terça-feira, 31 de maio de 2011

A quick snapshot

Driving through an old part of Lisbon...
...a bunch of pidgeons trying to make musical notes on some wires :)


segunda-feira, 30 de maio de 2011

Just a little eye candy

My heart stopped when I saw Marilyn's post on Room on the Left last Friday because I had just taken these photos in the afternoon... could they be the same flowers, across the ocean?!
Nope... they are both gorgeous yellow flowers but not exactly the same... and they both caught our eye!

This photo actually has a better color (gotta start carrying my camera around, the cell phone just doesn't do the job sometimes...) but still a bit too blueish...
And while we waited for the boys' to finish swim class (actually just the little one, the other has a broken arm from roller skating!) I went around snapping a few shots... 
I really wish I were a botanist to know what these flowers and trees are! They just take my breath away... don't you just love the little heart shaped flowers?
...these I do know, they're jacarandas--don't know if they have a different name in English...
My favourite time of the year, when there are fantastic colours all over the place! Lisbon is full of them...
And of course, my little balcony... the hydrangea :)
Again, so pale here when they're actually a nice pink shade! Right next to the lucia-lima plant (aloysia citrodora, lemon verbena) which I love for infusion, my baby medlar tree (waiting to be transferred from the pot to the ground) and the ginger root happily sprouting again in the top left corner :)

Still need to get some lavender, coriander and oregano, for my little aromatic herbs "garden".

I'll be back later on with some updates on the WIP--and to answer some questions you asked on my last post!

Happy Monday!

quarta-feira, 25 de maio de 2011


... Just playing around with the look of this!

By the way... in case you're wondering, Tarekices is as word that does not quite exist but can be understood. Weird, huh?

Tareco, or Tareca, can be a cat--I'm definitely a cat person.

Or it can be a trinket. Or odds and ends.

Or just my stuff!

So Tarekices means something like a cat's playfulness or silly little things that surround me or a practical joke. Sort of has to do with my name (Tareca can be a nickname for Teresa) and my last name, which means artsy / craftsy or cunning and playfull.

I'll be back soon with some new things :-) Have a wonderful day!

terça-feira, 24 de maio de 2011

A new WIP and a small tutorial

One of my nurses is pregnant, a baby girl on the way... so I decided to make her a little baby blanket (those girls most certainly deserve it! They are always so sweet and caring...)

In pink and white, of course... 
...and a lovely soft cotton thread because she will be born in August and that is a very hot month around here!
About a quarter of it is ready, it's so easy to make and will be ready soon!

In the mean time, as some of you have asked for a tutorial on this stitch, here it is (you'll see how easy it is!)

Most of the effect on this comes from the variegated yarn but it will look good too if you use single colour yarn. In fact, as I was making a small sample I thought it would be a great stitch for a baby blanket too, if you make it in a soft yarn instead of mercerized cotton as I used in my bag.

Here's a tentative description for it. 

For starters you have to make a chain as long as you would like, multiples of 4 stitches plus 1 or 3 (3 may be better but I used only 1 in my tutorial). Then make 3 rows of short stitch as a basis for the work. Remember, my tutorial won't be exactly as my bag because I was working in the round (not turning it around at the end of each row) so all stitches are facing the same way. That will account for a slight difference but I don't think it's too important as the final result is similar.

After the first 3 rows in short stitch you'll start the pattern itself. 

Make a *double stitch on the first short stitch; for the next one insert the needle 2 rows below in order to create that "pulled thread look" making a "long double stitch"; another double stitch; chain one**. Repeat from * to ** to the end of the row. 

The next row is all made in short stitches.

Then switch colors (or you could use the same, the effect will be less visible but it will be a more textured effect). 

As you start, keep in mind that you'll be making a long stitch over the "holes", that is, on the spaces where you have made a chain previously. So you'll be setting off the pattern by 2 stitches--start by making a *double stitch, chain, double stitch, long double stitch, double stitch** and then repeat the pattern.

Confused yet? I hope not :(  Now in pictures...

The base 3 rows of short stitch are done, and then starting the pattern itself: double stitch, "long double stitch" inserted 2 rows below, double stitch, chain, repeat...
When you finish that row, make a new row of short stitches
Switch colours again and offset the pattern so that the long double stitch ends up on top of the chain stitch 2 rows below: start with one double stitch, chain, double stitch, long double stitch, double stitch, repeat. Make sure you don't pull the thread too tight so that it doesn't "crumple" and stays flat.
And again changing colours (this is optional...)
And this is what it should look like in the end!
Sorry about the poor quality of the photos, my cell phone really does not cooperate sometimes!
But I hope I was clear enough in this tutorial--it's the first I've made so please forgive me if it's not too good. Let me know if you have any trouble and I'll try to straighten it up :)


quinta-feira, 19 de maio de 2011

Bag Ta-Dah!!!! :)

Remember this?

I finally finished my mystery WIP--my colorful little flower bag :)

And doesn't it look nice...?

This is how it started out... a few flowers... a rectangle for the bottom and then a few rows in short stitch around it, to start the rounding up the bottom...

It's made of cotton yarn, the type I've used before for my other little bag (Katia's mercerized cotton Bombay and Capri for the single color).
After a few trials I came up with this pattern, which is a sort of a mixture of the larksfoot stitch and a spiked stitch--I made some and tore it appart and started again and tried again... until I was happy with the result! It's really easy, if you'd like I can make (I think!) a small tutorial. But most of the effect is given by the variegated yarn alternating with the plain navy blue yarn.

Then it all seemed to be coming together...

...and I got to like it a lot!

So when I finished I was really happy with the result! And couldn't resist a few pictures by Mom's beautiful flowers...

Still have to line it--I have the fabric for that already but we're away from home and I don't have the sewing machine here... but I'll show you again after I sew in the lining!

(PS -sorry about the lousy pictures again... but I finally found my camera charger, next time I'll show you some decent ones :) these don't do it justice, the colors are so much prettier... )

Dear Marjo from Marjo's cosy corner is sad again, things aren't working too well for her now... if you get a chance, won't you drop her a note to help her feel better...? 

terça-feira, 17 de maio de 2011

New kitchen...

This is where we're staying these days--Alcochete, on the other side of the River Tagus, accross from Lisbon.

Land of kings and queens, as my husband says--where our King Manuel I, the Fortunate, was born in 1469. My grandmother was born here too :) so it certainly is an important town for me!

Couldn't wait... this is one of my favourite meals in the summer! Charcoaled sardines with tons of tossed salad with grilled peppers :))) The sardines are still tiny but they tasted oh so good!

So... why are we here? Well... a while back we had some icky news. There was a water infiltration from our appartment to our downstairs neighboor, in Oeiras. The insurance company came to see the problem and discovered the plumbing was in bad shape. So... instead of only fixing that part of the kitchen (I confess... I truly HATED the tiles in that kitchen!) we decided to replace the wall and floor tiles (yessssssss!!!) 

And this is what it looked like last week.. (help!!! there's no turning back now!)

...this is what it looked like today, when I stopped by to see the work progress... (begining to take shape!)

...and this is what I'd like it to look like by the end! My kitchen is a long, rectangular one so it won't look quite like this... but I know it will look so much better than it did before!

Right now there are kitchen cabinets in the living room, a fridge and a freezer in the hallway, the drawers with their contents in the boys' room and the washers and dryer in the bathroom aside from everything else...and it's completely impossible to live there while they're working, with all the dust and everything!

These have been busy days, between my treatments, running around to buy the stuff we need in the kitchen, chosing the new cabinets, deciding on so many things in the new kitchen and not having my own place to stay during the day (I stay at Mom's and then meet hubby to come back here) it seems time is so much shorter!

I'm so anxious to see everything go back to normal--but a so much prettier normal! :)


sábado, 14 de maio de 2011

For my e-friends

Even thought I lost the comments here, I still got them in my email. So...Carla, Annette, BumbleBri, Marjo, Wendy, Meme Rose, Valeria, Wendy, Carol--I did read your comments, my e-friends, and thank you from the bottom of my heart for your sweet words and support!

These flowers are for you!


terça-feira, 10 de maio de 2011

A long walk...care to join me?

Yesterday I felt the sudden urge to go for a walk by the ocean... so there I went, off to the beach!
As I was nearing I noticed the trees had blossomed... into red pompons! How cute can they be?! I'm not sure if I had ever noticed them before, but then there are a lot of flowering trees around that I hadn't noticed before... Is it me or is it an exceptional year for flowering trees?! The others that are just starting now are the jacarandas that make me sigh in awe each year...

And off I went on my quest for some sun... not too much because the doctors say I'm getting quite a bit of radiation and don't want to add on to it the sun's... So there's no chance I can lay there in a bikini (wishing it  would fit lol) until 2 weeks after I end the treatment. But they didn't say I couldn't get some sun on my face, or legs!

One day I'll have to find a way to go here. This lighthouse stands alone in the middle of the Tagus River mouth, just in front of Oeiras. You can take a closer look at it here or here. It was once a prison :( but now it's just a lighthouse and they call it the Guardian of Lisbon and the Tagus River.

I set foot on the "paredão", the sidewalk by the ocean that was built not long ago to join the beaches of Paço d'Arcos and Oeiras, all the way to the Marina. I wasn't planning on going that far, this time (it's almost a 10 km walk, there and back home).

...and even stepped over the little bridge where the fishermen are usually casting their poles (nobody there at that time) to get a better view of it, the rocks and the fortress.

See those tiny people on the sidewalk? Well, one of them could have been me :) 

Looking back at the little beach of Paço d'Arcos...

And closer to the Forte de S. João das Maias, which was recently restored... this is what it looked like before and this is what it looks like now, after the wonderful work they did on it, last year. My picture doesn't do it justice...

...but I kind of like this one, even if it's a bit out of foccus! Not a cloud in the sky...

well... barely any!

...and I finally got to the beach of Oeiras, where I used to spend my summers as a teenager :) 

Couldn't resist stepping into the sand and getting my feet wet...

--and suddenly I spotted a bottle of Coke in the water which reminded me of "Message in a bottle" by Nicholas Sparks (one of my favourite books, by the way)... I had to pick it up--no, no message there, but I was a good girl and trashed the bottle in the garbage bag...

...but sort of miscalculated the strength of the waves wopsss!!! Wet sweats...

Oh well... just had to sit down on the warm sand for a while enjoying the rays of sun soaking in while I waited for the pants to dry up ;)
And that's it for today :) says Teresa the red-nosed girl, hope I brought a little warmth and sunshine your way! 


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