Sunday, 26 February 2017

Urge to be girly - it must be spring

Just a quick update on Flossie - she is getting stronger each day and is adjusting to life on three legs.  She won't be joining Scruffy in the outside hutch until her wound is healed and her fur grown back though. She's still not eating and drinking as much as we would like but she's survived!  My bank balance, however is in terminal decline. What I have learnt is that the service and care from a vet is second to none.

I came home from the shops the other day with some daffodils and plonked them in the nearest receptacle whilst I unpacked the shopping. The sauce by the way is the same as every other tomato sauce in a jar. Utterly disgusting. I must spend the time to make some proper stuff instead of taking the easy way out. However I think I might give the jar a shabby chic makeover because it it's rather a nice shape.

Talking about Shabby Chic and Girly stuff, I went to visit my friend Jan at The Cotton Tree yesterday and found the Tea Shop next door under new management - formerly Jiggery Pokery - now called Elisa Rose Tea Rooms
Jan said I would love it or hate it. I think I'm more in the latter camp although I recognise the huge amount of work that's gone into it - I just wouldn't like to be the cleaner! They had perfumed candles burning too which I really don't like, especially when I'm eating; it's an assault on the senses, not to say an air pollutant. 

I called into Bradley Gardens Nursery which I have passed so many times and promised myself I would go to.  It's a walled garden - bare at this time of year but still so very interesting:
 Beautiful Hellebores and Snowdrops in an urn
 A Garrya -  (Silk Tassle Plant)
And a standard bay tree next to the beautiful wall.  There's also a fabulous cafe built into the victorian glasshouse along one wall.  Unfortunately I'd just had tea and a piece of tiffin at Elisa Rose but I'll definitely call in at different times of the year to see how the gardens look.  There's also a few lovely shops built into the wall and some plants and (expensive!!) pots for sale.

My friend commissioned a heart for her husband for Valentine's Day.  I had a little angel heart that I had started a long time ago and abandoned because I couldn't get inspiration.
I started by painting over the old colour - there is a little bit of sculpting paste on but I decided to leave it.
Then I painted a plaid background and a little space for the wording - I love the painty clutter on my little table!

I made one of my favourite ever bakes last week
 Millionaire Shortbread - the trimmings are for the chef.
None of your waffer-thin, sprayed on toppings though. Buttery Shortbread with a hint of sea salt, creamy soft caramel and milk chocolate topping, poured over when it just starts to thicken so you get thicker bits, like an Easter Egg.  Nom Nom.

I ran a workshop for would-be Durham Quilters yesterday - there are some promising ladies and they have signed up for a second workshop to learn how to design a wholecloth quilt. This was the most popular choice for the block they made - called a Rose in a Rose.

Alex and Will are braving the wind this afternoon to visit the charming Crook Hall Gardens in Durham City so it's peaceful enough to relax and do some stitching, the weekend chores are done, so it will be guilt free.

So why have I got the urge to do something girly? Not girly like Elisa Rose but fresh and Spring-like.  I think it's the gloom that we have endured for the last few months. There is sunshine today and we have had some bright days but on the whole it has been a gloomy, grey winter.

Some spring shades to make a little hanging and a mat for the chest in my bedroom.
I have a few projects in mind. The linen has sparked my creative juices (mixed metaphors?) to make some hangings. I saw a little mat I liked somewhere on the internet so I have done a rough drawing and will have a little potter making this - about 6"-7" I think. It will have little embroidered flowers around the outside.
So Flossie and I are going to to settle down to watch the rugby this afternoon and I haven't decided whether to start the little mat or continue with my Moorland Blanket. Considering last Sunday was spent wondering whether the little bunny would survive her operation I feel so glad that I am now watching her nibbling sweetly at some kale and groom her little face so daintily.

Until next time xxxx


  1. O-M-G that millionaires shortbread looks delicious. In fact, my mouth is watering and it's only 9.11 a.m. on a Monday morning!! That would go down a bomb in our house. I will HAVE to give that ago this weekend. I tried a new recipe for tomato sauce yesterday. It's waiting in the fridge for tea tonight. I'll let you know what it's like.

    I agree on the scented candles and plug-in thing-a-me-gigs. They make me feel quite sickly and it's now officially classed as indoor air pollution! They are awful things.

    I'll let you know how the shortbread turns out.

    B x

  2. Thanks Bernice - hope you share the tomato sauce recipe too.