Monday, 19 March 2018

Tidy desk - tidy mind?

So after my last post, my poor desk/study looked very much in disarray. Large amounts of paper, card, glue sticks, die cuts, stickers, scissors and off cuts to name but a few made up the disorganised mess I'd created. There were boxes of all kinds of papery paraphernalia as well as rubber stamps and stamp pads, paper clips, string, washi tape and loads more besides.





It didn't help the fact that I'm working on another journal 
alongside my kitchen one




It needed tidying that's for sure. But where did I begin. I walked in and then did a turn around several times. It was daunting, trying to find the right place for so many bits of journal stuff bearing in mind I'll want to get it all out again in the next few days.









Today was the turning point


It had to be done



Mind you this is only one corner - you don't need to see the rest!!!



Back soon. P x

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Savouring Memories

Six years ago I wrote a post here about my collection of recipes handed down, shared and cooked by my grandparents, parents, friends, relatives  and colleagues - all with their own unique memories. My sister Helen came up with an idea a few years later about writing a book about recipes from the past.  Well it sounded a good idea at the time and my sisters and I got excited at the prospect of possibly publishing a book that could be handed down to future generations, but it didn't happen - life often gets in the way of good ideas and so it was forgotten about, abandoned.

However, it has always been there in the background for me and as a maker of Journals over the years I decided to turn this idea into a Journal for myself not only about the recipes but incorporating  kitchens of the past and the gadgets, utensils and kitchen paraphernalia that housewives have used over the years, me included (I have always been a sucker for new gadgets which often lay at the back of a cupboard for years before they see the light of day again).




So, armed with all my old recipes and cooking ephemera and a huge amount of research I set about making the Journal. The cover was from an old hardback book that I gutted (sorry book lovers but it was found in a charity shop and destined for book heaven anyway). I covered the front and back covers and then joined it together with rings.  I generally make my own signatures and sew them into a cover but for this purpose it was easier using rings as I was, and am still able to add other items as I go along.





I found photos of old cooking utensils and copied lots of my old cookery books and food advertising that go back for 70 plus years, to the time of my grandmothers' kitchens.




I've been busy making tucks and pockets, banners and labels in order to facilitate all my ephemera. 


Inside the actual journal I am adding a further three mini journals/signature that I have made, to cater for the many scraps of paper/recipes that I have collected since I married 48 year ago. This has evoked so many happy memories - like the shoe shop receipt for my daughter's first pair of Clarke's shoes aged 4 year old in 1977 - with a recipe hastily written on the reverse. The shoes by the way cost a mere £4.49!


Then there's memories of the Peanut butter and other cookies and jotted down on an American friend's scribble pad. I only knew her for 18 month before she returned home to the USA and now sadly lost touch.



This has been such an exciting venture for me and evoked so many happy memories. Each scrap of paper/recipe/photo has a story to tell. It certainly kept me busy during the dark dreary winter months and delighted I have something to show for it. I'll be hand-writing and using my old vintage typewriter on occasions for making my Journal entries.





And who remembers the days of Hostess trollies, fondue sets and pressure cookers let alone the electric carving knife, wall can openers, choppers, mandolin slicers  - to name but a few, although I'm sure many of these are still found in households today. And then of course there was the introduction of the deep freezer into our homes in the late 1960s which then was a revolution but one we couldn't be without today!




So, the adventure carries on. This is definitely a work-in-progress and each day I'm finding and adding new ideas all the time. Whilst I can't take credit for Helen's original idea, it certainly gave me food for thought (no pun intended!)

Be back again soon P x


Monday, 26 February 2018

The Beast from the East

We've recently been potting up some Spring plants - more especially Primulas and Cyclamens to pretty up a weary looking garden but with the onset of the "Beast from the East" I have just come in from moving them to a safer environment underneath our pergola and covered them with a protective fleece. Hopefully they will survive the extreme weather conditions that have been forecast.





We've had snow flurries all day but evidently tonight's the night when it all happens. I'm guessing most schools will be closed and public transport will come to a halt and supermarkets will sell out of their produce, mainly bread and milk, after panicky customers buy all they can stuff in their car boots!! I do get cross, don't you. Other countries seem to get by without all the faffing and panicking.

Anyway, the forecasters are telling us that we should be prepared for extreme weather conditions and so that's what we'll do.  Hopefully they've got it wrong and it won't be as bad as they are banging on.

So, while I've been having a whinge, my Soda bread has just come out of the oven.  Hoping it's okay as I've never made one before.


So, Mary Berry said turn it over and knock it - if it sounds hollow then it's done. Watch this space!

Bye for now and keep warm. P x

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Belated New Year greetings from a returning blogger!






I’m not making any excuses or explanations but suffice it to say I have returned. Maybe once a week who knows. But blog I will. I’ve missed this blogging community - the caring and sharing between online friends and enjoying a peak at how other people live their lives.

So, its a new beginning. Christmas came and went and here we are in the middle of January and Spring is just around the corner??? Not sure about that.  It’s very chilly out there and the forecast doesn’t look too good either. But, on the bright side the evenings are drawing out and the days are getting longer. Not a lot, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I don’t know about you but I hate it when it’s dark around 3.30pm.

The first of January brought us a new grandson - Herbie - who is simply adorable. No pictures as yet but maybe soon (respecting my son’s wishes for privacy). This makes six grandchildren in total and we’re all delighted.

I’m still enjoying my writing and journaling and I love a spot of watercolouring and doodling as well as photography, cooking and my garden.

Well that’s it for now. Just a little catch-up on my life. Be seeing you all again soon. Px








Friday, 3 February 2017

Journals and Journalling

Thank you for your encouraging comments on my last post - cheered me up no end.

I make my own journals and notebooks. I love making them and get a lot of pleasure from this hobby. The time has come for me to now actually write in more of these journals. They're no good just sitting on the shelf looking pretty. So I've started keeping a journal - not necessarily daily - more a place to keep my thoughts and jots, and a few drawings and quotations I've found along the way.



The one on the bottom of this pile is my Christmas journal, where I keep lists of gifts given yearly, things to do, places I've been, meals I've cooked and such like.

The next one up is my Commonplace book. Here I jot down quotes or poems I've heard or read by famous people, authors, actors etc. If any of you watch First Dates on the tv, I even jot down the love and life quotes that Fred the Maitre d' and restaurant manager often says.

The third one up is the book I take to church to keep notes of the Sermon and any bible scriptures I've enjoyed.

The brown leather book is my travel notebook, which I lined with a map of the area where I live. Useful for days out and holidays - a sketch or poem recalling where I've been - to the beach - countryside - places of interest etc.

The ones on top are waiting for a suitable theme to be catered for and I have a few ideas waiting in the wings.

Bullet journals (bujos) and planners seem to be the thing of the moment (although why I'd want to plan and bullet when I mop the floor, clean the microwave and put the laundry on I'll never know)  but I can see that this format must suit a lot of people who lead busy lives.

So, for the moment at least, I'm quite happy just pootling along with my mutterings and jottings and occasional sketches - it keeps me happy.


Have a great weekend.
P x



Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Saying goodbye to January

February, for me this year is the new January! To say that January was a bad month is an understatement. I won't go into the finer details but suffice it to say I'm quite glad it's behind me now.



So, I don't as a rule make resolutions but this is the year that the hubster and I reach a certain age ending with a 0.  I've decided, in view of recent happenings and events that life is too short for faffing around and not doing anything positive. No I'm not going to do a wing walk or jump out of an aeroplane, in fact as yet I haven't thought of anything that could be that adventurous but .... who knows?


 Happy February friends
Spring is on the way!!
Px




Friday, 27 January 2017

A stroll through the woodland and country park

Last weekend we took a stroll through our local country park which we frequent quite often.  The weather was sunny but very cold so we donned boots and thick coats and spent a pleasant afternoon taking in the nature around us.

The walk took us through this wooded copse and out onto the open woodland and Hadleigh Castle that overlooks the River Thames.




I wonder if anyone's at home?





It didn't take long before a light mist started enveloping the surrounding 
hills and the sun was beginning to lose its strength, so no river view today







We are so fortunate to live where we do. Ten minutes away from the coast and downs, and yet only about 15 minutes from open countryside. Plus the added bonus of only being a 45 minute drive into London.





This pond was completely frozen over


As we came away the sun was just going down


So homeward bound for a well deserved hot cuppa.

Hope you all have a great weekend. P x