Friday, November 27, 2009

Christian's (a) fruit cake

When I was 15, the school arranged a trip to Calshot activity centre on the south coast, for a week. Not a seriously overweight teenager's idea of fun, especially the thought of abseiling from the top of an aircraft hanger. I was terrified, but did it. Twice. Will not be doing it again.

I am just as scared now. The Fayre is tomorrow and I popped in today to see the hall and tables. Came home and decided to set up the dining table for a practice run. I HAVE SO MUCH STUFF!! Everything was laid out and I was rearranging and tweaking, adding the odd gold coin here and a cinnamon stick there, until I realised that the 4 trays of jams, jellies and mincemeat were still upstairs, along with a huge sacks of cushions, stockings and draw string bags! *shock*

Lavender bags, wheat pillows, oatie biscuits and a cheeky elf skittle in the background

I have no idea how I am going to fit it all on the table. Will only put a few of each thing out. The rest can stay hidden under the table cloth!

Scottie dog brooches, fruit cakes, pot plants with garden markers and fabric vases at the back. If it stood still long enough, it got tied up in ribbon and adorned with a bauble!

I spent yesterday making small Christmas cakes and decided not to ice them. Nigella's recipe, you can't go wrong. Good old Miss Lawson. I can't be the only one who's stomach turns at the thought of marzipan. I wrapped them in greaseproof paper and decorated each one with brown paper and ribbon etc

Made 80 odd oatie biscuits today and ate a few as they weren't perfect, I am all baked out. Jase is in Milan, but will be home late tonight. Too tired to do anything. Arm is killing me from the swine flu jab a couple of days ago.

Have lots of snacks in the fridge for tomorrow. It is going to be a long day, so have stocked up on diet coke, apple juice and sausage rolls. The staples of life.....! Will fill a few bagels and get the thermos out later. I like to be prepared (and would never go hungry)!!

The girls are fine, sloshing around in the mud that was once a dry corner of the garden. They will get a thorough clean out next week. Eglus and runs out, dig over the whole area and put everything back. My back is really looking forward to it! Elsbeth is still the only one laying. One day off, one day on - like this for 3 weeks now. At least we are getting some eggs a week. Next door have lots of bantam eggs if I need them!

Resisting the urge to light the fire. It is all stacked ready to light tomorrow night, but it is perishing outside. Might just have to strike a match to try and thaw out my hands and feet.

I have received so many good luck wishes for the stall tomorrow and just wanted to say thank you to everyone. *Smiles*

I have worked really hard to get things ready and am happy with everything I have made, so hopefully will do well. I am a Christmas fayre virgin, so will just try and enjoy the weekend - have seen a few bits for sale on other stalls, so no doubt will come home with a few nice bits........

Sod it, am off to light the fire now. Hope I sleep tonight!

C x x

p.s Camera is charged so will take piccies tomorrow.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

I'll be home for Christmas

Woke up at 9am today, which is quite late for me. Really foggy head and blocked ears. Not pleasant. Didn't get that much done today, so just slobbed around. A slobby day is good every now and then. It gives you a chance to recharge.

Dosed up on Lemsip and feeling a bit better now. Fire is lit and bag packed, ready for the crack of sparrows tomorrow.

My little Christmas pudding arrived in the post today *smiles* As soon as I get a chance to make it, I will post pictures.

Jase left for work at 1ish, so I decided to get baking. Found a recipe in an old Country Living magazine and gave it a whirl. Mini Fruit cakes.

They are lovely - I might even make some to sell at the fayre. Talking of which, I am nearly finished with my scottie dog brooches. They seem to take ages to sew, but I'm quite happy sitting stitching, whilst watching Merlin on BBC1. Only 2 more to make and then I'm all stitched out. Well, maybe I could manage a little bit more. Hee hee.

I got an email yesterday asking for details of my scottie dog brooches and someone has ordered one for a Christmas present. It is all wrapped up and will be posted early next week if you are reading *wink*.

The chicken area is a swamp with all this rain we've been having. I need to get out there, move both eglus and runs, dig over the whole area, and add more wood chippings. Once the fayre is over, I will sort it out ready for winter. Not particularly looking forward to it, as it is a mucky, dirty job, but needs must. Plus, I have a chicken course on the 5th December and I can't let people sink in mud. Even though I am baking mince pies for a Christmas hen party special! We might even have snow by then!! *hops around excitedly*

Completely forgot to mention that my December roster was published the other night. I am off at Christmas!!!! I get back from Istanbul on the 23rd and am then off until the beginning of January. I am trying to swap the Istanbul flight as I'm not too keen on long range flying! It is only 3 and a bit hour flight, but that is a couple of hours too long for me. Paris would be ideal.

Right, time to make my packed lunch for work. Am slightly worried by my 'cool bag lunchbag' fetish that is developing rapidly. There is no helping me.

Enjoy the rest of your weekends.

C x x

Friday, November 20, 2009

'..Pleasure to meet you Mary Poppins'

Morning all! 5am and feeling grotty! I am often up at this time, but usually for work. Have a fair bit to do today, but I'm still in sleep deprived shock.

Blowing a gale outside and the rain is hammering the windows.

Jase just left for work and I woke up with a really sore throat. Apparently it was like sleeping with a freight train all night!!

Our next door neighbour popped over a few days ago with a dozen of her bantam eggs. She has too many! The chance here would be a fine thing! Elsbeth is still the only one laying. I was mortified at the state of the house. Her's is always spotless where as our's is more 'lived in'. The fabric piled up in every corner doesn't help make the place look tidy.

She had a look at the things I have been making and bought 2 scottie dog brooches and some candles. 10 minutes later she came back with her son who bought a Christmas stocking, gingham heart, wheat pillow and some hand warmers for Christmas presents! I was advised to up my prices too. *anxious*

The cup of tea is slowly soothing my throat now. I have the chimney sweep coming over at 9am, so had better clean out the fire before then. I will resist the urge to put on a fake Cockney accent and sing 'Chim-chimenny'.

Not much post to greet us when we got in last night. I ordered a few presents from M&S Penny Bazaar for 1p delivery, but they haven't arrived yet. Maybe today. Will give me a chance to get things hidden before His Lordship gets home.

I was very naughty and possibly in a Lemsip infused state, but ordered this from the lovely Cupcakes for Clara site. It is a Christmas Pudding decoration. It will be nice do to some sewing for me for a change.

Going in to Town later as we have run out of Muesli and Cheerios. No, the world won't end due to lack of cereal, but Jase is partial to them. Might go to Penny's and get a few sewing bits. Waterstones have sent me a 25% off voucher, They are bad. Must resist temptation.

Wind is picking up again and it is a tad chilly here. Off to make another cuppa and then think about getting on my hands and knees to sweep out the fire. Still have a few hours before Dick Van Dyke, sorry Don, arrives......

I have put some runner beans seeds in small brown envelopes, popped them in a pot with garden markers and a pencil and wrapped the whole lot in cellophane for 'Gardener's gifts'. WIll post pictures as soon as the sun comes up. Well not immediately, but you get what I mean. *edit* Pics added -

And the Scottie dog brooch! *smiles*

More tea needed.......!

C x x

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Zesting before bedtime.

Back from work! 2 days off now and desperate for some time off. I apologise in advance for the typos and spelling mistakes, but am dropping off here!

Jase and I were both on the same 3 day trip which is rare. A day in Duesseldorf and then Glasgow for the night. We met up with some friends for a drink and then headed off to Wagamamas for dinner. Lovely evening and great to catch up.

Jase is up at the crack of dawn, so went to bed at 9pm. I won't be far behind him.

Have just weighed out sultanas, currents, raisins, chopped prunes and dates, mixed in some orange zest, juice and brandy and left to soak. Need to make some more Christmas puddings, so thought I would get a head start for my time off next week. The fruit will happily sit in brandy and cointreau for a week.

My throat feels like it is wrapped in barbed wire. Not sure what is going on there?

Will get up early tomorrow as have a few bits and bobs to finish off, so will sign off now.

C x x

Friday, November 13, 2009

Back to school....

Again, sorry to post and run, but limited internet time here in Nice.

Quick picture of the pencils cases I have made so far!

Will be home again tomorrow evening and will try to pull my finger out and update you all. Loads going on and the clock is ticking, but am getting quietly excited about the Fayre.

Nighty night,

C x x

Thursday, November 12, 2009

So sorry!! I have been really busy for the past week or so and haven't had a chance to update my blog.

I am in Nice tomorrow and will post some pictures and update you all re the goings on at Farm Cottage!

2 weeks until the Christmas Fayre. Really worried now.

Night night!

C x x