Thursday, 23 December 2010


Today I finally feel as though Christmas is real. I finished work yesterday evening and was glad to do so. There was no heating in the building for five days running and we were all perished, the chief of all our branches visited and never even thanked us for putting up with the conditions. It was a cold, long journey on the train to get home to a warm home and warm hearts.

Today feels positive. The jewelled colours of Christmas chocolate immediately cheers me up and yes, I've pinched one. But don't tell my teenage boy - he's been told not to touch until Christmas Eve. I know he's not touched them.......there would be a tell-tale trail of discarded wrappers glistening and glinting all over the house.

Christmas is certainly on the way and I feel ready after a few final touches to here and there. Baubles popped underneath a domed cake stand should look o.k. as a table centre for Christmas Day I think?

And there's a wreath on the kitchen door as a welcome

Presents are wrapped and ready under the tree.

The Teenager has gone out to meet friends and I'm going to enjoy these last few quiet hours before the hustle and bustle of Christmas really begins. I may even watch a film this afternoon.....I might even pinch a few more of those chocolates. Would you like one? Help yourself.

The snow has really only affected us badly since Saturday when its heavy, silent downfall filled the skies and streets and quietened the normal sounds of the day replacing them with the thuds of snowballs landing and children shouting and laughing as the snow hit its target. You've all probably seen enough snowy pictures to last you until the summer but we enjoyed such a wonderful afternoon walk at the weekend around our town that I just wanted to share a few with
you if you don't mind. Down our street

to the local park

and a walk around the frozen pond

through the town and past beautiful St Thomas's church.

As the light faded, we walked home along the canal, past the Bonded Warehouse, still busy with families queueing for narrowboat trips to see Santa

passing a few narrowboats along the way. It was dark by the time we reached home and we were ready for that warming cup of tea.

Have a great Christmas everyone. Stay warm and safe annd enjoy the snow. Let me know what you're up to.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Unexpected Snowfall

I've been listening to the radio this morning. Presenters are taking phone calls from from people who have seen upto 14 inches of snow. Well, it's bloomin cold here in the West Midlands and I'm not particularly fond of snow but I am beginning to feel left out now. Don't get me wrong, if I'm snowed in tomorrow and can't get to the hairdresser I'll be mightily displeased but today, when I don't have to go out particularly, well perhaps a litle of the white stuff might be quite nice. I bought the jigsaw last weekend intending to keep it until Christmas as a little something to do inbetween all that eating. However, it is proving difficult to resist and as I no longer have Downton abbey or The Pilllars of the Earth to keep me out of trouble... well I might just have to unwrap it.

I have walked into town this morning and for once the charity shops came up trumps and I found this beautiful tablecloth. I love its cheerfully embroidered flowers, just right to brighten up a day of leaden skies. I also found this bright jingly jangly heart that does sound very like the bells on Santa's sleigh. I was extremely norty because I couldn't resist this little red heart either.

I thought you might like to meet our new pets. They came all the way from Ikea and will go on the Christmas tree eventually. At the moment though they do like exploring the house and keep popping up all over the place. Today, they're in the kitchen having agood old nose around. Thankfully, they've not discovered the biscuit tin yet.

Well, I think it's the kind of afternoon to spend with a pot of tea

in front of a snuggly, cosy fire.

I bought this for Christmas too. Do you think I would be very very norty if I opened it now?

Have a great weekend, I'd love to know what you're up to.

Monday, 8 November 2010


I've not been near my blog for weeks again. I've felt that I've had nothing interesting to write about or to show you. For months the house has been in upheaval as Mr F. struggles to find time to decorate inbetween work and other commitments and my bedroom has been turned into a storage room with just enough space to navigate a route around the bed. Still, I suppose it will all get done at some stage and then I'll have plenty of pics to share. I've missed writing my blog and reading your comments, so here I am back again, not a lot to say so I'll just ramble on a bit if you don't mind.

One positive of late is my refound interest in cross stitch. I finished this chess board over the half term holiday. I've had it on the go for simply ages I'm ashamed to say. I'm pretty pleased with it and it has spurred me on to begin a project in petit point.

I've still got to make sense of this bundle of threads but the colours are wonderful, exactly right for this beautiful time of year.

A Sunday walk in the park last week showed off all the glory of Autumn. Since then, the wind and the rain have blown most of these golden jewels off the trees and little feet in brightly coloured wellies are jumping into the huge heaps of papery leaves that have been enthusiastically gathered. Much more fun than the swings and slides in the play area!

This is the time of year to cosy up as nights become darker and colder. After a summer of idleness, fairylights are switched on and add a warm glow in a dark corner. The the tub of hot chocolate stays permanently on the kitchen worktop ready for young Master F. to come home from school, usually uttering pleas for marshmallows and chocolate flakes to be added because it's been such a hard day at school.

I love to spend the evenings in my winter pyjamas. Do you like my new Primark ones?Exactly right to settle down for an evening of Autumn t.v. and I've LOVED watching Downton Abbey. I can't wait until the next series.

Time for me to put the kettle on for myself I think. Just want to leave you with this view from my kitchen window today. I bet that poor cat wishes he was somewhere as cosy as me.

I hope not to be leaving it so long between posts in future.....

Friday, 24 September 2010

September Days

September brings a a sense of expectation for me. I look forward to closing the curtains against the dark, lighting the fire and putting on cozy socks for the first time this autumn. September is a time of opportunity. The time for English apples, making damson gin, preserving and pickling and making the most of the last of the summer flowers. This is the time of year I need to 'play house', make us cosy and warm and nothing makes me cosier than cooking and baking.

I love buying cookbooks. Many are packed away at present as we decorate our study(spare bedroom) but there is nothing lovlier than curling up on the sofa with a favourite cookbook. My very favourite at the moment is this by lovley Lotte Duncan.

Any blogger who loves vintage will ooh and aah over this book. Not only are the recipes mouthwateringly good but it is a feast for the eyes as well. The pictures show the food photographed in Lotte's beautiful cottage and garden. Believe me you'll pick this book up again and again and love every minute of it.

I loved this plum cake I made from it.

Another favourite at the moment is the Popina baking book. Try the chocolate cookies from here - the best I've ever made.

Young Master F has a real passion for cupcakes and I think I could make these from memory now.

And of course yuo have to make the most of the strawberries whilst there is still a hint of warmth before Sunday lunch return to the ritual of fruit crumbles.

Whilst I witter on about baking and food. Has anyone been watching The Great British Bake Off? I've loved watching this series but I was so disappointed with the final. I didn't like losing one contestant after the first challenge and felt that some of the comments directed at one of the contestants was so unfair. I was with Mary Berry - I so wanted Miranda to get through. Her lemony cupcakes were just the thing for afternoon tea. I'd love to know what you think.

Monday, 30 August 2010

This Summer

As August draws to a close I thought it was about time I revisited photographs from the summer months and actually did something with them. It's been a funny old summer hasn't it? It began with so much promise, the sunshine and heat of June only to give way to such dullness and disappointment in July and August.

Above and below is my Cornish cove. Yes , it is mine - at least it is at eight o'clock in the mornings when I share it only with the oystercatchers and ships lined up ready to dock in Falmouth.

Later on I do have to share it with others, but being a pebbly beach in a tiny, tiny village it has very little chance of ever turning into the type of seaside I avoid. We had some lovely days in Cornwall this year my favourite being my birthday when we had a walk from the tiny village of Zennor and its beautiful church to the gaspingly beautiful dramatic cliffs of Zennor Head.

Pausing on the way to Zennor Head we were able to admire the hedgrows

and some inquisitive locals

suddenly to find this spectacular scene before us.

I really could live in a house here.

Josh had a fantastic week as he left his Mom and Dad behind to camp with friends who were staying just a few miles away from us at Manaccan. That freed us to do some 'boring' stuff like visiting CK in St Ives. Well it was my birthday!

And to revisit my beautiful, peaceful Trerice. How I would love to live in a house this old! Mind you I wouldn't fancy the bills that come with it!

Mr F. is more suited to the Victorian grandeur of Lanhydrock but beautiful as it is I think I might get lost too often if I lived here.

This year was the first time we had walked along Gillan Creek with the serene St Anthony church right beside it. I can't think why we hadn't done so before as it's close to where we stay.

There was a trip to Porthleven.

To Coverack too.

I did mean to take pictures of tea rooms and cake - but the trouble was I just wanted to eat it and couldn't be bothered photographing it to share with you. Mind you everyone else in the tearooms would think I was a right old nutter wouldn't they, taking pictures of cake. Or maybe they might say "Ah! There's another blogger dear, bless!' Well, today is the last day I can put my feet up. It's back to work tomorow.