Showing posts with label domesticity. Show all posts
Showing posts with label domesticity. Show all posts

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

WWII Wednesday: Eggless Chocolate Buns ...

Over Christmas I watched (twice) Back In Time For Christmas, as I do enjoy social experiment type programmes and jump at the chance to watch them. My favourite moment will forever be Rochelle's comment about her gift of a new vacuum cleaner, which was something along the lines of: "I'll get started now, with a fag in my mouth and my new slippers" eluding to her two other gifts. My nan got a new pair of slippers every Christmas, so this also reminded me of her.

But I digress. This set me thinking about The 1940s House which I also really enjoyed. So, I pulled out my DVD and had a watch. This in turn reminded me of how much I used to like cooking and baking from WWII era recipes and I decided to bake.

I picked Eggless Chocolate Buns, as I always overthink eggs, so don't use them or buy anything with eggs in. I have made this recipe a lot and they're always really scrummy. However, I was midway into the recipe when I found I had run out of sugar, so I decided to make up the difference with maple syrup. Yes, well, you live and learn ...

These turned out to be the unsweetest cakes I had ever made. Edible, but with no sweetness whatsoever. Also, as we were 'enjoying' them, I remembered the Kilner jar of sugar in the bottom cupboard ...

Oddly this batch also looks like flying saucers.

*Cue scary b-movie voice over*
"The Cakes of The FUTURE!"
*Cue weird sci-fi noises*
"They came from beyond THE STARS!"
"They were odd, they were SUGARLESS!"

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 - 20 minutes
Quantity: 12

8oz (225g) self raising flour or plain flour sifted with 2 tsps baking powder
1oz (25g) cocoa powder
3oz (75g) sugar
7 & a half fl oz (225ml) hot water  
1 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
few drops of vanilla essence
3oz (75g) margarine, melted

Preheat oven to 180c (350f) (gas mark 4)
Grease 12 hole patty tin

Sift the flour or flour and baking powder with the cocoa and add the sugar
Pour the hot water into a good sized bowl, add the syrup and bicarbonate of soda
Add to cocoa mix with the essence and margarine and combine
Spoon into patty tins and bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until form to the touch
Remove from tins onto a wire cooling rack


Previous Recipes

Monday, 2 October 2017

Rang dang diggedy dang di-dang ...

Mmmm, saucepan tea ......

At 12.30am yesterday, our power went out. It was back on again soon enough and we thought that was that.

At 10.30am, just as we were ready for a second cup of tea, it went out again and stayed off until 12.30pm. In that time, we had to make tea by boiling water in a saucepan. See, I said we needed a stove top whistling kettle. And do we have one? No. No we do not.

In this initial time, I utilised my little Bluetooth speaker and listened to music via my iPod, while we drank tea. Then the doorbell rang and it was our neighbour wanting to know if it was just him with no power. As we stood there with cups of tea in hand and with music coming out from behind, we assured him it wasn't just him, but I don't think he was convinced, as I saw him eyeing my cup!

12.30pm, the power came back on and I was in the kitchen in a flash, trying to get dinner on early, for fear it would go out again and lo, it did go out again fifteen minutes later and stayed off until 7.45pm.

Initially it was all fun and games. I read a bit of It. I crocheted a square for my throw. I listened to music until my speaker lost power and then I lost my daylight, as it was also rainy and overcast, so by about 4.30pm, I couldn't see well enough to do anything. We tried to get an old Bush radio which runs on batteries working, succeeded, but the medium wave signal kept dipping in and out. There was only one solution, which I had fallen back on once, on a long journey when we had no car radio.

"Andy, sing for me," I requested.
"Sing what?" he asked, as if he didn't know.
"White lines," I replied.

I had in the car that time asked him to sing for me and he reeled off a full rendition of White Lines by Grandmaster Flash for me. I wanted a reprisal of that day. I only got part of it, as I was far too amused by the "Rang dang diggedy dang di-dang, Diggedy dang di-dang, diggedy dang di-dang" part.

We then played I Spy. He danced while flashing a torch around to some record on the radio. We had more saucepan tea and oh yes, he made beans on toast, by toasting bread on the gas hob. Mmmm, chargrilled bread.

So that was Sunday!

Friday, 15 September 2017

Folly Come Lately: The Return

Whoops. Vanished again. I have no excuse other than my chronic ailments flaring up and my long-term clinical depression making itself known a severe case of the blues. I needed some 'me' time alone.

In my absence, we have celebrated our eighteenth wedding anniversary and Bob’s 11th birthday!

The Domestic Part
I have been cooking a lot from scratch lately, trying to get past my aversion to 'bowl food' or 'all together food' as opposed to a meal where the food is separate from each other. It seems an occupational hazard when it comes to vegan cooking. My aversion to 'all together' food isn't some sort of weird food OCD thing, just an aversion to day after day of food in a bowl or slopped onto a plate ... well not slopped, but you get the idea.

One day saw me in the kitchen making three different (vegan) stews (chickpea and aubergine, Argentinean and a general casserole with bits and bobs from the freezer and fridge), so I could batch freeze double portions to take us into autumn. I ended up with seven tubs in the freezer that day and have made it a weekly habit. 

The Exploratory Part
I have also been exploring different teas. I was once hooked on Ceylon, but always like to give others a go. We tried Assam, which was right up Andy’s street, but leave it to brew too long and it’s just too strong for me. Then Darjeeling, which was one I really liked, but Andy wasn’t so keen, as he likes more robust teas. Then we tried Lapsang Souchong … never again. Never. Never ever. I opened the tea packet and was hit square in the face with a smell like a bonfire. We gave it the benefit of the doubt mind you. I swear I have never had a cup of tea which you can smell from a different room. I’d go further … the whole place was filled with the smell of Lapsang Souchong which to us was not pleasant. I could smell it three rooms away from the kitchen. In fact I started to feel nauseous a quarter of the way in and I ended up throwing it away which I never do to tea, sacred drink that it is. It certainly wasn’t the sort of tea you would offer a guest. Andy had to make an emergency tea run and I had to buy a new tea canister, as the  Lapsang Souchong tainted my metal caddy and nothing I could do would get the smell out! Thankfully Waitrose were off loading their summer picnic stock, so I picked up a set of three canisters for £1.50. 

The Film and Telly Part

I was left on my lonesome last night and if Thursday nights alone have taught me anything, then it's there is nothing on the telly that interests me on a Thursday evening and that there's no one home to make me a glass of gin and cranberry (yes, I could make it myself and I did, it's just nice to be made a drink). I had the foresight to record a film to watch and opted for one I had only seen just recently, 2015’s Mr Right. Oh how I adore this film and I might have a weeny crush on Sam Rockwell in this film. It finished just in time for me to see Legend again. Ahh, film Ronnie Kray, how I adore you.

Then there was Twin Peaks: The Return. Wow. Oh my. Episode Eight ............. I must admit, initially I found it difficult to get into, but then I became hooked in. Also, I was very impressed with the use of that superb song by The Platters in this series. Someone has offered to lend us Fire Walk With Me, too, so I’m looking forward to that.

I also reaaaaaaaly want to see the new adaptation of It, but don't allow myself to see scary films in the cinema as I am far too jumpy. I'm that person who screams at the slightest thing and embarrasses herself. I am also the one who sees her shadow at 3am and scares herself as she was reading Stephen King books before bed.

The In Closing Part
I shall be back to show off the vintage goodies I have acquired, some new things to wear and the gifts I have been sent!

Monday, 17 July 2017

Kelly Ann and Pennywise

Did you miss me? Andy's been on holiday so I purposely stayed off line for
my own little holiday. 

For now, a quick outfit post which I forgot to post before Andy finished work. The place is in chaos and I want to get it back in order before I can even think about putting together new posts and reading blogs. 

* * *

Andy's choice on this day, Lindy Bop's 'Kelly Ann'.
I am so annoyed as either I have, ahem, increased in size up top, or this dress has shrunk.
Either way, it's definitely shorter than when I last wore it, a year ago (whoops!). 

Compare, contrast.
This year ...

Last year.
I added the broderie anglais trim to the hem, to make it this long as it was of course, too short, and now, although it fits well everywhere else, it feels too tight across my bust and is obviously much shorter.

Back to this year.

It is a pretty dress though, this is more typically the sort of dress I'd choose for myself, if I wasn't taking Andy's advice and jumping out of my comfort zone print and colour wise.

Pink and white chiffon hair scarves - charity shop and gift
Metal flower earrings - Accessorize
Dress- Lindy Bop 'Kelly Ann'
Petticoat - eBay
Shoes - retail

So, the past fortnight has seen lots of day trips which I'm looking forward to writing about here and I picked up a long neglected book to read ... Stephen King's 'It'. You may recall, I purchased this as my October read last year, but I always have difficulties with King's novels. Initially they are hard for me to get into and then suddenly, I am hooked and can't put them down and wade through huge swathes of the book in one sitting.

Short story:
This year there is a new adaptation of 'It' and the child actors were warned about how scary Pennywise was, as they weren't to see him until they were on set, so there would be a true sense of terror stemming from their first encounter. They insisted they were professionals and it would all be okay ... until they saw him that is and they were all terrified!

2017 Pennywise Vs 1990 Pennywise
Who's scarier?

Likewise, I was pre-warned that if I wasn't scared of clowns before reading 'It', I would be after and much like the child actors, I pooh-poohed this as it was only a book. Wrong! I am now starting to get a little spooked by clowns. Also, Andy said to me the other day while in the kitchen, "There's a balloon out here" and instead of thinking, "Oh, hot air balloon", which it was, I was automatically thinking of Pennywise and his red balloons. So that's clowns and balloons. Thank you Mr King, I very much appreciate it!

But for now, onward to domesticity! The bed is covered (no exaggeration) in clothes to be ironed, which I chose to ignore as it was my holiday too and I also got diagnosed with BPPV (Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo) which on top of my permanent lack of balance and daily dizziness, has been enormous fun (she said sarcastically). So, I didn't really want to be stood at an ironing board in hot weather, with the sensation that someone was pushing me over.

So, I'm off, bye bye lovelies!

Monday, 13 February 2017

Time Slips

I like the days when things shift and it feels as though you have somehow slipped through a rip in time. Sunday dinner finished, washing up done, I found myself yesterday doing something my nan did every Sunday: the weeks ironing.

Pressing a nan me down jumper and cardigan from, I believe, the 1960's, I noted the missing button, which was lost long before it became mine. I retrieved my button jar and sorted through to find a match. There was one solitary contender, it was a fraction too big to match but I decided to use it anyway.

Reaching for my sewing box, I sat and attached the button. Billy Fury was playing in the background, it was quiet outside and all felt wonderfully old fashioned, like I could have fallen through that rip in time.

I have had these perfectly serene moments before, but two stand out.
The first was cooking Christmas dinner one year. I was alone, there wasn't a soul on the street and I was listening to the famous Orson Welles War Of The Worlds radio broadcast. That moment was pretty much near perfect.

The second was one summer as I sat on the sofa darning a sock. Again, so quiet. The window was open and I suddenly heard a push lawnmower making its distinct sound. Peering behind me, I saw the man across the road mowing his front lawn. Soon the smell of cut grass filled the room.

For an old fashioned girl such as myself, I believe it all comes down to those wonderful quiet times when I am doing things women have done for decades before me without thinking. It's so perfectly domestic that I believe time does rip, just for a moment and I am rewarded with that wonderfully perfect little treat of stepping back in time.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

More Flamingos, Gingham, Bunnies and a Bit of Normality

I am a little bit rubbish at getting round to actually taking photos off of my camera and when I have managed such, I usually recall I was meant to take a picture of something else to show too and forgot (red peignoir, scarf from Mim, for instance). I did just this today. So as not to break the habit of a lifetime, here are some random snaps with some I meant to show, missing.

This is the locket Andy got me for Christmas (amongst other things) and as Kezzie expressed an interest in seeing it, here it is! Inside are teeny tiny little charms.

And here are the charms he chose for me.
A black scotty dog. I generally like big dogs, like Irish Wolfhounds, salukis, borzois, that sort of thing, but I really like basset hounds and black scotty dogs. My scotty would be named Mr McCready as I have mentioned before.
A bunny.
A flamingo and a bee.
All things he knows I love.

There on the left is Larry, my Christmas flamingo, next to Pantoni my meetiversary flamingo from last year from Andy and Alexander, my Longleat flamingo. 

The key box we got as a joint gift for Christmas.
It was cream and shabby chic, but Andy painted it for me.
It has since taking this photo, fallen off the wall, hit me and broken the dustpan.

And at last, at last, at last!
Two years ago I started making this 1950's nightwear set.
Two years ago!

You may recall I could not make head nor tail of the pattern for the bloomettes. I wrote and asked my aunt for help and she, well she ignored me.
They sat waiting in my unfinished projects drawer until late last year when I gave them another go and bingo! I finally figured it out!
But then I put them away as it was nearing Christmas.
Recently I got a new sewing box in the sales, which I also forgot to photograph, and as I was gathering up my scattered sewing bits, popped the elastic for the bloomettes inside in the pocket and evidently forgot as I then turned the place upside down looking for the aforementioned elastic.

If any more proof is needed that I have the attention span of a lemur, well I don't know what to say.

I am now struck by just how much they look like something a baby would wear, hence the baby doll nightie label I suppose! Funny how you know it's called that but don't see it till it's right there in front of you!

It's been a noisy old day here so far, yesterday too actually. Workmen have set up camp outside, something to do with water pipes I believe. Consequently I haven't been able to hear myself think. Once the pneumatic drill has stopped I am able to put on some music though, as it quietens considerably to a dull roar.
Speaking of music, I made up a modern music playlist for myself and was playing it at the weekend. "This is modern to you is it?" asked Andy, as The Byrds were playing.
Yes. Yes it is, now hush.
I'm back to my usual music today, all those new sounds were starting to rattle me.

Belle had to go to the vet Sunday morning with suspected GI Stasis and we appear to have been lucky and nipped it in the bud as she was not only eating by the evening, but also getting in everywhere. She's also back to doing a double lap of honour when given a treat, as usual without the treat, as she's far too excited about the whole thing and doesn't realise she hasn't actually got it with her.

Some furniture was moved around Sunday, leaving quite the mess for me yesterday. I got the hall looking pretty good then realised all the moving about of furniture had blocked the convenient plug sockets so, I had to drape the vacuum lead across the bunny tent we made up and into the kitchen. Luckily the schmoos were napping, otherwise it would have been fun and games keeping them away from the Danger Worm aka vacuum lead. Then once finished, I realised I had nowhere neat to put the vacuum cleaner when I had finished (1950's Housewife Problems). This was also when flamingo key box took a tumble.

I've had a hankering to sew, to finish off another item at least from my unfinished projects drawer, this time, the patchwork quilt cover I am making, but in the upheaval, Yarn Crate, which is also where my sewing machine pedal lives, had vanished. So, as I was feeling creative, I decided to sit down and edit some of my novel. Such a novelty doing some writing, it seems an absolute age since I even attempted to do such a thing. There was crochet too, two squares were finished before Bob got his needy knickers on and decided he wanted endless stokes because evidently he was feeling insecure.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

It's Christmas!

I love Christmas.
I love December.
I actually prefer this time of the month as I love the run up more than the actual day I think, as I thrive on the anticipation.

These are some of our decorations, taken at about 6.30am this morning.
Odd that our sofa is plunged into darkness here!

That's Elvis Tree on the left, it was once white but has now gone an odd bronze colour which I am fine with, but it drives Andy nuts.
On the right, in the window is Elderly Tree. Andy got this the November after we met, so his place would be Christmassy when I visited. It's a little tired looking without the decorations, but it feels wrong to leave it in the cupboard or throw it away, so we have two trees! Three if you include Yarn Tree.

Yes that is a mesh gate in front of the tree protecting the side table.
🐰 🐰
Enough said I believe.
But I want to replace it with a portion of low picket fence, it'll look nicer.

As ever, atop the tree is Bataella the Snow Bat.

These are the bunnies decorations, taken a bit later, hence daylight!
They have stockings and I crocheted them a garland.
Once upon a time I made the bunnies paper chains.
They waited roughly ten days before tearing them down and eating them.
This is just their sleeping pen by the way. It cuts down on sleepy-time shenanigans. When we go out, an extension is added and the rest of the time they free range all over the place and on the furniture.

My lovely Father Christmas decorations.
Note that the one on the right is stood on a house. 
I feel he is bordering on being scarier than Krampus.

This camel was a cat sitting gift from the Middle East and he comes out every Christmas.

And here's Wilf wearing Andy's Christmas hat.
A pumpkin is for life, not just Halloween.

In other Christmassy news, we watched what I think is one of my favourite Christmas films over the weekend, the 1949 Holiday Affair, starring Robert Mitchum. We also saw the 1947 Miracle on 34th Street and will likely watch the 1994 version some time this week.

And of course, we still have Bad Santa to watch!
Yay for Billy Bob Thornton!
This one is Andy's favourite Christmas film, and oh he is annoyed they made a sequel!

And in non-Christmassy news, Meirionwen is all booked in for next years London to Brighton classic car run!
How exciting! I am to be navigator, despite me getting terribly travel sick if I try and read while in a moving car, and we may end up in Scotland rather than Brighton as my sense of direction is shocking, but still, exciting!
I am peeved though, that there was no room on the application form for the name of the navigator, just driver. The only spot to even mention my name was in the fifteen words or less box for details about driver and car. Meirionwen took up the whole fifteen words all by herself.

Oh and yes, I have worn tinsel on my head like a hat, so it's officially Christmas!

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Folly Come Lately

It's been a little while since I have looked in here, long enough so that the blogger dashboard has changed.
Tis Confusion!

So, what's been going on in Folly Bird land?

Well I finally watched Home Fires. Twice. Once when I was recovering from the flu and then again when Andy expressed an interest. I really enjoyed it.
My favourite characters were Alison ...

.. and Marek. Andy guessed he would be my favourite male character based on his accent and his boots! I asked him why he thought I wasn't taken with any of the RAF types, he assured me they weren't my thing! It seems I am nothing if not predictable!

In other telly news, I completely went off Poldark, though Caroline's red riding outfit, oh my! Andy called me in from the kitchen just to see it! Now THAT is how you go horse riding! I have long wanted to go horse riding and would love to turn up at a riding centre dressed like this! Can you imagine this glorious riding outfit alongside the jeans, practical footwear and terribly boring jackets I so often see on the horse riders we slow for on the lanes around this way?

I also enjoyed The Victorian Slum, chicken plucking aside, and finally saw all of Ripper Street. To say I was left traumatised would be an understatement. I am still sad. The previous series they took Fred Best away and now, now they take Drake away????? What is going on with the world!

Just a couple of note of late, last years cinema release of Krampus. I stress cinema release as there were others at the same time, which apparently are rubbish and went straight to DVD. This was the Toni Collette version. Funny, horrifying, cosy, it managed all three magnificently.

Also I stumbled across a Christmas film called Wishin' & Hopin' At Christmas. It stars Molly Ringwald and Chevy Chase narrates. It is set in the early sixties and has a real feel of the film adaptation of Jean Shepherd's book In God We Trust, A Christmas Story, which I love. I loved Wishin' & Hopin' so much that I looked for it on DVD but have had absolutely no luck.

There have been pies: one cherry, one apple and for Halloween, pumpkin. Yum.
Also cherry crumble and mini cherry pies.

And things have been on the move. My glass cabinet which resided in the bedroom has been moved into the living room, so I can see all my beautiful glass on a day to day basis and not just at bedtime.

I have collected coloured glass since I was in my teens and purchased every single tea set I saw for no more than £4. Annoyingly I haven't seen a coloured glass tea set for years. In fact I rarely see coloured glass at all and when I do, it's usually completely over priced.

Some soft focus pictures of things after the move.

The dish the cup is sat in is carnival glass and was my nan's.

This beauty of a carnival glass bowl was a charity shop find, isn't it a beauty!
Although it is actually more vibrant in real life.

More like this ...

The green glass is Arcoroc, the blue is by another French company, name beginning with V I believe ... the sweet cut glass smoked set, has no makers name.

This 1950's sundae dish set was found in an antique shop for about £7.

 I shall have to photograph things properly.

Unfortunately the lovely carnival glass bowl Mim was sending me arrived broken. Not simply cracked or chipped, it was absolutely shattered into tiny pieces, which made me sad. Sad enough that Andy whisked the box away and hid it from me as I was getting wibbly about the whole thing. But, lovely Mim also sent me a beautiful silk Laura Ashley scarf which I have worn every time I have gone out.

I tried to read all of Stephen King's IT during October. I failed miserably, partly due to flu and then migraines and then various other things. I think it'll take me the rest of the year to get through the thing, have you seen how big that book is? Actually, it's December now ... I don't fancy my chances. I tried to read some in the car the other day when we were visiting Meirionwen and Andy came up to ask me something, approaching from behind the car and scared the living daylights out of me and I haven't even got to the scary stuff yet!

Not only am I lapping up repeats of Friends, I have also recently got back in touch with someone I haven't seen for twenty years. It was nerve-wracking meeting up again, as it had been so long but once I met her off the train, the years melted away and we picked up where we left off. It's nice to have her back in my life again after so long. We still have much in common, including in an ever changing world, the same views which is wonderfully refreshing, as I often find myself floundering along in life, feeling I just plopped down from some alien place with people barking, "You believe what? What do you mean you don't like such and such??? You're letting the side down Melanie! How dare you!"
We're going to go to the zoo together this month, so that'll be fun.

And speaking of the telly version of Friends, I am only now noticing the 90's fashions. I have seen countless repeats but am only just seeing the very distinct styles of the era. I suppose Friends and Clueless best sum up the nineties.

Crochet has been the name of the game in this area of my life.
My granny squares, well some of them.

Random Sightings
Traction Engine just pootling along the dual carriageway near here.

Of Blogging
My health has taken a right old battering these past couple of years, so as I don't ever know how things are going to be for me on the health front and as I don't want to abandon my blog, I will be approaching things a little differently than before.

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Folly Bird's Nest

As well as having an interest in vintage culture, I am, and have been for many years, a housewife. I was never one for high flying career ambition, I simply wanted what I had seen around me growing up.

As I am all about routine and predictability, as that is also how bunnies like things, I have over the years tried to find a routine that works for me. If Andy is going to go out and earn the pennies, the least I can do is keep house. But, keep house in a way which I actually like and that doesn't fill me with sinking dread. I have tried various methods over the years and currently I'm a potterer. I potter from room to room. I might pick up something to return to another room and when I'm in that room, I do something there that needs doing.

I have been thinking about it for a while and feel maybe I should take the plunge and start to again follow the 'Plan of Work For A Servantless House' that I saved from a book on war time Britain years ago.

I have seen projects by bloggers, where they immerse themselves in a certain era and always thought I would like to do that too; I was smitten by 'The 1940's House' and all of those historical reality telly programmes (except for The Edwardian Country House as I'm not overfond of the upstairs/downstairs things and all the hunting that lies therein). I can't really plunge headlong into a social experiment as I have no era appropriate technology … I don't have a dishwasher, that's me, so that wouldn't be an issue and I don't really use the microwave either, I will if I'm making porridge but that's it. I even heat baked beans on the stove. Music is very important to me and I only have a modern stereo (it does have valves though!) and Andy loves the telly so that is on when he's home so that wouldn't work.

So I have again pulled the aforementioned 'Plan of Work For A Servantless House' back out.

Obviously some things are not relevant to me, as I don't have a boiler that needs stoking and I don't have children, just furbabies.. I don't have a fire to lay either. We eat our main meal at about 3pm when Andy is home from work for the day. I also do not have silver to clean (imagine!). I am going to change this around a little to suit and there are things which I want to add.

The 7am start doesn't especially bother me, but I don't sleep very well because of back pain and have trouble waking myself up properly in the mornings but I am rather adept at playing catch up! 

This is the plan as laid out in the book as is, word for word.

7.00am Get up, dress
7.10am Strip The Bed and air the rooms
7.20am Unlock the house
7.30am Stoke the boiler
7.40am Light living room fire if necessary
7.50am Prepare breakfast

8.00am Have breakfast
8.10am Clear away, wash up and accompany child to school when required
8.20am "
8.30am "
8.40am "
8.50am "

9.00am Sweep porch and steps
9.10am Lay sitting room re if necessary
9.20am Vacuum dining room and sitting room carpets, mop surrounds and dust
9.30am "
9.40am "
9.50am "
10.00am Make beds
10.10am Mop and dust upstairs rooms and W.C
10.20am Attend to bathroom, wash out bath and lavatory bowl
10.30am Sweep and mop bathroom floor and landing, sweep stairs
10.40am "
10.50am "

11.00am Look over larder
11.10am Prepare vegetables or pastry for midday or evening meal
11.20am "
11.30am Shopping when required and special weekly duties*
11.40am "
11.50am "
12.00pm "
12.10pm "
12.20pm "
12.30pm "
12.40pm Finish cooking and prepare lunch
12.50pm "
1.00pm Serve lunch or dinner
1.10pm "
1.20pm Have lunch and clear away
1.30pm "
1.40pm "
1.50pm "
2.00pm Wash up, tidy kitchen and scullery
2.10pm "
2.20pm "
2.30pm "
2.40pm "
2.50pm Change clothing

3.00pm Recreation, resting, visiting or special duties such as ironing, gardening, needle-work, minding young children if necessary
3.10pm "
3.20pm "
3.30pm "
3.40pm "
3.50pm "
4.00pm "
4.10pm "
4.20pm "
4.30pm "
4.40pm Prepare and serve tea
4.50pm "

5.00pm "
5.10pm Wash up tea things
5.20pm "
5.30pm "
5.40pm "
5.50pm "

6.00pm Prepare food for supper or dinner and cook the meal
6.10pm "
6.20pm "
6.30pm "
6.40pm "
6.50pm "

7.00pm Put children to bed
7.10pm "
7.20pm "
7.30pm "
7.40pm Serve and have dinner
7.50pm "

8.00pm Clear away meal, wash up or defer to morning
8.10pm "
8.20pm "
8.30pm "
8.40pm Reading, recreation, letter writing, accounts
8.50pm "

Weekly Duties *

Monday Brush all clothes used over the weekend and put away. Collect large articles and send to laundry or do at home.

Tuesday Turn out dining room. Clean silver.

Wednesday Special turning out of bedrooms.

Thursday Special turning out of sitting room.

Friday Thorough weekly clean of bathroom, W.C, landing and stairs. Baking.

Saturday Special cleaning of hall, kitchen and scullery. Extra cooking for weekend.

~ ~ ~

This coming week I am going to tweak the above schedule, to see if I can tailor it to my requirements.

~ ~ ~

Who does the majority of housework in your home?
Do you follow a routine?

~*~*~*~ Melanie ~*~*~*~

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Christmas Greetings!

Dropping by to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas!

It's veggie sausage rolls for us today (our Christmas Eve tradition) and a mince pie and Snow Milk (aka vegan eggnog, which I made first thing this morning), while watching a Christmas film for pudding.

 Speaking of puddings, I have also made some chocolate mousse, adapted from a vegan recipe, as I am not quite vegan and vegan chocolate chips are so expensive. I did use soy milk though and coconut cream, which makes a delectably rich chocolate pudding. Yum. Andy's having Christmas Pudding and as I'm not fond of dark fruit cakey type things, I have opted for chocolate mousse for the second year on the trot.

Best wishes to you all

Monday, 14 December 2015

Brooching Things

For some reason I fail to comprehend, I have been getting up at 5.15am lately. I have found that this is rather beneficial as I can spend the dark hours 'waking up', have tea and breakfast while watching repeats of 'George and Mildred' then I might be able to run off a blog post and then I can start with my day once it starts getting light. 

I have as I said recently, been crocheting flowers for brooches of late. 
I am pleased with the results as I am notoriously rubbish at following patterns.

Mistletoe with howlite gemstone 'berries'
and holly

The thistle


Margarite daisy for my Danish roots and a red rose for my English.

Inadvertent cherries, made because my first holly berries were HUGE!

Daffodil for my Welsh roots. This was tricksy to make and tricksier to photograph.

And because Mim expressed an interest, these are the squashed coffee pod earrings the brother in law and girlfriend got me as a gift from Madeira.

Andy had his hair cut recently and I went along for the ride. It seemed to take an age and I got restless, so ...

The barber shop. I love it here, it's so interesting :)


Let's try and get a picture of my holly brooch in situ ...
Hmmm, blurry AND grainy.

My boots ...

Andy's rockabilly barber Mark.

And on to other things :)
One thing I love about bunnies is the behind ear fluff.
This is Belle's.

Light bulb in kitchen went and we had no replacement so I spent two days washing up by candlelight.

And behold the teapot dress in its infancy. Also blurry and grainy.
I have since sewn the bodice to the skirt, here it is pinned. All that is left now is the hem and shoulder buttons.
My dress making form is named Peggy. Peggy has been moved about from a to b for most of the past week. I placed her just inside the bedroom at one point and my heart was in my mouth when I opened the door and saw a headless woman in a fabulous dress stood in the dark, hehe!

edited to add: Finished!
Yes, I managed to cut the top of my head and my feet off and I look as bewildered as I usually do
*rolls eyes*
I am so happy with this dress! The bodice was long enough as was, I didn't need to extend it or add anything because I hadn't extended it, unlike my Queen of the Mountains dress.
The length is fabulous, I love the buttoning on the shoulders and shall definitely make this again and again.
I read reviews of this pattern and most people chose the v-neck version and also used only half the required fabric for the skirt but I am pretty sure that whoever has the most voluminous skirt wins and this skirt has oodles of volume, reigned in however by the gathering. I also decided against the cummerbund belt as it would have added too much bulk.