Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Days 364 and 365

These are the final two photos of my 365 photo challenge!

Day 364 of 365
On this morning the wind and rain were lashing at the windows and Husband went out in it to prop up nextdoor's fence as it was about to topple over.  Rudolf and I stayed inside in the dry.  This was the only sort of forest my sweet, little reindeer wanted to be in on a morning such as this!  He was meant to be finished in time for Christmas Eve, but I only managed to sew on his legs the previous day.
Day 365 of 365
Time for the last photo, pun fully intended! :)
This was my Christmas gift from my Husband.  My watch broke last autumn and I chose this one in October as a replacement.  I didn't wear it before as it was my Christmas present.  I normally wear small watches, but I felt like a change.  Jay also chose a large watch for his Christmas gift.  It seems an appropriate photo for number 365.
When I started this challenge, 365 photos seemed an awful lot to post (not to actually photograph as I take a humongous amount of photos), but now I am at the end of this project and paradoxically 365 no longer seems a lot!  I have enjoyed highlighting our year of celebrations with a daily photo.  Some days have been ordinary and others have been extra special; Fay's 21st Birthday, Jay's 18th, Husband's 50th and Our Silver Wedding Anniversary.  There have been lots of cakes and I had to go on a diet, which I will need to continue in 2014! :)  There have been wonderful trips away; a week in Venice, 5 days in Kent and 3 days glamping in Dorset.  We have also popped up to Stafford and Birmingham on several occasions as both children are now at university.  I feel very blessed to have had such a wonderful year and while I am pleased to have completed this challenge, I will not be repeating it! :)

I would like to take this moment to wish you all the very best for 2014.
Pj x

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Days 361 to 363

Wow, I'm almost at the end of my 365 photo challenge!
Day 361 of 365
Ella truly was "the cat that got the cream" on this day!  I made some coffee ice-cream and Ella enjoyed licking out the cream pot.  For once Maurice didn't get a look-in! 
Day 362 of 365
Another day, another dessert!  Espresso Chocolate Pots, served in our Turkish tea glasses.  I'm so going to need to diet in the new year!!
Day 363 of 365
Up early today as my Husband needs to be on the road to see his brother.  Jack Frost had visited us during the night and left the sharpest frost yet this winter. 
So that leaves only 2 more photos to round up my 365 project for 2013!
Best wishes, Pj x

Christmas 2013

Before Christmas ...
the tree was decorated,
as were the windows,
the stairs,
 and the kitchen.

Even the bedrooms were tinselled.  In fact only the bathroom escaped! :)
Cards were exchanged
and the sweetie bar was opened once the children had returned home from university.
Christmas Eve ...
the baking was finished and the cake decorated.
Stockings were brought out in anticipation of Santa's visit. :)
Christmas Day ...
Presents were opened and much appreciated by all.
The table was set and the turkey placed in the oven.
Crackers were pulled and jokes moaned at!
In the afternoon we posed for our Christmas photo.
The biggest kid kept larking around! This photo still makes me laugh; there were cries of "Dad, please behave!" :)
Me and my Babies
and with my Husband, who was finally behaving himself. :)
In truth he made my day, he was so funny.
Boxing Day ...
was a quieter affair.
After our morning coffee, my Husband and I went for a walk in the glorious sunshine.
A few trees had been brought down by the recent storms.
After a repeat Christmas lunch we attempted to break Fay's reign as Queen of the Monopoly board.  The keyword there is attempted! :)
The gingerbread house was only thing that was broken! :)
 So that was our Christmas, the four of us together at home having a fun time.  I hope you all had a good one too.
Best wishes, Pj x

Friday, 27 December 2013

Days 358 to 360

Our 365 Christmas :-

Day 358 of 365
I spent most of Christmas Eve decorating this cake!  Next year I am only making one Christmas cake!
Working from the bottom to the top, the cakes are Delia's Classic Christmas Fruitcake, Nigella's Chocolate Fruitcake, Pj's Lemon & Ginger Fruitcake and a Giant Sponge Cake Pop for the head, made with the Brandy-soaked offcuts from the Battenburg Cake I recently baked.  The hat is a chocolate covered marshmallow with a biscuit brim.
Day 359 of 365
Our 2013 Christmas photo.  Each year we take a family photo at Christmas.  Sometimes my parents are here with us, but this year we are visiting them at a later date.  We had a fun day at home, just the four of us, with lots of laughter.
Day 360 of 365
Boxing Day we got out my "vintage" Monopoly.  Fay said that her flatmates won't play with her as she is unbeaten - game on!  Of course she wiped the floor with us! :)
So that was our 365 Christmas.  Only 5 more photos to go until I have completed my challenge.
Best wishes, Pj x

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Days 354 to 357

Yippee, it's Christmas Eve! :)  So it will be no surprise that my next 365 photos lean heavily towards Christmas!
Day 354 of 365
In town to have my hair cut and for a little mooch around the shops.  This pretty scarf caught my eye so I treated myself.  I love the design of birds, moths, roses and lavender - lots of my favourite things in nature - all in a muted palette of grey, brown and blue.
Day 355 of 365
Cutting up the Festive Rocky Road after it had been in the fridge overnight to set.  OH was around to help me "clear up" the trimmings! ;)
Day 356 of 365
We went to see the second Hobbit film,  "The Desolation of Smaug".  Leaving the cinema I had hoped to photograph the Christmas lights, but most of them had been turned off!

Day 357 of 365
I spent most of the day in the kitchen baking for Christmas.  I needed a coffee after that!  This is my homemade gingerbread latte with a vanilla snap biscuit.
Only 8 more photos to go!
Merry Christmas, Pj x

Friday, 20 December 2013

Winchester Christmas Market

Yesterday the weather forecast promised sunshine, so three of us hopped into the car for our annual visit to the Christmas Market at Winchester.

 The sun was shining, but it was a little chilly.
 The market was surprisingly quiet.
 OH bought a bag of roasted chestnuts and Jay had some toasted marshmallows.

 We wandered up the high street,
 popping into the odd shop, but not really having any particular shopping to do.
 As dusk began to fall we admired the Christmas lights.

 The high street was a lot busier than the market!
Only four more days left until Christmas!

Days 348 to 353

Only 12 more photos of my 365 challenge to go after these 6!
Day 348 of 365
My childhood tree sitting in our kitchen.  I usually stick to red and gold baubles on this tree each year and change the other decorations.  This time I have a wooden Santa and reindeer, a reindeer spoon, two felt gingerbread men and a Forever Friends teddy angel on the tree.  I think I just need to make a star for the top.
Day 349 of 365
On Sunday I made a Battenburg Cake for my son as it is one of his favourite cakes.  I decided to give it a festive vibe by colouring the sponge red and green and by spraying the marzipan gold and adding a few holly leaves and berries.
Day 350 of 365
Grocery shopping and these just "fell" into my trolley!  It must be Christmas! :)
Day 351 of 365
Sweet card from my Husband.  ♥ 
Day 352 of 365
I decorated my first gingerbread house! I have to confess that I didn't make it from scratch; bought the kit from Ikea and typically it came with building instructions! :)  It smells delicious!
Day 353 of 365
Making the most of the sunshine, three of us took a trip to the Winchester Christmas Market and then we wandered around the shops.