Saturday, 26 October 2013

New Makes

It's been a crazy half term what with my new work responsibilities, university course and family life. I haven't really had any time for crafting but now it's half term and I thought it was about time I started making again.

I started with gingerbread men smelling of cloves perfect for the holiday season but to be honest I think they look a bit zombie like.

I then moved onto owls with buttons for eyes in various different colours.

And this morning I'm thinking of something new which will have a beaded keyring element to it.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Busy Life

My life has been so busy since I returned to work from the summer holidays that my blog has been sadly neglected. I've got a new role at school which is taking up a huge amount of time and I've gone back to university for the year which is involving a lot of reading and will also involve essay writing come the holidays.

As you can imagine that hasn't left a lot of time for being creative. I've had a few unfinished projects lying around and I finally managed to finish them yesterday. I love the colours, buttons and beads that are involved. What do you think?

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Early Morning

I was up early this morning to make sure the flapjack was made and soup done before we had to be out of the house. I always find that if I don't do this before we go out, I can't be bothered when we get back. Do you ever feel like that? When we were on holiday, I had a lovely lentil soup so I've tried to recreate it this morning. I've used a recipe from the good food website. It's a twist on a plain lentil soup as it has carrots in too - useful as I had some carrots lurking away in the bottom of the fridge.

Here it is after it's blended. I've just tried a tiny amount and it's delicious. Perfect for lunch.

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Summer Holidays

Sorry I haven't posted for a while. I've been on holiday in the Yorkshire Dales then it was back to earth with a bump with the start of the new term and Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah). It's been a busy couple of weeks and I've managed to find 5 minutes to share some pictures of the makes and bakes.

I decided to start making some felt key rings, but this time I used beads instead of ribbon. I like the way they look.

Small and large hearts with matching beads

I also made a new house design.

I took these as presents for family when we met them yesterday in Birmingham.

I've also been making honey cake (for a sweet new year) and round challah (sabbath bread).

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy

So sorry I've been so quiet recently. The summer holidays are always a time for catching with friends and family and having the time to do all the jobs I've been putting off for the rest of the year. We've visited the doctor and dentist, found time for some crafting (although my mojo has only recently decided to visit me again) and spent some time away in beautiful countryside. My children decided to spend a week with their grandparents so my dh and I booked a cottage for a week in the Peak District. Bliss. Surprisingly, for a National Park which is the second busiest in terms of visitor numbers, it was really quiet. I don't know if it was because everyone was heading to the beach or because last summer was so rotten that everyone was abroad but we loved it. Here are some of the things we did.

Cycling on the High Peak Trail and Tissington Trail - 44 miles in one day which I was extraordinarily proud of even though they are both old train lines so quite flat ;).

Drinking the spa water in Buxton. Weirdly it was warm.

Picking and eating wild raspberries - little mouthfuls of sweetness.

Cycling the Monsal Trail - every time we came out of a tunnel, we were greeted with a beautiful view.

Walking along the Limestone Way into Matlock and we then walked back along the Derwent Way. It was a beautiful walk and we didn't meet anyone on the walk. Even getting caught in a downpour was fun.

Walking up and over Mam Tor, near Castleton. You can just see Hope Quarry in the distance in the photo.

Whilst the weather wasn't great it didn't stop us walking and cycling all week. We even managed to get to the Bakewell Show.

This was about 9am and it became a lot busier during the day (thousands of people).

So, if you ever get the chance, the Peak District is definitely worth a visit. Now I'm off the defrost the freezer - another one of those holiday jobs :) I'll be back soon to show you some of the things I've been making and baking this holiday. 

Monday, 5 August 2013


I love holidays that can rejuvenate and revitalise (although I'm sitting here writing this post in the cottage we've rented with a very sore posterior from the cycle ride we went on yesterday). Apologies that posting will be kept to a minimum this week as I'm having too much fun in the Peak District. This is truly a beautiful part of the UK and the word of the week so far has been AWESOME. The views are beautiful and we're hoping to walk straight out from the cottage this morning, not using the car at all and then get the bus back from the end of our walk. Even the rain is refusing to dampen my spirits. We've done and seen so much in the two days we've been here - walking, cycling, Bakewell, Buxton....

The view from our cycle ride

Buxton Water (which was warm)

Just a few pictures with more to follow. Hope you're having a lovely week.

Puff Pastry Pizza

What do you make to take to a friend's house when your job is to provide a main dish and the weather is so hot, you don't want to spend any time in the kitchen? Puff pastry pizza. This is the easiest 'pizza' to make and allows you to spend a minimal amount of time in the oven. I started by roasting two peppers in the morning (when it was slightly cooler outside). I used a red and orange pepper. As far as I'm concerned, green peppers should never be used a they're just not sweet enough and even with the caramelisation process of roasting, they still don't work.

I roasted these for about 20 minutes, turning once. About an hour before I was due to go out, I unrolled the puff pastry. Now, usually I go for the cheaper option and but the block of puff pastry and roll it out myself but it was just way too hot yesterday to expend any excess energy. I placed the puff pastry on two oiled baking sheets and scored around the edge. This is to encourage the outer edge to puff up. I covered one sheet in homemade tomato sauce and the other with pesto (from a jar). I always use the Sacla organic pesto as that's the only one which is vegetarian.

I then topped both sheets with sliced baby tomatoes, mushrooms and roasted peppers. Having forgotten to pick up mozarella at the the supermarket in the morning, I topped it all off with grated cheddar cheese.

I then baked it for approx 15 minutes at 180 degrees centigrade. The mistake I made was not to prick the base first as the middle section puffed up during cooking so I had to put a fork in the base when I took it out to let the steam out. Apart from that, the dinner party guests seemed to enjoy my offering. It was so warm on Thursday night that we had drinks on the patio of my friend's house and then dinner on the lawn. This is really turning out to be a warm summer (although it is raining as I write this).