Saturday, 27 December 2014


The lead up to Christmas was met with a bit of apathy and remorse. To be honest as much as it is my favourite time of year normally, this year just did not seem right. 

We wanted a white Christmas, on the other side of the world. Not another warm one down under. But we made ourselves get jolly and celebrate anyway. I got a new job so my disorganisation just got even worse with limited time but, baking did happen and presents were got. 

Mother Nature came to the party too, and we had a couple of interesting shakes on Christmas Eve, to remind us where we are living.

Presentation is key for me...and it seems to be rubbing off on the next generation too.
Cinnamon apple fritters with maple syrup for brekky
Awesome pressies made with love; vanilla chai candles and rose sugar body scrub !!
Just a bit spoilt.

Nut roast and veges for lunch - cooler here than some places, so it was nice to enjoy a hot meal. No wine though as nurses don't get Christmas off, but look what I found in our local supermarket !!

A little bit of our English summer - come to Aotearoa. Love Belvoir !! We have a cupboard full now too.
Then pavlova roll (filled with white chocolate, cream and berries). YUM !!! Thank goodness we could take all the leftovers to Blenheim for a Boxing Day Christmas, or else we would have been eating it all for a month !!

Hope you all had a great celebration with friends and family too.

Garden Produce

Remember those ripening blackcurrants ?

Well now there are thousands of them ! The first picking weighed in at 500g

and made this much jam !

the next picking on Christmas Day closer to 1 kilo
has been used in baking, desserts, packed in punnets and taken to Blenheim or frozen. If it doesn't rain tomorrow I might need to pick the rest before the birds catch on.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Starting to get a bit like Christmas

Well it's been a while since I found time to get to this again. Things didn't work out work-wise so I can't even use that as an excuse. 

The training phase went well, but then once everything was set to "go live" there actually didn't seem to be much work at all. After 2 1/2 days of pretty much twiddling my thumbs and trying to organise my desk and look busy I decided enough was enough. Since then I've been looking for something new. Sometimes I think I should have stayed, got paid for being bored out of my mind and just kept looking for a new opportunity. Oh well. I've been getting interviews, phone ones and in person so fingers crossed things will fall into place soon.

It is hard to believe that Christmas is almost here. We both LOVE this time of year normally, this time we've had a bit of trouble getting in the spirit. But we found the box with a tree in it, and I found some of others marked Christmas. We're keeping it simple.

There has been a bit of baking going on - not me though - I just want to make gingerbread....and I have no idea where my cookie cutters are, and it has taken me many trips to many different stores to be able to find some replacements. Seems everyone else is making gingerbread too ! At least I don't need cookie cutters to make white Christmas which is also on my list of things to do.

We've been for a couple of night time drives all over the city, getting totally lost at times as it is difficult to read maps and directions in the dark. Nevertheless, we have found some great Christmas light displays. This has been one of our regular Christmas traditions and it has been great to be able to do it here as well.

It has been very un-summery weather - winter clothes are getting well aired after having been packed away since June. I'm almost expecting snow on the actual day. There have been plenty of late snowfalls with the recent frequent cold snaps, so who knows.

Meanwhile things in the garden are trying their best to get on with what they should be doing this season. Currants are turning red, strawberries are growing in abundance, raspberries and grapes are beginning to appear, lettuce is growing, apples are swelling, feijoas are flowering....

and some things have just gotten away on me...

maybe I should put some pretty lights on it.