29 November 2010

Day 333 of 365

New neighbours?

Just so you can get an idea of the size. Bob, the owner had to use a forklift truck to get the head on!!

28 November 2010

Day 332 of 365

Here comes the sun.

Love it or hate it?

The thing with snow is that you either love it or hate it. Or if you're like me, love looking at it and walking in but absolutely hate driving in it.

Today we took Moss for a walk around the Gordon castle and he loved it. When we set off we had a gorgeous blue sky.
This unfortunately didn't last very long and before we knew it.....................we were in the middle of a blizzard.

A few minutes later the sun was just trying to break through.

And a few more after that we were back to blue skies.
Over by the pond the water had already turned to ice and the sun was shining. The oak tree was just losing the last of it's leaves and the the snow was beginning to defrost...right on top of my head!!!
More snow is forecast for tonight and I'm sure all the kids in the local area are hoping for a snow day tomorrow. We can but hope. I could cope with a three day weekend.

24 November 2010

Day 328 of 365

Snow, hail and a definite drop in temperature but the ice cream parlour is still open for business. We are a hardy lot up here!!

Day 327 of 365

Proper poorly with tonsilitis :0(

Day 326 of 365

Christmas themed decoration for this weekend's crop (weather permitting!!)

Day 325 of 365

Not rain but condensation on the windows in the back porch!! We really must get some heating in there!!

Day 324 of 365

:: All change again. My hair is getting shorter every time I go to the hairdresser ::

19 November 2010

Day 323 of 365

;; the Birthday Girl with her cake - before it was demolished! ;;

Day 322 of 365

:: The top of my chocolate cake ::

I made this cake for my friend June at work, whose 40th Birthday it is today. I had a bit of a disaster with the white chocolate as it all ended up in one place on top so I had to scoop it off with a spoon and disguise it as a pattern!!!!

It didn't last long this morning at coffee time!!!!

Family Chocolate Cake!!

125g/4 1/2oz - soft margarine
125g/4 1/2oz - caster sugar
2 eggs
1tbsp golden syrup
125g/4 1/2oz -self raising flour
2 tbsp cocoa powder

50g/1 3/4oz icing sugar - sieved
25g/1oz -butter
100g/3 1/2oz milk chocolate
a little white chocolate

1. Lightly grease two 18cm/7 inch shallow cake tins
2. Place all of the ingredients for the cake in a large mixing bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until mixture is smooth.
3. Divide the mixture between the prepared tins and level the tops. Bake in a preheated oven, 190C/325F/Gas Mk 5, for 20 mins or until springy to the touch. Cool for a few minutes in the tins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
4. To make the filling, beat the icing sugar and butter together in a bowl until light and fluffy. Melt the milk chocolate and beat half into the icing mixture. Use the filling to sandwich the two halves together.
5. Spread the remaining melted chocolate over the top of the cake. Pipe circles of contrasting white chocolate and feather into the milk chocolate with a cocktail stick, if liked. Leave to set before serving.

Best eaten on the day you make it!! :)

Children in Need

Yes it's that time of year again. Time to dig deep for Children in Need.

On the Chris Evan's breakfast show on BBC2 yesterday the auction for the day was £23,000 short of £1,000,000. A listener phoned in and donated the extra to make up the amount. Later the show phoned the listener back to tell him that his donation was very much appreciated and went on to tell him that the one million mark had been broken so he didn't need to donate. The listener donated the money anyway!! Today an 8 year old boy was on the show to tell Chris that he was donating £23 of his savings to Children in Need, as his version of amount from the previous day.

It doesn't matter how much or how little you can spare. Every penny helps. So please donate.

17 November 2010

Day 321 of 365

Britain wakes to Prince William and Kate Middleton's engagement on the front of all the papers.

Day 320 of 365

:: The dark nights mean being able to light the candles in the living room ::

Day 319 of 365

:: The fireplace is finished at last ::

Day 318 of 365

:: A bit of card making ::

Day 317 of 365

:: New door stop. An orginal flat iron my MIL gave me when we went to visit ::

13 November 2010

11 November 2010


A day to remember all those who have died in war. Not just in Britain but all around the world.
I found this poem while surfing the net and thought that even now a soldier can make something so moving while serving in a warzone.

Sgt John Norbury explains how this poem came about:

I was moved to write this following a Vigil Service on 4th Jan 2010 in Helmand Province . I have a son of my own, he is a similar age to the majority of these brave young warriors, I can only imagine what the parents, family & friends are feeling at this time in their loss.

I think when I wrote it I initially wanted for the soldier's family to read it, to know that others care.
Please take a moment in reading this, say a little prayer for those who grieve, for those who wait back home.

To those out there, reading this, take care & stay safe.

Goodbye Young Soldier

We said goodbye tonight
To a soldier whom I did not know
He did his duty well
But sadly he had to go

He did not travel this far
To leave behind family & friend
He came to do his duty.
He did not know it would be his end

His short life was just that
A soldier’s ultimate commitment he gave
This earth deserved him longer
He went too early to his grave

He is one of many heroes
Another poor young soldier
For he is not alone
No years left in which to grow older

What comfort lies for those he left
Never again to be by their side
A gallery of happy memories
And deservedly this Nation’s pride

So farewell young soldier
Whilst here you did just right
I hope your life was not a waste
Farewell young soldier, sleep tight.

Sgt John Norbury, Afghanistan, January 2010.


10 November 2010

Day 314 of 365

Another recipe. Given to me today by one of the girls at work. It's the first time I've made it and it was delicious and really easy to make.

Spaghetti Salmon Primavera
Serves 2

200g (7oz) spaghetti
25g (1oz) frozen petit pois
50g (2oz) fresh asparagus tips, chopped
200ml low fat crème fraiche
1 spring onion, finely chopped
80g (3oz) smoked salmon trimmings
Ground black pepper

1. Cook the pasta according to the instructions.
2. Meanwhile, cook the peas and asparagus in boiling
Water for 1 minute. Drain.
3. Put the crème fraiche into a pan and heat gently but
do not boil. Add the spring onion, salmon, peas and
asparagus and heat until everything is warmed through.
4. Drain the spaghetti and add to the pan. Mix well together.
5. Serve immediately in warm bowls.

9 November 2010

Quote of the weekend

Any parent of a teenager will know that they don't say a lot.............................lots of grumping, moaning and grunting but not much actual speaking.

Imagine my surprise then when on Saturday, while waiting for his flu jab, I asked Samuel about his Christmas dance at school only to have him speak to me and use a very big word for 9am on a Saturday morning!!

Mum - So when is your school dance?
S - I'm not going.
Mum - are your mates going?
S - No. It's not "mandatory" you know!!
Well that told me didn't it?

Day 313 of 365

:: Gnocchi with Bolognaise Sauce ::

This is great for using any leftover bolognaise sauce.
500g pack of ready-made gnocchi
cherry tomatoes, as many as you like
2 - 3 large spoons of leftover bolognaise.
juice of half a lemon (or tablespoon of Jif lemon)
1 tablespoons of olive oil
2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese

Heat oven to 180C.
Put gnocchi in a pan of boiling water and cook until they float to the surface. Scoop them out and transfer to a large bowl. Add the tomatoes and bolognaise to bowl and stir through. Add the lemon juice and olive oil. Season to taste.
Transfer mixture to ovenproof dish and Sprinkle over half of the Parmesan cheese saving the rest for the topping once cooked.
Cook for 15 - 20 minutes. Serve immediately with green salad or crusty bread or on its own.
Can be frozen, if desired.

This is a revamp of the Gnocchi and Pesto recipe my sister sent me.

Day 312 of 365

Time for a change. The clocks went back at the end of October meaning the start of darker nights. Not ready for my dark, winter wardrobe yet I thought I'd put my red handbag to good use.

7 November 2010

Day 311 of 365

A little hooky time at last. It's nice to put my feet up on my new foot stool and chill.

Bit of a naff photo today....sorry

Day 310 of 365

:: My new fire place ::

Here's what it looked like before

Day 309 of 365

:: The only autumnal bit of my garden. Everything else is green!! ::

5 November 2010

Day 308 of 365

:: I've finished my Christmas parcels for the girls at work ::

Day 307 of 365

:: It must be nearly Christmas as the tins of Roses chocolates are in the shop ::
Mine are hidden away otherwise come the big day there wouldn't be any left!!

Day 306 of 365

:: A Birthday card for my MIL ::

2 November 2010

A wee story about a Chocolate Labrador

It is a well know fact, especially in the gun dog world, that Chocolate Labradors do not make good gun dogs. They can't be trained, a few of them have brain cells but most of the time there's not a lot going on between the ears (sorry Max!).
NOT SO.....................every morning on my work to work I stop at the Lollipop (crossing) lady while she helps the little ones across the road to school. There is one who Mum who likes to walk her Chocolate Lab at the same time. This puppy has got it sussed. It walks quite happily along the pavement but when it gets to the crossing it stops dead in it's tracks...................... until Mum gives him a treat then he gaily bounds across the road to the other side.
Take that Black Labs. This Chocolate puppy got all the brains :0)

Day 305 of 365

:: My lovely new bookshelf. John took out the old alcove and built this in it's place. ::

Here's the before picture.

1 November 2010


Wear your poppy with pride
Remembrance Day 11 November 2010 (and every year)