Sunday, July 22, 2012

Aprons and candles

We've had a busy few days. We went to see my lovely Mum's new house in  Kent. Its  a fabulous 1930's semidetached house. The previous owners had had it for a very long time and there is a feeling of history there. Lots of original character remain - the original doors ( not painted!) with bakerlite handles. The garden still has its original structure and  there is plenty of room to grow vegetables. There is even a cupboard- just for the lawn mower!

The wonderful Mrs Thomasina Tittlemousee has been busy making long victorian type aprons and kindly offered to give several away and I was one of the very lucky ones to receive one !. Its beautifully made and the colours are perfect! and would have been just what I would have chosen. I am soooo delighted with my gift and hope to post a picture soon of me wearing it!. For now I am enjoying admiring it. Apologies for the quality of the photos- they don't really do the apron justice.

Today has been a day for in the garden , making the most of the lovely sunshine. I sorted the greenhouse which had been badly neglected, removing side branches on the tomato plants and generally  tidying. I was delighted to see that I have several green peppers , a couple of chillies and one or two tomatoes growing. This was a lovely surprise considering the  severe lack of attention they had received.

 I also found that we had a number of rather wonky citronella candles left over from last year and me hating waste decided that I could perhaps make some new candles using the wax and wick from these and some old china cups and bowls.

I melted the candles  over a bain maire- ( a pan over a pan of hot water) .

 Once the wax had melted I removed the wick  and cut to the desired length. I then used a peg and stick to balance the wick over the centre of the cup or bowl.

 I poured in the hot wax and left it to cool.


1. I removed as much of the black bits as I could from each candle with a knife in a scraping type action, a bit like peeling potatoes.
2. Make sure you cut the wick long enough to be suspended from the peg.
3. Put  newspaper down where you will be working but most importantly where you will be pouring the wax. As it makes a bit of a mess when you pour.
4. Melt the wax over a low to medium heat. ( in fact once the wax started to melt I turned the heat right down)
5. Most importantly the wax is hot - so handle carefully- it can be inflammable!
6. NEVER  ever leave a lit candle unattended.

 So I'm on a roll now and will probably make some more tomorrow!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Wild raspberries and jam!

Yesterday whilst out walking my daughter and I noticed some wild raspberries - these together with my home grown ones made some lovely jam last night. I used the recipe from Nigella Lawson's book called 'Domestic goddess' . It's called 'No Hands Raspberry Jam' . It's not a jam for keeping and needs to be kept in the fridge but the taste is so fresh and absolutely delicious . It's one of my family's favourite jams! This is my first batch of jam this year! Those who know me are aware of my prolific preserving habits - it has almost become obsessional in the past. It must be nesting instincts or certainly something primeval ! But the satisfaction and the pleasure I have once a batch is made is soooo rewarding . I'm already making plans for my next batch of jam - apricot or strawberry ?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Vintage shoes for the Ball

> Just a quick sneak preview of preparations for the school leavers ball. We bought these shoes in Blondie Vintage near Brick Lane London on Monday . They should go perfectly with her dress - another photo tomorrow. Aren't the shoes fabulous - unfortunately they don't fit me - I felt a little like I was starring in Cinderella when I had a sneaky try on! However they are just perfect for my daughter !
> Sent from my iPhone

Vintage shoes for daughter who will go to the ball !

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

I haven't forgotten!

Things have been rather mad in the H household! After my lovely escape to Bath with some girlfriends - the family spent a few days at Centre parcs - time for bonding , fresh air some exercise and importantly time away from telephones, chores and stress! Then teenagers spent a weekend at Blissfields - a local pop festival. Are you exhausted yet? Oh ok - not yet? We then spent Monday on a day trip to London - one daughter visited a friend in Chelsea and the other daughter and I visited Brick lane and all the vintage shops for shoes and a bag for the Prom ball ( which is on Friday this week). These will go with a Vintage dress we bought in Durham earlier in June on our visit up North!
Yesterday I finished the first part of an order of lavender bags before last minute shopping for the ball which included a bow tie for my son! Then last night involved putting highlights in my daughters hair and the initial stages of making a flower headress!
I have now two days of work and then Friday we have the ball! My daughters dress still needs some minor adjustments and her headress needs finishing but there is till plenty of time! Oh and I checked on the allotment tonight and our potatoes have got blight! - now are you exhausted? I think I am! I'm hoping lots of photos will follow! See you soon!