Monday, 30 November 2009

The End of November

It's advent calendars tomorrow! My Mum has always bought a traditional calendar for each of my two children since they were little. She asked if they still wanted them, now that they are older and I said "yes". Don't know if the yes was for myself or the children ;)
Time for the November Flower Mosaic.
I planted up some Paperwhites for a Christmas display, but they decided to flower in November! It has been so mild that they are rather early! I have also planted individual white grape hyacinth bulbs in tealight holders. I'm hoping that they will flower for the Christmas table arrangement - fingers crossed.
Sunday we visited the in-laws. My children think they have a cool Grandad. Look what he has in his bedroom. OH calls this a man cave! :)

Well, the countdown to Christmas starts in earnest tomorrow. I've made a start on the Christmas shopping and baking, but there's still a lot to do. I've got my Christmas magazines out of the cupboard for inspiration and have started to make space in the freezer for all the goodies! I'm even beginning to feel a little excited at the prospect of the festivities!

Friday, 13 November 2009

Last Week

Last week ... we had sparklers in our garden to celebrate November 5th. Our local display is late this year and is planned for tomorrow, weather permitting!
Last week ... on the crafting front, I made this felted Scottie dog gift tag for a friend and now that the weather is colder I have two scarves "on the go" - one crocheted and one knitted with a crocheted flower. I will post pictures of them when they are finished.
Last week ... I made my Christmas cake to my usual Delia recipe. I love how the fruit looks jewel-like whilst it is soaking up the brandy.
I have ordered a few cake decorating bits and pieces on-line and this year's cake is going to be predominately white, with a wreath of white holly leaves on top. Watch this space, as last year's design didn't go as planned and had a very last minute change!

Best wishes, Pj x

Monday, 2 November 2009

Holiday Haunts

October Garden Mosaic.

The garden is starting to look a little bear now that the leaves are falling. Just 2 more garden mosaics to do and then I will have to think of a different monthly mosaic for next year, any ideas?Just to make you laugh! On the last day of book week we all dressed up as a character from a book. I'm the Worst Witch!

What is it about cats and boxes? OH had just left these 2 small boxes on the sofa and Maurice had to try one out for size! Needless to say, it was far too small!

The next day I put my handbag on the floor, a moment later I heard a noise and turned around to see Maurice trying to crawl into it! I said, "MAURICE!" and he laid down where he was and hoped I couldn't see him :)

Half term we stayed with my parents in Norfolk and visited the following places:-

Oxburgh Hall

A beautiful moated house.

Unfortunately photography isn't allowed in the house, so I only have external photos to show you.

Up on the roof. That's "mini-me" in the middle! I'm 5ft 6in, but my children make me feel small. Jay is now just over 6ft!

Woodland walk at Oxburgh Hall. These 2 where making me laugh with their funny comments and faces - it's a wonder that the photo isn't blurred.

The moat at the back of the house.

The next day we went to Norwich and after lunch at this cafe we looked at the recently renovated Dragon Hall, a medieval merchant's hall.

Dragon Hall rafters.

One of the dragons remains.

In the cellars - scary.
Not the faces they are pulling, but the fact that I have to live with these 2 jokers! lol

Rear of Dragon Hall.

Front view.

On our journey home we took a detour to RHS Hyde Hall in Essex.

I love these Chinese Lanterns - I must grow some next year in my garden.

Pink and Silver - a lovely combination.

Lots of autumn colour.

My children on the bridge.

The rose garden was still in full bloom at the end of October.

The Hill Top Garden.
A blaze of orange.

We were back home again in time for Halloween.

I spray-painted some twigs black and arranged them with some dead sunflower heads from the allotment and some glow-in-the-dark shapes.

The wreath I made last year.

Also last year I painted these lanterns. The dumpling squashes are from the allotment.

Outside the front door.
I only had time to carve one Jack-o-lantern this year.

Bats and spiders hung from cobwebs outside the door.
Chocolate and vanilla marbled cupcakes with homemade chocolate decorations.
Salted and roasted - seeds from the pumpkin.
Usually we get so many ghosts, ghouls and witches calling, but this year there were only a few, even though the weather was mild. I think a lot of the usual trick or treaters are a little older now and have probably given up. Unfortunately this means that we have been left with a lot of candy!