Sunday, March 25, 2012


We have been watching the single quince on our tree all summer. It started as one of a dozen tightly curled flowers on our little tree. A few weeks later there was a series of little quinces waiting to grow. The wind cut all but one to the ground. Miss H found the remaining one and has been watching her squince ever since.

It made me think of Mary, Mary quite contrary ... with a silver nutmeg and a golden pear.

Today it fell in the wind. Fragrant, ripe and ready for crumble.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Experiments with Burda

This was my first attempt at making an outfit for a big occasion since the incident with upcycled upholstery fabric. That experience left me with a dress split down the back, from zipper to hem for the most part of a ball. While a great conversation starter, not something I would care to repeat. This dress on the the other hand, remained intact, and has me thinking I could maybe try doing this again.

The fabric was a fantastic silk twill from Global Fabrics. I took it to the counter under the false impression that it was included in the sale. Even at full price, the dress came in at a little less than a bought one, and fit a whole lot better.

I'm also giving Pattern Review a try. You can find my first ever review over here.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Rocket Flavoured Lace and Caterpillars

I know that caterpillars love to eat cabbages, but having a taste for rocket and radishes was new to me. The holes on the radishes started out so small, I figured they had one tiny peppery bite and then faded away. I know I would, if I were that small. Today, the holes on the rocket got to be so big that they were just stalks dotted with famished green caterpillars.

I enlisted the girls' help in wiping them out. I have heard of kids being paid 10 cents for every caterpillar. Fortunately, I realised this would make me a pauper before I made the offer. Instead they have been bundled into the bug catcher for show and tell. The kids were delighted to find hole munching caterpillars just like the one in "The Hungry Caterpillar" and Little E is looking forward to showing her teacher that caterpillars eat radishes and rocket, not just swan plants* and cabbages.

* Our largest swan plant caterpillar was last seen heading for the rose bush, where there is now a new chrysalis. Perhaps they just have a taste for the letter R.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Small Indulgences - making bath bombs

As the first winter fires light up and our wetback* begins to bubble away, it's time to start thinking about hot baths. E and I have been making bath bombs. Fizzy baths get to be a treat. I will let you know when I get the recipe right. If you have already found one, please point me in the right direction. The ingredients were bought in such quantities that we wont be stopping at just one batch. So far we have learnt:
  • Silicon moulds make pretty shapes, but are really hard to pack tight. We won't use these again.
  • Cornstarch is sometimes listed in a recipe, but only seemed to make our bath murky. Will leave this out next time too.
  • Dried flowers look pretty when added to the mix, but area pain to clean up. There are much better uses for dried lavender.
  • Lavender and clove oil mix smells delicious and fizzes ever so delightfully.

*log fired hot water pipes

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Snippets of Order

I am not one for housework. I could write screeds and screeds to justify my views and insecurities about this.

I can whole heartedly justify not doing any, but then there are the moments of order. These are the moments when one or two corners of the house get cleared out, given an over haul. I am struck by the calm it leaves, heave a sigh of relief and just for a second, wish I did this more often.