Sunday, 30 June 2013

June - Instagram

June brings with it the promise of so many things, everything is growing and the days are long and more often than not warm, cycling to collect the boys from school I noticed most days I am just wearing a t-shirt without one of my trusty M&S vests!

My vegetables are growing so fast with all this warm and wet weather, the peas now have sticks to grow up and the courgette plants have doubled in size

The blue bells in June were beautiful, I found white and pink ones too. 

We learned about the planets in June, creating our own to hang in the boys rooms

My parents had Asa and Japser for the weekend, while they were in Lego Land Barry and I enjoyed some much needed sleep and much needed time just the two of us

We spent the day at Stratford park, scooting, picnicing, swimming and walking through the woods 

Asa is a little snail life saver, he moves them out of harms way on foot paths and into the bushes


Saturday, 29 June 2013

Elderflowers & Gooseberries

Everywhere I look at the moment there are Elderflower bushes, as I cycle along the country roads I am hit by the heady scent of their flowers, it is intoxicating. This weekend the boys and I plan to forage a big basket full ready for cordial making.

In June there is another treat in store for us down at our local farm shop, the very first of the pick your own harvest is ready, the Gooseberries! After school on Friday we headed down to pick as many as we could carry, I have a recipe I want to try, if it goes well I will share it here!

Jasper was a great picker and picked as many as I did, Asa and Barry on the other hand sneaked in to check on how the strawberries were doing and both came out with red stains on their t-shirts, there really is no stopping them sometimes


Friday, 28 June 2013

Peach Melba tray bake - Recipe corner

For a birthday treat my Mum made these for me, they are a heavenly mix of sweet peaches, tart raspberries and a soft texture of almonds in the sponge. I have to admit I do love tray bakes, they are easy to prepare and even easier to cut up for transporting.
I hope you enjoy them as much as we do here
You will need:
  • 250g pack unsalted butter
  • 300g golden caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • 2 just-ripe peaches, stoned, halved, then each half cut into 3
  • 100g raspberries
  • handful flaked almonds
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar, to finish
    Line a traybake tin or small roasting tin, about 20 x 30cm. Heat oven to 180C. Gently melt the butter in a large saucepan, cool for 5 mins, add the sugar, vanilla and eggs, then beat until smooth with a wooden spoon. Stir in the flour, almonds and ¼ tsp salt
    Tip the mix into the tin, then lay the peach slices evenly on top – that way each square of cake will have a bite of fruit. Scatter the raspberries and almonds over, then bake for 1 hr-1 hour 10 minutes, covering with foil after 40 minutes. Test with a skewer: the middle should have just a tiny hint of squidginess, which will firm up once the cake cools. Cool in the tin for 20 minutes, then lift out onto a cooling rack. Once cold, dredge with icing sugar, then cut into squares.

    Tuesday, 25 June 2013

    Easy tarts

    This is our favourite dessert right now, easy and good for you


    You will need some premade tart cases, I use the M&S ones. (I normally get a few packs in when I am in the city)
    Any yogurt in your fridge, I use Yeo Valley 


    Place a tea spoon a your favourite jam on the bottom of the tart case, pour in 2 tablespoons full of yogurt. Decorate with any spare fruit you have, its a great way to get children to help at this point



    Monday, 24 June 2013


    "A portrait of Asa & Jasper, once a week, every week, in 2013."
    Playing in mirrors

    Jasper - Our mischievous little boy, today you woke before the rest of the house, padded down stairs, sneaked 3 chocolates on his tipy toes, devoured then put the evidence in his brothers room. Oh Jasper how you remind me of myself
    Asa - I see heaven in your eyes
    Joining in with Jodi on the 52 project


    Wednesday, 19 June 2013

    May - Instagram

    May came and went in a flash, we had a trip away, our littlest turned 4 and the sun started to shine a little. 


    Tuesday, 18 June 2013

    Growing your own

    This year Barry and I decided to get back to growing a few vegetables ourselves, not wanting to put too much pressure on ourselves. I volunteered for the outside plants, carrots, peas, beans, courgettes and beats have all been panted. Barry is in charge of the green house. He has toms, foxgloves (not edible, I know) and lettuce growing.

    We had an adult dinner this evening with both boys tucked up in bed tired from their weekly swimming lesson. Ricotta and mushroom pizza with home grown lettuce, so yummy.

    Lettuce can be grown indoors too if you don't have a green house, any pot, old coffee jar, or tray will do. Simply fill with soil and sprinkle your seeds in, we like these best. Water regularly. Cut and come again varieties are great.

    One cropped drop into a bucket or your sink full of ice cold water, swill then spin, we use a salad spinner and can't recommend it highly enough



    "A portrait of Asa & Jasper, once a week, every week, in 2013."
    Asa & Jasper - Still damp after their swimming lesson
    Joining in with Jodi on the 52 project

    Friday, 14 June 2013

    Happiness is.......

    Happiness is a family weekend all together, shadows in the garden, apple buds, slow walks and home made cream teas. 

    Natalie xx 
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