Monday, 31 March 2014


I turned free roadside stall quinces into jam - the best batch I have ever made.  Super thick and tastes really good.  Such a pretty jewel colour too.

A quick banana cake on Sunday afternoon.  Trying really hard not to let anything go to waste.  We always seem to have a surplus of bananas round here.

Vanilla cupcakes for George from a very clever friend - edible decorations on top of buttercream icing.  Say no more!  The kids loved them.

Freshly picked mushrooms from the garden.  Mr H is going to eat them, me not so game.

Have planted in my winter vegetable patch.  After keeping the soil covered in grass clippings for the last 6 months and then mixing through sheep poo and compost the soil is so much more healthier than last year.  It was so compacted and dry but now is perfect for winter planting.  I've planted savoy cabbage, silverbeet and kale.  My sister n law Em is going to plant different vegetables in her garden so we can swap produce when the time comes.

I have only planted half the vegetable garden as I thought it would be too big, but I'm now thinking I may need more room.  I still have the patch under the apricot tree planted up.  I put down stepping stones to make it easier to navigate over the wetter months.  And a border down one side of marigold plants.

An old Dove Cote from our neighbours.  I've been cleaning it out and will put in some hay for any new bird families that may want to take residence over the winter.  Hanging bird seed feeders are next.

Yay!  It's that time of year again.........Feijoa season!

Farmers market bread and tomatoes for lunch.

Snippets from around our home.......

My growing washi tape pile.  Love the stuff!  I have had a couple of months of Birthday and Swap parcel wrapping and I love being able to use my washi tape.

Hope your weekend was a good one, here's to a happy week!

Joining in here with Meg and here with Em.

Sunday, 30 March 2014


"A portrait of my children together, once a week, every week, in 2014."

 Sunday night dinner with a movie......easy and simple the way a Sunday night should be, don't you think?

Joining in with Jodi's "52 project".


Friday, 28 March 2014

And just like that........

You turned 3!  Low key with dinner at your favourite place in the world (McDonalds) a brand new bike and some great pressies from family.  You are so easily pleased and never expect a fuss.

It has been a busy couple of weeks here,  I have been absent from this space and have been so looking forward to returning.

With George turning 3 it also meant that he started Kindy.  Here in New Zealand, once children turn 3 they are entitled to 20 hours free childcare each week. 

We had his name down on the waiting list for an amazing Kindy in town.  Situated on a 40 acre farm, complete with animals, organic gardens and Steiner based Philosophy.  Because of the huge outdoor space and high teacher numbers we new it would suit George perfectly. 

We did initial visits and as of last week he started on his own (without me hovering) 5 mornings a week.  I was going to start with 3 but Mr H said we should go with the 5 that was offered - and I'm glad we did because he loves it.

He has settled in so well - and runs into the centre each morning and after doing a puzzle or reading a book, I kiss and hug him and say goodbye.............and that is that.  Easy.  After being such a clingy little man, this has been a huge surprise.

And there you have it.  I am now a mum to 2 in school and 1 at Kindy.  And 5 mornings a week free.  Someone said don't underestimate how quickly the time will go - you were right!  I'm getting lots of things done, but some days I'm also racing to get things finished in time for the midday pick up.  I've been loving the quiet house and coffees in town.  I have been keeping a beady eye open for a suitable part time job, ideally mornings and term time only......wishful thinking?  The biggest adjustment hasn't been for George I think but for me.......funny huh?

And now it's the weekend.  Pizza night, movies and lollies.  A favourite round here.  Everyone is suitably tired from their busy week.  I'm looking forward to getting into the garden, the weather is going to be great for the next few days.  The mornings are freezing but the days are turning out bright and warm.  Hope life is treating you well in your part of the world.

Have a great weekend lovelies!

Thursday, 27 March 2014


"A portrait of my children together, once a week, every week, in 2014."


Joining in with Jodi's "52 project".


Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Around here

I've finished setting up my sewing space.  It looks really cosy.  There is a lot of natural light and sun filters in from early in the morning.  My materials are tucked away in the draws, but that doesn't mean that I don't find them thrown about the room on occasion.  And the pin cushion is a constant drawcard.

I have a corner spot for some of the boys toys.  The chairs sunny position is great for reading a book and drinking a cuppa and I can watch the boys play in the front garden from here.  Bell likes to use the space to practice her dancing in too.  Mr H still has his dart board up, which I have decorated with bunting, ha!
Channelling my inner Julia Child..........butter with everything.
Moving things round in the kitchen.  Glass milk jugs on display.
Doesn't take a lot these days to make me happy.  Bubbles and chocolate will do it.  I branched out and tried Lindt chocolate.  No where near as good as Mr Whittaker's.
My well worn Edmonds cookbook.  Complete with graffiti.
Pikelet's for morning tea, smothered with Nutella.  I'm a jam and cream girl myself.
Teachers only day for Tom on Monday - Pikelets, a movie and Lego were requested.
Signs of Autumn creeping in.  Leaves on the water tank are turning crimson.
But it has still been hot with only one day of rain in the weekend.  We are still swimming and eating outside.
We have two new family members.  Alfie and Robert.  The cutest little Guinea Pigs I have ever seen.  I'm a bit smitten.  I take them out of their home during the day for cuddles and take vegetable treats into them throughout the day.
Hope you are having a good week!


"I wholeheartedly believe that no matter what is happening in your life, there is always something you can be thankful matter how simple it is."

Joining in here with Meg and here with Em.


Monday, 17 March 2014


"A portrait of my children together, once a week, every week, in 2014."

 Chill out time in the back yard before dinner.  We have had such a mixture of weather this month.  Cool mornings where a heater is required, steamy hot afternoons that needs the fan blasting.  A predicted tropical cyclone that bought nothing but light winds and a welcome day of rain.

Come rain or shine, these three will still venture outdoors......I'm also determined to get a photo of Georgie smiling.  He is so hard to photograph.  He has the most gorgeous smile, hoping to capture day.

Joining in with Jodi's "52 project".


Thursday, 13 March 2014

You can take the girl out of London..............

But you can never take London out of the girl!  Or so the saying goes.

It has been nearly 6 years since leaving London,  I was smitten from the very first time I stepped foot in that amazing city.  I have from an early age always wanted to go, so I could visit the Queen (as one does) and then in my teens it was to nanny and travel Europe.

Like many things in life it didn't quite go to plan.  I arrived in my late twenties with four year old Bell and my then (now ex) husband.  We had sold our business and spent the previous couple of months travelling the US and came to Europe via a Trans Atlantic Cruise, stopping off in Portugal and Spain along the way.  A quick Easy Jet flight landed us in London, where we played tourist before buying a campervan and travelling around England, Ireland and Wales for 6 months.

Once Visa's were secured we settled in Cambridge, but the call to London was too strong and after 6 months we made our way to South West London where we found a Victorian Terrace to rent and me a great job.

The marriage didn't work out, but my love affair with London did.  I met Mr H in London, along with wonderful life long friends.  We started planning a family but I wanted to raise them back home in NZ.

We can't wait to go back for a visit.  Go back to places we loved to visit when it was just Mr H, Bell and I, visit where I worked, see Mr H's family and our friends.  To visit where we first met.

I LOVE London!

Below are some treats that were sent to me by Tracy from Mad about Bags.  We took part in Kimberley's Share your Country Swap.

Tracy cottoned on to the fact that I love London and Tea and based my parcel around these themes.

I think she has put together the most wonderful things and I'm in the love with the Buckingham Palace trinket.  And the handmade tea bags, look at those!!!  I had so much fun unwrapping everything.  Tracy you couldn't have picked a better theme if you tried.

Thank you Kimberley for organising such a great swap and to Tracy for being such a wonderful swap partner.



Lots of great swaps going on in blog land at the moment.
So tell me, is there somewhere in the world that you have always wanted to visit?
Have you been to an amazing city or country that you are absolutely smitten with?
Hope you are having a great week!

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

When all is quiet...........


Sunset over our back fence..........

The night time routine is nearly done, little eyes are tired, close to slumber and sweet dreams.

Before windows and doors are closed for the night I wander round the house and garden, packing away toys and making sure animals are safe for the night.

Another busy day is at an end. Tonight clean sheets are calling, but can wait as this is the time of evening that I like to potter, watch a movie, read and write blog posts, drink tea, eat chocolate, sew, chat to Mr H without interruption about our day and occasionally fold the washing.

I will go to bed too late and say this as I finally lay down for the night and when I wake a little bleary eyed in the morning I will be thinking "I really should go to bed earlier" but know the same thing will happen again that night.

Are you a night owl?

What do you like to do when the house is quiet? - keep it PG please! xo

Sunday, 9 March 2014


"A portrait of my children together, once a week, every week, in 2014."

Our first walk in the vineyard all week.  They have been busy harvesting the grapes, so it has been a hive of activity...........I love it here.

Joining in with Jodi's "52 project".


Friday, 7 March 2014


Birthday treats from my sister.  She didn't know that I love Orla Kiely- but thought the patterns were very Retro and that I would love them.  So very right.  I'm going to pop these on my sewing table for storing buttons and threads.  Too good to store leftovers in I think?!

Flowers that last - Mr H delivered these to me last Friday and they are still going strong........

Favourite breakfast at the moment.  Avocado and tomato on Vogel's toast with sea salt and cracked pepper.  Washed down with an almighty mug of sugary sweet tea.

Tom sat these two together on the chair in my room and covered them with a scarf.  Love seeing this gentle side to boys, instead of throwing them around the room.  "They can be friends, mum".
You may have seen the portrait of my three for week nine of the Portrait Project here.  This is where we had our tea Saturday night.  On the first day of Autumn.  There was a very cool sea breeze blowing but the light was glorious.

This week was the first time I have not had to pop a carton of eggs in with the groceries.  At the moment we are getting an egg or two a day from our bantams.  We currently have four ladies, and am hoping to add another two.  I love being able to hear them clucking about as they fossick around in the grass.  They are funny things, and there is most definitely a bossy one in the mix and that would be Betty.  I think her name suits her.

Hiding under the asparagus bed..........

Chicken run!

One of our new girls.

Movie night - I bought Pride and Prejudice over a week ago and finally got to watch it last night.  After much eye rolling and commentary from Mr H he sat at his laptop and popped his ear plugs in.  Amy I thought of you when Basildon House was featured - lucky you for being able to work there.

Tonight Bell and I are going to watch Beaches (insert rolling of eyes here), eat chocolate and hopefully enjoy the movie in peace and quiet!  Love a girls movie night.

Happy weekending!

"I wholeheartedly believe that no matter what is happening in your life, there is always something you can be thankful matter how simple it is."

Joining in here with Meg and here with Em.

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