Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Coke and pineapple juice

I went out for lunch this week with a local accountant who has been sending work our firm's way and it was a kind of thank you to him. I discovered at the lunch 2 things - firstly he has no large intestine (surprisingly noone asked any further questions!) and secondly his drink of choice is coke with pineapple juice. Yes.

Apparently he used to belong to a caving club, which was more a drinking club and the members tended to look down on those not drinking. One member developed a drink which looked enough like a mild bitter to not attract attention from the drinkers - grapefruit juice in coke. My colleague did not like grapefruit juice and replaced it with pineapple. It does look surprisingly like beer - not sure whether I'm brave enough to try it though. Surely there's curdling????

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Little bit of baking (again!)

I made Miranda's bakewell biscuits this weekend and they are lovely - despite being slightly larger than anticipated!

We also had a new veg box. We're trying to use everything each week and that does mean being slightly creative - not all the veg is easily usable as accompaniments. So this week I used up all the extra tomatoes making this (well, not this actual tart - this was the first one I made some time ago)

and we also had a shed-load of courgettes which I'm hoping to turn into this....tomorrow.

We also had mushrooms, broccoli, a savoy cabbage, sweetcorn, apples and pears. Lovely stuff!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Romanesco Cauliflower

Last week's veg box was again great - the best item in it though was this

It is apparently a Romanesco Cauliflower and you prepare and cook it as you would a cauliflower - not quite such a strong flavour though and it was loved by everyone in the house. More please!

We also had more beetroot (this time roasted and eaten with nectarines and salad leaves with a dressing), fennel (thinly sliced over the salad!), and more regular items like tomatoes, mushrooms, bag of salad, leeks and fruit. We are still just about managing to either eat or prepare food for the freezer to use up the box each week - I need some more tomato based recipes though!!!

I also made the next set of biscuits over the weekend - coffee and walnut biscuits. I'm sure that Leo would like me to point out that he put the walnuts on the top of the biscuits. Onto the next one!

The Ballet Programme

The NSO have another concert coming up in November - it's being referred to as an all Russian programme, but in my mind I'm calling it the ballet programme. We're playing excerpts from Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet Suites (yes, including the theme from The Apprentice!), Petrouchka by Stravinsky and Piano Concerto No 2 by Shostakovich.

Petrouchka is another ballet - again with a slightly strange and surreal plot, and we're just getting used to the music at the moment. It is not too long and I wanted to try and find a version of it on You Tube, but just found it in 4 sections rather than all in one video, so I'm not going to post it here. Wikipedia had a very full synopsis though which is here.

The piano concerto is a piece I thought I had not heard before, but recognised it within a few bars as being the music used by Disney to set the story of the steadfast tin soldier to in Fantasia 2000. I proclaimed this quite proudly to my desk partner at rehearsal and then thought I perhaps should have been a bit more circumspect about revealing my shabby musical knowledge! But I did find a video of it (it is only the first movement of the concerto) - it isn't a ballet, but there is a ballerina in it!

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Homemade Bourbon biscuits

Yummy yummy! These are also from Miranda's biscuit book and taste really great. As you will from the photo though, some of the precision in these biscuits lies in ensuring that they are cut the same shape and size. Yes, well that was a fail for me. I tried to use a measure to make them more accurate, but had nothing that I actually felt comfortable putting against the dough, so they came out as a lovely variety!

Also, the filling was very soft - I think I possibly should have waited until it firmed up slightly before filling the biscuits, because the biscuits ended up absorbing some of the filling and were soft the next day. The flavour was still great, but the texture not so much. I will have to try them again!

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Start of the new year

Well, new school year anyway - I thought it sounded a bit more positive than 'end of the summer!' This week has certainly been the end of the summer though - the mornings suddenly seem that bit darker and cooler (although the afternoons are still baking!), and although I've managed to stave it off for another week, my evening appointments will be starting again - orchestra on Monday, Rotary on some Tuesdays. I've had a lovely summer doing bugger all in the evenings (apart from games on a Wednesday which has continued throughout) and had time to do more baking and sorting out. It's going to be difficult getting back into the old routine again, but I'm sure it won't take long!

This week has been a bit rough and ready too - our new childminder is away on holiday and the holiday clubs stopped last week so my Mum and her husband Chris came up to help out with the boys Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday ready for them both to start back at school (well, school for Zachary and new nursery for Leo) this morning. She had a big plan - Nottingham Castle Monday, Sheffield Tuesday and Crich Tramway Museum Wednesday. Needless to say they ended up in Nottingham all 3 days and still didn't manage to reach the Castle!! I think they all had a good time - Mum doesn't see the boys all that often and although they pretty much ran her ragged, she does love being with them.

We also had a new veg box this week - lots of delights, but nothing that I'm going to turn into a cake at the moment - although typing this did remind me of this recipe. We got a lot of tomatoes this week and my Mum brought some from her garden too - mmmm tomato cake!! They're not plum tomatoes....never mind, might still be able to make something of them!

Some other bits of my week in pictures -

Flowers from my Mum

Lower fat treacle tart for pudding club

Very tasty - but I think I'd still prefer a version with just golden syrup in it! This one had a tablespoon of black treacle, grated apple and half-fat creme fraiche in the filling.

And finally, first day of school photos. For some reason it is incredibly hard to get my 2 boys to stand together (but not in front of each other), hands by side (no hands in front of face) and smiling (usually it's one, then the other, then both but one is by then doubled over in get the idea). I managed to get this photo

by also agreeing to a kung fu photo!

They both had a fab time today.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Center Parcs

We have just returned from a lovely few days at the Sherwood Forest Center Parcs - swimming, archery, adventure golf, boating, the works! We were there on the mid-week stay, Monday to Friday and it was just right - if we had been there any longer I would have been forced to clean the bathroom and vacuum!! Oh and wash the shower towels which never quite managed to fully dry each day - bit damp!

There were 2 other things that tickled me - Zachary got into the habit of calling the living accommodation 'valets' (a hybrid of my 'chalets' and Leigh's 'villas') and in the toy gift shop, they had a range of those wooden calendars which have two cubes at the top which you rotate to change the day number. ALL of them were set to 27 January, which is my birthday! Clearly whichever date they chose for the calendars would be someone's birthday, but it made me smile.

The boys want to go back. Again!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Veg Box No. 4

Veg box number 4 was bumper this week - and included a free fruit box. So fruit-wise we had about a gazillion (techincal term) pears, plus apples, grapes, a melon and plums. Then in the veg box we had padron peppers again, chard, tomatoes, mushrooms, runner beans, courgettes, cucumbers and beetroot (and possibly some other bits I can't remember!).

Leigh made pear and vanilla butter with the pears and we've eaten all the rest of the fruit. The cucumbers made a lovely oriental salad with some peppers, thank you Leigh, and we managed to eat quite a lot of the other veg in meals. I also made a bumper lasagne this weekend to eat at Center Parcs next week and that included all the tomatoes, mushrooms and courgettes, plus a layer of chard between mince layers.

And the beetroot...chocolate and beetroot cake of course!

This was a Nigel Slater recipe - the cake looks great (haven't tried it yet - also provisions for Center Parcs!) but it did use nearly every bowl and implement in the kitchen! The beetroot needs cooking, cooling, peeling and then food mixing into a rough puree. You then melt the chocolate, add espresso and melt the butter in the cooling liquid. Sift the dry ingredients together. Separate the eggs and whisk the yolks into a frenzy. Fold those into the chocolate mixture and then also the beetroot. Finally whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks, fold in caster sugar. Fold all of this into the chocolate mess (ahem), mixture, and the finally fold in the dry ingredients. It'd better be worth it!!!!

And just for good measure I've also made the next biscuit on my Miranda list - Bedtime Biscuits. These have oats and malted milk powder in the mix. We have a tub of Horlicks powder in the cupboard which I used for these, unfortunately the powder had formed itself into a solid lump. Luckily the mortar and pestle did its job well!!!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Telling Tales

The boys LOVE telling tales on each other - mind you, I'm pretty sure that was how it was with me and my sister too. But it's very interesting hearing to a tale unfold...and let me preface this by saying that the boys are now in bunk beds and Leo has been told (on many occasions) that at bedtime he is not allowed up in Zachary's bed.

Leo crying - 'Zachary hit me in the face'
Zachary - 'But Leo tipped water all over my bed'
Me - 'Leo you know you're not allowed in Zachary's bed'
More crying
Leo - 'Zachary asked me to get his water cup for him from his bed.'


Sunday, August 18, 2013

Culinary Escapades - a post script

Not being one to easily shake off my slightly clumsy/inept persona there was one kitchen casualty over the weekend. We have a great set of measuring spoons which are magnetic so all stick together and to the fridge and are double-ended - one end with a regular 'spoon' sort of shape and the other end a bit more of an oval, which is absolutely perfect for fitting into jars and containers with slightly narrower necks, for example spice jars.

As I was putting the courgette loaves (delicious - especially spread with butter!) into the oven to bake I failed to notice that the teaspoon measure had attached itself to the side of the loaf tin.... bye bye sweet teaspoon measure.

Culinary Escapades

It's being a bit of a foodie weekend.

Leigh has been working mainly with fruit - it's jam season and we still have a boatload of strawberries in the freezer from a few weekends ago when we headed off to Scaddows Farm to pick them. Added to that, Leigh's Mum gave him a box full of blackberries from her garden so he's been catching up on some jam-making this weekend. He made strawberry, apple and lime jam, and a blackberry chutney yesterday, and there's a spiced blackberry jelly straining in the kitchen as I type. Wonderful!

I've been doing things with vegetables. We have started getting a veg box again, from Riverford Organic Farms - it's still a little expensive compared to what I would spend normally at the supermarket, but it is making us eat veg I wouldn't normally buy, which is a good thing. We've had 3 boxes so far and have managed to eat our way through all of them so far which we're very pleased about. The first couple of weeks we had bags of pod peas which we gave to Leigh's Dad (he's a huge fan!), and then were able to use up anything else we didn't eat during the week in a large spaghetti bolognese!

This week we had a bag of spinach, 4 apples, 6 pears, a melon, 2 globe artichokes, a bag of salad leaves, 2 cucumbers, 4 courgettes and some padron peppers.

So last night I attempted to cook the globe artichokes and the padron peppers, neither of which I have eaten or seen prepared before. Riverford provided us with cooking information for both of them - the artichokes had to have their outer leaves removed, remove the hairy choke with a teaspoon and then boil whole in salted acidulated water for 20-40 minutes. To start with I had no idea how much of the leafy layer to remove, so I went until the leaves turned from dark green to a light greeny-yellow colour and then scraped out the middle. I'm not sure this was quite right as there were still very tough fibrous leaves even after cooking that couldn't be eaten, so should probably have removed more. The middle of the artichoke was good - although it did seem a lot of time and effort and bits you couldn't eat for a very small part of the vegetable! I think this may require further research.

The padron peppers were easier to deal with. You basically fry them whole until the skins are wrinkled and blistered, sprinkle with salt and then eat whole. They were delicious, but incredibly hot and spicy!!! Neither of us could eat as many as we wanted!

And then finally I've turned 3 of the 4 courgettes into 2 courgette loaves - one to freeze and one to take to a friend's house this afternoon.

Added to all this, we went over to Kedleston Hall yesterday for the Derbyshire Food and Craft Fair. Not great weather and not very many people there but the boys managed to pick up a wooden hazel whistle each, I got some lovely gin from these people, and Leigh bought some delicious mayonnaise from these people. Very good for dipping artichole and padron peppers in!

This trip had the added bonus that as National Trust members we then had a visit around Kedleston Hall itself which was amazing. Whay have we not been before? We will definitely be returning.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Jammy Dodgers!

I have reached the jammy dodgers page in my Biscuits book! I didn't read the recipe through before I started and so didn't realise that - (a) the jam isn't cooked in the biscuits, you simply sandwich two of the vanilla biscuits together when cool with it, and (b) Miranda suggests that you leave them for a day after putting them together to allow them to stick together properly and for the jam to absorb slightly into the biscuits. Yes. Well if she thinks that a batch of biscuits can be made in this house without being sampled the day they're made....

And a note on the jam - nothing specific was mentioned in the recipe, but jam with big bits in (like the mixed fruit jam  Leigh makes) will not work very well - I managed to break a biscuit trying to squash it down over the lumps! Sieved jam worked much better!!

Stage I - bake the biscuits individually

Stage II - sandwich with jam!!

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Camping on the Isle of Wight

We've just returned from a great 4 days on the Isle of Wight. We've never been before but have friends who have been with their caravan several times and have always seemed to have a great holiday. The Isle of Wight does seem to have a bit of a 'stuck in the 50's' reputation but we found more than enough to fill our 4 days and plenty that we'll try and do on our return next year!

We bought a new tent this year to try camping with the boys (the old tent got chewed through by a mouse in the shed!) and had a trial run in my Mum's garden a few weeks ago. Emboldened by the success of that night, we booked a holiday on the Isle.

We stayed at Beaper Farm campsite which was ace. Lovely big pitches, clean facilities and a playground for the boys.

It was just outside Ryde and very close to the ferry terminal. We managed to get pitched fairly quickly after we arrived

and went to Sandown for a walk along the seafront. The pier was great - we managed to get some dinner

and then played Lost Cities adventure golf - the first of 4 games of adventure golf over the 4 days we were there!

The boys slept really well in the tent - later bedtime than usual, but both of them slept till about 7 each morning which was bliss! Saturday saw us going to St Helen's beach in the morning for rock pooling. We were surprised by all the beaches we visited - all beautifully clean and not crowded at all. A lot of the beaches were very shingly but all the boys were interested in was fishing!! We didn't get very much, but there were a lot of shells and we saw lots of other people catching crabs with their bags of sausage meat - next time, next time!

In the afternoon we sent back to Sandown to Dinosaur Isle, the big dinosaur museum there which was excellent, and the evening saw us at the Waltzing Waters, which was a rather bizarre but compelling theatrical experience - the boys loved it!

On Sunday we drove across the island to the Needles.

The Needles are at Alum Bay which is a kind of seaside resort in itself - rides, shops, a chairlift down to the beach - where much paddling and falling into the sea was done!

a sweet factory and glass blowing workshop...and of course the obligatory filling of containers with layers of different coloured sand! 

We also walked along the cliff top to the National Trust centres right on the tip of the coast - the Old Battery which was a Victorian defensive fort, and then you can walk up the cliff a bit to the New Battery which was a secret rocket testing station. They're not as flashy as some of the big houses, but just as interesting - even more so in some ways. There was a great display with photos of people who had worked on the rockets then with a more up to date photo alongside it and some information about the job they did. 

Monday saw us visiting Shanklin seafront - played another 2 games of adventure golf (crazy golf and Pirate Adventure golf!)

We were hoping to go up to Shankling Chine which sounded lovely (gorge and waterfall) but we didn't quite make it and ended up for dinner back at the Baywatch on the Beach Cafe in St Helens which was fab. Another trip to the Waltzing Waters (our free return visit!) and then a wet strike on Tuesday morning. Could have done without that, but after a beautiful day here today the tent is finally dry and all packed up again.

Brilliant holiday - we didn't have time for the other National Trust or English Heritage properties, Black Gang Chine park, Robin Hill park, more beach time, either of the zoos, the butterfly and fountain we need to return!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Week 9 beckons...

I can hardly believe it but I am nearly at week 9 of Couch to 5k!!! My last week 8 run is tomorrow, and then week 9 beckons after the weekend.

I remember week 1 - I think I pretty much nearly gave up after the first minute's run, and now I can run for 28 minutes! Not fast...but I can keep going for 28 minutes. My body does seem to give up when I get the 5-minute call and the last 5 minutes are hard, but I can do it!

I have taken a possibly foolhardy step though of signing up for something to keep my motivation going after I finish the 9 weeks - a half-marathon in October. I'm not planning to be able to run all the way round, but I'm hoping that between now and then I can extend my half-hour running to an hour running and possibly try to get 10k in that hour. Which will mean I have to start running faster as well!

But I'm staying positive - now just need to find another good running plan to help me extend my run...

Friday, July 12, 2013

William Henry Shadbolt

I have been to a family funeral today - that of my cousin's son, William Shadbolt. William was only 17, but he was born with severe mental and physical disabilities and it is a testament to his parents' and sister's devotion to him that he defied medical opinion again and again and lived such a long life.

It is incredibly sad to consider the loss of such a young life (and I still haven't been able to look at the photos on the order of service for very long yet!), but the service was a wonderful tribute to an amazing young man who clearly touched the lives of many, many people. The church was packed tight with people who had come to pay their respects and full of vibrant colours - no black!

William's parents and sister all said a few words in the service, and I think it gave everyone a glimpse of what life was like with William and, despite their love for him, how hard it has been. And also how fulfilling and inspiring. I have nothing but admiration for them all, and for William himself, for his enjoyment of trees and classical music and that strength that just kept him going until he needed a final rest.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Tyger, Tyger

The theme for Zachary's school concert this year is 'Animals,' and his class are singing 'If I could talk with the animals...' We also have to provide costumes and Zachary is to be ...a tiger! He's making a mask at school so just had to sort out stripey yellow and black. Fortunately I already had a spare yellow t-shirt which I'd ordered from eBay for the Bee Day (and hadn't arrived in time) and I set about trying to turn it into something which looked like a tiger and not a bee!

Add some old tights as a tail and a bit of yellow fake fur (which I now have a large pile of!)

Blueberry Bumbles

This is another recipe from Miranda's lovely Biscuit book. These are regular biscuits with dried blueberries, orange zest and white chocolate chips in - quite nice, although you can't really taste the blueberries and the orange pretty much overpowers the biscuit. I probably put too much in! Straightforward to make and the bonus is that the dough gets rolled into logs which can either be chilled and cooked straightaway, or you can freeze the logs for emergency biscuits any time!

The next recipe in the book was sweetie biscuits, which look like regular cookies with Smarties on the top, so I'm leaving that one. The next recipe is chocolate biscuits with Rolos on top which Leigh tried and were lovely! That means the next batch to try will be...jammy dodgers!! Hurrah!!!

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Chewy date and coconut bars

This is a gorgeous recipe which Leigh obtained from a day long cookery course at the cookery school in Aldeburgh. There was a period when we used to make it pretty frequently, but it hasn't been made for a while and I thought it was about time it saw the light of day again!!!

115g butter
1 large tbsp golden syrup
1 egg, beaten
140g chopped dates
170g demerara sugar
85g dessicated coconut
115g self-raising flour

- Preheat oven 160C/325F/Gas 3
- Melt the butter and syrup together
- Allow it to cool for 5 minutes and then beat in the egg
- Mix all the dry ingredients together, then add the egg mixture and stir well
- Tip into an 8in square tin and press down
- Bake for approximately 20 minutes
- Allow to cool and slice into bars

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Tidy loft, tidy mind?

I have been needing to sort out our top bedroom for ages. The bed was still out from our last set of visitors (mid-May), there were pictures to be hung lying around and a huge pile of 'things to put away' at the bottom of the stairs. Leigh is out this evening so it is the perfect opportunity.

So, I've put the bed away and tidied the pictures into a stack (not hung them though...). I've emptied and sorted out 6 or 7 Crafty Creatives boxes and put aside some bits I think my friend will be able to use. A lot of the bits in the craft boxes I can see myself using, but some are a bit too random. My friend likes dabbling in crafty stuff too so I've sorted out some bits she might like. Put away a stack of birthday cards (from January...) - I'm trying now to only keep a maximum of 5 cards each year, that is particularly special or pretty ones. I'm still going to have to get rid of them eventually but whilst there's room in my box of special things I can keep going! I put away books, tried to sort the craft drawers in the desk but gave up and just ended up shoving a load of bits in the top drawer. So that will need going through again.

I looked in the loft cupboard - this is a project for another day (videos needing to be turned into DVDs lurk in there are the back somewhere behind cots and old computer game consoles) but there are 2 rather large stacks of empty boxes in there and we seem to just accumulate more and more. Boxes from appliances, computer stuff, kitchen stuff, board games, Crafty Creatives... I thought it would be a good idea to just put them all in the bedroom and get Leigh to look at them with me and decide if we could get rid of any. When I had nearly covered the floor and there were still boxes in the cupboard I gave up!

But, one other great thing - I refound some dinosaur material I asked my Mum to get for me. A while ago now she made quilts for the boys' beds and Zachary's had a great dinosaur fabric on it. The daughter of a friend of ours is mad about dinosaurs and has a dice game which is crying out for a drawstring bag! So I asked Mum if she could get me any more of the fabric and she did - which I then put in the loft and have spent the time since then trying to ignore it because I couldn't see, let alone reach my sewing machine. I was very organised tonight though, got the tiding out of the way and made a drawstring bag for the game and another little bag from the material. I decided to use ribbon for the handles of the bag rather than make them from the material itself (which is what I have been doing in the past when I've made these bags) but I couldn't for the life of me remember how I fixed them on properly with all the hemming and stuff. So it's a bit of a cobble - artisan I think is the word!

Here are the fronts (well...either side could be the front really!)

And the backs. I hope she likes them!

Big screens have more fun

Welcome to the newest member of our family - my lovely red 3DS XL. I don't play a huge amount of computer games really, but I've been caught up in the latest Professor Layton and the new Animal Crossing games recently (and tempted by Luigi's Mansion 2...) and have been using Leigh's old 3DS (he migrated to XL a while ago) to play them. Leigh was concerned that my screen was too small and bought me a fab red XL. Very sleek, lovely big screen!!!

Only problem is - more space for the boys to be jabbing their fingers when I'm trying to play!!!!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Bag of tricks

My handbag was feeling a bit heavy today so I thought I'd have a clear out. Blimey it's been a while. When I'm out and about with the boys I tend to gather things in my bag - the various bits of detritus they leave the house with and then have nowhere to put it...stuff collected in other I though for the delight and entertainment of you dear reader, I'd have a clear out tonight.

Here is my bag (although I hasten to add I do have a proper handbag for work - this is my weekend bag...)

and here is what I poured out of it (along with an inordinate amount of sand....)

which consisted of -

  • First aid kit
  • Purse
  • Mobile phone
  • Baby wipes - new pack, I suspect most of the additional weight lies at this door!
  • Umbrella
  • Dvds for posting
  • Another purse – full of shoppng cards
  • 2 lots of pirate bubbles - I think from a party about 6 weeks ago
  • 2 blue inhalers - Leigh!
  • Toy golf ball - ?????
  • Yellow plastic scissors - from the front of a craft magazine one of the boys had last month
  • Small tub Vaseline
  • 14 pens and pencils - ooooops!
  • Gullivers theme parks blue wristband
  • Black eye pencil - used to create pirate scars and facial hair for the party mentioned above!
  • Pink hair band - mine
  • Paracetomol - of course!
  • Ladybird mobile phone
  • Toy story phone with magic screen - another jot from the front of a magazine
  • Small white wolf - thank you Kinder eggs
  • Small plastic bag with safety pins in - my brain can almost remember why these are in my bag but the information is proving ridiculously elusive
  • 12p
  • Used battery - we seem to get through a surprisingly large number of batteries what with Wii remote controllers, Tag readers and the like. I tend to just sling them in my bag and then attempt retrieval on the weekly trip to Asda!
  • D20 with a d12 inside - one of Zachary's

It's much lighter on refill!

Friday, June 21, 2013

New chef on the block

I think I have blogged about Cooking with Hugo before, but I can't be bothered to find the link now so I'll explain again! It's a cookery class designed for 2-4 year olds and run by 2 mums in Long Eaton and it is fab! They used to just run sessions on a Tuesday, which became impossible for me to attend with Leo once I went back to work and I was very disappointed. But for the month of June they have been running Friday classes as well and I have been taking Leo.

Teresa and Louise set the room up for the children - we start with a song, say hello to Hugo the dinosaur (who's a cheeky scamp and usually hiding or napping!) and then see what we're making and the ingredients. It's all designed so that the children can more or less do everything themselves and the dish can be prepared and baked all within the hour session. Teresa and Louise do a fab job measuring out all the ingredients so it's just a case of tipping things into the bowl and mixing, or rolling or sprinkling. And they provide a snack and drink while the dish is being cooked and another fun activity - we had play dough last week and made nature weavings this week.

So here are some pics of Leo - there are also some on their Facebook page. There is a website but there's not much on there.

Leo making his rhubarb cookies last week

... potato, pea and pesto tart this week 

And with his nature weaving - super dude!

Thursday, June 20, 2013


A very good friend of ours  has been dabbling in zentangles - which is a way of producing art through the use of structured pattern and design. It is said to help focus the mind, and Leigh has been trying it out as well.

This morning Zachary had a try too and I think got the hang of what he was trying to do (although I've just noticed a spooky ghostly face in the middle! Not deliberate I'm sure!)

They're so attractive - I'm thinking I might never have to buy notecards again!