26/06/2013 § 3 Comments
I’m going to take some time out to enjoy Wimbledon.
I always seem to have a little blogging break at this time of year, but that’s because I’m completely exhausted as the end of the academic year approaches. Usually I am only able to catch up with the day’s play at Wimbledon when the highlights are shown later on in the evenings. This year, I’m going to take full advantage of my new, relaxing lifestyle and plan my sewing around the matches I really want to watch live! Enjoy the tournament, if you’re a fan.
Let’s hope for some sunshine.
16/02/2013 § 4 Comments
I forget which week we’re in now, but here goes …
- Feeling much better. It was a case of kill or cure and I’ll share the recipe that I think cured me!
- Finished Carnival and Songbird – here’s just a taste. Which one would you like to see Ta-Dah’d first?
3. Seaside and sunshine – yes, we’ve just arrived in Cornwall and the sun has got his hat on!
4. Anemones – some of my very favourite Spring flowers, fresh from a little market stall in Truro on the way.
Now, for the cure-all recipe – I hope you like ginger! You know that feeling? Heavy, aching, very sore throat, hot then shivering – well, that’s how I was feeling a couple of days ago. Very unhappy! I sat back one evening and thought that if I listened to my sore throat, what would it say it needed – yes, I know it’s a funny thing to do, but I really, really didn’t want to be ill. It said it needed GINGER and lots of it.
So I blitzed 2 mega pieces of root ginger with a splash of cider vinegar then added the paste to the remains of a jar of honey. I popped in a few cloves then put the jar into a bowl and let it stand in boiling water, to melt. I gave it a quick mix around and had a few teaspoons full (minus the cloves) and then decided it would be really good as a drink. I dolloped a few teaspoons of the sticky, gingery, vinegary paste into a huge mug, added some just-off-the-boil water to about 3/4 full and then topped it up with some fruit juice – pomegranate – only because I like the colour!
I had loads and loads of these drinks and amazingly they seem to have worked. We’ll see, maybe it’ll come back and get me, but for the moment I’m feeling so much better and I’m just off to walk the dogs on the beach.
Lots of crochet and quilt photos in the next couple of posts – stay tuned!
09/02/2013 § Leave a comment
This week’s 4 things are:
- It’s snowing!
- I’ve won an absolutely brilliant prize – more soon, when it’s all sunk in! (No, it’s not the lottery, but it is the next best thing for Adaliza and I’ve been grinning from ear to ear).
- One of our boys has been spending a few days at home and it’s lovely to have him around. He makes us laugh.
- I’ve almost finished my totally enormous Carnival blanket and the very sight of it makes me VERY happy!
There’s been lots of laughter and happiness all around. Candles and firelight, home-cooking and chatter. Lunch with friends, quiet quilting moments and I’ve finished the Patteran Trilogy – Larksleve, Blanche and Bye Bye Blackbird. Ahhhhh.
Now there’s a funny thing – those beautiful hardback books belonged to my Mother. She absolutely loved the stories tracing two families through the 1800’s; one Somerset farming family and the other a Romany family. Though the characters are fictional, the landscape, towns and villages are real – Montacute, Buckland St Mary, Taunton and Yeovil. I had a look for some photos online and found to my astonishment that it’s Montacute that featured in one of my own favourite photos from last summer, taken with my zoom lens. I had no idea where the village was, it was a simple scene taken from a lay-by somewhere in the west country. Without realising it, I’d captured the same distant village and it’s the cover of the family calendar I made for 2013. Now isn’t that a strange co-incidence?
24/01/2013 § 6 Comments
Yet another amendment to my Happy:Smiley recipe for week 4 – you must know by now that I can rarely ever do exactly the same thing twice in a row (except crochet maybe)!!
In the last 24 hours I’ve enjoyed and achieved just a few little day-to-day things that have made me feel – well, just sort of satisfied. Not ecstatic or shouting-from-the-rooftops-happy; they’re really nothing very special at all, but I’ve enjoyed them, felt happy and smiled! Here are my 4, caught in 24 hours …
1. Some like it hot!
Misty just loves a bit of warmth. She usually has her nose on the slate hearth and we have to physically drag her away – either when we smell scorching, or when she puts her paws over her nose ‘cos it’s toasting! She’s such an old softie. Belle prefers the sofa, with an ample supply of cushions to cuddle up to!
These 2 collies are, I swear, almost human. Belle has started coming upstairs after we’ve gone to bed – she snouts at the lounge door until it opens for her, then creeps upstairs. She nuzzles me until I tell her to go back to bed, then she very quietly pads back downstairs to her sofa! I think it’s a very Belle-type goodnight kiss!
2. What’s on today?
I look at my calendar many times each day and I can’t tell you how much pleasure I have from seeing that simple saying, in the middle of a patchwork cushion that I made, on my first Adaliza calendar. I remember the day I made it and taking it out into the garden to take the photo – happy days!
3. The best thing (even though it isn’t sliced)!
Not sure if we’ll ever buy bread again. This simplest of recipes produces simply amazing loaves. I’ll swear it’s nothing to do with me – it’s incredibly simple. I made the floury-yeasty dough in a couple of minutes yesterday evening, covered it in clingfilm overnight and then got up early to bake this loaf. I used strong white bread flour (different from my recipe here), but then rolled the dough in malted flour so it’s a bit nutty. It really does taste as good as it looks! Give it a go – on the side with homemade soup, or with a dollop of homemade jam on top & a slice of cheese – yum! Cheese & jam – try it – awesome combination!
4. Flicking over the pages
I’ve read these before, maybe 20-odd years ago. They belonged to my mother and I remember her telling me about the magical stories of rural families and Romany life in the 1800’s that wends it’s way through all 3 volumes. I think I bought one of them in Winchester for her – in the Oxfam bookshop! I love that Mum loved them, I love the travellers’ tales & superstitions, I love the descriptions of farming life and I love turning the thick pages to rediscover the tale unfolding.
Have you read them? I’d love to hear from anyone else who’s enjoyed them. We visited Montacute in Somerset – the village in the book – last summer. I desperately want to go there again and imagine the characters living there, walking to the little Church and exploring the woodland walks.
I’m trying to keep to my New Year’s theme – to dare to go confidently in the direction of my dreams. It helps to feel happy inside – and to keep smiling!