Monday 27 August 2012

Unfinished Projects

This has been one of those unfinished projects lurking in its box under the sofa, over the past 12 years it has occasionally come out and seen daylight, July 29th this year it came out of the box for the last time as I was determined to clear some of those unfinished projects starting with this Tiger in the Jungle latch hook kit, it was half finished when I took it out, and every evening after work I had dutifully sat down and worked on it, today it has finally been finished and the box has gone for ever, it is a joyous moment when you complete something that has been hanging about for so long, its to be hung on the wall in the front bedroom. My next unfinished project is a tapestry cushion front of a cockerel, quarter of it has been completed now I am going to get it finished and turn it into the cushion it deserves to be to sit on the sofa in the conservatory.

Yesterday was a day spent in the garden, clearing ground from spent crops and getting some winter veg planted out, tidying things in the greenhouses and tunnel, and picking raspberries and plums. We popped to the farm shop as I wanted some vitamin conditioner for the chooks to make sure they are in good shape to get through the coming winter, picked up a tray of 14 bell peppers for a £1 chopped them up and dried them in the dehydrator, I have fallen in love with drying everything.

While cleaning out the chooks I noticed that Gizmo my Silky Cockerel was limping, I noticed his spur had grown to about 4 inches long and had curled round and was catching him on his leg, I was horrified I had not noticed it before but he is so fluffy it was hidden, we managed to catch him and with some dog nail clippers I have taken off about 1/2 inch in a few weeks we will take a bit more off, while we had him we took the opportunity to apply some louse powder, so of course we then had to catch all the others and do the same, we also took the opportunity to trim the spurs of the other cock as well.

So a lot has been achieved this bank holiday weekend, I hope you all had a good one as well.

Sunday 12 August 2012


Yes today I got stung for the first time by one of our bees, and it blooming hurt, we had been doing a hive inspection and took some comb from one of the top bar hives as it was getting rather full, the comb was in a closed bucket, I went to move it not noticing a bee on the handle and of course as I squashed it in my hand it stung me on the finger, it made me feel not too well and gave me a headache, now all I have is a swollen finger and its still a bit tender. We need to take some honey off another two hives so hopefully we will get that done this week.
I got myself a food dehydrator, and today I have been drying out some bananas, I am really looking forward to playing with, I have ordered some books from Amazon about dehydrating food. Jerky is something I like the idea of doingWhen and if we get a glut of tomatoes this year we shall have a go at some dried tomatoes stored in olive oil, I managed to get a box of bananas today for a £1 from the farm shop, and some bags of apples for 50p each so tomorrow I will start drying out apples. I have been looking up about some dried meals, that will be ideal for when we go off walking.
Will report back when I have had a few more trials, The Granola went down well and I have made another batch this time its Maple and Pecan again its yummy, I have been taking granola for my lunch at work.
Once I have some strawberries dried I can add some of those as well. right must dash things to do.

Tuesday 7 August 2012

Breakfast Time

Breakfast is something I have been giving a lot of thought to, the processed cereals loaded with sugar and salt don't sit well with me, porridge is fine during winter but Hubby cant stand it, fry ups are not convenient during the week days and we need something to sustain us till lunch so fruit and toast don't fit the bill it had to something good healthy I can make myself and is quick and easy in the mornings and tasty, so I have just had a go at doing Granola, it ticks all the boxes and I can sneak things into that the otherwise wouldn't eat.

This one which doesn't take long to prepare, and there is 10 servings and its really tasty, 2tbsp sunflower oil, 125ml maple syrup, 3 tbsp honey, 1tsp vanilla extract, 300g rolled oats, 100g of flaked almonds and mixed chopped nuts, mix together, spread on two baking trays, bake at 150c for about 12/15mins, tip in a bowl mix in 120g of dried fruit I used cranberries and raisins and then I added 120g of ground up pumpkin sunflower sesame and flax seed, mixed it all up popped it back into the oven for about another 15mins, leave to cool and store in an airtight container.
I tried a portion with cold milk and it was scrummy. Will test it on the others tomorrow morning.
This set me to thinking about dried fruits that could be added strawberries, raspberries blackberries, I know you can buy them dried and kibbled but as we grow an abundance of them if I was to dry them myself, we can use them throughout the rest of the year, so I am researching a home dehydrator. if anyone out theres knows a reliable one to use at home let me know please.