Monday, 29 October 2012

keeping busy

It doesn't look that appetising!
 Chutney slowly cooking. This one is made from apples given to me by one neighbour, tomatoes that failed to ripen by another and a bag of courgettes reduced down to 50p in the local shop. Appearances can be deceiving and this super chunky chutney is really good!

 Stripey and wavy scarf  finally finished. it was over 15ft in total. In the end I folded it in half and stitched it back to back to make a double thickness scarf and to stop it curling in on itself! This one is to be given away as I've knitted yet another in the same yarn - different pattern - for myself.

Last lot of haws gathered over the weekend simmering with vinegar to make a haw ketchup. First batch tasted really good and has all been used up!

Who can resist a cup of tea and a delicious new teapot?

 I spent an evening untangling all this yarn and for £1 a ball instead of the usual £5 it was worth it! When I get a chance this will make me 2 new pairs of socks or maybe one pair of socks and a pair of gloves.

Autumn Woodland Walk

A few photographs from this weekends walk. Lovely and sunny but bitterly cold with the wind. The woods provided a lot of shelter and gave us a chance to explore and forage for the last of the autumn berries.

I think this is a Birch polypore. This one was as big as my hand.
Sweet chestnuts still ripening.
Fighting the squirrels for the tiny number of sweet chestnuts this year. Just like the apples the sweet chestnut trees were laden with nuts last year, this year we've struggled to find them and those we have found the squirrels had first.
My favourite tree. Its trunk roughly a metre across.
My guess this is one of the oldest trees here, just behind it hidden by the bushes is an old dry stone wall. These woods were originally market gardens gardens and farm land growing everything from strawberries, rhubarb and daffodils and they would then send the harvested produce by river to the train stations. A few of the boundary walls are left, hidden beneath the undergrowth. Cast iron gates are slowly decaying amongst the thriving trees and if you look carefully you can see the old stone gate posts. I walked down what was once perhaps a right of way between the farms. The trees towering over on both sides growing between the stone walls and the path beneath my feet slowly being washed away down to the slate once quarried just a few miles away.

pine cones gathered ready for christmas wreaths and deocrations,
These will be dried out allowing them to open.
A patch of the woodland has been taken over by pine trees. Thick layers of pine needles litter the floor and not much else grows. The odd fungus grows on a decaying pine and squirrels come for the pine seeds. Once they've gone, not even the birds bother much with these trees.
Pine trees. Squirrels were already in the trees
tearing at the pine cones for the seeds.

fallen leaves outside my house.

Friday, 26 October 2012


Today I woke with the best intentions, a morning walk in the woods to gather sweet chestnuts and then the rest of the afternoon to work in the garden. The weather has put a halt to those plans, bitterly cold, windy and very very wet!

Instead I plan to sit here at my desk and tackle to long list of jobs. I have had this list since since June. Many have been crossed off and yet more added. Its safe to say it is a work in progress!

I have a lot of small sewing jobs that need finishing. I'll get to those first, then there is the cleaning. I'll be doing that room by room, locking them up as I finish. It is the only way to save my sanity with the boy.

I have more photographs to mount and frame. Then they can be returned to the freshly (july!!) painted walls in my bedroom freeing up some much needed space.

There's an illustration idea I need to work on. Some small book binding projects. Books I need to find homes for. I want to cross as many jobs off that list as I can today freeing up tomorrow for all those jobs listed in the garden.