Sunday, 30 September 2007

Strawberry Scones and Cream

Another moment of domesticity today. This post features one of my all time favourite treats- warm, home baked scones with jam and fresh cream.

The pastry cutters I use are vintage and I had to do battle on ebay to win these! I saw a set of these many years ago in a local antiques shop. They were in pristine condition and I didn't buy them when I saw them but went away to 'think about it'. You guessed it, when I went back they had gone. Grrrrr.... how many times have we all done that.
Anyway, the recipe I use for these is from Nigella Lawson's book 'How to be a domestic Goddess'. I added some chopped, dried strawberries to the mixture and they turned out quite nice.
The fabric scone holder was from Portugal and makes a pretty display.
Not that they lasted long!

Friday, 28 September 2007

An Autumn Walk

Today, whilst I was slaving away at work my husband took himself and Dante for a nice, long walk. Armed with my camera so that he could take lots of photo's of our countryside to share with you.

One very happy dog posing for the camera or is he just pausing to catch his breath?
It all looks very bright despite the fact that it has been a dark and dreary day. Quite a cold wind and the odd shower of rain.

All the leaves are changing colour now. Lovely rich shades of red and brown.
A nice atmospheric woodland scene.
And who is this strolling into the picture?

This has to be my most favourite photo. Isn't this honeysuckle just gorgeous.

This carving is part of a seat where you can sit and admire the views all around. It is a girl with a foal draped around her shoulders.
I love walking around here no matter what the season or weather and so does Dante. It is a joy to see him bounding around, so completely happy and exploring every nook and cranny until he is tired out and absolutely filthy!
Bye for now.
Enjoy your week-end whatever you choose to do.
Sandi x

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Wooden Spoons and an Apple Pie

I arrived home from work last night to be greeted by these. A clutch of lovely wooden spoons. Let me tell you we are not talking any old wooden spoons my dears, no siree, we are talking Qualideeee wooden spoons. French, no less.
See, told you so........
Now to me this can only mean one thing and one thing only. Yup, I mean serious cooking. Nay, not just cooking, we are talking the business here - real baking!!!!!
Now don't get me wrong. I love to cook, I really do. But sometimes a girl just wants to do a little light blog surfing, meander through homes of breathtaking loveliness, drool and admire all of that creativity going on in blogland. I had a suspicion there was to be none of that for me on my day off. Mutterings and heavy hints issued from the husbands direction. Talk of quiches and apple pies reached my only half listening ears as I was perusing yet another newly discovered blog. Huge sighs on my behalf as I agreed to go down to the kitchen and bake. How could I deny the man who had ordered French wooden spoons from some website he had discovered.
So, first things first, make myself a large pot of tea......
Ah that's better. Feel a bit more up to the task now.
Put some music on.........Love listening to this particular cd.
Get some company. He's my litle shadow and loves to be in on any action, especially if it involves food. A dog never knows when some tasty morsel may land in his paws if he plays his cards right. Don't get in the way, pose nicely for the camera and watch out for any possible falling edible debris. Anyway, I finally got the quiche and the apple pie made and guess what? I didn't use those new wooden spoons at all. Stuck to my tatty old things just because the new ones look so nice, seems a shame to use them really.
Here is the finished apple pie. I always cook mine on an old enamel plate. Love those plates, so useful for lots of things.
Slice of apple pie anyone? With a generous dollop of fresh cream of course.

Monday, 24 September 2007

Faded Flowers and Butterflies

I took the opportunity of picking these whilst the weather was dry and windy. I love the faded colours which work so well with the vintage look. They will get some glamour treatment for Christmas with a dose of gold spray paint and glitter.

A nice close-up picture, the variation in colour is just lovely. These are all from the same bush too.
I bought this sweet butterfly from an antiques and collectors fair yesterday. It is a hatpin and the wings move. I thought it would look nice amongst the blooms.
This is a more permanent home for it, stuck in the cork of a miniature bottle. I didn't think that I had any more butterflies but once I started looking around me I found quite a few.
This is a dish by Portmeirion pottery which we bought from the actual place a few years ago. Portmeirion is the Italianate village in Gwynedd, Wales which was built by Clough Williams-Ellis from 1925 to 1975. It is absolutely stunning, well worth a visit. It is like something out of a fairy story and was where they filmed the cult 1960's TV series called The Prisoner.
A trinket box which I have had for years.
Both of these are from Portugal and were bought on different holidays by Zoe.
This one was a Christmas present from my sister several years ago.
Another Christmas present, from my son Dan this time. It says "Carry your dreams with you and the world will be a more beautiful place".
This rests on a cut glass salt pot.
This one was bought for me by my husband last year. It was from a craft fair in Shrewsbury. I love little surprise presents like this. They don't have to cost a fortune but they always seem more special when they are bought just because......
I know that had I continued to look around the house I would have found even more of these lovely creatures, alas none of them real. We get a lot of them visiting a buddleja near to the kitchen window. It isn't called the butterfly bush for nothing!
Until next time,
Bye for now.
Sandi x

Friday, 21 September 2007

Birthday Celebration and Prize Draw

Excuse me folks but I feel a tad delicate today. This, of course is the reason. We celebrated my son's birthday last night with a lovely meal, cooked by my husband. Pan fried steak in red wine sauce - mmm lush. Washed down with a glass or three of wine, followed by this very chocolatey cake. I usually have a cast iron constitution but having worked all day too and eating quite late I feel a bit muzzy headed. Much quaffing of tea has taken place by yours truly today, just to settle my heaving digestive system.

Anyway, the birthday boy enjoyed it all hugely, judging by the size of his grin.
Twenty three candles all blown out in one fell swoop. Large slices taken with double cream poured over. Groan..... pardon me while I find the alka - seltzer.
Now on to the other purpose of this post. Fairy announcement about to be made on the winner of the fairy gift draw.
Put all the names into the hat.
Not hundreds, but I am a very infant blog and I was thrilled that any comments were left.
All neatly folded up......

And the winning name is Sophie Honeysuckle!!!!!!
A huge fairy thank you to all who take the time to visit my blog and leave kind comments. I really look forward to my blogging time, it's a nice little (almost) daily interlude for me and all your lovely blogs never fail to cheer me up.
I must try and do some housework now, my parents are coming on one of their very rare visits on Sunday and I haven't quite moved into panic mode yet over the state of the house. I know they aren't coming here to look at the dust (thank goodness, there is a lot to see) but I do believe it only good manners to make visitors feel welcome.
Oh well, off I jolly well must go, but I think I need another cup of tea before I start.
Bye for now,
Have a great week-end.
Sandi x

Wednesday, 19 September 2007


This is one of those fibre optic lamps that I just love and isn't my usual vintage style. I have been sitting in front of the computer this evening catching up on blogs that I like to visit. This lamp is sitting on the table right next to the computer. It has found its way here from my son's room which is in the throes of being decorated. I thought that it looked so pretty, even if it is wafting around right under my nose. So of course, I had to take a photo of it. Little Miffy was already in the background, sitting on top of the processer so has managed to get into the picture! It got me thinking how so many advances have been made in technology. How fortunate we are nowadays and how easy it is to take all of these things for granted. I'm sure that my own grandparents, born at the turn of the last century would have marvelled at something like this.
I have a fibre optic Christmas tree, all twinkly pink fluff, and one of those little cottages covered in twinkling snow and icicles, all courtesy of fibre optics. I love history and of course delight in nostalgia but I am so grateful that I live now and can enjoy all of the benefits of the 21st Century.
It is my son's birthday tomorrow which means I will be drawing out the winner of one of my Nostalgia Fairies, no fibre optics but plenty of sparkle and oodles of prettiness.
Bye for now.
Sandi x

Monday, 17 September 2007

Welcome to my Shabby Chic World

Good evening all. Tonight I would like to welcome you to my home.

This is my cosy corner. I love a nice cup of tea.A nice 'new' vintage book. The cake on the cover is a work of art!
A shabby chic candlestick.
A few things in my china cabinet.
Pretty pink bits and pieces.
A fairy hovering over a glittery mirror.
Lovely green and blue birds - with glitter of course. I don't know who coined the phrase shabby chic and made it trendy but this has always been my style. It's never really been my way to do minimalism, I just wouldn't feel comfortable. To me, all of my accumulated things make my house homely, somewhere to feel relaxed. I don't mind if the cushions get squashed or people eat snacks whilst sitting on the sofa. Dante is very much part of the family too and makes himself comfortable just about anywhere.
I hope you have enjoyed your visit. Until the next time.
Bye for now.
Sandi x