Monday, November 30, 2009

Three weeks to go people (give or take a day)

NaBloWriMo - National Blog Writing Month

Woo hoo, I did it. Oh yes I did it. :) Thirty posts in Thirty days - and only the odd filling in lettuce photo amongst it.

YAY me.

But, there is NO REST for this eager blogger. Oh no siree.

Tomorrow I decorate The Tree with the help of two very small bossy people (and one very tall one). Much sugar will be consumed and probably a lot of wine.

Then its making lame presents for everyone (because we are POOR). Just raised giving second hand presents to the pre-school aged cousins with my mother - SHEESH - you would've thought I'd gaily announced I was giving them a lump of coal or a sock puppet made from one of hubby's Unwashed Socks. Ye Gods, my eyes water at the very thought.

Then there will be a great deal of baking and photos of badly glazed ham, steaming christmas puddings (on a hot day with 98% humidity) and super-saturated solutions of brandy butter.

Then there will be an obscene amount of fake snow and paper snowflakes stuck onto windows regardless of the 40+ temperature outside.

And do not forget the HORROR of school holidays starting in 17 days (not that I'm counting).

Ah its going to be good.

:)

And just whilst I'm on the subject... All I want for Christmas this year is for hubby to get a job - last year it was a tonne of dirt for my vege garden. Funny how things change.

People of the Book

So the Blog This challenge for this week is to write about a book that's caught our interest in 2009.

ACK.

As a writer I KNOW I should have a thousand books I've read, or could recommend, or are sitting beside my bed in a to be read pile. But sadly I'm usually so busy researching and writing that I don't get time to read as much as I'd like.

Still, never fear. I do have a recommendation...

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks



Liked: Engaging story, easy to read, brilliantly researched, the prose just lights up the page and you feel like you are there with the character, looked forward to picking this one up each evening (which is more than I can say for Nora Roberts's Tribute, what a yawn fest that was).

Didn't Like: Awful ocker heroine, pathetically weak and perplexing ending, over use of stereotypes. The fact they wrote "A Novel" on the cover - er, thanks but its bleeding-sodding-obvious.



Speaking of covers...


I'd like to include a couple of my favourite covers for 2009. Both of them made me snort coffee out my nose all over the screen at some point this year.


:)

<- Check out her hands if you haven't spotted it.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Saturday at Avoca


Lunchtime. :)

Well i managed to remember that i can blog from my phone. Here is the hot misty muggy sticky view from the flat. Yes. Not exactly enticing. But i have plan b...

And here is where i plan to spend the day. :)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Friday night at Avoca


Avoca. My footprints in the sand.

Off for the Weekend

Mother's Group and I are off for the weekend.  Yes.  If you happen to be in Avoca this weekend and hear much cackling then that will be us.

I am not taking my laptop.

However, I will be back on Monday with ALL the gossip.

Yes, yes. I know I'm doing NaBloWriMo and this means I'll miss the last two days. This pains me deeply. HOWEVER, in the run up to Christmas and the January school holidays I shall be blogging frequently - so brace yerselves for bad photos of lame decorations, things boiling over on the stove and me ranting about life with pre-schoolers.

Also, if hubby doesn't get a job soon the bank's going to be repossessing the house, which will give me heaps to talk about. YAY.

sigh.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thankfulness

Anyone not under a rock or in a cave has probably noticed that in the States its Thanksgiving (well in a few hours, I think. Timezones perplex me).  Hubby knew, but only because of the fuss made about the "black friday" sales and the fact you could buy some laptop (I went a bit hazy then) for some incredibly low price.  Whatevs love.

Hmm, anyway, I digress.

Thanksgiving is not an Aussie holiday. Nope.  You won't find me wishing anyone Happy Thanksgiving on Twitter, because its their cultural event, not mine. (I will however eat the Pumpkin Pie made by an ex-pat US friend of mine - because yanno, its nice to be neighbourly - and also it's DIVINE - yes, yes, my stomach knows no international boundaries, cultural or otherwise)

Oh look, not only digressing, but now not even making much sense.  Excellent.

ANYWAY. I've been pottering around a few blogs this evening, and have been reading about the days of a couple fellow bloggeresses (or Goddesses bloggers as I'd like people to call me, or just Your Worship for close friends and family members, yes, finally I am getting tired of She Who Must Be Obeyed).

Okay, I'm tired, but I have a point.

I don't want to put up some cheesy post listing all the things I'm thankful for, I'm not one who counts my blessings - oh WHAT? - I may not count them, but I know them and I hold them close to my heart - I just don't go trumpeting them about the place.  

And the fact I'm rabbiting on about being thankful has nothing to do with Thanksgiving, its just a coincidence.  

But tonight I've been reading the blogs of women who have children who are autistic, or have Aspergers syndrome, one whose little boy has Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome, and another about a woman going through divorce and has just put up her Christmas tree, without her kids, for the first time.

They are amazing everyone one of them.  Their frank and straight-forward approach, their compassion, their strength, their patience and their fundamental resilience make me wonder how on earth I can begin to moan about my own children without the words catching in my throat.  

Not to put too fine a point on it, these ladies are teaching me that I don't know shit.

And I thank them for it.

I love my blog. I love prattling on about my kitchen disasters and my vegie garden and the latest 'terrible' thing my kids have done. But the reality is that I have two happy, healthy kids and a marriage that whilst it is something of a work-in-progress, is built on solid ground.  And MY GOD am I thankful for this. 

:)

Normal programming will resume tomorrow with photographs of the cat poo on the clean laundry pile that greeted me at 5.55am this morning. (Kidding, kidding)


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Fermenting things

I do love a good ferment.

However, sometimes a good bacteria goes bad and you end up with a smelly mess.  And sometimes things that ferment get forgotten about and die of neglect.

This would be a case of the latter. And if you think this attempt at home made vinegar looks bad you should smell it.  On the upside I think I've invented penicillin - so really I deserve another Nobel Prize (yeah, got the first for irritability and general foul temperedness - but I don't like to boast about it).

Luckily I can start again. I have a couple more vinegar mothers that I can add to red wine and try to turn it into vinegar.

For anyone remotely interested you do this:  Place vinegar mother in a container with 1.5litres: 50%wine 50%water. Taste after 4/6 weeks. Double quantities. Cover container with muslin as it needs oxygen.
Aside from this I have remaking my unset plum jelly.  Has now set beautifully...


But of course it didn't all go according to plan. And no, I did not catch an artery with the cheese slicer, I cracked a jar when I was pouring boiling jelly into it. Spectacular yes?  Why does it always happen when the jar is full?


Then, in a moment of complete BHG-ness (BHG=Better Homes and Gardens) I took to covering cereal boxes with pretty paper. I have no idea why. None.  The house is a tip and the dirty washing pile smells unspeakable. We've eaten nothing but baked beans for days. So what do I do to rectify the situation? Well, results below. Quite pleased actually.

Should've got that Nobel Prize they give out for domestic goddess-ness.

:)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Waiting

When any member of his pack isn't home, Sebs sits vigilantly at the front window, waiting.

Its also prime post-man barking position. Or delivery van, tradesman, neighbours, dogs, cats, birds, butterflies, caterpillers, ants, leaves that Dare To Move... you get the picture.

He spots the offender, flys to his feet in paroxysms of barking and then sticks his nose on the glass and wuffs at them.  See the smearly glass. Nice.  



All that defending of the castle can be exhausting on a small spaniel.

::::::

I'm much improved on yesterday.  A trip to Miss 5's new school uniform shop chased away any residual overwhelm-ness - so cute in her new Uniform. Oh and cooked brownies and madelines for a family afternoon tea this arvo. That's helped too. Probably more than it should.

:)






Monday, November 23, 2009

Teensy Bit Overwhelmed Today

Never, ever want to see another plum in my life. Ever. But, oh joy, have sorted out my 13kgs of plums - made into jelly, or frozen for when I make them into jam, and the maggotty ones? Well I poured boiling water on them and tossed them in the compost. :)

TAKE THAT MAGGOTS - hmm, suddenly I'm reminded of yelling at my children. Why is that?

It has all not been completely successful tho. Alas.  The plum jelly has refused to set properly thus far. I boiled it to the magic 104.5 degrees so it must be not enough pectin.  This means I'm going to have to remake the sodding stuff, but I think I'll pretend I'm giving it time to think about setting for the next couple of days before I embark on the process again. oh sigh.

Other than that, after the heat and the full-on-ness of the past week I am feeling almighty washed out and low this afternoon.  Things I haven't got to, like editing Drive, and not having a single flat space in the entire house that isn't covered in crap, and the dreaded clean laundry pile, and the caterpillers demolishing my calendulas, and being overweight, and not being able to see myself in the bathroom mirror due to the centimetre thick layer of... er... 'spatter', are all starting to pile up.

Ah, go away overwhelmed feeling. You are not welcome here.  :(

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Holy Hell its hot. Not the weather for spending the afternoon stuffing oneself with food, but I did it anyway.

For today's breathtaking blog installment I have photographed things in my garden that have not karked it in the last 36 hours.

OH, that's such a lie. Who's for a photo of a dead and dying potato patch?? Anyone? Anyone?

Nope not looking good. sigh.

Still, the passionfruit vine is passionfruiting...


The chillies are chilling (snicker at own joke)


The corn is corny (lol)


And the cucumbers are... NOT SUCCUMBERING (ah ha ha ha)


Yes I agree, that is quite enough from me.
:)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Crab Apple Jelly and Plum Juice

Spent the day watching the sun disappear into an orangy bushfire haze, the mercury hitting 39, and creating havoc in the kitchen.

My first job was to start on the processing of the 13kgs of plums that are currently scattered about the kitchen.  Words cannot really describe what it is like to be boiling 6kgs of aforementioned plums and being assisted by a very enthusiastic nearly four year old - headache inducing comes close.  Sigh. Still, I managed to keep her out of harm's way mostly.

These particular plums are going to be turned into jelly - so am straining out the juice through muslin.  In the photo the pulp is in the muslin that has gone a fantastic shade of red and is sitting in a colander in the top of one of my stock pots.  Its about to go in the fridge and in a couple of days I'll add the sugar and turn it into plum jelly.  The peg is entirely superfluous and was hubby's contribution to the process.


Whilst this was going on I had defrosted some crab-apple juice that dad gave me ages and ages ago - this stuff is so tart that it makes lemons look like complete wimps.  So I added a LOT of sugar, boiled it until it reached 104.5 degrees precisely and then bottled it.

So, six, five, no six jars of crab-apple jelly...


And scones with crab apple jelly for afternoon tea.

:)


I've also been making two Smitten Kitchen Chocolate Pudding Pies for a family thing.  Normally I am not overly fussed with my pastry. HOWEVER - mostly because the Universe is punishing me for losing my rag with the kids when they ripped a branch off my beloved lemon tree this afternoon - the crusts collapsed mid-cook and I had to whip them out of the oven and squish them back into crust shape with a fork, then promptly had a rare blonde moment and over cooked them.

I just know these little suckers are going to leak.

SIGH.

Still, I do plan to fill these with chocolate and sugar, and top them with enough cream so HOPEFULLY no one will ever know.  It'll be our little secret. K guys? K?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Hot - and not in a good way

Oh. My. God. Today it hit 44 degrees here. FORTY FOUR or 111.2 in the old scale.  And guess where I was?  In an un-air conditioned classroom attending a parenting seminar.

Urgh does not really cover it.

The seminar was fantastic, I have been discovering the slow parenting movement and Forest pre-schools - pre-schools where the kids spend all day messing about in a forest with no toys except what they can find - I kid you not. They do have a shed or similar to hide in when the temperature drops below -10 (yes MINUS TEN DEGREES CELCIUS) or there is a storm, but other than that they potter about outside playing with sticks and lighting fires with flint stones, none the worse for wear. 

I also experienced my first encounter with an attachment parent.  I'm an each to their own kind of person in most things and parenting style is no exception.  Personally, attachment parenting has always been one of those things that I was sure if I tried my head would explode within twenty minutes and I'd have to retire to bed with a valium and a large glass of bacardi.  But yanno, if it works for you...

When I realised that the mother in question had eschewed the offered child care and was bringing her two kids aged 6months and 2.5 into the lecture with her I was all you are KIDDING me, and how totally selfish is she, and great, 40+ degrees and I'm stuck in a room with her screaming kids.  But these kids were without doubt the happiest and most beautifully behaved I have ever come across. Not a peep out of either of them. They ate, played happily and silently and then napped.  Woke up, got a hug, and went on with their playing.

I honestly never thought that children could behave like that in a crowded room - mine certainly wouldn't.

Arrived home with Miss nearly 4 in a sweaty heap and the sum total of achievements since then has been sorting out my bumper 13kg plum harvest into those for drying (the perfectly ripe ones), those for jam (the under-ripe ones) and those for making into plum butter (or puree or fruit leathers) - the over ripe and blemished ones.

OH AND... we got a new shower head.

:)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bushfire Survival Queen and Hunter of Lost Car Keys

Hmm, so its all happening on the meteorological front tomorrow.

The Bureau is telling us that not only will there be a duststorm with vile air quality but we're expecting severe fire weather in Sydney as well.

Ye Gods.

I blogged a while back about how helpless I felt knowing my area will at some point be threatened by bushfire (you get that in an extreme fire danger area).   Since then I've done some research and talked to people and have nutted out a When To Leave plan.

So, for what its worth (and because its been a slow hot day in Chez Nicholas) this is our bushfire evacuation plan...
  • Severe fire danger
    • See or smell smoke - locate fire (internet, radio, phone RFS)
    • Fire 20kms away - stay put and monitor
    • Fire 10kms away 
      • Moving towards us - Leave
      • Moving away from us - stay put and monitor
    • Fire 5kms away - Leave
  • Extreme fire danger
    • See or smell smoke - locate fire (internet, radio, phone RFS)
    • Fire 20kms away
      • Moving towards us - Leave
      • Moving away from us - stay put and monitor
    • Fire 10kms away - Leave
    • Fire 5kms away - Leave with extreme urgency
  • Catastrophic fire danger - leave
We've got all sorts of contingency plans and whatnot, but I won't bore you with them.  Except to say that the shirt below is my official Fire Fighting Shirt.  Pure cotton flannelet and striped pink, pale pink and cream.  Should there be the slightest hint of fire I'll be slipping this stylish baby on (bought in 1986 - thank goodness flannelet never goes out of fashion) and hurtling down the highway to have coffee in Killara.  Yes, I am a seasoned survivor. Seasoned I tells ya.


In other news My Wretched Husband - let's refer to him as SOMEONE - buggered off to Chatswood this afternoon leaving me to discover that the SOMEONE had decided to play hide the car keys five minutes before I had to pick up Miss Five from pre-school.  Ten minutes later I was just pulling on  my sneakers to RUN through the 37 degree heat the 2kms to the pre-school and get her (desperate phone calls to friends had gone unanswered) and I glanced at the pram. A suspicion dawned and sure enough there in the back pouch were the keys. WHERE HE HAD LEFT THEM.

Argh.  Don't worry, I've made him suffer and I'm not done yet.

Manic drive and I got there late but not so late that she was sitting forlornly alone on the mat waiting for me. PHEW - bless the other slack mums in the world. Bless. Them. All.  Had to recover sitting in the bed with the kids eating ice-blocks and writing letters to Santa (for the kids - Santa already knows what I want, same thing as last year... a pirate).

Also the dog has eaten a lot of unripe plums (yes, I feel that is going to end Very Badly).

sigh.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Gingerbread Part Two

Ta daa... one fully functioning gingerbread house. Every bit of it edible.


The square bit in the garden is a vegetable garden people. A. Vegetable. Garden. (and not a "square bit with hamster-dropping-things in it"). And the green stuff artistically scattered about the dish is grass - and yes I put grass in the garden and not your usual snowmen because it is an Australian Gingerbread house.  Was going to put in an above ground pool (blue jelly in a ramekin dish) but didn't have room.

Back view.


Note cunning jelly belly wall down on the bottom right there. Covers monumental cock-up involving a lot of very runny icing.


Tips for anyone interested.
  1. Reinforce roof with wooden skewers - stick them on the back with icing
  2. Use glass headed dressmaking pins to hold structure together when gluing with the icing - dont forget to remove them :)
  3. Once you've added the icing sugar to the eggwhite beat on high for a long time - ten minutes or so. If icing is dripping off the house then its not been beaten enough. Icing should hold its shape and lollies shouldn't drop off.
  4. Dont mix your green food colouring into the coconut 'grass' by hand - green thumbs!
  5. Even though you think it will be fun to include your children when decorating - don't do it to yourself. They only want to eat the lollies, nag, whine and bicker and then go hyper on you the minute their little system tries to process all that sugar and food colouring.  Do what I do and save that part for when you have your entire extended family present.
Of course because this wasn't enough, I also harvested about 10kgs of plums from next doors tree. They taste wonderful and I'm almighty chuffed about it - they'll ripen in the next few days - if we leave them to go ripe on the tree the birds get them all.

Watch this space for a thousand plum recipes...

:)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Gingerbread Part One

Am making a Gingerbread house for a family thing on the weekend.  However, before I get to that I'd like to point out that I have a migraine and feel completely crap - am not even hungry. Yes. That is how sick I am. 

So today's post is short and sweet.

Semi cooked gingerbread, with crushed boiled lollies about to go into the oven.


And the result... WINDOWS
 (sorry for the unfocussed look - sigh)


And we did make excellent use of the leftovers

Monday, November 16, 2009

Sunburn

So Miss Five spent the day at her big school today, and I got to hang out in a cafe with No Children and get a taste of what next year will be like (yes, that's rejoicing you can hear).

Now yesterday hubby took the kids to the beach. There was a breeze off the water and it was overcast - and I just know that every Aussie reading this is howling 'perfect sunburn weather' - and indeed it was. They were all slathered in suncream with hats on but...

Miss Five copped it around her eyes and the side of her face.

And hubby got his legs to medium rare. Check out the lobster feet - poor love (snicker).

Its an easy mistake to make, and I know it won't happen again. Live and learn as they say.

However, I did have to turn up as a new parent at the new school with a slightly baked child.

Yes, parent of the year me.

sigh.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Drive

So I've been going on (and on and on) about editing Drive.  Thought it was only fair to share some of my hard work. Here is the first couple of paragraphs. (OH WHAT - I'm doing nablowrimo and I am all out of blogging inspiration and energy today after about nine hours of editing and Very Small Screamy Children).

Drive Me To Distraction
by C Nicholas (me)
“If he doesn’t slap my arse, make women driver jokes, or tell me to brace myself because he’s the most shit-hot race driver I’ve ever seen –“

Mike’s eyes continued to glaze over. They’d paused when she’s said the word arse, but now they continued their journey to complete ambivalence.

“- then we’ll get along just fine.” Alex finished with a sigh.

“You’re never going to get anywhere unless you lose that chip.” Mike stepped close and brushed an imaginary chip from her shoulder. His gaze wandered down from her shoulder to her chest.

Alex knew from experience that elbowing people in the nose hurt a lot, but even so, the urge to damage Mike was unusually persistent. She had her racing overalls unzipped to the waist, it being a rare hot English summer day, but now she pointedly zipped them up to her neck. Heat exhaustion was preferable to Mike trying to peer down her tank top.

Again.

She snatched her clipboard from her desk and departed the small administration office of Thruxton Motorsport Centre with enough force to make the windows rattle in their cheap aluminium frames.

Outside the smell of baked tarmac and hot oil hung heavily in the warm still air. She glanced at her clipboard as she undid her racing overalls a couple of inches, Rob Dryden was her next client for the Race Driving Test, and had elected to drive the Lotus.

She strode up the pit lane to where the Lotus was kept. A man waited for her, turning as if he’d heard her coming, though she wasn’t nearly close enough. He smiled as she approached, a warm sexy grin.

Tall, lean, brown hair flopping across his dark eyes and the pale skin of an office dweller, all came together to make him meltingly handsome, in a laddish way.

Surrounded by men, working in an industry that only saw women as decorative, Alex had learned to be aloof and matter-of-fact. Especially with the distractingly handsome ones. But the hint of kiss-me-nowness about his grin unsettled her.

She zipped her racing overalls all the way back up again.

“You’re a girl,” he declared as soon as she got within earshot.

“And you’re yet another idiot,” she muttered.

“Pardon?”

She ignored him. “Hi, I’m Alex. I’ll be taking your racing licence test today –“

“Sorry,” he interrupted her spiel. “That sounded really sexist of me. I was just surprised.”

She stared at him for long enough to make the confident grin falter.

“I’m sure you were surprised -” She consulted her clipboard, and kept talking so he wouldn’t start on about female driving instructors, and how he was totally for equal opportunity and well done her for being a girl. She’d heard it all before. “- Let’s get in the car and we’ll see what you can do.”

Alex didn’t bother to hide her reservation. Rob Dryden’s variety of driver was all too familiar. Couldn’t drive a racing car to save his life. It was easy to tell after seven years in this business, if he’d been examining the Lotus and reeling off its vital statistics the moment there was someone close enough to listen then chances were he’d be a decent driver. But those that ignored the car and looked at the view were never any good.

She handed him the keys, stamped around to the passenger side and wrenched open the door. Best get it done and over with.

“Accelerate up the pit lane and then we’ll turn out onto the track.” She pointed the way. He stamped his foot down on the accelerator. The car made a strangled whine then lurched into second gear with a shuddering clunk.

“Watch it,” she muttered. He shot her a startled look. The kiss-me-now grin was entirely gone.

They staggered around the track. Rob Dryden went out of his way to ignore Alex’s instructions. He accelerated too fast into the corners, and hurtled down the straight barely in control.

“This is a tricky thread the needle. You can do it at about seventy but you have to take it from the far left of the track.” She braced herself against the dash and blew out a sigh. If he didn’t listen then at their current speed there’d be only one outcome.

Rob Dryden remained at ninety in the centre of track. The tyres squealed like fingernails down a blackboard as he tried to take the hairpin corner and lost control of the car. It spun in a graceful circle on the loose gravel at the side of the tarmac, and ended up pointing in the wrong direction.

“What the hell are you doing?” growled Alex, when they came to a halt.

“Driving the sodding car -” He stopped talking so abruptly that it was as if he’d inhaled his next words. Then he sat, staring at his knuckles which gleamed though his skin, white against the black of the steering wheel.

Alex sighed again, remembered her anger management course and tried to let the tension go. It didn’t want to leave.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Spring has Sprung

Spring has sprung at our house, you want to know how I can tell?

Well the plums are ripening on next-doors plum tree (and being eaten by the King Parrots - which I was planning to photograph but the wretched dog started barking).


And today I pulled out the last of the Broad Beans and am drying them in the sunshine (some to plant next year and the rest to use in cooking)...


And the flowers on the Hydrangea have gone from this...

To this...


But the most telling sign of all is that we've taken the cover off the World's Most Boring and Pointless pool...


Fancy a dip anyone?

sigh.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Old

I find peculiar satisfaction in old stuff.  Anyone who's been reading The Blog for a while is entirely too familiar with the couches and trays and furnitures that belonged to my Grandmother and now reside in my lounge - some call it too tight to fork out for new stuff - I call it filling my home with antiques (or "recycling" when I'm in an environmentally friendly mood - you see now I want to expand on being in an environmentally friendly mood and move that into a call for a No F*rting Day (and add a few jokes about hubby exploding). But NO. That would be Crass. I am writing about Old).


Of course my most favourite old things in the world (apart from mumndad) are my teacups.  They are all handmade bone china and were produced in the UK by a company called Shelley China between 1882 and 1966.  The company was then sold and all the moulds for the teacups were destroyed.  This means that no more teacups could ever be made - and attempts to recreate the moulds since have failed. 

*I'll note for the purists that the company was originally named Wileman and it became Shelley China in 1910.


This teacup, which has a backstamp that dates it between 1910 and 1916, is one of my oldest.  The shape is called Gainsborough and the pattern is glamorously called 7084.  The artist has signed the back with their unique mark, which is `x`.


Because it is hand painted, if you look closely there are spots where the gold guilding has missed a bit, or a delicate dot is slightly off line.  This is what makes me love these cups the most. The mistakes. I think about the artist working in the factory a hundred years ago and wonder what they were thinking, or if they were chatting. Is that dot out of line because they were distracted, upset, excited, tired.  Did they mutter a curse, but decide to leave the mistake anyway, or simply not care less. Who was `x`?

The other thing that charms me is wear on the guilding in the centre of the cup, where a teaspoon has gone around and around.  Who held that teaspoon? What was her life like (I always assume her)? This cup has survived two world wars, imagine the things its seen and the experiences of the people who's fingers wore away the guild on the handle.

I also wonder where the cup will go next. This one, I think, may become an heirloom, and maybe it'll be passed from my daughters children to their children. Perhaps one of them will break it and have to keep the accident a secret so she doesn't upset her mother.  Now that would amuse me.

I'm not one for locking treasures away.  My teacups are here to be used and I am quite resigned to them breaking.  The dresser in my kitchen looks like this... (sorry the light is awful for photography today)

And when I have guests I invite them to pick their favourite cup to have their tea in.  Kids as well. I have half sized or demi-tasse cups for them to use.  My mum always, but always, picks the one that has a dead fly in it - sigh. 

Of course my girls have their own favourites - and this is one of the main reasons I started collecting in the first place - so that as they grow up we have a firmly established tradition of drinking tea together and talking, the cups are just an excuse to do it really.  Hubby has his own cups as well, less lavishly decorated, but still sleek and beautiful. 

So yes. Old. My Teacups. There you have it.

:)

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Plaiting Garlic

Harvested garlic from the garden


Tidied it up

And plaited it (insert lame vampire joke of choice)

Other than that today has passed ferrying Miss five to the doctor and paying $57 for seven minutes and the information that she has a double ear infection - which was another $20 on antibiotics.

Sigh.