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Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Family visit

I've just returned from eight nights in Devon with my daughter and grandchildren. My son in law was moving his work premises over that period so I went down to help her out while he was working late and then to go camping with her and the children over the bank holiday weekend.
We had pretty good weather until the last two days so we managed to pack in lots to do!

Gilby enjoying hot chocolate and marshmallows after a particularly chilly out door swim

We went to the beach twice


Gilby drew the whole family flying in his paper 'plane

They have a bell tent so I needed to have a scheduled meeting with my son in law before the camping trip to be told how to pitch it :)

It took me less than 30 mins start to finish with just a little help putting the centre pole in place. These tents are great!

We chose the site because it has a heated outdoor pool but we managed to pitch near the corn fields and away from the busy part. The children are great campers, staying up late each night to toast marshmallows on the camp fire and sleeping in late the following mornings. My brother, sister in law and some of their family joined us the second day and it was great to be together which doesn't happen often enough.

Polzeath Beach is on the north coast of Cornwall and where lots of surfing takes place.


The children were happy to get back to see how Snoopy had fared without them....not sure how Snoopy felt about their return ;)

Both our daughters celebrated their wedding anniversaries last week, I was able to baby sit for hose in Devon while they went out for dinner together, my daughter in SA and her husband took their boys out for dinner with them :)

Jesse looking very smart for his meal out

Joe showing me something but I'm not sure what :)

I'm not back home, it's always good to get back and we have lots on but I do miss my lovely family and am happy we had such a great time.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

new recipe book

I found this recipe book recommended on Instagram, I rarely buy myself recipe books as I have some beautiful books that my children have bought me over the years. But this one uses mainly unrefined ingredients like spelt flour and honey or maple syrup in place of sugar etc. which appealed to my taste

It's called Love Bake Nourish by Amber Rose

I began with making the Honey & Lavender tea cake which is delicious and then Apple & Honey muffins which are equally as good.
I will include the muffin recipe below but if you love to bake and would like healthy alternatives to the usually extra sweet cakes, muffins, cookies etc, I would recommend buying this great book. 
The photos are wonderful too and so make the book lovely to look through.





Apple & Honey Muffins
125g unsalted butter, softened
150g whole grain spelt flour, sifted
2 large free range eggs
1 heaped teaspoon of baking powder
185g honey
60g ground almonds
50ml while milk
Finely grated zest of 1 unwaxed lemon and 1/2 unwaxed orange
Unrefined icing sugar for dusting if required

For the apples 
2 eating apples (I found one was enough for 12 muffins) cored and thinly sliced
20g unsalted butter, melted
1.5 teaspoons of rapadura or unrefined castor sugar

Preheat oven to 180 degrees
Place apple slices in a bowl, pour over melted butter and sprinkle with the sugar. Coat the apples well and lay slices in the bottom of muffin cases

Cream butter for about 4 mins add a spoonful of flour and beat briefly, add eggs one at a time and add more flour if mixture is curdling

Gently fold in the rest of the flour, the baking powder, honey, ground almonds, milk and zest 
Spoon mixture into muffin cases (I like to use a nice cream spring release scoop to do this) and bake for 25-30 mins

Saturday, 9 August 2014


We have just returned from a sixteen day 'holiday'. We spent the first nine days in Devon and Cornwall, mostly with our daughter and her family. The sun shone and we had fun in the pool, Molly helped with podding the beans...this was the first time Molly had met the children and they hit it off big time! She especially loved Gilby and followed him everywhere.

My daughters garden has lots of beautiful hydrangea bushes, I had meant to pick some to dry but forgot 

The children have had pottery classes since the twins were two and are very capable now

We made a delicious cake

We visited the woods and met the Gruffelo, we played hide and seek and hubby and I went out for dinner with great friends who we don't see often enough since we moved from the South West

We then travelled up to Wales to visit our little cottage and do more work, we put the bedroom carpet down and the bed up! We put up a shelf in the bedroom, made from a lovely piece of driftwood we found on the beach back in March....knew it would come in handy :)

We had one day off working on the cottage and met up with my sister and her husband. We headed for the coast and after having a picnic on the sea front we explored the lovely little harbour town called Aberaeron, we loved it there and will visit again. 

We then drove back through the beautiful √Član Valley, the sun shone and the drive was spectacular 
, we stopped off for a cup of tea on route.

This area is just a few miles from our cottage, we really didn't know the area when we bought the cottage and are so happy with where it is

Hubby finished the tiling and showed me how to do the grouting, it's harder than it looks! We just have to lay the flooring then the kitchen is finished. I have been looking for a Welsh wool blanket to make a curtain to cover the front door that we don't use, eventually I found one that is both big enough and a fairly neutral colour. 

I realise I have repeated the curtain photo but as I am using the blogger app I couldn't go off the page to delete it from the collage without having to re do the whole page!!!
My husband used to be a plumber before going into the ministry, pretty handy when it comes to renovation work :) he has fitted a new toilet and basin, and laid the flooring which us grey stained laminate. Just the bath to replace then the bathroom is finished. The garden was looking pretty too.

So we have a few jobs left, the local carpenter that we found, replaced all the internal doors to lovely old latch doors and will fit the oak flooring in the lounge and the slate flooring in the boot room which will be a huge help. 

For now we are back home and back to church work tomorrow 
. I hope you are all enjoying your summer :)

Wednesday, 16 July 2014


Both my daughters like me to knit dishcloths for them. They can also be used as face flannels. For the plain cloths in this pile I have used Sirdar Sinply Recycle yarn, this is made mostly from recycled cotton with some acrylic added and knits up really nicely. 


This little baby hat was made in Debbie Bliss Eco baby fair trade organic cotton yarn again this also knits beautifully. For this hat as well as the baby jacket in my previous post, I used patterns from the book below. It contains some lovely baby patterns and I plan on making some more hats using the recycled yarn in the bottom photo. I also have a fair bit of quilting to get on with, but hand quilting in warm weather isn't great! So I think I will stick to knitting for now :)




Tuesday, 8 July 2014


The twins and their brother are on holiday in Berlin at the moment so I have taken the top three photos from my daughters IG account. The girls are wearing the skirts I blogged about in my previous post and the bottom photo is taken from my other daughters IG account of Lilhle wearing the outfit I made for him and lying on his quilt that I made a while back. 

There is still no news on his future, my daughter and her husband would love to adopt him and are praying for a way forward with this. I'm just hanging in there thinking I would love for him to be my grandson but at the same time praying for Gods will to be done.

If you have a minute check out my daughter new blog where she writes about her shelter work 





Saturday, 28 June 2014

I've spent a lot of this week making clothes for etsy, for my grandchildren and for my new great nephew.  I do enjoy making small clothes :)

But I really need to get back to my quilts, my Liberty quilt needs handquilting and my eldest son has asked for a  new quilt and so I plan on getting it done by his birthday at the end of August...that's the plan!


The twins love to wear skirts but can be fussy with their fabric choice. The right hand skirt below is made of vintage Laura Ashley fabric, it looks red in the photo but is actually deep pink. My daughter reminded me that I made her a skirt with wide elastic at the waist from the same fabric (I've had it years) and would I make the same for the girls. I only had enough for one skirt and so used a Liberty fabric for the other one. I had some denim and made the bottom two skirts from that...let's see if they are happy with them ;)

My daughter in SA still has baby Lilhe living with them...they are really hoping to adopt him. She asked if I would make some trousers for him, I lined these with some lovely soft vintage winsiette that I had in my stash. The weather is chilly over there at the moment. I also knitted hi. His little jacket and hat and can't wait to see him wearing them all :)

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Wales visit

We have just come back from two days at our cottage in Wales, the weather was beautiful and the drive over there never ceases to take my breath away when I see the views and countryside

Hang gliders enjoying the sunshine....don't think I will be trying this activity

This is taken from the new by-pass running parallel to our road which used to be busy until the new road was built

This is our road, the cottage is down around that bend

I got some more painting done in the main bedroom, the whole cottage was painted in two colours, creamy pink walls and mushroomy pink woodwork. We are painting the whole place in white but it is taking a while to cover those old colours, this ceiling was already painted which made it a bit easier than painting over the pine tongue and groove that was there originally. The windows took a bit of time but look good now they are white


This is the bathroom window that looks out of the side of the cottage, there was pine tongue and groove on two walls and ceiling which I painted white and now looks so much better

A local carpenter came and fitted the new stable door which opens into the boot room, he also delivered a trailer full of logs for the log burner..... 

And then helped my hubby fit this oak mantle over the fire was far too heavy for me to hold up!

Hubby put up some more wall cupboards and shelves in the kitchen, plumbed in the washing machine and put up a few tiles to see what they will look like

He also put down some oak flooring in the back bedroom, we bought a single bed with another one underneath so plenty of beds for guests to visit 


We then hung up our ladders and headed back home for hubby to finish his sermon prep for church today...very tired but also very satisfied that we managed to get so much work done :)