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Sunday, 29 May 2011


Even though South Africa is a warm country, during their winter season the weather can become a little chilly and so my daughter asked me if I would knit jumpers for the they are wearing them. The photos are taken with a Blackberry and then sent to me so they are not as clear as they would be taken with a camera. These two little chaps will be here on 8th June...very excited!

Saturday, 28 May 2011

French Basket

I've been looking for one of these baskets for a while, I could have bought one online but I didnt really want to pay the prices they are asking. My daughter has a number of these in different sizes, she uses them for carrying washing, toys and beach stuff as well as packing them full of their luggage when they come up to visit us. She bought hers in France.
Yesterday when we were out visiting a market town near where we live we found there was a French street market and I found this basket at a very reasonable price.
So today I went through my fabric to find something to line the basket with, I found some Toile de Jouy that I have had for some years. I used a piece of denim to make a pocket for each side. I will be packing it up on Monday when we leave for a few days trip in our little caravan we are travelling over to the Cotswolds

Friday, 27 May 2011

 I realise that I haven't posted on here for two weeks, I have, however, been taking a look at your blogs....just havent had the time to post. We went to Wales last weekend to spend a few days with my sister and her husband. I have posted before about my sister finding us here We had a lovely weekend and the first four photos below were taken in Wales.
On Wednesday evening this week some of our Women's Group went for an evening walk (4 miles). It was a lovely evening.
I am very excited at the moment, my daughter and her family are arriving in the UK from South Africa on 8th June, I have tried to stay calm until they had the boys visas in their hands which they have today! . We have had a couple of times in the past when these things have been held up in SA and taken ages or not come through at all.We havent seen the boys for nearly a year. My other daughter and her family will also be coming to stay and so we are hoping that we will have one day when the whole family are together which hasnt happened since our sons wedding in  Sept 2008!

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Chocolate Whoopie Pies with Fuffly Marshmallow FIlling

Today is my birthday. Yesterday we went into London and met up with our sons and daughter in law (its also her birthday today) We went and had lunch in Wahaca Mexican restaurant in Covent Garden. We have been before and its lovely!
Today we went to church, I then made these lovely little cakes from my new recipe book that one of my sons gave me The Whoopie Pie Book by Claire Ptak of Violet, a baking company in East London which is near where my son lives and pops in to get a coffee etc.

They are really yummy and the filling is like the Fluff you can buy in jars....I know to all you Americans these are probably nothing new, (it says in the book that they originated in the US in the 1920's probably by the Amish) but over here in the UK Whoopie Pies are the new Cup Cakes.
Here is the recipe of the pies I made today

Chocolate Whoopie Pie

Makes about 9 large or 24 small

175g plain flour
100g cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp bicarb of soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
125g unsalted butter, softened
200g sugar
1 lge egg
225ml buttermilk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 180 c/gas 4
line 2 trays with baking paper
In a bowl, sift together flour, cocoa, bicarb & baking powder. stir in salt and set aside
In separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy
Add egg and mix well
Add buttermilk and vanilla and beat well
Slowly add dry ingredients in 2 batches, mixing until just incorporated.
Chill for 30 mins
Drop 18 large or 48 small scoops of batter, about 5 cm apart, onto baking trays.
Bake in middle of oven for 10-12 for large and 8-10 for small whoopies, until the cakes ar impression when touched with finger.
Remove and cool on a rack left with a slight.

Spread or pipe a generous :) scoop of Fluffy Marshmallow Filling onto the flat surface and top with another whoopie. I found if you put a nice round dollop on the base and dont spread it out, just put the top and press down then looks really nice!! (making my mouth water typing it out)

Fluffy Marshmallow Filling
3 egg white
150g sugar
2 tblsp golen syrup
pinch salt
1 tsp pure vailla extract
Weigh all ingredients into a heatproof bowl and place over a saucepan of boiling water
Whisk continuously by hand until the sugar has dissolved and mixture is frothy and slightly opaque (about 10-15 mins)
Remove from heat and whip the mixture on high speed in mixer until it is white and thick and holds shape
Use straight away

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Nice Fabric!

When it was Mothers Day in the UK my eldest son was working in New York (He's a fashion photographer) so I didnt get my gift from him until I saw him over Easter...he knows what I like, while in NY he visited some antique shops up state and he bought me this piece of 50's fabric. He suggested I use it to make a couple of small cushions for the Ercol Day Bed that we have in our garage...waiting for my husband to finish rubbing it down so I can make new foam cushions for the base and back. I have all the fabric ready and waiting but cant start until the woodwork is finished and I have bought the foam.
I love the 50's styles that are making a come back. I am not sure who has designed this piece of fabric but I especially like fabrics designed by Lucienne Day. Along with her husband and fellow designer, Robin Day and other designers including Ray and Charles Eames, Lucienne was part of a design movement that is now known as Mid-centry Modern.
I am really looking forward to the daybed being finished!

Lucienne Day

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Prayer Request

I am sending out a prayer request. As most of you readers will know, my eldest daughter and her husband are missionaries in South Africa.  They support and build homes for children who have been orphaned through HIV/Aids. Finances are always a constant battle. But we know from past experience God always comes through for them. At the moment  they are having vehicle problems (this is a regular prayer request)...they are either breaking down or in this case the monthly installments are stacking up!
Hebrews 11:1 says
'Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen'
Keith Hudson says " The few who are willing to stand in the gap praying will make the difference between and battle won and a battle lost"
Thank you for standing with us!

Monday, 2 May 2011

Dressing Up!

I thought I would add some more photos as I havent had time to post about anything specific. I can only take credit for the bottom one as my son in law took the others.
The twins love the opportunity to dress up, today they went to the grand opening of the new playpark in their village and it was fancy dress, they went as Yogi and a bumble bee. My daughter had bought the main part of the costumes in a charity shop. They had been hand made by some clever person, and today she added the bee's head part with antennae and Yogi's hat, collar, tie and picnic basket. She did a great job!
 Last week they went to their second cousins birthday which was held at a pony place so they wore their Woody PJ tops and hats.
The last two photos are of them having fun with their uncles!

Sunday, 1 May 2011

The Royal Wedding

Last Thursday I drove down to Devon to spend a couple of days with my Mum and then one day and night with my daughter and family. I had arranged to sit with my Mum and watch the wedding, I took scones, strawberry jam and Cornish clotted cream and made a cream tea for us to eat while watching!
We really enjoyed the coverage of the wedding, I liked the fact that the whole wedding had a stronge spiritual emphasis and that William and Katherine had written their own prayer.I pray that God will bless their marriage and life together.
 When the wedding was over I took my Mum for a drive across Dartmoor where we found an ice cream van and stopped to eat a cone each in the car. While our children were growing up we lived in Devon and spent many a lovely day picnicing on the moors and paddling in the lovely cool streams. Such a great place for children to grow up. And now some of my grandchildren are enjoying the same upbringing, moors and beaches what could be better!