Forgiven but not Forgotten!


image imageAfter the recent trauma of Benji dog destroying my vintage blanket I have decided to forgive him how could I not? He has obviously forgotten that he ever did anything wrong! The blanket has taken up temporary residence hung over the stairs with some other favourite textiles. Actually it looks quite good if you ignore the shredded bits.

I will have to decide what to do with the blanket in the longer term. Because of its special history I would like to keep it, but I can only think of cushions. The hole in the middle means it won’t make a lap blanket. Has anyone any good ideas?

Grandchildren have just invaded our house for a week. Guess what? They have brought Benji dog a present. It is a plushy toy that he is currently enjoying trying to destroy!

Vintage Blanket Destroyed!


image imageSome of you may (or may not!) remember that in August I blogged about my much loved vintage blanket. Well I have to report that it has befell a tragic incident. Benji the dog seems to have taken an interest in it and virtually destroyed it. This is the only item that he has wrecked since he moved in with us twelve months ago and I’m still in a state of shock. He seems to enjoy pulling at loose threads and I think he took a fancy to the blanket’s fringe.

I remember Reminiscing about my childhood illnesses virtually being cured when I was wrapped in it as a child and my Mum attempting a vintage repair. Ah well! Nothing lasts forever as they say! I cannot bring myself to throw it out so maybe I will come up with a recycling project for it. I will report on this when I am over the shock.

A Walk Around Derwntwater


 imageWe are camped on the edge of beautiful Derwentwater, Cumbria. Itis a beautiful location looking over the lake towards the Fells. The weather is cool and crisp with gorgeous Autumnal colours. We have dodged heavy rain at night when we are cosy in Damnvan1.

This is the time when I indulge my need to craft, knit, read  and play on line scrabble! I am still working on Mum’s Christmas present of a shawl.( I’m OK to go public as she will definately NOT read this blog!) The shawl,or wrap, feels like something of a monster at the moment and has taken on a life of its own. I think that this is because I’m on the last leg and the last few inches always seem to take the longest. Anyway if everything else fails I know that it has been knit with great love.

Benji dog really enjoys the outdoor life. Actually he is really frightened of the visiting geese who arrive  every morning. They are enjoying the fallen apples for breakfast each day.

Coniston Old Man

Photo by Ann Bowker

Photo by Ann Bowker


“Coniston Old Man” is the name of the Fell situated by Coniston Lake in The Lake District, England. This fell is 2634 feet (803m) high and is popular with hikers, walkers and climbers. In fact Hubs remarked that is the only reason to visit Coniston Village! Not so! There are pubs, cafés shops and a beautiful lake.

Between foodie places and the few shops we came across one particular shop with the intriguing name of “Honest Shop”. Of course I had to pop inside to research it. It was a small craft shop filled with home made cards, small knitted goods, books, plants, cakes and treats. All this with just an honesty box for payment! There was a notice stating that they had sold just under £2000 goods in the last year. How good is that? It goes a long way to restore my faith in honest folk.

Coniston Hall, Cumbria


We are imageimageaway in Damnvan1 for a few days. We decided to head to the Lake District, Cumbria as it is beautiful any time of the year but particularly in the Autumn. We have not been disappointed! The colours are gorgeous and the weather is cold and crisp. We stayed in Windermere for the first night which wasn’t long enough. This gives us the perfect excuse to return at some time! We have spent two nights in Coniston and tomorrow we move on to Keswick. Life is good and I am fulfilling my mantra “adventure before dementia!”

In Coniston we had a walk down into the village and back along the lake to our campsite. En route we passed Coniston Hall. This is in the ownership of the National Trust but it isn’t open to visitors. It is a Medieval Hall built in or before the late 16th Century. A looooong time ago so remarkable that it still stands. It is currently part farm house, part sailing club and part ruin. I particularly like the grassed ramp leading up to the hall entrance. I suspect that this was for the animals to enter the property in Medieval times. I do know that it was common practice for the animals to live on the ground floor whilst the family and workers lived above them. The animals provided warmth for the people in the cold winter months and believe me it can get cold around here! An impressive building standing on Coniston Lake shore.

Watch this space for more information on my Blogger of the Month award!

Birth Place of Robbie Burns


image image imageOn our recent trip to Scotland we visited the house where Robbie Burns was born. This beautiful, low cottage has been restored to demonstrate life in the1760s. There was a lovely rag rug in front of the fire which I suspect wasn’t the rug that Robbie learned to crawl on!

I saw the box bed where Robbie was born, the first of seven children. Interestingly they have hung old linen babies night gowns, each had the name of a child embroidered on them, born in the box bed. Strangely there was a light inside each gown which appeared rather spooky. In fact I couldn’t get out of the room fast enough.

I am fairly certain that the phrases and slogans were not painted on the walls in Robbie’s day. This is a rather odd, modern idea designed to illustrate the times I suppose.

Robbie Burns lived in this cottage until he was seven years old in1766. He went on to become the best known Scottish poet and lyricist that Scotland has ever produced. He was also known as “Rabbie Burns” and was born in Alloway, Ayrshire, Scotland.image

Tomorrow I am off to The Black Sheep Wools which is very exciting. I can browse, plan and choose another project to start. I will report back and let you know what comes next! Watch this space.

Marmalade making.


image imageToday I have been making Marmalade! OK so I cheated a little and used tinned, ready prepared fruit. But I did cook it and sterilise the jars, and add sugar, and wipe up all the sticky mess! I’m pleased to report that it has turned out really good. I have this on good authority from Hubs who is a marmalade expert. I now feel like a good “House wife” well the bathroom wants cleaning and I hardly ever iron. You can’t win ‘em all!

I also visited my Sis who has been real sick and in hospital for some time. Fortunately she now seems to be on the mend. Thank goodness for modern, Medical science. Perhaps I should take her some Marmalade.

Apple Festival


We attended an Apple Festival at Erdigg as a birthday treat for me!!! The weather was beautiful, cold, crisp and Autumnal. We took a pic nic. played rolly polly down hills and melted marshmallow over a bonfire. Erdigg is a National Trust house near to Wrexham in North Wales. The apple display was awesome. I didn’t  realise that there are so many apple varieties, but we came home with bags of bargain apples.

The walled garden is lovely but I adore walled gardens. So mellow, warm and lush. The autumn colours are stunning with golden red foliage.  Truly a season of “mists and mellow fruitfulness” I had a lovely birthday treat and am grateful to have made it this far!image image image image image image

Blogger of the Month!


imageGreat happiness! I have been awarded Blogger of the month for September 2014 by Black Sheep Wools. Go to this is a great barn/shop to browse and maybe buy! They have a cafe for sustenance and an on line service. Black Sheep also visit many of the craft shows. In fact I spent quite a lot of time on their stall  at the Manchester Craft show recently.

I will up date you on this award later next week when I hope to pay them a visit.

I’ve had a heck of a week whilst Hubs has been away. Apart from walking Benji dog three times a day and hospital trips with my Sis nearly every day all is well! Oh and I cooked a dinner party for eight girl friends last night- whilst the Hubs away the girls will play! These friends are all from my village. We are a diverse group of women with multiple hobbies and very different lives. When we get together we all get on and don’t stop talking ( except when eating). We call ourselves “The Covan” and our next dinner party is on Halloween for which we will all be appropriately dressed. Must dig out that witches pattern for my outfit.

Smoked Applewood Cheese & Sage Sausage Plait



This would be great for a picnic💃

Originally posted on Homemade With Mess:

With the nights getting darker and Summer officially on its way out, a sausage plait is the perfect recipe for this time of year. Not only is it comforting, hearty and delicious, but if you are lucky enough to catch a few rays of sunshine then this makes great picnic food when cold. These days we are fortunate to be spoilt for choice when it comes to super market sausages, as they are regularly stocked with some really fab quality and affordable varieties. Because of this, my top-tip when making sausage plait would be to buy some decent quality sausages rather than a pack of sausage meat, which I often find can be a little cheap and flavourless. I used pork and apple sausages for this recipe, and they worked a treat!

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Serves 6

  • 450g sausage meat – I used pork and apple sausages, just squeezed out the meat from…

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