Monday, December 30, 2013

Wild Plum Jam

After our little foraging trip, we had a kilo of wild plums, tiny and more sour than sweet. I roasted them to soften them then pushed the pips out, one by one. I transferred the soupy flesh to a saucepan, added sugar, then watched it bubble and simmer until it was sticky and jammy. Then I poured it into scalding hot jars, left them to cool, then tied it all up with string.

The end result - tart, not too sweet, perfect on a scone. Hopefully not poisonous. 

{Washi tape purchased from my old friend, the Craft Queen.}

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Pickings

A change in our living circumstances this year has meant we don't have a garden, at least not much of one to speak of. We have land, a huge expanse of vacant lawn, but lack of inspiration and the short-term rental thing means we haven't done anything out there. But we live at the end of a little dirt lane, one that I meander down regularly. And a recent wander revealed a bounty of produce. So one evening last week, my babes and I went a-foraging to see what we could see.

When we returned, we had a big bucket of wild plums, a posy of pretty weeds, apple branches that we twisted together with some mysterious berried shrub to form our Christmas wreath (and the tiny apples looked quite festive, too, in a glass bowl) and a bunch of spiky holly. It brightened up our 'for now but not forever' home beautifully. All in all, a festive foraging success.

Oh, and Merry Christmas! I hope yesterday was fun and messy and noisy and a just little bit excessive - it certainly was for us.

{I'll be back in a couple of days to show you what we did with those wild plums}

Sunday, December 22, 2013


I was digging around for my Christmas spirit. I knew I'd left it somewhere. After the year we've had, the loss, the massive change, I wasn't sure where it could be.

And then, in the space of 24 hours, we hit up a local carol evening, and sang and danced in the rain. We drove home via the crazy lit-up Griswold houses. We visited Santa for the obligatory half-thrilled, half-terrified photo. We travelled along beautiful country roads to pick out a tree and cut it down. And we chose a corner of our home in which to set it up and decorate it.

And suddenly, there it was. Suddenly I was making pompom garlands and homemade gifts for teachers, downloading Bing Crosby and ordering ham. Every evening we turn on the lights and do a stocktake of the pressies underneath the tree. 

No, you can't open them yet. Yes, you have to wait till Christmas morning. 

Only three more sleeps.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Handmade Christmas Giveaway

Head on over to Christina Lowry Designs - I'm featured today! And better still, you can win an incredible selection of handmade goodness for Christmas, including one of my hand-knit hats in the winner's choice of style and colour. Quick, it closes tomorrow!

Monday, November 11, 2013


The party had a robot theme. I, being me, suggested we get into the swing of things and make some robot masks to wear. They, being them, decided we needed to add a touch of flair - a bunny robot, a three-horned unicorn robot and a horse robot. Neigh.

They're crackers, all three of them. Gloriously, beautifully, relentlessly, seriously crackers.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


I had thought to begin this post with, "I was wandering through the house wondering if I'd ever blog again." Which led me to envision myself in something flowing, moving slowly, fingers draping absently along dust-free surfaces, deep in contemplation.

But none of that ever happens, the flowing, the slowly, the draping. (The dust-free).

I'm here and I'm busy and I'm accepting it may never relent. I'm smiling more than I'm not. My girls are well and beautiful. It's November already. I'll find my way back to this space with time. I've been feeling its absence.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Family Holiday in Singapore

We ate dumplings, rode roller-coasters, danced in the storm. We swam every day, several times a day, to escape the heat. We took a break from the normal, kicked back with aunties and cousins, let ourselves be looked after for a bit. My three little travellers handled the flights like champions. And we all want to go back tomorrow.

Monday, October 21, 2013

We're Back

Sorry for the silence. More photos from our Singapore sojourn very soon.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

In the Press

Some months ago, an email arrived from a land far, far away, requesting I send a couple of my bonnets off for a potential photo shoot. They arrived just in the nick of time, and life rolled on, and I forgot about it. Then I heard word that the photos were going to make it into print. And today my copy of Papier Mache magazine arrived, within it a fantastic feature interview with one of my absolute favourites in this blog world, Flannery O'Kafka, alongside images from her incredible fashion shoot entitled 'When My Father Was At Sea'.* 

This is all very exciting for a country mama who spends most evenings on the couch knitting in her jimjams.

PS I'm going on holidays next week, so the shop will be closed for a couple of weeks from tomorrow. Stay tuned for some exciting new things when I return...

* Bonnets aside, this woman (and her ridiculously beautiful family) is very cool and very inspiring. You should seek her out and read about her.


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