19 June, 2011

Rain, rain, go away

The rain has eased off and the sun is shining, for now, but it's just a matter of time before there's another downpour. I was hoping to get stuff done on my day off today; our garden currently looks like a jungle - I fear Ray Mears'* survival skillz would be put to the test; the lawn is desperate for a cut but I don't want to die, so mowing it whilst it's wet is out of the question. Maybe I'm being a big ol' blouse, but I didn't even go for my bike ride. I actually put it down to the puncture my poor bike got the other day. Yes, another puntcure! That's two in the space of 5 weeks - is this normal? Maybe cycling through the glass-bottle graveyard that is my route to work isn't such a great idea. My bike is a bit under the weather, so he's tucked up in the garage until he's feeling a bit more sprightly.

Instead, I've enjoyed my afternoon watching 'A View to a Kill', supping a big mug of homemade masala chai - Yum!

There's nothing like a bit of Roger Moore, who incidently is the best Bond, to lift your spirits on a rainy, miserable day off. Yes, I know, everyone prefers Sean Connery - not this gal. I'm also partial to a bit of Timothy Dalton *sigh*

*super dreamy*
But the rain... please come again another day. Preferably when I'm at work...

(*So much better than Bear Grylls)

Masala Chai

235 ml water
6g sugar
1 whole cardamom pod
1 whole clove
2 black peppercorns
3g black tea leaves (I love Yorkshire Tea!)
120ml warm milk

Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan, and bring to a boil. Add the cardamom pod, clove, peppercorns and tea leaves. Remove from heat, and let the mixture steep for 2 to 3 minutes. Strain into a cup, and fill cup the rest of the way with milk.

06 June, 2011


Way back in 2007 I took a 9 week recreational sugarcraft course at Tamworth College. I wanted to do something with my spare time that I enjoyed, and as I come from a family that loves to bake I thought that this would be the perfect way to spend two hours every Tuesday evening, that wouldn't interfere with my job and shift patterns.

Yes, please ignore the very crude photo, but I was extremely chuffed with my efforts from my first proper cake decorating course. It may not look like much, but that was my flowerpaste poinsettia! Don't you just love the glare of the flash against the red of the petals?

At the time, I felt frustarted that I couldn't quite get the hang of using this 'stuff' that was not too dissimilar to chewing gum. My hands were always too hot and made working with flowerpaste really difficult. I almost gave up within the first couple of weeks as it seemed almost impossible to create anything.

Patience and persistence was all I needed. I felt I could create (almost) anything once my poinsettia was complete! Bring it on...

...I mean, just look at my bow cake. You want one don't you? Admit it.

And this is my embossed, piped and whatever-else-I-could-get-on-it cake. Simply Beautiful (with a capital B)

Hey kids, you gotta start somewhere.

03 June, 2011

A beautiful day for a bike ride!

Having the day off today I decided to make the most of this fab weather and go for a spin on my bike. I headed out of Tamworth towards Wigginton on a ride that I do a lot with Kellie, but as she's sunning it up abroad this week, I'm on my tod.

Please excuse my pasty whites

Look at this lovely house for sale, shame it's just out of our price range.

HELLO! I just love these yellow gates on Sunnyside Farm.

These pots are lovely aren't they?

Wigginton Manor.

Eye eye.


With schools off for Whit Week I thought I might have seen more families out and about on their bikes, sadly no. I did see (and was overtaken by) a few lycra clad gents on their road bikes, I tried to keep up but couldn't be bothered didn't want to miss any of the view.

Look at all these broad beans! The field went on for ages

and potatoes! Lots and lots of potatoes - I hope they'll be sold at our farm shop when they're ready.

Canal in Fisherwick

 Packington pig


What a feast for the eyes! I'm now sporting a rockin' farmers tan on my arms, ending just below my elbows. Where did the sunshine take you today?

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