take a picture of in my last post, the almond cake that tasted great but was too greasy from all the butter. This time I reduced the amount of butter and allowed the batter to rest in the fridge before transferring it to the tin.

As soon as it came out of the oven, the tripolatas were all over it, I'm surprised that I was able to take the picture. They kept coming over to the book case (the only place were there is enough light), trying to pick out the almonds. In the end I gave each of them a few sprinkles of the almonds to tied tem over til dinner time.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

New Recipes

After posting the recipe for my Cinnamon Crunch Cookies last week, I spent most of this week working on two new recipes.

The first was for yet more biscuits, a sort of jam rolly polly biscuit. In terms of flavour, they turned out great,  I just need to work on the texture of the biscuit itself, with the jam adding a caramelised Jammy Dodger feel to it.

Coconut jam rolly polly biscuit

The second recipe was for a cake, a loaf cake, an almond loaf cake to be exact. This was delicious, however, the butter content was too high, which left the base of the cake greasy.

This is where the picture of the Almond Loaf Cake would have been if I remembered to take one before it was gobbled up

I'll try another batch of the cake over the next few days.

As most of the week has been taken up by baking,  I have done little to no knitting or crocheting. I still haven't received a response from the makers of the Ladies Shrug, but I know where the mistake is so when I get the urge I'll rip the last few rows and carry on.

Enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Cinnamon Crunch Cookies

Biscuits seem to be the baking staple of the U household. It's the only baked good that the tripolatas are guaranteed to eat (I've tried apple pie, they ate the apples and left the crust).

Mr U (supposedly) only likes plain cakes, no frosting, no fruit, seed or nuts. So until my boys learn how to appreciate a good home made pie, my oven will be filled with biscuits and the odd cake.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

How To Get Yarn From Old Sweaters

Recycling a sweater for yarn
Unraveled Sweater by My Virtual Sanity

Most of us have a jumper hanging in our wardrobe that we no longer wear because it's misshapen, looks worn or simply doesnt appeal to us any longer and though we don't wear this garment, we just can't seem to get rid of it.

Thanks to Pinterest and Dawn Prickett of My Virtual Sanity I've found a nifty way to put that old jumper to good use, and save money at the same time. It involves unraveling the yarn and using it to knit another piece.

However, if unlike me you don't have an old jumper,  you can do as the original blogger does and check out the offerings of charity shops. This is a great idea as not only are you saving money on yarn, you're also giving towards a good cause.
Click the link to check it out.

Recycling Sweaters for Yarn

I will definitely give this ago, what other methods do you know of for reusing yarn from knitted or crocheted garments?