Sunday, 29 June 2008

More Cooking with Cherries......

Last night we had our neighbours around for a meal, we had starters of Olives, Hummus and Taramasalata, followed by Moussaka and Greek Salad. And for dessert a cooked cherry cheesecake shown below. It was rather like a New York Cheesecake, very yummy and delicious.

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Goodies from Woolfest.....

Woolfest is the wool event of the year, and I always look forward to it so much, it is a lovely drive to Cockermouth and just far enough not to become so tiring. I go with good intentions saying I will not buy too much, but I am overcome with excitement as to all the goodies on sale, I succumb and before I know it my purse is empty and the cards come out. This year was slightly different as I did want to purchase some fleece to spin. I bought with the help of very nice lady a Shetland fleece for £4 and a Ryland Fleece for £10 I don't know if that was a good buy but it seemed fair to me. I deposited them both in the " Wool Creche" and went in search of more goodies. Here are some of my purchases.

I also got to look at the exhibitors stands and this one really caught my eye, this piece was made from felt by Bun Brough of Wild Wool Felts, she is a registered Art Therapist, Storyteller and Textile Artist. She does not have a web site yet, but is hoping to have one soon.

Below more of her unusual work.

I also like the bags here made by she makes them from felt and laminated birch plywood. I think they are so unusual.

Alas the day comes to an end and I feel I could spend another day here. On the way out we we waved off by the Estonian Youth Project. Seen here, their clothes are made by hand from Native Sheep Wool, by girls from Saaremaa Island.


A trip to Woolfest in Cumbria today, I always have such a good time at this show now in its 4th year. It is growing each time I visit. Will post some pics tomorrow if I get time. Very tired now as it has been a long day.

Monday, 23 June 2008

What to do with a box of Cherries....

DH came home the other day with a box of cherries and as if by luck I had just bought the latest Sainsbury's Magazine. In it, a few pages with recipes all about cherries, so voila here we have
Cherry and Almond Tart. Here it is before cooking.......

.......And below just out of the oven. If I say so myself it was delicious, it was very similar to a Cherry Bakewell Tart, but looked like a Cobbler. Anyway, needles to say the whole family loved it and it was gone in one sitting. All they could say was "mum you must make this again". Happy families.
Still loads of cherries left, so if I have time I might try and make the Cherry Cheesecake also in the magazine.

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Royal Highland Show.......

Had a lovely day on Friday at the Royal Highland Show. I could not believe how big the event was. Lots to do and see for all ages and interests. First stop was into the Poultry Tent to see the hens. Below a pair of Silkies, quite funny looking things with the classic fluffy tufts of hair on top. DS3 would love one of these .

Below a cockerel, can't remember the breed but he looked stunning.

I spent loads of time in the Craft tent, and saw some lovely things. They was a great emphasis on bags made from Harris Tweed and some gorgeous knitted jumpers. I bought myself a lovely lacy shawl made for mohair and silk, I think it will look stunning over a sleeveless dress on a summers evening. We just need some decent weather. There was a big tent dedicated to Scottish food and each stand were giving away freebies, I tasted some lovely sausages and cheese, lunch sorted. The day was great and the weather stayed fine.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

It's Official.......

It's official I can spin. I have just just got back from my time learning to spin. The ladies in the spinning group were wonderful, they have shown me how to card and comb the wool ready for spinning. Then the exciting bit actually spinning, I went from this to

.....My first skein of wool, plyed too. I feel quite chuffed that I could actually do it.
The ladies gave me confidence and were very complimentary on the finished product. I hope it was not beginners luck. I have also come home with a bag of fleece, to practice with before the next meeting. I am off the the Royal Highland Show with the spinners on friday, this will be my first visit to the show, looking forward to it. Will let you know how it goes.

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Happy Fathers Day...

Happy Fathers Day to DH. The irises are flowering in the garden pond, summer is definitely here. We lead such busy lives and DH is no exception, so as he had lots of jobs to do today he decided he could only afford to take a few hours off relaxing on his special day.We had a morning of doing jobs, planting veggies at the allotment, lawn cutting etc. A quick lunch then off to visit a gallery on the art tour. We headed off to Horsley in the Tyne Valley to "The Hearth", a converted church or school housing several artists including the Horsley Printmakers. There was some lovely work on display, and I bought some dyed fabrics from the only textile artist. Her work was so meticulous, she specialised in wall art, patchwork and quilting being her interest. It included molar applique, with a very contemporary twist. From there we decided to go to Cherryburn a National Trust property, home to the famous wood engraver Thomas Bewick. It was very interesting reading all about him, and seeing many fine examples of his work, it must have taken him ages to do some of the intricate engravings and working by candlelight. There was a printing press room in the back, and they usually have demonstrations on Sundays but the Gentleman who does them was off sick. We will have to visit another time. There was a delightful garden, where we had tea and cake, and the views were lovely over the valley. Sorry no photographs as it was not allowed. Driving home we stopped off for a pint and DH had a treat a packet of "Pork Scratchings". I think he enjoyed his day.........

Friday, 13 June 2008

No more L Plates.......

No pics today, but good news. DS2 has just passed his driving test, first attempt. Well done from the whole family

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Making a Run For It.....

Jill escapes everyday into the garden, and this is how she does it. She flies onto the roof of the greenhouse, then onto the patio, exit to the garden. Cheeky little devil!!!

The chicks are getting big now, hardly recognisable from when they were born.

Mum is still looking after them well, the day is looming when we will separate them, not looking
forward to it. We discovered the other day we have a nest in the bushes next to the oil tank and saw these two blackbirds going in and out with worms, to our surprise there were four babies sitting in the nest with open mouths waiting for mum to deliver the food. This is not a good photograph, but there is a baby blackbird, head poking out, waiting for food. We sat and watched the nest for days, then the babies were all gone, they had fled the nest and Mum was looking for them. So sad she was mum for such a short time. It brings it home to me how lucky we are to be parents, and that we are for life. And although our children grow up and flee the nest, we are still there for them when they need us.

DS1 is coming home from uni next week for the summer, looking forward to seeing him.

Sunday, 8 June 2008

I Have a New Toy........

I have finally taken the plunge and bought myself a spinning wheel. I have been wanting one for ages, but not sure if to go with new or second hand. The trouble with a second hand one is I would not be sure what I was buying and being a novice if there was something wrong with it I would not know. In the end I have decided to go with a new one, and this one was recommended by a friend who is a spinner, it is an " Ashford Kiwi" ideal for schools and beginners. It is a double treadle, which should make it easier to spin I am informed.
It came flat packed, and it recommends to Danish Oil it, so before assembly all the pieces were treated with the oil. It looks the biz. Also in view are my hand made carders, lovingly made by DH. I bought the spiky carder rubbers a while ago, and DH has put them together for me. He is so good at these sort of tasks.

Just need to spin now, off to try..... Wish me luck!!!!

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Snapshops from my garden...

I do love the summer and especially the flowers, here are a few snapshots of my favorite flowers this time of the year. The oriental poppy, so bright and bold with lovely papery petals and the fluffy black centre. It towers above everything in the border, sham it only flowers for a short time.

Clematis Multi Blue, this has taken quite a few years to get established, I think this is going to be it's best year.
Euphorbia Wulfenii, this has taken over the garden, but I do love it . The mass of acid green flowers, look great next to the vibrant oriental poppy.

Clematis Montana, an old favorite, this was growing in our old,old house 23 years ago, we have taken cuttings from it each time we have moved and it is still going strong. I think the term "a good do oer" springs to mind Geranium Johnson's Blue, a quiet, shy little flower. It almost goes unnoticed until it starts flowering, it seems to carry on if you keep dead heading.